SABINEWS MORNING NEWS UPDATE FOR MARCH 1, 2017
I Will Not Run against Buhari, Says Tinubu
The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Bola Tinubu, has said he will never contest against President Muhammadu Buhari nor will he support anyone who does so.
In a statement filled with vitriol over a THISDAY news report published tuesday on his preparations for a run for the presidency, the former Lagos State governor denied it, stating that he was not preparing to contest for the presidency in the 2019 elections. Read more
We’ll pass PIGB latest by April- Senate
The Petroleum Industry Governance Bill that is currently before the National Assembly will be passed into law latest by April this year, the Chairman, Senate Committee on Petroleum, Upstream, Senator Donald Alasoadura, has said.
He stated this during a plenary session at the ongoing Nigeria Oil and Gas Conference in Abuja, while discussing how new legislation and policies could transform Nigeria’s oil and gas sector. Read more
Dangote Ends Nigeria’s Dependence on Imported Cement
Having ramped up cement output from its factories within Nigeria to nearly 30 million tonnes per annum, the Dangote Group tuesday announced that it had officially ended the nation dependence on imported cement.
The company also hinted that it exported 400,000 tonnes of the product to other nations in 2016.
In its 2016 full year audited results presented on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) in Lagos yesterday, Dangote Cement sold 8.6 million metric tonnes of cement outside Nigeria, which is 54 per cent more than what was sold in 2015. Read more
MTN Admits Network Downtime, Rules out Sabotage over Xenophobic Attacks
MTN subscribers in the last two days have complained of the difficulty of getting through to the MTN network via data and voice connectivity, making it extremely difficult to either make calls or get fast data connections.
The situation, which is heavily felt in Lagos, Abuja and some other cities, has rendered MTN subscribers incommunicado for some days. Read more
FG Rules out Banning Tricycles, Commercial Motorcyclists
The Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, Tuesday said federal government would not ban commercial tricycles and motorcycle operators in the country.
Amaechi, who made the disclosure at this year’s meeting of the Amalgamated Commercial Tricycle and Motocycle Owners Repairs and Riders Association of Nigeria (ACOMORAN) in Abuja, said slamming ban on operators in that sector of the economy would negatively impact on the economy. Read more
PDP Crisis: Jonathan Begins Peace Talks with Governors
Former President Goodluck Jonathan tuesday night made good his pledge to mediate in the crisis rocking the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), when held a meeting with governors of the opposition party at his residence in Abuja.
The former president had earlier promised that he would intervene in the lingering leadership dispute in the bid to find a way out of the logjam which has been aggravated by the recent Court of Appeal judgment that restored Senator Ali Modu Sheriff as the national chairman of the party. Read more
Osinbajo Unveils Three-year Strategic Plan for Civil Service
The Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, tuesday launched the strategic document for the Nigerian Civil Service from 2017-2019 aimed at increasing the quality of public service delivery, leading to the provision of a more lasting trajectory for the progressive development of the country.
The policy in four broad spectrum and enunciated by the Head of Civil Service of the Federation (HoS), Mrs. Winifred Oyo-Ita, was unveiled at the Banquet Hall of the State House. Read more
FG Completes Repair Works on Abuja-Kaduna Highway in Readiness for Abuja Airport Closure
The federal government Tuesday said it had completed the repair works it started on the Abuja-Kaduna highway preparatory to its closure of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja for repair of its runway and subsequent diversion of air traffic to the Kaduna Airport.
A statement from the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing in Abuja stated that the Minister, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, inaugurated the completed emergency repair works on the 330 kilometres road network. Read more
Osinbajo Pledges FG’s Support for Aba
The Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, has commended what he described as “smart business approach to governance” of the Governor of Abia State, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu.
Osinbajo said this when Ikpeazu led a delegation of some top functionaries of Abia State Government and top Aba industrialists to a meeting with Acting President in Abuja Tuesday. Read more
Edo APC Caucus Elects Oshiomhole as State Party Leader
Former Governor of Edo State, Mr. Adams Oshiomhole, has been elected as a leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) by the party caucus in the state.
The decision to elect Oshiomhole, THISDAY gathered, was reached at the inaugural caucus meeting of the party since the coming of Governor Godwin Obaseki at Government House on Monday evening. Read more
Amina Mohammed Lists Priorities at UN
The United Nations Deputy Secretary-General, Ms. Amina Mohammed, has said her responsibility at the UN will be to focus primarily on helping the UN Secretary-General António Guterres to reposition sustainable development as the heart of the organisation.
