Bonny monarch lends muscle to new BOCCIMA
The newly reactivated Bonny Chamber of Commerce (BOCCIMA) received huge backing from the king of Bonny, Edward Asimini Dappa Pepple, the highly revered Perekule XI and Amanyanabo of Grand Bonny Kingdom.
The backing was made formal on Saturday, April 27, 2019, in Bonny when BOCCIMA concluded its ICT-driven reactivation scheme sponsored by Exxonmobil Producing Unlimited through technical backing of Wrights Portfolio Consult Limited.
This was said to aim at launching Bonny to international limelight through trade and global business transactions. The king was said to have initiated the reactivation scheme as way of using trade and business to build the kingdom and to bring Bonny at par with the likes of Dubai.
Speaking at the closing ceremony of the one week ‘ICT Training and ICT Upgrade’ event, the King, represented by the chairman of the Bonny Chiefs Council, Dagogo Isoala Claude-Wilcox, said the palace was satisfied with what has so far been done by Constance Nwokejiobi, the Country Executive Director of Wright Portfolio and Exxonmobil to the point that the BOCCIMA now sounds confident to deliver on the mandate of the Amanyanabo and the Chiefs Council.
The chairman of the chiefs council said in an interview that he was confident to report back to the king BOCCIMA look capable of driving the development of the Island with the speed envisaged by the palace and the people of Bonny Kingdom.
The chairman who led over 10 Se-Alabos (top chiefs) who often are leaders of their various war-canoe houses to the closing ceremony to emphasize the importance attached to the reactivation scheme by the monarch made it clear that whatever is needed to make the new BOCCIMA be a sustained success would be done by the King and the Chiefs Council.
He said; “Bonny is growing and the island has people in all the professions. The sky is your limit.” He added that Bonny was a great merchant city right from the days of slave trade to the era of palm oil that fed the industrial revolution of Great Britain, up till the present era of crude oil and gas. To him, there is no reason why the island would not be one of the strongest trading cities in the world.
In his welcome remarks, the scheme’s coordinator and official from the Public and Government Affairs Department of ExxonMobil, Bara Kabaka Brown, said the oil multinational corporation jumped at the request of His Majesty to help reactivate BOCCIMA because of the enormous opportunities it would bring to Bonny Kingdom. He said chambers of commerce around the world drive development to their host cities.
He noted that the reactivation of BOCCIMA is one of the numerous activities lined up to reposition Bonny Island ahead of the first-ever coming of a federal highway to Bonny Island and the coming of the NLNG Train-7, the largest train to be.
In his closing address, the Interim President of BOCCIMA, Lawrence F. Jumbo, said what is happening to Bonny through the revived chamber is no joke, saying efforts have been put in place to ensure sustainability.
In his vote of thanks, one of the experienced hands and forces behind the new drive, the CEO of Bie-Usha (WA) Limited, the Amaopusenibo, Chapp Jumbo BJ, thrilled the audience with hints about the numerous benefits lined up for BOCCIMA members especially trade missions abroad. He said the biggest ambition is for BOCCIMA to become the fist city chamber in Nigeria to host an international Oil and Gas Trade Fair.
The morning session was dominated by a thrilling lecture by Williams Odah from the Lagos City Chamber of Commerce who took the eager BOCCIMA members on membership drive mechanisms, what to expect from a City Chamber, the reasons for decline, the strategies for financial sustainability, and the various international funding source-possibilities.
Most of the CEOS who participated told newsmen that their eyes had truly been opened to new ideas and numerous investment options possible in Bonny Island and how to prepare for business life beyond oil/gas. They said they are now primed to running their businesses, forming partnerships, and thinking about collaborations to achieve goals.
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