Italian oil firm ENI signs MoU with NNPC to refurbish Port Harcourt refinery.

Plans are underway by the Italy-owned international oil company, ENI, to refurbish the Port Harcourt refinery.

In a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by the oil firm and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) in Rome, Italy, yesterday, the company would also build the phase two of the Okpai Power Plant.

A statement by the Director, Press, Ministry of Petroleum, Idang Alibi, quoted the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, who is in Rome, as urging international oil Companies (IoCs) to invest in building refineries in Nigeria.

The minister stated that the major plan of the Federal Government is to stop importation of petroleum products in the long term and that it would be expedient that every IoC should invest in building a refinery with a chain of distributions.

Kachikwu assured that if IoCs build refineries within a short period of time, investment in the venture could be recouped by direct sales model.

He explained that the government desires to upgrade old refineries and build new ones, thus increasing local production capacity with an objective to reduce importation of petroleum products by 60 per cent in 2018, and by 2019 to become a net exporter of petroleum products and value-added petrochemicals.

In continuation of the ongoing investment drive in Italy, Kachikwu would also be meeting the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Economic Development of Italy to formalise the new trend of cooperation between oil majors and Nigeria.


Source: Guardian

Federal Medical Centre, Umuahia, American university sign MoU on kidney transplant

Abali Chuku, Medical Director, Federal Medical Centre, Umuahia, said on Thursday that the hospital had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Toledo University, Ohio, U.S. for kidney transplant services.

Mr. Chuku, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Umuahia. He said that the services would kick-off in February 2017.

He recalled that discussion for the partnership began in 2015 when he was inducted into the Medical Mission Hall of Fame by the university.

Mr. Chuku said that the university would train eight medical personnel, comprising three doctors and two nurses in the first phase, while three others would be trained later.

The medical director said that the centre was also collaborating with the National Association of Nigerian Nurses in North America for the training of its nurses.

He, however, identified adequate funding as the major challenge facing the centre in carrying out its activities, especially its training programme.

Mr. Chuku also said that the hospital was grossly understaffed and thus, performing below capacity.

He said that the centre needed 236 additional nurses and required more consultants to be able to provide more efficient services to patients.

Mr. Chuku, therefore, appealed to the Federal Government for N500 million take off for the centre to be on solid financial footing and provide optimum performance.

Nigerian government, Unilever sign MOU on oral health programme

Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Health has signed a Memorandum of Understanding, MOU, with UNILEVER to re-introduce and ensure sustainability of the Schools Oral Health Programme.

The programme had been launched in 2013 in Bwari Area Council in the Federal Capital Territory.

A press statement by the ministry disclosed that the memorandum was signed at the commemoration of the 6th Edition of the National Oral Health Week in Abuja on Tuesday.

Speaking at the ceremony, the Minister of Health, Isaac Adewole, said while oral health is paramount to achieving general health, oral diseases and disorders not only affect the victim’s quality of life, but also the well-being of the community at large.

He disclosed that the ministry was working with development partners to ensure sustainability of the schools oral health programme.

Mr. Adewole, a professor of medicine, said that Colgate-Palmolive Nigeria was planning one of such global oral health initiatives, “Bright Smiles, Bright Future”, targeted at school children across the country from the ages of 6 to 8 years.

The minister said the project has been successful in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and 25 other countries around the world where it has made an immense difference to the oral hygiene of children.
According to the minister, Unilever Nigeria Limited has accepted to undertake the initiative in collaboration with his Ministry by providing facilities to 10 million school children across the country through the Pepsodent School Oral Health Initiative.

Mr. Adewole said that these school health programmes were aimed at increasing the child’s responsibility for oral health, promote positive self-esteem as well as proper habits for oral hygiene, and encourage schools and families to play their roles in children’s oral health.
He pointed out that the ministry had been working on the National Oral Health Programme, towards integrating oral health into primary health care via a rapid oral health intervention programmes with focus on Noma (also known as Cancrum Oris).

In his remarks, the President of the Nigerian Dental Association, Olabode Ijarogbe, praised the minister for his passion for oral health.
Mr. Ijarogbe said the minister had put measures in place that have helped to drive the implementation of the national oral health policy to enhance oral health care delivery to average Nigerians.

NNPC, Shell sign MoUs with 8 Nigerian banks.