Mohammed, who made the remarks at the UN Headquarters in New York at her first official press briefing, said while sustainable development was not an end in itself, it was the best way to achieve universal peace. Read more
IG: Inadequate Funding Affecting Police Performance
The Inspector General of Police (IG), Mr. Ibrahim Idris, tuesday lamented the underfunding of the Force, saying that the non-release of fund by the National Assembly was seriously undermining its performance.
According to him, the Nigeria Police Force got only N4 billion in 2016 budgetary appropriation out of the more than N380 billion budgeted for its capital expenditure. Read more
Government, Turkish investors partner to revive moribund Sokoto factory
Conducting the visiting investors round the factory, Managing Director of Sokoto Investment Company, Aliyu Bala Sokoto, said government is determined to bring the company back to its former glory.
“We are talking with the Turkish investors, under the auspices of the MUSIAD Group, with a view to collaborating in various sectors. Read more
Akwa Ibom to commission first pencil factory in Nigeria
In line with its industrialisation drive, Akwa Ibom State government has concluded plans to commission the pioneer pencil factory in the country.
The factory which has been producing tooth pick, is a wholly-owned Akwa Ibom State government company amd was floated in 2015 under the Akwa Ibom Enterprises and Employment Scheme (AKEES), an initiative aimed at re-awakening the spirit of enterprise among youths and position them to benefit from the industrialisation programme of the state government Read more
Court adjourns senior advocate case of falsification, gratification to May 16
A Lagos High Court, Igbosere, Lagos yesterday has adjourned till May 16, the trial of Mr Rickey Tarfa (SAN), for alleged age falsification and offering of gratification to a public officer.
Justice Adedayo Akintoye, adjourned the case at the instance of a letter written by prosecution counsel to EFCC, Mr Rotimi Oyedepo, to the court proposing the continuation of the trial on three dates – one in March and two in April – one of which falls on a public holiday and the other Saturday. Read more
Senate screens Onnoghen today
Senate President Bukola Saraki announced yesterday that Justice Walter Onnoghen’s nomination, as substantive Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) would be considered today.
To that extent, the Senate will subject the nominee to a thorough screening at a confirmation hearing in plenary.Onnoghen who was nominated by the Acting President earlier in February has been serving in acting capacity since November 10, 2016. Read more
NAFDAC busts forgery syndicate linked to Indians, Mexicans
The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control says it has arrested some members of a syndicate who specialise in the forgery of NAFDAC numbers, certificates and documents of other government agencies. Read more
Economy shrank by -1.5% in 2016 – NBS
The National Bureau of Statistics on Tuesday released the Gross Domestic Product growth rate for the country, with the economy recording a contraction of -1.3 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2016 and – 1.5 per cent for the year.
The NBS explained that in real terms, the economy recorded a decline of N240.8bn from N18.53tn in the fourth quarter of 2015 to N18.29tn in the fourth quarter of last year. Read more
Petroleum products’ importation a fraud, must end –Kachikwu
The importation of petroleum products into the country is a fraud and must be put to an end if the nation is to make progress in the oil and gas sector, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, has said.
According to him, aside the fact that it is a shame that Nigeria has been importing finished petroleum products over the years despite having abundant oil resources, the system has been opaque for a long period. Read more
Military Establishes New Brigade in Bayelsa
The Nigerian military tuesday formally commenced the operationalisation of the 16 Brigade of the Nigerian Army located on Elebele Road, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.
The Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt Col, Tukur Buratai, who had earlier visited the state Governor, Seriake Dickson, in his office, said the emerging security threats, both internal and external, prompted the location of the army unit in the state. Read more
CBN Black Market Attack is Just a Stopgap Until Nigeria Floats the Naira
Don’t be fooled by the biggest black-market gain in a year for Nigeria’s naira.
The rally, sparked by increased sales of foreign exchange forwards and looser capital controls, is contingent on the central bank continuing to sell down its reserves. And until it devalues or makes a clear switch to a free-floating currency, Africa’s most-populous country will struggle to lure back foreign investors, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Renaissance Capital. Read more
JAMB Restructures, Scraps Awaiting Results
The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has concluded all restructuring, transformation, reforms and other preparation for the 2017 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) and is now set to commence the sale of its application document in March 2017.
