ABUJA, Nigeria, March 6, 2018
The former deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria and founder of the Institute of Governance and Economic Transformation, Professor Kingsley Moghalu (https://KingsleyCMoghalu.com) has declared his intention to run as a candidate in the Nigerian presidential elections in 2019.
This was announced during a press conference held at the Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Centre, Abuja on Wednesday, 28 February, 2018.
Stating his vision, one laid out extensively in his recently launched book, ‘Build, Innovate and Grow: My Vision for Our Country’, Moghalu explained that he is taking a stand to unify Nigeria beyond ethnicity to break the stranglehold that the current political class has on leadership, to put the country on the right path and move it forward.
“We must stop recycling failed politicians and regenerate our leadership ranks with competent and experienced young men or women. Youths who have prepared themselves with the relevant qualifications must take over the mantle of leadership because this struggle is about the future of Nigeria, not its past. Strong, knowledgeable guidance is needed, and I offer myself for service with a solid track record of leadership,” he said.
Emphasising the importance to modernise Nigeria, the candidate also stated that competence, capacity, and character are required to reorient Nigeria into a strong and capable country – qualities that citizens should demand their president should possess.
“If it is about competence, my work as a Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria who played a leadership role in rescuing and stabilising the Nigerian banking system after the global financial crisis speaks for itself. In capacity, working in the United Nations to reconstruct countries torn by civil war or internal reform of the world body is there for everyone to see. About character, my colleagues, mentors, friends, and of course, my family are there to answer anyone,” he stated.
Professor Moghalu also explained that although he has been approached by a number of political parties, he would still focus on the people of Nigeria rather than parties that have been vehicles for capturing power. He stated that his decision to join any political party will be based on commonality of vision and the importance of a generational shift in political leadership, as he promised that his decision will soon be announced.
A global leader who has made contributions to the stability, progress and wealth of nations and communities across academia, economic policy, entrepreneurship, diplomacy and more, Kingsley Moghalu has taught and inspired citizens from more than 40 countries in North America, Europe, Africa and Asia, mentoring men and women for leadership roles in business, military intelligence, non-profits, and government service.
As Deputy Governor of the CBN from 2009 – 2014, he also led the execution of extensive reforms in the Nigerian banking system after the global financial crisis. He has also had extensive experience working for the United Nations from 1992 – 2008, where he retired from in the highest career bracket as a Director.
EnergyNet and African Business have joined forces in 2018 to produce the annual Africa Energy Yearbook and a Special Energy Report on African energy for global distribution
LONDON, United Kingdom, March 6, 2018/ — Celebrating 20 years of projects, deals & partnerships, the Africa Energy Forum (www.Africa-Energy-Forum.com) will celebrate its 20th anniversary in Mauritius from 19-22 June. As the official publication of the Forum, the 9th Africa Energy Yearbook will reflect on the achievements of Africa’s energy sector over the last 20 years with a special anniversary edition examining the role which the African power community has played in these successes.
Content from the yearbook will also be compiled into a Special Energy Report to be published in African Business magazine (www.AfricanBusinessMagazine.com) and circulated throughout the magazine’s global distribution network. The report will feature a number of CEO interviews, thought leadership pieces and in-depth analysis on a number of energy-related issues that are shaping the African continent. Distribution will reach 300,000 readers at business lounges and newsstands in over 75 countries.
…As Dangote, Ovia, Elumelu Urge Lagosians To Voluntarily Pay Taxes
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Tuesday said his administration is not oblivious of the hue and cry generated by the revised Land Use Charge Law, saying that the government is ready to dialogue to resolve the issues going forward.
Governor Ambode, who spoke during a well attended forum with the Organised Private Sector tagged “Lagos Means Business”, said the review of the law was not a deliberate attempt by the government to overburden property owners but a decision taken in the overriding interest of the future of Lagos.
The forum had in attendance major players in the business circle including former governor of Cross River State, Mr. Donald Duke; founder, First City Monument Bank Group, Otunba Subomi Balogun; Chairman, Premier Lotto Limited, Chief Kessington Adebutu; Chairman, Eleganza Group of Companies, Alhaji Rasak Okoya; Chairman of Zenith Bank, Mr. Jim Ovia; founder United Bank for Africa (UBA), Mr. Tony Elumelu; Chairman Honeywell Group, Dr. Oba Otudeko; former Minister of Industry, Chief Nike Akande, Chairman, Channels Television, Mr. John Momoh, members of the diplomatic corps, top business owners, among others.
