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Thursday, May 16, 2019

Mozambique, ARC sign MoU to mitigate drought, floods - NaijaAgroNet

The African Risk Capacity (ARC) Agency and the Government of Mozambique have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to provide mid to long-term solutions against the recurrent episodes of drought, floods, and tropical cyclones in the country, reports NaijaAgroNet.

The MoU serves as “a framework to facilitate cooperation and collaboration between the ARC Agency and the Government, and to define the terms and conditions under which the Government and the ARC Agency will work together to address the impact of Extreme Climate Events on Mozambique, including through support provided by the ARC Agency for Mozambique, training of Government officials and other efforts in support of Mozambique objectives.”

Mozambique, which is emerging from two tropical cyclones, is vulnerable to climate change because of its location and geography which expose large areas of the country to tropical cyclones, droughts (every three to four years) and river/coastal storm surge flooding. This vulnerability is heightened by the country’s 2,470 km of coastline and socioeconomic fragility which puts infrastructure, coastal agriculture, key ecosystems and fisheries at risk.

Speaking about the signing of the MoU, the United Nations Assistant Secretary-General and Director-General of ARC, Mohamed Beavogui indicated that the aim is to work with the Government of Mozambique to understand its own risk profile vis-à-vis the various perils facing the country and develop customised response plans.

“ARC is a Development Insurance Mechanism which links risk profiling, contingency planning and a payout. “Although insurance will never cover all the risks associated with a peril in each country, the ARC approach allows for the risks to be managed in a way that multiplies the benefits from limited resources available to Government. Therefore, helping to save more lives and livelihoods at the early stage of a disaster…before the arrival of humanitarian assistance…,” ASG Beavogui stated.

“The Government of the Mozambique appreciates the onset of formal collaboration with the African Risk Capacity” said HE Adriano Afonso Maleiane, Mozambique’s Minister of Economy and Finance. “We expect that the MoU will initial a well-coordinated take-off of activities towards strengthening the capacities of our climate management authority officials as well as other personnel to better understand our risk profile and provide quicker responses in the event of natural disasters,” he concluded.

Under the MoU, the Government of Mozambique and the ARC Agency will work together through the Program to prepare for the potential participation of the Government as an ARC Ltd member. At the end of the Program, the Government will decide whether to participate in ARC Ltd and its level of participation.

Government involvement in the Program does not commit it to participate in ARC Ltd but rather support an informed decision-making process on climate risk insurance.

ARC is working with other development partners including the African Development Bank as well as the World Bank towards a premium financing support to Mozambique when it decides to take the sovereign disaster risk insurance coverage. 


Isaac Oyimah/Editor

Pix; UN-ASG / Director-General African Risk Capacity, Mohamed Beavogui and HE Adriano Afonso Maleiane, Mozambique’s Minister of Economy and Finance during one of the discussions leading to the signing of the MoU

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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Merck Foundation mets Kenyan First Lady to underscore healthcare capacity - NaijaAgroNet

NaijaAgroNet:
Merck Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany underscored their commitment to build healthcare capacity in Kenya during a high level meeting held at the State House between The First Lady of Kenya, H.E. Madam Margaret Kenyatta and Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation, reports NaijaAgroNet.

The First Lady of Kenya, had emphasized, it was an honor to meet and hold talks with the Chief Executive Officer of Merck Foundation, Dr. Rasha Kelej. 

"I am looking forward to partnering in the training of more oncologists and experts in diabetes and infertility management, as well as in @BeyondZeroKenya” she said.

Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation and President, Merck More Than a Mother explained, “I am proud and elated to meet Her Excellency The First Lady of Kenya, to discuss Merck Foundation’s commitment to improve the health and wellbeing of people of Kenya by improving access to quality and equitable healthcare in the country by training more doctors in the fields of Fertility, Cancer and Diabetes care through nationwide programs. Also, to work closely to break the stigma of infertility in Kenya and other African countries.”

Uj. N. Dominic/Editor

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Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Fayemi commissions Gossy Water plant - NaijaAgroNet

NaijaAgroNet: The Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, has commissioned Gossy Water Production plant, signalling the commencement of full scale production of the popular table water brand, a year after the parent company was liquidated, reports NaijaAgroNet.

The entire Ikogosi was tuned into a carnival, Tuesday, as both the young and the old trooped to the major streets as early as 6.00am singing and dancing in celebration of the return of the company.

Governor Fayemi who led other dignitaries to commission the plant, said it was regrettable that the Gossy Water Company which could have been generating revenues for the State went moribund due to lack of conducive environment for ease of doing business in Ekiti State after he left office in 2014.

