Thursday, July 20, 2017

Video - Abuja, Lagos are among the most costly cities for expats in Nigeria

Consulting firm Mercer has released its latest Cost of Living Survey. African, Asian and European cities top the list of most expensive locations for people working abroad in 2017. Two of those African cities are Lagos and Abuja -- both in Nigeria.

Video - Retired footballer Okocha believes Nigeria will rise again

Speaking on the sidelines of that symposium, retired Nigerian footballer Austin Okocha has backed his country to bounce back, despite a recent spate of poor results.

Nigeria clears Cameroon of the death of 97 fishermen

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, on Wednesday said there was no evidence of 97 Nigerians being killed by Cameroonian Gendarmes.

He said the 97 deaths represented the accumulation of all the Nigerians that had been killed in previous incidents in the Bakassi area since 2008.

Mr. Onyeama made the claim before the House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs headed by Nnena Elendu-Ukeje. The committee is probing the incident.

The minister, who was represented by the permanent secretary in the ministry, Olusola Enikanolaye, added that independent investigation had shown that such killings did not occur.

He explained that the incident started following the deployment in July 2017 of a new Divisional Officer (DO) to Idabato sub- division of Cameroon to administer the Bakassi General Area.

“On assumption of office , the new DO commenced the imposition of new taxes on the residents after a meeting with all the chiefs.

“Accordingly, all men engaged in fishing and other business activities in the area were to pay N55,000, women 30,000 and churches N50,000 per annum.”

“Furthermore, taxes on packets of fish were raised from N200 to N1,000. Butchers were to pay N1,000 per head for goats slaughtered by them.

“The sanctions placed on the residents for violation of the tax rules include seizure of their boats and payment of 200 per cent of the initial tax.

“This accounts for the N100,000 which was hitherto heralded in the news and initial reports as the amount of the tax to be paid by Nigerians.”

He said by the records of the Nigerian Mission, the death recorded were not orchestrated by the Gendarmes.

He said some Nigerians fled their homes and headed for the Ikang Jetty when the new DO threatened to use force. It was while they were on their way that some of them reportedly drowned.

“Unfortunately, the leaders who confirmed these assertions to the team had no corpse of persons drowned in the incident as proof of the manner of death,” he said.

New oil policy approved by Nigeria

The Federal Government has approved a new policy on oil administration in the country.

The approval is sequel to a memo presented to the Federal Executive Council, FEC, by the Minister of State, Petroleum, Ibe Kachikwu.

Mr. Kachikwu said the approval was given at FEC meeting Of Wednesday chaired by the acting president, Yemi Osinbajo.

Briefing State House correspondents at the end of the meeting, Mr. Kachikwu said his ministry had already began implementing some of the policy.

“We are working assiduously to exit the importation of fuel in 2019 and we also captured the cash calls changes we have done which enables the sector to fund itself through incremental volumes,” he said.

The minister also said the new policy captured the reorganisation in the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, for efficiency and to enable accountability.

“It captured the issues in the Niger Delta and what we needed to do as a government, to focus on stability and consistency in the sector.

“It is a very comprehensive 100-page document that’s deals with all the spectrum in the industry,” he said.

Mr. Kachikwu said the last oil policy was in 2007.

“It’s has been 10 Years and you are aware that the dynamics of the oil industry has changed dramatically.

“Apart from the fact of fluidity in pricing and uncertainty in terms of the price regime in crude, we are pushing for a refining processing environment and moving away from exporting as it were to refining petroleum product, that’s one change you will see.

“Secondly how we sell our crude is going to be looked at, there is a lot of geographical market we need to look at in the long term, contracting and sales as opposed to systemic contracting that we have been doing.

“Those are the fundamentals, it’s a document if well executed will fundamentally take the change process that we began in 2015 to its logical conclusion hopefully in the next couple of years,” he said.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Video - Public outcry over Nigerian lawmakers' salary perks intensifies

If there is one thing Nigerians are unanimous about, it's that their lawmakers earn far more than they should. Public pressure to reduce lawmakers' salaries and allowances has been growing -- but nothing has happened. One of the problems is that Nigerians don't know what their politicians earn.