How My Pastor Introduced Me To Pornography,Masturbation-Witness

One Chigozie Emmanuel,Monday, told an Ikeja High Court how his pastor, Elijah Emenandy, allegedly introduced pornography and masturbation and anal sex to him in his church office.

Emmanuel,who testified against Emenandy, charged with sexual assault by penetration and sexual assault,was led in evidence by Lagos State counsel, Mr Olu Azeez.

He disclosed to the court that the incident happened when he was 19 years old and the defendant was his pastor.

He said that the defendant had in December 2020, told his mother that he had a vision about the witness, where he would die in February 2021 and requested that his mother should bring him for prayers immediately.

He said,when his mother told him he did not take it seriously but the defendant sent a message again that he should see him immediately.

Speaking on how he went to see the pastor, the alleged survivor said: “My mum and I then went to see him in his church during an evening programme. Afterwards, when he wanted to see me, he asked if my mum should come along but I said I could handle it.

“He told me we had met before in a church (name withheld) and that he was my teacher in the church, then I remembered how I knew him. He said he got a vision of how I died in February 2021 and I asked him if he could give me a solution.

“He said he would pray for me and I should come for counselling every Tuesday, he told me other things and that he would be giving me spiritual assignments.

“He asked me questions like if I had ever had sex before or masturbated and if I watched pornography, also asked if I had wet dreams or if I was into fraud, I said I had not done those things but I was about getting into fraud.

“He advised me not to get into fraud and I should change my lifestyle and I did, I stopped wearing earrings, my dress code and how I speak.”

He said that one of the days thereafter, he called him to his office and asked him to take off his trousers and that he should touch his manhood until he became hard, but he said he could not because he had never done that before.

He told the court that in the days afterwards, the defendant would take off his clothes and ask him to do the same and sit on his lap and then make him suck the defendant’s nipples.

He added that at first, he refused but the defendant told him that he was releasing powers from his body parts to his to wade off any spirit of death.

The alleged survivor said the defendant started showing him porn videos on his phone to teach him how to masturbate in his church office.

He said that the pastor asked him to stand on a Bible and masturbate.

The witness said he could not do what the pastor asked him to do, he therefore stepped donwt from the bible and went to the bedside where the defendant lay watching him.

“After trying for some time, I ejaculated and the defendant looked at my semen and said it was ok,” he noted.

According to the witness, the pastor told him that he should ejaculate more often and then called him to the bed to lay with him and suck his nipples.

“He asked me to suck his nipple until he ejaculates and said that was how he had helped other boys and that was how we did that at his friend’s house twice after that day.

“Then we started again at the church, he will just go naked and asked me to suck his nipples and masturbate, that every time we ejaculated together, life was transferred from his own to mine so that I won’t die. I believed him because he was like my spiritual father.

“He then promised to help with my education and everything, that I should move to his house after telling my mum, but I did not tell my dad. I moved to his room and parlour self-contained apartment somewhere in Mile 2.

“I met a guy, a lady and a little baby in the house. The lady and the child slept in the room while we slept in the parlour. At night, he started touching me again and made me suck his nipples while he sucked mine, we did this every night.”

The witness further said that the defendant, thereafter, requested to penetrate his anus, but he refused and the next morning the defendant was angry, accusing him of refusing to do the work of God with him (defendant).

He told the court that days later, because the defendant was persistent, he agreed to anal sex and was seriously bruised afterwards because he bled for two days.

According to him, the pastor made him masturbate with the defendant twice daily.

He said the next assignment was to drink the defendant’s urine, an act, he said, he refused at first but later did after much persistence.

The alleged survivor further said that the defendant would ejaculate in his mouth and said it was power being transferred.

Emmanuel said the defendant also told him to eat his faeces which he did once and vomited, however problem started when he started watching pornography on his own with the phone the defendant gave to him.

He said the defendant asked him to always watch same-sex pornography and not the opposite and he would beat him up, whenever he had a wet dream, piercing his manhood, scrotum and his stomach with a syringe.

He informed the court that on one occasion, the defendant used the middle to pierce his veins and black blood started gushing.

The alleged survivor said that at one time, the defendant pierced his body, used St. Micheal oil on his eyes, poured grounded pepper on his body that was bleeding and asked him to eat the faeces of a dog which he did after much force and he vomited.

Justice Oyindamola Ogala adjourned the case until Dec. 11 and Dec. 14 for continuation of trial.

The defendant, who appeared sick and was reported to have been brought from the hospital, is standing trial on a three-count charge of sexual assault by penetration and sexual assault.

