The President of Enugu Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, ECCIMA, Barrister Jasper Nduagwuike, has expressed disappointment over the poor state of infrastructure at the permanent site of Enugu International Trade Fair complex for 37 years running.
Speaking at the official opening of the 33rd Enugu International Trade Fair on Tuesday, March 29, Nduagwuike said that given the neglect of the complex by the Federal Government, the chamber has decided to look for help elsewhere. .
According to Nduagwuike, any individual or group that donates funds to give the complex a facelift, would be recognised and their names written on “a Golden Memorial Plaque.”
The ECCIMA president explained that during the investiture of the current executive, a video was made on the dismal face of the pavilion, lamenting that for 37 years, the complex has remained 18% completed whereas other trade fair complexes in Kaduna and Lagos were given the needed attention.
“In the course of our investiture, we showed a brief video of this pavilion where you are seated and our wish to make it better.
” This is the 33rd time that we are pleading with the Federal Government over a period of 37 years that this complex which has remained 18% completed since the 80s should be given at least a facelift.
“We have made several visits to Abuja to bring this matter home to our parent ministry, however, probably due to paucity of funds, nothing has been done,” Nduagwuike laments.
He said that the Fair was supposed to be of an international status that would project the good image of the country to the outside world, pointing out that not to do something about the complex would not be to the best interest of Nigeria.
“This Trade Fair is supposed to be an International Trade Fair which means that it is the country Nigeria that this is being showcased with this Chamber as the host. What this means is that whatever impression people leave here with, will be the impression they have about Nigeria and not about ECCIMA,” the ECCIMA president continues to lament.
Touched by the sorry state of the Fair complex, Nduagwuke said the Chamber would do something drastic to ensure that the 34th Fair be hosted in a better environment.
His words, “while we wait however for this to be done, the Chamber has decided to take its destiny in its own hands, and I can assure you that by the special grace of God and cooperation of public spirited individuals and perhaps the government, the 34th Enugu International Trade Fair will be declared open in a brand new pavilion.
” You may therefore wish to take note of how this place is because this is the last time you will see it like this. For those who will heed this plea, a golden memorial plaque shall be erected in their honour and where the funds donated can build the pavilion, the pavilion shall be named after the person,” he said.
Earlier,the Governor of Enugu State, Rt Hon Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, who was represented by the Deputy Governor, Barr. Cecilia Ezeilo, commended ECCIMA management for holding the prestigious Enugu international trade fair every year, stressing that the contribution of the fair to the sustenance and growth of economy can hardly be overemphasized.
He emphasized that “He hope this 33rd fair will open up new Visa for improving the global competitiveness for Nigeria economy through the creation of opportunities for increase innovation, technological collaboration, human capital development, building of resident businesses partnership and general trade facilitation”.