By Salisu Sani-Idris
The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has assured that no registered pilgrim for 2022 Hajj will be left in Nigeria at the end of deadline for transportation of pilgrims.
The Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of NAHCON, Alhaji Zikrullah Hassan gave the assurance at a news briefing on the update of the ongoing 2022 Hajj operation, on Thursday in Abuja.
Hassan said that the commission would complete the transportation of the majority of pilgrims on July 3, and finalise it by July 4, n the event of any other person left.
He debunked insinuations in some quarters that not all Nigerian pilgrims would be transported to Saudi Arabia before the deadline for the closure of the Saudi airport.
As you are aware, we contracted an agreement with three airlines namely; Max Air, Azman Air and Flynas, a Saudi Arabia designated Airline.
When the operation started, our counterpart from states were actually not fully prepared probably because of shortness of the notice, so the flights were fluctuating.
The airlines were ready but the pilgrims were actually not ready, however, in the last few days, we have overcome that.
So, by our own arrangements, we expect to finish majority of the flight by July 3, and clean up in the event any other persons by July 4, he said.
The NAHCON boss revealed that the commission had transported about 22,000 Nigerian pilgrims to Saudi Arabia, adding that the commission was hopefully concluding before the deadline set by Saudi authorities.
In the event there are few ones who are just getting ready, the totality of Nigerian pilgrims will be in Saudi Arabia by July 4.
I may wait till July 5 to be sure that no registered pilgrim will be left in Nigeria.
As you are fully aware, this years Hajj is an emergency one in the sense that it took Saudi Arabia unlike the previous times, to give us short notice to start preparations.
Shortly, few weeks before the month of Ramadan, it was when the Saudi Arabian authority announced that there will be hajj for the International pilgrims, he said.
According to him, it also took them a while before they informed us of what will be the operational framework for conducting this years hajj.
Hitherto, we used to start Hajj preparations by the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs to lead Nigerian delegation to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
But I guess because of time such formality was dispensed. Essentially, most of the preparations this year were carried out through the e-Track.
e-Track is an online transactions and that is what we did for most transactions, he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that no fewer than 43,000 Nigerian pilgrims registered through 36 states.
The Federal Capital Territory Pilgrims welfare boards and licensed tour operators are expected to partake in this years hajj in Saudi Arabia. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Josephine Obute/Grace Yussuf
Source: NAN News
By Vivian Emoni
The Federal Government on Thursday emphasised on importance of training and re-training of civil servants, especially through Public Private Partnership (PPP) for efficient service delivery.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Boss Mustapha, made the call at a Workshop and Fellowship Induction of Integrated Institute of Professional Management (IIPM), in Abuja.
Mustapha said that the workshop was a free advanced leadership development and fellowship Induction for 100 participants in the category of directors, deputy directors and assistant directors of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
He said that the workshop, which was organised by the institute, was tailored toward providing the participants with contemporary leadership qualities which would definitely produce measurable impacts on economy.
According to him, both the government and the private organisations have realised that training offers the only way of developing employee skills and capacity for better delivery of public services.
To achieve this therefore, there is a conscious need for proper capacity building to ensure a paradigm shift in the operations and mentality of the public servants.
It is imperative that all hands should be on deck to ensure continued training and re-training of the civil servants, especially through the PPP.
The benefits of the PPP cannot be over emphasised, PPP provides better solutions that offer each participant opportunity to do better in their field, he said.
The SGF said the workshop was a welcome development as it strived to address issues on management challenges in the civil service.
He added that the workshop would offer highest cadre of the civil service the requisite skills and competence to carry out their duties effectively.
He said that the the Federal Government was ready to collaborate with the institute for effective service delivery, urging the participants to take the workshop serious for a better understanding of good management.
The Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr Folashade Yemi-Esan, said the workshop would assist to maintain management ethical standards and championing the advancement of knowledge in the service.
I was made to understand that since inception of the institute, the IIPM has operated as a consultant in the areas of leadership management, and mentoring through capacity building.
Also, the institute is re-engeneering human capital development, which is in line with one of the six priority areas of the civil service strategy and implementation plan 2021 to 2025 (FCSSIP25).
The office of the civil service introduced the FCSSIP25 to strengthen the civil service and improve its staff competencies and skills through well targeted and funded programmes across all cadres, she said.
Yemi-Esan said that the OHCSF had initiated various reforms, policies, cultures and systems into the civil service to replace inefficient ways of doing things in the service.
She, however, appreciated the IIPM for organising the workshop, adding that the effort would improve tremendously in the service delivery.
The Director-General, National Productivity Centre, Dr Kashim Akor, said that the essence of the workshop was in the pursuit of continuous improvement in the area of capacity building for economic development.
Akor said, for any organisation to function efficiently, it required human intervention, adding that the workshop provided an opportunity for networking and exchanging of knowledge.
He urged the participants to be dedicated, firm and fair in the discharging of their duties, adding that such commitment would bring about effective service delivery.
The Executive Director, IIPM, Mr Eburuche Banito, said that the institute wanted to build a sustainable capacity that would help the civil servants improve in their productivity.
Also, Mr Francis Binuyo, Accreditation Curriculum Development Centre for Management Development, said that the objective of the workshop was to improve the productivity of the participants in their various fields.
Binuyo said that the workshop would as well help the participants see perspectives of how their roles in policy implementation, formulation and development would translate to tangible result, thereby achieving effective service delivery. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Idris Abdulrahman
Source: NAN News
By Lucy Ogalue
The Minister of State for Transportation, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki, says the Onitsha river port is positioned to generate over N23billion to the Federal Government in 30 years.
Saraki, during the signing of the concession of the port on Thursday in Abuja, said the port had lots of economic benefits to the country.
According to her, the port will among other things, ensure the 60 per cent shiped cargoes which hitherto goes through Onne port to Onitsha to be transported directly.
So there is a lot of economic growth, there is going to be creation of wealth, creation of jobs, security and greater development.
