As part of its continued efforts towards environmental sustainability, Nestlé Nigeria has restated the need for continued consumer education on collection and proper disposal of packaging waste.
The company said on Tuesday in Lagos that it was in line with its commitment toward ensuring that none of its product packaging, including plastics, should end up in landfills or as litter in the environment, in the seas, oceans and waterways.
It made the assertion as it concluded it “Maggi Mega Millions” in Lagos, adding that over 100 million Maggi wrappers were collected by participants from across the country.
“Waste pollution is one of the biggest sustainability issues the world is facing today.
“Its impact can be seen across many urban cities, oceans and waterways across the world,’’ it said in a statement made available to the Nigeria News Agency.
“Nigeria generates more than 32 million metric tonnes of waste annually with Lagos alone producing about 10,000 metric tonnes which end up in landfills and in waterways, exacerbating the challenges of flooding and gridlocks.
“Tackling this menace requires multi-sector and multi-stakeholder collaboration to accelerate progress toward a sustainable solution.
“The recently concluded MAGGI MEGA MILLIONS is therefore a welcome intervention to sensitise the general public on the need for proper waste management.’’
It said that over 100 million Maggi wrappers — over 7 tonnes, were collected and returned by participants across Nigeria.
Speaking at the end of the Maggi Mega Millions in Lagos, Nwando Ajene, Category Manager Culinary, Nestlé Nigeria said: “We believe that this activity has helped to encourage proper collection, sorting and disposal of packaging materials to help ensure a cleaner environment.
“With the success of this initiative in retrieving this volume of wrappers in only six weeks, we believe that with all stakeholders working together, we can ensure a sustainable waste-free environment.’’
It said that participants at the closing event included members of the Nestlé Nigeria’s management team and the Executive Secretary of the Food and Beverage Recycling Alliance (FBRA), Agharese Lucia Onaghise.
“This is a great initiative by Nestlé in line with its commitment to recover their post-consumer waste from the environment.
“It is interesting to see the amount of Maggi wraps collected from this programme that would otherwise have been disposed indiscriminately.
“I encourage all to continue to ensure we are responsible for the waste we generate so that we can have a cleaner environment,’’ Onaghise said.
On what else Nestlé is doing about waste management in Nigeria, the statement said the company was a founding member of the FBRA whose mission is to build a self-sustaining recycling economy around post-consumer packaging waste to stimulate employment, wealth creation and innovation.
“The company remains committed to working with other stakeholders to achieve its ambition of ensuring that none of its packaging waste ends up as litter in the environment.’’
It will be recalled that in September 2019, Nestlé Nigeria signed an MOU with Wecyclers to accelerate the process of recovering and recycling post-consumption plastic packaging waste in Lagos State.
This partnership, in addition to reaching five more communities and 15,000 more subscribers, also aims to drive consumer education and awareness on sustainable waste management in the five communities.
Throwing more light on this, Victoria Uwadoka, Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Manager for Nestlé Nigeria said: “A key factor for ensuring the success of efforts to improve waste management is consumer education and awareness.
“At Nestlé, we are passionate about protecting the environment where we live and work, and will continue to work with all stakeholders, including our industry alliance, FBRA and our partner, WeCyclers to reach even more communities and consumers with critical information on how to collect, sort and dispose of waste for effective management’’
On Nestlé’s global environmental sustainability strategy, it that earlier in the year, Nestlé announced its global vision of ensuring that 100 per cent of its packaging is reusable or recyclable by 2025.
To this end, Nestlé inaugurated the Institute of Packaging Sciences in Switzerland, the first-of-its-kind in the food industry.
This Institute will enable Nestlé to accelerate its efforts to bring functional, safe and environmentally friendly packaging solutions to the market and to address the global challenge of plastic packaging waste.
Nestlé Nigeria Plc began simple trading operations in Nigeria in 1961 and has today grown into a leading food manufacturing and marketing company.
Nestlé Nigeria is the biggest food company in West Africa and Nestlé Nigeria employs around 2,300 people and has three world-class factories.
Nestlé Nigeria manufactures and markets a range of high quality brands, including MAGGI, MILO, GOLDEN MORM, NESTLE PURE LIFE and NESCAFE.
(Edited & Vetted By: Peter Ejiofor)
Expert says COVID-19 provides Nigeria opportunity to invest, improve health sector financing
He said that for over a decade Nigeria had invested less than five per cent of its annual budget to the health sector.
