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‘Nigeria Needs Serial Miracles’

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If Nigeria were to be a company, by now it would have been under receivership for possible resuscitation, the former Chief Executive Officer, Nigeria Economic Summit Group, Prof. Anya O. Anya, has said.
Anya, who stated this in Lagos, yesterday, while delivering the 21st Mike Okonkwo Annual Lecture, added that it would take a series of miracles for the nation to get out of the interwoven socio-political and economic challenges it has found itself.
This is just as the former Chief of General Staff, Commodore Ebitu Ukiwe, called on clerics and religious leaders in the country to fervently pray for divine intervention.
Ukiwe, who was the chairman of the occasion, noted that having served in various capacities as a public officer, he could not recollect a period where the level of intolerance, division, and other negative forces were this high in Nigeria.
“My remarks are not influenced by any emotion or sentiments, but I am speaking from personal experience gained from serving this country in various capacities before and after independence. There is no time we have experienced this level of intolerance and, division among ourselves. Bishop Mike Okonkwo should liaise with other clerics and they should go on their knees to seek divine intervention in the affairs of this country,” he said.
Anya, whose lecture was titled “Nigeria: Culture, Values, Democratic Governance And Development,” noted that with the national debt being close to N50trillion, and national earnings not enough to service the huge debt, all indices of bankruptcy were already manifested in the economic life of the country.
“Unemployment is chasing the 40percent mark even as inflation rate is slowly inching upward towards the 20percent mark. The exchange rate has come from around N400 to a dollar to N700 to the dollar in less than two months. We now need trillions of naira to pay the so-called petroleum subsidy. If this were a private company, we would have called in the receivers because the case for bankruptcy is strong. Over the last seven years, our GDP has hovered between 2,3 or at most 4percent per annum.
For accelerated growth that would match population growth, we need a growth of 11percent in our GDP.
“Experience over the last 50 years has shown that it is possible for economies to grow on the fast track and double their GDP within a decade as Singapore, China, South Korea and Taiwan have been able to do in the last 30 years. This is why Singapore has the highest GDP per capita in the world, higher than the United States the largest economy globally,” he said.
He faulted the disharmony and the disequilibrium entrenched in the distribution of wealth that has driven many youths to drug abuse and crime.
On the security challenges facing the nation, Anya opined that the country is in a state of undeclared war and the major task should be how to secure the state.
“We need to recall and mobilise all the retired military and paramilitary personnel in our country. There are among them a reservoir of experience, expertise and patriotism that we can ignore only at our peril. We must also create an environment for enduring social and political harmony. The easiest path to that end is the immediate implementation of those aspects of the 2014 National Conference that have constitutional and long term policy impact,” he added.
He urged Nigerians not to be despondent, recalling that some of the nations of choice today like Dubai, Malaysia etc. were nowhere some regions in Nigeria in terms of economic development and growth in the First Republic.
He advised that Nigerians and their leaders only need to toe the path of patriotism, honour and self-sacrifice the leaders of those days followed.
In his remarks, the Presiding Bishop of The Redeemed Evangelical Mission (TREM), Bishop Mike Okonkwo, who was celebrating his 77th birthday, said Nigerians should seek the face of God and live according to His will.
He noted that the challenges confronting the country were not insurmountable, but that the people should also be ready to do the needful.

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I’ll Provide Solid Representation, If Elected -Banigo

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Rivers State Deputy Governor, Dr. Ipalibo Harry Banigo, has assured the people of Abua/Odual Local Government Area that she would provide undivided representation if voted into the Senate in 2023.
Banigo gave this assurance when leaders and critical stakeholders of the Peoples Democratic Party had a meeting with her, at the Government House in Port Harcourt to map out campaign strategies, yesterday.
The deputy governor said, she was excited that the meeting was held for the stakeholders to understand themselves, to ensure the party wins at the elections in 2023, adding that by the grace of God the local government area would be better than what it is now, if she emerges as the Rivers West senator.
In a related development, the Deputy Governor, Dr. Ipalibo Harry Banigo, who is the Rivers West Senatorial District Candidate of the PDP in the upcoming polls, has also met with leaders of the PDP in Ahoada East Local Government Area, where she urged them to reach out to their constituents and encourage the collection of PVCs.
“We must realize that with this new Electoral Act, the votes will surly count, as this 2023 election is not going to be like the previous elections, there will be a difference, people should not be afraid to pick up their cards and vote, they should not be lackadaisical about it, they should keep their cards safe and on the day of election they should come up and cast their vote, because this time every vote will count”.
She said the campaigns would be unit based and urged them to reach out to those in their units.
“Make sure you have unit executives in each of the wards, so we can have a door to door campaign”, Banigo said.
In his remarks at the meetings, the Vice Chairman of the Rivers West Senatorial District of the PDP, Dr. Nname Robinson Ewor, said there is a need for members of the PDP to go out and establish their presence in all units’ wards and constituencies, stressing that the nature of this upcoming election would be different from previous elections.