Shell Companies in Nigeria, supported by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, have signed Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) with eight Nigerian banks under the refreshed Shell Contractors’ Support Fund, the latest milestone in efforts to improve access to finance for Nigerian vendors and suppliers in the oil and gas industry.

Under the MoUs signed in Lagos in November, Access Bank, Skye Bank, Zenith Bank, Stanbic IBTC Bank, First Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, First City Monument Bank and Guaranty Trust Bank have set aside $2.2billion for contract execution by Nigerian firms.

The scheme provides support for contractors to enable them finance projects executed for Shell Companies in Nigeria in line with the aspirations of the Nigerian Content Act. To access these funds, the contractors must have a valid purchase order and meet the banks’ risk assessment criteria. This refreshed version is in response to market realities and will offer loans faster and at cheaper rates.

“Supporting SMEs under this scheme is for the mutual benefit all the parties,” said Osagie Okunbor, Managing Director of The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Ltd (SPDC) and Country Chair, Shell Companies in Nigeria at the signing ceremony in Lagos.

“While the scheme reduces the pressure from requests for advance payments from contractors on us, it also ensures optimum delivery by our contractors, leaving the banks with a de-risked client base in addition to the comfort of domiciliation of payments.”

The Finance Manager, Nigeria and Gabon, Guy Janssens, added that funding is key to enable contractors deliver and grow. He also urged the banks to make the scheme work.

The Managing Director, Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company (SNEPCo) Bayo Ojulari, advised the contractors to perform in order build trust and grow.

The Group General Manager, NAPIMS, Dafe Sejebo, who was represented by Bunmi Lawson, implored the banks to make the loan facilities available to the vendors when they come for them.

In the same vein, the Chairman of the Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria, PETAN, Mazi Okoroafor, enjoined the banks to be realistic in their demands in order to engender easier access to the funds.

Responding, one of the contractors, Moritz Abazie of Strides Energy and Maritime Limited, requested that the rates charged should be comparable to that for credit sourced overseas so that they could fairly compete with foreign firms in bidding for jobs.

The idea of a Contractor Funding Scheme started in 2011 with the Shell Kobo Fund, which gave rise to the Shell Contractor Support Fund in 2012. The scheme has been redesigned to address the current economic exigencies and to align it with stakeholder needs by merging the two initial initiatives. To date, the six participating banks have disbursed a total of $1 billion to over 220 vendors.

In 2015, 93 per cent of all contracts awarded by Shell Companies in Nigeria were undertaken by Nigerian companies amounting to $0.9 billion.

USAID signs MoU to improve primary education in Sokoto.

The U.S. government has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Sokoto state to support and improve the education sector.


The five-year MoU will be facilitated through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).


The MOU will see the U.S. support Sokoto state government’s goals and targets in its education sector strategic plans and also the establishment of a preliminary plan for joint monitoring and evaluation of progress.


“The United States commends Sokoto State for its extraordinary efforts to provide greater learning opportunities for its children. This MOU will expand the partnership between USAID and Sokoto State to improve primary education in Sokoto,” said Michael Harvey, USAID mission director.


The USAID is already backing the Northern Education Initiative Plus and the Leadership, Empowerment, Advocacy and Development.


The aim of both programmes is to build state and local government capacity and systems that will teach approximately 2 million primary school children how to read and allow nearly 500,000 children the opportunity to attend classes in community-based learning centers by the year 2020.

Etisalat, Cross River sign MoU on malaria reduction

Nigeria’s most innovative telecommunication company, Etisalat, and the Cross River State Government in partnership with Mediatrix Development Foundation have pledged to forge a close working relationship in the fight against the scourge of malaria in the State.

The partners made this commitment on Thursday at the official flag-off of the Etisalat Fight Malaria Initiative and signing of a Memorandum of Understanding that will see them coordinate efforts and resources to eradicate the menacing spread of malaria in the State.

Speaking about the partnership, Ikenna Ikeme, director, Regulatory & Corporate Social Responsibility, Etisalat Nigeria, said the telecommunication company identifies a healthy populace as a precursor to achieving economic growth, hence the alignment of its business growth strategy with societal goals such as health.

“A nation can only be economically buoyant if it has a vibrant and strong work force, and a healthy population; hence our identification of health as one of our key platforms for Corporate Social Responsibility.

