Tuesday, August 4, 2015

President Buhari Appoints ExxonMobil Vice-chair To Head Nigeria's Petroleum Corporation

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the appointment of the Executive Vice Chairman of ExxonMobil Africa, Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu, to head Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). Kachiku is expected to take over from from Joseph Darwa at the NNPC headquarters in Abuja around 3:00 PM Nigerian time.

Kachikwu, trained lawyer, was born and raised in Onicha Ugbo in Aniocha  North local government area of Delta State. 
Source : Saharareporters

PMB: We’re identifying banks keeping money for oil thieves

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday said his administration had taken efforts to recover looted Nigerian resources a step further by searching for the banks keeping the proceeds of stolen oil.
Buhari said his government had started identifying banks, financial institutions and countries in which payments for stolen Nigerian crude oil had been made.
A statement by President’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, quoted Buhari as saying this while granting audience to some United States Congressmen at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Adesina said the President acknowledged the support and cooperation his administration was receiving from the international community in gathering required intelligence for tracing and recovering of stolen national resources.
Buhari reportedly told the US congressmen led by Rep. Darrel Issa, “We are getting cooperation from the international community, including information on ships that take crude oil from Nigeria and change direction, or pour their contents into other ships mid-stream.
“Some monies were paid to individual accounts. We are identifying the financial institutions and countries that are involved.
“I have been assured that when we get all our documents together, the United States and other countries will treat our case with sympathy.’’
He also told them that his administration would welcome more regular meetings of the Nigeria-United States Bi-National Commission, noting that the commission could serve as a more useful platform for the promotion of bilateral trade and economic relations as well as joint cooperation in the war against terrorism.
Issa assured Buhari that the US would support Nigeria against Boko Haram by providing training, intelligence and military platforms.
Buhari’s latest revelation on the steps being taken by his administration to recover the country’s resources in the hands of corrupt citizens and oil thieves came on the heels of recent report that the President was handed a list of Nigerian oil thieves during his recent visit to the US.
“I can tell you that the President already has the list of names of the people engaging in the stealing of Nigeria’s oil,” someone in the entourage of Buhari to the US trip had confided in The PUNCH last week.
The source had said that Buhari was taken aback when he saw the names on the list and that the list given to the President by the US might compel him to probe the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan.
A Presidency source had also confirmed that Buhari had such a list but that “the President has been keeping the list to himself.”
The source, who spoke to The PUNCH about the list in the President’s possession, said the US gave Buhari two separate lists – one listing the names of top government officials who have been stealing the country’s oil, using their high offices to perpetrate the stealing; and the other containing the names of illegal oil bunkerers.
The President had also said last week that some ministers in the cabinet of Jonathan were stealing as much as 250,000 barrels of Nigeria’s crude daily.
Edo State Governor, Adams Oshiomhole, who was also on the President’s team to the US, said last week that a former minister stole as much as $6bn.
Apart from oil thieves, the Buhari administration has also reportedly zeroed in on corrupt public servants, with the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission’s operatives already marking assets of some corrupt ‘super rich’ civil servants for possible confiscation.
The ICPC is said to have been set to approach the court this week for an order to effect seizure of choice properties said to have been acquired through ill-gotten wealth by corrupt civil servants.
Many of such assets, including buildings and state-of-the-art automobiles, were said to have been discovered in the Federal Capital Territory and other locations across the country.

Source: The Punch

Monday, August 3, 2015

How Ooni Of Ife Died In London

SaharaReporters has learned that the late Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuade, the death of whom will soon be officially announced, died at the London Clinic, located at 20 Devonshire Place in London.

The palace of the late Oba is still denying his passing, but Premium Times reported at the weekend revealed that his body has already been secretly flown into Nigeria and placed within the palace to enable death rites of passage to commence.
His death is expected to be officially announced as soon as the required traditional rituals are concluded in Ile-Ife.
The Ooni was rushed to London on Friday July 24, and was taken from Heathrow Airport in an Ambulance to the clinic where he passed four days later.
As expected of tradition, the death of Ooni is being wrapped in secrecy by the traditional council in Ile-Ife.  SaharaReporters has confirmed the death of the monarch, but the traditional council, which began the required rites of passage last weekend, still maintains that the Ooni is “hale and hearty”.
The Oba was conspicuously absent at his son’s wedding yesterday, however, he was represented by his traditional staff of office.


