Oliseh To Expose NFF In Court

Former  Super Eagles coach, Sunday Oliseh, is prepared to meet the Nigeria Football Federation in court over what they termed breach of contract,

The Football house is reportedly threatening to sue Oliseh for quitting his post as coach without prior notice, but the 42 year old gaffer is optimistic the court will vindicate him on the false allegations levelled against him.

“They said I was paid for three months (December 2015, January 2016 and February 2016) and half-year rent for July-December 2015. But we will see who is telling lies,” Oliseh said.

“Since they are prepared to expose themselves, I will help them further. My lawyers are studying the reports, and when we meet, we shall know who breached our contractual agreements.”

Oliseh further claims his eight months on the job was a lesson for him, that only a wholistic change is needed in Nigerian football void of favouritism and nepotism.

“My time there was a big lesson and unless a wholistic change is made in the administrative level, it will be difficult.”

 

“PMB Has Good Intention To Put Nigeria In Good Shape” – Kaigama

The Trade Union Congress of Nigeria, TUC, Taraba State Chapter said the pace at which President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration is moving, its plan to achieve developmental goals cannot be done in just four years.

President of TUC, Boboi Bala Kaigama, who spoke in Jalingo, Taraba State, while speaking on national issues, argued that the anti-corruption crusade by President Buhari was a welcome development and declared that the president would take long time to lay foundation for good governance.

According to him: “President Buhari has a good intention to put Nigeria in good shape but the pace at which he is moving, it is difficult for him to actualize the dream in just four years. He should start thinking of another four years after his first tenure. The PDP governed the country for eight years, for another political party to come and take over then restructure the mechinaries for change may not be in just two years, but if he is not carful he may end up handing over to a wrong person in a heist to go”

The TUC president who insisted labour would continue to reject the recent hike in electricity tariff, said the hike was not only “wicked but condemnable and unacceptable to the union”

“Is as if we are in a country where even court order is not been obeyed, people went to court over this matter, the court ordered that the  company should stay action on the increase of the tariff but they went ahead and increase it the way they wanted. For some of us we want to believe that the privatization of electricity sector was wrong, if someone come to establish give him land to put on his machines, look at GSM in the Telecommunication, they came and installed their equipment and people saw that they were genuine and customers cue in. They wanted to increase the tariff but they refused to do extensive consultations as demanded by the rules, we are going to reject it till the right thing is done”

 Agency Report ….

Speculators Get Burnt As Naira Gains Value

There are strong indications that the efforts of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to stabilise the naira may have started yielding the expected results.

A CBN official last week noted that the deployment of a number measures by the bank may have turned the tide in the foreign exchange (FOREX) market and led to the severe punishment suffered by currency hoarders and speculators.

The CBN had earlier insisted that speculators were behind the market bubble since the upper week which dealt negatively on the naira, sending it down to an all-time low of almost N400 to the dollar.

The CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, had accused speculators who connived with bureau de change operators to undermine the efforts of the bank of propping up the naira and warned that such speculators would eventually be punished by the market. Last week, it became apparent that the recent depreciation of the naira was not as a result of genuine demand but the insatiable urge of speculators, many of whom had got burnt in the sharp appreciation of the naira.

The value of the naira which started the week at N367 rose to N350 by Tuesday and N305 by Wednesday. There had been a wide gap between the selling price and the buying price on Wednesday.  Money changers bought from customers at N270 per dollar but sold at average of N305 per dollar.

A bureau de change operator explained that the wide gap between the buying rate and selling rate was due to the attempt by operators to minimise their loss.

He said, “People had bought when the rate was N370, and they are already making losses. But by combining dollars bought at N270, the average buying rate becomes N320. So at N305, they are still losing about N15 per dollar.”

Although it rose again to N350 to the dollar at the close of business activities on Thursday, the naira closed the week stronger at N315 to the dollar.

Counting their losses, a good number of the sellers who had suffered huge losses confessed that they had bought at the rate of N380, hoping to sell at N400 before the sudden turn in fortunes.

Industry analysts say that a number measures taken by the apex bank lately may have led to this improvement. One is the decision to publish all FOREX sales from the inter-bank market to make for unprecedented transparency. The second is said to be the mop-up operations of the CBN which had reduced the excess liquidity behind the high speculation of the upper week. This step is said to have made the naira ‘relatively scarce.’

