The Federal Government has declared Tuesday, October 19th, 2021 as Public Holiday to mark this year’s Eid-ul-Mawlid Celebration in commemoration of the birth of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him).
Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, who made this declaration on behalf of the Federal Government, congratulates all Muslim faithful both at home and in the Diaspora for witnessing this year’s occasion.
He admonished all Nigerians to imbibe the spirit of love, patience and perseverance which are the virtues of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), adding that doing so would guarantee peace and security in the country.
Ogbeni Aregbesola enjoined Nigerians, particularly Muslims, to refrain from violence, lawlessness and other acts of criminality. As the indisputable leader of our race, we must show responsible leadership in Africa.
While calling for a stop to all divisive tendencies across the country, the Minister urges all Nigerians and the youth in particular, to embrace the virtues of hard work and peaceful disposition to fellow humans, irrespective of faith, ideology, social class and ethnicity and cooperate with President Muhammadu Buhari’s led-Administration in its effort to build a progressive and enviable nation that all citizens would be proud of.
All civil servants in the country have been given December 1, 2021 by the federal government to take their Covid-19 vaccine if they still want to maintain the jobs
This is as the Nigerian government has also revealed that it has removed South Africa, Brazil and Turkey from the list of countries where travellers have been restricted from coming into the country due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
This disclosure was made by the Chairman of the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on Covid-19, Boss Mustapha, who announced this during a press briefing about the activities of the committee on Wednesday in Abuja
Mustapha, who is also the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) said, “With effect from 1st December 2021, Federal Government employees shall be required to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination, or present a negative COVID-19 PCR test result done within 72 hours to gain access to their offices in all locations within Nigeria and our Missions.
“An appropriate service-wide advisory/circular will be issued to guide the process.’’
Mustapha explained that the government took the decision to lift the ban following an emergency meeting held before the briefing.
He also commended the United Kingdom for reviewing its travel protocols which allowed fully vaccinated travellers from Nigeria to get into the country without having to self-isolate after their arrival.
He said, “Over several months, four countries were placed on high-level restriction for travellers from such countries.
The PSC has after a review of the developments in these countries, decided to remove South Africa, Turkey, and Brazil from the restricted list.
“As you are aware, the UK has eased restrictions on fully vaccinated travellers from Nigeria to the UK with effect from 11th October. Nigeria welcomes this development and assures that the PSC shall continue to review Nigeria’s protocols based on global developments, science, and national experience. A revised protocol will be issued in the next 24 hours.”
Mustapha warned Nigerians to be vigilant during the forthcoming 2 major religious festivities, Salah and Christmas, noting that there would be increased passenger traffic in and out of the country coupled with the possibility of large gatherings.
Mustapha, who said the PSC would escalate surveillance and other control activities, urged the states and all Nigerians to increase their vigilance.
The Federal Government announced that it will commit N75,765,087,178.28 to carry out rehabilitation works on collapsed portions of roads in Nigeria this yelutide season
The Director, Highway Construction and Rehabilitation, Federal Ministry of Works and Housing, Mr Folorunso Esan, in Abuja at the meeting of stakeholders in the transport sector to plan and prepare for making the roads motorable and ensuring the safety of lives on the country’s highways.
He stated that the rehabilitation is to improve ease of travel for Nigerians during the yuletide seasons.
Mr Esan revealed that “The rainy season has affected many sections of the road across the country, hence the need for urgent palliative works to avoid further deterioration.
“Bad roads have been identified, indicating that the affected roads had been mapped out and contracts for the repairs would be awarded to contractors as part of the preparation for the ember months.
The total cost for the repair works is N75,765,087,178.28.”
The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, said that the government is doing all it can to move cargo by rail as it is faster and it makes the roads more durable.
“The President Muhammadu Buhari administration is making efforts to ensure that overloaded trucks no longer ply the nation’s highways.
You may not be aware of this, the government is building the Kano, Lagos and the Abeokuta pipeline and we want to see petrol tankers, timber going on railway and we hope this can relieve pressure on the road.
“I want to appeal to road users, NUPENG, NATO, NURTW and FRSC that we have to work together. Our responsibility is to ensure safety of the road users.
“All the data that we have about the road shows us that most of the accidents on the road are as a result of speed violation.
