The Vice-Chancellor, Federal University Oye-Ekiti, Professor Kayode Soremekun has decried what he termed the celebration of other people’s productive abilities. Nigeria, blessed as it were, with rich human and material resources, has no reason to depend on manufactured goods.
The eloquent don observed that many Africans have written extensively on how Europe underdeveloped Africa, but not much has been said about how Africa underdeveloped itself. He then threw the poser: “When will Nigeria come to her own? When will Nigerians stop celebrating consumption?”
Reminiscing on Nigeria’s productive capacities of the past periods of regional divisions, Professor Soremekun asserted that the country’s economic system of that time, if sustained, would have created among the regions a healthy production and export competition that would gradually have transported Nigeria into a global economic giant. He therefore blamed the economic inertia that has emasculated the country on the nation’s mono-export interest on petroleum products.
For him, part of the measures to put Nigeria on the part of production would include the banning of importation of all foreign goods, including cars. He cited the examples of Indians and Koreans, who took the hard decision of banning the importation of cars, and today have become car-manufacturing giants.
Professor Soremekun then charged Engineering faculties of Nigerian universities to look inwards, and create the necessary patnerships needed to develop a suitable model of vehicle that is affordable to the average Nigerian; as he somberly prayered that Nigeria would come into her own in the productive capacity. On this note too, the ViceChancellor was optimistic that the administration of President Mohammadu Buhari would avert a total economic collapse and set Nigeria back on her economic foot.
It was at the occasion of the commissioning of six newly acquired Toyota Camry cars for the use of faculties of the university. According to him, it was a gesture aimed at making officers comfortable in the discharge of their duties. The ebullient professor also made a promise of more good things for the members of the university community.