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Lagos plans big for Federation Cup finals

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Lagos State is set to host one of the best Federation Cup finals in recent times as two-time winner Enyimba Football Club of Aba and first time finalists, Warri Wolves Football Club get set to clash in a classical final on September 15, at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos.

The women’s finals will also feature for the first time in the history of the championship, same day, with Rivers Angels Football Club taking on Nasarawa Queens Football Club. Teslim Balogun Stadium will therefore parade the best four clubs in the premier knock-out competition in the country.

Chairman of the Lagos State Football Association, Seyi Akinwunmi expressed gratitude to the Lagos State Governor, His Excellency Babatunde Raji Fashola and the Commissioner for Sports, Wahid Enitan Oshodi for bringing the Federation Cup finals to Lagos for the third consecutive year.

He said hosting the Federation Cup finals in Lagos is another way the State Government demonstrates its commitment to sports development, particularly football, urging the good people of the state to support this move by coming out en-mass to watch the finals.

Akinwunmi who is also a member of the Federation Cup Planning Committee stated that all the logistics needed for a successful hosting is being worked on, adding that a few weeks back, the state had a very successful meeting with the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) on plans for a befitting 2013 finals.

“I must sincerely thank His Excellency, Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola and the Honourable Commissioner for Youth, Sports and Social Development, Hon Wahid Enitan Oshodi for their support and commitment in accepting to host a befitting Federation Cup final for the country. It will be of huge benefit to Nigerians, as it will enable many of our youths to get a feel of the nation’s premier knock-out competition,” Akinwunmi said.

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Posted in Nigerian Newspapers. A DisNaija.Com network.

Source: National Mirror Newspaper

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Tribune

NIgeria records 685 new COVID-19 cases as total rises to 131,242

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Tribune Online
NIgeria records 685 new COVID-19 cases as total rises to 131,242

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has recorded 685 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 131,242. The NCDC disclosed this on its official Twitter handle on Sunday. “685 new cases of #COVID19Nigeria; Lagos-355 Kaduna-58 Nasarawa-46 Kano-40 Akwa Ibom-33 Katsina-26 Ogun-25 Osun-21 Rivers-16 Edo-15 Oyo-13 Ondo-12 Borno-11 […]

NIgeria records 685 new COVID-19 cases as total rises to 131,242
Tribune Online

Sourced From: Tribune Online

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The Nation

Making the best of reforms beyond PIB

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The debates on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) rage on the hallowed chambers of legislators, the highbrow offices of operators and stakeholders and on the streets. In this analysis, Najim Animashaun, a seasoned oil and gas expert and Partner, Gulf of Guinea Consulting, underlines the imperatives of reforms in the oil and gas sector and the need for government to undertake more urgent reforms in the sector

 

The Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) that is before the National Assembly is the first time in Nigerian history that the complete overhaul of the legal regime of the sector has, since 1963, occurred in a democratic dispensation, and, more importantly, not coincided, at least within two years, of a new constitution or restructuring of the Nigerian state occurring.

These two connections would be coincidental or even accidental, if five of the most consequential structural or constitutional changes to Nigeria’s political-geography had not happened within two years of major petroleum industry legislative changes.

Successive governments since Frederick Lugard amalgamated Northern and Southern Nigeria have designed legislation to exert control over and extract revenue from the petroleum industry. That would not be a concern, were that fixation accompanied by an enterprising mind-set rather than narrower imperial or statist ‘rentier’ goals. Why consult the governed when designing governing systems when you can have a monopoly on resources to fund government, essentially without imposing or effectively enforcing tax on the populace? Why create an energy sector, when tax and other resource revenues enter government coffers? The default mind-set is thus to secure the resource for revenue for the government. And the constitution is there to support that endeavour. This mind-set is consistent with creating an extractive industry but is anathema to creating a diversified energy sector. That constitution making and petroleum legislation have gone hand in hand at critical junctures of our history thus bears further scrutiny.

For present purposes, constitutions should chart a path for the future. But when combined with petroleum legislation, including the current PIB, they tend to focus on solving past problems than meeting future challenges. Or as the Columbia Center for Sustainable Investment (CCSI) described the PIB as “a small step when Nigeria needs a leap”.

“The PIB, ultimately, fails to account for climate change, acknowledge the Paris Agreement, and address the need for diversification to adequately prepare Nigeria for the energy transition that is already underway, ‘’ CCSI notes in its blog. They continue “rather than locking more capital into projects and infrastructure that will soon be obsolete, Nigeria should be promoting the stewardship of assets that propel the energy transition forward, not those that will be left behind”.

