Explore, learn, have fun with books – Lagos Library advises students


The Director of Lagos State Library Board, Mr Oyadipe Amoo, has called on students to make use of public libraries in their localities to explore, learn and have fun with books.

Amoo gave the advice at the Year 2024 World Book Day with the theme ‘Read your way’, held on Tuesday at the Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Maryland, Lagos.

The event, organised by the Ministry of Tertiary Education through the Lagos State Library Board, had 150 students from 12 schools across six education districts in the state.

He said that across the state, 13 public libraries had been established under the board, adding that the 2024 theme was centered on ways to help, promote, influence and impact reading culture on youths.

The Director said that the libraries included Henry Carr Public Library, Agege; Epe Divisional Library, Epe; Ikorodu Divisional Library; Borno House Library, Amuwo-Odofin; Igbogbo Bayeku Public Library, Ajegunle; Ipaja, Ilupeju, Isolo, Meiran and Isolo,

According to him, reading for pleasure ha
s many great benefits for students.

‘It helps improve their literacy skills, expand their vocabulary and enhance their creativity.

‘The Lagos State Government is playing a very crucial role in nurturing love for literature by providing access to vast array of books, resources and activities that spark their imagination and curiosity.

‘This year’s World Book Day is more than a celebration of books, writers and authors.

‘It’s a celebration of joy of reading and the State Government is dedicated to create a conducive environment where students can be reading and have individual study’.

Earlier, Mrs Anike Adekanye, Tutor-General/Permanent Secretary (TG/PS) Education District 2, in her address, described reading as an integral part of journey and a powerful weapon that helps to navigate ways through life.

According to Adekanye, the objective of today’s theme is to make reading an enjoyable experience and to promote its widespread adoption as a healthy habit among students and individuals striving for self im
provement.

‘ `Read your way’ is not just a phrase, but an essential ingredient in shaping and molding our lives; it’s a lifelong journey we embark on to explore and acquire knowledge for us to function productively in our world.

‘Reading helps to rejuvenate our thinking capacity and provide a sound mind for sustainability and improves our communication skills, we must therefore cultivate reading habit,’ she added.

The TG/PS was represented by Mrs Bosede Macaulay, Director of Education, District 11.

In her remark, Oghenekevbe Ogufere, author, Africa Writers Tribe, who urged the students to be ‘Gen Z goody’, a tribe that reads, said that readers are leaders that change the world.

‘Know it today that Lagos State depends on you because you are our future leaders and the future starts now,’she added.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the organisers distributed books and school bags to the students.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

IBEDC customers demand business hub in Kwara community


The Offa/Oyun Electricity Consumers’ Forum in Kwara has demanded for the establishment of an Offa Business Hub and improved power supply from the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC).

The forum in a statement signed by its Secretary, Mr Tajudeen Iwalola, said this had become imperative because of the status of Offa town as the second largest in Kwara.

It also described Offa as the commercial hub of the state with over 15 industries as well as 13 public and private tertiary institutions.

The forum further requested the immediate replacement of the aluminum conductor in the Offa feeder with a 150mm conductor wire to enhance the reliability and capacity of the electricity distribution system.

‘We also need the upgrading of two obsolete 7.5MVA transformers installed since 1963 to improve efficiency and prevent frequent breakdowns.

‘We call for a revision of the electricity distribution schedule to guarantee a minimum of eight hours of uninterrupted power supply daily for all consumers.

‘We deman
d the immediate metering of at least 50 percent of the 26,000 customers in our area between April and December 2024, to promote transparency and accountability in billing,’ it added.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

NTAC D-G urges employers to demonstrate love for Nigerian workers


The Nigerian Technical Aid Corps (NTAC) has urged employers of labour to use the occasion of the International Labour Day to demonstrate love for Nigerian workers.

The Director-General of NTAC, Dr Yusuf Yakub, said this in a statement signed by Mr Nkem Anyata-Lafia, his Special Assistant on Media and Publicity on Wednesday in Abuja.

