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DEMOCRACY DAY: Nigerians report better power supply, less use of generators –Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has said that Nigerians from all parts of the country continue to report better power supply and less use of generators.

He says his administration is committed to lawful interventions to ensure that the operators of the power distribution business live up to expectations.

The President stated this when he addressed the nation in a broadcast to mark the 19th year of Nigeria’s nascent democracy and the third anniversary of his administration in Abuja on Tuesday.

The president, who noted an impressive improvement in power generation and distribution in the past three years, however, charged the operators in the sector to enhance their services, especially in the areas of distribution capacity, service delivery, collection efficiency, and metering to eliminate contentious estimated billing.

“In the area of power generation, Nigerians from all parts of the country continue to report better power supply and less use of generators.

“This underscores the effectiveness of the methodical plan to deliver incremental and uninterrupted power supply to our homes, markets, offices and factories.

“The country achieved 5, 222.3 MW representing the highest peak of power generated onto the national grid and delivered to customers in December, 2017.

“With new facilities, repairs and rehabilitations by Government and private investors, generation capability now exceeds 7,500 MW,’’ he said.

On the transportation Sector, the President observed that the sector had continued to undergo a series of reforms in order to sustain the international best practices and ensure safety and security.

According to him, the nation’s major airports have witnessed reconstruction of runways, installation of navigational equipment and new international terminals.

He said these new terminals were due for commissioning in Abuja, Lagos, Kano and Enugu.

President Buhari expressed the hope that Bilateral Air Services Agreements between Nigeria and the Governments of other countries would significantly open up new flight routes.

He said: “As a result of strict regulatory and compliance policies, Nigeria retained her Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Category 1 status, after a routine international audit.

“Recently, a new Maintenance Repair and Overhaul facility with capacity for aircraft C-checks and other comprehensive levels of maintenance was established in Lagos.

“This would save the country an estimated 90million dollars annually.’’

The president added that giant strides had been recorded over the past three years to improve road transport infrastructure in all geopolitical zones of the country.

He stated that the railway sector had also received tremendous attention as government was committed to the goal of linking all state capitals in the federation by rail network to ease the movement of goods and passengers.

(NAN)

 

Infinity Trust Bank records N222.7 million profit

The Chairman of Infinity Trust Mortgage Trust Bank (ITMB) Plc, Dr. Adeyinka Bibilari, has declared a profit after tax of N222.72million for the financial year ended December 2017.This however, is against the N242.86 million it announced in its 2016 financial year, representing an 8.3 percent decrease.

The financial statement also shows a 16 percent decrease in profit before tax (PBT) from N312.70 in 2016 to N260.92million in 2017.Addressing stakeholders at the company’s 15th annual general meeting in Abuja.

Bibilari in a statement said the tough operating environment, orchestrated by the nation being in recession for most part of the year, impacted greatly on the income of most households which affected purchasing power, savings and investment culminated into a reduction in the PBT and PAT as against the previous year.

The bank also announced that it has approved the cash dividend of 2 kobo per ordinary share against 3 kobo in previous year of 2016 and 7k per preference share to shareholders whose names appear in the books of the registrars by 9th May 2018, translating to an aggregate of N125.4million.

The company’s gross earnings however, grew by 2.5% from N861million in 2016 to N883million in 2017.The firm’s total assets stood at N.8.13billion as at 2017 in contrast to N8.08 billion in the corresponding period of 2016 as a result of continuous growth in the bank’s investments, risk assets, deposits, on lending funds and shareholders’ funds.

Its shareholders’ funds also rose from N5.69 billion in 2016 to N5.75 billion in 2017, representing an increase of 0.9 percent.On his part, the bank Managing Director/Chief executive Officer, Olabanjo Obaleye, said the bank in its 12years of operation, has been able to make 4000 people home owners despite bottlenecks and challenges that arose from some of government policies.

Obalaye said the bank would continue to build on this feat not minding the present economic situation and hostile business environment it is operating under.The Managing Director said the firm is working tirelessly to ensure that its shareholders are treated well and called on the government to map out policies that would ensure easier ownership of land by private individual and investors.

