The World Bank has sunk a princely $11bn into Nigeria’s economy and development since its engagement with the country over the years.
Country Director, Rachid Benmessaoud, who disclosed this Thursday, in Abuja at the maiden edition of the Nigeria Portfolio Performance Award organised in partnership with the Ministry of Finance, said the bank’s investment was targeted at poverty alleviation projects and programmes that improved the living standards of the people.
The award was to recognise and honour outstanding performance from project implementation units of World Bank supported projects at states and federal levels.
Benmessaoud said 60 per cent of the bank’s programmes were implemented at the state level and another 40 per cent by the federal government adding the bank’s portfolio in Nigeria with over 30 operational projects was among the largest in the entire African region.
He said the projects were spread across health, education, agriculture, social protection, energy, infrastructure, and governance among others in the 36 states of Nigeria, including the FCT.
He also said the bank was working toward a new country partnership framework that would outline the new reform challenges that the government faces and how it could support it in implementing solutions to the challenges.
“The country partnership strategy is always anchored on the economic reform plan of the government and in this case, we have used the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP).
“Which is the medium term programme of the government on which we are anchoring our country partnership framework.
“We have plans to scale up our commitment but you know the scale up is not only about funding.
“One can say it is really important to realise that even if we scale up, it will not be sufficient to address the large gap that is needed to be filled.
“We feel that the world bank can play a catalytic role in creating a conducive environment for private sector to finance infrastructure so that we can create the fiscal space for the government to put more money in human capital and in social spending.’’
Speaking about the awards, The country director explained that the awards were introduced to recognise the various entities that were involved in implementing the bank’s programmes in terms of their performance.
“We have a number of criteria with which we have evaluated these entities and we felt that bringing all of these entities together into an award ceremony would help us to recognise all of the good works that all of them are doing and recognise those that have done something special that others can replicate.
“There is a lot of learning that we are emphasising in our engagements, states have to learn from each other and that is what we would like to create, the space where the states can learn from each other’’, he said .
Umahi congratulates Mbah, urges opposition parties to stop distraction in Enugu
…..Umahi congratulates Mbah
Minister of Works, Chief Dave Umahi, has congratulated Gov. Peter Mbah on his victory at the Enugu State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal, even as he called on opposition parties to stop distracting the governor.
Umahi, who is an All Progressives Congress (APC) stalwart, said it was not about party affiliation but about the quality of the individual chosen by the people of the state to lead them.
The minister, who said this when he inspected the collapsed bridge at the Enugu end of the Enugu-Port Harcourt expressway, advised the opposition in the state not to waste their time contesting Mbah’s ‘divine and people’s mandate’.
He also said that Mbah’s initiative to commence the reconstruction and dualisation of Enugu-Abakaliki road up to the Ebonyi boundary was another display of people-driven leadership by a private sector person in governance.
“I am happy that you came from the private sector. There is a high hope, especially with the steps you have taken so far.
“They are in tandem with President Bola Tinubu’s steps and I pledge to support you. There must be a change; we must reset the country.
“I want to publicly say, while congratulating you on the tribunal victory, that whoever is taking you to court must stop wasting his time as you are clearly the people’s choice and for good reasons.
“So we will continue to support and pray for you and I urge whoever is distracting you that they should understand the steps of God and know that your emergence is divine and we are very proud of you.
“I know Gov. Mbah as a very successful private person and he is going to bring it to bear in the governance of this state.
“I also believe that what he is bringing to the table will rub off positively on Enugu State, the entire South-East states,” he said.
The minister also commended Mbah for ending sit-at-home in the state, describing it a major step forward for the Igbo nation.
“Let me also thank you for being able to courageously stop sit-at-home in Enugu State.
“It is a major thing you have done for the Igbo people and for the country,” he said. (NAN)
…..Umahi congratulates Mbah
FG Plans Full Production Capacity Revamp for DICON – Matawalle
By Tony Obiechina, Abuja
The Minister of State for Defence, Dr Bello Muhammed Matawalle, has charged the staff and engineers of the Defence Industry Corporation of Nigeria (DICON) to improve on their performances as Federal Government plans to revamp and scale up the industry to a full production capacity.