30 shop owners arrested for sponsoring Boko Haram activities in Borno

Reports available to DAILY POST in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state reveals that the Nigerian military had during a raid recently at Benishiekh and Mainok towns of Kaga local government area of the troubled northeast state of Borno, arrested 30 shop owners over their close contact and sponsorship of the dreaded Islamic sect, Boko Haram.
A security source who pleaded anonymous because he was not authorized to speak told DAILY POST on Sunday that the suspects were helping the security with vital information including names of prominent personalities.
“There are going to be surprises if President Buhari is going to act on information at the disposal of security agencies. The rumour making the rounds about names of personalities involved in Boko Haram activities and sponsorship is going to shock many Nigerians.
” the arrests at Benishiekh last week when we raided the town is already giving signal to the fact that, prominent people are involved with Boko Haram. These shop owners are the suppliers of food items, money, fuel and other needs of the Boko Haram fighters. They also revealed how they attack Benishiekh town to deceive people.” Our source said.
Ask to give some of the names of the arrested persons he said, ” I do not have their names, I am not in position to give their names. We are soldiers and our duty is to make sure we do what we are asked to do. We raided the area in a mop up operation and made some arrest, which fortunately led to the shocking arrests of those personalities we are talking about,” he said.
Asking him to comment on the rumour about some prominent Borno indigenes who are believed to be sponsors of Boko Haram, with particular attention on the rumour that 25 names of prominent people have been given to President Buhari for action, he said, the information has been going round for sometime now.
“Let’s not talk about rumours. I am just telling you about those people we arrested in the mop up operations and that is what I know,” He said
Travellers who plied the Maiduguri/Damaturu road have also confirmed the mop up operation. They told DAILY POST that they were held on that road for eight hours until the mop up operation ended.

Ex-Defence Chief Indicts GEJ, Ihejirika, PDP In Boko Haram Terror Crisis

The immediate past Chief of Defense, Alex Badeh has in his recent outpouring confession, indicted the former People's Democratic Party, PDP, his immediate predecessors in the army and former president Goodluck Ebele Jonathan in the deadly success of Boko Haram's terror campaign against Nigeria that led to over 100,000 dead and maimed and millions displaced with property and livelihood losses running into billions of dollars in the northeast and Nigeria as a wh***.
The former military chief said, "Over the years, the military was neglected and under-equipped to ensure the survival of certain regimes, while other regimes, based on advice from some foreign nations, deliberately reduced the size of the military and underfunded it."
The past 16 years through which Nigeria made a killing in oil sale profits, come directly under the scope of Badeh's pointed accusation. The question is, where is the money or the equipment budgeted for this purpose and how does the PDP and over-compensated Senate account for this missing funds/equipment?
The United States had similarly requested a probe of Jonathan's four year military chief, Azubuike Ihejirika for allegedly usurping billions meant for kitting the Nigerian army. [See: US Wants Ihejirika's Sudden Billions Probed]
In the five years from 2009-2014, Nigeria's defense department gulped a stunning $33 billion USD! And in spite of this quite comfortable sum of money budgeted, Alex Badeh submitted that the Army was "neglected and ill-equipped!" So where is our money?
It is recollected that towards the end of Jonathan's tenure, realizing his defeat was imminent and desperately desirous to at last attempt to put a halt on Boko Haram in the hope of increasing his odds at the Presidential polls, former President Goodluck Jonathan in a last minute ditch, borrowed $1 billion to use to arm the army for the infamous 6-week pre-election war.
Nigerians are now looking at former chief Ihejirika and former Commander in Chief of the Nigerian Armed forces, former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan to come and defend themselves in view of Badeh's strong allegations: where is the billions of dollars worth of equipment or where is the money?
PDP stalwart and former President Ibrahim Babangida is also expected to account for under-equipping of the Nigerian army as well as the Olusegun Obasanjo past administration which ruled Nigeria from 1999-2007 and also enjoyed a comfortable oil surplus.
Further: Badeh's confessions vindicate the several hundred Nigerian troops sacked or sentenced to death. Because troops are not expected to be altruistic and suicidal if they are sent to combat a deadly army while "under-equipped" as Alex Badeh described their situation.

