By Ogu Bundu Nwadike, M.A
Signs that His Excellency, Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, CON, KSC has a great vision for an industrialized Imo State were seen when as a national legislator he provided cottage industries in the three zones of Imo State – Owerri, Orlu and Okigwe.
Today, at the verge of becoming the governor of Imo State, Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha has made public his plans for industrialization of Imo State from May 29, 2019.
In the abridged edition of his concise but comprehensive manifesto, he had to following say about industrialization, job and wealth creation.
“(Our government shall on assumption of office embark on) Creation of 135 manufacturing enterprises (that will be) localized in the 27 Local Government Areas (LGAs); Empowerment of 15 youths per year from of the 305 wards in the State for specific skills acquisition trainings that will amount to 4,575 entrepreneurs each year; Create an ICT Innovation hub in Owerri to empower Imo youths and products of Imo schools to play in the software and Apps development opportunity space to emerge as strong techpreneurs and active players in the digital economy; Partner with hotels and transportation entrepreneurs to transform Owerri a conferencing, hospitality and entertainment capital of the South East and South South geo-political zones of the country; Creation of Industrial Clusters and Parks in.the three Senatorial zones of the State in partnership with the private sector; Aggressively pursue investment drives within and outside Nigeria to attract industrialists to established in the various Local Government Areas that have comparative and competitive advantage; Launch a four-year N10 billion Imo Employment Trust Fund (IMO-ETF) to give access to entrepreneurial ventures across the three senatorial zones of the State; Pursue opportunities in prospecting for solid minerals available in the State, including lead, calcium carbonate, zinc, and clay limestone.”
In the months of November and December 2018, Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha made two major tours to the United Kingdom and the United States. His mission to meet with the Imo community in those countries.
However, as it turned out he killed more than one bird with one stone. For example, he met with representatives of government of a numver of States in America a well as the officials of their legislature. He obtained concrete assurances of bilateral relationships between their States and Imo State.
Significantly, he held interactive sessions with Imo people, among whom were manufacturers, industrialists and investors. And from the reports of the foreign trip, Ihedioha got tremendous assurances from Ndimo in diaspora that they will involve the foreign direct investment property of the incoming Ihedioha administration.
He believes in vocational skills acquisition trainings for sustainable empowerment and employment of the people. This he remarkably facilitated and sponsored for thousands of beneficiaries from across the 305 wards of Imo State.
On job and wealth creation, Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha facilitated the employment of hundreds of Imo people into the federal civil service. Many of the beneficiaries of his skills acquisition trainings and empowerment progammes are still earning decent livelihood through the skills they acquired.
What all of the foregoing portend is good omen for Imo State with Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha as governor. When he promises industrialization, job and wealth creation, he precisely knows what he is talking about.
Imo people should support him by voting for him on March 2 for the overall benefit of all Imo people.
(c) Ogu Bundu Nwadike, M.A
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