Aso Villa Reads for 17/10/2018
Every day, we bring you the best stories that the media is reporting about the Government of Nigeria
Guardian reported that “irked by the increasing spate of attacks on the waters, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), has assured seafarers and the international community of its unrelentless efforts to ensure safer for navigation on its territorial waters. Director-General NIMASA, Dakuku Peterside, who made this assurance during an official visit of the Consular-General of the Korean Embassy in Nigeria, Kim In-Taek, said: “Nigeria is totally committed to the safety of all vessels that come on its coastal waters. Efforts have been doubled to ensure that vessels calling at Nigerian ports are safe and secure by investing even more in surveillance to guaranty safety of vessels. NIMASA is working closely with the Nigerian Navy and the National Intelligence Agency”. He noted that Nigeria was expected to witness a drastic drop in maritime crimes with the additional security measures being put in place by the agency, saying the country ultimately aims to completely rid its coastal waters of pirates and other criminals.”
“The Federal Government, yesterday, said the engineering, procurement and construction of the planned $4.3 billion Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Limited (NLNG) Train 7 plant will be done in-country by mostly Nigerian companies. The Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Engr. Simbi Wabote, said this at a public workshop on the Nigerian content aspect of the NLNG Train 7 in Abuja.” Daily Trust reports that “Wabote, who indicated that fabrication of pressure vessels, pipes, flare stack and other opportunities related to the Train 7 project would be domiciled in Nigeria, saying that the era of building such projects in modules abroad to be shipped and coupled in Nigeria, was over. “I know how we insist on some of these local content requirements (from the international oil companies (IOCs). If you leave them alone, they will build this Train 7 in modules and then ship them from England or Netherlands and then take them straight to Bonny and couple them. That is not going to happen. We are going to build the Train 7 in-country because we have the capacity,” Wabote said”.
“Africa’s biggest economy has moved up by ten places ranking 115th position globally from its previous 125th position, according to the latest Global Competitiveness 4.0 2018 Report of the World Economic Forum (WEF) released today. According to the WEF annual report that analyzed 140 countries, Nigeria scored 47.6 out of a total score of 100. The new Global Competitiveness Index 4.0 which measures national competitiveness, defined it as the set of institutions, policies and factors that determine the level of productively of a nation. The report looked at 98 indicators across 140 countries to determine the overall ranking and to signify how close an economy is to the ideal state or “frontier” of competitiveness. The indicators which were then organized into 12 pillars are health, skills, financial system, infrastructure, institutions, ICT adoption, macroeconomic stability, product market, labour market, ,market size, business dynamism and innovation capacity. Nigeria scored 42 in the institution indicator, 42 in infrastructure, 26 in ICT adoption, 56 in macroeconomic stability, 51 in health and 40 in skills. In addition, it scored 52, 59, 44, 71, 55 and 31 in product market, labour market, financial system, market size , business dynamism and innovation capacity respectively.” Business Day reported this.
“No fewer than 10,000 petty traders in Ogun State, yesterday, accessed the Trader Moni collateral free loan of the Federal Government to expand their business activities. Speaking at the activation of ‘Trader Moni’ initiative at Sango Ota Market in Ogun, Toyin Adeniji, Executive Director, Bank of Industry (BoI), said that the programme was part of government’s efforts aimed at reducing poverty at the grassroots level”. According to Guardian, “Adeniji said that the programme would be activated in various markets nationwide and would support two million Nigerians to grow their business through access to collateral free loans irrespective of their status or level of education. The Federal Government had earlier unveiled the programme under the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP) in partnership with the Bank of Industry (BOI)”.
Daily Trust reported that “the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has denied the insinuations that it has in its custody $3.5billion subsidy fund. NNPC’s spokesman Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja, explained that, at the hit of the shortage of products supply at the close of last year, the National Assembly asked the NNPC to do everything possible to stem the hiccups. Ughamadu said the fund, dubbed the National Fuel Support Fund, had been jointly managed by the NNPC, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the Federal Ministry of Finance, the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), Office of the Accountant General of the Federation (OGF), the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and the Petroleum Equalization Fund (PEF). Mr. Ughamadu clarified in the release that NNPC did not independently spend a dime of the fund which he said was to ensure stability in the petroleum products supply in the country. The NNPC spokesperson said, for the avoidance of doubt, the corporation was fully aware that it is only the National Assembly that has the statutory responsibility to appropriate on petroleum subsidy matters”.
