Can the Private Sector Truly Help Rescue Nigeria?

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As the Federal Government has for long been urging the organised private sector (OPS) to be more actively involved in the business of governance and in helping to bring the country out of recession, some analysts believe most operators in the vital sector are too profit-conscious and selfish to help sincerely government. In your own opinion, can the private sector truly help government to revamp the economy and bring positive development to the citizens? If yes, in what ways can this happen?

ABIMBOLA AKOSILE

* The private sector is key to the development of emerging economies including Nigeria. Government needs to understand this in totality, partner the sector on policy development and implementation, as well as engender a conducive environment for fair competitiveness, productivity and economic advancement both for the short and long term.
– Miss Nkeiruka Abanna, Lagos State

* Only the government can open the door for the private sector to revamp the economy. Government has done well by increasing the tariff on certain items we can’t produce locally, but much more needs to be done to protect the economy and attract greater investment and growth in the private sector. One fundamental thing is to open up the power sector to competition, while incentives like tax holidays for companies that employ more than 50 people can be introduced. Also, subsidising home-made products to make them cheaper than foreign imports is in order.
– Mr. Buga Dunj, Jos, Plateau State

* The organised private sector (OPS) should assist government to make the country great simply because the OPS operate in the same economy. Captains of industry should key into ‘Buy Nigeria’, lifestyle-wise. What prevents the private sector from leading the campaign to ensure girl children are properly educated? With advocacy and funding, this can be done.
– Mr. E. Iheanyi Chukwudi, B.A.R. Associates, Apo, Abuja

* Yes, the private sector can very much help rescue Nigeria, especially when given the right enabling environment. Our indigenous captains of industries here and even in the Diaspora are excelling very greatly in various fields. Advanced nations rely on private sector with amazing results. Private sector participation is an invaluable asset still waiting to be tapped. Some top government workers are corrupt, lazy, greedy and fraudulent as they cruelly drain public resources and purse at all cost without proper checks and balancing. Private Sector Partnership (PSP) is the direct opposite and so it is better.
– Mr. Apeji Onesi, Lagos State

* They can, if there are laws regulating their activities. Stiffer punishment must be meted out for those violating the laws of the land, especially expatriates whose interest are to make only money. Our country should not be made to only assemble products but real manufacturers.
– Mr. Dogo Stephen, Kaduna

* Yes, they can. Although the private sector is profit-oriented, they are also more eventful, result-oriented, accountable, reliable, committed e.t.c. Sure, they are profit-oriented but they are also genuinely productive and very frugal financially. They hardly fail in the execution of vital projects. Government must incorporate Private Sector Partnership (PSP) into the system and allow them to free us from recession e.t.c. God bless Nigeria.
– Miss Apeji Patience Eneyeme, Badagry, Lagos State

* The organised private sector can massively invest in the rail system on a collaborative basis with financial institutions. Furthermore, an IPP -Independent Power Project can be floated to birth other downstream industrial companies that need consistent power generation for their production. If the OPS can be more patriotic on power (electricity) generation and distribution works in this country instead of importing generators, things will turn around for good with noble ideas from young entrepreneurs. We must also add value to our agro produce through processing, to avoid annual waste, and Nigeria can earn foreign exchange in the exportation of these refined items. Also in the tourism sector, state governments can partner the OPS in promoting their states – ‘Local content…Global outlook’ The areas the OPS can contribute are just endless if they will be patriotic enough.
– Mr. Oluwagbemiga Sorunmu, Colombo, Sri Lanka

* The private sector can do a lot in this country. Look at the revolution in the telecoms industry. With the coming of GSM into Nigeria, lots of jobs have been created, huge revenues generated to government coffers and foreign investments have been encouraged. Just compare NITEL of those days and the transformation in the communication sector today, then you will appreciate the importance of the private sector.
– Mr. Sunday Aikulola, Ikorodu, Lagos State

* While l do not disagree that the private sector do have the potential to contribute to the economic development of the nation, my immediate concern is, do we have a private sector (in the real sense) in Nigeria or do we have a set of ‘kalokalo’ pretending to be private sector? To have a private sector you must be talking about long term investment in the real sector powered by a banking sector ready to fund such investment rather than short term investments in petroleum products imports and finished consumer goods. Secondly is the regulatory environment that encourages investment while protecting national interest. What obtains currently is a private sector that doesn’t have an independent capital base and a non-performing regulatory environment. In my humble view, the necessary pre-condition for the private sector to positively contribute to the economy does not currently exist!
– Mr. Babatunde Oluajo, Abuja

* The private sector in truth is supposed to help rescue Nigeria but for the ‘get rich quick’ syndrome or attitude of Nigerians. They shouldn’t be trusted in doing that; in fact our business men and women are our problem and are most responsible for what we are passing through. They don’t care what we become; all they are after is more money. They tell you, ‘to hell with Nigeria’, not to talk of rescuing it.
– Hon. Babale Maiungwa, U/Romi, Kaduna

* Most of the local major players in the organised private sector in Nigeria have foreign roots with capital flight inclinations. While this group takes advantage of the huge local market for their products, they also obey the dictates of their parent-organisations. For local operators, the harsh operating environment makes it really difficult for them to put compassion before profit. For the private sector to break even and make profit, it must work actively with the government at all levels to create an enabling environment for business to flourish and government to prosper. The organised private sector can do this if it so wishes.
– Mr. Olumuyiwa Olorunsomo, Lagos State

THE RESPONSE

Yes, the OPS can: 5
No, it cannot: 1
Others: 5
Radical tip: Punish violators!
Total no of respondents: 11
Male: 9
Female: 2
Highest location: Lagos (5)

Next Week: Can Nigeria Afford Economic Protectionism in 2017?

As the United States moves to protect its economy and citizens under a new leadership, many analysts have argued that Nigeria can adopt the same protectionist approach this year to protect local manufacturing and boost indigenous goods and products. Although Japan did this successfully after the Second World War (WWII), others believe Nigeria cannot survive without throwing her borders wide open for all sorts of imports as canvassed by globalisation and lopsided trade agreements. In your own view, can Nigeria afford protectionism in 2017 to help revive her local industries and overall economy?

Please make your response direct, short and simple, and state your full name, title, organisation, and location. Responses should be sent between today (February 2 & Monday, February 6) to abimbolayi@yahoo.com, greatbimbo@gmail.com, AND abimbola.akosile@thisdaylive.com. Respondents can also send a short text message to 08023117639 and/or 08188361766 and/or 08114495306. Collated responses will be published on Thursday, February 9