Sabinews Morning News Update for December 29, 2015
Ribadu Moves To Join APC, Meets Akande
The wind of mass defection into the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) may soon blow the former pioneer chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, to the party.
Indications to this effect emerged at the weekend with the meeting of Ribadu and the former pioneer chairman of the APC, Chief Bisi Akande, at his country home in Ila Orangun, Osun State. Read more
APC Suspends Senator Shehu Sani
The senator representing Kaduna Central senatorial zone, Senator Shehu Sani, was suspended yesterday from the All Progressives Congress (APC) by his Tudun Wada ward of the party in Kaduna State.
The ward chapter of the party in a letter dated December 27, 2015 and addressed to the senator, said the suspension will last for a period of eleven months. Read more
Gunmen abduct Uyo pastor, demand N50m
A Uyo-based clergyman, Rev. Friday Phillip, has been kidnapped in his native Oron council area of Akwa Ibom State and his abductors have demanded a N50 million ransom for his release.
Daily Sun investigation revealed that Rev. Phillip, a former superintendent of the Assembly of God Church, Eket District, was abducted along Ibo Street, Oron, at about 8.30 pm on Sunday. Read more
Mixed reactions trail proposed reintroduction of toll gates
A Potpourri of reactions has continued to trail the proposed re-introduction of toll gates on Federal highways across the country. While built environment experts welcomed the reintroduction because tolling is a universally accepted procurement standard for the maintenance of roads infrastructure, labour unions opposed the move because in the past, proceeds from toll collection were never effectively deployed for the maintenance of roads. Read more
Man electrocuted in bid to steal electric cable in Kaduna
An unidentified middle aged man was electrocuted at the early hours of Sunday while trying to steal electric cable at a power supply installation in Kaduna.
The traditional ruler of the area, Dan Iyar Unguwar Rimi, Alhaji Muhammad Gidado, confirmed the incident that happened at Accra Crescent by LEA Primary School, Unguwar Rimi. Read more
Police arrest soldier for supplying arms to robbers
A Lance Corporal of the Nigeria Army was among eight persons arrested by the Inspector General of Police Special Intelligence Response Team, SIRT for allegedly supplying arms and ammunition to robbers in Lagos.
Among those the gang allegedly supplied arms were those robbers who raided commercial banks in Lekki, Ikorodu, Festac and Agbara areas of Lagos and Ogun State, where they carted away large sums of money, recently. Read more
Oyo govt to probe Ibadan plank market fire
The Oyo State Government has said that it will investigate the circumstances surrounding the fire incidents that engulfed the Sango Alaro plank market twice in three days, which resulted in losses estimated at several millions of naira.
Governor Abiola Ajimobi made this known when he paid a visit to the market which got burnt first on Christmas day, while another part was also razed in the early hours of yesterday. Read more
Fire razes UNN female hostel
One of the female hostels of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, was razed by fire with property running into millions of Naira damaged, including personal effects of the students accommodated in the hostel.
An eye witness, who gave her name as Joy Uwalaka, explained that the fire was allegedly caused by power outage in the university community, adding that as soon as Enugu Electricity Distribution Company, EEDC, restored power on campus around 7.30pm with a high voltage, the two storey hostel building went up in flames from the last floor. Read more
FG’ll not sell National Arts Theatre, says minister
The Federal Government on Monday assured that the National Arts Theatre will always remain a national monument and won’t be sold for whatever reason.
“But we are not averse to a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement that will add value to the iconic (National Arts Theatre) complex,’’ the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, said during a visit to the complex as part of tour of parastatals under his ministry. Read more
CBN releases N250m agric loan to Lagos cooperative members
Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has released N250 million to Lagos State Agro-allied Cooperative Multipurpose Societies Ltd on behalf of the Federal Government for on-lending to genuine cooperative societies’ members in Lagos at the single digit nine per cent interest rate to accelerate the eradication of poverty from the state.
At a flag-off ceremony last week for the disbursement of the loan, Mrs. Queen Aladejobi, national coordinator/researcher on agricultural/agro-allied matters, who is also the national director of Mobilisation and Poverty Eradication, on behalf of the Federal Government, presented the cheque to the Lagos State Coordinator of Agro-Allied CSP Nigeria Ltd, Chief Sonaiya Olajumoke. Read more
FG, World Bank disagree over 2016 budget target
Contrary to the projections of the World Bank that pegged the Gross Domestic Product growth rate at 3.7 per cent, the Federal Government economic agenda as contained in the 2016 budget breakdown insisted on GDP growth rate of 4.37 per cent thus making it ambitious.
Earlier this year IMF cut its growth forecasts for the global economy on the back of a slowdown in China, looming recession in Russia and continuing weakness in the eurozone. Read more
MAN Urges CBN to Stop Funding Bureau de Change Markets
The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has called on the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to stop funding Bureau de Change (BDC) markets, noting that the BDCs should seek alternative funding windows to carry out their market operations.
