Press zooms in on warning that Nigeria is at brink of avoidable catastrophe, others

The warning by the pan-Yoruba socio-political organization (Afenifere) that Nigeria is at the brink of an avoidable catastrophe that requires…

The warning by the pan-Yoruba socio-political organization (Afenifere) that Nigeria is at the brink of an avoidable catastrophe that requires urgent actions is one of the trending stories in Nigerian newspapers on Monday.The Vanguard reports that the pan-Yoruba socio-political organization (Afenifere) yesterday, expressed worry over the state of the country, warning that Nigeria is at the brink of an avoidable catastrophe that requires urgent actions.

This came on a day the Yoruba One Voice (YOV) weekend, urged Yoruba people all over the world not to relent in the campaign for self-determination for the people of the South-West.

Those at the Afenifere Executive Council, presided over by its leader, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, were Oba Oladipo Olaitan (Deputy Leader), Chief Sola Ebiseni (Secretary-General), Chief Supo Sonibare (Treasurer), Abagun Kole Omololu (National Organising Secretary), Comrade Jare Ajayi (Publicity Secretary), Mr. Adebayo Adenekan (Secretary for the Diaspora), Dr. Akin Fapohunda (Director of Research), and Mogaji Gboyega Adejumo.

In a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Jare Ajayi, Afenifere warned that the signs are “ominous, requiring steps to prevent the country from an apocalypse”.

The statement read: “The Nigerian nation is at the brink of an avoidable catastrophe that requires urgent actions. And the most potent recipe to prevent the catastrophe is restructuring that would return the country to true federalism.

“After reviewing recent developments in the country, Afenifere Executive Council said that the signs are ominous, requiring steps to prevent the country from an apocalypse.

“The meeting endorsed the recent resolutions of the governors of Southern Nigeria, with regards to placing a total ban on open grazing and having state police.”

The Guardian says that the Oyo State COVID-19 Task Force has uncovered the virulent Delta variant of coronavirus in the state.

The State Incident Manager and coordinator of the Emergency Operations Centre, Dr. Olabode Ladipo, who confirmed this development yesterday, said the public is notified of the need to take extra caution and consistently apply all advisories earlier released by the task force.

The Delta variant is a highly transmissible variant of COVID-19 originating from India and it infects people more rapidly than the other known COVID-19 variants. This is coming after the Federal Government last Thursday confirmed the first case of Delta variant in the country.

A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to Governor ‘Seyi Makinde, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, on behalf of the task force, said: “We wish to notify the general public of the isolation of the Delta variant of the COVID-19 virus in the state. This strain has been associated with high transmission, increased severity of infection and outcomes.”

It warned residents to continue to comply with all advisories aimed at curtailing the spread of COVID-19, including all in-bound travellers being mandated to isolate for seven days and submit themselves for tests.

ALSO, Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, yesterday, said the state has started experiencing a potential third wave of the pandemic with dire consequences. Sanwo-Olu, who gave the alert while giving an update on the pandemic situation in the state and ongoing response as a government, added that the country stands the risks of losing both lives and livelihood on a devastating scale.

The Punch reports that Nigeria received about $8.4bn investment announcements as at 4th March 2021, out of which $5.46bn were pledged by foreign investors. The remaining $2.08bn was promised by domestic investors, statistics obtained from the Nigerian Investments Promotion Commission showed.

The sum pledged by foreign investors in Q1 2021 is 27.5 per cent lower than the $7.54bn foreign investment announcements recorded by the NIPC in the preceding quarter.

However, the Q1 foreign investment profile was 36.5 per cent higher than the $4.02bn reported in the corresponding period in 2020, but was 56.6 per cent lower than the S12.6bn recorded in the same period in 2019.

In its ‘report of investment announcements in Nigeria (January – March 2021)’, the NIPC noted that the major sources of foreign investments announcements in Q1 2021 originated from Morocco, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Investors from the three countries pledged $1.40bn, $0.24bn and $0.08bn respectively, while other investors from undisclosed countries pledged to invest $3.74bn in Nigeria’s economy.

The newspaper says that the Nigerian Government has signed an agreement with some Brazilian firms to establish tractors’ assembly plants in Nigeria.

The Chairman, Senate Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, disclosed this in an interview with our correspondent in Abuja.

He said the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, with the support of the regime of President Muhammadu Buhari, had secured funding from the Islamic Bank to accelerate the process.

Adamu, who was a two-term governor of Nasarawa State, added that the plan was aimed at allocating at least 10 tractors to each of the 774 local government areas of the country.

ThisDay says that the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Mrs. Mariam Katagum, has said the federal government is committed to improving the inflow of foreign capital into the country.

She pointed out that capital inflows dipped by 60 per cent in 2020 from $24 billion in 2019 to $9.7 billion. The minister said the government remained determined towards addressing the enormous challenges faced by stakeholders in the agric-commodity value chain in particular.

She said this was why the government launched Nigeria Agri-business and Agro -Industry Development Initiative (NAADI) to among other things rein in the high cost of production, low quality of products and issues around capacity utilisation in the sub- sector.

Katagum, in her remarks during the official flag-off and inauguration of the Bauchi State Office for the implementation NAADI in the state recently, pointed out that the overall objective of the initiative was to develop an industrialised and commercialised agricultural sector, comprised of highly productive and profitable commodity value chains.

The Sun reports that in what appears like a payback time over Nigeria’s closure of its borders in 2019, the government of the Republic of Benin has stopped Nigeria-bound trucks laden with transit goods from Cote d’ivoire, Ghana and Togo from passing through its border to Nigeria.

This development has left over 3,700 Nigeria-bound trucks laden with transit goods worth several billions of naira trapped between Ilakoji, a border between Ghana, Togo and Benin.

However, stakeholders were worried that some of the goods, which have been under both rain and sun, might have gone bad, particularly the perishable ones, which will bring huge financial losses to the affected companies.

As a result of the closure, Daily Sun learnt that the Benin government has imposed a new import duty payment of CFA 9 million, per every transit truck laden with Nigeria-bound goods, an equivalent of about N6.5 million which, are exempted from all forms of duty under ECOWAS protocols on transit goods.

Confirming the development, the Chairman of the Association of Nigeria Licensed Customs Agents (ANCLA) Seme border chapter, Bisiriyu Fanu, said Benin authority actually stopped the cargoes that were coming from Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Togo to Nigeria passing through Cotonou land, Ilakoji and Seme border.

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