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Looting: A bad image for Nigeria

Attracting foreign investment is said to be extensively anchored on the attractiveness and conduciveness of the recipient’s domestic environment.

Right from the 1980s, the Nigerian economy was characterised by a gross industrial decline, political instability, policy inconsistency, collapse in infrastructural facilities, economic depression, and the danger of financial frauds, among other ill menaces.

All these made the commercial environment unattractive to foreign investors, and likewise not conducive for the local ones, as they continued to destroy Nigeria’s domestic economic environment.

However, the current social unrest, which has aggravated several incidents of looting and destruction of government public structures, is not doing any good to the already soiled image of the country in the face of other developed countries.

In this same vein, the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines, and Agriculture (NACCIMA) has revealed that the ongoing looting and deliberate destruction of properties present Nigeria in a bad light to international investors.

Hajiya Saratu Aliyu, President of NACCIMA in a statement entitled ‘An Urgent Call for Calm and Frank Dialogue to End #EndSARS Crisis and Ongoing Violence’ said that billions had been lost to destruction and looting in Lagos and some other parts of the country during the social unrest.

She said, ‘NACCIMA’s efforts as a national chamber to help project our country as a favourable and investment-friendly destination to our business partners abroad and other foreign investors over the years are now suffering a serious setback.’

She urged Nigerians to dialogue and for the return of peace, as well as an abrupt end in looting, havoc and ruination of properties.

She further said, ‘Unfortunately, a hitherto peaceful, legitimate protest has been hijacked by thugs and miscreants, resulting in the attack on businesses, destruction of government properties, burning of police stations and correctional centres to free prisoners.’

Adding that, ‘We must work with others to put an end to the violence and lawlessness we are now witnessing.’

‘We are equally concerned about the deployment of military forces to confront the protesters, which resulted in unsavoury consequences as witnessed, especially at the Lekki Toll area in Lagos recently.’

‘We are therefore calling for an end to the involvement of the military in current situation. The impact of the crisis and wanton destruction of property as being witnessed is clear for all to see. Billions have been lost in arson and looting going on.’

The NACCIMA Preisdent concluded that, a prompt agreement on the five-point demands of the youths and the dissolution of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad is an indication of what could be achieved by means of agreeable dialogue on several other controversial issues.

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She also implored chamber members across Nigeria to engage opinion leaders and other stakeholders in their states, in a bid to make strategic moves that would help in putting a check on violence.

In light of this, a more democratic Nigeria with a favourable investment climate, will give room for diplomatic ties with other countries, as this will enable the country(Nigeria) to assume its natural role on issues of mutual interests in international gatherings.

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