Sabinews Morning News Update for August 28, 2015
APC leaders angry as Buhari appoints more northerners
There was an outrage in the ruling All Progressives Congress on Thursday over the announcement of new appointments by President Muhammadu Buhari.
Leaders of the APC, who spoke to The PUNCH, complained that the appointments tilted in favour of the North and said the party must move fast to cope with the backlash of expected rumblings in the polity. Read more
Tribunal decides Gbajabiamila’s fate next month
The National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Ikeja, will on September 29, 2015 give judgment in a petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, candidate in Surulere Federal Constituency I of Lagos State, Mr. Tony Ashikodi, challenging the declaration of the House of Representatives Majority leader Olufemi Gbajabiamila of the All Progressives Congress, APC, as the winner of the March 28, 2015 poll. Read more
Ambode shifts reforms to councils, may sack 57 Exec Secs
There are strong indications that the on-going restructuring and reforms in the Lagos State Civil Service will soon be extended to the 20 Local Governments and Local Council Development Areas, LCDAs in the state.Presently, the affairs of the councils are being managed by Executive secretaries appointed in the twilight of Governor Babatunde Fashola’s administration to replace the former chairmen after the expiration of their tenure, pending the conduct of fresh election. Read more
Senate probes Customs, FIRS over N567bn scam
The Senate on Thursday commenced investigation into the alleged unauthorised spending of N567bn being the cost of tax collected by the Nigerian Customs Service and the Federal Inland Revenue Service from January 2005 to July 2015.
A non-governmental organisation, Legislative Watch, dragged the two Federal Government agencies to the Senate through a petition that was sent to the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, on 13 August, 2015. Read more
We hid cocaine in Arik flight meals – Attendant’s accomplice
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency on Thursday said it had apprehended another employee of Arik Air, Ikechukwu Chibuzor Oliver, for his alleged involvement in the smuggling of 20kg cocaine to London on Monday.
According to the NDLEA, Oliver had confessed to the crime and had revealed that he charged N400,000 for each of the three bags containing the substance. Read more
Niger Bridge: Ex-minister dismisses Oshiomhole’s N140bn allegation
A former Minister of Works, Mr. Mike Onolememen, has denied the allegation by the Edo State Governor, Adams Oshiomhole, that the Goodluck Jonathan-administration paid the sum of N140bn to consultants for the construction of the Second Niger Bridge.
Onolememen, who made the denial in a statement signed by his media aide, Mr. Tony Ikpasaja, made available to The PUNCH on Thursday, accused the governor of misleading Nigerians with “wild and spurious” allegations. Read more
2 monarchs, one security escort kiddnaped by pirates in Bayelsa
Unidentified gunmen suspected to be sea pirates on Wednesday, attacked two passenger boats and kidnapped three persons along the Ogbia to Brass waterways in Bayelsa.
Asinim Butswat, Police Spokesman for Bayelsa Command, confirmed the development on Thursday but said that details were still sketchy, “I am waiting for details.”, Butwat said. Read more
NIMASA Assures Niger Republic of Hitch-free Cargo Transit
The acting Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Mr. Haruna Baba Jauro has restated the agency’s commitment to remove all barriers to seamless facilitation of transit cargo to the Republic of Niger through Nigeria’s seaports.
Jauro gave the assurance when the Nigerian/Nigerien Joint Commission on Transit Cargo led by the Director General of the Shippers Council of the Republic of Niger, Mr. Oumarou Issoufou paid a courtesy visit to the agency in Lagos. He noted that Nigeria and Niger can work together without barriers to ensure smooth passage of goods between both countries. Read more
Interest in Blue Chip Stocks Lifts Equities Market
Investors in the Nigerian equities market hived a sigh of relief on Thursday as the market returned to positive territory buoyed by interest in blue chip stocks.
The market has been unstable in the last few months as a result of negative investors’ sentiment fuelled by macro concerns in the economy. Read more
Nigeria’s annual tomato import bill now N16bn — Per Sec
The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Arc. Sonny Echono, has disclosed that the nation’s annual import bill on tomato has increased to N16 billion.
Echono made this known in his welcome remarks at an international workshop on ‘Development and Application of Postharvest Handling Model for Horticulture Crops’, organised under the auspices of the Korea-Africa Food and Agriculture Cooperation Initiative, KAFACI, and jointly hosted by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and Rural Development Administration of Republic of Korea in Abuja. Read more
SON targets 10% reduction in substandard goods by 2016
Hinging its new agenda on the strength of its ‘operation flush campaign’ and integration of its online platform with other stakeholders, the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has announced plans to reduce the level of substandard goods in the country by 10 per cent before end of 2016.
