By Matthew Denis
The Management and Staff of the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) has heartily congratulate H.E. Sen. Bola Ahmed Tinubu, GCFR and H.E. Kashim Shettima, GCON on their inauguration as 7th democratically elected President and Vice President respectively, of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
This is contained in a statement signed by the Director General of the agency, A. Michael Ohiani and made available to Newsmen on Tuesday
the statement reads ” Your victory at the polls demonstrates your determination to take Nigeria to greater heights; which is a victory for democracy, for Nigeria and for the continuation of infrastructure development in Nigeria.
“Mr President, going by your antecedents as Former Governor of Lagos State, we recall how you revolutionised the infrastructure stock in the state; conceptualised the Lekki Free Trade Zone which now showcases the Lekki Deep Sea Port, the Dangote Refinery and many other world-class infrastructure facilities. We are confident that the infrastructure development fortunes of Nigeria will be further transformed in your administration.
“It is now evident that in view of the need to upscale the national infrastructure stock and bridge the wide gap in the midst of dwindling government revenue, Public Private Partnerships (PPP) have become the globally tested and accepted way to go.
“From the inception of ICRC in 2010 to date, following our regulatory guidance in line with extant rules and subsequent issuance of Full Business Case (FBC) compliance certificates, a total of 103 PPP projects have been approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC). These projects will bring in private capital investment of almost NGN11 Trillion (approximately USD24 Billion).
“Out of the 103 projects, 94 approvals worth almost NGN9 Trillion (about USD19.5 Billion) were granted in the last 8 years under the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR.
“In line with the ICRC Act, 2005; the Commission published in 2022 a list of 53 eligible PPP projects worth USD 23 billion in the pipelines of projects, sequel to their certification as both viable and bankable to be undertaken using PPPs. In addition, the Commission has issued Outline Business Case (OBC) compliance certificates for 174 projects to proceed for procurement. Many of these projects are at different stages of procurement. These projects cut across various sectors including but not limited to transportation, health, education, aviation, agriculture, water.
According to the statement some of the notable projects approved in the last 8 years include the development of Hydroelectric power from existing Small and Medium dams across the Country at Bakolori Dam (Zamfara State), Ikere Gorge Dam (Oyo state), Omi – Kampe Dam (Kogi state) and Zobe Dam and Jibiya Dams (Katsina State). These are valued at over NGN 1,5 Billion. Others include the Operation and Management Concession of the 700 MW Zungeru Hydroelectric Power Plant at NGN552 Billion; the 360 MW Gurara 2 Multipurpose Dam Project at NGN 516.6 Billion; the 40 MW Kashimbila HydroPower Dam at (HPP) Project at NGN7.68 Billion.
“In the Health sector, the Warehouse-in-a-box projects were approved for Abuja and Lagos among others. While in the Agriculture sector, FEC approved the Concession and Leasing of 19 Grain Storage Facilities at NGN15.1Billion.
“In the Transportation sector, the following were approved the Abuja-Baro-Itakpe-AjaokutaWarri Railway Line (269.12km) with branch and extension lines to Jakura-Lokoja (41km) and Agbarho-Warri (5km) at NGN 3.2 Billion; Design, Development, Deployment and Management of a Secure Automated Fare Collection (AFC) Solution for the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) Rail Network at NGN900 Million; Development of Port Harcourt Railway Industrial Park, Rivers State equipped with rolling stock assembly, Oil and Gas materials supply Industrial Park, Textile Industrial Park as well as Light Industry Park for Fast Moving Commodities and Goods at NGN133 Billion; Development of Bonny Deep Sea Port at NGN253 Billion; Ibom Deep Sea Port Project in Akwa Ibom State. NGN 927.5 Billion; Onitsha River Port project at NGN 3.9Billion; The Development of Deep-Sea Port in Badagry, Lagos at NGN1.28 Trillion; The Construction and Maintenance of 12 corridors under a highway development and management initiative (HDMI) as follows:
“Route 1: Benin- Asaba 125 km road, Route 2: Abuja – lokoja 195km road, Route 4: Onitsha – Owerri – Aba 161.2 km road, Route 5: Shagamu – Benin 258km road, Route 6: Abuja-Keffi-Akwanga 175.9km road, Route 7A: Kano – Shuari 100km road, Route 9: Enugu – Port Harcourt 200km road, Route 11: Lagos – Ota – Abeokuta 80km road and Route 12: Lagos – Badagry – Seme Border 79km road. All the routes will be constructed at a total cost of NGN1.57 Trillion). Total – 1,374km road. Concession Period: 25 – 27 years.”
