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…As Reactions Trail N56,000 Proposal

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In commemoration of this
year’s Workers’ Day, the labour movements in Nigeria, made a N56,000 minimum wage demand on the  government.
This demand, which should by all means please Nigerian workers, has however  raised mixed  reactions from the same  workers who would supposedly benefit from it.
An assistant  director  with the state ministry of Agriculture, Mr. Jonah  Isikima, sarcastically applauded  the move by labour  and asked, “where have these labour leaders been. Is it that they are  hard of hearing  or  have  not been in this country?
“Much as  I would benefit if implemented, but lets be realistic. The monthly federal allocation to this state for example is N2 billion short of salary bill of the state as we are told, so where does labour expect the government  to  get the  money to meet  this their  incredulous demand,” he continued.
Isikima pointed out that many states for the past one year have not been able to regularly pay the current N18,000 minimum wage “And now they ask government to pay N56,000, well my take is that  they want the usually settlement for themselves not for the workers they represent.
“We know that the present day  Nigerian labour leaders  are completedly compromised”,  was the  response of Mr Sunny Dede, a staff of Nigeria Ports Authority.
Dede noted that, “gone are the  days when labour unions truly represented Nigerian workers and worked for their wellbeing . now, what  they do is make unnecessary noise and   give altimatums so  that their palms would be greased otherwise, how do you  explain  this demand? Oil , our economic mainstay has taken  a nose dive for the past one year and we hear that it would remain so  for a while  and now this demand for a new minimum wage of N56,000. This is not realistic at all.
Another respondent, Mrs Ibifubara Inetimi,  a Rivers -born teacher in Bayelsa State, stated,  “what labour should think of doing in the present situation  is to make government devise ways of increasing the purchasing power of our Naira and seek  her welfare packages like improved healthcare  system, power supply, make petrol available to workers  than this unattainable demand. Some of us  in Bayelsa have not been paid for about eight months, where would the money come to pay arrears  before paying new minimum wage, we will enjoy it, but  it is not a demand  for now.
“Labour is obviously disconnected from the reality on ground. You and I know that  many states are yet to pay the current minimum wage, this  simply means that the demand, will not fly with the  government, given  the current economic situation unless labour  is prepared  to prune the work force generally to 30 per cent across the country, then the new minimum wage  could be paid, says Mr Romanus Chinedu, a businessman.
Chinedu lamented  that, “it is unfortunate that labour has deviated from  course  of  fighting for the good of Nigerian workers, now a days, they fight  for their  good only.
For Mrs. Kano Kpandei, a local government  staff,  it is a good move that should be accepted  and  implemented by the  federal government, saying, ” after all,  the politician  who has  never worked in his life is receiving much more than that, so whig  shouldn’t  the workers who break their backs everyday to ensure  that the  country is run smoothy not have just a little  bit of their  labour.

 

Tonye Nria-Dppa

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Oil & Energy

Partners Execute Shareholder Agreement For Brass Products Terminal

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, (NNPC), along with their partner, the Nigerian Content Development & Monitoring Board, NCDMB, and Zed Energy have executed a shareholders’ agreement for the establishment of a 50 million litre Petroleum Products Terminal in Brass, Bayelsa State.
The N10.5 billion Brass Petroleum Products Terminal project is expected to deliver an automated 50 million litre depot with two-way product jetty, automated loading bay, and 6 automated tanks for storage of 30 million litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS)and 20 million litres of Automotive Gas Oil (AGO) and Dual Purpose Kerosene (DPK).
While speaking at the signing ceremony, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his giant strides in the Niger Delta which is making a huge impact on the people of the area.
“I make bold to say today without any fear of contradiction that no President has impacted the people of the Niger Delta like President Muhammadu Buhari. Aside from what we are witnessing today, remember there is also the Brass Fertilizer & Petrochemical Company, the Oloibiri Oil and Gas Museum and the Oil & Gas Park in Ogbia, all under Mr. President,” the Minister stated.
Sylva added that the establishment of the Terminal further demonstrates Mr. President’s commitment to the enhancement of the livelihood of the Niger Delta people particularly, the riverine communities in Bayelsa State where people purchase products at exorbitant prices due to logistics challenges associated with transporting products to that area.
Speaking shortly after signing the agreement, the Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mallam Mele Kyari said the Corporation was proud to be part of the project which aside ensuring products availability in all nooks and crannies of the Niger Delta, will also guarantee the nation’s energy security and generate employment.
“This Terminal will create 1,000 direct jobs during the construction phase, and over 5,000 indirect jobs during its operation. Considering the potential for employment when completed, this will definitely reduce youth restiveness in the Niger Delta area and will also address the problem of illegal refining in the area,” Kyari stated.
In his remarks, the Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Simbi Wabote stated that this milestone was as a result of strong interagency collaboration and public-private sector partnership.
“The NCDMB will continue to drive such partnerships across the industry to bring development in Nigeria,” he noted.
Earlier, the Coordinator of the Project and Group General Manager, National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS), Mr. Bala Wunti stated that the project would enhance the economics of marine petroleum products distribution.