To this end, the board has scrapped awaiting results in its admission criteria, instead, include fourth choice in the institution preference. Read more
Price of 14.5kg cooking gas hits N5,950 in Borno, Delta, Katsina
Efforts by the Federal Government to promote consumption of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) otherwise known as cooking gas, is being threatened as the price of the commodity has risen by over 30 per cent.
According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), average price for the refilling of a 12.5kg cylinder of cooking gas increased by 35.28 per cent month-on-month and 49.82 per cent year-on-year to N5,508.16 in January 2017 from N4,071.63 in December 2016. Read more
Sponsor bill to regulate okada activities – Ashafa
The Senator representing the Lagos East Senatorial District in the National Assembly, Gbenga Ashafa, has advised the Amalgamated Commercial Tricycles and Motorcycles Owners Repairs and Riders Association of Nigeria (ACOMORAN) to approach the National Assembly with a bill to regulate and institutionalise the association and its activities Read more
Again, No African Leader Qualifies for 2016 Mo Ibrahim Prize
For the second year in a row, the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, an African non-governmental organisation established to promote good governance and responsible leadership, yesterday announced that there was no winner of the 2016 Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership.
The Chairman of the Independent Prize Committee, Dr. Salim Ahmed Salim, disclosed this in a statement he issued after deliberation on the candidates for the 2016 Prize by the Mo Ibrahim Foundation’s Board. Read more
CSO Wants CBN, NERC to Carry Out Forensic Audit of Discos
Since investment in the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) cannot be guaranteed unless low liquidity challenges in the value chain is tackled, the federal government has been asked to ensure that all funds collected by the Distribution Companies (DISCOs) are remitted appropriately.
A civil society organisation, Centre for Social Justice (CSJ), which made the recommendation also called on the National Council on Power (NACOP) to prevail on the Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) to collaborate with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in carrying out a forensic audit of all the accounts of the DISCOs with the commercial banks throughout the country so as to confirm their exact revenue profiles. Read more
Igbo Leaders Visit Nnamdi Kanu, Call for His Immediate Release
Prominent Igbo leaders under the auspices of Nzuko Umunna tuesday visited leader of the Indegenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, demanding his immediate release by the federal government, failure of which they threatened to drag the federal government to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in the Hague, Netherlands.
The group’s demand came amid public outcry by prominent Igbo leaders of an orchestrated plan by the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to witch-hunt the Igbo nation, including the brutal killing of agitators from the South-east. Read more
N15.1m ransom paid for Iba monarch’s freedom, witness tells court
A prosecution witness in the ongoing trial of four men arraigned for kidnapping the traditional ruler of Iba Town in Lagos State, Oba Goriola Oseni, yesterday, told an Igbosere high court that a ransom of N15.1 million was paid to the kidnappers. The witness, Sergeant Dele-Ojo Odunayo, an Investigative Police Officer, IPO, attached to the Inspector-General of Police Force Headquarters, Abuja, who was assigned to investigate the case, said this while testifying before Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo. Read more
MedView airline plane develops fault mid-air
A Medview Airline flight from Lagos to Abuja was said to have been aborted mid-air after a fault was observed on the plane. A passenger on the flight was quoted as saying passengers suspected the plane, with flight number VL 2102, was faulty before take-off, but they were assured by the pilot and the crew that all was well. Read more
Commuters groan as BRT/LAGBUS fare hike begins today
As the new fare regime announced by the Lagos State government for Bus Rapid Transit (BRT), LAGBUS and franchise buses begins today, commuters have expressed their displeasure with the hike in fare.
The Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA) had recently announced its plans to effect an upward review of BRT and LAGBUS fares from March 1, stating that the current economic recession posed a serious threat to its continued operations. Read more
EFCC recovers more vehicles, others from ex-Customs boss
Barely six days after 17 “exotic” vehicles were recovered from a Kaduna warehouse belonging to former Comptroller-General of Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) Abdullahi Dikko Inde, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), another set of items including vehicles, tricycles and motorcycles, have been seized.
