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Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Scrap NNPC, Land Use Act, Says Presidential Aspirant Moghalu

Scrap NNPC, Land Use Act, Says Presidential Aspirant Moghalu

Former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Professor Kingsley Moghalu has called for the scrapping of the Land Use Charge as well as the dissolution of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) as a step towards the economic growth of the country.

Moghalu, who recently declared his intention to contest for the Presidency in the 2019 elections, said the NNPC as it is presently constituted is more of a “government ATM machine

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Speaking at the 2018 edition of ‘The Bullion Lecture’ organised by the Centre for Financial Journalism tagged: “The Wealth of Nations and the Imperative of Economic Transformation” he said the government needs to dissolve the NNPC and constitute another entity that would run as a public private partnership.

“The NNPC must be partially privatised like the NLG which is functioning well. It is making profit. It is obvious that the answer is public private participation, so that there can be discipline in its operations.

“The other one (NNPC) is a government ATM, political ATM. So there is no real oversight.

Transparency is not there. We could have made a lot of money from it but our refineries are dead. We are a country that exports crude petroleum products and imports refined petroleum products. Is that not the clinical definition of madness?” he asked.

Also calling for the repeal of the Land Use Act, he said, “the constitutional repeal of the land use act which is trapping the wealth of Nigerians citizens in the hands choking grip of state bureaucracy because one of the need for a successful capitalism is property right if you have land that land is vested in the state.

“This means you are just a tenant with a C of O instead of having a free home which expands what you can use that land for in terms of generating capital” therefore he recommended that it should be scrapped in order to promote economic growth.

The former CBN deputy governor also called for the deregulation of the downstream petroleum sector noting that it is long overdue in addressing the fuel scarcity of the country.

“If we do not deregulate it, we cannot be free of all this running around on how to decide the price of petroleum products and fuel scarcity will continue.

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“I saw a newspaper that showed fuel scarcity in the 1970s and somebody that we are very familiar with who was the then minister of petroleum said the problem will soon be over. This was 40 years ago and we are still facing the same challenges.

Moghalu who is eyeing politics and aiming for the presidency stressed the need for the establishment of a clear worldview for the Nigerian state as well as the “establishment and consistent application of a clear economic philosophy of entrepreneurial capitalism in the context of a developmental state as a guiding framework for the Nigerian economy.”

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