Sabinews Morning News Update for April 1, 2016
Petrol may sell for N88 per litre from today
Amid the lingering fuel crisis in the country, there were indications yesterday from the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) that the product may be sold for N88 per litre at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) stations and N88.50 in other stations starting from today.
Until this new template, the NNPC’s official price for a litre of fuel was N86 while for others it was N86.50. The new price mechanism that is expected to take effect today is a requirement of price modulation system that is reviewed every quarter. Read more
Shiite Stages Peaceful Protest in Kaduna
The Academic Forum of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) also known as Shiite yesterday organised a peaceful rally in Kaduna, demanding the release of their leader, Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, who has been in detention since December 2015.
Thousands of members of the movement converged on the Leventis Roundabout at the city centre by 11a.m, calling on the army authorities and the federal government to release their leader, his wife and other members of the sect being detained since clash between the group and the army in Zaria on December 12, 2015. Read more
IPOB: Kanu Not Begging for Freedom
The Independent People of Biafra (IPOB) on Thursday clarified what it considered a misinterpretation of the petition that its detained leader, Nnamdi Kanu, sent to the British Government over his travails in the hands of Nigerian Government.
TheHead of IPOB media and publicity, Emma Powerful, cleared the air in a telephone chat with THISDAY saying Kanu “is not begging to be released,” even though his freedom has been circumscribed since October 14, 2015. Read more
NCC Clamps down on TV Signals Theft, Arrests Two
The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the country’s regulatory authority for the telecommunications industry, yesterday raided illegal operators of broadcast signals in Bayelsa State.
Officials of the agency noted that the measure was to check the proliferation of such illegal activities which it said abound in many parts of the state, particularly in Yenagoa, the state capital. Read more
Recruitment of 10,000 Policemen Begins Today
The recruitment of 10,000 policemen by the Police Service Commission (PSC) begins nationwide on today.
President Muhammadu Buhari had last year at the National Security Summit in Abuja directed the recruitment of 10,000 Nigerians into the Force to address the obvious shortfall in the manpower needs of the police. Read more
Lagos Clarifies Position on Environmental Sanitation
The Lagos State Government has clarified reports making rounds on social media that the monthly environmental sanitation in the state has been outlawed, saying the policy on the monthly exercise has not been reviewed for now.
In a statement signed by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Steve Ayorinde, the government said the erroneous story which was attributed to the state Commissioner for the Environment, Dr. Babatunde Adejare, was inaccurate. Read more
Pilots Paralyse Bristow Operations
The National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE) on Thursday shut down the operations of Bristow Helicopters at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos.
The action of the pilots and engineers grounded Bristow from providing vital services to its clients in the oil and gas sector. Read more
Tribunal to rule on Sylva’s application to inspect election materials
Bayelsa State Government Election Petition Tribunal, sitting in Abuja will on April 11, deliver ruling in an application filed by the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state, Timipre Sylva.
Sylva had approached the Tribunal, seeking an order to allow him inspect the election materials used for the December 5, 2015 and January 9, governorship elections held in the state. Read more
Ambode promises to complete $1.7 billion Lekki seaport in 2019
The governor, who reeled out the numerous investment opportunities that abound in the state to prospective investors in critical sectors such as power, agriculture, transportation, health, tourism, housing, ICT and manufacturing, gave assurance that the state was poised for more investments.
Speaking at the formal unveiling of the Office of Overseas Affairs and Investment, otherwise known as Lagos Global, the governor said his administration, in anticipation of increased socio-economic activities, had resolved to prioritise the achievement of the four pillars of the Lagos State Development Plan (2012-2015), including economic, infrastructural, social development as well as security and sustainable environment. Read more
Intrigue, losses as MMA2’s regional service stalls
Regional flight service scheduled to take off at the Murtala Mohammed Airport Two (MMA2) since January this year has remained in the cooler.
The non-take off of this service which stakeholder in the industry believe could be a gold-mine that could substantially shore up the income of the relevant government agencies involved, which are statutory contributors to the national budget, is coming at time when the country is facing a dwindling economic fortune. Read more
Treasury looters don’t deserve bail, says Falana
A Lagos-based lawyer, Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), says politically-exposed persons facing corruption charges do not deserve bail.
“Since victims of grand corruption including armed robbery and kidnap suspects are not usually admitted to bail, those who are charged with looting the treasury should no longer be granted bail,” Falana said. Read more
Small-scale Farmers Face Difficulty in Accessing Agricultural policies
Small-scale farmers are said to be facing challenges in accessing and benefiting from government agricultural policies and practices despite that they account for over 80 per cent in the country.
