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President Buhari Presents N7.3trn 2017 Budget to National Assembly

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Budget 2017 year on cube with pencil and clock
  • President Buhari Presents N7.3trn 2017 Budget to National Assembly

President Muhammadu Buhari has presented a N7.298 trillion 2017 budget before the joint session of the National Assembly.

The presentation was made on Wednesday in Abuja with members of the senate and House of Representatives in joint session.

President Buhari said at the ceremony that government benchmarked the 2017 budget at N305 naira against one US dollar ($1) .

He said the budget is also predicated on daily crude oil production of at 2.2 million barrels and at $42 per barrel.

Buhari said that 2017 budget proposal is 20.4 per cent higher than that of the 2016 estimate.

He explained that for the country to effectively diversify from oil, it would need oil money for the movement.

Tagged budget of economic recovery and growth, he said, it was centered on agriculture and manufacturing.

He said that the budget would bring the nation out of recession.

The President said that government would continue to fortify “our defence’’ and spend on it till “all our enemies within and without are subdued.”

He said that government would retain N500 billion social intervention fund in the 2017 budget.

The Senate President, Bukola Saraki and the House Speaker, Dogara received President Buhari.

The President appealed to governors to make land easily accessible to farmers to boost food production.

The House of Representatives on Tuesday adopted the 2017 to 2019 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) as President Muhammadu Buhari presents the 2017 budget estimates to a joint session of National Assembly.

The House fixed the exchange rate of Naira to a dollar at N350 as against the N290 recommended by the executive.

The House also concurred on the oil benchmark of 42.50 dollar per barrel with a proposed daily production of 2.2 million barrels per day.

Consequently, the House had mandated its joint committees on Finance, Appropriation, National Planning and Economic Development, Legislative Budget and Research and Aids, Loans and Debt Management to further scrutinise the document.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Buhari had on Oct. 4, forwarded a request to the National Assembly seeking for approval of the 2017 to 2019 MTEF and FSP.

Moving the motion for the adoption of the MTEF/FSP, House Leader, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila, said Section 11(2) of the Fiscal Responsibility Act, 2007, provides that “the MTEF shall be considered for approval with such modifications if any, as the National Assembly finds appropriate by a resolution of each House of the National Assembly”.

He further noted that Section 11 (3) of the FRA, 2007, states that “the MTEF shall contain, among other things, a macro-economic framework setting out the macro-economic projections for the next three financial years.

“The underlying assumptions for those projections and an evaluation and analysis of the macro-economic projections for the preceding three financial years”.

He said that some analysts forecasts that the shortage of forex supply may push exchange rate to as high as N350 to the dollar in the official and N500 in the parallel markets.

He recommended that “the budgeted exchange rate of N290 per dollar is unrealistic and should be moved to at N350 to encourage foreign capital inflows”.

On crude oil, he said that “the proposed oil benchmark is 42.50 dollars per barrel with a daily production of 2.2million barrels per day.

“Both seems to be realistic as oil is currently trading at about 50 dollar per barrel”.

According to him, though there is a steady improvement in oil prices, the government has chosen to play safe and benchmark oil price at 42.50 dollars, 45 dollars and 50 dollars for 2017, 2018 and 2019.

He explained that “with current price level of over 50 dollars per barrel and Nigeria’s current output at 1.9 million barrels per day, the estimates are conservative enough especially with OPEC output freeze last week”.

He maintained that the revenue target of N4.169 trillion and total expenditure of N6.687 trillion were audacious to move the country out of recession.

He said: “These are achievable only on effective combination of strong fiscal and monetary tools by government, increasing the tax base in the country.

“Curtailing militancy in the Niger Delta and injecting back looted funds, diversification of the country’s revenue sources, controlled government spending and strong anti-leakage and
anti-corruption drives.”

He stated that GDP was projected to grow at 3.02 per cent in 2017, while inflation was expected to moderate to 12.92 per cent.

Also consumption was projected to increase to N80.5 trillion.

“However, GDP growth at end of third quarter, 2016 slowed to 2.24 per cent, while inflation rose to an all-time high of 18.3 per cent.

“These budget growth levels in GDP and inflation are not achievable in 2017.”

NAN also reports that President Buhari is expected to present a proposed budget of N7.28 trillion for the year 2017 at a joint session of both chambers of National Assembly on Wednesday.

The proposed budget represents an increase of ‎about 19.95 per cent over the 2016 Appropriation of N6.07 trillion.

NAN

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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Nigeria Immigration Service Reopens Portal With New Passport Application and Payment Process

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Nigerian International passport- Investors King

The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has announced the reopening of its passport application and payment portal.

The assistant comptroller of immigration, Mr Amos Okpu announced in a statement in Abuja on Tuesday.

In the statement, Mr Muhammad Babandede, the Comptroller-General of the service, said the portal became effective for new applications from 12 midnight on Tuesday.

Babandede further said that the portal would allow eligible applicants to apply and make payments for the various categories of passports of their choice.

Mr Muhammad Babandede explained that with the reopening of the portal, a new passport application and payment regime had begun.

The statement in full:

“The Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (CGI), Muhammad Babandede MFR, has announced the reopening of the Passport application and payment portal effective 8th June 2021 by 12 midnight to allow eligible Passport applicants to apply and make payments for the various categories of Passports of their choice.

The Passport portal was closed following the directives of the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola on the 17th of May, 2021to afford the Service the opportunity to clear all backlogs of applications that have piled up across Issuing Centres in the past few months.

With the reopening of the portal, a new Passport application and payment regime have commenced. Under the new Passport regime;

Applications and payments for Passport services shall be made through the Service website www.immigration.gov.ng;

  • applicants are expected to visit the portal to apply and upload their support documents for vetting and processing;
  • a chat room facility to guide applicants through the application and payment process has been provided on the portal;
  • upon successful applications, applicants shall make their online booking interview/enrollment appointment on any day, time and location they consider convenient;
  • that the new timeline for Passport production and issuance after a successful enrollment at the selected Issuing Centre shall be six weeks for Fresh applications and three weeks for Re-issue (Renewal applications);
  • that no applicant who is yet to make an online application and payment shall be allowed into any of the Passport Issuing Centres for Passport processing;
  • applicants will be contacted through email and phone number they provided during application when their Passports are ready;
  • a helpline with the number 08021819988 has been provided for feedback mechanism on any challenges.

The Comptroller General, Muhammad Babandede MFR wishes to use this medium to call on Nigerians and indeed Passport applicants to avoid patronizing touts as the entire process has been made seamless for effective and efficient service delivery. He warned Passport racketeers to desist from acts capable of undermining the reform efforts to avoid very strict sanctions.

Signed AMOS OKPU MNIPR
ASSISTANT COMPTROLLER OF IMMIGRATION
SERVICE PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER
For: COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF IMMIGRATION 8TH JUNE, 2021″

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INEC To Publish The List Of New Polling Units Next Week

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has pledged to publish a comprehensive list of its new polling units across the nation next week.

The INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, disclosed this on Monday in Abuja.

Yakubu was speaking at the formal handing over of a new state of the art fire truck, deployed to the Commission’s headquarters in Abuja by the Federal Fire Service (FFS).

He said that details of the locations of its registration centers and the procedure for the commencement of online registration for resumption of nationwide Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) would be made available in the second week of May.

He expressed appreciation of the commission to the FFS and all security agencies for the demonstration of their support to protecting INEC facilities

He said that the support was coming on the eve of the resumption of the CVR nationwide in the next three weeks.

“We earlier assured Nigerians that we shall conclude work on the expansion of voter access to polling units and make the new polling units available to citizens ahead of the CVR exercise.

“I am glad to report that we have accomplished this task for the first time in 25 years.

“A comprehensive list of the new polling units will be published next week.

“Similarly, details of the locations of the registration centers and the procedure for the commencement of online registration will also be made available after a series of regular consultative meetings with stakeholders next week,” Yakubu said.

He said that as a member of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) FFS had been as concerned as other security agencies about the recent attacks on our offices across the country.

