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Oil Exploration: Lagos Assembly Seeks Protection for Host Communities

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Pipeline Vandalism

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.

According to him, the stakeholders’ meeting has become crucial to adequately prepare to prevent a repetition of the current agitation in the Niger Delta over environmental degradation.

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.

 

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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FG Places 3,964 Nigerians on Watch List, Suspends Passports

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Nigerian passport - Investorsking

No fewer than 3,964 Nigerians are currently on the watch list of the Nigeria Immigration Service.

The names of the affected individuals, it was gathered, have been placed with security agencies at the nation’s international airports where they will be arrested on sight.

According to the 2020 NIS annual report suspect index, 308 persons were placed on the watch list in 2019, 166 in 2020, while 51 persons were stop-listed in two years.

No fewer than 3, 438 passports are also being watch, while 23 are on the exemption list.

The report states, “Suspect index reviews and maintains the list of persons whose entry into Nigeria is prohibited or on whom special instructions are in place with respect to entry and departure from Nigeria. The travel documents are the instruments used to achieve this objective through synergy with other law enforcement agencies and court of competent jurisdiction.”

In a related development, the NIS has revoked 149, 875 stolen or lost passports and uploaded them to Interpol’s Stolen and Lost Travel Documents database via the Web Services for Data Management platform.

Meanwhile, there are indications that the FG may not meet its 2021 revenue projection from NIS services.

Findings show that there might be revenue shortfall from visa; e-PASS, ECOWAS Residence Card, the Combined Expatriate Residence Permit and Aliens Card and other documents issued by the NIS due to the reduced number of foreign visitors and expatriates in the country following COVID-19 travel restrictions.

Immigration sources said the number of Italians, Britons, South Africans, Chinese, Indians, and other Asians, who constitute a large percentage of expatriates in the country, had reduced on account of travel restrictions imposed by their respective countries.

The erstwhile Comptroller-General of Immigration, Muhammad Babandede had said the service recorded a 40 per cent revenue shortfall in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Figures from the NIS showed that in 2018, the immigration service generated N20.3bn from CERPAC; N40.7bn in 2019, and N16.7bn in 2020.

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Envoy Considers Establishment Of Chinese Banks In Nigeria To Boost Economy

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Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria- Investors king

Mr Cui Jianchun, the Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, says he is in talks with Chinese owned Banks to establish operations in Nigeria.

This, the envoy said, is to boost Nigeria’s economy and expand trade relations between the two nations.

Cui made this known on Tuesday in Abuja while addressing Journalists during the commemoration of the 2021 Chinese Moon Festival and China-Nigeria Cultural week.

According to Cui, the establishment of Chinese Banks in Nigeria will also be one of the key areas of discussion during the China-Nigeria Binational Committee meeting, which he is also pushing for the establishment.

He said that an efficient financial institution was a key driver to achieving a strong economy, one Nigeria can learn from China’s experience.

“Before my departure from Beijing to Abuja, I talked to several banks in China. When you list the World’s 10 big banks, six are in China.

“The Banking sector is very important, because, without money, we cannot build our industries.

“What I am thinking here is best to talk to the governor of Central Bank and how we can allow the Chinese Banks to run office here and now, they are doing the feasibility studies on that.

“I am working hard that in the Bi-national meeting, I hope we can make a big decision and give a big push to let the banking industry and insurance industry because financial integration and institutions are key.

“If you go to China, you will find our banking industry is very powerful, not only for business but the change in the way of life.

“Because of the COVID-19, the Banking Industry is a little hesitant, but I told them Nigeria has a lot of human resources and as long as we work together, we can do big things.

“And that is why it is important to invest in the banking industry, to solve this problem,” Cui said.

Extolling the extant China-Nigeria trade relations, Cui noted that the volume of trade between China and Nigeria is nearly 20 billion US Dollars, with an increase from 2020’s 19.2 billion dollars.

Cui said the Chinese economy is restoring to the normal post-COVID-19 pandemic and both governments are working hard on how to expand imports and exports.

Speaking on the event, Cui said the China’s moon festival is a very important and significant one for China as it symbolises family reunion, national peace and social harmony.

The envoy said the 2021 celebration is also a special one as it coincides with the 50th Anniversary of China-Nigeria’s bilateral relations.

He said that both countries also share Oct. 1 as their National Days.

He said it is also on that note that the Chinese Embassy is honouring 50 Nigerian employees of Chinese Companies in Nigeria for their outstanding performance and contribution to strengthening diplomatic ties.

Dr Ifeoma Anyanwutaku, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, also lauded the Nigeria-China relations.

She said the relations had recorded great successes over the past five decades.

“The five decades of co-operation had since witnessed several cultural activities and exchanges in the spheres of arts, music, dance, exhibition, cultural administration, training and capacity building of cultural officers.

“And recently, the development of Cultural Industries centres in Nigeria, among others.

“I must add that China, through the youth-oriented programmes such as the photos competition and similar activities in the past is surely a dependable ally.

“In redirecting the energy and mind of our youth to creative ventures, thereby furthering the Nigerian government’s policy of lifting a hundred million Nigerians out of poverty in the next 10 years”, Anyanwukatu said. (NAN)

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Lagos Prohibits Open Cattle Grazing, Sanwo-Olu Signs Bill Into Law

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herdsmen

Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Monday, assented to the bill prohibiting Open Cattle Grazing and Trespass of Cattle on Land, signing the legislation into law 11 days after it was unanimously passed by the State House of Assembly and transmitted to the Executive arm for authorisation.

By implication, it is now criminal in Lagos for cattle rearers to occupy unapproved public areas and private land with their livestock for grazing. The law also prohibits the act of moving cattle round public places by herders.

The signing of the anti-open grazing law by the Governor followed the decision of Southern Governors’ Forum last August, setting the September deadline to pass the law across member States.

There have been crises witnessed in some States, resulting from alleged open grazing.

Although farmer-herder crisis is not pronounced in Lagos, the anti-open grazing law is expected to prevent the spillover of the menace into the State.

Sanwo-Olu, who assented to the bill during the State’s Executive Council meeting in Alausa, directed the security agencies to swing immediately into action and enforce provisions of the law.

He said: “By the powers vested in me as the Governor of Lagos State, I am signing the bill on Open Cattle Grazing and Trespass of Cattle on Land into law to prohibit issues associated with open grazing of livestock.”

The Governor also signed legislation transforming the Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Response Team (DSVRT) into a full-blown agency.

The development coincided with the commemorative month dedicated to raising awareness on gender-based violence in the State. The Governor and members of the State’s cabinet wore attire with purple shades to support the campaign against sexual violence.

The DSVRT legislation provides for the establishment of Sexual Offenders’ Register that would help the State efficiently tackle violations in the communities.

After signing the law, Sanwo-Olu said: “Raising awareness about domestic and sexual violence is an important piece of working to end the cycle of violence. It is important to reiterate the State Government’s zero tolerance to all forms of sexual and gender-based violence. We will not rest on our oars until the menace is reduced to the barest minimum in Lagos.”

The Governor appointed Mrs. Titilola Vivour-Adeniyi as the Executive Secretary of the new agency.

Vivour-Adeniyi was the coordinator of the response team before the legislation was signed into law.

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