He said the Law, enacted in 2001 provides for an upward review every five years, but that the State Government had not carried out any review of the Law up until 2017, adding that the recent review was in line with the present economic realities.
He said, “The law was made in 2001. It provides that every five years, we should review it and also find a way to increase. 15 years after in 2017, the law has never been reviewed. Now, the question is this; those who are having commercial properties, the rental income they were getting in 2002 as against the rental income they are getting in 2017, is it the same? The level of infrastructure that existed in 2002 as against what has happened in the last 15 years, are they the same? Did it not come at a cost? So, why is the market value of the property that you built with one million naira, 15 years after, you are selling at N20million. Why do you think somebody who is a buyer will pay N20million for it? Is it not because of the facilities around the property? So, we have to sacrifice; that is how it works everywhere.
“So, somebody comes and say we have increased by 400 per cent. The question is the 400 per cent of what? You were paying N10, 000 before, now we say you should pay N50, 000 and you are calculating and turning statistics upside down by saying it is 400 per cent.
Explaining further, the Governor said that while the revised Land Use Charge law requires owner-occupiers to pay just 0.076 per cent, pensioners, churches, mosques, non-governmental organisations and government institutions are exempted from payment.
“So, who is the one that will take care of the ones that are free? If you are owner-occupier you don’t need to pay. So, it’s the commercial part that people are complaining about.
“Why have we increased the rate? We should have been doing this every five years but I am looking at it if I must sustain the level of my vision, I have to give something back to people. I don’t have to come and meet you if I continue to borrow money, but we are borrowing to punish you ultimately which is not what we want because it is even the taxes you pay that would pay the interest and the principal. Somebody needs to tell us the bitter truth for us to sacrifice together and that is what we have done,” Governor Ambode said.
Reeling out statistics to explain the challenges that would confront the State in the nearest future, the Governor said Lagos is projected to become the third largest consumer market in the world with a population of 35.8million, closely behind Tokyo and Delhi, while the population growth and rapid urbanization would put infrastructure and public services under pressure.
He said the State requires a minimum of $50billion over the next five years to bridge the gap of infrastructural deficit, adding however, that a special infrastructure fund that would be driven by the private sector to address social challenges is the way to go.
“Assuming the entire budget for 2018 is spent only on infrastructure development, Lagos will be left with a deficit of about N14.47trillion and also require an additional 19 years of similar expenditure to bridge the infrastructure deficit,” Governor Ambode said.
The Governor, also expressed concerns that out of the eight million taxable adults in the State, only about two million submitted their tax returns while only 700,000 actually paid their taxes last year.
“We are 24million; taxable adults in Lagos is 8million. The number of people that actually submitted tax returns in 2017 is 2million and then only 700, 000 people paid their taxes,” he said.
He said the current tax returns were not enough to cater for the capital projects ongoing across the State, adding that major cities across the world with thriving economies are sustained by the taxes paid by residents.
Thanking the business community for their support over the years, Governor Ambode said his administration was committed to creating an enabling environment for businesses to thrive, adding that concerted efforts have been made to encourage investors to set up their businesses in the State, which according to him would have multiplying effects on the State’s economy.
“I invite you to come and own the economy. Whatever you say here would be taken seriously because this gathering is not just about knowledge sharing; it’s more about the future of Nigeria and not just Lagos,” the Governor said.
In his brief remarks, President of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote commended the Governor for deeming it fit to organise a forum to meet the business community in Lagos, adding that his (Governor) passion to make Lagos thrive was not in doubt.
He also said the economic drive by the State Government was one that required all and sundry to rally round the government and perform their civic responsibility of paying their taxes as and at when due.
“I am more convinced now and I think people should really be voluntarily paying taxes in Lagos. I think for people who are doing business here, Lagos is the most-friendliest States in Nigeria. If you really want to know, try other states and you will see hell.
“I am not advertising for Lagos but there is not a single time you go with a problem and the Governor will ask you to go and come back tomorrow because in most cases, he will call everybody and say let us sit down and sort out the issues. So, your Excellency, we congratulate you and assure that we will continue to support you,” Dangote said.
Also speaking, Ovia and Elumelu lauded the Governor for the massive infrastructural renewal projects across the State especially in the area of security.
