By Emmanuel Elebeke
The National Automotive Design and Development Council, NADDC, has explained that the N1.8billion approved by the Federal Executive Council, FEC, would be expended in the procurement and installation of automotive/mechatronics equipment in special centers across six geopolitical zones of the country.
Recall that the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, while addressing newsmen on Wednesday shortly after the virtual FEC meeting in Abuja, had said the approved fund will cover three pilot workshops and automotive service hubs initiated by the NADDC.
He explained that the reason for the project, “is that with the kind of vehicles being manufactured today, we need training institutes that will train our mechanics and our youths how to maintain and service these vehicles.”
Speaking with journalists on Thursday in Abuja, the NADDC Director-General, Jelani Aliyu, welcomed the approval, saying that the seven Automotive Training Centres will impact skills and create more jobs in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment towards lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty.
According to him, the 3 Automotive Hubs being constructed in Sokoto, Ondo and Imo states would be equipped with all the necessary equipment and highly professional staff who will be able to diagnose any vehicles, maintain or repair it.
“So with such projects, I can say that we have 10 very important projects that are contributing towards fulfilling President Muhammadu Buhari’s promise to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in the next ten years,” Mr Aliyu said.
The director-general also disclosed that the agency was constructing3 Automotive Testing Centres in Zaria, Lagos and Enugu for the homologation of vehicle spare parts.
He said: “As you are aware the Automobile is a very complex machine with many different components that all come together to create that machine and it is imperative that Nigerians are protected, that any spare parts that they used most meet minimum global standard which unfortunately isn’t the case.
“As I speak, in our efforts to protect Nigerian Public, we have almost completed the construction of 3 Automotive Testing Centres in Zaria, Lagos and Enugu.
“These projects would be completed before the end of this year, any spare parts that has not been tested by any one of the these centres, will be deemed sub- standard or illegal, all these are our efforts to make sure that the vehicles and the components are available in Nigeria and are safe and efficient.”