The financial expert said that with improved health sector financing, strengthening accountability mechanisms and public-private partnerships, Nigeria would be better prepared for future emergencies.
“Indeed, the COVID-19 pandemic has provided us with an avenue to evaluate the way we have been doing things.
”It has also provided us with an opportunity to re-assess the government’s preparedness to address future pandemics,” he said.
Eziukwu said it was imperative that health policymakers took advantage of the pandemic to improve health financing mechanisms, correlation between health and economic growth and increased attention to disease prevention.
He said larger impact of the pandemic could be broadly grouped a national health emergency.
He said that this was because of its rate of spread and the diversion of human and financial resources from other critical health challenges such as Ebola, Malaria and .
Eziukwu said that coronavirus could overwhelm the health system in little time as was currently the case in Nigeria and other affected countries.
He further said that the neglect of other health challenges could lead to loss of already gained grounds in the fight against them.
He said that the economic challenge presented by the pandemic could be quite devastating particularly for emerging economies in Africa.
“However, the continent can be said to be worst hit considering other factors.
“One key factor is the mono-primary commodity export in most African countries, of which price falls will lead to a great loss of income in these countries.
“Another factor is the dominant informal sector in the economies.
“Contrary to what is obtainable in Western economies, African economies are still very nascent with the majority of its citizens operating in the informal sectors,” he said.
Eziukwu, said that the approach of locking down the economy had caused hardship to many citizens, adding that the limited fiscal policy had also contributed to the hardship the citizens were experiencing.
“Many African countries have high debt to revenue ratios, of which a reduction in commodity prices will be unable to meet the basic operating and administrative costs.
“Also, there is limited health insurance in emerging economies which leads to high out-of-pocket health expenditure and these have further increased poverty rates,” he said.
Eziukwu said that some of the most hit areas of the economy during this pandemic were foreign reserves and currency values.
“Many emerging countries’ 12 months forward price is trading at approximately 50 per cent reduction when compared with the United States dollars and other currencies.
“It is reported that the Naira is currently trading at over N500 to a dollar in the foreign exchange market.
“This is an over 42 per cent reduction when compared with the currency’s trading average of N360 before the pandemic,” he said.
Eziukwu said that the epidemic preparedness and health sector funding models had also been seriously tested at this time.
He said that African countries that religiously followed the 2001 Abuja Accord were better positioned to withstand the economic impact of the pandemic.
The financial expert said that the countries that failed to meet the Abuja Accord target were more vulnerable as a result of the pandemic which was already over stretching frail health systems.
“This pandemic has provided a critical juncture for policymakers to review all possible approaches to better health financing.
”There is no better time to understand and agree that health is indeed wealth and should take precedence in all budgetary and financing decisions of the government.
“It is expected that going forward, there must be a convergence between the private sector, donor agencies and the government.
”This convergence will be important in addressing the weaknesses the COVID-19 pandemic has amplified,” he said.
Eziukwu said that in April, Nigeria’s Finance Minister had rolled out several interventions to address the pandemic.
He said that the interventions among other things included N500 billion intervention fund to build and maintain various primary health care facilities across the country.
“While this is a welcome development, an enabling environment should be created and sustained.
”This enabling environment is necessary to assist the private sector to further invest in the revamp and management of primary healthcare facilities across the country.
“Doing such will bring Nigeria closer to achieving universal health coverage (UHC),” he said.
Eziukwu said that investing in infrastructure only would not be sufficient to address the weaknesses in Nigeria’s health sector.
He said that there was a need to reduce the burden of care for basic ailments on secondary and tertiary health facilities by improving and sustaining PHCs.
The expert said that during a pandemic, improving micro and medium scale enterprise investments would have to be another approach for all Central Bank’s development finance investments.
He said that on March 27, CBN rolled out several interventions aimed at assisting businesses facing challenges as a result of the lockdown, which was welcome.
Eziukwu, however, othebserved that review of the requirements from the CBN revealed certain requirements that small-scale businesses would not be able to meet to access the funds.
To address this, he said, the CBN should lower the requirements for accessing the funds and target high-impact job-generating sectors during the lockdown and after.
Eziukwu, however, said that while this might have short term positive impact as a considerable amount of the funds would go into food purchases, in the long run, it might lead to inflation.
He said that targeted interventions should be critically encouraged at this point.
