By Adewale Sanyaolu
The Chairman of MOMAS Electricity Meters Manufacturing Company Limited (MEMMCOL), Mr. Kola Balogun, an indigenous and one of the pioneers of meter production in Nigeria has advocated the direct procurement of electricity meters by consumers in a bid to bridge the 8.1 million metering gap.
Balogun stated this at the graduation ceremony of 10 youths on a five-week Printed Circuit Board (PCB) training course in Lagos at the weekend.
He said the Federal Government should license indigenous meter manufacturers to enable them sell meters directly to the consumers.
The MOMAS boss said local meter manufacturers must be adequately encouraged through Government policies that would encourage additional incentives to enable them invest more.
He added that the centralized procurement of meters through the respective Discos was not helping the industry to grow.
Balogun pointed out that most the enterprise that are sustainable in the country today which included the Banks, telecommunications industry are all licensed.
He said the essence of training was the reposition the Nigerian youth in the area towards the digital global economy which included; artificial intelligence, robotics and computing to enable them design.
He said Nigerians are heavy user of technology but regrettably the country is not a leader in the design of the technology that creates computer or any other form of electronics, saying the fundamental foundation in the design of any electronic device is the PCB.
He said the digital economy is to present youths not to stand up from their work stations but still be able to interface with the global best practices manufacturers which are the likes of IBM, GE, Samsung who will engage them remotely to be able to design whatever they want them to do and earn in foreign currency from the comfort of their offices and homes.
Balogun said funding to central to the development of the industrial sector, calling on the Federal Government through the Banks and other Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) to deliberate target the funding of the real sector at reduced interest rate.
He said recognition recently came the way of MOMAS which got a grant from the German Government because of its efforts in repositioning skill development and acquisition in the country.
The MOMAS boss explained that the German Government emphasized that the grant should be targeted at women empowerment to build a skill acquisition center.
‘‘So going forward, we are going to change the name of MOMAS Metering School to MOMAS Institute of Mechatronics so that we can build a formidable institute for skill acquisition which PCB fabrication would be one of the courses we are going to be running,’’.
He disclosed that the metering school has graduated over 1,000 students till date and was equally not resting on its oars as it has a database of its graduates and constantly follow up on them to ensure that they are living up to the discipline of the profession to sustain them in the future.
Balogun lamented that one of the major setbacks the country is witnessing today is the lack of character that drives knowledge, saying knowledge without character is an effort in futility because no one would like to associate with an individual or organization that lacks character.