Emergency Economic Stabilisation Bill Is Buhari’s Formula To Fight Recession

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For Nigeria to quickly get out of recession, the presidency is mulling an executive called the Emergency Economic Stabilisation Bill 2016. It is in line with the advise of Nigeria’s economic team.

The Emergency Economic Stabilisation Bill 2016 will seek to cut bureacracies by allowing President Muhammadu Buhari to carry out speedy reforms that can help Nigeria gain economic growth in the shortest possible time.

The finalised bill will be passed to the National Assembly for speedy deliberation and passage into law. The following are the proposition of the Emergency Economic Stabilisation Bill:

  • To Abridge the procurement process to support stimulus spending on critical sectors of the economy
  • To make orders to favour local contractors/suppliers in contract awards
  • To abridge the process of sale or lease of government assets to generate revenue
  • To allow virement of budgetary allocation to projects that are urgent, without going back to the National Assembly
  • To Amend certain laws, such as the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) Act, so that states that cannot access their cash trapped in the accounts of the commission because they cannot meet the counterpart funding, can do so
  • To embark on radical reforms in visa issuance at Nigeria’s consular offices and on arrival in the country and to compel some agencies of government like the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), the National Agency for Foods Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and others to improve on their turn around operation time for the benefit of business.

Analysts have argued that some of the composition of the bill do not necessarily need a fresh bill to get them restructured. However, the intricacies of getting things done would reverse to getting a legislation to make things fit into the speed required.

However, there are fears that the president’s requests to get more powers might set a precedent for several other request that might arrogate more powers to an already ‘powerful’ executive arm of government.

Moreover, the economic and social intents of the Emergency Economic Stabilisation Bill is what makes important. Nigeria is planning to exit a ‘technical’ recession in the fourth quarter of this year.

Inflation is allready in a 20 year high of 16.5%. The National Bureau of Statistics, NBS is expected to release July inflation data in the coming days. All these indices would make any sensible moves laudable. For a government that has been criticised for lack of a cogent economic plan, this might be what the markets id looking for.

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