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Buhari Asks Senate To Approve $4b, €710m External Loans

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Buhari Asks Senate To Approve $4b, €710m External Loans

President Muhammadu Buhari has asked the Senate to approve $4 billion and €710 million external loans.

The request was contained in a letter addressed to Senate President Ahmad Lawan and read at plenary on Tuesday.

According to the president, the proposed loan would be financed through sovereign loans from the World Bank, French Development Agency, EXIM Bank and IFAD.

Buhari noted that the loan, if approved, would enable the Federal Government to fund critical infrastructural projects in different sectors across the country.

READ ALSO: Six Nigerians Named As Financiers Of Boko Haram, Others

The letter reads: “I write on the above subject and submit the attached addendum to the proposed 2018-2020 external rolling borrowing plan for the consideration and concurrent approval of the Senate for the same to become effective.

“The distinguished Senate President may recall that we submitted a request on 2018-2020 borrowing plan for the approval of the Senate in May 2021.

“However, in view of other emerging needs and to ensure that all critical projects approved by FEC as of June 2021 are incorporated, I hereby forward an addendum to the proposed borrowing plan.

“The projects listed in the external borrowing plan are to be financed through sovereign loans from the World Bank, French Development Agency, EXIM Bank and IFAD in the total sum of $4,054,476,863 and €710 million and grant components of $125 million.”

 

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Buhari Asks Senate To Amend PIA, Ignores Oil Areas’ Demand For 5%

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Buhari Asks Senate To Amend PIA, Ignores Oil Areas' Demand For 5%

As President Muhammadu Buhari seeks to amend certain provisions of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), he is silent on the demand of oil communities for five percent equity share.

The joint National Assembly committees that worked on the PIB had proposed a five per cent equity share for the development of the host communities but the Senate led the campaign for its reduction to three per cent while the House of Representatives approved the panel’s recommendation.

The conference committee set up by the presiding officers of both chambers in their recommendation, fixed the equity share at three per cent and was invariably approved by the National Assembly.

The development degenerated into a controversy with senators from the South-South geopolitical zone kicking against it and asked Buhari to resolve the impasse by seeking an amendment to increase the equity share to five per cent.

However, the new amendments proposed by the president did not address the concerns of the South-South stakeholders.

READ ALSO: Why Buhari Govt Won’t Name, Shame Financiers Of Terrorism – Adesina

Rather, Buhari’s fresh request centred basically on the need to review the administrative structure of the Upstream Regulatory Commission and the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority.

Buhari is seeking the senators’ approval to increase the numbers of the non-executive board members of each of the regulatory agencies from two to six, in order to capture the six geopolitical zones.

He said: “The Petroleum Industry Act 2021 provided for the appointment of two non- executive members for the board of the two regulatory institutions.

“I am of the view that this membership limitation has not addressed the principle of balanced geopolitical representation of the country.

“Therefore, I pray for the intervention of the 9th Assembly to correct this oversight in the interest of our national unity.

“Needless to add that this amendment will provide a sense of participation and inclusion to almost every section of the country in the decision making of strategic institutions such as oil industry.

“if this amendment is approved, it will now increase the number of the non-executive members from two to six that is one person from each of the six geopolitical zones of the country.”

The president also removed the ministers of finance and petroleum resources from the board of the two agencies.

According to him, the two ministers already have constitutional responsibilities of either supervision or inter-governmental relations.
He said: “They can continue to perform such roles without being on the board.

“It is also important to note that administratively, the representatives of the ministries on the board will be directors – being the same rank with the directors in the institution

“This may bring some complications in some decision-making especially on staff-related matters.”

READ ALSO: How Buhari’s Panel Sold Six-storey Building For Paltry N100m

Buhari added that the appointments of the executive directors who would be in charge of the seven departments in the NMDPRA should not be subjected to Senate confirmation since they are civil servants who were promoted in the course of their career.

He said :“The Act has made provision for seven departmental heads in the Authority to be known as executive directors.

“Their appointment (according to the PIA) will also be subjected to Senate confirmation. This category of officers are civil servants and not political appointees.

“The Senate is invited to note the need to exempt serving public officers from the established confirmation process for political appointments.

“This will ensure effective management of the regulatory institutions through uniform implementation of public service rules for employees of the Authority.

“In the future, these positions will obviously be filled by the workers in the Authority.”

Buhari said the proposed amendment would also increase the membership of the board from nine to 13 members that is representing 44 per cent expansion of the board site.

He said: “This composition would strengthen the institutions and guarantee national spread and also achieve the expected policy contributions.”

 

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Obasanjo Lashes Out At Buhari Over Borrowing

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Obasanjo Lashes Out At Buhari Over Borrowing

Erstwhile President Olusegun Obasanjo has condemned the Federal Government’s plan to take fresh loans amid criticism by Nigerians over incessant borrowing by the current administration.

While speaking to Channels Television in South Africa, Obasanjo described as criminal, the alleged move to accumulate debts for the next generation to pay.

Obasanjo expressed worries that if the existing debts remain unserviced or unpaid by the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, it might become a huge problem for successive governments.

The president, a few days ago, requested the approval of the National Assembly to borrow the fresh sums of $4,054,476,863 and €710 million.

READ ALSO: Buhari Orders Incorporation Of NNPC Limited, Names Board Members

Reacting, the former president who believes that borrowing is not a problem, however, stated that the challenge would be the utilization of the borrowed fund and the plan or capacity to pay back.

He said: “But if you are borrowing and accumulating debts for the next generation and the next generation after them, it is criminal. What are you borrowing for?

“If we are borrowing for recurrent expenditure, it is the height of folly. If we are borrowing for development that can pay for itself, that is understandable. Then the payment, how long will it take to pay itself?”

 

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Buhari Orders Incorporation Of NNPC Limited, Names Board Members

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Buhari Appoints EFCC Board Members

President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered the incorporation of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited.

In a statement on Sunday by the Special Adviser to the President (Media and Publicity), Femi Adesina, he said that the president gave the order in his capacity as the Minister of Petroleum.

“This is in consonance with Section 53(1) of the Petroleum Industry Act 2021, which requires the Minister of Petroleum Resources to cause for the incorporation of the NNPC Limited within six months of commencement of the Act in consultation with the Minister of Finance on the nominal shares of the Company,” the statement said.

The statement said the Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mr Mele Kolo Kyari, had been directed to take necessary steps to ensure that the incorporation of the NNPC Limited is consistent with the provisions of the PIA 2021.

READ ALSO: How Bureaux De Change Finance Terrorism – CBN

President Buhari has also approved the appointment of the Board and Management of the NNPC Limited, with effect from the date of incorporation of the company.

The President named Senator Ifeanyi Ararume aa Chairman of the Board while Mele Kolo Kyari and Umar I. Ajiya were appointed as Chief Executive Officer, and Chief Financial Officer, respectively.

Other Board Members are; Dr Tajudeen Umar (North East), Mrs Lami O. Ahmed (North Central), Mallam Mohammed Lawal (North West), Senator Margaret Chuba Okadigbo (South East), Barrister Constance Harry Marshal (South South), and Chief Pius Akinyelure (South West).

 

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