MAN in a statement expressed worries over BDCs’ dependence on the official allocation of foreign exchange by CBN for their survival. Read more
Investors lament N6b loss to festive breaks
Investors in the capital market may have lost N6 billion to the three-day public holidays declared by the Federal Government to commemorate the Eid-el Maulud and Christmas celebrations, going by situational analyses from the operators over the weekend.
The loss calculation was based on the fact that the nation’s stock market usually records N2 billion transactions on a daily basis and with the festivity break, investment worth N6 billion would have slipped out of the market. Read more
Oil and Gas
ENI’s Force Majeure Will Only Impact LNG Production in Short Term, Says NLNG
The Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Limited has stated that the recent force majeure declared by the Nigeria Agip Oil Company (NAOC), the Nigerian subsidiary of ENI, on gas supply from its Obiafu-Obrikom (OB/OB) gas plant to NLNG would only impact the company’s production of LNG in the very short term.
Export of Nigeria’s LNG was said to have suffered setback as Italian energy giant, ENI declared force majeure on gas supply to the Bonny Island plant of NLNG due to pipeline sabotage. Read more
Global LNG Prices Steady in Subdued Market
Asian liquefied natural gas (LNG) prices were steady this week amid limited trading activity, Reuters has reported.
The price of Asian spot cargoes for February delivery was pegged at $6.90 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), in line with the previous week. Read more
Oil Companies Rush to Exploit End of US Crude Export Ban
US energy group Enterprise and oil trader Vitol raced to exploit the end of a 40-year ban on most US crude exports, the first of many firms eager to “stress test” last week’s historic opening.
Despite a sudden change in global oil market conditions that many oil traders say has eliminated the economic advantage of shipping domestic crude far abroad, some companies that have long lobbied for the change in policy may be eager to show that their effort was not in vain, according to some experts. Read more
We’re intensifying effort to end fuel crisis —NNPC
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, yesterday, stated that the Special Intervention Fuel Supply instituted by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr. Ibe Kachikwu, is intensifying efforts at eradicating the noticeable fuel queues across the country with the sustained truck-out of petrol to the nooks and crannies of the country. Read more
NNPC initiates direct delivery to IPMAN outlets
In its quest to reduce the fuel scarcity ravaging the country, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has initiated direct supply of petrol to Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) retail outlets in the country.
This was stated by the National Operation Controller of IPMAN, Mr. Mike Osatuyi, during an inspection tour of some IPMAN retail outlets in Lagos. Osatuyi, who praised the initiative of the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr. Ibe Kachikwu, said that more than 300 trucks of PMS were supplied last weekend. Read more
Nigeria earns N413bn from gas export in three months
Nigeria earned N412.983 billion from the export of Liquefied Natural Gas, LNG, Liquefied Petroleum Gas, LPG, also known as cooking gas and other gaseous materials in three months, between July and September 2015, according to data obtained from the National Bureau of Statistics, NBS.
The NBS, in its Foreign Trade Statistics Report for the Third Quarter of 2015, revealed that this represented an increase of 9.5 per cent or N35.813 billion when compared to N377.17 billion earned by the country from the export of those commodities in the second quarter of 2015. Read more
Shell cuts 2016 spending by $2b, prepares for BG’s takeover
Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Europe’s largest oil company, further reduced spending plans for this year and 2016 as it prepares to take over BG Group Plc amid slumping prices for crude.
The combined company plans $33 billion of capital spending next year, lower than Shell’s previous guidance of $35 billion, it said Tuesday. Shell also cut its spending forecast for this year by $1 billion to $29 billion. Read more
US May Resume Purchase Of Nigeria’s Crude – Kachikwu
There are strong indications that the United States will soon resume buying Nigeria’s crude oil following ongoing talks in this regard between the US and the federal government.
Minister of state for petroleum, Dr Ibe Kachikwu, who gave the indication, stated that despite having diversified into the Asian market and other parts of the world, the federal government is presently in talks with the United States government on the possibility of the latter resuming the purchase of crude oil from Nigeria. Read more
Oil falls to $37, near 11-year low, as excess supply weighs
Oil fell to around $37 a barrel on Monday, trading within sight of an 11-year low, pressured by excess supply that has led to prices more than halving since the downturn began in mid-2014.
U.S. crude was trading above global benchmark Brent, having earlier in December risen to a premium for the first time in about a year following the lifting of a 40-year-old ban on most U.S. crude exports. Read more
Nigeria Misses Power Targets
In Nigeria’s power sector, setting timeline-based targets for operators in the industry has never been out of place. Targets are often set for the industry but mostly, they are never achieved at their expirations, thus turning them into mere rituals.
For 2015, it was not a different development. The government during the the year made known its desire for the sector, stating its intention to see electricity generation ramp up to 5000 megawatts (MW) by September and then 6000MW by the close of the year. But for too long and too often, promises of increased power supply such as this had been made and they never materialised. Read more
Ahead CHAN 2016: Eagles depart for South Africa Jan. 2
In order to get adequate preparation ahead of the African Nations Championship (CHAN) tagged Rwanda 2016, the Super Eagles Team B will depart the shores of Nigeria for South Africa on January 2, 2016.
