Seyi Adekunle, SeyiVodi, Nigeria, Abuja, Government

One of Nigeria’s top fashion designer, Seyi Adekunle better known as SeyiVodi, may have made a strong impact in the Nigerian fashion industry but there are still some silent pains he goes through.

Recently watching the way some businesses have struggled to strive in the country, Seyi took out time to explain how his planned investment in the fashion industry in Nigeria was almost destroyed by government’s negligence.

He further revealed that he is still having issues with a micro finance bank which was given licence to operate by the Central Bank of Nigeria as his money is yet to be recovered.

According to him, “Nine years ago, I bought one hectare of land in Gwagwalada, a suburb of Abuja, hoping that by 2014 the property would have been fully developed and ready to accommodate, employ and engage over 1000 youth in tailoring for the purpose of export and training. I made that decision because I had been informed a few years earlier that in the Abuja Master plan, Gwagwalada was proposed to follow Idumota as the next industrial base. My greatest disappointment today is the fact that there is no power in the area to run an industry no matter how small. The land is still lying fallow. In fact, I have put the land back in the market because I changed my plans.

“My new plans are not dependent on the government providing any enabling environment to run a successful enterprise. I have found a way to generate power for the company to run smoothly and I maintain my clothing line in Nigeria while I outsource shoe production abroad. I have also resolved not to rely on the financial institutions in Nigeria. That, again, is because of an unpleasant experience.

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“For almost one year now, I have been in battling to recover my hard earned money from a micro finance bank that is licensed to operate by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). I have done everything I possibly can short of going to court (which may be the last option) to recover my money to no avail. I am sure some of us can relate this and other forms of discouragement we get daily. But we must keep hope alive.

“Nigeria is the only home I can call my own, so I have to build and sustain without depending on government or financial institutions, most of which have become time wasters. For some that trade in commodities, you should start thinking of how to manufacture those commodities. The Nigerian reality is we must independently begin to factor in power to actualize this revolution.”