Oil Price Crash Has Made Nigeria Poor– Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday  said  the crash in world oil prices has suddenly made Nigeria poor, adding that  the past one year has been very difficult for his administration.
He spoke at the Aso Rock Presidential Villa in Abuja while receiving the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Executive Director and Under Secretary General, Professor Babatunde Osotimehin.

Buhari, however, said despite severe shortage of resources, commitment to transparency and accountability was serving his government in good stead.
“It has been a very difficult year for Nigeria. Before we came to office, petroleum sold for about $100 per barrel. Then it crashed to $37, and now oscillates between $40 and $45 per barrel. Suddenly, we’re a poor country, but commitment to transparency and accountability is not making people know that there is severe shortage,” he said.
Buhari appealed to UNFPA to bear with Nigeria in whichever area the country could not live up to its responsibilities for now.
He noted that an exploding population and different cultural practices in the country provided a fertile ground for research by organisations like the UNFPA.
The president described reports from the North-east of the country as encouraging as people were returning to their farmlands with a guarantee of relative security. He thanked UNFPA for its commitment to saving lives in Nigeria.

Read More: dailytrust

See Prom Dresses Made Entirely Out Of Condoms

These condom dresses aren’t exactly wearable, but they do serve as a pretty great reminder that seniors who plan on having sex after the prom should use protection.

According to WOWT News, the colorful condom gowns were created by the Adolescent Health Project and Women’s Fund of Omaha, and they’re meant to get teens and their parents talking about safe sex while doing something almost all high school seniors do this time of year. While you might want to try them on, if only to know what wearing hundreds of condoms at once feels like, sorry, you can’t.

Ololade Ajekigbe: I’ll Buy Nigeria, But…

In the past couple of weeks, there has been some clamour for Nigerians to patronise made-in-Nigeria products. The hashtag “Buy Naija To Grow The Naira” was even created to drive its awareness on Twitter. The aim is simple – Buy locally made goods to save the naira from its current alarming slope downhill. For all intents and purposes this campaign has become imperative especially in the light of the dwindling fortune of the naira against the dollar. Since the price of crude oil has been on a steady decline for a while now, oil producing countries have had to turn their attention to other sectors of their economy to ensure that their gross domestic product does not plummet. In a mono-economy like Nigeria there were no such options.

After jettisoning her first love agriculture for the more attractive oil in the last couple of decades. Nigeria has suddenly found herself in a quagmire occasioned by the consistent fall in the price of crude oil.  This has had a multiplier effect on all other areas of the economy as we never really gave a long term thought to the consequences of our over-dependence on one area of the economy. Now, the prices of goods and services have skyrocketed, organizations are laying off staff every day, the naira now exchanges for N400 to a dollar in the parallel market, while one would have to cough over N500 in exchange for one pound an all time low since its steady decline at the beginning of this year following the stopping of weekly dollar sale to Bureaux de Change’s by the Central Bank.

Bottom line – the prognosis doesn’t look good , and there remains a pervading sense of uncertainty in the air. Hence, the call for Nigerians to strengthen their currency by reducing their long time penchant for buying foreign products as opposed to the made-in-Nigeria ones. One man who has been at the forefront of this crusade is the CEO of Silverd bird and Senator representing Bayelsa East constituency, Mr Ben Murray Bruce. The “commonsense” crusader has taken it upon himself to champion the cause of Obinna who makes shoes in Aba, Iya Kudi who deals in Adire textile in Ibadan and Hassan who manufactures leather wallets in Kano. Mr Bruce put his money where his mouth is by not only sharing photos of himself patronizing Aba made clothes and shoes, but also going further to purchase made-in-Nigeria cars by Innoson Motors.

The Senate President has also added his voice to the “Buy Naija To Grow The Naira” campaign. Promising to re-examine to the laws to seek ways to improve support for domestic manufacturers and producers following his meeting with the CEO of the Nnewi based vehicle manufacturing company, Mr Innocent Chukwuma. These are steps in the right direction. However, the fact remains that the average Nigerian has developed an apathy for made-in-Nigeria goods over the years, and for good reason too. Locally made products are often seen as counterfeit and sub standard. Only very few Nigerian manufacturers put utmost care and attention into their creation. The Anything-goes mentality of the typical Nigerian has eaten deep into the fabric of our manufacturing industry.