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Ariolu, Others Welcome Ex-Deputy Guber Candidate To PDP

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Chairman of Obio/Akpor Local Government Council, Barrister George Ariolu, has led other party faithful, including Chairman of PDP, Ward 6, Kingsley Nna; Chairman of PDP, Ward 9, Collins Wobo Chukwu; and Obio/Akpor PDP Secretary, Kingman Ogbonna; to receive a bigwig and stakeholder of the All Progressives Congress (APC) from Rumuogba in Ward 6, Chief Williams Igwe, into the PDP.
Receiving the former Deputy Governorship Candidate of the then Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) at the Obio/Akpor PDP Secretariat, Rumueme, Ariolu expressed delight over his decampment from the APC to the PDP, describing it as an indication that the party was waxing stronger.
Ariolu, who was greeted with euphoria by the LGA PDP Chairman, Chidi Amadi, who also welcomed the former deputy governorship candidate at the secretariat, promised to work closely with Igwe to build the party ahead of the forthcoming election.
He pointed out that the foundation of the PDP was built on togetherness, stating that collectively, the party would achieve more.
Ariolu thanked Igwe for wholeheartedly accepting to come back to the party.
According to him, Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has separated governance from politics following his relentless battle to promote the interest of Rivers people.
Also speaking, Chairman of the PDP in Obio/Akpor, Chidi Amadi, said the reception of Igwewas a fulfilment of an age-long dream, and a welcome development for members of the party, expressing joy over the event.
He further commended Ariolu for his strong support and leadership towards the sustenance and growth of the party.
In his remark, Chief Williams Igwe affirmed his loyalty and commitment to the PDP in its quest to oust the APC and fix the broken state of the country’s socio-economic and political fabrics.
He described the reception as a homecoming for himself and his supporters who would be formally received at a formal event which would be organised by the state party chairman, adding that PDP remains a major political party which will unite the nation.
He added that his decision to defect to the party was well-thought-out, and called on others to join hands with the Rivers State Government to rebuild the socio-economic fortunes of the state.
According to him, he believed that it was time for him to cross over to join hands with the Rivers State governor in moving the state forward.
The former Deputy Governorship Candidate was also received by PDP Chieftain, Barrister Temple Ejekwu; Obio/Akpor PDP Woman Leader,Gloria Wonodi; Barrister Kelvin Akani; and members of Obio/Akpor PDP Executive.

By: Nelson Chukwudi

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NNPC Posts N674bn Profit

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC Ltd) has declared a profit after tax of N674billion for the financial year ended December 31, 2021.
The profit represented a growth of 134.84per cent when compared with N287billion profit in 2020 which was recorded under the old Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
The Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO), NNPC Ltd, Malam Mele Kyari, said this at a news conference, yesterday, in Abuja.
“NNPC progressed to a new performance level, from N287billion profit in 2020 to a N674billion profit after tax in 2021 climbing higher by 134.8per cent year on year profit growth,’’ he said.
Kyari also said that it recorded an increase in total assets from N15.86trillion in 2020 to N16.27trillion in 2021.
Speaking on the group’s financial position, Kyari said the corporation’s total liabilities decreased by 8.3per cent to N13.46trillion during the review period from N14.68trillion in 2020.
The GCEO said its shareholders funds position rose N2.81trillion representing 144per cent year-on-year.
“The performance would have been greater if the operations in the year under review were free from incessant vandalism, crude oil and products theft, among others.
“Details of the performance of NNPC and the respective subsidiaries as well as that of National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) will be published on our website www.nnpcgroup.com for stakeholder’s perusal.
“We look forward to achieving greater performance to support our growth aspirations and to create more value for our stakeholders as we drive full commercial operations under NNPC Ltd.,’’ he said.
He recalled that in September 2021, President Muhammadu Buhari approved the publication of the 2020 NNPC Group Audited Financial Statement, in which NNPC declared a profit after tax of N287billion for the first time in 44 years.
Kyari said that in spite of the challenging operating environment, it strongly believed that the corporation had the potential to sustainably deliver better value to it esteemed shareholders.
He said it sought to become a dynamic global energy company of choice to its customers, partners and over 200million shareholders comprising of all Nigerians.
Kyari noted that the corporation in 2019 rolled out deliberate policies and initiatives aimed at reducing costs and eliminating losses while adopting technology to entrench transparency, accountability and performance excellence (TAPE) across its various functions.
He said the NNPC had recorded significant improvement over the past three years, turning up the curve from losses to profits.

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