Ibom Air Is  Nigeria’s Best Airline

Ibom Air emerges best airline in Nigeria
Ibom Air has emerged the best airline in Nigeria, an award it also won in 2021, its first year of operations.
Mr. Ikechi Uko, Organiser, Travellers Award and publisher ATQnews,who disclosed this recently,said  the assessment was based on the ranking of Nigerian airlines, using the following parameters: average age of Aircraft, schedule integrity, spread of services, customer care, inflight services and total number of flights done in 2021.
”This year’s Travellers Award chose to highlight the expectations of travellers in Nigeria.The organisers listened to the complaints and yearnings of travellers by incorporating these in the selection of the 2022 winners.Delays and cancellations are big issues on the domestic scene, customer care and schedule integrity ranked high on most social media feedback reports,” he said.
He  noted that with the independent research done by Publishers of Atqnews.com using statistics released by Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority and other sources, Nigerian Airlines are ranked from 1 to 10 on all parameters and their scores totalled up.
 He said  the airline with the lowest scores was ranked as leaders.
 “The awards will be presented on March 11, 2022, at Abuja Jabamah.Travellers Award was instituted in 1996 by the Publishers of Travellers Magazine and Atqnews.com with the theme: ‘Promoting Excellence in Travels’,” he said.
He said about 65 to 70 aircraft by 10 airlines carried over 12 million passengers to over 20 active airports in Nigeria.
According to him,Air Peace won the award of the Best Nigerian International Airline of the year.
Ogun Councils Share N3.587bn In January

Ogun state says its   local government areas shared  N3.587 billion, being the amount they received from the Federal Allocation for January, 2022.
The State Commissioner for Local Governments and Chieftaincy Affairs, Afolabi Afuwape, who disclosed this during the
January 2022 Joint Account Allocation Committee (JAAC) meeting held in Abeokuta,said  currently the statutory allocations from the federal government may not be sufficient for the council areas.
He emphasized the need for the need for the  councils  to look inward on how to improve on their Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
He  implored  the chairmen to see the monthly JAAC meeting as an official engagement that requires utmost attention, in order to improve welfare and infrastructural development at the grassroots.
According to him,the meeting was an avenue to equip the Chairmen with information regarding the monthly allocations, for them to be able to answer questions that may arise to that effect.
Also speaking at the meeting, the State Commissioner for Finance and Chief Economic Adviser, Mr. Dapo Okubadejo, said, the sum of N4,058,660,832.72 billion is expected to be paid as first line charges which include, primary school teachers’ salary,  local government staff salaries, traditional rulers and other charges.
Okubadejo,who was represented at the meeting  by Director of Inspectorate and Monitoring, Finance, Mr. Kolapo Ilori,noted that the gross deficit stood at the sum of N470,901,128.69, which covers PAYE, contributory pension, five percent bond on pension and cooperative and loans.
The chairman, Ijebu Ode Local Government, Hon. Tunde Emiola-Gazal,commended the state government for harmonizing payment of the first line charges which had allowed all the councils to meet up with salary payment.
Onimeko of Imeko, Oba Benjamin Olanite and Odofin of Shoyindo, Oba Lasisi Gisanri,advocated the need for formidable and effective distribution of wealth across the Local Government Areas in order to justify the current distribution formula.
 NUGA Games: Makinde Hosts UNILAG VC, Promises N25m Donation