There was also the decision by the CBN to maintain the supply of FOREX for school fees and medicals which earlier speculated the removal from interbank FOREX eligibility had caused panic.  Another reason being adduced by market watchers has to do with the rising cost and drop in demand for imported goods because a good number of Nigerians are beginning to switch consumption to local goods. This is also said to have led to a significant fall in dollar demand. Likewise, the unchanging stand of the federal government against devaluation,  despite pressures from many quarters, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF), also had its own impact on the fortunes of the naira.

According to a source within the apex bank, “The aim of the CBN is to ensure that the divergence between the official and parallel rate does not exceed N3, so we are looking at a parallel market rate of N200 to the dollar because the downward trend in the pressure on the naira will be sustained. The CBN has the capacity to sustain the downward pressure and will deploy further currency management initiatives while capitalising on fiscal policies of the federal government to remain in support of non-devaluation of the naira. The current stand of the federal government on Nigeria’s legal tender is non-devaluation. It will be unwise for anybody to be hoarding dollars because we can assure you that the naira appreciation is going to trend upwards going forward.”

So far, the CBN in a bid to manage the pressure on supply has deployed over $11.7 billion to support the agricultural sector, SMEs, manufacturers, and others. This has reduced the patronage of black market by end-users and has forced rent seekers to dump the greenback, thereby creating a dollar-glut in the black-market.

It has been observed that most of the imports that were draining FOREX resources have since found local substitutes with attendant savings in FOREX and shortage of demand for the greenback, which was fuelling the pressure. This is also coming on the heels of the CBN’s instruction to commercial banks to publish the allocation of FOREX to end-users. This has in recent times ensured that the real sector of the economy and genuine users of the greenback for education and medicals have been able to access FOREX at the official rate.

Industry analysts have also described the development as a game changer for a majority of local manufacturers in Nigeria. The manufacturers acknowledged that the impact of the CBN policy on FOREX since, its inception, has more than doubled their productive capacity with attendant benefits in terms of expansion to meet increasingly higher demands for their products and services.

The analysts said, “Conveniently, since the CBN foreign exchange policy came into existence, production capacity by local manufacturers has increased from 50 per cent to 70 per cent. This has impacted on their propensity to increase exports with higher volumes which is expected to also earn Nigeria commensurate higher foreign exchange earnings.”

Speaking further, the analysts are of the opinion that the policy has helped the local manufacturers to realise the urgent need to expand because of increasing demands for their products. With global oil prices rising gradually and an upward trending external reserves, the naira is expected to regain its lost value. In the past one week, the external reserves of the country has so far improved from $27.789 billion to $27.807 billion, an $18 million improvement. Also crude oil prices at the international market is priced around $32.89 according to data made available by the CBN.

leadership News ……

NCC Fines Glo, MTN N34m For Non-Compliance To Number Portability

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has fined MTN Nigeria and Globacom Ltd (Glo) a total of N34 million for breach of the Mobile Number Portability (MNP) business rules and regulations.

The regulatory body made this known in its “2015 Q4 Compliance Monitoring and Enforcement Reports’’ obtained by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Lagos.

In the report, NCC noted that of the N34 million sanction for number porting breach, Globacom was fined N22 million, while MTN was fined N12 million.

NAN recalls that in the “2015 Q3 Compliance Monitoring and Enforcement Reports’’, NCC had resolved to monitor and sanction violations with MNP process time obligations said “to address the increasing cases of port request rejections’’.

The commission said that series of compliance checks were carried out regarding timer violations by Donor operators with respect to “validation and deactivation responses’’ which had timelines of 2 hours and 1 hour respectively.

According to the Q3 report, there is a timer deactivation violation by MTN, regarding a Corporate Port request of over 109 lines belonging to Nigerian Breweries Plc.

“The company had initiated a corporate port out request from MTN to Glo via lead Mobile Station International Subscriber Directory Number (MSISDN): 07036735494 on Aug. 11, 2015 at 1.20 p.m. but was partially completed as at 11.22 a.m. on Aug. 14, 2015.

“As a result, these subscribers were not able to receive calls from MTN subscribers.

“In the same vein, a timer validation violation by MTN regarding four individual Port requests from MSISDNs: 08139382308, 08143810152, 08135485305 and 08162108093.

