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320 Katsina farmers get free FG solar-pumping machines

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320 Katsina farmers get free FG solar-pumping machines

…As Buhari approves 2,100 bags of maize, others, for Kwara flood victims*** 

 The Federal Government, through Rural the Electrification Agency (REA), has supported 320 irrigation farmers with 32 free solar water pumping machines and one electrical solar power at eight farming community locations in Katsina State.

The support is in collaboration with the National Fadama coordination, Abuja.

Flagging off the distribution on Wednesday in Katsina, the deputy governor of the state, Mannir Yakubu, commended the Federal government’s gesture.

Yakubu, who is also the state Commissioner for Agriculture and natural resources, said the gesture is part of an effort to reduce carbon emissions by the REA.

The Deputy Governor was represented at the event by the Permanent Secretary of the state’s ministry of agriculture, Dr. Aminu Garba-Waziri.

According to the deputy governor, the effort will also enable the irrigation farmers to enhance their production capacity for socio-economic well-being.

320 Katsina farmers get free FG solar-pumping machines

Commending the REA for the gesture, Yakubu restated the commitment of the state government towards reviving the agricultural sector for the development of the state.

He further called on the agency to sustain the tempo for the interest of the general public, especially to complement the government of President Muhammad Buhari.

According to him, the beneficiaries would be trained on how to operate the solar-powered pumping machines so that they can benefit from it for a long time.

In his response, the Northwest Coordinator of the REA, Engr. Sani Daura said the distribution of the solar-powered water pumping machines is part of the federal government’s efforts to achieve zero emissions.

He explained that Katsina State is the first to benefit from the gesture among the seven benefitting states in the Northwest zone of the country.

He explained that Katsina State is the first to launch the distribution in the northwest zone, saying that the distribution of the equipment shows transparency.

Daura warned that any beneficiary found guilty of selling the machine would be prosecuted as it was contained in the agreement letter signed between them and the fadama office in the state.

The state’s Fadama project Coordinator, Alhaji Mas’ud Banye, said the assistance is also to enhance irrigation farming and reduce the consumption of diesel, and petrol.

According to the Coordinator, it will also ensure a habitable environment and reduced air pollution which he said causes climate change.

He explained that 32 Fadama farming communities from Daura, Mashi, Dutsi, Mai’adua, Kurfi and Zango Local Government Areas (LGAs) were provided with one free solar electric power and solar water pump machines in their domains.

Banye further said that there will be constant monitoring of the beneficiaries to ensure proper utilization of the machines.

One of the beneficiaries, Malam Dauda Alto, thanked the Federal and State governments for the assistance and assured of the judicious use of the machines for the purpose it was given. 

In another development, the Director–General (DG), National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Alhaji Mustapha Ahmed has handed over foodstuff and relief materials worth millions of naira to victims of flooding in Kwara State.

In a press statement from the Minna Operations Office of NEMA issued on Wednesday by the Head, Hajia Zainab Saidu, it was stated that the handing over was approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The statement announced that Buhari approved 12,000 metric tons of assorted grains to be distributed to vulnerable people across the country.

While handing over the relief materials to the Kwara State government in Ilorin, Ahmed said the occasion was another significant milestone in consolidating the mutual support and collaboration between Kwara Government and NEMA.

The DG said that in the last few months, many Nigerian states including Kwara had suffered incidents of flooding resulting in loss of lives and properties, and socio-economic dislocation.

The DG was represented at the occasion by the Deputy Director, ICT of the Agency, Alh. Sani Lokoja.

In his speech, the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Prof. Mamman Jibril who collected the items on behalf of the state government, thanked the DG for continuous support to victims of various disasters in Kwara.

Jibril tasked the Federal Government through NEMA to proffer lasting solutions to recurring floodings in the country by dredging rivers to be able to accommodate more water.

He advised the government to also build buffer dams to absorb excess water.

Jibril called for the planting of trees along river banks to prevent flooding and windstorms.

As a long-time measure to famine occasioned by flooding, the SSG urged the government to encourage mechanized farming with adequate support for farmers.

Items handed over for vulnerable people in Kwara State included 2,100 bags of 50 kg maize, 1,800 bags of 50 kg sorghum; and 3,600 bags of 25 kg garri.

Apart from these, NEMA also delivered food and non-food items to flood victims in Kwara.

The food items are, 75 bags of 20 kg salt, 75 kegs of 20-litre vegetable oil, 150 cartons of seasoning cubes; and
75 cartons of sachet tomato.

Among the non-food items are, 8,000 pieces of nylon mats, 1,000 pieces of mosquito nets, 600 cartons of soap, 2,500 pieces of guinea brocade, 1,000 pieces of children’s wear, 1,000 pieces of women’s wear; and 1,000 pieces of men’s wear.

