17th August, 2010
The National President of Micro Entrepreneurs of Nigerian (AMEN) Prince Saviour has pleaded with government to come to the rescue of micro manufacturers in the country as police and massive importation of foreign goods are killing local production.
In an interview with Consumers Advocate, Prince Saviour said that the constant harassment of members of his associationÂ by police is killing their business
He said; â€œ we are micro entrepreneurs. Most of us started our business with a little over N10,000. We produce items like soaps, herbal creams and paste. Our problem is that anytime policemen sight our member with chemicals, they just arrest them and demands for their NAFDAC license. Several times we have had to go the police station to bail some of our members for this purpose.â€
He added: â€œhow do the police expect some of us who are just managing to make a living by engaging ourselves in producing herbal product to have NAFDAC license? Those of us who have big factories, have NAFDAC license but those of us who are just starting cannot afford it. Government should help us appeal to police to leave us alone. Would they rather we go into robbery? We have a working relationship with NAFDACÂ so police should leave us alone.â€
Another issue which Prince Saviuor says is killing their micro manufacturing business is high interest loans from banks
AccordingÂ to him, the current interest rate charged on loan by micro manufacturer in the country is not encouraging the sector. He queried â€œ How do they expect us to pay back the huge interest? We have an association now. Let them give us a huge fund and we will know how to disburse it among ourselves.â€
He appealed to NAFDAC to give a waiver to members of his association who are trying to start up their own micro production business pending when they are able to afford the fund to pay for registration.
He also called on micro manufacturers of products to join their association.
â€” Igbanor Rukayat