Saturday, 25 June 2016
President Muhammed Buhari demonstrated this resolve with his recent trips abroad aimed at attracting new investments, the development of Nigeria’s infrastructure among others. Perhaps the most elaborate and promising of these trips was President Buhari’s recent foray into China.
Building on existing talks, the Kwara State Governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed on June 8th, 2016 also traveled to the city of Nimgbo, in East China to finalize planned investments in the state and secure fresh inflows.
It was a five-day trip that took Governor Ahmed and his team to three cities through a grueling 12-hour drive. A typical day featured at least three meetings or receptions with separate sets of businessmen and government officials.
These high-level meetings all ended with the Chinese parties expressing interest in investing in Kwara State for Mutual Benefit. The day after the team’s arrival in Ningbo, East China, our host, Mr. Shi Zengchai of Ningbo Jinsheng Star Limited, led the team to the 18th China CEEC Trade Fair which featured exhibitions from China, other parts of Asia, Europe and America on an expansive ground that covered the size of four football fields.
During his three hour stay at the Trade Fair, Governor Ahmed was particularly interested in processing equipment, diagnostic tools, and aviation training equipment stands where he exchanged ideas with the exhibitors.
The following day, the schedule was no less hectic. It opened with Governor Ahmed meeting a group of Chinese investors who expressed a desire to establish agribusiness ventures in the state.
Looking at these men dressed in T-Shirts, casual shirts and trousers, it was tempting to dismiss them. That was until they opened up about their investments in other African countries and their desire to come to Kwara.
Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed, speaking through an interpreter, said the state government was following the path of President Muhamadu Buhari to meet potential investors who can take advantage of opportunities in Kwara State for mutual benefit. He said the state was looking for investors especially in the area of manufacturing.
Kwara State, according to him, has a very youthful population which shows there is a strong workforce that can support industrialization. He described the opportunities for investment in Kwara State as huge, and commended Shi, who he described as a “brother’, for his resolve to invest in Kwara State.
Any expectation that the day was over were dashed as the team marched into the hall downstairs for another engagement.
This event, which will turn out the highlight of the trip, was the 18th China Zheiland Investment and Trade Symposium, had in attendance about 200 hundred investors, businessmen and Chinese officials. Kwara State was the only delegation from Africa and the only one from Nigeria for the ceremony which was designed to formalize agreements for government back investments within China and abroad.
Specifically, the Ningbo Major Investments Signing Ceremony was organized by Ningbo Municipal People’s Government to provide incentives for Chinese companies to invest in other parts of the country and overseas. In all, a total 31 projects worth $3.7b were consummated at the event. Of the amount, $1.42b was outbound, including the Kwara investment.
The Kwara State Government inked an agreement with the Ningbo Jinsheng Star Import and Export Company for the establishment of the $56m Kwara Chetex Textile Park in the state. During the short segment, Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed signed for the state while Zengchao signed for Ningbo Jinsheng.
Amidst congratulatory hand pumping and back thumping, an elated Governor Ahmed said he was pleased the deal had finally been signed. He particularly emphasized the fact the textile factory and park were expected to create 3000 direct jobs and transform the Irepodun/Edu LG axis of the state.
For him, the factory and other infrastructure projects planned for the area will stimulate growth and jobs in the area as part of his admiration’s effort to develop Kwara North. This is part of an overall strategy designed to ensure even development across the state. It was the culmination of a yearlong effort involving Ningbo Jinseng, Chinese Officials, Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment as well as the State Public Private Partnership Office.
Also speaking, Yomi Ogunsola, Chief Economic Assistant to Governor, and DG, PPP Bureau, said the State will provide up to N1b as counterpart fund, 400 hectares of land as infrastructure support as its own contribution.
The next three days will see the team undertaking a 4-hour road trip to Anhui Guangxin Agric Chemical Company, another trip to Changxing City and finally to Shanghai. At every stop, the team was treated to full Chinese hospitality including neon lights welcoming Governor Ahmed and the team from Kwara State at hotels and government offices as well as the almost statutory welcome reception.
