African Voice



gej in helmet

• Launch of the Roadmap for Power Sector Reform. The Roadmap launched sets out a clear implementation plan of the Electricity Power Sector Reform Act (2005) as a reaffirmation of the commitment to resolve the power crises and setting the path for power sector Improvement.
  • The Re-instatement of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission. The regulatory body was strengthened with a new Chairman and Commissioners sworn in for the purpose of providing appropriate regulatory functions for the electricity market in Nigeria.
  • The Jonathan administration unbundled the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) into 18 successor companies for greater efficiency and effectiveness in power generation and distribution.
  • Creation of the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc. The President inaugurated the CEO and board of the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc (also known as the Bulk Trader) in August 2011. The requisite environment for private sector investment in the Nigerian Power Sector has been created by establishing a credit-worthy offtaker of power, NBET Plc, who provides confidence to the power generating companies that they will be paid for power produced.
  • The Jonathan administration launched the Energy Efficiency and Energy Conservation Lighting Scheme. This is to promote and encourage the use of energy efficient bulbs and lighting systems in order to create an energy conservation culture
  • The Federal Government of Nigeria entered into an MOU with worldwide leaders in the power sector, General Electric. The MoU stipulates that General Electric will invest up to 15 percent equity in power projects in the country summing up to 10,00MW capacity by the year 2020. General Electric also proposes to establish local packaging facility for small aero-derivative turbines in Nigeria which will promote job creation.
  • Signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with the US- ExIm Bank. The Ex-Im Bank of the United States of America signed an MoU with the Federal Government of Nigeria to provide an investment window of up to $1.5BN for investors willing to invest in the Nigerian Power Sector. This is the first time such quantum of money will ever be made available by the US Exim Bank for a specific sector in Africa.
  • The Goodluck Jonathan administration has improved the power generation from around 2000 megawatts to 4502 megawatts in December 2012 the highest since Nigeria returned to democratic rule in 1999.
    •By July this year, power generation will hit 6,000 megawatts and by December this year it will hit 10,000 megawatts (assurance given last week by Minister of State for Power).
    •All ten Power Plants under the National Integrated Power Projects (NIPP) scheme to be commissioned by the end of this year. At the moment, majority of them have reached 95 percent completion stage.
    •Improved power supply has been boosted in part by the emergency declared in the Gas sector last year by President Jonathan. At the time gas supply was insufficient. But now, thanks to the intervention by Mr. President, Nigeria now produces more gas than is required for domestic consumption.
    •For more efficient power supply, the Jonathan administration has privatized the power distribution companies (DISCOs) under a most transparent bid process.
    •Today, large parts of an unprecedented number of cities and towns across the country are enjoying between 14 to 16 hours of uninterrupted power supply, except in some few areas where localized problems of power distribution network have created bottlenecks for smooth transmission.
• In 2012 14 new rice mills with capacity to process 240 metric tons of rice were set up by the private sector while in addition, a sum of 1.2 billion dollars was secured by the Federal Government to install 100 large scale rice processing mills to produce 2.1 million metric tons of rice annually.
•This and other initiatives of government in 2012 resulted in the creation of about two million new jobs among rural dwellers. In 2013, the Federal Government will implement a Young Graduates Commercial Farmers Scheme, which will absorb 780,000 graduates in its first phase and provide an estimated four million jobs in the agricultural sector in the first year.
•Today, Nigeria has reached an unprecedented 60 per cent sufficiency in rice production, a feat, which the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) recently described as capable of raising world rice output to a record high in the next 12 next months.
•The Federal Ministry of Agriculture has set a clear goal to make the country self-sufficient in rice production by 2015 and end the N 356 Billion currently spent on importing rice annually, as well as replace up to 40% of the wheat imports for which the country spends over N 635 Billion annually, by 2015.
• The Nigeria Agricultural Bank is being restructured and recapitalized to provide loans to peasant farmers at single digit interest rates. This will be the most remarkable fund injection initiative ever undertaken by any government to empower rural peasant farmers and create wealth for rural dwellers.
•Export of dried cassava chips began in July 2012 and this represented the first time that Nigeria will achieve commercial scale export of dried chips, which will earn the country $136 million annually in foreign exchange.
•The Jonathan administration is resuscitating the production of Cotton particularly in the Northeast and Northwest zones of Nigeria through the provision of improved cotton seedlings, which have been given free of charge to farmers. This will definitely result in the resuscitation of the upstream and downstream cotton/textile subsector before the end of 2013.
