Fuel Scarcity: NNPC Has Doubled Supply Across The Country – Baru

In a bit to arrest the biting fuel supply across the country, the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr Maikanti Baru, has reassured Nigerians of the Corporation’s commitment to end the scarcity.

Baru stated that the corporation has doubled the daily supply of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), otherwise called petrol, from daily 700 trucks (about 27million – 30million) litres per day supply to 80million litres per day since the current hiccup in the supply chain was noticed a few days back.

Dr. Baru, disclosed this shortly before the signing ceremony of a memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Corporation and the Benue State Government on the Agasha-Guma Bio-fuels Projects, in Abuja, on Thursday.

The GMD attributed the hiccups in the supply of PMS to rumours about purported planned increase in the price of petrol.

He stated that some marketers, in their quest to cash in on the situation, suddenly started hoarding products.

“But we swiftly swung into action by doubling our supply nationwide. At the time the rumour started, we had about 30 day sufficiency. The normal daily supply to the nation is 700 trucks, equaling about 27-30m litres per day.

He further informed Nigerians that the NNPC has enough products sufficiency that will last up to 30 days.
Dr. Baru said that at least a billion litre petrol laden cargoes were heading to Nigeria shores at the end of December which he noted would return the Country to a 30-day-plus sufficiency.

Dr. Baru, who expressed joy at PENGASSAN’s call-off of its planned strike, called on motorists not to engage in panic buying as the Corporation has more than enough products for domestic consumption.

Assuring that the fuel situation would soon fizzle out this week, Baru also warned marketers against hoarding, stressing that any filling station found wanting in this regard would lose its entire products to motorists.

He commended NNPC’s sister agencies, the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), for their support in helping NNPC tackle the menace of hoarding by filling stations.

Kim Jong-un Executes Two Senior Officials Over Failed Nuclear Test

Two top officials of North Korean government has been executed by the country’s supreme leader, Kim Jong-un over mishaps at the country’s test missile site.

The latest unnamed executive was killed after he allegedly took responsibility for setbacks at the Punggye-ri nuclear base, which led to the date of a rocket launch being pushed back.

Five days ago, a high-ranking official once described as the ‘second most powerful man in North Korea’ disappeared from public life, sparking speculation he too may have been executed by death squads.

General Hwang Pyong-so once held the most senior military position in the hermit state as a Vice-Marshall after the supreme leader.

The most recent victim was said to be the director of Bureau 131, in charge of construction at Kim’s missile and nuclear bases.

Back in September, at least 200 workers were reportedly killed when a tunnel collapsed shortly after the detonation of an H-bomb.

It has been claimed the nuclear base, situated in the North Korean mountains, is falling into disrepair after being struck by earthquakes and landslides due to repeated nuke blasts.

A source told Japanese paper Asahi Shimbun: “It seems he took the blame as the prolonged mining of the nuclear facility pushed back the test date to September when it was initially set for spring.”

Kim has executed more than 340 people since he came to power – and that doesn’t include untold numbers sent to gulags or labour camps.

The so-called tubby tyrant is said to have been reshaping North Korea’s ruling elite in recent months as he fears the military is becoming too powerful.

He has also launched dozens of missiles this year, as well as detonating the hydrogen bomb on September 3.
Earlier this month Kim was pictured on top of a mountain he previously ‘climbed’ before executing top officials – sparking fears he was about to do the same again.

The tyrant visited the significant Mount Paektu, seen as mystical and situated not far from North Korea’s nuclear testing facilities, where Kim goes to make important decisions.

In 2016 he was pictured on the mountain before carrying out a huge nuclear test.

In April 2015 he visited the mountain then executed former defence chief Hyon Yong-chol.

In November 2013 he visited the mountain before killing uncle and political guardian Jang Song-thaek.

(Metro)

Trump Threatens To Cut Aid To Countries Supporting UN Resolution Against Jerusalem As Israel’s Capital

The U.S. President, Donald Trump, has threatened to cut financial aid to countries that back a United Nations resolution opposing the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Mr. Trump earlier in December formally recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and said the U.S. embassy will be moved to the disputed city.