We hope it is a catalyst for other river ports, so that it will decongest other ports and bring about growth.
You know the traffic on our road, the state of our roads as well as the tankers, and freight being moved on our roads have now reduced.
And so it is a very good thing and we are exceptionally proud that at long last we have actually achieved this.
Its being signed and we look forward to the growth there to materialise,Saraki said.
According to the minister, the Baro, Lokoja and Oguta ports, which are at different stages of completion, will be considered after the onitsha port.
The most important thing is that we already have interest from potential investors who want to actually take over this.
The Managing Director, the National Inland Waterways Authority, (NIWA) Dr George Moghalu, said the Onitsha port would reduce the volume of cargoes transported via roads to the South East.
Moghalu said:Our roads are not designed to carry the kind of weight they are carrying.
Over 60 per cent of the containers that arrive Nigeria through Onne, Tin Can or Apapa port ends up in Onitsha and what it translates is that these containers are moved by trailers.
Onitsha port is very well positioned to play a key role in addressing this if opportunities are provided.
He commended the concessioneers in the efforts they were already making in bringing in investors into the country.
Moghalu also expressed hope that the concessioing would open up opportunities for other ports in the country to be given due considerations.
Meanwhile, the Acting Director-General, Infrastructure Concesion Regulatory Commission,(ICRC) Mr Michael Ohiani, reiterated that the 30 years concession would generate over N23 billion to the government.
He said:After rigorous procurement process, Universal Elysium Consortium emerged as the preferred concessionaire for the concession of Onitsha River Port.
Over the 30-year concession period, the concessionaire will be responsible for all the activities and maintenance of the port.
The asset along with the entire infrastructure will be returned to the authorities at the end of the concession period.
The redevelopment of Onitsha River Port is seen as a boost to commercial activities in the South East.
Importers and traders from the commercial towns of Onitsha, Nnewi, Aba and Ogbete-Enugu see the relaunch as a welcome development from the Federal Government.
The port will serve as an alternative mode of transporting goods from Lagos and Port Harcourt by road.(NAN)(www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Grace Yussuf
Source: NAN News
By Florence Onuegbu
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Industries, Sen. Adetokunbo Abiru, on Thursday, empowered 1,250 market women and men in Lagos East with grants totaling N62.5 million.
Abiru, who represents Lagos East Senatorial District, unveiled the grant in Epe Local Government Area, along with other projects facilitated through the Office of the Sustainable Developmental Goals (SDGs).
Other projects inaugurated included a 960-capacity mini-Stadium, remodeled Oluwo Fish Market; distribution of Hand-planters and grants to Farmers.
He said the sum of N50, 000 each as financial grants, would be given to 1,250 market women and men, totalling N62.5 million.
According to him, the respective market leaders (Iya Olojas) in the 16 LGs/LCDAs of Lagos East were given the direct responsibilities of selecting 50 members each in their localities, making a total of 800 market women.
He said the remaining beneficiaries were nominated by the party structure.
At this junction, I must publicly acknowledge and appreciate the magnanimity of the Presidency, through the SDGs for the projects we are commissioning today, those we had commissioned in the past and the ones that are yet to be commissioned.
I specially thank His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, and Her Excellency, Mrs Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on SDGs.
The projects attracted to Epe town that are being commissioned today are: a 960-capacity mini-Stadium, which include: Football pitch, Basketball and Volleyball courts, administrative offices, changing rooms and other amenities.
Also, the remodeling of the popular Oluwo Fish market, which now comprises 240 open stalls, 82 lock-up stalls, five open floors, 12 toilets and four new offices for Iya Oloja and Baba Oloja, Tourism Board and Local Government Staff Security post.
The empowerment also includes the distribution of hand-planters to about 200 farmers, along with financial grants of N20, 000 for our farmers in the agrarian part of the district, the senator said.
He said the projects and support for market women and rural farmers were part of fulfilment of the social contract with the people of Lagos East senatorial district, while seeking their mandate in 2020.
Inaugurating the projects, Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State, said that they would have direct impacts on the socio-economic reality of the town.
The governor commended Abiru for representing the district diligently in the National Assembly.
Over the last 18 months, Abiru has dutifully delivered the dividends of democracy in several areas and on multiple fronts, not just in the primary mandate of law making, but also in terms of life-changing empowerment and endowment.
Today, we are here to commission a number of infrastructure projects by him, some of which are facilitated through the Oofice of the special assistant to President Buhari SDGs, occupied by an esteemed daughter of Lagos, Orelope-Adefulire, he said.
The governor expressed delight on the benefit of the projects to the residents, saying that the market project was commerce-oriented, designed to improve the livelihood and earning capacity of beneficiaries.
He said the recreational facility was a project that would positively affect peoples lifestyle and translate to health benefits, as well as improved quality of life.
Sanwo-Olu said the lawmaker had lived up to the ideals of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and to the legacy of transformation instituted in Lagos state since 1999.
He appealed to the beneficiaries to see the projects as public resources entrusted in their care, urging them to productively utilise the facilities with the utmost sense of responsibility.
This is also what our great party, the APC, stands for, bringing a better life for all our people, regardless of their age, gender, religion, income or class. Our goal is to ensure that no one is left behind, as we spread development around Lagos, Sanwo-Olu said.
Orelope-Adefulire applauded the lawmaker for making women empowerment a cardinal focus of his activities, noting that such action remained key to strengthening inclusion.
She said the empowerment of women was in line with the aim of the SDG.
She added that the office of the SDGs in the presidency had facilitated rehabilitation of more than 10 schools and four healthcare projects in the district. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Lydia Ngwakwe/Chioma Ugboma
Source: NAN News
By Babatunde Ogunrinde
The 22nd edition of the Nestle Milo Basketball Secondary Schools Championships ended on Thursday in Lagos with schools from Bayelsa emerging winners in the boys and girls categories.
The News Agency of Nigeria(NAN) reports that St Judes Girls Secondary School Amarita defeated Akpur College of Benue 38-14 to lift the trophy a record seven times in a row.
