The assurance by the African Union Development Agency-New Partnership for Africa’s Development (AUDA-NEPAD) to Nigerians that President Muhammadu Buhari will not renege on his promise of bequeathing free, fair and credible elections to the nation is one of the trending stories in Nigerian newspapers on Tuesday.The Guardian reports that the African Union Development Agency-New Partnership for Africa’s Development (AUDA-NEPAD) has assured Nigerians that President Muhammadu Buhari will not renege on his promise of bequeathing free, fair and credible elections to the nation.
The organisation, therefore, called on Nigerians, especially political actors, to eschew violence during the 2023 general elections.
National Coordinator and Chief Executive Officer of AUDA-NEPAD Nigeria, Gloria Akobundu, stated this at a media briefing to showcase achievements of the organisation for the year 2022, at the weekend in Abuja.
The President had, in several forums, assured that rigging and other forms of electoral fraud will not be tolerated in the elections, assuring that Nigerians would be free to elect new leaders at the polls.
Noting that the President will keep to his words, Akobundu said all hands must be on deck to assist Buhari fulfil the pledge.
She advised the media to be professional and avert breach of the peace in reportage before, during and after the polls.
Akobundu said: “Buhari has promised free election; we should all support him. We have no other country but Nigeria. Do not allow personal interest or quest for whatever that won’t support the peace of this country come to play during the election. Therefore, we need to join hands together to campaign for violent-free elections.”
She added that the agency is also implementing a national action plan on violence-free election across the six political zones.
Akobundu said the organisation, as part of its mandate, has been supportive of the President’s vision of pulling 100 million poor Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years. She, however, said limited resources, especially funding, has been a serious challenge, as more citizens continue to fall into poverty.
The newspaper says that the Managing Director, Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise Limited (LPLEL), Du Ruogang, has stated that the first phase of the Lekki Deep Sea Port is ready for official commissioning and commercial operations.
This comes as the promoters have opened discussions with potential operators of the liquid berth terminals for the commencement of the construction of phase two of the port.
Ruogang disclosed this yesterday at an end-of-the-year media parley held in Lagos. He assured that all necessary arrangements are being made for the official commissioning of the port by President Muhammadu Buhari after which the facility would commence full commercial operations.
He noted that the terminal operator, Lekki Free Port Terminal (LFT), was putting everything in place to achieve a world-class port experience, adding that all the relevant agencies have been sensitised on their roles in this regard.
Ruogang noted that while Lagos State government has commenced work on the construction of access roads, there was an appeal for more support in the area of infrastructural development to ensure easy cargo movement.
He expressed appreciation to the Federal Government, including key agencies like the Ministry of Transportation, Nigerian Port Authority (NPA), Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC), and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) for their contribution to making the port a reality.
The Chief Operating Officer, Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise Limited (LPLEL), Laurence Smith, said the full commercial operation would commence at the end of the first quarter of 2023 while trial operations would be carried out once the company completes the installation of necessary equipment and infrastructure.
Smith hinted that Lekki Port has already opened discussions with potential operators of the liquid berth terminals, which is critical to the commencement of the construction of phase two of the project.
The Punch reports that the average cost of airplane tickets in Nigeria rose from N37,022.97 in November 2021 to N73,267.57 in November 2022 is one of the trending stories in Nigerian newspapers on Tuesday.
The Punch reports that the average cost of airplane tickets in Nigeria rose from N37,022.97 in November 2021 to N73,267.57 in November 2022, latest data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed on Monday.
This represents an increase of 97.09 per cent, according to the NBS’ Transport Fare Watch report for November 2022.
The report also showed that that the average price of a single flight ticket increased by 0.09 per cent from N73,198.65 in October to N73,267.57 in November, 2022.
The NBS report read in part, “In air travels fare, the average fare paid by air passengers for specified routes single journey, increased by 0.09 per cent on a month-on-month from N73,198.65 in October 2022 to N73,267.57 in November 2022.
“On a year-on-year, the fare rose by 97.90 per cent from N37,022.97 in November 2021.”
It also disclosed the states with the highest average prices of airplane tickets on a single journey, and they included Taraba (N77,100), Delta (N76,500) as well as Bayelsa and Oyo with N76,100 each.
The states with the lowest prices were Niger (N67,100), Gombe (N70,000) and Nasarawa (N70,100).
The report also disclosed that the average fare paid by commuters for bus journeys within the city per drop increased by 0.12 per cent in November 2022 on a month-on-month from N636.30 in October 2022 to N637.10.
According to the NBS, on a year-on-year basis, however, the average fare paid by commuters for bus journeys within the city per drop rose by 42.69 per cent from N446.50 recorded in November 2021.
The newspaper says that the International Monetary Fund has warned Nigeria and other oil-producing countries in Sub-Saharan Africa to expect dwindling oil revenues in the coming years as the world transitions from fossil fuels to cleaner energy.
In a new report titled “Savings from Oil Revenues Could Help Africa’s Producers Manage Price Swings,” the fund said oil exporters in sub-Saharan Africa should target buffers of around 5 to 10 per cent of gross domestic product to manage large swings in oil prices.
It means Nigeria would need to maintain annual fiscal surpluses of at least one per cent per annum over a 10-year period.
IMF’s latest Regional Economic Outlook showed that oil prices have fluctuated from lows of $23 per barrel to a peak of $120 in the last two years, resulting in highly uncertain revenues in oil-dependent economies.
“Moreover, as countries transition to low-carbon energy sources, oil revenues could sharply decline. By 2030, oil revenues in the region could fall by as much as a quarter and by 2050, by half. Building buffers now would help the region’s oil exporters navigate the transition toward clean energy while managing oil price fluctuations.”
Meanwhile, IMF has said Nigerian and other countries’ economies have grown below the regional average of 3.6 percent this year.
In a recent news blog titled, ‘Countries hurt by war and fragility need strong global partnerships, resources’ the IMF listed Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Comoros, Eritrea, Mali, Nigeria, and Zimbabwe as countries affected the low growth problem.
The Washington DC based financial body said that consumer prices had increased by more than 20 per cent on average this year, while public debt was approaching 60 percent of gross domestic product, a level not seen since the early 2000s.
The IMF also said that 12 per cent of the region’s population faced acute food insecurity, equivalent to two-thirds of the worldwide total.