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WTO May Name Okonjo-Iweala DG On Monday

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High Expectations As Okonjo-Iweala Becomes WTO DG Tomorrow

The World Trade Organisation (WTO) may on Monday, February 15 confirm former Finance Minister Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala Okonjo-Iweala as its next Director-General.

A notice posted on the international trade body’s website on Tuesday contained this hint.

WTO said in the statement: “The WTO’s General Council will hold a special meeting on 15 February at 15:00 Geneva time to consider the appointment of the next Director-General. The meeting will take place in a virtual format.”

If announced as the Director-General, Dr Okonjo-Iweala will be making history as the first African and the first woman to occupy the exalted office.

The race for a new DG for WTO started in May 2020 following the announcement by the former incumbent, Roberto Azevêdo, to step down on August 31, 2020, a year ahead of the expiration of his tenure, as the body called for nomination.

The nominees were pruned from the initial eight to five and eventually two; Okonjo-Iweala and South Korean Trade Minister Yoo Myung-hee.

Okonjo-Iweala enjoyed massive support across the region and was set to emerge as the new DG but the United States, under former President Donald Trump, did not support the former Nigerian finance minister candidature and that created a hiatus since the practice in  is that the DG must be a product of consensus.
READ ALAO: Contractors Storm N’ Assembly, Protest Against Non-payment Of N8b
Mr Joe Biden’s administration has, however, lent its support to Okonjo-Iweala, which set the stage for Okonjo-Iweala to emerge as the consensus candidate.

Yoo Myung-hee, Okonjo-Iweala’s major rival, officially withdrew from the race last week, and said in a tweet that she would “work closely with the new DG.”

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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 Orders Incorporation Of NNPC Limited, Names 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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How Bureaux De Change Finance Terrorism – CBN

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How Bureaux De Change Finance Terrorism - CBN

The Central Bank of Nigeria ( CBN) has moved to shut down the operations of Aboki FX, a website providing currency exchange information, which the bank described as an illegal and criminal platform.

CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele who disclosed this while fielding questions after the Monetary Policy Committee’s two-day meeting in Abuja on Friday, noted that the bank also plans to prosecute the owner of the platform, Olusegun Oniwinde.

He said: “I have given instructions to our experts to go after his website and let it be clear that we will go after him because we can’t allow this to continue.”

According to Emefiele, the CBN doesn’t recognize any forex market window besides the Investors and Exporters window.

Naira-dollar exchange rate has soared on the platform in the last couple of days. The platform currently recommends that bureau de change operators buy dollar at N560 and sell at N570.

On ban of forex sales to bureau de change operators, Emefiele said that the bank would not go back on its previous stance.

READ ALSO: CBN Bans Sale Of Dollars To Bureau De Change Operators

According to him, these BDC operators sell foreign exchange to criminals who import weapons to harm Nigerians and promote different forms of terrorism.

The CBN governor said: “It truly beats my imagination that Nigerians continued with this type of practice (selling dollars to BDC) that tended to promote illegal activities who are involved in graft and corrupt practices.

“We won’t support the corrupt tendencies of those who illegally buy dollars from our forex market, carry them in aircraft, buy arms and ammunition and bring them back into the country and conduct crimes. Whether it is Boko Haram, banditry and other nefarious activities.”

“Why will CBN give people our forex to go and buy arms? And that is what people want us to continue to do. We cannot do that. What we are saying is that if you have any legitimate need for forex, take it to the bank and they will sell you FOREX.”

 

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