UBA Grows Gross Earnings By 115% In Q3

Mohammed Shosanya

The United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, has announced an exceptional performance in its unaudited financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2023.

The bank’s gross earnings grew by 115.2 per cent to N1.309 trillion up from N608bn recorded last year, while operating income rose by 146 per cent from N414 billion in September 2022; to N1.018 trillion in the year under consideration.

The bank’s financial report filed with the Nigerian Exchange Limited, indicated a whopping 262% rise in Profit before Tax (PBT) to close at N502.01 billion compared to N138.49 billion recorded at the end of the third quarter of 2022, while profit after tax also rose impressively by 287.2% from N116 billion recorded a year earlier to N449.29 billion massively surpassing its annualised return on average equity for Q3 2023 at 131 per cent to 44.37%.

UBA continues to maintain a very strong balance sheet, with Total Assets rising to N16.24 trillion, representing a 49.5% increase over the N10.86 trillion recorded at the end of December 2022, just as the bank benefitted largely from its technology-led initiatives targeted at improving customer experience over the past few years, with customer deposits rising to N11.63trillion, representing a 48.6% rise, up from N7.8 trillion at the end of the last financial year.

UBA shareholders’ funds remained very strong at N1.778 trillion up from N922.1 billion recorded in December 2022 again reflecting a strong capacity for internal capital generation and growth.

Speaking on the result, UBA’s Group Managing Director/CEO, Mr. Oliver Alawuba, remarked that the Group has once again shown sustainable and remarkable improvement in key performance metrics over the period, reflecting its commitment to delivering value to shareholders and various stakeholders.

He said:“This significant improvement is attributed to the impact of foreign exchange harmonization, efficient balance sheet management, and our service-focused strategies. Our banking operations outside of Nigeria have continued to capture the broader business opportunities inherent across, and beyond Sub-Saharan Africa.

On plans and strategy to sustain and surpass the performance at the end of the year, the GMD explained that the bank will continue to leverage its customer-centric strategies, speed to market, and innovation to consolidate market share in its various jurisdictions, as he pledged the bank’s commitment towards expanding and deepening digital and other transactional banking offerings while building strategic alliances to take advantage of emerging opportunities in due time.

“Looking ahead, we are optimistic that the growth trajectory will be sustained in the final quarter of the year as we remain focused on consolidating the gains achieved so far in delivering enhanced returns to our shareholders.,” Alawuba added.

The bank’s Executive Director, Finance & Risk, Ugo Nwaghodoh, said:“Our performance in the third quarter demonstrates the strong momentum of the Bank, as we deliver continuous improvements across our businesses and key performance metrics. This is reflective of the combined impact of higher asset yields, modest funding cost, and balance sheet optimisation”.

Speaking on UBA’s strategy for an excellent performance by the end of the 2023 financial year, Nwaghodoh said, “Notwithstanding changes in the monetary and fiscal regime in some of our markets, we remain committed to driving sustainable and improved performance across our various business segments.”

Seplat Energy’s Revenue Hits N478.1bn

Mohammed Shosanya

Seplat Energy Plc,has announced its unaudited results for the nine months ended 30 September 2023, recording a rise in revenue by 31 per cent to N478.1bn from N258.7bn year-on-year.

It also declared a Q3 2023 dividend of US3 cents per share, in line with higher core annual dividend of US 12 cents.

It furthrt grew its 2023 nine months gross profit to N245.6bn from N118.5bn year-on-year whilst 9M 2023 production averaged 48,152 boepd, up 11 per cent on 9M 2022, with liquids production up 17 per cent.

Operations benefited from improved uptime at Forcados Oil Terminal and availability of the Amukpe-Escravos pipeline, supporting strong revenue, modestly offset by higher costs. Robust cash generation further strengthened the balance sheet,a statement said.

Seplat Energy achieved more than 6.4 million hours without Lost Time Injury (LTI) at Seplat-operated assets.

The company expressed increasing confidence that President Tinubu’s administration will approve its acquisition of ExxonMobil’s share capital of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPNU).

Financial highlights

• Revenue up 31.0% to $810.4 million (including an overlift of $127.8 million) from $618.6m in 9M 2022 (including an underlift of $60.3 million). Adjusted revenue was flat YoY as improved production mitigated lower oil price realisations.

• Average realised oil price $82.76/bbl (9M 2022: $108.25/bbl); average gas price improved to $2.87/Mscf (9M 2022: $2.80/Mscf).

