OrderPaperToday – Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila, has asked Huawei Technologies Nigeria to ensure adequate local content in its manufacturing activities in the country.
The Speaker also said the foremost ICT company should come up with measures that would make the transfer of technology to the country possible and employ a sizeable number of Nigerians.
Gbajabiamila, who spoke during a courtesy call by a delegation of Huawei Technologies Nigeria, led by the Managing Director, Eric John, to his office on Friday.
He said the 9th House of Representatives would look at how to partner with the Chinese-based company to develop Nigeria in the area of ICT.
”Thank you very much for this visit. Huawei is a very prominent company, not just in Nigeria but all over the world. We’ll always look at how we can partner for the development of our country,” the Speaker said, adding that “that is the best thing to do.”
Responding to an earlier remark by the Huawei MD, the Speaker said: “You didn’t talk about employment. There’s a difference between training and employment. We have local content in this country in terms of personnel and in perhaps manufacturing materials.
“I would like to know what’s your staff strength in Nigeria: how many are Nigerians and how many are imported? You talked about mutual benefit, but we should talk about employment.
“I’m interested in knowing about your infrastructure sharing. I’ll like to know that so that we can better understand it. Maybe you won’t be able to do that now, but you can provide all that later.”
Earlier, the Huawei MD in Nigeria, Eric John, said the company invested heavily in the country over the years and that they would continue to deliver quality services to the citizens and enrich the communications industry.
He said Huawei has been paying its taxes over the years and that as of today, it pays about $75 million tax per annum, calling for a reduction.
He said the company is currently providing training for Nigerian ICT experts and that they would want to build a strong foundation for the country’s ICT industry.
Present at the visit was the House Leader, rep. Alhassan Ado Doguwa, the Minority Leader, rep. Ndudi Elumelu among others. The Huawei team had Deputy MD Lanre Odekunle, the head of Abuja office, Liteng Tang and the PR Director, Mr. Kelvin.