who is Ezekiel Izuogu

NigerianMadeCarZ600TaggedAs far as technology is concerned, I never cease to wonder: what does Nigeria have that it can call ‘mine’.

The name Ezekiel Izuogu comes to mind as I remember an attempt by a Nigerian to design a car, I mean a car.

Dr Izuogu, an electrical-electronics engineer was a former lecturer in Communications and electronics engineering, Federal Polytechnic, Owerri, Nigeria. His major breakthrough in his engineering endeavor was the design and construction of the first ever locally made car: the Z-600.

First, the car was launched:

BBC News, Friday, April 17, 1998
*The all-African dream machine

It’s African, it’s new and it’s different. The latest – and the first – in the Z series, the Z-600, is the first ever all-African car, reports the BBC’s correspondent in Lagos, Hilary Andersson.

It was designed and made in Nigeria for the family market and has a top speed of 140km (86m) an hour.

Ninety per cent of its parts are locally produced – it has a doorbell for a horn. And if it ever goes into mass production it will cost just $2,000 (£1,195), making it the most affordable car in Africa – and probably the world.

Then everyone got interested in the idea: T’was majorly South Africa.

Business Day News, Wednesday, February 8, 2006
*S/Africa to acquire rights to produce Nigerian car

South Africa is set to acquire the rights from an automobile engineer to mass produce Nigeria’s first car, the Z600, in that country.

South African President Thabo Mbeki has instructed his deputy-president to finalise details of the agreement with the car manufacturer with a view to producing the vehicle in South Africa.

Ezekiel Izogu, managing director of Izogu Motors Limited managing director disclosed this in an exclusive interview with BUSINESSDAY.

Izogu said the car was first launched in Owerri in 1997 by then Chief of General Staff Oladipo Diya during the regime of former Head of State Sani Abacha.

Even Senegal was said to be interested. Then we heard ‘the technology was stolen’:

Vanguard News, Sunday, March 19, 2006
*Design history, moulds of Nigerian made car stolen

An indigenous motor manufacturing company, Izuogu Motors Limited, Naze Owerri, Imo State, has lost property valued at over one billion naira to burglary.

According to the chairman of the company, Dr. Ezekiel Izuogu, some armed men numbering about 12 broke into Izuogu Motors factory, Saturday, March 11, between 1.00 and 2.00 a.m. and carted away various machines and tools including a design history notebook of Z-600, the design file Z-MASS, containing the design history for mass production of Z-600 car, a proposed locally made car and the moulds for various parts of the car.

Izuogu, who has laboured for 18 years under very difficult circimstances to design and produce the stolen moulds, lamented that the moulds took 10 years to design and build.

source for the 3–quotes above:nigeriamasterweb

See what this article says about Doc Ezekiel’s work: Note the parts in bold.

Self-started innovation : a political & economic issueThe formula of hand-laid GRP bodyshell and simple steel chassis also appears tohave been followed by Dr Ezekiel Izuogu, who created Nigeria’s first indigenous car, theZ-600, in 1997. This is a 20 mpg family car using 90% locally made components, andintended to sell for around $2,000 (at 1998 prices), “making it making it the mostaffordable car in Africa—and probably the world” [18]; the factory was planned tomanufacture 30 cars per year. The self-developed 1.8 litre engine “could also be massproduced and put to other uses like agricultural mechanisation, standby electricitygenerator and tricycles”. Whilst this project has ultimately not yet come to fruition with interest from South Africa and Senegal being the latest twist, it has become something of a political symbol. Dr Izuogu’s house was stormed by an armed gang in 2003 and much of the speculation surrounding the vehicle is associated with lessening African reliance on western technology. Nigeria’s Chief of General Staff, Oladipo Diya, said at the Z-600’s launch that “Izuogu had demonstrated the spirit of self-reliance… the theory of technology transfer was a myth” and Izuogu has recently linked technology development to the movement for a pan-African language—“Technology determines whether a people will be rich or poor, strong, weak or influential at the UN or onlookers,borrowers or lenders… The moment a people can describe a technological feat andprocess using the mother tongue, technology becomes part and parcel of their culture”

Is this project dead or is it alive somewhere in the back-stage? Yes its true: Technology determines whether a people will be rich or poor, strong, weak or influential, and Nigeria is a prime example. I can hear someone say: ‘what about Oil’?. Then I’ll answer: where has it gotten us to, today? graft and corruption.

These questions beat my mind daily: 
 – why is the common Nigerian intellectual, business man, Engineering University graduate not interested in research and development?
 – why can’t we and our politicians see into the future, and do something that can last even after we are gone?
 – why do we have to rely on this and that country to come and assist us with the most basic of things.

The problem I see, is that the common man is interested in short term things that might bring immediate results and gratification. What about investing energy into something that is long-term but which would have a greater and wide-reaching impact?

