History was made when the first ever Enyimba Automated Shoe Company (ENASCO) with two million pairs of shoes annual production capacity built by the administration of Governor Okezie Ikpeazu was formally commissioned by the Senate President, Dr Ahmad Lawan.
Speaking while performing the ceremony at the company premises in Umukalika Village, Obingwa LGA, Senator Lawan commended Governor Okezie Ikpeazu for his vision in establishing the company, adding that he has shown that nothing is impossible despite the lean resources available to the state.
According to him, the Governor has shown how prudent, economic and efficient he is with resources at his disposal, adding that if the project is the only thing the Governor leaves behind he would have achieved a lot.
The Senate President said Abia is lucky to have Dr Ikpeazu as Governor and assured that he will push for more support from the Federal Government and its agencies to enable the company thrive.
Dr Ahmad Lawan said that to have a prosperous nation the country must embark on import substitution, adding that we must Nigerianize what we consume.
The Senate President while noting that the future belongs to the youths, pointed out that the stability of any country rests on providing the youths opportunity to put their energy into productive ventures.
In his remarks, the Governor Okezie Ikpeazu who disclosed that about one million youths are engaged in the leather and garment sub-sector of the state said his Government has been able to tie end to end issues of power, machine automation and marketing of products which have remained major challenge to the Aba shoe makers.
The Governor restated that it is through the use of Made-in-Nigeria products that the economy of the country can be enhanced.
He further said that the essence of setting up the company is to have a greater share in the growing shoe enterprise as ENASCO will produce five thousand pairs of shoes daily.
The Governor also revealed that in the next six months, machines for the Enyimba Garment Factory will arrive the state from Turkey, adding that the company will provide the state the leverage to contribute its quota in the competitive global garment market.
The Commissioner for SMEs Development, Mrs Adaku Adaku Uwaoma Onusiriuka Oseiza who described the project as a dream come true as it has provided the state the opportunity to sharpen and improve the productive capacity of Aba shoe makers through automation.
Earlier in an address, the Chairman of the Board of the Enyimba Automated Shoe Company, ENASCO, Mr Mark Atasie said that the vision of ENASCO is to be one of the most recognized leather companies out of Africa in the next five years while its mission is to elevate to a world class reckoning the Aba shoe Industry.
He listed the company’s take off products to include work boots, school shoes, military desert boots, police shoes, dress shoes for men among others , adding that the company has distributors in Lagos, Abuja and Abia in addition to online sales platforms.
The event was attended by the Deputy Governor Sir Ude Oko Chukwu, the Senate Chief Whip, Dr Orji Uzo Kalu, the Senator representing Abia Central, Senator T.A Orji, Speaker of the State Assembly, Rt Hon Chinedum Orji and members of the Abia State House of Assembly, a former Chief of Army Staff, General Azubuike Ihejirika, Senator Chris Adighije, Senator Yakubu Husseini ,some APC Chieftains including Chief Nyerere Anyim, Executive Secretary NALDA, Prince Paul Ikonne , members of the State Executive Council ,the Abia State traditional institution led by Eze Joseph Nwabeke, captains of industry and various PDP groups.