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$5m Bribe: NCDMB Rubbishes Allegation Against Wabote

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Simbi Wabote $5m Bribe

By Ahmed Rahma

The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) has defended its Executive Secretary, Mr Simbi Wabote, saying that the $5 million bribery allegation against him is false.

A few days ago, one Mr Jackson Ude had accused Mr Wabote of receiving $5 million bribe from a German company to violate Nigeria’s local content laws on the Bonny Train 7 contract.

The journalist has said, “Simbi Wabote, the Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Content Development and Monitoring Board, a lackey of Timipre Sylva, actually collected $5 million bribe from Kelvion, German company to violate Nigeria’s local content laws on the Bonny Train 7 contract. Details plenty!”

But responding in a statement signed by General Manager of Corporate Communication/Zonal Coordination, NCDMB, Dr Ginah Ginah, the organisation described this allegation as baseless.

“Our attention has been drawn to a spurious and libellous online publication in Pointblank News of 10th February 2021, in which one Jackson Ude, purported that the Executive Secretary of the NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Wabote, and the Minister of State for Petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva received bribes to undermine the Nigerian content policy in the award of  Train 7 EPC contract.

“The report epitomizes a futile attempt to soil the image of public officials who have worked hard to develop local content in the Nigerian oil and gas industry.

“It is apparent that the writer does not even understand the role of NCDMB as enshrined in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act 2010.

“It could have been proper to ignore the fabricated news report, but we have a duty to provide the facts so that unsuspecting members of the public are not misled by blatant disinformation.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the NCDMB is a regulator and does not award contracts in the Nigerian oil and gas industry,” NCDMB explained in the statement.

Explaining further, it stated, “Our involvement in the award process is limited to evaluation of local content requirements in tenders, upon which NCDMB communicates to operators and/or project promoters the outcome of bidders’ compliance or otherwise with the provisions of the NOGICD Act.

“Due consideration and the decision to award a contract to any of the compliant bidders rest with the operator and their partners/ project promoters.

“The process of scaling through local content requirements in a project development is based on the provisions of the Nigerian Content Act and not on a subjective checklist that can be changed at the whims of any individual.”

It revealed that, “Circumventing the rules/requirements attracts stiff sanctions. Therefore, it would have been impossible for the Executive Secretary and the Minister or any other official for that matter to be induced to contravene the provisions of the law they are meant to enforce.

“It would have also been impossible for any official to dictate to the operators or project promoters on their choice of contractors without due regard for the commercial aspects and project economics.

“This fake news by Jackson Ude is a disingenuous attempt to diminish the hard work that engendered the Final Investment Decision (FID) for NLNG Train 7 project even at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic last year.

“The allegations are not only reckless but also calls to question the motive of Mr. Ude and his cohorts as the country strives to attract investors and create job opportunities for Nigerians.

“Just to call a spade a spade: the report by Jackson Ude is completely FALSE and makes no sense; it is mere FAKE news that satisfies only the author’s mischief and the selfish interests of his sponsors.

“It is on record that the outcome of the Train-7 Project tenders provided very significant financial savings for the NLNG and the country at large.

“We will therefore not succumb to any mudslinging or blackmail from Jackson Ude or his cohorts, including those business promoters who did not win the NLNG Train-7 contracts but have decided to vent their spleen through channels of disinformation such as the online Pointblank News

“Since creation in 2010, the NCDMB has worked to achieve quantum growth in the Nigerian oil and gas industry from less than 5% to over 35%.

“The in-country capacities and capabilities developed over the years are evident and we will not be distracted from our focus and plan to increase this to 70 percent by 2027 in line with our extant 10-year Strategic Roadmap.”

Ahmed Rahma is a journalist with great interest in arts and craft. She is also a foodie who loves new ideas. She loves to travel and would love to visit other African countries someday. She is a sucker for historical movies and afrobeat.

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Coca-Cola Targets Total Renewable Energy Adoption by 2040

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Coca Cola Total Renewable Energy Adoption

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company (CCHBC) has announced its commitment to achieving net-zero emissions across its entire value chain by 2040.

