Grace Obike, Abuja
An indigenous firm has commenced the production of pencils in the country using old newspapers.
Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu said the firm has capacity to produce 2.4million dozens of pencils per annum which will surpass local and sub-regional needs.
Speaking yesterday in Abuja when he received a local pencil production company Bamib Resources & Investments Company Ltd on a courtesy visit, he said: “We commend you for the work you have done in the best interest of our nation. When I went to one of our agencies in Enugu, I found out that they were conducting research on pencils and I was very disturbed when they informed me that as of that time, there was no company in Nigeria producing pencils. There were companies before that produced pencils but they have all collapsed, so I was very concerned. As the minister of science and technology, I felt that something like pencil which both the young and old use, looks very simple, so I felt that a country like Nigeria should be able to produce all the pencils we need and I had to make the institute in Enugu to make sure they continued with that research.
“We gave them about two years, I was not just interested in just producing pencils for the sake of it but one that we can say that all the raw materials are from Nigeria which will help us in job creation, creating wealth and moving a lot of people out of poverty, I am happy that BRPDA has made some progress, they are working on seeing that all the inputs come from Nigeria, the Akwa Ibom state government also has a company producing pencils bit we are happy that on your own, you are taking the decision.