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NRC is a Bedrock of Social Economic Development – Transportation Minister 



NRC is a Bedrock of Social Economic Development - Transportation Minister 
Maritime First Newspaper

…As Sambo says Buhari has laid down 25-year Infrastructure Plan***

The Minister of Transportation, Mu’azu Jaji Sambo has described the Nigerian Railway Corporation as a bedrock of social-economic development which has touched many lives.

Sambo stated this while on a working visit to the Nigerian Railway Corporation corporate headquarters in Ebute – Metta, Lagos. 

The Minister who commended the support of stakeholders in the Transportation Sector said he wished that President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration had come earlier to help kickstart the Railway modernization programme. 

Sambo also noted that the Nigerian Railway Corporation has a rich history of unifying the people and impacting so many lives. 

“The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) has a very rich history and a lot of us who are our age know the impact the railway corporation has had on so many families in this country.

“Some people speak Igbo because their parents worked in the Railway corporation, some people speak Hausa because their parents worked in the Northern part of the country at a point or the other in their lives all because of their employment with the NRC, indeed this corporation has done well in unifying the country. 

“It is so unfortunate that this bedrock of social-economic development was allowed to die, to be laid comatose. At a time when we discovered oil and at a time when we even said at one time that we didn’t even know what to do with money. 

“Honesty, I wish the incumbent President had come much earlier. However, it is better late than never. The foundation is laid and there is no going back. I don’t think any government will come after this and not continue with the Railway modernization program of this administration, which has been very robust.” he said.

Sambo further commended the effort of the former Minister of Transportation, Honourable Rotimi Amaechi and other members of staff for their achievements in the Rail sector. 

*The Minister of Transportation, Mu’azu Jaji Sambo on a working visit to the Nigerian Railway Corporation Corporate Headquarters, in company of the Minister of State, Prince Ademola Adegoroye, the Permanent Secretary, Dr. Magdalene Ajani, Directors of the Federal Ministry of Transportation, NUR Workers and staff of the Corporation.

He acknowledged their support and prayed for their continuous cooperation so as to leave a positive and lasting impression in the rail transportation sector. 

“I want to thank those of you that we met on board for having achieved all that we have seen and some of them we are going to see today. The progress in the rail sub-sector is something that we are all proud of. 

“I think the gratitude goes to my predecessor and those of you here who supported him. We must commend him for all the things he did while he was in office. 

“One of those achievements is in the Rail sub-sector. I want to join everyone in hailing my immediate predecessor, Right Honourable Rotimi Amaechi for all he has done, especially in the rail sub-sector. He has indeed left an indelible mark, which you cannot take away from him. 

“Those of us that have come after him, have a very limited time but we have vowed to continue from where he stopped and we can only make an impression. If we get your total support. 

“So far, we have received that support and we hope that the support will continue until the last day which is May 29, 2023, may God spare our lives,” he said. 

Sambo further assured members of staff of the railway corporation that the Ministry would continue to support them by creating an environment where they can work comfortably without any harassment or intimidation. 

“On our own, we will continue to support you as we know that we are all here for the good of the country. I would like to thank you for this warm welcome.

“So on behalf of my colleague, Prince Adegoroye, the Permanent Secretary, the directors, and other members of staff who came from Abuja, I want to thank you and wish all of us a great day and a blessed one. Thank you,” he said.

In another development, the Minister of Transportation, Mu’azu Jaji Sambo has indicated that the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration had laid the foundation for a 25-year infrastructure plan.

Sambo said the infrastructure plan built on a 25-year railway modernization programme essentially features programs that ensure every state capital is linked by rail.

The Minister said that the whole country would be connected by rail while trying to connect every state capital. 

“I don’t have to tell you the advantages that railway brings so by the time that plan is achieved, the whole country would have been connected. 

“Already we have the Eastern line. It’s been rehabilitated from Port-Harcourt to Maiduguri, we have the western line from Lagos to Kano, the narrow gauge is operational and the new standard gauge, Lagos-Ibadan which we are on now is already operational. 

