National Economic Council Grants States Relief

National Economic CouncilPresident Muhammadu Buhari has granted state governments relief from the monthly deductions regarding CBN salary assistance loans, to enable the states recover fully from the current financial crunch.

Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun said this while briefing State House correspondents on the outcome of the National Economic Council meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osibanjo.

The Minister called on the state governors to submit details of their financial data to enable the government to predict how much support they would be needing.

Also, the National Economic Council is to reconstitute the board of the Niger Delta Power Holding Company with representatives from the six geopolitical zones.

The National Economic Council also adopted the national road safety strategy document to address the current overlap and streamline the role and responsibility of the road safety management activities.

The council decried the current petrol crisis in the country urging Nigerians to be patient with the NNPC as efforts are in place to get the queues out by next week.

The National Economic Council (NEC) meeting, was summoned by the Presidency barely 24 hours after the Federal Executive Council meeting.

The meeting, presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, had most of the governors in attendance.

The meeting also discussed strategies to boost Nigeria’s reserves in the Excess Crude Account and then the power challenges in the country.

VP Osinbajo Presides Over National Economic Council Meeting

Economic CouncilBarely 24 hours after the Federal Executive Council meeting, another major executive meeting; the National Economic Council (NEC) meeting, has been summoned by the Presidency.

The meeting, presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, had most of the governors in attendance.

The meeting which ended at about 4:50PM, discussed the lingering fuel scarcity and the need for state authorities to pay salaries.

Also discussed were strategies to boost Nigeria’s reserves in the Excess Crude Account and then the power challenges in the country.

At the Federal Executive Council meeting held on Wednesday, short-term and long-term plans were made to revamp the nation’s refineries before the end of 2017 and also put an end to importation of petrol by 2019.

The FEC also said that petrol supply would be available before the end of May, with Port Harcourt and Kaduna Refineries supporting supplies.

It is expected that the ongoing National Economic Council meeting would be discussing ways to implement the plans by the Federal Executive Council.

The National Economic Council (NEC) held its retreat in March.

The March retreat, according to the Vice President, was to provide a forum for in-depth discussions by NEC members of the policy actions that the states and the Federal Government could consider in order to stimulate local production, cut costs and enhance public revenues among other measures to stimulate the economy.

The NEC comprises of the 36 state governors, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria and other co-opted members.

The NEC is chaired by the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo.

FEC Says Petrol Scarcity To End In May

FEC on petrol scarcityNigeria’s Federal Executive Council (FEC) says the government is working hard to put an end to petrol scarcity before the end of May.

At the meeting of the council on Wednesday, short-term and long-term plans were made to revamp the nation’s refineries before the end of 2017 and also put an end to importation of petrol by 2019.

The Council’s statement is coming amidst scarcity of petrol in the oil-rich nation, a situation that had led to loss of man-hour at fuel service stations across the nation.

After the meeting of the Council presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari, reporters were told that all refineries in the nation would resume production fully by 2017.

Sympathised With Nigerians

There are also plans to ensure that fuel importation will be reduced by 60 per cent by 2018 before a total end to it by 2019.

In the short term, however, the Council said petrol supply would be available before the end of May, with Port Harcourt and Kaduna Refineries supporting supplies.

The Council also sympathised with Nigerians on the hardship they face in long queues to get petrol at fuel service stations, blaming it on sabotage and fuel marketers who the Council claimed wanted to make quick money.

The Council also directed the Department of Petroleum Resources to enforce correct pump prices, promising that 1,200 trucks of Premium Motor Spirit also referred to as petrol would be delivered daily to end scarcity.

The Minister of Works, Power and Housing, Mr Babtunde Fashola, who spoke on the power outages, blamed the situation on insufficient gas supply and vandalism of the Forcados Plants which resulted in a drop in power from 5,000 megawatts to 3,000 megawatts.

Mr Fashola further expressed confidence that the ministry would meet a target of 10,000 megawatts set by the president for 2019.

FG Receives Repentant Niger Delta Militants 

Niger DeltaThe Federal Government will be receiving about 7,000 repentant militants in Akwa Ibom State on Saturday, January 23, 2016.

The Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta and Co-ordinator of the Amnesty Program, Retired Brigadier-General Paul Boroh said that the repentant militants declared their interest to disarm and join the Niger Delta Amnesty programme.

He was speaking to journalists after an inter-agency meeting to discuss the recent attack on pipelines in the Niger Delta.

General Boroh added that the ex-agitators have also declared their willingness to be involved in plans to ensure the security of pipelines and oil facilities in the region.

The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Pastor Usani Ugure, had earlier hosted an inter-agency meeting, where strategies on how to counter the attacks on oil facilities were discussed.

Warri Pipeline Explosion

Facilities belonging to the Nigeria Gas Company, Chevron Nigeria Limited and Nigeria National Petroleum Company, NNPC were blown up by suspected militants on Friday, January 15 in Warri South-West Local Government Area of Delta State.

This has forced the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, to announce the operational shutdown of the Port Harcourt and Kaduna Refineries owing to crude supply challenges arising from the attacks on vital crude oil pipelines.

Both the Nigerian Army and the Navy have described the attack as sabotage and terrorism which will not be tolerated.

The JTF Commander of Operation Pulo Shield in the Niger Delta, Major-General Alani Okunola, said that the task force had mobilised men to apprehend those who attacked the oil facilities.

He also warned community leaders that they would be held responsible for any attack on the country’s oil and gas facilities in their domains.

The Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas, while condemning the act, promised that no efforts would be spared in securing the lives and property of the citizens.

He also proposed the establishment of special courts and tribunals to tackle crimes in the maritime sector.

 

Pipeline Attack: NNPC Shuts Port Harcourt, Kaduna Refineries

Kaduna-Refinery-plant-refinery-nnpcThe Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, on Wednesday announced the operational shutdown of the Port Harcourt and Kaduna Refineries owing to crude supply challenges arising from recent attacks on vital crude oil pipelines.

A statement by the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of the NNPC, Ohi Alegbe, said that the plants were shut simultaneously on Sunday after the Bonny – Okrika crude supply line to the Port Harcourt Refinery and the Escravos-Warri crude supply line to the Kaduna Refinery suffered breaches.

The NNPC stated that before the closure, the Port Harcourt Refinery was recording a daily PMS yield of over 4.1 million litres while Kaduna Refinery was posting a daily petrol production of about 1.3 million litres.

The statement noted that the Warri Refining and Petrochemicals Company is still on stream and producing a little above 1.4 million Litres of petrol per day.

The Corporation however assured Nigerians that it had put in place strategies to guarantee unimpeded country-wide availability of petroleum products.

“In response to the unexpected setback, we have activated comprehensive remedial measures to sustain the prevailing stability in the supply and distribution of petroleum products across the country,” the NNPC said.