In short, the PIB does well to play catch up, while being woefully unprepared for what’s coming next. NNPC is not only way behind its peer National Oil Companies in planning energy transitions, but the PIB’s proposed new NNPC limited is not equipped for the monumental changes facing the energy sector. Equinor, for example, Norway’s National Oil Company (NOC), is an investor in Oxford PV, an innovator in solar panel production using Perskovite cells. Equinoris also creating the world’s first fully decarbonised industrial cluster at an old chemical plant in Saltend, England.

Where Equinor is investing in cutting-edge solar and Carbon Capture and Storage technology, the PIB obsesses over applying 10 per cent of revenue from acreage rents to subsidise petroleum exploration in frontier basins for reserves that may not be worth much after 2030, elevating sectional political agendas over compelling commercial and climate change priorities.

Policy blindspots to changing global trends can be traced to the 1914 Ordinance. That law restricted participation in Nigeria’s oil industry to British companies, while also claiming ownership of the resource for the British crown. While excluding European competitors was good for Britain, was it any good for newly amalgamated Nigeria, or even in the Lugard administration’s enlightened self-interest, especially as the colonial office refused to fund exploration at the time? Imperial policy and post amalgamation public revenue demands drove the 1914 and subsequent petroleum legislation that Nigerians in the 1940s dubbed ‘obnoxious ordinances’.

Only upon enacting the 1963 Mineral Oils Amendment Act were these ‘obnoxious ordinances’ repealed, making room for Italy’s Eni to become Nigeria’s first non-British oil concessionaire. This amendment also came on the heels of the 1963 Republican Constitution that made subtle but consequential changes, beyond declaring Nigeria a republic, strengthening executive powers. Changes that enhanced state control over petroleum and gave the Prime Minister operational control over the security services. But changes that also triggered military intervention and the descent to civil war.

By 1965 Nigeria began asserting its desire to participate in the sector without defining whether this would-be private sector or government led. The Tafawa Balewa government negotiated a 35 per cent option to participate in Eni’s concession in 1963. In 1965, the deal with Shell over the Port Harcourt refinery included a term vaguely granting options for “Nigerians” to participate.

Shell’s reluctance to pay royalties and fees to the Federal Government during the civil war influenced government policy, paving the way for Nigeria to assert resource sovereignty and vest vast discretionary powers in the Minister of Petroleum under the Petroleum Act 1969. Abolishing regional governments and creating 12 states, in 1967, made Nigeria a federal republic thereby increasing the centralisation of power and centralisation of revenues from oil to the Federal Government. By 1971 oil revenue began exceeding non-oil revenue. This would continue for 45 years until 2016. Greasing political power with revenues from resources is a powerful multiplier of executive authority.

A literal demonstration of the allure the power of petroleum legislation backing constitutional authority is the fact that all present and past presidents in this Fourth Republic, with the exception of Goodluck Jonathan, for all or some of their tenure, made themselves minister of petroleum; dispensing altogether with any pretence of governing through ministers. Something no military or civilian leader before them ever did. To its credit the PIB devotes substantial energy to curbing these discretionary powers.

Until 1971, the minister’s wide discretionary powers under the 1969 Act were restricted to policy and regulation. It was not until the Nigerian National Oil Company (NNOC) was formed as part of the requirements for Nigeria to join OPEC, that the fusion of policy, regulation and commercial operations became possible. This vastly increased the operational scope and exercise of ministerial discretion. Thereafter commercial petroleum operations fueled ever deeper patronage networks that have come to define Nigeria’s petroleum and political landscape.

Battles over operational and commercial decisions between the management of NNOC and the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Mines nearly caused Nigeria to default on her obligations in 1973. Without adequate capitalisation and no operational autonomy NNOC was unable to function commercially. The Murtala-Obasanjo regime, rather than set NNOC commercially free, decided to abolish the ministry altogether and yolk NNOC’s successor NNPC with policy and regulatory responsibility, while repeating the earlier mistake of not capitalising NNPC. The net effect is that NNPC was no more autonomous than NNOC but now had to set national policy and regulate the oil companies. Essentially, Government threw the baby out with the bath water in the NNPC Act 1977, which act also accompanied another monumental wholesale constitutional change – the 1979 Presidential Constitution and the creation of additional states.  Three years after the NNPC Act was decreed, the “N2.8-billion oil money is still missing” scandal Fela sang about in 1985 occurred – an NNOC-type scandal all over again.

Meaningful reform came during Ibrahim Babangida’s administration, which arguably made more consequential commercially oriented reforms and promoted more private sector led indigenous participation in the petroleum sector than any administration since Tafawa Balewa amended the Mineral Oils Act.