Makinde hosts UNILAG VC, others, promises support for NUGA Games - National  Accord Newspaper
Oyo State Governor, ”Seyi Makinde, has promised his administration’s support for his alma-mater, the University of Lagos, to enable it host the Nigerian Universities Games (NUGA).
He  stated this while receiving a delegation of the University, led by its Vice Chancellor, Professor Toyin Ogundipe, in his office.
A statement by his Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, quoted the governor as commending  the Vice Chancellor and his team for transforming the institution.
He announced that he would contribute N25 million, in his private capacity, to the success of the games.
He said: When they say ‘Eko for Show’ and I remember I left UNILAG in 1990, from that time till now I have had the opportunity to come back to UNILAG’s sports centre and I see that it has undergone tremendous transformation. I passed by recently and I saw quite a lot being done.
“I want to say well done to you and your team. At this stage, the only thing we can do is support UNILAG to bring out the best show for this period and personally I would support and I will also approach a few friends of the school to also support.
The governor, after announcing the donation of N25million Naira from his personal pocket, promised  to appeal to his counterparts and friends of the institution to assist his alma mater over the hosting of the games.
He added:“I have seen the note and personally I will contribute N25 million, I will also approach a few of our friends who will be ready and willing to support this course and whatever we are able to raise will go a long way.
“I will put a call through to my colleagues, the governors of Akwa Ibom and Lagos to say I have done this, so you better do more than that because Akwa Ibom is a second term governor and he should be able to do more and Sanwo-Olu is the host governor and Lagos is the biggest state, economy-wise and so he should do better.We would support as much as possible. Once again, I wish you well and please if you think there are things we can do better to support you, let us know,” he added.
Speaking,  Prof. Ogundipe commended the Governor Makinde’s  administration  for  the good work he is doing to add value to the state.
He described the governor as a worthy and distinguished alumnus of the institution,adding Makinde’s contributions to the development of his department, faculty and institution, cannot be underrated.
Ogundipe said: “We want to thank you for the work that you are doing and the testimony people are giving concerning you. We went through Molete and Oja’ba and honestly speaking it was a smooth ride because of the improvement of the network around that place.
“When we record some of the things that the alumni are doing, who are governors and deputy governors of their states like Lagos State, Oyo State, Akwa Ibom State, Anambra State and these we are cataloging, it is part of what we are going to put in our 60th anniversary, which is coming up in December.
“We want to appreciate you for what you have done even before you came in as the governor, for your contribution in the Faculty of Engineering. The last time we came here, we said it that the Faculty of Engineering, your department; the laboratory then happens to be the best laboratory until now and when people came that they were going to do something for us, I had to show them that laboratory and say ‘you are not going below this standard.’ “Now, they are working on it and we are doing this to tell other alumni to look at the 3Ps; the Project, Programme and Person and people have been doing that.”
50m People Risk Contracting Neglected Tropical Diseases Annually-WHO

The World Health Organization(WHO),has said about 50 million persons are at risk of contracting Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) annually.
It also said more than 1 million Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) new cases are still being detected yearly.
Dr.Walter Kazadi Mulombo, WHO Head of Mission and Representative,disclosed these in his goodwill message to commemorate the 2022 World Neglected tropical diseases (NTD) Day in Nigeria.
He stated that, this year’s theme is “Achieving health equity to end the neglect of poverty related diseases” and there is the need for increased collaboration by all stakeholders.
According to him:”Health inequities triggered by COVID-19 have undermined economic, societal, and developmental progress. Focusing on NTDs provides a step forward in addressing diseases of poverty. The NTD programmes contribute to stronger health systems by enhancing capacity, bringing communities together and contributing to universal health coverage
“Young people’s voice and commitment are critical to advocating for and to supporting NTD programmes and policies. This will ensure future generations, free of NTDs.Stigma, discrimination & mental health are neglected consequences of disability, mainly from NTDs.  Eliminating NTDs will ensure an inclusive and equitable response for everyone”, Mulombo stated.
He said Nigeria remains important in the global NTD eradication road map and has made significant progress in treatment and control of NTD.
Mulombo noted that WHO in collaborations with other key partners, will step-up action in supporting Nigeria  to mobilize the needed domestic and international resources required for the control, elimination and eradication of NTD in the country.
He said: “I want to encourage individuals, communities, and local governments to encourage surveillance, testing and treatment for NTD and to learn more about these diseases, to end the silent epidemic it causes.WHO works with countries and everyone – including partners and NGOs – to address NTDs towards health systems strengthening and universal health coverage
“Let me pledge WHO’s commitment to continuing partnership with FMoH and other departments, partners and stakeholders working on NTD through provision of technical support, and innovations towards the attainment of the set targets. WHO is also committed to facilitating the donation of all essential medicines for NTD as it has always done each year.
Omicron:UAE’s Travel Restriction On Nigeria Still In Force -NCAA