As we play our part in the creation of a healthier nation, we enjoin all stakeholders to embrace technology and innovation in the fight against malaria.” he said.

Also speaking at the event, Dr. (Mrs) Linda Ayade, wife of the Cross River State Governor and founder of the partner NGO, Mediatrix Development Foundation, expressed delight in the capacity of the partnership to help fill the existing gap in the fight against malaria by providing the much needed support to the State structures in the health sector.

“I believe this is the beginning of a rejuvenated fight to end malaria for good in Cross River State. We are delighted that our efforts to check the effects of malaria in communities is yielding results and has attracted Etisalat to partner with us to strengthen existing state structures in the health sector,” she said.

The Etisalat Fight Malaria Initiative would facilitate the setting up of 40 Malaria Clubs in primary, secondary and tertiary institutions across the state with a mandate to reach approximately 25,000 people in the rural and urban areas, create a Malaria Hub of 2,650 peer educators and 3,150 Malaria Champions within two years.

Nigeria, UK sign MoU On Return Of Stolen Assets

The Federal Government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the British Government on the modalities for the return of Nigerian stolen assets.

The Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, signed on behalf of the Federal Government in Abuja on Tuesday.

Malami said that the MoU reflected the desire and willingness of both countries to continue cooperation and mutual support.

Malami said that this was in the responsible and transparent return of all recovered assets.

He outlined the objectives of the MoU to include the fact that the processes of returning stolen assets was a partnership recognising the interest of both countries and based on mutual understanding, confidence and trust.

The MoU read in part:

That both countries recognised that they have a mutual interest in ensuring that returned assets are not at risk of being misappropriated again.

And that both countries recognised they have obligations toward their own citizens for providing such assurances.

That both countries recognised the importance of ensuring that the highest possible standard of transparency and accountability are applied for the return of assets.

He gave the assurance to the international community that all funds recovered would be judiciously utilised for projects that would benefit the poorest segment of the Nigerian society.

Earlier, leader of the UK delegation, British Minister of State for Immigration, Robert Goodwill, said that the MoU provided the mechanism by which monies could be returned.

Goodwill, who is also a member of the British Parliament, noted that there was no safe place for stolen assets in the UK.

“Our ability to recover and return stolen assets should send a clear message to all who may seek to habour such assets that there is no safe haven in the U.K,” he said.

According to him, the British government is committed to the return of all funds looted from the Nigerian State.

“We are keen to do this as soon as the necessary legal process allow. As outlined at the summit, we will be taking steps to accelerate the procedures for identification and confiscation of illegally acquired assets,” he said.

He said that they were as committed as Nigeria in ensuring that beneficial ownership of assets was made available to relevant authorities so they know who the real owners of assets held in the UK are.

“Forty jurisdictions, including British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies announced that they will automatically share beneficial ownership information relating to companies, trusts, foundations, Shell companies and other relevant entities and legal arrangements.

It is important that everyone can see how returned assets are used to benefit Nigerians. We have therefore agreed in this MoU to be fully transparent about this,” he added.

The signing of the MoU is a follow up to the agreement reached at the London anti-corruption summit in May.

Also signed was an MoU on the return of illegal immigrants.

Obasanjo Awarded Abuja Rail Project Without Design, MOU- Senate Panel

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo awarded the Abuja Rail Project in 2007 with neither a design nor a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), according to the Senate Committee on Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
The then Minister of FCT and current governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, was said to have signed the contract based on an uncalculated estimate.

The revelation came as the committee discovered the contract, which stood at 60.67 kilometres, was inflated by $10 million (about N2 billion at N200 per dollar) per kilometre even as the length was later reduced to 45 kilometres without the refund of the cost for the 15.67 kilometres dropped.

To this end, the Senate committee, led by Dino Melaye has demanded the refund of the of $195,878,296.74 ( about N392 billion at N200 per dollar) being the amount for the 15.67 kilometres cut out from the Chinese Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC), handling the project.

The Project Manager of the company, Etim Abak, who answered questions from members of the committee when they undertook an oversight assignment to the project site, said the contract was signed by the then FCT minister without design and MOU, saying it was carried out based on what he simply identified as a conceptual design.

“The contract was awarded based on a conceptual design and estimates were not properly done. There was no formal design submitted and rail bridges and crossover bridges were not captured in the contract, “he told the committee.

