The report that the Nigerian Army has placed an order for 50,000 boots from local manufacturers in Aba has generated commendation from Nigerians for the patronage of Made-in-Nigeria product. Among the commendations flooding in are some who said that the morale of the troops will be boosted by wearing such made-in-Nigeria boots fashioned for the rigors and harsh weather and soil condition of the country.
The Army was reported to have asked Aba shoemakers to produce 50,000 pairs of boots for soldiers.
Nigeria had in the past patronize foreign boots for the army, but this singular step has elicited commendations that the government had taken the lead to patronize local goods.
Aside the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, who had seen it as a patriotic act, residents have equally thrown in their support for the locally-made products. They however, urged the manufacturers to maintain the quality of the boots in order to encourage more patronage.
An Akwa-based businessman, Mr Afam Okeke, said: “The Nigerian Army has done a good job by patronising made in Nigeria goods of this quantity.
“When other establishments of government do the same, the amount of money that will be in circulation will be much and will help ease us out of the current recession.”
“What the Army has done – ordering 50,000 boots from a local manufacturer – is leading by example, which others should emulate,’’ Okeke said.
Stanley Ogba, a student, called on local manufacturers to maintain the standard they have set for their products.
“It will be hard for Nigerian Manufacturers to maintain the standard they used for their first products when there is more demand from the populists.
“The morale of our officers will be boosted if they wear boots that can withstand the vagaries of the thick forest, desert, and quagmire they have to go through for them to fight our enemies and protect our interests,” he added.
Chief Anayo Ileka, a financial analyst, urged manufacturers in the country to apply global best practice in the production of their goods.
“In as much as the move will generate jobs for the teeming youths, buying made in Nigeria goods will also conserve foreign exchange.
“Even if their gain in the transaction is not much, local manufacturers should maintain the standard they have started with for it pays in the long run than lowering the quality of their products later on in an attempt to maximise profit,” he stated.