- Nuclear Experts Challenges African Countries on Nuclear Power Development
Nuclear technology experts on Friday urged African countries to accelerate development of Nuclear Power Plants(NPP) and other technologies to reduce energy deficit and speed up development of the continent.
The experts made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigerian (NAN) in Tomsk, Russia.
They said it was cheery, African countries were looking in the direction of nuclear power production, giving their various agreements with Russian atomic agency ROSATOM to construct NPP and nuclear research centers.
The experts said the growing acceptability and utilisation of nuclear technologies especially for electricity supply would ultimately help decrease electricity shortage in the continent.
According to them the utilisation of nuclear technology in electricity sector, health, aviation, and other sectors would further help accelerate development of the continent.
NAN recalls that Nigeria started developing its peaceful nuclear programme a decade ago and Russian atomic agency ROSATOM has been working with Nigeria for roughly half of this time.
A great deal has already been done in terms of the legal framework and educating specialists, both of which are part of the nuclear infrastructure development programme.
The two countries started their partnership in nuclear power development in 2009, by executing an intergovernmental agreement on cooperation in the field of the peaceful usage of nuclear technologies.
On Oct. 30, 2017, Russia and Nigeria again signed project development agreements on construction and operation of a Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) and a Research Centre housing a multi-purpose nuclear research reactor on the territory of Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Zambia on the other hand is steadily advancing efforts at actualising its nuclear energy goals .
Zambia had also in 2017, signed an intergovernmental agreement with Russia via ROSATOM on the construction and operation of nuclear power center
Lately, African countries like Ghana, Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda have been embracing prospects of adopting nuclear power plant.
Recently, Egypt also signed a deal with ROSATOM for the construction of its maiden NPP with plans to inaugurate the first unit of the NPP in 2026.
South-Africa remained the only country in Africa with an operational NPP that produces the cheapest power in the country.
To this end, Head, Laboratory for Radioactive Substances and Technology,Tomsk Polytechnic University, Prof Vladimir Golovkov said:
“ I think that, now atomic energy is one of the main possibility of overcoming the distance in the absence of adequate electricity, with minimal effort.
“There is a possibility to create, not only grid atomic power plant but a small power plant to create energy that will be distributed all over Africa.
“And so the look of Africa in the direction of atomic energy is very promising.“
Golovkov said the use of nuclear energy would provide faster development of African continent, given the importance of electricity to development.
On fear for nuclear energy waste, Golovkov said :“You know that each technology not only has its advantages, it also has its disadvantages. For example, some renewable technology leads to environment pollution and pollution of water etc.
“But atomic energy is free of danger of pollution, it is absolutely clean and clear from the point of view of environment pollution.
“Russia now has had great experience in exploiting of atomic power stations and using of atomic energy is not so dangerous, not so dangerous from the point of pollution, from the point of affecting people.
“So I think that usually atomic energy has great potential and the fear of using atomic energy is mainly in our minds than the reality. “
Dr Vera Verkhoturova, Director of masters’ programme, nuclear power engineering, and installations, Tomsk Polytechnic University said the number of students from Africa undertaking courses in nuclear technology engineering was on the increase yearly.
She said the students were choosing research courses in nuclear technology, ranging from nuclear safety security , non proliferation and research in reactor.
This, Verkhoturova said indicated that the demand for development of nuclear industry in Africa was very high, adding that the education of Africans on nuclear technology was increasing at a fast paste.
“Judging by high rate of students developing competence here in nuclear education, I can say that Africa is moving on faster and faster to this target of developing nuclear infrastructures in these countries.“
She said given the expensive nature of training nuclear engineers, the university was collaborating with industrial agencies like ROSATOM to help support development of its international nuclear engineering programmes.
“ROSATOM helps us to organise internships for international students, they help us provide the international students with scholarships which means that African students can start the programmes for free if they are qualified.
“Because nuclear education is very expensive in the world, together with ROSATOM we are also organising different short term programmes for already working staff of nuclear regulatory bodies of countries partnering with ROSATOM.
Verkhoturova, said about 20 African students had been registered at all levels of nuclear education in the university, adding that more students would enroll in the university’s nuclear engineering programme in the coming year.
92.6 Million Nigerians Enrolled For the National Identification Number – NIMC
The Federal Government through the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) has stated that NIN will be a compulsory requirement for business registration.
The National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) has announced that 92.63 million Nigerians have enrolled for the National Identification Number as of November 2022.
This represents an increase of 1.9 million when compared to the 90.68 million recorded in October.
According to the recent data released by NIMC, more men have been captured than women. The data also revealed that men accounted for about 52.1 million people or 56 percent of the total people captured so far in the NIN database.
On the other hand, women represent 40.5 million or 44 percent of the total enrollment, Investors King learnt.
