By Job Osazuwa and Henry Uche
With the recent worrisome level of crimes being perpetrated in the South East and South-South, the former Chief of Defence Staff, General Alexander Ogomudia (retd), has recommended the way out.
According to him, fixing the education sector to meet international standards and establishing clusters of industries would go a long way to mitigate these crimes.
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Speaking at the maiden medal of Honour’s Nite, organised by the South East South South Professionals of Nigeria (SESSPN) in Lagos, the former defence boss maintained that economic capacity building for young people would shift the attention of youths away from doing evil to engaging in more productive ventures that will be beneficial to not only themselves but for the country.
With the theme, “A Blueprint for the Rapid Economic and Social Transformation of the South East and South-South regions of Nigeria”, the general maintained that a satisfied man would never carry arms.
‘If we get it right in the South East and South South it would translate to the rest of the country. We need to increase investment in our regions and sensitize the political class on the best way to deliver dividends of democracy.
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‘If every governor in the South East and South-South can emulate Governor Chukwuma Soludo, by supporting indigenous industrialists, entrepreneurs, economists and others, it would augur well for us,’ he added.
On his part, the deputy president/chairman of the organising committee, Mr Andy Wabali, stated that the group’s desire to see the Socio-economic and political development of the two regions surpass those of Turkey, Indonesia, Malaysia and even the Asian Tigers.
According to him, the group came up with a document in 2014, to bring together those who haik from the zones and are doing great things in different parts of the world, urging them to be development-focused in order to restore the lost glory of the regions.
‘We want to compete and surpass the economy of Turkey, Indonesia, Malaysia and even Asia Tigers. That’s why we honoured these 10 distinguished sons and daughters of our regions. They have been doing great works in different parts of the world and we want such to be seen in our regions. Let’s come together to build our regions because nobody would do it for us. We are calling on well- meaning south East and South South people to join the train,’ he implored.
The personalities honoured were: The Executive Secretary of Nigeria Content Development Management Board (NCDMB) Simbi Wabote; erstwhile deputy speaker HoR, Emeka Ihedioha; Mr Sam Ohuabunwa; Uche Orji; Okey Oramah; former governor of Cross River Donald Duke; founding president of SESSPN, Emmanuel Ijewere; Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala; late Chidi Izuwah and late Albert Okumagba.