- Dangote, BUA in War of Words Over Mining Site
The war of words between the Dangote Group and BUA Group continued on Sunday with the former accusing the latter of illegally mining limestone deposited in its Mining Lease No. 2541, located in the boundary town of Oguda/Ubo in Okene, Kogi State.
However, BUA denied the claim and accused Dangote of attempting to disregard the judicial process and scheming a viable competitor out of business.
The Executive Director, Dangote Group, Mr. Devakumar Edwin, said in a statement, “The Dangote Group validly acquired its interest and mining title in the disputed Mining Lease No. 2541 from AICO Ado Ibrahim & Company Limited sometime in 2014. AICO itself had applied to the Mining Cadastre Office and Ministry of Mines and Steel Development for the said Mining Lease No. 2541 located in a boundary town of Oguda/Ubo in Okene Kogi State in 2007.
“The ministry, in exercise of its power under the Nigerian Minerals and Mining Act, 2007, granted and issued to AICO Mining Lease No. 2541 for the renewable period of 25 years effective from 1st of February, 2008 and to expire on 31st of January, 2033. Thus AICO by virtue of the said grant, became vested with the legal title over Mining Lease No. 2541. In 2014, the Dangote Group approached AICO and indicated interest in acquiring AICO’s stake in the lease.
“In 2014, AICO in exercise of its right under the mining Act, applied to the ministry for the transfer of its title in the ML No. 2541 to the Dangote Group. AICO and Dangote Group equally paid all the transfer and statutory fees demanded by the ministry.
“By a letter dated February 5, 2016, the ministry wrote to the Managing Director of the Dangote Group to convey the approval of the ministry for the transfer/assignment of ML No. 2541 from AICO to Dangote Group with effect from February 3, 2016. Following the successful transfer of Mining Lease No. 2541 to the Dangote Group, the Group became the holder of the Mining Lease No. 2541.”
However, BUA insisted that its mining sites were in Obu, Okpella, Edo State and not Kogi State.
The Group Head, Corporate Communications, BUA International Limited, Otega Ogra, said in a statement, “This latest statement by the Dangote Group stinks of desperation in its continued attempt to disregard the judicial process and scheme a viable competitor out of business. We thus wish to reiterate once again that whilst we do not want to take issue with anyone on this matter as it is currently before a court of competent jurisdiction, we are, however, compelled to use the opportunity presented by Devakumar Edwin’s reckless statements to clarify the cycle of misinformation being proliferated.
“In specific response to Devakumar Edwin of Dangote Group’s claim of BUA operating on ML2541 in Okene, Kogi State, we wish to restate that BUA does not have any operations whatsoever in Okene, Kogi State where the purported ML2541 is situated. Our mining operations are limited to Obu-Okpella, Edo State for which licences ML18912 and 18913 were issued and revalidated by the same ministry in a publication.
“These licences have been owned, operated and fulfilled by BUA and its predecessors-in-title since 1976 as it is also a notorious fact that we have exercised total control and possession over the mining area covered by the above mining leases since 1976 when we operated under the name of Bendel Cement Company Limited.”
Npower News on Permanency for Batch A, B
Npower News on Permanency for Batch A and Batch B
Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouq, Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, recently said the exited and eligible N-power beneficiaries will be absorbed into government programmes and by private organisations for a permanent job.
On N-power Permanency, she said “We have directed Focal Persons of National Social Investment Programmes in the states to submit an updated list of the exited N-Power beneficiaries that are interested in participating in the transition plans of the ministry.
On stipend, she said the payment has been approved by President Muhammadu Buhari and outstanding stipends paid to exited N-power beneficiaries of Batch A and B.
“Meanwhile, approval has been given for the payment of the outstanding stipends for the exited N-Power Batches A and B beneficiaries.
“The approval for payments for up to the month of June, 2020 for the two Batches has already been forwarded to the office of the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF) for final checks and payments.
“The only outstanding approval waiting to be forwarded to AGF’s Office is for the payment of July Stipends for batch B beneficiaries,” she said.
The minister said she has requested the details of those affected and the reasons for their rejection. She promised to communicate that to the affected beneficiaries.
Several organisations and stakeholders have called on Federal Government not to disengage Batch A and B beneficiaries but rather absorbed them into government parastaNpower News on Permanencytals to further ease the unemployment rate.
