Jonathan Expands Economic Management Team

President Goodluck Jonathan Friday  expanded the Economic Management Team inaugurated Wednesday by including business mogul, Alhaji Aliko Dangote; Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service, Mrs. Ifueko Omoigui-Okauru and two others. The President has also set up a 15-member Economic Implementation Team headed by Minister of Finance, Mrs. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.
Other new members of the economic team are Managing Director of Access bank, Mr. Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede and the President of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, Kola Jamodu. The 15-member implementation team is charged with overseeing the effective implementation of the decisions of the Economic Management Team and is expected to meet weekly to help ensure that the goals of the federal government is attained.

Apart from Iweala who heads the implementation team, other members are Ministers of Petroleum, Mrs. Diezani Allison-Madueke; Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Adesina Akinwunmi; Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga; Minister of Works, Mike Onolememen; Minister of Health, Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu; Minister of State (Finance) Yerima Lawal Ngama and Minister of State (Health) Mohammed Ali Pate.

Others are Chief Economic Adviser to the President, Professor Nwanze Okidigbe; Special Adviser to the President on Monitoring and Evaluation, Professor Sylvester Monye; Director General, Budget Office, Bright Okogwu and the Director General Bureau of Public Enterprises, Bola Onogoruwa.

Jonathan after watching a power point presentation on "Transforming Nigeria/Creating Jobs – A Short to Medium Term Agenda" by Okonjo-Iweala directed the new body to meet weekly while the enlarged EMT will meet fortnightly for the next three months and thereafter, monthly. The team deliberated on the theme of the presentation as well as on how to achieve macro-economic stability as well as ensuring significant strides in infrastructure, agriculture, manufacturing, education, health and housing.
Meanwhile, rumour, which wafted through newsrooms last night that the Finance Minister Okonjo-Iweala has resigned her position, has been doused. An online blog had alleged Okonjo-Iweala had thrown in the towel, citing allegedly the enormity of the problems before her and saying she was not a magician. But its all lies, says the minister’s Senior Special Assistant on Information and Communication, Paul C Nwabuikwu.
He said: “The information is completely false and without foundation. We are aware that the baseless falsehood is part of the ongoing orchestrated campaign by entrenched interests and corrupt groups working against more transparent and improved governance in the country.

“The obvious intention is to distract Dr Okonjo-Iweala from contributing to the realisation of the vision of President Goodluck Jonathan and his administration for sustainable economic growth in Nigeria. This intention will not be achieved because Dr Okonjo-Iweala will not be distracted.”