President Muhammadu Buhari has stated his administration’s commitment and readiness to deliver to the Nigerian economy, a sustainable and inclusive growth.
The President made this known at the investiture of Dr Michael Olawale-Cole as the 24th president of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) on Saturday in Lagos.
He was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr Evelyn Ngige.
Buhari said that his administration was focused on addressing the challenges in the business environment.
This, he explained, would be achieved through relevant agencies of government which were already implementing various initiatives to accelerate the pace of recovery of the Nigerian economy.
He said that the Federal Government was ready to collaborate with the private sector to bring to life the administration’s vision of sustained inclusive economic growth.
“This administration is focused on providing the enabling environment for businesses to thrive, as we understand the importance of the private sector’s role in providing job opportunities and developing critical infrastructure in the country,” the President said.
Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, expressed the state’s readiness to build stronger partnership with the chamber.
Sanwo-Olu was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry, Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Cooperative, Mrs Olatokunbo Emokpae.
He said the partnership with the organised private sector was in its quest to create wealth and employment opportunities for its teeming unemployed youths.
In his acceptance speech, the LCCI president, Olawale-Cole, said under his leadership, the chamber would continue to work in close collaboration with its partners in the private and public space.
He said this was inclusive of the Federal Government and its agencies, Lagos State government, other State governments, development partners, the diplomatic community, the media, and other stakeholders.
He noted that the strategic role of the LCCI in the Nigerian economy demanded that he leveraged the Chamber’s varied experiences and competencies to build on the chamber’s legacies and leave indelible marks for future generations.
“We cannot change everything at once, but if we choose wisely, and work together transparently, flexibly, and honestly, progress in a few areas will lead to progress in many more.
“We will ensure that our advocacy achieves the right level of effectiveness which will be measured by the response of various tiers of government to our proposals on policy direction in the interest of the organized private sector.
“I want to appeal to government at all levels to please do all they can to make this country a better place to live so that the younger generation will be less tempted to migrate to other countries.
“I believe very strongly that there should be no better country than Nigeria for them because this is a country full of possibilities,” he said.
Immediate past President, LCCI, Mrs Toki Mabogunje, said the numerous achievements of her administration, in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic, were made possible by the support of the LCCI community.
She listed some of them to include the conclusion of the digitalization of the chamber, obtainment of ISO certifications, strengthened advocacy effectiveness, creation of new sectoral groups, virtual and physical trade fair among others.
“I wish to acknowledge the extraordinary contributions, sacrifices, focus, and deliberate collaboration from the management and staff at the secretariat led by the Director-General.
“The level of cooperation which I have enjoyed from the members, secretariat, officers, BoT, and volunteers is indeed amazing.
“We have entrenched ourselves as the foremost chamber in West Africa and the role nodel to be followed.
“With our ISO Certification and ITC Benchmark of being in the top 10 per cent of our ranking worldwide, we can blaze a trail on the continent of Africa as we build the new estimated $3 trillion AfCFTA market of 1.2 billion people.
“I am immensely grateful to you all and I hope you will continue to support the Chamber in the years ahead so that we remain the leading voice of the Organized Private Sector in Nigeria,” she said. (NAN)