The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) says the country’s external reserves now stand at 45 billion dollars as at June, 2019.
The CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, disclosed this while reeling out the policy road map for his five years second term in Abuja on Monday.
Emefiele said the bank put all necessary measure to ensure the steady growth of the country’s external reserves after the recession.
“I am delighted to note that our external reserves have risen from 23 billion dollars in October 2016 to over 45 billion dollars by June.
“Inflation has also dropped from 18.72 per cent in January 2017 to 11.40 per cent in May.
“Our CBN purchasing manufacturers index has risen for 26 consecutive months since March 2017, indicating continuous growth in the manufacturing sector.
“As a result of measures implemented by the CBN which improved access to raw materials and finance for manufacturing firms GDP growth has risen for seven consecutive quarters following the recession.
According to him, with concerted efforts by the monetary and fiscal authorities the bank implemented a series of measures which led to the recovery of the economy from the recession by the 1st Quarter of 2017.
Speaking on recovery efforts, Emefiele said part of the measures deployed to support the recovery included tightening of the monetary policy rate in order to rein in inflation.
He said the bank also created an Investors and Exporters Window which allowed exporters and investors to inflow and sell their foreign exchange at the prevailing market rate.
“In order to reduce our reliance on the importation of items which could be produced in Nigeria, we restricted access to foreign exchange on 43 items.
“We also deployed our intervention funds to support growth and productivity in the agricultural and manufacturing sectors.
“These measures helped to support the attainment of our monetary policy objectives such as a reduction in the inflation rate, stability in our exchange rate and improved accretion to our external reserves,” he added.
Feature: Nigerians mourn African music artist Majek Fashek
Millions of his fans have paid tribute to the music talent on social media. “Legends don’t die. They live in our hearts forever,” said Oluwatosin Nwodo, a reggae enthusiast who described herself as one of Fashek’s hardcore fans.
“Majek Fashek was a quintessential legend whose works will live forever … For he was a soldier and tool for change that reggae musicians are, symbolically,” Nwodo further wrote in a short tribute on Facebook.
Through his inspirational reggae music, “Majek Fashek was a rare gift to mankind,” said Felix Duke, president of Nigeria’s Creative Industry Group.
Local media reported that the cause of his death is not clear for now, but he had been ill for some time.
In 2015, there was a hiatus in his career when he landed in a drug rehabilitation center in Nigeria’s capital city Abuja, where he recovered and then returned to music.
“I will always remember Majek Fashek for writing Free Africa, Free Mandela, a song he made to lend a voice for the release of Nelson Mandela, then a leader of the African National Congress in South Africa,” said Sammy Wonder, a Nigerian music instructor.
Nigeria records 241 new cases of COVID-19, total Infections hit 10,818
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on Tuesday said it has recorded 241 new cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in the country, taking the total number of infections in Nigeria to 10,818.
The health agency stated that most of those who died were associated with co-morbidities, noting that three out of four of those who have been discharged were without co-morbidities.
It said this was consistent with the fact that risks were higher for those with other illnesses such as hypertension, diabetes and other chronic non-communicable diseases.
The NCDC said that there was general reduction in mortality trend and continuous improvement in recoveries as shown in discharges compared to the increase in number of confirmed cases.
It stated that no new state have reported a case in the last 24 hours.
According to the body, till date, 10,819 cases have been confirmed, 7,266 of active cases, 3,239 cases have been treated and discharged, 314 deaths have been recorded in 35 states and the Federal Capital Territory.
The NCDC said that the 241 new cases were reported from 14 states – Lagos(142), Oyo(15), FCT(13), Kano(12), Edo(11), Delta(10), Kaduna(9), Rivers(9), Borno(8), Jigawa(4), Gombe(3), Plateau(3), Osun(1) and Bauchi(1).
NCDC said that it was important for Nigerians to remember that there were humans behind the numbers.
Five months later, the disease continues to affect people in countries across the globe.
Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Muhammad Suleiman Tola (NAN)
COVID-19: Lagos discharges 30 Nigerians, 3 Indians
Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu said in a statement that a total of 908 COVID-19 patients were now discharged.
”Good people of Lagos, I bring you great news from our isolation facilities. Today, 33 fully recovered COVID-19 Lagos patients; 7 females and 26 males including 3 foreign nationals – Indians -have been discharged to join the society.
”With this, the number of patients successfully managed and discharged from our Isolation facilities is now 908.
”As our frontline health workers records successes in this battle against #COVID-19, we urge citizens to adhere strictly to our public advisories and directives, as this is the only way we can break the chain of transmission of the infection,” Sanwo-Olu said.
Gambari’s wealth of experience will move Nigeria to next level-Political scientists
Nigeria Political Science Association (NPSA), an umbrella body for all Political Science lecturers in the country, has applauded President Muhammadu Buhari for appointing Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, a career diplomat, as his new Chief of Staff (CoS).
NPSA in a statement signed by its National President, Prof. Aloysius Okolie of University of Nigeria, Nsukka and made available to the News Agency of Nigeria , commended Buhari for the appointment.
Okolie said the association received the news of the appointment of Gambari, a distinguished scholar, career diplomat and eminent member of NPSA with great joy and expectations because of his wealth of experience.
“The CoS with his wealth of experience locally and internationally will help to move the country to the next level, “he said.
He noted that Gambari as a lecturer broadened the field of Political Science at Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria by establishing International Relations programme.
“Based on his pioneering efforts, International Relations today has become a very attractive discipline to prospective candidates seeking admission in the country.
“His numerous academic contributions, including his vast enriching publications, as head of department and community services earned him promotion to the rank of professor by management of ABU,” he said.
Okolie said it was in view of Gambari’s numerous contributions to NPSA in particular and humanity in general that the association resolved in January to confer on him the award of Fellow of the Academy of Politics.
“This is in recognition and appreciation of his numerous positive contributions to our great discipline in particular and humanity in general, “he said.
The don urged Nigerians to give Gambari maximum support and cooperation as political scientists were hopeful that, this intellectual icon and career diplomat would be a viable asset in engineering and deepening good governance framework in Nigeria.
“NPSA is happy with Gambari’s achievements so far, because he has done the association proud in all positions held locally and internationally, “Okolie said.
Olowo assures Nigerian Army of more support
Oba Ajibade Gbadegesin Ogunoye III, the Olowo of Owo kingdom, has assured the Nigerian Army of its support in the fight against terrorism, kidnapping, banditry among other security challenges in the country.
The monarch gave this assurance on Tuesday in his palace at Owo when the Brigade Commander, 32 Artillery Brigade, Brig. Gen. Zakari Abubakar paid a courtesy visit to the palace in Ondo state.
Ogunoye, who lauded the Nigerian army for the success recorded in the ongoing fight against insecurity and other criminal activities in the nation particularly in Ondo state and Owo environs, said it was highly commendable.
“We will continue to support the military in order to further the course of peace and stability in the nation and Ondo State in general,” he said.
Earlier, the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, who presented the letter of appreciation for projecting the Nigerian Army in good light to the monarch, said Ogunoye had helped security agency to tackle criminality in the state.
Buratai, who was represented by Brig. Gen. Zakari Abubakar, Commander of 32 Artillery Brigade in Ondo State, promised that the Nigerian Army would not relent in carrying out their constitutional role of protecting lives and property of citizens.
“Oba Ajibade Gbadegesin has been a lead advocate in projecting the Nigerian army in good light, considering his high profile and high esteem.
“And for also providing credible information to the security agencies in the state to tackle crime in Owo community,” he said.
The top army officer, who said that troops had been deployed to some strategic areas in the state as Arimogija, Owo and Oba Akoko area, said that 24 suspects had been arrested so far within two weeks of operation in the area.
Nigerian celebrities mourn late Majek Fashek
Nigerian celebrities have taken to their social media platforms to mourn the death of Music Legend, Majekodunmi Fasheke, a.k.a Majek Fashek.