The commitment, which was recently launched across 28 markets by the leading bottlers of the Coca-Cola brands, represents a bold response to the global concerns around climate emergency and its threats to the future of the planet.

The company aims to achieve this total renewable energy adoption target through the adoption of several initiatives, including the investment of €250 million in emissions reduction initiatives by 2025; switching to 100 per cent renewable electricity and low carbon energy sources; accelerating efforts towards low carbon packaging by increasing rPET use and adopting package-less and refillable options and removing plastics in secondary packaging.

The organisation also plans to provide energy-efficient and eco-friendly coolers to customers, reduce emissions from agricultural ingredients and implement a “Green Fleet” programme to switch to low and no-carbon alternatives.

Commenting on the initiative, Mr Zoran Bogdanovic, CEO of Coca-Cola HBC, said, “This commitment is the ultimate destination of a journey that we started many years ago. It is fully aligned with our philosophy to support the socio-economic development of our communities and to make a more positive environmental impact. Both are integral to our future growth.

“Although we don’t yet have all the answers, our plan, track record and partnership approach give us confidence that we will deliver.”

Also commenting on behalf of one of the company’s partners, Mr Markus Pfanner, Vice President, Sustainability Tetra Pak, said: “As Tetra Pak also has a net-zero target and SBTi approved 1.50 aligned 2030 targets, we look forward to working with Coca-Cola HBC to reduce GHG emissions and together achieve our joint aims.”

In Nigeria, NBC is playing its role to accelerate efforts towards reaching this target through several interventions.

The company commenced the transition of four of its manufacturing plants in Maiduguri, Kano, Asejire and Abuja, to renewable energy sources through the installation of solar power infrastructure. These efforts deliver up to 2,650 KWP to the facilities, and the expansion phase will even deliver more carbon footprint reduction.

Furthermore, NBC has completed the installation of Combined Heat and Power Plants (CHP) at four of its manufacturing plants which has resulted in a significant reduction of its carbon footprint across the country. With the CHPs, heat emission that would have been lost is effectively channelled back into powering boilers at the plants.

As an innovative leader in water stewardship, the company has also ensured that all its manufacturing facilities have effluent treatment plants which ensure that wastewater released from operations are safe for plant and animal life.

As a confirmation, all NBC plants have received the prestigious Alliance for Water Stewardship certification, the highest global benchmark for responsible water stewardship.

Speaking on the company’s interventions so far, the Managing Director at NBC, Mr Mathieu Seguin, said, “Climate change is a global emergency that requires deliberate, proactive and coordinated efforts to be mitigated. We have seen its impact on agriculture and food production, rising sea levels, declining biodiversity, and the threat to coastal communities.

“We are passionate about leading efforts that strengthen the sustainability of the environment while supporting the socio-economic development of our communities. These priorities are integral to our future growth and central to our values as an organization.”

Through an existing and approved science-based target, the CCHBC is aiming at a 25 per cent reduction in its value chain emissions by 2030 and a further 50 per cent reduction the following decade.

To address the 90 per cent of emissions resulting from third party actions, the company is broadening the existing partnership approach with suppliers whilst also investing in other climate protection measures wherever emissions cannot be eliminated entirely.

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Prophet Iginla Fixes October 30 for Mother’s Burial in Ekiti

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Prophet Iginla mother's burial

By Dipo Olowookere

Popular Nigerian clergy, Prophet Joshua Iginla, has concluded plans to give his late mother, Deaconess Lasisi Iginla, a befitting burial, with the funeral rites lasting three days.

A statement issued by his media representatives disclosed that the burial rites will commence on Friday, October 29 and end on Sunday, October 31, 2021, in Ekiti State.

The General Overseer of Champions Royal Assembly lost his mother to the cold hands of death on Thursday, April 15, 2021.

The woman, who was aged 83 before her demise, was said to have lived an exemplary life, with the cleric describing her as the queen of peace and love.

In the statement, it was stated that several dignitaries from within and outside the country are expected to gather at Oke-Ila in Ekiti State to celebrate the life and times of Mama Iginla.

