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FG, States, LGs Share N473.8bn For Oct

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Nigeria’s earnings from oil exports dropped further in October, with a loss of about $1.3 million (about N256.1 million), as the slide in global crude oil prices continued to negatively impact the country’s economy.
The loss was a result of drop in average crude oil price from $47.315 a barrel in August to $46.96 in September, said the minister of finance, Kemi Adeosun.
However, compared to September, the revenue slide was relatively smaller.
Oil receipts which stood at about N213.128 billion in September, dropped by about N25.898 billion, to N187.23 billion in October, as the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee, FAAC, converged on Abuja on Friday to share the statutory allocation for the month.
At the close of trading on Friday, Brent crude oil price, which opened at $43.04 per barrel, dropped by 2.95 percent, to about $41.77, signalling no respite for Nigeria and other major oil producers struggling to keep their heads above the economic waters.
Members of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC are already preparing for the 168th meeting of the group scheduled for Vienna, Austria next Friday to attempt to strike a compromise on how to stabilize the market and firm up commodity prices.
Members of the group are already jittery, amid fears that crude oil price may be heading towards the $20 per barrel mark, down from a peak of over $107 per barrel in June 2014, if steps were not taken to attempt to salvage the situation.
The N187.23 billion oil revenue in October would be the worst accrual from oil exports since the present administration took over power.
In May, FAAC reported a yield of about N225.2 billion, which increased to about N289.4 billion in June.
Although about N213.13 billion was realized as oil revenues in September, it was lower by about N2.85 billion than the N215.98 billion in August.
At the end of the FAAC meeting in October, the Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, had explained that the drop in oil revenue was as a result of the negative impact of facility shutdowns for maintenance and production shut-ins at different periods and terminals during the month.
At the end of the FAAC meeting in Abuja on Friday, Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, said gross revenue received in October stood at N400.310 billion, which is higher by N78.314 billion than the N321.996 billion for the previous month.
Mrs. Adeosun said intermittent shutdowns of operational facilities and production shut-ins for repairs and maintenance at different terminals continued to negatively impact on crude oil and gas revenue during the month.
Besides, the Minister said the country lost about $1.3 million (about N256.1 million) as a result of drop in average crude oil price from $47.315 in August to $46.96 in September.
To make up for the drop, Mrs. Adeosun said non-oil revenue recorded a significant improvement during the month, with about N104.212 billion collection above the figure in September.
In addition, about N6.33 billion was received from the Nigerian National petroleum Corporation, NNPC, as refund for the N450 billion unremitted revenue since 2012, while another N6.995 billion came into the government coffers as exchange gain for the month.
Apart from a total of N57.789 billion realised from value added tax, VAT, collection, the Minister said the balance in the excess crude oil revenue account remained ta $2.258 billion.
Details of the revenue allocations to the three tiers of government for the month showed that the Federal Government took N200.662 billion, or 52.68 per cent; states N126.277 billion, or 26.72 per cent; local governments N95.303 billion, while 13 per cent oil derivation to the nine oil producing states was N24.141 billion.
On stolen funds, which President Muhammadu Buhari said recently that some public officials have started returning to the Federal Government, the Minister said such monies were not part of the revenues shared during the FAAC meeting.
“Recovered loot is not shared in the FAAC meeting,” the minister said. “We have no records of recovered loots. But, I am sure the process is on-going. When the accounts of such returns become available, they would be returned to wherever they were stolen from.”

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NUT Tasks NASS On Teachers’ 65 Years Retirement Age Bill Passage

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The Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), has urged the national assembly to expedite action on passage of the Harmonised Retirement Age for Teachers in Nigeria Bill 2021.
The Secretary-General of NUT, Dr Mike Ike-Ene, made the appeal in an interview with The Tide yesterday in Abuja.
He said the passage of the bill and its eventual signing into law by the President would go a long way in giving teachers the hope that their profession was being given the needed attention.
Ike-Ene said the hope of passage of the bill on June 30, having been mentioned on the Order Paper, was dashed because of the controversy that followed the debate on the Petroleum Industry Bill, now an Act.
“We are expecting that as the national assembly has resumed, the bill will be one of the first few bills to be passed.
“We expected the bill to be passed on June 30 concurrently by the two houses having been mentioned on the Order Paper but the debate of the Petroleum Industry Act and debate of the Electoral Reform Bill took the day.’’
The Secretary-General commended the National Assembly for its commitment to ensuring conclusion of work on the bill.
He expressed optimism that when passed, President Buhari would not hesitate in signing it into law.
He thanked the President for the effort to reposition the teaching profession, saying the union had been in the forefront in the struggle for elongation of tenure for teachers, among other things.
According to him, we have actually been fighting for some of the things the President promised to do for teachers, for instance, the elongation of years.
“We have been agitating for 65 years retirement age or 40 years by service and one of the reasons for the agitation is that we discovered that about 26 states did not recruit a single teacher for over 20 years.
“Yet teachers were retiring in their dozens, in hundreds and more deaths were being recorded as a result of the growing insecurity, particularly in schools.
“Some died naturally, others were resigning, yet teachers were not being employed.”
He further said, “We have also been agitating for Teachers Special Salary Structure (TSS) but hazard allowance was granted instead.
“The hazard allowance accumulated to 27.5 per cent of the basic of teachers’ salaries which were not what we were agitating for.
“We thank God that the Buhari’s administration has promised to implement the TSS and since that pronouncement, NUT, government and other stakeholders have been working to ensure implementation.’’
Ike-Ene disclosed that the promise made to teachers by the president would be implemented at different levels, stressing that while some would be passed into law, others would be implemented as policies.
President Muhammadu Buhari had in June, transmitted a letter on a Bill to increase the retirement age for teachers from 60 years to 65 years.
The Bill also seeks to extend the years of service for teachers from 35years to 40 years.
Meanwhile, the president at the commemoration of the World Teachers Day on October 5, 2020, approved a special salary scale for teachers and special pension scheme.
He also said the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND) will begin to fund teaching practice in universities and colleges of education.
He further promised to ensure provisions for rural posting allowance, science teachers allowance and peculiar allowance.
The president also promised sponsorship of at least one refresher training, construction of low-cost housing for teachers in rural areas and reintroduction of bursary award.
Other promises are, expansion of the annual Presidential Teachers and Schools Awards and payment of stipends to Bachelor of Education students and automatic employment after graduation.

