United Bank of Africa Chairman Tony Elumelu, CFR, emphasized the need to empower the private sector to transform Nigeria.
In Abuja, he made the remarks at the 63rd Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Main Conference on Sunday, August 27, 2023. He said:
“Nigeria’s transformation is a journey that requires our collective effort, recognizing political affiliation, ethnic differences, and socio-economic differences. This task is not the responsibility of our government alone. Great nations start with great people, not just great leaders. Our private sector, our philanthropic institutions, our civil society, and all peoples need to be united and empowered as genuine and valued partners in this national regeneration, this nation-building. ”
Mr. Elumelu also spoke about the need to empower young people on the entrepreneurial side, referring to the work of the Tony Elumelu Foundation in championing this cause.
“Investing in our youth. We must renew our commitment to our youth and give them the tools to grow in Nigeria, not beyond.” This is only the education system. But it also means investing in an entrepreneurial culture. Nigeria is a land of entrepreneurs. You know I’m an investor and entrepreneur advocate. I know the social and economic benefits of entrepreneurship. Create a joint government task force to advocate youth and entrepreneurs at the highest level. When entrepreneurs thrive, we thrive as a nation. Otherwise, we all fail. In my interactions with other private sector leaders, my message is simple. We must see ourselves as an engine of innovation, a source of investment, and a source of job creation. That is exactly what we have achieved with the Tony Elumelu Foundation. ”
Regarding private sector investment, Elumelu also provided insight into how the federal government can further improve the energy sector. He highlighted the 1000MW capacity of the TransAfam power plant owned by the Transcorp Group. In his words: “Let’s invest in our energy sector. Let’s create a regulatory structure that rewards success and provides our people, schools, hospitals, and industry with the sustainable and robust electricity supply we so desperately need.”, Gas Resources. Does that mean that a country rich in gas cannot operate its power plants optimally due to a shortage of gas? “We are starting to see what we can do. e.g.] TranscorpGroup’s TransAfam power plant has an installed capacity of 1000 MW.
“The Nigerian federal government has made significant investments to purchase a 240-megawatt high-speed turbine from General Electric (GE) making power supply available for 1 million homes in Nigeria.”