POLICY RECOMMENDATIONS FOR SOUTH EAST DEVELOPMENT
4.2.1 Political Governance
- There must be deliberate confidence building mechanisms between the political and traditional leaders and the youths to narrow the gap of suspicion and discontent from the people.
- Transparency and accountability in political governance at state and local government levels are essential to whittle down the corrupt practices in government, and build trust between the leaders and the electorates.
4.2.2 Economic Outlook
- The five state governments should deploy policy tools to create friendly environment to promote entrepreneurship and investments
- New tax policies to encourage Small and Medium scale Entreprises (SMEs) to survive the harsh economic and fiscal conditions prevalent in the country, arising from the economic recession.
- Operationalize the Onitsha Port to boost economic activities in the region and lower costs of goods
Need for improved security in the region to encourage investors and businessmen to repatriate their capital back to Nigeria.
4.2.3 Infrastructural Development
- The Federal Government to release funds in the 2017 Budget for the rehabilitation of the many federal highways in the region.
- The need to prioritize the Second Niger bridge by the federal Government which is critical to the socio-economic well-being of the people in the region.
- The need for the state governments in the region to re-awaken the industrial invention and adaptation skills of the people, as exemplified during the Civil War period. The government should take the lead in harnessing the huge professional, academic and manufacturing talents of the Ndigbos and systematically change the focus of development in the region.
4.2.4 Gully Erosion
- The magnitude and fury of the gully erosion demand Federal Government urgent intervention, along with international institutions
- Soil scientists and geologists need to conduct researches on how to prevent the sweeping erosion and guide the local communities
- There is urgent need to designed government policies, in partnership with the private sector, to provide employment to the youths in the region, and encourage SMEs.
- The five states’ governments must find a common strategy, and use the platform of the Office of the Zonal Police command as the clearing house of intelligence gathering and sharing for better security cover for the area.
- The states and the police should build the confidence for community policing, and vigilante groups in communities for credible information and intelligence gathering.
4.2.6 Regional Economic Platform
- The state government must show more interest in the venture through funding and high level contacts to build collective programmes and actions. There is urgent need to develop a road map to industrial growth and agricultural boon in the region.
- The private sector – driven regional economic initiative need more local and state sensitization to generate interest and cooperation
4.2.7 Gender Development
- Widowhood obnoxious and punitive practices should be abrogated through the intervention and networking of government agencies, religious and civil society groups.
- Imposition of heavy penalties on families that continue to punish widows and deny them their human rights
4.2.8 50 – Year “Marshal Plan”
- Dubbed “Vision 2066 for the South-East Region,” it is a comprehensive guidepost that has the potential of changing the socio-economic and technological face of the South East, if all stakeholders would cooperate sincerely.
Download the complete research report on “Regional Development in the South-East Zone of Nigeria: A Situational Analysis for Intervention below: