Home Business Why foreign investors shun  Nigeria globally—Obong Attah

Why foreign investors shun  Nigeria globally—Obong Attah

by Business News Report

Former Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Obong Victor Attah, has said it has been difficult marketing Nigeria to the international community for foreign investments inflow and for the country’s exports to be accepted because the wrong persons are doing the marketing and using the wrong approaches. He also said that lack of patriotism and poor human relations on the part of the citizens have been denying the country the opportunity of favourable trade relations with other nations. He spoke on Saturday in Ikeja, Lagos during the 2024 investiture ceremony of the Institute of Certified Sales Professionals which had with the theme “Fostering the art of being outstanding.” Attah spoke on the topic, “The imperative of selling Nigeria to the outside world in the post-2023 national elections era.”

He expressed sadness that most trips embarked upon by state governors ended up being mere jamborees, while little is achieved from similar trips by the Presidency and federal officials. He also took a swipe at the way Nigerians stripped their leaders and the country naked in the build up to the 2023 general polls through negative comments that went global.  “One thing distinguishes the February 2023 Presidential Election from all others which preceded it. It was the election in which the presidential candidates and their supporters spent more time on the character assassination of their opponents than setting forth their plans for governance in the event they were elected. Individually and collectively, Nigerians forgot that the number one National Salesman is the President of the country. He, more than any other person, has the responsibility of selling Nigeria first to Nigerians, and Nigeria to the rest of the world. 

“Don’t get me wrong, it is vital that the characters of our leaders – Presidents, governors – are known. But, in a situation in which only faults are highlighted, and positive attributes are concealed, the picture the world, as well as fellow Nigerians, receive is that of leaders with whom nobody should do business – unless it is unavoidable. Passive acknowledgement, rather than enthusiastic support would characterise our relationships with other nations virtually all the time. That is a shaky foundation for enduring and sustainable economic progress based on external trade, ” he said. Attah added that the nation has many things to sell to the world apart from crude oil, but that unfortunately, Nigeria has lost her pride of place in the agricultural sector. Let me say that the circumstances and conduct of the 2023 elections caused serious damage to the character of our President, our number one salesman, our electoral process and our judiciary. It left Nigeria with a badly damaged image. It is difficult enough to sell a good product in the face of stiff competition, to sell a damaged product is a daunting task.

“Those trying to sell Nigeria or its products to the world would need proper training and must be imbued with a high dose of patriotism. Whatever we want to offer must be of pristine quality and we must be always conscious of the fact that we have competitors and whoever we want to sell to has a choice,” he stated. Attah was invested as the Chief Patron of the institute. The President of the institute, Arthur Ozoigbo, said salesmen take a lot of risks to get products and services accepted by the public and emphasised the need to allow professional salesmen contribute their quota to national development. The Registrar, Bukunmi Fabelurin, said the institute has become a force to reckon with in the area of making salespersons more professional in the course of their job. 

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