“MTN breached the allowable two hours for validation of four port requests from the NPC, as stated in the MNP Business Rules,’’ it said.

The 2015 Q3 report also showed that there was a timer validation violation by Glo regarding 11 individual and one corporate Port requests.

It said that Glo had breached the two hours allowable for validation of six port requests from the NPC as stated in the MNP Business Rules.

Agency Report ….

NASS Crisis: Saraki, Marafa Feud Escalates

The unending feud between Senate President Bukola Saraki and Senator Kabiru Marafa (All Progressives’ Congress, Zamfara) may have escalated to the House of Representatives, as some memebers of the House of Representatives, who are former members of the defunct Loyalists’ Group in the House, have lashed back at their colleagues who earlier condemned Marafa for allegedly bringing the National Assembly to disrepute by his recent utterances.

About 11 members of the House [believed to be loyal to the Saraki] and, apparently, Speaker Yakubu Dogara had, few days ago, attacked Marafa, whose outbursts, they said, cast aspersions on the sanctity of the Legislature.

“It is, indeed, regrettable that eight months after the contest for leadership in the Senate ended, Marafa and his group have remained in electioneering mode,” they said in a statement.

However, in a statement issued yesterday and made available to a reporter, another group of lawmakers in the House countered their colleagues, telling them to “steer clear” of Saraki’s internal affairs.

The group said “It must be made clear to the legislators (who are mostly new members) that the two Houses of the National Assembly are independent and separate and, by getting involved in the internal crisis of the Senate, indicate that they are busybodies and interlopers who know nothing about the running of a bi-cameral legislature.

“We advise our colleagues to mind their own business and face the peoples’ work which they were elected for.”

Comprising mostly pro-Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila loyalists, the group threw its weight behind Senator Marafa, adding that the budget controversy was manipulated to settle political scores.

“Since we are all entitled to our opinion, we agree with Senator Marafa that the budget distortions became a political tool in the hands of some legislators and their agenda was to use it for political negotiation.”

The group also queried why their colleagues could not reply former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s letter to the National Assembly but chose to jump the gun by picking on Marafa.

“We wonder where these legislators were when former the former president made his opinion public recently. It is even more shocking that they were so quick to do the bidding of whoever their paymaster is that they moved even faster than the Senate Ethics Committee to investigate the matter,”the lawmakers said The lawmakers who signed the statement are Hons. John Dyegh, Lawal Gumau, Ahmad Kaita, Agunsoye Rotimi, Aliyu Sani Madaki, Aminu Malle, Nazir Daura , and Muhammed Soba.

Others are Ismail Gadaka, Abdulrahman Shuaibu, Sunday Adepoju, Adekunle Akinlade, Ajibola Famurewa, Abdulmahmud Gaiya and Musa Sarkin Adar.

However, Senator Marafa is opposed to Saraki’s emergence as the Senate President since June 9, 3015.

He had recently also alleged that “fifth columnists” in the Senate were responsible for the 2016 budget controversy just after the Supreme Court ruling that okayed Saraki’s trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).

He was subsequently referred to the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions, which has submitted  its report since last week even when Marafa refused to appear before it.

 Agency Report …..

I’m Reaching Out To Those Who Left PDP for APC, Others – Sheriff

National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff, said he has started reaching out to those who left the party for the All Progressives Congress and other political parties.

But he said he won’t mention their names yet.

The former governor of Borno State refused to say if he had also met with the President of the Senate, Sen. Bukola Saraki on whether the latter would return to the PDP or not.

Sheriff, who spoke to our correspondent through his Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mr. Inuwa Bwala in Abuja on Saturday, said the controversy that trailed his appointment was as a result of alleged panic in the camp of the ruling party.

He said the APC leadership was aware of his capability to unite the members of the PDP and also bring back those who defected to the APC, hence the controversy on his appointment.

Bwala said, “We have started reaching out to those who left the PDP and we are discussing already.

“We are getting positive results from them, but we won’t go to the pages of newspapers to announce their names.

“The APC and its leadership are aware that Sheriff has the ability to unite the members of the PDP and also bring back those who have left the party.

“This was why we had the initial controversy on the appointment. But now, we have thrown that behind us as we have resumed work fully.”

