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MAN warns that New CBN forex restriction will kill ailing firms

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MAN warns that New CBN forex restriction will kill ailing firms

The directive by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) that dealers should stop opening form M for payments that are routed through a buying company or any other third party has not gone down well with local manufacturers.
They are kicking against it saying it is wrongly timed saying the good intention of the apex bank is inimical to the survival of many manufacturing concerns that are not involved in any unethical practices.

Citing the especially perilous timed when the nation is implementing gradual ease of the lockdown caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

MAN noted that most manufacturers, especially SMEs, deal with accredited agents for their supplies, as many Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) abroad do not sell directly to individual buyers.

The association in specific terms said many companies had gone into contractual agreements via the procurement agencies for the 2020 financial year and, in some cases, beyond, hence, a default on the contractual obligations may result in expensive lawsuits across jurisdictions, bring disruptions to the production process and further undermine the resilience of the sector.

“Consequently, the multiplier effect on the economy will be reduction in productivity, loss in business revenues, supply chain disruption and ultimately loss of employment,” the local producers said.

The CBN had, in a circular titled “Destination Payment for All Forms M, Letter of Credit and Other Forms of Payment” on Monday, taken the decision in a bid to ensure prudent use of foreign exchange, by eliminating incidences of over invoicing, transfer pricing, double handling charges and avoidable costs that are ultimately passed to the average Nigerian consumer

A Form M is a mandatory statutory document to be completed by all importers for the importation of goods into Nigeria. It is mandatory for all importers to complete and register Form ‘M’ with authorised dealers at the time of placing orders.

MAN President, Mansur Ahmed, argued that a phased approach should be adopted to enable companies to have sufficient time to re-organize and build the required relationships with original suppliers, which they do not currently have.

He advised that to checkmate abuse, the apex bank could put in place a monitoring mechanism to ensure that unverifiable claims by some manufacturers are identified and dealt with accordingly, rather than stifle the business of genuine firms whose interest and commitment is to grow the economy.

“Given the prevailing extremely stressful operating environment our fragile manufacturing sector is contending with, the implementation of this new directive is like hammering the last nail into the coffin of many of our ailing members,” he said.

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Economy

Hope for border reopening dims as agric minister reiterates indefinite closure

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Hope for border reopening dims as agric reiterates indefinite closure

The Minister of Agriculture, Mohammed Sabo Nanono, has said that the Federal Government was not ready to reopen the borders, so as to boost the country’s agricultural sector.
He stated this, at the flag-off ceremony of the distribution of agricultural inputs to farmers affected by the recent flood in Kebbi State on Saturday.
He said Nigeria borders will remain locked and the key thrown into the lagoon.

He said: “Nigerian farmers have been performing well by producing such food items as rice, millet, guinea corn, and Shea butter, among others. We are not ready to reopen the borders, which is why the Federal Government is ready to support the dry season farming to regain what farmers lost to the flood disaster.”
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Aviation, Senator Adamu Aliero, supported the continued closure of borders, to encourage the growth of local rice farming.
He commended federal and state governments for supporting flood victims in the state.
The Kebbi State Governor, Senator Atiku Bagudu Abubakar, represented by the Deputy Governor, Col Ismail Yombe Dabai (rtd.), thanked the Federal Government for the kind gesture. He assured me of equal distribution of the items.
He appealed to the Federal Government to increase the quantity of the items, to enable them to go round the affected people.
The items shared included rice, millet, guinea corn, and beans, among others.

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AfDB, Synergos inaugurate machine for cassava peel conversion in Kogi

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AfDB, Synergos inaugurate machine for cassava peel conversion in Kogi


By Friday Idachaba
The African Development Bank (AfDB) in partnership with Synergos Nigeria and International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) has inaugurated a prototype maciine for conversion of High Quality Cassava Peels into feed ingredients for animal feeds.

The News Agency of Nigeria NAN reports that the prototype was inaugurated at the High Quality Cassava Peels (HQCP) Centre in Ejule, Ofu Local Government Area of Kogi on Friday.

Country Director of Synergos Nigeria Mr Victor Adejoh, in his opening remarks at the inaugural ceremony said the innovation aimed at addressing issues of environmental pollution and income support for women.

