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Dream Come True, As NDDC Inaugurates Niger Delta Chamber of Commerce Board

By Willie Etim

When the idea was first muted, a number of cynics dismissed it, typical of naysayers in our society.

They thought that all the effort will end in futility. The resilience of Chief Samuel Ogbuku, (PhD), Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), who nurtured the birth of the Niger Delta Chambers of Industry, Trade, Mines and Agriculture (NDCCITMA), came to bear when all other such chambers in the region put up a resistance against the registration of NDCCITMA, a battle that lasted over nine months.

As the initiator and benefactor of the NDCCITMA, the management of the NDDC, established a management committee for the chambers to midwife it to solid take off point. After the design of an implementation plan which was carefully followed, the committee terminated its engagement and set the stage for the official inauguration of the Chamber’s Board

The eventful registration and inauguration of the Board of the Niger Delta Chambers of Commerce, Industry Trade, Mines and Agriculture, under the Chairmanship of Chief Idaere Gogo Ogan, a renowned economist, is a dream come true.

The NDCCITMA is hundred 100 per cent the initiative of the executive management of NDDC led by Dr Ogbuku, who is driven by the desire to grow the business and commerce in the Niger Delta region.

The Chamber of commerce is positioned as tool for development that will encompass the involvement of the very informal sector, artisanal group, micro, small, medium and right up to mega scale businesses.

The Chambers is expected to enhance NDDC’s drive in achieving its vision and mission with a view to boost the development of the region through commerce, trade and industry.

The legal framework of the Chambers states clearly that the NCCITMA is registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) as a company limited by guaranty. By the framework the company has only one share which is held by the Attorney General of the Federation. All other directors are without shares, thus making it a not-for-profit organization.

Being that chambers of commerce are seen as a community development tool in aid of government, the involvement of the directors is voluntarily and attract no form of benefit. Members of the board are selected from across the states of the Niger Delta region with contribution from NACCIMA as it is mandatory for all chambers of commerce in the country to be registered with NACCIMA.

The vision of NDCCITMA is to build a strong economically sustainable region through a viable business community. The Chambers is committed to provide regional leadership for business growth through adequate networking, education and economic development.

As its objectives, NCCITMA is determined to promote economic development of members and the Niger Delta region, business network, advocate for economic interest of members in the region, pursue polices to support business growth and provide educational opportunities for members through seminars, workshop and training.

The chambers will also represent the scope of commercial business in the region in collaboration with other chambers of commerce, create awareness on the business advantage and opportunities within the region and attract investment.

Apart from establishing centers of excellence for capacity development, skills acquisition, trade, investment promotion directly and in partnership with NDDC, organized private sector, other government agencies, the chambers will invest. deposit and deal with the monies of the chambers not immediately required in such a manner as may from time to time be determined by the chambers.

The chambers of commerce shall at all time work with the Niger Delta Development Commission through Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and agreement in actualizing its set objectives.

The MoU with the Commission is for the purpose of providing and attracting support direction, ideas, resources and growth in the economic, commercial, industrial and agricultural development of the Niger Delta region.

The overall benefits of the Chambers of commerce for the Niger Delta region is to access a one- stop shop of the Niger Delta business community, provide the Niger Delta people the opportunity to promote their business, allow the Commission easy access to partnership for the development, essay access to data collection for business, capacity and capability.

Chief Samuel Ogbuku at the inauguration of the Board told the chairman and members of that the task ahead of them is enormous, noting that the management of the commission trust in their capacity as they were carefully chosen from diverse areas of specialization of with the needed wealth of experience.

He charged the Board to take it as a responsibility to stimulate the economy of the Niger Delta region and make the region prosperous and also ensure that every entrepreneur within the region is registered with the chambers.

He said because the biggest asset they have are the people of the Niger Delta region and that such registration will provide such a proper data based for the development of entrepreneurial activities.

He advised that all the contractors in the NDDC should endeavour to register with Chamber of Commerce as this will also serve and a guarantee for the operations.

While urging them to disseminate the information for effective registration of every serious person that does business in the region, he admonished not to let vision of the board die.

The chairman of the Board Chief Idaere Gogo Ogan, on behalf of the Board thank the management of the NDDC for giving them the opportunity to serve the region.

He assured with the caliber of persons appointed into the Board, he has no doubt that they will deliver to meet the objectives of Chamber of Commerce.

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