400,000 workers lose jobs in Kano

Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has raised alarm over the rising unemployment rate in Kano which it said will soon hit the sky if government continues to pay lips service to the power crisis threatening the manufacturing sector of the economy.

Addressing news men in Kano on Tuesday, the National vice President, north-west zone, Alhaji Ali S Madugu claimed that the closure of 400 manufacturing companies in the commercial city of Kano following their inability to access the required volume of power to remain afloat has resulted in the sacking of 400,000 workers.

Describing the power situation in Kano as pathetic, Madugu stated that there seems to be a total absence of transparency in the allocation of power to Kano Zone.

According to him analysis of data on market activities report of May 2013  indicated that Kano Zone which comprised Kano, Jigawa, Katsina, and Niger Republic was given 77,047,790 kw/hr which is about one hundred megawatt, representing 3.6% of the total allocation nationwide.

He pointed out that the allocation for Kano zone is shared between the three states and also a standing order to supply to Niger Republic and as such Kano alone has less than 50 megawatt to distribute to manufacturers, other business and the people of Kano state.

MAN said the zone could have done far better if they agreed 8% of the total allocation due to the state was properly allocated to it as stipulated on the power sharing policy and recalled that during a town hall meeting with the minister of power and other key officials of the ministry held in Kano with Governor Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, the private sector challenge the minister on power supply to Kano state during which “he out rightly accepted the monumental failure of his ministry and promised to correct the anomalies as soon as possible, but nothing has been done”.

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The association then listed the implications of the neglect of the private sector of the economy in relation to power distribution, pointing out that apart from threatening the survival of manufacturing companies leading to mass sack of workers, revenue from the sector would drop drastically and this will affect the economy.

“In the last 20 years over 400 well established and viable manufacturing companies each with no fewer than 100 to 150 workers have been shut down and more are winding up because of the power crisis”.

The disturbed manufacturers therefore called on the Kano state government to stand and challenge “this flagrant violation of the 8% power allocation of total generation due to Kano in courage and audacity, after all it is our right. Otherwise the remaining surviving industries and other businesses in Kano would be threatened by the brazen collusion to stagnates and strangulate the economy development of Kano state”.

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“We are also calling on the state governors Jigawa, and Katsina states to join hand with Kano to fight for the right of Kano zone”, he added.

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