The former lawmaker, said Nigerian workers should be appreciated for their contributions to national development.

‘On May 1 every year, the entire world recognises the central role workers play in harnessing the productive capacities available to different workforces across endeavours, and countries.

‘The efforts are to ensure that the global economy is sustained and that the place of man as the centrepiece of global activities is preserved.

‘We choose to pause for a day to honour those whose hands fertilises the earth, whose brains birth grand ideas that rule our world and whose efforts power the wheels of daily living and activities across countries ,homes, professions and
the like.

‘This year’s May day is no different from the others gone by,’ he said.

Yakub added: ‘It is however, another opportunity to celebrate our workers, to wish them well, to show that we care and to give them a soothing pat on the back for the days they stay out when others are home.

‘For the times they lose sleep when others are in bed and for the efforts they make daily to ensure that the machine of daily life and living does not grind to a sudden halt!

‘Today offers us the rare opportunity to bring to the front burner, issues concerning our workers, their welfare and their general well-being.

‘As we join other parts of the world to celebrate May Day as a nation, the celebration offers us the opportunity to, in all honesty.’

‘Review issues concerning the Nigerian worker and appreciate the sacrifice and commitment he/she makes to national progress and development.

‘ I wish to congratulate our leaders and the Nigerian workers on the occasion of the 2024 workers’ day celebration’.

Source: News Ag
ency of Nigeria

Fuel scarcity bites harder in FCT as fuel stations increase pump price


Filling stations in Abuja and its environs have unofficially increased the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) known as fuel as scarcity of the product bites harder.

A Correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday reports that the fuel stations that had products were selling between N850 and N1,000 per litre, while the black marketers are selling at N1,300 and N1,400 per litre.

NAN reports that in spite of the adjustment, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC Ltd.) maintained its price of N617.

The development has caused long queues at NNPC Ltd. retail outlets at Zone 1, Mega station near Church Gate, Jahi and others along Kubwa express.

It would be recalled that long queues surfaced in the FCT following low distribution of fuel to different stations due to logistics.

NNPC Ltd. had said in a statement on Thursday that the cause of the scarcity, which they described as ‘tightness in fuel supply’, had been resolved.

However, along Karshi-Jukwoyi road, Fuel Smart, Mobil
, NIPCO and many other independent marketers are selling the product in their fuelling stations between N850 and N1,000.

Conoil and TotalEnergies opposite NNPC Ltd. Towers sell at N660 but with long queues.

At Kubwa, majority of the fuelling stations are closed because of lack of the product.

Eterna and Ammasco at the Kubwa second gate, along the Kubwa-Zuba expressway are yet to be supplied with the product.

Only NIPCO fuelling station opposite the Eterna station has fuel but with long queue.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

UK organisation praises alumnus appointed as Nigeria’s insurance regulator


The United Kingdom based leadership development organisation TEXEM UK, has applauded one of its alumnus, Dr Usman Jankara, on his appointment as Deputy Commissioner for Insurance (Finance and Administration) at the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM).

In a statement on its website www.texem.co.uk, TEXEM’s Director Special Projects, Caroline Lucas said Jankara’s journey stands as a testament to his unwavering dedication, exemplary leadership, and relentless pursuit of excellence.

Lucas said that having participated in the TEXEM programme titled ‘Strategic Leadership for Success in an Unknown Tomorrow’ in August 2021; Jankara has demonstrated a profound commitment to continuous learning and development.

‘His expertise in strategic leadership will undoubtedly propel NAICOM towards unprecedented success as it navigates the dynamic landscape of the insurance industry.

‘With a tenure spanning over eight years and four months at NAICOM, Dr. Jankara brings a wealth of experience and insight to his new role.

‘As the former Assistant Director of Corporate Strategy and Special Duties, he played a pivotal role in shaping the commission’s strategic direction and enhancing its operational efficiency,’ she said.

Lucas recalled that prior to his new appointment, Jankara held various esteemed positions, including his tenure as the Assistant Director/Head of Corporate Strategy and Special Duties.

