*Buhari Meets Saraki, Dogara, Reaches Truce on Budget* *Protesters storm N’Assembly, demand Saraki’s resignation*

*Buhari Meets Saraki, Dogara, Reaches Truce on Budget* *Protesters storm N’Assembly, demand Saraki’s resignation*



Buhari Meets Saraki, Dogara, Reaches Truce on Budget

In line with the National Assembly’s resolve to meet with the executive to iron out the differences over the 2016 Appropriation Bill, Senate President Bukola Saraki last night met with President Muhammadu Buhari to reach a truce on the budget.

His meeting followed a similar one held yesterday afternoon between the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, and the president on the budget. Read more

Protesters storm N’Assembly, demand Saraki’s resignation

There was a chaotic situation at the National Assembly and its vicinity yesterday, as hundreds of protesters operating on the auspices of Citizens United for Peace and Stability (CUPS) stormed the complex, demanding the immediate resignation of the President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki, on the allegations of corruption levelled against him. This was as a pro-Saraki group also conducted a peaceful demonstration, condemning the trial of the Senate President at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).

The pro-Saraki group said that the trial was an attempt to intimidate and subjugate the Senate to the whims and caprices of the executive. Saraki is currently being prosecuted at the CCT on alleged false declaration of assets. Read more

Metuh hospitalised after falling from swivel chair

Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) National Publicity Secretary, Olisa Metuh was yesterday rushed to the National Hospital, Abuja, after falling from a swivel chair during the inauguration of Borno and Kebbi states caretaker committees.

Metuh was about to take his seat during the inauguration when he slipped off the chair reserved for him. Read more

IG Orders Arrest of Sellers of Fuel in Jerrycans, Containers

Concerned by the untold suffering as well as the  hazard of the activities of black marketeers, especially those who sell petroleum products inside plastic containers/jerry-cans, the Inspector-General of Police (IG), Solomon Arase, has directed all Zonal Assistant Inspectors-General of Police and FCT/state Commands Commissioners of Police to arrest anybody found selling petrol and other petroleum products in plastic container.

The IG, who issued the directives in Abuja on Monday, said apart from the hardship this act is causing for fuel buyers, it has also rendered some innocent and law abiding citizens homeless due to fire outbreak from jerry-can petrol storage. Read more

Assault on Lawmaker: C’ttee Recommends Dismissal, Arrest of Prison Inspector

The House of Representatives Committee on Interior has recommended the arrest, trial and dismissal of Idaa Odeh, for assaulting Hon. Mkrapor Onyemaechi.

Onyemaechi was hit in the face allegedly by Odeh for attempting to overtake the convoy of the Controller General of Prisons, Dr. Peter Ezenwa Ekpendu last Wednesday at the gate of the National Assembly. Read more

Lagos Evacuates 1,340 Beggars, Destitute in One Year

The Lagos State Government on Tuesday said a total of 1,340 beggars, destitute and mentally challenged persons were rescued off the streets of Lagos in the last one year, just as it said about 73, 664 patients were screened and helped to trace their homes through various media platforms.

Speaking at the ongoing 2016 ministerial press briefing held at the Bagauda Kaltho Press Centre in Alausa to commemorate Governor Akinwunmi Ambode’s one year in office, the Commissioner for Youth and Social Development, Mrs. Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf, said the government, in the period under review, released and re-united 590 rehabilitees with their relations for re-integration, while 1,228 persons were rehabilitated at the rehabilitation and training centre in Majidun. Read more

Synagogue Church: Remanded Engineers to Remain in Kirikiri Prison

The two engineers who constructed the collapsed six-storey guest house belonging to the Synagogue Church of all Nation (SCOAN),  Oladele Ogundeji and Akinbela Fatiregun are to remain in Kirikiri Maximum Prison till May 3 when the court will rule on their bail applications.

Justice Lateef Lawal-Akapo had last week remanded the duo in prison after they were  arraigned with their companies, Hardrock Construction and Engineering Company; and Jandy Trust Limited alongside the Trustees of the Synagogue Church of all Nation (SCOAN). Read more

Falana Asks Buhari to Investigate Unlawful Killings by Security Forces

A human rights lawyer, Mr. Femi Falana, on Tuesday asked President Muhammadu Buhari to investigate the extra-judicial execution of criminal suspects by officers of the Nigeria police and alleged unlawful killing of unarmed civilians, including children and women, by officers of the Nigerian Armed Forces.

