March 23, 2019

*Buhari Sends Names of Ministerial Nominees to Replace Ocholi, Mohammed *CBN Lowers Dollar Rate for BDCs to N360/$1

*Buhari Sends Names of Ministerial Nominees to Replace Ocholi, Mohammed *CBN Lowers Dollar Rate for BDCs to N360/$1



Buhari Sends Names of Ministerial Nominees to Replace Ocholi, Mohammed

President Muhammadu Buhari Tuesday night forwarded the names of two ministerial nominees to the Senate as replacements for the late Mr. James Enojo Ocholi (SAN) and Mrs. Amina Mohammed, THISDAY has learnt. Although the names of the two nominees could not be verified at press time, a presidency source confirmed that the letter had been sent to Senate President Bukola Saraki, who will be expected to read the president’s letter on the nominations at plenary on Wednesday.  Read more

CBN Lowers Dollar Rate for BDCs to N360/$1

In line with its resolve to achieve a rate convergence, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Tuesday lowered the rate at which dollar inflows from International Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs) are sold to Bureau De Change (BDC) operators to N360/$1, from N381/$1.

With this directive, BDCs are now expected to sell the greenback to retail end-users at not more than N362/$1, lower than N400/$1 it was sold in this segment of the market. Read more

Concerns mounting over acrimonious politics in Anambra ahead of guber poll

Concerns are high that violence, hate speech and character assassination may define the November 18 governorship election in Anambra state. Some individuals and groups have cried out against the silent departure by gladiators from issue-based politics that usually characterise governorship elections in the state.

Recently, the state chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Ken Emeakayi, sent a petition to Governor Willie Obiano, narrating how the governor and his aides descended on him shortly after he observed some constitutional breaches by the governor. Read more

NACA charges government on improved funding for HIV/AIDS campaign

The National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) has stated the need for the Federal Government to allocate more funds to tackle the Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) and the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).

Answering questions from media practitioners yesterday in Jalingo, the Taraba State capital, the NACA Head of Corporations and Media Communication, Toyin Aderibigbe said due to the mass departure of international donor agencies, the government should budget more money for the HIV/AIDS campaign. Read more

IGP redeploys senior officers

The Inspector General of Police (IGP), Ibrahim Idris has redeployed some senior officers.

The officers involved are the Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG) in charge of Zone 2 Command, comprising Lagos and Ogun states, Mr. Kayode Cornelius Aderanti; Imo State Commissioner of Police (CP), Taiwo Frederick Lakanu and the Commandant at Police College, Ikeja, CP Chris Okey Ezike. Read more

NAFDAC assures foreign investors of enabling business environment

The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), charged with the responsibility of safeguarding public health, has assured foreign investors of an enabling business environment that would benefit the food and drug sector.

The Acting Director General, NAFDAC, Mrs. Yetunde Oluremi Oni, gave the assurance at the Indian Professional Forum (IPF), with the theme: “Creating an enabling e-regulatory environment in NAFDAC – a panacea to ease of doing business,” Read more

Osinbajo, Govs, Ministers, Others Honour Tinubu At 65

Prominent Nigerians including Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo; former Vice President, Namadi Sambo, the President of Dangote Group, AlhajiAliko Dangote,  former and serving governors, Senators, politicians, entrepreneurs, among others yesterday converged on Lagos to honour former governor of Lagos State and National Leader of All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu who clocked 65. Read more

Police Parade 4 Kidnap Suspects, 2 Cultists

The Nigeria Police has paraded a gang of four kidnap suspects and two cultists for kidnapping, armed robbery and cultism in Rivers and other States in the South-South zone.
Parading the suspects yesterday in Abuja, force public relations officer CSP Jimoh Moshood said the IGP’s monitoring team raided a kidnappers hideout at Umuike Allu on March 20 and 23,2017 and rescued the victim and arrested the criminals. Read more

Attempts to Cause Rift Between Buhari and Osinbajo Have Failed, Says Tinubu

The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief Bola Tinubu, has said that critics of the administration failed in their attempt to cause a rift between President Muhammadu Buhari and his deputy, Yemi Osinbajo, during the president’s medical vacation. Read more

