FG pays 30 State Governments $138.5m SFTAS funds

By Favour Nnabugwu



The federal government has paid the sum of $138.5 million to 30 State governments  under the States Fiscal Transparency Accountability and Sustainability (SFTAS),

(SFTAS), is a facility of the World Bank to reward for the State governments of their efforts towards sustainable public debt management.  

Dr. Isyaka Mohammed of the Debt Management Office (DMO) said in Abuja, that  the states were paid for meeting the requirements for debt related Disbursements Link Indicators (DLIs).

The state governments (which were not named)  received the performance-based grants in 2018 and 2019.

In 2018, the benefiting states, received $29.5 million grants for meeting the requirements of DLI7, $1 million for DLI8 and $24 million for scaling through DLI9.

In 2019 the affected states received a total of $84 million as performance based grants broken down as $51 million for DLI7, $7 million for DLI8 and $25.5 million for DLI9. Thus bringing the total grants extended to the state governments to $138.5 million.

Dr. Mohammed identified the three debt-related Disbursements Link Indicators as (DLI) 7, 8 and 9.

According to him, DLI 7 focused on strengthening public debt management and fiscal responsibility framework for the state governments.

He added that DLI 8 was designed to improve the clearance/reduction of stock of domestic expenditure arrears of the state governments; DLI 9 was meant to mprove the  debt sustainability of the various states.

Dr. Mohammed said, “a combination of tools and approaches to support the State Governments in achieving the minimum requirements for the DLIs it supports” were employed.

The tools and approaches he identified were: guidelines; template and tools; physical or virtual workshops; and just-in-time advisory.

He explained that for DLI7.1 in 2018, 10 states met the three criteria  for the legal framework, while in 2019, 23 states met the three criteria.

For DLI7.2, a total of 19 out of 24 eligible states submitted quarterly debt report within 2 months of the end of the quarter in 2018.

According to him, “States’ adherence to the provisions of the Fiscal Responsibility Act on contracting state debts remained a major concern.”

He added that the capacity and  willingness of the state governments to prepare their Debt Sustainability Analysis (DSA) and Preparation of Medium-Term Debt Strategy (MTDS) also remained a challenge.
Dr. Mohammed suggested that debt reconciliation should be institutionalized with a standing committee comprising the staff of the DMO, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) the Federal Ministry of Finance and the Office oftheAccount- General of the Federation.

However in 2019, 31 out of 32 eligible states met the two months deadline and in 2020, only 15 met the DLR 7.2 requirement because the criteria became more stringent due to the inclusion of Debt Sustainability Analysis

Despite the encouraging performance of the state governments, Dr. Mohammed noted that there were still challenges to debt sustainability for the state governments

8 dead, 23 rescued as three-storey building collapse in Lagos

By Favour Nnabugwu


No fewer than eight persons have recovered dead while 23 persons have been rescued from the debris of a three-storey building that collapsed around 9.40pm on Sunday night at 32 Ibadan Street, Ebute Meta area of Lagos

According to a female resident, names are withheld, and the numbers of occupants trapped in the building are yet to be known.
Immediately the building collapsed, we began to call the emergency toll free lines 767 and 112 but they were not picking up their calls.”

It was gathered that it took the intervention of the past Managing Director, Adesina Tiamiyu who was contacted to get through to officials of Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) before men and equipment were mobilised to the scene for the incident.

Confirming the incident, Dr Olufemi Damilola Oke-Osanyintolu, PS LASEMA said on arrival at the incident scene, an old three-storey building comprising rooms and a parlour was discovered to have collapsed.”

“Further information gathered revealed that the incident occurred at about 10.56 pm with an undetermined number of people trapped.”

As search and rescue are still ongoing
22 males, one female were rescued alive out of the victims rescued two sustained severe injuries and have been taken to LASUTH for further treatment, while five males and three females were recovered dead.”

Rescued victim at the collapsed building

Tanzanian insurers hit by high management costs

By Favour Nnabugwu


High management costs are eating into the profits of insurance companies in Tanzania, according to Mr Khamis Suleiman, chairman of the Association of Tanzania Insurers (ATI).

Data provided by industry players show that the claims and management expense ratios are higher in Tanzania compared to Uganda and Kenya, reported The Citizen. For instance, in Tanzania, the management expense ratio stands at 46 percent while the claims ratio is 54 percent, amounting to a total of 100 percent

In Uganda and Kenya, the management expense ratio is 52 percent and 32 percent respectively, while the claims ratio stands at 42 percent and 62 percent respectively. The total for each market is 94 percent, leaving a profit margin of 6 percent.

Mr Suleiman revealed that, based on the data, an actuarial analysis was conducted and the advice arising therefrom is that players in Tanzania’s insurance industry should undertake steps to slash claims and expenses so as to increase profitability

Ghana:Regulator to issue rules on InsurTech

By Favour Nnabugwu


The National Insurance Commission (NIC) says it will issue regulations soon on InsurTech so as to safeguard customer interests, governance and security.

NIC deputy commissioner of insurance, Mr Micheal Kofi Andoh, speaking at a function organised as part of the Ghana Innolab InsurTech Accelerator Programme in Accra, noted that the new Insurance Act, 2021, has extensive provisions for InsurTechs in Ghana.

However, the regulations that would give effect to the legislation, and lend impetus for innovative solutions in the insurance sector, are yet to be finalised. He indicated that the regulations when issued would help develop the insurance industry.

He urged insurers to work with technology companies to help transform services in the insurance sector.

May Day: Masari approves N1.5bn for retirees, promise more funds

By Favour Nnabugwu


Katsina State Governor, Aminu Bello Masari announced the approval of N1.5 billion for the payment of benefits to those who retired from the state civil service between 2019 and 2020.

The said retirees are currently undergoing screening and verification exercise.

He assured that his administration will continue to inject more funds into payments of retirees benefits in the state to restore hope to those who put all their youthful years working towards the development of the state.

Masari gave the assurance while addressing workers in the state on the occasion of the 2022 May Day celebration held at the conference hall of the state’s local government service commission.

According to the Katsina Governor, the thrust of his restoration agenda is about taking and implementing measures that will give people of the state a brighter future.

Masari said so far, his administration is achieving this goal “through the many people oriented policies such as S-Power and the general improvement of welfare for the working class.”

He further noted that despite the dwindling resources, his administration has granted approval for the recruitment of 5,461 number of staff across all sectors to replace those who left the service.

The Katsina Governor also said he has granted approval for the replacement of 1000 teaching staff under SUBEB, 200 staff under the Judiciary as well as recruitment of 217 state indigenes under PHCA to effectively manage the state’s primary health care centres.

Masari urged workers in the state to reciprocate the gesture by ensuring a positive attitude, loyalty, commitment and dedication to work.