In the process, Governor Ahmed and his team held talks on the establishment of an agro-allied factory and a farm in Kwara State, as well as a visit to a factory to observe the kind of technology that will be deployed at the Kwara Chetex Textile Park in the state. The presence by Synosure, a Chinese Government agency which underwrites and approves Chinese investment abroad, was a major coup for team Kwara as it signaled the company had an opportunity to conduct due diligence on the state and was likely to be more disposed to approving additional investment in Kwara state.
Going by the $56m investment and other talks by the team, it was clear that a sleuth of investments are Kwara State-bound and will stimulate more growth, jobs and economic development in the state
Thursday, 23 June 2016
As the National Examination Council, NECO released the results of the 2016 Cowbellpedia Mathematics Qualifying Examination, conducted on Saturday, 19th March, 2016, the Managing Director of Promasidor Nigeria Limited, Mr. Olivier Thiry, has explained that the company has significantly increased the prize money for the finals for both students and teachers. This year, he said, the top prize student winner in each category will go home with One Million Naira in addition to other prizes, while the teacher will be awarded Four Hundred Thousand Naira.
…Commends Total’s Investment In Nigeria
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Wednesday called on members of the Organized Private Sector (OPS) to key into the graduate internship scheme of the State Government aimed at equipping fresh graduates with necessary skills to transform them into job creators rather than job seekers.
Governor Ambode, who spoke at the Lagos House in Alausa, Ikeja when he received a delegation from Total Exploration & Production Nigeria Limited on a courtesy visit, said there was the need for the private sector to deploy their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) towards empowering youths with relevant trainings with the ultimate goal of making them to contribute to the advancement of the Nigerian society.
While appreciating Total for its giant strides on CSR, the Governor said such relationship could be scaled up to the optimal benefit of the society, especially by creating wealth for fresh graduates.
He said: “I want our relationship on CSR to be scaled up so that we can start to have some kind of synergy between your expertise and the graduates that we churn out from our tertiary institutions in Lagos here.
“We can look at a way of exploring new ways of creating wealth among our graduates or even in accessing training that you can afford us both locally and externally so that in the end, we will be able to do what we think is good for our new graduates and we will be part of the success story of Total and also make our graduates to be useful to the society on their own.”
Governor Ambode also commended Total for investing heavily in Nigeria at a time when some others are running away from the country, saying the development underscores the trust and commitment of the firm to the improvement of Nigeria’s economy.
Besides, Governor Ambode reiterated his commitment to creating conducive business climate in the State, saying that such would ultimately go a long way in creating jobs.
According to the Governor, “We believe strongly that whatever it is that we can do to make Lagos safer; to make Lagos more comfortable for investors and improve on the business climate, we would not hesitate to do it because at the end of the day, it will create more jobs for our people, we would get more taxes and also provide infrastructure for the people.
“I just want to say that this is a partnership that we will like to enhance and also try as much as possible to ensure that your corporate existence is not jeopardized and in whatever form that government can do to assist in terms of needs of specific issues that relates to your organization, we will do it,” Governor Ambode assured.
Earlier, Managing Director of the firm, Mr. Nicolas Terraz, who led the delegation, said his team was at the Lagos House to further improve on the relationship which had always existed between Total Nigeria and the Lagos State Government.
Terraz, who was accompanied by Deputy Managing Director of Deep Water District, Mr. Ahmadu-Kida Musa and other top management staff of the company, commended Governor Ambode for his administration’s strides on security, the Light Up Lagos initiative and various infrastructural projects in the State.
He said apart from the fact that work was going on in every part of the State on a daily basis, there was also a pragmatic atmosphere being made by Governor Ambode to make Lagos a home for all.
The trial of a former governor of Nasarawa State, Aliyu Akwe Doma, and two others continued on Wednesday, June 22, 2016 before Justice Agatha A. Okeke, with a prosecution witness, Ego Maikeffi Abashe, the Clerk of the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, revealing how the former governor had allegedly diverted the sum of N350m from the state funds.
Doma alongside Timothy Anthony Anjide, a former Secretary to the State Government, and Dauda Egwa, a former Accountant-General, are being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on a 10-count charge bordering on money laundering and financial crimes.
The accused persons between January, 2007 and December, 2009 allegedly conspired and fraudulently laundered state funds to the tune of N8bn, an offence contrary to Section 14(1)(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2004 and punishable under section 14(1) of the same Act.
At the resumed hearing today, Abashe told the court there was no approval or record by the House of Assembly for the sum of N350 million allegedly disbursed under the title of ‘‘special releases’’.
Abashe, who was led in evidence by Kemi Phinheiro, SAN, also told the court that the State House of Assembly did not initiate the disbursement of N70 million as shown to him in exhibit 23aa-cc.
He added: ‘‘I can’t recall the disbursements of N80 million as shown in exhibit 23ca; N150 million as shown in exhibit 23ab and N120 million as shown in exhibit 23ba, as there was no record or memo initiated for such releases; and there was no cheque raised for special releases in the office of the House of Assembly.’’
Abashe, who stated that he was familiar with the records of the House of Assembly even before becoming the Clerk, added that ‘‘ for additional funding, which is not captured by the budget, the Clerk will put out a memo endorsed by the Speaker of the House of Assembly and addressed to the State Executive (Governor). The Governor would approve the memo, which would be conveyed to the House of Assembly and then taken to the Office of the Accountant- General for a cheque to be released.’’
According to him, funding of the House of Assembly is initiated by a memo and not by any other means.
While being cross-examined by A. F. Yusuf regarding the disbursements, he said that he was not the Clerk as at the time the disbursements were carried out.
He, however, said the procedures for disbursement were the same and were all in the files.
Still testifying, he said: ‘‘Monies meant for security matters are not addressed to the Clerk or channelled to the Clerk, as security matters are not discussed in the House of Assembly.’’
Another prosecution witness, Abubakar Sadiq Ishaq, Permanent Secretary, Bureau for Cabinet Affairs and Special Services, presented two documents titled: Expenditure Needs for the Nasarawa State Public Servicesand Part of Nasarawa State Executive Council Convention, which were tendered and admitted as exhibit P30 and P31, respectively.
He told the court that the documents were to guide government officials, ministries, departments and agencies particularly in areas of finances.
Ishaq, who was formerly a director in the same office, said: “It was proposed that the governor could not make expenditure above N50m. However, the Governor can expend any amount and later make ratification provided that the expenditure was done in the interest of the state and in accordance with due process.’’
When Ishaq was presented with exhibit P20, which was an approval for N496 million initiated by the Office of the Secretary to the State government, he told the court that there was no ratification by State executive council for it.
Also, going through exhibit P23 (cc), which was the approval granted by Doma for N150 million and P23 (ba) for N120 million , he told the court there was no directive to the State executive for ratification and he did not receive any ratification for it either.
The case has been adjourned to June 23, 2016 for continuation of trial
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Wednesday, June 22, 2016, arraigned the trio of Dayo Jimoh, Victor Ochola and Obaje Musa Mohammed before Justice A.R. Mohammed of the Federal High Court sitting in Maitama, Abuja on a 27-count charge bordering on conspiracy and obtaining money by false pretense to the tune of N220, 000,000 (Two Hundred and Twenty Million Naira).
The accused persons allegedly approached the complainant, Mohammed Jibrin, Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer, CEO, Suntrust Savings and Loans Limited, with a promise that they could help him secure some government houses purportedly being sold by the Ad-hoc Committee on sale of Federal Government houses.
However, the complainant alleged that he was issued forged offer letter and payment receipts, after he had made payment vide bank drafts to various accounts belonging to the accused persons.
Count one of the charge reads:
‘‘That you, Dayo Jimoh, Victor Ochola, Obaje Musa Mohammed and others still at large sometime in January, 2014 in Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did conspire among yourselves to commit an unlawful act to wit: obtaining money by false pretence and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 8(a) and punishable under Sections 1 (3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006.”
The accused persons pleaded not guilty when the charge was read to them.
In view of their pleas, the prosecution counsel, Johnson A. Ojogbane, asked for a trial date.
However, the defence counsel, Ojo Olukayode, moved an application for the bail of the first accused person.
Consequently, Justice Mohammed remanded the accused persons in prison custody.
The case has been adjourned to June 30, 2016 for hearing of the bail application.
The acting Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, has expressed the readiness of the Commission to assist the Cameroonian government in the area of asset tracking and recovery.
Speaking on Wednesday, June 22, 2016 when he received a five-man delegation from Cameroon in his office, Magu said:‘‘The Commission will be willing to exchange ideas and experiences with your country in necessary areas as you may desire. I wish to also thank you for your interest in the activities of the Commission.’’
Earlier, the leader of the delegation, Aseh Joseph Malegho, stated that the success story of the Commission had travelled far and wide through different media.
According to him, “Your actions are laudable. We commend you and the President of Nigeria, Mohammadu Buhari, for your efforts in ridding Nigeria of corruption.
‘‘Your anti-graft war has endeared you to us; that is why we have come to identify with your Commission.’’
Malegho also appealed to the EFCC boss to share his experience in the areas of asset tracing, freezing and recovery as well as how the recovered assets were being ploughed back into the country’s economy.
The OPERATION PULO SHIELD in Niger Delta has been scrapped with immediate effect and replaced with OPERATION DELTA SAFE. This is in line with the Defence Headquarters initiative to restructure the Joint Task Force for better service delivery, efficiency and effectiveness in line with the vision and mission of the Chief of Defence Staff to contain the current security challenges in the Niger Delta especially protection of critical national assets and provision of security in the area.
Under this arrangement, the Joint Operational Areas of the new outfit have been delineated into 3 sectors and 5 Operational Bases covering the entire Niger Delta, Ondo and Akwa Ibom States. The Headquarters of OPERATION DELTA SAFE would be in Yenagoa.
This development, according to Chief of Defence Staff, General Gabriel Olonisakin becomes expedient in order to inject new tactics and robust operational initiative to tackle the emerging security challenges in the Niger Delta region such as piracy, bunkering, vandalism and other criminalities prevalent in the area.
Monday, 20 June 2016
The RRS men were on duty point patrolling along Ogudu – Alapere axis inspecting the Light Up Lagos Project facilities when the accident occurred at about 12:06am on Sunday.
SERVICE IS SCAM
Nigeria Customs Service is launching on an all-out war against internet fraudsters who specialise in extorting money from innocent Nigerians under the pretext of offering them jobs, auctions or contracts.
recent upsurge of fraudsters using the name of the Nigeria Customs
Service to solicit applications for non-existent job offers for a fee that is usually paid into personal bank accounts.
Sunday, 19 June 2016
The Imushin community in the Ogijo area of Ogun State has been thrown into mourning after no fewer than 15 residents were reportedly killed on Friday evening by armed men suspected to be militants.
It was learnt that about 100 militants, armed with guns and cutlasses, stormed the community around 11pm on Friday and embarked on a killing spree, killing every resident in sight.
When he visited the community on Saturday, he saw a few of the corpses which their families were preparing for burial in accordance with Islamic rites.
Among the 15 killed was a technician, Waheed Buhari, aka Yah Alau, who was shot dead in front of his room.
One of his children, Mariam, sustained bullet wounds.
A travel agent, Mr. Oladele Ogundare, was said to be returning home in his car, when the rampaging militants opened fire on his car and killed him.
Another resident, Umoru, who was said to be eating noodles, was chased, hacked and shot to death, along with a friend, Danladi.
A mosque in the community, was reportedly attacked and a Muslim cleric killed.
Two hotels were said to have also been raided and their customers robbed and injured.
More than 25 shops in the community were looted by the militants.
Many of the residents, who spoke begged not to be identified as the militants had threatened to return to continue the killing.
A resident said the militants were suspected to be Ijaw youths involved in pipeline vandalism.
She explained that they were on a revenge mission as some operatives of the State Anti-Robbery Squad had killed two of the vandals earlier on Friday.
She said, “The whole thing began around 4pm on Friday. I was at the backyard of the hotel, cutting some weed when some SARS officers came in. They were shooting and ordering people to stop moving. There was confusion in the hotel.
“The SARS officials did not leave until after three hours. They killed two of the vandals and took away the owner of the hotel, a woman.
“Around 10pm, I went to urinate when I saw so many hoodlums coming from the waterside down the road. They carried sophisticated weapons and when they got here, they started shooting.
They blew off the hotel windows and shot people dead. They killed two men here in Lapete village.”
A friend of Waheed, the electrician killed in Oke Muti, said the Ilorin, Kwara State indigene had tried to shut his door when the militants killed him.