• Unit production opex of $9.7/boe, (9M 2022: $9.3/boe).

• Cash generation of $365.1 million, flat YoY, funding capex of $125.4 million.

• Balance sheet strengthened in the quarter, $391.0 million cash at bank (9M 2022: $305 million), $128 million MPNU cash deposit not included.

• Net debt at end September fell to $347.6 million (9M 2022: $452.2 million), a further $11 million of RBL borrowings were repaid in 3Q 2023 ($22 million YTD). Net Debt to TTM EBITDA improved to 0.9x.

• Q3 2023 dividend declared of US3 cents per share, in line with higher core annual dividend of US 12 cents.

Operational highlights

• Production increased to 48,152 boepd, up 11% (9M 2022: 43,337 boepd), slightly down on 6M 2023 given outages on export infrastructure in 3Q. Group production deferment at 31% down from 37% in the same period last year.

• Issues with the Antan-Ebocha line were resolved allowing production to resume at the Jisike field (OML53) in August.

• ANOH first gas now expected in 3Q-2024. Further delays during construction of the project, particularly the two critical infrastructure projects managed by third parties: OB3 pipeline and Spur line.

• Carbon emissions intensity: 26.0 kg CO2/boe. Three of four Sapele AG compressors have now been commissioned.

• Achieved more than 6.4 million hours without Lost Time Injury (LTI) at Seplat-operated assets.

Corporate updates

• Full year production guidance narrowed to 46-50 kboepd, inside the original guidance range of 45-55 kboepd.

• Full year capex guidance narrowed to $160-180 million, run rate capex in 4Q23 is expected to be modestly higher than the prior quarter due to project milestone payments.

• Increasing confidence that President Tinubu’s administration will approve our acquisition of ExxonMobil’s share capital of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPNU).

Speaking on the results, Mr. Roger Brown, Chief Executive Officer, Seplat Energy said: “Seplat Energy’s operational performance was strong in the third quarter, particularly September which mitigated some of the outages experienced on third party infrastructure and supported production growth of 11% on the same period in 2022.

“Our balance sheet remains strong and thanks to higher commodity pricing and our proactive approach to cash management, we have generated more than $170m in free cash flow year to date. Our focus for the rest of 2023 is on safe and reliable operations, revenue assurance and cost management, all of which will deliver further strengthening of our cash position. This keeps us on track for an excellent year that will support the increased quarterly dividends we announced in April and allow us to continue our commitment to reward shareholders.

“Following the serious incident on the Depthwize Majestic rig, which resulted in the tragic loss of life, we have provided significant support to Depthwize, its owner, in its recovery operation. Our own investigations are ongoing, but I can assure all stakeholders of our unwavering commitment to safety on all of our operations.

“Ongoing third-party delays to ANOH’s export infrastructure remain a source of frustration, but we are confident that the quality of the project will support dividend growth for Seplat in the coming years as we diversify the business and deliver on our strategy to provide more affordable energy for Nigeria.

“We remain confident that we can conclude our transformational acquisition of MPNU. We wholly align with and support President Tinubu’s efforts to make Nigeria a more attractive place to invest, and we will play our part by delivering affordable and reliable energy that will support our nation’s growth.”

FG Launches Electronic Ticketing For Lagos-Ibadan,Warri-Itakpe Rail Lines

Mohammed Shosanya

The federal government has launched the E-ticket platform for Lagos-Ibadan and Warri-Itakpe rail lines.

At the launch in Abuja on Monday, the Minister of Transportation, Sen. Saidu Akali said the initiative will kick off November 1, 2023, and will ease access to tickets and end ticket racketeering.

The essence of E-ticketing is to make it easy for our passengers to buy tickets, for security purposes and to stop ticket racketeering,he said.

Speaking, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC), Engr. Fidet Okharia stated the initiative will increase revenue generation for the country.

“I am so happy about this project, apart from the fact that e-ticketing will end issues of ticket racketeering, it will also increase the revenue from the routes.

“Already for !he last one week, revenue on Warri-Itakpe has increased from N3 million to N4 million and will even further increased” he stated.

Fare Solution Ltd is handling the contract on the Warri-Itakpe rail line while Global Software and Digital Solutions is handling the contract for the Lagos-Ibadan rail line.

The contract for the E-ticketing of the rail routes was approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) early in 2023 at the cost of N1.96 billion for both companies.

The Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Transportation and Marine and Blue Economy, Magdalene Ajani, said the concession went through the required processes and was approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC).

