ByÂ Chidi Nkwopara
OWERRIâ€”The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has cried out that epileptic public power supply was crippling the manufacturing sector in the countryâ€™s economy.
MANâ€™s President, Alhaji Bashir Borodo, made the lamentation in a message he sent to the 22nd Annual General Meeting of Imo/Abia Branch of the Association in Owerri.
â€œSuffice it to say that the manufacturing sector in Nigeria was almost crippled by the epileptic power supply during the year. Energy accounted for almost 40 percent of manufacturing cost,â€ Borodo lamented.
He further reasoned that sequel to this ugly scenario, capacity utilization in almost all the sectors dropped
from about 43 percent in 2007 to 38 percent in 2008, even as he expressed hope that the federal governmentâ€™s drive to attain 6,000 megawatts would be realized.
â€œOne will have to ask whether the structures are now in place and whether the other inputs like gas, adequate transmission and distribution facilities that will power the structures are being put in place. The issue of transmission must be given adequate attention,â€ Alhaji Borodo pleaded.
The MAN boss reiterated the call by the Association for a harmonization of taxes and levies in every state, stressing that the uncoordinated imposition of taxes and levies by different agencies of government remained a threat to investment and survival of existing industries.
Speaking earlier, the Chairman of Imo/Abia Branch of MAN, Dr. Frank S.U. Jacobs, lamented the state of insecurity in the South East geo-political zone of the country.
â€œIn the South East zone, security of life and property is no longer assured as armed robbery, bank robbery and kidnapping have become the order of the day. These have become worrisome and call for immediate and concerted action,â€ Jacobs said.
He disclosed that many of their members have fallen victim of kidnapping, leading to mass exodus of foreign nationals and sometimes, closure and/or relocation of factories.