Presidential election tears NLC apart
The Nigeria Labour Congress has been factionalised, following a rescheduled election of its national officers that ended in Abuja in the early hours of Saturday.
A section of the body declared a former National Treasurer of the NLC, Mr. Ayuba Wabba, the winner of the presidential contest of the nation’s foremost labour centre. Read more
Developing Nigeria’s Renewable Energy Potential
Nigeria is facing significant challenges in reforming and providing the required impetus for development of its power sector. The country’s Electricity Supply Industry (ESI) has been plagued by a variety of legacy, structural and institutional challenges which have resulted in overall decline in service levels across generation, transmission and distribution segments of the industry. In response, the government over the past decade and half has initiated various transformational projects, including the National Integrated Power Project (NIPP) aimed at increasing capacity, upgrading existing infrastructures as well as encouraging investment in the sector through various privatisation and market liberalisation initiatives. Read more
Oil and gas as springboard for SMEs
Nigeria is Africa’s undisputed economic performer in the last few years, thanks to the massive oil and gas reserves that have powered its socio-economic development and attracted billions of dollars in Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) to the nation’s economy in the last 14 years of democratic governance.
However, with the slump in the price of oil at the international market in June 2014, it became clearer that for the nation’s economy to survive the shock, the Federal Government cannot ignore the portfolio investment opportunities in the Small and Medium Scales Enterprises (SMEs) sector that abound in the oil and gas industry. Read more
Naira devaluation raises bank’s non-performing loans
The volume of non-performing loans in the Nigerian banking sector is set to rise further on the back of the devaluation of the naira amid weak global crude oil prices.
The nation’s weak currency is currently taking a huge toll on companies involved in manufacturing and fast-moving consumer goods, driving down their revenue and bottom line. Read more
FG, AfDB, IITA unveil $170m youths in agric scheme
The African Development Bank (AfDB), the Federal Government of Nigeria, through the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD), and the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), have launched a special programme aimed at boosting youth involvement in efforts to make Nigeria and Africa food secure.
The Agricultural Transformation Agenda Support Program Phase 1 (ATASP-1), which was formally unveiled last week at IITA’s location in Abuja, is to be financed by AfDB to the tune of USD 170 million aimed at creating additional incomes to an increased number of producers and entrepreneurs in the agricultural sector in Nigeria by providing about 120,000 jobs along the value chain of priority commodities. Read more
A shot in the arm at NSE
President Goodluck Jonathan took time off his tight political campaign schedule on Thursday to keep a date at the Customs Street where he had the rare opportunity to strike the gong to announce the closing of business at The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).
Two years ago, the Nigerian President performed a similar function when he took his administration’s drive for greater foreign investment in Nigeria to the prestigious New York Stock Exchange, where he rang the closing bell for the day’s business. He executed this task before delivering Nigeria’s statement to the 68th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in 2013. Read more
France increases efforts in fight against Boko Haram
France is providing intelligence to Nigeria and neighbouring Chad, Cameroun and Niger Republic, all of which are at war with Boko Haram.
Paris says it has also reoriented its military efforts in the region to focus more on the fight against the terror sect.
France specifically supports the Chadian offensive. Read more
Immigration tragedy compensation: APC accuses Jonathan of lobbying for votes
The All Progressives Congress, APC, has accused President Goodluck Jonathan of taking political advantage of calamities that have befallen Nigeria under his watch, saying giving N5m to each family that lost a relative in the Immigration recruitment exercise after one year is not only belated but aimed at currying votes.
In a statement issued in Lagos on Saturday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party wondered why it took the President all of one year to act on the promise he made to the families, adding that but for the forthcoming elections, the President would have simply ignored the families, in his usual style. Read more
Army in Final Push against Boko Haram in Gwoza, Sambisa, Goneri
The military is set for a final push to retake Gwoza, Sambisa and Goneri, the last three major havens of Boko Haram insurgents.
This is in furtherance of its determination to make the areas safe ahead of the upcoming general elections.
Also, the military plans to use this week to review its ongoing campaign in the North-east. Read more
Volatility in Naira Exchange Rate Subsides
Despite the scarcity of dollars in the nation’s deposit money banks last week, prompting them to scramble to meet customers’ demand, market survey during the period has however shown that volatility in the local currency was at its barest minimum as the naira remained relatively stable at the interbank market.
