Atiku Abubakar, former vice-president, has urged the federal government to be transparent in its privatisiation exercise of the nation’s refineries and national assets.
The federal government had announced that it is planning to sell or concession about 36 national assets to fund the N13.59 trillion 2021 budget.
A Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) document which was submitted to the national assembly showed that the properties, categorised under energy assets, industries and communication department, development institutions and natural resources are up for sale or concession.
The remaining properties were classified under infrastructure and public private partnership and post transaction management department.
In a statement on Sunday, Atiku said he has always championed the privatisation of the economy which President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration always scorned.
“For decades, I have championed the privatisation of our economy and full deregulation of our oil and gas sector, amongst other sectors, for greater service delivery and efficiency,” Atiku said.
“As chairman of the National Council on Privatisation, I advanced these policies which saw our economy achieve 6% GDP growth and created jobs for the masses of our people and amass the national wealth that enabled us exit the debt trap, and secure our financial independence.
“Even though my ideas were scorned by the All Progressives congress led federal government over the years, I am nevertheless most fulfilled that an administration that once failed to see the wisdom in these sound economic policies, is now facing reality and has now embraced reason, by announcing the privatisation of our refineries and other assets, which have not always prospered under public management.”
Atiku expressed delight that the idea has been accepted and urged that the processes be made as transparent as possible.
“It is always better late than never. And I commend the Federal Government for coming on board. I urge that the privatisation process be as transparent as possible, as that is the only way to ensure that Nigeria reaps the greatest economic benefits from this policy,” he said
“It was never about me. My interest has always been the peace, prosperity and progress of Nigeria, and I am happy to share these ideas, and others, with the government of the day, for the betterment of our nation and its people.”