She said: We went through all the necessary concession process and we have to thank the ICRC.
“From November 1st, Nigerians will enjoy the benefit to buy tickets at their own convenience and without any issues.

“I am certain that with this launch ticket racketeering will and I will stop receiving calls from superiors questioning why my staffs are cheating Nigerians”.

Why We Trained  500 Youths In Solar Power Installation,Maintenance-NCDMB

Mohammed Shosanya

The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) has trained 500 youths in Cross River State on solar power installation and maintenance.

The exercise took place in three locations: Calabar, Bekearra and Ogoja, making a significant contribution to the country’s sustainable energy sector.

At the closing ceremony of the training, Abdulmalik Halilu, Director, NCDMB, Planning, Research and Strategy,hinted that the Board initiated the programme to create employment opportunities in the country, generate wealth and empower the youths to contribute to the economy of the nation.

According to him, technology, skill acquisition in trades and agriculture are some of the high-impact economic sectors.

Director, NCDMB, Planning, Research and Statistics, emphasised that the unreliability of electric power is a major challenge affecting citizens’ quality of life and the success of business enterprises in Nigeria and Africa, hence the clamour for renewable energy solutions to become a major part of the energy mix.

He added that it was important for Nigerians to prepare and position themselves for opportunities in the renewable energy space, particularly because the nation enjoys abundant sunlight.

According to him, solar power installation and maintenance training provided an alternative source of power at homes and offices to support the national power grid in addition to providing job opportunities for the youths.

He disclosed that as part of the end-to-end planning for the programme, the Board has concluded arrangements to register cooperative societies for the group as well as provide shops where they would practice their trades.

He added:“The trainees will commence business as registration of cooperatives and the provision of shops in groups for the graduates has been done.

“This empowerment programme was aimed at providing lifelong support to youths that desired to be empowered in high impact economic sectors including oil and gas, Information and Communication Technology, Agriculture, construction, and others.

He expressed confidence in the potential of the trainee, adding that they are a pool of qualified talented youth equipped with capacities and capabilities to trouble shoot issues, proffer solutions, assemble, install and maintain solar projects that are currently largely import dependent.

He further implored Nigerian youths to take advantage of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Joint Qualification System (NOGICJQS), adding that the platform is used to select participants for human capacity building interventions and employment opportunities whenever they are available.

Rt. Hon. Legor Idagbo, immediate past Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring, who facilitated the NCDMB fully funded training programme in the state commended NCDMB for training youths in Cross River state.

Stop Campaign Of Calumny Against Gbajabiamila,Tinubu Warns

Mohammed Shosanya

President Bola Tinubu has expressed confidence in his choice of his Chief of Staff, Femi Gbajiabiamila, warning that all campaigns of calumny against him should stop henceforth.

Gbajabiamila was accused of auctioning appointments to individuals the President did not consider for such positions

Tinubu said:”First of all, let me reiterate to all of you the fact that a lot of stories are going around about what is happening. I’ve told everyone in this country that I can make mistakes, they’re bound to air them out and correct them.

“Perfection is that of God almighty. I have absolute confidence on the integrity of my Chief of Staff. All campaigns of calumny and insinuations should stop, the buck stops here.

“If I make mistake I’m ready to own up to it and we’re all joining hands to fight corruption and we want to enforce the law along with you”, the President said.

Tinubu,who gave Gbajabiamila the clean bill of health while presiding over the FEC meeting on Monday, at the Council Chambers,warned that he had observed unauthorized persons gaining access into the Council Chambers of the State House.

Falana Can’t Challenge Us On Naira Depreciation -CBN

Mohammed Shosanya

The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, has punctures the stand of the human rights lawyer, Mr. Femi Falana, SAN to pray the Federal High Court to compel the CBN to stop the alarming depreciation of the Naira.

The bank expressed this through a preliminary objection filed against Falana’s suit on the falling rate of the Naira and dollarisation of the economy.

It questioned Falana’s locus standi and also challenged the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court to entertain the case.

The bank prayed the court to dismiss tge case on the ground that it is statute barred.

In his reliefs in the originating summons, Falana in the suit number : FHC/L/CS/470/23 is seeking the order of the Court to stop the CBN from allowing market forces to fix and determine the exchange rate of the Naira vis a vis other currencies in line with Section 16 of the Central Bank Act.

Besides,Falana prays the court to compel the CBN to stop the dollarisation of the economy since Section 20(1) of the Act stipulates that the Naira is the only legal tender in Nigeria.

