Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III, has described elite Nigerians as greedy. According to him, ordinary Nigerians only needed government support to make live meaningful for themselves.
He, therefore, called on the 19 northern governors to invest on the Small Scale Enterprises, to make life better for people in the region.
The Sultan spoke at the opening ceremony of the second Kano Economic and Investment Summit with the theme, ‘Transforming the Economy of Kano: Turning Challenges into Opportunities’.
Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, who declared open the summit, was represented by the Minister of Interior, Lt. Gen. Abdulrahaman Danbazau.
Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III said, “our people are not greedy like our elite who would want to have all, support the common man with small business to enable them have something to fall back on, and when you do this they would be happy, and we would have peace and decent society”.
He stressed the need to invest in agriculture, noting that focus in agriculture would add value to the economy of Kano and Nigeria as a whole.
“Economics is not rocket science. Countries that have developed went through a certain act and that act is value creation. We must obviously focus on agriculture and certainly, we must look at agricultural productivity”, he said.
Earlier, Osinbajo assured Nigerians that the Federal Government would remain resolute in tackling the economic challenges facing the country.
His speech read by Dambazau, said the Federal Government was also committed in the fight against corruption and insecurity which were impediments to economic prosperity.
“We will remain committed on the three focused areas which include fighting corruption, insurgency and providing employment to the teeming number of unemployed youths in the country”, he stated.
Osinbajo maintained that the Kano Investment summit was in line with the Federal Government’s effort geared toward economic revitalization, assuring that such initiatives would be encouraged so as to improve the doing business climate and make life better for the people.
He expressed the hope that the summit would come up with recommendations that would promote investment opportunities not only in Kano State but the country at large.
Minister of Budget and National Planning Minister, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma announced that funds have been provided in the 2017 Federal Budget to provide infrastructure for the revival of the Free Trade Zone in Kano to stimulate industrial activity.
He added that funding has equally been provided for the revival of the Export Expansion Grant by way of tax relief, as a further incentive to exporters.
Senator Udoma assured that the Federal government would support Kano state towards regain the lost glory of its major industrial estates so as to create jobs and lift Nigerians out of poverty
“There is no doubt that Kano leather craftsmen are some of the best in the world. We must provide the enabling environment for the leather industry to grow and become a mark of quality recognized worldwide”, the Minister added.
In his remarks, Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje explained that “the idea of conceiving this summit is to generate perspectives, strategies and best practices that would showcase viable investment opportunities with a view to attracting local and foreign investors for the sustainable economic transformation of Kano State and by extension Nigeria at large”.
“Our vision is to have a private sector driven economy and in line with the Federal and State Governments resolutions to improve Nigeria’s ranking on the World Bank Ease of Doing Business Index”, he added.
To fast track development, he stated that his administration has made substantial and far reaching investments in agriculture and infrastructure, while effort is ongoing towards addressing the state’s power challenge, which has crippled many industries.
Ganduje further remarked his administration has secured a of $1.85 million loan from China, for the Kano intra city light rail project, which would go a long way in enhancing commercial activities in the state capital.