Jubilation as traders endorse Ugwuanyi for second term
By Tasie Theodore
The race for the Enugu Government House in the forthcoming 2019 polls which is currently being occupied by Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi is picking up steam and without saying much about it, it is clear that none of the interested gladiators seems to be taking any chances.
Days after his predecessor in office, Barrister Sullivan Chime led a pack of equally aggrieved former party chieftains to ditch the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP in the state and move over to the All Progressives Congress, APC, the Governor and his team appears to have gone into damage control mode.
This got a boost Wednesday when traders in Enugu State under the auspices of the Enugu State Amalgamated Market Traders Association (ESAMATA) unanimously endorsed Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi in run once again in 2019, saying that the governor has performed creditably well in just two years in office despite the daunting economic challenges in the country.
The traders took the decision at a well attended solidarity rally they organized to appreciate Gov. Ugwuanyi for entrenching good governance in the state and his unprecedented support especially in assisting them grow their various businesses.
In his address, the president-general of the market association, Hon. Temple Ude, stated that the traders are very happy and at home with Gov. Ugwuanyi for his visionary leadership and the empowerment programme initiated by his administration, where 100 lucky traders win N50,000 each every month, saying that the vision “is most favourable to traders doing business in Enugu State”.
Hon. Ude added that the idea was to stimulate the economy of the state as well as alleviate the sufferings of the people, stating that the cordial relationship existing between the governor and traders in the state “is equal to none when compared to other states in Nigeria, especially in the south east states”.
“Your Excellency, no government in the past has ever attempted to establish the existing relationship between traders and government. Traders in Enugu State have resolved that if tenure elongation is democratic, they will sponsor a bill that Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi should be cleared for third term in office. Sir, we are committed in showing loyalty and sacrifice to your government, hence you have done much to traders in Enugu State”, the president- general said.
He noted that Gov. Ugwuanyi has created “an enviable security outreach in the 17 local government areas with the establishment and equipping of the Neighborhood watch associations in all the nooks and crannies of the state, and has equally remained regular in the prompt payment of workers’ salaries, disclosing that such feat has gone a long way in encouraging traders to do business in the state.
“We are convinced that even with the current economic hardship you still positively navigate the affairs of the state for the betterment of the people of Enugu State. We have unanimously endorsed your re-election come 2019”, Hon. Ude declared with a loud ovation from the traders.
Responding, Gov. Ugwuanyi thanked the visibly jubilant traders for the gesture, love, goodwill, solidarity and support, adding that he feels highly honoured that they shut down the markets in the state to gather in their numbers “to show appreciation for the empowerment scheme that we launched for traders in Enugu State last February”.
Gov. Ugwuanyi explained that the Traders’ Empowerment Scheme carefully designed to boost economic activities in the state and improve the lives of the ordinary members of the society, was “in line with our promise to deploy government resources and services to create fair and equal opportunity for every citizen to make a living, create wealth and enjoy life in a peaceful and secure environment”.
“I must sincerely, thank traders in Enugu State for their support, enthusiasm and active participation in the scheme and I want to assure you this is only the beginning of our own appreciation for the immense support and affection that you have continued to show this administration since inception.
“We have indeed resolved to do all that is necessary to better the lot of traders in Enugu State and in this regard, I promise that we will never allow anyone to harass, oppress or exploit you as you go about your legitimate businesses. Be assured that we will deal with any such case, promptly, decisively and comprehensively as soon as it is brought to our notice.
“We are discussing with financial institutions, international corporations and other relevant organizations on the ways and means of extending easier and more convenient lines of credit and other facilities to traders in Enugu State.
“We are also working to upgrade the capacity of the Enugu State Marketing Company to arrange special import services for traders just as we are committed to the continuous development and equipment of markets in Enugu State as part of the efforts being made to create a more conducive environment for business and commercial activities to thrive in the state”, Gov. Ugwuanyi stated.
The entourage of Gov Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State receiving cheers from well-wishers at the event