He said: “We have lot of bottlenecks that tie us down but we have been able to hold our head high above water. The Bank has declared dividend for the fourth year running as a listed company and for the 12th consecutive time since 2006.“We want to ensure that we increase our shareholders wealth and again delight our smaller shareholders that are always interested in dividend, no matter how small it is. We are working with government to ensure that these bottlenecks are removed”

Sodiq Omolaoye

Full text of President Buhari’s Democracy Day speech

ADDRESS BY MUHAMMADU BUHARI, PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA IN COMMEMORATION OF THE 2018 DEMOCRACY DAY CELEBRATION, TUESDAY, 29TH MAY, 2018

My Dear Nigerians!

Today marks the 19th year of our nascent democracy and the 3rd Anniversary of this administration. I am thankful to Almighty God for bringing us thus far. This administration came at a time that Nigerians needed Change, the Change we promised and the Change we continue to deliver. We have faced a lot of challenges on this journey and Nigerians have stood by us in achieving the three cardinal points of this administration namely; Security, Corruption and the Economy.

The commemoration of this year’s Democracy Day is a celebration of freedom, a salute to the resilience and determination of Nigerians and a recommitment by Government to keep its promise to lead Nigeria into a new era of justice and prosperity.

Public safety and security remains the primary duty of this Government. Before this Administration came into being 3 years ago, Boko Haram held large areas of land spanning several Local Governments in the North East.

Today, the capacity of the insurgents has been degraded leading to the re-establishment of authority of government and the release of captives including, happily, 106 Chibok and 104 Dapchi girls, and over 16,000 other persons held by the Boko Haram.

In order to minimize the impact of the insurgency on Internally Displaced Persons, Government has established secure IDP Camps and has improved the mechanism for the distribution of basic aid, foods and essential commodities using various strategies in collaboration with local and international Organizations.

Efforts are in process for resettlement of IDPs in their home communities by providing schools, hospitals, clinics, water and sanitation to facilitate a quick return to economic activities. Government is similarly implementing de-radicalization and rehabilitation programmes to facilitate sustainable peace and development.

The unfortunate incidences of kidnappings, herdsmen and farmers clashes in several communities which have led to high number of fatalities and loss of properties across the country is being addressed and the identified culprits and their sponsors shall be made to face the full wrath of the law. All the three tiers of Government are presently engaged with communities and religious organizations to restore peaceful co-existence among Nigerians.

I want to commend members of the Multinational Joint Task Force drawn from Niger, Benin, Chad, Cameroon and our own country in collaboration with the International Community who are assisting in the fight against insurgency in the North East. I also commend the gallantry of members of our Armed Forces and other security agencies that have continued to provide security for lives and properties across the country. State and Local traditional authorities are helping with much needed intelligence in this fight against insurgency.

This administration is pained over the grievous loss of lives and properties occasioned by the carnage of insurgency and other forms of criminality in the country. I wish to assure Nigerians that we will not rest until all criminal elements and their sponsors are brought to justice. Government is boosting the capacity of our security agencies through recruitment of more personnel, training and procurement of modern equipment, enhancement of intelligence gathering as well as boosting their morale in the face of daunting challenges.

The Niger Delta Region has enjoyed relative peace through social inclusiveness and cooperation of the Elders and the good people of the region. Government is committed to implementing the comprehensive peace, security and development plan for the region. The environmental clean-up of the region which commenced with the launch in Bodo, Ogoni in June 2016 is progressing satisfactorily. Furthermore, farming assets are being revived and investors in cocoa and palm oil plantations are showing serious interest.

The second primary object of this Administration is to fight corruption headlong. Like I have always said, if we don’t kill corruption, corruption will destroy the country. Three years into this Administration, Nigerians and the international community have begun to applaud our policies and determination to fight corruption. We are more than ever before determined to win this war, however hard the road is. I, therefore, appeal to all well-meaning Nigerians to continue to support us in this fight.

Various policy measures already put in place to stem the tide of corrupt practices are yielding remarkable results. Some of these key reform policies include:

The Treasury Single Account (TSA) has realized Billions of Naira being saved from maintenance fee payable to banks. N200 Billion has also been saved from elimination of ghost workers in public service.