St Judes team were clear favourites heading to the final as they took the two quarters convincingly by recording 11-0 and 20-04 leads.
As a result, they wasted no time in dismissing the girls from Benue.
The final match in the boys category proved to be an end-to-end fight for supremacy as Bishop Dimieari Grammar School from Bayelsa defeated Government Secondary School, Karu in Abuja 36-33.
The match was of high tempo with fans at the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium being wowed from the beginning to the end.
Victory for the Bayelsa boys was also a historical moment for them, being their first time in the national championships finals and going all the way to emerge champions.
In the girls category, Abigail Isaac from Bayelsa won the Most Valuable Player Award, while Okini Valour also from Bayelsa won the Most Valuable Player Award in the boys category.
Head Coach of the Bayelsa team, Tony Nelson, told NAN he was proud of the moments and it would forever remain in his heart.
He said that over the past years he was criticised for not winning in the boys category but now he had proved his critics wrong.
We prepared very well for this tournament, and we are happy that out of the schools that came we are proud to take the championships trophies for the boys and girls categories.
This is a sign of the good job we are doing at the grassroots in Bayelsa and we can but only thank the youths for their hard work and the state governement as well for its unwaivering support, Nelson said.
NAN reports that in the third-place finals for boys, Davidhall College of Lagos beat Queen Amina College of Kaduna 21-17 to finish as third-place winners.
Similarly, Topfield College of Lagos beat King Amachree Academy of Rivers 42-32 to emerge third-place winners in the boys category.
NAN reports that no fewer than 10,000 schools participated in this years edition, with regional finals being decided before the National Finals which just ended in Lagos from Sunday to Thursday.
The Managing Director, Nestle Nigeria Plc, Wassim Elhusseini, said while speaking at the occasion that the company was delighted with the organisation of yet another successful event after the two-year COVID-19 break.
The competition over the years has provided that important platform for young lovers of the game to be developed and nurtured to stardom, he said.
Wassim Elhusseini added that the company should be aware of the fans.
We are committed to doing more corporate responsibilities for the future of the game in Nigeria, he stated. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Olawale Alabi
Source: NAN News
By Olaide Ayinde
Dr Oluwasegun Isiaka, a National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) member, has embarked on free cataract surgery for 20 indigent residents in Bauchi.
The exercise is part of his Community Development Service (CDS) project.
Speaking during the surgery at the state Specialist Hospital, Bauchi, on Thursday, NYSC State Coordinator, Alhaji Namadi Abubakar, commended the corps member for the selfless service as his CDS project.
He called on philanthropists and other wealthy citizens in the state to assist corps members in order to execute their CDS Projects.
This, he said, would boost their morale to execute projects that would have direct and positive impacts on the lives of the people in their host communities.
Abubakar appealed to the beneficiaries and members of the public to always co-operate with the authorities in safeguarding the lives and property of corps members posted to their communities for the one year mandatory service.
In his remarks, Dr Isiaka, with code number BA/21B/1948, serving at the states Specialist Hospital, said the project was to assist the patients who had been diagnosed with cataracts but could not afford to pay for the surgery.
He said that a lot of cataract patients patronise unorthodox treatment for the disease because they could not afford the surgery and would later return to the hospital still blind.
Isiaka said that the plight of the indigent patients motivated him into embarking on the project, adding that he also sensitises them on where to seek proper treatment.
The project was to help those who cant afford the surgery so that they will see and educate people of the community on the proper treatment when they are in such situation.
We have created awareness to educate people about cataract and the proper treatment.
This will prevent them from patronising unorthodox treatment and also help convey the message on the right treatment (cataract surgery) for others with the same condition.
20 people were selected and out of this number, we have 11 females and nine males, he said.
The corps member revealed that he singlehandedly sponsored the project with the sum of N620,500.
Malam Mohammed Mohammed, a beneficiary from Duguri Community, Alkaleri Local Government Area, who spoke on behalf of others, appreciated Isiaka for the kind gesture.
He recalled that Dr Isiaka was among the corps members who attended to him during the NYSC medical outreach in his community in 2021.
He prayed Almighty Allah to bless the corps member and wished him a successful life after service. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Fatima Sule/ Isaac Ukpoju
Source: NAN News
By Esenvosa Izah
Lagos, June 30, 2022 (NAN) The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has expressed worries over the low rate of Permanent Voter Cards (PVC) collection in Lagos State.
The State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Mr Olusegun Agbaje, made this known at the Eighth Annual Constituency Stakeholders Meeting held on Thursday in Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the meeting is organised by the Lagos State House of Assembly on the importance of PVC ahead of the 2023 general elections.
The meeting holds simultaneously in the 40 constituencies of the state.
Agbaje was represented by an INEC official, Mr Emmanuel Adegboyega, during the meeting held at the Eti-Osa II Constituency.
Agbaje said, The low rate of PVC collection in Lagos State is worrisome as only 6,382 PVCs out of 34,242 received from the commissions headquarters for the first and second quarters CVR had been collected by their owners.
This is just 18.6 per cent; similarly, for the old PVCs, a total of 1,091,157 are still uncollected by their owners.
He urged stakeholders to properly educate and mobilise voters in line with the Electoral Act 2022 and 1999 Constitution as amended.
According to him, such is a significant area where the commission needs the positive input of all stakeholders to complement its ongoing efforts towards improving the level of awareness.
This will no doubt increase the PVC collection rate.
Also, avoid voter apathy that have characterised past elections in the state where only 1,156,590 out of 6,570,291 registered voters, that is, 17.6 per cent participated in the 2019 general election in the state, Agbaje said.
Earlier, a lawmaker representing Eti-Osa State Constituency II, Mr Gbolahan Yishawu, said the essence of the programme was like a town hall meeting for sharing ideas.
Yishawu said, Town hall means rubbing minds with your constituents and the theme is the priority of the 2023 general elections, importance of PVC
We are trying to sensitise our people to ensure that they go and get registered and not just registered but to collect their voters card.