Falana said if the perpetrators of the killings “are not prosecuted, the federal government is likely to continue to pay damages in billions of naira awarded by the courts.” Read more

Court Rejects Kanu’s Application to Stop Trial, Pending His Appeal

A Federal High Court in Abuja has dismissed the application of leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, for a stay of proceedings, pending the determination of his appeal.

Kanu is standing trial on charges of treasonable felony. Read more

UI Shut Indefinitely after Violent Protest by Students

Following two days of violent protest by the students of the University of Ibadan, the institution was on Tuesday closed indefinitely.

The protesting students, had last monday and through the early hours of yesterday protested against the suspension of a union leader by the Student Disciplinary Committee. Other things protested against were lack of power and water among other municipal needs on campus. Read more

We’ll Rationalise, Not Reduce Nigeria’s Foreign Offices, Says Minister

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama has said the federal government will “rationalise’’ and not reduce the country’s foreign missions and embassies.

Onyeama told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja yesterday that the rationalisation of the foreign offices would be with a view to maximising the use of resources. Read more

House Summons DG, DSS over Enugu Killings, Ugwuanyi Sues for Peace

Following the alleged murder of about 48 persons in Ukpabi, Nimbo community of Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area in Enugu State on Monday by suspected cattle rearers, the House of Representatives on Tuesday summoned the Director General of the Department of State Services (DSS), Mr. Lawal Daura, over the incessant deadly attacks carried out by unidentified marauding herdsmen in different parts of the country.

This is just as a motion on the massacre in Enugu again brought to the fore the opposition to the proposed Grazing Bill from the executive arm of government meant to provide hectares of land as grazing reserves for the nomads. Read more

Navy arrests 40 crude oil thieves, smugglers

As efforts to curtail the resurgence of criminal activities in the Nigerian maritime waters intensify, the Nigerian Navy (NN) patrol teams have arrested 40 suspected oil thieves and smugglers, including eight Camerounians, in various operations carried out to cleanse the coastlines. The NN also destroyed thousands of litres of product suspected to be crude.

Director, Naval Information, Commodore Christian Ezekobe, made this known yesterday in a statement issued in Abuja that the landmark achievement was achieved following the directive of the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas, that efforts be stepped up towards eliminating all forms of crimes in Nigeria’s waters through sustained clampdown on “illegal refineries, crude oil theft, pipeline vandalism, smuggling, piracy and sea robbery”, by the operational commands. Read more


Stock market rebounds with N20bn gain

Trading on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) returned on the upbeat after two days of downswing, as equities got a fillip from resumed bargain hunting activities across the board, closing with a gain of N20billion. More than three stocks gained for every one that lost with financial services stocks closing upbeat, as investor confidence returned.

The key market performance measures, the NSE All Share Index and market capitalisation rose by 0.23 per cent following investors’ sustained optimism. Read more

Economic downturn hits banks’ first quarter profits

Widespread predictions that 2016 would be a lot tougher for banks than the previous year seem to be coming to pass. Reason: First quarter results so far released by the country’s leading Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) generally show decline in profits and gross earnings. Read more

CBN: BDCs bought $670m forex in Q4 2015

The total amount of foreign exchange purchased by Bureaux De Change (BDCs) in the fourth quarter of 2015 amounted to $670million, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said.

The apex bank stated this in its quarterly statistical bulletin for the last quarter of 2015 posted on its website. Read more

Economic Challenges Hurting the Real Estate Sector

The persistent macro challenges have negatively affected the real estate sector, resulting in a slowdown in activities, THISDAY checks have revealed.

Also, the monetary policy tightening, which resulted to the hiking of the monetary policy rate (MPR) by 100 bps to 12.00 per cent by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is hampering the growth of the sector. Read more

FBN Holdings Profit After Tax Dips by 82% to N15.1bn

FBN Holdings Plc yesterday reported a dip of 82 per cent in profit after tax (PAT) for the year ended December 31, 2015, falling to N15.1 billion, from N84 billion in 2014. The bank was among those that had sent profit warnings to the stock market community, saying its earnings would be materially below 2015 levels as a result of the recognition of impairment charges on some specific accounts resulting from a reassessment of the loan portfolio within our commercial banking business.

