A political activist and former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Timi Frank, has challenged President Muhammadu Buhari to account for the $1 billion he illegally withdrew from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) to purportedly fight insecurity in view of the increasing spate of killings, banditry and kidnapping across the country.
Frank, in a statement in Abuja on Sunday in reaction to the increasing incidence of kidnapping, banditry, killings and other forms of crimes across the country, insisted that the mindless looting of public funds that has so far characterised the current administration is directly responsible for persistent insecurity in the country.
He lamented that the President has woefully failed to protect Nigerians and demanded that the current “tired and incompetent heads of security agencies and Service Chiefs be sacked.”
The Bayelsa-born political activist said he believes that “No serious government will keep incompetent Service Chiefs if the President himself is not personally benefiting from their cluelessness.”
He added that if Buhari’s government is to be judged by the level of insecurity in the country, failure would be an under statement in describing the current administration.
According to Frank, no government has approved such humongous amount of fund to tackle insecurity in the history of Nigeria without noticeable improvement in the security of the country as is presently the case.
Frank said: “We are talking of $1billion (or N360billion) unilaterally withdrawn in a single tranche from the ECA by the current administration without any positive effect on the security of country. Rather insecurity continues to bedevil the country without let. Haba!
“The only achievement we have seen through the current military administration is propaganda and fake news to defend their looting.
“Dear Gen. Buhari, please tell the world what you did with $1billion (N360 billion) taken from the Excess Crude Account supposedly to fight insecurity!
“The number of lives lost and that of people in displaced on a daily basis across the country is your responsibility which you must account for, but it is obvious that you only care about your ambition.
The increasing level of insecurity in the country has pushed the citizens to the wall and this will no doubt set this country on fire if you don’t do the needful and urgently too.
“Nigerians should bear in mind that the more money the President approves to fight insecurity, the more the country becomes insecure.”
While responding to a statement credited to the President where he said ‘he is one of the unhappiest leaders in the world’ Frank said that if the President is not happy he would have sacked “the incompetent and tired Service Chiefs and his Minister of Defence -who cannot secure even his family in Zamfara, his home state.”
He, however, called on the international community to urgently come to the aid of Nigerians security-wise to prevent the growing humanitarian situation in the country from getting out of hand under Buhari, as “the present administration has lost the capacity and will to protect the people.”
Comrade Timi Frank
Ex-APC Deputy National Publicity Secretary
Eliminating Gas Flare Remains Priority – NNPC
Eliminating gas flare with a view to bequeathing a pollution-free environment to future generations of Nigerians remains a priority of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
The corporation made this commitment at an event held today at the NNPC Towers to mark the World Environment Day.
A statement by the corporation’s Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, quoted the Group Managing Director, Dr. Maikanti Baru, as urging members of staff to maintain the NNPC business culture of “working not to harm the people or the environment”.
Addressing the management and staff on the theme of this year’s World Environment Day, “Air Pollution”, the GMD who was represented by the Chief Operating Officer (COO), Ventures, Dr. Babatunde Adeniran, said NNPC had put in place a lot of measures to mitigate the impact of oil and gas exploration activities on the environment.
“As a corporate organization, NNPC is determined to reducing harmful emissions that can impact air quality and the well-being of God’s creatures in all aspects of our operations.
“We are committed to finding ways to fully commercialize our natural gas resources to eliminate gas flare in all existing future gas projects”, he said.
Dr Baru noted that air pollution was a major issue in today’s industrial world that needed all hands to be on deck to tackle.
Also speaking at the event, the Guest Speaker, Mr. Goni Ahmed, former Director General, National Agency for the Great Green Wall, commended the NNPC for championing gas-flare reduction initiatives that had helped Nigeria move from 2nd to 7th position in the global gas flare rating.
He expressed satisfaction with the measures the corporation had deployed to tackle environmental issues in the Oil and Gas Industry and lauded the GMD for ensuring availability of petroleum products across the country.
Earlier in his welcome address, the General Manager, Group Health, Safety, Environment & Quality (GHSEQ) Department, Mr. Hussaini Ali, said the programme offerred everyone the opportunity to contribute to the quality of the air we breathe, noting that the task of ensuring safer environment was a collective responsibility.
In the same vein, Manager, Operations, NNPC Health Manager Organisation (HMO), Dr. Getrude Bassey, advocated for strong individual participation in environmental management to avoid the negative effects of environmental pollution such as cancer, respiratory diseases, among others.
NBC / AIT Faceoff Resolved.
