The Lagos State House of Assembly on Monday called for a stakeholders’ meeting of government officials, oil investors and host communities, following oil discovery and exploration in Badagry area.
The call followed a motion moved by Mr Folajimi Mohammed (APC-Ikeja I) on the need for the state to be proactive in protecting the host communities from environmental degradation.
The motion was seconded by Mr Gbolahan Yishawu (APC-Eti Osa II).
Mohammed, Chairman, House Committee on Energy and Mineral Resources, urged the state government to do everything possible to protect the people and the communities within area of exploration.
He said, “The stakeholders should come together to discuss the socio-economic importance of the exploration of oil in the state and related issues.
“Efforts must be made to ensure that the state does not go the way of Niger Delta and other oil-producing states in Nigeria who are suffering from environmental degradation with the activities of oil companies.
“The discovery of oil in the state has made Lagos an oil-producing state but it is important to consider the consequences of the exploration.”
Yishawu, Chairman, House Committee on Waterfront Infrastructure said, “We need to learn from oil exploration in Niger Delta. We do not want a repeat of what is happing in the Niger Delta’’.
The Chairman, House Committee on Budget and Economic Planning, Mr Rotimi Olowo, called for a development plan by the investors to protect the environment and the people.
He said, “Our target should not be limited to environmental protection of the area; we need to talk on the infrastructure and economic gains by the people and their communities.
The Deputy Speaker of the House, Mr Wasiu Eshinlokun-Sanni said, “Oil spillage will come; there is going to be oil degradation of environment and we need to be proactive’’.
Mr Setonji David (APC-Badagry II) said that he received the news of the oil discovery in the area with mixed feelings because of the environmental degradation in Niger Delta occasioned by oil exploration companies.
David, the Chairman, House Committee on Physical Planning and Urban Development said, “I hope our communities will not be devastate’’.
“Fishing activities would be affected in the area if the government does not do anything about it.
“We need Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) on the discovery to know what would eventually happen to our people, when exploration starts.
“We should take all the necessary steps so that we would not regret the discovery. There is need for proper steps to ameliorate the environmental implications.”
The lawmaker said that a percentage of whatever would be accruable to the government should be dedicated for the development of the area.
He, however, expressed confidence in the ability of the state government to protect the host communities.
The Speaker of the House, Mr Mudashiru Obasa said, “There is a need for us to be proactive and learn from the past so that we can safeguard our state and host communities.’’
Obasa suggested that there should be a stakeholders’ meeting which would bring the host communities, government officials and investors together to avoid what happened in Niger Delta.
He said, “We must safeguard the host communities and we must commend companies that have been investing in oil exploration in the state over the years before oil was eventually discovered there.
“All necessary infrastructures must be put in place to protect the state and the host communities so that we would prevent what is happening in Niger Delta from happening in Lagos State.”
Obasa said that oil companies had to stop exploration if they had started so that the state government would be better prepared before they start operation.
The speaker, who commended investors in oil exploration, said that the state would benefit a lot from the exploration, adding that the state government would encourage the investors.
The Federal Executive Council recently approved the exploration of oil in Badagry and 13 per cent derivation for the Lagos State.
Nigeria Eyes BRICS Membership within Two Years as Foreign Minister Emphasizes Strategic Alignment
In a strategic move towards global economic collaboration, Nigeria is aspiring to join the BRICS group of nations within the next two years.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Yusuf Tuggar, affirmed that Nigeria is open to aligning itself with groups that demonstrate good intentions, well-meaning goals, and clearly defined objectives.
Tuggar stated, “Nigeria has come of age to decide for itself who her partners should be and where they should be; being multiple aligned is in our best interest.”
He emphasized the need for Nigeria to be part of influential groups like BRICS and the G-20, citing criteria such as population and economy size that position Nigeria as a natural candidate.
BRICS, comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, stands as a formidable bloc of emerging market powers.
In a recent move to expand its influence, BRICS invited six additional nations, including Saudi Arabia, Iran, Egypt, Argentina, Ethiopia, and the United Arab Emirates, to join the group.
Nigeria, as Africa’s largest economy, has been absent from the BRICS alliance, prompting discussions on the potential economic and political advantages the bloc could offer the country.
Analysts have noted that BRICS membership could provide Nigeria with significant leverage on the global stage.
Vice President Kashim Shettima clarified that Nigeria did not apply for BRICS membership after the bloc’s announcement of new members in August.
Shettima emphasized the principled approach of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, highlighting a commitment to consensus building in decisions related to international partnerships.
As Nigeria eyes BRICS membership, the move is seen as a strategic step towards enhancing its global economic and diplomatic influence.
Nigeria Spends N231.27 Billion on Arms Procurement in Four Years Amidst Rising Security Challenges
The Federal Government of Nigeria has disbursed a total of N231.27 billion for arms and ammunition procurement over the past four years.
Despite this significant investment, security agencies argue that the allocated funds are insufficient to effectively tackle the myriad security challenges afflicting the nation.
Chief of Defence Staff, General Christopher Musa, defended the substantial budget for arms purchases during a session with the House of Representatives.
He emphasized that Nigeria’s dependence on foreign countries for military hardware, which are priced in dollars, diminishes the impact of the substantial budget when converted to the local currency.
General Musa explained, “We don’t produce what we need in Nigeria, and if you do not produce what you need, that means you are at the beck and call of the people that produce these items. All the items we procured were bought with hard currency, none in naira.”
He further illustrated the challenges faced, citing that a precision missile for drones costs $5,000, underscoring the magnitude of the expenses associated with arms procurement.
An analysis of the annual budgets for the Ministry of Defence and eight other armed forces from 2020 to 2022 reveals allocations of N11.72 billion, N10.78 billion, and N9.64 billion, respectively.
In 2023, N47.02 billion was disbursed for arms procurement, supplemented by a recently passed budget of N184.25 billion, resulting in a total of N231.27 billion.
Security expert Chidi Omeje raised concerns about the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria (DICON), which is tasked with manufacturing arms locally. Omeje criticized DICON’s underperformance, urging the government to revamp the agency to reduce reliance on foreign nations for arms and ammunition.
Omeje stressed, “The new government must make sure that DICON lives up to its responsibilities,” highlighting the urgency of fostering self-sufficiency in arms production to address the country’s security challenges effectively.
Nigeria Aims for $5 Billion Annually in Humanitarian Funding
Finance3 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 6th November 2023
Business2 weeks ago
Nigeria’s Logistics Sector Holds Untapped N3tn Potential, Says Courier and Logistics Management Institute
News4 weeks ago
N-Power Beneficiaries to Receive Eight Months of Owed Payments After Funds Recovery
Black Market Rate2 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 14th November 2023
News2 weeks ago
Millionaire Powerplay Limited Unveils Unprecedented Odds in American Lotto’s Instant Cashless Payout
Naira4 weeks ago
Nigerian Naira Hits Record Low of N993.83 Against the Dollar at I&E Forex Window
Black Market Rate3 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 9th November 2023
News3 weeks ago
N-Power Batch C1 Programme Successfully Concluded, Investigation Ensures Eligible Beneficiaries Receive Payments