it further revealed that in the Aviation sector the Development of a Maintenance, Repairs and Overhaul (MRO) Facility at NGN690 Million; Abuja and Kano International Airport Terminal NGN47.6 Billion.
“The above demonstrate the effectiveness of PPPs in contributing private sector investment to infrastructure development, thereby complementing government’s efforts in bridging the gap.
“We are convinced that under your administration, PPPs will be deployed more to enable the country improve our infrastructure situation, with many more projects coming on stream. The Commission is committed to playing its role in the necessary pre and post contract regulatory guidance at the federal level, as well as work with the sub-national bodies to lift our country’s infrastructure to globally accepted levels.”
Every inch of Lagos was founded by the Awori — Olofin of Isheri declares
In response to a recent statement made by the Benin Oba regarding the historical founding of Eko (Lagos), His Royal Majesty, Oba SulaimanAdekunleBamgbade, the Olofin of Isheri and revered successor of the ancient throne of the Aworis’ progenitor, has affirmed to the Awori Heritage Alliance of North America that Eko (Lagos) was undoubtedly founded by the Awori people.
The Olofin in a press statement said, “In light of this confirmation, we, the Awori Heritage Alliance of North America therefore issue the following statement to emphatically and resolutely repudiate the remarks made by the Benin Oba concerning the founding of Eko (Lagos) during his courtesy visit to the Lagos House, Marina on Sunday, 26 November 2023.
“This statement by the Benin oba is not only erroneous, it in fact constitutes an utter disregard for the centuries old strongly held historical traditions of Eko (Lagos); as well as the documented historical facts on the founding or source of Eko, Lagos.
“In his statement, the Benin oba alleged that a ‘certain area in Lagos, maybe the nucleus of Lagos was founded by my ancestors.’ This profound misrepresentation of historical fact actually undermines the rich and verifiable history of the Awori subgroup of the Yoruba ethnic group who are the autochthonous people and founders of Eko, Lagos.
“It is imperative to at this point adduce certain highlights from the published as well as archived official historical records of Lagos, as collected from the native historical traditions of the indigenous inhabitants of Eko (Lagos) by the British colonial administrators of Lagos & Nigeria.
“The Deputy Chief Secretary to the British Government of Nigeria, Sir Alan C. Burns, GCMG published the ‘History of Nigeria’ in 1929 for the British colonial authorities based on the historical traditions collected in Nigeria from the native sources. The founding of Eko (Lagos) was detailed, and the nature of Lagos’ relationship with Benin was clearly spelt out as quoted below.
“A band of Yorubas, led by a cadet of the royal family, appears to have settled at Isheri, on the Ogunriver… the settlers then spread southwards to EbuteMetta, on the mainland opposite Iddo island, where a town was built and farming was begun. Some time after this the inhabitants moved across to Iddoisland. Iddo, however, was scarcely large enough to support the number of settlers, it was [then] decided to begin cultivation on the neighbouring island of [Eko] Lagos. [When] the first invasion from Benin took place; the inhabitants were fortunate that at this crisis their Olofin, or ruler, was a man of great courage and strong character, and under his leadership the King of Benin’s soldiers were repulsed.
“Subsequent attacks met with no better success, and the Olofin gained in fame and influence. He is reputed to have had thirty-two sons, one succeeded his father as Oloto of Iddo, the title of Olofin falling into abeyance. The custom of the [Eko] Lagos chiefs to wear ‘white caps’ came originally from Iddo, and was introduced by the ten sons of the Olofin, whose successors still wear similar caps.