The Governor recalled that the bottling company was established as a joint business venture under Otunba Adeniyi Adebayo, the first civilian Governor of the State and the investment “made waves in the market thereby boosting the IGR of the State and creating job opportunities for the citizens”.

He described the revitalisation of the company as another milestone in the state government’s determined efforts to revive moribund projects in Ekiti State.

“I am particularly excited about this development because of its expected multiplier effects on the economic lives of the people and governance in the State. I therefore congratulate Ekiti kete, home and abroad, for the restoration of this company which is an offshoot of one of our most prominent tourist attractions, the Ikogosi Warm Springs”, he said.

While lamenting the neglect of the tourism corridors of Ekiti State by the last administration, the governor said Ikogosi resort has now become “a ghost of its former self and hardly enjoys patronage because of its state of dilapidation”.

Dr Fayemi, however, assured that his administration would soon revive the warm spring resort, through private sector investment, and restore it to its pride of place as a first class tourist destination in Africa, with

While promising that his government would ensure an enabling environment for businesses to thrive, the governor said his administration has mapped out strategic plans towards the resuscitation of other abandoned and moribund investments in the State.

The governor commended one of the leaders of Ekiti socio-cultural group, Ugbimo Ure Ekiti, Sir Remi Omotoso for playing a key role in ensuring that the Gossy Water Company returns and called on other Ekiti indigenes to support government in moving the State forward.

In his speech, the Board Chairman of Gossy Warm Spring, Mr Wole Adeyegbe expressed the readiness of the company to run the Gossy brand profitably and extending the brand to related food and beverage segment.

Adeyegbe added that the company has employed Ekiti indigenes, adding that it is planning to have at least 300 of its direct and indirect staff from the State.

Earlier, the Group Managing Director of Fountain Holdings Ltd, Mr Seyi Ayeleso thanked Governor Fayemi for working with Benin Electricity Distribution Company to restore power to Ikogosi Ekiti and its two neighbouring communities; saying that this would help forestall a re-occurrence of power challenge which was part of the reasons for its liquidation by its owner company, UAC.


Isaac Oyimah/Editor

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Pix: L-R: Production Engineer, Gossy water, Engr Ayodeji Ojo; Ekiti State Governor; Dr. Kayode Fayemi and former Managing Director oodua Investment Company, Sir Remi Omotoso; inspecting production process, during the commissioning of Gossy water production plant in Ikogosi-Ekiti…on Tuesday

Monday, May 13, 2019

Shell targets equivalent of 2,400MW electricity from new gas supply project - NaijaAgroNet

NaijaAgroNet:
The ongoing Assa North/Ohaji South gas development project in Imo State, southeast Nigeria will produce 600 million standard cubic feet of gas per day, energy equivalent of about 2400 Megawatts which is enough to provide uninterrupted electricity to about 2.4 million homes, Managing Director, The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC) and Country Chair, Shell Companies in Nigeria, Osagie Okunbor said on Monday, reports NaijaAgroNet.

Okunbor spoke at the media launch of the 2019 edition of the Shell in Nigeria Briefing Notes, an annual publication detailing the activities of the business interests of the global energy giant in Nigeria covering SPDC, Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company (SNEPCo), Shell Nigeria Gas and the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas.

SPDC took the final investment decision on the Assa North/Ohaji South project last December giving a major momentum to the domestic gas aspiration of the Federal Government for increased power generation and industrialisation.

Giving a breakdown of the gas production, Okunbor said 300 million standard cubic feet of gas per day would be processed at a new gas processing plant owned by the SPDC Joint Venture while the remaining 300 million will go to a proposed gas processing plant by SEPLAT Petroleum.

Okunbor said, “The project would be a major game-changer in Nigeria’s quest for energy sufficiency and economic growth as we look to grow the domestic gas market.” He added that the SPDC and its joint venture partners – NNPC, Total and Agip – would continue to explore other areas of support for the expansion of domestic gas supply and continue to make investments under the right conditions.

The Assa North/Ohaji South Gas Development Project ranks top among the Federal Government’s Seven Critical Gas Development Projects aimed at accelerating Nigeria’s aspiration for energy sufficiency and diverse industrial growth.

Explaining the company’s gas development strategy, SPDC’s General Manager External Relations, Igo Weli, said Shell was transforming to a gas-oriented business and currently accounts for about 10 percent of Nigeria’s domestic gas most of which is used for power generation.

