The Concession Of Nigerian Major Airports Is The Right Thing To Do. Despite Opposition From Airline Workers
This is in reference to the report, FG Approves Concession Of Lagos, Abuja Airports
Another corroborated this opinion by saying,
Government Is Right And The Protesting Workers Are Anti-progress Beneficiaries Of The Status Quo.
….”status quo” meaning.. benefiting from the extant inefficiencies and corruption in the current airline systems.
Let us pause for a second, and examine this hailing of, and excitement about, concession..
A large corporation is not very different from a government. Microsoft, Apple, Google are as big and bigger than many governments. They have shareholders who demand performance.
The Apple Top Guns Are To The Shareholder As Government Is To The Electorates.
We talk as if it is not the same Nigerians that would run these ‘concessioned’ entities. The same Nigerians that run these places aground. The same ones who cannot run them efficiently.
If we assume that people have a certain lackadaisical attitude to government assets as public servants, and that this attitude of employees would be different because the entrepreneurs who invest their money would push for efficiency, get the best hands – for profit – we could be right. Somewhat.
It is the mindset of the people running things that determine the success, not whether they wear a uniform, work in private entities or are government employees…
Why is there the general belief that private entities can run things better by choosing capable hands, but that the bigger populace cannot choose good managers to manage public enterprises efficiently?
If we concession every darned thing, including football administration, roads, power, refinery, even the security services, the Ports, what exactly would government be doing? What would be the role of government?
(Build,) Operate, Transfer…. Repeat…
Someone would say, Government would be providing policy and institutional framework, bla bla, but then, those things aren’t enough to engage government full time. Perhaps we need to concede (concession?) government entirely, starting with the National Assembly?
Also there are critical sectors of the economy that you SHOULD NOT leave in private hands – who would be in this JUST for the money, and not as a patriotic act. There are times when National Consideration would be far more important than pure efficiency / capitalism, and this is why unbridled interminable concessioning could be dangerous, and approached with caution.
The (air-) /ports would be one of such, due to security reasons.
If I run the Ports, what stop me from compromising and allowing enemy infiltration for cold cash? The importation of Koko toxic wastes and humongous arms caches smuggled through ports is an example (while under government control.) Imagine what could happen when totally under private control!
Despite the concessioning of the Power SECTOR, it is clear that this has not yield positive results….
Just like corruption is what makes this economy go round (as demonstrated by the ascendancy of President Muhammad Buhari), inefficiency is also what keeps the country afloat.
If you totally concession numerous government facilities, many people would lose their jobs. No matter assurances to the contrary, this always happens.
The resultant efficiency would mean that two people could probably do the work of six, with automaton and general improved efficiency. This would compound the suffering of the poor masses already grappling with recession mostly cause by inept maladministration.
Osun, Imo , Kogi State governments, etc (struggling to pay salaries) could choose to send sixty percent of the workers away, improve on efficiency and reduce the salary bills accordingly.
What Would It Profit A Government To Pursue Efficiency While Many Are Thrown Into The Job Market With The Negative Attendant Spillover Effects?
I would therefore say that the workers resisting concession are not being unpatriotic… they are just being afraid for their livelihoods in these hard times. A natural self-preservative reaction!
We should therefore moderate our exuberance every time we hear the word, ‘concession’… It is not all positive.
Let us execute a secession from excessive concession.