“Some little time after the Olofin’s death there began the peaceful penetration into [Eko] Lagos of settlers from Benin. The Binis probably realised that they would not be able to occupy [Eko] Lagos by force, as they had already been so decisively beaten in their attacks on Iddo, and it is thought that they were also prevented from further aggression by superstitious fear, the dying wife of the Olofin having pronounced a terrible curse on any further invaders from Benin. Whatever may have been the reason, the Binis arrived with no great show of force, and permission was asked of the [Eko] Lagos people for them to land.
“Furthermore, a ‘confidential’ colonial report of the British Intelligence Division entitled ‘Précis of Information Concerning the Colony of Lagos, Together with Notes on the Neighbouring Native Territories,’ compiled in February 1888, unequivocally admits the Awori’s founding role of Eko, Lagos.
“This British document, which was printed for the archives of Her Majesty’s Stationery Office, outlines the arrival of the Bini immigrant group (among other non-native immigrant groups) into Lagos. These non-native groups, such as the Bini group, were able to settle-in on the island only after their sought permission to land was granted by the Awori natives. European coastal trading activities had by circa 1570s transformed the Eko area into a focal point of considerable importance. This development drew in non-native immigrant trading groups such as the Bini group.
“All of the above historical information which were collected from the historical traditions of the natives, by the British authorities evidently establish the following facts:
“That the Awori (a subgroup of the Yoruba ethnic group) are the autochthonous people of Eko (Lagos), as well as the founders of Eko, Lagos.
“That the Bini trading group who visited the area centuries later, and got allotted a piece of the island to encamp (as was done for others) have nothing to do with the founding of Eko, Lagos.
“In addition to the foregoing historical facts regarding the founding of Eko, we wish to shed light on another often-misrepresented aspect of our history. This pertains to the identity of the historical Ashipa — the progenitor of the royal dynasty of the Eko kingdom.
“This Ashipa is identified without any trace of uncertainty in the classical Awori historical traditions as a Yoruba noble (Awori) from Isheri-Olofin. This historical fact is also documented in the same early records of Lagos history already cited above. The same information is also contained in other early records of Lagos history such as the ‘Notes of Evidence tendered by Mr. Herbert Macaulay, C.E., At the Commission of Inquiry. Re: The Succession to the House of Docemo’ in the year 1920.
“The marital-alliance of this Isheri chief (Ashipa) with the family of the then Benin Oba produced the first crowned-king of Eko, King Ado. However, we must stress that while King Ado’s ancestry traces also to the then Benin oba through King Ado’s mother; this issue from the marital-cum-political alliance does not confer the founding right of Eko (Lagos) upon Benin kingdom or the Bini people; neither does Ashipa’s tribute of gratitude to his royal-political patron & in-law confer such right.
“As has been demonstrated from the original received traditions of Lagos which are also referenced to the earliest official records of Lagos history, it becomes clear that it is blatantly erroneous and categorically misleading to even suggest that Benin kingdom founded any part of Lagos. No! Not an ‘inch’ of Lagos was founded by the Benin kingdom or the Bini people.
“Furthermore, the present Benin Oba’s snide remark at His Imperial Majesty, the Ooni of Ife, Oba AdeyeyeEnitanOgunwusi (Ojaja II) will not be overlooked. Not only was the remark disrespectful to the person of a permanent Co-chairman of the National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria (NCTRN), a council of which the Benin oba is merely a member; it is also couched with grave historical fallacy. We demand an unreserved apology for this sacrilegious incivility and blatant insult to the cradle of the Yoruba civilisation.
“We strongly urge the Benin Oba to, going forward, desist from making statements such as this which are not only false (as have been demonstrated), but also have the potential to stir up irreparable inter-ethnic strife capable of setting Nigeria on the path of irreversible disharmony & potential balkanization; especially as we are all only slowly recovering as a Nation from the ugly discords of the 2023 elections.
“We stand firm in our commitment to preserving and promoting the historical truth and call for a respectful acknowledgment of the same by all parties. We also demand a retraction of this fallacious statement from the Benin oba, and we insist on an unreserved apology to all Awori sons, daughters, kith & kin; His Imperial Majesty, the Ooni of Ife; and the Yoruba race as a whole.”
