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Shell, Local Firm Sign First Seismic Contract

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As part of efforts to consolidate implementation of policies to build in-country capacity to grow the oil and gas industry, Shell Companies in Nigeria (SCiN) and CB Geo-Solutions, an indigenous firm, last Friday, signed the first-ever contract for the acquisition and development of 3D seismic data services to boost oil and gas development and production in the Niger Delta.
Speaking shortly after signing the contract on behalf of SCiN, General Manager, Development, Bayo Ojulari, praised CB Geo-Solutions for blazing the trail in such a strategic field where only international oil companies (IOCs) had dominated in the past, and assured that if the trend is sustained, local companies may soon surpass the IOCs in providing quality seismic data services for the industry.
Ojulari said that as a top player in global oil and gas industry, Shell would continue to provide level-playing field for all companies, irrespective of domiciliation, to contribute to the development of Nigeria’s oil and gas sector, noting that companies like CB Geo-Solutions which excel in delivering quality services would continue to get support to prove their capabilities.
He cautioned the firm to pay priority to issues of HSSE, and play by acceptable industry rules, saying that diligence, accountability and transparency, commitment and honesty in all its activities would help sustain the momentum, and open the floodgates for more rewarding opportunities.
The general manager said that CB Geo-Solutions has proven that it can compete favourably with any IOCs which specialize in seismic data acquisition and development, and encouraged it to explore opportunities in other oil and gas fields in Africa, where IOCs control seismic data acquisition and management, for more breakthroughs.
In his remarks, General Manager, Nigerian Content Development (NCD), Igo Weli, said that Shell was leading the advocacy for local content development because of its conviction that the active participation of Nigerians in the industry would fast-track economic growth and engender sustainability by creating more jobs, empowering businesses and the people while at the same time securing the stability and security of the nation.
Weli expressed the hope that the emergence of CB Geo-Solutions as a certified pre-sack migration of 3D seismic data services provider for a major oil and gas player, Nigerian economy would soon galvanise potential resources available to drive sustainable development, and emphasized the need to increase local capacity and capability to support the industry grow.
Chairman, CB Geo-Solutions, Dr Bank Anthony Fubara, who also signed for the company, expressed satisfaction with Shell for making his dream of Nigerian companies participating as players in strategic areas of the industry a reality, saying that the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) and Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria (PETAN), have over the years relentlessly partnered Shell to achieve this goal.
Fubara, a one-time NSE and PETAN president, thanked Shell for the opportunity given CB Geo-Solutions to compete with leading industry players in seismic data acquisition and studies, and challenged other IOCs to emulate Shell by encouraging local companies to participate actively in the development of the industry.
Managing Director, CB Geo-Solutions, Chidiebere Offor, assured consolidation of gains already made by excelling in delivering quality jobs, saying the company would use the window provided by the one-year call-off contract to prove that indigenous companies can deliver internationally-acceptable quality seismic data services at reduced cost and time.
In their separate remarks, Shell Manager, Geo-Solutions, Sam Ezugworie, and Chief Geophysicist, Reginald Mbah, said CB Geo-Solutions exceeded expectations by professionally delivering, in record time, high quality 3D seismic data provided them as test study, noting that it was that feat that encouraged Shell to award the first-ever seismic data acquisition contract to an indigenous firm.

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Ogoni Youths Give FG 14 Days To Fix East-West Road