The Whistle-Blowing Policy has helped to recover over N500 Billion.

The Presidential Initiative on Continuous Audit set up with a mandate to validate controls, assess risks, prune personnel costs, ensure compliance with Public Financial Management reforms has helped to identify and remove over 52,000 ghost workers from the Federal Government MDAs Payroll;

The Voluntary Asset and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS) aimed at expanding tax education and awareness has offered the opportunity for tax defaulters to regularise their status in order to enjoy the amnesty of forgiveness on overdue interest, penalties and the assurance of non-prosecution or subject to tax investigations.

The Sovereign Wealth Fund project portfolio has been expanded with an injection of US$650 million so as to strengthen its investment in local infrastructure, power, health, re-construction of Abuja-Kano road, Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, East West Road (Section V) and the Mambilla Hydro-electric Power project as well as the construction of the 2nd Niger Bridge.

The fight against corruption through the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission has resulted in recoveries of Billions of Naira, as well as forfeiture of various forms of assets. This alongside other efforts has improved Nigeria’s international image and regional cooperation.

We have retained the services of one of the world’s leading assets tracing firms to investigate and trace assets globally. This is in addition to the exploitation of provisions of existing Treaties, Conventions as well as Bilateral Agreements with Multilateral bodies and Nations. Nigeria has also signed Mutual Legal Assistance Agreements to ensure that there is no hiding place for fugitives.

This Administration has therefore focused on revamping the ailing economy it inherited in 2015. In 2016, Government executed an expansionary budget and developed the Strategic Implementation Plan. For the first time, 30% of the budget was earmarked for capital expenditure which represents an upward review when compared with the 2015 budget. The SIP was followed by the development of a comprehensive medium term plan – the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan 2017 – 2020.

The broad strategic objectives of the ERGP were to; Restore and sustain economic growth; Build a globally competitive economy; and Invest in our people. The implementation of the ERGP has started yielding results. The National Bureau of Statistics reports that the economy grew by 1.95% in 1st quarter 2018, which is a good performance when viewed against -0.91 in 1st quarter 2017 and -0.67% in 1st quarter 2016 respectively.

Our foreign reserve has improved significantly to 47.5 billion USD as of May, 2018 as against 29.6 billion USD in 2015. The inflationary rate has consistently declined every month since January, 2017.

Recently, Government conducted Focus Labs in three key sectors of the Economy namely, Agriculture & Transport, Manufacturing and Processing as well as Power and Gas. These have yielded significant prospects for investments and Job creation to the tune of US$ 22.5 billion with a potential for creating more than 500,000 jobs by 2020. These investment generation initiatives are expected to increase capital inflows in the form of foreign direct investment. There is a high prospect that the cumulative investments from this first phase of the Labs will hit US$39.2 billion by 2025.

Under agriculture, Nigeria continues to pursue a strategic food security programme built around self-sufficiency and minimization of import dependency. As a result, rice importation from other countries has been cut down by 90% which has a direct impact on foreign reserves.

The Social Investment Programmes (SIP) has been created as a means to graduating our citizens from poverty through capacity building, investment and direct support. The major strategic objective is to restore livelihood, economic opportunities and sustenance for the poor across the country. The SIP programmes and projects include:

Home Grown School Feeding Programme – About 8.2 million pupils are currently being fed from 24 States of the Federation with over 75,000 Catering Staff engaged under the programme.

The Conditional Cash Transfer has so far recorded over 297,000 caregivers and being trained by 2,495 Community Facilitators in 21 states. Less privileged Nigerians are now being paid N5,000 monthly stipend in 9 pilot States of Bauchi, Borno, Cross River, Ekiti, Kwara, Kogi, Niger, Osun and Oyo. Eventually the scheme will cover all the 36 states of the federation including the FCT.

Under the Government Enterprise Empowerment Programme – About 264,269 loans had been disbursed to 4,822 societies in the 36 States and FCT, while another 370,635 are awaiting release of funds.

