SABINEWS MORNING NEWS UPDATE FOR JULY 15, 2016
Arms scandal: Buhari orders probe of Ihejirika, Minimah, 52 others
President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered the probe of two former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika and Lt. Gen. Kenneth Minimah.
The two generals are among 54 persons to be investigated for their roles in the arms scandals that saw billions of dollars meant for the procurement of arms for the Nigerian military for the prosecution of the war against Boko Haram diverted to private pockets. Read more
EFCC grills Obanikoro’s wife over arms cash
The Department of State Services has arrested Alhaja Moroophat Onikoro, the wife of a former Minister of State for Defence, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, who has been in the United States since June, 2015.
It was learnt that the suspect was arrested in front of her husband’s house located on Layi Ajayi-Bembe Street, Parkview Estate, Ikoyi, Lagos on Thursday. Read more
I drove poll cash to Fayose’s hotel – Driver
A bullion van driver has confessed to conveying the N1.219bn, which the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission alleged was delivered to the Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, in the build-up to the June 2014 governorship election in the state, which Fayose won.
Fayose is being investigated by the EFCC for allegedly receiving the N1.219bn through the Office of the National Security Adviser for his campaign in 2014, an amount said to be part of the N4.7bn allegedly diverted from the ONSA under Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.). Read more
Tinubu’s wife called me dog, thug, says Melaye
The All Progressives Congress member representing Kogi West Senatorial District, Senator Dino Melaye, on Thursday said he called Senator Oluremi Tinubu a stupid woman on the floor of the Senate during an executive session because she also referred to him as a dog and a thug.
Melaye, who addressed parliamentary reporters in the National Assembly, however, denied using vulgar words against Oluremi, the wife of the leader of the APC, Senator Bola Tinubu. Read more
Sex scandal: Foreign affairs minister’s absence stalls hearing
The House of Representatives on Thursday shifted the hearing in the sexual House of Representatives’ members allegedly committed by three lawmakers in the United States of America to Wednesday, next week.
The three are the Deputy Chairman, Committee on Petroleum Resources (Upstream), Mr. Mark Gbillah (APC, Benue); Mr. Samuel Ikon (PDP, Akwa Ibom); and Mr. Mohammed Garba-Gololo (APC, Bauchi). Read more
How Dasuki paid millions of naira to Omisore —EFCC
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has revealed why it is still holding in its custody, a former Deputy Governor of Osun State, and the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the 2014 election in the state, Iyiola Omisore.
The anti-graft commission gave the reason in a counter-affidavit it filed before a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory opposing Omisore’s bail application. Read more
PDP zones chair to South, holds convention August 17
The National Caucus of the Peoples Democratic Party met in Abuja on Thursday and fixed August 17 for its national convention.
The convention, like the May 21 controversial national convention, according to the Chairman of the party’s National Caretaker Committee, Ahmed Makarfi, will also hold in Port Harcourt, Rivers State. Read more
Impeachment: APC’s reaction based on rumour, says Senate
The Senate on Thursday expressed surprise that the All Progressives Congress leadership made comments on mere speculation and fabrication by an online publication on a purported plan to impeach President Muhammadu Buhari.
The upper chamber lamented that the party leadership failed to find out the truth when it had all the opportunity to cross-check what actually happened at the executive session which held on Tuesday from its members in attendance. Read more
Reps want employment restriction for foreigners
The House of Representatives sought tougher measures on Thursday to restrict the employment of foreign nationals by firms or organisations in the country.
A bill to “restrict” the issuance of work permits to foreigners by the Federal Government passed second reading at the House. Read more
Corrupt people should be jailed, says Soyinka
The Nobel laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, has said anyone who is found guilty in the current Federal Government’s anti-corruption war should be jailed.
He said this on Thursday in Abeokuta at the sideline of activities marking his 82 birthday. He clocked 82 on Wednesday. Read more
Power: NERC to reverse 45% tariff hike
The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission on Thursday said it would uphold the court ruling mandating it to reverse the 45 per cent increase in electricity tariffs across the country, six months after implementing the Multi Year Tariff Order 2, which brought about the hike in the tariffs.