Clothes whose colours run as soon as you dip them into water, heels that come off just as you step into the interview room of a potential employer, the locally made soap that makes the hands appear shrivelled after washing, pot handles that come off only a few weeks into using them, diapers that induce rashes in babies and cornflakes that turn soggy just as soon as you introduce a bit of water into them. That has been the narrative associated with made-in-Nigeria products for a while now, yet there are many fantastic Nigerian-made products which have stood the test of time. The truth is as plain as a pikestaff – Nigerians don’t trust their own products. Hence, the “long throat” for foreign goods, even though there are no guarantees that they are any better.

The reality is; if the government of the day is serious about growing the naira, then it must invest heavily in small and medium scale businesses so as to encourage manufacturers to produce their best. The first thing anyone who’s parting with their hard earned cash wants to be sure of is getting value for their money, especially in these austere times. Nigerians are not going to be cajoled or guilt-tripped into buying Nigeria except they are certain of the quality of what they are getting. As a matter of fact, this rule doesn’t apply to Nigerians only. There’s no one in their right frame of mind, in any part of the world who would choose to buy a fake product when they can get the authentic one at about the same price or for a slightly higher amount. It only makes sense.

There are people who have sworn off made-in-Nigeria goods because of the not-too-pleasant and sometimes embarrassing experiences they have had because they dared to put their trust in a home-made good. Essentially, this means that our manufacturers and local industry need to up their game in order to make sure they put out good quality products which speak for themselves. The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) appears to be doing a good job in creating awareness on how to identify original products but things are far from uhuru yet. SON needs to do more to ensure that substandard goods do not define the Nigerian made goods market. The National Agency For Food And Drug Administration And Control (NAFDAC) which has been under the radar since the glory days of its late former Director General, Dora Akunyili must be alive to its responsibilities and ensure that chalk isn’t sold as paracetamol in our Pharmacies and Supermarkets. The right structure must be put in place to boost the local market.

In all, while it is shameful that a country with vast human and material resources like Nigeria still imports toothpicks and tomato paste, it is not enough to “shout it from the rooftops” and create a hashtag to encourage locally made goods patronage. If our leaders who are usually the first ones to ship in foreign made goods to satisfy their most basic needs can control their appetite for “oyinbo things” and patronize our own brands here, then the general populace will be more wont to follow suit, and not see this campaign as mere lip service.

Jos North Made Me Governor, Lalong Lauds Electorate

The governor-elect of Plateau State, Simon Lalong, has said that the votes of Hausa/Fulani community in Jos North made him win the April 11 governorship election in the state.

Lalong, who stated this when the Hausa/Fulani leadership  in Jos paid him a visit at Green House Presidential Lodge in Jos, said  though his victory was from God, he appreciated the contribution of the Hausa/Fulani community in Jos.

He said: “My victory is from the Almighty God and is for all the people of the state, but I must appreciate and thank the Hausa community of Jos for the love, fellowship and support for my candidature. My little daughter had consistently asked me what is Jos North, as many people who come to my house come from Jos North, but I have tried to explain to her and, at the end, I told her that people of Jos North are the ones that made me the governor of Plateau State.”

“During our campaign, the Jasawa promised to vote for APC and you have fulfilled your promise, it is now our turn to fulfil our pledges and, God’s willing, we will fulfil ours by doing justice to all the people of the state. I want to assure you that I will not discriminate against any community in Plateau State.

 “I want to thank the people of the state for their confidence and trust in me to lead them. Under my leadership, our government will carry all the people along and we will be just and fair to all, irrespective of ethnic or religious background. Peace had been restored in Jos. Jos is now peaceful, my appeal to you is to preach peace and work to consolidate the peace process.”

In his remark at the event, President of Jasawa Community Development Association (JCDA) Shehu Masalla, called on Lalong to reconstruct the Jos Main Market and pursue policies that would enhance business in the state.
He advised the governor-elect to create a new district in Jos for administrative convenience.