You saw me carry out an exercise trying to see how many people have actually registered and have got PVC.
You cannot vote with your slip; you must get your PVC, that is the essence, he said. (NAN)
Edited by Julius Toba-Jegede
Source: NAN News
By Peter Uwumarogie
The Federal Government through the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, has launched the 2022 nationwide free mass vaccination against Trans-boundary Animal Diseases (TADs) for the North East.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the vaccination was launched on Thursday at Rugar Jauro Muazu in Dadin-Kowa community, Yamaltu/Deba Local Government Area of Gombe State.
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Mohammed Abubakar, said at the launch thatthe exercise was to ensure an improved livestock sub-sector.
Represented by Dr Maimuna Habib, the Chief Veterinary Officer of Nigeria, Abubakar said the vaccination was against TADs such as Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia (CBPP), Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD), Peste Des Petits Ruminants (PPR) and Newcastle Disease (NCD).
He said the Federal Government had provided over two million doses of vaccines to support the six states in the North East Zone.
He added that vaccination was vital in view of the fact that livestock production was a major means of livelihood in Nigeria, employing about 70 per cent of the countrys population.
According to him, the countrys livestock population is put at 22,378,374 cattle; 53,061,143 sheep; 99,879,799 goats; 9,299,563
pigs and over 425,790,456 poultry, spread across the six geopolitical zones of the country.
He said that the full potential of the animals and the attendant socio-economic benefits they provide could not be guaranteed unless they were in a state of good health, hence the vaccination.
He added that the sub-sector provides economic and food security, nutrition and means of livelihood for majority of rural dwellers.
Livestock supplies the much-needed protein for growth and mental development of our children, spendable income and cash
reserves for use in times of emergency.
The by-products from these animals like hides and skin are used in the production of belts, shoes and bags, while the bone meal is used in animal feed production, as organic fertilisers come from animal wastes for crop production.
The minister said that the Federal Government would continue to partner states in carrying out annual vaccination against TADs to ensure healthy livestock population, and to achieve the much-desired herd immunity for prevention and possible eradication.
Abubakar further said that the vaccination would continue in the remaining four geo-political zones of the country, having carried
out similar exercise in Jigawa for the North-West in March.
On his part, Gov. Inuwa Yahaya of Gombe State, said the event demonstrated governments commitment to boosting animal health, as well as preventing setbacks in livestock management.
According to Yahaya, TADs have high mortality rate and are contagious, as they can cause negative socio-economic and public health consequences.
The governor said our efforts are geared toward eradicating these menaces through massive annual vaccination campaign so as to
achieve herd immunity.
Let me therefore assure you of our commitment to sustain this campaign for general improvement of livestock production in the state
and across the region.
We also want to reduce the impact of these diseases on our peasant pastoralists, as this administration has procured enough vaccines
and other veterinary equipment for the exercise in spite of scarcity of funds.
He, therefore, appealed to the pastoralists and other stakeholders to give the necessary cooperation to veterinary personnel that would
conduct the exercise so as to ensure success.
Appreciating the Federal and Gombe State governments, Malam Modibbo Yaya, the Gombe State Chairman of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), thanked the federal and Gombe State governments for the exercise, saying the vaccination was apt.
He said We thank the Federal Government for the initiative on transformation of the livestock sector.
We also commend the Gombe State Government for developing interest to partner with the Federal Government to actualise the plan in Gombe State.
The successful implementation of the annual vaccine programme will ensure quality meat and milk sufficiency, wealth creation
by improving productivity, ensure food security and animal development. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Hadiza Mohammed-Aliyu
Source: NAN News
By EricJames Ochigbo
The Speaker, House of Representatives, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila, says the bill for an Act to repeal and reenact the Nigerian Institute of Transport Technology (NITT) Act will address road crashes in the country.
Speaking at the opening of a public hearing on the bill on Thursday in Abuja, Gbajabiamila said the bill if properly harnessed would also liberate the country from over-dependence on oil.
He said the bill when passed into law, would provide direct and indirect employment opportunities and reduce the carnage on roads and waterways.
Represented by Deputy House Leader, Peter Akpatason, Gbajabiamila said that the high number of deaths on the nations roads would be addressed among other issues.
This bill is very timely and a laudable initiative. We as legislators will support all viable efforts that will lead to improvement of the transportation industry in Nigeria, he said.
In her remarks, the Minister of State for Transport, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki, said the NITT remained one of the key institutions under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Transportation.
She said it was the ministrys objective that it was supported to achieve its full potentials to become an institute of global standard.
I convey the full support of the Federal ministry of transportation to this legislative initiative by way of a bill for an Act to repeal and reenact the Nigerian Institute of Transport Technology (NITT) Act.
Since it came into existence on March 14, 1986, the NITT Act has not been amended; giving the need to respond to changing circumstances including the need to streamline the membership of its governing powers, and to align its staff policy with those of other academic institutions, the ministry supports the general principles of the bill.
It is geared toward ensuring that NITT becomes more professional, practical and future driven institution which will serve as a hub to produce the much need manpower in our nations transport sector.
As Nigerias economy continue to expand, the transportation sector will be required to adjust to changing realities, provide logistics and solutions to serve this expected expansion.
This bill from our own evaluation, is designed to ensure we put in place a foremost national institution to address potential manpower requirement to achieve this objective, she said.
In his remarks, the Chairman of the Committee, Rep. Abbas Tarjudeen (. ) said that transportation playes a major role in the daily life of human beings.
He said that no society or country could function optimally if it does not have measures in place to facilitate transport.
According to him, an effective transport system will provide productivity and overall development.
He said transportation had helped to enhance life over the years and the current world would not be able to thrive without the ability to transport things from one place to another.
He said millions of people around the globe relied on transport to get to their businesses, homes and work places every day.
According to him, transport facilitates economic activities and as such, economic growth relies on access to efcient and dependable transport system.
Transportation encourages tourism which is among the sector that have emerged as a powerful tool for economic advancement.