A Federal High Court in Ikoyi, Lagos had on Wednesday reversed the 45 per cent increase in electricity tariffs by NERC and the Federal Government in a landmark judgment. The court declared that the increase was illegal and ordered that it should be reversed immediately. Read more
Abia gov impasse worrisome, says NGF
The Chairman of Nigeria Governors Forum, who is also the Zamfara State Governor, Alhaji Abdulaziz Yari, said the forum was worried about the political logjam in Abia State.
He said the forum was working behind the scene to ensure that there was no breakdown of law and order in the state. Read more
Community sends SOS to LASG on damaged roads
A community in Lagos State, Abule Taylor, in the Abule Egba area has expressed worry over continued devastation of its roads and drainage channels, among other infrastrutural facilities as a result of an ongoing construction of a flyover at the Abule Egba interjection of the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway.
Residents of the community also complained about the recklessness of motorists, especially commercial bus drivers, being diverted to the area due to the construction work on the flyover. Read more
Vanguard publisher’s guard gave us a hint – Chadian robbers
Three suspected robbers, who attacked the Publisher of Vanguard Newspapers, Sam Amuka-Pemu, in the Anthony Village area of Lagos State, have said they got inside information from one of his security guards.
The robbers, who are nationals of Republic of Chad, were identified as Umar Hussein, 46; Atim Abukakar, 31; and 35-year-old Abdulrazak Hassan. Read more
Court remands hairdresser, boyfriend for fighting over sex
Two lovers, Emem Asuquo and Olugbenga Yakubu, have been remanded in prison by a Tinubu Magistrate’s Court sitting on Lagos Island for alleged public disturbance.
They were arraigned on Wednesday on four counts of assault and conduct likely to cause breach of the peace before Magistrate A.A. Adefulire. Read more
NLNG appoints another Shell executive as MD/CEO
The Board of Directors of the Nigeria LNG Limited on Thursday approved the appointment of Mr. Tony Attah as the new Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the company.
Mr. Babs Omotowa, who has held the position for nearly five years, is returning to Shell International in The Hague, Netherlands, according to a statement signed by the company’s General Manager, External Relations, Kudo Eresia-Eke. Read more
Suspected militants blow up gas pipeline in Ogun
Suspected militants, who were said to have disguised as maintenance officers from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, have blown up a gas pipeline around PZ Estate in the Ogijo area of Ogun State.
The incident was said to have occurred on Tuesday. The residents of the community said the men had pretended as if they were officials of the NNPC, who had come to carry out routine maintenance on the gas pipeline in the area. Read more
We need peace in Niger Delta
Like most well-meaning Nigerians, we are worried at the upshoot of violent activities in the Niger Delta.
The relative peace the nation has enjoyed since 2008 when the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) and other militant groups accepted the amnesty offer by the late President Umaru Yar’ Adua’s government came to a screeching halt a few months after President Muhammadu Buhari assumed power and served notice that he would move against certain arrangements put in place by his predecessors which had accommodated the ex-militants as stakeholders in some economic and security activities in the area. Read more
IEA says oil glut remains a major dampener on prices
The global glut in oil is refusing to ease and acts as a major dampener on crude prices despite robust demand growth and steep declines in non-OPEC production, the International Energy Agency said on Wednesday.
The IEA, which coordinates the energy policies of industrial nations, said it had revised up its forecasts of 2016 and 2017 global oil demand growth by 0.1 million barrels per day from last month to 1.4 million and 1.3 million bpd respectively. Read more
Angola halves growth forecast, cuts spending as oil price bites
Angola has halved its 2016 economic growth forecast and slashed government spending as lower oil prices hammer state revenues in Africa’s largest crude exporter, the finance ministry said on Monday.
Sub-Saharan Africa’s third-largest economy will grow 1.3 percent this year, compared with a previous forecast of 3.3 percent, the finance ministry said in a statement. Read more
2016 budget: Reps approve N241.5bn for FCT
THE House of Representatives, yesterday, approved N241,455,285,471 for the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, administration for the 2016 fiscal year.
