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Nigeria’s Oil Minister Gets OPEC Appointment

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timipre sylva oil minister

By Adedapo Adesanya

Nigeria’s Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr Timipre Sylva, has been appointed by the Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JJMC) of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to undertake a mission as Special Envoy to Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon and South Sudan.

This was disclosed in a statement released by the OPEC secretariat, which explained that the decision, taken at the 26th meeting of the JMMC, was in line with the principles of fairness, transparency and equity that underpin the “Declaration of Cooperation”, (DoC).

The purpose of this mission is to hold consultations with the respective leaders of these countries on the DoC market rebalancing efforts.

In particular, the Special Envoy will discuss matters pertaining to conformity levels with the voluntary production adjustments and explore how the four nations can collectively support and assist each other in achieving full conformity with their supply adjustments.

As part of his duty, the Minister will also discuss with relevant authorities the compensation mechanism in accommodating underperformed volumes as agreed at the June ministerial meetings and later amended in September 2020.

Furthermore, this mission will solidify the dialogue channels among the countries, and enhance transparency and information exchange. Given the geographic proximity of these countries, it is a rare opportunity for Ministers and leaders to safely meet in person, following months of virtual conferencing.

Speaking on this, the chair of the committee, Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Energy, and co-chair, Mr Alexander Novak, Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation, commended the positive efforts of all countries participating in the DoC for the monumental strides taken toward attaining full conformity with their voluntary adjustments in output.

The countries have been proactive and pre-emptive in measures taken to mitigate the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the oil market.

While progress has been achieved in introducing a greater degree of stability in the oil market since the historic decisions taken in April 2020, participating countries had said the will not rest on their laurels. They noted that a sustainable oil market stability necessitates a continual renewal of effort, engagement and responsiveness to factors affecting the market.

Nigeria is the largest producing country in Africa and a key member of the DoC. In 2021, Nigeria will mark the 50th anniversary of its membership of OPEC which it joined in 1971.

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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Shoprite Workers Protest Inhuman Treatment

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Shoprite workers protest

By Ahmed Rahma

Some employees of Africa’s largest food retailer store, Shoprite, in Akure, Ondo State on Tuesday embarked on a protest against an alleged inhuman treatment by the management of the company.

The workers of the organisation, who gathered in front of the mall as early as 8 am today, accused the management of treating them like slaves.

They carried placards with various messages, calling on the company to treat them with dignity.

Some of the messages conveyed in the different placards read, Say no to modern slavery, They want to abandon us and run, 10 years of service without entitlements, and they want to run, Reward our sacrifice, among others.

The aggrieved workers used various songs to press home their demands.

Recall that a few days ago, the National Assembly expressed displeasure over the casualization of works in the country.

Shoprite is a South African company operating in Nigeria and other countries on the continent.

Last year, the firm said it was planning to exit Nigeria because of a decline in sales.

Details later…

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Lagos Civil Servants to Work-From-Home Till March 26

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Lagos Civil Servants

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

Workers on the payroll of the Lagos State government from grade level 12 and below have been directed to continue to work from home for another four weeks.

They were supposed to resume on Monday, March 1, 2021, but the Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has extended the directive by a month.

A statement issued by the Head of Service, Mr Hakeem Muri-Okunola, disclosed that all public servants on salary grade levels 12 and below should continue to work from home with effect from Monday, March 1 to Friday, March 26, 2021.

It was explained that this action was taken to further stem the spread of COVID-19 within the public service and other stakeholders.

The government said it was delighted that measures put in place to curb the spread of the virus in the state were already yielding meaningful results as there has been a steady decline in the number of recorded cases in the preceding weeks.

In the statement, Mr Muri-Okunola maintained that in order to sustain the success so far recorded; the Governor felt it was necessary to extend the policy.

However, the HoS stressed that the directive does not preclude any of the exempted grade levels from reporting for duty whenever the Accounting Officer deems it necessary.

“All public servants are advised to continue to stay safe by observing all COVID-19 protocols such as physical distancing, regular use of face masks and hand hygiene.

“Also, Accounting Officers are to ensure strict adherence to all extant directives aimed to guarantee physical distancing in the workplace by preparation of weekly duty rosters as considered germane to effective service delivery in respective MDAs,” the head of civil servants in Lagos State said.

Recall that Lagos State has witnessed a decline in the number of infections in the recent past due to the government’s regular updates on preventive measures as well as public enlightenment campaigns to create awareness about measures to stem the spread of the deadly virus.

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Former Wema Bank MD/CEO Joins Chams

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chams

By Ahmed Rahma

Following the death of its non-executive director, Professor Oyewusi Ibidapo-Obe, Chams Plc said its board has approved the appointment Mr Olusegun Oloketuyi and Mrs Olamojiba Bakare as non-executive directors effective February 18, 2021, subject to the ratification at the Annual General Meeting (AGM).

In a notification to the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), the company said until his death, Mr Ibidapo-Obe joined the company as a director on September 29, 2015, and made major contributions to the organisation during his time on the board.

One of the new appointees, Mr Segun Oloketuyi, is a seasoned banker and accountant. He was the immediate Managing Director of Wema Bank Plc.

He had also served as General Manager, Business Optimization Division and Executive Director of Business Development at Skye Bank Plc and Deputy General Manager, Corporate and Commercial Markets at Polaris Bank Plc (formerly Prudent Bank Plc) and as its Executive Director of Finance and Enterprise Risk Management.

On her part, Mrs Olamojiba Bakare is a reputable international lawyer, having qualified as a Solicitor of England and Wales from Inns of Court School of Law.

She also has a Masters degree in The Theory and Practice of Dispute Prevention and Resolution from the University of Westminster.