Ovia, said that business owners now feel safe to invest in the State owing to the investment in security, just as he commended the Governor for sustaining the Lagos State Security Trust Fund (LSSTF), a public private partnership designed to enhance security in the State.
“Your Excellency, you have spoken today like a Chairman/CEO of a company to his shareholders. We are definitely one of your shareholders and we would renew your mandate in 2019 there’s no doubt,” Ovia said.
The duo promised to increase their donation to the fund, while also calling on others to contribute their quota to the enhancement of the State’s security architecture.
UN agencies in Rome to mark International Women’s Day
Rome, 7 March 2018 – The role of information communications technologies in supporting rural women’s economic empowerment, voice and status, will be the focus of discussions at the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) on 8 March, International Women’s Day.
IFAD, together with United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP), will highlight the role that innovations in information and communications technologies (ICTs) can play in expanding rural women’s opportunities in value chains and enterprise development, while increasing their access to education and information.
Many women, particularly young rural women, lack access to productive resources such as land, credit and technology. Women lag behind in terms of their access to ICTs, with only 41 per cent of women in low-and middle income countries owning mobile phones compared to 46 per cent for males. Nearly two-thirds of women living in the South Asia and East Asia and Pacific sub-regions do not own a mobile phone. Rural women regularly lack access to health care, education, decent work and social protection. As a consequence, they are more likely to be poor and they are vulnerable to economic and climatic shocks.
ICTs can go a long way to boosting economic opportunities for rural women. Mobile and smartphones, for example, provide access to real-time information on prices in different markets and allow more informed choices about where and when to buy and sell. Studies indicate that when women earn money, they are more likely than men to spend it on food for their families and the education of their children.
Gilbert F. Houngbo, President of IFAD, will open the 8 March event hosted by IFAD, by highlighting how the empowerment of women and greater equality are inseparable from achieving sustainable development. “At IFAD we have seen how information communications technologies can be powerful catalysts for political and social empowerment of women, and the promotion of gender equality if rightly designed, accessible and usable,” Houngbo said.
FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva said: “The global rise of information has deeply affected rural women in poor countries, who often find themselves on the wrong side of the digital divide: because they live in developing countries, in rural areas, and because they are women.
If the interests and needs of rural women and girls are addressed, there is significant potential for information and communication technology to foster gender equality and the improvement of rural livelihoods.”
David Beasley, WFP Executive Director, said: “Digital technology can transform lives if we get it into the hands of the people who need it, and that’s why we’re working hard every day to help increase access for rural women. And every time one of those women farmers uses a WFP app to sell her crops, the prosperity of her family and her community improves and we’re another step closer to gender equity.”
The event will include interactive sessions focussed on sharing knowledge and experiences about how innovative tools and technologies can contribute to the empowerment of women and girls. Danielle Nierenberg, President of Food Tank and a keynote speaker, will highlight how rural women can overcome exclusion patterns and actively participate in the economy using ICTs. In addition, the event will provide an opportunity to discuss policies and enabling legal frameworks that can facilitate access to, and good use of, ICTs in rural development.
In Mozambique and Tanzania for instance, IFAD supports a project that provides financial education and technological tools training for farmer groups – more than 50 per cent run by women – to help them move from cash to electronic payment management. In doing so, these farmers not only gain entry into the formal financial sector, but become better informed about market prices to increase profits and build their savings
FAO, through the Dimitra Clubs initiative is boosting collective action and the participation in development activities of villagers, particularly women, in remote communities across the Democratic Republic of Congo and Niger. By combining traditional communication channels and ICTs, and collaborating with community radio stations, the clubs have become powerful agents of change in agriculture but also in other aspects of society, taking on sensitive issues such as gender-based violence, HIV/AIDS, and early marriage.
WFP’s digital beneficiary management platform, SCOPE, with 26 million beneficiaries enrolled, helps ensure the right assistance goes to the right person in the best way. In Bangladesh, among Myanmar refugees, it is the most senior woman in each household who receives a monthly allowance to buy rice, lentils, and vegetables from WFP-contracted retailers close by. This helps keep women and girls safer and means they have lighter loads to carry home.
By Festus Fifen.
Former Minister of Special Duties under President Goodluck Jonathan, Hon. Kabiru Tanimu Turaki has said that contrary to news making the rounds that he has defected to the Social Democratic Party SDP, He is and will remain a very solid Member of the People Democratic Party PDP.
