Monday, September 20, 2021

Buhari inaugurates NSIA board, charges members to support Nigeria’s economic diversification drive

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday inaugurated the new board of the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, NSIA, charging them to support his administration’s economic diversification, as global oil prices are projected to drop to around $40 per barrel by 2030.

Inaugurating the third Board of the NSIA at the Presidential Villa, Mr Buhari described the appointment of the 9-man board as a call to duty, action and performance.

‘‘This Government operates on the agenda for long-term change which we all agree is inevitable. Change happens whether you are ready for it or not.

‘‘As representatives of the Federation, you are required to continue to drive the performance of the Authority to deliver benefits to all Nigerians.

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‘‘You must bear in mind that the National Economic Council, your Governing Council and Nigerians as a whole will hold you accountable for this mandate.

‘‘Periodically, you will be required to provide evidence of your stewardship at the Governing Council Meetings where your performance will be assessed.

‘‘The bar before you is very high and all of us are counting on you to deliver. If you do, I assure you that Government and indeed all Nigerians will be unflinching in their support for you,’’ the President said.

He expressed delight that so far the institution has discharged its mandate dutifully.

‘‘This is why we prioritized the appointment of a new Board to ensure that the Authority does not lose steam and can continue to benefit from the oversight it needs to deliver on its mandate.

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‘‘The new Board we assembled has a crop of seasoned, eminently qualified, and experienced professionals.

‘‘We expect these individuals to bring their wealth of experience to bear, in the next phase of NSIA’s journey,’’ he said.

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The new Board members are Farouk Mohammed Gumel (North West) as Non-Executive Chairman; Babatunde Sobamowo (South West), Non-Executive Director; Isiekwena Ikemefuna Louis (South South), Non-Executive Director; Ali Goni Kadugum (North East), Non-Executive Director; Oniyangi Kabir Sulaiman (North Central), Non-Executive Director; and Ike Chioke (South East), Non-Executive Director.

In her remarks, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, said from the base position of US$1billion when the Administration assumed office in 2015, NSIA now has around US$3.5billion in assets under management.

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She explained that the Board will, on behalf of the Nigerian people, guide and oversee the NSIA Management’s activities towards delivering outcomes to transform the fortunes of the country.

‘‘Using the NSIA Act as its guide, the Board will be required to supervise initiatives that meet the current and future needs of Nigerians.

‘‘On our part as Government, we will continue to support the Authority with the necessary policies and framework to ensure that the mission of the institution is delivered in a transparent, sustainable and inclusive manner,’’ she said.

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