NUJ Lagos Council inaugurates Secretariat Jan. 28

NUJ Lagos Council inaugurates Secretariat Jan. 28

Mr Adeleye Ajayi, Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Lagos State Council

 

A former Ogun Governor, Chief Olusegun Osoba, and Rev. Mother Esther Ajayi, Founder, Love of Christ Generation Church C&S, will inaugurate the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Lagos State Council Secretariat on Saturday, Jan. 28.

 

The project began about four years ago by the previous administration, has  been completed and is ready to be put to use immediately after the inauguration, courtesy of Rev. Mother Ajayi.

 

The completion of the project is a testimony to the maxim that government is a continuum as exemplified by the Adeleye Ajayi-led Lagos NUJ Executive Council, a statement on Thursday by the Chairman, Iyalla Secretariat Building Committee, Mrs Adenike Sodipo.

 

She expressed her appreciation to Rev. Mother Ajayi and the Lagos State Government for making the remodelling dream a reality.

 

“Lagos NUJ has shown that government is a continuum because as a country we were used to seeing a project becoming abandoned after the originator of the project left office.

 

“This secretariat remodeling completion is a symbol of progress in our union and it is to say to the world that notwithstanding our challenges as journalists, we deserve the best of life,” Sodipo said.

 

The Chairman of the council, Mr Adeleye Ajayi, commended his predecessor, Dr Qasim Akinreti for starting the project, saying its completion during his own administration symbolised unity in the union.

 

“Our Lagos Council is a progressive and united council. We are inaugurating the remodelled building to the glory of God and for the comfort of journalists who deserve the best.

 

“With this befitting edifice, every journalist can beat his or her chest because we now have something to be proud of, ” he said.

 

The chairman also commended the executive administration of Mrs Funke Fadugba, for her foresight in acquiring the original one-storey building for Lagos journalists two decades ago.

 

He recalled that the Fadugba-led Lagos NUJ Executive members bought the one-storey building between 2002-2005, and it served as a secretariat for the Council till it was remodeled.

 

“From the one-storey building bought by our great leader, Mrs Funke Fadugba has come this two-storey state-of-the-art building that will be inaugurated on Saturday,” he said.

 

Ajayi listed facilities in the building to include an ICT centre, conference hall, offices and an open space for social gathering.

 

The secretariat is also fitted with a 24-hour wireless internet as well as a workstation for journalists willing to write their daily reports and send to their offices.

 

The high point of the day will be the conferment of Grand Matron Award on Rev. Mother Ajayi, who helped in the completion of the building, and for her service to humanity

AU-NEPAD, stakeholders brainstorm on Nigeria`s 10-year devt plan

AU-NEPAD, stakeholders brainstorm on Nigeria`s 10-year devt plan

 

African Union Development Agency-New Partnership for Africa`s Development (AUDA-NEPAD) and stakeholders from private sectors, Civil Society Organisations, media and others converged on Abuja to brainstorm on strategies for national development through AUDA-NEPAD activities.

The programme tagged `National multi-stakeholder consultation on the evaluation of the first 10 years implementation plan and the formulation of the successor plan`, organised by the AUDA-NEPAD, is a second 10 years implementation plan of agenda 2063.

It is focused on incubating high-impact projects to translate AU`s continental strategic development frameworks into national development priorities.

Speaking, Gloria Akobundu, National Coordinator AUDA-NEPAD, said the gathering was necessitated by the expiration of the first 10-year implementation plan from 2014 to 2023 and the need to draw up the second 10-year implementation plan, commencing from 2023 to 2033.

Represented by Mr Hakeem Akande, Acting Head of Planning, Research, Innovation and Digitisation, Akobundu further said that the forum was one of the tools for assessing and reporting on the implementation of agenda 2063.

“It is pertinent to note that the continent developmental guide, agenda 2063 which was adopted in January 2015 at the 24th AU`s Assembly of Head of States and government.

“It is aimed at strengthening actions in accelerating development and good government in Africa.

“As you are aware, the first 10-year implementation plan was adopted, covering seven aspirations, 20 goals, 13 fast tract projects and 39 priority areas with 255 targets of agenda 2063. “

Speaking on objective of the consultation, Mrs Ifeoma Okoye said the forum was to x-ray the past progress of the first 10-year plan, identifying the gaps and strategies ways forward for more progress, hence the need to engage stakeholders.