Adejoh said that Synergos Nigeria was implementing the project in partnership with ILRI with funding from AfDB as part of the bank’s implementation of its “Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT)”.

The Country Director who was represented by Mrs Lydia Oyewole, Synergos Project Facilitator, hinted that TAAT’s developmental objective was to scale up agricultural technologies with Livestock component as one of the key compacts to achieve the objectives.

He said that the prototype waste-to-wealth innovation to be run by Small Scale Women Farmers Organisation of Nigeria (SWOFON) would be enable production of high quality cassava peel (HQCP) feed ingredients thereby, circumventing cassava peel drying constraints.

The prototype machine which is the second in the state with the first, located at Ojapata, Ankpa Local Government according to him, is based on principle of grating; dewatering, fermentation; pulverizing, sieving and drying.

“These steps essentially replicate the age-long processes involved in making cassava pulp safe for human consumption and storable and also conforms with the code of practice for the reduction of Hydrocyanic acid in cassava and cassava products (FAO, 2013a)

“Cassava peels waste has been recognized for ages as a potential animal feed, but with little utilization because of its cyanide content when consumed wet or its mycotoxins content when improperly dried”, he said.

Adejoh noted that the machine would produce dried high quality cassava peel mash (fine and coarse) feeds with four to six months shelf-life and suitable for poultry, fish, pigs, goats, sheep and cattle.

The state Commissioner for Agriculture Mr David Apeh, called on the women to utilise the prototype pricessing facilitie at their doorstep to increase their livelihood support and better their lives instead of idling away.

Apeh represented by Ichaka okolo, Director, Agric Services, also called on AfDB, Synergos, ActionAid and other partners and agencies to increase their interventions in Agribusiness initiative for overall development the state.

Earlier earlier in her address, SWOFON Coordinator in the state Hajia Sefiya Yahaya called on the Federal and and State Governments to accord women farmers their rights and make land available to them as a right rather than privilege saying, “Our land is our right.”

NAN reports that representatives of the state Fadama office, ActionAid Nigeria, Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN) and various women groups witnessed the inauguration and gave goodwill messages. (NAN)

FDJ/

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FG admonishes youths on acquisition of skills through digital revolution

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FG admonishes youths on acquisition of skills through digital revolution

The Federal Government has challenged youths in the country to take advantage of the present digital revolution by channelling their energy to good causes.
This they should do through the acquisition of new skills and knowledge sharing so as to nourish human capacity for the socio-economic development of the country. 
Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola made the call in Lagos during a Stakeholders Engagement on Internal Security and Conflict Resolution in Nigeria.
It was contained in a statement that was issued by the Director (Press & Public Relations)
Mohammed Manga.

In his speech, titled, “Lagos is the destiny of our race,” Aregbesola described the youth as the pride and glory of any people. “The youths are the pride and glory of any people. We must understand that youths are a unique demography.
“People under the age of 25 constitute 45% of global population, while they are 60% in Africa and the Middle East”.
“Today’s youth are a peculiar breed. They are a new generation of the social media and the power of ideas and intellect.
“They appear more intelligent and far more enterprising than previous generations, the deployment of their intelligence is a different matter; which we must all seek to re-channel through positive modelling and gainful employment.
According to the minister, the digital revolution has increased young people’s capacity to bring about positive social change.
“ICT gives them the tools to learn new skills, to share knowledge and to nourish human capacity.”

He said because information flows seamlessly around the planet, young people can more effectively act as catalyst for change – locally and globally.
“They must therefore be commended for the courage to start a movement that shook the foundation of this nation in a way that has never been done before. “However, much as they are a great asset, they also can be a great risk – to themselves and to the society – if their energy is not positively channelled”, he said.
He observed further that the time has come to rouse the consciousness of their leading lights to confront the charlatans among them. 
These charlatans he said, are the elements capable of dragging down society, because according to him, their activities are destructive to society as well as to themselves.
The Minister stated that the stakeholders engagement was convened to proffer lasting solution to security challenges across the state and the country at large, in order to enhance socio-economic development, especially in the wake of the ENDSARS protest, promote unity among diverse ethnic population of the State as well as share knowledge and ideas on matters that could create crisis in the polity and proffer proactive solution, among others.

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