The President, Association of Small-Scale Agro Producers in Nigeria (ASSAPIN), Bauchi state chapter, Alhaji Ahmed Jalam, who made the observation when he led members of the Association on a courtesy visit to Bauchi State House of Assembly Committee on Agriculture said that ‘’because our members are scattered and isolated, they have faced marginalisation, exclusion and disempowerment over time’’. Read more
Stock market investors lose N1.1 billion in Q1
With over 12 per cent loss suffered by stock market investors as a result of unprecedented fall in equities price, stakeholders in the nation’s capital market have urged government to fast track the release of specific growth- inducing policies that would help revamp the current sluggish economic trend and trigger activities in the various segment, especially the stock market.
The losses were calculated on start up All-share index at the beginning of the year from January 4, 2016 to Wednesday, March 30, 2016. Read more
FG entities to spend N3.4Bn on internet connectivity
In the recently passed 2016 budget of the federal government of Nigeria by the National Assembly, over 892 federal government entities are to spend N3.424 billion on internet connectivity, Nigeria CommunicationsWeek has learnt.
According to Nigeria CommunicationsWeek investigations, this figure does not include the many interventions by donors such as NITDA, NCC, CBN, PTDF, and others that are not reflected in the Federal Budget. This is also separate from the N3 billion provided in the service wide vote for “Funding of Galaxy Backbone Infrastructure,” Galaxy Backbone is the government-backed “Internet Service Provider”. Read more
Why U.S. is supporting Nigeria’s diversification, anti-corruption agenda
The United States (U.S) government has hinged its support for the Federal Government’s diversification and anti-corruption agenda on the need to aid the nation’s sustainable growth approach in order to strengthen its economy and provide leadership direction for other African countries.
According to the U.S., while it is very encouraged by President Buhari’s commitment to an economy that is more diversified, less dependent on a single commodity for export earnings, Nigeria’s future is in Nigerians’ hands and that means the country needs to develop sustainability. Read more
Nigeria to contribute over 25% to Africa’s GDP by 2020
Africa’S biggest economy, Nigeria, is to contribute over 25 per cent to the continent’s economic growth in the next four years.
According to a new report, the country’s contribution is benchmarked at an average rate of 4.8 per cent yearly leading to year 2020.
The document, which was made available yesterday to The Guardian by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) and titled “Economic Insight: Africa Q1 2016,” projected that growth on the continent would average over four per cent in the next four years. Read more
NEPC, PHCCIMA partner on non-oil export promotion
The Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) has expressed commitments towards advocating better policies on promotion of exports while improving measures in creating an enabling business environment for the private sector to thrive.
The body has also promised to partner and encourage members of Port Harcourt Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (PHCCIMA) to process; package and export value added products and locate viable markets for their products. Read more
18 firms lose despite N55bn market gains
The share prices of 18 companies depreciated in value despite the equities market gaining N55bn at the close of trading on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange on Thursday.
The top five losers on the stock table were Okomu Oil & Palm Plc, United Capital Plc, Tiger Branded Consumer Goods Plc, Transnational Corporation of Nigeria Plc, and Livestock Feeds Plc. Read more
CBN, Standard Chartered expand financial education
Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria says it has partnered the Central Bank of Nigeria to drive the financial literacy agenda with a workshop in Uyo, Akwa-Ibom State.
The collaboration, which is running for the third year, will help to empower more youths with financial education. Read more
GTBank targets N125bn profit in 2016
Despite the challenging economic environment, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc says its plan is to make N125bn in the 2016 financial year.
The lender reported N120.7bn and N116.4bn profit before tax in the 2015 and 2014 financial year, respectively. Read more
FG to borrow N219bn via Treasury bills
The Federal Government is planning to borrow N218.89bn ($1.1bn) through short-dated Treasury bills on April 7, the Central Bank of Nigeria has said.
The CBN said it would sell N55.40bn of three-month paper, N33.49bn of six-month bill, and N130bn of one-year debt, using the Dutch auction system. Read more
Oil and Gas
Nine firms submit bids for refinery co-location
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation on Thursday announced that it had opened bids for the co-location of new plants within its existing refineries.
The Chief Operating Officer, Refineries, NNPC, Mr. Anibo Kragha, disclosed this at the opening of the technical bids for the location of new refineries within the existing plants at the corporation’s headquarters in Abuja. Read more
Electricity Restored after System Collapse
The power generation from the Jebba Hydro power station which collapsed completely yesterday at exactly 12.58p.m and lasted for up to about three hours has been restored back to normalcy
The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, diclosed this on Thisday in Abuja. Read more
Eight power plants shut…zero generation recorded for hours
Eight of the nation’s power generating plants were completely idle on Thursday, with significant reduction in output from others, including Egbin, which is located in Lagos.