SPDC and SNEPCo continue to contribute tremendously to the Nigerian economy. They paid N515.14 billion to the Federal Government in 2018 in taxes, royalties and levies while contracts worth N393.94 billion were awarded to Nigerian companies in the same year.

These contributions, according the 2019 Shell in Nigeria Briefing Notes, are aside the N39.58 billion paid to the Niger Delta Development Commission and another N44.36 billion disbursed for various community-driven projects in the Niger Delta under the SPDC JV Global Memorandum of Understanding.

Shell Companies in Nigeria also made direct spending of N17.03 billion on social investment projects making Nigeria the largest concentration of social investment spending in the Shell Group.

Those who attended the Briefing Notes launch included the SNEPCo’s Managing Director, Bayo Ojulari; SNG’s MD, Ed Ubong and the SPDC’s General Manager External Relations, Igo Weli.

Uboshe Uboshe/Editor


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Erelu Fayemi laments 60% of out-of-School children in Nigeria are females - NaijaAgroNet

NaijaAgroNet: The Wife of Ekiti State Governor, Erelu Bisi Fayemi, has bemoaned the increasing number of out of school children in the country, saying that 60 per cebnt of out of school children in Nigeria have been found to be females, reports NaijaAgroNet.

The Ekiti State first Lady said available statistics indicated that the girl child accounted for over six million out of the 10.5 million that lack access to formal education in the country. She outlined this as one of the major impediments to the progress and leadership of Nigerian Women.

Stressing that presently, women representation at the National Assembly and other levels of government is almost non-existential, she, however, predicted that with the gradual conscious efforts being made to sensitize women, there would be a better representation in future elections.

Erelu Fayemi stated this on Thursday while delivering the 5th Distinguished lecture of the University of Medical Sciences, Ondo, titled: 'Clapping With One Hand: Female Education, Leadership and the Quest for National Development'.

In her lecture, the First Lady noted that the atrocities committed by terrorist groups such as Boko Haram have had a devastating effect on millions of citizens, particularly women and children. This, according to her has disrupted the education of many children, with a dire implication on their future and in turn the future of the country.

She added that despite their successes and achievements, millions of women and girls still suffer from the feminization of poverty, lack of access to basic resources, diseases, violent conflict and the complex use of culture, religion and tradition to render the female gender voiceless in the society.

According to Erelu Fayemi, "the gains of women are often eroded when faced with a combination of the following obstacles: Patriarchal Power and Privilege; violent conflict and displacement; lack of political will; religious and cultural conservatism; and ideological differences.

"Inaccessible political machineries and godfather's syndrome; lack of financial investment required for political office; violence and intimidation; Cultural and attitudinal barriers are major factors that are limiting women and reducing their capacities to rise to the top", she said.

"Patriarchy is a system of male authority which legitimizes the oppression of women through political, social, economic, legal cultural, religious and military institutions.

"Men's access to, and control over resources and rewards within the private and public sphere derives its legitimacy from the patriarchal ideology of male dominance," She explained further.

The First lady added: " If you look at the configuration of the National Assembly since 2011, women representation has always been very bad and this has not given women ample opportunity to participate in setting legal framework that regulates governance. It was better in 2011, dropped in 2015, but became worse in 2019" she said, stressing that these factors should not discourage the women from demanding for their rights.

The Ekiti First Lady further said "Crimes against women are on the increase, gender violence, rape, trafficking, sexual exploitation, discrimination and kidnapping, amongst others. All these issues make the atmosphere very unsafe for women".

Erelu Fayemi called for holistic implementation and enforcement of relevant laws that tend to tame gender inequality and promote women's interest to enhance their relevance in all sectors.

She further advised women "to seek conceptual clarity on gender and feminism, to research use of legislative and policy framework, build a platform to make political demands, encourage inter-generational organising, engage in resource mobilisation, make educational institution safe for female gender, prepare for leadership and build a legacy that can attract public respect.

"These are the different ways that we can reset the agenda and as a society clap with both hands," she noted.

Present at the event were the representative of the Governor of Ondo State, Special Adviser, Education, Dr Wumi Ilawole and Olori Olayinka Kiladejo, Wife of the Osemawe of Ondo.

Uj. N. Dominic/Editor

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North-East: 894 children released from armed group says UNICEF - NaijaAgroNet

A total of 894 children, including 106 girls, were released from the ranks of the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF) in Maiduguri, north-east Nigeria today, as part of its commitment to end and prevent the recruitment and use of children, reports NaijaAgroNet.

