Simbi Wabote, executive secretary of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), has affirmed his commitment towards continuing on the course of advancing the full adoption of local content and expansion of same from Nigeria through the rest of Africa, and beyond in line with the NCDMB’s vision and framework of actions.
He pledged while receiving the African Local Content Icon Award conferred on him by the African Leadership Magazine, the UK, in Yenagoa Bayelsa State on Friday to remain a strong advocate of local content adoption throughout the rest of Africa and beyond while ensuring that the vision gains more advocates.
Wabote noted that the award highlights the impact of local content within Africa, assuring that the vision to create a sustainable adoption of Local Content core principles in Africa and beyond will be sustained using all policy and legal instruments as well as through advocacy.
He further observed that though many challenges are linked with the vision and pledge to ensuring local content adoption and expansion in Africa, commitment and steady progress were being made daily.
Speaking on receiving the award, he said “This award is unique as it highlights the importance of local content across Africa and the globe. It shows that our sweat has not been in vain, as we continue to propagate local content core principles within Africa and beyond”.
It will be recalled that Wabote polled over 60 nominations to be selected for the prestigious award which he dedicated to his wife and children and the entire staff and management of the NCDMB.
On his part, the managing director, African Leadership Magazine, Kingsley Okeke in his opening remarks harped on the importance of the award while stating that it was necessary to tell the world that there are leaders in Africa who are living legacy based lives that should be promoted such as Simbi Wabote.
He said, “Tell the world that Africa is in fact housing some of the fastest economies and that it is a huge place for commerce, beyond what the news media are reporting globally.
“We know that we may not get the media space that we deserve, so we showcase leadership through the African initiative platform, the magazine itself tells the story of Africans, we deliberately chose to report positives, we are not ignorant of some of the challenges we have as a continent or some issues peculiar to us but we also know that there are also mediums dedicated to that.
“So we took a detour to that and promote what is purposeful because in every leader, lies an inherent desire to do well, and sometimes they need that little push to do that.”
United States Lawmaker, Laura Hall, hailed the NCDMB boss for his strides in promoting local content in Africa, even as she called for collaboration with the NCDMB on ways to deal with the challenges facing African-Americans.
Also, the former chairman, Georgia Congressional Black Caucus, Dawkins Haggler praised Wabote for his impact on the push for local content expansion, adding that it would be an honour to collaborate with NCDMB.
On its part, Heritage Times, a leading online news platform also affirmed the leadership strides of the executive secretary of the NCDMB, it noted that Wabote is a true Champion of Local Content in Africa and therefore deserving of the recognition and award from the African Leadership Magazine.
Wabote was appointed as the executive secretary of the NCDMB by President Muhammadu Buhari on September 29, 2016. He was reappointed on September 25, 2020, for another term. Before his appointment to steer the NCDMB, he was an Executive Director of Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) Nigeria Limited and General Manager, Business and Government Relations for Shell Companies in Nigeria (SCiN).
A little over four years on as the Executive Secretary, Engr. Wabote has reinvigorated the operations of the NCDMB.
Some of his major achievements include the establishment of the Three Oil & Gas Parks Scheme in Cross River, Bayelsa, and Akwa Ibom states. The Completion and Commissioning of NCDMB Corporate Headquarters, Investment in Modular Refineries, Gas Cylinder Manufacturing and Pressure Metering Plant, Gas Based Investments, Support For ICT and Stem Education, Increase of Nigerian Content Intervention Fund from US$200m to US$350m.
Others are the establishment of FPSO Integration Facility, Introduction of Nigerian Content 10-Year Strategic Road Map, Deployment of New Monitoring and Evaluation Template, Women in Oil & Gas, Launch of $50m R&D Intervention Fund, GSM Training for 1000 Persons in Kano, Training of 1000 Yobe Youths on GSM Repairs, Intervention in the North East and Training of 255 youths in vocational skills.