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RSG Extols Firm Over Community Dev Projects

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The Rivers State Government has lauded an indigenous oil company, Eroton Exploration and Production Limited, operating Oil Mining Lease (OML) 18 in Rivers State for complementing the state government efforts towards agricultural and rural development in the state.
The Permanent Secretary, Rivers State Ministry of Community and Chieftaincy Affairs, Felix Odungweru, made the commendation during the commissioning of projects estimated at millions of naira in the host communities in Rivers recently.
The Tide reports say that the projects commissioned in Ifoko, Sangama, Minama, Ido and Abonnema host communities include ultra modern town halls, civic centres and an integrated agro-farm industry.
The projects were built through development cluster board and funded by Eroton E&P with its joint venture partner, Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
Expressing delight over the agro-farm and other projects, Odungweru said, government recognises Eroton’s seeming unflinching commitment to its social corporate responsibility in its host communities, saying that the projects were product of series of meetings, negotiations and resolution culminating in a group memorandum of understanding (GMoU) between Eroton and all the communities in the Degema 3 Cluster Development Board.
He commended the communities for the peaceful disposition and cooperation they exited during the execution of the project and assured that Governor Wike administration would ensure that multi-national companies operating in the state develop their host communities.
Earlier, chairman of Degema 3 Cluster Development Board Chairman, Christian Sekibo Jnr, said the board decided to invest the funds made available by the JU partners in an income yielding project, hence the agro farm.
According to him, the agro farm has four sections, which include poultry farm with an installed capacity for 15,000 birds, fishery with the capacity for 20,000 catfish fingerlings, snailry with the capacity for 8,000 snails and piggery with the capacity for 44 piglets and pigs.
The DAA3 board chairman disclosed that apart from the commissioned projects, that there are ongoing projects in Tombia, Obuama, Captain Kiri, Elem Ama and Tema that were sponsored with the project funds for 2017, 2018 and 2019.
While thanking Ido community for providing 12 plots of land for the project, he appreciated DAA3 cluster for the peaceful disposition.
In his remarks, Emmanuel Toby, Eroton E&P Community Affairs Department representative, said the agro farm will create more job for the youth of the host communities.

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CBN Warns FG Against Rising Debt, Recession …As MPC Increases Cash Ratio To 27.5%

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has cautioned the Federal Government on its borrowing.
Addressing journalists at the end of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) in Abuja last Friday, CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, cautioned that “public debt was rising faster than both domestic and external revenues.”
Members of the MPC advised the Federal Government “to tread consciously in interpreting the debt to GDP ratio.”
According to the CBN governor, “the MPC looked at the debt to revenue and felt that there is always a tendency for us to say that our debt level is not high particularly when you begin to compare it to GDP. But we have to begin to look at other ways through which we can raise revenues to be able to fund fiscal operations and that is what the MPC is saying.”
The committee, Emefiele noted, is concerned about “the rising burden of debt services and urged the fiscal authorities to strongly consider building buffers by not sharing all proceeds from the Federation Account at the monthly FAAC meetings to avert the macroeconomic downturn in the event of an oil price shock.”
Also at the meeting, Emefiele announced that the decision has been taken to increase Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) from 22.5% to 27.5%.
Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) is a specified minimum fraction of the total deposits of customers, which commercial banks have to hold as reserves either in cash or as deposits with the Central Bank.
The committee, he said “is confident that increasing the CRR at this time is fortuitous as it will help address monetary induced inflation whilst retaining the benefit from the bank’s loan to Deposit Ratio policy, which has been successful significantly, increasing credit to private sector as well as pursuing market interest rate downwards.”
The committee encouraged the management of the banks “to be more vigorous in its drive, improve access to credit through its pursuit of the LDR policy as doing this would help not only in creating job opportunities but also help in boosting output growth and in moderating prices.”
The CBN governor lamented that the “committee felt that there will be a lot of liquidity in the market and there was a need for the bank to do something to mop the excess liquidity to level that it considers optimal to be able to run the economy in a way that the level of excess liquidity does not become injurious to the economy.”

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Elder Statesman Supports NDDC’s Forensic Audit …Wants Immediate Payment Of Genuine Contractors

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An elder statesman and one of the founding fathers of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Chief Jasper Jumbo, has called on the management of the commission to use the period of forensic auditing to pay genuine contractors who are being owed a backlog of money.
The elder statesman also called on the NDDC to ensure that forensic auditors engaged to audit the accounts of the commission are paid at the end of the exercise without delay.
Chief Jumbo, who is the head of the Jumbo major house in Grand Bonny, made the call while speaking to aviation correspondents last Friday, in Port Harcourt.
He noted that a lot of genuine contractors who did good jobs for the commission were suffering because they are not yet paid.
According to him, paying them would help reduce their suffering.
He said that the forensic auditing is one of the steps being taken to put the NDDC back on track, and as well restore accountability in the commission.
“I am one of the protagonists asking for the setting up of forensic audit because the place was stinking. NDDC is no longer the commission we set up.
“I wrote the blueprint for NDDC and the then OMPADEC. What we as founding fathers saw was no longer what we originated.
“So I went to the National Assembly, and I called on Mr President to set up an investigation into the activities of the commission, which he commendably did, and God will bless him because we do not have another major source that touches the lives of our people.
“A lot of money have come into the commission without much being seen. No legacy project is seen, but trillions of naira have gone down the drain.
“ By the time they finish the forensic auditing, there will be a lot of sanity because people will know that government can bite”, Jumbo said.
The elder statesman, however, expressed reservation on the payment of those that will be engaged in the forensic auditing, pointing out that it is not just to engage the forensic auditors, but that they should be paid at the end of the exercise.
He also urged the commission to look for a way to engage the youths, so as to engender peace in the region.

 

Corlins Walter

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Investors Forum To Promote Mechanised Farming In Rivers

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As part of effort to boost agricultural development in Rivers State, the President, Rivers Investors Forum, Ibifiri Bob-Manuel, has re-affirmed the investors’ commitment towards promoting mechanised farming through value chain manufacturing, with a view to tackling unemployment among the youths.
Bob- Manuel stated this in an interview with newsmen in Port Harcourt during the 2020 Rivers Entrepreneurs and Investors Trustee Forum.
He noted that most countries economy now depends on agriculture, saying that it is only achievable through mechanised agriculture, as subsistent farming with mundane implements was no longer attractive.
He advised Nigerians to drop the idea of subsistent farming and embrace mechanized farming, for easy farming and bumper harvest
According to him, “we are trying to bring farmers into clusters, the people that are already in clusters, we are going to be working with them to ensure that we link them up with the manufacturers to be able to improve upon what they are doing because if we keep doing the same type of subsistent farming, they have always been known for, they will end up suffering and being poor”.
He said further that “the narrative today should be mechanized agriculture and we are working towards that in 2020. We are going to bring investors from around the world into Rivers State to showcase the potentials on agriculture”.
Bob-Manuel disclosed that the investors forum was working with the Rivers State Government to ensure that investors in the state enjoy adequate security and incentives on their investments.
“We have a better security in the state today. Nine years ago we were hammering on issue concerning multiple taxation, as at then some of our members cannot even drive in their official cars without being hounded, but today it is not as bad as what it used to be. There is a lot of improvement. The investors forum set the ball in motion and today we are where we are,” he said.

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