Of the amount, N52,982,280,360 was for perso-nnel costs; N34,388,260,823 for overhead costs, while the balance of N154,084,744,288 was earmarked for capital expenditure. Read more
Naira falls to 363 as dollar scarcity continues
The naira fell further to 363 against the dollar at the parallel market on Thursday, as the scarcity of foreign exchange continued to weigh on the value of the local currency at the interbank and parallel markets.
The naira had closed at 360 to the dollar at the parallel market on Wednesday. Read more
RMAFC wants VAT raised to 10%
The Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission on Thursday called on the Federal Government to raise the rate of the Value Added Tax from the current five per cent to between 7.5 per cent and 10 per cent.
It said the need to increase the VAT rate was born out of the conviction that the nation could not continue to rely on oil revenue when it had other sources of raising funds to finance its activities. Read more
Govt revenue profile rising – Udoma
The Federal Government on Thursday said that the nation’s revenue profile had started rising due to increased oil production and improved access of manufacturers to foreign exchange for the importation of goods into the country.
The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udo Udoma, who was in company with the Director-General, Budget Office of the Federation, Mr. Ben Akabueze, stated this when he appeared before the Senate Committee on Appropriations led by Senator Danjuma Goje. Read more
‘How CFTA will drive economic integration, reduce barriers’
If Nigeria and other African countries embrace the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) agenda, which becomes operational by 2017, the continent may witness a mutually benefitting relationship by all parties, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) has said.
Specifically, UNCTAD expressed concerns over the low level of intra-African trade, emphasising the need for African countries to embrace the full benefits of the CFTA to achieve economic integration. Read more
Listing: NASD advises LMC on accountability, corporate governance
The NASD Over-the-Counter Securities Exchange has stressed the need for the League Management Company to imbibe the culture of full accountability/disclosure and good corporate governance, among others.
The company said this following the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the NASD and the LMC on account of having football clubs in Nigeria to get listed on the NASD OTC Securities Exchange market. Read more
LCCI seeks trade barrier removal among ECOWAS members
The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry has called for the removal of trade barriers among members of the Economic Community of West African States, stressing the need for greater economic integration between regions and countries outside the ECOWAS sub-region.
The President, LCCI, Dr. Nike Akande, made this call at a recent dialogue session on ECOWAS integration in Lagos. Read more
FBN Capital signs first-time MoU for research with Oxford Business Group
Nigeria, June 2016: A report by the global publishing firm Oxford Business Group (OBG) will examine the Central Bank of Nigeria’s monetary policy, reviewing the country’s recently-revised foreign exchange policy alongside broader efforts by the government to stimulate growth.
The Report: Nigeria 2016 will include analysis of the country’s new floating foreign exchange policy, which was enacted in June by the central bank. The decision to allow the naira to float marks a distinct change from previous policy, which in the face of dwindling reserves had led to a widening gap between official and black-market exchange rates for the naira against the US dollar. Read more
Priority for the Private Sector
To start with, for the benefit of the big corporate names who may not have heard, and are still eyeing a space on the coveted Nigeria’s economic management team, the government has made his position known; and it was loud and clear: there is no space for private sector personalities in the nation’s economic management team!
Indeed, that was a bitter-truth, as some may brand it, from the presidency and the office of the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo who is also the head of the Nigerian economic team. Read more
Expert Urges FG to Widen Tax Net
The Past President of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN), Mrs. Adebimpe Balogun, has called on the federal government not to focus on widening the tax net so as to accommodate the informal sector of the economy.
Balogun made the remark in Lagos, Wednesday at the eighth Wole Soyinka Centre Media Lecture Series, with the theme; ‘Tax Education, National Development and the Seminal Role of the Media.’ Read more
Nigeria Has Reset Export Financing Policy with Two Funding Tools
As the steep decline in the global prices of oil took its toll on oil exporting countries, international development experts called for national development policies to attenuate the commodity price shocks. Among some of its several policy responses, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is working in partnership with the country’s Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) having recognised the important role DFIs play in promoting structural transformation.