The plants, which did not generate any megawatts of electricity, included Sapele, Delta State, whose installed capacity was put at 240MW; Olorunsogo II in Ogun State, with a capacity of 625MW; Rivers IPP, 180MW and Trans-Amadi, 75MW, both in Rivers State. Read more
Messi provokes outrage in Egypt
A charitable gesture by Argentine football star Lionel Messi has provoked outrage in Egypt, where a lawmaker and football official took umbrage at the donation: his sneakers, AFP reports.
Messi, in an interview with the private satellite channel MBC Misr, had donated his shoes to the channel to auction them off for charity. Read more
LMC bans Ifeanyi Ubah for assaulting player
The League Management Company on Thursday placed a 10-match ban on the proprietor of FC IfeanyiUbah, Dr. Ifeanyi Ubah, for assaulting Heartland goalkeeper, Ebere Obi, after their Week 8 league match, which IfeanyiUbah won 1-0.
The league body in an earlier statement only reprimanded Ubah for fuelling the crowd disturbance that happened after the match. But in a later decision, which the LMC said was taken after the examination of video evidence from the match, Ubah was banned and fined the sum of N2.5m. Read more
NFF to hire French coach for Eagles
The Nigeria Football Federation is set to hire a Frenchman as coach of the Super Eagles after the team failed to qualify for a second consecutive Africa Cup of Nations.
National U-23 team coach Samson Siasia was drafted to the Eagles for the double header against the Egyptians after Sunday Oliseh resigned but the Eagles drew 1-1 in Kaduna before they were beaten 1-0 in Alexandria by the record African champions. Read more
South Africa holds its president accountable
South Africa’s Constitutional Court declared Thursday that President Jacob G. Zuma was guilty of making $23 million in illegal expenditures on his private residence, a verdict that may spell the end of his political career.
In a unanimous decision, the court’s 11 judges said Mr. Zuma had 60 days to pay up. Improvements to his residence, located in Nkandla and carried out in the ostensible name of security, included a visitors center, a cattle enclosure, a chicken run and a swimming pool. Read more
Policeman killed in South Sudan’s Lakes state
A policeman was on Thursday shot dead by an unknown gunman in South Sudan’s Lakes state capital, Rumbek, family members disclosed.
The deceased, Deng Nyibang Deng, hailed from Western Bahr el Ghazal state. Read more
Whoopi Goldberg launching marijuana company
Whoopi Goldberg is launching her own marijuana company.
The ‘Ghost’ actress’ Whoopi & Maya collection of balm, tincture, sipping chocolate and bath soak will be available only in California to people with medical marijuana cards and are to be targeted at women as the items aim to reduce the pain and cramps from periods. Read more
Total Kenya records Sh1.62 billion profit for 2014/15 year
Oil marketer Total Kenya has reported an increase in net profit for the year ended December 31, 2015, despite volatility in international oil prices witnessed last year.
The oil marketer’s net profit rose to Sh1.62 billion in 2015 from Sh1.42 billion in 2014, a 12.4 per cent increase. Read more
Libya unity government looks to assert authority in Tripoli
Libya’s unity government received a boost to its authority Thursday as 10 cities formerly under control of a rival militia-backed Tripoli body pledged support to the newly arrived prime minister-designate.
The arrival of U.N.-backed Fayez al-Sarraj at a naval base on Wednesday drew fury from the nonrecognized authority in charge of Tripoli, which demanded he leave or surrender. Read more
Rand rallies after president ordered to reimburse state
The rand rallied to its firmest in four months on Thursday, shrugging off mixed data after the country’s top court ordered the President Jacob Zuma to repay the state for some upgrades to his private home.
Stocks were weaker as some resource companies suffered. “The rand has outperformed pretty much everything today, gains which point to the politics,” said Rand Market Bank currency strategist John Cairns. Read more
El Salvador seeks to block prison cell phones to beat crime crisis
El Salvador is proposing to order telephone companies to block cell phone signals inside prisons where a state of emergency has been declared, in order to prevent gang leaders from ordering murders or extortions while incarcerated.
The move is among a raft of measures the government proposed to Congress on Thursday as the small Central American state struggles to combat record-high murder rates that have made it one of the world’s most violent countries. Read more
New book sheds light on North Korea’s abduction programme
In 1978 Kaoru Hasuike and his girlfriend were snatched by four North Korean agents from a beach near the Japanese town of Kashiwazaki, thrown into sacks and bundled onto inflatable rafts.
“Keep quiet and we won’t hurt you,” the kidnappers told them as they were taken to the North Korean capital, where until 2002 they were held as pawns in a secretive programme of kidnappings run by the DPRK regime. Read more
US and China pledge to oppose North Korea nuclear programme
The United States and China will work together to try to prevent North Korea from enhancing its nuclear weapons programme, they announced in Washington.
President Barack Obama met Chinese president Xi Jinping as world leaders gathered in the US capital for a nuclear security summit. Read more