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Buhari approves restructuring of Finance Ministry

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the restructuring and repositioning of the Ministry of Finance Incorporated to become a trusted custodian and manager of Federal Government’s investments and assets.

Inaugurating the Ministry of Finance Incorporated and its board of Directors in Abuja, the President said the initiative was a significant milestone to revitalising the nation’s economy.

He explained that the Ministry of Finance Incorporated, which was enacted prior to Nigeria’s independence, was not structured to deliver on the mandate expected of it, hence the need to strengthen it for maximum benefit.

Citing the successes achieved by countries that have restructured theirs, President Buhari said the Ministry of Finance Incorporated had been charged to optimize the return on federal government’s investments by ensuring consistent provision of risk-adjusted returns on federal government’s investments.

“It will provide visibility over what the federal government of Nigeria own by creating and managing a national asset register, take steps to unlock liquidity from federal government’s idle assets, mobilise capital and investing them and opportunities that are strategic to the nation’s social and economic development plan, and partner with federal government to leverage the nation’s investments and assets to support in delivering on its social and economic mandate”, he explained.

The President said the Ministry of Finance Incorporated, to be headed by the Minister of Finance, explained that credible personalities had been appointed to ensure smooth operation of the incorporated ministry.

“As part of the government’s structure, there will be a governing council, headed by me, a board of directors, under the leadership of a former Minister of Finance, Dr. Shamsuddeen Usman, and an executive management team, headed by Dr. Armstrong Takan.

“We have carefully selected individuals of repute and experience for the respective positions, and I have not doubts they will live up to our expectation to the highest standards”, the President said.

The Minister of Finance, Dr. Zainab Ahmad, had said the outright sale of government’s assets should not be the first option, but that government must do its utmost to safeguard those investments and assets while finding innovative to derive maximum value from them.

Reporting by Abdullah Bello, editing by Daniel Adejo