By Inalegwu Shaibu
ABUJA — SENATORS are pushing for the investigation of the Bureau of Public Enterprises, BPE, over its failure to turn around the fortunes of privatised Federal Government-owned companies.
The Senators in a motion sponsored by Senator Ahmed Lawan, ANPP Yobe North, and 20 others which is yet to be debated on the floor of the Senate raises questions on the viability of the privatisation exercise.
The Senators are worried that the privatisation exercise has not yielded the right results in terms of employment generation and economic development of Nigeria.
Part of the motion read: “The Senate is informed that many Federal Government enterprises from all sectors of the economy have been sold out to various core investors over two decades under the government privatisation programme.
“Further concerned that due to the collapse of the privatised companies, there are massive loss of jobs and colossal loss of economic returns to the Nigerian economy. For example, the privatised steel sector that used to employ up to 20,000 workers, now have less than 4,000 after the exercise. The Electricity Meter Company of Nigeria, Zaria that was privatised in December 2002, recently fired about 90 per cent of its workforce.”
They accordingly prayed that a special committee to investigate the process through which the BPE privatised the companies be set up.
According to the senators, “some of the privatised companies that have gone under include The Daily Times Plc; the Electricity Meter Company of Nigeria, Zaria, the Peugeot Automobile of Nigeria, PAN.