Speaking in an interview, Akande  explained that the forum was to further look into the AU agenda 2063 framework which is all about good governance and delivering to Nigerians in particular and Africa in general.

“So far, it started in 2015 and it was a 50-year developmental plan to end in 2063, you know like most plan, you must have some terminal or mid way where you will stop.

“Look back, review what you’ve done, and look at the impacts, challenges see whether what you’ve put in place like the blueprint of the framework is working or not working and then go back and re-strategize. “

According to him, the reason behind the gathering is to evaluate to bring out the best from the stakeholders so as to have a successful second 10-year implementation plan.

Speaking further on challenges, Akande said the expectation of the first 10-year implementation plan was high but was disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic which ravaged the global economic activities in last three years.

Also, retired Group Capt. Mohamed Gumi, member, National Institute for Security Studies Abuja, said he was interested in the forum which sought to prepare Nigeria for the next 10 years implementation plan.

According to Gumi, the preparedness can only be achieved only when the nation knew where it is coming from in terms of the first 10-year plan before it could successfully implement the second plan.

“That means we have to look at the first 10-year implementation plan.

“ As Nigeria may be aware, the AU reviewed itself and said where does it want Africa to be in 50 years to come, and the union came up with a blueprint of action called `The Africa we want` which was titled agenda 2063. “

According to him, all countries of Africa including Nigeria were to key into that continental agenda and Nigeria keyed into the first 10-year implementation plan.

“And, 10 years after we are here today to critically examine, assess the level of implementation of the first 10-year plan and after that, we will now fashion out the roadmap for the second 10-year implementation plan. “

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Agenda 2063 was adopted by the African leaders to serve as the continent`s blueprint and master plan for transforming Africa into the powerhouse of the future.

Cross-border smuggling hampering fuel distribution – FG

Cross-border smuggling hampering fuel distribution – FG

Fuel tankers

 

The Federal Government says the current Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) distribution hitch is heightened by the activities of cross-border smugglers who divert petroleum products to sell at higher prices in neighbouring countries.

The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) made this known in an update it issued on Friday on the supply and distribution of PMS nationwide.

It said that the smugglers were diverting PMS meant for the Nigerian market to neighbouring countries where the prices are significantly higher than the regulated price.

The authority said it was engaging and collaborating with the Nigeria Customs Service to address the issue.

It noted that the price arbitrage between Nigeria and neighbouring countries had continued to grow due to inflation and regional impact of the Russia-Ukraine conflict on global energy value chain.

The authority added that international freight rates and coastal vessels charter rates contributed to the development.

It further said that the ongoing government effort to rehabilitate strategic Nigerian roads ahead of the rainy season had necessitated rerouting of tanker trucks conveying petroleum products to alternative roads.

This, it said, had increased transit time and associated cost of product transportation.

“The NMDPRA and key stakeholders including NNPC Ltd. have put various measures in place to address the issues.

“The measures include modest adjustment in the cost of product transportation to cater for the impact of high price of Automotive Gas Oil (AGO), known as Diesel on transporters, while making special provision of diesel to marketers at a reduced price,” it said.

It listed others as automation of products sales interface and emplacement of a monitoring system in collaboration with government security agencies for distribution of products to retail outlets.

The measures also included extended operating hours both at the loading depots and some selected filing stations, rehabilitation of critical fuel distribution road network through Federal Government’s tax credit scheme by the NNPC and regular stakeholders’ engagements; among others.

It said it had reinforced its monitoring teams and appropriate sanctions to checkmate the activities of erring marketers who were distorting the planned product flow to designated outlets in order to profiteer from price arbitrage have been emplaced.

“As a medium to long term measure, cost-efficient means of transportation, including Autogas conversions and pipeline rehabilitation, are being implemented.

“This will be complemented by end-to-end process automation across the value chain.

“The authority wishes to reassure all Nigerians that there is PMS sufficiency of over 1.6 billion litres as of Jan. 26, 2023 both on land and marine,” it said.

The authority said the NNPC Ltd had additionally made firm commitment to supply more volume of PMS for the months ahead to guarantee national energy security and nationwide availability at the government regulated price.

“NMDPRA appreciates the collaborative efforts of some patriotic oil marketing companies who, despite the glaring incentives to engage in illegal price arbitrage, have stood steadfast and operated responsibly within the approved pricing limits.

