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Oronsaye report: FG may soon sell majority shares in NigComSat

The Federal Government may soon put up for sale its majority shares in the country’s satellite company, Nigeria Communications Satellite Limited (NIgComSat).

This is coming on the heels of Monday’s approval of the implementation of the Oronsaye report by the Federal Executive Council (FEC).

According to the report’s Whitepaper, the recommendation for the sale of NigComSat was one of the few accepted by the government among several others affecting agencies and parastatals under the Ministry of Communications.

The Oronsaye Committee, which was set up to work out modalities for cutting the cost of governance in Nigeria also advised the government to stop its budgetary allocations to the satellite company. This was also accepted by the government in the Whitepaper.

In addition to the recommendation on the sale of government’s shares in the company, the Committee added:

In its Whitepaper on the report, the government said it accepted all the recommendations, noting that it would only retain minority shares in the company.

Meanwhile, the government rejected several other recommendations that would have seen the merger of agencies under the Ministry of Communications.

The Oronsaye Committee had recommended that that Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) and the regulatory functions of the Nigeria Postal Service (NIPOST) be brought together under a unified management structure to be known as the Communications Regulatory Authority of Nigerian (CRAN).

However, the government in its Whitepaper said it rejected all the recommendations.

Announcing the government’s resolve to implement the 12-year-old report on Monday, the Special Adviser to President Bola Tinubu on Information and Strategy, Mr. Bayo Onanuga, said the Federal Executive Council in its bid to enhance efficiency in the Federal service and reduce the cost of governance, decided to implement the recommendations of the Steve Oronsaye panel on the restructuring and rationalization of Federal agencies, parastatals and commissions.

According to him, the implementation involves merging, subsuming, and scrapping agencies with similar functions.

He added that an eight-man committee has been set up to ensure that the necessary legislative amendments and administrative restructuring needed to implement the reforms are effected efficiently.

The committee comprises the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Head of the Civil Service, Attorney General and Justice Minister, Budget and Planning Minister, DG Bureau of Public Service Reform, Special Adviser to the President on Policy Coordination, Special assistant to the president on National Assembly. The Cabinet Affairs Office will serve as the secretariat.

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