The Coordinator of Nigerian Handmade and Local Fabrics Makers Association, Mrs Yetunde Aiyela, has said that locally designed bags, shoes and other fashion items from local fabrics, create more than one million new jobs in Nigeria annually.
Aiyela said in Lagos on Thursday that the recent high demand for locally designed products,had added new value to the products and enhanced profits for those in the business.
According to her, the inward search by local manufacturing concerns in domestic creativity, has also expanded value added opportunities, especially among women and youths.
“Handcraft making with local fabrics for bags, shoes and other accessories, is presently creating more than one million jobs for youths, widows and retirees, across the country.
“We have been going round to gather those who are into the business, to form small cooperative groups, so that we can attract more eligibility.
“You will be surprised how Nigerians have come to fall in love with fashion items like shoes, slippers, bags, wrist bangles, and even pillows, made with local fabrics like ‘Ankara’ and ‘Adire’.
“We have been making considerable progress because you can find one fashion item made with a local fabric in almost every home,” she said.
The coordinator said that the only challenge being faced was the lack of single platform to enhance and protect their interest of those engaged in the business.
She therefore called on government to support them by increasing awareness for people to patronize more homemade products.
She also urged government to use the prevailing environment and demand for Nigerian handcrafts as a platform to revive the nation’s textile sector.