Enugu International Trade Fair: Artisans lament poor participation, lack of jobs

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By Ifeoma Aka

Some artisans in Enugu State have expressed dismay over the low patronage at the ongoing 30th Enugu International Trade Fair in the state.

Some of the artisans told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Enugu on Saturday said they had been coming to the fair in search of jobs but could not find any client.

They described the fair as the `worst’ so far in terms of participation.

An artisan, Mr Boniface Ogbodo, who is also a student of the Institute of Management and Technology (IMT) Enugu, said he had been transporting himself to the fair for the past one week in search of job of any kind but to no avail.

Ogbodo said that he later changed his mind to see if he could get a job of a sales boy in any of the exhibitor’s stall but it was still not forthcoming.

“By this time in previous fairs, I have done as many jobs as possible that I could not even meet demands but this year, I could not even get a single exhibition stand to erect.

“The worst part of it is that I have used the little pocket money I have on transportation to the fair in anticipation of getting a job. Such jobs help me in my studies,” he said.

Another artisan, Mr Cyril Onwuka said that he had been constructing stands for exhibitors in the fair for the past 10 years, adding that he was yet to get a job in this year’s trade fair.

Onwuka said that the number of artisans in the fair was more than the number of participants.

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He said that the poor state of facilities in the fair contributed to the low participation of exhibitors, urging the state government to do something about it.

A hawker, Miss Ebere Agu, also blamed the location of the fair complex to low participation and patronage as the place was at the outskirts of the state capital.

According to her, I have been moving up and down in the fair since morning looking for patronage for her snacks business but could not find buyers.

NAN reports that the fair commenced on April 5 and was extended to April 17 following the ongoing Kaduna International Trade Fair.

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