‘His extensive background in general administration and executive assistance underscores his versatile skill set and multifaceted approach to problem-solving.

‘As the former Assistant Director of Corporate Strategy and Special Duties, he played a pivotal role in shaping NAICOM’s strategic direction and enhancing its operational efficiency.

‘As Dr. Jankara assumes his new role as the Deputy Commissioner for Insurance (Finance and Administration), he stands at the precipice of a transformative era in the Nigerian insurance industry,’ she said.

Lucas added that Jankara’s visionary leadership, coupled with his unparalleled exper
tise and unwavering dedication, will undoubtedly chart a course towards greater innovation, inclusivity, and sustainability within the Nigerian insurance sector.

‘In the helm of strategic leadership, Dr. Usman Jankara illuminates the path towards a brighter, more inclusive future for Nigeria’s insurance sector,’ the director said.

In his own statement, TEXEM’s founder, Dr Alim Abubakre said Jankara’s journey serves as an inspiration to aspiring leaders across the globe, reaffirming the power of passion, perseverance, and purpose in driving meaningful change.

‘He has honed his expertise as an astute insurance regulator committed to upholding the highest standards of market conduct supervision and ensuring the safety and soundness of the Nigerian insurance industry.

‘TEXEM UK extends its warmest congratulations to Dr. Usman Jankara on his well-deserved appointment and wishes him continued success in his endeavours to reshape the future of insurance leadership in Nigeria,’ Abubakre said.

Source: News Agenc
y of Nigeria

Alake unveils gender strategy for mining, steel sector


The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr Dele Alake, has unveiled the gender strategy document for Nigeria’s mining and steel sector.

He also launched the Women In Mining In Nigeria (WIMIN) strategy document.

During the event, Alake hailed the gender strategy as a significant milestone, underscoring the Ministries of Solid Minerals Development and Steel Development’s commitment to fostering diversity.

He noted that the strategy aims to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment, focusing on enhancing productivity for sustainable national development.

‘The strategy addresses gender equality and women’s empowerment across various levels – policy, regulatory, operational, and commercial, encompassing large scale, medium scale, small scale, and artisanal roles, as well as value and supply chain functions,’ Alake stated.

He stressed that the strategy serves as a blueprint for stakeholders to create a more inclusive and gender-balanced mining and steel sector, providing guidance for integrating gen
der equality priorities into policies, programs, and initiatives.

Alake acknowledged women’s indispensable contributions to the success and sustainability of the mining sector, highlighting the need to address biases against women in these sectors.

He said efforts have been made to prioritise gender mainstreaming in the sector in line with the Federal Government’s commitment to gender equity outlined in the ‘Roadmap for the Growth and Development of the Nigerian Mining Industry’.

Alake outlined plans to enhance institutional capacity for effective gender mainstreaming and increase women’s participation in leadership and governance roles within the mining sector and communities.

The minister emphasised the importance of promoting women’s economic empowerment and rights and eliminating barriers hindering their meaningful participation and access to mining resources and benefits.

Alake reiterated the commitment to building partnerships across various stakeholders to realise the vision of the strategy, sayin
g that the WIMIN strategy is rooted in the principles of equality, diversity, and empowerment.

Dr Janet Adeyemi, the National President of WIMIN, described the strategy’s launch as an opportunity to mobilise support and implement actions to address entrenched gender disparities within the mining and steel sectors.

Represented by the National Secretary, Mrs Emily Ofodile, Adeyemi highlighted the multifaceted barriers women face in these industries, hindering their full participation and advancement.

Dr Mary Ogbe, the Permanent Secretary of MSMD, urged women to be change agents at all levels and advocated for organisations to appoint gender focal persons to coordinate related matters.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

We need consultation, public hearing to review PIA regulations – Farouk


The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulation Authority (NMDPRA) says consultation with stakeholders and public hearing must be conducted to review proposed draft regulations of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA).