The items, which were recovered on Monday and Tuesday from another warehouse said to be the property of the former Customs boss include a 2013 model 32-seater Nissan bus, 42 cargo tricycles, one tipper truck, 16 motorcycles, over 500 rug carpets and two fire-proof safes. Read more
Taraba PDP Will Not Miss Ikenya
The defection of Sen. Joel Ikenya to APC comes as no surprise to followers of his flawed brand of politicking since he came to limelight in Taraba’s politics. He is a fitting embodiment of an interloper who sniffs at anything and finds himself only where the roar is loudest and therefore lacks personal political guiding principle.
The political antecedent of Ikenya has been dotted with cases of cross-carpeting and pendulum syndrome, swinging from one interest to the other at all times. Read more
FIRS Creates New Unit to Check Illicit Financial Flows, Tax Evasion by Multinationals
In a bid to combat tax evasion and illicit financial flows out of the country by multinationals and other companies operating in Nigeria, the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has created a new department to focus on transfer pricing.
In an interview with journalists on the sidelines of the fifth annual tax conference of the West African Union of Tax Institutes (WAUTI) in Abuja tuesday, the Executive Chairman of FIRS, Mr. Babatunde Fowler, confirmed the reality of illicit financial flows by multinationals and tax evasion by companies operating in Nigeria. Read more
Nigeria hopeful of trade growth under WTO TFA
With the ratification of the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA), the Federal Government has expressed optimism of improving bilateral ties with many countries by harnessing opportunities made available under the agreement.
Indeed, the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) has noted that the Federal Government will domesticate and implement the agreement.Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer of NEPC, Olusegun Awolowo stated that government will maximize the benefits of TFA especially to make export trade the catalyst for achieving national economic turn-around for sustainable development, enhanced annual GDP growth job creation, higher incomes, improved welfare,reduced trade costs, and ultimately landmark improvements to the ease of doing business index for the country. Read more
Obasanjo wasted opportunities to make Nigeria great –Fayose
Ekiti State Governor, Ayo Fayose, has asked former President Olusegun Obasanjo to stop making provocative statements that distract and discourage Nigerians from facing task of fixing the economy and building Nigeria into a strong and virile nation.
Reacting to a statement credited to Obasanjo, where the former president said his generation had failed the nation, Fayose, who spoke through his Chief Press Secretary, Idowu Adelusi, condemned Obasanjo’s statement and said that, apart from the statement being misleading, self-serving and discomfiting, it wass also not what the country needs at this time. “There is much suffering in the land. The people are hungry. Yet, one of those responsible for this unsavoury state of affairs relishes in adding insult to the people’s injury. He makes statements that are not only reckless but also untrue,” said Fayose. Read more
Nigeria’s GDP growth rate contracts by -1.3% in Q4, 2016 –NBS
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in its latest report on the country’s overall economic performance has again noted that Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) further contracted by a negative 1.3 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2016.
According to the report released by NBS yesterday, for the full year 2016, GDP contracted by -1.51 per cent, indicating real GDP of N67,984.20 billion for the year, the worst in more than 30 years.
The NBS in the report explained that in real terms, the economy recorded a decline of N240.8 billion from N18.53 trillion in the fourth quarter of 2015 to N18.29 trillion in the fourth quarter of 2016. Read more
MAN hails CBN’s forex intervention
Nigerians have been celebrating the recent rebound of the naira against the dollar at the foreign exchange market following the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN’s) injection of about $550.9 million to stabilise the soaring demand by end users.
In one of its major interventions in recent times, the apex bank pumped in about $370.9 million to the market through 23 deposit money banks to ease demand pressure by Nigerians for foreign exchange towards meeting various obligations under visible and invisible needs categories. Read more
Loading plans show Nigeria’s crude oil exports to slip in April
Nigeria’s April crude oil exports are on track to drop by just over 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) in April from the previous month, according to loading programmes compiled by Reuters on Tuesday.
The exports of 1.54 million bpd, on 50 cargoes, are down from a revised March programme that included 1.65 million bpd on 56 cargoes. The biggest month-on-month decline was in Qua Iboe, Nigeria’s largest oil stream. Qua Iboe exports in March were revised higher to 11 cargoes, four more than the 7 planned to load in April, due to loading delays that have pushed February exports back. Read more
NPDC’s Daily Crude Oil Production to Rise to 500,000b/d, Gas, 1500mmscf
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC has expressed its commitment to grow the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company’s, NPDC, crude oil production to 500,000 barrels per day by 2020. The Corporation said it would also grow NPDC’s gas production to 1500mmscf per day within the same period. Read more
Adamu suffers second FIFA blow
Amos Adamu was on Tuesday banned for a second time by FIFA for unethical conduct.
