Richard Branson hints on foreign direct investment Nigeria 2018 attractions

British business magnate and founder of Virgin Group, Richard Branson, has presented a rare business appraisal on the enormous opportunities that global investors could take advantage of in Nigeria’s renewed efforts to provide over 80 million of her citizens currently without any form of electricity.


Writing on his personal blog, Branson, described recent reports that Nigeria’s mini grid electricity sector could yield profits in excess of about $9.2 billion to investors, as encouraging.


Granting, he did not state if he would be making any investments in the sector, Branson, however suggested to investors in mini grid power systems to head to Nigeria in 2018 if they were interested in taking from the $9.2 billion potential profit it offered.


“Energy access in Africa is close to my heart. Bringing clean, renewable power to people instead of building coal-fired power stations is absolutely essential if we are going to tackle climate change,” said Branson, in the review THISDAY obtained in Abuja yesterday. Notwithstanding challenges of foreign direct investment in Nigeria


He explained that: “Developing off-grid alternatives to complement the grid could create a $9.2B/year market opportunity for mini-grids and solar home systems that will save $4.4B/year for Nigerian homes and businesses. And there is large potential for scaling – installing 10,000 mini-grids of 100kw each can occur for 10 years and only meet 30 per cent of anticipated demand.


“The combination of large revenue opportunity (USD $9.2 billion per year), a supportive government, and a dynamic entrepreneurial environment unite to make Nigeria the ideal location. If you are an impact investor that wants to make a difference in energy access next year, I’d suggest a trip to Nigeria.”


He stated that even though investors have viewed the market for mini-grids as being too risky, making gaining access to project financing rare, and market rate debt expensive, he was, “really thrilled to hear this week that the Rocky Mountain Institute may have cracked the problem with their partners, the Nigerian Rural Electrification Agency and the World Bank.”


According to him, the organisations released an independent investment brief that touts Nigeria as the nation which can now unlock the nascent mini-grid market in Africa in 2018. He encouraged companies investing in Nigeria

“Nigeria is the biggest and most attractive off-grid opportunity in Africa. It has the largest economy in Sub-Saharan Africa (GDP of $405 billion), a population of 180 million people, and flourishing growth (15 per cent a year since 2000).


“A significant amount of the economy is already powered largely by small-scale generators (10–15 GW) and almost 50 per cent of the population have limited or no access to the grid. As a result, Nigerians and their businesses spend almost $14 billion annually on inefficient, polluting and noisy generation that is expensive, and suffers from poor quality,” Branson said in his review.

Otukpo community boils as four hacked to death

No fewer than four persons, including a vigilante chief have been hacked to death in a renewed communal clash that broke out in Ogobia community in Ugboju district, Otukpo LGA of Benue State late Saturday night.

Details of the attack are still sketchy at the moment, but multiple sources said that residents had fled the volatile community for fear of being killed.

Confirming the incident, the Benue State Police Public Relation Officer, ASP Moses Yamu, said four persons have so far been confirmed dead.

He, however, said the police were currently investigating the root cause of the sad incident.

“Yes, we are aware. Our men have been drafted to the area to calm the situation. Four persons have been confirmed dead so far.

“We are yet to ascertain the root cause of the problem. I shall keep you posted as soon as I get the whole details,” Yamu told our reporter on phone.

Meanwhile, efforts to reach the Otukpo LG chairman, Hon. George Alli were futile as his phone was switched off at the time of this report.

Recall that in September, over eight persons, including one Major Lawrence Ugbo, were killed in Ugboju district.

It was reported that war broke out in the community after some boys from Ugboju allegedly attacked a group of persons loyal to a former chairman of Otukpo.

Souce: Dailypost

2019: Uche Secondus reveals what Yorubas will get from PDP

Ahead of the 2019 general elections, the newly elected National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus, has promised the Yorubas that the South West region will get juicy positions in PDP government.
He also said the party was searching for a presidential candidate that will unite the entire country.

In an interview with Punch Newspaper, Secondus said: “We want a President that must unite the country. There must be peace before you can govern. You can see that the All Progressives Congress-led Federal Government is totally broken. For peace to reign, we need to change it.

“There is no peace in the North-East, there is restiveness in the South-South and the South–East, herdsmen are killing people in the North-Central and even South-West every day, and there is no part of the country that is safe.

“We need a person that will, therefore, unite the country. Under the APC’s watch, the unity of the country is threatened. We will provide a credible platform for national unity.

“We are going to work hard to win in all the zones. The South-West will get juicy positions in the government if we win and we hope to win. I will not say anything more than that.”


Boko Haram: APC planning to loot $1billion from excess crude account – Aisha

The co-convener of Bring Back Our Girls Group, Aisha Yesufu, has blasted the Buhari-led administration for approving $1billion from excess crude account to fight against Boko Haram in the North East.

Yesufu insisted that the APC government, known for criticising the past administration of Goodluck Jonathan for looting funds, was about to do same with funds approved by governors on Thursday during FEC meeting.

Aisha in her tweets hinted that recent attacks by Boko haram was another technique by APC to siphon public funds.

She tweeted, “Now all the recent attacks make sense! New billionaires are to be made. Time for looting and sharing while citizens die.