Appealing to Federal Government, Umuahia, National Chairman of Isun Multipurpose Cooperative Society, Sir Isaac Nkole said, ”The introduction of N-Power stands out as one of the best policies of the Federal Government under President Muhammadu Buhari. A lot of graduates have been engaged through the scheme. Some of them are in N-Teach, N-Agro, N-Tax and N-build. I appeal to President Buhari not to listen to anyone advising him to disengage the beneficiary as being speculated that the programme will be stopped by the 26th of this month.
“The questions are; If you disengage these graduates that are helping to improve the quality of education in primary schools, where do you want them to go? Is it to the over-saturated labour market or the crime industry?”
Visa and She Leads Africa Partner to Deepen Support for African Female Entrepreneurs
Visa, She Leads Africa Partner to Deepen Support for African Female Entrepreneurs
Visa Inc and She Leads Africa, an organisation that empowers female entrepreneurs in Africa, have joined forces to deepen support for over 700,000 African female entrepreneurs.
According to a statement put out by Visa, the partnership is part of Visa’s ‘Where you Shop Matters’ initiatives launched earlier in June to champion and enable entrepreneurs across Africa.
The global payment company said women are the backbone of African economies. The company backed this up with the 2018/2019 report from the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor Women’s Entrepreneurship that estimated that 21.8 percent of women from sub-Saharan Africa are entrepreneurs, the highest in the world.
Corine Mbiaketcha, Visa General Manager for East Africa, said “our partnership with She Leads Africa, will enable us to engage over 700,000 female entrepreneurs across Africa through digital channels and direct engagements with female-owned businesses.”
Afua Osei, Co-Founder of She Leads Africa, said “we are so grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with Visa to support the incredible women in our community with learning and growth opportunities. Our community is passionate and committed to making an impact with their businesses and partnering with Visa enables us to share resources that will help them take it to the next level.”
African women entrepreneurs continue to face a myriad of challenges ranging from cultural barriers that require overcoming the narrow classification of child-bearer and or home manager, to a shortage of role models, inadequate access to financial assistance and limited educational opportunities.
Mbiaketcha concludes, “There are too many reasons why female-led organisations fail to flourish and we as Visa are committed to addressing these challenges by partnering with organisations such as She Leads Africa so that we can empower the next generation of female African businesses owners with the tools to not only survive but to thrive.”
Fuel Scarcity Looms as NARTO Directs Tanker Drivers to Halt Operations
NARTO Tells Fuel Tanker Drivers to Ground Operations
The Nigerian Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO) has directed all tanker drivers under the association to halt operations following the government’s directive banning operations of petroleum trucks more than 45,000 litres on Nigerian roads.
NARTO, the umbrella association of all commercial vehicles owners in Nigeria engaged in the haulage of petroleum products, general cargoes, and movement of goods and passengers within the country and the West-African sub-region, said members of the association will park their truck on Tuesday and Wednesday as warning against the ban.
Speaking on the situation in Abuja, NARTO’s National President, Yusuf Othman, said: “NARTO received with grave shock the recent government decision to place immediate ban on all petroleum trucks above 45,000 litres capacity from plying Nigeria roads.”
Othman explained that government’s sudden ban was insensitive and unappreciative of tankers efforts at strengthening the supply chain of petroleum products across the nation.
He said, “In view of the above, we are therefore constrained to allow the decision of all our members to park their trucks as from tomorrow, 22nd to 23rd September, 2020, to prevail as warning.
“And furthermore, issue 10-day ultimatum with effect from 24th September, 2020, for a full blown withdrawal of service.”
He added, “If such scenarios occur, we earnestly plead with those who will lose employment, income and the general public that will be negatively affected by this avoidable situation.”
NARTO argued that it was discouraging and distressing to abruptly enforced new policy without giving tanker drivers time to phase out affected trucks.
Othman said, “The leadership of NARTO is not in any way against the decision of the Federal Government to ban the use of trucks with more than 45,000 litres capacity in the conveyance of petroleum products considering the dilapidated state of Nigerian roads.
“But NARTO is particularly concerned about the sudden and prompt nature of the ban. We consider the approach to be highly insensitive to the huge investments the owners of these trucks have made and debts they incurred in executing the mandate given by previous administration.”
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