Aso Villa Reads for 13/07/2020

Every day, we bring you the best stories that the Media is reporting about the Government of Nigeria

Punch reports that the Federal Government has released guidelines ahead of the planned resumption of schools at every level in the country but failed to disclose the dates. The guidelines outlined actions, measures and requirements needed for the safe reopening of schools after the COVID — 19 pandemic. According to the guidelines released by the Federal Ministry of Education in Abuja on Monday, the safe distancing measures in the new guidelines required that in schools and other learning facilities, learners should be supported to stay two meters apart. The guidelines which was signed by the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu and Minister of State (Education), Hon. Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba was developed in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Environment, Federal Ministry of Health and health safety experts in the country. With the release of the document, the government would conduct a rapid assessment and determine funding requirement for upgrading infrastructure and facilities (such as classrooms, furniture, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene-WASH and ICT facilities) to meet and sustain prescribed safe school reopening requirements. The government said it was time for it to plan and address the eventual safe reopening of schools and learning facilities.

Negotiations between the Federal Government and China Railway Construction Corporation Limited for the construction of the Ibadan Inland Dry Port is nearing completion, the Nigerian Shippers’ Council announced on Sunday. The CRCC is the preferred bidder for the proposed dry port to be established in the capital of Oyo State. The NSC, which described this as a major milestone, is the guarantor to the concession of the proposed 80,000 twenty-foot equivalent unit capacity dry port to be built on the basis of public-private partnership agreement. It said in a statement issued in Abuja by the Head, Public Relations, NSC, Rakiya Zubairu, that on completion, the facility would help address the problem of port congestion and gridlock in Apapa, Lagos. As reported by Punch, the council said the Ibadan facility would be designated a port of destination where cargo would be consolidated for import and export, especially in the south-western part of Nigeria. “Among other uses, the dry port will provide a competitive cargo sorting centre, bulk breaking as well as cargo-tracking and truck management services,” Zubairu said. The council said, “This project, which has been estimated at $94m (N43.24bn), will boost employment in Oyo State and other cities in the environs.” It said the Lagos-Kano standard gauge railway, currently under construction, was aligned to the proposed dry port, making it easy to convey cargo from the seaports in Lagos and to all destinations along the route. The NSC said the negotiations emphasised the utilisation of local content at each stage of development and operation of the facility.

The Federal Government has handed over the National Theatre and its surrounding lands to the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, for restoration, which aims at creating millions of jobs for youths in the country and diversifying the country’s economy. According to the CBN, the country has the potential of earning $20 billion annually from the creative industry when the edifice is renovated into four pillars, namely information technology, music, film and fashion. This was disclosed, yesterday, at the handing over ceremony in Lagos. In his remarks, the CBN Governor and Chairman, Bankers Committee, Godwin Emefiele, expressed gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari for the handing over of the edifice constituting over 132,000 hectares of land. He said: “The National Theatre, Iganmu, Lagos, which is being handed over today to the Bankers Committee is expected to serve as the initial pilot for the Nigeria Creative Industries Centre. “Upon completion in another 18 months, this area would have transformed into Nigeria’s Creative industrial Centre, which will be comparable to other world class entertainment and convention centres in any part of the world. “Following the completion of the renovation works at the National Theatre, with the supporting facilities that will be built around it, which include a hotel and an expansive conference centre, we intend to set up similar Creative Industries centres in Kano and Port Harcourt.” Vanguard reported.

According to Vanguard, President Muhammadu Buhari has congratulated Kamarudeen Usman on the successful defence of his Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) welterweight title with an emphatic win over Jorge Masvidal. The president’s congratulatory message was conveyed in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, in Abuja on Sunday. Buhari commended the courageous fighter for finishing strong inside the octagon, proudly flying the green and white colours in distant lands. According to the president, as the first African-born and Nigerian UFC Champion, Usman has reminded the world that good things and great people still come out of Nigeria. While the global COVID-19 pandemic may have brought gloom to many families and nations, the President expressed delight and appreciation that Usman has lifted the nation spirits with another professional performance. He said this had also proven that things would surely get better at the fullness of time “when we remain committed to our vision’’.