Nikkiso Clean Energy & Industrial Gases Group Announces Expansion of Sales, Service and Engineering Facility in South Africa

Nikkiso Clean Energy & Industrial Gases Group Announces Expansion of Sales, Service and Engineering Facility in South Africa

Nikkiso Clean Energy & Industrial Gases Group (“Group”), a part of the Nikkiso Co., Ltd (Japan) and operating under Cryogenic Industries, Inc. (USA) is proud to announce yet another expansion of their sales, service and engineering capabilities for the African market. From their facility they will be providing support for all the Group’s products.

TEMECULA, Calif., March 21, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Nikkiso Clean Energy & Industrial Gases Group (“Group”), a part of the Nikkiso Co., Ltd (Japan) and operating under Cryogenic Industries, Inc. (USA) is proud to announce yet another expansion of their sales, service and engineering capabilities for the African market. From their facility they will be providing support for all the Group’s products.

Located in Waterfall, KZN, South Africa, the facility was established to provide a stronger footprint in Africa and support South Africa’s engineering hub and economic center. Local engineers and field service support will bring specific knowledge of the region and local markets, allowing highly customized solutions.

In addition to offering technical sales for all the Group’s products, they have added an air separation unit commissioning team which includes customer support. The additional engineering support will provide process and design optimization and innovative solutions for the region. The facility will also provide LNG equipment, to support the large natural gas expansion off Mozambique, and potential development of virtual pipelines for LNG fuel to mitigate the electricity crisis.

“This expansion positions us to be able to respond rapidly to the growing energy needs of Africa, and to provide greater service and support to our customers with our local presence,” according to Peter Wagner, CEO of Cryogenic Industries and President of the Group.

Bruce van Dongen will serve as Managing Director. A service facility is planned for some time in the future, which will support pumps and turboexpanders. This expansion represents their commitment to and support of the growth of the African market.

ABOUT CRYOGENIC INDUSTRIES
Cryogenic Industries, Inc. (now a member of Nikkiso Co., Ltd.) member companies manufacture and service engineered cryogenic gas processing equipment (pumps, turboexpanders, heat exchangers, etc.) and process plants for Industrial Gases, and Natural Gas Liquefaction (LNG), Hydrogen Liquefaction (LH2) and Organic Rankine Cycle for Waste Heat Recovery. Founded over 50 years ago, Cryogenic Industries is the parent company of ACD, Nikkiso Cryo, Nikkiso Integrated Cryogenic Solutions, Cosmodyne and Cryoquip and a commonly controlled group of 20 operating entities.

For more information, please visit www.nikkisoCEIG.com and www.nikkiso.com.

MEDIA CONTACT:

Anna Quigley
+1.951.383.3314
aquigley@cryoind.com

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at: https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/30d66f23-e389-4adb-86c2-43133a748d6e

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8791897

King Faisal Prize Awards $1 Million, in Recognition of COVID-19 Vaccine Development, Nanotechnology Ingenuity Contributing to 100 Scientific Breakthroughs that Changed the World, and other Key Scientific & Humanitarian Achievements

During its 45th session, King Faisal Prize Recognized Other Outstanding Figures in the Fields of Arabic Language & Literature, Islamic Studies, and Service to Islam

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, March 20, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — On 20 March, Harvard University and Oxford University professors Dan Barouch from the US and Sarah Gilbert from the UK received the King Faisal Prize for Medicine in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia for their innovative vaccine technologies. They developed Covid-19 vaccines, which saved millions of lives. Furthermore, Northwestern University Professor, Chad Mirkin, and the A*STAR Senior Fellow and Director at NanoBio Lab, Professor Jackie Yi-Ru Ying, were awarded the Science Prize for helping define the modern age of nanotechnology and for their various advancements and applications of nanomaterials.

Professor Dan Barouch; the Director of the Center for Virology and Vaccine Research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and the William Bosworth Castle Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and Professor Sarah Gilbert; the Saïd Chair of Vaccinology in the Nuffield Department of Medicine at Oxford University, employed a novel technology in developing Covid-19 viral vectors vaccines: the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and the Oxford–AstraZeneca vaccine, respectively.

Novel Vaccine Technology and Quick Response to the Pandemic

Instead of the traditional vaccines’ methods which use a weakened or killed form of the original infection and require a long time to develop in the human body, professors Dan Barouch and Sarah Gilbert genetically modified a harmless version of a different virus to carry genetic material to body cells and deliver protection. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine was based on engineering a harmless adenovirus (called Ad26) which was a common type of virus that caused mild cold symptoms..

In his acceptance speech during the ceremony, Professor Barouch said, “The Ad26 vaccine for COVID-19 demonstrated robust efficacy in humans, even after a single shot, and showed continued protection against virus variants that emerged. This vaccine has been rolled out across the world by the pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson, and over 200 million people have received this vaccine, particularly in the developing world”.

