The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has described the coming into being of modular refineries in the country as the result of the enabling environment created by the Administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The Minister stated this in Ibigwe in Ohaji Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State on Tuesday during a media tour of the Waltersmith Modular Refinery and Petro-Chemical Company Limited, which is due for commissioning next month.
“We can show Nigerians that while every government has been talking about modular refineries, no government has succeeded in turning the dream into reality until now,” he said.
Alhaji Mohammed said with the coming on board of medium scale refineries like Waltersmith, Nigerians will soon experience cheaper petroleum products.
“With this kind of refinery, all issues of subsidy become completely irrelevant because we would be able to get fuel at a cheaper price, especially because everything that is being produced will be for local consumption,” he said.
The Minister lauded the partnership between the Waltersmith Refinery and the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board that holds a 30% stake in the refinery, which will start with 5,000bpd, add 25,000bpd in the second stage and then another 20,000bpd to bring the capacity to 50,000bpd in the third and final phase.
He said the Administration will continue to showcase its monumental achievements because it has performed well in the execution of projects across the country.
“I am glad we are here today blowing our trumpet because we have created an enabling environment for this project,” he said, after he and his entourage, as well as Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State and some members of the National Assembly, were taken on a tour of the refinery, one of many of its type that are in different stages of completion in the country.
In his remarks, the Executive Secretary, Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board, Mr. Simbi Wabote, said the Board believes that at least 10% of Nigeria’s oil production should be refined through the modular refineries, because of its capacity to generate employment.
“With an average of ten direct jobs created for every 1,000 barrels per day capacity of a modular refinery, we believe that about 2,500 direct jobs and over 25,000 indirect jobs can be created if 10% of Nigeria’s production is refined using modular refineries,” he said.
Also speaking, the Chairman of Waltersmith Modular Refinery and Petro-Chemical Company Limited, Mr. Abdulrazaq Isa, said from 14 October, 2020, 23 trucks will commence the loading of products such as Diesel, Kerosene, Heavy Fuel Oil and Naphtha from the refinery.
“What we are doing is in support of government initiative and this is coming at the right time as the government is deregulating the market,” he said. ”We really support the government policy on deregulation and removal of subsidies because it creates a market for what we are doing.”
The Minister and Governor Uzodinma, as well as the Chairman, Senate Committee on Information and National Communication, Senator Danladi Sankara; Chairman, House Committee on Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Value, Mr. Olusegun Odebunmi, and over 30 journalists were conducted round the production facilities of the refinery by the Chairman, Mr. Isa.
Special Assistant To The President (Media)
Office of The Minister of Information and Culture
WE’LL WORK CLOSELY WITH YOUR SECTOR, SANWO-OLU ASSURES CREATIVE INDUSTRY
…Governor, Mo Abudu, Omoni Oboli, Others Meet On Cinemas Reopening
…CEAN: “We’re Ready To Open Cinemas Anytime”
Lagos State Governor Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Wednesday reiterated his administration’s commitment to work collaboratively with the creative industry, saying that his government will do all that is possible to ensure that the sector thrives in the State.
The Governor stated this during a virtual meeting with members of the Cinema Exhibitors Association of Nigeria, CEAN and other key stakeholders in the Nigerian film industry.
Sanwo-Olu said Government is mindful of the economic impacts of the covid-19 lockdown on the entertainment industry particularly the cinema sector, promising to work with the association to achieve a win-win situation.
Representatives of CEAN during the meeting, expressed concerns about their sector, appealing to Governor Sanwo-Olu to reopen the cinemas and open up the sector for business. They promised to adhere strictly to the laid down Covid-19 safety guidelines.
Speaking on behalf of the association, Mr. Moses Babatope said the cinema owners are ready to reopen.
He said: “we are ready to open our cinemas any time today or tomorrow. Cinemas outside Lagos are already open and they are complying with all the necessary protocols. We understand that your office is being careful about health and safety of Lagosians but we also assure you that these are top considerations for us too.”
The association also requested that the Governor set up a film office whose function would include liaising with foreign investors while also serving as a major hub for the film industry in Lagos.
A film maker and one of the participants at the meeting, Omoni Oboli appealed to Governor Sanwo-Olu for tax waivers, saying that no one in the film industry has earned a revenue in the past six months.
“Mr. Governor, we want you to help us with some tax break. As you may be aware sir, none of us has earned any revenue in the past six months. We want you to use your good office to help our industry.”
Responding, Governor assured the film industry experts that he would ensure that government continues to protect their interest, saying he is a new convert having seen the level of creativity and economic importance of the sector.