N-Power Job creation Scheme – is targeted at providing jobs for unemployed young graduates and has so far recruited 200,000 youths while the next batch of 300,000 have been selected, verified and would soon be deployed across the 36 States and the FCT. Furthermore, 20,000 non-graduate volunteers have also been selected to kick off the N-Build programme in collaboration with the National Automotive Design and Development Council and the Council of Registered Builders of Nigeria.

In the area of power generation, Nigerians from all parts of the country continue to report better power supply and less use of generators. This underscores the effectiveness of the methodical plan to deliver incremental and uninterrupted power supply to our homes, markets, offices and factories.

The country achieved 5, 222.3 MW representing the highest peak of power generated onto the national grid and delivered to customers in December, 2017. With new facilities, repairs and rehabilitations by Government and private investors, generation capability now exceeds 7,500 MW.

This Administration is committed to lawful interventions to ensure the operators of the distribution business live up to expectations especially in the areas of distribution capacity, service delivery, collection efficiency, and metering to eliminate contentious estimated billing.

The Transportation Sector continues to undergo a series of reforms in order to sustain the international best practices and ensure safety and security. The nation’s major airports have witnessed reconstruction of runways, installation of navigational equipment and new international terminals due for commissioning in Abuja, Lagos, Kano and Enugu. Bilateral Air Services Agreements between Nigeria and the Governments of other countries will significantly open up new flight routes.

As a result of strict regulatory and compliance policies, Nigeria retained her Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Category 1 status, after a routine international audit. Recently, a new Maintenance Repair and Overhaul facility with capacity for aircraft C-checks and other comprehensive levels of maintenance was established in Lagos. This would save the country an estimated $90m annually.

Giant strides have been recorded over the past three years to improve road transport infrastructure in all geopolitical zones of the country.

The Railway Sector has also received tremendous attention as this Administration is committed to the goal of linking all State capitals in the Federation by rail network to ease the movement of goods and passengers.

The Education Sector especially at tertiary level has continued to witness expansion in order to improve access to higher education by millions of youths in Nigeria. Over the last three years, Government has approved the establishment of 1 new Federal Polytechnic, granted licenses for the establishment of 4 State and 14 private-owned Universities as well as 12 private Polytechnics.

Government has also continued to support the implementation of various initiatives aimed at improving the quality of Basic Education delivery. Thus, it has ensured proper funding at the Basic Education level with the disbursement of N42.2 billion UBE Matching Grant to 26 States and the FCT, N851.5 million Special Education Grant disbursed to 23 States and private providers of Special Education and N2.2 billion Teachers Professional Development Fund to 33 States and the FCT.

The Federal Government has continued to support fiscal sustainability at the sub-national governments through the implementation of the Budget Support Facility which was accompanied by the 22- point Fiscal Sustainability Plan. Thus, bailouts funds were made available to States to ease their fiscal challenges and other obligations including payment of salaries.

In addition, a total of 73 Ecological Fund projects for the control of gully erosion in different communities across all geopolitical zones have been completed in the last three years and are undergoing commissioning while 53 other projects are ongoing. The execution of these projects has generated 357 skilled jobs and 1,350 unskilled jobs during this period.

It is pertinent to also make mention of the immeasurable contributions of the Nigerian woman to national development and advancement of democracy, over the last three years. The government and people appreciate you all as mothers of our great country.

My dear country men and women, as we all celebrate our democratic experience, let us resolve to avoid hatred and intolerance; we can only achieve our objectives in an atmosphere of harmony and peaceful co-existence.

Finally, the upcoming months will usher us into another season of general elections. Let me use this opportunity to urge us all to conduct ourselves, our wards and our constituencies with the utmost sense of fairness, justice and peaceful co-existence such that we will have not only hitch-free elections but also a credible and violence-free process.

In few days to come, I will be joined by many promising young Nigerians to sign into law the “Not Too Young to Run” Bill

I thank you for your attention.

God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

The Guardian

Amended Land Use Charge Law coming, says Lagos Speaker

Expect a Land Use Charge Act (LUAC) with human face, Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly Mudashiru Obasa has assured Lagosians.

The Speaker, however, foreclosed rolling back the property law as he explained that the law, now undergoing review, was enacted in the overall interest of Lagos residents.