Meanwhile, a former Minister of National Planning under the regime of former President Goodluck Jonathan, Dr. Suleiman Abubakar, has scolded Governor Ayodele Fayose over his comments that President Muhammadu Buhari was turning Nigeria to an Islamic state.

Fayose had alleged that the trip by President Buhari and five governors to Saudi Arabia was an attempt to transform Nigeria into an Islamic nation.

The former minister described said that the statement “should be seen as a misguided utterances and not a true reflection of the perceptions of most members of our party.”

He said in a statement that the statement was “not only capable of heighten the centrifugal tendencies in our country,

but could be counter-productive to the reform agenda been driven by some patriotic elements in our party.

“The mere visit by the President and some government functionaries is not enough to suggest an attempt to Islamise the nation.

“Any divisive statement from any leaders of our party is condemnable and not in the best interest of Nigeria.”

272 NDDC Projects Are Nowhere To Be Seen – Okorocha

Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State has accused the Niger Delta Development Commission NDDC of shortchanging the state and its people.

Okorocha said he was shocked by the claim that billions of naira had been spent on 272 projects in the state, which he, said were nowhere to be seen.

The governor said this when the new Managing Director of the NDDC, Mrs. Ibim Sememitari, visited him in Owerri while on a two-day working visit to the state.

Okorocha also lamented that the NDDC, which was established to serve member states, was allegedly turned into an Automated Teller Machine for some Peoples Democratic Party parliamentarians and bigwigs from the state.

He said, “I am shocked to hear that the NDDC has over 272 projects in the state for which billions of naira were also said to have been spent on. I would like to have the list of the projects, the contractors handling them and where they are sited because Imo people would also be shocked to hear this.

“Let us know the projects, their sites and the amounts paid on each of them.

“The truth is that these projects could exist only on paper because the popular impression here is that the NDDC abandoned the state and its people, while releasing money meant for projects in Enugu to some PDP elements from the state in Abuja, who shared the money with the contractors.”

“The NDDC isolated the state government. At times, these wicked people behind all these fraud would ensure that both NDDC and Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs would award different contracts on one particular project and at the end of the day the job won’t be done. At times too, they would put NDDC signboard on state government projects.”

The governor pointed out that the NDDC should not be partial, while people from member-states should be provided with services required despite their political affiliations.

“Frankly speaking, the state has not benefited or felt the impact of NDDC because no visible project has been executed for years. At a point, I thought about pulling the state out of the NDDC and demand that the money meant for the state should be remitted to it directly,” Okorocha added.

According to him, the NDDC has remained a nightmare to Imo people. He said with the new MD, the state could now partner with the commission with the hope that things would begin to work out fine.

Sememitari told Okorocha that she was in the state to brief him on the activities of the commission in the state. She added that Imo was the first state she visited.

The NDDC boss also said the commission would partner with the state government, especially on the issue of identifying areas where the state was in dire need of certain projects, to avoid duplication.

FG To Probe EFCC Over N1.3trn Recovered Loots

The federal government has resolved to trace the whereabouts of the over N1.3trillion said to have been recovered from treasury looters by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Also to be investigated is the whereabouts of the N80billion and assets seized from corrupt public officers by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences and Commission (ICPC) and Pension Reform Task Team (PRTT).

It has consequently raised three committees to find the money.

The committees it was gathered were constituted by the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami (SAN).

Specifically, the panels will find out what became of the assets and cash recovered from the late Bayelsa State Governor, Chief Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, one time Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Tafa Balogun, and pension thieves.

According to one of the sources, the presidency opted for the committees to enable it have a “true picture of the recovery records of the anti-graft agencies.”

He said the government was concerned that “politics is creeping into the whereabouts of the assets and cash got from looters.”

“All the committees are multi-agencies, including the Ministry of Finance, the Central Bank of Nigeria and anybody managing remittances from these anti-graft agencies.

“The committees will also consider court judgments, assets seized abroad and cash and assets under Temporary Assets Forfeiture Clause.

“The committees will interact with present and past heads of anti-graft agencies and Pension Task Force. The government is not after maligning anybody or group but it is out to streamline records and present the real situation to Nigerians.

“These are more or less purely fact-finding committees to resolve all lingering issues on the status of the recovery by these agencies.”

