Plateau State Governor, Barr. Caleb Mutfwang , has reiterated his administration’s desire to revive and give value to moribund assets in the state.
The assets include the Jos International Breweries (JIB), BARC Farms, and ASTC among others. The goal is to create employment opportunities and generate internal revenue to fight poverty.
Governor Caleb Mutfwang disclosed this when he received in audience, the Director-General of the Bureau of Public Enterprises, Alex A. Okoh, at the Plateau State Governor’s Lodge in Asokoro, Abuja.
He explained that the state will create a robust synergy with the Bureau of Public Enterprise to inject life into some moribund assets in the state with a view to generating revenue and fighting poverty.
“We truly have a lot of moribund assets that can still be given value, and our cornerstone of economic development is actually modeled on Public-Private Partnership. There has been inefficiency of funds and lack of capacity in the public sector to manage some of these assets,” said Governor Mutfwang.
He cited the example of Jos International Breweries, which was once the most ranking brewery in Nigeria. “The brand is still there to be activated, but it requires investment. Together with JIB, we have one of the Brewery Agro Research Company (BARC) Farms. It is one of the fantastic assets waiting to be given value. Also, we had one of the most successful Agricultural Programs in Nigeria, in terms of aggregating farming inputs – ASTC – which was highly recommended by the Federal Government.”
Governor Mutfwang lamented that sufficient effort was not made in the last eight years to inject capital into some of these assets and expressed his administration’s determination to resuscitate all the assets.
“We will cherish the opportunity to partner with BPP to unlock the values in these assets. Also, electricity holds high promise on the Plateau; we have all the potentials for electricity, including solar energy, and with the right investment, we will get it right,” he added.
He noted that his government is working around the clock to create a conducive atmosphere for ease of doing business and ensure that private participation in business is not strangulated in the state.
The Director-General of Bureau of Public Enterprises, Alex A. Okoh, who led his management team, said that recent power sector reforms that unbundled NEPA from power generation to transmission and distribution created many opportunities for states to generate revenue and solve their developmental challenges.
He noted that most state governments are likely going to face difficult challenges in terms of generating revenue to drive their developmental goals.
“It will interest you to note that sub-nationals also have assets that they can depend on; therefore, rather than relying on monthly rituals of going to Abuja for FAAC allocation – which has increasingly become a challenge – we think that sub-nationals should begin to look inward for resources resident in their states,” he stated.