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Airline operators want NASS to infuse Presidential order in finance bill

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Airline operators want NASS to infuse Presidential order in finance bill

The Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) have called on the National Assembly to infuse into the Finance Bill 2020, the presidential order, granting import duty waiver on commercial aircrafts, spare parts as well as removal of VAT from air transport. 
The Chief Executive Officer of Air Peace and Vice President of the association, Alex Onyema, who spoke on behalf of the operators,  Senate President Ahmad Lawan and Aviation Minister, Senator Hadi Sirika at the National Assembly during a meeting.
He decried the situation whereby the Nigerian Customs Service had reintroduced the taxes even when the president has not revoked his order taken at the Federal Executive Council. 
He said the reintroduction of import duty has had huge impact on their businesses. 
According to him, everything about aircraft is imported and that the operators were getting loans at 15 per cent interest rate and forex at N510 and sometimes N506. 
He said over 50 airlines have collapsed in Nigeria in the last thirty years. 
Onyema, blamed the collapse on unfavourable policies, saying that drastic measures must be taken by government to save the aviation sector.
“It is not something to be proud of that in the last 30 years of our life as a nation, over 50 airlines have gone down. The owners of these airlines succeeded in other businesses. Why did they fail in aviation? It could be traced to so many factors including corporate governance, but most importantly is policies. The policies have never been friendly to aviation,” he said. 
“We want the presidential directive to be incorporated in the Finance Bill currently being considered by the National Assembly. That is the only way the directive will work,” he added. 
He said the airline operators had planned to shut down last week but for the intervention of the Minister of aviation. 
Responding, the Senate President assured that their demand would be looked into.
Lawan, however, urged the airline operators to send a representative with their demands to the public hearing on the Finance Bill 2020, which held at the National Assembly yesterday. 
Lawan said though the country was facing difficult time and in need of revenue, the drive for revenue should not stifle businesses. 
“We need to strike a balance,” he said.  
“That’s why the government should come in. We shouldn’t allow the exchange rate to kill our businesses. 
“The Aviation industry around the world is facing serious challenges, and if the government did not support it, aviation businesses will sick and may be forced to close. 
“At least for the sake of the people that will loose their jobs, the government needs to support them,” he added.

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NEF warns Nigerians against stoking religious war with unguarded statements

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NEF warns Nigerians against stoking religious war with unguarded statements

The Northern Elders Forum (NEF) has asked Nigerians to watch and guard their statements so as to prevent any form of religious war in the country.
This was coming against the backdrop of inflammatory and inciting statements after the Christmas day sermon by fiery Bishop of Sokoto Catholic diocese leading to the issuance of a quit notice on the revered Bishop to leave Sokoto State.

NEF in a statement on Wednesday by its Director of Publicity and Advocacy, Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed warned that Nigeria should not be subjected to further difficult circumstances capable of imposing fear in the mind of citizens.

Baba-Ahmed who expressed worries about certain disturbing comments in the polity, therefore, warned those spreading explosive and inciting statements to check their ways and desist from such acts.

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‘Deep Offshore Production Sharing Contracts paying off with $2bn earnings annually’

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‘Deep Offshore Production Sharing Contracts paying off with $2bn earnings annually’

The amendment to the Deep Offshore and Inland Basin Production Sharing Contracts Act has increased remittances from the sharing contracts into the federation account from $260 million to $2billion annually, senate President Ahmad Lawan has said

He also vowed that the 9th National Assembly this year will conquer the “demons” frustrating the passage of Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) in the last fourteen years.

Lawan stated this yesterday while speaking with journalists on his 62 birthday celebration in Abuja.  

He said the patriotic zeal used by the National Assembly in October 2019 to pass an amendment to the Deep Offshore and Inland Basin Production Sharing Contracts Act would be deployed for expeditious consideration and passage of the PIB already before it, latest by the end of first quarter of this year.

“PIB is like a demon. People both within and outside the country are ready to work against it as they have been doing for the past fourteen years but the 9th Senate and by extension, 9th National Assembly will defeat the demon with the current bill before both Chambers.

“The patriotic zeal, sheer determination and unity of purpose by all serving senators across party lines to do this latest by the end of first quarter of this year will be deployed on the bill immediately the Senate resumes on 26th of this month the way it did with Deep Offshore Oil Production Sharing Contracts,” he said.

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Enough of the unwarranted attack on Kukah -Northern Christian group

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Enough of the unwarranted attack on Kukah -Northern Christian group


Apparently piqued by the dangerous dimension in misinterpretation of the Christmas message by Bishop Hassan Kukah to fan the embers of disunity, the Congress of Northern Nigeria Christians (CNNC) has warned Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI) to think about the consequences of their utterances.

They also warned other groups and individuals hiding under the Christmas homily of the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto, Matthew Kukah, to stop the incitment before the danger starts manifesting beyond what they can imagine.

The National youth leader of CNNC, David Kadzai, who spoke in Yola said that it was unfortunate that some agents of violence were turning the Christmas homily of Kukah upside down to serve their selfish purposes.

“If criticising President Muhammadu Buhari’s government is an attack on Islam, it means that Buhari, JNI and other Muslim faithful were attacking Christianity when they were criticising former President Goodluck Jonathan,” he said.

According to the youth leader, Kukah raised issues of nepotism, insecurity and lopsided appointments by Buhari’s administration, but his critics are not defending those allegations, since they have no defence.

“I want those behaving as if they are landlords and other Nigerians are tenants to know that the country belongs to all of us and nobody has monopoly of demeaning other Nigerians hiding under religion,” he maintained.

The group called on other religious leaders in the country to come out and speak on the challenges facing Nigeria as a result of bad governance.

It noted that the country was drifting to dangerous course due to unfocused leadership dominated by people without direction.

“I advise people to stop behaving like King Pharaoh of Egypt that was disrespecting the servants of God that were speaking to him to change from maltreatment of Israelites, but he refused to listen and was disgraced,” Kadzai added.






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