Like the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, the essence of the Oxford–AstraZeneca vaccine, (called ChAdOx1 nCoV-19), is a genetically modified weakened version of a common virus which caused a cold in chimpanzees and no infection when injected in humans. The modified virus in both vaccines carried the genetic instructions for the coronavirus spike protein. When entering the body cells, the virus used a genetic code or instructions to produce the specific surface spike protein of the coronavirus inducing an immune response and preparing the immune system to attack coronavirus if it infects the body.

Both vaccines were achieved in few months of work; the Johnson & Johnson vaccine required 13 months and the Oxford–AstraZeneca vaccine took 10 months of work. This was due to previous research work and clinical trials to develop vaccine candidates for multiple pathogens of global significance. The development of the Ad26 vaccine platform, which was the base for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, came as a result of Dan Barouch’s accumulated work on HIV, Zika virus, and tuberculosis. He is considered a pioneer in the creation of a series of vaccine platform technologies that can be used when developing vaccines for emerging infectious diseases, such as COVID-19. Moreover, Barouch led the world’s first demonstration of Zika vaccine protection in preclinical studies and launched a series of phase 1 Zika vaccine clinical trials.

Likewise, the Oxford–AstraZeneca vaccine’s innovative technologies were also applied by Sarah Gilbert to Malaria, Ebola, Influenza, and MERS, with clinical trials of the latter taking place in the UK and in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. In fact, the patented ChAdOx1 technology was developed by Professor Gilbert and other researchers at the University of Oxford in 2012. In 2014, she led the first trial of an Ebola vaccine after a large outbreak of the disease in West Africa.

“I am humbled to join the other 2023 laureates today, and to follow-in the footsteps of the men and women whose work has been recognized by the Foundation over more than four decades. This award is in recognition of my work to co-create a vaccine for COVID-19. A low-cost, accessible, efficacious vaccine that has now been used in more than 180 countries and is estimated to have saved more than six million lives by the start of 2022”, said Professor Gilbert in her acceptance speech during the awarding ceremony.

Nanotechnology Inventions Topping 100 Scientific Discoveries that Changed the World

In this year’s King Faisal Prize for Science about “Chemistry”, Professor Chad Mirkin (from the US); the Director of the International Institute for Nanotechnology (IIN) and the Rathmann Professor of Chemistry and Professor of Medicine, Materials Science and Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, and Chemical and Biological Engineering at Northwestern University, and Professor Jackie Yi-Ru Ying (from the US); the A*STAR Senior Fellow and Director at NanoBio Lab, Agency for Science, Technology, and Research, received the prize.

The work of Professor Chad Mirkin, which has been at the forefront of nano chemistry for over three decades, has helped define the modern age of nanotechnology. He is widely recognized for his invention of spherical nucleic acids (SNAs), which are nanostructures composed of nucleic acids in a spherical configuration which enter human cells and tissues and overcome biological barriers, making it possible to detect or treat a disease on the genetic level. More than 1,800 products for medical diagnostics, therapeutics, and life science research were based on this technology. “One vital component of our work aims to use nanotechnology to restructure DNA and RNA into forms that make them more potent medicines for treating debilitating types of cancer and neurological disease. Through this work, we hope to usher in a new era of powerful and precision genetic medicines where we can attack and treat disease at its genetic routes”, said Mirkin in his acceptance speech.

Professor Mirkin has over 1,200 patent applications worldwide. He also founded several companies, including Nanosphere, AuraSense, TERA-print, Azul 3D, MattIQ, and Flashpoint Therapeutics. He pioneered artificial intelligence-based materials discovery inventing a method to create patterns directly on different substances with a variety of inks called “dip-pen nanolithography”, which was described by National Geographic as one of the “top 100 scientific discoveries that changed the world”. He also developed HARP (high-area rapid printing) technology, a 3D printing process that can manufacture different products like ceramics at record-breaking throughput.

As for Professor Jackie Yi-Ru Ying, her research focused on synthesis of advanced nanomaterials and systems, and their application in biomedicine, energy conversion, and catalysis. Her inventions have been used to solve challenges in different fields of medicine, chemistry, and energy. “I am deeply honored to be receiving the King Faisal Prize in Science, especially as the first female recipient of this award,” she said in her acceptance speech.

Her development of stimuli-responsive polymeric nanoparticles led to a technology which can autoregulate the release of insulin, depending on the blood glucose levels in diabetic patients without the need for external blood glucose monitoring. Dr. Ying’s laboratory has pioneered the synthesis of mesoporous and microporous transition metal oxides; a class of nanomaterials used in energy storage and conversion, by supramolecular templating (organizing or assembling entities).

Dr. Ying has more than 180 primary patents and patent applications; 32 of which have been licensed to multinational and start-up companies for a range of applications in nanomedicine, drug delivery, cell and tissue engineering, medical implants, biosensors, medical devices, and others. Her work is at the intersection of nanotechnology and technical medicine and has culminated in the establishment of six successful start-ups and spinoff companies.

Four Exceptional Thinkers and Leaders Recognized in Arabic Language & Literature, Islamic Studies, and Service to Islam

Along with Medicine and Science, the King Faisal Prize recognized outstanding thinkers and scholars in Arabic Language & Literature and Islamic Studies this year and honored exemplary leaders who have contributed to serve Islam, Muslims, and humanity.