Fashola added that the Ministry will start restrictions with overloading stating that enforcement will commence from the tollgate in Lagos.
“If your vehicle is overloaded, you will pay fines, so the reason we have done that is that we want to make it cheaper to comply and make it very expensive to break the law,” he said.
He stated that the government hopes people will choose to comply instead of paying excessive penalties.
President Muhammadu Buhari is flanked by President, Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria, Sir. Muftau Oyegunle (R) and Commissioner for Insurance Sunday Thomas (L) at the event in State House Abuja.yesterday
President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday promised insurance industry practitioners that he will hasten the signing of the Consolidated Insurance Bill 2020 once it lands on his desk.
The President made the pledge during his conferment ceremony as the Grand Patron of the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN) by the Chairman and members of the Governing Council of the Institute, held at the State House, Abuja.
“Once the National Assembly has finished the process of reviewing the Consolidated Insurance Bill 2020 and is forwarded to me, I would speedily subject it to the necessary executive checks and sign it into law,” the President said.
The President, who commended the leadership of the Institute under Sir. Muftau Oyegunle for bringing some sanity into the Nigerian Insurance Industry as well as giving more visibility to the importance of the industry in national development, counselled them to do more.
“As you continue in your work of contributing to national development, I want to urge you to further increase the number of Nigerians and businesses that would benefit from and be benefited by the insurance industry.
“As you are well aware, you need to dispel misconceptions about the insurance industry presently held by a good number of Nigerians, especially as it relates to claims and need for insurance.
“As I have said on many occasions and would continue to reiterate, it is my commitment to leave a sustainable growth and development legacy by the end of this administration.
“Furthermore, the insurance industry as a whole must improve its efficiency and honour claims in good time,” he submitted.
President Buhari thanked players in the insurance industry, including the CIIN, for supporting this government as well as the kind words in appreciating the progress made in various areas of development.
Specifically, the President highlighted the contribution of N500,000,000 to support the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic in its early days in the country.
He noted that the granting of insurance cover for all frontline health workers at concessionary premiums contributed significantly to the globally acclaimed success of Nigeria’s National Response to the pandemic.
The President told the leadership of the Institute that he would count on their continuous support, as he rallies “all Nigerians to join our hands and hearts together with this administration to create the Nigeria we want.”
He also expressed appreciation on the conferment of the Fellowship award as the Grand Patron of the Institute, saying that he received it “with honour.”
President Buhari being decorated with the award Sir. Oyegunle solicits the president’s support in the area of increase patronage by Ministries, Departments and Agenciesof the Government through adequate insurances of government properties and also in the area of speedy passage into law, of the Consolidated Insurance Bill 2020,which has just been laid on the floor of the House.
On behalf of the insurance industry, Oyegunle appreciated the President for his sustained efforts to eliminate poverty in Nigeria.
He assured the President that the Institute and indeed the Nigerian Insurance Industry would continue to support his administration.
The CIIN President appreciated President Buhari for accepting the conferment of the Fellowship award of the CIIN, stressing that with the award, Buhari has become the Grand Patron of our great Institute.
Insurance and pension journalists have remained a strong voice in bridging the gaps in the nation’s financial sysyem.
Prince (Dr) Feyisayo Soyewo, the Executive Chairman, Prestige Insurance Brokers Ltd stated this at in his speech delivered at the 2021 Annual Conference of The National Association Of Insurance And Pension Correspondents (NAIPCo) said it is heartwarming to note that NAIPCO has maintained the strands in the sectors
He disclosed that my passionate affection for the media which dates back to my school days when I was an active member of the Press Club. It has always been my conviction and belief that the media is the conscience of the nation and as such enough space should be created for them to operate, he added.
“I must at this point commend NAIPCO for its very effective reportage of events, particularly relating to the insurance industry. According to him the Association of Insurance Journalists grow over the years, from the activities of the few avant-gardes, like the veteran Kelvin Egerue of the famous Champion Newspapers, Bisi Ladipo of Business Times and Etim Joshua Nse, of the Guardian Newspapers, among others. These gentlemen and lady did excellently well in laying the molding blocs upon which your association is building effectively, he added.
