The foremost advocacy group and a leading voice in the organised private sector (OPS) in Nigeria, the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), has elected Mr. Gabriel Idahosa, as President and Chairman of the Council, and offers a blueprint on how Nigeria’s economy can be rejuvenated.
This development followed the expiration of the tenure of Asiwaju (Dr.) Michael Olawale-Cole, having meritoriously served the chamber in the same capacity.
The Director-General of LCCI, Dr. Chinyere Almona informed that Idahosa emerged as the 43rd President after a duly-conducted election at the chamber’s 135th Annual General Meeting, at the Commerce House, Lagos State, describing him as “a distinguished individual with a remarkable track record of leadership, dedication, and commitment to the growth and development of various organisations, particularly in the fields of professional services, trade promotion, and industry”. The new President had served meritoriously as the Deputy President of the chamber.
As a council member and a key officer of the chamber, he has brought his extensive knowledge and experience to bear and has provided quality perspectives to deliberations at the chamber. We are confident that his presidency will enhance the chamber’s role as a leading advocate of best business policy and practice to promote and protect the interest of its members and the business community at large. The emergence of Idahosa as President and Chairman of the Council of LCCI, is in recognition of his contribution and commitment to the ideals of the chamber movement, its public policy advocacy, and the protection of the interests of the Nigerian business community, Dr. Almona added.
Mr. Gabriel Idahosa.
The new President has disclosed that he had taken over the mantle of leadership at the chamber when the country was trying to overcome the numerous challenges that have shaped it as nationhood. He said that in the midst of the celebration, there was a need to pause to reflect on the challenges that have shaped Nigeria as a nation, adding that it was in the forging of overcoming obstacles that Nigeria discovered her true strength and resilience. “Today is special, really special for me. I stand before you profoundly grateful, humbled, and genuinely touched by the warmth and support extended to me. One hundred and thirty-five years ago, some leaders of the business community birthed this legacy business membership organisation we celebrate today”.
He continued, “The founding fathers understood the significance, the constructive capacity and the transformative power that chambers of commerce and industry can play in the well-being of the organised private sector and the overall economy. These visionary men and many of those who followed in their footsteps are indeed the giants in the history of LCCI.
Idahosa stressed that “It is because of their immense contributions to the growth and development of our Chamber, the private sector and the economic evolution of our beloved nation that I am able to stand on the shoulders of these giants as I accept the leadership of this illustrious institution. On his part, Dr. Olawale-Cole urged LCCI members and staff to give unflinching support to the new president to succeed in his new role as the chamber’s new president. Meanwhile, the LCCI had disclosed that the Nigerian economy in 2023 was significantly influenced by global and domestic developments.
Some of the impacting global developments include Russia – Ukraine War, rising coups and coup attempts in Africa, Israel – Hamas War, elevated global inflation and sharp tightening of monetary policy in response, slow China’s recovery, global capital flight and overlapping shocks of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. On the local economic developments, the country experienced elections and election-related activities, persistent inflationary pressures and very high monetary policy rates, foreign exchange crisis, high levels of fiscal debt and low Gross Domestic Product growth. In addressing the most significant components of human capital development, we urge governments at all levels to be committed to significantly improving budget implementation in strategic sectors of the economy, including agriculture, education, health, infrastructure, and security, LCCI stated further.