19 August 2013, Lagos – Director general of the Centre for Democratic Governance in Africa, CDGA, Dr Dafe Akpocha, has commended the local content initiative of the federal government saying local meter manufacturers should be encouraged at this point to enable them play pivotal role in the power sector transformation.
He said that the only way to promote local content development in Nigeria is for government to discourage importation of goods and items that can be sourced locally. According to him, when importation of meter is banned, Nigerians will be forced to buy indigenous meters adding “There is no way we can stop importation but it can be reduced, there are some locally manufactured products here that can compete with international products.”
Akpocha said that the indigenous manufacturers can improve on their products and contribute to the growth of the economy in a positive manner if both government and the Nigerian banks could assist indigenous companies to strive. Akpocha gave the advice during a conferment of Gold Service Merit Award on the chairman of MOMAS meter manufacturing company, Mr Kola Balogun by the centre.
He said that the centre was prompted to give the award to deserving entrepreneurs like the recipient, who he described as “A silent achiever and good ambassador of Nigeria and indeed Africa”. The director general assured that he would do everything humanly possible to pull the right strings in order to further develop the company. “I can see the future of Nigeria here. Memmcol Nigeria Ltd is a manifestation of the can-do spirit only common to Nigerians.
“The company needs to be supported in every way possible. Banks should encourage indigenous oil companies through grant of loan facilities. The essence why government initiated the local content bill is to promote indigenous companies in the country.” He urged government and banks to introduce a special funding package to support the participation of indigenous companies in the oil and gas sector of the Nigerian economy.
– Chika Izuora, Leadership