The plaintiff has prayed the court for a declaration that by virtue of Section 16 of the Central Bank Act, the legal tender acceptable in Nigeria is Naira and kobo and that by the combined effect of Sections 15 and 20 (1) of the Central Bank Act, the currency notes issued by the defendant shall be legal tender in Nigeria

Falana also prayed the court for a declaration that by virtue of Section 16 of the Central Bank Act the exchange rate of the Naira shall be determined, from time to time, by a suitable mechanism devised by the Defendant for that purpose, as well as declaring that the Defendant is not competent to allow multiple exchange rates of the Naira vis a vis the dollars and other foreign currencies.

He further pray for a declaration that by virtue of Section 20(5) of the Central Bank Act the defendant is under a legal obligation to prosecute any person who refuses to accept the Naira as a means of payment in Nigeria.

He wants the court to hold that in line with the CBN Act the exchange rate of the Naira shall be determined, from time to time, by a suitable mechanism devised by the Bank for that purpose.

But in the preliminary objections filed on behalf of the bank by Mr Adeleke Agboola, SAN, the CBN contended that Falana has not in any way shown that he stands to suffer more than other citizens of Nigeria concerning the exchange rate policy of the CBN, adding that Falana has no locus standi to institute the case and that he has not reported those who are trading in dollars in Nigeria.

Other objections include the fact that Falana has not shown that the CBN acted in bad faith and that the plaintiff has not disclosed a reasonable cause of action against the CBN.

The bank is urging the court to dismiss the suit or in alternative strike out the suit on the ground that it lacks jurisdiction to entertain it.

It argued that the court lacks the requisite jurisdiction to entertain the suit and that the Plaintiff has not disclosed a reasonable cause of action against the CBN.

It said that the action is statute barred and that the action is not competent and maintainable against the Defendant.

Besides,it submitted that the substantive reliefs sought for by the Plaintiff has been overtaken by events, following the Central Bank announcement of unification of all segments of foreign exchange market in its Circular of 14 June, 2023.

Kano Conjoined Twins Flown To Riyadh For Surgery

Mohammed Shosanya

Nigerian conjoined twins, Hassana and Husaina Hassan Isa from Kano were Monday flown to Riyadh, the capital city of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for intricate and challenging procedure.

King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSARelief) in collaboration with a Saudi team of surgeons and medical professionals were on ground in Kano to facilitates the journey of life for the young Nigerians on a complex surgical separation.

Hassana and Husaina Hassan Isa are joined at the chest and do share vital organs, making their separation a medically intricate and challenging procedure.

Under the sponsorship deal by KSARelief, the twins family will be accommodated in Riyadh, and a support system will be in place to provide comfort and assistance throughout the journey.

The surgery, scheduled to take place at King Abdulaziz Medical City in Riyadh, will mark a groundbreaking moment in the field of pediatric surgery.

The conjoined twins,while in Riyadh will undergo thorough medical evaluation, and a team of experts. Including pediatric surgeons, anesthesiologists: and nurses, has been assembled to oversee the entire process.

The air ambulance, Saudi Medivac HZ-MS4C carrying the twins, their parents, and other officials taxied to the runaway around 14: 16pm local time , and took off by 14 : 25pm from Aminu Kano International Airport on a 7 hours journey to Riyadh.

The Kano state governor, Abba Kabir Yusuf,who was on ground with top echelon of his cabinet to bid the conjoined twins farewell, commended the Saudi Arabia authorities for several humanitarian gestures extended to Nigerians overtime.

He prayed for a successful proceedure to enable them start a good life.

How NSPMC Paid N14bn Salary Increase To Staff Without Approval-Senate

Mohammed Shosanya

The Senate, on Monday, said it has uncovered how the Board of Directors of Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Company (NSPMC) Plc paid N14 billion salary increase to all its staff members without the approval of the National Salaries Wages, Incomes and Wages Commission (NSIWC).

The Senate Committee on Public Accounts, made the discovery on Monday through report of the Auditor General of the Federation.

The Chairman, Senate Committee on Public Accounts, Senator Ahmed Wadada revealed this discovery at a session at the Senate, where the management of NSPMC appeared before the committee with respect to the 2019 report of Auditor General of the Federation.

According to the auditor general’s report, between 2016 and 2019, the NSPMC Board of Directors approved N14billion for salaries and allowances without approval of the salaries and wages regulatory body.