Senate Defers Action on REC Nominees over President’s Inaction on Magu

Miffed at the continued retention of Mr. Ibrahim Magu in an acting capacity as Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Senate on Tuesday declined to begin the process of screening and confirming the 27 persons nominated by President Muhammadu Buhari as Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Read more

 ‘Nigeria To Save N1.52trn Annually By Reducing Importation Of Software’

Nigeria will save about $147 billion it spends on importation of software in three years if the country begins to develop and consume its indigenous technologies.
The director general of National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Dr Isa Ibrahim Pantai, who disclosed this exclusively to LEADERSHIP yesterday hintedthat the nation could save whooping N1.52 trillion annually by drastically cutting down on importation of software. Read more

Ngilari’s Bail Followed Due Process, Says Counsel

The embattled ex-governor of Adamawa State, Bala James Ngilari, has said his bail was in accordance with the 1999 Constitution.

Ngilari was recently sentenced to five years in prison by a Yola High Court presided over by Justice Nathan Musa for corruption and the same court on Monday also granted the ex-governor bail based on his present medical condition in prison. Read more

Suswam’s Trial Stalled over DSS Detention

The trial of former Benue State Governor, Gabriel Suswam, and the state Commissioner for Finance during his administration, Omodachi Okolobia, was yesterday stalled due to Suswam’s absence in court. Suswam and Okolobia are facing trial for allegedly defrauding the state government of the sum of N3.1billion while in office.

They were on November 10, 2015, arraigned before Justice Ahmed Mohammed of the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on a nine-count charge bordering on allegations of financial impropriety and money laundering. Read more

Environment law: Lagos Govt makes u-turn on anti-people provisions 

The Lagos State Government has received a pat on the back for expunging anti-people provisions of the recently unveiled environment laws, a situation which stakeholders say will alleviate the sufferings of the masses.
The state government had penultimate week unveiled environmental laws that attracted public outcry due to the anti-people perception of some sections of the laws. The perception made a lot of professional groups and some concerned citizens to threaten legal action if the anti-people sections of the laws were not repealed Read more

Eko Atlantic City launches water system modular

One of the world’s newest advanced cities built adjacent to Victoria Island in Lagos, Nigeria,  Eko Atlantic City, has announced the ongoing construction of its ultra-modern centralised 24/7 water system designed to simultaneously supply Phases 1 & 2 of the city with water.
The water system construction, according to the promoters, satisfies “stringent international standards for construction of water treatment centres”, supplied by Degrémont, Suez-environment, a reputable company known for its worldwide supply of water treatment equipment. Read more

Stakeholders tackle FG over 2nd Niger Bridge project

For not seeing any tangible efforts of the Federal Government in the direction of the second Niger Bridge, stakeholders, mostly from the eastern part of the country, have decried the lacklustre attitude of government in the construction of the bridge.
The stakeholders who spoke independently believe that government is tactically waiting to use the bridge as a campaign tool for the forthcoming elections. They said that the inability of government to finish this project since 1970 when it was first touted has remained a scar on the government’s policy of three Rs, the policy of Reconciliation, Reconstruction and Rehabilitation. Read more

Abuja Airport will Reopen on April 19, Sirika Insists

The Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, yesterday reassured Nigerians and aviation stakeholders around the world that the April 19 date fixed for the return of flight operations to the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, was very much within reach and would certainly be achieved.

Answering question on THISDAY sister news network, Arise Television, anchored by Charles Aniagolu, Sirika noted that all the milestones and timelines set to ensure the completion and reopening of the airport on the said date are being met by contractors and workers handling the project. Read more

Shema’s appeal forces adjournment of N10bn fraud case

A Katsina High Court on Tuesday adjourned sitting till June 6 in the hearing of the an alleged N10bn corruption suit brought before it by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission against a former governor, Ibrahim Shema, and three others.

