The Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) has rejected the suggestion for the sale of Nigeria’s asset as a way of reviving the economy.
The ACF said in a separate statement that Nigeria was not for sale.
The group said that selling national asset, such as airports, Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) and refineries was like selling Nigeria.
The ACF National Publicity Secretary, Muhammad Ibrahim, said the previous sale of national asset had not helped the country economically.
Mr. Ibrahim said that selling NLNG and four refineries would only strip the country of vital asset without requisite funds going into the public treasury.
“The growing calls by some prominent politicians and business tycoons on the Federal Government to consider the sale of strategic viable national assets … at this material time is inappropriate,” he said.
Mr. Ibrahim said past privatisation of national enterprises did not yield the desired result in terms of judicious use of proceeds by the government or management practices of the asset by the new owners.
He listed some public enterprises sold in the past, including Nigeria Airways, Nigerian National Shipping Line, Ajaokuta Steel Company, NITEL, and Power Holding Company of Nigeria.
He said the sale of the enterprises to selected Nigerians and their foreign collaborators in the spirit of privatisation, only succeeded in converting public enterprises to private ones and some later became comatose.
“The ones that survived, their service delivery cannot be said to be better.
“ACF, therefore, considers it unwise for the Federal Government to contemplate the selling of our major national assets like the oil refineries, federal airports and NLNG,” Mr. Ibrahim said.
“The Federal Government’s diversification policy in agriculture and solid mineral resources is aimed at boosting the economy to arrest the recession.
“ACF wishes to suggest that unnecessary allowances of public officers and overhead cost that form over 40 per cent of our annual budget should be converted to capital allocation to boost the economy,” Mr. Ibrahim said.
He called for sacrifice in order to bequeath an enduring legacy to the next generation and stressed that positive change usually comes with painful necessary sacrifice.
He said ACF supported some of the measures proposed by the National Economic Council.
He called on prominent businessmen and women to invest in the oil and gas industry and other businesses that would compete with public enterprises to boost the economy.