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Federal Government Re-Constitutes Board of NBET

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Federal Government Re-Constitutes Board of NBET

The Federal Government of Nigeria has reconstituted the Board of Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Company (NBET).

The inauguration of the re-constituted Board of NBET which took place in Abuja has been necessitated by the challenges of the power sector, particularly the challenges of NBET in achieving its mandate, according to Mrs. (Dr.) Zainab Ahmed, the Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning of the Federal Government.

Speaking on understanding the role of NBET, she said:  “we have all come to better understand the role of NBET as the manager and administrator of the electricity pool in the Nigerian electricity supply industry (NESI), and how it buys electricity from the generating companies (GenCos) including Independent Power Producers (IPP’s) under Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) and resells it to the distribution companies (DisCos) via vesting contracts.”

“The role of NBET in the stabilization of the power sector cannot be overemphasised as it plays a key role in the generation of market confidence through well-negotiated and well aligned contracts with fair risk allocation that protects market participants from credit and systemic risks. NBET stands as a de-risking agent in the power industry as it acts as a credit worthy off-taker of power procured from Gencos in the absence of bi-lateral contracts between Gencos and Discos,” she stated.

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The contractual obligations and guarantees NBET issues and manages, according to her, are therefore of strategic importance for the repositioning of the sector and delivering of benefits to Nigerians for which NBET was established.

Ahmed, who is the Chairman of the Board, said: “The reconstitution of the board therefore took consideration of the current stage of evolution of the restructured electricity sector, the complexities the sector currently faces, multi-disciplinary skills of prospective Board members especially in finance and investment, electricity generation, system operations of deregulated electricity markets, administrative law, as well as economic regulation of network utilities, amongst other factors.”

Urging everyone present to note the importance of the assignment, she also said: “It is important that we bring our skills and experiences to bear in this critical assignment.

“It is important that we build NBET to become that defensive wall against potential payment defaults, till generation companies and distribution companies are able to enter into power purchase agreements on bilateral basis. NBET has to be able to successfully fulfill its role in the management and administration of financial flows in the sector, the promotion of a contract-based market that allocates risks efficiently to parties responsible for them and the formulation of policies for efficient system settlement.

She noted that the “electricity deregulation is still evolving in Nigeria, and the country is basically learning as the privatized market evolves. However, we do not have all the time, as the longer it takes, the more costly it is financially for Nigerians and the country at large.”

She, therefore, urged the members to ensure all hands are on deck and that their tenure as the Board in the transitional market trading arrangement should leave a good mark in the sands of time.

Recall that President Muhammadu Buhari had approved the reconstituted the Board of Directors of NBET. a Non-Executive Director from Ministry of Power, to be represented by a staff not below the level of a director; Mr. Alexander Ayoola Okoh, as Non – Executive Director from Bureau of Public Enterprises (80% Shareholder in NBET); Ms. Patience Oniha, Director-General, Debt Management Office, as Non-Executive Director; Mr Ben Akabueze, Director-General, Budget Office of the Federation, as Non-Executive Director.

Also appointed are Suleyman Ndanusa, former Director-General of Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), as Non-Executive Director (Independent); Engr. Mustapha Balarabe Shehu, former President Nigeria Society of Engineers (NSE), as Non-Executive Director (Independent); Mr. Adeyeye O. Adepegba as Non-Executive Director (Independent); and Dr. Marilyn Amobi, as Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer.

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Maina: Court Refuses To Grant Ex-pension Boss Bail

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The Federal High Court, Abuja, on Thursday, refused to grant a former Chairman of the defunct Pension Reformed Taskforce Team, Abdulrasheed Maina, bail.

Justice Okon Abang, held that Maina’s application for bail lacked merit.

Justice Abang also said though it was at the court’s discretion to grant bail, the ex-pension reformed boss did not deserve bail after jumping the first bail.

The judge added that Maina did not place sufficient materials before the court to convince the court that he deserves the second bail.

He said the medical report brought from the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital showed that Maina was not under any medical emergency.

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The judge said Maina was not only a flight risk but a proving risk, having fled to the Republic of Niger and Chad in violation of the court order.

“He has disappointed the court,” he said.

Justice Abang, who refused to grant Maina’s application for an order directing the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to release his confiscated property, including a BMW Car, also dismissed his request for an order to set aside the Nov. 18 and Dec. 4, 2020 orders.

The court on November 18, 2020, ordered the trial of Maina in absentia after he jumped bail.

Also on December 4, 2020, the court ordered Maina to be remanded in prison custody pending the hearing and final determination of his matter.

But Maina, who jumped bail last year and fled to the Republic of Niger before his rearrest, had on December 24, 2020, applied for another bail. Maina, through his lawyer, Anayo Adibe, on Jan. 20, approached Justice Abang in a motion on notice.

He argued that the application became necessary over his worsening health condition.

In the motion, the ex-pension boss told the court that he had reasonable and responsible sureties who were willing to act as sureties if granted bail.

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NAF personnel Funeral begins in Abuja

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The funeral of the seven Nigerian Air Force officers who died in the Sunday air crash has commenced at the National Cemetery, Lugbe, Airport Road, Abuja.

The men died in the Beechcraft King Air B350i which crashed a short distance from the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, after reporting engine failure.

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The deceased include the Captain, Fl Lt. Haruna Gadzama; Fl. Lt. Henry Piyo (Co-Pilot); Flying Officer Micheal Okpara (Airborne Tactical Observation System Specialist); Warrant Officer Bassey Etim (ATOS Specialist); Fl. Sgt.

Olasunkanmi Olawunmi (ATOS Specialist); Sgt. Ugochukwu Oluka (ATOS Specialist) and Aircraftman Adewale Johnson (Onboard Technician).

At the funeral service is the Minister of Defence, Maj. Gen. Salihi Magashi (retd.), the Chief of Defence Staff, Maj. Gen Lucky Irabor, the Chief of Army Staff, Ibrahim Atahiru, the Chief of Air Staff, Air Vice Marshal Isiaka Amao and the family members of the deceased.

The coffins draped in the Nigerian flags have already been placed on the open graves. Sitting on each coffin were the shoes and caps of the deceased.

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NDLEA Seizes 614kg Drugs Arrests 90, In Lagos Raids

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The operative of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency have arrested 90 persons, including an Indian, during raids on the hideouts of drug cartels in parts of Lagos State and confiscated 614.396 kilograms of various hard drugs.

The agency also announced the interception of a container load of tramadol at the Apapa seaport in Lagos, estimated at about two million capsules tucked in 554 cartons.

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The Lagos State Command of the NDLEA also raided some drug spots in Agege, Ikorodu, Lekki, Okokomaiko and other parts of the state, and dismantled major drug syndicates, arrested some suspects and seized large quantities of hard drugs.

NDLEA Director of Media and Advocacy, Femi Babafemi, said 90 suspects, including an Indian, were arrested, while over 614kg of various types of drugs were seized during the raids.

Ralph Igwenagu, the state Commander of NDLEA,was quoted as giving the breakdown of the seizures.

Igwenagu said, “A total of 577.020kg of cannabis Sativa was seized; cocaine, 0.183kg; heroine, 0.003kg, Tramadol, 36.202kg (7,697 tablets); Rohypnol, 0.208kg (646 tablets); Diazapam, 0.462kg (2,066 tablets); and Exol-5, 0.52kg (316 tablets), making a total of 614.396kg of different types of hard drugs.

“One of the drug syndicates busted during the raids is coordinated by one Samuel Ebenezer in Lekki, whose cartel imports special sophisticated drugs baked in cakes, biscuits and cookies from the United States and sells to the rich and affluent people in Lekki and Lagos Island.

“The second syndicate is coordinated by an Indian, Inderpreet Singh, alias Bobby, that imports Tramadol 225mg from India and sells in Nigeria from his Osy Agomo Close, Apple Estate, Amuwo Odofin area of Lagos. Mr Singh is also a dealer in tricycle parts and the Managing Director of Rashaan Trading Limited. Arrested with him is a Nigerian, one Sylvester Omorodion.”

The Tramadol were intercepted in the container, which was falsely declared to contain ceramic tiles. The Apapa Seaport Area Commander of the NDLEA,

Samuel Gadzama, said one of the containers bearing the illicit drug had earlier been intercepted and seized in Kenya.

“Though the second container found its way to Nigeria, but the eagle eyes of our narcotic agents discovered it during a joint inspection of the ship. We’re continuing with further investigations”, he stated.

Reacting to the raids and seizures, the Chairman/Chief Executive, NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa (retd), commended the commanders and their officers involved in the operations.

He charged them to remain focussed on the maxim of his leadership, that is, offensive action against illicit drug users, peddlers, traffickers and barons.

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The African Union and Africa CDC will virtually rollout the Partnership to Accelerate COVID-19 Testing (PACT) in Africa tomorrow 4 June, 2020 at 11.00 am Eastern Africa Time.

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"Also found worthy of honour was Bashir Abubakar, an Asst Comptroller-General of Customs, who rejected a bribe of $412,000 per container offered him by drug traffickers seeking to bring 40 containers of Tramadol into Nigeria. A fine example of incorruptibility, worthy of emulation"

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