Nigerian executives need strategic leadership to thrive–TEXEM faculty


Prof. John Peters, a faculty of the United Kingdom leadership development organisation, TEXEM, says CEOs and directors know that in the present turbulent times, organizations face multiple global and local challenges.

Answering questions on TEXEM’s website, www.texem.co.uk, on the coming programme of the organization billed for Manchester, Peters says the million dollar question is, how can they win in these turbulent times?

The TEXEM faculty asserts that Nigerian executives need strategic leadership and paradigm shift to thrive in such uncertain glocal business landscape.

He said the programme, ‘Strategic Leadership Unleashed: Thriving In An Uncertain GLOCAL World’ will equip Nigerian and global leaders with the agility and foresight to navigate complexity successfully.

‘Through this framework, leaders can anticipate market shifts, harness global opportunities, and address local nuances adeptly.

‘For instance, adept strategic leaders can leverage cross-cultural insights to expand operations internationa
lly while remaining rooted in local values, thus fostering sustainable growth.

‘A prime example of a company embodying these principles is Dangote Group, which, under the strategic leadership of Aliko Dangote, has successfully expanded its footprint continent-wide while maintaining its Nigerian roots,’ Peters said.

According to him, these topics and more will be covered during the forthcoming TEXEM programme, which will be held in Manchester between May 26 and May 30.

John Peters, former Chair of the Association of MBAs (an organisation that accredits Harvard, Stanford, Wharton and IMD), is a top world leadership speaker and survivor par excellence. He was a Prisoner of War during the Gulf War 1.

He will be among the three faculty members delivering the TEXEM programme titled ‘Strategic Leadership Unleashed: Thriving In An Uncertain GLOCAL World’, which is billed for Manchester.

Other faculty members include Prof. Rodria Laline (the inventor of the IP being used on all ATMs globally, Former SVP for Oracl
e in Asia Pacific and Harvard, INSEAD and IMD Professor)

Prof. Paul Griffith (the World’s first Professor of Management to lead a team to launch a rocket into space) is also a faculty on this programme.

Peters says understanding the changing roles of strategic leaders in these increasingly disruptive global and local times enables leaders to adopt a more holistic approach to decision-making to win.

He added that it enables balancing short-term objectives with long-term considerations, creating value for all stakeholders, and ensuring the resilience and longevity of their organisations.

Peters further explained how pressure can be utilised as a catalyst for innovation in problem-solving within an organisation.

‘Pressure can be a powerful catalyst for innovation in problem-solving within an organisation by fostering urgency, resourcefulness, adaptive thinking, risk-taking, collaboration, learning, adaptation, and motivation among individuals and teams.

‘When harnessed effectively, pressure can fuel creati
vity and drive positive change, leading to breakthrough solutions that propel the organisation forward,’ he said.

Peters said leaders can employ several strategies to recognise a crisis as an opportunity for transformation and organisational excellence.

According to the faculty, one of the strategies

is to embrace a growth mindset, by reframing challenges as opportunities and building the organisation’s core competence to respond to external threats.

Peters says in this way, leaders can inspire a culture of resilience and creativity within the organisation.

He said another strategy is to stay agile and adaptive explaining that by staying nimble and open to new possibilities, leaders can identify opportunities for transformation and guide the organisation towards excellence.

Peters also prescribed encouragement of innovation saying by fostering a culture of innovation, leaders can harness the collective intelligence of their workforce to overcome challenges and seize opportunities.

Focusing on purpose a
nd values is another strategy prescribed by the TEXEM faculty.

According to Peters, by anchoring decision-making and actions in core principles, leaders can ensure alignment and coherence across the organisation.

He said they can also guide efforts towards transformative outcomes that uphold the organisation’s mission and vision.

Peters suggested communicating transparently, explaining that transparent communication fosters trust, builds resilience, and encourages collective problem-solving, laying the foundation for organisational excellence.

He urged leaders and executives to empower and support employees saying by investing in employee well-being and development, leaders can foster a motivated and resilient workforce capable of driving transformation.

Peters advised them to learn from adversity asserting that by embracing a mindset of continuous learning and improvement, leaders can leverage crises as catalysts for organisational excellence.

‘For example renowned organisations such as Disney, Microso
ft, Uber and Airbnb were all founded during economic crises.

‘If they can thrive despite the challenging external environment so can Nigerian organisations,’ the faculty said.

Another strategy he prescribed for the leaders is to lead by example saying by embodying the values and behaviours they wish to see in others, leaders can inspire confidence, foster trust, and galvanise collective action towards transformative outcomes.

‘By attending the forthcoming TEXEM programme you will be able to glean fresh insights into how to win in these volatile times,’ Peters said.

