PRODA to start production of motor parts – Minister

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The Project Development Institute (PRODA), Enugu is set to commence the production of vehicle parts in partnership with INNOSON Group of Companies.

Minister of Science and Technology (State), Henry Ikoh disclosed this on Saturday in Enugu during an official visit to the institute.

Ikoh said that the production of the motor parts was part Federal Government efforts to diversify Nigeria’s economy.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that INNOSON Group is a Nigerian firm involved in vehicle manufacturing.

The minister said that Nigeria had both the manpower and resources to explore such possibility, but was not done over the years due to lack of political will.

He said that the current administration was keen to encourage PRODA and other research institutes to patent and commercialise their research outcomes.

The minister said that the move would ensure job creation for the youths, adding that PRODA had the capacity to excel in that area.

According to Ikoh, the ministry intends to use the remaining period of the current administration to place PRODA on a strong footing to achieve its mandate.

“We are looking for low hanging fruits in order to leave a legacy between now and March 2022.

“As a country, we do not need to import everything we use. We should be able produce certain types of machines and equipment for our industries,” he said.

Ikoh said that in spite of the breakthroughs that PRODA had made, it’s not where it should be.

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“We need to come up with the relevant laws and legislations to enable them achieve more in the interest of the country,” Ikoh said.

Earlier, the Director-General of PRODA, Mr Peter Ogbobe, said that the institute was at the forefront of repositioning the Nigerian economy.

“Our focus on primary processing and value addition have contributed remarkably to the reduction of poverty and youth restiveness in the country,” he said.

The director general , however, said that much still needed to be achieved by the institute in order to build the technological base of the country.

Ogbobe said that the PRODA Amendment Bill which was before the National Assembly, was one of the instruments and legal frameworks needed to enhance their operations.

He mentioned other challenges to include the encroachment of portions of the land housing the Ekulu Machine Workshop by agents of the state ministry of housing.

“The institute is desirous to put the workshop to maximum use by ensuring that those machines temporarily relocated were brought back for full industrial operations to start,” he said.

Ogbobe appealed for the intervention of the Federal Government on the deplorable link road which leads to the Ekulu Workshop from the Enugu -Abakaliki Expressway. (NAN)

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