By Rukayat Moisemhe
Lagos – The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has urged the Governor-elect of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to address the challenges facing the manufacturing sector in the state.
The association also urged Sanwo-Olu to implement the existing policies to ensure smooth and profitable operations of the sector in the state when he assumes office.
The Director-General of MAN, Mr Segun Ajayi-Kadir made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.
Ajayi-Kadir urged Sanwo-Olu to ensure the implementation of the harmonised inspection of factories and other work places as approved in 2016.
He also urged him to ensure the implementation of Water Abstraction Charges by the Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission.
Ajayi-Kadir urged him to ensure the schemes worked and that other MDAs and local government authorities were included in the scheme to help eradicate the overlapping functions of regulatory MDAs.
He added that the scheme would reduce the cost and ease of doing business and the wastage of management of time.
“While we congratulate the governor-elect, we are hopeful that his administration will deepen the existing Public-Private Sector partnership.
“We are also hopeful that he will re-focus on resolving the several challenges that inhibit the smooth and profitable operations of the manufacturing sector in the state.
“One of which is the harmonised inspection scheme of work places in 2016.
“Despite the approval of this scheme, some MDAs still visit factories and work places individually, thus defeating harmonised purpose of the scheme,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the outgoing Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode had approved a Harmonised Inspection Scheme of Work Places in 2016.
The scheme was inclusive of the Ministry of Environment being represented by the Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency (LASEPA), Lagos State Ministry of Health (Occupational Health & Safety), the Ministry of Special Duties (Lagos State Safety Commission) and the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Cooperatives, which served as the Secretariat.
Commenting on the water abstraction charges, the director-general said that the Commission in 2017, commenced the enforcement of the water abstraction charges.
According to him, this is without due consideration for the non-provision of potable water to the citizens of the state.
“We have had several discussions with the present administration on this challenges, and there is currently a hold on full implementation,” Ajayi-Kadir said.
He said MAN was looking forward to a final resolution of the matter in such a way that the requirement for payment of abstraction fee was abrogated and the commission mandated to discuss the issue of water supply with the relevant stakeholders to find amicable solution to the impasse.
Ajayi-Kadir also requested for a three year periodic review of the Environmental Audit Report by the Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency (LASEPA) to reduce cost.
“This is to reduce cost, as this regulatory function is also being carried out by the National Environmental Standards and Regulatory Enforcement Agency (NESREA) on a three-year review period with some financial implications,” he further said.
The director-general also expressed hope that the governor-elect would use his good offices to see to the resolution of the arbitrary increase of Environmental Development Charges (EDC) charges on the Effluent Treatment Plant Permit at a cost of not less than One Million naira yearly.
“It is the utmost belief of the association that if the above-mentioned issues are holistically resolved and resolutions implemented and sustained, the manufacturing sector will be better off, be better self-regulated,” he said. (NAN)