He offered some insights from Nigerian organisations and how their experiences can offer some lessons applicable to other contexts.

Referring to the Dangote Group again, he said that one key strategy that has contributed to the group’s resilience is diversification.

‘The lesson here is the importance of diversification in building resilience and sustaining growth, particularly in volatile environments.

‘Another is Guaranty Trust Bank: GTBank
has leveraged technology to expand its reach and offer customers innovative financial products and services.

‘The lesson here is the importance of embracing digital transformation and innovation to adapt to changing market conditions and meet customers’ evolving needs,’ Peters said.

He also mentioned the Lagos State Government as another Nigerian entity with commendable core competence.

‘The Lagos State Government has implemented various initiatives to ameliorate challenges such as traffic congestion, infrastructure deficits, and environmental degradation.

‘The lesson here is the importance of proactive governance, strategic planning, and public-private partnerships in addressing complex challenges and driving sustainable development.

‘Overall, many Nigerian organisations have demonstrated resilience, innovation, and adaptability in navigating crises, uncertainties and challenges,’ Peters said.

He said the key lessons from their experiences include the importance of diversification, digital transformati
on, innovation, collaboration, and proactive governance in building resilience and sustaining growth in uncertain environments.

‘While these lessons can be applied to challenges of the past, there is an urgent need to glean new insights on how to address present and future challenges such as how does geopolitics affect organisation’s particularly in emerging markets and how can leaders turn these headwinds to tailwinds,’ Peters said.

Peters, Laline and Griffith will leverage TEXEM’s tested and proven methodology that makes learning engaging, experiential, actionable and beneficial at the programme.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Man drowns in pond in Omusati Region

A 36-year-old man allegedly drowned in a pond while fishing at Ouhwaala village in the Anamulenge Constituency.

The Namibian Police Force crime investigations coordinator for Omusati, Deputy Commissioner Moses Simaho, told Nampa the incident occurred around 18h30 on Wednesday.

‘It is alleged that the deceased, who was suffering from epilepsy, was fishing in the pond near their house when he fell into the water and drowned,’ he said.

He added that the deceased’s body was discovered by his mother. No foul play is suspected thus far.

The deceased was identified as Shilongo Kilian Shamwene.

The body was transported to the Okahao Police mortuary for an autopsy to be conducted.

Police investigation into the matter continues.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

U.S. sports envoys urge Nigerian youth to embrace breakdancing


U.S. sports envoys, B-Girl and Lyons, have called on the Nigerian youth to embrace Breakdancing, to enhance their dancing skills and enable them participate in future Olympic breakdancing sport events.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that breakdancing is an officially recognised Olympic sport, set to debut at the upcoming Paris Olympic Games.

The duo stated this during their grand performance hosted by the U.S. embassy’s public diplomacy section, in collaboration with FAME Foundation, on Wednesday night, in Abuja.

B-Girl, whose real name is Ms. Macca Malik, stressed that through breakdancing, Nigerian youngsters could demonstrate their creativity and skills and represent their nation on a global scale.

Being a leading female competitor in the breakdancing community, B-Girl noted that Nigeria had a rich cultural heritage, and advocated for the active involvement of young women in the dance sport.

According to her, Nigerian youth participation in breakdancing will align with global standards in Ol
ympic sports events.

‘As an officially recognised Olympic sport set to debut at the upcoming Olympic Games, Breakdancing’s dynamic movements and creativity present a significant opportunity for Nigerian youth,’ she stressed.

Also speaking, Lyons, whose real name is Jacob ‘Kujo,’ and who is a representative of the deaf and hard of hearing community in breakdancing, urged the Federal Government to invest in breakdancing, as a sport.

‘We urge the Federal Government of Nigeria to consider investing in breakdancing infrastructure and training programmes.

‘The substantial positive impacts of such endeavours will be felt in youth empowerment, skill enhancement, and international representation are undeniable,’ he said.

He said that fostering a robust breakdancing community in Nigeria could enhance the country’s global sports presence and strengthen national pride and unity.

Aderonke Ogunleye-Bello, Executive Director, FAME Foundation, expressed gratitude to the U.S. sports envoys for providing Nigerian Breakda
ncers with valuable guidance to pursue success.

‘We believe that through this training, Nigeria can progress towards meeting international standards in Breakdancing and prepare its youth for Olympic participation.

‘The encouragement from the U.S. sports envoys reminds us of the transformative impact of investing in diverse artistic expressions and athletic pursuits.

‘While the Nigerian Breakdancers may not partake in this year’s Olympic competition, this training equips them to compete effectively in future events,’ she said.

