By Charles Nwaoguji
The Enugu Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ECCIMA) has appealed to Federal Government to support the completion of the Enugu International Trade Fair complex to boost Nigeria economy.
According to the newly elected President of ECCIMA, Sir Emeka Nwandu, the completion of the ECCIMA Secretariat complex would create a lot of employment for the youth.
Nwandu, who made this appealed at the installation as the 15th President alongside the induction of new members, held in Enugu, said that the chamber being the headquarters of South East Chambers of Commerce would attract Igbo sons and daughters to invest at least 10% of their businesses in the south east which will boost Nigeria economy as a whole.
At the same time, he called on the Federal Government to improve on the ease of doing business in this region, such as providing for liquefied gas reticulation, reducing the cost of energy, developing our seaports and inland dry ports as well as other enablers such as infrastructure and business friendly policies in all our state governments in the south east region.
“We therefore appeal to The Federal Government, our State Governors of the south east region and legislative representatives at all levels to provide the needed political willpower for developing the industrial cum commercial ecosystem of the eastern region.” the new ECCIMA President declared.
Speaking at the event, the former Governor of Anambra State, Mr Peter Obi commended the success stories of South East entrepreneurs.
He lamented on lack of support for local industries and delays, sometimes for years, in the payment to business men, including Small and Medium Enterprises proprietors, for goods supplied to government.
Obi said that some of them collapsed due to prolonged debts. The former Anambra governor said that the ugly event needed a legislation that would make it illegal for government to owe contractors beyond 90 days.
“Part of responsibility of governance is good and clear planning that will enable leaders to know their cash flow and what it can or cannot support at all times,” Obi said.
He thanked members of the Chamber movement in Nigeria for being part of the economic growth of Nigeria and encouraged government at all levels to patronise Made-in-Nigeria goods, saying: “As Governor, I bought over 1,000 Innoson vehicles for various uses, because such support usually have domino effect on the economy of the country.”
The bi-annual key man Awards were later given to Mr. Peter Obi, Chief Leo Stan Ekeh, Sir Rob Anwatu, Chief Allen Onyema, Engr. Arthur Eze, Sir Anthony Enukeme, Dr. Innocent Chukwuma, Dr. Cosmoas Maduka, Dr. Cletus Ibeto, Dr. Sir J.J. Ezeokafor, Surv. Ugo Chime, Dr. Ifeanyi Okoye, Engr. Onuora Nnabugwu, Chief Loretta Aniagolu, Dr. Herbert Wigwe, Dr. Ernest Nnaemeka Azudialu-Obiemesi, Prince Ifeanyi Chike Ezechukwu, Most. Rev. Dr. Emmanuel Chukwuma, Engr. Emeka Nwangele, and all the Past Presidents of ECCIMA who were honoured with awards of excellence in service.
Thirty one (31) new members were later inducted into Enugu Chamber of Commerce, by the Director General, Henry Nduka Awuregu who charged them to always abide by the code of ethics of the chamber.
The new President was installed alongside other council members including, Barr. Jasper Nduagwuike (1st Deputy President), Sir Odeiga Jideonwo (2nd Deputy President, Sir Chijioke Mbagwu (Honorary Deputy President), Engr. Nnanyelugo Onyemelukwe (V.P. Treasury), Engr. Nonye Osakwe (VP), Dr. Emma Nwankpa (VP), Pharm Sir Jasper Onyeka (VP), Sir Eric Chime (VP), Surveyor L.C.K. Ugwu (Council Member), Mr. Uzo Ozigbo (Council Member), Barr. Gozie Okoye (Council Member), Elder Martin Onyenmuru (Council Member), Chief Mrs Oriyomi Obidigbo (Council Member), Mrs Roseline Egbo (NAWORG Coordinator).
The event was attended by the President of South East Chambers of Commerce, Mr. Humphrey Ngonadi with other city chamber Presidents from Aba, Umuahia, Awka, Ebonyi, Onitsha, Nnewi, Nsukka and the Immediate Past President of Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr. Tony Ejinkonye and a host of other political and corporate LEADERS.