The Director General of the World Trade Centre and Nigerian former minister of the economy, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, has urged governors of the South-East region to build a regional economy through intentional approaches.
Okonjo-Iweala who spoke in Owerri, the Imo State capital on Thursday in her keynote address at the ongoing Southeast summit on the region’s economy and security, said that only deliberate approaches by the governors would boost the economy of the region.
Okonjo-Iweala who delivered her speech through a Zoom meeting, asked the governors to eschew bitterness among themselves.
According to her, the Igbo race had huge human resources, saying that it would be utilised to advance the economy of the region.
“The Igbo have high human resources. We are scattered across the world and are excelling. I call on the Southeast governors to convene an investment forum to examine the cause of blockages within the zone and how to address them, eschew bickering and work together.
“I urge the governors to open discussions with pharmaceutical companies, and vaccine producers on how to create a market chain in the zone. It can be achieved since power has been privatised.
“I appeal to the governors to maximise the huge Ndigbo human resource to support professors to develop high-quality schools, diaspora doctors to build quality hospitals.” She summed up.
The chairman of the occasion and Nigeria’s former senate President, Anyim Pius Anyim, condemned the rising insecurity in the region.
Anyim urged the leaders of the region to make a strong statement on the struggle for the actualisation of a sovereign state of Biafra even as he suggested that the agitators should be engaged.
The Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Alfred Achebe, called for the restoration of Igbo values to drive economic goals.
Governor Hope Uzodimma of Imo state welcomed his brother governors to the state and declared commitment to the growth of the region.
Governors Chukwuma Soludo of Anambra state, Alex Otti of Abia state, Peter Mbah of Enugu state, and Francis Nwifuru of Ebonyi state, all declared their readiness to work for the unity and safety of the region.
The summit continues tomorrow, Friday in technical sessions.