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Today Naija Newspapers

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Dogara charges Nigerians on attitudinal change

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, has called on Nigerians to have a change in attitude and orientation for the country to make progress even as the state is passing through challenging times.

Dogara said if Nigeria would be to witness significant progress in quality of leadership and governance, the citizens must alter their ways of life as leaders are recruited from among them.

The Speaker, who made the call at the weekend during a thanksgiving service organised by a member of the parliament, Jagaba Adams Jagaba at ECWA Church, Chigwa, Kaduna State, based on a statement issued by his spokesman, Turaki Hassan, said that while Nigerians expect leaders to live higher standards of life as role models, the followers must also understand that leaders are recruited from among them.

He, therefore, charged Nigerians to, as a matter of necessity, demonstrate higher standards of runs even as they anticipate same from their leaders.

There exists always expectations from citizens for leaders to demonstrate a higher standard of behaviour. Clearly, it's good that those that call themselves leaders must always aspire to keep higher standards.

But what exactly is wrong with the narrative, notably in naija news update mobile, is that in the majority of cases, citizens anticipate that only leaders must live above board. This state can only just make progress if all the citizens and leaders resolve that in their daily undertakings, they are going to maintain the best of standards.

Because if you anticipate just leaders to do the right thing, the direction recruitment procedure is such that leaders consistently emerge from the people.

Dogara admonished politicians to put their confidence in God because power comes from God, victory comes from God, no one, regardless of how powerful he or she's, can give you power.

But in his testimony, Jagaba urged Nigerians to eschew religious and ethnic sentiments, which he said, have split the country for decades.

He said the electorate should rather lay emphasis on individual nature rather than political party affiliation, saying that he has forgiven all those who plotted evil against him in the 2015 general elections.

In his sermon, ECWA President, Revd (Dr.) Jeremiah Gado, said by design, God created and saved humanity to live a life of gratitude, service, praise and worship.
Gains, pitfalls of Nigerias currency swap deal with China

Separated stakeholders say policy may ease company, stifle local businesses

For diverse stakeholders in the economy, the Federal Governments recent currency swap deal with China holds both bright prospects and grave implications for Nigeria even as the naira inched up against the dollar at the weekend at the parallel market.

During his official trip to the worlds second largest economy, President Muhammadu Buhari struck a naira and yuan swap deal, scripted to facilitate trade transactions between both states, devoid of present exchange challenges with the United State dollar.

Moreover, the deal, based on Presidency sources, has the potenrial of shoring up the value of the countries currency, in the foreign exchange market, through a concomitant emergent command scheme, with tactical decreased demand for dollar and other major currencies, besides the yuan.

The currency swap deal includes an arrangement between two central banks, a minumum of one of which must be an international money issuer, to swap their currencies. The central banks party to the swap trade can lend the proceeds of the swap, against collaterals they deem sufficient, to the commercial banks within their jurisdiction, to give them temporary liquidity in a foreign currency.

But pessimists pointed out the swap deal wasn't consummated between both states apex banks but between Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Chinas ICBC- the worlds biggest lender by total assets and market capitalisation. While this may not influence the goals of the swap deal in any way, it raises some essential sovereign issues, based on an analyst who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Cowrie Investment Limited, Johnson Chukwu clarified the currency swap scheme would address , on a short-term basis, the present liquidity challenge in the nations foreign exchange market.

He said: I think that Nigerias overriding objective for the currency swap is to address short-term foreign currency liquidity challenges which has led to CBNs inability to match foreign currency demands. With the currency swap, depending on the value, an important portion of Nigerias import invoices from China would now be denominated and settled in yuan, thereby reducing the demand for dollar by Nigerias importers.

Nonetheless, he pointed out the major draw back to the currency swap policy is an unrestricted access to yuan, at an overvalued naira exchange rate, if the N30/RMB is the predetermined exchange rate, will definitely encourage importation and stifle local production of goods.

I recommend that the Federal Government should try to integrate a strategy similar to that of the cement business policy, which would require some of the imports from China to be produced locally after a defined timeline, particularly if Nigeria has relative making advantage for such products. Examples that can readily come to mind include textiles, plastics, ceramics, among others.

