The Federal Government has pledged to fast track the supply of gas to the power sector as a means of ending the epileptic power situation in the country.
The Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke, made the pledge in Abuja on Friday at the signing of gas supply agreement between NNPC, PHCN, and some International Oil Companies (IOC).
The companies are Shell Petroleum Development Company, Agip Nig. Ltd, Total Nig. Ltd and Chevron Nig. Ltd
“The significance of today is in the fact that we are executing gas supply agreements between the top two gas supply joint ventures in Nigeria, namely the NNPC/SPDC and NNPC/CNL JVs,’’ Alison-Madueke said.
She said the agreements would help in supplying about 70 per cent of the total power sector gas requirement to the power plants in the country.
“Having fully negotiated the terms between these two JVs and an anchor power plant in Egbin, we are now in a position where we can very rapidly replicate these agreements across all other power plants,’’ the minister said.
She described the partnership and signing of agreements as timely, saying that the power sector was the largest domestic consumer of gas.
Alison-Madueke also said the ministry had concluded plans for the take off of the gas supply agreement for a fertiliser project.
In a brief remark, the Minister of State for Power, Mr Nuhu Wya, described the agreements as a milestone in achieving the power road map.
Wya assured the IOCs of government’s readiness to implement the agreements to the letter and ensure international best practices in the implementation of the project.
He said the agreements would enable the country to generate more electricity to power the economy.
On his part, Mr Austen Oniwon, the Group Managing Director of NNPC, who signed the agreements with the IOCs, said they would lead to the unlocking of the country’s huge gas market.
He said the NNPC would ensure adequate funding and development of gas for supply to the power sector.
Mr Osten Olorunsola, the Vice- President, Gas Shell sub-Sahara Africa, said the company would supply about 90 million standard cubic feet of gas per day to the Egbin Power Plant under the new framework.
He said the agreements would help increase the domestic gas utilisation, especially for electricity generation in order to catalyse the country’s economic growth.
According to reports the representatives of each oil company signed on behalf of their organisation.
Immigration Steps Up Anti-Touting Vigilance
The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Passports Command, Ikoyi, has increased its surveillance on touting in a bid to check extortion within its jurisdiction.
Speaking in an exclusive chat with The Tide in Lagos, last Friday, the Immigration Comptroller, Passports Office, Ikoyi, Lagos, Deputy Comptroller Liman A.I , said the negative impact of touting on the nation’s economy would not be allowed to continue under his watch.
He said ,”we are applying persuasion, dialogue and seeking the support of all well meaning stakeholders in this area to spread the anti-touting message and dissuade people from unlawful acts. However, we could apply coercive power as the need arises.
“With the selfless leadership shown by the Comptroller General, Alhaji Mohammed Babandede, we at the PCO, Ikoyi, Lagos, have decided to re-dedicate ourselves to duty and complement the efforts of the CGIS.
“We are prepared more than ever to wage the anti-miscreants war relentlessly.
Liman assured the general public of friendly environment for legitimate transaction in an effort to strengthen the national economy, warning deviants to shun touting and other related vices.
According to him, “the command has keyed into the various strategies including the use of ICT in gathering of intelligence, among others.
“The service believes that the fight against miscreants within its corridor cannot be undertaken by the service alone, hence our call on Nigerians to partner with us in ensuring that the passport seekers do not patronise touts to defraud them. Our resolve is unshaken and our commitment is total”.
On her part, the Public Relations Officer of the command, a Deputy Superintendent of Immigration (DSI), Mrs Adetoun Shiyindemi, commended the Deputy Comptroller Liman, for his selfless service, pointing out that he has really given the officers and men of the command a sense of belonging.
“Since the Comptroller came in, it has been a servant-leader relationship here at Ikoyi PCO and we are all motivated to put in our best with what the CGIS has given us, you will see a new immigration service”, she assured.
By: NkpemenyieMcdominic, Lagos
Union Urges NIMASA, RSG To Dredge PH/Bonny Jetty
The Bonny Maritime Transport Association (BMTA) has called on the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the Rivers State Government to dredge the Port Harcourt/Bonny Jetty to enhance marine operations.
The union said the low shore of the river hampers its operations and grounds boats.
The Marine Safety Officer, BMTA, Comrade Kings Don, who made the call, said the low shore of the jetty was not helpful to marine operations.
According to him, drivers and passengers find it difficult to ply the route whenever the tide is low, thus wasting man hours.
“Sometimes, we push the boat to a level it would afloat due to low tide suffered in the jetty. We are appealing to NIMASA and the state government to assist and dredge the jetty for more efficiency”, he pleaded.
Don described the Port Harcourt/Bonny Jetty as the gateway to Bonny Island and other riverine communities, and called on NIMASA and the state government to intervene and make the marine sector viable in the area.
He said that the prompt dredging of the jetty would enhance water transportation in the state and improve its revenue generation.
He, however, commended the security agents, especially the Nigerian Navy and the marine police, for rescuing the waterways and creeks from all forms of criminality.
Comrade Don appealed to the security agents to engage in 24-hour patrol of the routes and other channels to save lives and property.
By: Chinedu Wosu
Boat Mishaps: Ship Owner Blames Absence Of Safety Regulations
A renowned ship owner in the country, Alhaji Aminu Umar, has decried lack of standardisation and enforcement of safety measures on the nation’s inland waterways by the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA).
He also blamed lack of will to enforce regulations, safety, standard and regulations on overloading, night voyage, rickety and old craft as causes of mishap on the inland waterways.
Alhaji Umar, who is a former president, Nigerian Shipowners Association (NISA), said in Minna, Niger State, recently that enforcement of safety and standard on the nation’s inland waterways was weak.
Reacting to incessant boat mishaps in the country, Umar said, “there is no standard applied on movement of people, as all kinds of boat are being used. It is important that we standardise, because lack of safety and standard will increase accident.
“I think, the task of NIWA is to standardise conditions and procedures on the nation’s waterways”.
He also called for the regulation of movement of badges and passenger boats across the port environment.
“It’s a huge risk allowing badges moving containers around the port area side by side with boats carrying passengers.
“Moving people and containers at the same time is a huge risk, and a safety concern.
“NIWA and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) should see to this and tackle the menace”, he said.
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