FERMA budgets N55.5bn for road maintenance – Newstrends
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FERMA budgets N55.5bn for road maintenance

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By Dada Jackson

The Managing Director of the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA), Abdulrahman Nurudeen Rafindadi, says the agency has proposed the sum of N55.5 billion for the repair of federal roads spread across the country.

Rafindadi, an engineer, gave the figure while presenting to the federal lawmakers the agency’s budget estimates for the year 2021.

He, however, did not give state-by-state details of projects to be executed, assuring the lawmakers he would do so at a later date.

The FERMA helmsman said that as of now, the agency had N21bn available to tackle emergency road projects, adding that the money was yet to be deployed.

It would be recalled, that since its establishment, FERMA has consistently been underfunded, hence its inability to meet its core mandate of effecting substantial road repairs of failed federal roads across the country.

From the time of its pioneer managing director to the current helmsman, the sing-song of the agency has always been the paucity of funds to execute the maintenance of dilapidated federal roads begging for attention.

The proposed N55.5 billion budgetary expenditure for the year 2021 is considered a ‘drop in the ocean’ considering the state of federal roads across the country.

It would also be recalled that as far back as 2005, the then Managing Director of the agency, Engr Olubunmi Peters, had said that in order for FERMA to be able to fix failed federal roads in the country, it would need not less than N50 billion.

Almost 15 years after, FERMA is proposing to spend N55.5 billion to address the issue of failed federal roads nationwide.

Experts have noted that the consequence of this inadequate funding of the agency is that more federal roads in the country will fail as a result of neglect.

Railway

State trains: Plateau, Niger, Osun, Borno set to join Lagos, FCT 

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State trains: Plateau, Niger, Osun, Borno set to join Lagos, FCT 

Plateau, Niger, Borno and Osun states are among state governments currently making arrangements to run train services within their respective areas.

They are joining Lagos State Government and the Federal Capital Territory already operating and managing mass transit train services for the people in those places.

This is coming after the railway development and operation was moved from the exclusive legislative list to concurrent allowing states and private sector to be involved in the business.

Managing Director of the Nigerian Railway Corporation, Fidet Okhiria, disclosed this in Lagos on Tuesday during a public lecture.

Okhiria spoke as a guest lecturer at the endowed professorial chair on Transport and Logistics at the Lagos State University (LASU) on ‘From exclusive clause to concurrent list: Potency for sustainable rail infrastructure development in Nigeria and the Lagos State Example’.

He commended the Lagos State Government and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, two subnational governments for effectively initiating and running mass transit trains.

He said it was part of the fallout of moving the railway development from the exclusive list to current as signed into law in March 23, 2023 by the ex-President Muhammadu Buhari.

Already, he said the Plateau State Government had commenced a trial run of its stage-managed train service.

Okhiria said, “Lagos State is one of the states already operating a mass transit train in Nigeria. The Lagos Blue Line is a standard gauge track operating between Mile 2 and Marina…The service has greatly reduced the traffic jam usually experienced at Marina to Orile and Mike 2 axis, especially usually during peak hours.

“Lagos State is presently at an advanced stage of commenting the Red Line from Agbado to Oyingbo. We are currently inspecting and certifying various operating equipment along the corridor for safety concerns. When the service commences, it will greatly impact the way Lagosians travel.

“Other states are already keying in before now, using our track access tool to negotiate a train service within their corridor.

“Notable among them included Plateau State Government, already operating on trial runs, Niger State (talks ongoing), Borno State (talks ongoing), Osun State Government (hire service during festivities) and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) currently restated, to mention a few.”

The NRC boss recalled that the prior to the constitutional amendments, was both a sole operator and regulator of rail activities in the country.

He cautioned states against dropping standards due to the high cost involved in building railway infrastructure, which he noted could affect safety.

Okhiria said the NRC would continue to offer necessary technical advice and other input to ensure adherence to uniform global standards in railway development and management.

He urged private investors to key into the project in the area of running trains, both passengers and freight.

Vice-Chancellor of LASU, Prof. Ibiyemi Tunji-Bello, represented by the VC Administration, Prof. Adenine Omotunde Boyo, said that the removal of railway from exclusive to concurrent list would empower the states to invest massively railway business and boost the intermodal transport system.

She commended the initiative of the Lagos State Government for completing and commencing daily commercial train service from Mile 2 to Marina.

Speaking on the professorial chair endowment in the transport studies at LASU, Prof. Dele Badejo said it was the first of its kind in transport development and sustainable development in sub-Sahara Africa.

He said, “This guest lecture is historic because it is the first time that the endowment has gathered and assembled stakeholders and intellectuals in the rail transport sub-sector to brainstorm and provide a road map for the repositioning and improving various activities and infrastructure on rail transportation.”

 

 

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PH refinery receives one million barrels of crude – Report

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Port Harcourt Refinery

PH refinery receives one million barrels of crude – Report

Following the mechanical completion of the Old Port Harcourt Refinery in December last year, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd (NNPCL) supplied one million barrels of crude oil to the plant. This supply marks the refinery’s readiness to begin refining petroleum products.

NNPCL is pushing for a phased commencement of operations, with a possible start date in August, due to increasing pressure for the plant to begin production before the end of the year. The crude oil supply was delivered in two tranches, with the latest arriving last Wednesday.

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A barrel of crude oil can produce approximately 170 liters of refined petroleum products. Therefore, the one million barrels supplied to the Port Harcourt refinery are expected to yield around 170 million liters of Premium Motor Spirit (petrol) and other refined products.

The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority has issued the necessary license for the refinery’s operations. The Port Harcourt Refinery Complex (PHRC) rehabilitation project costs approximately $1.5 billion and is a national initiative encompassing the Engineering, Procurement, Construction, Installation, and commissioning phases.

PH refinery receives one million barrels of crude – Report

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Carloha to gift ILOTBET UEFA EURO 2024 Winner Chery car

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Carloha to gift ILOTBET UEFA EURO 2024 winner Chery car

A lucky person will on Thursday July 18 be presented with a brand new Chery vehicle for accurately predicting the teams qualifying from the group stage of the recently concluded UEFA EURO 2024 Championship.

The winner will be rewarded with a brand new Chery Tiggo 2 Pro, a stylish and versatile cross-over vehicle, known for its exceptional performance and advanced features.

Carloha Nigeria disclosed this in a pre-event press release obtained on Monday from the company.

It is the fallout of the partnership between Carloha, the exclusive importer and franchisee of Chery vehicles in Nigeria, and ILOTBET, a leading sports business company.

A statement by Caeloha said, “This exciting promotion, which commenced on May 31, 2024, and ended on July 10, 2024, before the beginning of EURO 2024, offers fans the chance to win Tiggo 2 Pro.

“The ‘Predict and Win’ promo invites football enthusiasts to predict the exact bracket of teams qualifying from the group stage of the UEFA EURO 2024 Championship.”

The highlight of this promotion is the prize-giving ceremony of the Tiggo 2 Pro, which will take place at Carloha’s Showroom on July 18, 2024.

This gesture typifies the generosity of Chery Group and its contribution to the development of sports and also its dedication to enhancing the overall fan experience.

“We are delighted to partner with ILOTBET on this innovative promotion that combines the thrill of football with the excitement of winning a fantastic prize,” said Mr. Joseph Omokhapue, the Marketing Director of Carloha Nigeria. “The Chery Tiggo 2 Pro is a perfect match for the energy and enthusiasm of football fans, and we look forward to seeing who will drive away in this smart technology.”

This collaboration with Chery aims to enhance the experience for football fans by offering an enticing incentive to participate in the UEFA EURO 2024 Championship predictions.

According to the firm, the partnership between Chery and ILOTBET brings added excitement to the UEFA EURO 2024 Championship and offers the yearning football fans an incredible opportunity to win a top-of-the-line Chery Tiggo 2 Pro.

“Chery Motors, a leading name in the automotive industry known for its innovation and commitment to excellence, has long been synonymous with high-quality vehicles that combine style, performance, and advanced technology,” the firm added.

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