IFEANYI3The visit of an 13-man economic mission from Enugu state  to Dublin, the capital of Ireland has come off as a major move by Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi’s administration to attract investors to the state to shore up the state economic fortunes and as well find opportunities to attract international donor agencies to the development needs of the coal city state. Led by the governor himself to the European country, the  Enugu State government delegation began the working visit last week Thursday and was engrossed  in intense engagements with investors and business operators as well as the management of the Dublin City University, Ireland’s foremost tertiary institution, for four days ending last week Sunday when the delegation wrapped up the working visit with a review session at the Intercontinental Hotels before departure for Nigeria.

At the end of the economic mission anchored by a Dublin-based newspaper organization entered into a working agreement when it  signed a Memorandum of Understanding  with Dublin City University to work  together to promote mutual relations between the two parties for purposes of developing education in the State in a manner that would also offer value to the university.

According to the document signed at the university by Enugu state commissioner for education, Prof. Uche Eze and the institution’s President, Prof. Brian McCraith in the presence of Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, ‘the Dublin City University (DCU) and the Enugu agencies will enter into reciprocal visits where the university would examine opportunities to broker relationships with funding agencies and other higher education institutes in conjunction with the Enugu government and other parties.

 In  the same vein, the former president of Ireland, Betie Ahern, is making moves to assist the Enugu state government in its current drive to shore up its economy through expansion of its revenue base by shopping for investors and donor agencies just as scores of prospective investors have held talks with the State governor and officials of the State government who have sojourned in the European country in the past week in search of investors. The former president was one of the scores of eminent persons who held talks with the Enugu governor on ways of attracting investments or international assistance to Enugu state, Nigeria.

These are fallouts of a mini-investment summit organized for Enugu state government and the said propective investors in Dublin, capital of Ireland. the series of events were put together by Metro Eireann, Ireland’s multicultural group of newspapers.

 In line with the successes recorded in the series of negotiations during which Governor Ugwuanyi led the Enugu delegation made up of top government functionaries and leaders of the state Economic Advisory Committee, the President of the Dublin City University, Brian MacCraith and other officials of the university are already billed to attend the Enugu state Economic Summit scheduled to take place in March this year in Enugu, the state capital.

The governor who had departed Nigeria with only one personal assistant also ensured that made sure that rest members of the delegation were billed to handle specific assignments all through the duration of the visit. The first port of call for the governor was a visit to the Dublin Bus, Ireland’s gigantic and very successful transport company with a view to learning first hand, how the company is run so that Enugu government could tinker with domesticating snippets of its success story into the Enugu state Transport Company. The visit also offered the governor and mission delegates the opportunity of touring the headquarters of Guinness in Dublin.

   On the delegation of the Enugu government to Ireland were three commissioners, namely commissioner for education, Prof. Uche Eze, his commerce and industry counterpart, Barrister Sam Ogbu Nwobodo and that of Agriculture, Engr. Mike Ene who took samples of pineapples from Enugu’s Sna carlos farms to Dublin for the summit as well as the governor’s special adviser of Diaspora Matters, Mrs. Olangwa Ezekwu,  deputy speaker of the state House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Donatus Uzogbado, majority leader of the House, Hon Ikechukwu Ezeugwu, chairman of the economic advisory committee, Monsgnr Obiora Ike, secretary of the committee, Mr. Dan Onyishi, Chief Lauretta Aniagolu who is a member of the committee, chief press secretary to the governor, Mr. Uwakwe Abugu, SSA to the governor on investments, Nnamdi Chime and the SSA for the governor’s office, Dubem Onyia Jnr.  

Edited by Anthony Okofu, Head Corporate Development, Research and Statistics ENS

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