The African Development Bank (AfDB), has drawn $31billion in investment interest from African and global investors.
In a statement issued by the Communication and External Relations unit of the AfDB, President of the bank, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, said this at the 2022 Africa Investment Forum (AIF) Market Days.
The forum ended, last Friday.
Adesina commended the forum’s outcomes and the partners’ commitment.
“Despite the challenges, we are not afraid, and neither have we despaired nor lost hope.
“We are excited and committed to a collective goal; accelerating the closure of deals to transform Africa and its investment landscape.”
He said the AIF’s focus was to attract more foreign direct investment to Africa, and ensure the private sector remained the driving force of that transformation.
“The private sector is Africa’s growth accelerator. We must mitigate real and perceived risks and persuade the private sector that investing in Africa is safe,” Adesina said.
Combined with $32.8billion from the rescheduled 2021 Africa Investment Forum Market Days, the forum has mobilised a total of $63.8billion of investment interest in 2022.
Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) President, Dr Mohammed Al-Jasser, said the organisation was hopeful that its commitment to the AIF would translate into tangible and measurable outcomes for the benefit of Africa.
Al-Jasser said the IsDB Group was commitment to support transformative African projects, especially those promoting resilience, financial, economic, and social sustainability.
Furthermore, Trade and Development Bank Group President and Chief Executive,Admassu Tadesse, spoke on the value of the “AIF spirit” in doing more to advance and close investments.
Tadesse said: “Notwithstanding ongoing global crises, we have to keep our eye on the ball. We must continue to encourage and enable investment in agriculture and industry, as well as infrastructure.
“Growing our own food and manufacturing more will enable us to trade more. It will lead to less overall greenhouse gas emissions linked to imports from far away.
“In the process also generating more employment and opportunities for our people.”
Also, European Investment Bank President, Werner Hoyer, said the bank was excited to see how the creativity and vision of African innovators were making an impact.
Hoyer said: “Particularly in the area of technology which holds such great potential for Africa’s future”.
The Group Executive Origination and Coverage, Development Bank of Southern Africa, Mohan Vivekanandan, said a unique feature of the 2022 forum was that it focused on transactions.
“It’s about the project sponsors, the project developers and how we, as development financiers, help them get their vision implemented to improve the quality of life of Africans.
“And how we promote economic growth, job creation and industrialisation,” Vivekanandan said.
Africa Finance Corporation President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Samaila Zubairu said: “The current global economic challenges indicate the critical need to build Africa’s self-sufficiency by investing in resilient infrastructure.
“Such critical investment is needed to drive Africa’s industrialisation and economic prosperity.”
Moreover, Africa50 CEO, Alain Ebobisse, said the AIF presented a timely platform to help scale up and speed up investments into Africa.
Ebobisse said attracting new pools of capital into infrastructure would be critical.
“More specifically, Africa’s institutional investors such as pension and sovereign wealth funds must play a critical role and will be the game changers for Africa’s infrastructure development”, he said.
In addition, Afreximbank President, Benedict Oramah, said the AIF reflected the interest and optimism of global investors towards the continent and its opportunities.
“We close, knowing that the AIF, Africa’s largest transactional investment marketplace, continues to be a huge success.
“Moreover, the event serves as a measure of international confidence in Africa’s economic and political development, and the unmatched investment opportunities this is creating,” Oramah said.
On her part, the AIF Senior Director, Chinelo Anohu, said a lot of the successes recorded by the Africa Investment Forum were domiciled in the spirit of the partnership.
Anohu said it was up to the AIF to ensure the continent was “what it ought to be.”
The three-day event, which held in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, attracted the participation of several African heads of states and government.
The event had as theme: “Building Economic Resilience through Sustainable Investments”.
The AIF platform has mobilised more than over $100billion in investment interests since its inception in 2018.
FG Mulls Introduction Of Private Firefighters
The Federal Government says it is proposing to broaden the scope of the National Fire Academy to accommodate private firefighters to address fire incidents across the country.
The plan, if carried out, would lead to the emergence of private firefighters in the country.
Speaking after his first official inspection tour of the academy, the Minister of Interior, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, said the fire service could have certified private firefighters like the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps’ private guards.
He added that private firefighters were needed to enhance the fire service’s operations as well as improve their response time.
This was contained in a statement by the Minister’s Media Adviser, Alao Babatunde, yesterday.
The statement partly read, “Today, we have over 3 million private guards certified by the NSCDC. We can have something similar for the fire service. We need private fire service men to enhance our service and response time. The President’s #RenewedHope agenda has charged us to be innovative if we must change the narrative.
“As a matter of fact, this is another innovative way to generate revenue because we expect that anyone looking to become a safety or security guard should get trained and certified by this academy.”