Obasa spoke yesterday on the occasion of the third edition of the House of Assembly’s yearly parley with the media and civil society organisations in the Lateef Jakande Auditorium.

He was fielding questions from stakeholders after presenting the lawmakers’ scorecard in the past three years.

The Speaker said: “The Land Use Charge Act is in the interest of all. We all acknowledge that there is development across the state. Resources are required to sustain infrastructural development in Lagos State. So, we need the law

“But a committee is working on it and very soon, the House will come up with law. I can assure you that whatever the outcome will be in the overall interest of the people.”

On the request of the state to be granted a ‘Special Status’, the speaker said the House will sustain the agitation until it is achieved.

He urged Nigerians to support the state, being the nation’s industrial hub.

Obasa said the House under his watch passed nine bills and 45 resolutions in the past 12 months, explaining that proper representation of the constituents is as important to the lawmakers as law making.

“In the year under review, however, we continued to blaze the trail in formulating laws for the benefit of the good people of Lagos State and in the promotion of a truly inclusive, participatory, open and people-oriented democracy.

Since last year, when we met like this, we have successfully passed a total of nine bills into laws while we have also made 45 resolutions. Some of these laws address issues related to our environment, power and energy sector, transport, as well as education.

“As stated above, resolution, as a powerful legislative instrument, has been used in tackling various issues that directly affect us as Lagosians.

“For instance, the need to preserve our cultural heritage from going into extinction necessitated the resolution of the Lagos State House Assembly to call for a compilation of buildings of architectural value and longstanding history that are relevant for preservation.”

The Nation

 

FG halts power tariff hike execution

  •   NERC hangs MYTO’s major review report

The Federal Government has yielded to pressure from the organised private sector (OPS)’s as it halted the implementation of power tariff hike for one year, New Telegraph has learnt. The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), this newspaper understands, has, through Multi-Year Tariff Order (MYTO) review, already concluded works on the tariff hike.

This tariff increase would, however, not be implemented until after the next one year when the general elections must have been concluded, a source at the Ministry of Power, Work and Housing told this newspaper.

Rising under the aegis of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) and Network of Electricity Consumers Advocacy of Nigeria (NECAN), the OPS had earlier registered their displeasure when the Federal Government commenced the major review of MYTO process.

A correspondence exchanged between NERC and DISCOs sighted by this newspaper, showed that the Commission had, however, dump the biannual template used in tariff review for a monthly review as earlier demanded by those who, through $2.525 billion investments, bought over the defunct PHCN on Friday, November 1, 2013. “There will not be announcement and implementation of hike in power tariff until after the next 12 months,” the source said.

“Though works have been concluded by NERC on the review, the commission will have to hang the report because its implementation at the time is considered to be a big issue, which could swing directions of votes during the next polls.” This newspaper had earlier reported plans by Presidency to slam an embargo covertly on the implementation. “Now, that has come home to roost.

There will not be tariff hike until the next one year when elections must have been concluded,” he added. “NERC has, through the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, briefed the president on the completion of the MYTO review.

However, implementation of the order is not likely until after the general elections,” another industry source said. “The Presidency considers this tariff issue to be one of the major elements that could shift peoples’ decisions before and during the polls, hence, the embargo of the implementation is on the card as we speak.”

The NERC was, however, silent on the issues. Its website contains nothing relating to updates on tariff review while two MYTO contacts – Sharfuddeen Mahmoud and Aisha Mahmud, whose e-mail addresses were given on the website did not respond to mail sent to them as at the time of this report.

The Federal Government had, through the agency, on June 7, given a one-month notice for major stakeholders to feed it with their positions on the plan to change the period of tariff review from every five years to monthly or quarterly “in order to reflect current economic realities.”

President of MAN, Dr. Frank Jacobs, said on the side-lines of a stakeholders’ meeting in Lagos, that any move to review the tariff would worsen the woes of Nigeria’s economy, which is already suffering from 95 per cent tariff increase in 13 months.