Ogunleye-Bello also called on the Federal Government and stakeholders to furnish facilities that would help dancers realize their ambition.

Minister of Youth and Sports Development, John Enoh, represented by Orok Effanga, pledged the ministry’s unwavering dedication to promote and facilitate the growth of Breakdancing in Nigeria.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Rössing contractor employee dies on job

Rössing Uranium Namibia has confirmed the death of an employee of one of its contractor’s sub-contractors working at the mine’s solar plant construction site on Wednesday.

A media statement issued by the company’s communications department Wednesday night stated that operations at the solar plant construction site have been suspended until further notice.

All operations for the afternoon and night shift at the mine were also halted for the rest of Wednesday and resumed on Thursday.

The details of the deceased could not be released as the next of kin had not yet been informed.

A safety pause has further been arranged for all shifts, addressed by a senior leadership team, before operations resumed on Thursday.

The spokesperson of the Namibian Police in the Erongo Region, Chief Inspector Ileni Shapumba, confirmed the incident, saying a case of culpable homicide is being investigated.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

Minster tasks Nigerians on commitment to duty


Dr Tunji Alausa, the Minister of State for Health and Social Welfare, on Wednesday in Abuja urged Nigerians to be diligent at their places of work and business.

The Minister gave the advice at a dinner tagged ‘Industry Evening of Honours’ organised in honour of Ms. Kachollom Daju, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Perm Sec. was honoured at the dinner by the West African Postgraduate College of Pharmacists with an Honorary Fellow of the college.

Alausa said that diligence, commitment, hardworking and transparency are the prominent virtues of every man, while calling on all Nigerians to possess these qualities.

He said that Daju, who was honoured with Honorary Fellow, possesses those hence the award.

‘These qualities are things people should aspire for, Daju also has cerebral capacity, the way she attends to things in a very fair manner; she doesn’t discriminate against any profession”, he said.

Alausa also described the Perm Sec as a t
eam player and urged the younger ones to emulate her.

‘Hard work, honesty, truthfulness and credibility matters in all what we do, we should maintaining high level of credibility in everything we do”, Alausa said.

Dr Ibrahim Kana, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Defence, described the award bestowed on Daju as recognition of her hard work, fairness and dedication to duty.

‘The group of Pharmacists has found her worthy of the honour because of her level of fairness and equity in the discharge of her duties in the ministry.

‘I join in congratulating her, she is always dedicated to her work and ready to learn and she has been doing that and she will continue with that.

‘With Daju in the ministry of health, our journey to Universal Health Coverage (UHC) will be easier,’ Kana said.

Dr Fidelis Ayebae, the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Fidson Healthcare Plc, also said Daju has performed excellently in improving the health sector.

Ayebae commended the West African Postgraduate College of Pharma
cists for finding Daju worthy of the honour.

He reminded the pharmacists of their crucial role in the development of the health sector.

While responding, Daju, thanked the organisers for the honour saying that it was not for her alone, but for those who believe in Nigerian’s health sector.

She said the Award would inspire her to do more, adding that government was ready to unlock the value chain embedded in Nigeria.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Agric insurance: Coy pays N110m claims to farmers


PULA Advisors AG in partnership with Leadway Assurance Company Limited, Heifer International, and AFEX Commodity Exchange on Thursday began payment of N110 million agricultural insurance claims to Nigerian farmers.

In a statement in Abuja by Dr Mike Enahoro, country commercial manager, PULA Advisors AG, it is stated that the ceremony kick-started the 2023 Wet Season Insurance Claims Pay-out Ceremony facilitated by PULA.

The statement announced that the insurance payout forms the basis of the ‘Naija Unlock Signature Program’ coordinated by Heifer in conjunction with AFEX and her network of Rice, Maize, Soya and Ginger smallholder farmers.

Enahoro said the farmers are spread across Niger, Kaduna, Jigawa, Plateau, Kebbi and Jigawa States.

He added that Leadway Assurance, being the lead insurer of the programme is to make the claims payout of N110 million to AFEX.

Enahoro said this is on behalf of Ginger farmers in Kaduna State who suffered 100 per cent harvest loss due to the outbreak of the Ginger Blight d
isease.

He added that a total of 1,138 Ginger farmers were verified for compensation for payouts in respect of their harvest losses.

Enahoro says the payout ceremony has been made possible also because of the catalytic role played by Heifer International.

He says that Heifer is responsible for pre-financing the insurance premiums of farmers participating under the AFEX 2023 wet season farming programme at the start of the planting season.

Enahoro asserts that the Heifer pre-financing model allows for farmers to be insured during the farming season but deferred their payment for insurance services post-harvest when they are financially buoyant to pay for it.

