‘Im­por­ta­tion is sec­ond high­est in­come earner for Nigeria’

NECA wants FG to go ahead with pri­vati­sa­tion

Daily Trust - - NEWS - From Johnkennedy Uzoma, Ow­erri From Mo­hammed Shosanya,la­gos

The Chair­man of the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Nige­rian Traders (NANTS), Chief Ken Ukoha, has iden­ti­fied im­port trade as the sec­ond high­est in­come earner for the coun­try.

Ukoha told Daily Trust in Ow­erri, yes­ter­day, that it is re­gret­table that de­spite the con­tri­bu­tions of traders Nigeria Em­ploy­ers’ Con­sul­ta­tive As­so­ci­a­tion (NECA) has urged the Federal Govern­ment to go ahead with its planned sale of the na­tion’s four re­finer­ies.

The Di­rec­tor-Gen­eral of NECA, Mr Se­gun Oshi­nowo, who gave the ad­vice in La­gos at a press con­fer­ence, iden­ti­fied pri­vati­sa­tion as the best pol­icy needed for Nigeria to stop im­por­ta­tion of petroleum prod­ucts. to the na­tion’s econ­omy, 90% of traders in the coun­try are ten­ants in the mar­kets where they op­er­ate.

He ad­vised traders in the coun­try have been ad­vised to unite and form a for­mi­da­ble force as the only way to avoid be­ing ex­ploited by those in govern­ment.

De­scrib­ing the re­cent in­au­gu­ra­tion of the NANTS, Imo State Chap­ter, as the best step to­wards the re­al­i­sa­tion of the

Ac­cord­ing to him, Nigeria can­not af­ford to con­tinue with prod­ucts im­por­ta­tion with the se­vere eco­nomic im­pli­ca­tions.

He said: “NECA calls on Federal Govern­ment to pri­va­tise the four re­finer­ies in the coun­try in or­der to stop im­por­ta­tion of petroleum prod­ucts. It is of no ben­e­fit hav­ing four re­finer­ies in the coun­try that are not work­ing.”

He lamented the ac­tiv­i­ties of Federal Govern­ment’s oil reg­u­la­tory agencies, say­ing they ob­jec­tives of the group, he called on the traders to have con­fi­dence in them­selves, say­ing that they now have pro­fes­sion­als in their midst such as doc­tors, lawyers and aca­demics.

He, there­fore, called on mem­bers of the as­so­ci­a­tion to see them­selves as people who could stand on their own and de­cide who could bet­ter their lots.

Also, the

Sec­re­tary Gen­eral were be­com­ing coun­ter­pro­duc­tive in their du­ties.

He said: “The reg­u­la­tory agencies are set up to achieve cer­tain

ob­jec­tives and pur­pose, but the truth about it is that in this

en­vi­ron­ment it is not all of them that act in a way that sup­port the de­vel­op­ment of this coun­try, rather their ac­tions are, in most cases, counter-pro­duc­tive. It is only here we see reg­u­la­tory agencies that are con­temp­tu­ous and show im­punity in the way they go about their of the Imo State Mar­ket Traders As­so­ci­a­tion (ISMATA) Chief Ger­vane Eleonu in a brief chat with Daily Trust, yes­ter­day, called on mem­bers of NANTS to con­ducts them­selves in a way that their opin­ion and in­ter­ests would be re­spected by any govern­ment.

He told them that the Imo State Gover­nor has em­barked on mas­sive con­struc­tion of mar­kets and other commercial cen­tres in the state. ac­tions. For ex­am­ple, they are not set up to make money on our mys­ter­ies. Nige­rian Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Com­mis­sion (NCC) also falls into the same cat­e­gory.”

Ac­cord­ing to him, some of the agencies are do­ing well while some have turned them­selves into money mak­ing ven­tures.

He ar­gued that the con­sumer’s pro­tec­tion coun­cil was needed to en­sure that con­sumers get value of what they paid for and en­sure safety of prod­ucts.

From left: Oloro­gun O’tega Emer­hor, Di­rec­tor; Obinna Ufudo, Pres­i­dent/CEO; Tony O. Elumelu, Chair­man; and Chinedu Eze, Com­pany Sec­re­tary dur­ing the 8th An­nual Gen­eral Meet­ing of Transna­tional Cor­po­ra­tion of Nigeria (Transcorp) Plc at the La­gos Ori­en­tal Ho­tel, Vic­to­ria Is­land La­gos yes­ter­day.

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