Yesterday, news broke that Innoson Motors Nig Ltd has laid off 50% of its work force, largely due to poor patronage and the harsh economic condition; no thanks to the fall of naira in the currency market.
According to the report, if things continue this way, the company might as well be on its way to folding up!
Innoson Motors is a purely indigenous automobile manufacturing firm, owned by Chief (Dr) Innocent Ifediaso Chukwuma, situated in Anambra state, South East Nigeria.
For me, the courage of this gentleman should be rewarded by the government and citizenry, by way of patronage.
The last administration of Dr Goodluck Jonathan did encourage him by purchasing IVM (Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing) automobiles for use by government functionaries . Ditto for Mr Peter Obi, erstwhile governor of Anambra state.
However, the present Federal administration of President Muhammadu Buhari and the State administration of Chief Willie Obiano have tactically stayed away from IVM automobiles.
This in my opinion, leaves much to be desired and negates the Change we seek!
If we desire to birth a new Nigeria, we must encourage indigenous manufacturers.
Annually, billions of naira is paid to Toyota and other foreign automobile firms for the importation of vehicles for use by government officials. What if those monies are paid to IVM?
Now 50% of its work force has been laid off, pushed into the labour market, increasing poverty and crime waves theretofore, while enriching the purse of Toyota, a Japanese conglomerate.
I hereby call on President Muhammadu Buhari and Governor Willie Obiano to save this prime outfit from folding up.
I look forward to a presidential pronouncement that makes it mandatory for all government functionaries, including the national assembly, to stop the importation of foreign automobiles and use ONLY made in Nigeria vehicles, as represented by IVM.
God bless Nigeria
(c) Thomas-Wilson Ikubese
15th January, 2016