He says the payout bears testimony to the impact of mitigating against agricultural risks that are currently experienced by the Nigerian smallholder farmers.

The PULA executive said losses which were due to pests, diseases, climate change, and other critical factors had necessitated the inclusion of insurance in the farming programme.

Enahoro said t
his is in order to protect farmers’ investments against crop or harvest failures emanating from climate change perils.

‘The partnership has been actively involved in ensuring that climate-induced challenges in the agricultural sector are tackled.

‘This is in order to ensure that smallholder farmers’ confidence is bolstered, food production guaranteed and food systems resilience is mainstreamed in the attempt to support the government’s ongoing drive to address food security challenges.

‘We are able to achieve this by ensuring that farmers’ claims are verified, catalogued and processed expeditiously anytime they suffer from harvest losses,’ he said.

PULA Advisors, a leader in agricultural insurance innovation, streamlined the claims assessment and payout process, ensuring transparency and efficiency in delivering financial support to aggrieved farmers that suffered losses.

Heifer Project International, a global non-for-profit organisation, pre-financed the insurance premiums for the farmers at the beginni
ng of the season, providing a post-harvest repayment option.

Leadway Assurance Company Limited, with over 50 years’ experience in protecting livelihoods through comprehensive insurance coverages has once again demonstrated its competence in servicing farmers’ claims.

By so doing, Leadway is providing climate resilience and sustainability for smallholder farmers’ businesses thereby contributing to the food security of the nation.

AFEX, one of the largest commodity players in Nigeria, works with an expansive network of farmers and processors, providing them with the capital, infrastructure and market access needed, to support food productivity.

AFEX’s innovative value-chain financing model leverages on insurance to protect their investments and indemnify their raw-material agricultural supply chain against crop losses.

The partnership has enjoined its collective aspiration towards expanding this engagement and ensuring that more Nigerian smallholder farmers are registered and insured during the 2024 farmin
g season.

Farmers and investors involved in the production value chains are therefore advised to take advantage of this partnership and have their projects insured against climatic and other risks during the 2024 wet season and beyond.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Ministry emphasises multi-sectoral approach to addressing public health challenges


The Ministry of Health and Social Welfare says addressing public health challenges

requires a multi-sectoral approach that recognises the intricate interplay between various determinants of health.

Dr Binyerem Ukaire, the Director and Head, Family Health Department in the ministry, said this in Abuja during a two-day

National Health Promotion Stakeholders workshop.

Ukaire, who was represented by Mrs Chinyere Ogbonna, the Deputy Director, Health Promotion Department of Family Health,

said the workshop was to review and refine the National Health Promotion Coordination Framework.

According to her, it is a critical aspect of public health that enables people to increase control over their health and its determinants.

She said ‘the purpose of the workshop is to develop a framework, identify gaps and develop strategies to enhance effectiveness.’

She explained that ‘health promotion efforts cannot be siloed within the healthcare sector alone; instead, it must engage multiple

sectors such as education, envi
ronment, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), as well as

nutrition.

She said that such would create supportive environment that foster health and well-being.

‘This integrated approach acknowledges the role this sector plays in influencing individual and community health outcomes.

‘It is about empowering communities, improving health literacy, and creating supportive environments for healthy living,’ she said.

The director said Nigeria faced numerous health challenges, including communicable and non-communicable diseases,

maternal and child health issues, and lifestyle-related conditions.

According to her, addressing these challenges require a well-coordinated and robust framework to tackle.

‘Therefore, the development of the National Health Promotion Coordination Framework (NHPCF) is a process of establishing

strategic approach toward the prevention of public health issues in Nigeria.

‘Building the foundation to drive health promotion in effective multi-sectoral partnership and coordinated action,
engaging

stakeholders in advancing the nation’s health agenda as well as harnessing resources.

‘It is important to mention that the ministry has given a strategic focus and direction, carefully presented in the strategic blueprint.

‘On this backdrop, the ministry, in collaboration with key stakeholders, must provide policy enabling environment for

successful implemention of this strategic blueprint,’ she said.

During his representation, Mr William Anyebe, the Executive Coordinator, Treeshade Associate Nigeria Ltd, said that the specific

objective of the framework was to facilitate efficient coordination and harmonisation.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Swap Station, others, to deploy electric vehicle accessories in Lagos, environs


Swap Station Mobility Ltd. has signed a partnership agreement with Glovo and Siltech World to deploy electric vehicle accessories across the country.

The accessories include motorbikes, smart swappable batteries, and a network of quick interchange stations across Lagos State.

It may be recalled that the company, signed partnership agreements with GlovoApp Nigeria Ltd. (Glovo) and Siltech World.