Fashek’s a.k.a rain maker’s death was announced by his manager, Omenka Uzoma, through a short video on his instagram page.
Other include Yomi Black, Bimbo Esho, actress Toyin Adegbola and Jude Okoye were not equally left out.
Sound Sultan had this on his page: “Rest in peace, power Majek.”
Yomi Black wrote:” Rest in peace, Majek Fashek.”
Also, Bimbo Esho, Chief Executive Officer, Evergreen Musical Company, mourned the late reggae maestro as she wrote ” Adieu Majek Fashek. May you journey well. The Rainmaker takes a final bow to the cold hands of death.
Jude Okoye, Chief Executive Officer of Northside Music, also wrote: “Rest peacefully, my Legend.”
Fashek, worked with various artists worldwide, including Tracy Chapman, Jimmy Cliff, Michael Jackson, Snoop Dogg and Beyonce.
Nigeria to resume film production under coronavirus guidelines
The Theater Arts and Motion Pictures Producers Association of Nigeria (TAMPAN) announced relaxed restriction on movie production, saying it was in line with the Lagos state government’s relaxation order which took effect from June 1.
In a statement reaching Xinhua in Lagos on Tuesday, Bolaji Amusan, TAMPAN‘s national president, thanked members for abiding by the earlier proclamations of the association to stop shooting of films and other related productions during the pandemic.
He however urged the artists to take the necessary precautionary measures that would protect them from contacting the virus in the course of their work, as the pandemic had not been completely defeated.
He said part of the measures to put in place subsequently on movie locations was that producers must provide soap and running water for constant washing of hands by both the cast and crew members.
“Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness, coughing or sneezing repeatedly, and quickly report such cases to the production managers for necessary actions,” Amusan said.
Nigeria’s movie industry, also known as Nollywood, is one of the largest film industries in the world in terms of quantity of films produced every year. Nigeria’s films and TV series have enjoyed popularity in Africa and even made a hit on international theaters, such as “Lionheart”, “Up North”, and “Chief Daddy“.
Nigeria yet to reach peak of contagion as COVID-19 cases cross 10,000: official
The Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) on Monday night recorded 416 new cases of COVID-19 in the country, bringing the total number of infections in Nigeria to 10,578, with 299 deaths and 3,122 discharged from hospitals.
Boss Mustapha, chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, told media on Monday it was necessary to restate to the citizenry, that Nigeria had not reached the peak of confirmed cases, adding that the battle against COVID-19 was a long term battle.
According to him, the majority of the confirmed cases are in a handful of local government areas in the country as 20 out of the 774 local government areas nationwide accounts for 60 percent of the cases.
Mustapha said the PTF has recommended to Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari to allow states to decide on easing lockdown measures, such as reopening of schools, businesses and worship centers shut since March as part of the efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19.
Joe Okei-Odumakin, a local observer, told Xinhua the government should step up capacity to test citizens for the virus so as to isolate and treat the infected. “Testing kits and reagents as well as protective equipment and materials are reportedly to be in short supply, in addition to their prices hitting the roof,” she said.
Mustapha, who is also the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, said there would be an application of science and data to guide the targeting of areas of high transmission of COVID-19 in the country.
He said the mobilization of resources at state and local government area levels will create public awareness on COVID-19 and improve compliance with non-pharmaceutical interventions within communities.
Nigerian newspaper decries African American glass ceiling
The article in This Day, under the title “The Mindless Murder of George Floyd,” asked, “Why are many blacks targeted in needless killings by the white cops? What crime have they committed? Is it a crime to be black? What happened to diversity and inclusiveness?”
In a video, the victim was heard saying “I can’t breathe” while three other police officers stood by.
The incident has triggered protests against racism in the United States, forcing curfews to be declared in several parts of the country.
Chairperson of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat called on authorities in the United States to intensify their efforts to “ensure the total elimination of all forms of discrimination based on race or ethnic origin.”
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