*Count us out of Jonathan’s campaign funds –PDP*  *U.S. to deny violence-promoting politicians visas*

*Count us out of Jonathan’s campaign funds –PDP*  *U.S. to deny violence-promoting politicians visas*

MORNING-NEWS-adSabinews Morning News Update for April 21, 2015

 

National News

 

Count us out of Jonathan’s campaign funds –PDP

Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) National Working Committee (NWC) has distanced itself from the controversy surrounding the handling of the PDP presidential campaign funds.

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A national daily, at the weekend had reported that President Goodluck Jonathan had set up a committee to audit how the party’s national secretariat and state chapters spent the campaign funds. Read more

U.S. to deny violence-promoting politicians visas

The United States will sanction Nigerian politicians who attempted or instigated violence during the elections, the Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Ms Linda Thomas-Greenfield, has said.

She said the U.S. will impose visa restrictions on any Nigerian found to have incited violence or interfered with the electoral process. Read more

Drag South Africa to African Commission over attacks, SERAP tells FG

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has urged the Federal Government to take legal action against the South African government before the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights to seek effective remedies, including adequate compensation, for Nigerian victims of xenophobic attacks in that country.

In a statement yesterday by SERAP Executive Director, Adetokunbo Mumuni, the organization said: “Several Nigerians have been attacked and lost more than 21 million rand (N1.2 million) in the ongoing xenophobic attacks in South Africa. This is unacceptable as it clearly violates the obligations of South Africa under the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights. These serious human rights abuses call for strong and decisive action from our government. Read more

How Indian firm shortchanges Nigeria

An Indian firm, Deekay and Sons (NIG) Limited has been discovered to have been shortchanging the federal government of an estimated N300 million every other month, in underpayments and wrong classification. This is one of the several revenue leakages plaguing the country, currently grappling with economic woes foisted on it by fall in oil prices and a devalued currency in the last few months.

Although the Apapa Area One Command of the Nigeria Customs Service often slams Deekay and Sons Limted with DEBIT NOTE (DN) because of underpayments and wrong classification, but are described as ridiculously low DN compared to the gravity of the offence that is even supposed to attract outright seizure in line with the Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA). Read more

US Govt to Partner Nigeria on Police Training

The United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Ambassador James Entwistle, has pledged that his government will partner the country in the area of police training.

Entwistle, who stated this during a courtesy visit to the Police Headquarters, Abuja, yesterday commended the Nigeria Police for the brilliant performance exhibited by officers and men of the force during the just concluded general election.  Read more

Courier operators seek passage of Postal Commission Bill

Citing lack of appropriate regulatory agency as cause of the stagnation in the courier sector, the Association of Nigeria Courier Operators (ANCO) has called on the National Assembly to pass the Postal Commission Bill before the expiration of its tenure in June.

President of the Association, Siyanbola Oladapo said at a media parley in Lagos that the refusal to pass the bill by the 6th and now the 7th National Assembly, which is winding down its activities, has retarded the growth of the industry. Read more

Military ties with Chad, others’ll be sustained –Buhari

The President-elect, Muhammadu Buhari, has promised that his government will not terminate the military collaboration Nigeria has with Cameroon, Niger and Chad to fight the Boko Haram insurgency.

Buhari said this when Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State led a delegation from the state on a congratulatory visit to Buhari. Read more

Deputy Clerk of Bayelsa Assembly Shot Dead in Yenagoa

The rising spate of violence in Bayelsa State continued at the weekend as the Deputy Clerk of the state House of Assembly, Hon. Geoffrey Nemine, was shot dead in his Yenagoa home.

The killing coincided with the admission by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the state that there were “pockets” of violence involving some ad hoc staff who were hospitalised following injuries sustained during last Saturday’s polls in the state. Read more

Crisis Rocks Enugu APC over N400m Campaign Fund

A major crisis has engulfed the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Enugu State over alleged mismanagement of over N400 million meant for the March 28 presidential and National Assembly elections in the state.

In a well-worded petition to the party’s National Chairman, John  Odigie Oyegun, four state officers of the party blamed the alleged mismanagement and incompetence on the part of the state Chairman, Dr. Ben Nwoye, for the dismal performance of the opposition party at the just concluded presidential and National Assembly election in Enugu State.  Read more

Ebonyi Assembly Freezes State, Local Govt Joint Account

In apparent continuation of the face-off between the Ebonyi State Governor, Chief Martin Elechi and the state legislators, the state House of Assembly monday froze the joint accounts of the state and local governments operated by the present administration in the state.

