From Femi Oyelola, kaduna
National Union of Textile Garment and Tailoring workers of Nigeria (NUTGTWN) has commended President Muhamadu Buhari commitment to revive the textile industry.
The Secretary General of the Union Comrade Issa Aremu stated this when the Minister of State, Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment Hajia Aisha Abubakar, paid a visit to the National Secretariat of the Union in kaduna yesterday.
Aremu said President Buhari made the revival of textile industry and manufacturing sector his cardinal campaign programm and through the facilitation of the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osibanjo, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Okechukwu Enelamah and the Minister of State, Hajia Aisha Abubakar, President Buhari administration has initiated a number of measures aimed at industry revival.
The NUTGTWN scribe disclosed that the visit was the second factory visit of the Honourable Minister of State to Kaduna., saying she had also visited some of the factories in Kano and Lagos to assess the situation, establish quality and capacity.
Aremu also said in the last two years, the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment has been partnering with the Union and other stakeholders in the commemoration of the Africa Industrialisation Day (AID)
He warned that There cannot be development without industry explaining that Only industry can provide sustainable jobs and living wages and necessary revenues for government to provide the needed infrastructure for development.
“For a diverse country like Nigeria, Industry is also a unifier. There was once a Nigeria in which we have textile industry in all the geo-political zones of the country. This is why our union s a Pan-Nigerian.
“For Africa to meet the Sustainable Development Goal 2030, especially SDG 9 dealing with industry and innovation, Africa Continent must innovate and industrialize.
“Africa must copy China’s industrialization drive which has within 20 years moved over 500 million people out of poverty through sustainable employment and wage-led manufacturing and industrialization.
‘Africa must make what it consumes, otherwise it will be consumed by the rest of the world.
“We acknowledge and commended the Federal Government of Nigeria for launching the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP).
“However, it is surprising the National Cotton, Textile & Garment (CTG) policy was not built into the ERGP.”
“Industry and investment are too important to be left with investors alone. President Muhammadu Buhari has commendably set up National Industrial Policy and Competitiveness Advisory Council.
“The Council must be inclusive in its composition. Industrial Policy Council must have three components; economic, sustainability and the environment. There are active investors whose interests are mainly economic.
“ Federal government should include critical stakeholders like trade unions and state government representatives on the Council to address the critical issues of sustainable production and job creation and the environment.” He said
Aremu however said despite all the efforts by the Federal government, the textile industry is yet to revive.
Only recently, the industry recorded about 700 direct job losses due to retrenchment in some of the remaining factories.