Stakeholders urge patronage of made-in-Nigeria textiles
Stakeholders in the textile industry want the Federal and state governments to as a matter of policy give patronage to Nigeria textiles.
They stated this at the 28th Annual National Education Conference of the National Union of Textile, Garment and Tailoring Workers of Nigeria (NUTGTWN) and the Nigerian Textile, Garment and Tailoring Employers Association (NTGTEA) in Benin City, the Edo State capital.
The President of NUTGTWN, John Adaji, urged the Federal to shift from rhetoric to practical actions about the nation’s textile industry. He said that the achievements of President Muhammadu Buhari can only be measured by the success he was able to achieve in reviving the textile sector.
On his part, the Director General NTGTEA, Hamman Kwajjaffa, called for a bail-out stressing that poor electricity supply remained a major challenge in reviving the ailing sector.
He lamented that smugglers have taken over the textile market, bringing goods from Asia and other parts of Europe. He said the height of the compromise in the sector was the recent raid by the Nigerian Customs Service of some warehouses where smuggled textile materials worth N350 billion were seized.
The General Secretary of NUTGTWN and National Vice President, Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Isa Aremu, said the recent re-orientation launched by Buhari should start from members of his cabinet. “The new change mantra must start from the textile industry. The president, vice president, ministers, must appear in made in Nigeria textiles,’’
“Our school uniforms, military and para-military uniforms, uniforms of the NYSC should be made in Nigeria with Nigerian fabrics, we must patronise what we produce at home. Secondly, we need uninterrupted power supply because the cost of production is very high.”
Responding, the Minister of Trade, Industry and Investment, Hajia Aisha Abubakar said the government was working out ways to revive the textile industry and ensuring that Nigerians patronise made- in- Nigeria textiles.
Represented by a director in the ministry, Barnabas Jattau, the minister disclosed that there was an ongoing discussion with the military and para-military, to patronise made -in -Nigeria textile for their uniforms.
He said other plans include reduction in the cost of production, and checking smuggling.
According to her, the government is in a high-level discussion with the Customs on how to stop smuggling of textiles materials into the country.
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