The lawmakers also raised the alarm over the level of fraud and financial misappropriation going on in the local government system and the unchecked expenditure of funds by the state government to any party of their choice without any due process. Read more

Judicial worker bags 3 years jail for fraud

A member of staff of the Lagos State Judiciary attached to the probate section of the state High Court, Ikeja, Mrs. Bukola Adeosun, has been jailed for three years for stealing government money.

Justice Latifa Okunnu of Ikeja High Court sentenced Adeosun to jail yesterday on a three-count charge of conspiracy, stealing and alteration preferred against her by the prosecution. Read more

I should have killed myself-Robbery suspect

An armed robbery suspect, Williams (other names withheld), has regretted not killing himself before his arrest.

Williams, who is detained at the State Anti Robbery Squad(SARS) of the Lagos State Police Command, has just been released from prison for the same offence of armed robbery. Read more

Land dispute turns bloody in Ogun

A middle-aged man, Sadiq Olapade, is now lying critically ill following gunshot injuries sustained when he was allegedly shot by suspected thugs on a disputed land at Agbodi village in Mowe area of Obafemi Owode Local Government in Ogun State.

The land had been the bone of contention between Deeper Life Christian Ministry and Sofidiya family of Agbodi. Read more

 

Economy

 

Oil Shortfall: FG Resorts to VAT

As Nigeria continues grapple with the challenges of shocks arising from over 50 per cent revenue loss due to falling oil prices, the coordinating minister for the economy and minister of finance Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, said there was the need for harmonisation of taxes in Nigeria to allow the country focus on VAT, adding that currently, there were too many levies and taxes and charges. Read more

‘Nigeria’s most resilient economy in Africa’

Despite facing criticisms and attacks for its policies over the past four years, the Federal Government, Thursday, said the transmission economic management apparatus to the incoming government next month would be smooth and seamless.

The Finance Minister and Coordinating Minister for the Economy(CME), Dr. (Mrs.), Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, who gave the assurance while speaking to African Banker magazine in Washington DC, the United States of America, stated that despite having the toughest opposition, the Jonathan administration has left a legacy of an economy with very strong fundamentals and would therefore want his successor to build and improve on the foundation already laid. Read more

IMF boss, Lagarde cautions Nigeria on public spending

Despite apparent discomfort many Nigerians feel when government cuts down on public spending, especially regarding removal of oil subsidy, the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, Ms Christine Lagarde has urged government to be extremely cautious in its public spending.

Addressing a world press conference in Washington DC as part of the activities lined up for the IMF Spring meetings (2015), the IMF boss, noting that the country is already making efforts in this direction, however, stated that the momentum must be intensified. Read more

Lagos, 10 others benefit from N75bn World Bank agric funding

World Bank has spent $380 million (N75, 240,000,000) in the last eight years to develop agriculture in Lagos and other parts of Nigeria.

It was gathered that of the total sum, $180 million was spent on Commercial Agriculture Development Project, CADP, while $200 million was spent on National Fadama Development Project, FADAMA. Read more

Celebrities rally to end poverty at grassroots

Worried by the dwindling economic fortunes ­in the country, which has plunged greater percentage of citizens into abject poverty, some Nigerian celebrities, activists and artists at the weekend staged a campaign to propagate the need to end deepening poverty level in the country.

Gathered in Abuja under the auspices of One Campaign Organization, a campaign and advocacy organization of more than six million people taking action to end extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa, called on world leaders to take urgent action for women’s empowerment ahead of the establishment of the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals. Read more

Sterling Bank’s Q1 profit rises by 25% to N3.9b

Sterling Bank has recorded a 25 percent increase in its profit after tax for the first quarter ended March 31st, 2015, demonstrating the lender’s ability to sustain its growth in spite of industry headwinds.

According to key extracts of the results released on Monday at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), which showed appreciable growth in all key performance indices, the Bank’s profit after tax leapt from N3.1 billion to N3.9billion year-on-year. Read more

NSE market cap drops N96.585b

After a halt to the free fall on the floor of The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) on Friday, trading closed negative again on Monday when two of the basis indicators, the All Share Index and market capitalisation, closed southward when they shed 0.81percent each.