Professor Abdelfattah Kilito, from Morocco, received the “Arabic Language & Literature” prize focusing on “Classical Arabic Narrative and Modern Theories”. He has been a visiting professor and lecturer at the New Sorbonne, Harvard University, Princeton University, the University of Chicago, the University of Oxford, and the College de France. Professor Robert Hillenbrand, from the UK, Honorary Professorial Fellow in the department of Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies (IMES) at the University of Edinburgh, was awarded the “Islamic Studies” prize in “Islamic Architecture”. His work was distinguished by its geographic and temporal expansiveness, which covered North Africa, Egypt, Palestine, and Central Asia, and spanned from the early Islamic period till the 19th Century. As for the “Service to Islam” Prize, Professor Choi Young Kil-Hamed (from South Korea) and His Excellency Shaikh Nasser bin Abdullah Al Zaabi (from the UAE) were this year’s laureates.

Since 1979, King Faisal Prize in its 5 different categories has awarded 290 laureates who have made distinguished contributions to different sciences and causes. Each prize laureate is endowed with USD 200 thousand; a 24-carat gold medal weighing 200 grams, and a Certificate inscribed with the Laureate’s name and a summary of their work which qualified them for the prize.

Attachments

Maysa Shawwa
King Faisal Prize
Maysa.Shawwa@kff.com

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8791879

Namibia Supreme Court Rules Against Same-Sex Couple in Citizenship Case

Gay rights activists in Namibia are decrying a Supreme Court decision that will effectively deny citizenship to a child born through surrogacy to a same-sex couple in South Africa. The case has ignited public debate in Namibia on what constitutes a family.

The ruling Monday by the Supreme Court of Namibia overturned a lower court decision that ordered the government to process a gay couple’s citizenship application for their child.

The high court ruled last year that the minister of Home Affairs and Immigration must process the application within thirty days.

However, the Minister of Home Affairs at the time, Frans Kapofi, appealed the judgment. He argued that the couple — Phillip Luhl, a Namibian citizen, and Guillermo Delgado, a Mexican national — had not proven that they were the actual parents of the child by submitting DNA results.

LGBTQ activist Linda Baumann told VOA the judgment of the Supreme Court is a major setback for Namibia’s LGBTQ community.

“The family and broadly us in the movement find it as ten steps back,” she said. “We also know that homophobia, bi-phobia and trans-phobia will be experienced when the family goes back to Home Affairs because now you have to go back to the person you have challenged in the court. We also know the frustration of harassment could occur because that is a common practice that happens against us when we try and push or advance our rights in this country.”

A full bench of Supreme Court judges agreed that Luhl and Delgado did not satisfy the requirements of the Citizenship Act in their application.

The Supreme Court held that the minister was correct in not granting the minor child citizenship by descent.

Speaking to journalists outside the Supreme Court, the lawyer for the two men, Uno Katjipuka, said the judges relied on technicalities when ruling on the appeal and did not consider the merits of the case.

She said the couple would now have to go back to the Home Affairs Ministry to register the birth of the child as a Namibian and said in all likelihood the registration will not be accepted.

The child was born in South Africa.

“All they’ve done is push the can or kick the can down the road to live, I don’t know, to consider these things another day but in my opinion it’s very unfortunate and not the sort of thing we expect to see from our Supreme Court,” said Katjipuka. “This was the time to deal with the merits and they chose not to, for a second time they chose not to.”

Kapofi, the former minister of Home Affairs, welcomed the judgment. He said the couple failed to prove that they were the fathers of the child by submitting DNA evidence to that effect.

Namibia’s Supreme Court heard other cases this month involving homosexuality. In one, a South African citizen who married a Namibian man in South Africa is asking to be granted citizenship by domicile. In another, a Namibian man is asking for the repeal of the country’s law, arguing that it is an invasion of privacy and discriminatory to people in homosexual relationships.

LGBTQ rights have divided public opinion in a country where the majority of the population identify as Christian and homosexuality is still regarded as taboo and abnormal.

Thousands attending Independence celebration at Outapi

Children, young people as well as elders converged on the Olufuko Cultural Centre in Outapi for colourful celebrations to mark Namibia’s 33 years of independence on Tuesday.

People from across the region and surroundings stood along the main roads from Oshakati to Ruacana, Outapi to Omakange as well as Outapi to Okahao waiting to be picked up by buses in order to make it on time for the celebrations, while some were seen walking towards Outapi.

Some of the people that Nampa spoke to said they woke up as early as 03h00 to catch the buses to the venue.

Namibia obtained its independence on 21 March 1990 after a protracted liberation struggle that spanned more than 40 years.

By 07h00, the public tents were full to capacity and people had started filling up the open spaces in the centre. There are five marquee tents.

Ministry of Information and Communication Technology Executive Director Audrin Mathe indicated earlier that they expect the event to be well attended.

He however gave his assurance that they are well prepared and that there is enough food to cater for everyone.

More than 15 000 members of the public and 3 000 public figures were expected to attend the 33rd Independence celebrations which include activities such as a military parade and performances by the Namibia Defence Force (NDF) air force and Ndilimani troupe.