The U.S. decision was condemned by other World leaders. The UN Security Council voted against recognising Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. The Security Council resolution affirmed that any decisions on the status of Jerusalem were “null and void and must be rescinded”, and urged all states to “refrain from the establishment of diplomatic missions in the holy city”. The U.S., however, vetoed the resolution.

A similar vote is now being taken to the UN General Assembly where there is no veto. The emergency session at the request of the Palestinians will hold on Thursday to take the vote. Nigeria and most other countries of the World are expected to vote in favour of the resolution.

It is in expectation of this vote that Mr. Trump spoke on Wednesday.

“They take hundreds of millions of dollars and even billions of dollars, and then they vote against us,” the American leader told reporters at the White House.

“Let them vote against us. We’ll save a lot. We don’t care.”

Both Israel and Palestine want Jerusalem as their capital with most countries of the World supporting a two-state solution that would see East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine.

Driver Lands In Court For Duping Housewife

By Nofisat Adeoye

A 55-year old truck driver, Adebayo Surajudeen, has been arraigned before a Magistrate Court in Osogbo, State of Osun for allegedly duping housewife of money meant for cow.

Prosecutor, Ajayi Sunday told the court that on the 23rd of October, 2017 at Olorunda Local Government Area in the state, the accused obtained the sun of N53,000 from one Alabi Sarah under the pretense of selling one live cow to her.

Sunday said the offense contravened sections 390(9) and 419 of the Criminal Code Cap 34, volume II, Laws of Osun State of Nigeria 2003.

However in his plea, the accused pleaded not guilty of the charge preferred against him. Also his counsel, Barrister Okobe Najite, urged the court to grant him bail in the most liberal terms.

In his ruling, Magistrate Ashiru Ayeni granted the accused bail of N50,000 with one surety in the like sum and adjourned the case till January 23, 2017.

FG To Spend N155bn On Kaduna-Kano Road Project

The Federal Government on Wednesday approved a sum of N155.7 billion for the construction of Abuja-Kaduna-Zaria to Kano road projects.

The minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola disclosed this while addressing press after a marathon federal executive council meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the presidential Villa in Abuja.

The meeting was also adjourned to today, the first time the council meeting will be holding for two consecutive days.

Fashola also said council approved the completion of Police Service Commission headquarters in Abuja.

According to him, the project was approved for variation to enable its completion over the next six months.
He noted that the initial cost was N3.486 billion and it has been increased to 3.925 billion, a variation of N439.113 million.

He said council also approved Nnamdi Azikiwe Mausoleum in Anambra State. The project was started but not completed by previous administration.

“Council approved the additional funding to complete it from N1.496 billion to N1.953 billion”.

Also approved is Efire-Araromi-Aiyede-Aiyela road to connect Ondo and Ogun states at the cost of N14.4 billion.
He said for the Enugu-Onitsha highway, the Amansia section, council approved the variations of the cost of N38.74 billion to enable the contractor progress with the work.

“Council also approved the awarded part at the Umunya at the cost of N23.4 billion. So if you add that N38.74 billion which was the cost of the Amansea section you will get a total approved cost of N62.06 billion.”

“This contract was first awarded for N24 billion in 2014 but the scale of work done is, to say the least, appalling,” he said.

Fashola said council also approved money for intervention in education and healthcare. It approved the provision of independent power plant in nine universities and one Teaching Hospital as the first phase of the pilot programme to cover 37 universities at the cost of N38.965 billion to provide dedicated power to the universities which include street lighting, workshop to train the students post-completion.

During his briefing, the minister of Water Resources, Suliaman Adamu said, council ratified augmentation of funds to complete Adada dam Igbo-etiti LGA in Enugu State, with the aim to provide water to the university town of Nsukka. It comprises of a dam, some kilometers of pipeline, water supply to some communities along the route and water treatment plant.

The Enugu State government is expected to take the conveyance system from where we stop from the water treatment plant into Nsukka town and provide the necessary distribution, storage and reservoirs.