He explained the increase of inclusion of Chinese Yuan within Nigerian reserve currency was done about five years ago by the immediate past CBN governor, mainly to diversify the reservation and reduce the currency risk associated with the U.S. dollar.

That action was taken at a period when the U.S. market was especially vulnerable due to the weakness of their economy after the international financial disasters triggered by sub-prime mortgage.

In his reaction, the National President, National Palm Produce Association of Nigeria (NPPAN), Henry Olatujoye, welcomed the currency swap deal, describing it as a fantastic measure that would significantly reduce the increasing pressure on the U.S. dollar, which has gone haywire in the foreign exchange marketplace.

Based on Olatujoye , the conclusion has the capability of bringing double investment to the country from China on one hand and from the U.S. on the other.

According to him, with the anticipated ease on the pressure on the dollar, it would bring down the value of the dollar with regards to the naira, which he said would now help it become possible for American investors to put money into the Nigerian economy again.

In his perspective, the current high rate of the dollar in Nigeria had in recent months discouraged American and Western investors in the Nigerian economy.

The NPPAN president allayed any concern that the determination could cause the higher importation of Chinese goods into my naija news, mentioning the economic competition or money war between China and America.

He, however, expressed the fear that European nations may not be well disposed to it because it's effective at adversely impacting their trade balance with Nigeria, warning which their stakeholders could frustrate the move.

The Chairman, Mobile Software Alternative, Chris Uwaje, believed that the naira to yuan swap agreement should reduce the pressure on the naira if correctly executed.

According to him, the agreement if it becomes a reality, means that the de facto currency, dollar , will not hold on the import and export deals between Nigeria and China.

Uwaje continued: We dont need to use dollar to pay because its going to be more expensive, we pay with yuan. By so doing we avoid every type of round tripping.

Uwaje urged Buharis economic team to see the way the nation can truly leverage on the technology prowess of China for Naija to attain a sustainable economy.

In accordance with Gbade Buraimoh, a Lagos-based financial expert, the quest for dollar through banks will undoubtedly reduce, as all transactions between Nigeria and China will take yuan instead of dollar.

He noticed that petroleum sales from Nigeria to China would be settled in Chinese currency, stressing that access to yuan would also be easier.

The swap will eliminate challenges arising from transactions with the dollar and encourage business flexibility between Nigerian and Chinese, Buraimoh clarified.

The Director-General of Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Muda Yusuf concurred that the swap deal would smoothen the payment system in the bilateral trade between the two countries but stressed that it might not really reinforce the naira in the forex marketplace, as the nation would have to enhance its productive base to reach that.

An Abuja-based international affairs and diplomacy pro, Kadiri Abdulrahman, viewed the currency swap deal as an optimistic move towards enhancing the value of the naira, therefore improving accessibility to cheaper foreign exchange, in favour of members of the business community.

The Director- General of the African Affairs Department of Chinas Foreign Ministry, Lin Songtian told reporters in Beijing after the agreement was signed by the Governors of Nigerias Central bank and the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Ltd. (ICBC) that the Renminbi (yuan) is free to flow among different banks in Nigeria and has been included in the foreign exchange reserves of Nigeria.

Nigeria isn't the first nation that China would enter into this agreement with. The Asian powerhouse has multiple year currency swap agreements of the Renminbi with Argentina, Belarus, Brazil, Hong Kong, Iceland, Indonesia, Malaysia,Singapore, South Korea, United Kingdom and Uzbekistan.

In accordance with the Peoples Bank of China (PBoC), those swap agreements were intended not only to stabilise the international financial market, but also to ease bilateral trade and investment.

Meanwhile, the benefit of the currency swap deal and other understandings reached in Beijing during Buharis excursion to the Far East Asia nation has rubbed off on the air travel sector, as a Nigerian carrier, Air Peace announced that it would soon commence scheduled flight to China from Enugu.

Chairman of Air Peace, Allen Onyema revealed at the Enugu Economical Summit that the airline has been made Nigerias official flag carrier for the course.

The government and the flying public created a yearning opening, all the agreements in this country are leaned to one side, the foreign airlines, but this government of Muhammadu Buhari has started to do things otherwise recognising the local airlines and seeing that in Air Peace there is a lot of quality, so that they determined to give us when we employed it didnt take time before they gave it to us, said Onyema.
Diversification of Nigeria’s market urgent, says Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday in Guangzhou, China said his government would take urgent steps to restructure Nigeria’s market by encouraging new investments in agriculture, mining and manufacturing.

