12 October 2011, Sweetcrude, Abuja- The current effort by the Federal Government to deregulate the downstream sector of the oil and gas industry received a major boost Tuesday from the organised private sector with an endorsement from Chief Kola Jamodu, President of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, MAN.
Speaking in a chat with journalists in Abuja, the renowned industrialist called on ordinary Nigerians as well as the organised private sector to brace up for the challenge ahead describing deregulation as a necessary sacrifice which everyone must be ready to make for the common good of the economy.
”I think it is a necessary sacrifice that will benefit all Nigerians sooner than later. We all have to take sooner or later and to my mind the earlier the better. We have looked at it from the stand point of manufacturing and one thing though is that once deregulation is in place, the whole system would be liberalised and whatever proceeds we get will be used as government said for the upgrade of key infrastructure. The roads are bad, no electricity, we must fast track the power projects but we need money to do all these,’’ Jamodu said.
The former President of the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Mines Industries and Agriculture, NACCIMA, stated that though members of the organised private sector are still in discussion with government on deregulation, it is apparent from all indications that deregulation is the only medicine that can revitalise the economy.
In the last few years, our economy has been growing at an average of 7.5 percent GDP yet people are not feeling the impact of such growth. This means we have reached a point where we must restructure,’’ the MAN President stated.
Commenting on the likely gains of deregulation to the Nigerian economy in general and the manufacturing sector in particular, Jamodu said that the programme would help break all existing monopolies across all sectors through the stimulation of positive competitions among firms and the entire private sector.
He however called on government to come up with creative ideas and palliative measures to ensure that the proceeds of deregulation are ploughed back to the economy for the benefits of the masses.
Chief Jamodu described the proposed National Social Safety Net package as a good programme if well implemented adding that the scheme will raise the standard of living of the average man on the streets in the post deregulation era.