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Traffic Congestion: FG Builds Three Flyovers, Interchange

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The Federal Government is collaborating with Ogun State Government to secure the Right of Way (RoW) for the construction of three bridges and an interchange on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, said this during an inspection of the highway last Wednesday.
Fashola, who was joined by Gov. Dapo Abiodun at the Lotto Bridge under construction, said the highway accommodated over 40,000 vehicles daily, hence the urgent need for additional flyovers and interchanges for decongestion.
The bridges are under construction at Makun, MFM and Lotto (Mowe) areas on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
“We are trying to execute an interchange that will separate the main carriageway and give commuters choice, especially those going to religious places to worship, those going to universities and so on and so forth.
“So that what used to cause the congestion is limited to the barest minimum if not totally eradicated when the road is finished.
“So, we now require additional land to build the interchange, that is why I called the governor (Dapo Abiodun),” he said.
He said that the Buhari administration inherited several stalled projects which he was committed to completing by adequately funding the projects
Fashola expressed satisfaction with progress of work on the ongoing reconstruction/rehabilitation of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.
On his part, Gov. Abiodun assured that the state government would give all the land and support needed.
Earlier, the Federal Controller of Works in Lagos, Mr Olukayode Popoola, gave the measurements and dimensions needed for the bridges and interchange.
Popoola also gave details on the number of buildings and services on the Right of Way of the bridges which, without paying compensations, would stall the project.
He said that section one of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway project, which spans from Ojota in Lagos to Sagamu Interchange, “has achieved 56 per cent completion”.
Also, during inspection of section two of the project, which spans from the Sagamu Interchange to Ojoo in Ibadan, the Federal Controller of Works in Ogun, Mr Umar Bakare, said that the section was 63 per cent completed.

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NEDC Flags Off Construction Of 500 Housing Units In Bauchi

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North-East Development Commission (NEDC) in collaboration with the Bauchi State Government has commenced the construction of 500 mass housing units in Bauchi, to address housing deficit in the state.
NEDC’s Managing Director, Alhaji Mohammed Goni-Alkali, stated this at the ground breaking ceremony of the project yesterday in Bauchi.
Goni-Alkali said that 300 houses would be built in Bauchi metropolis while 200 others would be spread across the 20 local government areas of the state.
According to him, the project is to ease the accommodation problems as well as fast track the rapid social and economic development of the state, to mitigate the devastation caused by the insurgency.
Goni-Alkali said that the commission had so far constructed 1,000 housing units in Marte LGA of Borno, adding that the houses had been handed over to the state government.
He said that the commission would also construct one primary school in each of the senatorial districts across the six states in the region, to promote educational development.
The managing director said that the commission had presented food and non-food items to the Bauchi State Government for distribution to the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
He listed the items to include 10,000 bags of rice; 2,000 bags of sugar; 10,000 gallons of palm oil; 3,000 cartons of pasta; 2,000 blankets; 2,000 plastic mats and 1,000 mosquito nets.
In his remarks, Gov. Bala Mohammed, lauded the impact of the commission in the North-East with regard to the construction of schools and roads.
Mohammed also commended NEDC for the provision of other essential services since inception in 2019.
He said that the commission had constructed one block of six classrooms each across the 20 local government areas of the state.
“We have recieved the intervention of the commission in health and agriculture,” he said.
Mohammed promised to distribute the donated items judiciously to the deserving families.
The Goni-Alkali and other officials of the commission would inspect road projects in Alkaleri and Kirfi, and  Visco Vaginal Fistula (VVF) Centre in Ningi

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