FEC Approves N87.54 Billion for Roads, Bridge Constructions
The Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved another N87.54 billion for the construction of roads and bridges in Nigeria.
The Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola and Muhammed Bello, the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, disclosed this to the State House correspondents at the end of the council meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari.
Bello told reporters that the contract for the road in the FCT was awarded to Messrs Gilmor Engineering Nigeria Limited in the sum of N30.69bn with a completion period of 32 months.
He said the contract was about the full scope development of Umaru Musa Yar’Adua Way to the Northern Express Way (Murtala Mohammed Way) popularly known as Kubwa Expressway.
He said the project area was within Phase II of the Federal Capital City, serving as boundary road between the adjoining districts of Mabushi, Kado, Katampe and Jabi.
Fashola, on his part, said the council approved a variation of N47.5bn for the completion of the 52 kilometre-Oyo-Ogbomosho Highway, which is a part of the Ilorin-Ibadan 145 kilometres highway.
The variation, he explained, had increased the cost of the contract to N105.04bn.
He said the variation was necessary because of the need to adjust the thickness of the pavement from 500mm to 560mm; to change the asphalt to polymer-modified bitumen and also change the shoulders from surface dressing to fully asphalted inside and outside shoulder.
The minister explained, “So, all these required changes in prices of N47.5bn. This was the revision that we presented which council approved.
“This road was awarded in 2010. As I said, Sections 1 and 3 were completed. We are trying to complete Section 2 which we also inherited.”
Fashola added that the council approved N9.35bn variation to complete Lokko-Oweto Bridge that links Nasarawa to Benue State, adding that the development had changed contract price from N51.621bn to N60.961bn.
He said, “That project was awarded in 2011 and it was awarded in three different sections – one section, the road to Benue to Oweto, was awarded to one contractor; we have completed that road.
“The bridge was awarded to another contractor. The bridge is essentially finished now. It is open to traffic. And then, Lokko to Nasarawa, 74 kilometres, was awarded to another contractor. We are trying to sort out that problem and we will come back to it.
“So, the approval given today was a N9.35bn variation to complete the bridge component or remaining work on the bridge.”
He said changes in the contract moved the price from N51.62bn to N60.96bn.
Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority Generates N160.06 Billion in 2020
The Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) generated revenue of N160.06 billion in 2020, according to the latest audited financial reports announced by the Managing Director of NSIA Mr. Uche Orji.
The NSIA income came from devaluation gain of N51 billion, and core income of N109 billion compared to N33.07 billion in 2019.
But Orji lamented: “Covid-19 adversely affected logistics around infrastructure projects, especially the toll road projects and the presidential fertiliser initiative.”
Despite the pandemic, the Authority achieved 33 percent growth in Net Assets to N772.75 billion compared to the previous year’s performance of N579.54 billion.
Orji said the NSIA “received additional contribution of $250 million; and provided first stabilisation support to the Federal Government of $150 million withdrawn from Stabilisation Fund last year.”
The same year, the NSIA received $311 million from funds recovered from the late General Abacha from the United States Department of Justice and Island of Jersey for deployment towards the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF) projects of Abuja-Kaduna-Kano Highway, Lagos Ibadan Expressway and Second Niger Bridge.
In response to COVID-19, Orji said: “NSIA partnered the global Citizen, a not-for profit group, to form the Nigeria Solidarity Support Fund. Separately NSIA acquired and distributed oxygen concentrators to the 21-teaching hospital as part of corporate social responsibility; in addition to staffing support to the Presidential taskforce on COVID-19.”
In 2020, the NSIA “invested additional capital into NG Clearing, the first derivative clearing house in Nigeria to maintain NSIA’s shareholding at 16.5 per cent following the company’s rights issue of 2020″ Orji said.
EFCC Recovers $153m, 80 Assets from Diezani, Says Bawa EFCC Chairman
The Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa has said the commission recovered $153 million and 80 properties from the former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke.
Bawa said: “There are several cases surrounding that. As you may have read, I was part of that investigation, and we have done quite a lot. In one of the cases, we recovered $153 million; we have secured the final forfeiture of over 80 properties in Nigeria valued at about $80 million.
“We have done quite a bit on that. The other cases as it relates to the $115 million INEC bribery as the media has sensationalised it, is also ongoing across the federation.”
“We are looking forward to the time when we will, maybe, have her in the country, and of course, review things and see what will happen going forward. The case has certainly not been abandoned.”
Speaking on the trial of former Abia State Governor Orji Uzor Kalu, he said his trial will start soon in Lagos.
Bawa added: “The position is very clear. The EFCC succeeded in 12 years to get him convicted at the Federal High Court. Of course, he went to the Supreme Court, and because the judge that convicted him has been elevated, the ruling was made and the EFCC as a respecter of the rule of law, we have taken it as it is. The Supreme Court has ordered that we should go back to the Federal High Court in Lagos.
“Now, we are at the Federal High Court in Abuja, and we have applied to the court for the case to be transferred to Lagos as ordered by the Supreme Court to enable us start all over again.
“It, however, draws a precedence, and those are the issues; law as the lawyers will say, is a living thing; we had the ACJA in 2015, we have had this problem of elevation of judges from High Court to Court of Appeal, and we pushed that they should be given the opportunity to finish their cases, because some of these cases have taken a very long time.
“We thought we had succeeded in getting this in ACJA, The law was, however, not seen as such. Now, we may have to solve the problem from the constitution, and then, we will be home and dry.”
Nigeria Consumes 93m Litres of Petrol Daily in April 2021
Nigeria’s daily petrol consumption rose to a record-high of 93 million litres in April 2021, according to the latest data from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
The amount represents 77 percent of the 120.80 million litres consumed daily in West Africa despite having just 52 percent of the region’s population.
In previous months, Nigeria consumed 61 million litres on average, therefore, the NNPC stated that the 93 million litres per day consumption is unsustainable.
The sudden surged in petrol consumption was a result of smuggling, according to experts.
“There is no doubt that Nigeria’s present petrol consumption is embarrassing, due to smuggling which is currently a thriving business,” Mike Osatuyi, national operations controller, Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria.
On the allegation that marketers illegally export petrol, Osatuyi asked why the five security agencies across the borders are unable to stop it.
Smuggling of petrol across the borders is becoming more intense as Nigeria inches closer to full deregulation, one stakeholder said. Despite over 95 million Nigerians in poverty, the country inadvertently pays for cheap petrol across West Africa.
“It means Nigeria is financing the economies of neighbouring countries,” Osatuyi said. “Nigeria should not be consuming more than 50 million litres per day.”
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