SON seeks law to penalise importers of substandard products
THE Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), has called on the National Assembly to legislate stiff penalties for importers of substandard products. The Director General of SON, Dr John Akanya, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja recently. Akanya blamed traders and marketers for going out to demand for low quality products to make more gains at the expense of the economy and the lives of the people.
Oil prices rise above $77 on inventory data
CRUDE oil prices traded little changed after a government report yesterday showed a larger-than-expected decline in U.S. stockpiles, signaling a recovery in fuel demand in the world's largest energy consumer. U.S. crude inventories fell for a third straight week, dropping to the lowest level since January, according to Wednesday's report. "The inventory report was a key catalyst for the market," said Paul Harris, head of natural resources risk management at the Bank of Ireland in Dublin. "That moved the market sharply."
Imo's N18 billion fund from bond intact, says Ohakim's aide
CONTRARY to speculations, the Imo State government has not started drawing down on the N18 billion bond already secured for the development of Oguta Wonder Lake project and other developmental projects, the Special Adviser on Special Duties to Governor Ikedi Ohakim, Mr. Chikwem Onuoha, has disclosed. In a chat with journalists yesterday, in Owerri, Onuoha noted that out of N40 billion bond which the state had requested for, only N18 billion was received, adding that in line with the specifications for real planning and execution, it would take about four years to plan the wonder lake project, just as it took the Sun City project in South Africa to actualise, urging Imo people to understand it in same light.
U.S. curbs African trade benefits
SOME African countries have a year-end raw international commerce bargain from the United States of America (USA), as President Barack Obama, stopped Madagascar, Guinea and Niger from receiving trade benefits for a year. The President explained that the countries had failed to make "continual progress" in meeting USA's requirements for a programme designed to create jobs in Africa. Obama said that each of the countries "has experienced an undemocratic transfer of power" meaning they did not satisfy the criteria. However, Mauritania was re-instated to the programme. The Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), was set up in 2000 to offer "tangible benefits" for African countries trying to adapt their economies to a free market.
NCAA summons Royal Air over baggage loss
By Chika Goodluck Ogazi AS a result of frequent cases of baggage losses and delays belonging to host of passengers, the Director General, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) Dr. Harold Demuren has summoned the management of Royal Air Maroc to an urgent meeting to address the issue. In a statement signed by the Media Assistant to the Director General, Mr. Sam Adurogboye, he said that this followed the complaints received by authority from various passengers who arrived the country on different flights of the airline in recent times. According to Demuren, some of the passengers complained about the poor sanitation on board the aircraft and on one occasion, the lack of water in the toilet with the associated health hazard during the flight.
Lagos set to launch N3.1b digital mapping project
By Emmanuel Badejo AS the Lagos State land reform vision reaches the climax, consultants, working on the N3.1 billion Lagos Enterprise Digital Mapping and Geographic Information System (GIS) project, popularly referred to as G.I.S, have said the project would soon be launched. According to the experts, at the moment revaluation of different aspects of the project is undergoing testing, which upon completion will eventually boost the stateÕs capacity on land management. Chatting with newsmen in office last week, one of the consultants, Mr. Oluropo Olajugba, managing director, Lordsfield Limited, a surveying and GIS firm, said that at the moment, the project is undergoing testing, which would be completed soonest, before making a final presentation to the state government.
