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Buhari to Flag Off Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano Gas Pipeline

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gas pipelines

By Adedapo Adesanya

President Muhammadu Buhari will on Tuesday flag off the construction of the Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano (AKK) pipeline, which is set to become the nation’s biggest domestic gas transmission infrastructure.

The 614 kilometre gas pipeline conceived to provide the highly desired stimulus to domestic industrial growth will be delivered by a consortium of indigenous and international engineering firms. This project will also signal the finest hour so far for the Nigerian Content Policy goals.

The President, by the flag-off of this project at Ajaokuta, Kogi State, would be turning to reality some of the nation’s long-term economic aspirations of boosting domestic energy infrastructure, deepening the local gas market, creating industrial corridors with cleaner fuel, and commercialising the country’s abundant gas resources.

The project, according to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), will significantly curb gas flaring in the Niger Delta and guarantee better air quality in the oil-producing region.

Furthermore, the pipeline, which was conceived to connect demand from the northern part of the country with supply from the south, would be the biggest infrastructure development in the country’s recent history.

It will also mark a significant shift in the nation’s energy policy; from revenue targeted export programmes to development-focused domestic supply programmes.

Significantly, the $2.8 billion project will breakthrough on the June 30 after seven years of rigorous processes that morphed from policy conception through implementation strategy designs, master-plans and solid implementation programmes.

The biggest value to the economy is the participation of indigenous engineering firms led by pipeline giant, Oilserv Limited, in the delivery of some of the phases of the project.

The company has successfully delivered over 17 similar challenging projects in the country including the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) of the 67 kilometres Obiafu/Obrikom to Oben (OB3) 48-inch diameter Gas Transmission Pipeline System. The Oilserv consortium is slated to deliver the first 200-kilometre phase of the AKK pipeline which covers the section between Ajaokuta and Abuja, after securing the EPC contract in April 2018.

According to the Presidency, “the AKK pipeline project is itself a section of an ambitious pipeline project to supply gas to Europe through the proposed Trans Sahara Gas Pipeline (TSGP) and Nigeria Morocco Gas Pipelines.”

Thus, in the short term the AKK will ensure energy sufficiency for domestic commerce and industry, and in the long term, having deepened and satisfied domestic demand, morph into an export pipeline and economic mainstay.

The AKK pipeline, in Nigeria’s prevailing socioeconomic downturn, will prove to be fortuitous as well as strategic even as the world steps away from fossil fuel.

Beyond the immediate need to stem the devastation of the corona pandemic and stimulate activity in the domestic economy, the AKK, which is already potentially poised as a very central economic powerhouse in Nigeria, will also create deeper, more enduring values.

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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NLC, TUC Suspend Wednesday’s Nationwide Strike

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NLC TUC strike

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

The planned nationwide strike action earlier fixed for Wednesday, June 7, 2023, by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) has been suspended by the unions.

The labour unions suspended the industrial action on Monday night after a meeting with the federal government at the Presidential Villa.

Nigerian workers had planned to stay away from work to protest the announcement of the removal of fuel subsidy by President Bola Tinubu during his inaugural speech last Monday.

Recall that earlier yesterday, the central government obtained an interim order from the National Industrial Court to stop the industrial action by the labour organisations on the argument that the strike could paralyse the country.

Justice O.Y. Anuwe restrained the NLC and the TUC from the action pending the determination of the motion of notice, which was fixed for a hearing on June 19, 2023.

Later in the day, the labour unions and the federal government held a meeting, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, who has been appointed as the Chief of Staff to the President, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila, informed newsmen last night that a committee would be set up to discuss ways to resolve the issues amicably.

“The federal government, the TUC and the NLC would review World Bank Financed Cash transfer scheme and propose the inclusion of low-income earners in the programme.

“The federal government, the TUC and the NLC to revive the CNG conversion programme earlier agreed with Labour centres in 2021 and work out detailed implementation and timing.

“The labour centres and the federal government to review issues hindering effective delivery in the education sector and propose solutions for implementation.

