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World Bank Asked To Release Details Of Spending On Nigeria’s Electricity

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The World Bank President, Mr David Malpass has been asked to release details of spending on Nigeria’s electricity.

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) made the request to the bank to exercise its “prerogative to release archival records and documents relating to spending on all approved funds to improve access to electricity in Nigeria between 1999 and 2020, the Bank’s role in the implementation of any funded electricity projects, and to identify and name any executed projects, and Nigerian officials, ministries, departments and agencies involved in the execution of such projects.”

The World Bank Board of Directors last week approved $500m “to help boost access to electricity in Nigeria and improve the performance of the electricity distribution companies in the country.”

However, in an application dated 6 February 2021, and signed by SERAP deputy director Kolawole Oluwadare, the organization urged the bank to “explain the rationale for the approval of $500m to implement electricity projects in the country, despite reports of widespread and systemic corruption in the sector, and the failure of the authorities to enforce a court judgment ordering the release of details of payments to allegedly corrupt electricity contractors who failed to execute any projects.”

SERAP said: “This application is brought pursuant to the World Bank’s Access to Information Policy, which aims to maximize access to information and promote the public good. There is public interest in Nigerians knowing about the bank’s supervisory role and specifically its involvement in the implementation of electricity projects, which it has so far funded.”

SERAP maintained that, “The $500m is part of the over one billion dollars available to Nigeria under the project titled: Nigeria Distribution Sector Recovery Program. We would be grateful for details of any transparency and accountability mechanisms under the agreement for the release of funds, including whether there is any provision that would allow Nigerians and civil society to monitor the spending of the money by the government, its agencies, and electricity distribution companies.”

SERAP also said: “Should the bank fail and/or refuse to release the information and documents as requested, SERAP would file an appeal to the Secretariat of the Bank’s Access to Information Committee to challenge any such decision, and if it becomes necessary, to the Access to Information Appeals Board. SERAP may also consider other legal options outside the Bank’s Access to Information framework.”

The letter copied to Shubham Chaudhuri, World Bank Country Director for Nigeria, read in part: “SERAP believes that releasing the information and documents would enable Nigerians and civil society to meaningfully engage in the implementation of electricity projects funded by the bank, contribute to the greater public good, and enhance the bank’s oft-stated commitment to transparency and accountability.

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“The World Bank has been and continues to be involved in overseeing the transfer, disbursement, spending of funds on electricity projects in Nigeria. The bank also reportedly approved a $750 million loan for Nigeria’s electricity sector in June 2020 to cut tariff shortfalls, protect the poor from price adjustments, and increase power supply to the grid. As such, the World Bank is not a neutral party in this matter.

“SERAP is seriously concerned that the funds approved by the bank are vulnerable to corruption and mismanagement. The World Bank has a responsibility to ensure that the Nigerian authorities and their agencies are transparent and accountable to Nigerians in how they spend the approved funds for electricity projects in the country, and to reduce vulnerability to corruption and mismanagement.

“SERAP also believes that the release of the requested information and documents is of paramount important to the public interest in preserving the legitimacy, credibility and relevance of the bank as a leading international development institution. The bank ought to lead by example in issues such as transparency and public disclosure raised in this request.

“It would also demonstrate that the bank is willing to put people first in the implementation of its development and governance policies and mandates, as well as remove any suspicion of the bank’s complicity in the alleged mismanagement of electricity projects-related funds.

“The information is also being sought to improve the ongoing fight against corruption in the country and the provision of regular and uninterrupted electricity supply to Nigerians as a fundamental human right.

“The information requested is not affected by the “deliberative” “corporate administrative matters” or “security and safety” exceptions under the Policy. The information requested is crucially required for Nigerians to know how the funds released to the authorities to improve electricity supply in the country have been spent, and monitor how the funds are being used.

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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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Short-term Vs Long-term Investing – The More Sure Path To Financial Freedom

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There are two paths people take when seeking to achieve financial freedom. The first path is the short-term investing path and the second is

 By

Grace Agada

There are two paths people take when seeking to achieve financial freedom. The first path is the short-term investing path and the second is the long-term investing path.  If you were to choose a path based on the timeline alone, the short-term investing path will be the obvious choice. But that will be an unwise decision to make. The wiser decision is to ask yourself if there are more important criteria to consider than timeline – and there are. For example, you need to ask yourself – Why am I investing and what end goal am I trying to achieve? You also need to know which of these two investment paths will deliver your desired end results faster? And finally, you need to know the path that possesses the most guarantee of delivering your desired result. Answering these questions will give you a better perspective on which path to choose and follow.

For example, we know from experience that not all shortcuts eventually become shortcuts. Most shortcuts turn out to be longer cuts at the end of the day. So, you need to be sure that a shortcut will end up being a shortcut for you. It is also important to note that the timeline of a thing is not as important as whether you achieve the goal you set out to achieve in the end. Thus, hinging your investment decision based on timeline alone is a short-sighted approach to investing.