According to its audited results released yesterday, FBN Holdings recorded impairment charges of M119.3 billion, up from N25. 9 billion in 2014. Read more

NBS: Telecoms Subscriber Base Shrank to 148.68m in 2015

The total number of subscribers to the Global System of Mobile Communication (GSM) shrank to 148.68 million as at December 2015, compared to 149.78 million in the previous month, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) stated yesterday.

Nevertheless, the new figure represented an increase of over 12 million subscribers (12,004,756) or 8.78 percent relative to December 2015. Read more

BPE commences review of failed privatised firms’ data

The Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), has commenced a comprehensive review of failed privatised enterprises’ data in the country, to ascertain their respective performance indices.

The Acting Director-General of the bureau, Dr. Vincent Onome Akpotaire who disclosed this recently when he appeared on the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA)’s breakfast programme-Good Morning Nigeria, noted that the data on these enterprises had not been sufficient, hence the need for the review. Read more


Kachikwu Targets Local Refining of Aviation Fuel

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, has disclosed that Nigeria’s refineries in Warri, Port Harcourt and Kaduna will soon begin production of aviation fuel as part of efforts to make the product available in the country for her aviation industry.

Kachikwu according to a statement last night in Abuja from the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, stated that the federal government was determined to make the product readily available in country irrespective of the fact that it is deregulated. Read more

World Bank Raises 2016 Oil Price Forecast to $41 per Barrel

Amid improving market sentiment and a weakening dollar, the World Bank has raised its 2016 forecast for crude oil prices to $41 per barrel from $37 per barrel in its latest Commodity Markets Outlook, stating that oversupply in markets is expected to recede.

Brent crude futures were up $1.30 or nearly three per cent, at $45.78 a barrel on Tuesday. Oil markets rose about three per cent as a tumbling dollar boosted commodities denominated in the greenback after bets that the Federal Reserve will hold US interest rates where they are. Read more

Light sweet crude rises to $43.35 a barrel

The price of Nigeria’s blend of crude oil – Light, sweet crude for June delivery rose by 71 cents yesterday, or 1.7 per cent, to $43.35 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent, the global benchmark, was up by 70 cents, or 1.6 per cent, to $45.18 a barrel in ICE Futures Europe.

The rise has been attributed to weaker dollar, but there were concerns that persistent market oversupply are expected to put a cap on gains. Read more

SacOil JV to purchase, resell Nigerian crude oil

SacOil and Energy Equity Resources (EER) signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to facilitate the acquisition and resale of Nigerian crude oil.

Pursuant to the initiative, SacOil and EER, was awarded a 12- month term contract for the purchase of Nigerian Crude Oil Grades by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). Read more

‘Nigeria needs cheaper, safer, affordable cleaner energy’

Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) has been considered as one of the relatively clean and efficient cooking fuel options currently available in the country.

But many people have shied away from its use in Nigeria due to perception on safety. Read more

OPEC requires $10tr to bridge investment gap in oil, gas business

The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has said that the global oil and gas sector would need additional $10 trillion investment to save the industry from total collapse due to the present investment cut, occasioned by low oil prices.

Speaking at the 17th International Oil Summit in Paris, France at the weekend, OPEC Secretary General, Abdalla S. El-Badri, stated that in the current oil market environment oil producers were already witnessing significant investment cuts due to low oil prices. Read more


Kwara Communities, IBEDC at Daggers Drawn over Power Outages

The management of Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC) and 30 communities in Ilorin metropolis in Kwara State are now at each other throats  over continued power outages, which the affected communities have been subjected to .

The communities under the auspices of the Joint Communities Development Association, had declared “NO LIGHT, NO PAYMENT, NO DISTRIBUTION OF BILL” rule against IBEDC since October, 2015. Read more

Again, Nationwide Power Generation Drops by 1,585.7MW

Total power generated by Nigeria’s power stations for transmission and distribution to homes has again dropped by 1,585.7 megawatts (MW) from 3,701.7MW that was achieved as peak generation last Monday evening, THISDAY has learnt.

THISDAY gathered from the daily generation report of the Nigerian System Operator which was published yesterday that as at 6a.m. on Tuesday, the country only had 2,116.0MW to transmit to the 11 distribution companies (Disco) for onward distribution to homes and offices. Read more

ASTEVEN plans to generate 50MW through solar energy by 2018

Asteven Solar, an energy product manufacturing and generation firm has announced the company’s plans to generate about 50 Mega Watts (MW) of electricity over the next 24 months.