Those in attendance include founding President Sam Nujoma, and Deputy Prime Minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah.

Omusati Governor Erginus Endjala could not contain his happiness at the big turnout, saying he had expected fewer people to attend.

Upon his arrival, President Hage Geingob mounted the Dias and the gathering stood up for the singing of the national and AU anthems, which ran concurrently with a 21 gun salute before he proceeded to inspect the parade.

The event will be addressed by President Geingob.

Independence celebrations are held on a rotational basis in various regions and last year the main event took place in the Erongo Region.

Source: The Namibian Press Agency

More medals for Team Namibia at SASAPD championships

Namibian athletes with disability raked in 24 medals on day two of the Toyota South African Sports Association for the Physically Disabled (SASAPD) National Championships underway in Cape Town, South Africa.

On the opening day of the championships on Sunday, Team Namibia won two medals in the powerlifting category and added 24 more medals from track and field, swimming and cycling time trials on Monday.

The track and field events medals came from T12 athlete Lahja Ipinge who scooped a gold in the Under-20, 100 metres (m) race and another gold in the 100m by T11 athlete Lahja Ishitile.

In the T11 100m men’s category Namibian athletes dominated the track after occupying all three podium places with Ananias Shikongo winning gold while Chris Kinda and Alfredo Bernado came second and third respectively.

T12, Christopher Marungu won a silver in the 100m after finishing behind South Africa’s Commonwealth Games gold medalist Jonathan Ntuthu.

Johannes Nambala won gold in the T13, 100m while T37 athlete Petrus Karuli took home silver after finishing behind Union Sekailwe of the Western Cape.

In the 100m mix category of T45, T46, and T47 athletes Namibia’s T47 sprinter Bradley Murere won gold despite stumbling at the start of the race. He also won silver in the long jump of the T46, and T47 categories, where he jumped a distance of 5.86m, to finish second behind T46 Collen Nicholas of Gauteng who jumped a distance of 6.35m.

The T44, T61, T62, and T63 open categories saw T44 sprinter Denzel Namene missing out on a medal after finishing fourth but he managed to win a bronze in the long jump event.

Namibian athletes competing under the GAP program also walked away with silver and bronze medals in the 100m T42, and T61 U17. Martha Nengola won silver in the T61 100m while T37 athlete Natascha Kakololo won a bronze. T38 sprinter Rosie Porter from England won the race.

Namibian swimmers and cyclists also raked in medals on Sunday, when Mateus Angula won gold in 50m backstroke, silver in 100m freestyle and bronze in 50m breaststroke. Caitlin Botha won five gold medals while Jeromius Rooi won a gold.

Roodley Gowaseb won gold in the H3 hand-cycling category while his teammate Lukas Ndahangwapo and Nico Kharuxab walked away with silver and bronze respectively. H5 hand cyclist Gabriel Nghiishililwa won gold in the time trial.

Team Namibia travelled with 40 athletes who are competing in para-athletics, para-powerlifting, swimming, para-cycling and goalball.

This year’s edition brings together athletes from nine South African provinces and other Southern African Countries.

Source: The Namibian Press Agency

Government aims for detailed soil studies

The secretary of State for Agriculture and Livestock, João da Cunha, considered today, in Luanda, the need to carry out more detailed studies of the soil to guarantee the suitability of the land available for the National Plan for the Promotion of Grain Production (Planagrão).

Speaking about the land description in the provinces of Lunda Norte and Lunda Sul, for the production of maize, rice and soy and other products, he stressed that, of the visited lands, visible observation allowed him to have an idea and to affirm that they are lands with agricultural potential.

João da Cunha said that they are initiating contacts with Agricultural Research Institute, in order to be able to travel to the two provinces and start collecting soil samples from the spots “that have already been identified to carry out the analyses. It is an extremely important step, because human eye is not enough”.

He recalled that it is the responsibility of the governments of the selected provinces (Lundas Norte and Sul, Cuando Cubango and Moxico) to identify, in their respective territories, the land available to be valued and used within the scope of the Planagrão.

“These lands are in provinces where the population density is relatively low and most of all, according to what was confirmed to us by the governors, are free lands, where the State can perfectly use them for the purpose for which it proposes”, he emphasized.

On his turn, the secretary of State for Economy, Ivan dos Santos, reinforced that the spots were identified, with the help of provincial governments and local authorities, as a result of a history of using these lands for the cultivation of selected cereals.

In the Municipality of Lóvua, Province of Lunda Norte (north-east), its history is conducive to the cultivation of corn and soybeans, therefore, provincial governments and local authorities selected these spots.

Regarding conditions for the preparation of a study of the Planagrão’s value chain, he stressed that “there is a need to prepare a study, being a new and challenging plan, but with a lot of opportunity for the private sector”.

“We are on schedule, we believe that we will be able to meet the schedule to ensure that the implementation of the plan has the intended success. In the multisectoral commission, we decided to implement the study, because it is in the State’s interest that our private sector be successful in implementing projects”, he emphasized.

