- Ibadan-Kaduna Railway: FG Submits Loan Requests to China
The Federal Government on Friday announced that it would be forwarding loan request documents to the China Exim Bank for the release of funds in order to commence construction work on the Ibadan-Kaduna railway project.
According to the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, the government is optimistic that China will release the loan this year so that work can commence on the project.
Amaechi disclosed this on the sidelines of an event in Abuja where he inaugurated the boards of five agencies under the Federal Ministry of Transportation.
The minister said, “We are currently working on the Lagos-Ibadan railway and we’ve completed the spur from Kaduna to Abuja. We’ve awarded the contract from Ibadan to Kaduna and from Kaduna to Kano. We will be forwarding our documents for the loan to the China Exim Bank, hoping that they will give us the loan this year for us to commence construction.
“We are negotiating for the contract from Port Harcourt to Maiduguri, which is about 2,000km, because we had to take a spur from Port Harcourt to Owerri, and from Owerri passing through Nnewi to Awka, and then from Awka to Abakaliki, while proceeding on to Gombe. From there, we will take a spur to Yobe, Yola and Borno.”
The minister had earlier tasked members of the boards he inaugurated to live up to expectation, as Nigerians would hold them responsible if they failed to take the agencies to greater heights.
This is coming as the Nigeria Railway Corporation on Friday assured passengers travelling on the Abuja-Kaduna train service of safety while onboard the trains and at rail stations.
The Deputy Director, Public Relations, NRC, Yakub Mahmood, said it had become expedient to allay the fear of the passengers.
“The NRC management wishes to allay the fear of our passengers after the reported incident where miscreants along the Abuja-Kaduna railway corridor engaged in an unwholesome act of stoning our passenger trains as against the unsubstantiated and purported report of an attack by gunmen,” he stated.
Mahmood said this did not constitute a security threat to the operations of the train service but was a deliberate attempt by unpatriotic individuals to damage the assets of the Federal Government.
He added that the NRC had deployed additional security equipment and personnel to check such acts.
IMF to Review Nigeria’s Growth Forecast Amid Destruction of Businesses, Properties
IMF Says it May Review Nigeria’s Growth Amid Recent Development in the Country
Following the destruction of businesses and properties that trailed the #EndSARS protest, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said it may review the nation’s growth forecast in view of the new development in the country.
Abebe Selassie, the Director, African Department, International Monetary Fund, made the statement while responding to questions during a virtual IMF press conference on the economic outlook of Sub-Saharan Africa on Thursday.
According to him, the protest is difficult given that Lagos is a very important economic hub and contributes to the overall Nigeria activities.
Selassie said, “On the growth projections in Nigeria, I mean, these protests happened of course, after we had closed, after the period where the data we looked at in making the growth projections for this economic outlook.
“And much will depend really on how these protests evolve.
“Lagos of course, is a very important economic hub and contributes quite a bit of economic activity to overall Nigeria activities.
“So, if these persist and are showing significant effects on economic data, we will internalise them in due course.”
He further explained that the nation’s economy had been a difficult one in the last four years ever since oil prices plunged in 2015-16.
He said, “I think this is exactly why we have been on the record in Nigeria about how really critical it is to get all of the policy induced barriers out of the way to facilitate stronger economic growth.
“For the government to do more to raise revenues through the area of non-oil resources to be able to invest in health education which would, you know, allow people to be more successful at getting jobs but also improve the economy’s potential.
“So, I think that development agenda that Nigeria has, I think, has to be tackled with gusto and vigor so that the millions of jobs that the country needs can be created.”
Oil Marketers Lose Millions as Hoodlums Set Petrol Tankers on Fire
Oil Tankers Burnt by Hoodlums as Marketers Lose Millions to Protest
Oil marketers lost millions of Naira to repeated attacks by hoodlums exploiting the #EndSARS protest.
The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria on Thursday said hoodlums have been attacking their trucks since they hijacked the protest earlier in the week.
The association said three petrol laden trucks were burnt again on Thursday in Warri, Delta State.
This came as the Board of Trustees of the Oil and Solid Mineral Producing Area Landlords Association of Nigerian urged protesters across the country to sheathe their swords as the destruction of oil assets and others had become alarming.
Chief Chinedu Ukadike, the Public Relations Officer, IPMAN, who spoke in Abuja said three petrol tankers with petroleum products estimated at about N90 million were set on fire on Thursday.
He said, “The protesters are burning our petrol trucks as we speak right now in Warri. They are burning three trucks. The cost or value of the content in those trucks is about N90m.
“That is outside the worth of the trucks that are being burnt. This is why we asked our tanker drivers to park or temporarily halt the movement of products.”
Ukadike said the association decided to halt the movement of petroleum products on Wednesday to avert a further disaster that could arise attack of oil tankers by angry protesters.
“That advise on the temporary halt of tankers movement was vital, particularly for volatile locations where protesters are highly aggressive. So that is what is happening now in Warri, the petrol trucks of oil marketers are being burnt,” he stated on Thursday.
LCCI Says FG Loses N700bn to #EndSARS Protest in 12 Days
Nigeria Loses Over N700 Billion to #EndSARS Protest in 12 Days
The Federal Government lost over N700 billion to the #EndSARS protest in twelve days, according to the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI).
Mrs. Toki Mabogunje, the President, LCCI, disclosed this while reviewing the economic implications of the just ended #EndSARS protest.
Mabogunje, who appreciated the value of citizens engagement and the demand for accountability which the protest represents, lamented the negative effect on the nation’s economy.
She said, “These are in consonance with democratic norms. They also form vital ingredients for good governance.
“LCCI is however concerned about the negative impact that the protracted nature of the EndSars protests has on business activities across the country.
“Over the past twelve days, economic activities have been crippled in most parts of the country and has been particularly profound in the urban areas.
“The Nigerian economy has suffered an estimated seven hundred billion naira (N700 billion) loss in the past twelve days.”
She further said the protest has reawakened the need to reform the shortcomings in the nation’s political governance, however added that to protect livelihoods of Nigerians, including business community, the protesters need to move to next stage of civic engagement.
“This is necessary to reduce the massive disruptions, blockades and barricades around our major cities and interstate highways. These actions have been at great cost to the economy and the welfare of Nigerian citizens. It should be noted that our economy is still reeling from the shocks of the Covid 19 Pandemic and struggling to recover from its devastating effects,” she added.
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