Haven been chairman of this committee for the past three years, I have observed that if Nigeria wants to stop or minimise her over -dependence on oil, one of the areas she must look into is transport sector.
In looking at transport, serious emphasis must be placed on training of transport operators and the only agency of government in transport that is saddled with the onerous responsibility is Nigerian Institute of Transport Technology.
A critical look and examination of Nigerian institute of Transport Technology Act 2004, revealed that there is an urgent need to repeal the Act if it must meet up with modern challenges and compete favorably with other transport training institutes in other climes.
It is on this positive note that I decided to sponsor this bill. There is no gainsaying that if this bill is passed into law, Nigeria is going to harvest a lot of benets from it, he said. (NAN)
Edited by Chioma Ugboma
Source: NAN News
By Ismail Abdulaziz
A Sokoto state pilgrim has returned a lost pouch containing 700 U.S. dollars, N70,000 and four Saudi Riyals belonging to a Kaduna state pilgrim in Madinah.
The Good Samaritan had found the pouch on the steps of their hotel accommodation where both states pilgrims were lodged.
Alhaji Arzika Bakaya from Tambuwal Local Government Area of Sokoto state says he has no regrets returning the money to its rightful owner.
The minimum Basic Traveling Allowance (BTA) of pilgrim is around 850 dollars for this years Hajj.
The pouch was taken to the office of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) and received by Alhaji Ibrahim Mahmud, NAHCON Madinah Coordinator.
During our orientations, our Islamic scholars told us that one doesnt just found money and claim it in Saudi Arabia. Everything found must be returned or the law will catch up with you. So, when I saw this pouch, I took it to an official of Sokoto state pilgrim welfare board; the PRO.
It was in his presence that we discovered the money inside the pouch. Luckily for us, the pouch also contains the telephone number and passport of the Kaduna pilgrim. I am happy to have satisfied my conscious, he said.
Mahmud thanked Bakaya and pledged to return the money to officials of the Kaduna State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board for onward transmission to the owner.
We will follow the same process of getting in touch with officials of the pilgrims state just as the Sokoto officials had done by contacting NAHCON. This is a laudable feat by a pilgrim and good for the image of Nigeria.
I will, however, advise all pilgrims to be more careful in handling their money and document while in the Holy Land. The stress involved in losing money is much, he said.
At the handing over, prayers were made for the pilgrim that returned the money, Sokoto state and Nigeria.(NAN)
edited by Sadiya Hamza
Source: NAN News
By Emmanuella Anokam
The Matrix Energy Exploration and Production Company Ltd., says it will replicate its positive performance in the downstream sector of the petroleum industry in its operations upstream.
Mr Abdulkabir Aliu, the Group Managing Director of the company made this known to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Abuja.
NAN reports that Matrix Energy is one of the 161 successful indigenous oil companies that received the Petroleum Prospecting Licences (PPLs) from the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC).
The NUPRC on Tuesday unveiled its maiden Petroleum Prospecting Licences (PPLs) and presented PPLs to the 2020 Marginal Fields Awardees as part of the implementation of Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), 2021.
The licenses, which were issued at the end of the 2020 Marginal Oil Field Bid Round was part of governments policy to encourage more involvement and participation of Nigerians in the exploitation and development of the countrys oil and gas resources.
Matrix Energy, along with its partners were awarded two licenses to explore and develop the Atamba oil field located in Oil Mining Lease (OML) 42 and Igbomotoru oil field in OML 33 in the Niger Delta region.
Aliu expressed optimism that the company being one of the leading downstream companies, with a network of petroleum products retail outlets nationwide would deploy its downstream experience to add value to current upstream operations.
He said the company was determined to take full advantage of the opportunities the award would offer to the betterment of the countrys economy.
He said with Matrix Energy as one of the companies that was privileged to be awarded two of the licenses to operate in the upstream, it would do its best to bring value to the assets as soon as possible to spur economic growth.
We are aware that the upstream industry is more challenging. But we are also aware that there are a lot of opportunities to contribute to the growth and development of the industry, in particular and the country in general.
As an oil producing country, it is best for the operators to ensure they take advantage of the current rising price of crude oil at the international market by ensuring the country meets its production quota at all times.
For us in Matrix Energy Group, we will do our best to ensure we contribute significantly to the national oil and gas output and reserve aspirations as well as the overall betterment of the country, Aliu said.
The CEO expressed satisfaction with the outcome of the entire bid process right from its beginning in 2020, saying the latest exercise was much better than what happened in 2003 and showed the high level of interest among investors.
On Signature Bonus, he said the decision by the government to select companies that not only have the financial capacity, but also those that have distinguished themselves with their technical capacities in their respective industries, made all the difference.
He said the presentation of the company with the prospecting license marked the beginning of the journey to first oil.
With three years given to the licensees to complete exploration work on the prospecting side of the license before going to mining and development, we will do our best to ensure we bring value to the license as soon as possible, he said.
Speaking on challenges, he said having gone through the first stage of completing the bid process and collecting the operating license, its focus would shift to the field to deploy its expertise and competences to get to first oil.
Aliu, while acknowledging the challenges operators face in the Niger Delta region, he said it would rely on the companys wealth of experience garnered since 2010 as a downstream player in the region to surmount challenges.
He said the readiness of the NUPRC to support the operators in resolving any challenges they may encounter, also boost the confidence of the company, especially in handling challenges ahead. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Grace Yussuf
Source: NAN News
By Suleiman Shehu
Trial in a case of alleged breach of public peace, conspiracy and defamation against Mr Abraham Joseph, a former member of staff of Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria (FRIN), was on Wednesday stalled due to the absence of the trial magistrate, Mrs S. Adeshina.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Joseph was on May 24 arraigned on a three-count charge of breach of public peace, conspiracy and defamation.
The defendant had earlier pleaded not guilty and was granted bail in the sum of N100,000 with one surety in like sum.
The court also directed that the surety should be a blood relation of the defendant.