He said that, after identifying the 130,000 hectares available for starting Planagrão in Lunda Norte, and 56,000 hectares in Lunda Sul, the teams are processing all hectares, in terms of land extension, and the access roads to evaluate the effective cost, mainly of the infrastructures.

Approved by Presidential Decree 200/22, of July 22nd, the plan foresees an average annual investment of around US$670 million for the production of wheat, rice, soy and corn grains, among others.

The State will provide kz 2.852 billion (USD5.6 billion) for the programME, with kz 1.6 billion (USD2.9 Million)to finance the private sector, provided by Banco de Desenvolvimento de Angola (BDA) and the Fundo Activo de Capital de Risco, (FACRA) – Venture Capital Active Fund.

The remaining 1.17 billion kwanzas will be channelled towards infrastructure, which includes the demarcation of two million hectares, allotment and access roads to the production areas.

The Planagrão foresees an average annual investment of around US$670 million for the production of wheat, rice, soy and corn grains, among others, and around US$471 million/year for the construction and rehabilitation of support infrastructures to the productive and social sector.

Source: Angola Press News Agency (APNA)

How FG is improving healthcare, addressing brain drain, medical tourism- Health Minister

How FG is improving healthcare, addressing brain drain, medical tourism- Health Minister

A News Analysis by Ibukun Emiola (News Agency of Nigeria

Mr Wole Jones (not his real name) and his family were involved in a ghastly motor accident in 2022, while returning from Lagos en route Ibadan. His car rammed into a trailer ahead due to brake failure and the incident left him unconscious having sustained a head injury and his wife a neck injury.

On getting to the University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, having received first aid elsewhere, they had to secure an ambulance to take him for a CT scan outside the hospital, the inconvenience and other logistics were beyond words, said the relative tending to the victims.

Patients in this category and others do not need to worry anymore, given the intervention and provision of some infrastructure by the Federal Government.

Speaking at the inauguration of the seven projects in Ibadan, the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, reiterated the commitment of the Buhari led administration to providing infrastructure and facilities in the health sector as well as improved welfare for staff.

He noted that the goal of the administration was to ensure that each ward has a functioning Primary Health Care facility and a standard Secondary Healthcare facility in each local government area, which will enable the Tertiary Health care such as UCH to focus on research, training and treatments.

Ehanire emphasised the importance of Universal Health Coverage, which will ensure that average Nigerians have access to quality healthcare, adding that such is the practice in developed countries hence the need for partnership among state actors and the private sector.

He said University Health Coverage had become germane now more than ever as non-communicable diseases such as Hypertension, diabetes and cancers are beginning to overtake the communicable diseases and the issue of malnutrition, which are on the rise because of ignorance of what to eat and how to combine food.

“Prevention is part of the treatment and Universal Health Coverage is the answer,” Ehanire said.

The minister spoke on global, continental and local collaborations to improve preparedness in tackling outbreak of diseases and treatment, especially in identifying, reporting and responding to issues within the shortest possible time frame.

The issue of brain drain has also become worrisome to the government and it is trying all possible means to address the challenge.

Just after the pandemic hit Nigeria and other countries, economic growth and living conditions nosedive resulting in more hardships and a quest for greener pastures to survive the hard time.

This turn of events led to the exodus of many Nigerians and professionals in various fields and the health sector in particular.

According to reports 4,460 nurses have left Nigeria for the U.K between 2019 and 2022.

This was buttressed by the Chief Medical Director, UCH, Prof. Abiodun Otegbayo, who said during the 65th anniversary of the hospital that every week he signs resignation letters of 15 health workers at the institution who are mostly clinicians, that is, Nurses, Doctors, and Pharmacies among others.

Otegbayo said from 2020 to Oct. 15, 2022, 600 clinical staff had left the hospital, noting that bureaucracy’s bottlenecks had been hindering replacement.

He noted incessant resignation globally, adding that there had been an acute shortage of manpower due to push and pull factors such as poor welfare of workers and insecurity among others.

Addressing the issue of brain drain, Ehanire said though Nigeria had been experiencing mass exodus of its health workers, it was not a new phenomenon as it had been as far back as the 1990s.

“Then Nigerians were going to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and other places. So, it is not a new thing. Also, it is not peculiar to Nigeria. It is a global phenomenon.

“There is a huge mobility of the labour force – pharmacists, laboratory scientists, doctors of all levels are moving to other countries.

“I have heard officials of the UK complain that their doctors are moving to New Zealand, Canada andAustralia, where the pay is higher. I have seen Ghanaian ministers saying that their doctors are leaving also.

“Even the Gambia said their doctors are leaving for other countries. So, it is a global phenomenon, that doesn’t mean it is not a problem.

“It is a problem for all countries, not only that the wealthy countries are looking to improve their health services with cheaply acquired doctors from other countries, they also do not want to train them because of the high cost involved.

“And, in many developed countries, there is nothing like free education at that level and it costs a lot to train doctors,” he said.

According to him, Nigeria is producing over 300,000 doctors yearly and the country is reorganising its housemanship programme to solve the problem of placement for internship.