Economy

Over $23bn revenue generated by oil and gas in 2021- NEITI

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FAAC disburses N2.054trn in Q3 2020 – NEITI

 The Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) said the oil and gas industry generated over $23billion in 2021.

The Executive Secretary of NEITI, Dr Orji Ogbonnaya-Orji said this while presenting highlights on the 2021 Oil and Gas report unveiled on Monday in Abuja.

According to Ogbonnaya Orji, the revenue sources included sales of federation crude oil and gas, taxes, royalties, concession rental, gas flare penalty, bonus and license fees, and transportation fees.

He said that the total revenue was also generated through dividends from NLNG, NDDC levy, NCDMB levy, Ness fee, and miscellaneous income.

According to the NEITI boss, a total of $13.2 billion dollars was remitted from the sum to the federation account.

He said that the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, before its transition failed to remit about $2 billion to the federation account and a total of $6.9 billion was deducted at FAAC.

Ogbonnaya-Orji said that while oil production for the year under review stood at about 566,129 million barrels per day, gas production came at over 2,743,700 million standard cubic feet per day.

He said that the sector contributed a total of 7.2 percent to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2021 with the export contribution of 76.2 percent

The executive secretary said that the Federal Government paid about $3.087 billion in cash calls as equity contributions while the outstanding cash-call liabilities payable by the federation stood at about N330.007 billion.

On data of Beneficial Owners (BO) of Assets, Ogbonnaya-Orji said that about 69 companies were covered in the production of the report and have disclosed some BO information through NEITI or CAC portal except four companies.

FAAC disburses N2.054trn in Q3 2020 – NEITI

On subsidy, the NEITI boss said about $1,159 trillion was paid by the government as subsidy between March to December 2021.

“NEITI audits revealed that between 2006 and 2021, a total of N8.149 trillion has been so far expended on petroleum subsidy, now referred to as under-recovery,’ he said.

On recommendations, he said that based on the outstanding liabilities payable to FIRS and NUPRC, the NNPC and NPCD should be investigated while other companies should promptly pay their liabilities.

Ogbonnaya-Orji said the report also recommended that a special investigation be instituted to establish the status of our non-operational refineries and value for money assessment on the refineries should be carried out.

He further reiterated the need to strengthen remediation mechanisms and involve independent third parties to conduct detailed investigations when necessary among other recommendations.

Earlier, stakeholders in the oil and gas sector commended NEITI on efforts towards ensuring transparency and accountability in the industry.

Representing the Secretary to Government of the Federation, George Akume, his Permanent Secretary on Political and Economic Affairs, Esuabana Nko-Asanye, reiterated the importance of the report to economic development.

Akume reaffirmed the Federal Government’s commitment to support and deepen the implementation of the EITI in Nigeria.

He then restated the need for security issues especially in the Niger/Delta to be tackled to reduce losses in the sector.

The Group Managing Director of NNPCL, Mele Kyari, represented by his Chief Compliant Officer, Nasir Usman, pledged the unreserved support of NNPCL to NEITI to enable it to achieve its mandate.

Representing the Minister of Budget and Economic Planning, his Permanent Secretary, Nebolisa Anako, stated the importance of data for economic planning.

He then reiterated the commitment of the government to the mandate of NEITI as the oil and gas sector was one of the major sources of foreign exchange for the nation.

The Chairman of, House Committee on Petroleum, Hon. Ikenga Ugochinyere, called for the need to amend the NEITI Act and urged for more government allocation to the initiative to enable it better carry out its mandate.

Ugochinyere also pledged the commitment of the House to work towards the implementation of the report that was unveiled today.

Similarly, the Chairmen Senate Committee on Petroleum Upstream, Etang Williams, and the Senate Committee on Oil and Gas Host Communities, Benson Agadaga also expressed commitment to stand by NEITI in implementing the recommendations of the report.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the unveiling of the 2021 report, was attended by various stakeholders and partners in the oil and gas sector in the country

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Economy

Freight train haulage to carry 90 containers daily – Transportation Minister

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…Says Lagos-Kano Narrow Gauge Freight Operations Begins December***

The Minister of Transportation, Sen. Saidu Alkali, has said that the inauguration of the wagon freight train from Apapa Ports to Ibadan would move 90 container cargoes on a daily basis.

Alkali made the disclosure during the inauguration of the wagon freight train haulage at APM Terminal, Apapa, in Lagos on Tuesday.

He said that the freight train for moving cargo would decongest the ports and would also save shippers from the accumulation of demurrages.

Alkali said that the wagon would pass through one track, adding that the remaining two tracks would start to function after completion.

