Nine Hydropower Projects To Add 2,672MW To National Grid – FG
The Federal Government has outlined nine completed and ongoing hydropower projects being prepared to add 2,672 megawatts of electricity to the national grid.
It outlined the projects in its latest document containing the status of the country’s hydropower sector, which was obtained from the Federal Ministry of Water Resources in Abuja on Monday.
Data from the ministry showed that the nine projects were located in five states including Kaduna, Taraba, Gombe, Benue and Nasarawa.
They include the 30MW Gurara I hydropower project in Kaduna, completed and put on concession; 360MW Gurara II plant, also in Kaduna, with its engineering, procurement and construction contract already awarded.
Others include the Kashimbila, Dadin-Kowa and Itisi hydropower projects with capacities of 40MW each and located in Taraba, Gombe and Kaduna states respectively.
The government said both the Kashimbila and Dadin-Kowa hydropower projects had been completed and were ready for concession, while a Memorandum of Understanding had been signed with Kaduna State on the Itisi project.
It said three other hydropower projects, namely, Bawarku, 182MW; Makurdi, 1,500MW; and Katsina-Ala, 460MW, were all located in Benue State.
The ministry stated that the Bawarku Hydropower project was in its Outline Business Case approval stage by the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission, while the Makurdi project was undergoing re-validation of the ICRC certification.
The Outline Business Case for the Katsina-Ala Hydropower project was currently ongoing, according to the document.
The government named the ninth power plant as the 20MW Farin-Ruwa Hydropower project in Nasarawa State, adding that the facility had been awarded and would soon add to the quantum of electricity on the national grid.
“Nigeria has a hydropower potential of 12,220MW, unfortunately, less than 2,000MW of this has been developed at Kainji, Jebba and Shiroro dams,” the document stated.
It added, “This explains the urgency of harnessing the nation’s hydropower potentials to meet the country’s power needs.”
The ministry said since 2015 it had pursued the goal of completing the many inherited hydropower projects across the country and had recorded successes in this direction.
This came as the Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu, explained that the Federal Government was not privatising its dams, rather some of the facilities were on concession, particularly those for power generation.
Infrastructure Deficit, Insecurity, Limit Maritime Contribution To GDP – Expert
A Maritime stake holder, and Chairman of Sifax Group, Taiwo Afolabi, has attributed maritime industry’s minimal contribution to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) to infrastructure deficit, insecurity on the nation’s waterways, low level of technology adoption, and deployment in the sector.
Afolabi made this known at the 5th Taiwo Afolabi Annual Maritime (TAAM) conference organised by the Maritime Forum of the faculty of law, University of Lagos.
Afolabi noted that other hindrances are foreign exchange bottleneck and inconsistent policies.
“These have limited the ability of the sector to contribute significantly to the country’s Gross Domestic Product GDP.
“If well harnessed, the maritime industry has the potential to become a major revenue earner for the country, particularly with the declining oil revenue.
“The lessons of the last few years as a nation should not be lost on us. The non-oil sector is increasingly becoming the mainstay of the country’s economy. We have funded our national budget in the last few years majorly without proceeds from oil but from other sectors.
“The days of our over reliance on oil is behind us now and it’s about time we focused on transitioning from an oil-dependent economy to non-oil reliance.
“The maritime sector, I can say without any fear of contradiction, will play a crucial role in this economic transitioning if more attention is committed to the industry.
“Judging by the potentials of the industry, we are of the opinion and belief that Nigeria’s maritime industry can rank among the best in the world.
“It will only take careful planning, progressive policies, generous funding, enabling environment, friendly economic policies, manpower development and massive infrastructural development”, he noted.
Loans Repayment Default: DMO Exonerates Nigeria
The Debt Management Office (DMO) has refuted the claim by the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) that Nigeria has defaulted in repaying its Chinese loans.
SERAP had in an earlier statement hailed the judgement that ordered the present regime led by President Muhammadu Buhari to account for how it spent $460 million obtained from China to fund the Abuja Closed-Circuit Television project which later was not implemented.
The NGO also quoted a report in its statement saying “Nigeria has failed to repay loans for which penalties stand at N41.31bn”.
But DMO in its refuttal said the statement is ‘false’ as Nigeria has not defaulted in its loan repayment.
It said, “Nigeria is fully committed to housing its debt obligations and has not defaulted on any of its debt service obligations”, DMO said on Monday.
SERAP had sued the Federal Government following a 2019 disclosure by the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed that “Nigeria was servicing the loan”, adding that she had “no explanations on the status of the project”.
She reportedly said, “We are servicing the loan. I have no information on the status of the CCTV project”.
Giving his judgement, Justice Nwite agreed with SERAP that “there is a reasonable cause of action against the government. Accounting for the spending of the $460 million Chinese loan is in the interest of the public. It will be inimical for the court to refuse SERAP’s application for judicial review of the government’s action”.
The presiding justice also said the Minister of Finance is in charge of the finance of the country and “cannot by any stretch of imagination be oblivious of the amount of money paid to the contractors for the Abuja CCTV contract and the money meant for the construction of the headquarters of the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB)”, SERAP said.
CBN Names Four Firms To Print Cheques
Nigeria’s apex banking institution, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has named four local firms for the printing of cheques, excluding the Nigeria Security Printing and Minting Company (NPSMC) PLC.
The list of the approved firms for the printing of cheques was contained in a circular issued by CBN.
The circular, which was signed by the Director of Banking Services, Sam Okojere, said the approved firms include Superflux International Limited, Tripple Gee and Company, Yaliam Press Limited, and Marvelous Mike Press.
“The re-accreditation of Cheques Printers and Cheque Personalisers is in line with the relevant qualification criteria”, CBN stated.
The circular also revealed that seven banks were approved as personalisers of cheques: they are Zenith Bank Plc, Ecobank Plc, First Bank Ltd, Stanbic IBTC Bank Plc, Keystone Bank Ltd, Providus Bank Ltd and Wema Bank Plc.
It further disclosed that all accredited printers and personalisers had been duly notified and certificates issued.
The Nigeria Security Printing and Minting Company Plc is the sole printer of N200, N500, and N1000 new notes.
Nigeria Security Printing and Minting Company Plc and Euphoria Group Limited were accredited and approved on Thursday, 04 December 2014, in a letter REF: BPS/DIR/GEN/CIR/02/033.
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