The President condoled with the government and people of Germany, as well as family and friends of the great preacher and teacher of the Bible.
He also commiserated with Bonnke’s co-labourers in the vineyard and prayed that the good Lord would comfort all those that mourn him.
President Buhari affirmed that Bonnke’s crusades in Nigeria, across Africa and the globe strongly accentuated the message of Jesus Christ.
He added that the preacher’s vision and zeal for the salvation of souls clearly helped the world in understanding the power of love and kindness as a universal language.
The President prayed that the Almighty God would accept the soul of the departed preacher, believing that his legendary contributions to the body of Christ in teaching and writing would always be remembered by posterity.
The Nigerian Government has condemned the attack on the Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Amaechi, in Spain.
Mr Amaechi who is in Madrid for a climate change event came under attack by some Nigerians living in the European country.
He explained via his Twitter handle that it took the intervention of the Spanish police to bring the situation under control, adding that he was not hurt.
Some minutes ago, I was attacked by a few misguided Nigerians while on national assignment at a climate change event in Madrid, Spain. They were quickly repelled by the Spanish police before they could do any harm. I am fine. I was not hurt. Thanks for your support & prayers.
Professor Rasheed made the disclosure at the annual retreats for Vice-Chancellors of all universities in the country which held between October 28 and November 5 at the NUC Headquarters in Abuja.
He explained that the fake professors’ details were posted on the commission’s website, forcing it to send the names to the various universities for verification.
The NUC scribe urged the vice-chancellors to delegate desk officers to check the list of professors in their respective universities before uploading the same on the provided website.
He, however, commended them for their cooperation with the NUC Strategy Advisory Committee (STRADVCOM) which published the Directory of Full Professors in the Nigeria University System (NUS and Statistical Digest of the NUS 2017-2018, among others.
Professor Rasheed announced that the updated version of those documents would be published by December 2019, adding that the essence was to make the NUS very visible both locally and internationally.
He gave assurance that the statistical digest would be updated every first quarter of the year.
Stressing that the fight against fake professors was a collective responsibility, he asked the vice-chancellors to make sure they have accurate statistics of staff, students, and other components in their respective universities off-hand.
He revealed that a lot of anomalies were found in private universities, including the issue of someone who had barely taught for two years being awarded professorship.
Consequently, the NUC scribe appealed to the vice-chancellors to notify the commission about any fake professor in their respective universities and their environs.
He thanked them for compelling professors in the irrespective universities to upload their curricula vitae on the website which was used in the compilation of the directory of full professors in the Nigeria University System (NUS) and had helped in identifying the fake professors.
The retreat was organised in three separate meetings with federal, state and private universities’ vice-chancellors respectively.
It was aimed at rubbing minds with the university bosses on their responsibilities in the NUS, as well as discussing their challenges with a view to addressing and finding solutions to them.
The NUC scribe assured vice-chancellors of federal universities that the government would continue to ensure that technocrats and elder statesmen were appointed as Chairmen and Pro-Chancellors of Governing Councils of federal universities.
A former governorship candidate, Mr Babatunde Gbadamosi, believes there is a need for the Federal Government to be more proactive in order to save Nigeria from sinking.
Speaking during an appearance on Sunday Politics, Gbadamosi who contested the March 9 Lagos State Governorship Election on the platform of the Action Democratic Party (ADP) described those managing the nation’s economy as ‘amateur’.
“The reality is that Nigeria is sinking very fast under amateur economic managers,” he said while reacting to the request for the approval of the 2016-2018 External Borrowing Plan.
President Muhammadu Buhari had on Thursday last week urged the National Assembly to review and approve the plan after it was rejected by the 8th National Assembly.
In letters addressed to the leadership of the Senate and House of Representatives, the President explained that the request was for specific outstanding projects under the 2016-2018 borrowing plan.
In his reaction, Gbadamosi faulted the move by the President and took a jab at those managing the economy.
He stressed that the nation does not need to borrow money but rather, put certain measures in place that would help generate more revenue.
The former governorship candidate also advised the Federal Government to create a better conducive environment for businesses to thrive.