“It is well! Let’s keep up the sycophancy

“Today’s victims were yesterday’s survivors and tomorrow’s victims would be today’s survivors!

“The looting in the last administration that many of you now have the guts to talk about this was how some of us warned about it.”

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Friday criticized the decision of the federal government to withdraw the sum of $1billion from the Excess Crude Account to fight Boko Haram insurgency in the North East.


PDP reconciliation: Our focus in South West is to return party to power in 2019 – Agbaje, George, others

After two days of close- door meetings with aggrieved chairmanship candidates and party leaders in the south west, the chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Committee on Reconciliation, and Governor of Bayelsa State, Honourable Henry Seriake Dickson, has declared that the committee had achieved its mission in the region.

The Governor said the leaders of the party visited by the committee made clear statements about their commitments to the unity of the PDP in the South West.

The Special Adviser to Dickson on Media Relations, Mr. Fidelis Soriwei, quoted the governor as having made the comment while speaking with journalists shortly after a meeting with a former Governorship Candidate òf the party in Lagos State and PDP Chairmanship Aspirant, Chief Jimmy Agbaje, in Lagos on Friday.

Dickson and members of the committee had earlier held a close- door meeting with former Deputy National Chairman, South, Chief Olabode George, and other top members of the party in the South West in Lagos on Thursday night.

Present at the meeting were a former Minister of Works, Senator Adesewe Ogunlewe, former Deputy Governor of Lagos, Sen. Kowoworola Akerele-Bucknor, former Minister of State for Defence, Erelu Olusola Obada, former Minister of Transport, Chief Ebenezer Babatope, former National Vice Chairman, South West, Ishola Filani, former Minister, Elder Wole Oyelese, PDP chieftain, Othman Shodipe and others.

Dickson said that the PDP leaders in the South West displayed understanding on the need to have a strong united political platform to rescue the country from the current situation of hopelessness.

The Governor said the committee was pleased with the individual and collective responses and the willingness of the South West PDP leaders to build a strong and cohesive party ahead of the 2019 general elections.

He said, “We think that our reconciliation efforts in the South West have gone on very well, our party leaders have left nobody in doubt as to their commitment, genuine and abiding commitment, and loyalty to our great party.

“They understand that we have no option, and that all people of good will need to be in a formidable platform: a non-religion, non sectarian, all inclusive big umbrella that would unite our party more, unite our nation more and deliver Nigeria from the situation of hopelessness that we now find themselves.

“I think all of us are united to do what is right for our country and we are grateful as a committee to our party leaders and we count on them particularly the leadership of the party in the South West to reunite the party, to build a cohesive and strong party. We have assured them that moving forward, the South West would be a critical pillar of support upon which our future success will be built and they have got that message.

“We are pleased with the individual and collective responses and activities, and these are people we know very well so we have no cause to doubt them. So we are going with that message of solidarity and continued membership and service of our party back to the leadership at the national level on whose behalf we are here and in no distant time Nigerians will see that all PDP leaders would work hand in hand moving forward.”

In his remarks, the party’s Governorship candidate for Lagos State in the 2015 general elections, Agbaje, described the meeting as productive in the concerted bid to strengthen the party.

He reaffirmed his hope in the PDP and commended the efforts being made to address the observed hitches in the last convention.

Agbaje Who spoke in the presence of the South West National Vice Chairman of the PDP, Chief Eddy Olafeso, said that the membership of the party was engrossed in moves to retrieve power from the ruling All Progressive Congress in 2019.

“I think it has been a very good meeting moving forward. For some of us, it is about moving the party forward. There were hitches here and there, but I think we are trying to smoothen those rough edges to kind of smoothen them. And I can see that we are coming out much happier than when we went into the convention.

“We have every faith that the PDP is going to remain strong. We have every hope and we are working strongly to ensure that we take over power come 2019. To do that we are going to do everything possible, bring everybody on board, we are going to sell ourselves to the people and by God’s Grace we will be there.”

Earlier Chief Bode George who was also a contender for the PDP National Chairmanship spot had urged the PDP to put its house in order in accordance with justice, fairness and equity which he said were the three pillars on which the party was founded.

He stressed that the real battle before the party was in 2019, adding that the members should refrain from demonizing or decimating any other group within the party.

He said that he does not have anything against the emergence of Prince Uche Secondus as he (Chief Bode George) played a role in his political rise.

“Yes the convention has come and gone. No qualms about Secondus. I have played a role in his coming and he has perpetually reflected that in all he does. The visit today is so timely. I have refused to make further comments, because as a party man, I can not be part of those that will destroy the house that I built, that is not in our culture.

“I want to assure you that yes we have debated, we have analyzed, and we have come with the best suggested solutions to prepare us for the future.
The campaigns were like national presidential campaign. It was refreshing for me.

“Of course, to err is human, I am happy you are here, we will do the analyses, we will discuss among ourselves; I can assure you that at tthe end of the day, with people like you and the men in your committee, we will be able to analyze it, so that those who are going to be at the helm of affairs will now know better, as we head for the real battle.

“The real battle is out there one year from now. We must strictly put our house in order with justice fairness and equity as the three solid pillars of our party.”