Governor Ikpeazu’s MSME narrative

By Admin on 24/08/2018

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon

Views: 302


THOUGH he died unsung,  Pa Ichiogu   Ikpeazu, the great Umuobiakwa   goldsmith, still lives on. Exceptional genes do not die. He produced a teacher, Nwaon­o (nono)   and the teacher produced another teacher, Okezie.

Call it a coincidence but I call it providence! There is, indeed, a   spiral link   between the story of Governor Okezie Ikpeazu’s grandfather, the unsung goldsmith   and the Governor’s   inspirational obsession for encouraging Micro, Small and Medium   Enterprises, MSME, in Abia State. He comes from a lineage of craftsmen.   Today, aside infrastructural renewal captured in the caterpillar revolution, Ikpeazu’s second unique selling point is the government intervention in support of SMEs. Abia under Ikpeazu has taken the front seat as the leader in the promotion of SMEs in Nigeria and the accolades are coming in succession.

From inception, the   challenge of harnessing the Aba talent has remained a major preoccupation of his administration.   Thus, the   Ikpeazu  narrative is the effort to develop a latent ingenuity and creativity for which Aba is known. It is a   mystique of the city and her people. This rare ingenuity manifests in the phenomenon   of the large spectrum of men and women of skill, trade and craft that populate Aba. From the Aba tailor, the Aba shoemaker, bag-maker and all leather workers to the fabricators, there is a generic talent that grows in the ancient city, a talent that Governor Ikpeazu has very well flaunted and for which his government has received the right applause and endorsement.

Indeed, the government intervention in support of SMEs in Abia is a narrative that has seen the Governor dealing with four main challenges: namely power, market share/sales, finance and automation. He deployed the first strategy of aggressive marketing and creation of awareness. The goal was to motivate our people and rebuild their confidence. “This was necessary because our people were branding other nations and denying our ingenuity and identity. So we started by awareness and marketing,” declared the Governor. Looking back, the efforts in promotion and marketing have yielded great results.

The Governor has taken Made- in-Aba, MIA, to Aso Rock, Otta Farm, the Senate, NYSC, America and to many other agencies. “Today, our people have taken pride in our own dear Made-in-Aba and our labels have returned,” he affirmed. To tackle the challenge of power, the government deployed the power of marketing to atract the Vice-President, Professor   Yemi Osibanjo, to Abia State six times and this has culminated in uninterrupted power for six months in Ariaria International Market where nine clusters exist. Through marketing also, Abia have sent 30 out of the 100 artisans to China to learn automation in shoe manufacturing. With this intervention, the challenge of automation is resolved as Abia is set to launch the first Made-in-Abia shoe factory in December 2018. In the area of sales, the Governor has also attracted over N1.3 billion to the shoe and garment sector. About 50,000 pairs of military booths have been delivered to the military through this process.

The government has also attracted funding through the Bank of Industry,  BOI and other agencies because the attention is now on the World Bank data of 250,000 SMEs in Aba Governor Ikpeazu has remained the number one brand ambassador of the Made-in-Aba goods and he has personally led the campaign. The results have exceeded his expectations and this is affirmed by the torrent of recognitions. In 2016, Ford Foundation, an American based institutional donor partnered with Abia State to launch the First Aba Development Summit.

The goal was to develop a strategy for the development of the MSME in Abia and the organization followed up by sponsoring a 50 million Naira international brand campaign for the promotional of MIA goods. More endorsement later came in 2017. In that same year, the Nigerian Army ordered 50,000 military booths from Aba. The Federal Government also came to   debut its National Programme for MSME in Aba with over 3000 operators having a direct engagement with   industry leaders in the sector.

Recently, BOI, in collaboration with the Ford Foundation worked with the Abia State Government to launch the state’s first ever “Aba Finished Leather Cluster”, a project targeted at providing incentive to the Aba leather and garment workers. Through this programme, the craftsmen in this sector will be able to access funding from   BOI. Indeed, the highpoint of the Ikpeazu narrative is that the Federal Government of Nigeria have crowned Ikpeazu’s effort with the award of ‘Best MSME Friendly State in Nigeria”. His forefather, Ichionu, the great Umuobiakwa goldsmith, could not   take his goods beyond Abia. But, today, his grandson, Okezie, has taken his ideas far beyond our boundaries. *Mr Godwin Adindu is Special Adviser, Media & Documentation, to the Governor of Abia State.

 

Posted on August, 24 2018

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon


You may also like...
Reno Omokri; The accidental Media aide

LANGUAGE AS A TOOL OF CONQUEST

That Unelderly Outburst by Dr. Nduaguibe

Fajuyi, Nnamdi Kanu, and the Virtue of Loyalty...

WHY COURT CANNOT REMOVE IKPEAZU AS GOVERNOR OF...

THE CASH, THE JET AND PASTOR AYO ORITSEJAFOR...

Something Strange Is Happening in the Southwest

Buhari, You Are Not God And We Have...

Re: Open Letter to Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, Governor,...

Alex Otti, "Are You For Real?" By Enyinnaya...

JOHN KERRY'S UNADULTERATED GARBAGE AND HIS NEW-FOUND FRIENDS...

Ala, Obodo, and Emigration Among the Igboid: Reflections...
Opinions Editorial (4) Letters (12) Perspectives (346)

 

 

Advertisement

 

Latest Opinions OPINION: THE CHURCH IS NOT YOUR PROBLEM! OPINION: HOW NOT TO BE IN OPPOSITION: ABIA APC EXAMPLE ABSU Versus Abiapoly: the Tale of Two Abia Parastatals Governor Ikpeazu's Futuristic Initiative Again Clears The Coast For PDP In Abia State - Don Ubani ALEX OTTI: LIES AND DECEIT WON'T WIN ELECTIONS IN ABIA How Gov. Ikpeazu will win 2019 Guber election OPINION: Alex Otti has gone mad again... Orji Uzor Kalu and the delusion of a professional gamji man And Ikpeazu flies the PDP Governorship flag Justifying the place of Equity in 2019 Guber race in Abia ~ Chief Isaac Ogbonna

 

Most Read Kebbi 2015: Dakingari’s legacy and friendly enemies within (5,878 views) APUGO’s STOOGE MENTALITY (5,338 views) Nigeria and ‘unremitted’ revenues (5,281 views) FG predicates Sanusi’s suspension on loss of confidence in his ability to lead CBN (5,145 views) Understanding Kalu’s Anger (1) (5,095 views) Discourse on Our “Mumu”, Part 3 (5,005 views) Discourse on Our “Mumu”, Part 1 (4,883 views) Before We Crucify Jonathan…. (4,770 views) It Is All Lies, Muhammadu Buhari Never Built Any Refinery (4,559 views) Buhari’s Indistinct Body Language (4,380 views)