Ehanire said the government had also taken steps to re-organise residency training programmes to ensure more doctors in Nigeria public hospitals.

“The Federal Government has now allowed for the one-for-one replacement. If you lose one doctor, you replace him with another doctor.

“I want to urge you all not to abuse this programme. If one doctor goes out, replace him with another of the same calibre.

“The government is also looking at how to improve conditions of service and to engage Nigerians in Diaspora in a scheme known as ‘Knowledge and Skill Repatriation’.

“By engaging them to train and share knowledge using virtual platforms to provide services, even as it improves conditions of service and provide investment on infrastructure and equipment,” he said.

Otegbayo in his remarks lauded President Muhammadu Buhari, under whose leadership there has been provision of infrastructure to improve facilities and create a conducive atmosphere for research at the hospital.

He said with the recent procurement of the 64 slice CT machine, “our Radiology Department will be able to render advanced radio diagnostic services to our teeming patients.

“The two Digital Mammography machines have the latest GT Technology and it is capable of carrying out an array of services.

“The Practical Demonstration Room in Nurse Tutors’ School will be for seminars, tutorials, clinical demonstrations and simulation.

“The establishment of the Molecular Laboratory, envisioned by the Federal Ministry of Health, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, will help to detect, with a high level of reliability, accuracy and rapid turnaround time, microorganisms, genetic mutations associated with certain infectious diseases (COVID-19, Lassa Fever, HIV etc.) and cancers and paternity tests, among others,” Otegbayo said.

The CMD noted that another important project was the Pressure Swing Absorption Oxygen Generating Plant.

According to him, High quality, medical-grade oxygen will be produced and administered to patients in-house, leading to less dependence on oxygen from external sources.

“This will greatly enhance our existing daily oxygen production capacity in the hospital to meet the needs of critically ill patients who are oxygen-dependent.

“These projects were envisioned in my strategic plan to improve clinical services to elevate the hospital from a tertiary hospital to a quaternary level.

“These projects deliver on so many of our commitments to the sustainability of the Hospital and the management is proud and honored to have the Federal Government’s intervention in these key areas of our services,” Otegbayo said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Amushelelo arrested while leading a nationwide youth againts unemployment protest

Activists Michael Amushelelo and Dimbulukeni Nauyoma were arrested by the Namibian Police Force (NamPol) on Tuesday at the Katutura Youth Centre while leading a youth national protest against unemployment.

Police Spokesperson, Deputy Commissioner Kauna Shikwambi, confirmed to Nampa on the same day that the duo was arrested for contravening the public gathering Act 23 of 1989, malicious damage to properties, inciting public violence, and contempt of court.

‘Their arrests come after the High Court ruled in favour of the State, declaring that such a demonstration on 21 March 2023 will be illegal and in contempt of court,’ Shikwambi said.

The case, she said was brought before the High Court by the Namibian Economic Freedom Fighters (NEFF) who lodged an urgent court application following a directive by NamPol Inspector-General (IG) Joseph Shikongo to have the demonstration rescheduled to another date as it was set to take place on the day of Namibia’s 33rd Independence Celebration.

‘Taking into consideration the national security interests and the fact that the intended peaceful demonstration is set to take place on the day of the country’s Independence commemoration, the IG has reason to believe that the demonstration may cause feelings of hostility between different sections of the population or may compel any person to abstain from doing an act which such person is legally entitled to do, should he not invoke the powers vested in him by Section 3(1) of the Public Gathering Proclamation Act 23 of 1989,’ she said.

The pair is detained at the Otjomuise police station where member of parliament Inna Hengari was also later arrested.

Source: The Namibian Press Agency

No food for VIPs: Geingob

President Hage Geingob on Tuesday ordered that all food meant for Very Important Persons (VIPs) at the 33 Independence celebrations instead be distributed to the members of the public, as there was not enough food.

Geingob after delivering his speech at the celebrations held at Outapi in the Omusati Region, said: “There is not enough food for the public and VIPs must forget their lunch. You can afford to buy your own food.”

There were six marquee tents where lunch was supposed to be served to the VIPs. All the food was instead given to members of the public.

The event was very well attended, surpassing the estimated number of close to 20 000 people expected to attend.

Omusati Regional Governor Erginus Endjala, earlier, could not contain his happiness at the big turnout, saying he had expected fewer people to attend.

Source: The Namibian Press Agency

Angola needs to allocate 10% of State Budget to improve water and sanitation sector

The improvement of the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) sector in Angola requires an annual investment of about 10 percent of the General State Budget (OGE).

This estimate, which aims at equity and sustainability in Water, Sanitation and Hygiene services, is expressed in a UNICEF project to which ANGOP had access, whose public presentation is scheduled for March 28 in Luanda, as part of the celebration of the World Water Day.

The draft sets out this estimate based on the “Africa Infrastructure Country Diagnostic (AICD), which states that African countries should allocate 3.5% of their Gross Domestic Product to the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene sector to achieve equity and sustainability in these services.

