How Industrialization In South East Would Reduce Emigration


Enugu Free Trade Zone which was projected to create some 30,000 jobs and to attract some $500 million investments to the State has not taken off despite being approved for over 2 years now. Aside the foundation laying stone ceremony that was done on the purported site, no substantial construction work has begun there.

Nnewi is a budding industrial town whose industrialization is chiefly driven by the natives of the town. Up until now, Anambra State government has not considered it worthwhile to site an industrial estate in that town to compliment the efforts of Nnewi people. In sensible climes, Nnewi should have been boasting of an industrial estate with good infrastructures by now.

Eziama Industrial Estate is as old as the old Eastern Region. As I speak, it remains the only industrial estate in the whole of Aba and maybe Abia State. To think that past governments never really paid attention to this critical sector of the state that has the capacity to generate income for the state makes me laugh. Not even one of them ever thought of expanding the industrial estate let alone adding additional one.

Imo State has an industrial area earmarked by the late Sam Mbakwe around Onitsha Road. Past and present governors of the state have never considered putting in place the necessary infrastructures therein that would aid the industrialization of the state. They have been singing industrialization but none has been willing to walk the talk.

Governor Umayi of Ebonyi State is busy beautifying his state same way Rochas was busy beautifying Imo State. He isn’t creating jobs, he isn’t talking about the industrialization of Ebonyi State. And he may not even have an industrialization blueprint for the state.

This is the first time that the Igbo-speaking part of Delta is pulling the string at the government house after the creation of the state. Governor Okowa may go down in history as a wasted opportunity like ex-president Goodluck Jonathan. Governor Okowa is not aiming to place Asaba and its environs in the same pedestal as Warri and Effurun. This is the third years of his reign and nothing has been done about industrializing Asaba and its environs. Sad!

The benefits of industrialization are enormous. I have been wondering why South East governors or Igbo governors are paying lip service to the industrialization of Igboland. Why ain’t they interested in creating an ecosystem where industries would thrive which an industrial estate easily offers?

Industrial revolution word cloud concept

On the political front, an industrialized South East/Igboland will cut back on emigration for greener pastures outside Igboland as more people will be domicile in Igboland which ultimately will increase our bargaining powers during elections. Meanwhile, did you know that no South East state was considered a key state to decide the outcome of the elections in the last presidential elections owing to low number of voters? I guess we now know why the president said he doesn’t need the South East to win the election? Think about what this can cost a presidential candidate of Igbo extraction in the future.

Okere Chidiebere


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