The Authority’s Chief Executive, NMDPRA, Mr Farouk Ahmed, said this on Tuesday in Abuja at its stakeholder’s forum on Midstream Petroleum Host Community Development Trust (MPHCDT) regulation.

Ahmed, represented by Mr Ogbugo Ukoha, Executive Director, Distribution Systems, Storage and Retailing Infrastructure, NMDPRA, said consultation was necessary to provide a platform for harnessing ideas for the HCDT implementation.

‘The regulation shall apply only to the Midstream Petroleum Host Communities and a holder of a license that is engaged in the midstream petroleum operation in accordance with Section 318 of the PIA.

‘This is a platform for us to deliberate and get feedback on the draft regulations that we publish,’ he said.

In an overview, Dr Joseph Tolorunse, the Authority’s Secretar
y and Legal Adviser, said the NMDPRA may by notice designate the facilities to which these regulations shall apply in accordance with the PIA.

He listed the objectives of the regulations to include the procedure for the establishment and administration of the Trust Fund for the midstream petroleum host communities and to establish parameters to safeguard the Trust Fund.

According to him, the regulation would also establish grievance resolution mechanism for the settlement of disputes between the host communities and licensees.

‘The regulation will make general rules for the implementation of the development of the midstream petroleum host communities. It is expected to promote social and economic benefits from petroleum operations to the host communities.

‘It will enhance peaceful and harmonious co-existence between the licensees, lessees and the host communities, as well as curtail pipeline vandalism and increase oil production,’ he said.

Also speaking, Chairman, House Committee on Host Communities, Dou
namene Dekor, said the committee had carried out a series of engagements to understand the current status of implementation of benefits to host communities.

He urged the Authority to expedite action to apply proactive and innovative mechanisms that would ensure the speedy and effective operationalisation of funding of host communities in the sector.

‘We have noted some of the challenges that the authorities face in the implementation of the PIA, particularly the omission of the mainstream petroleum operations in Section 240-2 that provides for the funding of HCPs.

‘Our committee is ready and already taking necessary legislative steps to address these gaps and challenges,’ he assured.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Fuel Scarcity: IPMAN threatens shutdown over non-payment of bridging claims


The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) Depot Chairmen Forum has exonerated its members from the current fuel scarcity in the country.

According to IPMAN, the scarcity is caused by its inability to source petroleum products.

The IPMAN Depot Chairmen Forum also threatened to withdraw its services over non-payment of N200 billion bridging claims by the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) to its members, since 2022.

Alhaji Yahaya Alhassan, the Chairman, of the Forum said this while briefing newsmen on Tuesday in Abuja.

Alhassan said the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC Ltd.) was the sole importer of the produc but the marketers could not source products from NNPC Ltd. deport, rather from the private depots at high rate.

‘We cannot buy fuel from the private depots at N950 and transport the product from Lagos to the North and other parts of the country with N2 million and still sell it at N900 or N1, 000.

‘It is expedient for
us to state that we are more pained by the non-availability of petroleum products in the country, which has given rise to another round of untold hardship for Nigerians.

‘Contrary to claims that IPMAN members are hoarding Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) known as fuel, we will like to categorically state that PMS scarcity is wholly triggered by inability to get fuel from NNPC and not IPMAN,’ he said.

Meanwhile, the NNPC Ltd. Chief Corporate Communications Officer, Olufemi Soneye said the disruption was due to logistical issues which had since been resolved.

‘We currently have an availability of products exceeding 1.5 billion litres, which can last for at least 30 days. Unfortunately, we experienced a three-day disruption in distribution due to logistical issues, which has since been resolved.

‘However, as you know, overcoming such disruptions typically requires double the amount of time to return to normal operations.

‘Some folks are taking advantage of this situation to maximise profits. Thankfully, product s
carcity has been minimal lately, but these folks might be exploiting the situation for unwarranted gain,’ Soneye said.

He however, said the lines would clear out soon.

On the non-payment of bridging claims, the IPMAN forum said it was distressed and depressed by the laidback attitude of the NMDPRA towards the survival its member’s businesses, arising from its refusal in paying the claims.