Justice Maikaita Bako gave the adjournment to give room for the determination of an Appeal Court’s decision on ‘a motion of stay of proceedings’ brought before it by Shema. Read more

FIRS: Reps probe non-remittance of N5.6bn by FMBN

The House of Representatives has mandated its Committees on Finance, Housing and Urban Development and Regional Planning to investigate allegations of non-remittance of tax to the value N5.6 billion by the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) to the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).
The mandate of the House was sequel to the adoption of a motion on the urgent need to investigate the non-remittance of N5.6 billion to the FIRS by FMBN, sponsored by Ossai Nicholas Ossa and Victor Nwokolo. Read more

NHIS removes 23,000 ghost enrollees from health insurance scheme

The National Health Insurance Scheme says it has removed 23,000 ghost enrolees, who have been enjoying the benefits of the insurance scheme, from it.

The Executive Secretary, NHIS, Prof. Usman Yusuf, disclosed this in Abuja on Tuesday at the award of ISO/IEC 20000 standard certification to Galaxy Backbone Plc. Read more

Senate: Seized Range Rover N62.5m, Not N298m

The Senate yesterday clarified that the bullet proof Range Rover Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) purchased by the National Assembly as part of the convoy of the Senate President was procured at the sum of N62.5million not N298 million as had been reported in the media.

It was imported into Nigeria for the sum of $298,000 in 2015, at an exchange rate of N165 to a dollar, the Senate clarified, adding that the vehicle was purchased from the dealer to who it was consigned for N62.5million. Read more

Oil Prices Rise over Libyan Output Disruption

Crude oil prices rose yesterday following a severe disruption in the Libyan oil production and comments by officials of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) that the cartel could extend their production cuts to the end of the year.

OPEC and non-OPEC Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JMMC) had last Sunday agreed to review whether the global deal to curb oil output should be extended by six months. Read more

Afenifere Sets up Panel to Compile Disturbances by Herdsmen

The pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, yesterday said it had set up a panel to compile disturbances of herdsmen in the South-west and compile the reports for action.

The Publicity Secretary of the organisation, Mr. Yinka Odumakin, disclosed the decision of the group in a communiqué issued at the end of the meeting of the association held at the residence of leader of the group, Pa Reuben Fasoranti in Akure, the Ondo State capital. Read more

RMAFC: N37.5bn Paid as Compensation to Cross River for Loss of 76 Oil Wells

The federal government has disclosed that as of February 2017, Cross River State received the sum of N37.5 billion as compensation for the loss of its 76 oil wells to Akwa Ibom State in 2012.

The oil wells were transferred to Akwa Ibom State by the RMAFC following Nigeria’s loss of the Bakassi peninsula to the Republic of Cameroun courtesy of the October 10, 2002 judgment of the International Court of Justice (ICJ). Read more

Body found floating in hotel’s swimming pool in Lokoja

Tragedy yesterday occurred in Lokoja, the Kogi State capital, when the body of a young man identified as Mohammed Suberu, was found floating in the swimming pool of Idrinana Hotel, located in Phase Two area of Lokongoma.

The deceased was said to have gone to the hotel to swim on Monday morning, only for his lifeless body to be found later floating in the pool. Read more

Police arrest suspected fake tyre vendor at Ladipo Spare-parts Market

The Lagos State police command has arrested two men, who allegedly specialise in changing the expiry date of used vehicle tyres, engine and chassis numbers.

The men, who claimed to be traders at the popular Ladipo Spare-parts Market, Mushin, were arrested while changing the expiry date of dozens of used tyres inside the market. Read more

House summons NNPC GMD, CNS, Lubcom MD over crude lifting

The House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee on Review of Pump Price of Petroleum Products, yesterday, summoned Group Managing Director of NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru; Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ekwe Ibas and Managing Director of Lubcon Oil to appear before it April 7 to explain issues concerning foreign exchange claims and lifting of crude oil by some companies not qualified to do so, Vanguard reports. Read more

NCDMB, others plan knowledge sharing sessions on Egina FPSO

Plans are underway by the Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board (NCDMB) and other critical stakeholders to organise knowledge sharing session on the Egina Floating, Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) units.

The Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Simbi Wabote, who disclosed this after inspecting the Samsung Heavy Industry (SHI) yard in Geoje, South Korea where the Total Upstream Nigeria Egina’s FPSO is undergoing construction, explained that the one-day knowledge sharing session on Nigerian Content would enable International Oil Companies (IOCs) share strategies they deployed on their projects. Read more

Adeduntan: Economic Recession Offers Windows of Investment Opportunities

The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, First Bank of Nigeria Limited and Subsidiaries, Dr. Adesola Adeduntan has said that economic recession facing the country presently also offers windows of opportunities for investors.

The FirstBank boss said this in a keynote address he delivered at the KPMG Alumni Cocktail held in Lagos recently. Read more

CBN Declares Tomorrow Financial Literacy Day

As Nigeria joins the rest of the world to mark this year’s Global Money Week, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has declared March 30,2017 Financial Literacy Day.

Working in collaboration with 29 financial institutions and Junior Achievement Nigeria (JAN), the CBN also directed chief executives of banks across the nation to, on the stated date, visit over 800 schools in the 36 states to teach financial literacy curriculum provided by Junior Achievement Nigeria. Read more

States’ external debts hit $3.5b

The external debt of state governments stood at $3.57 billion as at last December. In a report, FBNQuest said the debt figures declined by $90 million over six months, and that the fall reflects not the fiscal prudence of the states but that of the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN).

In a report titled: “Few borrowing options for states”, the firm, an investment and research arm of FBN Holdings, said in an emailed report, said the FGN guarantees these debt obligations and clearly has reservations on credit grounds. Read more

Report: Exchange Rate Stability, Surest Way to Restoring Investor Confidence

For Nigeria to realise the much-needed investor confidence required to stimulate its economy, limit inflation and ensuring the availability of goods, it must ensure that it achieves exchange rate stability, a report by the Financial Derivatives Company Limited (FDC) has stated.

It also advised the federal government to shun policy inconsistency, political interference Read more

Rohr, NFF push for Everton’s Lookman

Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr is pushing hard on all fronts to convince  Everton wonderkid Ademola Lookman  to switch his international allegiance to Nigeria.

Rohr, receiving the backing from the Nigeria Football Federation, appears to have succeeded in  convincing Chelsea right-back Ola Aina and Arsenal forward Chuba Akpom to choose Nigeria ahead of England, after the England-born players took part in a closed-door friendly match  between two teams formed from the Super  Eagles squad in London on Monday. Read more

Visa problems: Eagles to avoid London

Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr has claimed the Super Eagles will avoid future friendly internationals in London after the country’s game against Burkina Faso scheduled for Monday was cancelled, according to Newsweek.

Burkina Faso, the third-placed finisher at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations, had been expected to provide stiff opposition for Rohr’s team as it builds towards FIFA 2018 World Cup qualifiers in August and September against Cameroon. Read more

Chuba Akpom dumps England for Nigeria

Arsenal youngster, Chuba Akpom, is set to commit his international future to Nigeria according to The Independent of London.
Although Chuba Akpom has represented England at most youth levels, he is set to join the list of English-born youngsters declaring to play for Nigeria. The Arsenal striker has been training with the Nigeria squad in Barnet this week, as part of the Nigerian Football Federation’s (NFF) initiative to recruit the next generation of young players.
The NFF has been pushing to recruit players for their 2018 World Cup and 2019 Africa Cup of Nations campaigns. Akpom is currently on loan with Brighton and Hove Albion in the Championship and seems likely to join Arsenal teammate and long-term friend, Alex Iwobi in playing for Nigeria. Read more

Nasarawa Won’t Defend against Pillars in Today’s Midweek Clash

Nasarawa United Kabiru Dogo has warned Kano Pillars that the Solid Miners won’t play a defensive formation when they clash in today.