The case was then adjourned till June 29 for trial.
However, at the resumption of proceedings on Wednesday, the Senior Magistrate was not available for the trial, while counsel in the matter picked Aug.18 for the continuation of trial.
It would be recalled that the Prosecuting Counsel, Mr Sikiru Ibrahim, had informed the court that the defendant and others at large conspired with Sahara Reporters, an online medium, to publish a defamatory message against Prof. Adepoju Olusola, the Director-General of FRIN.
Ibrahim said that the publication was intended to tarnish the reputation of Olusola and cause breach of public peace, knowing it to be false.
He said that the incident happened on June 29, 2021 at about 2.00 p.m.
The prosecutor said that the offence contravened Section 517, Section 375 and 249 (d) of the Criminal Code Cap 38 Vo.II, Laws of Oyo State of Nigeria, 2000.
Section 249 (d) of the Criminal Code Cap 38 Vo.II Laws, Oyo State of Nigeria 2000 states:
Every person who, in any public place, conducts himself in a manner likely to cause a breach of the peace, shall be deemed idle and disorderly persons and may be arrested without warrant, and are guilty of a simple offence and liable to imprisonment for one month.
Section 517 says:
Any person who conspires with another to commit any offence which is not a felony, or to do any act in any part of the world, which if done in Nigeria would be an offence but not a felony, and which is an offence under the laws in force in the place where it is proposed to be done, is guilty of a misdemeanor and is liable to imprisonment for two years.
Section 375 of the Criminal Code Act states that any person who publishes any defamatory matter is guilty of a misdemeanor and is liable to imprisonment for one year.
Edited by Olagoke Olatoye
Source: NAN News
Sen. Bola Tinubu
The Ireland Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has paid tributes to the partys presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu, saying his emergence as flag bearer is a testament to his unwavering efforts to enthrone democracy in the country.
The Ireland chapter of the party stated this in a felicitation letter made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Abuja.
The letter was jointly signed by the chapters Chairman, Hammed Adefioye and General Secretary, Sunday Oyedeji.
Your victory at the primary election is a testament to the years of unwavering efforts toward the enthronement of democracy in our dear country which you are an harbinger since the Fourth Republic.
As APC has entrusted you with the mandate to lead our party to the next general election as our presidential candidate, we are resolute that you have what it takes to deliver the presidency for APC and all other elective posts across Nigeria and for all our candidates.
APC Ireland Chapter stands ready to be part of the electioneering campaign both in person and materially as we approach full blown campaign for the election come 2023, the letter said.
The group also congratulated President Muhammadu Buhari and the partys stakeholders for a successful convention, adding that it would soon visit Tinubu on a courtesy call ahead of the campaigns. (NAN)
Edited by Julius Toba-Jegede
Source: NAN News
By Sumaila Ogbaje
Unity Advocacy Group (UAG), a non-partisan group has urged Nigerians to support the Nigerian Armys position that it is not right for citizens to carry arms for self defence.
The Convener of UAG, Mr Ifeanyi Aigbedion made the call in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja.
The Zamfara state government had in a statement issued by the Commissioner for Information, Ibrahim Dosara, on Saturday directed residents to arm themselves against bandits.
The directive was, however, faulted by the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Gen. Lucky Irabor on Monday.
According to Irabor, the call is not right as the armed forces and other security agencies are combat ready to handle the security challenges.
Aigbedion said the CDS and the military were very much aware of the dangerous consequences of allowing citizens to bear arms.
He said that allowing citizens to carry arms would also affect the success of the 2023 general elections, saying politicians would use the opportunity to arm thugs.
According to him, people may not be aware of the dangers associated with allowing the citizens to bear arms.
The armed forces of Nigeria are privileged to have all information and we should allow them sort out the security challenges.
Allowing people to start carrying arms may likely deepen the security challenges and take it to uncontrollable levels.
The Nigerian military has so far shown capacity in dealing with the security challenges. Politicians should not be allowed to compound the situation, he said.
Aigbedion also agreed with the position of some lawyers in the country who described the directive by Zamfara state government as unlawful. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)
Source: NAN News
By Ismail Abdulaziz
A Nigerian pilgrim, Hajiya Aisha Ahmad, has died of illness in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday.
Aisha Ahmed, from Keffi Local Government Area of Nasarawa state, died after a brief illness according to Alhaji Idris Al-Makura, Executive Secretary, Nasarawa State Muslim Pilgrim Welfare Board.
Al-Makura told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Makkah, Saudi Arabia that the deceased had no record of ailment before departing from Nigeria.
The deceased had no medical history as at the time of departure to the Holy Land and we are together in Madinah. The pilgrim took ill two days ago.
She was first taken to the National Hajj Commissions Hospital in Makkah and later transferred to the King Abdulaziz Hospital where she passed on. The family was duly informed of the death.
We sent the family a video recording of the process of her death confirmation, to the funeral rites and finally, the burial, he said.
Bala Ango, young brother of the deceased, told NAN that her demised is a great loss to the family, adding that she would be greatly missed by all.
He said she lived a life worthy of emulation by the younger generation.
Ango described her as an embodiment of piety, adding that she was always promoting the ideals of Islam at home and within the neighborhood.(NAN)
Edited by Alli Hakeem
Source: NAN News
By Emmanuella Anokam
The Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) has awarded Petroleum Prospecting Licences (PPLs) to 161 successful 2020 marginal fields awardees.
The commission also officially unveiled the Host Communities Development Regulations and model Petroleum Prospecting Licences (PPLs).
Chief Timipre Sylva, the Minister of State Petroleum Resources, at the unveiling and licences presentation on Tuesday in Abuja said the maiden presentation of the PPL was part of the implementation of Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), 2021.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the successful companies include Ardova Plc, Matrix Energy Ltd., Sun Trust Oil Company Limited, Deep Offshore Integrated Service Ltd., Island Energy Ltd. and Sigmund Oil Field Ltd.