‘It is with deep frustration that we have assembled here today as the IPMAN Depot Chairmen Forum. It is also disheartening to note that some of our members have completely shut down businesses and retrenched employees.

‘As businessmen and women, our members acquired bank loans to keep their fuel retail outlets running on a daily basis across the nooks and crannies of Nigeria in order to serve the teeming population of Nigerians,’ Alhassan said.

He recalled that Sen. Heineken Lokpobiri, Minister of State Petroleum Resources (Oil), at a stakeholders meeting in February mandated the NMDPRA management to clear the entire de
bt in 40 days.

‘However, today, we have crossed the 40 days’ time lapse given to the NMDPRA to clear the debt, and it is shameful to state that only the paltry sum of N13 billion has been paid, ignoring minister’s directive.

‘We are not happy with the indiscriminate increment in the issuance and renewal of Sales and Storage Licence, by the NMDPRA, and the subsequent delays in acquiring the licence, which our members are recently subjected to.

‘We are also calling on President Bola Tinubu to look into this unwholesome figure which is highly detrimental to our business and reverse it forthwith, as it is bound to impact negatively on the masses.

‘We are poised to take far reaching decisions that may cripple the supply and sales of petroleum products across Nigeria if our demands are not met within the shortest period of time.

‘We are collectively prepared to withdraw our services, shut down every single outlet, and suspend lifting of products forthwith till our demands are fully met, and the consequences wi
ll be terrible.

‘We call on our members to however remain resolute and law abiding, even as we draw close to the immediate ultimatum for our demands to be met by the NMDPRA,’ the chairman said.

Reacting to the IPMAN’s claims, the Acting Head, Corporate Communications, NMDPRA, Seiyefa Osanebi said the bridging claims payment was ongoing.

‘The bridging claims payment is always an ongoing process,’ she said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Workers’ welfare: Our initiatives already yielding results – NAN MD


The Managing Director of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Malam Ali Muhammad Ali, says the initiatives put in place by his administration to boost the welfare of workers are already yielding results.

Ali said this on Wednesday in his congratulatory message to the agency’s workers on the occasion of this year’s International Workers Day with the theme: ‘Ensuring Safety and Health at Work in a Changing Climate’.

The managing director acknowledged the diligence, passion and contributions of the workers in the agency striving in diverse ways to create an agency we all desire.

Ali described this year’s theme as apposite, saying that his administration would continue to create a safe and conducive atmosphere for NAN workers to unleash their creative energy in order to attain the zenith of their full potential.

‘Let me also restate management’s avowed commitment to repositioning the agency to meet up with global best practices and realisation of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda,’ he added.

He
expressed optimism that NAN would achieve the vision of its founding fathers with the management and staff members collaborating in its institutional interest.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

FRSC trains paramedics, patrol officers in northeast, northwest on life-saving rescue


Eighty paramedics and Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) patrol operatives from the North-East and North West are currently undergoing capacity building training on saving lives and reducing road crashes.

The FSRC Corps Marshal, Mr Dauda Biu, while declaring a three-day capacity- building training opened in Kano on Tuesday, said the objective was to retool knowledge and zeal of personnel in life-saving rescue operations.

Biu said the training would focus on strengthening the capacity of FRSC paramedics, operational personnel and officers to meet the goals of the United Nation’s Decade of Action for Road Safety, in saving the lives of crash victims on Nigerian roads.

The FRSC boss, represented by Assistant Corps Marshal, Corps Project Implementation, Clement Oladele, said the training would bridge the gaps in the Corps rescue operations.

‘This training is to enhance capabilities of FRSC personnel in two crucial areas – crash scene management and administration of cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

‘Our main go
al is to save lives and prioritise how casualties and injured victims are professionally evacuated to hospitals for immediate medical attention.

‘The corps has long been at the forefront of efforts to rescue crash victims and create safer roads in Nigeria.

‘We have also partnered with Ford Foundation and this invaluable support has availed personnel the opportunity to receive world class training and acquire essential skills,’ he said.