According to him, the contract sum was $841.645,898 and project completion period was 48 months while the scope of work was 60.67km standard gauge, with double railway tracks and associated permanent way within FCT.

Melaye , who alleged the whole project may be shrouded in fraud, wondered why the project, whose length initially stood at 60.67 kilometres was later reduced to 45.245 without cut in the cost of the project initially paid for.

Credit: Guardian

UNICEF Signs 1.3 Billion Naira MoU With Niger State

The United Nations International Children’s Education Fund (UNICEF), Kaduna Field Office has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Niger State government on the provision of basic necessities of life for children and women in the state.

The Chief Field Officer of UNICEF in Kaduna, Mr Utpal Moitra, made the disclosure in Minna after the signing of the MoU.

He said that the Joint Work Plan for 2016 ensured that government and UNICEF shared commitment to accountability and transparency of the programme.

“The joint partnership is about joint commitment, sharing commitment and working together so as to deliver benefits to the large number of children and women in Niger state,” he said.

Moitra, who oversees three states including Niger State, stated that the cost of 1.3 billion Naira has been shared with UNICEF contributing 60% while the state government would provide 40% counterpart fund.

He explained that the agreement was reached following the continued partnership between the Federal Government of Nigeria and UNICEF as well as the states which include Niger State.

He informed that the major areas of priority in the MoU were education, health, water sanitation, nutrition and a host of others which would have direct benefits and bring development to the people of Niger State.

Governor Abubakar Sani Bello signed the MoU on behalf of Niger State, while the Chief of Field Office, Mr Utpal Mostra, signed on behalf of UNICEF.

Governor Bello appreciated the partnership and promised to be supportive in the fulfilment of the state’s part of the agreement as quickly as possible.

Credit: ChannelsTv

Bill Gates, Aliko Dangote In Kaduna State To Sign MoU With Northern Governors (PHOTOS)

Bill Gates, Aliko Dangote In Kaduna State To Sign MoU With Northern Governors Billionaire entrepreneurs, Bill Gates and Aliko Dangote are in Kaduna to sign the Memorandum of Understanding, MoU on routine immunization with the governors of six states.

The governors of Borno, Bauchi, Yobe, Sokoto and Kano are also in Kaduna, along with the Sultan of Sokoto and the Emir of Kano.


Credit: NationalMirror

Ifreke Inyang: Mourinho; Of Betrayal And The Last Supper – The Man Many See As Jesus?

To many, Jose Mourinho is the modern-day Jesus Christ.

An instant miracle worker. Good luck convincing Porto fans, who saw their own lift the Champions League in the 2003/2004 campaign. I dare you to argue with Chelsea fans, who celebrated back-to-back Premier League titles after he arrived.

Heck, he even resurrected Inter Milan. They won an unpredecented Treble with ‘dead bones’.

It gets better.

While we expect the second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, Mourinho has been there and done that.

He was sacked at Stamford Bridge on Thursday, making him the first manager in recent history to be axed by one club twice.

The procession to his crucifixion began on Monday night. Chelsea were defeated 2-1 by Leicester City. The home side, managed by his predecessor at Stamford Bridge, Claudio Ranieri, were everything he hoped to be. Hyperactive. Slick. Ruthless.

“My work was betrayed,” he lamented afterwards.

“I worked four days on this match. I prepared everything related to the opponent. I identified four movements where they scored almost all their goals. My players got all that information, you can ask them, they are honest guys who will tell you it is true.”

Who be the Judas Iscariot in the group be? Eden Hazard who substituted himself off? John Terry who allowed the trigger-happy Jamie Vardy ghost past him for the first goal?

While we were trying to demystify that, the club held its Christmas dinner on Thursday.

Mourinho joined his players and staff at their annual party at their Cobham training ground.

It proved to be his Last Supper.

Chairman Bruce Buck and Eugene Tenenbaum arrived at about 2pm and delivered the news: it is finished.

The Internet was in raptures. Some Chelsea fans celebrated and rival fans trolled and posted memes.

Guus Hiddink might be announced as Interim Manager soon. Ah, a familiar messiah. He came in and did a decent work in 2009.

This time around, Chelsea, looking up from their 16th position in the league, need salvation.