Under Article 3, the NSIWC Act, 1990 stipulated that the commission shall advise the Federal Government on national incomes policy; recommend the proportions of income growth which should be utilised for general wage increase and inform the Federal Government of current and incipient trends in wages and propose guidelines within which increase in wages should be confined, among others

In his written submission, however, the Managing Director of NSPMC, Alhaji Ahmed Halilu,claimed that the company did not need any approval from the salaries and wages regulatory body because it was registered under the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA).

He later admitted before the Senate Committee on Public Accounts that it was wrong not to seek approval from the NSIWC before implementing the new salaries and allowances increase for the company.

He said: “It has come to our notice that we must obtain approval before salaries increase. It is salaries paid over the period of three years. On this ground, it was not misappropriated considering the volume of works done by thousands of staff over this period.”

Members of the Senate Committee, were, however, displeased with the illegal payment, adding that the public funds were spent without due process.

The Deputy Whip of the Senate, Senator Nwebonyi Onyeka stressed that the government money was spent without due process, insisting that the misappropriated fund should be refunded.

Nigeria Needs Cost Reflective Tariffs In Power Sector-Tinubu

Mohammed Shosanya

President Bola Tinubu,Monday declared that there need to rebase tariffs in the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) in order to recognize the real costs and loss levels of the entire value chain, and allow for adequate cost recovery for investments.

He disclosed this during the opening ceremony of ongoing Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry Market Participants and Stakeholders Roundtable (NMPSR) with the theme: NESI Privatization and its 10-year Milestone: The Journey so far, opportunities and prospects.

He was represented at the event by Sodiq Wanka, the Special Adviser to the President on Energy and Power Infrastructure, Office of the Vice President.

He said major challenges the sector will continue to tackle is the lack of cost ‘reflective tariff that will provide sustainable liquidity for the entire value Chain, stressing that the exercise will help in discovering what shortfalls are and how to finance them.

There was need to quickly develop and execute a clear roadmap for serving profitable pools of customers, and strengthen operations, sector governance among others things to create an environment where the worst performers do not continue to drag the sector down,he said.

He added:”We need to have a clear plan to rebase tariffs, so we recognize the real costs and loss levels of the entire value chain, and we allow for adequate cost recovery for investments. We need to be clear on what shortfalls are and how we will finance them. And there must be a clear path to extinguishing historic sector debts to various value chain stakeholders. A reconciliation exercise in this regard is already underway.

“We need to quickly develop and execute a clear roadmap for serving profitable pools of customers. This includes industrial and agricultural clusters and strengthened participation in the West African Power Pool in the immediate term.

“And we must deepen engagement with the Nigerian public on power – including communicating sector strategy and key milestones and curbing energy theft through community engagement and penalties.

“Operationally, there a number of key imperatives that we must pursue:
80% of grid generation today is from gas. We intend to convene all relevant stakeholders to develop a gas policy for the power sector delineating where the power sector will get gas from and how it will pay for it. We cannot build a sector on best endeavour arrangements.

“We need to have a single source of truth in terms of data in the sector, a national electrification plan that highlights the energy gaps, supported by clear investment plans on how to close the gaps.

“We need to institute a Presidential Taskforce that will monitor and unblock the progress of deployment of key projects in the sector. This includes projects that will help un-constrain the grid and deliver the full available generation capacity to our homes and factories.

“We have to accelerate the pace of deployment of renewables and solar in places where it makes sense. There is a real opportunity to accelerate the deployment of inter-connected and isolated mini-grids to deliver power close to the point of use. And will support the rollout out of initiatives aimed at diesel displacement to reduce the carbon intensity of embedded power plants, while supporting innovative financing schemes for solar solutions in the home.

According to him,there was need to create an environment where the worst performers do not continue to drag the sector down.

He said,all licensees must not only have the technical capacity to deliver on their license, but must also have the financial muscle to invest and grow their operations.

“Preliminary analysis shows that DISCOS today are under-capitalized to the tune of close to NGN 2 trillion. We must facilitate a reorganization and a recapitalization process that brings in new partners and new capital to jumpstart performance in this critical section of the value chain” he added

Also speaking, Col, Sani Bello (Rtd} Chairman, The Board of Directors Mainstream Energy Solutions Limited, stated that after a decade of the privatization of the NESI, the industry has evolved and has made positive strides and impact on the Nigerian economic landscape through investments in capacity recovery and capacity expansion thereby increasing the installed Industry generation capacity

He lamented that despite these achievements in the sector, energy transmission and distribution still poses a severe challenge to a functional NESI due to the state of the infrastructure and requires significant capital to finance its rehabilitation and expansion.