Others are Shafa Exploration and Production Company Ltd., Emadeb Energy Ltd., Zigma Ltd., Inland Basin Ltd. and Petraco Oil Ltd., among others.
NAN also reports that 57 fields presented in the 2020 bid round met the criteria and were subsequently offered for bidding.
Out of the 665 entities that expressed interest in the exercise,161 emerged as potential awardees while out of the 57 fields, 41 were fully paid for.
Also, 37 fields were issued with the PPL having satisfied all conditions for award.
The minister commended the management and staff of the NUPRC for ensuring the successful completion of the process, which began in 2020.
He described it as a giant milestone for the administration.
The implementation of the PIA 2021 is in top gear. Consequently, the new awardees should note that their assets will be fully governed by the provisions of the PIA 2021.
As you develop your assets with the special purpose vehicles (SPVs), ensure that good oilfield practice is employed, environmental considerations and community stakeholders management are not neglected.
It is my strong belief that the awardees would take advantage of the current attractive oil prices to bring these fields into full production within a short period to increase production, grow reserves and reduce cost of production.
The onboarding of new oil and gas players in the petroleum sector is part of this governments policy to encourage more indigenous participation in our petroleum operations, he said.
Sylva said the development would boost activities in the oil and gas sector.
He added that it would boost production output and create additional employment opportunities for Nigerians
Mr Gbenga Komolafe, Commission Chief Executive (CCE) NUPRC, recalled that one of the major tasks inherited by the commission, upon its inauguration in 2021 was the need to conclude the 2020 Marginal Field Bid Round.
He said the exercise was faced with several constraints which included the COVID-19 interruption, partial payment of Signature Bonuses by some awardees, and the unwillingness of co-awardees to work together in forming SPVs for field development.
He said the marginal fields award initiative began in 1999 and was borne out of the need to entrench the indigenisation policy of government in the upstream sector and build local content capacity.
He recalled that since its inception, a total of 30 fields had been awarded with 17 currently producing.
He said that the 2020 Marginal Field Bid Round exercise in respect of which PPLs were being issued had attracted government revenue of about N200 million and seven million dollars, respectively.
He said it was significant to note that the passage of the PIA brought an end to the era of Marginal Field awards.
Section 94 (9) of the Act states that no new Marginal Field shall be declared under this Act.
Accordingly, the minister shall now award PPL on undeveloped fields following an open, fair, transparent, competitive, and non-discriminatory bidding process in line with Sections 73 and 74 of the Act, he quoted.
Komolafe said the impact of the upswing in the crude oil price was not reflecting in the nations revenue earnings due to disruptions in our national oil production owing to sabotage, theft, and other operational challenges.
He urged the potential companies to take advantage of the current market realities and quickly bring their fields to production.
Speaking on the unveiled Host Communities Development Regulations, he said it was significant for the commencement of implementation of the provisions of Section 235 of the PIA, for attraction of dividends to the host communities. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Chinyere Joel-Nwokeoma
Source: NAN News
By Florence Onuegbu
Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu says the government will soon unveil a 30-year development plan, toward accelerating sustainable economic growth.
Sanwo-Olu made this known during the Lagos Chambers of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) private sector interractive meeting with the Governor on Tuesday in Lagos.
He said that the 30-year plan was in pursuit of physical development, social growth and economic prosperity.
According to him, the Lagos State Development Plan 2052 will be officially unveiled at the forthcoming ninth Economic Summit of the state, popularly known as Ehingbeti.
He said that the 30-year plan was developed with clear objectives from four strategic dimensions, aimed at positioning the state to achieve its vision.
Sanwo-Olu said that each of the four dimensions of the development plan would be achieved through over 400 policy initiatives that would be implemented throughout the period.
The Lagos State Development Plan 2052 has been developed with a set of clear objectives across four strategic dimensions, which are to position Lagos on the track to achieving its vision.
The dimensions to this plan are to keep a thriving economy that will make Lagos a robust, healthy and growing economy with adequate jobs and strategic investments to sustain growth.
We are building a human-centric city in which every Lagosian will have access to affordable and world-class education, healthcare and social services.
There will be deliberate effort to keep modernising our infrastructure, by providing reliable and sufficient infrastructure that meet the needs of a 21st century city.
The plan will also bring about sustenance of effective governance. Lagos will have a supportive and enabling environment that creates opportunities for all Lagosians.
This is a huge task that must be achieved between now and the nearest possible future, he said.
The governor said that the plan would not be realised when the private sector the drivers of the states economy is not carried along in the implementation of the identified policy phases.
He thanked the business community for supporting the state government in dealing with arising issues in the challenging period of COVID-19 pandemic pushback.
According to him, more social burden could have trailed the pandemic have the private sector not considered the governments entreaty that prevent mass retrenchment of workers.
Sanwo-Olu the state government would continue to improve on the ease of doing business in Lagos.
He said that in the last one year, Lagos had recorded massive influx of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) to the tune of million in the technology sector.
The governor said that the state had attracted global tech brands such as Equinox, Google, and Microsoft, among others.
He expressed hope that the meeting with the Organised Private Sector would lead to creation of new pathways, that would facilitate a more robust relationship with the sector.
LCCI President, Dr Michael Olawale-Cole, said that the meeting with Sanwo-Olu indicated the Chambers continued faith his administration for a better business environment.
Olawale-Cole said that Lagos had continued to be the investment haven for FDIs coming to the country, as the state alone accounted for 71 per cent of the ,573 billion foreign investment Nigeria recorded in the first quarter of 2022.
He said that policy direction was critical for a thriving and supportive business environment in any economy, as the quality of the policy was a key consideration for local and foreign investment decisions.
According to him, with an improved business environment, Lagos can attract more capital inflows from Nigerians in the Diaspora, as a more sustainable funding for the provision of required infrastructure.
He said that enormity of needs in Lagos required the cooperation of both the public and private sector.
The LCCI boss announced that Lagos would be the official chief host of the International Tech and Telecommunication (ICTEL) Expo coming up in August.
