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Gov. Hope Uzodimma of Imo State
A bill to establish the Imo State Micro, Small and Medium Industries Development Agency and other related matters and another establishing a Bureau to Coordinate, Supervise and Monitor projects undertaken by Donors/ Development Partners in Imo State and other related matters, were on Tuesday signed into law. The Imo State governor, Senator Hope Uzodinma, assented to the bills in a ceremony held at the Sam Mbakwe Executive Council Chambers Government House Owerri.
He said the bills marked yet another milestone in the committed efforts of his administration to the development and growth of Imo State.
Said Governor Uzodinma: “The bills are necessary to put a body together that will supervise and monitor local manufacturing, entrepreneurship skills, private sector driven activity, intervention from government and non-governmental organizations. Other objectives include empowerment of local artisans, specify standards for them and ensure that products being delivered to the markets are not only hygienic but fit for human consumption”.
The Governor who commended the House of Assembly Leadership for the speedy passage of the Executive bills into law informed that before now there were interventions to the state from World Bank, USAID, French Developmental Agencies and other development partners, in form of water, erosion control, rural developments, rural roads and many others, but there were no records on the good interventions to show their commensurate impact on the people.
He harped on the need for a bureau that would coordinate all interventions from Local and International Partners, be it World Bank, State Development Agency or Federal Government, to ensure the proper management and implementation of the policies and at the end of the day, ensure that the State got value for her money.
The Governor noted that it was no longer going to be business as usual with these two laws in operation in the State, and encouraged the international organizations to continue with their empowerment programmes to the State bearing in mind a more coordinated, efficient and effective administrative organs in place to satisfy their expectations.
Presenting the Bill for the Governor’s assent, the Speaker Imo State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Chiji Collins said the bills had undergone all stages of legislative work – first reading, second reading and third reading after robust debate by members of House of Assembly.
He informed that the first bill which establishes an agency would be a vanguard Agency and focal point for rural industrialization, poverty alleviation and eradication, technology acquisition and adaptation, as well as job creation and sustainable livelihood. Accordingly, the agency would regulate activities of micro, small and medium scale industries in the State and ensure that goods manufactured were of high quality.
In the same vein, the second bill is meant to coordinate, supervise and monitor the activities and funds from Donors/ Development partners while liaising with State MDAs to ensure effective execution in the implementation of approved projects.
Collins also emphasized that the bills would go a long way in helping with the development of the State and that the House of Assembly was happy to work with the governor to move the State forward in this regard.