According to the agency, efforts are underway to stem the illicit act from the current 35 per cent to less than 10 per cent before the end of 2016. Read more
Fidelity Emerges Best Bank to Work in Nigeria
Fidelity Bank Plc has been adjudged as the best bank to work for in Nigeria. In a recent study conducted by Venture Africa, an online platform for news and analysis about African businesses, in conjunction with Jobberman.com, Fidelity Bank was the only bank among the top 12 most preferred places to work in Nigeria. Read more
Oil and Gas
Shell declares force majeure on Bonny Light exports
Barely a week after it resumed gas supplies to the Nigeria LNG Limited from the Eastern Gas Gathering System, Shell Petroleum Development Company has declared force majeure on Bonny Light crude oil exports.
Bonny Light is one of Nigeria’s main export grades. Read more
NNPC invites Forte Oil, Mobil, others for fresh crude lifting deal
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC has opened bids for the 2015/2016 award of contract to companies for the evacuation of Nigeria’s crude oil equity from the various crude and condensate production platforms.
The Corporation has however extended invitation to Forte Oil, Mobil and other companies affected in the cancellation of the deal announced earlier in the week. Read more
Delta communities threaten to shut oil facilities over DESOPADEC board
Youths of Ogulagha Kingdom, Burutu Local Government Area, Delta State, under the aegis of Ogulagha Clan Youths Association, have threatened to shut down the Forcados Terminal and the Crude Loading Platform and all oil and gas production facilities in their area.
Their grouse is that the state government did not appoint an Ogulagha native into the newly constituted board of the Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission, DESOPADEC. Read more
Filling stations reject N87 price, close stations
Petrol station owners in Umuahia, the Abia State capital, on Thursday, closed shops in protest against government’s insistence that they should dispense the premium motor spirit at the official pump price of N87 per litre.
The Department of Petroleum Resources had three weeks ago sealed off over 11 filling stations in Umuahia for selling petrol above the official pump price. Read more
KEDC New Staff Urged to Key into Firm’s Developmental Plan
The Chairman of Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company (KEDC), Alhaji Yusuf Hamisu Abubakar has tasked newly recruited staff of the company to key into the developmental plans and programmes put in place by the company to ensure uninterrupted power supply to its numerous customers.
He gave the advice at an induction programme for the new recruited workers held in Kaduna on Wednesday. Read more
Dream Team jet out Monday
Nigeria U-23 team, Dream Team VI, will fly out of the country for the All Africa Games on Monday, officials have announced.
The team, who are drawn in Group B alongside Ghana and Senegal after Egypt pulled out, will be made up of players from domestic league after overseas clubs refused to release players for the competition to be staged in Congo Brazzaville. Read more
Nigeria beat Gabon, to meet Senegal in semi-finals
Nigeria’s men’s basketball team D’Tigers on Thursday defeated Gabon 88-64 to qualify for the semi-finals of the 2015 Afrobasket. Nigeria will now face rivals Senegal in the semi-finals on Saturday after the West Africans defeated Algeria 75-58 in a late quarterfinals match. The Africa Nations Cup is holding in Tunisia.
Nigeria dominated the game all through just as they did with the Wednesday match played against Mozambique. D’Tigers outscored Gabon, 23-11 in the first quarter and then made it 26-14 in the second quarter. It was a similar pattern in the third quarters but Gabon rallied to win the fourth quarter 30-16. It made little difference as Nigeria coasted to victory. Read more
Buhari orders team Nigeria: DONT GO BELOW SECOND PLACE
Nigerian Olympic Committee (NOC) President Abu Gummel is optimistic that Team Nigeria will come good at the All Africa Games as President Buhari is sending off the team with a wish list: “Do not go below second place!” The NOC President revealed this at the unveiling of Team Nigeria kits for the Games and stated that he is hopeful it will be a splendid Championship for Nigeria as preparations are in order and prompt. Read more
Emenike returns from injury
Fit-again Emmanuel Emenike will be back to action for Al Ain against Al Jazirah in a UAE league match on Friday, officials have disclosed.
This will be cheering news for Nigeria coach Sunday Oliseh as Emenike is one of 18 foreign pros called up by Nigeria for next month’s AFCON qualifier in Tanzania. Read more
Home Eagles: Oliseh pencils down 70
Super Eagles coach, Sunday Oliseh and his assistants, have penciled down 70 home based players as they continue the task of re building the Super Eagles.
