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BusinessDay 16 Apr 2018

Monday

Monday 16 April 2018 46 BUSINESS DAY C002D5556 NEWS L-R: Aliyu Abdulhameed, managing director, Nigerian Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL); Zainab Ahmed, minister of state, budget and national planning, and Laoye Jaiyeola, CEO, Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG), at a workshop on low carbon investment opportunities in Nigeria, organised by NESG in Lagos, at the weekend. Pic by Olawale Amoo Lagos-Badagry 2019 rail completion... Continued from page 1 system along the Lagos- Badagry axis, referred as the blue line may no longer be feasible. Awarded to the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC), with advisory services being provided by CPCS Transcom Limited, the blue line project is being financed solely by the Lagos state government. The slow pace of work on the on-going blue rail project linking Marina and Okokomaiko to meet with the proposed integrated transportation system initiative and the lack of push to deliver it on record time has been described as one of the factors piling up traffic along the corridor which has become a recurring decimal. Meanwhile, many motorists and other road users have continued to narrate their harrowing experiences of deadly attacks by some criminal elements and destitutes who lay siege at the newly constructed Lagos-Badagry rail terminals. A visit to the railway terminals reveals the occupants had fixed mosquito nets and curtains at their respective sleeping corners, while clothes were littered all over the floor. Occupants used stones and similar objects to carve out their spaces. Ijeoma Goldie, a petty trader who hawks mineral drinks and water along the corridor, said she had witnessed a lot of crimes perpetrated by hoodlums using the rail terminal at Mile 2 and Suru-Alaba as their target points. About two weeks ago during a traffic gridlock, the criminals attacked many vehicles and smashed the windscreen and made away with their belongings. A Chinese supervisor working for the CCECC at the site who did not give his name said it was not their responsibility to chase away the hoodlums and other occupants of the railway terminals. According to him, “Our job is to fix the project and getting protected from these people is government’s responsibility. I believe, after completion of the construction, their activities here will be over.” In April 2008 during the administration of former governor Babatunde Fashola, the Lagos state government approved N70 billion (Out of the estimated N220 billion) for construction of the Okokomaiko-Iddo-Marina Line, with an estimated completion date of 2011. However, the project has suffered many delays due to funding shortfalls with the completion date being revised to June 2013, then December 2016, then 2017. As at November 2016, only 16 km of the 27 km blue line had been completed. Comparing the Lagos rail project to similar ones in other parts of Africa shows that Ethiopia managed deliver the first modern light rail project in Sub-Saharan Africa which opened in the capital Addis Ababa in 2015. Ethiopia’s rail project was delivered on time despite being longer than the Lagos – Badagry rail line currently under construction. Addis Ababa’s two line 34-kilometre systems was built by the China Railway Engineering Corporation (CREC) and cost $475m, 85 percent of which was covered by China’s Exim bank. Lagos has a population of about 20 million people, compared to Addis Ababa’s 5 million. The Ethiopian light rail has a capacity to carry 60,000 passengers a day across the capital of Africa’s second most populous nation. Ethiopia was able to complete the project despite its $50 billion GDP being about half the Lagos economy. Lagos currently doesn’t have enough infrastructure to move its teeming population, with choked roads and bridges sometimes leading to 4 hour “go slows” or traffic jams. Speaking with BusinessDay on telephone, Kola Ojelabi, LAMATA’s head of media and communications, said the project was stopped for almost three years because of various problems of obstruction on the right of way (RoW). Reacting to the menace of hoodlums living on the rail lines harassing motorists and other road users, he explained that, it is illegal for anybody under any guise to live on the rail tracks, not to talk of turning themselves into criminals and causing a breach to public safety. According to him, the state government is exploring the option of lighting up the entire stretch or highway and erecting a protective safety fence along the entire Lagos- Badagry rail corridor when completed. “It is true that we have given different completion dates for the project but one of the challenges that we had was that the train was originally to go to the Iddo Railway Terminus, but the Railway Act did not allow us to do such.’’ “Since we could not take the train station to Iddo, we had to change the alignment, and in changing that, there were a lot of obstructions on the way.’’ Among these challenges was a fertiliser plant around Ijora belonging to the Federal Government. The state government had to negotiate to use the compound, so that it could take away the warehouse and build another warehouse for them. Moving into the lagoon, there were two major Adeosun reassigns portfolios in SEC, Mary... Continued from page 1 position of Acting Director-General of the Commission. Uduk’s appointment is governed by the provisions of the Investments and Securities Act (ISA), 2007 and the conditions of service applicable to the Director- General of the Commission. The Minister, in a letter dated 13th April, 2018, said Uduk’s appointment had become necessary to ensure effective regulation of the Capital Market. Her appointment will, subject to satisfactory performance, subsist until further notice. The Minister also announced the redeployment of the former acting Director-General of the Commission, Abdul Zubair, to External Relations Department. She further made the following reassignment of the under-mentioned persons - Reginald C. Karawusa – Acting Executive Commissioner, Legal and Enforcement; Isiyaku Tilde – Acting Executive Commissioner, Operations; Henry Roland Adekunle – Acting Executive Commissioner, Corporate Services. The new Acting Director- General joined the Commission in 1986 as an assistant financial analyst. Her career as a regulator has spanned many functions and departments in the Commission, from corporate finance, administration, to providing structural, policy and due diligence for capital market transactions. She has also been responsible for managing several landmark capital market projects, including challenges, including the relocation of gas link, a gas pipe underneath the lagoon, which also took some time. There was the wreckage of a ship that was at the bottom of the lagoon that also had to be removed. These delayed the time line for the delivery of the project, Ojelabi of LA- MATA explained. “From the initial plan of the Lagos State Government, this rail project ought to have been delivered in 2012 or 2013,’’ he said. Ojelabi explained that LAMATA lost about three years to the recovery of RoW, adding that, the state government had to bear the additional costs, which were not in the initial budget. This, according to him was to ensure that the structures were solid because rail infrastructure the registration of Capital Market Operators, articulating rules for bonds and equities; Mergers, acquisitions and Takeovers, and managing the banking and insurance industry consolidations between 2005-2007. Uduk served as the pioneer Head of the Operations Division in the Lagos Zonal Office, and has headed the following Departments in the Commission: Internal Control, Investment Management, Financial Standards and Corporate Governance and Securities, and Investment Services Department, among others. Meanwhile, the Federal Ministry of Finance has requested for a formal explanation from the SEC of the recent communications between the Commission and the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), which adversely impacted market confidence. is expected to last a minimum of 100 years. When completed, the rail project will cover a distance of 27.5 km from Marina to Okokomaiko, with 13 stations and an end-to-end journey time of 35 minutes. The entire blue line will operate over a secure and exclusive right-of-way, with no level crossings and no uncontrolled access by pedestrians or vehicles.