For instance, throughout the week, the local currency traded at a range of N199.10/$1 to N199.15/$1 at the interbank and was sold at N197/$1 from the CBN. Read more
Oil Firm Cries Foul over Obstruction of Court Judgment in Enugu
Concerns were raised at the weekend by the management of Pinnacle Oil and Gas Limited over the difficulty in enforcing a judgment obtained and reconfirmed from the Enugu High/Magistrate court to take possession of a property. It was gathered that trouble started when Pinnacle Oil &Gas was challenged for the right of ownership by one Mr. Agu Bede Azubuike over a property sold to the company by First Bank Nigeria Plc. According to the company’s source, Azubuike, it was gathered had about 11 years ago in 2003, forfeited the said property to First Bank Plc in a mortgage deal; and every document transferring ownership to First bank, perfected. Read more
After Roundtrip to US, Stowaway Dies in Arik Aircraft Wheel
Ground workers at the international terminal of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, were shocked on Saturday morning when the dead body of a man in his mid-40s dropped from the wheel-well of Arik Air aircraft being prepared for another flight to New York.
According to security officials, the body, which had started decomposing, must have been in the wheel-well since Wednesday, March 11 when the aircraft had its last flight from New York. Read more
China says Japan ties face test, opportunity this year
China’s relations with Japan face a “test” this year linked to whether Japan can properly atone for its wartime past, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said on Sunday.
Li made the remarks to reporters at the end of China’s annual parliamentary session. Tension between Asia’s two largest economies, long strained by territorial disputes and historical issues from the World War Two, has abated in recent months. Read more
First aid shipments on the way to cyclone-hit Vanuatu
The first shipments of aid are on the way to Vanuatu as authorities declared a state of emergency and global relief agencies responded to the devastation caused by a powerful cyclone.
Red Cross officials said the first aid flight, a New Zealand military Hercules aircraft carrying tarpaulins and other emergency supplies, was cleared to land today as the airport in the capital Port Vila partially reopened. Read more
Tony Abbott refuses to apologise for ‘lifestyle choices’ comments
Tony Abbott has refused to concede that saying Aboriginal people who live in remote communities have made a “lifestyle choice” was a poor choice of words as the father of reconciliation issued a public plea to rebuild relations with Indigenous people.
The Australian prime minister has suffered near universal criticism from Aboriginal leaders over his “lifestyle choice” comments last week when he was defending the closure of Indigenous communities in Western Australia. Read more
Bus Plunges off Cliff in Brazil, Killing Scores of Passengers
A bus plunged off a cliff in the southern Brazilian state of Santa Catarina on Saturday, killing more than 40 people, emergency response officials said.
The bus was carrying families going to an evangelical Christian event in Paraná State when the driver lost control late in the afternoon on a curve in a highway through the Dona Francisca mountain range, sending the vehicle over a cliff into a tree-lined area in the Atlantic Forest. As rescue crews worked into the night on Saturday to recover bodies, the police said the death toll could climb as high as 55, including children. Read more
NFF, Keshi closer to new deal
As the meeting between the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) technical committee, Coach Stephen Keshi and his advisers dragged late into Wednesday night, chairman of the committee, Felix Anyasi Agwu, has disclosed that major progress was made.
He noted that in a matter of days Keshi’s contractual issues would be sorted out and the erstwhile coach would be re-appointed as coach of the Super Eagles. Read more
ITTF Tour: Nigerian players win respect of foreign rivals
Nigerian players taking part in the ongoing International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Lagos World Tour have been described as fighters with a bright future in the ping-pong game.
This was the submission of a Russian player, Irina Ermakova, after she had it tough in a game against Akoke Ojomu of Nigeria in the round of 16 of the women’s singles on Wednesday at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere, Lagos. Ermakova beat Ojomu 4-1. Read more
Ghana to face Nigeria or hosts Senegal in Africa U20 championship semi-final
Ghana will play Nigeria or hosts Senegal in the semi-final of the African Youth Championship after the latter sealed their place in the last four of the competition following Saturday’s final Group A matches.
The Black Satellites has already sealed their place in the last four thanks to their two previous Group B wins over South Africa and Zambia and were awaiting results from the match in Group A to confirm their places in the semis. Read more
Mayweather, Pacquiao Agree to Drug Testing
Floyd Mayweather’s fight against Manny Pacquiao on May 2 is to be conducted under the US Anti-Doping Agency (Usada) testing programme. Both fighters have agreed to unannounced blood and urine testing without reservation. The welterweight rivals will be tested out of competition prior to the fight and in competition after the fight.
“We commend these two fighters for their stance on clean sport,” said Usada chief executive Travis Tygart. Read more
Flying Eagles draw with Ivory Coast
Nigeria ended their Group A campaign at the Africa Youth Championship in Senegal by playing out a 2-2 draw with Ivory Coast on Sunday.
The Flying Eagles, who had already qualified for the semifinals, were looking to finish the group games on a high by winning all their games, but were pegged back by an ambitious Elephanteaux side looking to get into the semis. Read more
Follow us @sabinewsnaija