By Agbonkhese Oboh
Certified Computer Manufacturers of Nigeria, CCMON, has raised the fresh alarm, saying poor implementation of the Federal Government’s local content policy, as it relates to its avowed support for local content in all public procurement as contained in the Executive Order 3 and 5, is shrinking market for made-in-Nigeria computers.
The five original equipment manufacturers, OEMs, in Nigeria, on the platform of CCMON, made the declaration in a virtual press conference at the weekend.
Hosted by CCMON President, Engr. Adenike Abudu, the conference concluded that the government was not effectively monitoring the implementation of her policy directives on local content in public procurement.
Meanwhile, the local content policy directs all ministries, departments and agencies, MDAs, of government to patronise made in Nigeria computers as a priority choice.
However, foreign brands of PCs are continuously and publicly been embraced to the detriment of local companies, Abudu said, adding that this trend is not healthy for the local OEMs in computers.
She lamented that the continued disregard of the presidential EO 3 and EO 5 in preference for foreign brands is stifling and killing local capacity and growth.
She noted if not checked it may lead to the extinction of the local OEMs with the attendant loss of jobs and capital flight that will otherwise have been retained in the country for growth and development.
The presidential orders
Part of the EO 3 states that “made-in-Nigeria products shall be given preference in the procurement of the following items and, at least, 40% of the procurement expenditure on these items in all MDAs of the FGN shall be locally manufactured goods or local service providers
“Any document issued by any MDA of the FGN for the solicitation of offers, bids, proposals or quotations for the supply or provision of goods and services (Solicitation Document), in accordance with (1) above, shall expressly indicate the preference to be granted to domestic manufacturers, contractors and service providers and the information required to establish the eligibility of a bid for such preference.”
Even with these clear directives, Abudu disclosed, MDAs are even boldly specifying only foreign brands in their invitation for quotes without fear of any regulatory sanctions, which though spelt out in the local content policy, are not been implemented by the relevant government.
Meanwhile, part of the objectives of CCMON, according to Engr. Abudu included working with all relevant stakeholders to grow the capacity of Nigeria computer manufacturers so that they can continue to generate increased employment, strengthening of the Naira and ensure the growth of our local economy.
Her words: “We have pledged to work closely with the National Information and Technology Development Agency, NITDA; Office for Nigerian Content in Information Technology, ONC; Ministry of Communications and the office of the Vice President that heads the nation’s economic team.
“This is to ensure that the laudable objectives of the government policies on local content adoption in ICT is properly implemented to the benefit of the country.
“CCMON members have the capacity to manufacture enough quality devices for all MDAs and projects as their recent performance on the N-Power batch A and B device beneficiaries attest to.
“With the impact of the pandemic leading to a large number of people working remotely, Nigerian OEMs in PC manufacturing are ready and have the capacity to meet the increased demand for computing devices.
“Other countries are increasing local capacities and patronage to grow their economies and Nigeria may be left behind in the global competitiveness by over-dependence on foreign computer hardware and software.”
Abudu made a passionate plea to the government to work with CCMON and her members to ensure that her own policies are judiciously implemented to ensure the realisation of the laudable objectives of both EO 3 and EO 5.