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Nigeria to impose travel ban on visitors from India, Brazil

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The Federal Government has announced plans to issue a travel advisory within the next two days on inbound flights from India, Brazil and Turkey.

This followed the escalation of new variants of COVID-19 virus in those countries.

Head, Technical Secretariat of the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on COVID-19, Dr Mukhtar Muhammad, said this at a news conference in Abuja.

He expressed concern over the situation in India, which is a popular destination for medical tourists from Nigeria.

The PSC also urged Nigerians to keep observing all the regulations and instructions already provided to keep safe from the infection of COVID-19.

He warned that the third wave of the pandemic sweeping through other parts of the world was lurking around to enter Nigeria, especially as the nation had already reopened its economy to the world.

His statement read in part, “While we continue to reopen the economy, we must also be aware of the happenings around the globe. Mr. Chairman and Minister of Health have made reference to specific incidences in India, Turkey, Brazil and also South Africa.

“These were taken with serious concern and we continue to monitor what is going on in these countries. We sympathise with the people of these countries because it is really a very trying time particularly for India that is recording over 300,000 cases a day and over 2,000 deaths.

“It is not easy. India is a prime destination for medical tourism for Nigeria. We know that many Nigerians like to travel to go to India, but now we see the situation that the country has found itself in. While we urge Nigerians to limit all travellers to only essential travel, particularly to these affected countries.

“We will continue to urge Nigerians to also comply with public health measures that are put in place to continue to ensure that we comply with the regulation.

“We actually empathise with those countries and what is happening in those climes. However, on our part, we are looking seriously into this issue. We are looking at other considerations that we need to provide.

“The health of Nigerians is of prime importance and whatever we need to do to protect Nigeria and to protect Nigerians from going into escalation of this current situation, the PSC will do that as necessarily.

“We will be providing some travel advice in the next 48 to 72 hours with particular reference to both Nigerians and those coming into the country to help advise us.”

Aviation

Rains: NiMet warns of severe turbulence, flight cancellations

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The Director-General, Nigeria Meteorological Agency (NiMet), Prof. Mansur Matazu, has said airlines will encounter severe turbulence, flight delays and cancellations during rainfall.
He therefore called on pilots and airline managements to adhere to the weather forecast as the likely severe turbulence could cause discomfort, injury to passengers, instability and even loss of control for small aircraft.
Matazu was quoted in a statement on Friday as saying, “Heavy rains could also lead to skidding of aeroplanes due to surface wetness and impaired horizontal visibility.
“Thunderstorms could also lead to accidents, incidents, flight delays, flight cancellation, death, damage among others.
“Windshear could lead to accidents, incidents, aircraft nosedive, discomfort, aircraft lost control and death.”
The NiMet boss urged airline operators to take weather forecast seriously, stating the turbulence usually would cause poor visibility.
He also called on passengers to be patient with the airlines as flight delays, flight cancellations and flight diversion will be experienced within this period.

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Business

Navy arrests 10 vandals with smuggled 210,000 litres of diesel

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Operatives of the Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) Beecroft have arrested 10 suspected vandals with 210,000 litre of stolen diesel.
The suspects were alleged to have attempted to smuggle the products concealed in water tanks to neighbouring Benin Republic through a wooden boat when they were intercepted around the Lagos anchorage.
A statement released on Friday by Base Information Officer, Sub-Lieutenant Veronica Effiong, said the suspects with the seized products had been handed over to the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, after preliminary investigations.
She said, “The vandals and seized products were on Tuesday, June 15, handed over to the Lagos Command of the NSCDC for further investigation and prosecution.
“The Commander NNS BEECROFT Commodore Bashir Mohammed reiterated the NNS BEECROFT`s commitment to the protection of critical national infrastructure and the eradication of all illegal activities in its area of responsibility in line with the Chief of the Naval Staff`s mission statement and strategic directive of 2021-5.
“As partners for a safe maritime environment, members of the public especially our host communities are enjoined to kindly furnish the base with credible information to assist in curbing the activities of criminal elements and economic saboteurs.”

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Buhari challenges MTN on quality service, data rate

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President Muhammadu Buhari has asked the MTN Group to offer quality service to its Nigerian subscribers at cheaper rates.
He stated this when he received in audience members of the board of MTN Group, led by its President and Chief Executive Officer, Ralph Mupita, at the State House, Abuja, on Friday.
Buhari said, “I congratulate you on your appointment as the Group President of MTN. I wish you all the best.
“Nigeria is your most lucrative market in Africa, Asia and the Middle East as well as the source of a third of the income of the entire MTN Group. As such, we urge you to offer top-of-the-range and affordable services to Nigerians.
“As we seek to make broadband widely available and affordable, we urge MTN to continue to support our efforts by expanding high-quality connectivity to Nigerians in un-served and under-served areas.”
The President also called on MTN to support the implementation of the National Policy for the Promotion of Indigenous Content in the telecommunications sector.
He said, “I recently unveiled and launched the National Policy for the Promotion of Indigenous Content in the Nigerian telecommunications sector.
“I call on MTN to support the implementation of this policy and, train and engage more Nigerians in your company.”
He assured his visitors that his administration was doing everything possible to make Nigeria investor-friendly by addressing identified challenges.

He said, “We have identified and addressed the key challenges that affected the growth of the digital economy sector. I am happy to note that the right of way charges have now been pegged at a maximum of N145/linear metre.
“I have given directives for the protection of critical national infrastructure and this has addressed the issue of vandalism of such infrastructure.”

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