The Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) in Cross River State has joined other groups and individual in Nigeria to oppose the proposed sale of national assets by the federal government as one of the measures at pulling Nigeria’s economy out of recession.
The PFN warned that the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) must not be sold by the federal government.
Opposing to the proposal, the Chairman of the PFN in the state, Pastor Lawrence Ekwok, pointed out that the sale of any of the countries’ public property would amount to daylight robbery.
Ekwok stated this in Calabar yesterday at a solemn assembly staged by the PFN in the state to pray for Nigeria as the country marks her 56th Independence anniversary.
Addressing members of the PFN at the event, Ekwok noted that from available facts, the sale of public property has never been of benefit to the Nigerian people.
“I would like to enjoin us to recall the past and ask questions about what happened to Nigeria’s national assets that were sold under the guise of commercialisation and privatisation in the past.
“Apart from the fact that the assets were grossly undervalued, due process was not followed in most of the sales as “powerful” government officials and business men were the ones who “bought” most of the assets and most of the funds that were supposed to accrue to government coffers never came in.”
Continuing, the PFN chairman said: “The Ajoakuta steel company, for instance, was built then at the cost of $3.3 billion, but was sold at a paltry sum of $250 million to a Russian company known as Rusal. As if that was not enough day-light robbery of Nigerians, only $130 million of the $250 million was paid. Nothing has been heared about the balance till date. Delta Steel company was valued by the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) at N225 billion but was sold at N4.5 million only.
“Let me not bore you with stories of other national assets that were sold including Volkswagen of Nigeria (VON), Daily Times of Nigeria (DTN), Alluminium Smelter Company of Nigeria (ALSCON), Nigeria Re-insurance, NICON Insurance, etc.”