“The people that are running the economy right now are ranked amateurs; they have no clue what they are doing,” he insisted.
Gbadamosi added, “Stop borrowing, open up the economy. Open the land borders, allow trade, remove forex restrictions; stop trying to micromanage the foreign exchange rates.”
However, a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and legal practitioner, Daniel Bwala, defended the decision to borrow money.
Bwala, who was also a guest on Sunday politics, disagreed with Gbadamosi on the need to borrow, saying it was easy to say than to do.
“Intriguing enough, any government that comes to power; before coming to power they will kick against borrowing but when they come to power and they are faced with the reality, they will have to face the issue.
“I am in support of the borrowing because if you have infrastructure deficit; if you have the problem of managing between that revenue ratio and the borrowing, then you have a problem,” he stated.
According to the APC member, no economist would argue the fact that a country needs to borrow if it must tackle the problem of infrastructure.
He, however, advised the government to set up a task force such as a department in the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to monitor projects which the borrowed monies were meant for.
President Buhari’s letter to the National Assembly read:
Pursuant to Section 21 and 27 of the Debt Management Office (Establishment) Act, I hereby request for Resolutions of the Senate to approve the Federal Government’s 2016 – 2018 External Borrowing plan, as well as relevant projects under this plan.
Specifically, the Senate is invited to note that: While I had transmitted the 2016-2018 External Borrowing Plan to the Eighth National Assembly in September 2016, this plan was not approved in its entirety by the Legislature, only the Federal Government’s Emergency projects for the North East, (Four (4) States’ projects and one (1) China Exam Bank Assisted Railway Modernisation Projects for Lagos – Ibadan Segment) we’re approved, out of a total of thirty-nine (39) projects.
The Outstanding projects in the plan that were not approved by the Legislature are, nevertheless, critical to the delivery of the Government’s policies and programmes relating to power, mining, roads, agriculture, health, water and educational sectors.
These outstanding projects are well advanced in terms of their preparation, consistent with the 2016 Debt Sustainability Analysis undertaken by the Debt Management Office and were approved by the Federal Executive Council in August 2016 under the 2016 – 2018 External Borrowing Plan.
Accordingly, I have attached, for your kind consideration, relevant information from the Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning the specific outstanding projects under the 2016 – 2018 External Borrowing plan for which legislative approval is currently sought.
I have also directed the Minister to make herself available to provide any additional information or clarification which you may require to facilitate prompt approval of the outstanding projects under this plan.
Surrounded by four children, Ladi Usman scoops shea nut paste from a plastic container into a metal pot on the stove in her cramped kitchen.
Squinting to keep charcoal fumes out of her eyes, she stirs it with a bamboo stick, completing the final stages of eking out the valuable shea butter oils.
For the past two decades Usman, 39, has relied on shea nuts — and the oil they contain — to provide a livelihood for herself and her family in central Nigeria.
“I cook with it, I sell it and the money I get from it I use to take these children to school, to hospital and everything else,” she told AFP.
Together with 50 other women in a cooperative in the village of Kodo she extracts value from shea nuts that grow abundantly in Nigeria.
Shea butter is consumed worldwide in chocolate, margarine and cooking oil, and cosmetic giants are using it more and more as a natural moisturiser.
The global shea butter market is expected to be worth $3.5 billion by 2028, according to Transparency Market research.
Experts say the huge number of shea trees in Nigeria could be a major source of income.
But potential profit is being lost as it exports just 10 per cent of the 350,000 tonnes of shea nuts produced annually as finished products to lucrative world markets.
Nigeria could satisfy up to 60 per cent of global demand for shea, “and with many companies in Europe and America using shea butter as an alternative to cocoa butter the potential is enormous,” said Aderemi Akpatira of the National Shea Products Association
“We as a nation just need to get ourselves organised and take that leadership place.”
For women working in the Kodo collective, extracting oil from shea nuts takes several stages and a lot of work.
First Usman and the other women collect the nuts and remove the sweet pulp either to be eaten or fermented into a wine that is consumed locally.
The nuts are then washed and boiled to prevent germination before being roasted on charcoal ovens.
