Nigeria can generate over 380,000,000 Euro (about N158,526,855,300.00) from pest control and fumigation industry, Tolu Caleb, Managing Director, Rotimax Integrated Services Ltd has said.
He gave this hint at the weekend during a two-day training and certification programme organised by his company for prospective pest control and fumigation companies.
According to him, Nigeria is worth over 400 million Euros in the pest control and fumigation industry but the sector remains untapped as the networth is about 380million Euros.
The pest control and fumigation industry is very lucrative especially in Abuja, Port Harcourt and Lagos, with opportunities for professionals in other parts of the country to also start doing very well in the business in terms of income.
“Ignorance has made it look like the business is not lucrative. I have gone for jobs where a client was shocked that I could speak good English and in this business. I am a graduate who studied economics; we have MSc and PhD holders in this business and we have been doing well,” he said.
Caleb who cited the case of Kunle Williams, currently the Vice President of the Pest Control Association of Nigeria, Kunle Williams who has been the one fumigating the Muritala Muhammed Airport for 18 years, according to him, says a lot about the lucrative nature of he business.
The pest control expert who encouraged professionals to seek out opportunities in the corporate sector because there is a law that mandates every public facility to conduct pest control on quarterly basis or risk being shutdown, said, “We are just trying to make sure that the laws are enforced; so it is very lucrative and not well tapped into.”
On sensitising the people about pest control, he said there are bodies responsible for it but added that if everyone can put in effort to encourage Nigerians about the importance of pest control, the industry will be better than what it is today.
“Even people that have the awareness don’t attach value to it. We are in a country where people can live in a house with cockroaches and rats and feel comfortable; someone will see rats and just ignore, these are vectors that transmit diseases.”
He called on Nigerians to avoid trying to control pest themselves because most of the chemicals sold in the general market are cancerous. “In advanced countries you cannot have access to these chemicals the way we do here. You can’t just go to the market and say give me sniper when you don’t even have personal protective equipment that will shield you from the dangers. You don’t know the hours you are supposed to stay away from the house; you don’t even know the chemical composition.”
Echoing similar sentiments, the National VP Pest Control Association of Nigeria, Kunle Williams impressed on the participants the need to get acquainted with preventive and safety measures required for rodent control.
One of the biggest issues bedeviling the industry is the proliferation of quacks in the market. “We have an association called the Pest Control Association of Nigeria and we are working with government on the federal level. The laws are there against quacks but the problem we have is enforcement so we are working with the Environmental Health Officers Registration Council (EHORCON) which regulates the profession. I hope very soon they will reenact the tax force team to go round and stop quacks. We are also trying to enlighten people on the dangers of using quacks because they bring poison to your homes and can kill you because they don’t know the right thing to do.”