The world football governing body said on its website on Tuesday it decided to ban Adamu from the sport this time round following his “involvement in the organisation of an event in 2010” in violation of its rules of conduct. Read more
FG endorses Pinnick
The Federal Government has officially endorsed Nigeria Football Federation Amaju Pinnick’s bid to stand for the March 16 CAF Executive election.
Nneka Anibeze, spokesperson for the sports minister Solomon Dalung, said both the government and the NFF board gave Pinnick their backing during Tuesday’s meeting presided over by her boss in Abuja. Read more
Sunshine Stars Eye Upset against El Kanemi in Maiduguri
Sunshine Stars Head Coach, Kayode Olujohungbe, believes his side can cause a stir by becoming the first side to inflict defeat on El Kanemi Warriors at their home patch in this season’s top-flight.
The Owena Waves are guests of the Warriors in Maiduguri, where the hosts boast a fearsome record this afternoon as the NPFL enters Match-day 11. Read more
Zlatan Ibrahimovic gives other footballers the perfect lesson in social media
Modern players love a social media post whatever it is they are up to.
But Zlatan Ibrahimovic saves his messages for special occasions – mainly winning trophies.
Sunday’s EFL Cup win gave Ibrahimovic his 32nd trophy of his career and after full-time at Wembley he appeared to have a subtle pop at Arsenal when he told reporters: “We are winning. After seven months I have two trophies with this club. Read more
Benjamin Henrichs the latest name to be linked with fixing Man City’s full back woes
Manchester City are looking into signing young Bayer Leverkusen full-back Benjamin Henrichs, according to The Daily Mail, with the youngster impressing in Germany so far this season.
What’s the word?
City have been very good at times this season but at others, they’ve simply been woeful. Read more
Barcelona need Andres Iniesta, Sergio Busquets fit and firing
Luis Enrique suggested he may take the chance to rotate his squad when Barcelona kick off three home games in the space of a week with Sporting Gijon’s visit to Camp Nou on Wednesday.
However, his biggest priority should be getting Andres Iniesta and Sergio Busquets back to their best. Read more
Barack and Michelle Obama agree Penguin Random House book deal
Former US President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle have agreed a book deal with Penguin Random House.
“The company has acquired world publication rights for two books, to be written by President and Mrs Obama respectively,” the publisher said. Titles and other details have not been disclosed but the deal is believed to be worth tens of millions of dollars. Read more
Two women charged with murder of Kim Jong-nam
The two women accused of smearing a deadly nerve poison on Kim Jong-nam, the half-brother of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, have been charged with his murder after arriving at court under heavy protection.
Burma: Army defends Rohingya crackdown, denies abuses
BURMA (Myanmar)‘s military defended its crackdown on the Rohingya Muslim minority as a lawful counterinsurgency operation at a rare news conference on Tuesday, adding it was necessary to defend the country. It was the first time the top generals directly addressed the mounting accusations of human rights abuses which, according to U.N. experts, may amount to crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing.
“I want to say that I am very sad because of these kind of reckless accusations and neglect of the good things that the government and the military have done for them,” said General Mya Tun Oo, Chief of the General Staff, referring to the reports in the media quoting Rohingya residents describing the alleged abuses such as burning of houses in the area. Read more
Russia Unleashes Sonar Robots
The Russian Defence Ministry has started deploying massively capable sonar tracking technology called ‘Harmony’ underwater.
The unique underwater system can render vast portions of ocean ‘transparent’ and so view all deployed assets active there, including submarines, warships, low-level helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft. Harmony’s principal developer is Russia’s Komet Special Space Systems Corporation. Also involved are the Istochnik Battery Research Design and Technology Institute and the Malakhit Central Design Bureau. Read more
Donald Trump creates Voice agency to publish list of crimes by immigrants
Donald Trump will form a new agency to publish a regular list of all crimes committed by immigrants.
The agency is expected to publish a weekly list of all crimes committed by what it terms “aliens”. That does not seem to refer only to undocumented migrants – suggesting that anyone who has moved to the US could find their name on the public list. Read more