Most of the nuts are sold at that point by Usman and the rest of the collective for the oils to be extracted industrially.
It makes sense to the small-scale farmers as it avoids the long hours and fuel needed for extraction, but it precludes profits they could be making.
Distance to markets is another major problem as farmers have to offload what they produce to middlemen who buy low and sell high in other towns and cities.
“The middlemen come to buy from us and go to sell in other towns. They buy from us at one dollar and sell at five dollars,” Maryam Aliyu, chairwoman of the Alheri cooperative, told AFP.
“We feel like we are just working for the middlemen.”
Farmer Mustafa Umar, 35, agreed as he surveyed the shea trees on his farm in Kodo.
“People are coming from different areas to buy shea butter, and when they buy it cheap here they will go back and double it two times and make their own profits,” he said.
“We want to invite the foreigners to come and buy the shea nuts here from us.”
‘Exploit the Potential’
Nigerian authorities are desperate to diversify the country’s oil-dependant economy and have made boosting domestic agriculture a priority.
Proponents say that tapping into the value of millions of Nigerian shea trees could provide a crucial source of income.
Since June, The Nigeria Agribusiness Register market monitor has been facilitating investment it hopes can help Nigeria gain a bigger share of the world’s shea butter market.
“It is estimated that Nigeria could make up to $2 billion from the export of processed shea kernel” if it was done domestically, said Roland Oroh, director of the organisation that tracks the agricultural sector.
But despite the ambitious targets, Nigeria remains a long way from cashing in on its shea wealth.
Industry experts say a first step to targeting foreign markets would be to improve quality at the first stages of production.
“We need to get more educated especially in the scientific aspect, some of our finished products that went to Europe were rejected because they didn’t meet import standards,” said Christopher Chuwkuemeka, 62, a shea butter processor in the Jos, central Nigeria.
“Poor practices reduce the quality of the shea butter even before it reaches us,” he noted.
UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson has been accused of profiling Nigerians as greedy and materialistic.
Mr. Johnson is leading the British Conservative party into a general election, which is set to hold on December 12.
According to the Guardian UK, Mr. Johnson made the comments in a diary piece he wrote for a British paper in October 1999.
“All the young people I know – ie those under 30 – are just as avaricious as we flinty Thatcherite yuppies of the 1980s in fact, they have an almost Nigerian interest in money and gadgets of all kinds,” Mr. Johnson was quoted to have written.
“Boris Johnson is unfit to be a prime minister that represents the entire United Kingdom. He had demonstrated this by lying and falsely representing black, Asian and different communities inside this country.
“This is deeply offensive and unforgivable and should not be ignored and he should be held to account.”
The United Nations High Commission for Refugees has said that there are about 218,000 Nigeria refugees in Chad, Cameroon and Niger Republic.
Addressing a news conference in Abuja on Wednesday, the UNHCR country representative, Mr Anthonio Canhandula, urged the Federal Government to create conditions that would facilitate the return of the refugees to the country.
Mr Canhandula added that Nigeria is currently housing 46,000 refugees from Cameroon, which is spread across Benue, Cross River and Taraba States.
He also noted that only 1.2 million of the 1.8 million accessible Internally Displaced Persons are receiving assistance – a situation which he believes requires urgent attention.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) says Nigeria imports cassava derivatives valued at about S600 million annually.
CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele disclosed this on Tuesday at a meeting with governors of cassava-producing states in Abuja, the nation’s capital.
At the event, the apex bank signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Nigeria Cassava Growers Association and Large Scale Cassava Processors.
Emefiele explained that the country was blessed with several varieties of cassava that could be explored to optimum potential.
He, however, said there was a need to adopt improved varieties and practices that would guarantee better yield, better processing efficiency, increased profit and improved standard of living for the farmers.
In achieving this goal, the CBN governor revealed that consultations were ongoing with the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture, Ibadan, and the National Root Crops Research Institute, Umudike.
According to him, increasing cassava production is a necessity apart from foreign exchange conservation as starch, glucose, sorbitol, and other products were being imported.
