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Economy & Politics

Nigeria set to resume evacuation of Nigerians in diaspora

Those who wish to be evacuated are first expected to get registered with the Nigerian missions.

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The Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 has announced that evacuation of Nigerians in diaspora is set to resume again.

Speaking at the Presidential Task Force briefing on COVID-19 on Monday, the Coordinator, Dr Sani Aliyu also announced that the modified guidelines to guide the process have been approved by the PTF.

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According to Aliyu, these new modalities seek to “make use of the limited resources and ensure that Nigerians are safely returned home,” while also mitigating risks and ensuring that infections stay in check.

Modalities

Those who wish to be evacuated are first expected to get registered with the Nigerian missions which will be coordinating the evacuation.

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They are also expected to obtain a COVID-19 clearance showing that they are free of the virus. As stated earlier, Nigerians who test positive will not be allowed to board the evacuation flight. The test must have been conducted less than 14  days before the flight or it would be considered invalid.

Intending evacuees will also be required to sign an undertaking promising to abide by the guidelines and safety precautions put in place. This is a requirement for boarding.

Upon arrival in Nigeria, they will be required to undergo clearance at the airports, while their passports are withheld by the immigration authorities, pending the outcome of the second testing.

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Those who test positive will be taken in for treatment and those whose tests return negative will still have to self-isolate for 14 days before they are signed off and allowed to take their passports and go home.

Intending evacuees are to note also that they will bear the costs implication for their lodging in Abuja or Lagos for the two weeks before they are allowed to return home to their families.

However, those who reside in the arrival locations (Lagos or Abuja) and can self-isolate in their homes will be allowed to do so under strict supervision from the NCDC.

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Aliyu stated further that priority consideration will be given to those in challenging condition -“short term visitors, those on medical trips, those on holidays, pregnant mothers and students”.

The target, according to Aliyu, is to evacuate a minimum of 1000 Nigerians every week, thus clearing the backlog caused by the long break in the evacuation process.

Patricia

Ruth Okwumbu has a MSc. and BSc. in Mass Communication from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, and Delta state university respectively. Prior to her role as analyst at Nairametrics, she had a progressive six year writing career. As a Business Analyst with Narametrics, she focuses on profiles of top business executives, founders, startups and the drama surrounding their successes and challenges. You may contact her via [email protected]

5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. Celestin

    June 10, 2020 at 3:52 am

    How do you the governance and presidency want to evacuate your peopl, your citizens by tasking them.your people that are stack, your people that have one issues or the other in another country. If they ok, do you think that they want to come back, unless some people that is the lockdown kept out there. What can you do for your people to help them in that country.peoplthat have it you kno they will take care of their affairs, but many people that can’t are out there, languishing and wondering in out side d country most of them not only b.a holders but MSc.becaus some didn’t get job in Nigeria, they entered into one business or the other,the condition of country affected them,they travelled out but it didn’t work out, they want to come back at least to their father land. What is Nigeria doing frustrating them the more. Why this tasking? Why tasking?. Is unfair .

  2. ADERO OLANIRETI

    June 10, 2020 at 6:35 am

    please how much is the evacuation fee and ? Am currently in United Arab Emirates. And how can I register for this evacuation?

    • Mary ogar obla

      June 10, 2020 at 11:53 am

      Please we’re stranded here in Saudi Arabia and we cry to Nigeria government to help and take us back home, we’re suffering here hunger is killing us, please we plead to Nigeria government to help us ,
      These are our names: ogar Mary obla
      Name: omomo edung glory.
      Thanks

  3. Stephen Tubo

    June 11, 2020 at 10:29 pm

    Please am stranded in Ukraine. How can I enroll for this evacuation. I will pay my cost of flight. I want to go home 😭

  4. Chinye

    June 18, 2020 at 10:04 pm

    Hi, could you please respond to the comments asking about where and how to register for this evacuation?

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Economy & Politics

Nigerian and US Authorities battle former Enron Nigerian Subsidiary over $80 million Yacht

Both Nigerian and American governments have opposed Enron Nigeria’s appeal. 

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19 years after the bankruptcy of Enron Corporation, one of the biggest corporate bankruptcies in American history, a former subsidiary of the company is battling Nigerian and American Authorities over the sale of a yacht valued at over $80 million acquired by Nigerian businessman Kolawole Aluko. 

The yacht was seized by the US Government in 2018 after prosecutors say it was bought with the proceeds of bribes paid to Nigeria’s former Minister of Petroleum, Diezani AlisonMadueke. 

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The yacht was later auctioned for $37 million in 2019. The Nigerian government also dropped claims to the proceeds of the sale recently and a Texas Court ordered all proceeds should be retained by the US Government. 

However, a former unit of the Bankrupt Enron, Enron Nigeria Power Holdings claims its entitled to the proceeds and demands $22 million in a bid to get an arbitration awarded to them against the Nigerian government for suspending a contract signed with Enron in 1999 to build and operate a Power plant. 

(READ MORE: Nigeria leads Africa combined in Q2 2020 on BTC P2P)

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Enron Nigeria claims the Nigerian government dropped claims to the proceeds of the yacht’s auction in an attempt to fraudulently transfer assets to stop creditors from accessing them. Saying Nigeria dropping its claims was a recognition of the factual and legal basis” in a DOJ court filing. 

Both Nigerian and American governments have opposed Enron Nigeria’s appeal. 

Enron Nigeria Power Holdings Ltd is owned by ex-Enron staff involved in the negotiations for the Power Plant contract in Nigeria and was bought out of bankruptcy for $750,000 in 2004 by a Cayman Islands registered company. 

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An arbitration ruling in 2012 awarded Enron Nigeria Power Holdings $11.2 million including interest in damages against the Nigerian government. 

The DOJ says Mr. Aluko bought the yacht for $82 million in 2013 and funded a lavish lifestyle for Alison Madueke in exchange for NNPC contracts valued at over $1.5 billion. 

Aluko and his business partner, Olajide Omokore are also accused of laundering illicit revenues into and through the United States

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Economy & Politics

Apapa Command’s revenue rises 10.59% to N227.3 billion in the first half of 2020 – Customs 

Abba-Kura also praised the Customs Service for its achievements in spite of multiple challenges.

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Nigerian Customs: Apapa Command recorded N40.6 billion FoB in 2019

The Nigerian Customs Service announced on Thursday that its revenue for the Apapa Command rose by 10.59% from the previous year as it has generated N227.3 billion during the first half of 2020. 

While disclosing this, the Customs Area Controller, Mohammed Abba-Kura said, “There has been a steady improvement in revenue collection all through the half-year except for the month of May which recorded a decline of about 3.531 billion, when compared between year 2019 and 2020. The command in the half-year of 2019 collected a total sum of N203.264 billion as customs duty and other charges like seven percent surcharge, Value Added Tax, one percent Comprehensive Import Supervision Scheme (CISS) among others. 

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 “From January to June this year, the command collected a huge sum of N227,347,046,233.53, which represents an increase of N24,082,991,550.84 or 10.59 percent increase from the previous year.” 

READ MORE: Court slams N5 million fine on Nigeria Customs Service for collecting duty on personal effects

According to NAN, Abba-Kura also praised the Customs Service for its achievements in spite of multiple challenges they have faced this year. 

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In spite of all challenges, the Apapa Area Command has maintained its tempo at ensuring that maximum revenue is collected in addition to trade facilitation and suppression of smuggling, he said.  

The Area Controller further disclosed that the Command seized 142 containers of various items during the period. The seizures were related to smuggling and were seized pursuant to sections 46 and 48 of the Customs and Excise Management Act (CEMA) which enforces laws related to forfeiture of goods that are illegally imported. 

The seized goods ranged from luxury cars like Rolls Royce 2018 and a 2019 Lamborghini Hurricane. Others include pharmaceuticalsriceclothes, assorted foodstuffand other materials. 

