By Prince Okafor
THE Electricity Meter Manufacturing Association of Nigeria, EMMAN, has warned that it would no longer condone acts capable of undermining its position in the industry. Muhideen Ibrahim, its secretary, said the allegation levelled against the company by some distribution companies, DISCOs, that it produces inferior meters compared to the ones imported from China and other countries, was not true.
He said local meter manufacturers have suffered a lot in the hands of Discos and their foreign partners, which publicly criticised them for producing substandard meters. Besides, the DISCOs said EMMAN members did not manufacture the meters, that they only import accessories and assemble them.
“Criticism is part of life. Without criticism, it would be difficult to improve on the quality of one’s product or services. But the criticism must be objective in order to achieve the goal intended. That is the area where meter manufacturers in Nigeria are having grouse with people that are criticising their product.
“While it is true that there are producers of substandard products in the country, it would be hasty to generalise that all Nigerians are fake. In the meter manufacturing sub-sector of the industry, meters are produced in line with international standards. That is why the products are certified by duly recognised institutions before they were sold.”
Ibrahim also said some Discos were buying the locally-made meters because they are good and can give them good results. “Why did DISCOs keep buying our meters? If the meters are of lower quality, as some sections of the society are made to understand, they would have stopped since.” He said the federal government licensed four companies to produce meters, adding that the firms have tried to improve capacity in recent times. The companies are MOMAS Nigeria Limited, UNISTAR Nigeria Limited, MOJEC Nigeria Limited, and EMCON Nigeria Limited, he said, stressing that MOMAS has the capacity to produce 50,000 meters monthly, while the other three firms produce between 20,000 to 30,000 meters a month.
He lauded the federal government for its local content initiative, urging it to fulfill its promise of making Nigerians consume what they produce, in order to grow the economy.