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Igbo Traders Supports Sanwo-Olu For Second Term
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Igbo Traders Supports Sanwo-Olu For Second Term 

On Thursday, an alliance of Igbo traders from 58 major markets in Lagos State voted in favour of Gov. Babajide Sanwo-reelection Olu’s campaign for a second term.

News Agency of Nigeria

The merchants, who are affiliated with the Ndigboamaka Progressive Markets Association, stated that while Sanwo-Olu has not formally notified them of his second term candidacy, they uniformly support the governor’s re-election.

The merchants granted their approval at the 2022 All Markets Conference, which the group hosted in the Amuwo Odofin region of Lagos State.

Mr Chinedu Ukatu, Secretary General of the Ndigboamaka Traders’ Association, stated that the endorsement is in recognition of the state government’s business policies and infrastructural development, which assist their businesses.

”Mr Governor, you have not formally told us whether you are seeking re-election or not, but I want to tell you that all the market leaders seated here today are yearning for a second term for you,” Ukatu said.

He says that whenever Sanwo-Olu walks, the trader follows.

The endorsement, according to Gov. Sanwo-Olu, is a sign of widespread support for his administration’s efforts to deliver ‘Greater Lagos’ and strengthen the culture of good governance for which the state is known.

He stated that the assistance came with the promise of more development programmes from his government.

The governor promised not to take the Ndigbo people’s support for granted, while assuring them of the state government’s ongoing collaboration to create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive.

He stated that Igbo traders remained important actors in the state’s economic progress, and that the story of Lagos’ development would be incomplete without mentioning the Igbos’ entrepreneurial drive.

”This is another moment for our government to recognise our Ndigbo brothers and sisters for their commitment to the growth and development of Lagos.

”Certainly, Ndigbo traders have been part of the good story of Lagos; your entrepreneurial spirit is second to none and the Igbo enterprising spirit has become a case study in Harvard, which is the biggest business school in the world.

”Contribution to the livelihood of your host communities have been acknowledged and in Lagos, we have created together an economy that has continued to grow and position our nation as the biggest economy in Africa.

”Trading is a veritable link between producers and consumers, which is the area the Ndigbo traders have tirelessly worked to define the growth trajectory of our dear State. I am happy that our modest interventions for more growth in this area are visible and being recognised,” Sanwo-Olu said.

He promised that his government will continue to defend the Igbo people’s commercial interests, while also vowing to make the state habitable for non-indigenes who follow the state’s laws.

He stated that his government will continue to pursue peaceful coexistence among all ethnic nations cohabiting in Lagos, and that ethnic groupings must consider themselves as different sides of a coin with nothing to do with one another.

”We have to come to the understanding that we all have different roles to play in keeping Lagos safe for business and living.

”We are all important stakeholders in Lagos project, whether it is government, traders and private sector individual. We must continue to foster peace and harmony through an avenue like this conference, using the interaction to make Lagos better for everyone of us,” Sanwo-Olu said.

Dr Wale Ahmed, Commissioner for Local Government and Community Affairs, stated that the state government views informal marketplaces as an essential segment of the state’s economy.

The conference, according to Ahmed, who was represented by the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Mrs Kikelomo Sanyaolu, established a venue to discuss complex challenges afflicting business activity across markets.

He stated that market management in Lagos was designed with policies to promote economic progress.

”In April last year, we inaugurated a 21-member Lagos State Market Advisory Council (LASMAC), with the responsibility of managing the affairs of markets in the state, in line with the international best practices, thus helping to acquaint the traders and other stakeholders with the policies of this administration.

”The council took cognizance of the various socio-cultural settings in markets across the state and Mr Governor ensured that various communities were brought on board to represent different socio-cultural interests and affinities,” the commissioner said.

Dr. Obiora Okonkwo, Chairman of United Nigeria Airlines, stated that the conference provided opportunity to contact policymakers and political administrators in charge of commerce in order to push for regulatory steps that would further facilitate corporate activity.

Okonkwo particularly charged merchants with assisting the government and regulatory organisations in identifying counterfeiters in their markets.

Chief Jude Okeke, President of Ndigboamaka Progressive Markets Association, argued for trade incentives for marketers, emphasising that the economy will not thrive without the involvement of informal traders.

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