Under 18s have no business drinking alcoholic beverages- Guinness Nigeria

By Tosin Kolade

Mr Rotimi Odusola, Corporate Relations Director, Guinness Nigeria, has called for more partnerships with relevant authorities to promote responsible drinking in Nigeria.

Odusola made this call when the Guinness Nigeria team led by Mr John Musunga, its Managing Director, paid a courtesy visit to the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP) office on Friday in Abuja.

According to Odusola, those under 18 years have no business consuming alcoholic beverages.

He said that the organisation was working to promote responsible and positive drinking habit for Nigerians to drink better and not more.

Odusola said that in collaboration with the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), many motorists had been educated on the dangers of excessive drinking and driving.

He noted that the visit was to strengthen collaboration with NOTAP on diverse areas, so as to do business correctly and in line with its corporate governance.

He said although Nigeria was faced with a lot of challenges that hindered organisations,  his company would continue to play its part in changing the economic landscape by supporting locally manufactured products for their alcohol beverages.

“I have to say that in our value chain, we have farmers; farmers that  supply us with raw materials for our production processes, especially sorghum; we have even localised recently, the ethanol that we use in the production of some of our alcoholic beverages.

“At the moment, the value chain in the farming area that constitutes the support of our business supports up to about 30,000 farmers across the country.

“80 per cent of our local raw materials or materials are sourced locally, and we also support a lot of local businesses to the tune of about 30 billion,” he said.

The corporate director said his organisation would continue to research on ways to further localise the things that were used in production process, as part of its social responsibility.

He, however, urged NOTAP to support the company in its renewal of all approvals needed to function well in the country for the benefit of all Nigerians.

NOTAP’s acting Director General, Dr Idy Imiyoho, commended the interventions of Guinness in economic strengthening and development.

She said there was the need for the agency to be carried along in all activities as it regulated the inflow of foreign technologies into the country through the registration of technology transfer agreements.

According to him, the agency also has the duty to encourage the development of indigenous technologies, hence the call on Guinness to invest more in research.

“We will continue to strengthen partnerships to change the narrative for manpower technology development; we ask that Guinness carries us along in all activities,’’ he said.

Mrs Yejide Akinkunmi, NOTAP’s Director of Consultancy Services, called for more corporate social responsibility from Guinness in sponsoring young professionals in the NOTAP Industry Transfer fellowship.

She said it would encourage manpower development and close the huge technology gaps, adding that emphasis should be placed on market-driven research.

Mrs Caroline Anie-Osuagwu, NOTAP’s Director of Technology Acquisition Research Coordination, noted that demand-driven research would help to reduce the major setback to technology development of the country.

She said that NOTAP had the duty to encourage the development of indigenous technologies, urging Guinness to key into the database of science, technology and engineering platform of the agency.

“We need to start raising awareness for demand-driven research;  we encourage universities to come out with products and we are taking them into the industries,’’ she said.

Anie-Osuagwu added that Nigerian researchers should take up demand-driven research that would turn into goods and services for the benefit of the country.  (NAN)