Speaking through Chairman, Economic policy, MAN, Reginald Odiah, Jacobs told this newspaper that his group, which forms the larger chunk of the Maximum Demand Customers, was contacted by NERC and they completely objected to any review of MYTO.

He said: “What we know, which we want them to know, is that our budget is done yearly and any attempt to change the tariff of electricity to monthly or quarterly period, will affect our budget and worsen the harsh economic situation being faced by our members and the generality of Nigerians.”

MAN, which has membership strength of 3,500, he explained, is yet to recover from the last tariff hike and the planned review would chase out more manufacturers and drastically reduce their number in the country.

Stating that cost of power for manufacturing is exorbitant in Nigeria, the MAN boss said that China spends less than 10 per cent of its production cost on electricity, while its members spend 40 per cent of their production on electricity.

The DISCOs, however, disagreed with MAN and NECAN, insisting that the country deserves “cost reflective tariff,” which is not yet in place, to get the power sector working.

He said: “What we know, which we want them to know, is that our budget is done yearly and any attempt to change the tariff of electricity to monthly or quarterly period, will affect our budget and worsen the harsh economic situation being faced by our members and the generality of Nigerians.”

MAN, which has membership strength of 3,500, he explained, is yet to recover from the last tariff hike and the planned review would chase out more manufacturers and drastically reduce their number in the country.

Stating that cost of power for manufacturing is exorbitant in Nigeria, the MAN boss said that China spends less than 10 per cent of its production cost on electricity, while its members spend 40 per cent of their production on electricity. The DISCOs, however, disagreed with MAN and NECAN, insisting that the country deserves “cost reflective tariff,” which is not yet in place, to get the power sector working.

Adeola Yusuf

 

 

Real estate: Mortgage operators seek improve access to credit

Mortgage Banking Association of Nigeria (MBAN) is currently seeking ways to improve access to credit for real estate recovery and provision of affordable houses for the citizens.

Consequently, the association is mulling an agreement with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the National Pension Commission to allow investment of over N7.5 trillion pension funds in the mortgage market. The anticipating agreement, according to the President of MBAN, Mr. Adeniyi Akinlusi, is aimed at improving access to credit in order to solve the nation’s housing deficit of over 17million units.

According to the MBAN boss, the proposal would help free up money held by pension fund managers, which is estimated at around N7.5 trillion ($20.9 billion) as at the end of 2017, according to the National Bureau of Statistics. Of these funds, he noted that 69.2 per cent is invested in either Federal Government bonds or Treasury bills, with the balance sitting with the stock market, banks or corporate bonds.

If the application to regulators is successful, expectation is that it would free up liquidity for investment in individual projects or real estate investment trusts. Meanwhile, low returns on investment, illiquidity of real estate as an asset class, poor and unreliable real estate assets valuation have been listed as some of the factors limiting investment of pension fund in real estate sector.

According to one of the administrators of fund raised from contributory pension scheme (CPS), who is the Managing Director, AIICO Pension Managers Limited, Longe Eguarekhide, an estimated eight per cent annual return and about five per cent annual rental yield did not make real estate an attractive investment asset class.

Besides, he said that real estate assets could not be converted easily to cash when the need arises. However, he confirmed that discussions were on-going between pension fund administrators and primary mortgage operators on how contributors to the pension scheme could access part of their retirement savings for use as equity contribution for mortgage loans.

According to the CEO, IBTC Pension Managers, lack of political commitment and differing approaches between sovereign and sub-national entities were also part of the policy challenges.

He cited the National Housing Fund (NHF) managed by the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN), which had a total collection of well over N2 trillion, but was yet to fully realise its goal.

Another regulatory challenge, as cited by the CEO, was the Land Use Act of 1978, which rests the power to allocate and revoke land on the state governors.

This, he said, was slowing down process of obtaining titles to ownership of land and also making property registration not only costly, but also difficult.

Contributory pension scheme came into being in 2004. Contribution has been quite significant and has progressively grown from N5.4 trillion a couple of years ago to N7.5 trillion at the moment, coming from contributors who represent a little above four per cent of the country’s 170 million population.

