The federal government has been called upon to dredge the River Benue and establish a Dry Sea Port as a deliberate plan to boost economic growth and enhance industrialization of Benue state.
The Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC), Rev. Tor Uja who made the call in Abuja noted that, when completed, the project would not provide mass employment for the teaming unemployed youths but will turn around the fortunes of the people of Benue and other states like Kogi, Nasarawa and Taraba.
Speaking further when he received members of the Benue Journalists Forum in his office in Abuja Monday, Rev Uja who is also an indigene of Benue state however, blamed Benue elites for the economic and industrialization backwardness of the state.
According to him, without the culture of investment, lack of the will and commitment to investment, the state remains relegated to the background in all economic and commercial activities while other states have progressed ahead.
“We call on the federal government to dredge River Benue as this will help boast and uplift the economy and commercial status of Benue and other neighboring states .
“With the dredging of the river, the federal government should give us a dry sea port believing that in a short time the story of benue will change”, he stated.
“At the completion of the project, it is expected that the people must utilize it effectively and and develop the culture of investment.
“Our elite lack investment culture. They are short on investment initiatives but long on talking which never have positive effect on the citizens.
“The economic back born of Benue is from the rural communities who produce food and cash crops that are been allowed to rotten away for lack of industrialization.
Speaking earlier, national president of the Benue Journalists Forum, Mr. Saater Undu informed the NCPC boss that there visit was to intimate him just like other prominent Benue sons and daughters in the positions of authority about the activities of the forum which is to ensure the unity and development of the state.
According to him, Benue state is currently faced with serious security challenges orchestrated by the continued attacks and killing of innocent people as well as the destruction of property and economic life line of the state, as such need to unite as a people to be able overcome them.
Rev. Uja further lamented that the poor investment attitude exhibited by the Benue elites who have the resources to do so has kept the state perpetually at the back stage of economic development.
“We should urge people to invest. We also need in Benue an investment platform else we are dweling on shared poverty.
There must be investment platform out of which the wealth will be shared.
” I want to assure that some steps will be taken towards industrialization of the state.
We must change the story of Benue, Nigeria and our people”, he stated.