Recommendations

For the efficiency of the ASH, UNICEF recommends that Angola develop and approve a National Strategic Plan for Water Supply and Sanitation, future-oriented financial instruments that ensure the alignment and involvement of stakeholders in decision-making.

To improve the sustainability of the sector, WASH also suggests creating additional sources of finance, including private sector investment, and increasing sanitation standards, coverage and budget.

To increase the effectiveness of public spending in the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene sector, it further advises investing in administrative modernisation and operational digitisation, improved performance monitoring and results-based budgeting, as well as continued accountability and transparency of the national budget.

Obstacles

The project presents obstacles linked to regulation and strategy, precisely the “lack of connection between priorities and financial needs, even though national plans exist” and defined goals are not directed transparently at specific institutions”.

Still on the obstacles linked to regulation and strategy, the project indicates that “future funding is very unpredictable, with no long-term funds for the sector”.

It points to the existence of a clear delimitation of roles, responsibilities and relationships between institutions, as well as the need to create clear and transparent mechanisms for effective coordination and implementation of the sector.

On the other hand, the project, which resulted from an analysis, concluded that the budget for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in Angola is mainly made up of “Water Supply”, which in 2022 consumed 73.8% of the total foreseen, and this year it is foreseen 74.1%.

Basic sanitation comes next with 26.2 percent in 2022 and forecasts 25.7 percent for 2023, a significant increase compared to 2021, which was 12 percent.

The budget includes “Water Supply”, “Sewerage”, “Waste Management”, and “Wastewater Management”, however, since 2020, these last two items have not been included in the State Budget.

The money for WASH is mostly administered by the ministerial departments of Environment and Energy and Water.

The annual growth of the Angolan population is estimated at 3% (34 million inhabitants), another detail highlighted in the analysis as a tremendous challenge for water supply, sanitation and hygiene infrastructures throughout the country.

Objectives

The UNICEF project consisted of conducting analysis of the challenges facing the water, sanitation and hygiene sector in Angola through a Public Finance perspective.

It aimed to understand how government funds have been allocated to the sector over the past 10 years to provide a tool to improve budget allocation and a mechanism through which stakeholders in the sector can better understand national spending.

Source: Angola Press News Agency (APNA)

AEDC working to restore power to Bwari and environs in Abuja

The Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC) says it is working with stakeholders to restore power supply to Bwari and environs.

The Management of AEDC, in a statement in Abuja on Tuesday, said that the power outage, currently being experienced in Bwari and environs, was due to technical fault on the feeder serving the area.

“The management of AEDC wishes to notify its esteemed customers in Abuja, Bwari Town, Ushafa Town, Dutse, Jigo, Kuduru, Kuchiko, Bmuko, Garam, Kogo., Veritas University and environs that the power outage they are currently experiencing is due to a technical fault on the feeder serving their areas.

“All responsible stakeholders are currently working hard to restore the power supply soonest,” it said.

The company said that it regret any inconveniences caused by the outrage.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Kogi guber: Group wants power shift to Western senatorial district

A political pressure group, Kogi Youth Ambassadors (KYA) has called on registered political parties to pick their governorship candidates from the Western Senatorial District of the state to equity, fairness and justice.

The State Coordinator of the group, Mr Abdulrahman Adbdulsalam, made the call at a news conference on Tuesday in Lokoja.

Adbdulsalam said the state`s governorship position should be rotated to ensure equity, fairness and justice.

He noted that no state in Nigeria had multiethnic diversity like Kogi, adding that such unique endowment should not be taken for granted.

According to Abdulsalam, the Kogi East has ruled the state for over 16 years, while Kogi Central is currently in its eight years.

He said that it was therefore the turn of Kogi West to govern the state for equity, fairness and justice.

He, specifically appealed to Gov. Yahaya Bello to consider a candidate from Kogi West as his successor as a way of unifying the state.

”The Kogi youth ambassadors do not have any aspirant in mind by our agitation, but all we want is for power to shift to Kogi West for the sake of equity, fairness and justice.

”We want Gov. Yahaya Bello, to adopt a competent, reliable and credible candidate from Kogi West as his successor.

”We are also appealing to opposition political parties to also chose credible candidates from Kogi West for the state governorship elected slated for November,” Abdulsalam said.

He said the group had put in place strategies for consultation, sensitisation and mobilisation to achieving its demand for the unity of Kogi.

He said the group had over 20,000 members with Permanent Voters` Cards (PVCs) across the 239 Wards in the state.

Abdulsalam assured that the group would be engaging in vigorous sensitisation and mobilisation to press home its demand.

Also speaking, the Zonal Coordinator of the group, Mr Austin Alabi, said their desire was to ensure that equity, fairness and justice was maintained in Kogi.

”We advise the government of the day to consider a credible and reliable candidate, that has the interest of Kogi at heart and ready to develop the state to the next level just as Gov. Bello has done.

”The governor has done well in infrastructure and security, and we expect him to get a successor from Kogi West that can consolidate on his legacies and develop our state to the next level,” Alabi said.

