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180,000 Free Houses for The Poor Nigerians

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  • 180,000 Free Houses for The Poor Nigerians

More than 180,000 modern houses are to be provided free in all the 36 states of the country, according to an NGO — Africa National Development Programme (ANDP).

The two-bedroom houses to be situated in an estate or scattered in different locations will have facilities such as schools, police stations, markets and hospitals.

The ANDP, a subsidiary of World National Development Initiative, said the houses mainly for the poor would be given out free.

The Africa Director of ANDP, Dr Samson Omojuyigbe, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the project would cost N2.8 trillion.

Omojuyigbe said the 180,000 houses would be distributed equitably at 5,000 houses per state at a cost of N78 billion.

He noted that because of the economic situation in the country many people were incapacitated in getting shelter and lack basic necessities of life.

“ANDP as an NGO is investing huge amount of resources to provide the facilities free of charge to citizens of Africa because of the economic situation.

“We believe we should provide houses free for the less privileged instead of providing relief materials to displaced persons as is in vogue and end it there.

“We are constructing 5, 000 units of modern two-bedroom houses in each state of the federation.

“The plight of the poor and the grinding poverty they face daily are the innate concerns of the ANDP,’’ Omojuyigbe said.

The director-general noted that it was obvious that the various governments at all levels in Africa could not provide everything, including shelter for the people.

He said: “Based on the circumstances they have found themselves and the less and less resources available to governments at all levels, it is obvious they cannot provide everything for the people.

“Good-spirited individuals and organisations with the right heart must come to the rescue of the people if we must secure the future and provide a decent lifestyle for the coming generations.

“The project is a sole initiative of ANDP and will not cost the state governments any fund beyond moral support and the provision of an enabling environment conducive to the successful implementation of this effort.

“Our organisation is interested in alleviating poverty on the African soil’’.

Omojuyigbe described poverty as a complex phenomenon indicative of man’s inability to feed, provide shelter for the family and himself and function effectively in a given economic environment.

He, however, allayed the fear that distribution of the houses might be influenced in some quarters, saying “the consideration of beneficiaries will be devoid of bureaucratic bottleneck.

“It will be on the basis of scientifically-proven method of distribution to the rightful members of the society who deserve to own a house free of charge.

“No interference of any sort will be accommodated as the sponsors expect that this be done with the fear of God and the acceptance of all right thinking members of the society.’’

Omojuyigbe also disclosed that two states in the South-East – Enugu and Ebonyi – and two other states in South-South — Akwa Ibom and Cross-River had provided land for the project.

The director-general said the ground breaking for the project had been performed at Ikpa Nkanya in Cross River on a 250-hectare land provided by the government.

He said Kaduna, Kano, Jigawa and Adamawa had promised to provide land in scattered locations for the project.

“Some states are trying to perfect the Certificate of Occupancy (Cof O) of the land,’’ Omojuyigbe said, urging the media to partner with ANDP in monitoring and reporting stages of work at the various sites.

ANDP, headquartered in Abuja, is currently working in 50 countries in Africa.

It works with the less-privileged, indigent and excluded people in Africa, promoting values and commitment to civil society, institutions and governments with the aim of achieving structural changes to eradicate injustice and poverty.

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.

Economy

India, Spain, the Netherlands, USA, Nigeria’s Major Export Markets -NBS

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India, Spain and the Netherland top Nigeria’s export markets in the final quarter of 2020, according to the latest data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

The Commodity Price Indices and Terms of Trade Q4 2020 report showed that the United States and China trailed the three.

However, the NBS revealed Nigeria exports mainly crude oil and natural gas during the period under review.

It, “The major export and import market of Nigeria in Q4 2020 were India, Spain, the Netherlands, United States and China.

“The major export to these countries were crude petroleum and natural gas. The major imports from the countries were motor spirits, used vehicles, motorcycles and antibiotics.”

The bureau stated that the all-commodity group import index increased by 0.13 per cent between October and December 2020.

This was driven mainly by an increase in the prices of base metals and articles of base metals (one per cent), boilers, machinery and appliances; parts thereof (1.03 per cent), and products of the chemical and allied industries (0.75 per cent),” it stated.

The NBS, however, noted that the index was negatively affected by animal and vegetable fats and oils and other cleavage products.

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Economy

Onyeama: Qatar To Invest $5bn In Nigeria’s Economy

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The oil-rich state of Qatar is to invest a total of $5 billion in Nigeria’s economy, the Foreign Affairs Minister, Godfrey Onyeama, has disclosed.

Onyeama, who spoke Sunday at a send forth dinner in honour of Nigeria’s Ambassador-designate to the State of Qatar, who is also the outgoing Director of Protocol (DOP) at the State House, Ambassador Yakubu Ahmed, also stated that recent career ambassadorial appointments made by the gederal government was based on merit, experience and professionalism.