“We reassure all Nigerians that NMDPRA would continue to work passionately to ensure energy security and continuous collaboration with relevant stakeholders to restore normalcy in the PMS supply and distribution network within the shortest possible time,” it said

Govt plans generation of electricity from ethanol

Govt plans generation of electricity from ethanol

By Fatima Saka

The Federal Government of Nigeria has disclosed its plan to be the largest producer of sugar on the African continent in the next 10 years and generate electricity from ethanol.

The Executive Secretary of the National Sugar Development Council, Mr. Zach Adedeji, made this statement while addressing a press conference on Wednesday in Abuja.

According to the Executive Secretary, the country is rolling out a 10-year Master Plan aimed at massive increment in sugar production that would make Nigeria satisfy the sugar needs of the African continent.

Adedeji revealed that the Nigerian Sugar Master Plan (NSMP), a 10-year road map policy that seeks to meaningfully revitalize the once vibrant sugar sub-sector and make Nigeria one of the leading sugar-producing nations within the continent, was first initiated in 2012.

He further explained that it is an ambitious and well-thought-out policy framework for the sector, which seeks to bring about a complete overhaul to enable Nigeria to become self-sufficient in sugar production, create direct and indirect jobs, generate electricity, become a notable global sugar producer, and produce ethanol for industrial use.

I must say that we are quite pleased with the tremendous successes weve recorded with regard to the refining of imported raw sugar. In fact, Nigeria has since met its raw sugar refining capacity, which is commendable.

“But like Ive always stated, the successes we have achieved in the area of raw sugar refining must be replicated in our backward integration project (BIP), which is a major component of the NSMP and has the capacity to tackle rising unemployment and also address other socio-economic challenges facing the country,

“We can only celebrate as a sector if we are able to grow cane and produce raw sugar locally. I know its a tough job, but we are more than ready to achieve our target objectives given our commitment and efforts. Also, within the first 10 years of the NSMP, weve been able commission a multi-billion dollar sugar factory and estate in Sunti, Niger State, creation of over one million direct and indirect jobs, the takeoff of the moribund Nigerias foremost sugar company Bacita, Kwara State, and several other landmark feats recorded in the last 10 years in the sugar sector.

It is a known fact that the nations sugar sector has witnessed some significant reforms in the last 10 years. The sector is now well regulated, roles of stakeholders are clearly defined, formulation of enabling laws and policies to aid growth and heavy reliance on modern technology to drive the process,” he said.

He said going forward, all the activities of the council would solely be driven by research, data, innovation and modern technology, adding that the Nigeria Sugar Institute located in Ilorin, Kwara state would assist in the sugar revolution.

He noted that with the Federal Governments approval of the commencement of phase two of the NSMP, with actual implementation to begin this year through 2033, there is going to be turnaround in the fortune of the country which would lead it to the summit of sugar production on the continent and creating massive employment for the citizens and generating electricity through sugar for the populace.

“This is an ambitious and well-thought-out move that will drive and revamp the sector in order to restore Nigerias lost glory as far as sugar production in the continent is concerned. Raw sugar quota allocation would be given based on the performance of BIP operators and not based on the size of their refineries. Weve communicated this to our stakeholders, especially the operators. In fact, we even made them to sign recommitment forms for the BIP, indicating that they are ready to act in line with the new order put in place by the council. It is not a witch-hunt, but a deliberate and well thought-out measure to accelerate our drive to self sufficiency in sugar production,” he added.

He noted that the nation was upgrading from sugar industry to sugarcane based industry, and would be focusing on producing ethanol from sugar for power.

He said the new Master plan for 10 years start now and the industry is open for new investors.

He said: In the next ten years we should be able to fill the African market with sugar from Nigeria. Satisfy our local consumption and export to the rest of Africa. We hope to be the largest exporter of sugar in Africa soon.

NUJ Lagos Council inaugurates Secretariat Jan. 28 I

NUJ Lagos Council inaugurates Secretariat Jan. 28

Mr Adeleye Ajayi, Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Lagos State Council

 

 

A former Ogun Governor, Chief Olusegun Osoba, and Rev. Mother Esther Ajayi, Founder, Love of Christ Generation Church C&S, will inaugurate the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Lagos State Council Secretariat on Saturday, Jan. 28.