On a state-to-state basis, Lagos State recorded the highest enrollment with about 10.3 million. This was followed by Kano State with more than 8 million people.
Other states with substantial enrollments include Kaduna with 5.4 million, Ogun with 3.8 million, Oyo with 3.6 million, FCT with 3.2 million, Katsina with 3.1 million, Rivers with 2.7 million, Delta with 2.4 million, and Bauchi with 2.4 million.
Meanwhile, Bayelsa is presently the state with the lowest enrollments. A total of 583,323 have so far enrolled in the state. Ebonyi trailed Bayelsa with 744,869 and Ekiti’s record shows 971,712 enrollments. While Cross River, Taraba, Yobe, Enugu, Imo, Akwa Ibom and Zamfara followed with 1 million, 1.3 million, 1.3 million, 1.5 million, Imo 1.5 million, 1.5 million and 1.6 million, respectively.
In another development, the Federal Government through the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) has stated that NIN is now a compulsory requirement for business registration like it is with banks.
According to the Registrar of the Corporate Affairs Commission, Garba Abubakar, NIN was adopted because its security can’t be compromised, unlike the National Identity card, passport, and driver’s license, which could easily be cloned.
“If you don’t have a NIN, it means you can’t register your company. The essence is to verify the integrity of the data we are collecting,” Garba noted.
National Identification Number is the unique number created by the Nigerian government to identify Nigerians, curb crimes, deepen infrastructure in cities and generally access all citizens.
Governors Forum Replies FG, Blames Poverty on Rising Insecurity
The NGF accused the federal government of being unable to tame rising insecurity which has led to the high costs of food.
The Nigerian Governors Forum (NGF) has stated that governors could not be blamed for poverty in their respective states. The NGF accused the federal government of being unable to tame rising insecurity which has led to the high costs of food.
Investors King could recall that President Muhammadu Buhari earlier alleged that governors are pocketing funds meant for the development of the local governments.
Similarly, the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Clement Agba, also stated that the 36 governors were responsible for the rising poverty index in the country,
According to the Governors Forum, the rising level of poverty among Nigerians was a consequence of the biting effect of insecurity on commercial and agricultural activities.
A statement released by NGF’s Director of Media and Public Affairs, AbdulRazaque Bello-Barkindo said “It is important to put on record the progress made by state governors in the administration of their states, which have witnessed tremendous progress in recent times. Governors have undertaken projects where they, in conjunction with their people, deem them fit for purpose.
“This dereliction of duty from the centre is the main reason why people have been unable to engage in regular agrarian activity and commerce. Today, rural areas are insecure, markets are unsafe, travel surety is improbable and life for the common people generally is harsh and brutish.”
Barkindo further accused the minister of deviating from the major issues and passing blames when he and his colleague, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, should be implementing policies that can ameliorate the hardship Nigerians were facing.
Barkindo in the statement added that the primary duty of any government is to ensure the security of lives and property, an area he claimed the Federal Government has failed.
“But the Federal Government, which is responsible for the security of lives and property, has been unable to fulfil this covenant with the people, thus allowing bandits, insurgents, and kidnappers to turn the country into a killing field, maiming and abducting people, in schools market squares and even on their farmlands,” he said.
President Buhari Accuses Governors of Stealing LG Funds
Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari has once again accused state governors of stealing monthly allocation due to local government under them.
The president spoke at a parley with members of the Senior Executive Course of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru, held at the State House Banquet Hall, Abuja.
Speaking at the event, the president stated that it beats anyone’s imagination how some governors collected money on behalf of council areas in their states, only to remit just half of such allocation to the council chairmen, who would further deplete the remittance by filching it. Investors King learnt.
‘‘I found it necessary to digress after reading my speech and this digression is a result of my personal experience. What they did, this is my personal experience, if the money from the Federation Account to the state is about N100m, N50m will be sent to the chairman, but he will sign that he received N100m. The governor will pocket the balance and share it with whoever he wants to share it with,” the president narrated.
‘‘This is what’s happening. This is Nigeria. It’s a terrible thing; you cannot say the person who was doing this is not educated. He was a qualified lawyer, he was experienced, yet he participated in this type of corruption.” he queried.
Furthermore, the president clarified that state governors and local government chairmen should be held responsible for the underdevelopment in the rural areas noting that most of the local governments lack basic amenities.
Similarly, the National Union of Local Government Employees on Thursday backed the position of the president on the embezzlement and mismanagement of local government funds.
Responding to Buhari’s position, the President of the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE), Hakeem Ambali, said Buhari was merely stating the obvious.
The NULGE President nevertheless admonished the president to go beyond the statement and ensure governors, especially those in APC to sign the local government autonomy bill into law.
“He should go beyond that statement. He is the leader of the party, he should ask them to sign the autonomy into law; he is the leader of the governors,’’ he said.
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