(By Iheanyi Ezinwo)-The administration of Governor Ezenwo Nyesom Wike has been praised for providing a conducive environment for business to thrive in Rivers State. This commendation was made by Hon. Prince Charles Beke, Managing Director of Eastern Wrought Iron Limited, in an encounter with Notable Outcome in his office in Port Harcourt.
Hon. Prince Charles Beke, who was the immediate past chairman of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, Rivers/Bayelsa chapter, said he scores the governor 98 percent pass mark on governance of the state.
“ In the area of business growth, what we need as industrialists is enabling environment and that includes provision of security, electricity, road network and checking of multiple taxation. His Excellency has sole responsibility over local control of taxes between the state and local governments. In this area I give him kudos. He has been able to sanitise the system, so there has been no case of multiple taxation in the state.
“We also commend him for road network for business to transport goods freely. Look at the Trans- Amadi area where many industries are based. The link roads are good for movement of goods. On security, from his periodic reports, I think he has also done his own part. He is to make sure that the needs of security agencies are provided in terms of vehicles and other logistics in the state. He has done that but as we know, our security control does not lie in the hands of the state government.
“It is rather in the hands of the Inspector General of Police, who is in charge of security of life and property of all Nigerians, and he has Commissioners of Police in all the states and they take directives from him, and not from the state government. They only have security meeting where they discuss security architecture of the state.
“The security architecture enables the state to know the area they can assist to achieve set goals. His Excellency has always said that he is doing whatever that is expected of him. And there has been no refutal from the security agencies .So if there are lapses in the security of the state, it is the federal security agencies that should be held responsible”, he emphasized.
The Managing Director of Eastern Wrought Iron Limited, Port Harcourt further explained that the improved internally generated revenue in Rivers remains a clear evidence of increased industrial activities in the state. “It means so much has been done to check security threats in the state’’, he enthused.
“Provision of electricity is not in the hands of the state government but those of private organizations. However, with the collaboration between the state and the distribution companies, power supply in Trans Amadi area has improved significantly for companies to carry out their businesses. The collaboration is boosting industrial activities in the state and encouraging new investors to come in”, he said.
Thanking the governing for running an inclusive administration in the last four years, where no part of the state is left behind in appointments and development projects, Hon. Charles Beke called on Rivers people to encourage the governor to do more.
“ Our collective prayer is that he will continue with that Rivers spirit in his second term to return the state to its past glory and Garden City status. The only area I want to draw attention in the aspect of environmental sanitation. The dumping of refuse on the middle of roads is offensive”, he observed while suggesting that the people appointed to do the job look at ways of controlling the dumping of refuse.
“ There should be collection location in every area, even if it means government buying over a property and fencing it off; let it be a neighbourhood dumping site where trucks can then go and pick up the refuse. That will keep the streets free of filth. Visitors driving into Port Harcourt on Saturday morning will be put off by the refuse that litter the roads. I want government to seriously look into this in the second term”, Prince Beke counseled.
He warned against the demarketing of Rivers State by Rivers people. “Rivers people should stop demarketing the state and control what they post on the social media that have adverse effects on the image of the state. This is our state. We should be patriotic irrespective of our political leanings. It is in our collective interest to project the good things and opportunities in the state.
“ Demarketing the state because you don’t like the face of the person at the helm of affairs will affect you directly or indirectly. Let us promote our state to attract investors. The interest of the state should be over and above personal interests. Whoever is elected to govern will only be in office for awhile and leave but the state remains and belongs to all of us”, the Emohua born politician summed.