“The project was started in 2010. This project has been augmented and council approved that the project be completed now at N5.6 billion by the end of 2018.

“Council also approved the augmentation of phase II Galma Dam and irrigation project in Kaduna Zaria. The purpose of the dam is to provide water in Zaria and environs. The phase I dam has already been completed while phase II involves irrigation and some additional structures. So there was an augmentation to raise the project N16.5 billion in favour of Gilmore Nig. Ltd.

“Council also approved the review of construction fee for Uguashi-Ukwu dam project in Delta State. The project is almost 100 per cent completed but because of the extension of time over the years, we have to ratify the need to pay consultants for staying on site to oversee that project. So council approved the sum of N133.6 million.”
The minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi, said council approved production and distribution of core text books for early education classes 1-3 and for primary 4-6 in public schools nationwide.

He pointed out that the federal government felt there is a need to support the funding of education not just the instruction but also the individuals who occupy the institution at the cost of N6.9 billion.

He said council also gave approval for Jos Central Library and the construction of the Faculty of Animal Sciences and Engineering.

For ministry of transport, Amaechi said they had approval for two vessels called pilot cutters to escort vessels into the seaport saying “Prior to this time they were hiring, now we have approval for NPA to buy theirs at the cost of N1.9 billion.”

Also, he said council approved another two vessels of 17 meters in the eastern port that will help monitor and assist vessels into the seaport at the cost of N1.2 billion.

“Council also approved the award of contract for direct procurement of installation and commissioning of Wide Area of multilateration for the Gulf of Guinea at the cost of N3.9 billion. This is to help capture that equipment flying below the radar, for us to be able to pick them because it will be dangerous if we cannot because a lot of them use helicopters.

“There was also an approval for the consultancy services to construct a new terminal building at Mallam Aminu Kano Airport. We just want to complete the payment which is at N621 billion.

“Council also approved the purchase of flight calibration inspection at the cost of N111.6 million.”

He said one other key project that was approved is the engagement of consultants for the project management, monitoring and evaluation including media and public relations services of the UNEP report.

“The president has also directed that immediately remediation should start and so the processes for remediation should come to council within the next six months so that we can commence the activities of reclaiming the land from the disastrous stage that it is now. The president reminded the cabinet that he was in Ogoni during campaign and had promised that the UNEP report will be carried out”, he added.

The FCT minister, Mohammed Bello, said council approved the completion of the Goodluck Jonathan Way in the FCT that links traffic from Keffi-Nyanya into the city. “We got an augmentation of an additional N3.8 billion and with the funding the road will be completed any moment from now.”

He explained, “Council also approved a critical project which is the infrastructure development of Wasa resettlement site sitting on about 695 hectares at the cost of N26 billion. The infrastructure development will include the construction of 198 roads within the settlement area totaling about 88.95 kilometers. The project is meant to move about 13 indigenous communities in the FCT in that area.

Source: Leadership

Center Confirms One Death, 61 Cases Of Monkeypox In Nigeria

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has reported the first death and 61 cases of monkeypox fourteen weeks after the first outbreak of the disease in the country.

According to situation report for monkeypox outbreak released by the health agency for the epidemiological week 49, on Wednesday, the dead patient was a confirmed case with a “background immune-compromised condition.”

The health agency, however, said it has deactivated the monkeypox Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) this week.

In addition, five additional confirmed cases and two probable cases have been reported since the last update, bringing the total confirmed cases to 61 in 14 states.

There has been a decline in the number of new suspected cases reported over the last five weeks. Since the onset of the outbreak, a total of 172 cases (suspected, confirmed and probable) have been recorded from 22 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

According to the NCDC, only seven percent of the current cases in Nigeria have been linked to human-to-human transmission, including one healthcare worker.

The first suspected case of the disease was reported in Bayelsa and later reported at neighbouring River State before spreading to other states across the country.

One new suspected case was reported from Adamawa State in the reporting week, while two new confirmed cases were recorded in the reporting week from Bayelsa.

