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Govt, World Bank Disagree Over Dev Rate

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The Federal government of Nigeria and the World Bank last week in Abuja disagreed at the rate of development in the country. While the World Bank in a report, blamed the low level of development in the country on inconsistency in creation and implementation of economic policies, government faulted the World Bank report for what they called inconsistencies and banks inability to factor in recent changes that are being implemented by the Yar’Adua administration.

The report also showed that though growth rate has been on the increase in the last eight years, it has not been marched by productivity since the nation still has a negative employment. Index, an indication that the growth percentage is not felt by the populace. The officials sought to draw public attention to various policies of this administration which are yielding fruits, although at a gradual process.

The consensus, however, is that Nigeria’s attitude of changing policies with successive governments has been responsible for its low economic growth.

Senator Adamu Aliero, Minister of the Federal Territory, said the administration of the capital city was involved in job creations for its residents through mechanized farming.

Represented by the Dr Abdul Muktar, executive director of the Abuja Investment Company Limited, Aliero said the FCTA provides various facilities for the farmers like fertilizers, tractors, treated grains among others, to ensure higher yield at the harvest time.

Mr Onno Ruhl, country director of the World Bank in Nigeria, said contrary to wide beliefs, Nigeria’s greatest resources is its youth population, and not in oil resources. The potential of this human capital, Ruhl said, is however grossly under utilised pointing out that even though the growth rate being recorded by the country is a good thing, the fact that it is not matched by productivity downgrades its success. Other sectors of the Nigerian economy could become money spinners, if properly harnessed, he said.

“Growth is good, but without it creating jobs poverty remains. Before coming to Nigeria, I thought it was solely an oil economy, I did not know about Nollywood or that Nigeria was the world’s largest producer of cassava. I simply didn’t understand that Nigeria had this much potentials, but potential is not good enough if it is not harnessed”, he said.

Ruhl commended the vision 2020 proposal saying it has the potential to transform the nation if properly implemented adding that the World Bank is impressed with the contents of the document.

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Stakeholders Meet To Assess Nigeria’s Preparedness For AFCFTA

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Stakeholders are expected to converge in Lagos today to take a look at the Nigeria’s preparedness to maximize the gains of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). 
The Tide learnt that stakeholders will be converging at the instance of a popular online newspaper, Primetime Reporters, to assess the progress made so far by the Federal Government through the National Action Committee on AfCFTA agreement.
The event which is the Third Annual Lecture and Awards of the online medium has as its theme: “Assessing Nigeria’s Preparedness to Maximize the Gains of AfCFTA.” 
The event will also witness conferment of awards on eight eminent Nigerians who have distinguished themselves in various fields of human endeavours.
The Managing Director/Editor-In-Chief of Primetime Reporters, Mr. Saint Augustine Nwadinamuo, made this known in a statement made available to The Tide in Lagos on Monday.
According to him, the event will hold at the National Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), Kofo Abayomi Street, Victoria Island, Lagos beginning from 10.00am.
Nwadinamuo said that the event would be chaired by a renowned legal practitioner, Barr. Osuala Emmanuel Nwagbara of the Maritime and Commercial Law Partners, Lagos, while the Director General, Lagos Chambers of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Dr. Muda Yusuf, would be the lead paper presenter.

By: Nkpemenyie Mcdominic, Lagos

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EFCC Nabs 419 Kingpin Over N250m Fraud

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has arrested a leader of a deadly 419 syndicate, Abayomi Kamaldeen Alaka (a.k.a Awise) over an alleged attempt to swindle an innocent Nigerian of N250 million. 
The Tide learnt that the syndicate operates from a shrine at Ashipa Town, near Abeokuta, Ogun State.
According to a statement made available to The Tide in Lagos on Sunday, by the EFCC, Awise’s arrest followed a petition by his victim, Juliet Bright who lost N250m to the fraudster after she was tricked to provide money for sacrifices and invocations to heal her of an ailment.
The statement said Bright was introduced to Alaka by one Akinola Bukola Augustina (a.ka. Iya Osun) whom she met on Facebook in the course of her search for solutions to her health challenge. 
What drew her to Augustina was the latter’s post under the name, Osunbukola Olamitutu Spriritual Healing Centre.
 Once Bright contacted Augustina, the latter promised to heal her if she could pay N16 million. 
The victim paid the money through an Access Bank account belonging to one Mohammed Sani, who later turned out to be a Bureau De Change Operator.
After paying the money without receiving healing, Augustina transferred the victim to other members of the syndicate, notably Awise. 
Bright revealed that she met Awise at his shrine in Ashipa Town and was hypnotized and subsequently transferred various sum through bank accounts and in cash to the suspect and his syndicate members, until she lost N250 million to them.
Despite all the monies collected from her, her health conditions has never improved.

By: Nkpemenyie Mcdominic, Lagos

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Expert Wants Farmers To Grow Plant Produce For Export

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An expert in Quarantine Agriculture, Dr Vincent Ozuru, has advised Nigerian farmers to give more attention to growing plants produce that could be exported.
He said that plant like the hibiscus, popularly known as Zobo is on high demand in some countries around the world, today.
Ozuru who gave the advice while speaking to aviation correspondents at Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa, noted that some plants produce, particularly hibiscus, had yielded huge revenue to the Federal Government through export.
According to him, Nigeria exported about 1,983 containers of hibiscus to Mexico alone in 2017 and earned $35 million within nine months of that year.
The agricultural quarantine expert explained that the export of the plant had a setback as a result of storage pest discovered by the Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Service in some consignments.
“The issue has now been taken care of and the export is resuming again, and all matters have been resolved with the stakeholders across the value chain.
“Mexico is the largest importer of Nigerian hibiscus, and our farmers should brace up to the challenge.
“The good news is that Nigeria has a vast growing belt in hibiscus, and the harvest is available all year round.
“We need to take advantage of this opportunity to earn foreign exchange for ourselves and for the country at large, even with the commitment of the present administration to diversify the economy”, he said.
Ozuru called on Nigerian farmers to show more commitment to the growing of export produce and also endeavor to get ready information on it in order to increase their income.

By: Corlins Walter

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