“Reflecting on my tenure as President of the Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers brings to me fresh memory of my exciting walk and work with journalists. They assisted the Council and the Insurance Broking sector in no small measure in achieving the cardinal focus of my tenure, which was significantly anchored on image making and strategic engagement. It was also a time when the Council had to fight its legal battles with the regulator with regards to the acceptance of the NCRIB Act 2003. It is heartwarming that the Council, won the various legal battles through partly the positive support and positive reportage of the media at the time. Part of the fallout of the whole episode has today helped to put our Council in the headlines and brand prominence, for which I am personally grateful.
According to him the theme of this Conference: “Covid-19: Impact of Financial Inclusion: Opportunities for Insurance and Pensions Sectors” cannot be more apt than now, when the entire world is just heaving a sigh of relieve from the ruinous impact of the pandemic.
Prince (Dr) Soyewo said it makes little news that the pandemic disrupted the usual work culture and affected every facet of human endeavors never experienced in recent history. The financial services sector of which insurance and pensions are critical players also had their fair share of the impact of the pandemic. For insurance industry, aside from the long cessation of work, necessitating remote working conditions, the pandemic led to the need to review rates and revisit some of the policy conditions and exclusions earlier permissible for some insurances. I want to believe that the pension sector also had its own side of the pandemic which they would be able to relate to us more explicitly at this auspicious forum.
He said it is heartwarming that many individuals and operators have taken the whole pandemic experience as an opportunity for a paradigm shift in all their undertakings. It has led to retooling of operational strategies by corporate institutions leading to higher profitability and easier ways of doing things virtually and getting results, he added
Insurance and Pension industries operators need to leverage on the opportunities of the COVID-19 pandemic to grow the sectors and contribute to the National economy.
The operators of these two critical sectors are also charged on creativity and innovation in their products development and service delivery by focusing on meeting the needs of the people for enhanced financial capacity.
The former Director-General, Lagos State Pension Commission (LASPEC), Mrs. Folashade Onanuga, while delivering the theme paper of the 2021 national conference of the National Association of Insurance and Pension Correspondents (NAIPCO) “COVID-19 Impact On Financial Inclusion: Opportunities For Insurance & Pension Sectors” in Lagos today.
Onanuga said while the pandemic has caused severe disruptions, opportunities have also been created to grow customer base on account of the obvious fact that there is no real social security arrangement by government in the event of sudden and unexpected events and so citizens need to make plans by themselves for wellness both in business and family life.
According to her, “Economic shocks like sudden loss of job, illness or death can send people living just above the poverty line into abject poverty. So whether one is in the formal or informal sector, there is the need to have a safety net. The sudden and unforeseen calamities created by the pandemic has highlighted the need to plan for unforeseen circumstances and even early retirement.
To take advantage of these opportunities, she said, the pensions and insurance industries must remain committed to the inclusive growth of the Nigerian economy, creating opportunities for lower income groups to be part of the broader financial system.
She noted that, “Financial inclusion is achieved when adult Nigerians have access to affordable financial products and services that meet their needs. Financial inclusion can only be achieved when financial transaction processes and documentations are transparent, simplified and seen as meeting needs of the people and at the same time being beneficial to the financial services sector.”
“Speaking of insurance, opportunities exist to increase insurance penetration and the customer base, both in the retail and corporate segments of the market if the right moves are made. Insurance penetration has remained at an average of 0.4% of GDP driven largely by a general lack of understanding and awareness of the benefits of insurance products, specifically amongst low-income Nigerians. We need to build trust. The Banking Sector has managed to bridge this gap to an extent.
“Attempts have been made to improve the performance of the insurance industry through regulation and legislation – new capitalization requirements have been announced and reviews of several key laws are being discussed to bring them up to current realities,” Mrs Onanuga added.
In improving access to insurance and making products and services more inclusive, we are discovering that there is a role for all stakeholders to play.
For pension sector, according to LASPEC boss, “inclusive growth in pensions must recognize the peculiarity of the population segment being addressed, adding that This recognition must have an impact on how products are designed and how lower income segments of the population interact with pension funds. If you consider what happens in developed economies, there are different kinds of plans to meet different needs.”
For the trust gap to be bridged, Mrs. Onanuga called on the National Pension Commission (PenCom) to take more advantage of digitization in pension operations to make transactions easier and more accessible by taking example of what the banks have done to provide banking services to lower-income population groups by ensuring that structures are put in place before the release of pension laws to ensure that all aspects of the Law are implementable