Speaking to BEN Television in a Brief Telephone Interview on Monday, Hon Turaki said many People mistook him for the former Jigawa state Governor Saminu Turaki.
In his words,” I am still very much a card carrying member of the PDP, he Saminu is a former governor, I have never been a governor, I am a minister he has never been a minister, I am from Kebbi State, he is from Jigawa state, I am a Lawyer he is not a lawyer so you can see we are very different, PDP is in my Blood and I will die a member of the PDP” he said
He therefore used the medium to thank his friends and loved ones who have called to confirm the news of his purported defection over the weekend assuring them that he is and always will be committed to the People’s Democratic Party PDP and Nigeria as a country.
…Reiterates Commitment To Promote Tourism All Year Round
The Lagos State Government has released a calendar of over 70 state-sponsored and endorsed arts and culture programmes slated for Y2018 in its bid to garner visibility for tourism-oriented art programmes.
The State’s Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mr. Steve Ayorinde in a statement on Thursday, described the calendar as a novel exercise designed to frontload State and privately driven arts, culture and entertainment events that will have positive effects on tourism promotion.
“This is in fulfilment of the State Government promise to announce a yearly calendar of events to guide programming, tourist and visitors’ decision,” he said.
According to Ayorinde, the State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, kick-started the year with his attendance at Ali Baba’sJanuary 1st Comedy concert at Eko Hotel. Other arts and culture events held in January and February 2018 and included in the calendar are Angel and Muse, an art exhibition by a Lagos trained world renowned artist; Eebi; a month-long Indigenous Cultural Festival in Epe; Wazobia FM Carnival as well as the Lagos Marathon amongst others.
The idea of creating a calendar of events for state-sponsored and state-endorsed programmes, he said, is to make event planning, tour bookings and business decisions easier for tour operators and the general public.
He added that the calendar is part of the State’s innovation to project arts, entertainment and leisure benefits inherent in Lagos and makes the state attractive to domestic tourists; business travellers and stop-over passers-by.
The Commissioner said, “The State is forging ahead of expanding the consumption of its tourism products by improving access to tourism information and creating an events guide for the media and tour bloggers”.
Although not exhaustive, the calendar contains many of the indigenous cultural festivals across the state, entertainment events; concerts; visual; performing and fashion and culinary events.
The State is expected to leverage on infrastructural development, regeneration of old and creation of iconic attractions for entertainment, arts and culture enthusiasts to boost economic activities and expand opportunities for job creation during the various events slated on the calendar.
“The administration of Governor Ambode believes that the quantum of cash transactions across the tourism and entertainment value-chain, as tracked in December 2017 when about N50billion was spent on entertainment and leisure alone, is a testimony to the huge economic gain in promoting tourism in Lagos State. This and other economic factors make Lagos one of the most vibrant culturally significant cities in Africa with potentials to make enormous impact in driving in-bound tourists from across the globe,” Ayorinde said.
Major events listed in the calendar include Gidi Fest, Lagos Water Regatta and Fanti Carnival around the Easter Period; the International Jazz Day celebration on April 30 which will be dedicated to the South-African Jazz legend, Huge Masekela; the Lagos Comedy Festival on May 6 and the Eko Art Expo at the last weekend in May.
June will be rich with the first ever Lagos Golf Funfair and the Lagos Cinefest, which is designed to take cinema-going experience to all the five divisions of the State.
The Lagos Festival of Plays is a major highlight in the third quarter of the year; so is the Lagos Fishing Festival (Oshoroko) in Ibeju-Lekki; Akwaaba Travel Market and Faaji Agba – a special concert for the elderly to mark World Elders Day.
October to December will be the most intense period on the calendar with Olokun Festival; MUSON Festival; AFRIMA, AFRIFF; Kayo-Kayo Festival in Epe; the Lagos Luxury Summit/Fair; Felabration; Lagos Books & Arts Festival (LABAF) as well as the One Lagos Fiesta.
“The State is grateful to corporate sponsors who will make many of these events happen. Our aim is to use the calendar and other strategic initiatives to enrich the entertainment and cultural content to drive tourism promotion in this mega city,” Ayorinde said.
COMMISSIONER FOR TOURISM, ARTS & CULTURE
MARCH 1, 2018