...integrity and prudence!


According to Dr. Mufutau Adebowale in his lecture at Merit House Abuja on 16th of June, 2011 “Growth is embellished in development. In actual fact a country will be growing without development when the variable of development are not properly harnessed. A typical example is Nigeria. Our country has been generating huge income from export of petroleum products for many years now. This actually is growth. What we actually lack is development! At 51 we still depend on advance country of the world for supply of virtually all our needs. We import electronic gadgets, calculators, wristwatches, and many more. We depend on Sweden for supply of Volvo cars, we depend on Germany for supply of Mercedes Benz vehicles, we depend on Japan for Nissan Vehicles, Toyota and Honda. Similarly, that small Italy supply us with Fiat Cars, Buses and trucks. What can our engineers produce?

The pertinent question now is “How far with the Nigerian made car by the Project Development Agency (PRODA) Enugu which was invented in the year 1989 that was exhibited at Tafawa Balewa Square Lagos on the 16th of October 1989. According to the Daily times issue of October 17th front page under the caption IBB calls for patronage of local goods “Nigeria’s first independence car yesterday eventually made it at the exhibition stand at the Tafawa Balewa square. Rear Admiral Koshoni had at first hopped into the drivers seat, apparently to test drive, but after starting the engine and trying his hands on the gear lever, changed his mind and asked a fair complexioned man to test the wheels…………………….. when the car engine coughed to life, it took some seconds of pumping of throttle. It was not clear whether the car made the almost 600 miles journey from Enugu to Lagos on its own or was ferried in by a trailer or an aircraft”. Concerning this situation, Femi Ajayi wrote on page 22 of Daily Times October 17, 1989, “I watched with cynical amusement the understandable feverish excitement of many well-meaning Nigerians over the first fully indigenous Nigerian car. The car designed and built by the Project Development Agency (PRODA) Enugu was to have been displayed at Abuja between September 25 and 27”.

Expectedly, the media, true to character- celebrated the arrival of the first locally made car some newspapers actually announced that the dream of many Nigerians to have their own cars was near fulfillment…. Alas, even the prototype of our dream car could not be taken to Abuja for mere exhibition because of administrative hitches or technical faults”. It has now become 25 years yet no solution!

Again the Centre for Automotive Design and Development situated at Ahmadu Bello University Zaria was mandated to develop a Nigerian made car (see pgs 8 & 9, Sunday Tribute November 20, 1994). This centre spent about 10 years and yet no tangible result. The centre (CADD) was closed down in year 2000 by Obasanjo’s administration for lack of result. The question now is: were the HND graduates responsible for all these?

We now manufacture, sorry assemble Keke Napep from completely knocked down parts imported from India (another 3rd world country).

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