“Statistics show that out of the 53.0 million metric tonnes of cassava produced in Nigeria annually, more than 90 per cent is processed into food for human consumption.
“Whereas a significant industrial demand exists for the output of processed cassava, primarily as substitutes for imported raw materials and semi-finished products,” Emefiele said.
He added, “Potential demand that exists in our cassava value chain, demand High-Quality Cassava Flour (HQCF) in bread, biscuits and snacks is above 500,000 tonnes annually while supply is below 15,000 tonnes.
“Demand for cassava starch is above 300,000 tonnes annually while supply is below 10,000 tonnes.”
The demand for cassava-based constituents in sugar syrup, according to the CBN governor, is above 350,000 tonnes annually while supply is almost nonexistent.
He noted that potential demand for ethanol in the country as a fuel for cooking, to power vehicles (E10), and other industrial uses, exceeded one billion litres while production was nearly zero.
Emefiele said the CBN was taking bolder steps in collaborating with the private sector, state governments producing cassava, and other stakeholders towards resuscitating the sector.
The Nigerian Government is stepping up in its commitment to reducing the rate of milk importation while encouraging local production in the country.
This comes as the Niger State government signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on dairy chain development with Royal FrieslandCampina WAMCO Plc on Tuesday in Abuja.
Governor Abubakar Sani Bello signed the MoU on behalf of the state government while the Managing Director of the company, Mr Ben Langat, signed for FrieslandCampina WAMCO.
President Muhammadu Buhari and Netherlands Prime Minister, Mark Rutte, witnessed the signing after the bilateral consultations between delegations of both countries at the Presidential Villa in the nation’s capital.
The agreement on dairy chain development is expected to save Nigeria about 1.2 billion dollars from milk importation annually, said a statement from the President’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina.
Earlier, President Buhari and Prime Minister Rutte – who was at the Villa – met to discuss bilateral relations and agreed that Nigeria and the Netherlands would continue to work together to improve bilateral trade volumes as well as private sector investments.
A communique issued at the end of the meeting said the two leaders reviewed the progress that has been made with implementing the Memorandum of Understanding on deepening the bilateral relations between the two nations concluded and signed by the respective Foreign Ministers in The Hague in July 2018.
The communique signed by Nigeria’s Ambassador to the Kingdom of Netherlands, Oji Ngofa, and the Deputy Head of Mission, Netherlands Embassy in Abuja, Ewout-Jan de Wit, said, “We welcome the steps that have been made to increase bilateral economic cooperation and are happy to see higher levels of bilateral trade volumes as well as private sector investments.
”The contribution of Dutch private businesses, both global players and small, micro and medium enterprises, to the Nigerian economy is duly noted.
“Investments by the Netherlands Investment Bank FMO and the Dutch Good Growth Fund are contributing to better access to finance and energy for the private sector.
“Nigeria confirms its commitment to continuing reforms for a conducive business and investment environment while the Netherlands pledges to continue assisting Nigeria for an increase in agricultural productivity especially horticulture, seed, and sustainable palm oil production.”
President Buhari and Prime Minister Rutte also reiterated their commitment to the fight against human trafficking and appreciated the close collaboration between Nigeria and Netherlands in supporting the victims.
The Netherlands PM, who decried the challenging security situation in the West-African sub-region and Nigeria, noted the efforts of Nigeria in the fight against insurgency and in countering violent extremism.
“The Netherlands will continue to provide humanitarian assistance to those in need, in particular women and girls, in order to mitigate the impact of insecurity and displacement,” the communique added.
Prime Minister Rutte is on a two-day working visit to Nigeria.
He is leading a trade delegation of eight Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of Dutch multinationals currently operating in Nigeria with huge investment portfolios in the agriculture, finance, oil and gas sectors.
On his part, the Senate Committee Deputy Chairman on Environment, Hassan Hadeja, called on the states and Federal Government to make more investment in solar energy.
The lawmaker believes this will go a long way in reducing pollution of the environment.
Over the years, climate change has become a threat to global security going by the effects of flooding, earthquake, and fire outbreaks among others.