•Nigeria is the largest producer of cassava in the world with 34 million MT produced per annum
•In the last one year following the efforts of the Ministry of Agriculture under the Agriculture Transformation Agenda of the Jonathan administration, around $8 billion in private investments have been attracted to agricbusiness, crop production, processing and other forms of value addition.
•The Jonathan administration cleansed the rot in the fertilizer distribution system. Under the previous system, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development procured and distributed fertilizers to farmers. The system undermined the private sector and only about 11 percent of the farmers received fertilizers. The rest were sold to friends and ‘political farmers’ whom exported them. President Jonathan’s intervention dismantled in 60m days, this corrupt system, which had existed for over 40 years and fertilizers are now sold directly to farmers and not to government.
• The Ministry launched a Growth Enhancement Scheme, where farmers receive 50% subsidy on fertilizers, for a maximum of two bags, through the use of their mobile phones or what we call Electronic-wallet system (or E-wallet). In 120 days, over 1.2 million farmers bought their subsidized fertilizers using the E-wallet system. Over 1.5 million farmers will be reached by the end of the dry season. A total of 138,802.7 metric tons of fertilizer and 10,974.78 metric tons of seeds in 517 active redemption centres out of all the 804 centres spread across all states of the federation. The E-wallet system is the first of its kind in Africa and already several African countries have indicated they want to implement the Nigerian system.
• Multilateral and bilateral agencies are providing donor-related investment support and have shown enthusiasm for the major reforms on-going in Nigeria’s agriculture by committing more $1 billion towards Nigeria’s Agricultural Transformation Agenda. The World Bank Group is providing $500 million. African Development Bank (AfDB) has committed $250 million. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has selected Nigeria as a priority country for its investment in agriculture. The International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD) has put up $80 million. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has committed $60 million. The UK Government, through DFID has committed £37 million. The Tony Elumelu Foundation, Ford Foundation and UNDP are providing significant technical support facilities.
  • A total of 651km of roads was paved in bituminous layers in 2012.
    •A total of 32 Highway projects were completed in 2012.
    •Following the recent effects of floods in some parts of the country, the administration intervened by constructing new bridges and re-instating washed out embankments.
    •The Ministry of Works on the order of President Jonathan unveiled Operation Safe Passage, a programme aimed at recovering deplorable sections of major roads in the country to ameliorate the sufferings usually experienced by road users during festive seasons. Under this programme, key roads in the six geo-political zones of the country, were rehabilitated.
    •80 projects prioritized in 2012 two have been completed, three are over 90 percent completed, five are over 80 percent completed, eighteen are between 50-79 percent complete while the rest are in different stages of completion.
  • The radical intervention by the Subsidy Reinvestment Programme SURE-P in the road sector in 2012 resulted in accelerated work on the rehabilitation of the following projects:
    Benin-Ore-Sagamu dual carriageway;
    Onitsha-Enugu-Port Harcourt dual carriageway;
    Kaduna-Maiduguri dual carriageway;
    East-West Road
    The Second Niger Bridge for which a sum of five billion naira has been set aside.
These roads cover a distance of 1,664 kilometres and are at various stages of completion. Most of these projects are due for completion and commissioning in this year..
•As a major turnaround Federal Government also terminated the concessioning
agreement with Bi Courtney company on the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the Lagos-Ibadan expressway. The road rehabilitation work is currently been handled by two construction firms and will be completed this year.
•The Jonathan administration has entered into collaboration with multi-lateral agencies under the Road Sector Development Team (RSDT) scheme.
•Under this framework, the RSDT is currently implementing road rehabilitation, upgrading and maintenance, institutional strengthening and policy reform, and road safety improvements with the credit from the World Bank; and additional funding from the Africa Development Bank (AfDB).
•The RSDT in collaboration with multi-lateral agencies rehabilitated/ maintained a total of 257 kilometres of road length in 2012. Two projects under the scheme, the Mokwa-Bida Road and the Akure-Ilesha Road will have their contracts awarded in June.
•Also, the Ministry of Works is currently working out modalities for the execution of the dualisation of the Keffi-Lafia-Makurdi-Enugu (9th Mile) roads in Nasarawa, Benue and Enugu States with funds from the Export-Import Bank of China.
•The administration at the end of 2011 earmarked 22 airports for rehabilitation and reconstruction and by the end of October 2012, over 50 percent had been commissioned for public use with. The remaining eleven would be completed in 2013.
