Vice President Kashim Shettima has emphasised the need for a strong public-private sector partnership that will help catalyse the development of critical infrastructure for economic growth.
Shettima stated this in Abuja on Thursday at the public presentation of two books authored by one of Nigeria’s legal luminaries, Yusuf Ali, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), according to a statement by Stanley Nkwocha, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Communications, Office of the Vice President.
Shettima recalled Tinubu’s legacies as governor of Lagos State, a feat he said the President is set to replicate at the national level in the bid to reposition the country.
Delivering his speech titled, “Mallam Yusuf Ali: Enduring Reflection in Law, History, and Public Policy,” the Vice President stated: “There is, of course, no politician in the country today who can match President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s experience in both brokering public-private partnership and understanding what must be done to bridge our infrastructure gaps.
“You only need to gaze into the realities of Lagos State before and after his progressive leadership as Executive Governor to realise his spectacular legacy, a skill set he’s again brought into play to reposition Nigeria as a competitive global player.”
He said the President’s Renewed Hope Agenda “is built on the realisation of improved infrastructure as a critical catalyst for “the nation’s economic growth,”
Shettima pointed out that the projections of the administration’s sound economic team on revolutionising investment in infrastructure were in tandem with those of its development partners.
“I am here to acknowledge that such a grand vision is the reason we are exploring innovative funding mechanisms like Public Private Partnerships, with avenues like the Infrastructure Concessions Regulatory Commission (ICRC) as testimony to such ambition. The ongoing review of the ICRC (Establishment ETC) Act, 2005, is telling,” the VP stated.
The vice President described the two books, “The Supreme Court and the Jurisprudence of the Right to Fair Hearing,” and “Public Private Partnerships: An Essential Guide for Stakeholders,” unveiled today as an eagle-eyed contribution to the “nation’s pursuit of order and development.”
“These books aren’t well-timed solely due to their thematic interests. They are not being celebrated solely for their interpretation of paramount aspects of our nation’s journey, nor for a yearning for such interventions in our collective responsibility to serve the nation. These two books stand out due to the intellectual and professional pedigree of the author,” he added.
Referring to the author of the two books, Mallam Ali (SAN), as a friend and brother, VP Shettima also described the learned silk as a “reservoir of knowledge acquired over decades of sincere engagement with the legal intricacies of our dear nation.
“His decision to document these treasures of wisdom reflects a legacy that shall echo through the corridors of scholarship beyond the practice and learning of law,” he noted.
The VP further observed that the author was able to capture readers’ attention by recognising the need for a clearer perspective on collaborations between the public and private sectors.
“Nigeria’s infrastructure deficit depends on our understanding of the complex interests of all parties involved in deals that do not disadvantage the nation. It’s crucial to ensure that we are not blinded by any legal requirements.
“It’s worth noting that one astute lawyer can bankrupt a country, but it also takes just one astute lawyer to save a nation. We have witnessed this, even in the recent case of Nigeria versus P&ID, which could have resulted in an unbelievable $11 billion arbitral award against us.”
Reviewing the book, Wahab Egbewole, A Senior Advocate of Nigeria SAN, said apart from the numerous contributions to knowledge by the author, the book offers an absorbing, interesting, and informative insight on the Supreme Court’s jurisprudence on the right to fair hearing in Nigeria.
He noted that the book is a well-researched study focusing on the principles of fair hearing as laid down by the Supreme Court of Nigeria, adding that it is a must-read for not only lawyers and judges but also for all other stakeholders involved in the justice sector.
The other book on Public Private Partnerships in Nigeria, according to him, was written to provide stakeholders with the requisite knowledge and guidance regarding the operations and implementations of the Public-Private Partnerships initiative in Nigeria.
Dignitaries who graced the book launch include Olukayode Ariwoola, the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Lateef Fagbemi, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, and Abdullahi Ganduje, National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Others present at the event were Patricia Etteh, former Speaker of the House of Representatives, amongst others.