FG approves two consortiums to bid for NITEL/MTEL assets

By The Rainbow
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FG approves two consortiums to bid for NITEL/MTEL assets

The Federal Government has taken another step towards the sale the assets of Nigerian Telecommunications Limited.

The government, through its privatization body – the National Councl on Privatisation- on Monday approved two of the 17 interested companies to bid for the assets of enterprise with that of its subsidiary, Mobile Telecommunication Limited.

The Minister of Mines and Steel, Alhaji Musa Sada, who announced the development I n Abuja said that the approval of the two companies followed the consideration of the evaluation reports for the expression of interests on the guided liquidation of NITEL/MTEL.

He spoke while briefing newsmen after the meeting of the National Council on Privatisation, which was presided over by Vice President Namadi Sambo.

He said: “Part of the consideration that we had, we had quite a number of companies, about 17 were shortlisted, based on a criteria.

“It is guided.
“There is a criteria that is used at every point in time and of this evaluation of the 17 (companies), two qualified for request for proposal issuance.

“This is what the Council deliberated upon today and approved the qualification of the two companies and the two companies are NATCOM Consortium and Nectar Consortium.

“These are groups of investors in the sector and they came top with 90.7 per cent and 90.2 per cent respectively.

“These are the two companies the council today approved for further consideration in this exercise.”

The minister said that government's efforts at getting NITEL/MTEL back on stream had been strenuous and challenging.

Sada, however, said that the by the time the ongoing arrangement was fully implemented, NITEL and its subsidiary, MTEL, would attain the height for which it was originally established.

“You will agree with me that efforts at getting NITEL back on stream has been very strenuous because of so many issues, so many problems, but this time around, there have been strong efforts so that we do not go back to what we had before.

“With what is put in place, we are very confident that we would only move forward to the appropriate destination.

“The idea here is for us to have a working institution not necessarily a situation where these assets are just dispensed with for whatever reasons.

“From our discussions today, we are making sure that this asset does not go to somebody who for other considerations will want to own it and keep it.”

He said that the target of the council was to make sure that NITEL/MTEL comes back on stream, stressing that with its robust assets “it will be a very good thing for the country.”

“Mobile telephones and networks are not substitute for landlines and that is why we are doing everything we can to bring it back to work,“ he added.

The minister said that the council also approved the transfer of its 51 per cent shareholding in Stallion Property Development Company to NNPC pensions' funds to bridge pension gap.

Also briefing the correspondents on the outcome of the council's meeting, the Minister of Works, Mike Onolememen, said that the council granted a five-year leave extension to Associated Maritime Services, the concessionaire for the New Warri port.

Onolememen said that the approval of the extension followed a “no objection memo” forwarded to the council by the Managing Director of the Nigeria Ports Authority and the Minister of Transport.