Resource Management: We have learnt our lessons —Osinbajo

Posted by News Express | 9 February 2016 | 2,815 times

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The Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, said on Monday that a critical pillar of the Buhari presidency is transparency, especially in the extractive industry.

“It is important for us that we handle our resources with transparency and good governance,” he told a delegation of the global body, Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), during a meeting at the Presidential Villa Abuja.

The Minister of State for Budget & Planning, and the former Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), Mrs Zainab Ahmed, was also in attendance.

“One of the objectives that we have set for ourselves is to ensure that we are transparent and able to handle our resources well.

“If we (as a nation) had handled our resources better, with transparency and good governance, we would not find ourselves were we are now.”

According to him, as a nation, “we have learnt our lessons,” and going forward the government will work transparently and generate more revenues.

He stated that as a government, the Buhari administration was determined to work with the Nigeria Extractive Industry and Transparency Initiative (NEITI) “to ensure good governance and look at how we can generate revenues and keep proper accounts.”

On the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), Prof. Osinbajo assured that the executive was working with the National Assembly to get the PIB passed into law.

“We want to see what will come out of the bill because this will give some regulatory direction and we are working very closely to get that done.”

Earlier, the in-coming global Chairman of EITI, Mr Fredrik Reinfeldt, a former Prime Minister of Sweden, commended Nigeria’s commitment to the EITI framework.

He said the organisation was following the restructuring of the NNPC and other developments in the oil sector.

Reinfeldt said the EITI was aware of the stress Nigeria was going through following the low global oil price, but added that such trying times called for strengthening of the country’s transparency and accountability framework.

According to him, it is the determination of EITI to ensure that the resources coming from the member nations of the organisation were used for the benefit of the people.

The Acting Executive Secretary of NEITI, Dr Orji Ogbonnaya Orji, said that the visit was to introduce the in-coming chair of EITI to the Acting President.

According to Orji, the visit was also to inform him of the nomination of the Minister of State, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, into the board of EITI.

Ahmed, the immediate past Executive Secretary of NEITI, was among the 20 international experts nominated into the board.

She would represent the 12 English and Portuguese speaking member-nations on the board of the 49-member-nation international organisation.

She also told correspondents that she would bring the wealth of experience from the Nigerian operation into the global body.

“What I am bringing to the new EITI board is the implementation experience that we have gathered in Nigeria.”

Also, the Acting President received delegations from Nigeria Leadership Initiative (NLI), Class of 2015 and members of the Board of the Nigerian Institute of Legislative Studies (NILS).

He told the delegation from the NLI that considering the extent of effort required to address the socio-economic impact of the insurgency in the North-East, Nigerians with the required capacity should partner government agencies to rehabilitate and rebuild the area.

“It would be useful to work with the Presidential Committee on North-East Initiative to achieve some of its objectives,” he told the class led by the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investments, Dr Okey Enelamah, and Central Bank Deputy Governor, Mrs Sarah Alade.

The leader of the delegation, Enelamah informed Osinbajo about the proposed documentary project of the group, which focuses on the humanitarian crisis in the North-East as a collective issue rather than government concern alone.

The Chief Executive Officer of NLI, Mr Yinka Oyinlola, told correspondents that the group would specifically look at interventions in the health and education sectors and in terms of planning of the efforts in the reconstruction of the region.

In his meeting with the NILS, Osinbajo expressed government’s readiness to support the work of the Institute which played a prominent role in the legislative arm of government.

Sen. Muhammad Shitu, a member of the Governing Council of NILS, and the Senate Committee Chairman on Water Resources, who led the delegation, expressed its support for the change agenda of the Buhari’s Administration. (NAN)

•Photo shows Ag. President Yemi Osinbajo.


Source: News Express

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