The short-term challenges of lower reserve buffers, negative output growth and inflationary pressures have not masked the dynamism of the Nigerian economy, which still remains the largest in Africa by a wide margin. Notwithstanding, these challenges present an opportunity to put Nigeria on the path of economic diversification and structural transformation. There would be no better time to get this done than in this current administration of President Muhammadu Buhari who has shown the political will for fiscal discipline. Read more
TEF, ITC Commit to Promote Women in Global Trade
Themed ‘Achieving Zero Oil Growth through Women Inclusiveness in Global Export Trade,’ this year’s stakeholders forum and exhibition was organised by the Nigerian Export Promotion Council and the International Trade Center (ITC) in Geneva. The Women in Export Stakeholders Forum and Exhibition seeks to increase economic empowerment of women through trade via the ITC’s SheTrades Initiative. The goal of this initiative is to connect one million women to the international market by 2020.
The keynote addresses at the forum were delivered by Mrs. Buhari and the Executive Director of the International Trade Centre (ITC), Ms. Arancha Gonzalez. Read more
Forum advises new PM on Brexit, bilateral ties with Nigeria
The country director of the Nigerian London Business Forum (NILOBF), Prof. Chris Onalo, has charged the new Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (UK), Mrs. Theresa May, to return the head of the Commonwealth nation to its post-Margaret Thatcher era when Britain was solely an industrialized and producing nation.
May on Wednesday succeeded David Cameron at No. 10 Downing Street and became the second woman to emerge Prime Minister of Britain after Thatcher in the nation’s history. Read more
FIFA rankings: Benin, Uganda overtake Nigeria
Three-time African champions, the Super Eagles, have dropped nine places to the 70th position in the latest FIFA rankings released on Thursday. And as a result of the slide, Republic of Benin and Ugandan are now ranked above Nigeria.
Eagles have been witnessing a steady decline on the monthly rankings but Thursday’s review by the world football governing body produced new all-time low for the former African champions who are in need of a new permanent manager. Read more
I’ll receive FIFA president not Pinnick, says Giwa
Chris Giwa, the factional President of the Nigeria Football Federation, said on Thursday that he would receive the FIFA President Gianni Infantino when he arrives in Nigeria on July 23.
Giwa spoke in Abuja at the inauguration of board members of the various Nigerian leagues. He said that his decision was predicated on the rule of law which FIFA had sworn to adhere to. Read more
NFF’s technical committee explains procedure for choosing Eagles coach
The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Technical Committee has explained the procedure for the recruitment of a new coach for the Super Eagles, who will be announced on Monday.
The NFF saddled the technical committee with the responsibility of screening and selecting a new coach for the senior national team. Read more
Beautification of Keshi’s Illah Country-home Begins
As activities toward the burial ceremonies of former Super Eagles Coach, Stephen Okechukwu Keshi, reach advance stage, renovation work has commenced at the country-home of the late football icon at Illah in Oshimili North Local Government Area of Delta State.
This development has ended speculations in some quarters that Keshi might not be buried in his hometown because the late former Nigeria’s soccer coach had no building in the town. Read more
LMC Appoints NASD Plc NPFL Official Supporter
A historic step towards restructuring Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) Clubs’ ownership and open it to private sector investments was initiated on Wednesday in Lagos when the League Management Company (LMC) and NASD OTC Securities Exchange signed a Memorandum of Understanding to partner towards actualising the listing of NPFL clubs in the secondary capital market.
At a well attended ceremony inside the event hall of Westwood Hotels on Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos, the Chairman of LMC, Shehu Dikko and the Managing Director and CEO of NASD Plc, Bola Ajomale, signed the MoU and separately pledged to drive their respective organisations to bring about the attainment of the set objectives. Read more
MultiChoice signs Ighalo as ambassador
MultiChoice Nigeria, has announced Super Eagles and Watford striker, Odion Ighalo as brand ambassador for MultiChoice. The endorsement deal was on Thursday at the MultiChoice office in Victoria Island.
