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CBN’s Godwin Emefiele, foreign investors meet amidst weak naira

President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration is trying to lure foreign investors to support Nigeria’s weakened currency.

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Total loans in Nigeria's banking sector hits N15.35 trillion

President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration is trying to lure foreign investors to support Nigeria’s weakened currency. The move is headed by the top executives of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

In a report made public yesterday, the Governor of the apex bank, Godwin Emefiele, was said to have met with unnamed professional asset management firms (fund managers) in London, United Kingdom last week.

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The meeting between Emefiele and the foreign investors reportedly centered on the stability of naira. According to the report, the authorities want to boost liquidity in the forex market and luring investors back into the local currency will help to achieve this. It was disclosed that Emefiele told investors that currency stability would continue.

[READ MORE: British Airways beats FAAN’s deadline, relocates to Nnamdi Azikiwe’s new terminal]

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Forex ban: Emefiele, who was reappointed in May 2019 after his tenure ended, was recently directed by President Buhari to ban forex for food importation. According to the President, the directive was given to encourage local agricultural production and attain full food security in Nigeria.

The decision to stop provision of forex for food importation, however, didn’t go well with some stakeholders like Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA), Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) and the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ).

Emefiele affirmed the forex directive, disclosing that the President’s action was in line with the foreign exchange policy of CBN management that started as far back as 2016. He said the country’s foreign reserves should not be wasted on importing food items, adding that the criticisms received were unfair and unfortunate because the president’s speech had been largely misrepresented.

[READ MORE: FSDH explains why the Government should issue zero-coupon bonds]

He, however, stated that the CBN would aggressively drive the policy as more items would be banned to restrict food importers from accessing foreign exchange from both the CBN source and the Nigerian banking industry.

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Olalekan is a certified media practitioner from the Nigerian Institute of Journalism (NIJ). In the era of media convergence, Olalekan is a valuable asset, with ability to curate and broadcast news. His zeal to write was developed out of passion to shape people’s thought and opinion; serving as a guideline for their daily lives. Contact for tips: [email protected]

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Appointments

ExxonMobil Nigeria gets new Chairman and Managing Director

The disclosure was made in a statement by the Manager Media and Communications.

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Exxon to Divest oil fields in Nigeria, Domestic oil companies

Oil exploration and production giant, ExxonMobil, has announced the appointment of Richard Laing, as the new Chairman and Managing Director of its 3 affiliate firms in Nigeria with effect from August 1, 2020.

The disclosure was made in a statement by the Manager Media and Communications, ExxonMobil, Mr. Ogechukwu Udeagha, on Saturday, August 8, 2020, in Eket, Akwa Ibom State.

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The 3 affiliate oil firms of ExxonMobil include Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited, Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria Limited and Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria (Offshore East).

According to the statement from ExxonMobil, Richard Laing was appointed to replace Paul McGrath, who has been appointed Vice President, Global Projects for ExxonMobil in Houston after spending more than 3 years in Nigeria.

The statement from Ogechukwu Udeagha reads, “Prior to his appointment, Laing was executive director of oil and gas production and related support groups for all of the ExxonMobil affiliates in Nigeria.’’

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”Laing joined ExxonMobil in 1989 and has held variety of engineering, planning, safety and managerial positions in upstream and downstream operations while working in the U.K, Qatar, U.S. and Nigeria,” he added.

Udeagha said that Laing holds a bachelor’s degree in Mining and Petroleum Engineering from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow and Master’s in Petroleum Engineering from Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh.

In his reaction, Liang said; “It is a privilege to lead the ExxonMobil team in Nigeria and build on the work that Paul McGrath had done over the last three years.

“I look forward to the work that lies ahead and continuing the company’s outstanding relationships.”

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Coronavirus

UPDATED: Buruji Kashamu dies, bows to COVID-19

Kashamu’s demise was announced by a former lawmaker-friend and party member on Twitter.

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Senator Buruji Kashamu has died on Saturday.

Buruji, who was a member of the 8th Senate, died of complications from COVID-19 at the First Cardiology Consultants, Lagos.

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This was disclosed by Senator Ben Murray-Bruce via his Twitter handle.

Kashamu, 62, served as a Senator representing Ogun-East in the eighth National Assembly under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

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He joins a list of prominent Nigerians who have succumbed to the novel coronavirus.

Former Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari, Abba Kyari and former Governor of Oyo state, Abiola Ajimobi, have also passed on from COVID-19 complications.

Kashamu’s family is yet to issue an official statement regarding his death.

 

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NUPENG gives reasons it directed petroleum tanker drivers to embark on strike in Lagos

NUPENG said its members are being consistently extorted, intimidated, harassed and victimized by different groups.

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The National leadership of the Nigerian Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) has disclosed the 3 major reasons why it directed Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD) to withdraw their services from Lagos.

NUPENG revealed that the 3 major challenges that were being faced by Petroleum Tanker Drivers include; Extortion of money from the petroleum tanker drivers by various security agents, the menace of containerized trucks at Apapa, Kirikiri and Beach Land axis of Lagos State and the harassment and extortion by area boys and area godfathers.

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This was contained in the press statement that was issued by NUPENG on Friday, August 7, 2020, and signed by its National President, Comrade Williams Akporeha, and its General Secretary, Comrade Olawale Afolabi.

While directing petroleum tanker drivers to withdraw its services, the national leadership of NUPENG said it cannot afford to fold its arms while its members are being consistently and continually extorted, intimidated, harassed and victimized by different groups and segments in Lagos.

On the extortion of money from Petroleum Tanker Drivers by various security agents; NUPENG said that it is really disturbing that security agents who are expected to ensure free-flow of traffic and protection of road users now use their uniforms and arms to intimidate, harass and extort money from Petroleum Tanker Drivers. The union pointed out that this reprehensible conduct by the security agents is taking serious tolls on the psychological, emotional and financial state of Petroleum Tanker Drivers and their capacity to effectively and efficiently deliver services to the nation.

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On the menace of Containerized Trucks at Apapa, Kirikiri and Beach Land axis of Lagos State and collusion of government officials hindering Petroleum Tankers from loading activities at depots and tank farms;

The union said that the persistent traffic gridlock and indiscriminate parking of containerized trucks on major Lagos roads and bridges leading to Apapa port, Kirikiri, Beach Land, Satellite Town, Ijegun, are another major setbacks bedevilling the smooth running of the operations of Petroleum Tanker Drivers in Lagos State.

NUPENG disclosed that as at today, MRS depot has been held captive for more than 3 months from discharging products to Petroleum Tanker Drivers despite heavy availability of Petroleum products stockpiled in their tank farm facilities.

They explained that for safety reasons, Petroleum Tanker Drivers cannot continue to struggle with these containerized trucks in these corridors considering the inflammable nature of the products their members carry and cannot afford to undermine safety standards, procedures and protocols in the course of rendering their services.

Some of the locations faced with this situation include Oshodi/Apapa Expressway, Ojuelegba Bridge, Iponri, Constain roads, Ikorodu road through Funsho Williams Avenue (formerly Western Avenue) to Ijora inward Apapa and Oshodi-Apapa Expressway through Mile 2 to Berger Yard inward Tincan Island. These locations have been overwhelmed with indiscriminate parking of these articulated vehicles, aggravating the gridlock faced by Petroleum Tanker Drivers that ply the roads daily to lift products.

On the harassment and extortion by Area Boys and Area god-fathers; The union said that it was really worried that Lagos State which is known to be a megacity and centre of excellence has now become a safe haven for area boys and area god-fathers who now see Petroleum Tanker Drivers as soft targets, extorting money from them on a daily basis, assaulting them and vandalizing their trucks in some instances, especially when some of the Tanker Drivers show restraints in paying them illegal fees and levies.

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They said that the Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD) now battle with both Area Boys and Area God-fathers amidst the deplorable state of the roads in Lagos State, and this is really causing PTD lots of havoc on a daily basis.

The union pointed out that a distance of just about 10 kilometres, now takes 7 to 8 hours of manoeuvres by petrol tankers, many of which break down in the process, upturning their contents, killing PTD members and endangering the lives of several other Nigerians who traverse the roads.

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They revealed that Tanker Drivers whose activities cut across Oguntedo, old Ojo road, Ijegun-Egba, Abule Ado and its environs in Satellite town, Oriade Local government Area, and Apapa corridor of Lagos state have continued to work in fears, following incessant attacks by members of various notorious groups who have developed a penchant for extorting money forcefully from Tanker Drivers.

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They are known for operating unchallenged and freely around Apapa, Kirikiri, Mile 2, Maza-Maza and Abule-Ado, near Trade Fair flank and so on.

NUPENG said that they decided to embark on the indefinite strike after consultations with the different leadership organs of the union and stakeholders in the oil and gas industry.

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