He said: “we would work collaboratively with your industry. I am aware of the enormous challenges you face especially in this period of covid-19 pandemic. But as you know, we have to do what is right to protect the lives and property of millions of Lagosians.”
Governor Sanwo-Olu promised to look into all the requests made and return to them in due course.
Filmmaker and television host, Mosunmola Abudu, popularly called Mo Abudu moderated the meeting.
CHIEF PRESS SECRETARY
SEPTEMBER 16, 2020
FG, LASG STOP BARGE OPERATIONS ALONG MARINA COASTLINE
- NPA To Revoke Companies Approvals
- Lagos CP To Arrest, Prosecute Offenders
The Lagos Marina is set to regain its beauty and serenity, with the planned stoppage of barge operations along the coastline.
The Federal Government, in conjunction with Lagos State Government, on Tuesday ordered the stoppage of all such operations, which have desecrated the once beautiful and peaceful Marina coastline.
The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) is to revoke barge approvals granted some companies operating in Lagos.
The Minister of Transportation, Hon. Rotimi Amaechi, and the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who defied the early morning downpour to inspect the activities around the Marina coastline, made the stop-work order during an unscheduled visit to the Marina.
They went round the coastline, seeing the long row of trucks and containers that have constituted health and security hazards on the Marina. Amaechi and Sanwo-Olu kept on shaking their heads on seeing the devastation of the coastline that used to be the pride of the state, attracting crowds of visitors.
Amaechi and Sanwo-Olu found the “unwholesome” activities on the coastline “shocking” and “unacceptable”.
The Minister spoke of an urgent need to sanitise the entire Marina coastline and restore its tranquility and beauty.
He ordered that trucks must immediately stop coming to Marina to load.
Amechi said the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) did not grant anyone the permission to carry out barging operations, insisting that all such activities must stop immediately.
“The Federal Ministry of Transport has agreed with Lagos State Government to ensure that whoever is making use of Marina coastline should stop. We have agreed with Commissioner of Police to stop those using the roads and we have agreed with NPA to cancel all barge permits pending when each person will come back to NPA, NIWA and Lagos State Government to renew such approval,” he said.
Sanwo-Olu directed the Lagos State Commissioner of Police to arrest and prosecute anyone who flouts the order to stop ”unauthorized activities” on the Marina.
He said the State Government would do everything the to bring sanity to the coastline.
“We are also talking to the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing because we understand that some of the approvals were from the Federal Ministry of Works. So, we are also taking up that responsibility and we would do what we need do,” the governor said.
Also at the inspection were the Managing Director of NPA, Hadiza Bala Usman, representatives of NIWA, Ministries of Works and Waterfront as well as the Police.
COMMISSIONER FOR INFORMATION AND STRATEGY
SEPTEMBER 15, 2020
Niger Delta leaders, ICPC set for showdown over NDDC staff
The Niger Delta leaders and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) may be heading for showdown over the interrogation of senior management staff of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
Notable leaders in the region, under the aegis of the Niger Delta Leaders Forum (NDLF) on Friday described the action of ICPC as a distraction.
Addressing journalists in Port-Harcourt, the spokesperson of the NDLF, Chief John Harry, described the invitation of NDDC officials by ICPC as unnecessary and ill-motivated.
Chief Harry, who was flanked by Akwa-Ibom, Cross Rivers, Abia, Rivers, Imo, Bayelsa, Delta, Edo and Ondo representatives, condemned the interrogation of the Commission’s workers.
The leaders praised the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Chief Godswill Akpabio for redefining leadership in the region, sanitizing NDDC, decentralizing the functions of NDDC, finding solutions to the problems confronting the region and bringing the Commission closer to the ideals for which it was established.
‘’Chief Godswill Akpabio is the most positive Minister in the Niger Delta region’’
Specifically, the leaders commended Akpabio for the sense of independence in the interventionist agency.
‘’The approach of ICPC is bound to result in conflict with the mandate of the Interim Management Committee and the Act setting up the Commission. It is in every sense witch hunting’’
The leaders accused ICPC of disrupting the progress of the region.
‘What ICPC has done now is sabotage of the forensic agenda of President Muhammadu Buhari. The Interim Management Committee is a panacea for the region’s problem, IMC’s problem is understandable. Some politicians want to control the Commission. The idea of a minister who is not controlled by them is unthinkable’’
They urged President Buhari to ignore the antics of mischief makers and pecuniary seeking elements that are all out to bring down the minister and the IMC.
‘’There has been well oiled machinery by enemies of progress and failed politicians to bring down Akpabio and the Interim Management Committee. Those frustrated by the achievements recorded by the IMC are using ICPC against the Commission’’ the leaders said.