Speaking on the side lines of the Nigeria Energy Forum Lagos Expo 2016 where the company was the recipient of the Group Award for Outstanding Contribution to Sustainable Energy Development in Nigeria, the Managing Director of Asteven Solar Nigeria, Sunny Akpoyibo, said that the value culture of the company is built on the ethos of sustainability which includes economic empowerment, environmental conservation, clean energy generation incubated in a Private-Public sector cooperation. Read more


Atletico Gets Chance for Bayern Revenge

Bayern Munich destroyed Atletico Madrid’s dreams of winning the European Cup in 1974 and today, the Bavarians are out to wreck their hopes of reaching a second Champions League final in three years when they visit the Spanish capital for the semifinal first leg.

In the final in Heysel 42 years ago, an equaliser from defender Hans-Georg Schwarzenbeck in the final minute of extra time cancelled out Luis Aragones’ opening goal and forced a replay, in which Bayern ran out 4-0 winners. Read more

Three Points Possible for Heartland against Enyimba, Says Efugh

Heartland captain and centre back, Chinedu Efugh has said his side will end their search for three points on the road at champions and neighbours, Enyimba.

The Naze Millionaires are guests of the People’s Elephant in today’s rescheduled Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) Match-day 6 Oriental Derby at the Umuahia Township Stadium. Read more

Nadal asks ITF to publicise drug test results

Rafael Nadal has written a personal letter to the International Tennis Federation (ITF) asking for all of his drug test results to be made public, reports theguardian.com.

Nadal took legal action on Monday against the former French government minister, Roselyne Bachelot, who claimed the world No5’s seven-month injury lay-off in 2012 was “probably due to a positive doping test.” Read more

Government interference: FIFA may ban Egypt from Nations Cup, World Cup qualifiers

World football governing body, FIFA, has threatened to ban Egypt from all international football, including the Gabon 2017 African Nations Cup and the Russia 2018 World Cup qualifiers if the country’s government did not stop further interference in the administration of the game.

Egypt defeated Nigeria 1-0 in Alexandria last month to virtually confirm their ticket for the Gabon 2017 African Nations Cup. The Pharaohs are also in the final round of the Russia 2018 World Cup qualifiers. Read more


Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) seeks powers to name rogue banks

Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) yesterday asked MPs to amend the law to give it power to publicly name and shame rogue banks. Officials of the Bank Supervision Unit said the sanction was necessary to make sure banks respect the directives of the CBK as a regulator. Read more

Bahrain, Egypt sign 11 MoUs during King Hamad’s visit to Cairo

The Bahraini government is negotiating to increase investments in Egypt, which currently amount to $1.7bn, chairman of the Bahraini Chamber of Commerce and Industry Khalid El-Moayyed said during the Bahraini-Egyptian Business Forum on Tuesday.

A number of agreements will be signed during the forum to increase investment and trade volume between the two countries. Bilateral trade volume amounted to $340m in 2015, compared to $320m in 2014. Read more

Coalition squeezing Islamic State’s funds in economic warfare campaign

The US-led coalition against the Islamic State is squeezing the group’s revenues from oil, taxation and financial markets but it needs to step up its campaign of “economic warfare”, a leading British official said Tuesday.

Air Vice-Marshal Edward Stringer, who is leading British government efforts to disrupt the Islamic State of Iraq and the the Levant’s  financing alongside international allies, said the jihadist group was showing signs of the pressure on its finances. Read more

Renegade Libyan oil shipment sets sail at behest of splinter government

The unrecognised government in eastern Libya has shipped its first cargo of crude oil in defiance of UN-backed authorities in the capital, Tripoli, in a move that could deepen the divisions that have brought chaos since the fall of Muammar Gaddafi.

The Tripoli government asked the security council on Tuesday to blacklist the Indian-flagged tanker Distya Ameya, which left the eastern Libyan port of Hariga carrying oil they said could not be lawfully sold. Read more

Prince’s Sister Says Musician Had No Will

Prince’s sister, Tyka Nelson, said the music icon had no known will and asked a Minneapolis court on Tuesday to appoint a special administrator to oversee his estate, the Associated Press reports.

Nelson — Prince’s only surviving full sibling — filed an emergency motion for “formal appointment of special administrator” at a Carver County probate court in Minneapolis, essentially asking to be appointed executor of his estate. Read more


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