BusinessDay

Remove subsidy, deregulate economy for Nigeria’s prosperity – CIBN

Dr Bayo Olugbemi, president, Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN), has urged the federal government to totally remove subsidies and fully deregulate the economy in the long run to ensure Nigeria’s prosperity.

Olugbemi, who is also Chairman of Council, CIBN, made the call on Thursday at the official inauguration of ‘The CIBN Bankers Hall’ at The Polytechnic, Ibadan, Oyo State.

According to him, it is not only the Nigerian economy that is in tumult, all over the world, but there is also a problem with the economies, with COVID-19 that is just abating.

“Unfortunately, Nigeria is the worst hit probably because of our mono-economy, meaning we have only one major revenue earning which is petroleum products.

“And, of course, world pricing is a function of what the refined products would be. And as we know because of the war between Russia and Ukraine, the dollar price of oil is going up and definitely it has to affect the final products.

“Unfortunately, we are not refining in Nigeria. We have to import using dollars and that is the reason why the government is giving subsidies; but for me as a person, as an economist, a banker and a financial expert, in the long run, the best would be to diversify the economy and deregulate.

“There shouldn’t be anything called subsidy because, at the end of the day, it doesn’t percolate to you and me. The people at the top are the ones enjoying it.

“Government has no business with subsidies, in the long run, it should deregulate the economy fully and ensure there are modular refineries.”

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The CIBN president said the project being carried out in the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria represents the modest contribution of the institute to the development of banking and finance education in Nigeria.

“The Institute is mindful of the fact that government alone may not be able to provide all the funding required to provide quality education, especially at the tertiary level.

“Revamping the educational system in Nigeria is, therefore, a collective responsibility and we all must play our role,” Olugbemi said.

Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, represented by Mr Rahman Abdu-Raheem, the Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, said the present administration had been leveraging on partnership to revamp the education sector.

While appreciating CIBN for the smart building said, “the building will facilitate improved academic learning as it will complement the existing ones.”

Dr Seye Awojobi, the Registrar of CIBN, also urged the management, staff and students of the institution to make judicious use of the building and ensure that the state-of-the-art facilities provided are well maintained.

He noted that the 150-seater capacity building with free WiFi would facilitate the training of professionals in the banking sector.

In his address, Prof. Kazeem Adebiyi, Rector of The Polytechnic, Ibadan, pledged that the building and its facilities would be maintained while asking for more intervention from CIBN to the institution.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event was attended by the representative of Olubadan of Ibadan, the Ekerin Balogun of Olubadan, High Chief Olubunmi Isioye, Chairman Governing Council, The Polytechnic Ibadan, Prof Kunle Akinyemi, represented by Moji Adeyemi, wife of the Alaafin of Oyo and a member of the council, among others.