The Federal Government is committed to tackling the problem of weights and measures in the country, the Minister of Commerce and Industry, Chief Achike Udenwa, has said. Udenwa said this when he featured on the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) forum on Wednesday in Abuja.
â€œThis is an area that up till now we have not been able to play the role efficiently on what we are supposed to do; that is, being able to ascertain the correct weights, the correct measures,â€™â€™ he said.
He said it was the ministryâ€™s responsibility to determine the volume of petrol motorists got at filling stations and the quantity of crude oil leaving the country.
â€œThere are quite a lot of responsibilities imposed on our ministry by the law. But unfortunately, we have not been able to do these very efficiently in the past because of lack of funds and manpower capacity.
We want to see how we can confront this in this new year. If we have adequate budgetary allocation, we should be able to face some of these problems squarely,â€ Udenwa said. The Minister restated the ministryâ€™s commitment to sustaining the campaign on the patronage of Made-in-Nigeria goods, improving the free zones and supporting Small and Medium Enterprises this year.
According to him, Nigerians are beginning to realise the importance of buying Made-in-Nigeria goods, adding that the campaign on it would be launched in Maiduguri and Enugu this month. He added: â€œBut we must continue the sensitisation and, again we appeal to you, the media, to assist us. It is a major issue.
â€œLet Nigerians get it into their heads that we donâ€™t wear or use foreign materials where the local material or alternatives are available.â€™â€™ He said this was necessary not only for the sake of patriotism, butÂ for the individual well-being of Nigerians and the creation of employment opportunities for Nigerians. Udenwa also spoke on the volume of trade between Nigeria and China, describing it as huge, explaining that China imports oil and gas from Nigeria and in turn exports finished products.
He decried the attitude of Nigerian businessmen who aided the importation of fake and sub-standard products into the country. However, he said the Federal Government was collaborating with relevant Chinese authorities to ensure that all products coming into Nigeria from China were of international standard. Udenwa said that many Nigerian products were of high quality, noting that this had made them the target of counterfeiters. He pointed out that there had been cases where Made-in-Nigeria goods were exported, branded as foreign goods, re-imported into the country and sold at exorbitant prices.