Ighalo will feature in a soon to be launched DStv campaign which includes TV, out-of-home, digital, radio and press adverts and make special guest appearances at major DStv events amongst other activities. Read more
It’s either Super Eagles job or nothing – Saintfiet
Belgian tactician, Tom Saintfiet has cleared the air on reports linking him with the Bangladesh national team job declaring he has not signed or accepted any other job as he awaits news from the Nigeria Football Federation, which remains his priority.
Saintfiet, 43, is one of 3 shortlisted coaches for the Super Eagles jobs, but news of an offer from the Bangladesh Football Federation for the job of the Bengal Tigers sparked concerns in the Nigerian football circles that the former Qatar and Zimbabwe Boss may be looking elsewhere. Read more
Nigeria’s Rugby team beats Mauritius, moves a step closer to Division 1B
Two tries from Onoru Jato and one each from Christian Ogar and Obi Wilson, as well as Monday Omoregieva’s successful conversions and a penalty kick, gave the Nigerian national rugby team (Black Stallions) victory over Mauritius on Wednesday at the ongoing Africa Division 1C Cup Championship taking place in Casablanca, Morocco.
Speaking after the team recorded a 31-21 victory at the COC Stadium, President of the Nigeria Rugby Football Federation, Sir Edward Pam Fom, stated the Black Stallions would now shift their attention to the all-important clash against host, Morocco, tomorrow. Read more
Edwards, Adekoya glitter at Oremule @ 70 tourney
The fact that it was a birthday kitty, never detracted from the stiff contest that hallmarked the Asiwaju Babatunde Oremule @ 70 Golf Tournement.
This much was attested to by scores carded by top finishers in the tourney, where the crème-de-la-crème of amateur golfers in the country gathered to celebrate Oremule, a consummate golfer. Also, part of the golf extravaganza were golfers from neighbouring Ghana. Read more
A lorry attack in Nice suggests no end to the acute terrorist threat that menaces France
FRANCE was just breathing a sigh of relief. It hosted the Euro 2016 football competition without suffering a terrorist assault of the sort that jihadists had staged in Paris in November and Brussels in March. France says it is at war with Islamic State (IS) and its ilk, and intelligence officials feared the tournament would be the next target; some 90,000 security forces were deployed to protect football fans at ten different venues across the country. Yet it ended without serious incident.
But late on July 14th, as crowds in cities across France celebrated Bastille Day with fireworks displays and concerts, the next attack did come—this time in Nice, a southern coastal town packed with holidaymakers. Read more
Thailand army tightens media control ahead of draft charter referendum
THAILAND’S telecommunications authority has been given the green light to to shut down any radio or television station whose broadcasts are considered a threat to national security.
This is part of the military government’s move to tighten its control on electronic media ahead of the draft constitution referendum next month. Read more
Australia PM ‘donated A$1m to own campaign’
Australia’s prime minister has evaded questions about a reported A$1m (£570,000, $770,000) donation to salvage his re-election campaign. Malcolm Turnbull declared victory for his ruling Liberal-National coalition on Sunday.
The Australian newspaper reported Mr Turnbull made the donation to compete with the opposition Labor Party’s union-bolstered TV ad spend. Read more
World leaders ‘stand united against violence and hatred’
The Bastille Day attacks in Nice on Thursday has drawn international condemnation.
US President Barack Obama issued a statement: “On behalf of the American people, I condemn in the strongest terms what appears to be a horrific terrorist attack in Nice, France, which killed and wounded dozens of innocent civilians.” Read more
China economy grows more than expected in second quarter
China’s economy grew by slightly more than expected in the second quarter of the year as the government increased infrastructure spending.
Gross domestic product expanded by 6.7% in the three months to June compared to a year earlier, China’s statistics bureau said. Read more
Donald Trump chooses Mike Pence as his running mate
Republican Donald Trump has selected Indiana governor Mike Pence to be his vice-presidential running mate, according to US media reports.
Mr Trump’s campaign planned to announce his selection on Friday, but cancelled the event because of the attack in Nice, France. Read more