Prof. Adebisi calls on Nigerians to embrace ‘everythingprenuership’
The first occupier of Dr. Mike Adenuga Jr. Professorial Chair in Entrepreneurial Studies, University of Lagos, Professor Sunday Adebisi has called on Nigerians as a matter of policy and deliberate intention, embrace “everything prenuership” to ensure value creation in the country.
Professor Sunday who is also the Director of Entrepreneurship and Skill Development Centre of the institution said this will address the issues of deprivation, hunger, unemployment, and “japaism” and move many informal businesses into the formal circle.
While delivering the first special lecture of the Professorial Chair entitled, ‘Revolutionising the Nigerian Economy to Create Jobs and Sustainable Wealth The Sole Ladder, The Sole Option, The Sole Platform’ on Tuesday at University of Lagos, he said all the things happening in and around Nigeria are windows of opportunities, adding that the citizens, if given direction and supported with well outlined policies, would help the nation create massive wealth.
“Government should identify possible innovations in the areas of their strength and motivate the citizens to pursue enterprise opportunities there. The three tiers of Government must make a deliberate effort to support the democratization of innovation and entrepreneurship from the next academic session in all levels of education in Nigeria with a good monitoring team at all levels,” Professor Adebisi said.
Earlier in her speech, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Lagos, Professor FolasadeOgunsola, expressed appreciation to Dr. Mike Adenuga for partnering with the University in enhancing the frontiers of entrepreneurial academic knowledge and skills acquisition through the endowment.
She said the drive of the Board of Trustee of the Adenuga Professorial Chair of is leading the University progressively towards the realisation of shared dream of the donor and the university which is to use the chair to collectively explore innovative pathways that would not only address economic challenges we face but also pave way for sustainable and prosperous future for our youths.
The Chairman, Board of Trustees of Dr. Adenuga Professorial Chair, Professor TaiwoOsipitan, stated that the lecture was designed to explore how to integrate entrepreneurship issues and create gainful employment in the country.
The Mike Adenuga Professorial Chair in Entrepreneurial Studies was instituted in 2008 to ignite Entrepreneurship Research and open a new frontier for entrepreneurship knowledge and practice, and enterprise creation in our nation’s nascent democracy.
FG approves promotion of 32,361 personnel
The Federal Government has approved the promotion of 32,361 officers across the Civil Defence, Immigration, Correctional and Federal Fire Service.
Reading out the reports of the Board shortly after its meeting on Friday in Abuja, while granting a press conference, Commandant General of Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Dr. Abubakar Ahmed Audi, stated that the Board met on its 5th meeting for the year 2023, chaired by Minister of Interior Dr. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, approved the promotion of 32,361 personnel across services in the Ministry of Interior.
While reading out the breakdown of the number of personnel across the services, Commandant General of NSCDC stated that there is an improvement in the numbers of promoted personnel as against previous year’s exercise, which he attributed to strategy adopted by the Minister.
CG Audi reeled out the detailed numbers of the promoted officers according to each service during the press conference as thus: “Nigeria Correctional Service a total number of those promoted, out of the number that actually sat for the promotion exams are 4,498 personnel have been promoted to the next rank out of seven thousand plus.”
While for Nigeria Immigration Service 4,598 personnel were promoted, he said this cuts across various ranks out of 6,544 and expressed satisfaction for the improvement as against last year’s number.
He said while for the Federal Fire Service 1,680 out of 1,698 were promoted, that cuts across all ranks, and equally acknowledged improvement in the numbers of personnel promoted as against last year’s promotion.
Dr. Audi, said the last agency is Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, which he described the improvement as being very unprecedented, he said this is the first time the corps is having this sizeable number being promoted in the service.
He said out of about 25,921 that sat for the exams, the Board promoted 21,355 personnel from the NSCDC.
The NSCDC boss thanked the President and Commandant in Chief of the Arm Forces of Nigeria, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR for his fatherly support given to the Board via the Chairman also Minister of Interior, Dr. OlubunmiTunji-Ojo.
He subsequently congratulated all the promoted personnel across services and also charged them to do more in the service of the country, by quoting a famous speech of American President J. F. Kennedy, “always think of what you will do for your country not for what your country will do for you
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