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IFC, SECO introduce African Corporate Governance Programme to Nigerian enterprises


Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola

Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola

• IT group doubts LASRRA’s efficiency 

THE National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has said that key business enterprises that support the nation’s economy are domiciled in Lagos.

According to the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) National Survey 2013, released by the bureau, Lagos State recorded highest number of micro enterprises nationwide with a total of 3,224,324 representing 8.72 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Similarly, the population of small and medium enterprises located in that state total 11,663 or 16.01 per cent of the GDP.

Conversely, the report showed that Nasarawa State had the lowest number of micro enterprises with 382,086 or 1.03 per cent of the total GDP, while Kwara State had lowest number of small and medium enterprises with total of 226 or 0.31 per cent.

The bureau, which said the purpose of the survey was to identify growth indices within the economy, noted also that micro, small and medium enterprises are essential for the growth of any nation.

“It is well known that micro, small and medium enterprises are key drivers of socio-economic transformation in both developed and developing countries, put at the fore-front of economic policy”, it said.

The survey further revealed that the MSMEs contributed 48.47 per cent to GDP in nominal terms, while 7.27 per cent was contributed by the sector to export volume, also in nominal terms. On sector-by-sector basis, the services area contributed 54.72 per cent to the GDP, followed by agriculture, which had 42.02 per cent. Industry gave 12.26 per cent of the total GDP.

The marked drop, the bureau said, were caused by low level of capital and employees needed in businesses within the sectors. Relatedly, skills gap have also been identified as key players in the shortfall of performances in the micro economic sector.

For instance, skills gap in micro enterprises stood at 42.10 per cent as against 27.75 per cent in small and medium scale.

The survey also said that the mining and quarrying sector had 65.48 per cent skills gap, while extra-territorial organisations and bodies had 54.99 per cent of skills gap. The accommodation and communication sector had 51.99 per cent of skill gap, while education and real estates had 50.83 per cent and 49.83 per cent respectively.

And ahead of the commencement of distribution of identification cards to residents next month, a Lekki-based Information Technology (IT) group, Oracle Data Resort, has expressed doubts about the management efficiency of the Lagos State Residents Registration Agency (LASRRA).

The group, through its Operations Director, Mr. Nkenna Osuji, pointed out that an otherwise lofty idea that began in 2011 by an enactment of state law, is gradually becoming bogged down by the Nigerian factor of nepotism despite the multi-billion-naira public funds spent on it by the government.

His words: “The residents’ cards project is a good idea even when it has proved to be a duplication of already existing data initiatives of the national identity card project, the data captured in the driver’s licence through the Federal Roads Safety Corps (FRSC) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)-ordered banks’ biometric and data collation initiative among others.

“When the idea will, as a matter of projection, ensure even distribution of the needs of the populace, despite the reality that the governor obviously wields awesome discretion in the areas of giving priority to projects, the huge amount of over N7 billion so far expended on the initiative is scandalous in view of the yet-to-be-disputed non-commensurate paltry 168,000 residents’ cards shamefully produced in three years … and the purported suspicious disappearance of the residency cards of the incumbent Governor Babatunde Fashola when the vehicle of the agency’s head was purportedly robbed by robbers.”

The resort’s image-maker, Mr Gboyega Alebiosu, also bemoaned lack of transparency in the operation of LASRRA, blaming it on nepotism arising from the appointment of Ms Fashola, blood sister of current governor, as its General Manager.

He went on: “Is it because the blood sister of Governor Fashola is the head of the agency that is keeping it’s ineptitude away from the prying eyes of relevant government officials and the public?

“For how long will this run on public perception which has been quite positive when in actual fact, an agency like LASRRA has not been a good ambassador of the government in this regard? “Our investigation has shown that this kind of nepotistic tendency has influenced the decision of most civil servants to vote against the ruling party in the state during the last elections.”

However, LASRRA has shown its resolve to forge ahead in its determination to ensure that the distribution exercise holds as scheduled.

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