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Oil & Energy

Senate Hails NNPC’s Drive Towards Profitability

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The senate has commended the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) for its efforts towards attaining profitability and stamping out corruption from its system.
Chairman, Senate Committee on Anti-corruption and Financial Crimes, Suleiman Abdu Kwari, gave the commendation at a hearing which was held at the national assembly complex, Abuja.
Kwari said it was heart-warming to learn that the NNPC was making great strides towards profitability and urged the corporation to sustain the gains recorded so far for the good of the country.
In his presentation at the hearing, Mele Kyari, the group managing director of NNPC, said the corporation was championing the fight against corruption in the oil and gas industry by placing measures to curb incidences of corruption across its various business portfolios and by enlisting as a partner company of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI).
He also said that the corporation has reported several incidences of infractions such as products diversion and crude oil theft to the police, EFCC and other investigating agencies of the federal government to stem corruption within the oil and gas industry.
In an effort to clampdown on fuel smuggling, the ministry of petroleum resources launched the operation white project in October 2019 to monitor and track the movement of petroleum products in the country.
Also in February 2021, the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) launched the downstream remote monitoring system (DRMS) to track the movement of petroleum products from depots to retail outlets.
“We have created an anti-corruption desk in NNPC that engages the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and other anti-corruption agencies on a regular basis,” NNPC GMD said.
“The desk ensures that in all our operations, every staff complies to the code of conduct procedures with consequence management.
“We have established a regulatory compliant governance charter and transparency policy; this is a mark of our compliance to the anti-corruption strategy.
“For the first time in 43 years, NNPC, as a part of the evolving culture of transparency and accountability, published its Audited Financial Statements (AFS) for 2018 and 2019. We are going to publish that of 2020.
“The AFS is the only document that tells how a company does its transaction. We are happy that by the time the 2020 AFS will be published, Nigerians will see the dividends of our accountability.”

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Oil & Energy

Chevron Spends $10bn On Nigerian Suppliers, Service Providers

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Chairman/Managing Director, Chevron Nigeria Limited (CNL), Rick Kennedy, said the company has in the last 10 years spent an estimated annual average of $1 billion on Nigerian suppliers and service providers in line with its commitment to Nigerian Content Development.
Highlighting the opportunities and new approaches to the future of hydrocarbons at the ongoing 2021 NIPS in Abuja, Kennedy stressed the need for robust policies and regulations to address and remedy existing challenges in the oil and gas industry; digital technology/innovations; cost efficiency initiatives; sustained social investments as well as continued support for Nigerian Content Development.
Kennedy, who was represented by Monday Ovuede, director, NNPC/CNL Joint Venture, identified opportunities in lowering carbon emissions and harnessing Nigeria’s gas resources as key enablers in complementing the new approaches to future of hydrocarbons in the Nigerian oil and gas industry in the post COVID-19 era.
According to him, the global community has continued to scale up the collaboration towards lower carbon emissions, adding that Chevron supports global efforts to reduce carbon emissions and is actively investing in operations to improve environmental performance while also working with industry to develop new innovative technology and best practices to achieve these objectives.
He emphasised that CNL’s gas strategy is to end routine gas flaring and build a profitable gas business through a portfolio of projects, and stated that in Nigeria, CNL, with its joint venture (JV) partners, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), has progressively reduced routine gas flaring by over 95% in the past 10 years and remained ahead in terms of maximising supply of on-spec gas into the Nigerian domestic market.
He also highlighted the NNPC/CNL’s Gas Sales and Aggregation Agreements with Egbin Power Plc, Dangote Fertilizer Limited, and Olorunsogo Generation Company Limited, while mentioning the positive impact of the West African Gas Pipeline (WAGP) through which Nigeria supplies gas to countries in the West African sub-region – specifically, Ghana, Togo, and Benin – thus, helping to boost economic development in West Africa.
Kennedy also noted that Chevron has joined other energy companies supporting the Methane Guiding Principles to reduce methane emissions from natural gas exploration and production operations through digital innovation and deployment of best practices, which include designing, constructing, and operating its facilities in a manner to reduce emissions from its operations.

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