Can this psychology be ever reversed?

 

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7 responses

  1. Good day Dr Izuogu.
    Its my pleasure to express my inspiration to you.In deed you are not only a scientist but a prophet.
    What you are doing for Nigeria and Africa,can only be done by a supernatural being.Am happy you are
    a christian and you understand the voice of the Lord.
    Its true the devil has used his instrument(the robbers) to discourage you and your vision.
    My Brother,pls dont give up.The Lord is in you.He has started it,He will finish it.Pls depend only on
    God and his help.Remember Isaac in the Bible dug many wells and he faced challenges but he never gave up until the Philistians couldn’t do any other thing.I hope the life of Isaac is a case study for the challenges you face.Remember I Love you and God also Love you.HE WILL SURELY FINISH ALL HE HAS FOR YOU.Pls
    have a joyful atmosphere for your faith and relationship with God.I Love You.CHIME

  2. DEAR CHIME,
    I AM SORRY,I JUST SAW YOUR MAIL,TWO YEARS AFTER YOU WROTE.I WOULD LIKE TO THANK YOU IMMENSELY FOR YOUR KIND AND ENCOURAGING WORDS.
    PEOPLE LIKE YOU PROVIDE THE INSPIRATION AND COMFORTING WORDS THAT KEEP US GOING IN THE THANKLESS JOB OF CONDUCTING RESEARCH IN NIGERIA.

    TRULY,IT IS MY FAITH IN THE OMNISCIENT GOD THAT KEEPS ME GOING.I KNOW NOTHING EXCEPT THAT WHICH HIS HOLY SPIRIT TEACHES.SCIENTISTS IN THE TECHNOLOGICALLY ADVANCED WORLD CAN AFFORD TO PUT THIER FAITH IN THEIR EQUIPMENTS AND GENEROUS RESEARCH FUNDS.HAVING NONE OF THESE,THE AFRICAN RESEARCHER MUST RELY ON GOD’S AWFUL WISDOM AND POWER,THAT HELPED LITTLE DAVID TO FLOOR THE GREAT WARRIOR GOLIATH.

    THANK YOU CHIME AND DO HAVE A GREAT DAY.

    SINCERELY,

    EZEKIEL

  3. DrEzekiel

    WIll you ever make a car again? If not, will you work with innoson, the car company in Nnewi? How do you think these cars can change Nigeria?

    Thanks,
    Emeka

  4. Dr.ezekiel.

    its good to know that a local science technological mind like urs still do exist in a place, a country and a continent most considered a place of despair utterly dead by the world. they said can anything good come out nazarreth but jesus did! yours wont be exceptional, l tell you a word of prophecy. l had thought we would as people and as a nation rely permanently on the out-side world technical know- how for survival until l came to be aware of the ezekiel izuogu motor invention.and then tradegy that follows. like every one who still try to comfort and motivat you back to your feet, l want to just cheep in but a few, by leaving you with the story of how a man who lost a business empire to tragedy bounced back to a ten-times bigger business empire than the former. surprising! but what was his secret key for his resurrection? he simply stopped telling the story of his misfortune and spoke more daily to himself and to those who asked to know if his given up, and that motivated him to a whole bigger empire. he activated himself and evoked himself to where he wanted tobe after his delemma.Dr. ezekiel, you can do same just practice seeing yourself in a future you desire to manage tomorrow constantly in your present state of awareness thats where you gather yourself together-what you keep seeing is just what you keep becoming, if just stay motivated to your local motor technology whose blue-prints still resdes and lingers in you. you were the one God gave the dream and no matter what happened to you. l want you to know that dreams dont die but seems dead because a man no longer familiarize with it. Dreams are never dead and cannot!. the picture of the stolen enginee molds is still in your spirit and you can have touch with it in the most greater and clearer dimension than before- l didnt read this from a book, its a proven experience and its works and l know so. am a creator just like you are. Dr. when you get back to work, other unknown secrets or mystery – spectaclarly unkown to the world of motor or car technology will be given to you and this world will find you, am speaking to you from my spirit, your reseaches and work about this technology will be easier and fast, all and more will come to you again as if in a dream. it took 10 years before, it will take less now. this is my prophecy to you, be courageous and go back to work and experience all l just told you. God is with you and this worlds most eminents will find you even to your door steps.thanks Dr. ezekiel. best-wishes.

  5. Hi there! I simply want to give a huge thumbs
    up for the good info you will have right here on this post.
    I will probably be coming again to your blog for extra soon.

  6. obioma progress osahon

    pls dont give what so ever you want to do nobody will stop you as far God is on your side pls dont give up make the igbo people proud

  7. It’s nearly impossible to find experienced people on this subject, but
    you seem like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

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