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FG discloses how the problem of the power sector was created

Some GenCos, DisCos were sold to incompetent people.

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FG discloses how the problem of the power sector was created, Buhari orders probe of past administrations over $9 billion U.K judgment

The Federal Government has traced the problem in the power sector to the sales of power generation and distribution companies to incompetent investors by the previous administration of President Goodluck Jonathan.

This disclosure was made by the Minister for Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, while responding to questions on electricity tariff adjustment, at a meeting with Online Publishers Association of Nigeria, on Saturday, September 26, 2020.

READ: DisCos seek CBN funding for massive roll-out of meters to consumers

According to News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Mohammed said that the federal government had spent N1.7 trillion to subsidize electricity tariff after the previous administration sold and handed over to the investors, an expenditure he said is no longer sustainable especially under the prevailing economic conditions.

He pointed out that the country’s revenue and foreign exchange earnings had dropped sharply by almost 60% due to the downturn in the fortunes of the oil sector.

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READ: Nigerian Stocks fire up on all cylinders, investors gain N173.62 billion

Mohammed said, “Before we came in, the power sector had been privatized by the previous administration, but the people they sold to them are incompetent. When we assumed power, we met the mess. Apart from the fact that the Distribution Companies (Discos), could not meter the people, they also could not pay for the electricity generated by the Generation Companies (Gencos), from the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Companies.’’

“We had two options – cancel the entire sales or to get the Discos to recapitalize. We took over the debt of the Discos, which was about N701 billion, because of the effect the cancellation of the sale will have on the country and international investors. The people are simply incompetent and if we did not provide the money that means they will not distribute power to anybody,” he said.

READ: Nigerian fintech companies raised $600 million in five years – McKinsey Report 

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The minister revealed that the government did not have the resources to continue along the path of subsidizing electricity tariff to private companies.

He said, “To borrow just to subsidize generation and distribution, which are both privatized, will be grossly irresponsible.’’

Going further, Mohammed disclosed that the Federal Government was providing incentives to local manufacturers of meters through the Central Bank of Nigeria, to cushion the effects of adjustment of the tariff.

READ: UPDATED: Minister of Power sacks TCN MD, confirms appointment of Directors

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He said that companies importing meters would get incentives through tax waivers.

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Mohammed reiterated that in order to protect the large majority of Nigerians who could not afford to pay cost-reflective tariffs, only customers with a guaranteed minimum of 12 hours of electricity would have their tariffs adjusted as the industry regulator, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), would ensure its implementation.

The minister said that the government was also taking steps to connect Nigerians not yet connected to electricity at all, to the facility as the government is providing solar power to 5 million Nigerian households in the next 12 months under its Economic Sustainability Plan.

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Chike Olisah is a graduate of accountancy with over 15 years working experience in the financial service sector. He has worked in research and marketing departments of three top commercial banks. Chike is a senior member of the Nairametrics Editorial Team. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

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Companies

Multiverse forecasts N39.5 million profit in Q1 2021

The management of Multiverse Plc has projected a revenue of N76 million and a profit of N39.5 million in Q1 2021.

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Multiverse Mining and Exploration Plc has projected that in the first quarter of 2021, the mining and exploration company will generate N76 million in revenue, and post a profit of N39.5 million.

These projections were made by the company in a recent earnings forecast issued by the Management, and signed by the Corporate Secretaries of the company.

Key highlights of the earnings forecast for Q1 2021

  • Total revenue is projected at N76 million.
  • Turnover from agency sale is projected at N1 million.
  • Agency cost is s projected at N850 thousand.
  • Total expenses are projected at N7.8 million.
  • Operating Profit is projected at N67.3 million.
  • EBIT (Earnings Before Interest and Taxation) is projected at N67.3 million.
  • Interest Expense is projected at N27.8 million.
  • Profit after tax is projected at N39.5 million.

Key assumptions made to support the earnings forecast and projection of the company

The earnings forecast was made on the ground that there won’t be any significant change in the economic policies of the Federal Government, while the monetary policies of the CBN would not be altered significantly.

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The company also maintained that there would not be any industrial unrest that would affect its production and sales volume, while the profit of the company would not be pressured by rising costs of inputs, as prices of materials used in production shall be stable in the period under review.

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GCR affirms Dangote Cement issuer ratings of AA+(NG) and A1+(NG)

Global Credit Ratings has affirmed Dangote Cement issuer ratings of AA+(NG) and A1+(NG).

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Dangote Cement Plc has announced that Global Credit Ratings has affirmed the cement manufacturer a long-term and short-term national scale issuer ratings of AA+ (NG) and A1+(NG) respectively.

According to the press release issued by the company, the rating which maintains a stable outlook on Dangote Cement would expire by November 2021.

In line with this, GCR reviewed existing bonds of the company and assigned the N100bn Series 1 Fixed Rate Bond of Dangote Cement a rating of AA+.

Why this matters

  • The ratings reflect Dangote Cement Plc’s status as Africa’s leading integrated cement manufacturer with a group-wide installed capacity of 45.6 million metric tonnes per annum across ten countries.
  • The stable outlook which was maintained by GCR reflects the extensive distribution network, significant scale economies and position as the largest corporations on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, with sound access to capital.
  • It is important to note that a rebound is expected within 18-24 months, on the back of strong base domestic demand.

What they are saying

Michel Puchercos, Chief Executive Officer, said:

  • Dangote Cement has shown great resilience in 2020 despite the COVID-19 pandemic and a challenging environment. The Group continues to report strong cash generation while maintaining strong financial discipline. As Africa’s leading cement producer, we are committed to maximizing shareholder value creation.”

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Governor Sanwo-Olu says 24,000 students yet to resume in public schools

24,000 students in public schools are yet to return back after the reopening of schools, according to Governor Sanwo-Olu.

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The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has revealed that about 24,000 students in public schools are yet to come back after the reopening of schools following last year’s lockdown necessitated by the first wave of Covid-19 across the country.

This is as the governor said that resumption of school activities Monday, January 20, 2021, was a difficult decision to make in light of the second wave of Covid-19.

This disclosure was made by the governor while peaking during a press conference on Covid-19 update at the Lagos House, Ikeja on Tuesday.

Sanwo-Olu assured that it was the best decision for the children’s safety and long-term development, especially the most vulnerable ones.

What the Lagos State Governor is saying

Sanwo-Olu in his statement said, “Last year after the first lockdown and kids have to come back to school, we are still looking for about 24,000 of them that have not come back to school. So, there is a challenge if you keep them out for that long and their parents or guardians now turn them to other things instead of ensuring that they have time to come back for learning even if it is twice or thrice a week.

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“At least they have been registered since the beginning of a session and they can be monitored. If not, they will just be roaming the streets and become endangered. We have seen incidents of child abuse and all unprintable things that are being done to these children. So, we believe to a large extent that schools sometimes happen to be the safe haven for them. We have done the roster in which we ensure they keep social distance and we are monitoring,” he said.

What you should know

  • It can be recalled that public and private schools below the tertiary level in Lagos State, On Monday, January 18, 2021, reopened for academic activities despite opposition from some stakeholders due to the second wave of coronavirus pandemic in the state.
  • Following the surge in the number of infections in the state, which is the epicentre of the disease in the country, there were complaints about the state of preparedness of the schools, especially the public ones, in adhering to the strict Covid-19 protocols and guidelines.

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