In a statement by the Acting Director of Press and Public Relations of the Ministry, Attari Hope in Abuja on Saturday, Matawalle stated this during his maiden visit to DICON facilities in Kaduna State.
In an address to staff of the industry, he said “as the technical personnel of this promising industry, your professionalism and dedication to work is paramount in sustaining the vision and growth of this industry.We will ensure you get adequate funding to achieve this.”
The Director General of DICON, Maj Gen AE Edet, lauded the Minister of State for his words of encouragement and assured hm of DICON’s unwavering commitment to its vision and objective which it was set up.
As part of his maiden tour of DICON, the Minister of State visited the DICON’s Special Equipment Factory, Ballistic Helmet Production Unit, Tailoring Unit, amongst others.
Kwara EXCO Okays N239bn 2023 Revised Budget
Kwara State Executive Council has given approval to Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq to present to the state House of Assembly, a draft revised 2023 budget of N239,084,199,757.00, with capital expenditure taking some 50.2% of the chunk, while recurrent tanked to 49.8%.
The revised budget is 27% larger (N50,238,596,196.
The approval followed a submission from the Commissioner for Planning and Economic Development, Hon.Lafia Aliyu Kora Sabi, who said that a service-wide and bottom-up process for the revised budget started since June 2023 — followed by thorough deliberations and reviews of submissions from the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of the government by the Central Budget Committee (CBC).
“The pertinent factor governing the selection of projects for execution in the remaining part of the year is the emphasis placed on capital projects that are critical to stimulate the economic activities in the state for inclusive growth and development,” Sabi told the council, adding that special considerations have been made to boost economic activities and improve the living standard of the people.
The cabinet, among other government processes, also approved for Star Sewing Machine Limited, an International firm, to manage the state’s Garment Factory following a long-drawn bidding process involving open tendering in line with relevant laws.
Held Friday evening, the council meeting was chaired by Governor AbdulRazaq, attended by Deputy Governor Kayode Alabi; Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji AbdulKadir Mahe; and all the commissioners.
Chevron continues to partner Nigeria for socio-economic development—MD
Chevron Nigeria says it has continued to make significant investments in Nigeria including generating socio-economic development in several communities across the country in its six decades of operation.
Its Chairman and Managing Director (MD), Mr Rick Kennedy, made this known in a statement on Sunday in commemoration of Nigeria’s 63rd Independence Day.
Kennedy said that the company strove to build lasting relationships to help enable human progress now and into the future.
According to him, Chevron Nigeria has been successful in leading and investing in some major initiatives in the Nigerian oil and gas industry.
“These include the development of the Deep Water Agbami project which has produced over one billion barrels of oil.
“The development of the Escravos Gas Processing facility to enable the reduction of flares and be the largest supplier of on-spec domestic gas in Nigeria.
“Also, the development of the Escravos Gas-to-Liquids facility to reduce gas flaring and produce high quality diesel,” he said.
The MD said also, that Chevron companies in Nigeria had developed and imbibed the Local Nigerian Content development philosophy well before the enactment of the Nigeran Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act (“NOGICD Act”) in April 2010.
He said that Chevron had helped in building the capacities of several Nigerian businesses by providing training, contracts and procurement opportunities to Nigerians on all projects in our operations.
“For the last 10 years, one of the Chevron Nigeria companies, Chevron Nigeria Limited has spent an estimated annual average of $1 billion on Nigerian suppliers and service providers.
“Chevron does all these, not because it is compelled to, but because it is the right thing to do,” Kennedy said.
Also, Chevron Nigeria’s General Manager, Policy, Government and Public Affairs, Mr Esimaje Brikinn, said that Chevron Nigeria’s focused on helping to engender the development of communities in the Niger Delta.
According to him, this is through the erstwhile Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) a community-driven, participatory partnership model for community engagement pioneered by Chevron Nigeria in 2005.
“Through the GMoU, we provided funds to execute hundreds of projects in the communities where we operate in the Niger Delta region.
“This has led to social investment projects benefitting over 600 communities in the Niger Delta area.
“We will be leveraging our experience with the GMoU in the implementation of the Host Community Development Trust provisions of the Petroleum Industry Act,” Brikinn said. (NAN)
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