How Jonathan’s Aides, Ministers Shared Federal Government Houses

A report by The Sun newspaper claims that some aides and ministers of former president Goodluck Jonathan shared 500 houses owned by the Federal Government in Abuja and Lagos before they left power.
Aside the ministers and aides, some heads of powerful feder­al agencies like the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and top military officers also benefited from the alleged largesse of the Jonathan’s administration.
Making reference to the documents sight­ed in the office of the Secretary to the Govern­ment of the Federation (SGF), the report revealed that the allocation of the houses was not done in their individual names but in the names of front-companies.
The report also claims that the decision of President Muhammadu Buhari to probe Jonathan’s administration has prompted the former government officials to abandoned the properties.
A source in the SGF office said they are now scared to take possession of the properties which are scattered all over Asokoro and Maitama areas of Abuja as well as Ikeja GRA, Ikoyi, Victoria Island and Apapa areas of Lagos.
The source further said, most of the houses were abandoned because “the owners are obviously looking for private sec­tor individuals that can buy them as many of them didn’t really get the allocations to live in the houses, they only want to sell them off and make profit.”
When queried why the allocations were done in the names of companies rather than the names of the actual beneficiaries, the offi­cial said: “Most of the owners got the houses while still in government and they wouldn’t like to disclose such huge assets in their assets declaration forms with the Code of Conduct Bureau because of the questions on the source of the funds used to pay for such. We’re only the ones who knows who owns what but if you follow the table of allocations, you will only find names of companies as beneficiaries.”
The source also exonerated the com­mittee in charge of the houses  of any complici­ty, adding: “Decisions and approvals more of­ten than not, come from the Presidency.
“The committee also has no control over which name will be used for the purpose of allocation and what such beneficiaries do with the properties afterwards”, the official added.
Another source in the Ministry of Lands and Housing, however, said that the number of houses allocated was far lower than 500. The source dis­closed, “It is true that some requests for allo­cation came towards the end of the last admin­istration but the real allocation was tactically delayed by some officials to avoid running into trouble with the then in-coming Buhari admin­istration.”
 Meanwhile, about 12 close aides of former President Goodluck Jonathan have been stripped of their official passports.
Source: Daily Sun

Naira to rise further as banks reject dollars

The United States dollar will further tumble against the naira at the parallel market this week as Deposit Money Banks continue to reject cash deposit of foreign currencies into customers’ domiciliary accounts.
The naira had appreciated against the dollar from 245 to 220 at the parallel market last week after banks started denying their customers opportunity to make cash deposits of dollar, pound and euro into their domiciliary accounts.
Foreign exchange dealers told our correspondent on Sunday that the naira would likely appreciate further against the dollar at the black market this week.
A forex trader, who chose to speak under the condition of anonymity said, “We expect the naira to appreciate further this week at the parallel market.
“Banks have flooded the market with dollars and other foreign currencies. This is making the naira to appreciate. There is still a huge stock of dollars out there that the banks will be pushing into the parallel market this week.”
The Acting President, Association of Bureau De Change Operators, Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe, also noted that large amount of dollars in the market would make the naira to appreciate further at the parallel market this week.
Banks had last week told customers that they would no longer collect cash deposits into domiciliary accounts.
Fidelity Bank Plc, in an email to customers, said the policy came from the Central Bank of Nigeria and it was only a temporary measure to curb speculative activities.
Guaranty Trust Bank Plc also told customers about the development in an email statement.
“Banks no longer accept dollar cash due to large speculation on the currency,” the Chief Executive Officer, First City Monument Bank, Mr. Ladi Balogun, told a conference call last week
He said the lenders would continue to receive dollar transfers from other banks.
The Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, had two weeks ago said the naira was “appropriately priced” at its current level of 197 to the dollar on the interbank market.
The local currency has lost around 15 per cent against the dollar over the past year, with an official devaluation in November and a de facto one in February.
The naira had weakened on the parallel market, falling as low as 245, on persistent dollar shortages after the central bank last month limited importers’ access to dollars in order to save the external reserves.
Early last month, the central bank fixed the spread at which bureaux de change operators could sell dollars to individuals, and also limited the amount that bank customers would spend using their debits cards abroad.
Although the restrictions have angered investors and frustrated companies that need dollars for imports, Emefiele has rejected the idea of loosening the curbs, saying the central bank could not adopt an “indeterminate policy” of currency depreciation.
Global ratings agency, Standards & Poor’s, had also said Nigeria would have to devalue its currency at some stage, possibly by more than 15 per cent, though it saw the adjustments as likely to be gradual.
FCMB’s Balogun had also noted that the parallel market was beginning to see a reversal in the naira’s weakness as banks stopped taking dollar deposits.