The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, on Tuesday said Nigeria should be prepared for the repercussions that will come with the signing of the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement.
Lawan made the statement after the Senate appealed to the Federal Government to ban importation of textiles for a period of five years to allow the local textiles industry thrive
Senator Kabir Barkiya (APC-Katsina Central) during plenary session had sponsored a bill titled “Urgent need to revamp the nation’s comatose textile industry”.
Barkiya mentioned that the textile industry played a significant role in the manufacturing sector of the Nigerian economy with a record of over 140 companies in the 1960s and 1970s.
“The textile industry recorded an annual growth of 67 per cent and as of 1991, employed above 25 per cent of the workers in the manufacturing sector. The textile industry was then the highest employer of labour apart from the civil service.
“The industry had witnessed massive decline in the last two decades with many textile companies such as Kaduna Textile, Kano Textile and Aba Textile closing shop and throwing their workers into the job market,” Barkiya lamented.
“The closure of our borders is an eye opener. China closed its borders for 40 years for its industrialisation and development. I believe that the closure of our borders should be extended to allow us to put our house in order,” Senator Robert Boroffice (APC-Ondo North) said.