By Ike A. Offor
The presidency unveiled the economic team of the president lask week Tuesday amid media frenzy, and outrage from some quarters that he has no economic team, but has overwhelming number of media team. Some quarters, especially some folks on social media said that it is very clear where the prirority of the president lies. Since he has staggering number of media team, numbering over five but has no economic team. Some said that his priority lies in media propaganda than in the state of the economy.
In a response to that, the presidency through the Senior Special Assistant to the vice president on Media and Publicity released some list of names of the purported economic team of the president.
The unveiling of this economic team raised few bothersome questions. One of those question is, why did it take such outcry from experts and a good number citizens from some quarters before the presidency has to make the economic team public?
These questions raise the suspcicion that this list of the economic team were just an adhoc list to appease the public outcry towards the president for not having an economic team. Something many experts and other citizens raised as a single reason behind the unresponsive action towards the ailing economy from the president.
The Presidency has reacted to a media report that quoted some economic experts as urging the president to form his economic team that President Muhammadu Buhari has an economic management team. The Senior Special Assistant to the Vice President on Media and Publicity, Mr Laolu Akande, who spoke to the Punch correspondent on phone last night said, President Buhari’s economic team has been put in place since the inauguration of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) last November.
Akande said the economic management team is headed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo. He listed the team’s key members as including the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma; the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun; the Minister of Trade, Industry and Investment, Okechukwu Enelamah; the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godswin Emefiele; and the Director-General of the Debt Management Office (DMO). He said the composition of the team was not static as Agriculture Minister Audu Ogbe and Information Minister Lai Mohammed as well as relevant permanent secretaries have also been involved.
But something worrying is that looking at the list of the economic team, apart from few experts among them, most are unqualified to be part of a serious economic team that, could handle the messy economic situation in the country at the moment. So, it is worrisome when you take a serious gaze on that economic team list. So, the question is, could this team really be good, if they have failed so far to end the big slide in the eocnomy? The answer to such question raises far more worrisome scenario for the fate of the economy and the country.
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