• In addition to remodeling, the Jonathan administration has approved the sum of N106 billion for the construction of five new airport terminals in Lagos, Kano, Port Harcourt, Abuja and Enugu as well as six cargo terminals to be managed under a Public Private Partnership (PPP) Scheme
•The Jonathan administration inaugurated the Lagos-Kano train service, which had been moribund for almost a decade. This is a major feat considering the long years of decay in the rail transportation sector.
•The Eastern rail line from Port Harcourt to Maiduguri is being rehabilitated as well as the fixing of the Zaria/Kaura Namoda rail route.
•The Abuja to Kaduna 187 kilometre rail line is about more than 30 per cent completed.
•the Ajaokuta-Warri Standard Gauge Rail line will be completed any time now. This will provide a less than four-hour journey between the Middlebelt and the South South.
•The Lagos-Ibadan new gauge rail line, which was also initiated last year is on course.
•The Federal Government has completed three feasibility studies and commissioned three others to open new railway corridors, which will be concessioned to local and foreign investors. An unprecedented investment of 200 billion dollars will flow into the Nigerian economy through these concessions in 2013 and 2014 with over 10 million new jobs of skilled and unskilled laborers (engineers, technicians, machinists, accountants) created in the next two years.
•In 2012 N9 billion was spent By the Subsidy Removal and Re-Investment Programme (SURE-P)on:
500 Primary Health Centres (PHC) across the 36 states and FCT of the Federation.
Employment and deployment of skilled Health Workers- Midwives, Community Health Workers (CHEWs), and Village Health Workers (VHWs).
Upgrading, Equipping and Supplying of Drugs to the 500 PHCs across the six geopolitical zones are being done.
Selection of 125 General Hospitals across the 36 states and the FCT. Equipping and upgrading their Maternity section to provide comprehensive intervention for complicated Maternal and Child cases from the PHCs is being done.
•4,604 jobs created for health workers in 2012.
•Statistics show that Nigeria has become the favoured destination of investors coming into Africa recording the highest investment of $8.4billion (around 930 billion). Government’s target is to attract $20 billion worth of foreign investments in three years.
•The Jonathan administration’s handling of the economy led to JP Morgan Chase the reputable American investment and Securities Company to list Nigeria on its Government Bond Index-Emerging Markets (GBI-EM). It is the second African company after South Africa to be listed. This inclusion of Nigerian bonds could mean an ‘inflow of at least $1.5 million of inflow into Nigeria’s bond market’. The listing will also improve the profile of Nigeria’s debt market.
•The Jonathan administration has in less than two years put Nigeria on the path of economic recovery. In 2011 for instance the Nigerian economy following International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecast, Nigeria was expected to witness 5.9 percent GDP growth but figures from the Federal Bureau of Statistics in Nigeria showed that by third quarter of 2011 the GDP growth stood at 7.3 percent.
•The Jonathan administration has remained committed to the UN resolution in July 2010 on the “Right to Water”, which formally acknowledged the right of every human being to water.
•Pursuant to this, in February this year it organized a Presidential Summit on water to seek more effective ways of preserving national water and make same available to Nigerians.
•To check the menace of flooding and prevent a repeat of the flood disaster experienced last year, the Federal Ministry of Water Resources recently released the 2013 Annual Flood Outlook for Nigeria
•The document evaluated the flood scenario in 2012 and analyzed the most likely areas to experience flood in 2013. It has also offered suggestions to all stakeholders and the general public on how to reduce the anticipated flooding as a result of expected increase in rainfall this year.
•The Jonathan administration has revitalized the 12 River Basin Development Authorities (RBDAs) nationwide.
•The RBDAs have helped in boosting food production through resuscitation of equipment, rehabilitation of production units such as processing of rice milling, palm oil, fisheries, palm oil, bottled water etc.
•The RBDAs have also helped in redistribution and redeployment of idle equipment, improvement of water management within basin catchment e.g. the Chad and Hadejia-Jamare basins, where the Ministry of Water Resources repaired the Challawa Gates for release of water downstream.
•Nine dams completed in 2012 and 125,000 jobs created in the process.
•Ten irrigation projects deployed in 2012 for crop production. Four other irrigation projects completed and ready for commissioning.
•Residents in125 Local governments sensitized via sanitation programme for attitudinal change.
•52,384 jobs created in 2012 four completed irrigation projects costing several billions of naira.
•Before the Jonathan administration came on board, the pension funds administration regime was one the major channels through which public funds running into hundreds of billions of Naira are misappropriated by corrupt officials.