Tunji-Ojo urged all institutions and recreation centres to engage certified fire and safety personnel trained by the academy when the plan materialises.
He said: “A lot has been done, but there is still a lot more to be done. With what I have seen here, I can guarantee you that we will work very hard to see that this facility will not only be useful in training officers of the fire service but also for the private sector.
“We must make fire safety a personal affair. Every institution, commercial and social recreation centre should have certified fire and safety personnel, trained by this facility.
“All public and commercial buildings and infrastructure such as banks, hotels, malls, restaurants, or even government buildings should have first responders that can administer basic fire fighting remedy while waiting for the arrival of a full operation squad of the country’s Fire Service”.
Decentralise Pipeline Surveillance Contracts, Ondo Ex-Militants Urge Tinubu
A group of ex-militants in Ondo State, on Wednesday, called on President Bola Tinubu to revisit the pipeline surveillance project and decentralise the awarding of the contract.
The group, under the auspices of the Ondo State Niger Delta Coastal Vanguard, said decentralisation of the contract would enhance the security of pipelines on waterways.
This was contained in a statement issued by the Public Relations Officer of the group, Chief Lucky Ajiroba.
The statement is titled, ‘Call on His Excellency President Bola Tinubu to re-visit the pipeline surveillance contract.’
The group faulted the last administration for awarding the contract to only one company, saying the purpose for which the contract was awarded was not achieved as the security situation of the pipelines was getting worse.
The statement read, “We are the members of Ondo State Niger Delta Coastal Vanguard. The group led by Akogun Job Omotuwa comprises ex-militants in the state who voluntarily submitted their arms and ammunition in response to the good gesture of the Federal Government of Nigeria under the amnesty programme in the year 2017, and we have shown our unwavering allegiance to the terms of the amnesty initiative of the government.
“The overall effects of all these are: it has increased considerably the quantum of oil production, it has substantially increased the revenue accruable to the Federation account, and ultimately it allows peaceful coexistence among the people of the oil-producing communities of the country.
“We are aware of the sterling enterprise of this administration to improve on the security architecture of the Nigeria state and all its apparatus, with a particular reference to the pipeline surveillance and secured waterways.
“The last administration made a giant stride by awarding the pipeline surveillance to a sole company in the Niger Delta Area. It is not out of place to state that the purpose upon which the contract was awarded for was not achieved as the situation of the security of the pipeline was worse than ever before since their collaborative effort was not enough to support the constituted military authorities.
“The failure of this was ascribed to the centralization of the contract. In view of this perennial failure, there has been avalanche of agitation from every quarter that the pipeline security contract should be decentralized for the purpose of achieving the desired goal of the Federal Government which is in the best interest of the entire citizens.”
The group, which commended the President for its efforts in repositioning the country’s economy, opined that each ex-militant leader in the Niger Delta Region be identified, and the pipeline security contract be split among them.
Assembly Tasks Delta Govt On Rising Prostitution, Drug Abuse
The Delta House of Assembly has passed a resolution urging the State Government to take drastic measures against rising cases of drug abuse and prostitution in the state.
This followed the adoption of a motion by Mrs Bridget Anyafulu (PDP-Oshimili South) at plenary in Asaba.
Presenting the motion, Anyafulu decried rising cases of open sex trade and use of illicit drugs among youths in the state, especially in Asaba and environs.
“Open sex trade and use of illicit drug is not a good example for our children.
“The situation is worrisome considering the fact that both issues are illegal,” she said.
Anyafulu, also the Chairman, House Committee on Women Affairs, Community and Social Development said that urgent measures must be taken to address the situation.
“The twin evil of drug abuse and sex trade represents great danger to the lives of our young people and the society at large.
“They both underline the physical, mental and social well-being of our young people and this will also jeopardize the development, peace and security of our dear state.
“So, I want to state that no nation survives without the youth, the youth and the young general are the life wire of our nation.
“Any nation that ignores the youth is heading for doom, so the importance of the young people cannot be over emphasized, it is therefore very important that we address this ugly trend,” she said.
Also speaking, Mr Oboro Preyor (PDP-Bomadi) decried the negative impact of rising drug abuse and prostitution, saying it must be addressed.
‘‘If this ugly trend is not addressed, it would attract more young people into their folks,’’ he said.
He also urged the government to rehabilitate youths who were addicted to drug and to create other avenues of engaging them in productive activities.
The motion was unanimously adopted by the lawmakers when put to voice vote by Speaker Dennis Guwor.
The lawmakers also called for support from law enforcement agencies to ensure the arrest and prosecution of illicit drug dealers and commercial sex workers in accordance with the law in order to curb the rising trend.
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