New Telegraph

CBN funds 704,928 electricity meters, 500 transformers

The Central Bank of Nigeria has provided funds to power distribution companies for the purchase of 704,928 meters and for the acquisition and installation of over 500 transformers.

In a bid to avert the collapse of the country’s power sector, the bank has also paid more than N24bn to gas suppliers and rehabilitated over 2,000 kilometres of 11kV lines and 130km of 0.45kV lines.

The CBN said its intervention in the power sector was through the Nigerian Electricity Market Stabilisation Facility, as captured in the NEMSF Progress Report, which was presented to operators in the industry at the 27th power sector monthly meeting.

The report, which was obtained by our correspondent from the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing in Abuja on Monday, stated that the facility also helped the Discos to provide N13.78bn of security cover to the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Company and the Market Operator as required under the vesting contracts/market rules.

It stated that other outcomes of the intervention include “the purchase of 704,928 metres through the facility, purchase and installation of over 500 transformers to enhance the distribution networks, and over 2,000km of 11kV lines and 130km of 0.45kV lines were rehabilitated.”

It added, “More than 1,000 megawatts of generation capacity was recovered, 56 substations were rehabilitated/constructed, and over N24bn has been paid to gas suppliers to ensure adequate supply of gas to the Nigerian power sector.”

Following the privatisation of the electricity supply industry in 2013, it has had to grapple with several challenges, chief among which is revenue shortfalls.

The shortfalls, which had risen to N210bn by December 2014, threatened the survival of the industry and by extension, the Nigerian economy.

“In order to prevent a collapse of the industry, the CBN intervened to provide liquidity and stabilise the sector through the Nigerian Electricity Market Stabilisation Facility,” the bank stated in the latest NEMSF progress report.

It noted that the core objectives of the facility was to reset the economics of the power sector by way of providing liquidity to the industry by settling the debt overhang that arose during the interim rules period as a result of revenue shortfalls during that time.

The report stated that it was the apex bank’s aim to also bring about a contract-based electricity market where participants were being governed by market rules and instill discipline, as well as facilitate tangible improvement in power supply across the country.

On disbursements and repayments from the NEMSF as of May 14, 2018, the report stated that the total amount was N210.63bn, out of which N158.74bn had been disbursed, representing 75 per cent of the fund. It added that N19.35bn had been repaid, leaving an outstanding balance of N139.39bn.

The apex bank said, “The outstanding disbursement of N51bn under the facility is mostly as a result of the Kaduna and Yola Discos that are yet to fully sign on to the facility. Efforts to sign on these Discos are already been intensified as both Discos have made remarkable progress in this regard.”

“The CBN is desirous of unlocking more liquidity into the industry and is providing the necessary support to these Discos to ensure that they are on-boarded to the facility within the year.”

Okechukwu Nnodim

 Ugwuanyi pledges support as 1st solar- powered housing estate takes off in Enugu

Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State, has pledged to support the construction of the first solar-powered estate being built by CBN Cooporative in partnership with Geometrix Homes and Estates Ltd., in Enugu.

The Governor made the pledge when the National Executive Committee of the CBN Cooporative led by its president, Mr. Isa Aminu Buhari and the Management of Geometrix Homes and Estates Ltd paid him a courtesy visit at the Government House.

Buhari, while briefing the governor on the project, said the project, the first set to be built across the states with their partner, Geometrix Homes, is intended to be environment-friendly and will solve the perennial energy problem which afflicts most homes in Nigeria as a result of fossil fuel-powered energy.

He said the solar city project is situated inthe reserved section of the Emene Industrial Layout, adding that it is the second of a series of solar-powered estates to be developed across the country by the CBN Cooperative in partnership with Geometrix Homes.

According to him, the proposed estate comprises over 170 plots sitting on a land area of over 14 hectares, pointing out that it will be a “fenced and gated neighbourhood with asphalted streets, good drainage and well landscaped lawns. Other facilities such as internet backbone, security and cleaning services and others, will be provided. All the houses within the estate will be powered by solar energy along with street lights.”

Buhari, while highlighting details of the estate said the project plan includes the construction of an 18 km state government road from Innoson Junction along Abakiliki Road to the estate site that will equally be provided with solar street lights.

