House Committee moves to enforce Local Content in power sector

House-of-Reps-session05 March 2014, Abuja – The Chairman of the Diaspora Committee of the House of Representatives and member of the Committee on Power, Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa has stated that the committee on power would work towards the enactment of Local Content Act in the power sector to encourage indigenous manufacturers of meters in the country.

Speaking during a recent facility tour of Momas Meter Manufacturing Company Limited (MOMCOL) in Lagos, Dabiri-Erewa also urged the ministry of power and the new management of all electricity distribution companies to promote and patronise local manufacturers of meters.

She said the only way to ensure economic growth in Nigeria was to encourage local Small and Medium Entrepreneurs, adding that Nigeria has the best meter manufacturing companies in Africa.

“I am shocked when I saw all the equipment at MEMCOL meter manufacturing company in Nigeria, I don’t believe that we can have this kind of facility and sophisticated equipment in Nigeria and we still complain about metering challenges. Despite these local companies striving to manufacture energy meters, we still go ahead to import meter, this is indeed very bad to our system. I am amazed with what am seeing here today, it will be a big shame if we do not make use of what I am seeing here as regard meter manufactured in our own country,” she said.

Dabiri-Arewa said from what she had observed there was no patronage, despite all meters produced in anticipation for market use.The lawmaker stated that the legislature would ensure that local content is embedded in power sector just as it was done in the oil and gas sector.

“We are going to invite all parties involved, be it DISCOs owners, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), ministry of power and all stakeholders to know why local manufacturer are not been patronised,” she said.

In his speech, the Chairman of Momas Meter Manufacturing Company Limited, Mr. Kola Balogun decried the poor patronage of his products by government agencies and companies.

He said that the low patronage was stifling the growth of local industries. According to him, the revolution in telecommunications can be sustained in Nigeria through indigenous innovations.

“Indigenous manufacturers do not get enough patronage from government ministries and that is why our economy is not growing. The story of poor patronage is still the same in meter manufacturing where foreign firms are better patronised and recognised by government agencies. I can confidently say that local manufacturers of meters can meet our demand needs,” he said.

Balogun said that employment opportunities would triple if local manufacturers got more support from government at all levels, adding that the local content policy of government would not succeed if home-made innovations were not adequately utilised.

– This Day

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