The call was made at an interactive session organised by the government and the State Emergency Management Agency.
The industrialists, who were largely from the Onitsha Industrial Harbour, expressed regrets on the huge loss on investment due to the flooding.
The Group Managing Director of Krisoral Group of Companies, Oranu Chris, spoke on behalf of the manufacturers.He urged the Federal Government to release the disaster funds to help mitigate the effects of the flood.
He said the occupiers of the harbour, which employs no fewer than 25,000 people, had started to protect their investments through erection of embankment on the river bank.
In his remarks, the Secretary to the State Government, Mr Oseloka Obaze, said the 2013 NIMET flood prediction was unfavourable to the state.
Obaze, who also heads the state flood management board, said that about 280,000 persons were envisaged to be displaced.
He said the state government spent N500 million on management of 2012 disaster, appealing to communities in disaster-prone areas to create awareness on how to mitigate flooding on the citizenry.
He further appealed to the Federal Government to assist the state government in fully resettling the victims and cushioning the burden of affected industrialists.
Prof. Christian Mmadu, Director of Shell Centre for Environmental Management and Control, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, called for a more proactive approach to the problem.
Mmadu called on the government and communities in the flood-prone areas to constitute technical committees to work out a possible long-term solution to the global climate change challenge.