The history of this institute is that it was founded by corporate members. Many of the institutions facilities and structures were donated by corporate organisations such as UAC, Unilever, BAC, CFAO, LEVENTIS etc. Somehow they have kind of faded from the institute’s activities, and there is a saying that a stream that despises its source shall go dry, so we must go back to our source.
We intend to do a lot of cooperate business to let them know and to get them back. The council already agreed that we nominated five of them who now will be on our council and hopefully the council they will begin to gain more prominence in the governance of the institute and so we intend to carry out a lot of collaborative activities with them and therefore be able to get back into the governance and the operation of the institute.
You have been the deputy president since 2015 and now you are the newly elected president of the institute. What are the other challenges that you intend to creatively manage or over come?
Well what we have always done and what we will continue to do and intensify is to strengthen our advocacy programe. The institute promotes management practice and as you know management practice in our country is very lax.
This country is blessed, we have the size, resources (material or human); so we are endowed to excel but why are we not excelling? Why is it that we are still poor? We are the ones who are trying to traverses the Mediterranean Sea to cross to countries which should be coming to us. It is a management issue.
The fact that we are not managing those resources for the benefit of the country is worrying. The fact that Nigeria is a poor country with a lot of richest citizens is equally a concern. There is a kind of paradox here – we have the riches black man and woman in Africa. How did they get rich? Is it from productivity?
In the west, people like Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates etc., became rich by solving human problems and challenges. In turn, people are able to say this is what these rich people do to get rich.
Until we are able to do that, we cannot move forward as a country and as a people. In that line, we have proposed the establishment of a Management Hall of Fame which we hope will put a perpetual memory of the nation and the men and women who have served this country conscientiously. It is going to be a very stiff test so that those who emerged to qualify to be named as member of the Management Hall of Fame will be people who have served conscientiously; who have kept the code of conduct of this country or our institute, and have put service above self.
We want to become the think tank for this country within the limitation of our resources. We intend to undertake research studies of some of the issues that we see as the obstacles to our growth and to our wellbeing.
Lagos to Benin, Ibadan to Lagos or Lagos to Ibadan, you will see the road have been under construction for ten years. 2009 was when it was flagged off; up till now, they are not 50% on that road yet and billions of Naira has been spent already.
We have four refineries; they can produce what we need. Why are they not working? Why are we importing petroleum which we export the crude and then we bring back petroleum. These are management issues.
What kind of education are we getting? Yes, we boast quantity – we have 172 universities, if you look at the per capital expenditure of those universities, it is nothing compared to what some countries pay, so we would if we have the means try to attend to see education.
Currently, we have the controversy about Agronomy versus animal husbandry, which is a way out? We need them both (meat and crops), but must one destroy the other? It is high time we moved them out of politics and move them into management to which they rightly belong.
We have the problem of structure of our economy. Structure is a way of organizing an entity in a way that that it can be most effective and efficient in achieving that goals or objectives of that organization.
We hope to be a think-tank looking at problems that we can within our means since we don’t have all the means we will select those ones, commission knowledgeable experts in that area they will study, they will propose a solution we will disseminate that solution to the stakeholders hoping that we would have influenced the policy and the orientation in order to make Nigeria a better managed country.
We intend to also improve on our examination system and professional exams. we intend to set up a panel of management educators to review the curriculum, update it, make it more rigorous that by the time we go through it we will know that yes we have got something.
Also, we need to look at our heroes in the institute. We consider people who have, sacrifice their time, their talent, their treasure so that we don’t forget them. Already we visited Dr Abebe about a month ago, on January 11; we went to Iruepe to see him as he will be 99 years old in July this year, we pray that he would be a 100. Dr omolayode was 89 in December; we went to felicitate with him on his birthday. We also visited Dr Christopher Kolade who was 85 also in December. We have plans to visit others who are still alive so that they will know that they are remembered, and that I think can make people begin to see that yes it is not how much money that you have amassed, but that you are leaving a legacy that would be appreciated and that should be a motivation to other people.
Even as Nigeria has exited recession things are still difficult for the common man. What policies do you think can be put in place to turn the economy around?
Well, I think we have come out of the recession because we had a negative growth of about 1.45% decline in our GDP in 2016. In 2017 we had a growth of above 0.8%; so we are moving. This year most international agencies believe that we would attain a growth of 2.1% to about 2.6%. So it looks like we are likely to have about 4.3% and maybe the manufacturing sector would get about 7%.
What are the things that are being put in place to achieve these?
The government has what it calls the economic policy that focuses on six or eight areas – solid minerals, agriculture, power, petrochemical, services etc. If these are effectively implemented they certainly will get a greater buoyancy of the economy. Also, in recent times, things seems to be favouring us, as petroleum price has gained considerable progress from a about $45 per barrel in 2015/2016 climbed to about $64 and currently its now about $70 – that’s by far a major increase.
I think the TSA has been of tremendous assistance in curtailing corrupt practices that have in times past crippled the economic wheels of the country. We heard that JAMB returned about N7 billion, which has never happened before now.