Edited By: Chidinma Agu/Donald Ugwu (NAN)
Late Sen. Osinowo displayed unwavering commitment to better Nigeria- Folarin
Sen. Teslim Folarin (APC-Oyo Central) has described the death of Sen. Adebayo Osinowo (APC-Lagos East) as a loss of a patriot, who displayed unwavering commitment to a better Nigeria.
This is contained in a tribute he signed and made available to newsmen in Ibadan on Tuesday.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the late Sen. Osinowo died on Monday.
“Distinguished Sen. Osinowo was unwavering in his commitment to a better Nigeria. He made a huge difference in the lives of millions of people in Lagos East Senatorial district and Nigeria at large,” he said.
Folarin, a former Senate leader, recalled late Osinowo’s great impressions on him as regards religious tolerance, efficacy of prayers and service to humanity during the 2019 Hajj they performed together.
He said that Osinowo’s demise was a bitter pill for members of the 9th National Assembly, the people of Lagos, Southwest Nigeria and All Progressives Congress (APC).
“The sudden demise of my colleague and brother, Sen. Sikiru Adebayo Osinowo is, undoubtedly, a bitter pill for members of the 9th Assembly, the people of Lagos, Southwest Nigeria and APC,” he said.
Folarin expressed his condolences to Osinowo’s family, the Nigerian Senate, APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, the good people of Lagos and Ogun States.
“My thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and associates worldwide as we grieve over the loss of such an extraordinary individual.
“I pray that in this difficult time, God give us the strength and courage to bear the irreplaceable loss.
“The wonderful memories of Sen. Osinowo’s unique personality will be celebrated by all for a very long time. May Allah grant him Al-Jannah Fridauz,” he said.
Edited Edith Bolokor/Adeleye Ajayi
Nigeria records 573 new COVID-19 cases, infections hits 16,658
Nigeria recorded 573 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, bringing the total number of Infections to 16,658.
The Nigeria Centre For Disease Control (NCDC) announced this official Twitter handle.
It said that as at June 15, Nigeria recorded four deaths while no new state reported any case in the last 24 hours.
The NCDC said that Lagos reported the highest number of cases with 216 new cases and Rivers was second with 103 new infections.
“The 573 new cases are reported from 20 states, Lagos (216), Rivers (103), Oyo (68), Edo (40), Kano (21), Gombe (20),FCT (17), Delta (13), Plateau (12), Bauchi (12), Niger (10), Kebbi ((9) Ogun (8), Ondo (8), Abia (7), Nasarawa (5), Borno (1), Kwara (1), Benue (1), Anambra (1)
The NCDC said that till date, Nigeria has 10,885 active cases while 5,349, patients have been treated and discharged.
It added that Nigeria recorded 424 deaths in 35 states and the Federal Capital Territory.
The agency said that the increase in the number of COVID-19 cases across states, calls for Nigerians to TakeResponsibility, especially with the use of masks, avoiving mass gatherings and hand Washing.
“The health of each of us depends on our collective action,“ it said.
The health agency disclosed that it got samples with fictitious names and fictitious addresses.
“We can only vouch for the results of the samples.
“There’s no reason whatsoever to doubt the reality of COVID-19 in Nigeria. In fact we believe there are more cases out there than we’ve found.
“Behind each of those numbers we announce daily are people. Four Governors have themselves announced they’ve been infected.
“We have to make it socially unacceptable to be seen outside the home without face masks.
“We must also discourage unnecessary mass gatherings,”NDDC said.
Edited By: Chidinma Agu/ Sadiya Hamza (NAN)
UN chief condemns terrorist attacks in Nigeria’s Borno State
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Monday strongly condemned Saturday’s terrorist attacks in Monguno and Nganzai local government areas in Nigeria’s Borno State, which killed dozens of civilians, injured several others, and damaged a major humanitarian facility.
The secretary-general conveyed his condolences to the families of the victims, the people and government of Nigeria and wished a speedy recovery to those injured. He reiterated the need to protect civilians and humanitarian personnel, assets and facilities at all times in accordance with international humanitarian law, said Farhan Haq, Guterres’ deputy spokesman, in a statement.
The secretary-general reaffirmed the United Nations’ continued solidarity with the government and people of Nigeria in their efforts to fight terrorism and violent extremism, said the statement.
Saturday’s attacks were carried out by suspected Boko Haram militants. The terrorist group has been trying to establish an Islamist state in northeastern Nigeria, and has extended its attacks to countries in the Lake Chad Basin.