The CJTF is a local militia that helps the Nigerian security forces in the fight against insurgency in north-east Nigeria. It was formed in 2013, with the aim of protecting communities from attack.

“Any commitment for children that is matched with action is a step in the right direction for the protection of children’s rights and must be recognised and encouraged,” said Mohamed Fall, Representative of UNICEF in Nigeria and the Co-chair of United Nations Country Task Force on Monitoring and Reporting on Grave Child Rights Violations (CTFMR).

“Children of north-east Nigeria have borne the brunt of this conflict. They have been used by armed groups in combatant and non-combatant roles and witnessed death, killing and violence. This participation in the conflict has had serious implications for their physical and emotional well-being." 

Since September 2017, when the CJTF signed an action plan committing to put measures in place to end and prevent recruitment and use of children, 1,727 children and young people have been released. Since then, there has been no new recruitment of children by the CJTF.

The children and young people released today will benefit from reintegration programmes to help them return to civilian life, seize new opportunities for their own development, and contribute to bringing lasting peace in Nigeria, as productive citizens of their country. Without this support, many of the children released from armed groups struggle to fit into civilian life, as most are not educated and have no vocational skills.

In the ongoing armed conflict in north-east Nigeria, more than 3,500 children were recruited and used by non-state armed groups between 2013 and 2017. Others have been abducted, maimed, raped and killed.

“We cannot give up the fight for the children, as long as children are still affected by the fighting. We will continue until there is no child left in the ranks of all armed groups in Nigeria,” said Fall.

UNICEF continues to work closely with state authorities and partners to support the implementation of reintegration programmes for all children released from armed groups, as well as others affected by the ongoing conflict. The gender and age-appropriate community-based reintegration support interventions include an initial assessment of their well-being, psychosocial support, education, vocational training, informal apprenticeships, and opportunities to improve livelihoods

At least 9,800 people formerly associated with armed groups, as well as vulnerable children in communities, have accessed such services between 2017 and 2018.

Uboshe Uboshe/Editor
 
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Thursday, May 9, 2019

See the power of blue economy, ABEF charges businesses - NaijaAgroNet

NaijaAgronet:
Africa Blue Economy Forum (ABEF) comes to Tunis on June 25-26 with some confirmed speakers include Government ministers and officials from Gabon, Ghana, Morocco, Somaliland, Tunisia and Seychelles; Aims to raise awareness of the economic, social and environmental benefits of the Blue Economy.

African businesses are being challenged to wake up to the economic, social and environmental power of the Blue Economy. Momentum is gathering for companies based in Africa’s coastal nations to fully recognise and understand the benefits of backing a Blue Economy, which covers a wide range of productive sectors that are crucial for the continent’s sustainable development, including fisheries, aquaculture, transport, energy, trade and tourism as well as extractive industries.

Research indicates that the Blue Economy has the potential to be a major source of wealth and prosperity for the continent and help advance the African Union’s Agenda 2063 and the UN Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development.

Businesses interested in learning how they can be part of the rising tide involved in the Blue Economy are invited to attend the second Africa Blue Economy Forum (ABEF), which is being held in Tunisia on 25-26 June.

This year’s ABEF2019 builds on the inaugural event in London last year which explored what the Blue Economy was. This year’s forum aims to take it a stage further and explore how business and government can implement actions that will proactively boost the economic, social and environmental welfare of the continent.

Isaacc Oyimah/Editor

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Friday, May 3, 2019

Nestle Nigeria records 5.2% growth - NaijaAgroNet

Nestlé Nigeria Plc has unveiled its financial results for the first quarter of 2019 with a record of post-revenue of N71.0 billion, which is a growth of 5.2 per cent over previous year, reports NaijaAgroNet.

The gross profit for the period, 
NaijaAgroNet gathered, stood at N 31.5 billion, compared to N 25.8 billion during the previous year. 

Also, the company posted a net profit of N 12.8 billion as compared to N 8.6 billion during same period under review. 

In the first quarter of the 2019, Nestlé Nigeria continued its emphasis on creating demand as well as strengthening brand loyalty programs to increase market penetration.

Also, the company continued to focus on Creating Shared Value for society and its shareholders by delivering high quality nutritious products to consumers and contributing to the growth of the local economy through local sourcing and increasing access to clean drinking water in the communities where it operates.

Managing Director & CEO of Nestlé Nigeria Plc, Mr. Mauricio Alarcon, said, “We are pleased with the sustained growth of our company, the loyalty of our consumers and the discipline and dedication of our people to provide tastier and healthier foods and beverages,” 


Isaac Oyimah/Editor


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