The Honourable Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Barrister Kingsley Ononuju (Ekwedashike) has urged Imo produce officers to remain focused on their duty and work conscientiously for the greater good of Imo State, stressing that diligence pays at the end of the day.

Barrister Ononuju, stated this during a meeting with Produce Officers of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry at the State Secretariat complex, Owerri, recently. He added that soon, they will have new project staff attached to them whom, they have to groom for maximum result and optimal performance.

He said that Produce Department is back with the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, as the issuing authority and promised to ensure that their welfare is adequately taken care of.

In his words, “I want to count on your experience. In conjunction with Imo Internal Revenue Service (IIRS), the days of consultancy are over. You should report to the authorities any difficulty or anomaly you might encounter in the line of duty. His Excellency, Distinguished Senator Hope Uzodimma is different from other previous Governors. He is focused, in spite of all the distractions and determined to bring shared prosperity to Imo people. He is not a selfish man and under his watch, Imo State is experiencing real governance”.

According to Hon. Ononuju, “leadership is everything. If you have a wrong leader he leads you astray but a good leader will take you where you want to be”.

He was of the conviction that locusts invaded Imo State for eight (8) years of Rochas Okorocha and regretted that people supported such bad governance then and even extols the gate keepers of rescue mission, despite the ruins they wrought on the state through unrestrained massive treasury looting and armed robbery of our common wealth.

The Commissioner added that he will look into their terms of reference, to know their challenges and pointed out that government will provide security for the Produce Officers when necessary. He discouraged violence on their part warning that they should avoid extorting money from people as such will not be acceptable to the Government.

He cautioned against absenteeism, stressing that anyone, who is not fit and ready to work using the excuse of being in the field, will be dropped.

In his remarks, the acting Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mr I.B. Uhwa, eulogized the Honourable Commissioner for what he described as the “war” he fought to get the Produce Department back on track,adding that it will be terrible for the Produce Officers to disappoint. According to him, all that are required is simple diligence but should be bold and courageous as they carry out their duties.

Mr Uhwa pointed out that the Federal Produce Department, has no business collecting produce revenue from the States and charged them to apprehend anyone seen posing as a Federal Produce officer.

Speaking, the Technical Assistant to the Commissioner on Commerce and Finance, Dr Tony Nkemakolam, thanked the Commissioner for his laudable efforts since assumption of duty in the ministry and urged the Produce Officers to give good accounts of themselves, since to whom much is given, much is expected.