It is not news that the Nigerian Vice-President Professor Yemi Osinbajo is a keen advocate of Made-In-Nigeria products. He recently demonstrated his confidence in the country’s booming fashion industry when he commissioned Nigeria’s foremost design house, Okunoren to produce his garments.
Osinbajo’s decision sends a strong signal that our indigenous brands are a force to be reckoned with and should be supported. The preference for a local brand at this level of leadership also serves as a source of encouragement to entrepreneurs across Nigeria’s multi-billion naira fashion industry.
As one of the key proponents of reforms, which have made business operations in Nigeria easier over the past few years, the vice president represents a growing movement that underscores the viability of Made-In-Nigeria brands and showcases the best of Nigerian craftsmanship to the world.
“We are deeply humbled to have the Vice President embrace indigenous brands as this will inspire even more of our leaders to wear local clothing labels. There is so much latent talent around us and it is encouraging to see this finally being harnessed alongside reforms that make it easier for businesses like ours to operate,” said Okunoren’s Creative Director, Taiwo Okunoren.
Okunoren also emphasized that beyond legislative reform, the Nigerian menswear market could also benefit from the support of financial institutions.
“We are hopeful that the leadership of our financial institutions will also begin to patronize locally made suits—currently, none of the MDs of our top banks wear Made-in-Nigeria suits, this implies that foreign products are superior,” he stressed. These are influential personalities who can shape the future of the fashion industry, not only through the financial support of their institutions; their endorsement of this sector is immensely critical to its growth.”