He enjoined all registered political parties in the state to imbibe the idea by fielding candidates from the western senatorial district of Kogi.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Nigerian foundation wins competition for bridging tech gap among PWDs

Data-Lead Africa Foundation (DLAF) has emerged as one of the winners of the 2023 Uplink Corporate Change makers Challenge, for its innovative approach to bridging the gap between the deaf community and the technology industry in Africa.

This is contained in a statement issued by Mr Nkpecha Franklin, Head of Operations, Data-Lead Africa, on Tuesday in Abuja.

He said that the DLAF’s Deaf-In-Tech project, which won the challenge, organised by the Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneurship, was recognised based on its ability to contribute to social and environmental equity.

He said that the project is an ed-tech inclusion programme focused on strengthening diversity, equity and inclusion in STEM, data analytics, higher education and employment.

“It seems to close the existing skills gap among marginalised people, particularly people living with disabilities (PWDs).

“In low and middle income countries, PWDs are one of the key marginalised groups, while many initiatives have focused on gender equality and racial diversity, initiatives working to improve inclusion of PWDs are abysmally low.

“DLAF has created the first tech community of deaf people in Africa, with over 200 deaf persons learning and working on different tech and innovative solutions,” he said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Centre partners agriculture agencies, others to support aged mothers

The National Senior Citizens Centre (NSCC) says it is partnering with relevant agriculture agencies, health sector and traditional leaders to provide conducive work environment for aged mothers.

Dr. Emem Omokaro, the Director-General, NSCC stated this in Bwari on Monday, during a town hall meeting on the implementation of its programme tagged: “Grandmothers Arise for Good” initiative, an Economic Tree-Crops Planting Project in Bwari, FCT.

Omokaro said the centre was determined to support senior citizens, especially aged mothers to boost their agricultural business and ensure decent living.

“ We took time to develop a wide sector intervention for communities; we call them grandmothers arise for good. Principally, the focus is for all the women who we know are assets in their communities.

“ Most of them who are farmers and engaged in crafts have been doing their businesses individually, not really making a headway in terms of breaking even but at least, mitigating multidimensional competition.

“So, we call in the royal fathers to work with the community to end open defecation through the primary healthcare to institute a national health insurance and access to health,” she said.

The NSCC boss said that the essence of the partnership was to converse with the senior citizens in the community, support them and organise their farming to attract more fund for them.

“And we bring in all the agencies to fulfill our mandate which is to improve the quality of life ” she said.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that participants at the meeting include representative from the Federal Capital Territory Primary Healthcare Board, Water Aid, FCT Head of Agricultural Services and Sanitation; and Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency..

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

CODE expresses concern over ethnic profiling in 2023 general elections

Connected Development (CODE),a civil society organisation, has expressed concern over ethnic profiling of some groups in the 2023 General Elections and urged Nigerians to embrace unity in nation’s interest.

Chief Executive of CODE, Hamzat Lawal, said this on Tuesday in Abuja at a news conference to present the organisation’s findings on the 2023 General elections.

Lawal said that CODE and its 20,000 observers were at the forefront of the poll and have followed the process religiously with the deployment of CODE’s Uzabe platform.

“We speak against the ethnic profiling that took place in most parts of the country and how we must shun these things as a country.

“We must see ourselves as humans; yes, each and every one of us is from a village or a community but Nigeria as a whole has united us.

“We cannot target people because of their choice, their language or because of the region that they come from.

“If we continue this way,it will consume each and every one of us, so we hope that our political, traditional and religious leaders can douse the tension and call people to order,” he said.

Lawal said there was need for Nigerians to be united and remain peaceful.

He said that CODE’s observations revealed that in spite of the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC’s) acclaimed readiness to host the presidential election on Feb.25 it fell shot of expectations in terms of logistics.

He however, commended the commission for correcting the shortfall during the governorship election as polls started very early in more than 70 per cent polling units monitored across the country.

He said that there were some critical incidences that that undermined the success of the governorship and State Assembly elections.

Lawal listed electoral violence ,ballot box snatching ,attacks on observers and journalists ,low voter turnout, ethnic profiling among others.

He also expressed disappointment at the way some security agencies reacted to the issue of electoral violence, adding that some of them seemed to have been compromised.

He said that although the 2022 Electoral Act was a good amendment, it failed to deliver on the electoral system due to human interference.

He said that the 10th National Assembly would have a critical role to play in the amendment of the Electoral Act, particularly on how to unbundle INEC as an institution.

“This is because in our democracy and our politics, election is the first step and if we get it wrong, then our democracy will be in shambles and Nigerian people will not enjoy the dividends.

“In unbundling INEC as an institution, first ,we will need to look at how the National Chairman of INEC,the National Commissioners emerge and most importantly, how to Resident Electoral Commissioners emerge and who are they answerable to.

“This is because today, what we have seen is that the institution as a whole and the people there have been compromised, some are placeholders for corrupt politicians.’’

Lawal said that there was need to unbundle INEC and make it truly independent without outside interference with its duties.

He also stressed the need for the commission to step up its result collation process.

“ I think that as we reform the institution and provide reform on the Electoral Act for every result that would be uploaded should have the signature of every party agent,’’he said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria