This column is not for the faint-hearted. The line here is bold and brass, and this surely is the place where we call succubus by name.

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2018 Year of Infrastructure

January 22, 2017
by the Presidency Office of Digital Engagement (PODE)

2018: The Year of Infrastructure

– The Federal Government has so far released 1.2 Trillion Naira released for capital expenditure in the 2017 Budget, which was signed into law in June 2017. (Recall that the total amount released for capital projects in the 2016 budget was 1.2 Trillion Naira — a record at the time).

– The Federal Executive Council (FEC) last week approved a framework for mobilising additional investment to expand distribution capacity, to enable consumers access 2,000MW of power currently available in Nigeria but not distributed because of capacity issues. Nigeria can today generate 7,000MW of electricity. Following extensive grid expansion in the last two years, the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) now has the capacity to wheel the 7,000MW. Bottlenecks however exist at Disco level, with only 5,000MW of distribution capacity, hence the need for the expansion.- On January 4, 2018, President Muhammadu Buhari commissioned the first Inland Dry Port in Nigeria – the Kaduna Inland Dry Port, in Kakuri, Kaduna State. Read the President’s Speech at the commissioning, here

– Also on January 4, President Buhari commissioned 2 additional locomotives and 10 additional passenger coaches for the Abuja-Kaduna standard-gauge rail service. Read the President’s Speech at the Commissioning, here

– The 12 stations on the Phase 1 corridor (Blue and Yellow Lines) of the Abuja Light Rail Transit system have now been completed. Also, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Administration has taken delivery of 3 coaches meant for trial operations of the Light Rail — the first to be completed and operational in West Africa.

– Still on Rail, work is ongoing on the Lagos-Ibadan leg of the standard-gauge rail line between Lagos and Kano, and is expected to completed by December 2018. (The first section, Abuja-Kaduna, was completed and commissioned by President Buhari in 2016).

– On January 8, the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing announced that its Incremental Power Journey has recorded the following milestones:

-/ Generated power has gone up to 7,000 MW in 2017 from 3,000 MW in May 2015
-/ Transmission Capacity now at 6,900MW in 2017, from about 5,000 MW in May 2015
-/ Peak Distribution now averaging 5,000 MW in 2017 from 2,690 MW in 2015.

– In 2018, an additional 1,600MW of power is scheduled to be added to the national grid, including the following:

– In 2017 the Federal Government raised 100 Billion Naira in its debut Sukuk Bond. The proceeds of the Bond have been allocated to major road projects across the six geopolitical zones – each zone gets 16.67 Billion Naira. Another reason why 2018 is the Year of Infrastructure!

– The Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) has commenced repairs of damaged sections of federal roads across the country. Citizens can tweet pictures of bad roads and tag @FedRoadsNGR (on Twitter) for prompt attention.

– British entrepreneur Richard Branson writes on the work the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) is doing in partnership with the World Bank and Rocky Mountain Institute to unlock Nigeria’s mini-grid energy market: “If you are an impact investor that wants to make a difference in energy access next year, I’d suggest a trip to Nigeria.” Read the article here

Numbers:

a. On January 8, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) announced that Nigeria’s external reserves is now $40.4 billion – the first time in four years the reserves are hitting the $40 billion mark.

b. On January 9, the Nigerian Stock Exchange All Share Index (NSE-ASI) hit the 40,000- point mark for the first time since 2014. On January 19 the NSE-ASI hit 45,000 points. The NSE-ASI was also one of the world’s best performing markets in 2017, surging by 42%.

c. As part of efforts by the Federal Government to block revenue leakages (about N100 billion was discovered as tax revenue shortfall by contractors between 2012 and 2017), on January 9, the Ministry of Finance ordered vendors of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to display their Tax Identification Numbers (TINs) on their invoices before payments are effected by the MDAs. Details here.

d.

In other news:

a. President Muhammadu Buhari on January 11 appointed a substantive Director General for the National Intelligence Agency (NIA). The new Director-General is Ahmed Rufai Abubakar, a retired career Foreign Service officer, who till his appointment served as Senior Special Assistant to the President (SSAP) on Foreign Affairs/International Relations. Prior to that he served as Senior Political Adviser, Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) in Ndjamena; Director Political Affairs, United Nations Office for West Africa (UNOWA), Dakar; Acting Director, Political Affairs Division, African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID); and Chief of Staff, AU-UN Joint Mediation Support Team, in Doha, Qatar. Between 1993 and 2005 he held various positions as a career Foreign Service Officer including four and a half years in the Embassy of Nigeria, Rabat, Morocco as Head of Chancery.

b. On Tuesday, January 16, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo delivered the inaugural keynote lecture at Harvard Business School’s “Africa Rising” course. Summary of his lecture here

c. Another Chibok Girl rescued: On January 4, troops of Operation Lafiya Dole deployed in Pulka rescued Salomi Pogu, one of the Chibok girls abducted by Boko Haram terrorists earlier in 2014. Salomi was rescued in the company of another young girl, 14-year old Jamila Adams, and a child. Salomi is the 107th Chibok girl to be freed. Find a Timeline of the Chibok Girls here

d. Following the publication of videos obtained by CNN showing the existence of slave camps in Libya, President Buhari ordered the commencement of evacuation of Nigerians stranded in the North African country. So far about 1,500 Nigerians have been repatriated home, and the evacuation is still ongoing. Read our ‘Factsheet On The Migrant Crisis Involving Nigerian Citizens’ here

e. Vice President Yemi Osinbajo will lead Nigeria’s delegation to the World Economic Forum, holding in Davos, Switzerland, this week.

f. The United Nations has appointed Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, into the Investments Committee of the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund (UNJSPF). Details here

g. Public Hearing for the Bill establishing the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) holds today, Monday January 22, at the National Assembly. An important step to provide legal backing for one of the most important agencies in Nigeria.

Factsheets:

Check out our factsheets on the following:

1. The security situation in Benue: here

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