As part of this trend, the alarming rate of desertification in In Nigeria’s northern region has forced thousands of herders to move to the middle-belt and South, leading to incessant clashes with farmers in the regions.
The Guinea Savannah region is not spared either as logging and over-dependence on firewood for cooking have stripped a greater part of the area of its vegetation cover.
The situation is not different in the south-south region where the forest has reduced to grassland while erosion has continued to devastate many communities in Nigeria’s south-east zone.
The National Council on Environment is Nigeria’s highest policy-making body in the environment sector.
It facilitates inter-governmental deliberations and guides consultation on environment issues at all levels of the government.
Saturday’s event focused on safeguarding the environment through advocacy as experts and policymakers brainstormed and made suggestions on how to checkmate the challenges of climate change.
The meeting has the theme ‘Promoting Environmental Advocacy, A Panacea for Achieving the Next Level Agenda.”
According to stakeholders present, including the Deputy Governor of Kaduna State, Hadiza Balarabe, and the Guest Speaker, Professor Mohammed Ibrahim, positive engagements among critical stakeholders will ensure effective implementation of policies and laws that will help in tackling environmental challenges in the country.
President Muhammadu Buhari has received the report on ‘Funding Universal Healthcare Delivery in Nigeria’ by the Senior Executive Course 41 of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS).
He pledged that his administration would ensure that all Nigerians have access to affordable, efficient and equitable healthcare services without the risk of impoverishment.
The President who hosted members of the Course on Friday in Abuja directed relevant agencies of government to review the submission of the report and ensure its integration into ongoing policies and programmes.
He recalled that he had approved the study theme for the 2019 Senior Executive Course in late 2018 because of his desire to address the challenges in Nigeria’s health delivery system and improve the wellbeing of the citizens.
“Nigeria is a signatory to United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and is committed to achieving Universal Health Coverage aspirations by 2030.
“This government is unrelenting in its commitment to ensuring that all Nigerians have access to affordable, efficient, and equitable healthcare services without the risk of impoverishment,” President Buhari was quoted as saying in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina.
He added, “Your findings and recommendations are very innovative and useful. I, therefore, commend the Management, Staff, and Participants of Senior Executive Course 41 for this report.
”I assure you that the Ministry of Health and all relevant agencies will be directed to review this submission and ensure its integration into our ongoing policies and programmes.”
The President also used the occasion to congratulate the Board, Management and Staff of the National Institute on its 40th anniversary.
He noted that the Institute, despite its funding challenges, has credibly discharged its responsibilities as the nation’s apex multi-disciplinary think-tank.
President Buhari assured them of his continuous support, saying whatever challenges they have would be addressed properly.
He also congratulated the participants of the Senior Executive Course on successfully completing the programme, felicitating with them in advance of their formal graduation ceremony in Kuru.
Earlier in his remarks, the Director-General of NIPSS, Professor Habu Galadima, said in exploring the theme, the participants during the 10-month period of the course engaged in series of lectures and seminars, brainstorming sessions, as well as study tours.
These, according to him, include both domestic and international tours with a view to obtaining clear perspectives on funding universal healthcare delivery in Nigeria.
“I can inform Mr President confidently that this report is a product of thorough and painstaking engagement with relevant stakeholders and critical analysis of the issues and challenges in funding universal healthcare delivery in Nigeria,” Galadima told President Buhari.
He added, “It is our prayer that the government will adopt many of the usable recommendations as part of the ongoing efforts at making healthcare accessible and affordable to all citizens.”
The Senior Executive Course 41 had 66 participants.
The President of the United Nations General Assembly, Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, has arrived in Nigeria for a four-day official visit to the country.
Muhammed-Bande who arrived to a rousing welcome at the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja on Thursday night was received by some top UN officials and government officials in Nigeria.
They include the UN Resident Coordinator, Ms Comfort Lamptey, and Representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Charge d’Affaires of the Permanent Mission of Nigeria to the United Nations, Ambassador Samson Itegboje, among others.
Similarly, among those on the entourage of the UNGA President are his Chef de Cabinet, Mari Skåre; Senior Adviser, Alex Tope, and Special Assistant, Muyiwa Onifade.