For over 12 decades research shows that 80% of working professionals have been matching into retirement with a lower quality life. All of them are investors that have engaged in one form of short-term investing or another . Some have even spent their entire career life investing. Yet, all of them fail to achieve financial freedom before retirement. If short-term investing were really working short-term, it would have been possible to achieve financial freedom within a 30-year work life. But for many this is not so. Thus if you spend your active career life investing in ways that deliver everything else but the ultimate goal of investing, then you have simply wasted your time and pain awaits you in retirement.

READ ALSO: How To Make Your Financial Freedom Dreams Come Through Half The Time

The truth is financial freedom cannot be achieved through short-term investing efforts. Especially when these efforts come with little or no guarantees. But you also do not need 30 years of active investing to achieve financial freedom. You can achieve financial freedom in half the time if you invest in ways that hit financial freedom straight on the head. The more guarantee you can have on an investment path the more likely it is that you will achieve your desired end goal. Investing is thus not a guarantee to financial freedom.  You can invest all you want and still not achieve financial freedom. The only way to achieve financial freedom is to enter the financial freedom path.

So, what is the financial freedom path?

The financial freedom path is the path that leads to financial freedom. To succeed on this path, you need four things. The first is time. The second is money. The third is a plan. And the fourth is investment neutrality.

Time is a critical factor in investing as it gives everyone a level playing ground. With time a person with little resources can achieve comparable investment results like the person that has large resources but no time. Without the introduction of time people with little resources cannot afford investing or achieve comparable results like their richer counterparts.  Thus, if you still have time but little resources, you should leverage  time as time is your greatest asset. The only way to achieve financial freedom with little resources but ample time is to focus on investing for financial freedom and not rush after quick and unstable returns.

Money is also another big advantage if you lack time. With the right size of money, you can achieve financial freedom within a shorter time. But this will only be possible if you have the right plan and follow the right guidance. The right plan is a financial freedom investing plan. And the right guidance is an advisor who themselves have achieved financial freedom. No amount of money is immune to a loss. And despite the amount of money that you have you can lose all of it or tie it down in the wrong investments with the wrong plan and advice. Thus, if you have money, the only other thing that can hold you back is the wrong plan and advice.

Take a look at your own life for a moment and assess where you are and the goals that you have accomplished. All of them were  made possible by the plan and advice you have followed before now. While they have brought you this far, they may not be able to take you further. If you have not yet achieved financial freedom, chances are high that they have taken their full course. To move to the next level, you need a new plan and advisor.

READ ALSO: Middle-Class Poverty And How To Escape The Rich Dad, Poor Dad, Same Dad Syndrome

BLastly you need to develop investment neutrality and approach investing from a result-based perspective. Many people fall in love with their investments such that they cannot move away from a bad investment decision or detach from a low performing investment. They fall in love so badly that they are blinded by emotions. Here is some advice, if this is you. You can invest your love in your spouse, your children and your neighbor. If you still have some love left, send some my way wrapped as a gift- I will take it if it keeps you from throwing all that love on your investments. Your goal as an investor seeking to achieve financial freedom is not to love the investment. But to choose only investments that can deliver financial freedom. You must detach your emotion from investing if you will ever achieve success. If you can invest 10, 20 or 30 years of your life going to a job that you do not necessarily love just to pay the bills, you can invest objectively in investments that deliver the right results and forget about your feelings or ego.

You have a 30 year career life, a crawling salary, time that is tied to one source of income and a disturbing retirement gate. You cannot invest like everybody else.  To achieve financial freedom, you must decide to think like the wealthy class. The wealthy class never pursue quick wins or get rich quick schemes. They are methodical, strategic and are the wealthiest people on the planet. If we are to compare results, their results show that their way is working. If you will ever achieve financial freedom, you must learn their ways. The ultimate goal of investing is to achieve financial freedom. Any investment effort that falls short of this goal will keep you in perpetual financial bondage.

If you need help getting on the financial freedom path, we can help you. Send an email to info@createsolidwealth.com

Bio

Grace O. Agada is the most sought-after financial planning expert in Nigeria. She is a renowned author, financial expert and keynote speaker. Agada  is popularly known as the Upper-Class Mentor and her goal is to help working professionals escape middle-class poverty and transition to the upper class. Agada is the author of three books and possibly the most widely read financial articles. Her articles are spread across seven national newspapers and four of the most popular Nigerian blogs. Agada  is also the Founder of the University of Wealth, the Rich Retirement Bootcamp, and the Wealthy Business MBA Programme. Agada has been featured on BBC Africa. Business Day TV. Inspiration FM. and inside Naijatv. And she consults for numerous top organizations, company directors, CEOs, senior executives, and high-income Professionals.

 

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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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