Waheed’s corpse was still lying in a room and being prepared for burial w.
His friend said, “He was going to urinate when the militants started firing. He tried to quickly shut his door, but it did not jam. They opened fire on him at the door step and did not stop until he dropped dead.
“Not satisfied, they entered his room and sprayed everywhere with bullets. Waheed’s child, Mariam, that was in the room was hit. She is still at the hospital.”
He added that the police recovered 15 corpses in the community.
The widow of the travel agent killed in the Ereko area of the community said her husband, Oladele, who worked on Victoria Island, Lagos State, had left for work in his car on Friday morning without any foreboding.
She said, “He gave me money for foodstuffs after dropping me off in front of a bank where I wanted to do a transaction. By 6pm, we spoke and he asked me to prepare rice for him that night.
“By 10pm, I called his line; it rang and he didn’t pick. I tried it again at 12am, still no response. I called his mother by 6am that I had not been able to reach him on his two telephone lines and she promised to call as well. She also couldn’t get to him.
“It was this morning (Saturday) that I saw a crowd of people in my house. They said he was a short distance from home when he was shot dead. I can’t believe this because we have barely spent a year in this community and this has never happened before.”
Some customers at the Catcher Hotel were lucky to have escaped with their lives.
However, the hoodlums carted away all the valuables in the hotel and vandalised all the electronic gadgets.
A soldier, who was not in uniform at the time of the attack, said the vandals cut him with a cutlass and smashed bottles on his head.
He said, “I had entered the beer parlour in the hotel when the militants came in. They were about 200. At first, I thought they were having a festival until they ordered all of us to lie flat on the ground.
“They asked for my two phones and when I gave them one, they became angry. One of them cut my head with a machete and followed it with a bottle. I was drenched in blood. The militants had sophisticated weapons that I had never seen before.
“They never asked for money from me and they didn’t search my pocket. If they did, they could have found my ID card and I would have been dead. I wore just a white shirt.”
A disc jockey at the hotel said one of the militants wanted to shoot him dead, but one of them persuaded him against it.
“They were arguing among themselves whether or not to kill me. One said, ‘If you don’t want me to kill him, then let me cut off his leg.’ But his colleague asked him not to. Before I knew it, he had smashed three bottles on my head.
“They went away with my laptop, phones, money and everything I had. They refused to carry away the beers in the hotel. They took only the hard drinks,” he said.
Women in the hotel, who claimed that the militants spent about 30 minutes, said they tortured them with cutlasses and guns.
Efforts to speak with community leaders were abortive as they declined comment.
It was gathered that a community leader had been abducted by the militants a few months ago, after reporting a case against them at a station.
A source said, “The man was in the creek for 40 days. The militants collected N10m from the community before he was released. That is why everybody is afraid to talk. People have started fleeing the community. Two Hausas were killed during this attack and the Hausa community has vowed to fight back.”
A man, who spoke for the Imushin community, pleaded with the government to intervene before the community was completely deserted.
He said, “These people are militants and even the police cannot withstand their firepower. We need help from the government. We will appreciate anything they can do for us.”
The Ogun State Police Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi, confirmed the attack, but said only three people were killed.
He said, “Around 11pm at Ereko Community, Ogijo, some hoodlums numbering about 100 invaded the community and started shooting sporadically. Bullets hit one Waheed Buhari and his daughter, Mariam. While Buhari died, the daughter is still at the hospital. Two other unidentified corpses were found, making a total of three deaths.
“Information from eyewitnesses showed that the hoodlums were militants and they came from the riverine area. But we have not confirmed this, as investigations are ongoing. We are particularly interested in why they came in such a large number.”
Ina lillahi wa Ina ilayhi rogihun
It's so sad we lost one of our own in the movie Industry Again tonight.
Alfa Abdul-Lateef Titilope aka Itakure.
His burial arrangement will be holding at his family house Ile Gbantan, Agunpopo OYO town, Time is strictly 8:00am
Pls and Pls let's all give him the last respect he deserve by making the condolence visit to his family and to the burial prayer.
Thank u all, a o ni fi iru eleyi san funraa wa oo, amin.
Pls let's be punctual.