The President, who stated this at a reception in his honour said Nigeria would welcome the support of foreign investors, the Chinese government and local companies for efforts to diversify the state’s market.

A statement issued in Abuja by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, quoted the President as saying the diversification of the Nigerian economy was long overdue, as ongoing reliance on crude oil exports had consistently made the economy vulnerable to shocks.

"This time we will be more purposeful. Businesses and the government will be entailed," Buhari said.

The statement added that Buhari also visited with the Sino-Singapore Knowledge City in Guangzhou, "which showcases advancements by China in technological and medical, science inventions."

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reported Shehu as saying the President has expressed satisfaction with the results of his working visit to China, which he said given added investments to Nigeria exceeding $6billion.

Buhari said the several agreements concluded with the Chinese would have a tremendous and positive impact on key sectors of the Nigerian economy, including home, solid minerals, agriculture, power and rail transportation.

"In the electricity sector, North South Power Company Limited and Sinohydro Corporation Limited signed an agreement valued at $478,657,941.28 million for the construction of 300 megawatts solar power in Shiriro, Niger State."

In the solid minerals sector, Marble and Granite Nigeria Limited and Shanghai Shibang signed an agreement valued at 55 million dollars for the construction and equipping of granite mining plant in Nigeria."

Based on the statement, a total of $1billion would be to be invested in the development of a greenfield expressway for Abuja-Ibadan-Lagos under an arrangement reached by the Infrastructure Bank and Sinohydro Corporation Limited.

It further said that both companies also sealed a $250 million deal to develop an ultra modern 27-storey high rise complex and a $2.5 billion agreement for the development of the Lagos Metro Rail Transit Red Line project.

Other arrangements signed and announced during the visit, in accordance with the statement, comprise a $1billion facility for the establishment of a Hi tech industrial park in Ogun-Guangdong Free Trade Zone in Igbesa, Ogun State.

The statement said that the Ogun-Guangdong Free Trade Zone and CNG (Nigeria) Investment Limited also signed an agreement valued at 200million dollars for the building of two 500MT/day float petrol facilities.

It further stated an agreement, valued at $363 million for the establishment of a comprehensive farm and downstream industrial park in Kogi State was also announced at the Nigeria-China company forum.

Additionally, agreements getting negotiations comprise a $500 million project for the supply of television broadcast equipment and a $25 million facility for creation of pre-paid smart meters between Mojec International Limited and Microstar Company Limited.

Based on the statement, about 100 Nigerian companies and 300 Chinese firms participated in the Nigeria-China business forum, which took place a day after Buhari started his v isit .
ICPC charges Nigerians to fight with corruption

The class which was initiated eight years ago by NIPSS is targeted at creating a vital means of getting technocrats involved with policy making for national development.

He said the threat was a global phenomenon which was not confined to Nigeria.

According to him, corruption is more common where there is poor value orientation, bad governance and systemic failure.

He stressed that it was regrettable as the legislations seemed not to be helping the problems that in spite of the various legislations against corruption in the state, it still persisted.

The ICPC leader, consequently, called to review corruption laws in the state to ensure efficiency, greater operation and deterrence.

He said that though public perception was that the commission was simply participated in prosecuting corrupt government officials because of the thoughts it was focusing on other corrupt practices.

These, he said, included land administration in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and the observation and implementation of particular government policies.

He said that ICPC was collaborating with the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in some of the assignments.

Nta said that the commission was now investigation a state where public resources have been transferred into three distinct bank accounts, adding that the details would be made public.

He further said the commission had so far regained billions of naira in cash and forfeited assets, stressing that it was also running systemic study in some conditions in some universities.

He said that the measure followed reported instances of pupil harassment in some universities in the nation.

Nta included that ICPC was also reviewing the state’s primary health care system in collaboration to address its decay through the years.

He also said that inadequate protection of risks and whistleblowers to officials were some other challenges facing the commission.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports the class participants were drawn from the military, the Authorities and other government agencies.

The 21st session of the class focused on corruption in the state and the indices driving it.


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Guest Martes, 20 Febrero 2018