“The ministry is going to liaise with the Minister of Finance and the Customs, concerning the demolition of the scanning centre which is affecting the completion of the remaining tracks into the ports.

*

The Director of Operations of China Civil Engineering Construction Company, Mr Yakub Adogie, the Minister of Transportation, Sen. Saidu Alkali, and the Managing Director of Railway, Mr Fidet Okhiria during the minister’s first visit to railway facilities in Lagos and Ibadan.

“After laying the two remaining tracks, the cargoes will leave the ports respectively and the two remaining lines will enter the ports,” Alkali said.

The Managing Director of Nigerian Railway Corporation, Mr. Fidet Okhiria, said the wagon would carry 30 freights of containerised cargo on a trip from Lagos to Ibadan.

Okhiria said that the Minister of Transportation had inaugurated the freight movement of cargoes to Papalanto and Ibadan.

“We have facilities to move four trips daily but we are starting with three trips, making 90 of the 40ft containers to move out of the ports per day.

“What we are using now is a temporary transitional line, We are making headway to ensure the building gives way to make us have the three lines that are slated for this terminal.

“We are ensuring that the operation starts, so that we don’t give room for vandalisation, when the tracks are not in use then it is vulnerable to attack,” Okhiria said.

He said that if the tracks were used frequently people would see the value and respect the tracks.

The Managing Director of Bueno Logistics, Mr. Jetson Nwankwo, said that he had been working to ensure that the railway was optimally utilised and to decongest the roads.

“Currently we are partnering with the Nigerian Railway Corporation and the terminal operators to help Lagos to decongest its roads from container trucks.

“The new standard gauge line that has entered APM Terminal is a big deal, It will be able to carry at least 60 containers at a go out of Apapa complex, and if we do that every day, you will not see containers on the bridges.

“The deal is to move the containers from the Apapa Port complex to Moniya in Ibadan, where we have a very big freight terminal.

”Any truck coming to pick the truck will go to Moniya that will really decongest Lagos,”

In a related development, the Minister of Transportation, Sen. Sa’idu Alkali, has said that the freight wagon haulage on the narrow gauge from Lagos to Kano will begin in the next three months.

Alkali made the disclosure during his visit to the Kajola Wagon Assembly Plant in Ogun, on Tuesday.

He said the railway corporation was using standard gauge to carry cargo from Lagos to Ibadan. but will begin the operation from Apapa to Kano in three months’ time.

Alkali said that the Federal Government had already fixed the narrow gauge from Lagos to Kano, and will now get some locomotives and wagons to take containers from Apapa and move them to Kano

“Once we evacuate containers from Lagos, we will use the narrow gauge to move them to Kano,” Alkali said.

After visiting some of the railway facilities, the Minister directed the  Managing Director of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC), Fidet Okhiria, to look into the cleanliness of the coaches, to enhance patronage on railways.

Okhiria, on his part, said that the Nigerian Shippers’ Council, being the port regulator, and the former Minister of Transportation set up a ministerial committee headed by the former Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Transportation to look into freight charges.

He said that the purpose of the committee was to ensure the smooth operation of freight rail.

“The impact on NRC is that the terminals are charging 60, 000 per container for moving the container to the wagon freight, which is still higher than the movement on trucks, and the Shippers’ Council is working on that.

” The terminal charges are high because of the double handling; presently, moving cargo by rail is more expensive than road but is faster.

“We are looking to see how we can do it, we have minimum operational cost, and we don’t need to go and borrow money to buy diesel, that is why we are starting the freight rail movement of cargo handling now,” Okhiria said.

He said that NRC had begun the freight rail movement from the port pending when they received the order from the Minister to reduce charges.

Okhiria said that NRC was operating the rail freight with the narrow gauge before now, but stopped due to security issues.

He said the corporation would use a month to repair all the vandalised tracks on the narrow gauge, adding that the management would assemble all the wagons and service them before putting them on track.

Okhira said that NRC had about 120 narrow gauge wagons, as the Federal Government had been proactive and the corporation had placed an order through the China Civil Engineering Construction Company.

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Economy

Naira Falls, Exchanges N747.87 At Investors, Exporters Window 

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Naira further Depreciates Against Dollar by 0.09%

The Naira depreciated against the dollar on Monday as it exchanged at N747.87 at the Investors and Exporters window.

The Naira dropped by 1.01 percent compared to the N740.38 it exchanged for the dollar after the close of business on Sept. 1.

The open indicative rate closed at N772.06 to the dollar on Monday.

A spot exchange rate of N799.90 to the dollar was the highest rate recorded within the day’s trading before it settled at N747.87.

The Naira sold for as low as N730 to the dollar within the day’s trading.

A total of 74.64 million dollars was traded at the investors and exporters window on Monday

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