The LCCI Deputy President, Mr Knut Ulvmoen, said that Sanwo-Olu took his most important decision to come out and meet with the investors.
The Norwegian, who has lived in Lagos for 36 years, said that he had witnessed the city transformed before his eyes into a blossoming economy.
The Lagos narrative is a story in progress. The city is now cleaner than it used to be. I implore the government to focus more on education and make it accessible to the teeming young people. This is what will sustain the city in the long term.
Government leaders should demand more than donations from the international community; they must come and create jobs, Ulvmoen said. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Chinyere Joel-Nwokeoma
Source: NAN News
By Joan Nwagwu
The International Labour Organisation (ILO) says outgoing and incoming migrants are increasing within the Nigerian borders.
The ILO Senior Technical Specialist on Workers Activities, Abuja Office, Inviolata Chinyangarara, made this known at a two-day consultative workshop on Tuesday in Abuja.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the workshop was organised to define a roadmap for the development of a Trade Union Labour Migration Policy.
According to Chinyangarara, counting labour migration trends figures is a challenge because migration can be regular or irregular.
Some coming in are counted because they come through regular process, airports and other ports of entries but the majority that are vulnerable that in precarious situation are those that are coming through irregular means.
But ILO statistics also show that they the trends are increasing, that is outgoing and income migrants, particularly within the Nigerian borders, she said.
She said that labour migration were triggered by social, political and economic issues such as climate induces on labour migration, disasters, pandemics and other crisis, trigger people to move.
According to her, our statistics also shows that largely in Africa, people are moving for economic reasons, particularly the young men and women.
When they find that there are no jobs, no prospects for livelihood, they are pushed to move to other countries where they can find greener pastures for employment or enterprise development, she said.
She however noted that the sectors highly hit by migration include health and construction sectors, cross borders traders and domestic service sectors are highly mobile.
She said that there was brain-drain of highly skilled medical personnel, others, leaving the shores African countries to get better jobs in neighbouring countries.
That is why the ILO has come up with a global International Standards that is protecting and promoting the rights domestic workers, that is Convention 189,she said.
Chinyangarara said that ILO was collaborating with the tripartite constituency in Nigeria on issues of decent work and particularly on labour migration governance, to ensure the promotion of rights of migrants, among others.
According to her, this is to brainstorm around a roadmap for the developing a Trade Union Labour Migration Policy, understand that in 2014, the Ministry of Labour spearheaded the process to develop the policy.
So, leveraging on that the trade unions are also going to brainstorm on this workshop some of this national frameworks including global frameworks such as the agenda 2030 for sustainable development.
We are also going to look at the ECOWAS Protocol on Movement of Goods and Persons, we also going to look at relevant ILO International Labour Standards.
It is some of these documents that would then inspire the content in the process for developing the Trade Union Labour Migration Policy.
We are going to look at what is going to change in the process of the review and what are the new antics that COVID-19 pandemic, others has brought to bear, she said.
Chinyangarara said that the Trade Union Labour Migration Policy was one way that the trade unions would contribute to the implementation of the national Labour Migration Policy.
She said that a Trade Union Labour Migration Policy is a partway for trade unions to contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that were targeting labour migration.
She said that the Labour Migrations Policy had become imperative as migration had become a major challenge in Africa for young men and women as they travelled through irregular processes.
After this workshop, we are hoping to come up with a process that will then define the milestones for Labour Migrations Policy.
We hope to come up with a steering committee that will be made up from NLC, TUC that will then define if they want to do development of Labour Migration Policy.
That is through consulting or on their own in-housing knowledge expertise to develop this process, she said.
NLC Migration Officer James Eustace said the workshop was first of its kind to design a roadmap policy on Trade Union Labour Migration.
Eustace said that there were two policies that were already frameworks for migration governance in Nigeria, which include the National Policy on Labour Migration adopted by the Federal Executive Council in 2014 and the National Migration Policy adopted in 2015.
This are all state actors policies, but for us it is a clear fact migration is merely driven by employment and labour migrants, forming the bulk of migrants.
Therefore it is very critical and necessary for trade unions to have a framework that guides trade unions activities in migration governance, hence the decision to hold the workshop, he said.(NAN)
Edited by Grace Yussuf
Source: NAN News
By Ginika Okoye
The National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), has cancelled certificates of registration of Standard Alliance Insurance Plc, RIC 091 and Niger Insurance Plc, RIC 029 with effect from June 21.
This is contained in a statement issued by Mr Rasaaq Salami, Head, Corporate Communications and Market Development of NAICOM in Abuja on Tuesday.
Salami said the Commission had appointed Sanya, Ogunkuade Esq of Plot 217, Upper Grace Plaza, Utako, Abuja as the liquidator for Niger Insurance Plc.
According to him, the Commission has also appointed Kehinde Aina, Esq, of Aina Blankson LP, 5/7, Ademola Street, Ikoyi, Lagos as the liquidator for Standard Alliance Insurance Plc.
He advised all stakeholders to forward their enquiries to the respective receiver/liquidator for each company for their necessary action.
Salami assured all stakeholders of the Commissions readiness to ensure their safety and the protection of their investments. (NAN)(www.nannews.com)
Edited by Ese E. Eniola Williams
Source: NAN News
By Gami Tadanyigbe
The Governing Council of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) has approved the appointment of a new Registrar, Bursar and Librarian for a single term of five years.
Director, Media and Publicity of the university, Ibrahim Sheme, stated in Abuja on Tuesday that Mr Oladipo Ajayi was appointed as Registrar; Mr Nasir Marafa as Bursar and Dr Angela Ebele Okpala as Librarian.
He added that the outgoing Registrar, Mr Felix Edoka, issued appointment letters to the trio on June 27 after approval by the universitys Governing Council at its 69th meeting, held on June 23.
The registrars appointment takes effect from Sept. 5; the bursars takes effect from Sept. 17, while that of the librarian took effect from June 23. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Alli Hakeem
Source: NAN News