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FG Announces New Pump Price For PMS

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L-R: Communication Officer, Consumer Advocacy Foundation of Nigeria, Adu Elizabeth, Chairman, Nigeria Association of Small Scale  Industrialists, Great Akintunde, Head of Lagos Operation, News Agency of Nigeria, Mr Joe Bankole, National Financial Secretary, National Association of Nigerian Traders, Ebere Nnakife and Chief Executive Officer, Fortworth Communication Agency, Goddy Ikeh, during a courtesy visit by a private sector coalition to Nan office in Lagos, yesterday

L-R: Communication Officer, Consumer Advocacy Foundation of Nigeria, Adu Elizabeth, Chairman, Nigeria Association of Small Scale Industrialists, Great Akintunde, Head of Lagos Operation, News Agency of Nigeria, Mr Joe Bankole, National Financial Secretary, National Association of Nigerian Traders, Ebere Nnakife and Chief Executive Officer, Fortworth Communication Agency, Goddy Ikeh, during a courtesy visit by a private sector coalition to Nan office in Lagos, yesterday

The Federal Government on
Wednesday announced a new pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) which should not be above N145 per litre.
This is contained in a statement issued by the Minister of State for Petroleum, Mr Ibe Kachikwu, and read to State House Correspondents.
The Minister said the decision was taken at the end of the stakeholders meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
According to the statement, any Nigerian is free to import the product and sell at a price not above N145 per litre.
“In order to increase and stabilise the supply of the product, any Nigerian entity is now free to import the product subject to existing quality specifications and other guidelines issued by Regulatory Agencies.
“All oil marketers will be allowed to import PMS on the basis of FOREX procured from secondary sources and accordingly PPPRA template will reflect this in the pricing of the product.
“Pursuant to this, PPPRA has informed me that it will be announcing a new price band effective today, 11th May, 2016 and that the new price for PMS will not be above N145 per litre,’’ the minister said.
He said the government expected that the new policy would “lead to improved supply and competition and eventually drive down pump prices, as we have experienced with diesel.
“In addition, this will also lead to increased product availability and encourage investments in refineries and other parts of the downstream sector.
“It will also prevent diversion of petroleum products and set a stable environment for the downstream sector in Nigeria.’’
Kachikwu said that the government shared the pains of Nigerians but, “the inherited difficulties of the past and the challenges of the current times imply that we must take difficult decisions on these sorts of critical national issues’’.
He said that along with the decision, the federal government had in the 2016 budget made an unprecedented social protection provisions to cushion the current challenges.
“We believe in the long term, that improved supply and competition will drive down prices.
“The DPR and PPPRA have been mandated to ensure strict regulatory compliance including dealing decisively with anyone involved in hoarding petroleum products,’’ the minister added.
The minister said that the stakeholders’ meeting had reviewed the current fuel scarcity and supply difficulties in the country and the exhorbitant prices being paid by Nigerians for the product.
He said that the meeting observed that prices ranged on the average from N150 to N250 per litre.
He said the meeting also noted that the main reason for the current problem “is the inability of importers of petroleum products to source foreign exchange at the official rate’’.
According to him, this is due to the massive decline of foreign exchange earnings of the federal government.
He said that as a result, private marketers were unable to meet their approximate 50 per cent portion of total national supply of PMS.
He said that following a detailed presentation by him, it “has now become obvious that the only option and course of action now open to the government is to take the decisions’’.
Kachikwu said the meeting had in attendance the leadership of the Senate, House of Representatives, Governors Forum, and Labour Unions.

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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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