Following the suspension of the Broadcast License of DAAR Communications Plc., owners of Africa Independent Television (AIT) and Ray Power FM by the National Broadcasting Commission ( NBC ), the President of the Nigerian Press Organisation ( NPO ) comprising of the Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN), Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria ( BON ), The Nigerian Guild of Editors ( NGE) and The Nigerian Union of Journalists ( NUJ), convened a meeting of all parties to resolve the issues in the national interest.
The meeting hosted at 8PM, on Sunday 9th of June, 2019, by elders and patrons of NPO, Mallam Ismaila Isa Funtua and Uncle Sam Amuka, had the following in attendance:
1. Ishaq Modibbo -Kawu – Director General & CEO, NBC;
2. High Chief Raymond Dokpesi, Founder and Chairman Emeritus, DAAR Communications Plc;
3. Raymond Dokpesi, jnr, Chairman of the Board, DAAR Communications PLC;
4. Mr Tony Akiotu, GMD, DAAR Communications Plc;
5. Mrs Tosin Dokpesi , MD, AIT;
6. Barrister Donatus Anopuo – Company Secretary DAAR Communications PLC;
7. Uncle Sam Amuka, Publisher, VANGUARD Group;
8. Mallam Ismaila Isa, Patron NPAN and
9. Nduka Obaigbena, President NPAN and President NPO.
At the meeting the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) restated their commitments to freedom of expression and the constitutionally guaranteed role of the media under sections 22 and 39 to hold governments accountable, which states amongst others that the press, radio, television and other agencies of mass media are to uphold the fundamental objectives contained in the 1999 constitution and ensure the responsibility and accountability of the Government to the people.
The NBC also raised concerns about the non-adherence of the DAAR Communications group (AIT/Ray Power) to the Nigeria Broadcasting Code, despite repeated interactions on same; the NBC then cited lack of editorial balance by DAAR Communications as well as the lingering issue of non-payment of national network license fees by DAAR Communications.
DAAR Communications Plc. defended its position saying it gives its team freedom to make editorial commentary on issues of the day relying on Section 39 of the Nigerian Constitution guaranteeing freedom of Expression, freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart ideas without interference.
DAAR stated it had made some payments on account to the NBC but acknowledged that there were some defaults in the payment plan they submitted to the NBC, and explained that the defaults were due to decisions jointly reached at BON meetings by all broadcasters to engage and renegotiate the cost of license fees with NBC, in view of the current difficult economic realities affecting the industry. But the NBC insists that license fees are statutory and thus non-negotiable.
After an exhaustive dialogue, all parties RESOLVED as follows:
1. DAAR Communications Plc. will work out a new realistic payment plan with the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) and ensure prompt payments in accordance with the new plan;
2. DAAR Communications Plc. will appoint an Ombudsman to ensure balance in its news coverage especially political commentary; it will also take full editorial responsibility for the use of content sourced from social media outlets;
3. Following this NPO statement, The NBC will immediately lift the suspension of the broadcast license of DAAR Communications Plc;
4. DAAR Communications Plc. will withdraw its case in court, against the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) and;
5. All parties will take necessary steps to work together to build confidence in the public interest.
Very Many Thanks!
Chairman & Editor-in-Chief, THISDAY / ARISE Group,
President , NPO.
NNPC Subsidiary , NGMC , Makes 12bn Profit
The Nigerian Gas Marketing Company (NGMC), a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), has announced a profit after tax of ₦12,476,685,000.00 (twelve billion, four hundred and seventy-six million, six hundred and eighty-five thousand naira) for the year ended 31 December, 2018.
This was disclosed at the company’s Annual General Meeting today in Abuja.
A press release by the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of NNPC, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, quoted the corporation’s Group Managing Director, Dr. Maikanti Baru, who is also the Chairman of the NGMC Board of Directors, as saying that the company’s performance was impressive considering the challenges it faced in its operations, notably pipeline vandalism.
The GMD who was represented by the Chief Operating Officer (COO), Gas and Power, Engr. Seidu Mohammed, said the company would do everything to sustain the impressive performance, adding that: “We have to expand our portfolio, we are going into the West African market to position ourselves as the best marketer of gas in the sub region”.
He stated that NGMC had already signed contracts with some companies in the Republic of Benin.
On his part, Managing Director of NGMC, Engr. Mohammad Barau, attributed the company’s impressive performance to the support given to it by the NNPC Management which helped to resolve some of its challenges and motivated the company to embark on an aggressive drive for customers, resulting in increased earnings.
The company’s total revenue for the year 2018 was ₦243.630billion compared to ₦275.162billion for 2017.
The decline in revenue was attributed to the move by the electric power generating companies to purchase gas directly from gas producers since June 2018.
The NGMC is mainly engaged in sourcing, marketing and distribution of natural gas to major industrial users and utility companies in Nigeria and the West Africa sub-region.
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