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Meanwhile, in terms of exports, the value of exported products so far is about N52,369,506,770.90 – Free on Board Value, mainly Agricultural produce and Mineral resources. 

READ MORE: Even with a 939% jump in H1 Profit, Neimeth still needs to build consistency

Unfortunately, the Coronavirus pandemic has inevitably affected the operations of the Command this year.

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According to Abba-Kura, “ten of our men in Apapa command got infected with COVID-19 and were sent to the isolation centre and as at today, they are all well now and we appreciate the Lagos State government and doctors at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital for their help.”  

Note that the Customs revenue growth comes at a time of declining revenue for Nigeria, even as the Federal Government’s debt service as a percentage of revenue rose to 99% in the first quarter of 2020. Therefore, it is a good development. 

Nairametrics reported the country earned N950.5 billion in revenue compared to a prorated budget of N1.9 trillion, representing a whopping shortfall of 52%.  Oil revenue was N464 million representing a shortfall of 30% when compared to budget while non-oil revenue was N269 billion representing a shortfall of 40% in the first quarter of 2020. 

Patricia
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Economy & Politics

Buhari suspends NSITF MD and other top management officials, appoints acting MD  

The minister disclosed that the suspension of these officials became imperative after the preliminary investigation.

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President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the indefinite suspension of the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF), Mr Adebayo Somefun and three Executive Directors of the Government agency over corruption allegations. 

Also suspended are some other top management staff of the agency.  

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This was disclosed in a press statement by Charles Akpan of the Press and Public Relations of the ministry on behalf of the Minister for Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, on Thursday, July 2, 2020.  

The suspended Executive Directors are Jasper Ikedi-Azuatalam, Executive Director (ED), Finance and Investment, Mrs Olukemi Nelson, ED, Operations and Alhaji Tijani Darazo Sulaiman, ED, Administration. 

Also suspended are Mr Olusegun Olumide-Bashorun, General Manager, Administration/Human Resources/Maintenance, Mr Lawan Tahir, General Manager, Finance, Mr Chris Esedebe, General Manager, Claims and Compensation, Mr Olodotun Adegbite, Deputy General Manager, Investment and Treasury Management, and Mr Emmanuel Enyinnaya-Sike, Deputy General Manager, Finance and Accounts. 

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The press statement also mentioned Mrs Olutoyin Arokoyo, Deputy General Manager/Acting Head, Legal, Ms Dorathy Zajeme-Tukura, Deputy General Manager, Administration, and Mrs Victoria Ayantuga, Assistant General Manager, Internal Audit as part of the management team that was suspended. 

The minister disclosed that the suspension of these officials became imperative after the preliminary investigation established prima facie infractions on the extant Financial Regulations and Procurement Act. and other acts of gross misconduct. 

According to the statement, ‘’During the period of their suspension, the officers will face a Joint Board and Audit Investigative Panel that had been set up to look into the financial and procurement breaches, as well as gross misconduct in the NSITF from 2016 to date. 

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“The gross misconduct has invariably put the contributions of stakeholders in a perilous state. The affected officers have also been directed to hand over to the most senior officers in their respective departments.” 

The statement also quoted the Minister, Chris Ngige, as directing the most senior General ManagerDr Kelly Nwagha, to take over as the Acting Managing Director/Chief Executive with effect from Monday, July 6, 2020. 

The Labour Minister also charged the Chairman of the Board, Mr Austin Enajemo Isire, to ensure that the investigative panel commenced work as soon as possible. 

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The NSITF has not been new to controversies as the Federal Government had alleged that N48 billion out of the N62 billion contributions to the agency was mismanaged by the former board and management between 2012 and 2015. 

Some of the former officials of NSITF including the former Chairman, Ngozi Olejeme, were charged to court for corrupt practices and embezzlement by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). 

Also, sometime last year, Ngige, had a running battle with the Nigerian Labour Congress over the non-inauguration of the board of the government agency.

Patricia
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