Babangida, notwithstanding, failings in other spheres, also created new states and promulgated a new constitution of 1989 (from which the 1999 constitution is cloned). In the petroleum sector, he incentivised Deep Water exploration, restructured NNPC along commercial lines – creating and incorporating strategic business units such as Nigerian Petroleum Development Company and Corporate Service Units such as NNPC headquarters, which survive to this day. He appointed the first independent chairman of NNPC.  He even announced plans to commercialise NNPC through the Technical Committee on Privatisation and Commercialisation (now the Bureau of Public Enterprises).

He also separated policy functions from regulatory functions reestablishing the Department of Petroleum Resources as regulator in 1988.  Babangida’s reforms decoupled from 25 years of increasingly statist- driven policy re-making the petroleum landscape without enacting a new framework law . The PIB is the policy progeny of these reforms, but cannot shake off the limiting statist impulses.

After 20 years of struggling to pass a PIB, we have reached a fork in the road, with a bleak future for petroleum and no accompanying structural political change on the horizon. Petroleum can no longer paper over the cracks in the constitutional structure. It behooved this government to have more ambition than to bet on a petroleum future when our petroleum past, at the best of times, has produced suboptimal returns. In light of the apparent decoupling of structural or constitutional change from petroleum policy reform, Nigeria may be missing that rarest of opportunities to forge a new energy future untethered to hydrocarbons, essentially bypassing the industrial revolution in the way Nigeria did with telecoms.

The PIB would have been a forward-looking piece of Legislation in 1992 when the Earth Summit in Rio de Jenario, Brazil brought Climate change into international political consciousness. It would even have positioned the industry for greater domestic utilisation and diversification had it been passed in 2000. But, today, it is a day late and dollar short. Though, perhaps, this is better than no dollar at all.

 

  • Animashaun is a Partner at Gulf of Guinea Consulting, Abuja.

 

Sourced From: Latest Nigeria News, Nigerian Newspapers, Politics

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This Day

PDP Laments NURTW’s Activities in Lagos

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By Oluchi Chibuzor

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Lagos State, yesterday expressed concerns at the activities of National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) in different parts of the state.

The party, also, vowed to reclaim five million non-participatory eligible voters in the state, noting that such inactive citizens lost confidence in government since their plight was aggravated.

The Chairman of Lagos PDP, Mr. Adedeji Doherty made this remark at a virtual town meeting yesterday to enlighten the youths on the need to participate in the electoral process.

Specifically at the meeting, the party chief decried the activities of NURTW in the state, describing their activities as frustrating and debilitating to road users in some parts of the state.

Doherty noted that most businesses “are in comatose while others have wound down because of unfair policies which include undue taxes imposed on businesses.

“The NURTW needs to be withdrawn. Its activities are exacerbating the plight of the people coupled with other levies, taxes and charges which are suffocating many businesses.

“We need this government to rethink and make amends where necessary. We are open and ready to share ideas for the general well being of the people. The welfare of the masses is paramount to us.

“We need a society where there is peace and tranquillity, talents development, equity, fairness and justice. We shall re-orientate every apathetic citizen, women and the youths in particular to make them better decision makers going forward, and PDP is fit and proper to achieve this,” he averred.

He lamented that the decline in citizens’ participation in elections was becoming unbecoming owing to bad governance.

Doherty noted that PDP “is open and ready for a cross-fertilisation of ideas with the ruling party (if invited) for such brainstorming synergy to better the lots of the people.

“The party will focus on youth and women empowerment going forward to arm them with requisite knowledge to wage war against any form of deception by any political agent.

“The unfolding events in the country is a clear indication of deception and lies perpetuated by some political leaders which have dragged many into abject poverty; therefore, the people must wise up and reject any act of falsehood and rhetoric from people seeking their mandates.”

He added that PDP was designed “to foster and advance the cause of young people and women, noting that Lagos State Chapter of PDP would embark on massive youths and women talents development empowerment and ready to incorporate them with opportunities to hold strategic positions across levels.

“What happened during the pandemic and Endsars protest was a clear lesson for all and sundry. We don’t need to be deceived any longer. Let us fortify ourselves mentally and otherwise to resist any form of vain preaching from any angle.

“All these little offerings are ephemerals. We at PDP are coming with succour and more to mend the wounds of the people. We call on all stakeholders to work assiduously to restore the dignity and respect of the people being eroded by this administration. We remain auspicious for better tomorrow,” the party chairman said.

Sourced From: THISDAYLIVE

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Guardian

Police nab suspected female robber, 15 others

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Police operatives attached to the Rapid Response Squad of the Lagos State Police Command, between January 29 and 30, arrested 13 suspected traffic robbers in Oshodi and Ketu (Alausa) areas of the state, as it intensifies efforts in mopping…

The post Police nab suspected female robber, 15 others appeared first on The Guardian Nigeria News – Nigeria and World News.

Sourced From: The Guardian Nigeria News – Nigeria and World News

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