 

The project began about four years ago by the previous administration, has  been completed and is ready to be put to use immediately after the inauguration, courtesy of Rev. Mother Ajayi.

 

The completion of the project is a testimony to the maxim that government is a continuum as exemplified by the Adeleye Ajayi-led Lagos NUJ Executive Council, a statement on Thursday by the Chairman, Iyalla Secretariat Building Committee, Mrs Adenike Sodipo.

 

She expressed her appreciation to Rev. Mother Ajayi and the Lagos State Government for making the remodelling dream a reality.

 

“Lagos NUJ has shown that government is a continuum because as a country we were used to seeing a project becoming abandoned after the originator of the project left office.

 

“This secretariat remodeling completion is a symbol of progress in our union and it is to say to the world that notwithstanding our challenges as journalists, we deserve the best of life,” Sodipo said.

 

The Chairman of the council, Mr Adeleye Ajayi, commended his predecessor, Dr Qasim Akinreti for starting the project, saying its completion during his own administration symbolised unity in the union.

 

“Our Lagos Council is a progressive and united council. We are inaugurating the remodelled building to the glory of God and for the comfort of journalists who deserve the best.

 

“With this befitting edifice, every journalist can beat his or her chest because we now have something to be proud of, ” he said.

 

The chairman also commended the executive administration of Mrs Funke Fadugba, for her foresight in acquiring the original one-storey building for Lagos journalists two decades ago.

 

He recalled that the Fadugba-led Lagos NUJ Executive members bought the one-storey building between 2002-2005, and it served as a secretariat for the Council till it was remodeled.

 

“From the one-storey building bought by our great leader, Mrs Funke Fadugba has come this two-storey state-of-the-art building that will be inaugurated on Saturday,” he said.

 

Ajayi listed facilities in the building to include an ICT centre, conference hall, offices and an open space for social gathering.

 

The secretariat is also fitted with a 24-hour wireless internet as well as a workstation for journalists willing to write their daily reports and send to their offices.

 

The high point of the day will be the conferment of Grand Matron Award on Rev. Mother Ajayi, who helped in the completion of the building, and for her service to humanity.

Association seeks govts support to reposition cotton sub-sector

Association seeks govts support to reposition cotton sub-sector

The National Cotton Association of Nigeria (NACOTAN), has appealed to government at all levels to support cotton farmers and ginners.

The association made the appeal in a communiqué issued on Thursday in Abuja after the end of the 1st Nigeria International Cotton Summit and Expo 2023.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the two-day event which held from Jan. 17 to Jan. 18 in Abuja had the theme: “Revamping the Cotton Value Chain’’.

The communiqué signed by the Director of Administration, NACOTAN, Mr Ado Sule and Chairman, Conference Organising Committee, Mr Felix Egbamuno, also urged the Federal Government to revive the textile and garment sub-sectors.

While emphasising the urgent need to revamp the Cotton Textile and Garment (CTG) sub sector, the communiqué said that it was crucial in curbing smuggling of cotton products into the country.

“Revamping the CTG sector is significantly hinged on reducing smuggling at the country’s borders.

“Government must provide a more aggressive control at country’s borders by setting up anti-smuggling task force at all points of our borders.’’

The association said that the Federal and state governments must as a matter of urgency eliminate multiple taxation on CTG industries.

According to the communiqué, there is the need for earnest desire of all the industry players in the CTG sector to bring about a turn-around in the fortunes of this major sector of the manufacturing industry in Nigeria.

“NACOTAN must ensure that cotton farming in Nigeria is rebranded to become competitive and attractive, especially to the teeming youths of our nation,’’it said.

The association also urged military and paramilitary agencies to patronise the Nigerian cotton, textile and garment sector in sourcing fabrics, uniforms and blankets for soldiers, prisoners and others.

The association urged the Federal Government to re-introduce the Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP) to promote cotton farming in the country.

The communiqué said that the sudden stoppage of the (ABP) after two years created problem of continuity.

The association emphasised the need for the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to fine-tune the programme to run for at least five years to achieve its aim.

“NACOTAN must alert the CBN of the need to fine-tune the programme to run for at least five years in order that the full impact of the programme can be seen.

“NACOTAN must as a matter of priority, convince the need to pay the outstanding balance of input supplies and service providers who executed their contracts fully but whose payments have been put on hold since 2020.’’

According to the communiqué, a committee will be set up to follow up on policies of government that are geared toward repositioning the cotton sub-sector.