He thanked the governor for his developmental projects especially in the area of infrastructure and housing which has enabled the state to be an investment destination in the South-East.

He enjoined the Governor to use his good offices to provide an enabling environment for the smooth take off of the project especially in the area of statutory approvals, security and inter- agency cooperation.

Reacting, the CEO/MD of Geometrix Homes and Estates Ltd., Uche Uche, an architect, said they were in the state to help develop and beautify the state capital, Enugu.

He said that the concept of powering an estate with solar energy was coming to Enugu State for the first time and hoped it will usher in a new era of eco-friendly and sustainable dwelling concepts within the state.

He promised to deliver the project with quality materials and within the specified period. In his response, the governor thanked the CBN Cooperative Society and the management of Geometrix Homes and Estates Ltd., for embarking on such an innovative and strategic project in Enugu.

He said it will serve as a catalyst for infrastructure development and enhance standard of living. He promised that the project will receive maximum cooperation from his government, expressing his willingness to attend the foundation-laying ceremony and flag off that will take place in the first week of June.

Tony Nwankwo

 

AIHS IS REAL ESTATE EVENT OF THE YEAR- URBAN SHELTER MD

The Chief Executive Officer/ Managing Director of Urban Shelter Limited, Saadiyat Aminu has described the Abuja International Housing Show as the singular annual event of the year when it comes to housing.

Saadiyat Aminu stated this in an interview with Housing TV in her office in Abuja.

She said Urban Shelter Limited has been participating at the Show for a decade noting that it has been amazing to watch.

The Managing Director congratulated the Fesadeb team and added that Urban Shelter Limited and Fesadeb have continue to share experiences, knowledge, challenges and opportunities.

She encouraged everyone to attend the Show as it has continue to evolve over the years.

The 12th Abuja International Housing Show is expected to hold July 16th – 19th 2018 at the International Conference Centre, Abuja.

The Show will have has its theme- Driving Growth and Sustainability in Nigeria Housing and Mortgage Markets-improving structures and policies for impact.

The Guest Speakers for the housing finance section of the 12th Abuja Housing Show are drawn from the World Bank, African Union of Housing Finance, Central Bank of Nigeria, Shelter Afrique Kenya, Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria, Nigeria Mortgage Refinance Company, UN Habitat, OPIC Investment USA among others.

Adeleke Samuel, Housing TV

 

WHY I WROTE FIRST BOOK ON CONSTRUCTION LAW IN NIGERIA-  Ewuwuni

A Lawyer and an Arbitrator, Mrs Ewuwuni Onnoghen- Theophilus says the need to bridge the gap in Nigeria’s legal jurisprudence motivated her to write the first book on Construction law in the Country.

Mrs Ewuwuni stated this in an interview with Housing TV in Abuja.

According to her “I noticed there was no book on construction law in Nigeria, construction law is a relatively unexplored area in Nigeria. Unlike its brothers, oil and gas law, intellectual property law, maritime law, my dad actually suggested I go for my masters in construction law, I was curious, why construction law?”

She further added that “construction law is also known as Building law, Engineering Law, Infrastructure law, there are a lot of foreign textbooks on it but there is no Nigeria indigenous book on it based on our laws and principles that govern construction projects”

MrsEwuwuni said her book which was released in 2016 will help foreign investors among others to know what they are going to face, adding that it also reviewed forms of standard of contract in Nigeria, standard form of building contract in Nigeria, reviewed contract for the general procurement of works as drawn up by the Bureau of Public Procurement.

Barr. Ewuwuni described construction law as a law that deals basically with the contract in respect of construction of buildings, roads, rails, bridges and infrastructure generally.

She said “it is basically law of contract, the contract that has to do with getting buildings up, constructing roads, bridges, infrastructure, the contract to which the parties to a construction project enter into”

The Author advised that the contract should entail payment terms, period of payment, currency of payment, what documents should be submitted by the contractor to entitle him for payment, scope of the work clause, quality of the materials, level of skill of the workman, how to vary the contract and a dispute resolution clause.

The book will be available at the 12th Abuja International Housing Show for purchase.

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