The Governor of the State, Mr Willie Obiano, gave the Certificate of Occupancy of the parcels of land within three communities in Nnewi South and Aguata – Akwaihedi, Unubi and Uga – to the Federal Government.
Handing over the document to the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Okey Enelama, Governor Obiano demanded for a speedy development of the park within a period of 18 months.
He says failure to complete the park within the stipulated time would mean forfeiture of the land.
Governor Obiano said his decision to add a caveat was due to the ugly experience the previous administrations had with the Federal Government in allocating land to them that has remained unutilised till date.
“This is a very important ceremony. We are handing over 80 hectares of land to the Federal Government to develop the Automotive Industrial Park.
“It took us a while to arrive at this decision purely because we have not had good experience with previous Federal Governments in giving them land.
“Anambra state is the smallest state in Nigeria today because of erosion and therefore, we are very careful about giving lands.
“This land we are giving is half of what the Federal Government requested for because we said no, let us try with this, but if you do well we will give you another one. Because there is a land at Amansea, we gave that land to the Federal Government 21 years ago and nothing happened there and we don’t want to be giving lands and nothing happening.
“So my good friend, the Minister, Okey, has reassured me that I will see the difference, that they will fire like no man’s business and that this place will develop very fast. And you know, there will be an industrial park here, there will be ancillary industries that will be creeping up around here. That is what industrial parks attract, ancillary industries,” Governor Obiano stated
The minister, who was accompanied by the Minister of Labor and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, assured the government of Anambra State that the latest partnership would not only be successful but would trigger more investment and rapid industrialisation of Anambra State.
Dr. Enelama told the Governor that the development of an Automotive Industrial Park would crystallise into provision of adequate infrastructure for entrepreneurs, industrialists, and manufacturers from far and beyond that would make Anambra State an investment destination.
“One of the goals I had and still have is to see Anambra industrialise to its fullest potentials and because I know that by doing that we will be industrialising Nigeria.
“In order to do that, there is absolutely no question that you need special economic zone and industrial parks such as the one we are bringing to life today.
And the reason is quite straightforward. That this industrial park will provide the enabling environment for the entrepreneurs, the industrialists, and the manufacturers to do their own work without having to do the work of the government or the work the communities should do for them by providing the basic infrastructure.
“The other reason such a park and such initiative are essential is the importance of partnership.
“So, I believe with all my heart, that what we are going to see is a model industrial park, from the handover ceremony we have done today, to the design, to the implementation, to the operations, I think it will do very well. And I know that this is only the beginning of what is going to be a very successful partnership,” the minister said.
The handing over ceremony took place in Unubi and the project would be handled by the Director General of Automotive Design and Development Council, Dr. Aminu Jalal.
After the Certificate of Occupancy was handed to the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, he handed it over to the developer, Dr. Jalal, for immediate takeoff of development.
The occasion was rounded off with the unveiling of the plaque that seals the deal between Anambra State and the Federal Government with high hopes that the project impact on the people of Anambra state when completed.