Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State said on Thursday that the state had generated N1.4 billion from the sale of Made-in-Nigeria goods, since the campaign began.
The governor disclosed this while addressing state House Correspondents in Abuja after conferring with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on the proposed Committee on Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Council.
“Part of the direct fall out of our campaign since the past 24 months is that today some parts of Ariaria market, where the shoe making enterprise is flourishing, has enjoyed steady power for three weeks now.
“It is on a pilot scheme courtesy of the agency in charge of rural power supply.
“Beyond that we are interfacing and having better relationship with funding agencies now.
“And we were able to attract about N1.3billion or N1.4 billion on direct sales from the Made-in-Aba shoes, made in Abia dresses and all that,’’ he said.
The governor stated that besides the investments the Made-in-Aba fashion show was held in Abuja and another one was held in New York where they (manufacturers) came face to face with world class designers “and we did not do badly at all.
“The Made-in-Nigeria campaign has assumed international dimension now,’’ he added.
He said the visit to the Vice President was because, “we are trying to set up a committee for the MSME Council and I am a critical stakeholder in that because Abia state is the SME hub of Nigeria today.
“We are actually interested in what happens; the patronage of Made-in-Nigeria products in Abia is going up,’’ Ikpeazu explained.
On what the state had done to encourage local industries, the governor stated that having direct sales of N1.4 billion was not a joke and ensuring that there was constant and uninterrupted power supply for three weeks was not also a mean feat.
According to the governor, exposing them to fairs as far as to New York is not something you sweep under the carpet.
“Confidence is returned; everybody now places “Proudly Aba, Proudly Nigeria’’ on his wares.
“If our youths are happy doing what they are doing then we have started something.
Ikpeazu stated that his administration had been working on infrastructure steadily including roads, electricity, security as all of them were part of enablers that would drive the vision.
According to him, this government has completed about 45 roads and about 25 of those roads are in Aba.
“We are doing the first flyover in the entire Abia state in Aba and the cement roads we are doing; our roads have survived three rainy seasons now and they are standing.’’
On Nnamdi Kanu’s whereabouts, the governor described him as his brother but noted that Kanu was not in the custody of Abia government.
“Those who are looking for him may have a better knowledge and have the capacity to determine the location of anyone in Nigeria.
“There are people who are trained to track people and it is their responsibility not mine,’’ the governor stated.
Kanu is the leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).