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Why I will not include private sector topshots in my economic team – Buhari

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President Muhammadu Buhari has again clarified why he excluded private sector players from his administration’s economic team.

He also responded to critics who are of the opinion that he does not have an economic management team.

Buhari said he already had one headed by Vice President Professor Yemi Osinbajo.

 Senior Special Assistant to the Vice President on Media, Laolu Akande, quoted Buhari as saying this in an exclusive interview in The Interview magazine.

Akande in excerpts from the interview made available to State House correspondents yesterday, said while his government would still listen to everyone, it will not include private sector individuals members of the National Economic Management Team (NEMT).

“We will listen to everybody, but we are averse to economic teams whose private sector members frequently steer government policy to suit their own narrow interests rather than the over-all national interest,” Buhari said.

Asked if he has an economic management team, Buhari responded: “What do they mean by team? The vice president heads our economic management team.

“You have a finance minister, a budget and planning minister, a minister for industry, trade and investments, a governor of the Central Bank, a national economic adviser and others. Yet, some still ask for a team. I don’t know how they define the word team,” he added.

The statement recalled that the Presidency had disclosed several times that an economic management team existed and met at least once a week.

It said though the Buhari administration was averse to interested private sector members, its economic team regularly consulted with different representatives of the private sector and other stakeholders.

Buhari was also quoted as promising that his administration, “will truly change the way we do things in Nigeria, therein lies the future of our country as a great entity.”

He added that his government will also ensure “a fully diversified Nigerian economy no longer dependent on oil only, three, a Nigeria where every Naira that comes into the treasury is used for the good of the people, particularly the ordinary people.”

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