The communiqué promised that NACOTAN would continue to play its role as the umbrella body for the Cotton, Textiles and Garment sector of Nigeria by promoting synergy among stakeholders in the sector.

Digital technologies’ll create $13 trillion in economic value by 2025, says NITDA MD

Digital technologies’ll create $13 trillion in economic value by 2025, says NITDA MD

*Tasks institutions on development of Digital Economy

By Stephen Olufemi Oni, Ilorin

The Director General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, has disclosed that digital technologies have the potential to create a whopping $13 trillion in economic value by 2025, noting that Digital Economy is creating new opportunities for businesses, governments, people and institutions to collaborate and innovate.

Abdullahi, who spoke on Wednesday in Ilorin, the Kwara state capital, at a Digital Economy Sensitisation Lecture Series 2023 organised by the Centre For Digital Economy, Kwara state University (KWASU), Malete, said Digital
Economy is driven by advances in technology such as the internet, mobile devices, and cloud computing, adding that these technologies are making it possible for businesses to reach new markets and customers, and for individuals to access information, goods and services from anywhere in the world.

He said: “In order to fully reap the potential benefits of the Digital Economy, we have to aggregate our resources together as government, people and institutions. The triple helix model is an interaction among these three for the purpose of fostering the economic transformation of various sectors of the economy.

“In this case, our Ivory Towers are the main source of impacting knowledge, research and intellectual discussions. The people and industries being the principal vehicle of commercialisation while the government retains its crucial regulatory role. Government’s role is therefore critical in the development of the Digital Economy because it must create an environment that is conducive for innovation, investment and growth.”

The NITDA MD, who was represented by a Director in the Agency, Oladejo Olawunmi, said institutions play a critical role in the development of the Digital Economy, adding that they are the engines of innovation providing the knowledge, skills, and research necessary for the Digital Economy to grow.

He said: “It is important that these institutions align their activities and curriculum with current societal demands and provide opportunities for students to gain hands-on experience through internships at relevant organisations. The government, through organisations like NITDA, can support these institutions by providing infrastructure, grants, and regulations that foster capacity development.

“At the same time, it is important to remember that the people are at the heart of the Digital Economy. They are the consumers, workers, and entrepreneurs driving its growth and the ones who stand to benefit the most from the new opportunities and services it provides. It is crucial that the Digital Economy is inclusive and sustainable, benefiting everyone.”

In his address, the Acting Vice Chancellor of the Kwara state University (KWASU), Prof.
Shaykh Luqman Jimoh, who lauded NITDA for the donation of equipment through the partnership of Ilorin Innovation Hub to the institution, said the Centre for Digital Economy is one other way the institution is contributing to the growth of her immediate and extended environment, by bringing together key players in the digital economy world to sensitise participants of the diverse ways the digital economy can be jointly harnessed by the government, the people and the institutions to drive the economy and improve the general quality of life of the people.

He said: “In the history of the world, digital technologies have advanced more rapidly than any other innovation, so much so that the world has transformed into a digital world where everyone; governments, organisations and individuals, have become dependent on some form of digital support, however simple.

“The KWASU Centre for Digital Economy (CDE) is in collaboration with Ilorin Innovation Hub and is backed by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), for Digital Economy training. The training Centre is in Ilorin and is focused on all the processes, infrastructure, and regulations involved in conducting business across markets via the internet.”

End

Expert lauds CBN for raising MPR to 17.5 %

Expert lauds CBN for raising MPR to 17.5 %

CBN Building

CBN Building

 

A financial expert, Dr Samuel Nzekwe, has commended the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for raising the Monetary Policy Rate from 16.5 per cent to 17.5 per cent.

Nzekwe, also a former President, Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN), gave the commendation in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), while reacting to the outcome of the MPC Meeting, on Tuesday in Ota, Ogun.

NAN reports that the CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, on Tuesday in Abuja, after the two days apex bank’s MPC Meeting, announced the increased of MPR from 16.5 per cent to 17.5 per cent.

The others key instruments were retained at Cash Reserves Ratio (CRR) at 32.5 per cent and Liquidity Ratio at 30 per cent, respectively.

This is the fifth time the CBN would increase the interest rate in spite of the advice from manufacturers and some key stakeholders.

The MPR is the baseline interest rate in an economy; every other interest rate used within that economy is built on it.