•Problems associated with the pension management system include embezzlement, falsification of records, Ghost pensioners, obsolete administrative structure and denial of pensioners their due entitlements. This was what necessitated the setting up of the presidential pension Reform Task Team. The activities of this important task force resulted in the following:
•Detection and deletion of over 73,000 Ghost/Fake pensioners from the Head of Service/police pension office.
•Stoppage of a monthly theft of over N4 billion from the National treasury.
•Saving a monthly sum of over N1billion from the police monthly pension releases.
•Discovery of over 50,000 unpaid pensioners and immediate payment of their entitlement.
•Discovery of over N2.7billion fraud by the Nigeria Union of Pensioners.
•Seizure of about 200 properties including choice hotels and cash worth billions of Naira from corrupt public officials.
•Arrest and on-going prosecution of pension fraud suspects by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
•Introduction of a more efficient tamper-proof pension funds management system.
•In line with global best practices and the principal aim of the Nigerian Extractive industry and Transparency Initiative (NEITI), President Jonathan recently forwarded the Petroleum Industry Bill to the National Assembly for passage into law.
•By the time the Petroleum Industry Bill is passed into law, Nigeria would have successfully broken the jinx of being a Nation where global business rules and practices are flouted with impunity. Estimated annual earnings of 680 billion dollars would be added to our Gross Domestic product. Crude oil theft and other sharp practices are also being combated with much vigor by various security and regulatory agencies on the president’s instructions.
•Furthermore, the fuel subsidy regime which had been a conduit pipe through which huge funds were siphoned from the National treasury has been subjected to forensic scrutiny by various agencies and committees set up by Mr. President in the last twelve months.
•The Aig-Imoukhuede Presidential committee on verification and reconciliation of subsidy claims and payments led to the arrest and arraignment of a number of individuals and firms by the EFCC.
•It is also on record that the president, upon receipt of the House of Representatives subsidy probe panel report, forwarded same to relevant security agencies with a firm instruction that there must be no sacred cows in the prosecution of culpable individuals and corporate entities.
•The on-going implementation of this and other reports has resulted in huge savings of money hitherto stolen by corrupt public officials.
•These are initiatives which had not been taken by any other previous government.
•President Goodluck Jonathan that this important process has been sanitized in a manner unprecedented in our political history.
•The reform carried out in this sector is responsible for the conduct of elections assessed by local and international observers as credible, free and fair.
•He has given the Nations electoral body a free hand to carry out its statutory duties without any form of direct or indirect manipulation. It takes a man who is committed to eradicating political corruption to do this in view of the apparent desperation of some politicians to capture power at all cost.
•Opportunities for bribery, documents forgery and other sharp-practices in the Nigerian ports have been substantially removed through a number of measures introduced by both the Ministries of Finance and that of Transport.
•A Presidential committee on ports reform and monitoring has worked assiduously to reduce congestion in our ports with the ultimate goal of a 48-hour goods clearing policy. The reforms in this sector are helping:
• To improve efficiency and transparency in ports operations and management.
•Reduce charges and promote competition.
•Facilitate the development of the transport sector.
•Eliminate ports congestion.
•Reduce government’s financial burden.
•The Jonathan administration has since its inception been concerned securing convictions of suspects accused of economic crimes within a reasonable time frame.
• On the occasion of the swearing in of Justice Miriam Aloma Mukhtar as Chief Judge of the Federation in July 2012, President Jonathan admonished the new CJ to consider the creation of special courts and designation of special judges to adjudicate on corruption cases.
•In addition, the President as the head of the Executive Arm of government has also initiated a reform of the criminal justice system as a means of plugging loop holes often exploited by counsels to delay trial of persons accused of corruption.
•The office of the Attorney General and Minister of Justice has completed a new set of proposals which has been sent to the National Assembly. This bill, when passed into law, will remove incidence of frivolous injunctions, interlocutory motions, adjournments and other abuse of court processes by counsel employed by suspects in corruption cases.
•The CJN has keyed into the crusade for a reform of the judicial system by President Jonathan by taking steps to weed out judges who acts of omission and commission are subverting delivery of justice.
•The signing of the Freedom of Information Act into law by President Jonathan in May 2011 represents a water-shed in the anti-corruption crusade in Nigeria.
•This piece of legislation which had been virtually stalled by successive administrations since 1999 was signed into law by President Jonathan to usher Nigeria into the league of countries where transparency in governance is entrenched and citizens are granted access to unfettered information about government activities.
•It is noteworthy that the present administration took the bull by the horns to lay this very important foundation for the war against corruption in Nigeria in the early months of its inception and 24 hours after the bill was presented to him by the National Assembly.

No comments:

Post a Comment