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA),says it has not received  official communication from the government of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on the lifting of flight restriction placed on Nigeria and 11 other African countries.
It said  that once an official letter is received from the UAE, the Ministry of Aviation and the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on Covid-19 pandemic would act accordingly
Capt. Musa Nuhu, the Director-General of NCAA told journalists that the Country Manager of Emirates Airlines visited his office on Thursday to convey the lifting of the flight services restriction on Nigeria and 11 others.
According to him,his agency could not act on it until the UAE Civil Aviation Authority write officially to the Nigerian Government through the diplomatic channels known to the two parties, maintaining that flight operations between the two countries was based on Bilateral Air Service Agreements (BASA) arrangement.
He added: “The Country Manager of Emirates Airlines came to my office yesterday (Thursday) and he submitted a letter of release by the Dubai Airport lifting the ban on Nigeria and 11 other African countries. Of course, we still have some protocols that have to be complied with. I think it is acceptable.
“But, what I told him is that the issue of flight operations between Nigeria and UAE is based on BASA. Nigeria as a government, we don’t deal with an airline, we deal with the authorities of UAE. So, what I told him is that the Civil Aviation Authority of UAE should write to us officially through the diplomatic channels. When we have that it means the Nigerian Government is in official communication from UAE. As soon as that letter comes in, I am sure it is going to come may be today (Friday) or tomorrow (Saturday), we will act on it.
“Unofficially, we are not aware because I need the UAE CAA to officially inform me through government to government channel. So, when we get that it becomes official.”
Besides, Nuhu said that the regulatory body had rescinded its decision to restrict operations of Emirates Airlines to one frequency weekly and to Abuja Airport only, stressing that the government took the decisive decision then when the UAE CAA could not grant Air Peace the three frequencies it requested for to fly into Sharjah Airport, while the government granted it 21 weekly frequencies.
UAE had  Thursday announced plans to lift its entry and transit ban on travellers who had recently visited Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya, Ethiopia and eight other African countries.
The lifting of the ban was disclosed by the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Emergency Management Authority (NCEMA). The ban was initially imposed in light of the Omicron variant of COVID-19.
“From January 29, entry into the UAE for arrivals from Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Nigeria, the Republic of the Congo, the Republic of South Africa, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia and Zimbabwe is allowed again,” NCEMA said on Twitter.
The initial ban covered travellers who had visited certain African countries in the previous 14 days. The changes will come into effect at 2:30pm on Saturday, January 29.
New Chairman Of CMAN Assumes Office,Commends FG On Improved Economy

Lawal Bello assumes office as Chairman of cement manufacturers - The  Business Intelligence
 Mohammed Lawal Bello, has assumed office as Chairman of the Cement Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (CMAN).
Speaking  during the inauguration of the new BUA cement 3 million metric tonnes plant commissioned by President Muhammad Buhari in Sokoto, Lawal commended  the efforts of the Buhari administration and the Central Bank of Nigeria in partnering with stakeholders to boost the nation’s  economy.
 The Cement Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (CMAN) is the umbrella body of all cement manufacturers in Nigeria.
Adamawa born Mohammed Lawal Bello is a technocrat and businessman. His coming on board will re-engineer the activities of CMAN to conform to its objectives and goals while making sure the public gets value for its money.
He will also  bring dynamism and focus to the association’s goal and objectives of providing quality services to cement consumers while protecting the interest of its member
Mohammed Lawal Bello is a founding member of skygeoscan, a company involved in using patented thermovision tomography technology to scan for oil, gas, and solid minerals.
He started his career in 1985 as an engineer with the engineering and technical services department of NNPC and resigned in 1988 to set up his business.
He is the founder of the Universal petroleum company limited, Robinson international inspections limited, international diamond drilling company limited, and he also owns a joint venture with an American company called Delaney.
He is the past chairman, the board of directors, Nitel-Mtel, and also the past vice-chairman/commissioner (renewable energy, research, and development) of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, ABUJA.
After his service in 2015, he got involved in the renewable energy of the power sector, consulting and partnering with petroleum and power industries.
 He is the chairman of the Gede Foundation, an NGO involved in fighting HIV/AIDS and other diseases in Africa. He is a Harvard alumnus and member of the renowned energy institute, United kingdom.
Nigeria Didn’t Spend Dollar On Cement Import  In Seven Years – CBN

The Central Bank of Nigeria,says  Nigeria has not spent dollars to import cement in the last seven years.
Its Governor,Mr Godwin Emefiele, disclosed this  at the inauguration of the new BUA cement plant in Sokoto, which was performed by the President Muhammadu Buhari (retired), in Sokoto, on Thursday,according to a statement
He said:“No dollar had been spent on the importation of cement into Nigeria in the past seven years”
The CBN governor pledged the bank’s support for the manufacturing sector in Nigeria and pushed for a reduction in the prices of building materials in the country in order to make housing more affordable.
He said that the decision of the bank to restrict access to foreign exchange for the importation of 43 items, including cement, which could either be produced in Nigeria or for which raw materials could be sourced within the country, had helped to boost the production capacity of cement in the country.
According to him, the production capacity of cement companies in Nigeria has increased from 30 million metric tonnes in 2014 to 60 million metric tonnes in 2021.
Emefiele commended the BUA cement company for its effort in constructing the plant with no external finance, noting that such private sector initiatives were yielding fruits and were critical complementary ingredients to reducing unemployment and boosting production activities in Nigeria.
He said such investments helped to support the CBN’s mandate of promoting stable macro-economic growth in Nigeria.
He promised  current and prospective operators in the industrial sector that the CBN was ready to collaborate with them in enabling the development of a viable manufacturing sector in Nigeria.
He added:“For those who are willing to invest in new greenfield or existing brownfield projects, the CBN will provide all the support needed, both in naira and dollars needed to import plants and equipment to actualise these investments”
 US Launches Anti-corruption Website In Nigeria

