Nigerian Government to Promote Locally Made Products, Cassava Bread; Power to Stabilize By 2013

Minister of Information, Labaran Maku

Below, is a press statement from the office of the Minister of Information of Nigeria regarding patronage of products made in Nigeria.

Federal Ministry of Information has launched a media campaign to promote Made-in-Nigeria products in furtherance of President Jonathan’s resolve to boost the local economy. Information Minister Mr. Labaran Maku stated this in Abuja at an exhibition of made-in-Nigeria products organized by the Ministry in collaboration with some small and medium enterprises.

He said the media campaign is to sensitize Nigerians to understand the linkage between patronizing local products, growth of the economy and job creation. “Federal Ministry of Information is leading a media campaign to make Nigerians aware and to sensitize them and make them understand the implication of always rejecting things that are made in Nigeria in preference to foreign products”.

Mr. Maku decried how the elite elevated the consumption and usage of foreign foods and products in the country to a status symbol at the detriment of the economy and attributed it to disorientation that emanated from colonial rule.

“Unfortunately for a long time, since the coming of the Whiteman, Nigerians have been disoriented into thinking that it’s only the products made in Europe or Asia that are good. You remember that during the colonial government, the colonial policy was to make sure that Nigerians produced raw materials and send to Europe while Europe would produce finished products for us to consume because there is more money from finished products than raw material”, he said.

The Minister remarked that in a global competitive market for products, every country wants to export its products to other countries while cutting down on the importation of finished products in order to create more jobs at home and curb capital flight.

He said it was in line with this that the President directed that any construction contract below 5 billion Naira should be awarded to Nigerian companies and that a fund had been set up to assist women to be involved in contract execution.

Mr. Maku further stated that Dr. Goodluck Jonathan made it a policy that only Nigerian foods would be served in the Presidential Villa in addition to promoting the consumption of cassava bread, which was discovered to be the best in the world, in order to support the growth of the local economy and create more job opportunities.

The Minister observed that the huge population of the country alone is enough to boost economic growth if citizens agree to patronize locally made products.

According to him, the Federal Ministry of Information had complied fully with the directive of the Head of Service of the Federation for staff to wear only Nigerian fabrics to office on Fridays and that those who were consistent collect prizes on the last Friday of every month.

He said this is a deliberate policy to promote the use of Nigerian fabrics among staff of the ministry, thereby encouraging producers to improve on the quality of their products.

Mr. Maku also gave assurance of the commitment of the present administration to boost and stabilize power supply in the country to support the growth of small and medium enterprises.

He said power would stabilize by 2013 through the commissioning of more power plants to energize the private sector which is the engineroom of economic growth and employment generation.

Mr. Labaran Maku, however called on local producers and manufacturers of products to ensure they produce quality products that could attract patronage from Nigerians.

“My advice to Nigerian producers is produce what is good, don’t cut corners. Let your products be genuine so that when they say made-in-Nigeria, people know that it is as good as anything. Anybody that cuts corners, you know will not last in the market,” he warned.

The occasion featured the exhibition of local fabrics, arts and craft, and Nigerian foods as well as fashion parade of Nigerian designer fabrics.

Joseph Mutah
Press Secretary

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