Five things to know to start your Thursday

Gas reserves to drive Nigeria’s development goals — Osinbajo

Professor Yemi Osinbajo, the Vice President of Nigeria, has said that the use of gas as a transition fuel will not only help in stemming deforestation but also advance Nigeria’s broader development goals.

Professor Osinbajo stated this on Tuesday night when he received at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, John Kerry, the US Special Presidential Envoy on Climate Change.

He also added that the country has one of the largest gas reserves in the world and believes that other developing countries will also benefit from the adoption of gas as a transition fuel.

Laolu Akande, the Vice President’s spokesman, said on Wednesday that Kerry had met with President Muhammadu Buhari prior to his meeting with Professor Osinbajo.

The Vice President had stressed the importance of switching over to gas, stating that the country needed to continue the exploration and use of gas as a way of arresting deforestation, transiting away from dirtier fuels like diesel, kerosene, and petrol, while at the same time ensuring that the “country has the necessary energy baseload for industrialization”.

He pointed out that Nigeria has one of the largest gas reserves in the world and should benefit from its exploitation, and he highlighted the significance of Nigeria’s Energy Transition Plan, which is the first in Africa.

Read also:Nigeria oil and gas industry – Setting a New Agenda

How Ayu can be removed as PDP National Chairman — Atiku

Atiku Abubakar, the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), on Wednesday, during an interactive meeting with stakeholders of the PDP, expressed his view on the call for the resignation of Senator Iyorchia Ayu as the National Chairman of the party.

Leaders of the party from the southwest were present at the meeting, which was held in Ibadan. The former vice president said that the call for the re-composition of the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) was not impossible, but only when the constitution of the party had been amended to accommodate such a demand.

“The Peoples Democratic Party is the oldest political party in Nigeria since the return of democracy and even before then,” he said. “It is a party that has laid down rules and regulations.”

“I have been a member of the party since it was formed, and I am still a member of the party up to the point of what it has grown to become.”

Amid calls for Ayu to step aside, Governor Seyi Makinde demanded that Ayu step aside for a southerner to become the party chairman.

In his response, the vice president said, “There is nothing any individual can do to change the outlook of the National Working Committee of the PDP. The PDP is a party where there are laid down rules and regulations.

“What Governor Makinde is asking for is possible only when we have amended our party’s constitution. As things stand today, no single individual has the power to tamper with the NWC of the party. Doing so will be illegal and it will be against our rules in the party. ”

Senate commends Dangote-Sinotruk’s investment in Nigeria

Senator Tokunbo Abiru, the Senate Committee on Industry chairman, has commended Dangote Sinotruk West Africa for its impressive commitment to Nigeria’s economic development through investment in a vehicle assembly plant in the country.

According to him, with Dangote Sinotruk West Africa, Nigeria’s path to self-reliance in vehicle assembling has begun. “We want to encourage the company to continue to see how best to make Nigeria self-reliant in vehicle assembling as well as encourage other players in the value chain to also get on board,” he said.

The senator said that as much as members of the Senate Committee on Industry would prefer a factory setting where almost everything is manufactured here in Nigeria, “we believe what Dangote Sinotruk has in place is a very good starting point towards achieving backward integration in vehicle assembling in Nigeria.”

“What the company is doing is one of the ways you can advance the economy of this country,” he stated.

In his remarks, Group General Manager, Dangote Sinotruk West Africa Limited, Hikmat Thapa, thanked the Senate Committee members for taking time out to tour the vehicle assembly plant.

Thapa said the company seeks to meet the growing demand for the automobile industry’s required for logistics, construction, and food and beverage industries in Nigeria to support the government’s efforts to boost economic development across the country.

He said the company is responsible for assembling and producing a full range of commercial vehicles, covering heavy-duty trucks, medium-duty trucks, light trucks, other semi-trailers, etc.

He added that the company provides employment opportunities to Nigerians, improves the local automobile industry, adds an equipment base, and achieves technological advancement in Nigeria to promote economic development in the country.

Egypt, Qatar sign agreements to boost cooperation during state visit

On Wednesday, Egypt and Qatar signed three memoranda of understanding. The Egyptian presidency said during a two-day trip by Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to Doha that the three memoranda of understanding are added to by a sovereign wealth fund agreement between the two nations.

According to Reuters, Sisi’s trip to Qatar is his first since Cairo and Doha restored relations last year following a regional diplomatic rift.

Qatar and Egypt have moved quickly to rebuild relations since, striking deals worth up to $5 billion.

Oil rises on weakening dollar

Oil prices advanced upwards in early Asian trade on Thursday, as supply concerns and a looming rail stoppage in the United States supported the market surge.

According to Reuters, by 0013 GMT, Brent crude futures were up 38 cents, or 0.4 percent, to $94.48 per barrel, while West Texas Intermediate crude was up 46 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $88.94.

The dollar index slipped 0.14 percent on Wednesday, taking back the previous session’s gains and lifting demand for dollar-denominated commodities such as crude oil from holders of other currencies.

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