“The Federal Government has directed the China Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC), Contractors handling the construction of the Lagos-Ibadan Railway project to engage more Nigerians to fast track the construction work on the Lagos-Ibadan Rail line in order to meet the December 2018 deadline for the completion of the Project. The Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi handed down this directive recently during the regular monthly Project Monitoring Steering Committee/inspection tour of the Lagos-Ibadan Railway Standard Gauge Project in Ibadan, Oyo State. “You must employ more hands to fast track construction work and meet the December deadline”, he said.” Federal Ministry of Information and Culture’s website reported that “Amaechi in demonstrating his passion and concern for the involvement of Nigerian Engineers who are to understudy the Chinese in the ongoing Railway Project charged the Project Manager in charge of the CCECC’s Construction Beam Yard at Omi-Adio Ibadan to profile Nigerian Engineers on site but to the Minister’s greatest surprise, the CCECC Project Manager could not name any Nigerian Engineers involve in the ongoing project.”
“The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Okechukwu Enelamah has said that the Federal Government was ready to provide indemnity to ensure that the re-concessioning of the Lagos International Trade Fair Complex (LITFC) is successful. Speaking at the kick-off meeting for advisory services for the concession of the LITFC in his office in Abuja recently, the minister said that the concession must be done right as “the Federal Government is prepared to provide indemnity to cover all the legal issues and other encumbrances on the LITFC”. According to a statement from the Ministry’s Head, Public Communications, Amina Tukur Othman, the Minister commended the leadership direction of the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) led by Mr. Alex A. Okoh on the LITFC re-concessioning, adding that “on behalf of the Federal Government and this ministry, I wish to note that it is important to always do the right thing, as it is being done now on the Lagos International Trade Fair Complex by the professionals at BPE”. He said: “for the love of country and for professionalism, we support this development.” It would be recalled that the National Council on Privatisation (NCP) at its meeting on August 22 and 23, 2017, revoked the agreement which the Federal Government through the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) signed with Aulic Nigeria Limited in 2008 for the concessioning of LITFC to Aulic”. This is according to Guardian.
According to Daily Trust, “the Presidential Initiative on Continuous Audit (PICA), under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Finance Monday began the final verification of the ex-Nigeria Airways Ltd (in liquidation) pensioners. If you are a beneficiary or have a relative who is a beneficiary here are ten things they need to come with to participate in the verification/screening exercise.” The report listed ten requirements that every beneficiary must come to the verification with. “Letter of Appointment, Letter of Confirmation, Letter of Last Promotion, Letter of Retirement, NAL Identity Card, or Other Means of Identification (National ID Card, International Passport, Driver’s License, etc), Particulars of Bank Account: A cheque slip or statement of Bank Account, Letter of Administration to be presented by Next-of-Kin (NOKs) in the case of deceased beneficiaries.” It continued: “It is also important to note that beneficiaries will be subjected to biometric Data Capture. The exercise is ending Monday, October 22, 2018 across the centers except in Enugu where it will end on Thursday, October 18, 2018. The beneficiaries are being verified in three locations in Lagos, Kano and Enugu”.
“The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has banned the importation, sale and distribution of Malco Vitamin B Complex injection in Nigeria due to contamination.
The drug is produced by Shreechem Pharmaceuticals PVT Ltd, India. The Director-General of the agency, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, announced the ban in a statement in Abuja on Wednesday. Adeyeye said laboratory analysis by WHO indicates that the product is unfit for human consumption.” Guardian reports that “she said that the use of the product could cause a serious health hazard, urging healthcare providers and members of the public to stop the administration and use of the affected product to avoid negative health complications. The director-general therefore directed all importers, wholesalers and retailers to immediately stop the importation, distribution and sale of Malco vitamin B complex injection. She urged anyone in possession of the affected product to submit it to the nearest NAFDAC office.”
Guardian reports that “a Britain High Commissioner to Nigeria, Paul Arkwright, says the implementation of the Executive Order (6) by the Nigerian Government is important for rooting out corruption in the country. Buhari on July 5, 2018, issued the Presidential Executive Order which empowers the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) to take steps, in liaison with relevant investigative agencies, to temporarily seize property linked with corruption pending investigation and conclusion of the trial to prevent the dissipation of such assets. The order was, however, challenged by two lawyers, Ikenga Ugochinyere and Keneth Udeze, who instituted a suit before the court to challenge its validity. On Thursday, a Federal High court dismissed the suit for lacking merit and held that it was within the powers of the president, as granted by the Constitution, to issue executive orders for the execution of executive policies, as long as such orders do not offend the doctrine of separation of powers. “I’ve heard that this is an anti-corruption measure, it’s not for me to say who should or should not be on the list,” Arkwright said. “But what I would say is that it’s very important in continuing this fight against corruption and rooting out corruption where it is happening”.