US Government Launches Anti-Corruption Website, Urges Nigerians To Report  Corrupt Leaders – Independent Newspaper Nigeria
The United States government has  launched ReportMagoMago.com as parts of its renewed commitment to fighting corruption in Nigeria
The US Consulate General’s office  announced this in a statement on Friday.
It said: ” The U.S. government is committed to supporting anti-corruption initiatives and collaborative efforts that prevent graft,  strengthen investigation and prosecution of corruption, promote accountability and transparency, and empower reformers”.
“On Friday, the U.S. Consulate General in collaboration with the Inter-Religious Coalition Against Corruption in Nigeria launched ReportMagoMago.com, a unique web-based portal that leverages citizen engagement to fight corruption”.
Led by Bishop Emmanuel Gospel Isong and Imam Shefiu Abdulkareem Majemu, the Inter-Religious Coalition Against Corruption in Nigeria was formed in 2016 by Muslim and Christian religious leaders with the primary goal of addressing how faith communities could take a leading role in anti-corruption advocacy in Nigeria.
At the event,participants received a guided demonstration of the ReportMagoMago.com platform. In addition, political, traditional and religious leaders, members of law enforcement, judicial officers and civil society representatives renewed their commitment to the fight against corruption.
U.S. Consul General Claire Pierangelo explained that ReportMagoMago.com puts the power to report corruption in the hands of the Nigerian people.
She urged Nigerians to demonstrate their commitment to the fight against corruption by making use of the innovative online platform which seeks to address the daily instances of corruption faced by millions of Nigerians.
She said:“Countering corruption is not only a key concern in Nigeria but also a core U.S. national security priority for the Biden Administration,” Pierangelo said. “Growth and development, consistent with the richness and strength of Nigeria, depend on a new narrative and a culture where corruption has no place.”
She expressed optimism that the new initiative will encourage Nigerians affected by corruption to feel empowered to share their experiences and spark a new movement in citizen engagement in fighting the scourge that has hampered development and stifled prosperity in the country.
The United States, through a number of agencies, including the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development, takes an all of government approach to fighting corruption, a key component of the United States’ national security strategy.
Dust Haze Looms In 12 Northern Cities 

NiMET Warns Of Flights Disruption As Dust Haze Looms In 12 Northern Cities  – Independent Newspaper Nigeria
The Nigerian Meteorological Management Agency, said  12 Northern States would be enveloped in dust haze that would reduce visibilities and disrupt flight operations.
The agency listed the affected cities to include Maiduguri, Nguru, Potiskum, Dutse. Gombe, Yola, Bauchi, Katsina, Kaduna, Zaria, Kano and Sokoto.
It said thick dust haze with horizontal visibility values of less than 1000m are expected over cities in the coming days.
“Thick dust haze with horizontal visibility values of less than 1000m are expected over Maiduguri, Nguru, Potiskum, Dutse. Gombe, Yola, Bauchi, Katsina, Kaduna, Zaria, Kano and Sokoto.
“Flight operations may be disrupted and airline operators are advised to pick up their flight folders and adhere to regulations, especially at aerodromes in the Northern parts of the country.
“Road users should exert caution while driving along areas with poor visibility during this period. People with respiratory problems should take caution” it noted.
Nigerian Start-Ups Rake In $1.5bn  In 2021

Nigerian Start-Ups Attract Over $1.5bn Investments In 2021 – Independent  Newspaper Nigeria
Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, Director-General of National Information Technology Development Agency(NITDA), has said the Nigerian start-ups attracted over $1.5 billion investments in 2021.
Abdullahi,stated this at the virtual NITDA Nigerian Innovation Ecosystem Engagement 2022, where  he also disclosed that the
attraction of over $1.5billion by Nigerian start-ups represents 35% of total investments in Africa in 2021.
He said:”It is amazing that you have succeeded in building the most investment appealing ecosystem in Africa, attracting over 1.5billion USD representing 35% of total investment in Africa in 2021.This is unprecedented, but for me, there is no passion playing small and settling for leading only in Africa, if we can compete globally.
“We have the talent, passion and energy to be reckoned with globally. I believe we can, but how? It is simple, to win in the global market, we must first win in building trust within the ecosystem.
“Today, we have a golden opportunity to achieve that. If we fail now, I don’t know when we can.”
He noted that the promotion of the indigenous content agenda of the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration has remained one of the focal points of NITDA), calling for a more robust collaboration between the Agency and local start-ups in the country.
He said the promotion of indigenous content, which is one of the strategic pillars of the agency’s Strategic Road Map and Action Plan 2021-2024, was designed specifically to create opportunities for the development of homegrown solutions to meet the country’s needs as well as create wealth for the nation.