“The labour centres and the federal government to review and establish the framework for completion of the rehabilitation of the nation’s refineries.

“The federal government to provide a framework for maintaining roads and expanding rail networks across the country.

“The joint committee will assess all other demands submitted by the TUC to the federal government,” a communique issued at the end of the meeting said.

Business Post reports that after the NLC and the TUC agreed to “suspend the notice of strike forthwith to enable further consultations,” they fixed June 19 to reconvene a meeting with the government “to agree on an implementation framework.”

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Subsidy Removal: Court Stops Proposed Nationwide Strike by NLC, TUC

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Nigerian Labour Congress NLC

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

The proposed nationwide strike to kick against the removal of fuel subsidy by the federal government may suffer a setback as the National Industrial Court (NIC) has restrained the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) from going on with the action.

In a ruling on an interim order sought by the federal government on Monday in Abuja, Justice O. Y. Anuwe ordered the unions to stop the strike pending the determination of a suit filed by the government.

The judge directed the government to serve the NLC and the TUC the interim order and the substantive suit marked NICN/ABJ/158/2023, fixing June 19, 2023, for hearing of the matter.

“The defendants/respondents are hereby restrained from embarking on the planned Industrial Action/or strike of any nature, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice dated 5th June 2023.

“It is ordered that the defendant/ respondents be immediately served with the originating processes in this suit, the motion on notice, and the order of this court hereby made.

“The motion on notice is hereby fixed for hearing on 19th June 2023. Hearing notices to that effect shall be served on the defendants/respondents along with the other processes,” Justice Anuwe ruled.

Business Post reports that the Federal Ministry of Justice filed an ex-parte motion to stop the planned industrial action by the labour unions, arguing that the strike was capable of disrupting economic activities, the health sector and the educational sector.

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Momentum Gathers for Second Adire Lagos Experience

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Adire Lagos Experience

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

Stakeholders in the Nigerian textile industry are getting prepared for the second Adire Lagos Experience organised by Ecobank Nigeria Limited.

Momentum is gathering for this event slated for June 9 to 11, 2023, because the first edition, held at the ultra-modern Ecobank Pan African Centre (EPAC) complex in Victoria Island, was the talk of the town.

Participants used the occasion to network and get the latest designs in the local adire fabric.

Ecobank has assured that this year’s programme would be bigger as those expected are top government officials from  Lagos, Ogun and other neighbouring states, the CEO of Adire Oodua Textile Hub and wife of Ooni of Ife, Mrs Ronke Ogunwusi; the CEO of Dye Lab, Ms Joke Ladoja; the Creative Director, Afume Global Concepts, Mrs Funmi Sosanya; and the CEO, Aga Culture & Upbeat, Moyo Ogunseinde, among others.

The event is being partnered with the National Union Textile Garment Tailoring Workers of Nigeria (Adire Sector) and will involve the exhibition of new designs of the fabric.

The Head of Consumer Banking at Ecobank, Mrs Korede Demola-Adeniyi, said the exhibition is part of the bank’s contribution to boosting the nation’s tourism, culture and creative industry using Adire as a key driver, adding that, high profile exhibitors, vendors, dignitaries from different parts of the world have indicated interest to be part of the event.

“The bank was encouraged by the success of the maiden edition last year.  It is in line with our brand promise as a Pan-African Institution to promote culture and boost tourism on the continent.

“We expect topflight exhibitors, expatriates, influencers, dignitaries from all walks of life and members of the public at the three days event,” she said.

Mrs Demola-Adeniyi stated that the event would feature a series of masterclasses and exhibitions, as well as networking opportunities with entrepreneurs, shoppers and everyone interested in the making or trading of Adire, adding that the bank has provided a cosy ambience with utmost serenity to make participants feel comfortable and safe.

She added that, “Participation is free, and you are welcome to invite family and friends to come over to witness the beautiful event.

“This exhibition also presents an opportunity not only to sell and buy products but to experience the luxuriance in our culture.

“In addition to the wonderful display of Adire clothing and products, there will be masterclasses on Adire production, picture-perfect moments, and music to vibe.”

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