Monday 16 April 2018 US Nigeria Mission reiterates commitment to deepen ties with Nigeria US Consulate General, John Bray, has reiterated the commitment of the US Nigeria Mission to deepen bilateral ties with Nigeria for sustainable development. The mission recently graduated 20 young Nigerians of the Carrington Youth Fellowship Initiative (CYFI), an initiative geared towards promoting civic engagement, economic empowerment, and education and health care delivery. Launched in 2011, the CYFI works to bring together Nigerian youth to design and implement projects focused on societal innovation. These projects centre on broader themes championed by Ambassador Walter Carrington, for whom the initiative is named. Bray in his message to the graduates urged them to remain in touch with their cohort and maintain the strength of the bond they have formed together through collaboration. “Our objective at the US Consulate General in Lagos is to support efforts that address Nigerian issues, par- Kachikwu named as one of 100 most influential Africans of 2017 Minister of State for Petroleum Resources,. Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu, has been named by the New African, a London-based magazine, as one of the 100 Most Influential Africans of 2017 in the category of Business and Finance. In a letter signed by Omar Ben Yedder, group publisher and managing director, congratulating Kachikwu, the magazine’s publisher said their organisation was ‘’dedicated to changing the African narrative and fighting for its interests, and hope to continue on this journey ticularly economic development, access to healthcare, peace and security, transparency and good governance. To that end, the CYFI program is an incredibly valuable program, in that it allows some of the most promising young people in Nigeria who are passionate about these issues to affect real, positive change. “Always remember that you are a select few chosen from a pool of the most talented and driven young people in Nigeria. The friendships and partnerships you’ve developed over your year with CYFI will become some of the most rewarding. “As you’ve learned this year, you can run into all kinds of challenges in the course of implementing real and meaningful change. I hope that the successes you have had this year have shown you that the importance and impact of your efforts far outweigh the trials and tribulations you sometimes face in the course of enacting this change,” Bray said, urging them to stay committed and passionate to societal innovation and change in their society, even in the face of opposition. alongside people engaged in transformational roles across the continent such as your goodself.” According to Yedder, it has become the tradition of the publishing outfit to dedicate its annual year end edition to ‘’celebrating and reflecting on what shaped the African continent in the past year and highlighting the men and women who were changemakers and influencers in a number of sectors and industries’’. It is in accordance with that tradition that Kachikwu was spotlighted as one of the greatest influencers of the continent, last year. C002D5556 BUSINESS DAY 47 NEWS ICRC pledges commitment to successful implementation of port concession MICHEAL ANI The importance of ensuring Public Private Partnerships (PPP) in the country are executed without undue encumbrances was highlighted last week, when a delegation from the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) visited Josepdam port concession site in Lagos, as part of its monitoring activities. ICRC is a commission established in 2005, and saddled with the responsibility of monitoring and SEYI JOHN SALAU … embarks on fact finding to Josepdam concession project ensuring the efficient execution of all PPP projects entered into by Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) on behalf of the Federal Government. Chidi Izuwah, acting director-general, ICRC, who led the delegation, expressed delight at the site, which shows the potentials of PPP for making the economy more vibrant and improving the country’s indices as it pertained to port operations. According to Izuwah, the commission is aware of some of the challenges currently being faced by Josepdam, which range from the challenge of having third party and equipment occupying more than 25 percent of their terminal land mass, court injunction brought against Jospdam port services by third party and inability to meet covenanted GMT target as stated in the agreement due to certain challenges. Izuwah however maintained that all disagreements relating to concession exercises at the ports must therefore be resolved in order to make Nigerian ports the hub for international shipping trade in the West and Central African sub-region. To him, the commission is working tirelessly to ensure that all of such challenges be resolved. “It is on this premise that the ICRC decided to embark on this monitoring exercise to brainstorm with your management and the NPA on the way forward. “As the regulator of the lease agreement, we can- not fold our hands and leave you to struggle it out alone,” he said. “Under the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration, there is a will to address this issue and effort is being made to resolve it to create a winwin situation for all parties,” he said. Simon Travers, managing director, JBS, urged the commission to assist in finding an amicable settlement on the issue of the third party presence at the terminal, which was hindering its operations. He recommended that the NPA should review and extend the lease agreement for years lost due to the third party interference and also appealed to the government to repair the access road to the port. Prior to the ports exercise and subsequent concession of terminals in 2006, the nation’s ports were known for inefficiency and decaying infrastructure resulting in the delay in cargo clearance and several other malpractices.

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