From Uche Usim, Abuja
Finance Minister, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, has reiterated that the responsibility for the supervision, regulation and approval of issuance of securities in the local market for Nigeria’s internal debt rests solely with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
The minister stated this in a circular explaining that, in line with of its powers as conferred by the Investment and Securities Act, No. 29 of 2007 (ISA), and the Rules and Regulations of SEC made pursuant to the ISA (the SEC Rules), the commission shall continue to have and discharge the sole responsibility for the supervision, regulation and approval of the issuance of such securities in the local market by federal government agencies, state and local governments, their agencies and corporations.
She said: “Henceforth, all applications in relation to the issuance of such securities by any of the aforementioned entities shall be made to the SEC for review and approval.”
Adeosun noted that the clarification became necessary in recognition of the need to engender proper management and coordination of Nigeria’s internal debt through issuance of securities in the local market and to promote better fiscal responsibility.
The circular added that, in discharging its responsibility, SEC shall collaborate with the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation, the Federal Ministry of Finance and the Debt Management Office in carrying out a debt sustainability analysis with a view to encouraging fiscal responsibility by the various tiers of government, promoting an efficient sustainable capital market which engenders investor confidence.
“The final approval for such securities issuance shall be granted to the relevant applicant government or agency by SEC subject to a satisfactory debt sustainability analysis and compliance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007, the ISA and SEC Rules.”
NEPAD: NEPAD moves to empower women, youths
From Fred Ezeh, Abuja
the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) has mapped out plans to empower Nigerian women and youths with skills that would guarantee their financial and social liberty.
The agency said the programme, which would commence soon, was designed in such a way that it would get women and youths involved in the rebranding and economic development agenda of government.
National coordinator and CEO of NEPAD Nigeria, Princess Gloria Akobundu, disclosed this in Abuja, when she hosted the Win Win Women of Nigeria during a courtesy visit. Akobundu reminded the women that God created them to be helpmates to not only their husbands but the country at large. She appealed to them to take the message of rebranding to their various states and also think of what to contribute to make Nigeria better.
“Women have great potential and are generally referred to as best managers, leaders and peacemakers in the world,” she said.
The national president of the women’s group, Mrs. Celestina Ufele, who said the visit was to identify with the vision and effort of Akobundu in repositioning NEPAD for better results, expressed confidence in her ability to deliver on the expectations of government.
EDUCATION: Why we’re yet to get 2016 budget – TETFund
From Fred Ezeh, Abuja
The Executive Secretary of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) Dr. Abdullahi Bichi Baffa, has explained why the Fund was yet to convince the Presidency to get its 2016 budget approved, a few weeks to the end of the year.
Baffa told members of Senate Committee on Tertiary Education and TETFund, led by the chairman, Jibrin Barau, during an oversight visit that ambiguity in figures presented to the Presidency was responsible for the prolonged delay.
“The delay in the budget was purely our fault and not that of the Office of the President or the Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu. I inherited the budget when I assumed office in August. But in my desire to hit the ground running, I quickly submitted it to the minister for onward submission to the President for approval.
“I believe that the minister deliberately delayed the submission to the President because he was optimistic that the board of trustees of the Fund would be inaugurated immediately so that they could take a critical look at it and possibly make input before final submission to the President, but that didn’t happen,” he said.
Baffa said after careful scrutiny, the Presidency said that it detected several approximations in the figures that could possibly cause a huge variation in what was actual from what was estimated.
NITDA: Nigeria loses $2.8bn to ICT software importation
From Walter Ukaegbu, Abuja
Director-General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim, has said that Nigeria was losing $2.8 billion annually to the importation of information and communication technology goods and services.
Ibrahim, made the disclosure at the opening of a three-day conference tagged “eNigeria,” yesterday in Abuja. He said the amount included about $1 billion spent on software imports, and locally manufactured or assembled computers represent less than 8 per cent of all the computers used in the country.
“Similarly, Nigeria is projected to expend about $143.8 billion on ICT by 2019, a vast sum that translates to over seven times the value of the 2016 national budget. We strongly plead with our international manufacturers to domesticate their products in order to achieve a win-win relationship,” he said.
He averred that NITDA would lay emphasis on regulation, local content development and capacity building, as that the agency was making efforts to create and review existing standards and guidelines: “This will enable us to regulate the sector in line with the highest global standards. We are committed to ensuring that the proliferation of fake and sub-standard ICT products and services in the country is eliminated or at least significantly curtailed.”
NIMASA: Anti-graft war, step in right direction – NIMASA DG
The Director-General of the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Dakuku Peterside, has described the Federal Government’s anti-corruption fight as a step in the right direction.
In a lecture at the University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, at the weekend, Peterside called on Nigerians to appreciate the unusual courage displayed by President Muhammadu Buhari to fight the cankerworm.
According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Peterside said countries with impressive records of development had stringent anti-corruption regimes to detect and punish corrupt practices.
In the lecture titled “Connected Vision, Building Blocks for a New Nigeria,” the DG said the country stood to gain from strong institutions rather than strong leaders, because Nigeria must rely on the integrity of its institutions to survive.
On the country’s economy, Peterside said past leaders failed to diversify into other lucrative areas, leading to the consequences being experienced at the moment.
“Ordinarily, Nigeria’s originating economic policy framework should have, from the mid-1960s, included the element of diversification from oil by retaining the initial pride of place, which agriculture enjoyed in our immediate post-colonial period.
“Even in the context of the so-called oil boom, the process of diversification into other lucrative areas like tourism, solid minerals and human capital development should have begun actively from 1970,” he said.