By Okunade Adekunle
Members of the Lagos State House Of Assembly have called on the Governor of the state, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to establish more Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) and Commercial Hubs in all the senatorial districts of the state, saying that it would help in boosting the socio-economic development of the state.
The lawmakers made this resolution when a motion titled; “Call on the State Government to Establish Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), Commercial Hubs In All The Senatorial Districts of Lagos State,” was moved by Hon. Ganiyu Okanlawon (Kosofe Constituency 1) during plenary on Monday, September 28.
While moving the motion, Okanlawon said that life would become liveable and abundant if MSMEs grow, noting that a state’s economy can grow if the SMEs are clustered.
“In a country such as China, what helped them was when they clustered SMEs, and that China conceived the idea of one village one SME, one town one industry. We can establish commercial hubs in the state. In places such as Epe, Ibeju Lekki and others, they go into fishing. In a place like Badagry, they grow coconut and we can support them to grow. We can do over 100 products from coconut,” he said.
In the motion, the House commended Sanwo-Olu and urged him to call on the Commissioner for Commerce and Industry to create SME hubs in the different senatorial districts in the state and to provide the necessary structure for their survival.
“This House notes the efforts of the Federal Government in the recognition of MSMEs as the engine room for driving the Nigerian economy and establishment of Eko fashion hub at Ikeja, making it a one-stop centre for fashion designers to share facilities and resources.
“Further notes the commitment of the state government under the leadership of Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, in the creation of a more business-friendly environment for MSMEs to flourish through the MSMEs clinics initiative in which MSMEs shared facilities scheme that would be accessible to skilled and semi-skilled fashion design experts at a token fee per day to serve as an encouragement and thereby enhancing productivity that could compete favourably with their fashion designer counterparts around the world and promote ‘Made-in-Lagos’ brand.
The House also notes that the recently commissioned Eko fashion hub is a Fashion Cluster Shared Facility for MSMEs and would provide high quality operating equipment that small businesses can access at a reasonable cost, within a conducive space.
It also observes that the Shared Facility has a total of 161 machines which includes 74 industrial straight sewing machines, 10 industrial steam pressing irons, four monogramming machines, hemming and industrial weaving machines among others.
The House then resolved to call on Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the Governor of Lagos State, “on the laudable partnership of the fashion hub commissioned virtually by the FG and on Governor to direct the Commissioner, Ministry of commerce industry and cooperatives to work out modalities on how to establish more MSMEs commercial hubs considering peculiarities of the Senatorial District on Lagos.”
Earlier, In his contributions, Hon. Rotimi Olowo (Somolu 1) said that SMEs make developed countries such as the United States of America, China and others to grow and that they generate 17% of employment.
Olowo added that every family is represented in MSMEs, adding that if the state has MSMEs in each senatorial district it would showcase their peculiarities.
“The MSMEs help in reducing unemployment and insecurity. When there is SMEs in each district with their peculiarities, prosperity will spread across the state”, said Olowo.
In his comments, Hon. Abiodun Tobun(Epe 1) said that SMEs are useful instruments to establish the economic developed of every nation.
“SMEs are faced with so many problems as they have an issue of funding. When they are allowed to operate as hubs in each senatorial district, they would find it easy to come together and they would achieve more. This will enhance the economic development of the area and it will reduce payment of tax and Lagos would be better off economically,” he said.
Also, Hon. Lukmon Olumoh (Ajeromi/Ifelodun 1) said that when SMEs come together it reduces the cost of doing business.
In his contributions, the Deputy Majority Leader of the House, Hon. Noheem Adams (Eti Osa 1) stated that SMEs will lead to an unprecedented boost in the nation’s economy.
“Countries such as Germany, Britain, USA, China and others depend on SMEs. If we focus on this, it would create an opportunity for employment and improve the standard of our living.
“The Lagos State Government should do a survey of MSMEs in the state and consider their capacities. The state government should look at the challenges of these MSMEs in the state,” he said.
Hon. Gbolahan Yishawu (Eti Osa 2) said that a hub is a business generator, saying that it makes a difference in how a business grows.
“They are the backbones of every economy. Access to equipment and electricity are problems in our country, but this will be solved when businesses come together. It is an opportunity for the government to drive society into prosperity. With a furniture hub, the quality of furniture in our homes will improve, and it will help our GDP and economy,” he said.
In his ruling, the Speaker of the House, Rt. (Hon) Mudashiru Obasa, said that MSMEs bring about socio-economic development, adding that it is not about establishing, but sustaining what the state has established.
“We have to bring agencies that have to do with MSMEs together so that they can work together. Our Employment Trust Fund recently donated N5 Billion to SMEs,” he said.
Other lawmakers who contributed to the debate are; Hon. Victor Akande (Ojo 1), Hon. Setonji David (Badagry 2) and Hon. AbdulSobur Olawale Olayiwola (Mushin 2).