We’ll revamp Rivers seaports, Wike assures investors

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has promised investors in the state of his administration’s readiness to resuscitate the two seaports in the state.

Wike, who made this pledge yesterday while speaking with entrepreneurs and investors from the state at Government House, Port Harcourt, also said that his administration would exploit the potential of the ports in reviving the state’s economy

Describing seaports as the gateway to the state, Wike observed that the ports had huge economic potential, saying, “We are taking a visit to NPA soon to see how the seaport looks like now.”

The governor said his administration was open to suggestions on the best way to run the state, maintaining that a conducive business climate was crucial to revive the economy.

“We will do everything we can to see that the seaports are revived. Instead of our people going to Lagos to bring in goods for Rivers people, it will now come to our ports in Rivers State,” he added.

On the issue of multiple taxation raised by the investors and entrepreneurs, Wike restated that the matter would soon be addressed after a meeting with the business community in the state.

He expressed the need for a unified tax system in the state in order to fast track the economic development of the state.

“I will tell you that we will do everything we can to address it very soon; we will want to have an interactive session with the business community so that we can partner on these items that we think are important.

“The Rivers State Entrepreneurs and Investors Forum is expected to come up with a unified tax system in the state, which he believes will fast track the economic pace of the state,” Wike said.

Calling for the forum’s contribution to the economic programmes of the administration, Wike reaffirmed the desire of government to give priority attention to commerce and power.

He explained that his administration would not compromise in the area of commerce and power, adding that his government’s aim was to appoint capable hands that would drive the power generation in the state.

The governor expressed gratitude to the forum for organizing the governorship debate during the elections, describing the effort as part of its (forum) contribution to the state’s transformation.

Earlier, the President of the forum, Ibifiri Bobmanuel commended Wike for the pragmatic steps he took in the few weeks of his administration to give the state a new lease of life.

Bobmanuel stated that the opening of the courts and the State House of Assembly had demonstrated that the governor was ready to fulfill his electoral promises.

He called on the governor to provide conducive atmosphere for business, especially small scale enterprises, by addressing the issue of multiple taxation and reviving the two ports in the state.

Bobmanuel pledged the support of the forum to revive the economy, even as he recommended a move away from dependence on oil revenue to other sources of income for the state.

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