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Insecurity: Tackle arms smuggling, Anglican Bishop tells Buhari

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Insecurity: Tackle arms smuggling, Anglican Bishop tells Buhari

The Bishop of Ijebu North Diocese, Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), Rt. Revd. Solomon Kuponu, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to find a lasting solution to arms smuggling which is posing serious threats to Nigeria’s internal security. The cleric made the call at the second session of the Fifth Synod of the diocese held at the St. James’ Anglican Church, Atikori, Ijebu- Igbo, with the theme: “Fight the Good Fight of Faith, Lay Hold on Eternal life.”

 

In his charge at the event, Kuponu expressed concern over the increasing rate of crime and arms proliferation in the country, noting that the arms being illegally imported into Nigeria were often used by bandits, militias and insurgents to terrorise innocent people. He condemned the nefarious activities of Fulani herdsmen and Boko Haram insurgents, urging the Federal Government to confront them, and also asked the Buhari-led administration to dispense with commanders and intelligence chiefs that have failed the country in the fight against terrorism. He said: “Nigeria faces existential wars, terrorism and corruption. Both require sound strategies and continuous adaptation. Buhari should imbibe this in confronting the resurgent Boko Haram.

 

The murderous Fulani herdsmen and other violent ethnic militia must be tamed. “Intelligence, technology and cooperation with other nations should be stepped up while dispensing with commanders and intelligence chiefs that fail,” Kuponu said warning that if Buhari failed to lay solid foundation for Nigeria’s economic growth and national integration, the country could face uncertain future.

“At 76, with the grace of another four years in office, Buhari can utilise this unique second opportunity to be agent of positive change or go down as an obstacle to the realisation of a virile, strong and prosperous federal polity. The choice is his,” he added. The cleric commended the President for assenting to the new N30,000 minimum wage, saying workers in the country deserve the new wage in view of the present economic realities, and appealed to state governors to emulate Buhari’s gesture by paying workers in their respective states the approved minimum wage. Kuponu used the occasion to call on Governor Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State to return mission schools to their original owners and also incorporate Christian Religion subject into school’s curriculum

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Ambode: EFCC operatives raided my houses

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Ambode: EFCC operatives raided my houses

Muritala Ayinla

Former governor of Lagos State, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode has confirmed that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) raided his Epe and Parkview residences, urging his supporters and the general public to remain calm and law-abiding as there was no cause for alarm.

Ambode, in a statement by his media aide, Mr. Habib Aruna, spoke on the backdrop of a search by EFCC operatives on his Epe country home and Parkview, Ikoyi residence, where the anti-graft agency conducted the exercise without any incident.

He said the Commission, till date, has not opened any direct communication with him on any issue, adding that he was ready and willing to respond if or when they do so.

The statement reads: “This morning, operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission visited the Epe Country home and Parkview Ikoyi residence of Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, former Governor of Lagos State, with warrants to conduct a search. These searches were carried out extensively and at the end of the exercise the operatives left without any incident.

“The former governor reiterates that the EFCC has till date not had any direct communication with him on any subject matter whatsoever and if or when it occurs he is ready and willing to respond.

“The former governor wishes to assure his supporters and the generality of Lagosians to continue to remain calm and law-abiding as there is no cause for alarm.”

The former governor reiterated his belief in the rule of law and due process and remains grateful for the opportunity to have served Lagos State diligently and conscientiously.

It would be recalled that Ambode, in an earlier response to allegations by the EFCC that it had frozen certain accounts linked to him, insisted that no account of his contained N9.9bn let alone being frozen by the Commission as those accounts were opened and operated by the Lagos State Government.

Details coming soon…

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Supreme Court strikes out Atiku, PDP’s appeal

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Supreme Court strikes out Atiku, PDP’s appeal

The Supreme Court on Tuesday struck out an interlocutory appeal filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate Atiku Abubakar in the last presidential election after the appeal was withdrawn by Atiku’s counsel.

Justice Musa Muhammad in the lead judgment, held that the case was statute barred and therefore dismissed.

“This appeal is hereby dismissed haven been withdrawn by the counsel to the appellant and without any objection from the respondents.

Eyitayo Jegede (SAN), who represented the appellants (Atiku) told the apex court that the appeal is statute barred, the time for having expired.

The applicants are challenging the alleged failure of the electoral body to allow them access to the acclaimed central server used for the February 23 general election.

The petitioners also approached the apex court to challenge the proceeding of June 11 at the tribunal where they claimed APC ambushed them by secretly withdrawing a motion and replacing same with another not responded to.

NAN reports that Justice Garba Mohammed, Chairman of the tribunal had in a unanimous decision on July 3, dismissed a prayer by the applicants to re-open arguments on the APC application that sought dismissal of the petition.

Garba held that the petitioners failed to adduce cogent reasons why such request should be granted, having failed to file a counter affidavit against issues raised earlier.

The tribunal had on June 11 ruled that the petitioners failed to file counter affidavit against APC’s motion seeking dismissal of the petition on accounts of unsubstantiated allegations of non-compliance and malpractices.

The tribunal had held that its record showed that the petitioners were duly served with APC’s motion on May 16 which gave them seven days to file their counter-affidavit.

The APC had urged the tribunal to strike out allegations of widespread malpractices made on the conduct of the presidential elections in 10 states from the petition.

The party alleged grave errors, adding that the petition was shrouded in unsubstantiated issues in the 10 states.

The party also claimed that Atiku merely made vague allegations of electoral malpractices in the 10 states, adding that vague allegations were unknown to law.

The states were Borno; Yobe; Jigawa; Kebbi; Kaduna; Kano; Gombe; Niger; Katsina and Bauchi.

APC, had also in the motion invited the tribunal to strike out allegations of act of violence levelled against Vice President, Chief of Army Staff, Nigerian Army, Nigerian Police and several other individuals who were not listed as parties in the petition.

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EFCC raids Ambode’s Epe residence

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EFCC raids Ambode’s Epe residence

*It’s not true, says EFCC

Wale Elegbede

 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Tuesday morning entered the residence of former Lagos Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, raiding the building as part of an ongoing corruption investigation.

The residence, in his hometown of Epe, was being searched as of 9:35 a.m.

According to information available to us, the residence of the former governor’s Chief of Staff in the same Epe neighbourhood was also being searched.

The raid might not be unconnected to the recent fraud allegation traced to an account of Lagos State during Ambode’s tenure said to be about N9.9billion.

But the anti-graft agency has denied raiding the former governor’s house.

According to a statement signed by Mr Tony Orilade, the agency’s Ag. Head Media & Publicity, the EFCC insisted that nothing like that happened.

“We need to state for the records that the EFCC did not raid Ambode’s house. It is instructive that his administration, like other former governors is under investigation, since they no longer constitutionally enjoy immunity against prosecution.

“The Commission hereby states with high sense of responsibility that the operatives did not raid Ambode’s residence.

“Whatever the Commission is presently doing with regards to the investigation is in line with its mandate and the rule of law.

“We wish to inform the social media to be circumspect in the reportage of any news with regards to investigation activities of the Commission.

“As a tradition, the Commission does not carry out investigation on the pages of the newspapers or through the media. Our operations are always covert until at a time when we file charges in court.

“Therefore, the attempt to cast the Commission in a bad light is unacceptable as the EFCC will never engage in illegal act. We remain committed to the war against corruption,” the statement said.

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Militants kill 10 Burkina Faso soldiers

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Militants kill 10 Burkina Faso soldiers

At least 10 soldiers have been killed by militants in northern Burkina Faso, the military has said.

Many others were wounded in the attack in Koutougou, in Soum province – which borders Mali – and other soldiers are reported missing.

“In reaction to this barbaric attack, a vast air and land search operation is seeking to neutralise the many assailants,” the military statement said.

Islamist violence is increasing in Burkina Faso, with three key Islamist militant groups establishing a front in north and east.

Hundreds of people have been killed so far this year and more than 150,000 have fled their homes because of the attacks spreading across the Sahel region.

In December, a state of emergency was declared in several northern regions, granting security forces extra powers to search homes and restrict freedom of movement, reports the BBC.

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Cameroon’s separatist leader sentenced to life

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Cameroon’s separatist leader sentenced to life

A leader of Cameroon’s separatist movement, Sisiku Ayuk Tabe, and nine of his followers have been given life sentences by a military court in the capital, Yaoundé.

The 10 had been arrested in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, in January 2018 and were sent to Cameroon to face trial.

They have been convicted of various charges, including rebellion.

Tabe and his followers have been campaigning for the creation of an independent state called Ambazonia, made up of Cameroon’s English-speaking North-West and South-West regions, reports the BBC.

Cameroon’s English-speaking minority say they have been marginalised for decades by the central government and the French-speaking majority.

The Anglophone crisis started in 2016 when lawyers and teachers went on strike over attempts to impose French in schools and courts in the North-West and South-West.

Some took up arms in 2017 and the crisis has forced more than 500,000 people from their homes.

 

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US Customs stops 3 tonnes of marijuana entering country

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US Customs stops 3 tonnes of marijuana entering country

US border officials have thwarted an attempt to smuggle more than three tonnes of marijuana hidden among a jalapeno shipment.

A total of 314 packages of marijuana, weighing 7,560 lbs (3,429 kg), were discovered during an inspection of the cargo as it crossed over the US-Mexico border to Otay Mesa on 15 August.

It is estimated to be worth around $2.3 million (£1.8 million).

In a statement, US Customs and Border Protection said a 37-year-old Mexican man had crossed the southern Californian border in his tractor, which was towing a trailer of jalapenos.

But upon closer examination, customs officials discovered the hundreds of large green packages stashed among, and under, the sea of spicy peppers.

The officials then immediately seized the trailer and the marijuana.

Otay Mesa Port Director Rosa Hernandez said she was “proud” of her team for “seizing this significant load”.

She added: “Not only did they prevent the drugs from reaching our community, they also prevented millions of dollars of potential profit from making it into the hands of a transnational criminal organisation.”

The jalapeno-disguised shipment was the second interception of unique marijuana stashes in under a week for the Otay Mesa officials.

On August 13, customs officers seized 10,642 lbs (4,827 kg) of the drug hidden among plastic car parts, reports Sky News.

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Fowler to Kyari: Oil revenue figures beyond FIRS’ control

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Fowler to Kyari: Oil revenue figures beyond FIRS’ control

…says low oil price, recession responsible for falling tax returns

  • Presidency: Nigeria heading for fiscal crisis if…
  • PDP demands probe of revenue collections since 2015

 

 

Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mr. Babatunde Fowler, has attributed the declining performance of the Service between 2015 and 2018, to the low earnings from crude oil and the recession, which hit the Nigerian economy in the second quarter of 2016.

Fowler noted that while the FIRS management has control of non-oil revenue collection figures, oil revenue collection figures were subject to more external forces.

The FIRS chairman, who gave the explanation in response to the query issued to him by the Presidency, also attributed the low oil revenues for the period, especially Petroleum Profit Tax (PPT), to the fall in price of crude oil, reduction of crude oil production and the 2016 recession that hit the Nigerian economy.

President Muhammadu Buhari had, through his Chief of Staff, Mallam Abba Kyari, demanded explanations from the FIRS boss over discrepancies in tax revenue remittances between 2015 and 2018.

In a letter dated July 26, 2019, the Presidency expressed concerns that actual collections for the period 2015 to 2018 were significantly worse than what was collected between 2012 and 2014.

In a letter marked FIRS/EC/CIA/P/0249/19/03 and dated August 19, 2019, Fowler disclosed that the total actual collection for the said period was N14.527.85 trillion, while total actual collection between 2016 and 2018 was N12.656.30 trillion.

Highlights of the data presented showed that during the period 2012 to 2014, out of the N14.527.85 trillion, oil revenue accounted for N8.321.64 trillion or 57.28 per cent, while non-oil accounted for N6.206.22 trillion or 42.72 per cent.

Similarly, during the later period of 2016 to 2018, out of the N12.656.30 trillion, oil revenue accounted for N5.145.87 trillion or 40.65 per cent and non-oil revenue accounted N7.510.42 trillion or 59.35 per cent.

Fowler disclosed that the non-oil revenue collection actually grew by N1,304.20 trillion or 21 per cent within the period 2016 to 2018.

The FIRS chairman noted that the total budget collection figure during 2012 to 2014 stood at N12.190.52 trillion compared to N16.771.78 trillion for the period 2016 to 2018, which represent an increase of 37.58 per cent.

Fowler said that in spite of government’s efforts to diversifying the economy, oil revenues remains an important component of total revenues accruable to the Federation.

According to him, the price of crude oil fell from an average of $113.72, $110.98 and $100.40 per barrel in 2012, 2013 and 2014 respectively to $ 52.65, $43.80 and $54.08 per barrel in 2015, 2016 and 2017 respectively.

He recalled that there was also a reduction in crude oil production from 2.31mbpd, 2.18mbpd and 2.20mbpd in 2012, 2013 and 2014 to 2.12mbpd, 1.81mbpd and 1.88mbpd in 2015, 2016 and 2017 respectively.

“The Nigerian economy also went into recession in the second quarter of 2016, which slowed down general economic activities. Tax revenue collection (CIT and VAT) being a function of economic activities were negatively affected but actual collection of the above two taxes were still higher in 2016 to 2018 than in 2012 to 2014.

“During the years 2012, 2013 and 2014, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 4.3 per cent, 5.4 per cent and 6.3 per cent while in 2015, 2016 and 2017 there was a decline in growth to 2.7 per cent, -1.6 per cent and 1.90 per cent respectively. The tax revenue grew as the economy recovered in the second quarter of 2017.

“It is worthy of note that strategies and initiatives adopted in collection of CAT during the period 2015-2017 led to approximately 40 per cent increase over 2012 – 2014 collections. In 2014, the VAT collected was N802 billion, compared to N1.1 trillion in 2018. The increase is attributable to various initiatives such as ICT innovations, continuous taxpayer education, taxpayer enlightenment, etc., embarked upon by the Service,” he said.

Fowler also recalled that when he came on board in August 2015, the targets for the two major non-oil taxes were increased by 52 per cent for VAT and 45 per cent for CIT.

He said that notwithstanding the increase, FIRS had in line with the Federal government’s revenue base diversification strategy, grown the non-oil tax collection by over N1.304 trillion (21 per cent) when the total non-oil tax collection for 2016 – 2018 is compared to that of 2012 – 2014.

He expressed confidence that the current strategies and initiatives adopted by FIRS will improve revenue collections and meet the expectations of government in the coming months.

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Court voids Okorocha’s son-in-law guber candidature

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Court voids Okorocha’s son-in-law guber candidature

Federal High Court sitting in Abuja yesterday ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to remove the name of Uche Nwosu as a governorship candidate in the last election held in Imo State.

Justice Inyang Ekwo voided Nwosu’s candidacy on the grounds of double nomination by two political parties, the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Action Alliance (AA) in violation of Section 37 of the Electoral Act.

The court in its judgement upheld the case of the plaintiffs, the Action People’s Party and its Deputy National Chairman, Mr. Uche Nnadi that Nwosu’s governorship candidature was null and void on the grounds of a multiplicity of nominations as the governorship candidate of both the APC and AA.

Justice Ekwo, however, declared that the nomination of Nwosu by the AA as a governorship candidate “is invalid, null and void, having been made at the pendency of similar nomination of the 2nd defendant (Nwosu) by the APC for the same position.”

The judge noted that Nwosu affirmed to be the APC’s governorship candidate in his statement on oath sworn before the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory.

The judge similarly declared that Nwosu “has not been validly nominated by the 3rd defendant (AA) as its governorship candidate for the Imo State governorship election having been made at the pendency of the order of Justice Valentine Ashi of the Abuja High Court recognising the 2nd defendant as the candidate of the APC for the Imo State 2019 governorship election.”

He noted that Nwosu participated in the APC’s primary held on 6th October, 2018 and was subsequently nominated as the party’s governorship candidate.

While laying claim to the APC’s governorship ticket amidst stiff opposition from members of the party, he was said to have on 9th October, 2018 obtained an order of Justice Valentine Ashi (now deceased) of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, recognising him as the valid candidate of the party.

In the midst of this, Nwosu was also offered the ticket of the AA.

Delivering judgment on the plaintiffs’ case, Justice Ekwo held that “there is no controversy that, on October 6, 2018, the 2nd defendant (Nwosu) had himself nominated as the governorship candidate of the APC.

“Furthermore, there is no controversy that, to secure his nomination by the APC, the 2nd defendant on October 9, 2019, obtained an order of the High Court of the Federal High Court which subsists having not been set aside.”

“It is illegal in the eyes of the law. No one is allowed to benefit from an illegal act. The 2nd defendant allowed himself to be nominated by the APC and the 3rd defendant (AA).”

“It is hereby declared that the nomination of the 2nd defendant by the All Progressives Congress and Action Alliance, the 3rd defendant, is invalid, null and void and constitute a violation of section 37 of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended).

“An order of this honourable court is hereby made directing the 1st defendant (INEC) to remove the name of the 2nd defendant (Nwosu) as the governorship of the 3rd defendant (AA) in the 2019 Imo State governorship election for multiple nominations in violation of the provision of section 37 of the Electoral Act 2018 (as amended).

“An order of this honourable court is hereby made restraining the 1st defendant (INEC) from recognising the 2nd defendant (Nwosu) as the governorship of the 3rd defendant (AA) and/or any other political party for the 2019 Imo State governorship election.

“An order of this honourable court is hereby made restraining the 1st defendant (INEC) from giving value to any act done in pursuance of the 2nd defendant purported candidature of the 3rd defendant (AA) and/or any other political party in the 2019 Imo State governorship election.”

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Buhari: We won’t depend on hand-outs from devt partners

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Buhari: We won’t depend on hand-outs from devt partners

…says I’ll count on ministers to succeed

 

resident Muhammadu Buhari has declared that his government will not depend on hand-outs from development partners to solve some of the challenges confronting the nation.

The president said in the next four years, he would rely on members of his new cabinet to deliver on policies and programmes geared toward lifting many Nigerians out of poverty.

Buhari stated this yesterday at the opening of a two-day retreat for ministers-designate and other top government officials at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Declaring the event open, President Buhari explained that considering the United Nations (UN) estimate that Nigeria’s population will grow to 411 million by 2050, it becomes frightening, hence the need for proactive action towards development.

He said: “We are all aware of the looming demographic potential of our country. By average estimates, our population is close to 200 million today. By 2050, UN estimates put Nigeria third globally behind only India and China with our projected population at 411 million.

“This is a frightening prospect, but only if we sit idly by and expect hand-outs from so-called development partners. The solution to our problems lies within us.”

The president charged the ministers-designate: “As ministers, I am counting on you together with advisers and Nigerians willing and able to contribute to build upon our roadmap of policies, programmes and projects that will lift the bulk of our people out of poverty and set them on the road to prosperity.”

The president said his government cumulatively in eight years, would have laid the grounds for lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty.

According to him, such outcome will fundamentally shift Nigeria’s trajectory and place it among World’s great nations.

Buhari, who reminded the ministers-designate that they will be responsible for the development and implementation of policies, programmes and projects in their various ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs), said they must ensure that such agencies remain effective, efficient and accountable in the discharge of their responsibilities.

“It is a great privilege for you to be called upon to serve in these great offices of State and you must grasp the chance with two hands and put in your best efforts as Nigeria today needs top managers to handle our numerous challenges. There will be long hours and you must be prepared to live laborious days if we are to serve our people optimally.

“I congratulate all the new comers who your country has chosen above others to join the first term ministers whose performance has been outstanding. All of you are appointed to assist and advise the president in running the affairs of our country.

“At the end of the retreat, it is hoped that all of you will be in tune with the roles and responsibilities of positions you will occupy in government. Many national issues require unified decisions.”

Buhari enjoined the ministers-designate to encourage team work.

He said his government succeeded in the last four years in rolling back the frontiers of terrorism and actively addressing other challenges such as kidnappings, farmer-herder violence, improving the safety of our roads, railways, air traffic and fire control capacities.

“We are steadily turning the economy round through investment in agriculture and manufacturing, shoring up our foreign reserves, curbing inflation and improving the country’s infrastructure.

“On corruption, we have recovered hundreds of billions of stolen assets and are actively pursuing control measures to tackle leakages in public resources. We will not let up in fighting corruption,” Buhari said.

In his welcome remarks, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, said the objective of the retreat is to prepare the new cabinet in Buhari’s second tenure the opportunity to familiarize themselves with their roles and responsibilities as ministers, an understanding that will help to shape and streamline efforts towards achieving the delivery of dividends of democracy to the people of Nigeria.

He said the outcome of the retreat will set a strategic agenda, which would define the course of action for the next four years of the administration, set achievable targets and identify basic strategic options that will assist the new cabinet realise the goals for which the administration was elected to achieve.

According to him, the retreat was conceptualized in three thematic phases comprising, a context setting segment, led by Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo and supported by Mckinsey & Co. and KPMG as consultants.

“The second segment is principally designed to be more interactive, setting the values of team work as your appointments demand, which will be demonstrated by your involvement in syndicated breakout sessions focused on topics across defined government priority areas,” Mustapha noted.

