A non-governmental body of intellectuals and professionals, South-East, South-South Professionals of Nigeria (SESSPN’s) forum scheduled to hold on April 28 and 29, 2016, in Port Harcourt, is expected to drive regional and economic growth in the country.
The Chairman Planning Committee of the forum, Mr. Sam Ohuabunwa, explained that the time has finally come to redirect the economic development trajectory of the South-East and South –South away from its present sorry state back to its original pre-oil era focus and dynamism.
He pointed out that the regions with its abundance of latent human capital potential, could aptly be described as one of the several economic enclaves from which the African continent could hope to develop into a global economic player.
The past chairman of the Nigeria Economic Summit Group (NESG), during a press conference added that the quest for sustainable economic development has become imperative for every developing country of the world, stressing that entrepreneurship and innovation are now acknowledged globally as antidotes to the challenges of unemployment and poverty.
He said, to reverse this deplorable trend and restore the fortunes of the country, the 2nd regional forum on these geo-political zones would focus on fine-tuning and updating the regions’ 20 year development blueprint developed by the organsiation which its official unveiling is expected to hold June 2016 and also promote the massive investment in human capital development via entrepreneurship and innovation as stimulants and sustainers of economic transformation.
“The theme: “A new roadmap for regional integration and economic Development of the South-east and South-South a 20 year Development Agenda (DASESS 2035)”, will instigate the transformation of South-east and South-South zones into a global investment destination by attracting investors, identify areas of comparative and competitive advantages of the regions and plan optimal exploitation in a synergistic manner,” he said.
He said the forum will also complement the efforts of government at all levels and other private sector organisation towards engineering growth and success especially in the Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) sector in and around the region, spear-headed by its citizens in collaboration with interested multinational organisations.
He noted that the forum will go a long way in laying new foundation for growth and rapid development, facilitate effective communication, refinement of policies, access to entrepreneurial financing as well as lead to increased entrepreneurial drive among young people.
“It will also create a forum for networking and building strategic alliances which will help strengthen businesses in the region,” he added.
According to him, the forum will also help to determine how to harness the abundant human and material resources of the regions through collaborative efforts and help prepare the zones for a post-oil Nigeria by re-enacting the agricultural and manufacturing revolution of the 1960s.