By Balkis Tijani.
Kwara State governor, Mallam Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq has said that Kwara would build a strong economy capable of competing with that of Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial city.
Abdulrazaq, who stated this during a meeting in Ilorin with the Chairman of Palms Mall, Tayo Amusan, said it’s large scale businesses like that of Mr. Amusan that can help Kwara to raise the 35 billion naira monthly revenue of Lagos State, which, he said, Kwara accumulate in a year.
Palm Shopping Malls, which houses Shoprite, KFC, a cinema among other businesses, was looted and vandalised recently by suspected hoodlums.
Abdulrazaq, who had earlier gone to inspect the level of damages at the mall, pleaded with the investor to stay in Kwara.
“You are an investor and I know with what happened, you will be disappointed. But I urge you not to lose hope but to forge ahead, stay with us and continue to invest in Kwara. What happened does not represent our character,” the governor said.
Pledging the support of his government to small businesses, particularly those affected in the recent looting incident in the State, Abdulrazaq said that small and medium scale enterprises are integral to building a strong economy.
Explaining further, governor Abdulrazaq said, “Our plan is to build a strong economy. We aspire to build an economy like that of Lagos, which has an IGR of about N35billion monthly. That’s about what we generate here in a year. So, we want to scale up our IGR and it is the businesses like what you are doing here (Kwara Mall) that will help us to scale up.
“You have built a mini-economy in Kwara by anchoring Shoprite and other small and medium enterprises that have sprung up around Kwara Mall. That fits into our programme of building an enterprising state. Kwarans are enterprising. You will see Kwarans all over the country doing very well.”