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Permit: FG Audits Foreigners Working on Project Sites

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  • Permit: FG Audits Foreigners Working on Project Sites

The Federal Government has conducted an audit to find out the number of foreigners working on 127 works and housing project sites across the country.

It also announced that the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing had inaugurated a full audit to ascertain the number of foreigners working on all project sites nationwide, beyond just the works and housing sectors.

President Muhammadu Buhari disclosed these while speaking in Abuja at the 60th Anniversary of the Nigerian Society of Engineers in preparation for the 2018 National Engineering Conference and Annual General Meeting which begins on Monday (today).

Buhari, who was represented by the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, said, “The Executive Order Number Five issued earlier this year is one step towards ensuring that in the short term, the economic benefits of our investments in infrastructure are maximised for the benefit of Nigerians. The implementation committee of ministers set up to ensure compliance has already started work.

“Therefore, while we have taken loans from overseas to execute some of these projects, we did not sign away the rights of Nigerians to benefit from them. I am happy to inform you that the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing has conducted a snap audit of 77 works construction sites and 50 housing sites to ascertain the number of foreigners employed on those sites and whether they have work permits on the work they are undertaking.”

He added, “The report shows that first, there are 8,950 workers on those 77 works project sites, out of which 227 are foreigners and 8,723 are Nigerians. On the housing side, the inception report shows that we have 51,360 workers and no foreigner was found working on those sites.”

Buhari said foreigners must obey Nigerian laws and must obtain work permits if they must continue working in Nigeria.

He said, “But the ministry has gone beyond that; they have now commissioned a more detailed and full audit of all construction sites and we are waiting for the results of the findings. Let me declare that why the government of Nigeria welcomes foreigners and investors to our country, we expect that, like in all law abiding countries; foreigners can only work after obtaining work permits in accordance with our laws.

“This is one of the objectives of the Executive Order Number Five and in cooperation with the NSE, will be most welcome towards achieving our long term objective of delivering prosperity to the greatest number of Nigerians.”

The NSE, President, Adekunle Mokuolu, applauded Buhari for his courage in giving Nigerians the Presidential Executive Order Five.

“It is important that I mention here again that the NSE considers the Executive Order Five which is for planning and execution of projects, promotion of Nigerian content in contracts and science, engineering and technology, as a call to action for Nigerian engineers.”

Mokuolu observed that it had been an uphill task getting successive governments to understand the importance of indigenous engineering innovations to national economic and social development.

He, therefore, noted that the conference would re-emphasise, from an informed point of view, the need to prioritise rural integration in the approach to infrastructure development as a nation.

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

Nigeria’s Real Estate Sector Shrinks by 8.06% in the Third Quarter -NBS

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Economic uncertainty plunged Nigeria’s real estate sector by 8.06 percent in the third quarter of the year, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

Nigeria’s statistics office said “In nominal terms, real estate services recorded a growth rate of –8.06 per cent in the third quarter of 2020, indicating a decline of –11.78 per cent points compared to the growth rate at the same period in 2019, and by 9.12 per cent points when compared to the preceding quarter.

“Quarter-on-quarter, the sector growth rate was 18.92 per cent.

“Real GDP growth recorded in the sector in Q3 2020 stood at -13.40 per cent, lower than the growth recorded in third quarter of 2019 by –11.09 per cent points, but higher relative to Q2 2020 by 8.59 per cent points.

“Quarter-on-quarter, the sector grew by 17.15 per cent in the third quarter of 2020.

“It contributed 5.58 per cent to real GDP in Q3, 2020, lower than the 6.21 per cent it recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2019.”

Nigeria’s economy contracted by 2.48 percent in the first nine months following a 6.10 percent and 3.62 percent contraction in the second and third quarters respectively.

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Economy

Nigeria Requires N400 Billion Annually to Maintain Federal Roads -Senator Bassey

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The Chairman of the Senate Committee on road maintenance, Senator Gersome Bassey, on Friday said Nigeria requires about N400 billion annually to maintain federal roads across the country.

The Senator, therefore, described the N38 billion budgeted for road repairs in the 2021 proposed Budget as grossly inadequate. According to him, nothing meaningful could be achieved by the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) with such an amount.

He said, “For the 35 kilometres federal roads in the country to be motorable at all times, the sum of N400bn is required on yearly basis for maintenance.”

Bassey “What the committee submitted to the Appropriation Committee in the 2021 fiscal year is the N38bn proposed for it by the executive which cannot cover up to one quarter of the entire length of deplorable roads in the country.

“Unfortunately, despite having the power of appropriation, we cannot as a committee jerk up the sum since we are not in a position to carry out the estimation of work to be done on each of the specific portion of the road.

“Doing that without proposals to that effect from the executive, may lead to project insertion or padding as often alleged in the media.”

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Economy

Scarcity of Day-Old-Chicks Cripple Poultry Farmers in Akwa Ibom

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Despite billions of Naira spent on Akwa Prime Hatchery and Poultry Limited by the Executive Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Udom Emmanuel, poultry farmers in the state said they had to order day-old-chicks from outside the state as the 200,000 capacity poultry farm developed specifically to make day-old-chicks and other poultry products available at affordable prices is almost empty at the moment.

The farmers expressed frustration over many challenges they face in the course of bringing day-old-chicks from outside the state. Usually, Ibadan, Enugu and sometimes as far as Kaduna, while the hatchery built and inaugurated in 2016 remains idle.

Mr Ekot Akpan, one of the poultry farmers who spoke with the pressmen said the state had not had it this bad.

Akpan said: “For the 12 years that I have been in poultry farming, this is the first time that poultry farmers have been so harshly affected by both economic and non-economic factors. And, quite unfortunately, nobody is available to offer any explanation.

“Farmers have been left at the whims and caprice of owners of the means of production.

“There seems to be no government regulation of the poultry industry. How, do you explain a situation where you wake up suddenly and the price of a day old chick is selling for N600, a bag of feed goes as high as N6,000.

“And, in a state that government claims to be pursuing agriculture as one of his cardinal programmes.

“For instance, in 2016, the state government said it has constructed an hatchery, and the intention according the government was to ensure availability of day old chicks at affordable price to farmers, but, quite, unfortunately, that effort has not yielded any tangible result.

“Farmers are still getting their day old chicks from Ibadan, Kaduna, and Enugu. So, the question now is where is the hatchery?

“One would have expected that farmers would be buying old chicks at humane prices, but, from all indications they acclaimed hatchery is a ruse. So, which one is the Akwa Prime Hatchery producing,” he said.

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