Mrs Olamojiba Bakare is armed with almost 20 years’ experience in the corporate world, out of which she used 15 years as a practicing Solicitor in the United Kingdom.

Since her relocation to Nigeria in 2010, she has both taught corporate law and practiced as a solicitor.

She comes with a wealth of knowledge, experience, professionalism and passion.

Chams PLC is Nigeria’s leading provider of integrated identity management and identity and payments transactional systems and solutions provider.

Over the last3 decades, Chams has evolved from computer and hardware maintenance to providing enterprise technology solutions in the identity management and transaction payments space to public and private sector institutions.

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Senate Confirms Buratai, Other Ex-Service Chiefs as Ambassadors

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Buratai ambassadors

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

The nomination of the immediate past service chiefs as non-career ambassadors has been confirmed by the Nigerian Senate.

President Muhammadu Buhari had selected the former Chief of Defence Staff, Mr Gabriel Olonisakin; the former Chief of Army Staff, Mr Tukur Buratai; the former Chief of Air Staff, Mr Ibok Ibas; and the former Chief of Naval Staff, Mr Abubakar Sadique as non-career envoys shortly after they retired from the military.

He had sent their names to the Senate for screening and confirmation on February 5, 2021, in accordance with the law.

On Tuesday, despite opposition to their nomination, the upper chamber of the National Assembly led by the Senate President, Mr Ahmad Lawan, authorised their appointments.

Critics had accused President Buhari of appointing the former military officers as diplomats to shield them from prosecution at the International Criminal Court (ICC).

They were accused of human rights abuses while they were in office, especially the October 20, 2020, incident in Lagos, where it was alleged that soldiers opened fire on some peaceful protesters at the Lekki Toll Gate.

The demonstration was for an end to police brutality in the country as well as bad governance. No one has been indicted as a panel instituted to look into the matter was yet to conclude its findings.

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FG Targets 40,000 Jobs from Steel Industry

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steel industry

By Adedapo Adesanya

The nation’s steel industry, when fully developed, could generate not less than 40,000 jobs and would drive economic growth, the federal government has said.

According to the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Mr Olamilekan Adegbite, the steel sector has the capability to propel the economic diversification agenda of the present administration.

Mr Adegbite, who was at a facility tour of Premium Steel and Mines Limited, Warri Delta State, therefore, encouraged the management of the firm to begin full operations to help achieve these goals.

“The mandate of the ministry is to expand the sector, use it to diversify the economy and create jobs and also to generate revenue for the government.

“I will encourage you to speed up the process. You are going to employ a lot of people which is a welcome development,” the Minister said.

Mr Adegbite also said that it was important for the nation’s steel sector to produce flat steel sheet, saying it’s vital for the development of the sector.

“For the nation to industrialise, we need to produce flat sheet, which is the ultimate goal of the sector. With flat sheet we can produce many things like engine blocks, vehicle bodies etc’

Mr Adegbite also rallied the steel producer to support the metallurgical Industry bill, adding that the bill when enacted into law would assist in establishing programmes that would aid the private sector to operate optimally, producing competitive high-quality products for both local and international market.

“Government is willing to do everything to support the industry. That’s why we have proposed a metallurgical industrial Bill, which is at the council for approval. When it is approved it will support the industry.

“It will make it a lot easier for you to operate. We would have been empowered by the law to support you. The support we give will have the backing of the law,” he said.

In his remarks, the GCEO of Premium Steel and Mines Limited, Mr Anant Badjatya, said that the management of the company was working towards fully reviving the company.

He said that the company would save the nation more than a million tons of steel in import and conserve about 600 million dollars in foreign exchange when working at full capacity.

“We aim to save the nation about 600 million dollars from import substitution.”

Premium Steel was formerly called Delta Steel Company before it was privatised, the company was designed to produce 1.2 million tonnes of liquid steel per annum to be cast into 960,000 metric tonnes of billets and rolled 330,000 metric tonnes in its rolling mill.

The remaining 630,000 metric tonnes were to feed the 3 inland rolling mills at Jos, Oshogbo and Katsina which have 210,000 metric tonnes capacity rolling mills each.

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Buhari Picks Audi as New NSCDC Commandant-General

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NSCDC Commandant-General

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) now has a new Commandant-General and he is Mr Ahmed Abubakar Audi.

A statement issued on Thursday by the Director for Press and Public Relations at the Ministry of Interior, Mr Mohammed Manga, disclosed that the appointment of Mr Audi was approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The statement signed on behalf of the Minister of Interior, Mr Rauf Aregbesola, explained that the new Commandant-General was chosen by the President following the retirement of Mr Abdullahi Gana Muhammadu from service.

Mr Audi was described as the most qualified officer for the position. He was said to have undergone a transparent selection process and emerged the best candidate.

“President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the appointment of Ahmed Abubakar Audi as the new Commandant-General of NSCDC following the retirement from service of Abdullahi Gana Muhammadu,” the statement said.

“Ahmed Audi emerged the top best candidate out of those that went through the transparent selection process initiated by the Ministry of Interior through the board to ensure that the most suitable among the top-ranking officers in the service was appointed to replace the out-going Commandant-General of the NSCDC,” it added.

In a related development, President Buhari has nominated Haliru Nababa as the new Controller-General of the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCoS).

However, his appointment is subject to the confirmation of the Senate in line with the provision of the new Act establishing the Nigerian Correctional Service 2019, the statement said.

In the statement, the Minister of Interior, who doubles as the Chairman of Civil Defence, Correctional, Fire and Immigration Board (CDCFIB), “congratulated the new appointees.”

He urged them to “ensure full implementation of the mandate of their services as well as to ensure synergy with other security agencies in the country with the view to providing efficient internal security services and citizenship integrity for Nigerians and foreigners alike in line with the policy thrust of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration.”

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