'Ifreke Inyang tweets via @Ifreke

Mourinho: I Might Not Watch Chelsea’s Clash With Stoke

The former Real Madrid manager is banned from the Britannia Stadium due to an FA disciplinary charge, but says his assistants are prepared for all circumstances

Jose Mourinho admits he does not know if he will watch Chelsea‘s clash with Stoke City after rejecting the chance to appeal his stadium ban.

Mourinho saw his appeal against a suspended stadium suspension relating to comments made to the media rejected on Thursday, and he insists he “already knows the result” of a potential second appeal after being punished for his behaviour during the club’s 2-1 loss to West Ham.

The Blues boss will travel with the side to the Britannia Stadium before leaving the team in the hands of his assistants, and claims he has made no plans as to where he will watch the match.

“I have no plans, maybe I sit in street corner with my iPad, I don’t know,” he told reporters.

“If I cannot contact with the game maybe I don’t even watch the game. I can’t contact with the game so what’s the point? Live score, results, maybe.”

Mourinho, though, says the Blues are well-prepared for every eventuality, with the Portuguese having thoroughly briefed his backroom team.

“If the first 10 minutes we are playing with seven men they are not prepared for that, they have to decide themselves. The game isn’t predictable, you don’t know the direction but we can try to reduce that and that we did,” he added.

“The most incredible scenarios that you can imagine, let’s go to extreme scenarios. At half-time winning 4-0, at half-time losing 4-0 and in between those you have 1000 options. Be dominating and controlling the game, being dominated and not having control, having problems in this area, in that area, injuries, four red cards, we went through all these different scenarios and they are prepared.

“What I think is important is for them to feel protected by the fact that it is my responsibility and it is just for the players to play and for the assistants to be with them and be supportive.”

Chelsea were knocked out of the League Cup by Stoke on penalties, but rubbished the suggestion that his side would go in search of revenge, insisting they have nothing to avenge.

“Revenge for what? What’s the problem? Why? We played a good game, people were nice to us, our supporters were fantastic, no problems between supporters, a great football match, a good referee, a good show for everyone,” he added.

“One team scores one more penalty, one team left happy, one team left unhappy, everything was normal, revenge for what?”

Mourinho Slams Gerrard Talk Of Terry Rift

Talk of a potential rift between the Chelsea captain and the Portuguese coach has been denied by the Stamford Bridge boss.

Jose Mourinho has dismissed Steven Gerrard’s suggestion of “friction” between the Chelsea manager and captain John Terry, claiming the pair get on fine. 

Terry watched the 4-0 Champions League win over Maccabi Tel Aviv on Wednesday from the bench, while the experienced defender was hauled off at half-time as Chelsea were beaten 3-0 at Manchester City in the Premier League last month.

Gerrard, a former England team-mate of Terry’s, expressed his disbelief in the pre-match build-up that the 34-year-old skipper had been dropped for the Maccabi Tel Aviv clash. 

“There’s certainly a bit of friction behind the scenes because for me, you play John Terry week in, week out. He’s your captain,” Gerrard said on BT Sport.

But Mourinho has played down talk of a rift, saying: “Steven is wrong. 

“I have a very good relationship with him. He’s wrong, because we have no problems.”

Mourinho made a number of changes to his starting XI following poor form in the Premier League, which sees champions Chelsea trailing leaders Manchester City by 11 points after five games.

Eden Hazard once again disappointed with an early penalty miss on Wednesday, but goals from Willian, Oscar, Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas secured a comfortable win for the Blues.

News Alert: Mourinho Plays Down Chelsea Medical Row

Jose Mourinho has responded to the criticism he has received for a row that developed between him and his medical staff in the 2-2 draw with Swansea.

He told reporters: “I don’t want to run away from it. I accept the question, and understand.

“First of all, I want to say I have a fantastic medical deptartment, with top doctor, more than a dozen professionals, a very good relationship with them and, as they tell me all the time, they were never praised so much as in last few years. I praise them lots of times. They don’t forget that, I don’t.

“We have disagreements during this period, we need disagreements to improve. We work together.

“Your question about the bench. For some people it’s important. For others, it’s not… It’s my decision.

“I have seven assistants, only four can go on bench. Seven kitmen, only two. Medical, only two on bench Dr Fearne and Dr Carneiro will not be on the bench, but doesn’t mean for rest of season.

“My decision [this weekend] does not mean they won’t be on the bench in the future.”

More to follow…