The health agency said though clustering of cases was demonstrated in some instances, there was no known evidence yet of epidemiological linkages across states.

Osun Women Charged On Interest Free Loan

Women in the State of Osun have been encouraged to avail themselves the opportunity of an interest free loan by the National Women Empowerment Fund (NAWEF) to either start a new business or expand their already existing small and medium scale business.

The Commissioner, Ministry of Women, Children and Social Affairs, Alhaja Lateef Giwa gave these words of encouragement during a one-day sensitization programme organised by the National Women Empowerment Fund (NAWEF) for women groups in the nine (9) Federal constituencies in the State of Osun held at Moremi Hall, Government Secretariat,
Abere.

Alhaja Giwa made it known that, the National Women Empowerment Fund (NAWEF) is a special intervention fund being implemented by the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development in partnership with the Bank of Industry (BOI) aimed at facilitating growth and entrepreneurial development at grassroots level.

She emphasized that, the State of Osun is privileged to be part of the eight pilot states in the country to benefit from the Micro-financing scheme noting that, fund will be disbursed to only credible women groups that are registered at the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Cooperatives.

According to her, the loan can be accessed by women groups with a personal Bank Account as well as Bank Verification Number. She maintained that, on the-spot-assessment would be carried out to ascertain the true identities and that each beneficiary has a legitimate trade before disbursement of loan.

The Commissioner further explained that, the defaulters of the loan will be blacklisted thereby making it difficult for such person to transact financially in the bank again.

Atiku Has No Kobo In Buhari’s 2015 Campaign – El-Rufai

Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has challenged former vice-president Atiku Abubakar, to prove that he funded President Muhammadu Buhari’s campaign in 2015.

Speaking on a Voice of America (VOA) Hausa Service Programme, tagged “Democracy Today”, in Kaduna, El-Rufai said Atiku leaving the All Progressives Congress is not a surprise to the leaders of the party.

He said, “Agreed, in politics if you lose even only one person, it should worry you, but the utterances of the former Vice President that APC used his money who did he give the money to? For me, I know those that supported us with their money and property that we used during election, and I never heard the name of Atiku that he brought a dime. If Atiku said he brought money, who did he give it to? Let him come and say it and how much did he give and what was it used for?

“And, in fact, if Atiku brought money, I ought to know, because I was part of the leadership of the party and during campaign, along with former Governor Rotimi Amaechi. We were at the centre of the presidential campaign. Therefore, we are supposed to know. So, let him mention who he gave the money and how much?”

El-Rufai said: “We in the APC were aware from the outset that Atiku was going to leave the APC back to the PDP in December and we thank God that he left in November.

“Atiku had seen that we in the APC, especially the APC governors, had resolved to support President Muhammadu Buhari to run again in 2019. That is why he left APC since he was only looking for where to contest for president.

“Even in the 2015 APC primary election, Atiku didn’t come second; he was floored by Kwankwaso. So, even if President Buhari decides not to contest, Atiku knows that the APC ticket is not sure for him. Majority of the APC governors have endorsed President Buhari as our candidate for 2019.

“And God has continued to improve the health condition of the President. Each time I see him, I thank God and I still pray that God continues to give him sound health.

“So, by 2019, we are waiting to see Atiku contest; we are waiting to contest against him and see what happens. I cannot lose sleep because Atiku wants to contest because, by God’s grace, this is the reign of President Muhammadu Buhari.

Asked about a large number of APC members who are likely to follow Atiku to PDP, El-Rufai said: “Sure, we know that, we cannot rule out the possibility of some greedy people following him; those that are following material things. But, if people will consider how we can work for the progress of our country, everybody knows that you cannot compare Atiku with President Muhammadu Buhari.”

Governor’s Wife Promises To Ensure Better Living For Children

The Office of the First Lady, State of Osun, Mrs. Sherifat Aregbesola will ensure that lots of work and policies are put in place in ensuring a better and healthy environment for the growth and development of children in the state.

The wife of the Governor State of Osun, Mrs. Sherifat Aregbesola made this known at the 2017 End of the year Children’s party held at the Government House Grounds in the state capital.

