Fg To Sack Bpe Boss, Dr. Christopher Anyanwu
Available information indicates another has beaten the dust. A credible source within the office of Acting President hints that the BPE boss may be removed soon or redeployed to another Federal Agency. This is as a result of the sale of NITEL.
The sale of government/public assets which falls under the auspices of the Bureau of Public Enterprise [BPE] has been reported as wanting. With the emergence of the recent BPE boss, Dr. Christopher Anyanwu, a year ago, a fresh and renewed enthusiasm was anticipated - judging by Anyanwu's academic qualifications. He was the acting head of the Department of Public and Private Law at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka before going to head the BPE. He got his doctorate degree from University of Birmingham, United Kingdom in 2002. Between 2000 and 2003, he served as Legal Consultant/Adviser to the then Senate President, Chief Anyim Pius Anyim.
“I have come here as a greenhorn with a clean slate and a clean mind. I am an academic, lawyer, scholar and teacher who has been thrust here by fate to help achieve through the BPE the economic reform and privatization programme of the Federal Government,” Anyanwu said at his maiden meeting with directors and management staff of BPE.
The recent NITEL sale has however shade the BPE boss in what appears a different and an unpleasant slate and mind.
Recently, the BPE called bidding on NITEL. A preferred bidder list was complied. New Generation and Omen were selected. The two were asked to bid and to have ready 30% of their bid value in a Banker's Draft. When the bid envelopes were opened, New Generation's bid amount was $350,000 [N53,200,000] and Omen's bid amount was $350million [N53,200,000,000].
The bidders were given a chance to make a final offer. Omen raised theirs from $350million to $950million and New Generation raised theirs from N350,000 to N2.5billion. And New Generation was announced the winner of the bid by the BPE Boss.
And so the troubles…
BPE Boss's overlook of the raise in final bid by New Generation from $350,000 to $2.5billion, to folks near the Acting President, appear suspect. And this comes on the heels of some of the International partners distancing themselves from the NITEL sale process. Unicom China, the Minerva Group of UAE, Telkom South Africa and Telecom New Zealand stepped away from the sale process in protest. And collectively, they point their protest at the BPE Boss.
Experts believe that the $2.5 billion and $956 million bids submitted by New Generation Telecommunications and Omen International consortia respectively to emerge the preferred and reserve bidders during the financial opening round cannot be justified. Although the federal government has committed to assuming the liabilities of NITEL, its EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and ammortisation) was estimated at $13 million. A bid of $2.5 billion for 75 per cent of NITEL would be equivalent to more than 100 times its current EBITDA.
The winner of the bid - Omen - is reported to not have the financial capacity to make such a bid of N2.5billion. It has yet to pay the30% Banker's Draft.
Worsening matters for the BPE Boss, at a recent appearance at the House of Representatives he told the committee members in an angry outburst that he "was ashamed of them" and proceeded to walk out of the Chamber. Sources say he has seen the handwriting on the wall.
Dr. Christopher Anyanwu is expected to travel USA in a few days for an Executive Training at Harvard University. This is as part of Dr. Christopher's sign on bonus at the BPE – where he received a N50million hand shake and a $100,000 provision for Executive Training.
Sources have it that the BPE Boss may not return - being wary of the embarrassment associated with removal from office. A source close to Dr. Christopher Anyanwu notes that "Chris may have to go but he will go before he is pushed".
“The BPE Boss' job is considered vacant”, the source noted as he added "there is an opening now at the BPE”.
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