Chief Ajisafe hails 2023 KOCCIMA Trade Fair in Kogi
The President, Kogi State Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, Chief Femi Ajisafe, Ph.D, has praised the successful outing and activities marking the 2023 edition of Kogi Trade Fair organized by the Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines Agriculture.
Chief Ajisafe described the event as a pointer to a greater and more robust fair and expected in future.
Chief Ajisafe made the disclosure at the closing ceremony of the 2023 edition of Kogi Trade Fair held at The Muhammed Buhari Square, Lokoja On Thursday, 30th November, 2023.
According to the KOCCIMA President, this year’s Fair is several steps ahead of last year, coming after a long spell of void since the last edition of Regional Fairs organized by, and rotated amongst states within the north central over twenty years ago.
The Trade Fair Chief Ajisafe disclosed represents KOCCIMA’s efforts at accentuating the economy of Kogi State through exposition, exhibition, synergistic association, collaborations, partnerships, trade missions and agreements for sustainable development of Kogi State and of course Nigeria.
According to Chief Ajisafe, “KOCCIMA has been losing about N22.5m (twenty-two million, five hundred thousand naira) only annually these past twenty years of a swap KOCCIMA conceded to out of patriotism but which the State has negated in fulfilling its own part of the agreement. In total sum, the Kogi Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture’s loss (without inputting time value of money and possible interests) amounts to about N450m (four hundred and fifty million naira) only”.
Chief Ajisafe called on Gov. Bello to rewrite the history of commerce and trade in Kogi State by offsetting the accrued loss of revenue, and relocating KOCCIMA to a to a new place and space of not less than twenty hectares (20 ha) for its offices and permanent trade fair site.
He also solicited the inclusion of KOCCIMA as an item in the States annual budget, as in the other nineteen (19) northern states.
“Let me hasten to warn that we can not measure performance yet as we’re just taxiing to take off again. But I am confident, and convinced that with determination, galvanized by early strategic plans and implementation; we will indeed have a smooth takeoff and successful landing in our destination – an excellent and well attended trade fair that will sustainably benefit participants and lift the economy of Kogi State”.
“May I therefore crave your indulgence to specially express my gratitude to West African(Royal ) Ceramics Ltd for taking the lead to support KOCCIMA, and also participating in the fair. We are not unmindful of our past sponsors who for one reason or the other couldn’t reach out to us this year – we wish you the best and look forward to a more robust partnership in future fairs”.
“I am to add that this fair wouldn’t have seen the light of the day without the active collaboration and partnerships with shared commitment demonstrated by the Nigerian Shippers Council Area office in Lokoja, NASSI, and our able friend and son-of-the-soil, MALLAM Mohammed who came all the way from Niger State to support us”.
“The press as coordinated by the NUJ and all security agencies in Kogi State led by the Nigeria Police upped the ante for the fair. This is recognized and appreciated”.
“All inventors and producers who participated in this year’s edition and all other business people and marketers are highly recognised”.
“The Kogi State government and especially its functionaries with special notation for the Kogi State House of Assembly led by RT. Honourable Speaker of the State House of Assembly did their best possible best uplift morales in the fair”.
In a speech by the KOCCIMA Deputy President and Chairman 2023 KOGI Trade Fair LOC, Dr Demiloye Akerejola, described the 2023 Trade Fair as one that provided a potential that was boundless, said the comprehensive review of the trade fair without doubt has been nothing short of spectacular.
“We witnessed a remarkable surge in participation, a testament to the growing recognition of the trade fair’s significance. Sectors such as education, mining, ceramics, and food commodities converged, painting a vivid picture of the diverse interests that fuel our economic engine”.
“A notable shift in dynamics was observed with the high-profile attendance of the Speaker of the State House of Representatives and other prominent figures. This not only highlights the trade fair’s importance but also underscores the positive evolution of the relationship between the Government and the Private Sector. Together, we are fostering collaborative efforts for economic development”.
While noting that the Value Chain Development Agency showcased their commitment to enhancing the entire value chain in Kogi, thereby fostering economic growth.
The Mines Association of Nigeria, a vital player in Kogi’s mining sector the Deputy Chairman highlights”, has significantly contributed to the state’s economic diversification.
In his remarks during the vote of thanks, Mr Samuel Enejoh, the Director General KOCCIMA, commended the organizing committee extended the gratitude to Gov. Yahaya Adoza Bello, for his commitment to the economic development of Kogi State, also extended the heartfelt appreciation of the Chamber to the Hon. Speaker of the Kogi State House of Assembly and other Honorable Members that graced the opening ceremony with their presence.
“Your involvement signifies a high level of your commitment to the economic growth of Kogi economy and we are confident that under your leadership, Kogi will continue to prosper”.
“The intentional hands of friendship and partnership extended by KOCCIMA to the Government of Kogi State is a testament to our shared commitment to propel our State into greater economic heights”, expressed gratitude to participants and exhibitors who brought life to the Trade Fair”, praised their dedication to showcasing and exploring opportunities for value addition which he notes reflects the vibrant entrepreneurial spirit of Kogi State.