Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote has denied reports that he advised the Federal government to sell national assets as a way of rescuing Nigeria from recession because he is interested in acquiring some them.
Dangote in an exclusive interview with ThisDay newspaper said, if the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Company or any other national asset was offered to him, even on credit, he would not be interested in acquiring them.
The President/Chief Executive of Dangote Group said his advocacy for the government to sell down some of its interest in some of the national assets was to help boost the economy as well as to stabilise the naira exchange rate, which has been under attack in the past few days.
According to him, he offered his proposal as a way out of Nigeria’s present economic recession because he is “a true Nigerian who really wants the issues about the economy to be sorted out”.
He added: “You know the issue, once your reserves are low, the banks, entrepreneurs, including external forces, would definitely attack your currency. They would speculate on your currency.
“We all know that the exchange rate of almost N500 to the dollar is not a true reflection of the value of the currency – the naira cannot be almost N500 to the dollar!
“But you see, if this thing is not handled properly, it can get out of hand. It can get to N600 to the dollar, or even N700 to the dollar.
“But the issue is, why did I suggest that we should sell some of the assets? I know the touchy one is the NLNG. I want to make it categorically clear that even if the government is selling NLNG on credit, I am not interested in buying.
“I don’t have any interest in NLNG and I will not buy it. It is not a business that I want to invest in. It is a mature business; that is what people don’t understand.
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