The Nigerian government has given the National Agricultural and Land Development (NALDA) a go-ahead to permanently instate 30,000 agricultural and other sciences graduates to handle soil tests and other responsibilities for the agency.
The Federal Government has directed the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) to immediately suspend the recently adjusted electricity tariff. This was disclosed on Thursday in a statement by the Minister of Power, Sale Mamman. On Tuesday, NERC increased electricity tariff to be paid by power consumers nationwide. The commission claimed the adjustment was due to inflation amongst other factors. Mamman said, “The public is aware that the Federal Government and Labour Centres have been engaged in positive discussions about the electricity sector through the joint ad-hoc Committee led by the Minister of State for Labour and Productivity and Co-Chaired by the Minister of State for Power. Great progress has been made in these deliberations which are set to be finalized by the end of January, 2021.
The crude oil price has shown strength on Thursday as the Brent Crude traded at $50 per barrel, recording a 2 percent gain and also, the highest it has been since March 2020 amid the remarkable development of the COVID-19 vaccine. At the end of the trading session in London, Brent traded at $50.34 PB, while U.S West Texas Intermediate traded at $46.96 PBD. The increase in crude oil price is attributed to the deal struck by the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on December 3rd where the group agreed to lift production in January by 500,000 BPD. This was following a price war by Saudi Arabia and Russia during the COVID-19 pandemic in March.
The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami, has approved the development and release of an improved National Identity Number (NIN) slip and a mobile application that will help in securing NIN. Dr. Femi Adeluyi, Technical Assistant, Information Technology to the ministry, made this known in a statement late Thursday in Abuja. Adeluyi said this development was part of the Federal Government’s policy to improve the process of obtaining NIN and linking it to Subscribers Identification Module (SIM) and also aligning with the national digital economy policy for a digital Nigeria.
The Federal Government has on Wednesday said it will offer insurance cover for assets in 22 airports owned by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) and the expansion of the apron of the Maiduguri Airport. The approval was done during the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided by President Muhammadu Buhari, adding that the contracts of the Kano, Kaduna, and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) roads have been approved. Speaking on the insurance of the aviation sector, Information minister, Lai Mohammed told State House correspondents that the contract which totals N758,173,556 were approved following a presentation by the aviation minister, Hadi Sirika.
President Muhammadu Buhari has on Thursday in Abuja signed the 2021 appropriation bill into law, the Presidency disclosed. This is after both chambers passed the N13.6 trillion (13,588,027,886,107) on December 21st, approving the proposed budget. The assenting of the budget will sustain the 1st January to 31st December 2021 fiscal cycle.The budget comprises total Capital Supplementation of N1,060,751,051,650 while, statutory transfer is at 496,528,471,273; recurrent expenditure is N5,641,970,060,680. Also, N3,324,380,000 trillion for debt servicing while N5,641,970,060,680 is for Recurrent Expenditure; and N4,125,149,354,222 for Capital Expenditure.
G7 finance ministers and central bankers have expressed the need to control and regulate digital currencies during a virtual meeting of officials held on Monday. Olaf Scholz German Finance Minister expressed his concerns about authorizing the launch of Facebook's Libra cryptocurrency, newly renamed Diem in Germany and Europe.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) announced the take-off of the Federal Government’s N200bn social housing scheme. The housing scheme which is targeted at providing low-budget housing for 300,000 Nigerians is part of the Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP). This was disclosed in a statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the Vice President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Laolu Akande. He said 20 states, including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), had already shown interest in the housing scheme, adding that it would provide jobs for 1.8 million Nigerians.
The Direction-General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Captain Musa Nuhu has said the Nigerian aviation sector is likely to experience mergers among airlines due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. He made this known on Saturday while assessing the impact of the pandemic on the aviation industry during a televised interview on NTA. "The COVID-19 pandemic exaggerated a bad situation; some airlines may not survive but the industry will come back better. It has always gone through crisis but has come out stronger. The Airlines Operators of Nigeria are coming together to see what they can do to help the situation and they met with me. The industry will be different altogether," Capt. Nuhu said.
The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria has promoted a cashless policy to optimize its revenue collection and reduce leakages. The Managing Director of FAAN, Captain Rabiu Yadudu, disclosed this when the House Committee on Aviation visited the agency’s facilities at the Lagos Airport. Listing some of the steps to push this drive, Yadudu informed that the agency had suspended the procurement of non-essential items, reduced staff related cost, and embarked on a debt recovery drive hampered by the COVID-19 pandemic.
In spite of the recent federal government pronouncement that the nation’s land borders would be re-opened soon after being closed for over a year, indications from across the country are that state commands of the main security agencies manning the borders –the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) are still awaiting an official directive, hence there is no practical preparation at the borders yet to that effect.