Hint to this effect was dropped yesterday in Abuja by the team’s assistant coach, Salisu Yusuf, during the Eagles’ weekly interactive session with the media. Read more
2 French journalists held for ‘attempted blackmail of Morocco king’
Two French investigative journalists were arrested on Thursday in Paris on suspicion of trying to blackmail the king of Morocco, legal sources in both countries said.
Eric Laurent and Catherine Graciet, who are working on a book about King Mohammed VI, were arrested after a meeting with a Moroccan official at which they were given money, a source close to the French investigation told AFP, confirming remarks made by a lawyer for the Moroccan government. Read more
Three killed including soldier in Boko Haram raid in Niger
Three people including a soldier were killed when suspected Boko Haram militants raided a village in southern Niger, security sources have said.
The overnight attack took place in the village of Abadam, near the border with Nigeria, earlier this week. Read more
Egypt reclaims its can-do spirit with the economy
Egyptian President Abdul Fattah Al Sissi declared August 6 a national holiday as millions of Cairo residents congregated to celebrate the grand opening of the much anticipated New Suez Canal. But the revelry — marked by flyovers, fireworks, and other nationalistic festivities — wasn’t just an acknowledgement of the newly completed 35-kilometre canal.
Instead, it was Egypt’s way of proclaiming proudly to the world — “We’re back.” Read more
MPs reject nuclear energy plans
The Committee on the Implementation of House Resolutions yesterday disagreed with the Ministry of Energy over Kenya’s capacity to develop nuclear energy.
The Committee was reacting to a presentation by Emuhaya MP Wilber Otichilo urging the government to shift its attention from nuclear power and instead invest in developing renewable energy. Read more
Uganda does not have extra sugar – Kituyi
The United Nations trade chief yesterday refuted claims that Uganda has surplus sugar.
United Nations Conference on Trade and Development secretary general Mukhisa Kituyi warned that Uganda could be used as a conduit for illegal sugar into Kenya, as it has no capacity to export. Read more
Hundreds feared dead after boat carrying migrants capsizes off coast of Libya
Hundreds of people are feared to have drowned after a boat packed with migrants sank off the coast of Libya, trapping many in the hold.
Around half of the 400 people on board are believed to have died when the boat capsized, having set off from the western town of Zuwara. Read more
Chinese shares continue their recovery
Chinese shares extended their recovery on the last day of a volatile week which started with shock losses that spread fear to global markets.
The mainland’s benchmark Shanghai Composite was up by 1.1% at 3,123.04 points in early trade. Read more
Thousands march in Guatemala to pressure president to resign
Tens of thousands of Guatemalans took to the streets on Thursday to demand the resignation of President Otto Perez, who has refused to quit in the face of accusations by his attorney general that he was involved in a lucrative customs racket.
Carrying banners proclaiming, “Guatemala has no president,” demonstrators staged marches from the capital to the regions while businesses ranging from McDonald’s restaurants to brewery Cerveceria Centro Americana closed in support of the protest. Read more
Malaysia blocks protesters’ website on eve of mass rally
Malaysian authorities have blocked access to the website of a civil society group that called for massive anti-government demonstrations this weekend, while a domestic news portal said the military could intervene if the protests get out of hand.
Pro-democracy group Bersih is demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Najib Razak over allegations of graft and financial mismanagement at debt-laden state fund 1MDB and a multi-million-dollar donation made into his personal account. Read more
Saudi Arabia Is Reporting a Surge in MERS Deaths
A rash of fatalities from Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) has been reported in Saudi Arabia, where 19 people have died after contracting the disease this week alone.
Including the recent spate, the kingdom’s Health Ministry has recorded 502 fatalities and 1,171 reported cases since June 2012 when the virus first appeared, reports Agence France-Presse. Read more
Thailand issues arrest warrant for suspect in second blast
An arrest warrant has been issued for an unnamed suspect in a bomb blast at a Bangkok pier that took place a day after Thailand’s worst ever-bombing killed 20 people at a popular shrine, Thai police said on Friday.
Police spokesman Prawut Thawornsiri said a court issued the warrant based on grainy video footage of a man in a blue shirt kicking a bag into the water near the pier on the night of Aug. 17, soon after the blast at Bangkok’s Hindu Erawan Shrine. Read more