The minister further said there had been discussions with Qatar on partnership with Nigeria’s Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF), for significant investments in the region of $5 billion in the Nigerian economy.

According to him, ‘‘Qatar is a weighty and strategic country and very strategic in that part of the world and we are putting our best feet forward to advance the interest of our country economically and in other areas.”

He recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari had visited the State of Qatar in 2016 and the Emir of Qatar, Tamim Bin Hammad Al-Thani, reciprocated with a State visit in 2019.

Onyeama also explained that only trusted hands with a track record of diligence, experience and professionalism in the Foreign Service were recently appointed career ambassadors by the federal government.

The minister said the appointment of Ahmed and other career ambassadors were predicated on posting dedicated and keen Foreign Service practitioners to serve as image makers of the country.

He said: ‘‘Ambassador Yakubu Ahmed is a dedicated professional with a penchant for rigour and detail. He is very capable and one of the best in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He is personable, affable, extremely friendly, dispassionate and objective.

‘‘He is going to head a very important mission, a very important country, reckoned to be one of the richest countries in the world, per capita, and there’s a lot we will be doing with the State of Qatar.”

Also speaking, the Deputy Chief of Staff, Adeola Rahman Ipaye, described the honoree as a ‘‘perfect gentleman, very even-natured and always well turned out’’.

Ipaye said he had no doubt that the newly appointed ambassador would serve the country well in Qatar, adding that: ‘‘We are further encouraged that when he completes this assignment, he would return to serve Nigeria in a higher capacity.’’

In his remarks, the Permanent Secretary, State House, Tijjani Umar, while congratulating the outgoing DOP on his appointment, lauded Ahmed for excellent service to the State House and the nation.

‘‘He served this institution and the nation with the deepest sense of responsibility and it is very important that we establish a tradition where the system appreciates those who have served it well and those who will continue to serve it well,’’ he said.

Umar urged the new envoy to keep very fond memories of his time at the Presidential Villa, assuring him of the prayers and goodwill of all the staff.

Responding, Ahmed thanked President Buhari for the great honour and privilege of making him his principal representative in Doha, Qatar.

The Ambassador-designate pledged to deplore his energy and skill to the promotion of the existing cordial relationship between Nigeria and Qatar, particularly in the areas of economic, political, cultural and consular affairs as well as other key areas.

Ahmed, who joined Nigeria’s Foreign Service in 1993, said during his years in public service he had learnt that ‘‘patriotism, selfless service, diligence, determination and perseverance will always result in the achievement of the desired objective’’.

According to him, these virtues would be his ‘‘watchword’’ in the pursuit of Nigeria’s foreign policy objectives and the attainment of national interests.

The Ambassador-designate singled out for appreciation the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, and the state Chief of Protocol, Ambassador Lawal Kazaure, saying he had learnt a lot working under their mentorship.

He expressed gratitude to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Permanent Secretary, State House for giving him the opportunity of a memorable work experience in the State House.

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Economy

France, Nigeria to Build New Partnership

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France is currently aiming at building a new partnership with Nigeria, with the dispatching of its Minister in charge of Foreign Trade and Attractiveness, Franck Riester, to Nigeria.

Riester, who was expected at the time of filing this report on Monday, is scheduled to visit Nigeria from 12-14 April, 2021.

A statement from the French Embassy in Nigeria said: “Franck Riester is visiting Nigeria from 12 to 14 April, a visit that follows up on the priorities set by French President Emmanuel Macron during his official visit to Nigeria in July 2018 and his desire to build a new partnership between Africa and France.

“As the largest economy in Africa and the economic engine of West Africa, Nigeria is indeed a major partner for France, the first in sub-Saharan Africa with bilateral trade amounting to a total of 4.5 billion USD in 2019 (2.3 billion USD in 2020, due to the Covid-19 pandemic).”

It disclosed that the minister will have several official meetings in Abuja and Lagos, in order to underline the importance of the bilateral economic relationship and to prepare the summit on the financing of African economies in Paris on 18 May.

It revealed that the objective of the mission is also to further strengthen the links between the French and Nigerian private sectors, and “in this regard, the minister will have in-depth discussions with the main Nigerian economic actors to strengthen bilateral cooperation and investments, both in Nigeria and in France, particularly in the logistics sector”.

It said while in the country, the minister would meet with young Nigerian entrepreneurs in the cultural and creative industries sector, to discuss the major role of their country in African creativity and the development of the African entrepreneurial ecosystem, with the support of France.

It further said: “The minister will also open the ‘Choose Africa’ conference, a €3.5 billion initiative by President Emmanuel Macron dedicated to supporting the development of start-ups and SMEs in Africa to enable the continent to benefit fully from the opportunities of the digital revolution.”

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