From David Onwuchekwa, Nnewi
The Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, yesterday, gave the assurance that the Federal Government would give necessary support to local manufacturers to boost their various manufacturing ventures.
This was just as he described the CEO of Chicason Group, Dr. Chika Okafor as the biggest industrialist in Africa.
Prof Osinbajo said this during the commissioning of Rimco Refinery/Fractionation Plant belonging to Chicason Group Nnewi, and tour of companies and industries under it and others in Nnewi.
“Federal Government has adopted a policy of buying locally manufactured goods and it is doing this by patronising vehicles manufactured by Innoson Vehicle Motors (IVM), Nnewi, and the Federal Executive Council (FEC) approved the purchase of specialised vehicles for Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) from the Nnewi -based company.”
“A lot of what we see in Nnewi is the result of private enterprise. I am pleased to see the number of people employed by Chicason Group and other companies in Nnewi, and we will support Chicason Industries and other companies like Innoson Vehicle Motors.
“I have heard and seen many of the goods produced by Chicason Group just as the Innoson Motors in Abuja as well as many other goods produced in companies in Nnewi, like Tummy Tummy Noodles company which has thousands of workers in the employ. I commend the CEO of Tummy Tummy company, Chief Chika Emenike.
I am highly impressed. I have been to Onitsha before coming to Nnewi and I must state that I am overwhelmed by the level of ingenuity, creativity and productivity of the manufacturers here. The vehicles produced in IVM are top quality and I have equally seen the large number of young men and women employed by these concerns.
The Federal Government will encourage them so that they can continue to employ our people.”
Prof Osinbajo said he came to Anambra State on a working tour to ascertain for himself firsthand the challenges confronting the manufacturers and industrialists in the state and to see how the Federal Government could assist them tackle the problems.
The Anambra state Governor Chief Willie Obiano who accompanied the Vice President on the working tour of selected companies in the state also ordered the purchase of five specially made Innoson Vehicles for the state command of the Nigeria Police Force.
Managing Director of Chicason Group, Nnewi, Chief Linus Ilozue who spoke on behalf of his chairman, Chief Okafor, said the greatest challenge they have in Chicason Group and other industries in Nnewi is power supply and lack of good roads.
He said they would perform better and employ more people if these two challenges were addressed. He added that they were striving hard not to lay off staff due to high cost of production as a result of poor power supply and appealed for help from Federal and state governments to address the problems.