The government in Rivers State is said to be pro-business and is determined to protect businesses and investors so as to boost internally generated revenue (IGR).
The Mayor of Port Harcourt, Alwell Ihunwo, revealed measures being taken to protect businesses and investors especially within Port Harcourt mayoralty (Local Council Area) when a delegation from the Rivers/Bayelsa Chapter of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) paid him a visit.
The Mayor said his team, along with the state government now headed by Siminalayi Fubara, a professional accountant, will do all within their power to support businesses and to support MAN to ensure that more investors came into Port Harcourt.
He said: “As you can see, prior to this time, you saw task forces or people moving about harassing people. That is no more.”
Commending the MAN delegation for sustaining business vibe in the city, he reminded the world that Port Harcourt is a good place for investors.
He said the former governor with the support of the present one put all necessary security measures in place to ensure that the state is safe, particularly PHALGA for businesses and investors to choose the city.
He reminded his business guests that the boys harassing business people on the streets of PH were no more seen. “We ensured that businesses do not suffer such. We want that businesses are protectors and investors are attracted and protected in the Garden City. That is what we have ensured.
“ If for any reason you find anybody, be it from the LGAs or communities coming to harass you unnecessarily, report to us because we cannot sit here and see businesses being chased away from the city or the state.
“We will do everything to protect businesses and investors. Without businesses, internally generated revenue (IGR) needed to carry out infrastructural development will suffer.”
Ihunwo said both the past and present governors have executed infrastructural projects such as roads and flyovers such that people can now travel from the state capital to any local council headquarters in a short time.
“The state govt has done everything possible to ensure that at least businesses are done seamlessly, particularly in regard to traffic situation which he said has become very good. “You have time to do your business. We want to grow like Lagos and grow our IGR. The only way to do this is to encourage investments into the state.”
He disclosed that the new commissioner of police, Polycarp Emeka Abonyi has already met with the local council bosses to ensure quick security in the state. He said this is because without security, no meaningful business or investment can thrive.
Urging the MAN chiefs to waste no time to refer matters to the Council, he pledged support to respond to challenges confronting manufacturers.
He also agreed to partner with MAN for a show of PH products. “We will ensure solution as soon as possible. We will try to partner with you and support you where it is necessary.”
Earlier, the MAN boss in the two states, Vincent Okuku, described the Mayor and the City as friendly to businesses.
Okuku pleaded for sustained positive environment to make PHALGA a very conducive and attracted area for investors.
“We are here to re-emphasise that Trans-Amadi Industrial Area is the best industrial estate in Rivers State. This is because of availability of infrastructural facilities in the place that are not in other places in the state.
“There are roads, gas pipeline, etc. If not the removal of rail tracks, the area was designed to move goods to the seaport and to the hinterlands.
“We ask that PHALGA continues to support manufacturers. Please make a case for the state government to rebuild moribund factories such as PABOD Brewery to become bigger.”
Okuku said it is time to show that there are factories in the PHALGA area of the Garden City. “Join us to showcase the factories in the area and the products that are in Rivers State.
“Many people do not know that many factories exist in PH. That is why we are asking that you join us do an exhibition of manufactured goods purely by Nigerians in Port Harcourt.
“This is our major reason for coming down here to let you know that MAN is vibrant and we have factories in existence.
“We need support for factories and to attract more factories in Trans-Amadi. There are still lands that can be used for factories that could give rise to gainful jobs.”