At the celebration filled with children of the state, Mrs. Aregbesola emphasized that, there has been improvement in the lives of the people and the environment as well as greater enhancement in the health delivery systems in the state.

She used the medium to thank mothers in the state for their marvelous support of her husband, the Governor State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola.

Simultaneously, she appreciated her husband, Governor Rauf Adesoji Aregbesola for his compassion on women and children in the state, hence making policies in their favour.

To the children, Mrs. Aregbesola urged them to continue to improve on their education, quoting that, the world belongs to those who are educated.

The Governors wife finally encouraged all to nurture the children to become better citizens and to collaborate in fighting child abuse, violence against children, trafficking, and female genital mutilation.

Osun Provides Free Train Ride For Christmas

The State Government of Osun has provided free train ride for its citizens and others willing to travel to the State for Christmas and New Year celebrations from Lagos.

This was made known in a statement signed by the Commissioner for Ministry of Commerce, Industries and Cooperatives, Mr. Ismaila Jayeoba Alagbada.

According to the statement, the first trip of the train will leave Ido Terminus at Ebute-Meta for Christmas on Saturday, 23rd December, 2017 by 10.00am and return to Lagos on Tuesday, 26th December, 2017.

The second trip for the New Year celebration will leave Ido Terminus on Saturday, 30th December, 2017 and leave Osogbo Terminus on Tuesday, 2rd January, 2018.

The train popularly known as ‘’Omoluabi Train’’ is aimed at making travelling stress-free for the citizens of the State during the rush period of the festival.

Alagbada therefore enjoined willing travellers to join the ‘’Omoluabi Train’’ in order to have a peaceful celebration.

EFCC Only Chasing Shadow Because I Breached No Law – David Mark

Former Senate President, David Mark has taken a swipe at Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) over the latter’s invitation, says it only chasing shadow.

Mark, who spoke through a statement released by his spokesperson, Paul Mumeh, on Tuesday, alleging that the EFCC was after him over a property he purchased from government in 2011.

The Benue senator was quizzed last week by anti-graft detectives at the EFCC over the campaign finance that went to the Peoples Democratic Party Benue during the 2015 election.

“The EFCC or any other agent of Government are (sic) chasing shadows because the property was dully offered for sale, bided for, and he purchased like any other person would in line with Federal Government’s Monetisation Policy that was started during the time of President Olusegun Obasanjo,” Mr. Mark said.

“I had the right of first refusal. Even if I did not purchase it, someone else would have.

“I am a law-abiding citizen. I did not flout any law,” the senator added.

Mr. Mark also alleged political persecution on the part of the Buhari administration, saying he wasn’t the only one who bought official quarters meant for principal officers of the parliament.

“Curiously, four houses occupied by the then Presiding Officers of National Assembly were offered to the occupants. All of us, me as the then President of the Senate, Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, the then Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole and his Deputy Bayero Nafada were all given the same offer.

“I am at a loss as to why it is now a subject of contention.

“If this persecution is about politics, my political party and the 2019 elections, I dare say that only God and Nigerians would decide. No amount of persecution would alter the will of God.

“I had refrained from commenting on this because it is already in the law Court. But they have taken the matter to the Court of public opinion,” he said.

The presidential Task Force on Recovery of Government Properties has been making moves to evict Mr. Mark from the property, but the senator said he had dragged the government to court.

He said his lawyer, Ken Ikonne, has been litigating the matter in suit number FHC/ABJ/1037/2017 at the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, saying he followed due process and legally acquired the property from the Federal Capital Development Administration, FCDA, on April 27, 2011.

He recalled that the Federal Executive Council decided to authorise the sale of the properties housing the principal officers of the National Assembly because the general security of the area had been altered/compromised due to the sale of the other houses in the Legislative Quarters to the public.

Consequent upon which the houses were offered for sale and dully purchased.

Mr. Mark said he was given the first option of refusal upon which he dully accepted on April 21, 2011 and he paid the agreed purchase price to the adhoc committee on sale of Federal Government houses on April 27, 2011.