Worried by unabated kidnapping and festering banditry threatening the peace of the nation, All Progressives Congress (APC) leaders in the Southwest met in Lagos on Sunday to deliberate the way forward.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu hosted the meeting, which was held behind closed doors for about five hours, at the State House in Marina. APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, which was chaired by the former APC interim national chairman, Chief Bisi Akande, and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila.
Others are Governors of Ogun and Osun states, Prince Dapo Abiodun and Gboyega Oyetola, Minister for Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo, former Ogun State Governor, Aremo Olusegun Osoba, Gen. Alani Akinrinade (rtd), and Chief Pius Akinyelure.
Coming out of the meeting, the APC leaders strongly condemned separatist agitations and hate speeches, avowing their belief in the unity, stability and sustainability of the country. They also threw their weight behind the position of Southern Governors on open grazing taken during a summit held on May 11, 2021 in Asaba, Delta State.
Chief Akande, who spoke on behalf of the APC leaders, said the attendees endorsed the ban on open grazing, as the decision would lessen tensions between farmers and herders, while also helping the long-term economic viability of both the farming and herding communities.
He said the party leaders were mindful of the short-term dislocation the ban on open grazing might cause, but added the Southern Governors’ decision was in the best interests of all parties concerned.
The party leaders urged the Federal Government to provide short, medium and long-term finance through the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for States and private individuals who may wish to set up ranches as part of the agricultural sustainability policy.
He said: “We endorse the position of the Southern Governors taken at their summit in Asaba regarding ranching. We do so because such a decision will lessen tensions between farmers and herders while also helping the long-term economic viability of both the farming and herding communities. We are mindful of the short-term dislocation this might cause but we are also mindful that this position is in the best interests of all parties concerned.
“We recommend that the Federal and State Governments cooperate fully with one another to enact the necessary measures to encourage this more effective and modern method of cattle-rearing so that both farmers and herders can pursue their livelihoods with greater productivity and in a more cooperative relationship that minimises the friction between these two important pillars of our agricultural economy.”
The APC leaders expressed their concerns on security situation in the country, stressing that terrorism and criminality were threatening livelihoods of Nigerians adversely in many areas.
They urged the Federal Government to continue to allocate sufficient resources to enable the military and security agencies to tackle the security challenges.
The Southwest party leaders used the occasion to renew their call for restructuring and true federalism, where more power and resources are allocated to States to strengthen democratic governance and engender peace.
True federalism, they argued, will empower States to solve localised issues before they transform into national problem. The party stalwarts said aside mitigating political competition for control of power, federalism would empower grassroots economic development and political reforms that will stand as bulwarks against the terrorism and criminality.
The communique reads in part: “For Nigeria to overcome the present challenges, we must do so with unity of purpose and action. The desire for peace and the chance for a prosperous and just society is universal and transcends all regional, religious or ethnic divisions. Sadly, many public figures have made statements that spark division and undermine the needed unity of purpose.
“We urge government at all levels, security agencies, and public leaders across the country to do everything possible to prevent tension so that we sustain the necessary unity to defeat these challenges to our national security. All responsible Nigerians must speak and act in a manner that strengthens our common cause against these common threats to our collective peace, justice and development.
“We restate our abhorrence of violence as a means to achieve either political or economic power and influence. We strongly condemn violence of any form in any part of the country, regardless of ethnic or regional identity of the perpetrators of the violence or of the victims. Government must do all it can to protect potential victims and to assist those who have previously been victimized by terrorism or widespread banditry.
“We hold to the view that true federalism where more power and resources are allocated to the states will be an essential part in strengthening society and improving democratic governance so that we beat the present challenges but also engender durable peace and security. True federalism and the reallocation of resources and authority that comes with it will empower the states to solve localised issues before they spread and transform into national ones.”
Oníìdúró mi, Ẹ ṢÉ OOO…Shola Allyson
LAGOS POLICE LAUNCH NEW EQUIPMENT, FLOOD FLASH POINTS, ARREST 19 SUSPECTED TRAFFIC ROBBERS
The Lagos State Police Command immediately swung into action on a show of force across strategic locations in Lagos today Thursday 10th June, 2021, with some of the newly received security vehicles and gadgets from the Lagos State Govenrment, just after the Commissioning of the equipment by the President and Commader-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari today at the Police College,Ikeja-Lagos.
The RRS team, led by the Commander RRS, CSP Yinka Egbeyemi, in the process hit notorious flashpoints in Agege, Seven Up cum Ojota axis, Surulere to Eko bridge where notorious traffic robbers and miscreants have been terrorising innocent motorists and commuters, and arrested nineteen (19) suspected traffic robbers. The operation is ongoing and currently mounting surveillance on the Eko bridge.
The Commissioner of Police, Lagos State, CP Hakeem Odumosu, has ordered the Area Commanders, Divisional Police Officers and tactical Commanders, especially the Commander RRS, CSP Yinka Egbeyemi, to make judicious use of the newly donated equipment and decimate the activities of hoodlums at the identified areas across the state. He further directed that additional traffic surveillance officers, with motor bikes, be deployed to the strategic places in the state in order to suppress keep criminals at bay.
CP Hakeem Odumosu also assured the general public of adequate security of lives and property in the state, while he orederd that the suspects be transferred to the Command’s Special Squad for thorough investigation.
NDPHC, Eko Disco, address electricity supply shortfall in Lekki and Agbara
In order to improve electricity supply around Ibeju-Lekki area in Lagos and Agbara Industrial area in Ogun State, the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) and Eko Electricity Distribution Company Plc (Eko Disco), have signed a bilateral agreement for the sale of up to 300MW of power from NDPHC’s power plants to customers in these areas within Eko Disco’s franchise areas.
The Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu who hosted the signing of the agreement for these projects at Lagos House, Marina recently, commended the initiative by NDPHC and Eko Disco, and stated that “he will monitor the implementation of the agreement.” The Governor expressed his confidence that the collaboration between NDPHC and Eko Disco will complement the current policies of the state government in economic and infrastructure development.
NDPHC and Eko Disco have committed to work together to deliver safe, reliable and steady supply of power to customers in the areas of collaboration. The project will be structured to remove the commercial and technical inefficiencies in the Nigerian electricity market and will mobilise significant capital investment in transmission/distribution infrastructure and metering technology.
In his remarks, the NDPHC Managing Director/CEO, Mr. Chiedu Ugbo stated that the challenges in the industry inspired NDPHC to “source alternative means to sell and ensure dispatch of its stranded power generation capacity and explore innovative ways to unlock investment in infrastructure for improved supply to customers.”
In turn, the MD of Eko Disco, Engr. Adeoye Fadeyibi said that the partnership aligns with the efforts of the Eko Disco to bridge the metering gap and improve the quality of electricity supply to customers. He appreciated customers for their continued support for the Company in its quest to continue to empower the quality of lives of all stakeholders.
The agreement signed between NDPHC and Eko Disco is only the latest milestone in NDPHC’s innovative and ambitious programme to tackle the industry-wide challenges in the Nigerian power sector. These challenges have resulted in the inability of the operators in the industry to fulfil their investment and industry payment obligations, and a continuing low access to reliable power for industry, businesses and homes.
Despite a significant installed generation capacity – estimated to be more than 13,000 MW – access to electricity remains acutely low because much of this installed capacity is stranded and cannot be conveyed to customers because of inadequate transmission and distribution capacity. Operators insist that tariffs remain at a level that cannot guarantee returns for investors in the sector and as a result, an estimated $20 billion capital investment required to upgrade the transmission and generation infrastructure is not available. Insufficient investment in metering, collection and surveillance, among other factors, has also made collections by the distribution companies inefficient, thereby causing revenue loss across the value chain. A combination of these factors has led to severe liquidity shortfalls and a ballooning deficit in the market, and there simply is not enough collections from customers to cover the cost of power generation and delivery. The Federal Government has on several occasions intervened with financial bailouts to the sector, but this solution is only short term and is becoming an increasingly heavy burden on a cash-strapped government struggling with low oil prices and a struggling national economy.
The operators in the industry have had to innovate or go out of business. It is in this regard that NDPHC is blazing a trail in structuring deals that are solving many of the industry-wide challenges affecting its business. NDPHC, holds a portfolio of 10 power plants with aggregate installed capacity of more than 4,000MW and growing. To ensure that much of its capacity does not remain idle, NDPHC, with support from Electric Utilities Nigeria Limited, is now targeting to work with discos and other project developers to, in the first phase, sell more than 1,000MW from its power plants in manner that resolves the current commercial and technical inefficiencies in the market without a need for government funding intervention.
In addition to the agreement signed with Eko Disco, NDPHC has executed similar agreements with Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Enugu Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company Plc and Benin Electricity Distribution Company Plc. In each case, the parties will mobilise investment in the expansion of the distribution network of the discos to enable increased offtake of power and in metering technology including smart meters in order to increase the collection rate of the discos.
For NDPHC, these collaborations will lead to greater offtake of power from its under-dispatched power plants, thereby increasing the company’s revenue. For the industry generally, these collaborations will attract the requisite investment in the industry and increase liquidity that enables higher payment receipts across the value chain. Now that NDPHC has executed the agreements with 5 discos and more in the pipeline, it is projected that the impact on the Nigerian power sector will be massive in improving electricity access, market payments and attracting more investments to the industry.
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