Nigerian Tribune reports that Stakeholders in real estate investment and businessmen have called for the resuscitation of the moribund Nigerian Lamp Industry, established by the late industrialist, Chief Beyioku Adebowale of the famed Adebowale Electronics.
The industry is located at Odomola, in Epe Local Government Area of Lagos.
Speaking on the imperative of resuscitation of the industry, Chief Femi Ademola, a developer, described the project as “a courageous indigenous effort to play in the main stream manufacturing sector.”
According to Chief Ademola, when Adebowale built the plant in his native Epe township in Lagos State, it was reported to be the first of its kind in Africa. Specifically, the plant was equipped to manufacture light bulbs and fluorescent lamps, among other items.
“It is reported that Adebowale seized the opportunity of government policy that was meant to encourage indigenous businesses to thrive and depend less on importation of foreign materials.
“Unfortunately, by the time the plant came on board, government had made a reversal on policy. Rather than protect local industries, government lifted the restricted importation of bulbs and fluorescents tube and other lamp forms, which is quite unfortunate,” he said, urging Governor Akinwunmi Ambode to use his influence to attract foreign investors to resuscitate the plant.
Another observer, who is from Epe community, Mr Musediq Olaniyi, at the Lagos Consultative Forum, held at the Michael Otedola College of Primary Education, Noforija, last week, urged government to revamp the company.
Olaniyi was of the view that issue of unemployment would have been reduced in the local government area and its environs, if the industry were to be thriving.
“Our position is that Governor AkinwunmiAmbodeshould seek foreign or capable indigenous investors to look in the direction of the lamp industry in Epe. It’s our candid opinion that resuscitation of the industry would not only reduce unemployment, but would also have positive impacts on the state’s revenue,” he stated.
Observers were of the view that government policy somersault, which encouraged influx of substandard electrical and electronic items into the country killed the industry, even before it took off.
Moreover, those who were familiar with the history of the lamp industry, stated that it had become a publicly quoted company, which Nigerians had subscribed to its initial public offer.
“But with the influx of cheaper products and brands into the market, the company’s operation became blighted and soon after became literally comatose. The company that never took off for operation was eventually placed under a receiver manager. This officially announced the demise of the promising company,” said another observer.
Argument these days is that only a naive entrepreneur in Nigeria would be excited with the contemplation of floating a manufacturing concern. “But the wise ones, schooled in the experiences they have had to contend with in the ever changing dynamics of manufacturing and other investments tasks in the production lines have fled the scene to the shelter of trading and merchandising.
“The challenges of conducting manufacturing and related production activities in the country, though, huge, are however benign when compared with the ease with which government oft volte-face on policies and action. This, inadvertently stamped out the promises or existence of a once upon-a-time manufacturing plant”, said another observer, who listed many once flourishing industries such as Odutolatyres, Dunlop, Michelin tyres, Phillips, Bata, among others, that government’s policy inconsistency had driving away to a more saner clime.
Source: Nigerian Tribune