The All Share Index shed 283.44 basis points or 0.81 percent to close at 34,721.61 as against 35,005.05 points recorded at the weekend, while market capitalization went down by N96.585 billion to close at N11.831 trillion as against N11.9284 trillion recorded on Friday. Read more

 

Oil and Gas

 

China may cut oil imports from Nigeria over slow GDP growth

Baring any future change in its financial fortunes, Nigeria’s incoming administration may yet be confronted with more challenges delivering on its campaign promises from May 29, as China, the country’s largest crude oil buyer, may soon cut its imports over declining GDP growth.

The development is coming against the backdrop of anticipated increase in government security spending in its buildup to curtail terror threats in the North East and fixing key infrastructure, which formed part of its campaign promises. Read more

NLNG remits $21bn to JV feed gas suppliers

The Nigeria LNG Limited, NLNG, said it had spent over $21 billion as payment to Joint Ventures, JV, feed gas suppliers from inception till date, adding that 55 to 60 percent of this amount went to the Federation Account via its shareholding in the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC.

According to its publication titled, Nigeria LNG Limited: Facts and figures on NLNG 2015, the Company stated that it has utilised gas that would otherwise be flared, thus resulting to a significant contribution to the nation’s income while helping to protect the environment. Read more

Nigeria missing on treaty list to end gas flare out by 2030

Four African countries, Angola, Cameroon, the Republic of Congo and Gabon were among nine leading global crude oil producers that joined chief executives of major oil companies to agree with senior government officials to ending gas flaring at oil production fields by 2030.

It was, however, not clear why Nigeria, reputed as Africa’s largest crude oil and gas producer, was not listed among the signatories to the treaty even when she is faced with severe challenges arising from gas flaring at onshore/offshore production sites by international oil companies, including Shell. Read more

FAAC raises panel over NNPC’s unremitted $1.48bn

The Federation Account Allocation Committee on Monday night constituted a committee to find out the reasons for the delay in the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation to make $1.48bn available to the three tiers of government.

PriceWaterHouse Coopers had in the report of its forensic audit report of the corporation recommended that the NNPC should refund the amount to the Federation Account. Read more

Oil Spill: Delta Community Gives NPDC 14-day Ultimatum

Fledging indigenous oil company, Nigeria Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), has been slammed an odd demand by the Odidi community in Warri South-west Local Government Area of Delta State in connection with an oil spill in the area.

The people of Odidi have given the NPDC a 14-day ultimatum to restore the four lives lost to a fire explosion on Odidi river on April 4 this year or face a possible disruption of the company’s operations in the area. Read more

Oil communities, SPDC differ over oil spill in Bayelsa

Communities in Ogbia Local Government Area in Bayelsa State are worried over the delay in cleaning up the oil spill at Kolo Creek by the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC).

The Bayelsa State Commissioner for Environment, Mr. Iniruo Wills, had visited the site shortly after the oil spillage, warning that the state government would hold oil companies accountable for damage done to the economy. Read more

$3.8b Egina contract: Total, others accused of frustrating suit

The plaintiff in the suit before a Federal High Court in Lagos, challenging the $3.8bn Egina contract awarded to Samsung Heavy Industries Nigeria by Total Upstream Nigeria for the engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning of the Egina FPSO, has accused the defendants of frustrating the suit.

Defendants in the suit are Attorney General of the Federation; National Petroleum Investment Management Services, NAPIMS; Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board, NCDMB; Samsung Heavy Industry and Total Upstream. Read more

 

World News

 

‘No Britons killed in Dominican Republic plane crash’

Enquiries suggest no Britons were involved in a plane crash in the Dominican Republic which killed seven people.

A spokesman from the Foreign Office said: “We are liaising with the authorities in the Dominican Republic following reports of a plane crash in the Punta Cana region of the country. Read more

Fierce Storm Lashes Southeast Australia; 3 Feared Dead

A fierce storm lashing Australia’s southeast destroyed homes, left dozens stranded in swirling floodwaters and may have led to the deaths of three people, officials said Tuesday.

The storm, which has been pounding Sydney and other parts of New South Wales state since Monday, has dumped more than 30 centimeters (a foot) of rain in some areas, with wind gusts more than 100 kilometers (60 miles) per hour. Read more

After tasting power, former Egyptian president Mursi awaits sentencing

Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Mursi will stand in a court cage on Tuesday as a judge announces his fate nearly three years after he was declared Egypt’s first freely elected president.