Nzekwe noted that the MPC’s decision to increase the MPR was a welcome development in order to tightening funds circulation in the country.

The former ANAN president said that this development would make the cost of funds to be higher from banking system and discourage people from borrowing.

“The apex bank is working toward mopping up a lot of money and curb inflationary trend in the country.

“The weekly cash withdrawal limit placed on people by CBN and increasing the MPR were all stems by the regulation to ensure that the nation’s inflation rate is drastically reduced,” he said.

Nzekwe explained that Nigeria was having a higher inflation rate due to the crisis in Ukraine, Russia, Europe and all over America.

He noted that the country imported its raw materials and others goods from these countries, like Europe and America, adding that hyper inflation in these countries was likely to impact on Nigeria.

Nzekwe said that the decision of the MPC would help to curb the tendency of this higher inflation on the country

Plans underway by FG to create database for missing persons, says NHRC

Plans underway by FG to create database for missing persons, says NHRC

Tony Ojukwu, Executive Secretary, National Human Rights Commission (NHRC)

 

Plans are underway by the Federal Government to create a database that would comprehensively capture the details of missing persons in the country.

The Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Tony Ojukwu, made this known at a meeting of stakeholders involved in the compilation of missing persons in Nigeria.

The meeting was organised by the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development in collaboration with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and NHRC.

Ojukwu, who was represented by the Director of Human Rights Institute, Mrs. Ifeoma Nwakama, stated that the family members of the missing persons had continued to seek answers from government on the whereabouts of their loved ones.

Speaking on plans by government to locate such persons in the country, the NHRC boss said: “Looking inward so to say, at the NHRC, we have always played a key role in this issue because when you talk about missing persons, there are human rights issues, there are humanitarian issues and there are overlap between when you talk about missing persons.

“We can no longer refer to only what’s happening in the Northeast. Where is it not happening? It is happening all over the country.

“One of the issues it throws up is the issue of displacement, issue of family separation and the issue of people not being accounted for, and no responsible government would leave this matter without addressing it

“So, it is a matter that should be a source of concern for all of us representing one agency or the other.

“I also believe that we will soon begin to see ourselves the role that we can play in bringing this to fruition to the extent that we will get to that stage where we will have a proper database,” he said.

Ojukwu said that the government has done a lot to attend to do some sort of tracing to find out what is happening because when you listen to families, and it is a good strategy to invite family of these persons.

Also speaking, Hajiya Sadiya Farouk, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development said that the latest figures showed that out of the 64,000 disappeared persons across Africa, Nigeria recorded 25,000 missing persons including over 14,000 children.

Farouk, represented by the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Nasir Gwarzo said:”the federal government through the mandate of the Ministry shall establish a National Mechanism to raise awareness about the plight of the missing.

“Also, the needs of their families, establish a collaborative network between and among different stakeholders where methodologies in approaching the question of missing persons and their families, will be addressed,”’Farouk said.

She said that irregular migration by many Nigerians, including children through the Sahara Desert and the Mediterranean Sea in search of safety and better life contributed to great risk of disappearance.

”To date, there is no reliable national data on the number of missing persons in Nigeria because there is no official register.

” Currently the country has no National structure or Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) to address the humanitarian consequences of disappearances.

“It is very understandable why Nigeria as a country and this Ministry in charge of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development is very concerned about this often-neglected and tragic humanitarian and social issue.” she said.

According to her, the ministry will rely on the capacity of Law Enforcement Agencies to investigate cases of the missing persons to bring closure to the families of the missing.

She said It was also important to address the root causes of the problem which often include poverty, discrimination and political instability.

Mr Yann Bonzon, head of ICRC Nigeria Delegation, said people are left with the anguish of not knowing the fate or whereabouts of a loved one

Bonzon said that at least 25,000 people reportedly missing in the country was likely to be a tip of the iceberg.

According to him, behind every missing person is a family. People that are left with the anguish of not knowing the fate or whereabouts of a loved one.

“These are the numbers of cases that have been registered with the ICRC and Nigerian Red Cross Society. We know that this number is likely just a tip on of the iceberg.

“But what this number also represents is many thousands of people – thousands more than the number of people missing itself – who are impacted by that absence,” Bonzon said.

He said that the ICRC know that no fewer than 13,000 families in Nigeria are seeking missing loved ones.