By Christian ABURIME
Governor of Anambra State, Professor Chukwuma Charles Soludo has given the commitment of the State Government to partner with the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) and the organized private sector to achieve his administration’s industrialization agenda.
Governor Soludo gave the assurance at the MAN Business/Stakeholders Town Hall Meeting in Onitsha.
The Governor who described the community of manufacturers as true partners of progress, recalled his meeting with the landlords’ association and revealed that they had talked about Onitsha and its environs, and the need to revive its fortune as a Commercial city of repute
The Governor noted that his administration is already tackling the foundational issues and disclosed that there are plans to pass a law to make touting illegal and punishable by imprisonment for those found guilty.
He stressed that his administration’s major goal is to transform Anambra from a state with a largely informal economy into a hub for industry, technology, and leisure.
Governor Soludo also disclosed that the Anambra industrial policy would soon be implemented, and hinted that a new Commissioner for Industry had been appointed to support his vision for manufacturing and industrialization.
“With a sizeable urban population, Anambra’s future lies in industrialization and manufacturing, and we are dedicated to following this path.
“Our goal for Anambra is to make it a thriving community where people want to live and visit. People won’t be able to invest in the state if they can’t come and feel at home.
“In our master plan, we have also acquired 100 hectares of land that will house the center of commerce and grow to be Africa’s largest shopping mall, as well as 4000 hectares of land that will be an industrial city and the Nnewi Automobile Park at Akwaihedi.
“We will develop a power policy, now that the Nigerian constitution has been amended to include power on the concurrent list, he stated.
The Governor emphasized that buying local products is the best way to support its growth and urged Ndị Anambra living abroad and outside the state to send 25–50% of the taxes they pay to their home country to Anambra, assuring that if they do, the state will be far better for it in five to ten years.
Earlier, the President of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, Otunba Francis Meshioye, expressed gratitude to the Governor for honoring them with his presence as well as to his colleagues for the cordial reception.
He commended MAN members for sustaining their businesses, despite the difficult economic period and emphasized that the role of MAN includes providing foreign exchange as well as deepening ties between the public, private sector and manufacturers in particular. He prayed that the Dozzy Group’s Liason Office would bring good tidings and the inauguration of the Elders’ Committee will forge a way ahead for manufacturers in the state.
On her part, the Chairman of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (Anambra, Enugu, and Ebonyi), Lady Ada Chukwudozie, emphasized the need for the Government of Anambra State to find solution to problems related to land allocation, title documents (C/O), constant power supply for industries to operate efficiently, among others.
Lady Chukwudozie praised the Governor for flagging-off more than 261 km of roads in the state and suggested that a knowledgeable consultant should be engaged to meet with MAN stakeholders to discuss the issues and come up with solutions.
Speaker of Anambra State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Uchenna Okafor, Deputy Speaker, Dr. Pascal Agbodike, Senator Ifeanyi Ubah Representing Anambra South District, Chairman, Anambra State Traditional Rulers’ Council, Igwe Alfred Achebe, members of the State Executive Council, among others attended the event.
The event also featured commissioning of the MAN Liason Office provided by Dozzy Group.