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No fewer than 400 youths under the aegis of Ogoni Youth Federation (OYF), yesterday, staged a peaceful protest at the Eleme axis of the East-West Road, giving the Federal Government 14 days ultimatum to mobilize to site and fix the road or have economic activities in the area grounded.
The protesters, who carried various placards with inscriptions to press home their demands, trekked from Akpajo Junction to Refinery Junction in Eleme LGA, chanting solidarity songs to register their discontent over the neglect of the road.
Addressing newsmen during the protest, President General of the Ogoni Youth Federation, Comrade Legborsi Yaamabana, said it was regrettable that the road, which was a major route to the economic hub of the nation, has remained in a deplorable state, only becoming a death trap that has terminated the lives of innocent Ogonis.
Yaamabana, who described the mass action of the youths as a ‘warning protest’, said if the contractors handling the road were not immediately mobilized to site, then, the youths will have no option than to shut down all economic activities in the area.
He said, “we cannot continue to watch our people being killed on daily basis by tankers because of the poor state of Eleme axis of the east west road, we are calling on the Federal Government to as a matter of urgency fix the road and save our people from untimely deaths as a result of the sorry state of the road, the only bridge on the road at Aleto has collapse but nothing is being done to avert the disasters faced by our people daily”.
Yaamabana also called on the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio to constitute a substantive board for the Niger Delta Development Commission to address the development needs of the Niger Delta region, noting that the use of interim management for NDDC was “diversionary, self serving and not in the interest of the development of the Niger Delta region”.
The OYF president general also called on the Federal Government to exonerate Ken Saro-Wiwa and his compatriots who were extra-judicially murdered by the late Gen Sani Abacha military junta, and given post-humours honour as martyrs of democracy in Nigeria, while the ideals of justice they stood for should be upheld.
Also speaking, the immediate past secretary of the Ijaw Youth Council, Eastern Zone, Comrade James Tobin, who joined the protest in solidarity, decried the neglect of the East—West Road by the Federal Government, and called the immediate fixing of the road to save the teeming road users from untold pains and death.

By: Taneh Beemene

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Rising Prices Push 7m Nigerians Below Poverty Line -World Bank

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The World Bank has said that rising prices pushed about seven million Nigerians below the poverty line in 2020.
This was contained in a press statement titled, ‘Critical reforms needed to reduce inflation and accelerate the recovery, says new World Bank report,’ released by the World Bank’s Senior External Affairs Officer of Nigeria, Mansir Nasir.
The press statement was released, yesterday, in line with the latest World Bank Nigeria Development Update.
It was acknowledged that the Federal Government “took measures to protect the economy against a much deeper recession” but it was recommended that certain policies should be set for a strong recovery.”
The statement read, “The NDU, titled ‘Resilience through Reforms,’ notes that in 2020, the Nigerian economy experienced a shallower contraction of -1.8 per cent than had been projected at the beginning of the pandemic (-3.2 per cent). Although the economy started to grow again, prices are increasing rapidly, severely impacting Nigerian households.
“As of April, 2021, the inflation rate was the highest in four years. Food prices accounted for over 60% of the total increase in inflation. Rising prices have pushed an estimated seven million Nigerians below the poverty line in 2020 alone.”
Quoted in the statement, the World Bank Country Director for Nigeria, Shubham Chaudhuri, identified some of the challenges faced by the country and recommended a way forward.
“Nigeria faces interlinked challenges in relation to inflation, limited job opportunities, and insecurity.
“While the government has made efforts to reduce the effect of these by advancing long-delayed policy reforms, it is clear that these reforms will have to be sustained and deepened for Nigeria to realise its development potential,” Chaudhuri said.
Also quoted is the World Bank Lead Economist for Nigeria and co-author of the NDU, Marco Hernandez, who also gave a recommendation.
“Given the urgency to reduce inflation amidst the pandemic, a policy consensus and expedite reform implementation on exchange-rate management, monetary policy, trade policy, fiscal policy, and social protection would help save lives, protect livelihoods, and ensure a faster and sustained recovery,” Hernandez said.

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Inflation Dips To 17.93% In May, NBS Confirms

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Nigeria’s inflation rate dropped to 17.93 per cent in May, 2021, from 18.12 per cent recorded in April, 2021.
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) revealed this in its monthly Consumer Price Index report released, yesterday.
The drop in the headline inflation in May was the second consecutive month this year.
The report indicates that the consumer price index (CPI), which measures the inflation rate increased by 17.93 per cent (year-on-year) in May, 2021, which is 0.19 per cent points lower than the rate recorded in the preceding month.
According to NBS, food inflation dropped in the same month from 22.78 per cent recorded in April, 2021 to 22.28 per cent in May, 2021.
The report reads, ‘‘All items less farm produce which excludes the prices of volatile agricultural produce stood at 13.15 per cent in May, 2021, up by 0.41 per cent when compared with 12.74 per cent recorded in April, 2021.
‘‘The highest increases were recorded in prices of pharmaceutical products, garments, shoes and other footwear, hairdressing salons and personal grooming establishments, furniture and furnishing, carpet and other floor covering.
‘‘Others include, motor cars, Hospital services, fuels and lubricants for personal transport equipment, cleaning, repair and hire of clothing.
“Other services include personal transport equipment, gas, household textile, and non-durable household goods,” the NBS added.

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