Reactions have poured in torrents to President Muhammadu Buhari’s new eight-man Economic Advisory Council (EAC) which was constituted yesterday to replace the current Economic Management Team (EMT).
A statement by the presidential spokesman, Mr. Femi Adesina, named Prof. Doyin Salami as chair of the EAC.
He said Salami will be reporting directly to the president.
Other members of the team are Dr. Mohammed Sagagi (vice-chairman), Prof. Ode Ojowu, Dr. Shehu Yahaya, Dr. Iyabo Masha, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, Mr. Bismark Rewane and the senior special assistant to the president, development policy, Dr. Mohammed Adaya Salusi who will serve as secretary.
“The Economic Advisory Council (EAC) will advise the President on economic policy matters, including fiscal analysis, economic growth and a range of internal and global economic issues working with the relevant cabinet members and heads of monetary and fiscal agencies.
“The EAC will have monthly technical sessions as well as scheduled quarterly meetings with the President. The chairman may, however, request for unscheduled meetings if the need arises,” said Adesina.
Reacting to the development, the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Muhammadu Sanusi II, described it as the “best decision” the President had taken in his second term in office.
The monarch said the team would add a lot of value to the administration’s policy and strategy, and would also be frank and honest in its advice to Buhari.
“In my opinion this is the single most important decision taken by the President in his second term with great potential for turning the economy around. The team he has assembled is first class by all standards and each and every one of them is held in high regard by all our professional colleagues.
“He also has put together a team with balance. In there you have experts in macroeconomics, monetary policy, fiscal policy, development theory and financial markets. I can think of no better team of advisers at this point and we look forward to discussing and debating with and encouraging them as they serve the nation and the President.
“The President deserves to be praised on this decision and supported. It is evidence of commitment to focus on the economy. This team will add a lot of value to policy and strategy and will also be frank and honest in its advice. I honestly have not been so excited about prospect on the economy as I am today and you know me. I do not dish out praise,” said the Emir.
In his reaction, the 2019 Young Progressives Party (YPP) presidential candidate, Prof. Kingsley Moghalu, commended Buhari for setting up the EAC.
“I commend President @MBuhari on his appointment of a new Economic Advisory Council to replace the Economic Management Team.
“In my book Build, Innovate and Grow (BIG) where I laid out a vision for Nigeria, this was exactly my recommendation on page 273. Glad it has been heeded,” Moghalu tweeted.
Also commenting on the issue, the senate chief whip and former governor of Abia State, Mr. Orji Uzor Kalu expressed confidence in the new members of the council to deliver the goods.
He said with the inauguration of the EAC, the President demonstrated his determination to build a strong and robust economy.
He said members of the team are people with integrity and with vast experience in their respective fields.
The lawmaker urged the team “to work collectively with the organised private sector, relevant government ministries, departments and agencies, the academia and other stakeholders in a bid to retool the economy.
“Government must sustain pragmatic programmes and policies that will enhance the Ease of Doing Business (EODB) in the country.
“The constitution of EAC by President Buhari is a welcome and timely development.
“The EAC will play a crucial role in complementing the efforts of the President in fixing Nigeria’s economy.
“The government must drive policies that will create a conducive business atmosphere for local and foreign investors.
“The team must review the current economic policies in a bid to stimulate growth and development,” he added.