By Chidi Nkwopara & Chinonso Alozie
OWERRI—A stakeholder in Imo State, Perry-Uchenna Ekwunazu, yesterday, observed that lack of electricity supply had increased the level of impoverishment in the Nigerian communities.
He spoke to Vanguard in Umuaka, Njaba Local Government Area, in the state, on the hardship currently being experienced by Nigerians.
He reasoned that “political leaders in the nation had jettisoned purposeful vision and co-ordinated approach in dealing with the challenges in transforming the country.”
He said: “Nigerian political leaders have not been mindful of the strategic challenges and developmental expectations which include the provisions of electricity supply to our rural areas.
“I believe that it will go a long way in addressing the myriad of problems we have in our communities as well as address the issue of poverty.”
Ekwunazu was of the expectation that more laws were needed to assist the executive in addressing the pressing issues in the country for the good of the governed.
“I think, we need more laws to assist the executive in finding solutions to problems in this country, laws that will impact directly on the electorate,” he noted.
Poor business environment
Meanwhile, weak business opportunities arising from inadequate infrastructure and low purchasing power among local population in Imo State, is giving members of Imo Economic Development Initiative, IEDI, sleepless nights.
Similarly, very low employment opportunities resulting from weak absorptive capacity of the few employers in the state, is another source of serious concern for the group.
The group’s chairman, Professor Maurice Iwu, who disclosed this during the commissioning of IEDI office in Owerri, also expressed worry over the dearth of educational institutions to accommodate what he called “the positively insatiable quest for quality education by the Igbo.”
According to Iwu, the challenge facing them now, is the development of the state’s economy to reduce poverty, unemployment, create wealth and improve the internally generated revenue of the state.
“A deliberate, well-thought out plan of strategies to accomplish the goals are being addressed in the following areas: Agriculture, urban renewal of our three major cities, rural vitalization/renewal, health, energy, education and security”, Iwu said.
Professor Iwu further opined that “mobilizing, attracting, nurturing economic ventures, supporting the development of much needed infrastructure and deploying ancillary programmes are raison d’etre for the Economic Development Initiative”.
While affirming that the group is not overwhelmed by the challenges, Professor Iwu however insisted that “the time for agonizing is over, as we will organize to find solutions to the problems confronting Imo people.”