By Onah Paulinus Ogbaru : The Onitsha Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ONICCIMA), has deplored the late passage of the 2017 Appropriation Act, which they said will grossly impinge on the full implementation of the budget.

The outgoing president of the Chamber, Chief Uchenna Apakama (FPSN), who stated this during the 29th Annual General meeting (AGM) of the Chamber, urged the various ministries and agencies charged with the responsibility of preparing Nigeria’s annual budget and the National Assembly to ensure early passage of the national budget for effective implementation.

Apakama decried the rising poverty in the country due to the current recession and rising macroeconomic challenges, which have continued to pose strong threats to Organized Private Sector (OPS).

He listed high exchange rate, soaring electricity tariff, insecurity occasioned by the activities of Fulani herdsmen, low oil price in international market among others, as factors that had made Nigeria’s business environment to remain unfriendly.

He said the chamber therefore calls on the governments at all levels to continue taking proactive measures in order to reduce the high incidence of poverty in the land.

ONICCIMA condemned the delay in completing the second Niger Bridge and the take-off of Onitsha River Port Commissioned since 2012, saying the stalling of these two essential infrastructural projects seem to us a clear case of marginalization and injustice. The chamber is once again, calling on relevant authorities to give the people of the South East zone a sense of belonging by bringing the two projects into reality, without further delay.

The Onitsha Chamber commended the licensing of the Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) but appealed that obtaining the bank’s facility, when it becomes operational should not be too cumbersome.

Highlight of the chamber’s AGM was the election of Officers. In the election, Donatus Ebubeogu, Managing Director of Tiger Foods Limited was elected as the 12th President of the Chamber, Sir Chris Ukachukwu, the Managing director of Rexton Industries Limited was elected first deputy president, while Chief Kelvin Obieri, Managing Partner of Ich Dien Audit, a firm of Chartered Accountants will serve as second deputy president.

Source: Anambra State Government