Dogo and his men surprised Sai Masu Gida two seasons ago when they halted their unbeaten sequence at home in a landmark 2-1 away win in Kano and the Nasarawa United coach revealed ahead of the today’s tie that they are coming with another strategy that will hand Pillars another home defeat. Read more

Merseyside derby: Adam Lallana ruled of Liverpool’s clash against Everton with thigh injury

Liverpool have been hit with a significant injury blow ahead of the Merseyside derby on Saturday (1 April) after Adam Lallana returned from England duty with a thigh injury.

The midfielder has been ruled out for the visit of Everton after suffering a kick to the thigh in the latter stages of the Three Lions’ 2-0 win over Lithuania at Wembley Stadium on Sunday (26 March). Read more

Neymar on target as Brazil rout Paraguay 3-0

Goals from Philippe Coutinho, Neymar and Marcelo fired Brazil to a 3-0 victory over Paraguay in their World Cup qualifier here as the Selecao extended their winning run to eight matches.

The result at Corinthians Arena lifted Brazil to 33 points from 14 matches and all but guaranteed the five-time world champions a place at football’s showpiece tournament in Russia next year. Read more


Hours after Lionel Messi was suspended by FIFA for four World Cup qualifying matches, Argentina lost 2-0 to Bolivia in the altitude of La Paz on Tuesday and heightened its risk of missing a spot at Russia 2018.

Argentina’s archrival and tournament leader Brazil, meanwhile, had a 3-0 win over Paraguay to assure it cannot finish lower than fifth in qualifying – a spot which guarantees at least a playoff against a team from Oceania for a place in the World Cup. Read more

Chelsea to sell Diego Costa to fund deals for Alexis Sanchez, Eden Hazard

Antonio Conte has instructed Chelsea’s recruitment team to make Alexis Sanchez their No. 1 transfer target this summer, according to the Guardian, with the Chilean dazzling on Tuesday night for La Roja in their 3-1 win over Venezuela.

A sublime free kick maintained a quite remarkable season for the former Barcelona man for both club and country, and the Blues are now growing in confidence that they can lure the 28-year-old across the capital. Read more

Twenty years for serial bank robber who stepped out of Hollywood movie plot

California man who prosecutors say led a gang of burglars in a decade-long string of Hollywood-style bank robberies, rappelling through roofs in matching outfits and carrying walkie-talkies, has been sentenced to 20 years in prison.

Alceu Johnny Andreis, who was already serving 51 months behind bars for an attempted bank robbery in 2014, was also ordered by a federal judge to pay $12m in restitution and forfeit two Mercedes-Benz cars and four Ducati motorcycles purchased with his proceeds. Read more

French presidential candidate Francois Fillon’s wife charged in connection with alleged ‘fake jobs’ scandal

The wife of French presidential candidate Francois Fillon has been handed preliminary charges in connection with the alleged “fake jobs” scandal.

It is claimed that Mr Fillon employed his wife and two of their children as taxpayer-funded parliamentary aides, but that they never carried out these roles. Read more

We need a pragmatic Brexit deal to protect the interests of savers across Europe

The stage is set later today for one of the most pivotal moments in modern European history. The clock will start ticking on the 730 day timeframe that the UK has to leave the EU and detach itself from 44 years of membership of European economic and political union.

While politics will inevitably be a big driving force in the Article 50 negotiations, many businesses are hoping that economic imperatives and pragmatism will act as a counter to some of the more heated national debates.  Read more

UN experts call on UAE to release detained activist

A group of UN experts on Tuesday called on the United Arab Emirates to immediately release a leading human rights activist, saying his arrest was a “direct attack” on the work of rights defenders.

Three independent experts with the UN human rights office in Geneva also demanded information about the whereabouts of Ahmed Mansoor, saying his secret detention in the UAE puts him at the risk of ill-treatment and torture. Read more

Anti-abortion activists charged over undercover Planned Parenthood videos

California prosecutors have charged two anti-abortion activists who made undercover videos of themselves trying to buy fetal tissue from Planned Parenthood with 15 felonies, saying they invaded the privacy of medical providers by filming without consent. State attorney general Xavier Becerra announced the charges on Tuesday against David Daleiden of Davis, California, and Sandra Merritt of San Jose. The two operate the Irvine-based Center for Medical Progress. Read more




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