September 24, 2016by Tope Fasua0

… you said we should not view this as privatization/commercialization. Then what is it? You ASSUME that the proceeds will not be used for consumption or for state bailouts. Assume because you never can tell how politicians think. Can you lay your integrity on the line for them? You hinge the process on inflow of FDI, but we know that FDIs consider much more than a cursory look at a country’s foreign reserves. At the end of the day, $40Billion is guguru to these guys. You know that. Just like those in your school of thought promised that once Nigeria devalues or floats the Naira these FDIs will rush in, we can see they aren’t rushing in. These boys are highly sophisticated. They can come here and take advantage of sovereign debt at 16% pa, but you can’t beat them in a game that they created.

You again ASSUME that once we get money we can buyback the assets. na so e easy? How many assets has Nigeria acquired in the last 20 years? Can’t you see we are on a one-way freefall in these matters? Can’t you feel the plane lurching almost hopelessly? What about the FACT that those assets will be underpriced for now? Which good trader sells low and buys high? Now let us recall how Yaradua managed the boys in the creeks. Remember how he used pelekutu to talk to them and all the Tompolos and Generals this-and-that were weeping like babies at Aso Villa. It was a strategy that worked better than talking down on people and telling them off. Gordon Brown wanted to sell us $300million worth of Ammo to finish them off, which Umaru sidestepped. If not for the shutdowns will we be at this point?

Yaradua using his strategy increased Foreign Reserves from about $45Billion to $62billion. Now, please help solve this confusing equation. DMO says debt stock has increased N4.4Trillion within one year. Punch this morning has a story that Buhari is under attack for incurring N2.2trillion DOMESTIC DEBT in the last one year. Yet we are looking for money to fund the budget. about N600billion has been released on Capital. Yet we have implemented TSA and allegedly recovered Trillions. Yet we have alleged recovered other trillions from looters. Yet most states have been unable to pay salaries for upwards of six months. Yet the government introduced Stamp Duty on every banking transaction and projects N2.5trillion therefrom. Yet FIRS is working at double the pace and corralling thousands into the tax net afresh. Yet the FG forced companies this year to pay millions to regulatory agencies, from FIRS, to FRC, to ITF, to NSITF, to pencom and Insurance Companies, to even professional bodies… WHERE DID THE MONEY DISAPPEAR TO. I think i have a missing chip in my brain that does not allow me easily understand these matters like you do.

addendum: if we take everything Nigeria has as assets to the market today, be sure that the buyers will cherrypick. the first to go will be NLNG. They have expressed their intentions already. It just so happens that it is the only worthwhile stuff we have right now. these guys are very picky… and they are always afraid of the pepper in Nigerian food.

by Tope Fasua

Tope Kolade Fasua is a Nigerian ex-banker, entrepreneur, economist and writer with 28 years of work, business and policy analysis experience. He is the founder and CEO of Global Analytics Consulting Limited, an international consulting firm with its headquarters in Abuja, Nigeria, and footprints in the United Kingdom, USA and United Arab Emirates. Fasua has authored numerous columns on newspapers and six books. He currently keeps regular columns on policy analysis issues with Premium Times and Daily Trust newspapers.

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