According to the team’s media officer, Oluwatoyin Ibitoye, the team’s coaches yesterday changed their training parttern at the Abuja camp to ensure that players maintain high level fitness ahead of the departure. The Eagles are currently in their first stage of camping ahead of Nigeria’s participation at the African Nations Championship (CHAN) Rwanda 2016. Read more
Salami, Akas Miss Deadline to Eagles Camp
Warri Wolves striker Gbolahan Salami and Chima Akas from Sharks are the only players yet to rejoin the Super Eagles CHAN training camp.
According to Africanfootball.com, 24 players trained twice on Sunday with officials disclosing that Salami and Akas did not beat the Saturday night deadline issued by the coaches because of travel difficulties. Read more
Al Shabaab Islamists claim deadly ambush in northeastern Kenya
The Somali Islamist group al Shabaab said it ambushed a Kenyan security vehicle in remote northeastern Kenya on Sunday, killing four members of the security forces.
The Kenyan Red Cross said in a post on Twitter that two police officers had been killed and two others injured, while a Kenyan police spokesman said he was unaware of the attack. Read more
Youth call for proactive intervention in Burundi
A youth peace building course opened in Kigali, yesterday, with a call on the international community to walk the talk and intervene in the Burundi crisis as mediation dialogue resumed in Entebbe, Uganda.
The two-week course, dubbed “Great Lakes Peace-Building Programme,” organised by Never Again Rwanda, seeks to educate and promote cross-border dialogue for peace to prevent conflicts and to prepare future generations to cope with challenges. Read more
Rwanda franc weathers difficult year
The forex market has experienced interesting trends this year, with the central bank at one time using punitive measures to reign-in what it called ‘errant and speculative’ dealers. This was after the local currency touched lows of over Rwf800 against the US greenback in July.
The regulator also banned all transactions in foreign currency as one of the efforts aimed at reducing demand for the US dollar to ease pressure that was mounting on the Rwanda franc. Earlier, the local currency had shed 0.85 per cent in January, but bounced back in February losing only 0.52 in February, according to the National Bank of Rwanda (BNR) data. Read more
Guinea declared free of Ebola virus that killed over 2,500
Guinea was declared free of Ebola on Tuesday after more than 2,500 people died from the virus in the West African nation, leaving Liberia as the only country still awaiting a countdown for the end of the epidemic.
People in the capital, Conakry, greeted the declaration by authorities and the U.N. World Health Organization with mixed emotions given the deaths and the damage the virus did to the economy and the country’s health and education sectors. Read more
Central Africa set to vote for ‘president for peace’
The Central African Republic votes Wednesday in presidential polls, in which all leading candidates have vowed to reunite a nation torn and terrified by unprecedented sectarian strife.
Postponed several times due to violence and logistical problems, the first round of the polls was again delayed by three days from Sunday, partly because of reports of clashes in regions where armed gangs still hold sway. Read more
Around 20 Soldiers Arrested in Burkina Faso Over Jail Break Plot
Authorities in Burkina Faso have arrested around 20 soldiers for plotting to free from prison a prominent general who has been charged with staging a coup, Prime Minister Yacouba Isaac Zida told a news conference.
The arrests come in the wake of the short-lived coup in September and appear to show continued tension between the government and supporters of veteran President Blaise Compaore, who was overthrown in October 2014. Read more
South Korea, Japan agree to irreversibly end ‘comfort women’ row
South Korea and Japan reached a landmark agreement on Monday to resolve the issue of “comfort women”, as those who were forced to work in Japan’s wartime brothels were euphemistically known, an issue that has long plagued ties between the neighbours.
The foreign ministers of the two countries said after a meeting in Seoul that the “comfort women” issue would be “finally and irreversibly resolved” if all conditions were met. Read more
Stinky corpse flower blooms, attracts huge crowds downunder
Crowds in South Australia have been flocking to the Mount Lofty Botanic Garden near Adelaide to see, or rather smell, a rare flower that reeks of rotten fish.
The rare corpse flower, or Amorphophallus Titanium, is a two metre tall bloom known for its pungent odour. Read more
Iran Edges Closer to Fulfilling Historic Nuclear Pact
A landmark nuclear deal with Tehran moved closer to implementation Monday, with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry announcing that tons of enriched uranium that could potentially be turned to use in atomic arms were on a ship heading from Iran to Russia.
Kerry hailed the development as “one of the most significant steps Iran has taken toward fulfilling its commitments” under the July 14 nuclear agreement, in comments that expanded on information The Associated Press received from a senior Russian diplomat earlier in the day. Read more
Texas ‘affluenza’ teen detained in Mexico: CNN
A Texas teen, who was a fugitive after allegedly breaking his probation sentence for killing four people while driving drunk, has been arrested in Puerto Vallarta in Mexico, CNN reported on Monday, citing officials briefed on the matter.
Ethan Couch, 18, was sentenced to probation about two years ago in juvenile court for intoxication manslaughter and is wanted in Tarrant County, Texas. He and his mother went missing earlier this month. Read more