Biu explained that the training covered a comprehensive curriculum reflecting commitment of corps to equip its personnel with knowledge, skills and confidence to excel in demanding field of road safety and crash response.

He added that the training also included the female personnel, who as part of the consideration for selection, were nominated to enable them to attend more professionally, to children and women victims of crashes on the road.

‘We put into consideration woman’s dignity that needs to be more protected when our female personnel attend to female crash victims
.

‘The impact of this training on participants will undoubtedly be profound in enhancing their ability to administer life saving measures promptly and effectively, ‘ he said.

The FRSC boss advised participants to key into the training and use same knowledge practically in their various commands and units in the zones.

‘We are charging the participants to take the training seriously and put to practice all they have learnt as the corps expects to see renewed zeal to attend to rescue and doing it professionally.

‘The corps is grateful to Ford Foundation for supporting FRSC in this important training, which will involve all the units and commands within the zones in the country,’ he said.

The Regional Director, Ford Foundation, West Afica, Dr. Chichi Aniagolu-Okoye, said the Foundation valued the works of the FRSC and recognised that the work coul not be done by government agencies alone.

He said it required support like the capacity building initiative to improve quality of first responses in emergencies.

One of the paramedics and patrol operatives undergoing the training, Dalhatu Hussaini, from Taraba Command, thanked FRSC and Ford Foundation for the exercise and promised to make use of the skills being taught, when he returned to his command.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Tetfund installs transplant, urology equipment in 7 teaching hospitals


The Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) has completed the installation of transplant and urology equipment for the treatment of prostate and kidney stone worth N250 million in seven hospitals.

Alhaji Umar Ali, the contractor handling the supply, who also represented Tetfund, told newsmen shortly after the installation of the equipment at the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Kano (AKTH).

He described the gesture as the first in seven government hospitals at a time for the benefit of those seeking health assistance.

He listed other benefitting health institutions to include: Aminu Kano (now Bayero Teaching Hospital University) (BUK), Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, Bauchi, Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria, University of Abuja, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin.

Others are: University of Jos Teaching Hospital; and University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital, Maiduguri.

He said that those seeking treatment for kidney stone, and kidney failure are on the increase on daily basis, hence intervention by TE
TFund to find a lasting solution to their health challenges.

According to him, the fund has installed the equipment, tested and discovered to be in good working condition.

He added that ‘doctors have started using the equipment for research and practicals in the university, but all credits go to TETFund, because without their intervention, it may not have been possible.’

Prof. Sani Aji from Bayero University, Kano, said with the modern technology, there may not be any need to cut open any patient.

He said that ‘before now, after patients have been operated on, they will stay in the hospital for like between 10-12 days before discharge, but now, they can go the same day of the operation if there is no complications.

‘Very few centres have the facilities and they are all private, but with TETFund intervention, this laser surgery will help a lot.’

On his part, Dr Przemyslaw Zugaj, one of the medical personnel invited from Poland to train doctors on how to handle the laser equipment on patients when conduct
ing surgeries.

Zugaj explained that the surgery will destroy stones in the kidney and patients are checked properly, while it may not be necessary to repeat the surgery and it is cheaper.

He said with proper handling of the laser machine, there will not be need to open up patients, but carry out the operation successfully without bleeding.

One of the participants, Prof. Samuel Osaghae, also a Consultant Urologist from University of Benin, described the intervention as a special project.

He said the installation would facilitate indoor urology centre for kidney, urethra bladder and prostate, which would impact healthcare delivery in Nigeria positively.

Dr Haruna Usman from Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, Bauchi, said the gesture would be extended to other communities.

‘This will reduce waste of resources and people will no longer need to travel out for surgeries,’ he said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Fuel queues will fizzle out soon – Reps


The House of Representatives has reassured that the long queues at filling stations in the country will soon fizzle out.

Rep. Ikenga Ugochinyere, Chairman, Petroleum Downstream, said this at a joint news conference in Abuja on Wednesday.

