Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has expressed support to the plan by the Federal Government to privatise some of its assets.
Key assets under consideration include the ailing refineries; the International Conference Centre in Abuja; Yola Electricity Distribution Company; Zungeru Hydro Power; Tafawa Balewa Square among others.
Government hopes to generate a total of N493.4 billion from the sale of the assets; which were classified under energy assets, industries and communication department; as well as development institutions and natural resources.
Atiku made this known via a statement titled ‘Privatisation of Refineries and Other Assets: Better Late Than Never’.
He further called for transparency in the process of privatising the assets as he expressed delight that the privatisation of public assets which he once championed and was scorned for by the All Progressives Congress-led administration is now being embraced by the same administration.
He said, “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, saiid, “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 to 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.
“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.
“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.”