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Again, MAN warns FG against signing of AfCFTA

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Mansur Ahmed, the President of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), has urged the Federal Government not to sign the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

Ahmed, who is also the interim Chairman of Africa Manufacturers Association, said the measure would save Nigeria from being used as a dumping ground for foreign goods.

MAN’s president urged President Muhammadu Buhari to withhold its assent to the agreement, pending the completion of the ongoing assessment to determine its likely impact on the manufacturing sector and the economy at large.

Ahmed said,

“The position of the association is that the government should not sign the framework agreement until wide-reaching sensitisation and proper assessment is conducted on its impact on the economy and the manufacturing sector.

“Our advocacy on AfCFTA is yielding desired results and as you are aware, Nigeria is yet to sign the framework agreement. MAN is a functional member of this committee that is billed to submit its report to the President in early February. In addition, MAN, being a proactive organisation that strongly believes in evidence-based advocacy commissioned a sector-specific study on AfCFTA. We have shared the study, full report and fact sheets on the highlights of findings with the Presidential Committee on AfCFTA.”

However, President Buhari before the month runs out, was expected make his final decision on the signing of AfCFTA. The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Okechukwu Enelamah made this known.

The Nigerian Government had set up a committee to review the AfCFTA and according to the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Okechukwu Enelamah, the committee is expected to conclude their review this month, following which the report will be submitted to the President for decision.

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President Buhari in March 2018, had declined to sign the agreement to create the AfCFTA, which was signed at an extraordinary summit in Kigali, Rwanda by representatives of 44 African Union (AU) member states.

About AfCFTA

The 18th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in January 2012, adopted a decision to establish a Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) by an indicative date of 2017. The Summit also endorsed the Action Plan on Boosting Intra-Africa Trade (BIAT) which identifies seven clusters: trade policy, trade facilitation, productive capacity, trade-related infrastructure, trade finance, trade information, and factor market integration. The CFTA will bring together 54 African countries with a combined population of more than one billion people and a combined gross domestic product of more than US $3.4 trillion.

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Famuyiwa Damilare is a trained journalist. He holds a Higher National Diploma (HND) in Mass Communication at the prestigious Nigerian Institute of Journalism (NIJ). Damilare is an innovative and transformational leader with broad-based expertise in journalism and media practice at large. He has explored his proven ability in the areas of reporting, curating and generating contents, creatively establishing social media engagements, and mobile editing of videos. It is safe to say he’s a multimedia journalist.

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  1. Pingback: Buhari reveals why Nigeria has not signed AU’s trade agreement - Xtabellasblog

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Energy

Nigeria to fix irregular power supply in 40 years- Senate

Four decades is needed due to underfunding and the FG’s failure to fix the challenges of electricity generation.

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Customers to pay for metering through cost of tariff- NERC

The Nigerian Senate has said that it will take Nigeria 40 years to fix irregular power supply.

This was disclosed by the Senate Committee on Power on Tuesday after the Minister of Power and his team made a presentation to the Committee, according to Guardian.

The four decades wait, according to the lawmakers, is due to underfunding and the Federal Government’s failure to fix the challenges of electricity generation.

The committee was astonished by the submission of the Minister of Power, Mamman Saleh, that of the N165billion required for capital projects in 2020, N4billion was given as bribe of which only N3billion was cash-backed.

In lieu of this, the Committee dismissed claims made by the minister over raising hope on early provision of constant power supply, while Managing Director of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Sule Ahmed Abdulaziz, painted a gloomy picture during the ministry’s budget defense.

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A member of the Committee, Danjuma Goje, expressed concern that based on Abdulaziz’s presentation, N165billion was proposed, but the ministry gave N4billion in envelope, insisting that it would take 41 years to deliver constant electricity when N165billion is divided by N4billion.

Backstory

Recall that Nairametrics had earlier reported that it will take nothing less than $100 billion to enable stable power supply in Nigeria.

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What they are saying

Mr. Danjuma expressed pessimism over hopes of stable power supply in the country. He went as far as stressing that even if ongoing projects are being completed there is still no hope for stable transmission of power in the country.

Mr. Danjuma was quoted as saying: “Going by the minister’s presentation that transmission gas increased from 5000 to 8000 megawatts, it is not enough. When dishing out figures, we should bear in mind that capacity, transmission, and distribution have increased and that Nigerians, manufacturers, and industrialists want to see stable electricity.

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ENDSARS

#EndSARS: ECOWAS calls for protesters to remain peaceful in their demonstrations

ECOWAS has called on protesters to be peaceful in conducting their protests.

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ECOWAS ministers recommend gradual re-opening of borders 

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), has called on protesters to be peaceful in conducting their protests and urged Nigerian security operatives to exercise restraint in the handling of protests.

This was disclosed in a statement by the organization on Tuesday and comes on the heels of statements by other International bodies and personalities, who have expressed worry over the nature of brutality meted on protesters, especially after the Lekki shootings.

“ECOWAS Commission notes with concern that demonstrations by Nigerian youth calling for Police reforms, particularly the abolition of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigerian Police force, accused of misconduct by those demonstrating, have turned violent,” they said.

The body said it recognizes the right to peaceful protests and also called for protesters to be peaceful, due to the rising reported cases of lootings post protests during the curfews.

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While ECOWAS recognizes the right of citizens to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly and protests, it also wishes to stress that those rights should be exercised in a nonviolent manner.

“In this regard, ECOWAS calls on all protesters to remain peaceful in the conduct of their demonstrations. It also urges the Nigerian security operatives to exercise restraint in the handling of the protests and act professionally.”

Bottomline

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The tone of ECOWAS’ message is different compared to the rest of other stakeholders including the statement of the Lagos State Governor, House of Reps Speaker, and the Vice President, who all acknowledged that the protests were peaceful and the protesters were attacked and that the violence from the curfews was not done by the protesters but by hoodlums.

The ECOWAS message is also the first statement by West Africa’s most important regional body since the #EndSARS protests started in the first week of October.

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Economy & Politics

Kano State presents N147.9 billion budget for 2021 fiscal year

Governor Ganduje has presented the total sum of N147.9 billion as Kano State’s proposed budget for 2021 fiscal year.

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Dala Inland Dry Port set to take off after N2.3 billion investment - Kano Govt., DB to support 1.26 million farmers with $95 million

Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje has presented the total sum of N147.9 billion as its proposed budget for 2021 fiscal year before the Kano State House of Assembly today.

Presenting the budget tagged “Budget for Economic Recovery and Sustainable Development,”Governor Ganduje said the budget is in furtherance of his administration’s vision for diversification of the state sources of revenue which will engineer development in the future.

Backstory: Recall that Nairametrics had earlier reported the drive and optimism by Kano State government to boost its Internally Generated Revenue. This might probably explain why IGR increased by almost 10% between 2020 allocations and proposed estimates for 2021.

What you should know: The breakdown of the budget verified by Nairametrics showed the following key highlights:

  • The total budget increased by approximately 7.0% from N138.279 billion in 2020 to N147.935 billion in 2021.
  • Capital expenditure for the periods under view increased by 10.93% from N60.485 billion to N67.095 billion.
  • Recurrent expenditure also increased from N77.79 billion to N80.839 billion, indicating a 3.92%. increase for the periods under view.
  • Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) increased by approximately 10% from N24 billion to N26.395 billion during the period under view.
  • A breakdown of the budget showed that the Education sector has over N37 Billion representing 25% of the total budget while the health care delivery service has over N25 Billion representing 17% of the total budget.

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