Buhari Returns, Lands in Kaduna, Choppered to Presidential Villa
President Muhammadu Buhari arrived the country Friday at about 4 a.m., 51 days after he left the country on a medical vacation. Owing to the closure of the Abuja airport, presidency sources informed THISDAY that his plane was scheduled to land at the Kaduna airport in the wee hours of Friday, following which he was to be flown by helicopter to the President Villa, Abuja.
World Bank says Nigeria, Ethiopia under hunger threat
Nigeria is among a few countries in sub-Saharan Africa that are under the threat of food insecurity, the World Bank has said.
The President, World Bank Group, Jim Yong Kim, in a statement made available to our correspondent in Abuja on Thursday, said there were devastating levels of food insecurity in sub-Saharan Africa and Yemen.
FG sets up task force on frozen fish importation
The Federal Government yesterday, warned that it will soon clampdown on cold rooms stocked with illegally imported frozen fish across the country. Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, who made the disclosure in Abuja at a press conference, said government, will enforce the Sea Fisheries Act Cap S4 Laws of the Federation 2004, pointing out that measures had been put in place to arrest, detain and prosecute defaulters.
He explained that importation of frozen fish without licence attracts five years imprisonment or a fine of $250,000 (about N87m) or both in addition to forfeiture and destruction of the vessel and its products.
FG targets N800bn oil revenue increase in three years
The Federal Government is targeting an increase of N800bn in oil revenue in the next three years, according to the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan. The projection is based on an increase in the crude oil production volume from 2.2 million barrels per day to about 2.5 million barrels per day.
This is expected to be achieved as a result of the restoration of peace in the Niger Delta following series of consultation by the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, with stakeholders in the region. Osinbajo, had recently as part of efforts to douse the tension in the region, visited some states in the Niger Delta region.
DMO issues first FGN savings bond next week
A window of opportunity for Nigerians to harness the huge benefits derivable from retail bonds will unlock on Monday, March 13, 2017, when subscription for the Federal Government of Nigeria Savings Bond (FGNSB) opens. The offer will run for five days, with subscription forms available through Stanbic IBTC Stockbrokers Limited and in all branches of Stanbic IBTC Bank across the country.
According to the Debt Management Office (DMO), the retail savings bond product will be accessible to all income groups for subscription at N5,000 per unit, with a maximum subscription of N50 million and a tenor ranging from two to three years.
57 Insurance Firms Yet to Secure NAICOM’s Approval for 2016 Financial Statements
Only two out of existing 59 insurance firms and two reinsurance companies have secured approval for their 2016 financial statements by the insurance industry regulatory body, the National insurance Commission (NAICOM). THISDAY checks also revealed that five firms are still battling to secure the commission’s approval for their 2015 financial statements.
NAICOM, in a statement on this titled “Status of 2016 Financial Statements of insurance companies as at March 8th, 2017 gave the Names of the successful firms for 2016 accounts as FBN General Insurance, and Wapic Life Insurance. The duo successfully had their account approved out of 12 insurance firms that had submitted their 2016 accounts.
Recession erases N5, N10 values in market
Some of the nation’s currencies may soon be out of circulation if economic managers fail in their efforts to tame rising inflation, as increasing price of goods occasioned by higher production costs have taken its toll on the value of some legal tenders.
Already, an investigation across several markets has shown that besides peasant farmers in the rural area who give away their produce at lesser prices, it is difficult to get any item that can be bought at N5, while only few are bought at a few pieces for N20.
CBN, NCC intervene in Etisalat, banks’ loan crisis
The Central Bank of Nigeria and the Nigerian Communications Commission on Thursday agreed to intervene in the loan issue between Etisalat Nigeria and a consortium of banks. The Executive Vice Chairman, NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, and a team led by the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, reached the decision after a meeting in Abuja.
Our correspondents learnt that the meeting, which held at the CBN headquarters, was convened by the financial regulator at the instance of the NCC to deliberate on how best to stave off the possible takeover of Etisalat by the banks.
Africa’s freight demand up by 24.3%
International Air Transport Association (IATA) has released data for global air freight markets showing that demand, measured in freight tonne kilometers (FTKs), rose by 6.9 per cent in January 2017 compared to the year-earlier period.
While this was down from the 10 per cent annual growth recorded in December 2016, it still was well above the average annual growth rate of three per cent over the past five years. African carriers’ saw freight demand increase by 24.3 per cent in January 2017 compared to the same month last year, helped by very strong growth on the trade lanes to and from Asia.
Airport road: FG not frustrating Lagos, says Fashola
The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, on Thursday declared that his ministry was not in any way frustrating Lagos State Government with respect to the reconstruction of the Lagos International Airport Road from Oshodi.
The Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwumi Ambode, on Wednesday said the Federal Ministry of Works was frustrating efforts by his government to reconstruct the road.
NLC, TUC ask Ebonyi to stop ‘illegal’ pension deduction
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) have asked the Ebonyi State Governorment to stop violating the amended Pension Reform Act, 2004. The groups said in a statement signed by their presidents, Ayuba Wabba and Boboi Bala Kaigama, that the government’s abuse of the pension law was made known to them by their councils in Ebonyi.
They said the government has started pension deductions from its workers’ salaries long before it passed its pension law. They also alleged that the operating pension law is in contravention of the contributory ratio in the national pension law which mandates the employer to contribute a minimum of 10 per cent, and employees eight per cent to the contributory pension account.
3.7 million Nigerians lost jobs in 2016, says NBS
The National Bureau of Statistics, NBS, in its unemployment report for the fourth quarter (Q4) 2016 has given a breakdown of how 3.67 million Nigerians became jobless in one year.
Also, the number of unemployed Nigerians rose from 7.51 million at the beginning of October 2015 to 11.19 million at the end of September 2016. High unemployment indicates less productivity and less contribution to the economy because jobless people are spending less. Consequently, the government ends up borrowing money because of low revenues and high spending. Rise in employment rates also affects other areas, such as quality of health services and living standards.
CBN boosts forex supply by $170m
The Central Bank of Nigeria on Thursday offered the sum of $100m as wholesale interventions and sold about $70m to meet requests for business and personal travel allowances.
The CBN said the move was in a bid to sustain the tempo of foreign exchange supply to the interbank market and ensure liquidity to enable more bank customers and other business people to overcome the difficulty of obtaining forex for their transactions.
NECA hails Osinbajo for not signing Lottery Bill
Nigeria Employers Consultative Association, (NECA) has praised Acting President Prof. Yemi Osinbajo for not assenting to the National Lottery (Amendment), Bill 2016, passed by the National Assembly. In 2012, NECA sued the National Lottery Regulatory Commission for some infractions.
NECA’s Director-General, Mr. Olusegun Oshinowo, said Osinbajo’s refusal to sign the bill was justified, adding that it was worrisome that the Nigeria Lottery Regulatory Commission (NLRC), resorted to some tactics by sponsoring amendments to the Act when the issue is in court.