Why Government Can’t Run Business

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Owoyemi explaining the logo of the trade fair during the logo unveiling ceremony
Owoyemi explaining the logo of the trade fair during the logo unveiling ceremony

Rotimi Adeyeye, president, National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria, wants governments to stay out of business and, instead create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive

|  By Maureen Chigbo  |  Jun. 3, 2013 @01:00 GMT

AS the federal government moves on with its privatisation programme, prominent Nigerians urge it to create an enabling environment for business initiatives to grow and blossom. They premised their call on the fact that it was the duty of government to create an enabling environment for both investors local and foreign and not to dabble into business ventures.

Rotimi Adeyeye, president of the National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria, NIMN, said what the government ought to do was to put the necessary infrastructure in place, providing the right social amenities and utilities and instituting independent regulatory agencies to play the role of umpires rather than entering the business field as active participants.

Adeyeye (left) and Owoyemi, shortly after unveiling the logo
Adeyeye (left) and Owoyemi, shortly after unveiling the logo

When governments run businesses, they put themselves in an awkward position of being both a player and referee in the same game, Adeyeye said in Ibadan, while unveiling the logo of the forth-coming Oyo Mega Trade Fair.

Earlier, Delight Owoyemi, president of Oyo Mega Trade Fair, said the 10-day trade fair, which kicks off at the Lekan Salami Stadium, Adamasingba, on August 9, aimed at building brands of major manufacturers. He said the fair would open up Oyo State business opportunities to investors within and outside Nigeria as well as help in exchanging technical and commercial information and also showcasing industrial and technological innovations.

Owoyemi said that the trade fair would, in addition, afford local and foreign investors an opportunity to seal deals and offer exhibitors and visitors a life time opportunity to buy and sell at bargain prices. According to him, this year’s trade fair, which has the theme, “Manufacturing Opportunities in Sensitising the Nigerian Economy for Investment Evolution,” will attract no fewer than 20 sponsors and 10 partners, as well as over 1,000 exhibitors, apart from local governments. As being packaged, he said, 100 companies will have their special days.

The fair president revealed that arrangements were being concluded to ensure seamless traffic and security as over 30,000 visitors are expected at the fair daily. Owoyemi, who initiated and organised last year’s Oyo State Trade Fair, in collaboration with the Oyo State Government, said many who had thought it was impossible to stage a successful trade fair in Oyo State were pleasantly surprised at its success, adding that from what is being planned, last year’s trade fair would turn out to be like a mere dress rehearsal.

He said: “After the success of last year’s trade exhibition, the persistent calls from sponsors, partners and exhibitors was ‘don’t stop the music.’ However, if the stakeholders in that edition of the trade fair are adjudging it to be successful, we have chosen not to be carried away by the accolades but to regard it as a dress rehearsal to what we want to hold this year.

“From what we have conceived, what we are planning and from the green light which we are receiving from all quarters, the proposed trade fair coming up at the Lekan Salami Stadium, Adamasingba, Ibadan, from August 9 to 18, is going to be the mother of all trade fairs.”

Owoyemi said in view of trade fair being a marketing effort, the National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria, NIMN, was being carried along strategically as a partner in the project, adding: “You all know as much as I do that all professionally qualified marketing executives, officers, managers and directors in both the public and private sector organisations in Nigeria are members of the NIMN.”

The logo unveiling ceremony, which took place at the Conference Centre of the University of Ibadan, was attended by representatives of prospective sponsors, partners, exhibitors, brand and marketing communication professionals, as well as other stakeholders.

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