NOVEMBER 15TH, 2001.


It is my pleasure and singular honour to be invited here today to deliver a goodwill message on the occasion of the roll out of MBO Transit liners by M. B. ANAMCO Ltd. It is equally a privilege for me to perform the role of presenting, the keys to the launchers of this transit liners. Indeed, I am delighted to participate in celebrating the success story of M.B. ANAMCO Ltd. On this occasion. The story of  Mercedes-Benz – ANAMCO began in 1976 when the then military government headed by the present President of Nigeria Olusegun Obasanjo GCFR embarked on a policy that would require the Federal Government to go into joint ventures with foreign partners in the production of trucks and vehicles with heavy payload. As it were, the policy to manufacture commercial Vehicles and trucks locally was informed by government desire not only to provide adequate transportation for movement of men and materials but mores to increase employment opportunities for our teaming population.

Consequently, the actualization of the government policy on the local production of Commercial vehicles saw the birth of M.B.ANAMCO in Emene Enugu, STYER in Bauchi and FLAT in Kano among others. M.B. ANAMCO was incorporated in January 1997 and was thereafter commissioned on July, 1980 by the first executive President of Nigeria, Alhaji Shehu Shagari, Turakin Sokoto. Since the company commenced production in January 1981, it was delightful to note that M.B. ANAMCO has made an enviable mark on the nation’s industrial growth adding over 25, 000 vehicles to the nation’s transport sector, backed up effectively with a network of over 36 after-sales service outlets and spare parts depots. In essence, M.B. ANAMCO has remained and will remain a shining example of a profitable and viable economic and technological cooperation between the government and people of Nigeria and Daimler Chrysler A.G.

Indeed, M.B. ANAMCO has remained steadfast even against the odds of volatile economic indices, which have marred the growth of automotive industry in the Country. Perhaps, the success story of M.B. ANAMCO becomes evident against the backdrop that other trucks and Commercial vehicles manufacturing plants, which started production about the same time, have remained unprofitable ventures if not outright bankruptcy. On this singular feat, I salute the Managerial and technological skills of the entire management and staff of M.B. ANAMCO.  

Furthermore, I will equally salute the vision of the management of M.B. ANAMCO in diversifying its product range to include the full range of Mercedes – Benz commercial vehicles. I am aware that at the inception of M.B. ANAMCO the blue print was for the plant to produce trucks, now the Company has gone a step further in design, fabrication, manufacturing, production and sales of buses and other utility vehicles such as marcopolo/Buscal, fire fighting vehicles, ambulances, mobile clinics and refuse collectors.

In this regard, it is worthy of note and indeed quite commendable that M.B. ANAMCO, I was told as of today has achieved over 65% local content in the manufacturer of some of these vehicles, especially in the manufacture of buses. Quite frankly, the level of commitment and dedication, which M.B. ANAMCO has applied in its contribution towards the development of Nigeria’s economy, has resulted in creating over 800 employment opportunities for Nigerians in the plant at Emene and other service outlets.

It is indeed, a giant stride, which is in line with the current thinking of government that the manufacturing sectors should be encouraged to integrate local inputs into their production lines. As you may be aware, it is this thinking of government that led to its initiative in the establishment of Raw Material and Research Council, an Exra-Ministerial department under the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology to research and source local materials for possible inputs into our manufacturing sectors. On this note, it is therefore, my sincere desire that other manufacturing companies follow the example of M.B. ANAMCO in the integration of local contents into their production lines.

Finally, in the social sector, M.B. ANAMCO has participated actively in the Federal government assisted mass transit programme. It is on record that the company supplied over 1000 units of different bus models to the Federal government Urban Mass Transit Agency and State/local governments Mass Transit companies. Many of these vehicles are still plying our roads transporting goods and men. For this, I salute your industry and wish M.B. ANAMCO a more prosperous and profitable venture.

At this juncture, I now have the honour, to present the keys of the transit liners to the launchers.

Thank you and God Bless.

We must not delude ourselves about the state of the nation. For now and for the foreseeable future Nigerians must braze themselves up to meet three dominant challenges

(a) the challenge of enthroning democracy and good governance;

(b) the challenge of evolving a true nation-state, by fashioning out acceptable terms of our co-existence:

(c) the challenge of meeting Nigeria’s manifest destiny of leadership role in the West African Sub-region and Africa as a whole, in terms of “a new Imperialism” as defined above.

Nigeria must grapple with these challenges concurrently because the passage of time has placed us in the difficult position of having to do so. We can make some headway if we cultivate the requisite political will to succeed. The political will can materialise only if we as a people make up our minds from the very start to live together as one people, notwithstanding the inherent diversities that characterise our present set-up.

I may be stating the obvious in reminding fellow Nigerians that the eyes of the world are on us. In other words, the world recognises in us great potentials waiting to be actualised before we can play any positive role in the new world of the 21* Century.

What are we waiting for?

I believe that there are viable rallying points nation-wide through which Nigerians can generate the kind of momentum that will propel us to success in our search for an acceptable Nigerian nation. Let us identify these rallying points and galvanise Nigerians not only to feel a sense of belonging but also to ask, in the words of John F. Kennedy, not what the country can do for them, but what we can do for the country.