‘We hereby express our concerns over the temporary presence of fuel queues in petrol stations across the country.

‘However, we are convinced that this is temporary based on our investigation, and in a couple of days, we shall get over it,’ he said.

Flanked by Rep. Henry Okojie, the Chairman, Petroleum Midstream, Ugochinyere said that investigations had revealed that the scarcity was artificial.

‘We have discovered that there is availability of petrol products. We have it on good authority that we have in our storage facilities at least about 1.5 billion liters of petrol,’ he said.

He said that 1.5 billion liters can last for 30 days.

‘We have gotten assurances from the regulators in the distribution value chain that these bottlenecks have been cleared. In the course o
f this public holiday, more grounds will be covered.

‘From our findings, the issues that necessitated the disruptions that led to the appearance of fuel queues in petrol stations have been cleared.

‘They said that it will take a few more days for things to return to normalcy, while calling on Nigerians not to panic over this development.

‘We have gotten assurances from the regulators and the unions that these challenges will be cleared in a few days,’ he said.

Ugochinyere added: ‘It will require more time, like two to three days for products to be distributed to all stations nationwide.

‘As a committee that is charged with downstream and midstream oversight, we have been monitoring this development.’

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Climate Change: Don cautions against killing of wildlife species


Prof. Edem Eniang, Executive Director, Biodiversity Preservation Centre in Uyo, has expressed disappointment at continued engagement of some Nigerians in tree felling and wildlife killing for commercial purposes.

Eniang told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Tuesday that in spite of warnings, some Nigerians had continued in the acts, making the effects of climate change to be worse.

According to him, trees serve as physical barriers capable of reducing wind speed and redirecting its force.

‘ Thereby helping to prevent soil erosion, which can damage crops and destroy wildlife habitats.’

He added that trees could reduce the likelihood of damage to buildings and other structures by strong winds.

He said that wildlife species being killed were capable of attracting eco-tourism traffic to the nation and aid in generating foreign exchange earnings.

He advised Nigerians to refrain from the acts and rather engage in tree planting and general biodiversity conservation.

‘In Nigeria, the challenge of
endangered species conservation has become a matter of urgent concern requiring positive actions from governments at all levels and all individuals.

‘ We must all work together to address this situation for a better future, balanced ecosystem, and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals in our country by 2050.

‘ We have disregarded, disrupted and altered the planetary boundaries within our spheres of influence, allowing our daily activities as humans to have a negative impact on the environment or ecosystems.

‘Acid rain is now a reality; our water is acidified, and if we do not take action, 2025 will bring even worse consequences with increased temperatures and more severe wind disasters.

‘Currently, the only opportunity we have to view our wildlife species is presented by those sold at the bushmeat markets, whereas those are the same species that could have drawn eco-tourism traffic and bring in the much-needed foreign exchange.

‘Unfortunately, they are, on daily basis, displayed at wildlife market
s or at pepper soup joints, where they are being sold indiscriminately.

‘We are cooking crocodiles, antelopes, gorillas, chimpanzees, dolphins, African manatees and more. This is unacceptable,’ he said.

Eniang said that, to safeguard Nigeria’s endangered wildlife species, the Federal Government should consistently educate Nigerians about the dangers of killing them.

He said that due to reckless killing of some wildlife species, animals such as Forest elephants, Atlantic humpback dolphins, African manatees, red-capped mangabeys, colobine monkeys and pangolins were on the verge of extinction.

‘ also species such as the Ukpam stingray, snakefish, two-headed snake (Calabar ground python), Angwantibo, Nigerian-Cameroonian chimpanzee, Cross River gorilla and the Slater’s monkey, declared in 2000 as the 15th most important monkey on the planet, are all on the brink of extinction.

‘ Cheetahs, Giraffs and hunting dogs have disappeared from Nigeria.

‘Since the removal of fuel subsidy by the Federal Government, ma
ny Nigerians cannot afford the cost of PMS, diesel and kerosine; so, they have embraced firewood to cook.