The partnership will provide Glovo couriers with two-wheel electric motorbikes that offer lower cost, clean mobility alternative to the internal combustion engine (ICE).

The Electric Vehicles (EVs) are provided on a lease-to-own model whilst also offering riders a unique ‘pay as you ride’ or ‘weekly subscription’ to access SSM’s battery swap and charging facilities.

It will also give technical support and cover for insurance, licensing, and routine maintenance services.

This is part of efforts to increase adoption to build out a network of solar powered automated quick interchange battery stations along major de
mand routes and logistics bases starting in Lagos and surrounding states over the next 24 months.

Blackaion Capital and FundCo Capital Managers who are the co-sponsors of Swap Station Mobility, believe the operational cost of battery swapping per kilometre (km) will remain substantially lower than the fuel cost per km for the ICE counterpart.

‘This is the main value driver which has been catalysed by the Federal Government’s near elimination of fuel subsidies.

‘The products are designed to exceed the performance of petrol alternatives whilst significantly improving CO2 emissions, local air quality, and cost efficiency for users over the life of the asset,’ said Obiora Okoye, Director at Swap Station and Partner at Blackaion Capital.

Okwu Njoku, who sits on the Board, said ‘We are very excited about signing with Glovo who operates one of the most prolific food delivery platforms in Nigeria.

‘Our EVs and swappable batteries are in-country, and Siltech World, one of our key technology and technical partners
, supported us with the procurement, testing, and certification of the EVs, and so, we are now ready to start operations.

‘We plan to spend the next few months securing additional swap locations, building our technology platform, and expanding our team.’

Abiodun Oni, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of FundCo Capital Managers, and former Regional Sales Director, Energy, for Tesla, stated, ‘e-mobility is critical to our sustainable infrastructure investment strategy, and this agreement with our partners enables us to kick start that process’.

On his part, Head of Operations at Glovo, Ify Adah stated, ‘ By 2030, our goal is to have about half of our orders delivered by non-combustion vehicles.

‘So, we are very excited and look forward to working with Swap Station, and supporting our couriers with cleaner and more cost-effective transport solutions.’

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the company is an integrated EV financing and battery charging infrastructure development company that has built a b
usiness-to-business-to-consumer (B2B2C) platform.

It provides access to electric two-wheel and three-wheel vehicles, swap station infrastructure, swappable batteries, and a hub for repairs and maintenance services to fleet owners, businesses, and users operating in the logistics and last mile connectivity in Nigeria.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

NGO urges adequate guidance for students choosing career paths


An NGO, Hacey Health Initiative, says students require proper guidance and counselling in their choice of career paths to achieve fulfillment and contribute positively to socio-economic growth.

Ms Mercy Kalu, Programme Officer, HACEY’s PAVE Project Officer, said this during a Career Day Programme at Saint Francis School, Iwaya, Lagos, on Wednesday.

According to her, the event aims to assist students understand the process of effective career choice, clarify their future objectives, and appropriate action to implement these objectives.

She noted that an opinion sampling conducted showed that many of the students lacked clarity about their future career paths, while some were pushed to a career choice by their parents.

‘It is important for a child to make this decision themselves as it encourages confidence and self-reliance in future plans,’ she said.

Kalu said that the programme was also to deconstruct gender bias that it was safer to invest in educating a boy-child and marry off the girl-child.

‘We als
o engage parents and community leaders in our discussions so that they understand and align with what we are doing with the girl-child, so that we can build a safer society for them,’ she said.

She noted that the event was done under its PAVE Project, a girl-centred, community-based safe space programme, aimed at supporting teenage girls by providing them with essential health, financial, and life skills information, services, and tools.

‘The project establishes safe spaces where girls can access knowledge and resources related to sexual health, mental health, and career development.

‘They receive mentoring and are referred for additional support services as needed,’ she said.

Similarly, Mrs Oluwanifemi Sowole, a psychologist, said that passion, skills, personality, values were some factors that influence career choice.

Sowole emphasised the vital role played by parents and teachers in identifying and nurturing gifts of children to enable them excel in their chosen career.

Also, Mr Samuel Facon, Princi
pal of the school, commended the organisers for their interest in the future of the students.

Facon advised the students to utilise the opportunity properly, saying ‘ whatever career you choose, make sure you have the passion and capability for it.

‘Don’t go to science class because your friends are there. Stay in your area of strengths and you will excel in your chosen career,’ he said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

5 Rivers commissioners give reasons for resigning


The unending political rift in Rivers has taken a fresh twist with five Commissioners resigning.

Their resignations were contained in separate letters addressed to the Secretary to the State Government, Dr Tammy Danagogo.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the mass resignation is the second since Gov. Siminalayi Fubara became governor on May 29, 2023.

The first of such mass resignations led to the peace accord initiated by President Bola Tinubu which later led to the recall of the commissioners.

The crises in the state had since defied all interventions, climaxing in the fresh round of resignations.

While the Commissioner for Social welfare, Mrs Inime Aguma, gave ‘absence of work place progression’ as reason for her resignation, her Transportation counterpart, Dr Jacobson Nbina, cited ‘prolonged political crises’.

The Commissioner for Housing, Mr Gift Worlu, accused Fubara of ‘promoting toxic working relationship and attempting to fuse the legislative and executive arm thereby breaching the l
aw of separation of powers’.

Also, Mr Austen Ben, Commissioner for Environment, in his letter, said that he decided to tender his resignation ‘because of the political crises in the state’.

As for the Commissioner for Education, Prof. Chinedu Mmon, the ‘absence of trust, animosity and division amongst colleagues’ forced out of Fubara’s cabinet.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Northern Governors’ wives partner NGO to fight drug abuse


The Forum of the 19 Northern States Governors’ Wives has endorsed the Drug Prevention, Treatment, and Care strategy of the Re-Orientation Advocacy of Nigeria (RAN).

Mr Charles Folayan, Executive Director of RAN, announced this while speaking with newsmen in Abuja on Thursday.

He stated that the partnership followed the Northern Governors Wives Forum stakeholders’ meeting on Substance Abuse, held in Gombe on May 14 at the Government House.

Folayan mentioned that RAN presented on the successes and aspirations of the organisation in their efforts to prevent drug abuse, particularly in the 19 Northern states.

Folayan said that the Chairperson of the Forum, Hajia Asmau Inuwa-Yahaya called on all stakeholders and well-meaning Nigerians to support their efforts on rehabilitation and reintegration of people with drug use disorder.

Folayan called for treatment and care of victims of drugs, adding that RAN focuses on the wives of the Governor in the region to end drug abuse.

He said RAN is currently working with
two of the governor’s wives in the region.

The director said that RAN is seeking the involvement of others in the establishment of modern social and rehabilitation centres in their various states.

According to him, some of the Governor’s wives who responded to the partnership proposal of RAN, agreed on the need to step up prevention and treatment programmes in Nigeria.

‘They expressed their acceptance to work with RAN and their partners on the project.

‘RAN earlier in the year entered into partnership with Annmom Foundation USA, and formed a joint task with the Federal Ministry of Health and the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency on drug prevention

He said the organisation is also in partnership with the Nigeria Police Force and other relevant government agencies, on drug prevention, treatment and care programmes.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

2024 World Hypertension Day: NGO raises awareness on HIV-hypertension link


APIN Public Health Initiatives, an NGO, says there is need to create awareness on the link between HIV and hypertension.

Dr Abiodun Isah, Technical Officer, Clinical Services, APIN, spoke with newsmen on Thursday in Abuja in commemoration of the World 2024 World Hypertension Day.

Isah highlighted the increased risk of non-communicable disease complications associated with HIV.

He said there was need to integrate HIV and non-communicable disease services to improve care for those living with HIV.

According to him, early detection and proactive management will mitigate the adverse health outcomes of hypertension and HIV/AIDS.

‘Regular blood pressure monitoring is a critical component of HIV management because of the impact of factors like diet and lifestyle on blood pressure levels.”

Isah said that as Nigeria battled with the dual burden of HIV/AIDS and hypertension, the integration of care for both conditions emerged as a pressing need.

He highlighted the importance of expanding access to healthcare se
rvices for the effective management of chronic diseases, acknowledging the limitations of a healthcare system primarily structured for acute infections.

‘With a significant number of people living with HIV in APIN’s care experiencing Non-Communicable Diseases (NCD) such as hypertension, diabetes, renal diseases, cervical cancer, and mental health issues, we are strengthening the HIV-NCD service integration programme.

‘Currently supporting 308,497 active people living with HIV across 423 health facilities in Nigeria, APIN aims to address the interconnected health challenges faced by this population.”

Isah said the impact of HIV infection on the cardiovascular system underscored its potential to heighten susceptibility to hypertension-induced end-organ damage, including cerebrovascular accidents (stroke), nephropathy (kidney damage) and myocardial infarction.

He said there was significant risk factor associated with hypertension among people living with HIV and how it could contribute to challenges in HIV
drug therapy, adherence, morbidity and mortality.

‘Despite advancements in HIV treatment, disparities persist in monitoring and managing cardiovascular risk factors among individuals with HIV.

‘Challenges to adequate care include fragmented healthcare systems, limited awareness of cardiovascular risks, and prevailing socio-economic factors.”

He said that APIN was committed to continuously monitoring and evaluating the integration of HIV and NCD services to ensure the delivery of high-quality care.

‘As APIN expands its HIV-NCD integration programme across supported health facilities and states in Nigeria, individuals living with HIV can expect improved access to comprehensive care that prioritises their overall well-being.

‘This initiative demonstrates APIN’s dedication to promoting health equity and enhancing the quality of life for people living with HIV in Nigeria and beyond,’ he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the World Hypertension Day is observed on May 17 annually.

The theme
for this year’s commemoration is ‘Measure Your Blood Pressure Accurately, Control It, Live Longer!”

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Effective regulation needed for CNG conversion workshops- automotive council


The National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC), says there is a need for proper regulation of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) conversion to provide safe CNG vehicles.

Joseph Osanipin, the Director-General, NADDC, said this at a Stakeholders Engagement Meeting on Accreditation of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) Powered Vehicle Conversion Workshops in Nigeria on Wednesday in Abuja.

Osanipin, represented by Dr Fidelis Achiv, the Director, Research, Design and Development, NADDC, said according to Autogas Africa, there are over 120 CNG conversion centres with 466 skilled technicians operating across the country.

He said these workshops had a capacity to convert a minimum of two petrol vehicles to CNG per day, indicating that CNG conversion was increasingly gaining acceptance and the market was expanding in the country.

‘These CNG conversion centres are unregulated, which raises safety concerns on the standards and code of practice used in the conversion.

‘ The market expansion, safety concerns and
unregulated conversion centres have necessitated the council to roll out programmes to standardise CNG conversion centres.

‘Also to upgrade skills development through training of auto technicians on conversion, repair and maintenance of CNG vehicles.

‘The workshop aims to enlighten stakeholders on the developed council’s guidelines and requirements for the accreditation and certification of all workshops that are interested in undertaking CNG conversion.’

Osanipin said the accreditation and certification would ensure that workshops operated in compliance with workplace best practices and standards.

‘The guidelines and expression of interest form will be available online through the council’s website, therefore, it is required that all CNG workshops should apply for the accreditation and certification,’ he said.

Achiv, who spoke on the sidelines, said the council was ensuring compliance by the CNG conversion workshops.

‘We are going to go round the workshops to ensure the minimum requirements are met and
for those who do not meet the requirement we will not accredit their workshop for conversion.

‘If on their own they go ahead to do any conversion, the conversion will not be reckoned with and when they go to get CNG gas in any station they will not be served.

‘After the conversion, they are going to be given a QR code which will go with every vehicle they have converted. It is that QR code that will be used to serve them gas in the gas stations.

‘So if they do not meet the minimum requirement, they will not be served at the stations.’

He said a workshop was expected to have four personnel which include a mechanic, welder, auto electrician and an ICT personnel before it could be accredited.

Achiv said the council proposed a registration fee of N250,000 to be paid by the CNG converters, saying this would wade off converters who would want to circumvent the conversion process.

Zayganu Tobo, the Programme Coordinator, Regulatory Compliance and Facilitation, Presidential CNG Initiative (PCNGI) said the initi
ative was a bold and decisive programme that was strategic and realisable

‘By 2027, we anticipate one million vehicles running on CNG. We hope in four to five years, we will have 11,000 different CNG platforms and infrastructure.

‘We anticipate 25,000 technicians and allied professionals will be trained and three billion dollars of investment with multiple effects on our economy will be realised in four to five years.’

Tobo said a CNG app would be inaugurated to help people identify CNG infrastructure, and conversion centres closest to them.

Chukwunonso Okeke, the Director General, Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), said SON had 82 standards that guide the standards of CNG conversion in Nigeria.

Okeke, represented by Ega Ijachi, the Group Head, Mechanical and LPG, said the standards had been achieved by working with different stakeholders.

‘Out of the 82 standards, 28 are strictly on the conversion kits and these standards state the safety requirements of these kits. For example, the cylinders hav
e to go through 18 tests before they can be used.

‘CNG is safe for use, and SON is poised to ensure quality assurance of the kits used for the conversion, he said.

Ramalan Yerima, the Assistant Corps Marshal, Corps Safety Engineering Officer, Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), said the corps’ role was to enforce the standards and enforce the usage of CNG when the time comes.

Yerima said the FRSC would continue to work with SON to ensure standards of CNG conversion were met.

Mr Simon Agenyi, the Director, Procurement, Federal Ministry of Finance, encouraged all participants to support NADDC in ensuring the CNG conversion becomes a reality.

Agenyi, Represented by Adigwe Ebube, Chief Procurement Officer, said the conversion to CNG would improve the welfare and lives of Nigerians as he pledged the ministry’s support to the mission.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

FG assures better life for senior citizens


The Federal Government has promised to provide effective social care system to about 16.8 million aged population in the country.

The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation Dr Abel Enitan, made the promise on Wednesday during the unveiling of the Older Persons’ Social Care in Nigeria.

The event with the theme: ‘Geriatric Social Care and Value Chain: A Case for Social Investment in Abuja’ was organised by the National Senior Citizens Centre (NSCC).

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event featured the inauguration and certification of 20 healthcare institutions across some states which will serve as older persons care centres in the country.

Represented by Mrs Agnes Aneke, the Director, Special Duties in the Ministry, Enitan said that the aged population was estimated to be more than 16.8 million by the year 2025.

Enitan explained that government was working towards developing effective policy guidelines on ageing, to address some of the challe
nges associated with the population in the country.

He said, the growing number of ageing population in the country remained a source of concern to government.

‘It is essential to note that older persons population in Nigeria is estimated to reach more than 16.8 million by the year 2025 with an increasing incidence and prevalence of multiple and chronic health conditions.

”These conditions, indeed, require new ways to address them’ he said.

On her part, the Director-General, National Senior Citizens Centre (NSCC) Dr Emem Omokaro, said, the national action plan on ageing had developed a well-paid skilled workforce for geriatric social care sector.

‘We are gathered here today to witness the foundation laying of what would be a journey to building an expansive Older Persons Social Care Quality Assurance System which is the bedrock of a very multi-dimensional care industry.

‘This development aims to ensure that the care workforce has the knowledge, skills and competencies to enable the workers to practice
older-person centered care.

‘It is also to build a paid quality social care workforce to ensure reduction of negative stereotypes about care giving to older people.

‘This is in line with the job creation, improved productivity and inclusion in line with the deliverables of President Bola Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda’ she said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

NSE confers fellowship on 63 engineers


The Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), has conferred its fellowship on 63 engineers across various sectors in Nigeria.

Its President, Margaret Oguntala, conferred the fellowship on them at the Society’s Special Dinner on Wednesday in Abuja.

Oguntala, in a remark, said that the conferees had made exceptional contributions to the field of engineering, and urged them to continue to adhere to the codes and ethics of the profession.

She said they had been at the forefront in the drive for progress and development across various sectors including infrastructure, energy, healthcare, information technology, among others.

She also said they had overcome challenges and pioneered solutions with their unwavering commitment to excellence, tireless pursuit of knowledge and dedication to the advancement of the profession.

‘Each fellow being conferred represents the epitome of engineering excellence and serves as an inspiration to us all.

‘As we celebrate, we must acknowledge the challenges that lie ahead. The world
is evolving at an unprecedented pace driven by technological advancements and societal changes.

‘As engineers, it is our responsibility to adapt to these changes, to embrace innovation and to continue pushing the boundaries of what is possible.’

Oguntala called on the conferees to remain steadfast in NSE’s commitment to promoting diversity and inclusivity within the profession.

According to her, engineering is a collaborative endeavour that thrives on the contributions of individuals from diverse backgrounds and perspectives.

‘By fostering an environment that values and respects diversity, we not only enrich our profession, but also ensure that our solutions are equitable and sustainable.

‘Undoubtedly, the expectations of NSE and the larger society from our honourable conferees are high, with regards to the strict adherence to professional codes and ethics.’

Oguntala said the NSE reserved the right to revoke and withdraw the Fellowship certificate of any member enmeshed in breaches, if such breaches ar
e brought to the notice of the NSE.

She added that the conferment of fellowship was an opportunity to be of greater service to NSE by supporting its projects and programmes and providing mentorship to our young engineers.

She charged them to continue to prove themselves as worthy ambassadors of the NSE.

Also speaking, the Chairman, Board of Fellows, Kamila Maliki, congratulated the conferees for their exceptional and extraordinary prowess in the engineering field.

Maliki said that the conferment of the fellowship by NSE represented the pinnacle of achievement for any engineer, and urged them to use their ideas to contribute to the infrastructure and economic development of Nigeria.

Responding on behalf of the conferees, James Arukhe commended the NSE for counting them worthy of the fellowship.

Arukhe said that engineers held the keys to driving the society forward through innovative solutions.

He pledged the commitment of the conferees towards upholding the highest standards of ethics and integrity of
the profession.

‘There will be no need to withdraw the fellowship from any of us; no form of wrong doing shall be found among us,’ he said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria