By Zannau Hassan
Wukari is the most strategic local government area in Taraba state today base on the geographical position she enjoins. Wukari is located in the southern part of Taraba state bordering Benue state and with easy access to Plateau and Nassarawa states. Also, Wukari is readily available from the other parts of the Taraba South local government areas as well as the other parts of Taraba state through well-linked access roads from all sides.
Wukari is at the center of the abundant potentials of Taraba state especially within the southern corridor of the state with abundant timber, cocoa, Oil-palm, Sesame, Cashew, mangoes, oranges, banana and plantain as well as other solid minerals deposits. Takum, Donga, Ussa, Kurmi can easily access Wukari via the Wukari-Donga-Takum road while Plateau and Nassarawa states can access Wukari through Ibi road and that is why Ibi bridge across the Benue is crucial. While the rest of Taraba is linked to Wukari through the Wukari-Jalingo road. No local government in Taraba state has that kind of advantage.
Having had these geographical advantages, Wukari deserves to become an Industrial Hub of Taraba state. It is up to the state government to make this happen using her executive and legislative powers. They can create an industrial zone or a free trade zone and provide access to infrastructure that will make it easier for processing/manufacturing companies to be established.
As an industrial hub city, Wukari is closer to abundant natural resources of both southern Taraba and northern parts of Benue state as well as the southern part of Plateau state.
By declaring Wukari as an industrial city, investors stands a better chance of utilizing the abundant natural resources to their advantage instead of transporting it out of the state in their raw state. This will ensure jobs creation and increased revenue generation for both the state and local government area.
Wukari was on the part of becoming an industrial hub in the early 1980s with the establishment of the flour mill plant and the rice mill centre along Tsukundi road. The rice mill continued without modernizing the processes while the flour mill plant becomes moribund. At a time like this, when the nation is rethinking her economic strategy, Taraba state and the people of Wukari need to be awakened to take up the opportunity God has placed in their favor.