The fall of veteran autocrat Hosni Mubarak in 2011 paved the way for what was unthinkable for decades – the Brotherhood ruling the most populous Arab country. Read more

First infant MRI study finds babies feel pain “like adults”

The brains of babies “light up” in a similar way to adults when exposed to the same painful stimulus, suggesting they feel pain much like adults do, researchers said on Tuesday.

In the first of its kind study using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), scientists from Britain’s Oxford University found that 18 of the 20 brain regions active in adults experiencing pain were also active in babies. Read more

 

Sports

 

Nigerian Ref Makes History in Seychelles

Nigerian Referee Jelili Ogunmuyiwa was full of praises for the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) President, Amaju Melvin Pinnick, after making history on Sunday as the first Nigerian in recent memory to take charge of a CAF Championship final.

Ogunmuyiwa, 36, was selected by the Confederation of African Football to take charge of the final match of the 2015 African Beach Soccer Championship, between Madagascar and Senegal in Victoria, Seychelles. Read more

Nigerian Business Golfers Cancel South African Trip

The spate of attacks against foreigners in South Africa has made a group of Nigerian private investors to cancel a scheduled golf trip to the country.

The group similarly shelved the Kenyan leg of the itinerary in relation to the recent killing of about 200 students at the Ganessa University, Kenya by Al-Shabab terrorist group. Read more

Two Refs Suspended for Rest of Glo League Season

Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) referees, John Charles and Ogunta Matador, have been suspended for the rest of the season by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).

The decision to suspend the referees was reached monday by the NFF Referees Committee  after reviewing the performance of the duo in the Sunshine Stars versus Dolphins FC in Akure last Sunday. Read more

12-year-old Wins Scholarship at Greensprings/ Kanu Football Camp

For emerging as the best player at the 4th Greensprings Kanu Football Camp, 12-year-old Similoluwa Gbenle has been awarded scholarship by the management of the Greensprings School to enable him complete his secondary school education at the highbrow school.

The camp which concluded it 2015 edition at the Lekki campus of Greensprings in Lagos had over 100 participants drawn from Lagos, Ogun, and Rivers states including the Federal Capital Territory. Read more

Rangers coach escapes mob attack after loss

Enugu Rangers coach Kelechi Emeteole had to be whisked away from a mob of angry fans by security after his club slumped to a 1-0 home loss to Giwa.

Emeteole has blamed luck for the setback on Sunday. Read more

Chelsea could Face Arsenal without a Striker after Injury Blow

Chelsea are facing a striker crisis ahead of their clash against Arsenal this weekend, with Didier Drogba the latest to sustain an injury, according to reports from the Express.

Drogba was unable to feature in a charity ‘Match against Poverty’ in France due to an ankle problem following 90 minutes against Manchester United on Saturday. Read more

Desisa is Boston Marathon Champ

Ethiopia’s Lelisa Desisa won the Boston Marathon title Monday, winning his second crown in three years on the eve of the sentencing phase for convicted marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
Desisa won the 26.2 mile race in an unofficial time of two hours, nine minutes and 17 seconds, finishing more than a half a minute ahead of runner-up and Ethiopian compatriot Yemane Adhane Tsegay who clocked 2hr:09.48. Read more

Keshi blames NFF for delay in contract renewal

Former Super Eagles Head Coach, Stephen Keshi, is blaming the Nigeria Football Federation for the delay in renewing his contract with the federation.

Keshi was expected to renew his contract last week Friday but the event was postponed because the NFF said it was not ready. Read more

Eight teams vie for Etisalat N2m prize money

The eight teams that qualified for the group stage of the Etisalat U-15 football tournament were drawn into two groups of four team on Monday with the winner of the tournament carting home N2 million, while each of the players in the team gets N50,000 scholarship.

Drawn in group A are Rimi College, Kaduna, Winners College, Akure, Green Springs Secondary School, Lekki, Lagos Stage amd Government Secondary School, Owerri. Group B teams are Army Day Secondary School, Sokoto, Washington Grammar School, Onitsha, Asegun High School, Oyo State and the Government Model School, Bida, Niger State. Read more

 

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