“This is particularly so because out of the 42 attacks on our facilities nationwide, 18 incidents resulted from arson and three more by a combination of arson and vandalisation.”

Yakubu recalled that concerned by those incidents, the commission convened an emergency meeting of ICCES last week of April, where the security agencies renewed their determination to collaborate more with the commission.

According to him, they pledged to assist the commission address the challenge beyond the routine protection of INEC assets and the security of its officials, voters, observers, the media, candidates and their agents during elections.

“On its part, the Federal Fire Service offered to deploy an additional state-of-the-art fire engine to the INEC headquarters to complement the two existing trucks.

“At the same time, it directed its state offices to take additional protective measures around other INEC facilities nationwide.

“Today’s inauguration of the new fire engine is another affirmation of the support to the commission from the FFS whose personnel, already deployed permanently to the commission

“The personnel will continue to operate and maintain the fire engines and other firefighting equipment installed by INEC,” Yakubu said.

Speaking earlier, the Controller-General (CG) of FFS, Alhaji Liman Ibrahim said the deployment of the firefighting truck was premised on recent fire attacks on INEC offices in different parts of the country.

Ibrahim, represented by the Assistant Controller-General of the service, Mr Samson Karebo, said the deployed truck would serve as fire cover for the premises of INEC headquarters and the entire Maitama vicinity of Abuja.

“The FFS is taking this step as a proactive measure to protect our critical infrastructure and help to protect our economy by forming synergy with all stakeholders in protecting our environments.

“Our center is focused on bringing firefighting operations to every part of the country as part of our statutory duties by having a presence in virtually every state in Nigeria

“The FFS will very soon be moving into all senatorial headquarters in the country. That is how we want to operate for now so that we can touch every corner of this country,” Ibrahim said.

He called for the cooperation of all for the service to better serve the nation by not molesting FFS staff in the line of duty.

In his remarks, the National Security Adviser (NSA) retired Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno, who is also Co-Chair of ICCES, described the deployment of the truck as a demonstration of President Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment to sustain Nigeria’s democracy and address insecurity.

Monguno said that the gesture also symbolised commitment to a clear affirmation of Buhari toward protecting institutions of government, toward securing their property, toward fighting acts of irresponsibility, vandalisation and outright criminality.

“The President is determined as much as he can within the confines of legality to suppress any kind of criminality and destruction of public property.

“This is something that he is determined to do regardless of whatever the challenges are.

“He will apply all the resources in his disposal in his capacity as the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces to ensure the wider Nigerian society is safe, stable and is allowed to carry out its legitimate undertaking, free from any act of insecurity,” he said

Monguno urged all other security agencies not to relent in ensuring that they continued to protect lives and property.

The Inspector-General of Police, Mr Usman Baba pledged commitment to security agencies to work with INEC and protect INEC’s facilities, citizens’ life and property.

Also at the occasion was the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, represented by Director of Joint Services, Mr Peter Obodo; as well as the representative of Director-General, Directorate of State Services, Tony Adikweruka.

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Recovered Assets: Ad-hoch Committee Gives Emefiele, Others 72 Hours Ultimatum

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House of representatives

The House of Representatives ad-hoc committee, investigating recovered assets, has given the Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, and National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno, 72 hours to appear before it.

The committee also issued same ultimatum to the Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali, and the Director-General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Bashir Jamoh.

The summon was issued on Monday, after Mr Emefiele and the others failed to appear before the committee.

The government officials had sent representatives, but the committee chairman, Adejoro Adeogun (APC, Ondo), said they failed to forward letters to that effect.

He said allowing representatives without a proper letter of introduction would be akin to allowing “impersonators.”

You are indirectly insulting the House of Representatives. You are undermining the House of Representatives,” an angry Mr Adeogun said.

Moving a motion to give the agencies 72hours to appear before the committee, Ibrahim Isiaka (APC, Ogun), said the agencies created by Acts of the parliament “should not be undermining the parliament”.

The motion was unanimously adopted by the committee.

Mr Isiaka suggested that the House should shut down its activities if the agencies fail to appear before them.

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