“Abuja-Kaduna is operational, Kaduna Kano is being constructed and other sections and stations are also being constructed. 

“Now we have the central line running from Warri to Itakpe, which is operational and ultimately that same line will also link up with Abuja so that if you live in Delta State, you want to come to Abuja, you have no business going by air or road. 

“At the end of the day, the entire country would have been connected by a network of railways that would make life easier for passengers’ movement in large volumes and movement of goods,” he said.

The Minister emphasised that railway Infrastructure is a bedrock of social economic development and that the next administration should build up on what the present government is doing.

He revealed that a ministerial retreat was also recently held to score the performance and the mandates given to each ministry. 

‘The essential features of this retreat were to review the performance and see what has been achieved and also lay the foundation for a transition for the incoming government. By the way, the President has made it very clear that this government will work every day until May 29., 2023.” he added. 

Speaking on the importance of linking the railway to the ports, Sambo said he recently paid a visit to the Comptroller General of Customs to take him up on several issues that are of concern to the Ministry of Transportation, particularly the Apapa ports.

Sambo said the government is continuous and it is important that a transition plan take place so that subsequent administrations can build on what the present administration is doing. 

“When the Buhari administration came to power, there was no transition plan from the PDP government. Nothing at all to build upon and we felt it was wrong, we needed to correct it as part of governance. 

“Even if you are handing over to an opposition party, give them something to build upon. Government is continuous. So you must prepare for the next coming government.” He said.

The Minister further urged Nigerians to ignore sentiments and commend President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration for his commitment to infrastructure development. 

Sambo said politics should be set aside and honour should be given to whom it’s due, especially when it is obvious that the present administration has completed almost all projects abandoned by previous administrations.

He added that President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration has improved the security architecture of the country and also the revenue-generating power compared to the lad administration. 

“Before this present administration, a lot of communities in the North were under the control of terrorists but look at it now. Business is back to normal and there is peace. 

“Then we would come down from our vehicles and raise our hands while passing by military checkpoints. It’s been a long time since we had incidents of such now.

“You see, we cannot live without challenges but the ability of government to respond to challenges in the interest of the citizens is what is paramount and why shouldn’t we be appreciated,” he said.


Children’s Day: London Academy Business School Celebrates Nigerian Children



...Reiterates commitment to provide high-quality education to Nigerian Child***
Dr. Larry, the Director of London Academy Business School (LABS), joined other Nigerian leaders from other industries to celebrate children on children's Day. In his words, Dr. Larry stated that children remind us of the future.
While speaking to reporters, he emphasized the aura of love that children create in the homes and throughout society, Also that "the joy and happiness from children are amazing, sufficient enough to drive energy for nation building."

Dr. Larry also advocated for effective child protection policies and implementation, urging all critical stakeholders, including parents, teachers, and the government, to protect and celebrate children.
  To ensure that high-quality education is available to children in Nigeria, London Academy Business School has established a Lagos Study Centre with state of the art facility and modern technology with plans to expand across all cities in Nigeria.

Dr. Jones-Esan, who has big plans to change the face of education in Nigeria, has also urged the government and private stakeholders to work with him and his team of professionals to change the face of education in Nigeria. He claims that many children have big potentials but can't realise them because they're not in school.
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Tinubu To Adopt Price Control Mechanism For Agro Products



… Vows to Defend Nigeria From Terror, Criminality – Tinubu***

President Bola Tinubu says he will take steps to ensure price control for agricultural products.

Tinubu said this in his inaugural address on Monday in Abuja.

According to him, rural income shall be secured by commodity exchange boards guaranteeing minimal prices for certain crops and animal products.

He said that agricultural hubs would be created throughout the nation to increase production and engage in value-added processes.

“The livestock sector will be introduced to best modern practices and steps taken to minimise the perennial conflict over land and water resources in the sector.

“Through these actions, food shall be made more abundant yet less costly. Farmers shall earn more while the average Nigerian pays less,” he said.

On foreign policy, Tinubu said that the crisis in Sudan and the turn from democracy by several nations in “our immediate neighbourhood were of pressing concern”.

He said that his primary foreign policy objective would be the peace and stability of the West African continent.

“We shall work with ECOWAS, the AU, and willing partners in the international community to end extant conflicts and to resolve new ones.

“As we contain threats to peace, we shall also retool our foreign policy to more actively lead the regional and continental quest for collective prosperity, ” he said.

The President called on all Nigerians, irrespective of political affiliations, to support his government in his bid to take Nigeria to greater heights.

“Our administration will govern on your behalf but never rule over you.

“We shall consult and dialogue with, but never dictate. We shall reach out to all but never put down a single person for holding views contrary to our own.

“We are here to further mend and heal this nation not tear and injure it,” he said.

In the meantime, President, Bola Tinubu, has promised to defend Nigeria from terror and all forms of criminality threatening the peace and stability of the country and the sub-region.

Tinubu said this in his inaugural address after he was sworn in as the 16th democratically elected president of Nigeria on Monday in Abuja.

He said that security shall be the top priority of his administration, saying that neither prosperity nor justice could prevail amidst insecurity and violence.

“To effectively tackle this menace, we shall reform both our security Doctrine and its Architecture.

“We shall invest more in our security personnel, and this means more than an increase in number.

“We shall provide, better training, equipment, pay and firepower,” he said.

Tinubu said his mission was to improve the lives of Nigerians in a manner that nurtured humanity, encourage compassion toward one another, and duly rewards collective effort to resolve the social ills that sought to divide the nation.

“Our constitution and laws give us a nation on paper, saying we must work harder at bringing these noble documents to life by strengthening the bonds of economic collaboration, social cohesion, and cultural understanding,” he said.

He called for the development of a shared sense of fairness and equity, adding that the South must not only seek good for itself but must understand that its interests were served when good come to the North.

“The North must see the South likewise.

“Whether from the winding creeks of the Niger Delta, the vastness of the northern savannah, the boardrooms of Lagos, the bustling capital of Abuja, or the busy markets of Onitsha, you are all my people.

“As your president, I shall serve with prejudice toward none but compassion and amity towards all.

“In the coming days and weeks, my team will publicly detail key aspects of our programme,” he said.

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Fuel Subsidy Removal: Don Predicts Reduction In Fuel Price



Prof. AbdulGafar Ijaiya of the Department of Economics, University of Ilorin, has expressed optimism at President Bola Tinubu’s inaugural remarks on the removal of fuel subsidies, saying this may reduce prices at the long run.

Ijaiya, who spoke on Monday in Ilorin, observed that with commitment from the Federal Government in revamping existing refineries alongside Dangote refineries, will increase the availability of petroleum products.

The expert who however explained that though such effect may not be felt immediately, noted that the present pump price is about N200, depending on filling stations across the country.

He questioned if the present fuel price at about N200 was as a result of the subsidy removal, adding that if it is not, then fuel may likely increase with about 50 per cent rate after the removal.

“But the thing is that very soon, what has gone wrong with the refineries will be corrected and Dangote refineries will commence by July/August,” he said.

Ijaiya, who teaches in the Faculty of Social Sciences of the university, pointed out that in the beginning there might be an increase in the prices of foods and services.

He however asserted that in a society like Nigeria where people are used to hike in prices, it would not mean much to the citizens.

“By Economics principle, we have adjusted our expenditure profile consumption to particular items. We have moved from consuming luxury and unnecessary items to necessary items.

“This means people go for what is necessary and do away with those that are not,” he said.

Ijaiya affirmed that in the long run, the fuel pump price will adjust downward and there would be more supply of the products.

He further added that when there are more supply of a particular product in the market, it will automatically reduce the price.

“If we have enough supply, with time and there are no other man-made distortion that has to do with our behaviour, I see us buying it between N80 and N100 per litre,” he predicted.

The economist also foresee filling station advertising and competing for sales, saying it will be good for the nation.

He, however, cautioned that “we are in an uncertain world”, but maintained that fuel subsidy removal would be good for the country eventually as only a minority are benefiting from it.

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