Senate President, Bukola Saraki yesterday said that what Nigeria as a country needed at the moment, is  full recognition of the Igbo as a people. Saraki said the country needed the people of the South East geo- political zone of the country more than ever.

The Senate President spoke yesterday in Abuja while declaring open the 4th Made-in-Aba Trade Fair holding in the nation’s capital city and facilitated by Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, Abia South.

 The Made-in-Aba Trade Fair in Abuja is a zonal intervention project of Senator Abaribe. The Senate President, who was represented by the Deputy Senate Majority Leader, said  the ingenuity of  the Igbo would have enhanced Nigeria’s production capacity over the years, adding that Nigeria as a country was paying the price for neglecting the creative prowess of the Igbo.

He said: “If there is anything this country needs now, it is the Igbo. Nigeria needs the Igbo’s technological advancement now.

 We are paying the price of ignoring the creativity of  Ndigbo in the past.” According to him, the decision of governments over the years to neglect the  productive instinct of the Igbo had led to the backward state of the economy, adding that “In God’s wisdom, recession has come to force us to look inwards.”

Speaking on the Made-in-Aba trade fair, Senator Saraki, who noted that the Senate would continue to do everything to promote made in Nigeria goods, said that the upper chamber had taken it upon itself from last year to amend the Procurement Act to ensure that the local manufacturers benefit from the over N2 trillion government expenditure on procurement. Saraki said:

 “With the amendment of the Public Procurement Act, which has passed final reading in the Senate, and is making its way through the House of Representatives, we are in the process of making it easier for manufacturers and entrepreneurs around the country to benefit from the over N2 trillion in government procurement contracts.

“Through this challenge, which is still ongoing, we hope to identify goods, services and other products that can be matched with investors and government agencies, to further the plight of our homegrown businessmen and women.

Igbo Chiefs “On our part, we in the Nigerian Senate, and the National Assembly as a whole, will continue to do everything within our mandate and power to ensure that our domestic manufacturers and service providers have the enabling environment that they need to thrive.

 I believe in Made- in- Nigeria, I believe in Made- in-Aba. The possibilities ahead of us are endless.”

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