Responding to a question, the top source said: “For instance, the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) said it has so far recovered over N80bn looted funds.

“The funds include N23b funds stashed in 40 banks across the country by looters. ICPC has also received over 4,497 petitions with 899 concluded, while 470 are still pending in court.

“These committees will locate all these funds, how much has been utilised and for what purposes. This will require going through remittances into the Federation Account.”

The Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation (OAGF) confirmed the setting up of the committees last night.

The International Police Organisation (INTERPOL) recently issued a Red Alert on the former Chairman of the Pension Reform Task Team, Mr. Abdulrasheed Maina, giving the relevant security agencies to arrest Maina in any part of the world.

The Head of Media and Publicity of EFCC, Mr.Wilson Uwujaren, said Maina was wanted for his alleged role in the fraudulent biometric contracts through which he and former Head of Service, Steve Oronsaye and two others allegedly mismanaged over N2billion of pension funds.

Maina was on July 21, 2015 charged alongside Oronsaye, Osarenkhoe Afe and Fredrick Hamilton Global Services Limited before a Federal High Court on a 24-count charge bordering on procurement fraud and obtaining by false pretence.

While Oronsaye and two others were in court and pleaded not guilty to the charge, Maina is nowhere to be found.

However, on July 21 when the court heard the bail applications of the accused persons, Maina through his counsel, Esther Uzoma told the court that he was not at large, claiming that the EFCC had never invited him.

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The setting up of the committees by the federal government is coming on the heels of the Senate’s declaration of the immediate past Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Lamorde wanted over the whereabouts of the N1 trillion which the agency recovered from treasury looters

At its plenary session on Thursday, the Senate directed its Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions to issue a warrant of arrest on Lamorde to compel him to explain the whereabouts of the money in EFCC’s custody.

One Dr. George Uboh had petitioned the Senate to probe the matter.

Uboh, Chief Executive Officer of Panic Alert Security Systems (PASS), had alleged that EFCC under Lamorde short-changed the federal government in the remittance of funds and properties recovered from the late Alamieyeseigha and a former Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Tafa Balogun.

The anti-graft agency, according to him “has descended into the abyss of corruption and financial crimes.”

He added: “EFCC operates accounts in banks to warehouse recovered funds, which do not reflect in EFCC’s audited accounts. EFCC doctors and manipulates bank accounts to conceal diversion of funds.

“EFCC releases recovered funds to unidentified persons and EFCC officials. EFCC moves funds from its recovery accounts to EFCC operations accounts from where it diverts same.

“Over 95% of EFCC’s recoveries in foreign currencies, other than those from multinational companies, have been diverted.

“EFCC trades with recovered funds through bank deposits and placements.

“EFCC colludes with real estate companies in order to grossly undervalue seized assets before there are sold to their cronies.

“EFCC has not accounted for offshore recoveries.

“Over half of the assets seized from suspects are not reflected in EFCC exhibit records.”

Uboh claimed that the amounts of money recovered by the EFCC from Alamieyeseigha and Tafa Balogun were at different times falsified by officials of the agency with a view to perpetrating fraud.

Lamorde, a senior police officer, is yet to be arrested.

He is currently attending the Senior Executive Course 38 at the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies at Kuru, near Jos.

When reporters approached him at the institution on Friday to respond to the Senate’s decision to have him arrested, the former EFCC boss said he would have to get a clearance from his bosses at the Police Headquarters to say anything on the issue.

However, his lawyer, Mr. Festus Keyamo, had earlier asked the Police authorities disregard the Senate threat to arrest Lamorde.

He branded the Senate action as “legislative rascality”, and said the police should “resist the invitation to drag themselves into this illegal scheme.”

Keyamo said he has already filed a suit at the Federal High Court seeking an interpretation of the powers of the Senate with respect to investigations.

He said the Red Chamber refused to defend itself in court following which the Committee set up to probe Lamorde was restrained from proceeding with its assignment pending the determination of the substantive suit.

He said: “whilst there is no restriction on the powers of a court of law to issue a Warrant of Arrest against anybody who fails to honour its summons, the Senate’s own rules forbid it to do anything in respect of matters that are pending in a court of law.

“The conducts of the Senate and the committee amount to legislative rascality as they seek to usurp the powers of the judiciary and to undermine its authority. We most respectfully urge the Nigeria Police Force to await the outcome of the matter pending in court before deciding one way or the other about the enforcement of the said Warrant of Arrest, if eventually issued.”