‘This development has increased the rate at which trees are brought down and converted to charcoal. Nigerians must desist from it,’ he said.

Eniang urged Nigerians to make conscious efforts in the preservation of Nigeria’s fauna and flora endowments for wealth creation and environmental preservation.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Refugees: Commission to repatriate Nigerians in Chad, Cameroon


The National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFRMI) says plans are underway to repatriate Nigerian refugees in Chad and Cameroon, who wish to return.

Alhaji Tijani Ahmed, the Federal Commissioner, NCFRMI, stated this during a press briefing on Tuesday in Abuja.

Ahmed explained that 21, 000 Nigerians with about three thousand households were taken refuge in Chad, while 14,000 households were in Cameroon.

He said although the cost implication of the exercise had not been ascertained, the commission would be partnering with the government of Borno and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), to provide shelter and logistics.

‘In 2022, we had a very serious flood that caused some Nigerians to move to Chad and some of them to Cameroon and other factors include the herders and farmers clashes and Boko Haram crises.

‘So, we will enhance the repatriation and ensure that the people return in safety and dignity,’ Ahmed said.

In her remarks, Ms Bernadette Muteshi
, the Deputy Representative, UNHCR, commended the leadership of the commission for working in this endeavour, saying that the agency would support a credible process and ensure safety and dignity.

‘We are happy to see the government leadership in this endeavour. We are particularly happy to note that the voices of the Nigerians who want to return home, have been heard and are being acted upon.

‘We will try to ensure that this process happens as soon as it’s practically feasible by putting all the elements to get along with you.

‘We want to ensure that people exercise their basic human rights, have the ability to come home and go to any place in the country that they desire to go back to,’ Muteshi said.

She hoped that all arrangements would be in place to meet the aspirations of the people that were been cared for.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Lagos-Calabar Highway Project: FG begins compensation payment


The Federal Government has disbursed N2.75 billion for the first phase of the compensation payouts and unveiled the new design routes for the Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway project.

The Minister of Works, Sen. Dave Umahi, made the announcement at the commencement of payouts to property owners affected by the construction of the 700km highway project, on Wednesday in Lagos.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the federal government had, on April 4, inuagurated a committee to review, evaluate and compensate land owners affected by the construction of the highway project.

According to Umahi, the goal of the committee is to ensure transparency in all undertakings.

He said, ‘It’s my pleasure to unveil the new design route, and I wish to flag off the compensation from chainage zero to chainage three in a total sum of N2.75 billion. That is very ambitious.

‘It’s my pleasure to invite the Director of Design and the Controller to call the people and give them the symbolic amount agreed and to assure tha
t before 1p.m. tomorrow, you will all get your alert as agreed.

‘It will be difficult to show you all that we have done here to protect the claimants so that you don’t go to their houses, this one is private to us.

‘But the smaller ones, we can do that symbolically, but no cash is paid.’

The Minister also announced that all tenants affected by the demolition at Landmark would receive compensation by the end of the day.

Umahi said, ‘ All tenants within the Landmark premises have been shortlisted for payments by 2 p.m. today. That closes the politics of Landmark.’

The Chairman, Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway compensation committee, Mrs Korede Keisha, while presenting cheques to deserving beneficiaries, corroborated what Umahi said.

She said, ‘Just like the minister said that this will be done in phases, so, the first 10 recipients would be called today. If you were not called today, don’t be afraid, we are going to call you in the next few days.

‘The secretariat is open and we work 24/7 everyday. So, this
is just the opening one.’

She named the beneficiaries as Moist Beach, Checkmate, Kingfisher, G12 Beach, Xchange Lounge, Kingston, Landmark Kids Club by Maxtivity, FX lounge and Bar, and Best Rock.

The Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway is designed to connect Lagos to Cross River, passing through the coastal states of Ogun, Ondo, Delta, Bayelsa, Rivers and Akwa Ibom, before culminating in Cross River.

Construction of each kilometre of the 700 kilometre highway will cost N4 billion.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria