Following downpour and increased flood across Lagos metropolis, the state government yesterday warned residents of the flood-prone areas to be ready to vacate their homes for safety reasons, saying that flooding would not be completely eradicated in the state due to its geographical location.
This was even as some residents in areas like Itire, Idi-Araba, Obafemi Awolowo way in Ikeja had called on the government to urgently intervene on the persistent flooding in their communities, saying that their property and lives were constantly being threatened by flood occasioned by the heavy downpour.
Bu the government, however, allayed fear on the downpour, assuring residents that measures were already in place to address challenges being posed by incessant rainfall as witnessed in the state in the last three days, saying that effort was being made to clean and maintain the drainage channels.
New Telegraph gathered that residents and commuters of Itire, especially those close to the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, LUTH were usually being threatened by rainfall, which they lamented had made life horrible for them.
But Commissioner for The Environment and Water Resources, Mr. Tunji Bello and Special Adviser on Drainage and Water Resources, Engineer Joe Igbokwe said residents should be rest assured that irrespective of the volume of the rainfall, it would flow through the drains to discharge into the various channels.
PAN takes one egg per day campaign to schools
The Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN), on Wednesday, took its one egg per day campaign to government schools in Mararaba, Nasarawa State to sensitise children on the need to consume egg instead of snacks.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that more than 3,000 eggs were distributed to the students and pupils during the campaign.
This is coming against the backdrop of the world egg day marked on October 11.
Mr Lawson Okafor, the Chairman, PAN of the state chapter, called on the students to inform their parents on the need to give them one egg per day.
According to him, most parents are ignorant of the value of egg and instead they buy junks as snacks for them to eat.
He stated that egg was most valuable than meat pie, adding that parents should learn the significance of egg for their children in order to help them grow well.
Dr Boje Egboja, the PAN Coordinator, said that the distribution of eggs to the student was part of the activities to mark the world egg day.
She said that it was to tell the children the importance of egg in their system, adding that egg consumption would help their growth and also boost their immunity.
She added that it would also help to aid their intelligence quotient and save the children the hurdle of having to visit the hospital often, as it would improve their health status.
Also, Mr Peter Angbashim, the Principal of GSS, one of the schools, lauded the gesture, adding that egg consumption was imperative to the children’s growth.
He noted that though, the school was yet to benefit from the social intervention programme of the Federal Government through school feeding, he had no doubt that the school would soon benefit.
The principal said that the state was involved in the school feeding programme but it had been in batches and the school hoped to be part of the next batch.
Some of the students, who spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria, lauded PAN, stating that such move would encourage them to consume egg.
Abdulqudus Sodiq, a primary six pupil, said that he had learnt that egg was valuable to health to aid their growth, keep them fresh and make them strong.
Also, according to one of the students, Gloria, egg contains some vital nutrients that can boost immunity.
Delta proposes N389bn budget for 2020
The Delta State government has proposed a N389 billion budget for the 2020 fiscal year.
The state Commissioner for Information, Charles Aniagwu, disclosed this while briefing journalists on Wednesday in Asaba.
Aniagwu said the budget approval was part of the decisions reached at the state’s Executive Council meeting of Tuesday which was presided over by Governor Ifeanyi Okowa at the Government House, Asaba.
Giving details on the proposed budget, the Commissioner for Economic Planning, Barry Gbe, said the approval for the budget followed a rigorous process.
Gbe said that during the process the inputs of Ministries, Departments and Agencies in the state were scrutinised and aligned to ensure compliance and realisation.
Gbe said the state government Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) adopted the crude oil production figure of 2.18 billion barrel per day and $57 per barrel bench mark in arriving at the budget figure.
“The budget for 2020 is N389 billion which dropped with about N1billion from that of 2019 of N390.3 billion.
“The Capital Expenditure is about N217 billion and the Recurrent Expenditure is N171 billion. This means that we will do more projects than spend more money on recurrent.
“The personnel cost actually moved up because we put into consideration the payment of the new minimum wage by 2020,” Gbe said.
Aniagwu further announced that the council also approved the recognition of Beneku community as a clan and that the recognition was subject to the approval of the State Assembly.
According to him, getting the assembly’s approval is a preparation for the appointment of a traditional ruler for the community which in Patani Local Government Area (LGA).
“The council also approved the appointment of Obi Ifeachukwude Chukwuka-Okonjo ll as the traditional ruler of Ogwashi-Uku.
“Approval was also given for the appointment of HRM Johnbull Kolokoiwe, Ongolo l, as Pere of Ogbolubiri Mein Kingdom of Burutu LGA.
“It approved the appointment of Obi Christopher Uzu as the traditional ruler of Onicha-Olona,” Aniagwu said.
He also said that an approval was given for the construction of Queens Street, Agbor, Ika South LGA, at the cost of about N600 million, reports the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
“That of Owa-Alero-Owa-Nta- Aliseme Road was approved for construction at a total cost of N1.3 billion,” he added.
Minimum wage: NLC shuts offices, schools in Asaba
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Delta chapter has started to shut offices and schools in Asaba ahead of the planned strike over delay to implement the new minimum wage.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports on Wednesday that the NLC members were seen patrolling Asaba in a marked Hiace mini-bus, closing government offices and turning back school children.
Recall that the national body of the NLC had threatened to go on strike from Thursday if the Federal Government fails to meet its demand on the consequential adjustment.
Before the meetings, labour was demanding 29 per cent increase for officers at grade levels 07 to 14 and 24 per cent adjustment for officers at grade levels 15 to 17.
While the Federal Government proposed an 11 per cent increase for officers at grade level 07 to 14 and 6.5 per cent adjustment for workers at grade level 15 to 17.
Mr Goodluck Ofuburuku, NLC State chairman confirmed to NAN on phone that labour was on strike in the state.
“We are on strike and that is all I can tell you for now. We expect offices and schools to comply.
“The strike is in force that is why we are going round to enforce compliance,” Ofoburuku said.
NAN reports that most government offices and schools within Asaba metropolis were closed as at this morning.
The state government secretariat, along Okpanam road was equally shut as some workers who had reported for work were seen milling around the gate.
Mrs. Tina Okolo, a civil servant told NAN that the NLC members came and locked her office premises and ask the workers to go home.
“They came this morning and ask us to go home. I reported to work at about 8:15am, but now am going home.
“I don’t know much about the strike, so I am just waiting to see how things will turn out,” Okolo said.
NAN reports that the gate of West-End Mixed Secondary School, Asaba,was also closed, as the students were seen going home at about 10:15 am.
A teacher, who pleaded anonymity, said that the students had been asked to go home because of the strike.
Also, members of the NLC were seen at the Achievers Group of Schools, DLA road Asaba, driving out the students and trying to lock up the school gate.
However, most banks in Asaba remained open for business as customers continued their transactions without hindrance.
Japan typhoon death toll climbs to 74, rescuers search for missing people
Rescue workers in Japan continued to search for the missing on Wednesday as the death toll from one of the worst typhoons to hit the country in decades rose to 74, public broadcaster NHK said.
Many people were drowned in the flooding after scores of rivers burst their banks.
Public broadcaster NHK said 12 people remained missing and more than 220 were injured after Typhoon Hagibis swept through the country over the weekend.
As of Wednesday morning, more than 5,000 people are still in evacuation centres in 13 prefectures, almost a third of them in hard-hit Fukushima Prefecture, 269km (167 miles), north of the capital Tokyo, reports al-Jazeera.
Across the country, 13,000 homes were flooded during the height of the storm, while 1,100 were partly destroyed.
Throughout the eastern half of the main island of Honshu, 52 rivers flooded.
Weather officials in Japan were quoted as saying that many places that flooded received up to 40 percent of their annual rainfall in just two days.
On Wednesday, residents in Fukushima Prefecture, which suffered the highest number of casualties, were busy dumping water-damaged furniture and rubbish onto the streets.
Many elderly remained in evacuation centres, unable to clean up their homes.
In Date city, not far from the site of the nuclear disaster in 2011, farmer Masao Hirayama piled damp books in the street in front of his house, adding to a mound of rubbish from the neighbourhood.
He said the water had reached about two metres (6.6 feet) deep in his house, when he and his son were rescued by boat and taken to an evacuation centre.
His wife and grandchildren had stayed with relatives during the storm.
“I feel down,” Hirayama, 70, said, adding that the flood had swept away his greenhouses and farming equipment. “All that is left is the land.”
Hirayama said he had rebuilt his house in 1989, raising the ground level following a flood in 1986. His family plans to live on the second floor until he can make repairs, which he reckons could take three months
Survivors in Fukushima described how water rose rapidly to chest-height in about an hour, making it hard to escape to higher ground.
“Nobody from city hall has come to check on us yet,” Yoshinagi Higuchi said on Tuesday, as he and his neighbours piled sodden tatami mats and other damaged furniture onto the street.
Meanwhile, an evacuation centre came under intense criticism after it turned away two homeless men seeking shelter from a typhoon.
Shinzo Abe, the Japanese prime minister, promised on Tuesday to take action after reports emerged of the two men being denied entry to the shelter in Taito ward in the capital, Tokyo.
A 64-year-old homeless man told Japan’s Asahi Shimbun newspaper that he arrived at the Taito evacuation centre on Saturday morning.
“The wind was strong and it was raining and I wanted them to let me in,” he said.
Officials asked him to write down his name and address.
When he said he had an address in the northern island of Hokkaido, he was refused entry because he was not a resident of the ward and ended up spending the night taking cover under the eaves of a building.
Abe earlier said the government would set aside 710 million yen ($6.5m) for disaster relief. He has also proposed using 500 billion yen ($4.6bn) in reserves for the long-term recovery effort.
“It’s important to make sure the storm-hit municipalities have enough funds to rebuild their communities,” he was quoted as saying by NHK.
Turkey rejects US call for Syria ceasefire
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has rejected a US call for an immediate ceasefire in northern Syria, saying Turkey’s offensive will continue.
His comments come as US Vice-President Mike Pence and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo prepare to fly to Turkey to try to broker a truce.
On Tuesday, Russia warned that it would not allow clashes to take place between Turkish and Syrian forces, reports the BBC.
Turkey says its offensive aims to push Kurdish forces from the border region.
It considers elements of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) a terrorist organisation.
Ankara also says it wants to create a “safe zone” reaching about 30km (20 miles) into Syria to resettle up to two million Syrian refugees currently in Turkey.
However, Syrian forces – which are backed by Russia – advanced north at the weekend following a deal with the Kurds to try to hold back the Turkish operation.
The withdrawal of US troops from the region, announced last week, gave Turkey a “green light” for the offensive, critics of the Trump administration say.
The US has repeatedly denied this, and on Monday Washington announced sanctions on Turkish ministries and senior government officials.
Dozens of civilians have been killed in the operation so far and at least 160,000 have fled the area, according to the UN.
On Tuesday, the medical charity Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) said it had “taken the difficult decision to suspend the majority of its activities and evacuate all its international staff from north-east Syria”.
“They say ‘declare a ceasefire’. We will never declare a ceasefire,” Erdogan told reporters on Tuesday.
“They are pressuring us to stop the operation. They are announcing sanctions. Our goal is clear. We are not worried about any sanctions,” the president added.
Erdogan is expected to meet Pence and Pompeo in Ankara on Thursday.
Pence on Monday warned that the US sanctions against Turkey would worsen “unless and until Turkey embraces an immediate ceasefire” and negotiates a long-term settlement on the border.
US President Donald Trump has faced mounting pressure to take action against Turkey – a key Nato partner – including from Republicans usually loyal to his administration.
Syrian government forces on Tuesday entered the strategic town of Manbij, inside the area where Turkey wants to create its “safe zone”.
Meanwhile, Turkish troops and pro-Turkish, anti-government fighters had also been gathering near Manbij.
Over the past two years, hundreds of US troops have visibly patrolled the strategic town, but they left earlier this week.
On Tuesday, Russia – a key ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad – said its forces were patrolling along the “line of contact” between Syrian and Turkish forces.
Moscow describes the Turkish offensive as “unacceptable”. On Tuesday, President Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin discussed the issue in a phone call.
For now, Syrian forces have not been deployed between Tal Abyad and Ras al-Ain, where Turkey has focused its efforts.
Kurdish-led forces have been a key ally of the US in the fight against the Islamic State (IS) group in Syria.
They described the US withdrawal, which preceded Turkish action, as a “stab in the back”.
There are fears the destabilisation could lead to a resurgence of so-called Islamic State (IS), as thousands of former fighters and their relatives are being detained in northern Syria.
Hundreds of IS family members are said to have already escaped from one camp.
Democratic debate: Elizabeth Warren under attack
Democratic White House front-runner Elizabeth Warren has been fiercely attacked by rivals in a live TV debate.
They accused the Massachusetts senator of dodging a question on whether she would raise taxes.
Twelve White House hopefuls squared off in the primetime forum, with two other front-runners also under pressure, reports the BBC.
Joe Biden hit back against Republican personal attacks, while Bernie Sanders sought to allay doubts about his health after a heart attack this month.
Snapping at the heels of the pack leaders, South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, California Senator Kamala Harris and Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar came out fighting on Tuesday night.
Also on stage were New York entrepreneur Andrew Yang, former Texas congressman Beto O’Rourke, New Jersey Senator Cory Booker, former Obama housing secretary Julian Castro, Hawaii congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard and billionaire activist Tom Steyer.
The forum in the electoral battleground state of Ohio was the most crowded so far in the Democratic race.
Time is running out for the lower-tier contenders to make an impression. The Democratic White House race officially begins with the Iowa caucuses on 3 February.
The pack will be whittled down in state-by-state votes until a final candidate is crowned at the party convention next July.
He or she will take on President Donald Trump, a Republican, in the November 2020 election.
How did Warren find herself under attack?
Ms Warren found a bullseye on her back after surging to the top of the field over the past two months.
Both Sanders, a Vermont senator, and Ms Warren favour free healthcare for all Americans.
But unlike Sanders, Ms Warren has repeatedly avoided stating explicitly whether her version of “Medicare for All” would raise taxes on working families.
She was pressed on the issue by debate moderators and replied that she would not sign any bill that hiked costs on the middle class.
Buttigieg rounded on her, saying: “You heard it tonight – a yes or no question that didn’t get a yes or no answer.
“This is why people here in the Midwest are so frustrated with Washington in general and Capitol Hill in particular.”
Even Ms Warren’s progressive ally Sanders took a veiled jab, saying: “I do think it is appropriate to acknowledge that taxes will go up.”
Ms Klobuchar pounced: “At least Bernie’s being honest here and saying how he’s going to pay for this and taxes are going to go up.
“And I am sorry, Elizabeth, but you have not said that, and I think we owe it to the American people to tell them where we are going to send the invoice.”
Biden took a pop at both Ms Warren and Sanders.
“Both are being vague on the issue of Medicare for All,” he said. “Now look, here’s the deal, come on, it costs 30 trillion dollars!”
Ms Warren did not appear flustered under the repeated attacks, focusing on her policy prescriptions for ending income inequality.
Ms Harris, meanwhile, repeatedly challenged Ms Warren to back her call for Twitter to delete Trump’s account for incendiary tweets.
Ms Warren replied: “I don’t just wanna push Donald Trump off Twitter, I want to push him out of the White House.”
What about the Hunter Biden story?
Biden was asked about Trump’s unsubstantiated claims that the former US vice-president improperly tried to aid his son Hunter Biden’s business interests in Ukraine.
“My son did nothing wrong,” replied Biden, whose once commanding lead in opinion polls has been slipping. “I did nothing wrong.”
He was pressed by the debate moderator on whether he made a mistake while he was the Obama administration’s point man on Ukraine by allowing his son to serve on the board of a Ukrainian gas company.
Biden replied that he never discussed “a single thing” about Ukraine with his son. Meanwhile, his rivals refrained from attacking him about it.
It was the first debate since congressional Democrats launched an impeachment inquiry into Trump’s efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden.
Every candidate on stage backed the investigation, which may seek to remove the president from office, railing against Trump’s “criminality” and “corruption”.
BVN: 2.02m customers enrolled in six months
Number of bank customers with BVN stood at 36.4m as at December 31, 2018
inancial institutions in the country enrolled a total of 2.02 million customers for the Bank Verification Number (BVN) project between April and September this year, latest data released by the Nigeria Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS) shows.
New Telegraph’s analysis of latest NIBSS BVN figures as well as the organisation’s Electronic Payments Fact sheet for January to March 2019 show that total BVN enrolments increased from 37.4 million at the end of March 2019 to 39, 415,508 as at October 6 this year. This means that total BVN enrolment rose by about 2.02million in the six month period.
Given that total BVN enrolment at the end of last year, according to NIBSS, was 36.4 million, it means that 3.02 million customers enrolled for the BVN initiative between the end of December 2018 and October 6 this year.
Analysts, however, point out that there has been a significant slowdown in BVN enrolment in recent months compared with the situation three years ago.
Indeed, thi newspaper’s analysis of BVN enrolment data since the initiative was launched in February 2014, shows that the pace of registration by bank customers has declined in the past one year.
For instance, on the eve of the October 31, 2015 deadline that CBN set for bank customers to register for BVN, data released by the apex bank as well as NIBSS (the organisation that provides the connectivity service for the initiative), showed that 20.8 million bank customers had enrolled over 40 million accounts in various banks in the country.
NIBSS data also shows that as at December 2016, the number of bank customers that had registered for BVN had increased to 27.7 million. It climbed to 30.7 million by October 29, 2017, indicating that about 10 million bank customers were enrolled on the BVN platform between October 2015 and October 2017 – a two-year period.
However, comparing the October 2017 BVN data with the October 6, 2019 figure indicates that 8.72 million customers were enrolled on the platform during the period.
Industry watchers told this newspaper that the slowdown in BVN enrolment was a cause for concern, as it could defeat the purpose for the introduction of the initiative.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in collaboration with the Bankers’ Committee, NIBSS and the German firm, Dermalog, launched the $50 million BVN project, on February 14, 2014, with the aim of capturing biometrics of every bank customer and giving them a unique identity that can be verified across the Nigerian banking industry. The hope was that this would significantly reduce incidents of fraud and money laundering in the banking industry as well as enhance financial inclusion by opening up opportunities for credit to millions of Nigerians without a standard means of identification.
Financial experts note that by giving each bank customer a unique identification number that can be verified across the country’s industry, the BVN project has reduced the chances of criminals trying to impersonate people to attack their bank accounts.
In fact, at a press conference, in August last year, top banking industry officials had announced that in line with plans for the implementation of the Shared Agent Network Expansion Facility (SANEF) initiative, CBN, lenders and their partners planned to increase total BVN enrolment from about 33 million, at the time, to 70 million by 2020.
The SANEF initiative, which is primarily aimed at accelerating financial inclusion in the country, was launched in late March 2018 by CBN in collaboration with DMBs, NIBSS, licensed mobile money operators (MMOs) and shared agents.
Speaking at the briefing, a member of the technical committee set up by CBN to deepen financial inclusion, Guaranty Trust Bank’s Mr. Bolaji Lawal, said that the plan to almost double the number of Nigerians with BVN within two years was critical to boosting the country’s financial inclusion rate as well as ensuring financial stability.
He stated then that operators were committed to enrolling “40 million new unique BVNs between now and year 2020; 10 million in 2018, 15 million in 2019 and 15 million in 2020.”
He disclosed that as part of plans to ensure that the 70 million enrolment target by 2020 was met, 10,000 remote BVN devices were ordered by NIBSS and were being deployed by DMBs, MMOs and Super Agents.
Further, he revealed that under the initiative, the CBN had set aside N20 billlion, which would be accessed by operators at a reduced interest rate to enable them create 500,000 shared agent network points (access points) across the country by 2020.
According to him, 70,000 access points had already been created and nine operators, comprising three mobile money operators and six super agents, which are part of the scheme, had accessed N4.5 billion of the N20 billion.
But given the slowdown in BVN enrolment and with total enrolment standing at 39.42 million as at October 6, 2019, analysts believe that the chances of operators in the financial system achieving their target of 70 million BVN enrolment by 2020 now look quite remote.
FIRS: Court dismisses suit against Fowler’s tenure
Federal High Court sitting in Kano, yesterday, dismissed a suit challenging the tenure of Mr. Babatunde Fowler as Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).
The trial judge, Justice Lewis Allagoa, struck out the suit and consequently upheld the preliminary objection filed by Fowler’s counsel, Paul Erokoro (SAN) that the plaintiff, Stanley Okwara, has no locus standi to file the suit.
The court held that it could not see how the rights of the plaintiff have been affected by the non-appointment of the Executive Chairman of FIRS after August 15.
“In this case, the plaintiff said he is an unemployed legal practitioner. How specifically that affects his rights to file this suit is not disclosed,” said the judge.
The court agreed with Fowler’s counsel that the plaintiff has no cause of action and that it was fatal to his suit that he didn’t file a pre-action notice to the court, as required by the Federal Inland Revenue Establishment Act (FIRSEA) 2007.
“I agree with the first defendant that the plaintiff ought to have served the defendant with a pre-action notice. Learned SAN asked the court to strike out the suit. I so hold,” Allagoa said.
The judge also upheld Erokoro’s submission that the suit should be struck out as there is no “justiciable cause of action.”
After the judgement, Ike Odume, FIRS Director of Legal Services, commended the court, saying: “My Lord, we thank you for being forthright in this matter. Thank you for doing justice. It cannot be less. I have been following this court from Enugu. I know you will always do justice. Thank you.
“My Lord, we will be asking for costs. We have come all the way from Abuja three times because of this matter. We will be asking for costs.”
Justice Allagoa, however, overruled Odume.
“Don’t kill a fly with a sledgehammer. Parties should bear their costs,” the court held.
The plaintiff had asked the court in the suit marked FHC/KN/CS/141/2019 to order Fowler to vacate his office, which, he claimed expired on August 18, 2019.
Okwara claimed that Fowler was appointed on 20th August 2015 and that his tenure had expired as FIRS Chairman after 20th August 2019.
Citing the provisions of Section 3(2) (a), Section 4(a) and Section 11 (a) of the FIRS Establishment Act 2007 and the decision of the Supreme Court in Ogbuinyinya & Ors. vs. Obi Okudo & Ors. (1979) All N.L.R. 105, Okwara claimed Fowler has no business to continue to hold office.
He also asked the court for an order directing Fowler to refund to the Treasury Single Account (TSA) of the Federation all the salaries, emoluments and other monetary benefits he has been drawing on the purse of the FIRS and file an affidavit of compliance within 14 days after the delivery of judgement in the suit.
But in a notice of preliminary objection dated 30th September and filed the same day, Erokoro noted that Okwara has not disclosed a special interest.
Given Okwara’s failure to establish his locus standi to commence the suit and for failing to abide by Section 55 of the FIRS Establishment Act by filing a pre-action notice on the FIRS chairman, for failing to present any reasonable cause of action, Erokoro asked the court to strike out the suit.
“When a plaintiff has not disclosed his standing to sue as in the instant case the question of whether other issues in the case deserve to be decided does not arise,” he noted.
Erokoro told the court that the adjudicatory machinery of the court cannot be activated as such powers can only be invoked by a litigant whose action is for the “determination of the civil rights and obligations of that person. That is the letter and the spirit of Section 6 (6) b of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”
Citing Senator Abraham Adesanya Vs the President of Nigeria (1986) 5 SC 112, Erokoro said Okwara needs to have actual and real interest in the suit before he can sue.
“In this case, the plaintiff’s alleged cause of action is that he is an unemployed legal practitioner. He alleges that the tenure of office of the first defendant has expired. How the purported expiration of the tenure of the first defendant affects him is not disclosed. The case of Ogbuiniya and Ors Vs Obi Okudo & Ors (1979) ALL NWLR 105 heavily relied on by the plaintiff is distinguishable from the instant case. In that case, the plaintiff’s case were affected because a judge gave a judgement against the plaintiff at a time he had ceased to be a judge of that court,” he said.
APC, PDP, others can’t solve Nigeria’s problem – Anya
former Chief Executive Officer, Nigeria Economic Summit Group (NESG), Prof. Anya O. Anya, yesterday declared that the socio-economic and political problems of Nigeria was beyond what the All Progressives Congress (APC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) or any of parties could address.
He therefore called for a new programme of national regeneration, restoration and renewal to address Nigeria’s problem.
Speaking at the The Niche annual lecture in Lagos, yesterday, Anya who was the Guest Speaker, said the politics and economy of the new era needs a new culture that sprouts from a new mindset of the leaders.
Anya, in his lecture, titled: “Business and Accountable Governance in Nigeria: The Obligation of Leadership” said: “The failures in the public sector has seeped through into the political space and has insidiously corrupted the politics and management of the society by institutionalising a culture of greed, mediocrity and self-aggrandisement as the reward for political engagement.“
Anya said: “The current situation is beyond the capacity of our political elite; it is beyond the capacity of APC as a party and government. It is beyond the capacity of the PDP or indeed any of the multitude of parties. We need to start again by instituting a new programme of national regeneration, restoration and renewal.
“We must mobilise our people beyond the political beyond the political parties, beyond the ethnicities and other diversities and beyond the limitations of our current situation. In this effort, we must commit to Non-Violent Communication (NVC).”
Speaking in the same vein, Nigeria’s former High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, Dr. Christopher Kolade, said Nigerian youth have great role to play in rebuilding the country.
Kolade, who was the chairman of the annual lecture, said Nigerians should stop complaining about the elite and politicians and focus on the young ones, who are doing great in different fields of life to rebuild Nigeria.
He said there were a lots of active talent in the young people but they are not being given the recognition they deserved.
Also speaking, the National Leader of APC, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, challenged Nigerians to take their destiny in their hands.
Tinubu, who was represented by former Lagos State Commissioner of Information and Strategy, Mr Dele Alake, said the fortune of any society is in the hands of the people because they have the responsibilities to compel the elite to do what is right.
CBN: Nigeria’s revenue dropped 29.4% in August
igeria’s total federally-collected revenue dropped by 29.4 per cent to N879.39 billion in August 2019 compared with the monthly budget estimate of N1.2 trillion, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said in its Economic Report for August, 2019 released yesterday.
The CBN also disclosed that the revenue fell below the receipt of N931.93 billion in the preceding month by 5.6 per cent.
According to the apex bank, “The decrease, relative to the monthly budget estimate, was attributed to the shortfall in both oil and non-oil revenue.
“Oil receipts at N484.75 billion or 55.1 per cent of total revenue was below the monthly budget of N798.83 billion by 39.3 per cent. However, it exceeded the receipt of N387.74 billion in the preceding month by 25.0 per cent. The decrease in oil revenue relative to the monthly budget was attributed to shut-ins and shut-downs at some NNPC terminals due to pipeline leakages and maintenance activities.”
Similarly, it disclosed that non-oil receipt at N394.64 billion or 44.9 per cent of total revenue, was below the monthly budget of N447.24 billion and the preceding month’s earning of N544.19 billion by 11.8 per cent and 27.5 per cent, respectively.
“The drop in collection, relative to the monthly budget, was due to the decline in revenue from Corporate Tax and Federal Government Independent Revenue,” the CBN said.
In the last few days, financial analysts have been questioning the Federal Government’s ability to realise the N8.155 trillion revenue projection in its 2020 budget. For instance, in its preliminary review of the budget obtained by New Telegraph, the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) faulted the projected revenue, stressing that it was overly ambitious and unrealistic given the trend the national budget had taken in recent years.
The CSJ pointed out that over the years, the Federal Government has continued to propose unrealistic revenue projections, thereby leading to poor implementation of budgets as there were usually no funds to execute projects.
It noted that in 2016, revenue projections fell short by 23 per cent; by 47.73 per cent in 2017 and in 2018 by 45 per cent.
Meanwhile, the CBN also revealed in the economic report for August 2019 that Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) borrowed a total of N2,867.77 trillion from it through its Standing Lending Facility (SLF) window during the period.
The regulator said: “Commercial banks and the merchant banks continued to access the standing facilities window to square up their positions in August 2019. The trend at the CBN standing facilities window showed more patronage at the Standing Lending Facility (SLF) window, reflecting the liquidity squeeze in the market. Applicable rates for the SLF and Standing Deposit Facility (SDF) remained at 15.50 per cent and 8.50 per cent, respectively.
“The total SLF granted during the review period was N2, 867.77 trillion (inclusive of Intra-day Lending Facility (ILF) converted to overnight repo). Daily average was N179.24 billion in the 16 transaction days in August 1 – 26, 2019. Total interest earned was N1.87 billion. The total SDF granted during the review period was N257.35 billion with a daily average of N16.08 billion in the 16 transaction days. Daily request ranged from N0.15 billion to N34.60 billion. Cost incurred on SDF in the month stood at N0.09 billion,” it added.
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