Agency Report ….

Biafara: Ohaneze Warns Kanu Against Hate Speeches

The Ohaneze Ndigbo Youth Wing yesterday called on the federal government to adopt the method of dialogue in resolving the agitation in some states of the South-east and Niger-Delta region over the continuing detention of the director of Radio Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu.

The group’s national president, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, at a press conference in Abuja at the weekend, recalled issues that may have led to the recent calls for the separation of the south-east region from the country.

He however expressed support for the government and the unity of the country.

Isiguzoro said: “in the first place, we believe in a united Nigeria anchored on justice and equity. We believe that all the problems and issues in Nigeria can be solved through dialogue and roundtable discussions.

“we are conscious of the poverty and youth unemployment ravaging the country and the South-East in particular. We are also aware of the infrastructural challenges and deficiencies in Igboland. These may have contributed to the rage for a neo Biafra as an escape route”, he stated

While appealing to the federal government for the release of Nnamdi Kanu, the group adviced Kanu to desist from continuing with hate or inciting broadcast from Radio Biafra if released while also calling for more federal presence in the zone.

It also called on governments at all levels to positively engage the youths who will not see Biafra as an alternative which can also be taken advantage of by fortune and fame seekers to cause chaos through gullible youths of the area.

Osinbajo, Sanusi Differ On Naira Devaluation

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo yesterday reaffirmed President Muhammadu Buhari-led’s Federal Government position to resist pressure to devalue the naira.

But former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Lamido Sanusi, faulted the government’s stand and said it was merely postponing the evil day.

Both spoke at a town hall meeting in Lagos which the Vice President held with his co-tenants in the Victoria Garden City (VGC) in the Lekki-Epe axis of Lagos.

The VP declared at the well-attended session that devaluation was not on the card at all.

He explained that the administration’s policy was to “come up with a flexible exchange rate to be supported by strong monetary policies” and the objective was to stop unnecessary consumption of imported goods and promote local manufacturing.

However, Chief Sanusi, a VGC resident, advised the government to either devalue the currency or stop the confusion between the official and parallel market exchange rates.

He said allowing an official rate at N197 per dollar while the parallel market goes for over N300 was “distractive”.

“Naira is already devalued and government not accepting it is postponing the evil day,” he said.

Vice President also said at the forum that the Buhari Administration met a falling revenue profile in May 2015, which was down by about 70 per cent compared to the same period of the preceding year.

He said that in spite of the high cost of about $22 to produce a barrel of crude oil now selling at about $33 dollars, at least 38 per cent of the foreign reserve was spent on importing petroleum products.

He also said the previous administration was spending about N20 billion on food importation annually, which reduced the nation’s foreign reserve drastically from about $40 billion to about $25 billion.

 

He said government was now poised to diversify the economy by investing heavily in agriculture and solid minerals production with a view to making the country self-sufficient in rice, poultry and palm oil production as well as developing the entire agriculture value chain to create wealth and jobs for the teeming youth.

The vice president further said the administration was targeting 2018 for complete reliance on refined petroleum products, adding that the petrochemical industry, railway infrastructure and provision of other infrastructure were top on the priority list of government.

On the Boko Haram insurgency, he said the terror sect had been degraded as a “military might” although pockets of suicide bombings still take place.

“This is a challenge we must tackle going forward but the other challenge is the over two million people displaced by insurgency who need resettlement,” he said.

He said government plans to re-settle the people back to their farming occupation first, but that would be after the entire North East land would have been de-mined.

He said government was mindful also of the agitation by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), pipeline vandalism in the South-South and the Fulani- farmers clash in some communities, all which pose security threats.

The Chairman of the VGC Residents Association, Olusegun Ladega, requested Vice President Osinbajo to intervene in the flooding of the estate caused by the non-provision of ancillary drainage on the Lekki-Epe Expressway by the Lagos State Government.

Another resident, Tochi Okwor, raised concerns about the high rate of communicable diseases, such as TB and HIV and AIDS, which she said might reach unacceptable proportion if nothing was done.

She also advised the federal government to remove the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) from the Health Ministry and make it an independent organisation to enable the NCDC play its role effectively.

New Punch …….