Others slated to deliver papers at the retreat include former SGF, Yayale Ahmed, former Head of Service of the Federation (HoSF), Ms. Amal Pappel and former President of the Senate, Ken Nnamani.

The retreat is expected to end on Tuesday while the ministers will be sworn in by President Buhari on Wednesday.

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Emefiele: More goods’ll be denied forex

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Emefiele: More goods’ll be denied forex

…says Nigeria’ll appeal against $9bn UK judgement

 

Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, has disclosed that more items will be denied foreign exchange (forex) by both commercial and the apex banks.

The CBN governor stated this yesterday at the opening of a two-day retreat for ministers-designate and top government officials at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Speaking to State House correspondents, Emefiele said that the bank will not go back on the recent directive by President Muhammadu Buhari that the apex bank should stop issuance of forex for food importation into the country.

Buhari had, last week, Tuesday in Daura, Katsina State, directed CBN to stop providing foreign exchange for importation of food into the country.

Commenting on how far he has implemented the president’s directive on forex, Emefiele said: “Mr. President’s comment on the issuing of forex to people who import food items into the country, is in the logic of CBN’s management foreign exchange policies that we started since 2016.

“If you recall, we started with about 41 items (food and non-food items), because we believe that those items can be produced in the country. As we stand today, there are about 43 items on that list and I will say substantially most of them are food items.

“We are basically saying, if we have a food item that can be produced in the country, why should we waste scare foreign exchange importing those items into the country, when those can be produced in the country.”

The CBN governor noted that “it is important for me to say that the attempt to misrepresent the comments of Mr. President is very unfair and unfortunate. But, what we will say from CBN is that Mr. President has made this comment purely to strengthen the position of CBN, to say that he believes in what CBN has been doing since 2016 and there is need for us to reinforce that going forward.

“We would aggressively go more into the list of items that are being imported into the country, items that can be produced in Nigeria. I will like to stress that we would ensure that more of these items will get on the list of items that are going to be restricted from accessing foreign exchange in Nigerian banking industry, not just from the CBN source.

“Because, I have heard some comments that maybe it’s about the CBN’s source; it is not the CBN’s source, we are saying you will not be able to access foreign exchange from the Nigerian banking industry because it is important for us to produce these items in Nigeria and we will follow through on them.”

Emefiele, who insisted that there will be no amendment to the policy, said: “There will never be an amendment because the issue is this: why should we be exporting jobs to other countries? Today we are complaining that there is a high rate of unemployment, leading, to some extent, the level of insecurity in the country. Why should we allow people to import food that can be produced in the country?

“We need to improve wealth in our rural communities and I am saying we will not change course, we will even be more aggressive on this programme.”

Asked if the president’s directive won’t affect the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) Nigeria just subscribed to, he said: “It will not affect the content of the AfCFTA. The important thing is that Nigeria needs to stand as the largest economy in Africa and the largest populated country in Africa, we need to stand and dictate the terms under which we want to be in it and this is what we are saying. But what I am saying is that it is wrong, it is inappropriate that an item that can be produced in Nigeria should be imported.”

Emefiele also said that Nigeria will move to get stay of action against the $9 billion judgement.

A British court had ruled on Friday that an engineering and project management company, Process and Industrial Developments (P&ID) Ltd., has the right to seize $9 billion in Nigerian assets.

The ruling by Justice Butcher bordered on a 2010 contract Nigeria signed with P&ID, to the intent that the latter would build a state-of-the-art gas processing plant to refine natural gas (“wet gas”) into “lean gas” that Nigeria would receive free of charge to power its national electric grid.

Emefiele said: “I am not scared at all and I think it is also important that this question has come up. Since the news about the judgement broke out late on Friday, we have been discussing with our counsels and they have advised that there are sufficient and strong grounds on the basis of which we could file a stay of execution and also an appeal against that judgement.

“There are certain anomalies in the process leading to the award of that contract, which is currently being looked into by EFCC and I believe that the EFCC themselves have their own investigation reports about that.

“So, we will follow through and aggressively too on ensuring that the execution of that judgement is stayed and that the appeal succeeds at every level, both within Nigeria and abroad.

“It is important for me to use this opportunity to assure our friends, local and foreign investors, who called to express solidarity with us, not to express concern, but to say that there is no need for anybody to worry. We know that the implication of that judgement has some impact on monetary policy and that is why CBN is going to step forward and very strongly too to ensure that we defend the country and defend the reserves of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”

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