It was revealed that on Friday, there would be a service of songs at Champion Royal Assembly, which is located opposite Yemraf Hotel, Adebayo Ado-Ekiti from 5 pm to 9 pm, while the next day, the lying-in-state will take place at the same church from 7 am to 9 am and by 11 am, the internment will hold at her residence along Afao Road, behind CAC (Rejoice Arena), Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti, with the entertainment of guests fixed for Damlek Multi-Purpose Hall and Event Centre, Beside Five O’s Filling Station, Afao Road, Oke-Ila, Ado-Ekiti,

On Sunday, October 31, a thanksgiving service will take place at Champions Royal Assembly in Ado-Ekiti by 7 am.

Prophet Iginla, while commenting on the death of his mother, said she was “the vehicle that brought me to the world. You are my hero of childhood mum. You held my hands when I was small, you caught me when I fell and you taught me love, forgiveness and how to be a giver.”

“I remember your last word mum, today you have gone to be with the Lord. Death takes the body. God takes the soul and the spirit. Our mind holds your memories. Our heart keeps your love. Our faith let us know, we will meet you again.

“Your 83 years on earth was a blessing. Your memory [is] a treasure. I love you mum forever,” he added.

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Sanwo-Olu, Uduaghan, Others for The Witness Newspaper Foundation Unveiling

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The Witness Newspaper Foundation

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

The Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, will on Sunday, October 24, 2021, lead some dignitaries to the unveiling of The Witness Newspaper Foundation scheduled to take place at the prestigious Lagos Continental Hotel (formerly Intercontinental Hotel), Victoria Island, Lagos.

Business Post gathered that The Witness Newspaper Foundation is the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) arm of www.witnessngr.com, a credible Nigerian newspaper in digital and print formats.

The launch of the non-governmental organization (NGO) is in commemoration of the fourth anniversary of the newspaper, which was established in 2017 by a respected journalist, Mr Julius Akpovire-Enyeh.

A statement issued on Monday by Mr Akpovire-Enyeh explained that the foundation will focus on enhancing the education, health and empowerment of the less-privileged and vulnerable children, youths, widows and the aged in the society.

“Today, there are many children and youths who have dropped out of school due to lack of adequate support; there are a lot of less-privileged widows and the aged who are yearning for help.

“As a responsible organisation, we aim to ameliorate the pains of these individuals and in turn contribute to nation-building.

“The underprivileged widows and their vulnerable children constitute a significant component of every country’s population.

“Available statistics show that Nigeria has over eight million disadvantaged widows with over 21 million children. Many are stigmatised and blamed for their husband’s death and displaced from their marital homes.

“The aged constitute 5.2 per cent of Nigeria’s population and the figure is expected to hit 6 per cent by 2025. But it’s sad that in 61 years of independence from the colonial administration, Nigeria is yet to enact a national policy on the care and welfare of older persons.

“The rate at which the elderly are dying in the society as a result of inadequate healthcare and poverty is alarming and embarrassing to the country.

“The foundation will also tackle poverty and empower less-privileged youths. Although Nigeria is Africa’s biggest oil exporter with the largest natural gas reserves on the continent, it was reported by the National Bureau of Statistics in 2019 to have 83 million people living below the nation’s poverty line. Still, unemployment and underemployment are on the increase,” he disclosed.

He revealed that Mr Sanwo-Olu will serve as the chief host of the event, while the immediate-past Governor of Delta State, Mr Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan, is the chairman of the occasion.

According to him, other personalities expected to grace the launch include the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mr Mudashiru Obasa; the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, (NNPC), Mr Mele Kyari; the Managing Director of Ecobank Nigeria Limited, Mr Patrick Akinwuntan; the Director-General/CEO of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mr Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi; an Executive Director at Titan Trust Bank Limited, Ms Adaeze Udensi; and a former senatorial candidate and chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Victor Adoji.

The Witness, which is updated regularly, was founded with the mission of bringing its readers accurate and reliable information without bias, about happenings within the nation and abroad and has consistently recorded massive hits and heavy traffic.

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