CSJ canvasses support for public procurement bill
By Tosin Fodeke THE Centre for Social Justice, Nasarawa State, has called for the support of a bill that will enhance capacity to improvement on the needed skills for advocacy, monitoring, evaluating and reporting of public procurement implementation in the state. According to the Director, Centre for Social Justice Nasarawa State, Mr. Eze Onyekpere, the bill seeks to among other things to form a common and united front and create a civil society forum on public procurement and empower themselves with the requisite specific knowledge for public procurement reform and public expenditure management. Onyekpere, said the group has organised a workshop to sensitise Nasarawa State Civil Society Organisations (CSO) on best practices in public procurement reforms, the provisions of the Public Procurement Bill before the Nasarawa State House of Assembly and to build their capacity to improve on the needed skills for advocacy, monitoring, evaluating and reporting of public procurement implementation in the State
How to grow a virile economy for Nigeria at 50, by stakeholders
By Andrew Iro Okungbowa & Babatola Adeyemi TO make NigeriaÕs 50th anniversary celebration next year a unique one, a multi-faceted approach to addressing NigeriaÕs economic nay national development challenges was unfolded on Tuesday in Lagos. Indeed, stakeholders who gathered at the event organised by ALLSTATES group were very optimistic that the latest initiative would not go the way of previous genuine attempts at repositioning the country. Justifying the national development agenda at a Media EditorsÕ briefing, the Managing Director of ALLSTATES group, Alhaji Salem Kareem Rabo declared that Nigeria deserved something different from the usual yearly independent celebration as it clocks 50 next year.
Saraki proposes N67b appropriation bill to lawmakers
From Abiodun Fagbemi, Ilorin GOVERNOR Bukola Saraki of Kwara State, on Tuesday in Ilorin, presented the state's 2010 budget of N67 billion beforethe State House of Assembly as against N70 billion earmarked last year. The budget, christened "Budget of Consolidation," is made up of N37 billion capital expenditure and N30.8 billion recurrent expenditure. Giving the sectoral breakdown, Saraki said works and transport will take the largest share of N9.2 billion; followed by general administration with N6.2 billion, education with N4.2 billion, water resources N4.3 billion, agriculture N3.7 billion, health N2.4 billion and sports and youth development N2.3 billion
Governor presents N60.7b to Abia legislature
From Gordi Udeajah, Umuahia GOVERNOR Theodore Orji of Abia State on Tuesday presented the 2010 budget proposal of N60.7 billion to the House of Assembly, saying the figure represent a 28 per cent increase over the 2009 estimates of N55.5 billion. This 2010 budget proposal put capital and recurrent expenditures at N20.7 billion and N40 billion respectively. Reviewing the 2009 budget which he said showed that by the end of its third quarter, the state achieved 65 per cent of its implementation explained that the estimates suffered serious set-back in its implementation process occasioned by the reduced revenue from the federation account and dwindling internally generated revenue which he said led to downward revision of the 2009 budget from N63.98 billion to N55.56 billion.
Niger plans to spend N111b to reduce dependence on federal allocations
THE Niger State government is to spend N111 billion in the next fiscal year with N334.52 billion of the amount coming from the federal allocation, N5135 billion is expected from VAT, and N12 billion will come from internally generated revenue while capital receipt is put at N43.9 billion. . Presenting the budget before the state House of Assembly in Minna on Tuesday, the state governor, Dr. Muazu Babangida Aliyu, said that the budget which is tagged budget of "Consolidation and Accelerated Development," is aimed at completing all the ongoing projects, while viable new initiatives that are critical to sustained economic growth and development would be undertaken. According to the governor, the recurrent is expenditure expected to gulp N37.1 billion, representing 33.28 per cent of the estimate, while N74.4 billion, amounting to 66.72 per cent of the total budget, will be expended on capital projects.
As Kano budgets N110.3 billion
KANO State Governor, Ibrahim Shekarau, yesterday, presented a budget proposal of N110.3 billion to members of the Kano State House of Assembly. The governor, who described the budget tagged: "Budget for Sustainable Economic Growth and Development 2010", noted that the proposed expenditure would be utilised in the pursuit of economic growth in Kano State. The proposed budget is made up of a recurrent expenditure of N48.87 billion and capital expenditure component of N61.62 billion. The proposal is expected to be funded from a total recurrent revenue receipt of N89.39 billion (Federally Collected Revenue and IGR) and capital receipts of N21.1 billion. Highlights of the budget indicate that a total of N9.3 billion has been allocated to the agricultural sector, with the governor explaining that the objective was aimed at integrating and expanding agriculture far beyond subsistence level.