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Dangote Builds $1bn Cement Plant in Edo State

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The Dangote Group has started building $1 billion dollars cement factory in Okpella, Edo State, to expand its cement production in Nigeria.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the six million metric tonnes per annum (mmtpa) Okpella plant and the upcoming six mmtpa plant in Itori, Ogun State will increase the company’s local production capacity to 41 mmtpa annually.

The Okpella project, which is to be constructed within 26 months, will provide 6000 direct jobs and 45,000 indirect jobs in the community.

Kayode Fayemi, minister of Solid Minerals, said at the ground breaking ceremony at Okpella on Sunday, April 10, that the cement plant was an evidence that the diversification agenda of the Federal Government was already working.

Fayemi said that the cement plant would be a model that would bring positive changes to the nation’s solid minerals sector in the areas of job creation, foreign exchange earnings and local content promotion.

He said that mining sector was currently contributing 0.34 per cent to the GDP and had potential to contribute over 25 million dollars annually to the economy by 2025.

Fayemi advised other investors to take a cue from Dangote’s commitment and support to transform the nation’s economy through active participation.

Okechukwu Enelamah, minister for Trade, Industry and Investment, commended the expansion drive of Dangote Group through its commitment to liberate the country from cement importation, increased job creation and foreign exchange earnings.

“Dangote Group is the second largest employer of labour in the country, se‎cond to the Federal Government. ‎The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Investment will continue to partner with Dangote in providing the necessary support for investment growth in the country,” Enelamah who was represented by Aisha Abubakar, minister of State for Trade, Industry and Investment.

Aliko Dangote, chief executive officer of Dangote Group, said that local cement manufacturers were saving the country three billion dollars annually through cement import substitution.

“The additional investment in the sector will guarantee that we always meet local demand as well as surplus for export and foreign exchange generation.”

Dangote urged other investors to explore investment opportunities in the country considering the federal government’s readiness to resuscitate the industrial sector through investment friendly policies.

“A key factor that drives investments in an economy is the presence of an investor-friendly business climate.”

Dangote said that economic reforms in the areas of tax, innovations in rural finance and investment in infrastructure created the enabling environment that made him consider investing in Edo State.

Yusuf Dirisu, the monarch of Okpella, commended the commitment of Dangote Group to the establishment of the plant, while pledging the community’s support to provide enabling environment for the investment to thrive.

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Just In: President Tinubu approves N70,000 minimum wage

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President Bola Tinubu has approved N70,000 as the new minimum wage for Nigerian workers with a promise to review the national minimum wage law every three years.

 

More details later…

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Gov. Zulum Clarifies Son’s Purported Killing Of Chinese National At Indian Nightclub

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The Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum, has denied reports alleging that one of the sons has been arrested and sentenced to prison for the murder of some Indian citizens.

Reports has it that there were unverified rumours, especially on social media platforms, alleging that the first son of the governor, Umar Zulum Umara, killed the Chinese national during a fight at an Indian nightclub.

However, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on New Media, Abdurrahman Ahmed Bundi, dismissed the reports in a statement on Wednesday.

According to him, no son of the governor was arrested or charged with any crime.

The statement read, “attention of the Borno State Governor’s Media Unit has been drawn to rumours circulating that the son of the Borno State Governor has been arrested for the alleged murder of some Indian citizens.

“This misinformation was published in an online blog, Nairaland, titled “Son of Borno State Governor Murders Someone In India—Politics.” The blog claimed that the Governor also travelled to India, attempting to use diplomatic status to resolve the matter.

“It is on record that Governor Babagana Zulum was on a one-month vacation in Saudi Arabia for the 2024 Hajj and later travelled to Egypt to attend the annual ASUWAN forum conference in Cairo.

“The Media Unit would like to clarify and set the record straight that Nairaland and other online blogs have mischievously spread defamatory content without any speck of truth.

“We hereby warned Nairaland and all those who have spread the false information to pull down this misinformation from its website and platforms within the next 24 hours and offer an unreserved apology to Governor Zulum, his son, and the entire family, or risk legal action. The Governor shall also not hesitate to take legal action against any media outlet that continues to publicise this defamatory information on its platform.

“We would like to inform the public that none of Governor’s Zulum’s son was either arrested or charged with any crime, or involved in any unlawful activities anywhere.

“We urge the public to exercise caution when consuming and sharing information, particularly when it comes from unverified sources and blogs instead of credible media outlets.

“We enjoin all media organisations to engage in responsible journalism of truth and factual verification while recognising the potential harm and psychological trauma the spread of false information might have caused to the Governor’s family.”

 

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Over 600,000 Nigerians sought asylum abroad under Buhari – Report

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Over 600,000 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries between 2016 and 2023, which were years under the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari.

Buhari was President from 2015 to 2023 and handed over to President Bola Tinubu who was sworn in on May 29, 2023, after winning in the general elections the same year.

According to a report released on Wednesday, July 17, 2024, by Statisense, a data collection organisation, of a total of 664,384 in eight years, 355,792 persons sought asylum between 2016 and 2019 while 308,592 sought asylum between 2020 and 2023.

On a year-by-year basis, 66,862 sought asylum in 2016, 91,924 in 2017, 84,624 (2018), 112,382 (2019), 73,233 (2020), 83,105 (2021), 83,402 (2022), and 68,852 in 2023.

The figures indicate a surge from the past years, as Statisense noted that within 12 years – 2004 to 2015 – only 204,791 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries.

In total, 869,175 Nigerians filed for asylum in the last 20 years, notably from 2004 to 2023.

The report was posted on the organisation’s X.com handle @StatiSense, citing the United Nations Refugee Agency.

In another report shared by the organisation on Wednesday, it was stated that the Republic of Niger topped countries with the most Nigerian refugees in 2023 with about 200,497 Nigerians and a total of 1,268,464 Nigerian refugees between 2015 and 2023.

Niger, a border country, shares proximity with Nigeria’s north, where residents battle a spate of insecurity in the region ranging from banditry, terrorism and herdsmen-farmers crisis.

Another report also revealed that Nigerians topped the list of African countries who sought asylum in Canada in 2023 with about 10,111 asylum seekers followed by Kenya with 1,345.  It stated that 1,345 Nigerians however sought asylum in the United Kingdom and 5,136 in the United States of America.

Source: The Punch

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