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FEC approves N245bn for road, other projects

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Following complaints by various state governments, the Federal Executive Council yesterday approved N105 billion as intervention funds for 44 road projects in the states.

The eight-hour council meeting, presided by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, also approved N80.199 billion as revised sum for the second section of the 84km Lagos-Ibadan road project.

Also approved was N38.034 billion for the construction of the 72 kilometre 9th-mile Orikam Road in Enugu State. About N10 billion will draw from the Ecological Fund to finance the contract awarded to RCC Limited.

The Minister of Works, Power and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, told State House reporters that the council approved N18.874 billion for repair works at the Third Mainland Bridge in Lagos State.

The minister said the contract was awarded to an Italian construction firm, Borini Prono, which constructed the bridge.

He said 33 piles of the bridge would be replaced in the first phase of the project with a total of 177 piles to be strengthened.

Fashola added that the contract would also assess the expansion joints of the bridge and replace the worn-out ones.

He said the contract, with a 27-month completion period, was captured as ‘Bridge Renovation and Repair Contracts’ in the yet-to-be-passed 2018 Appropriation Bill.

The minister said though the immediate past administration conceived the award of the contract in 2011, it never made budgetary allocation for it.

He said council also approved N2.54 billion for the redesign and construction of the Illie bridge in Osun State.

Fashola said the FEC also approved N120 million for the purchase of 50 circuit breakers for the Transmission Company of Nigeria.

The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, said the FEC approved the repairs of narrow gauge railway line to increase the speed of trains just as well as N1.2bn for the purchase of wagons and coaches.

Amaechi said the council raised a committee comprising himself as well as the Ministers of Niger Delta Affairs, Information and Power Works and Housing to inspect the East-West Road.

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NITDA introduced NIIEV to unlock national ICT potentials – Pantami

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The Director General of National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, has given a clearer explanation on the reasons behind the introduction of Nigeria ICT Innovation and Entrepreneurship Vision (NIIEV).

The introduction followed President Muhammadu Buhari’s matching order to the agency at e-Nigeria 2017, where he charged NITDA to develop policies and strategies that will change Nigeria’s narrative from being a tech-consuming to a tech-producing country.

To unlock our national potential, NITDA proposes a number of urgent measures to connect, educate and enable digital innovation.

In a statement issued by the Head, Corporate Affairs and External Relations, Mrs. Hadiza Umar, the DG revealed that NIIEV comprises of policy recommendations and incentives on the key components for building a technology ecosystem and are categorised into three themes.

The themes include Digital Infrastructure; Education Reform, skills Development and R&D; and supporting the Ecosystem for Innovative Entrepreneurship.

Business Hilights recalls that while hosting the maiden edition of the ICT Innovation and Entrepreneurship stakeholders meeting on the 31st October 2017, Dr Pantami averred that “The objective of the meeting was to collectively identify the challenges of stakeholders and identify strategies to address them for a thriving technology ecosystem. Several representatives from Government, Hubs, banks, investor networks, academia, media and technology entrepreneurs were in attendance”.

Currently, NITDA through its subsidiary, the Office for ICT Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIIE) has worked directly with entrepreneurs, hubs and hub networks to review the best practices across Africa and around the world to support digital transformation in Nigeria.

As part of the Agency’s rulemaking process, the document has been subjected to internal reviews by some key Government agencies where insightful feedback and updates were received.

In an effort to enrich the document and in line with the Agency’s policy of participatory regulation, industry stakeholders and the general public were invited to review the document through either of the following (i) on the consultation tool at https://niiev.ictinnovation.gov.ng (ii) via www.nitda.gov.ng and click important notice(iii) via facebookchatbot at http://m.me/ngrinnovationor simply send an email to info@ictinnovation.gov.ng.
All the portals for the review were open from 13thNovember 2018 to 27thNovember, 2018.

It would be recalled that NITDA is a Federal Government Agency established in April 2001 to implement the Nigerian Information Technology policy and coordinate general IT development and regulation in the country.

Specifically, Sections 6(h &i) of the Act mandate NITDA to create incentives to promote the use of information technology in all spheres of life in Nigeria including the development of guidelines for setting up of information technology systems and knowledge parks as well as introduce appropriate regulatory policies and incentives to encourage private sector investment in the information technology industry.

 

Source: BusinessHighlight

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THE NATION

IT Start-ups added $101m to the economy in three quarters – NITDA

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Start-ups in Information Technology contributed $101m to the Nigerian economy in the first three quarters of the year, the National Information Technology Development Agency, has said.

The Director -General of NITDA, Isah Ibrahim Pantami, said this at a pitch by new ICT companies during a programme – Start-up Friday – organised by the IT development agency in Abuja to galvanise innovations in the ICT sector.

(more…)

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Julius Berger honours 578 long-serving personnel nationwide

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… As Joseph Ogungbe is lauded for 40 years of service to the Company

 

Nigeria’s most operationally trustworthy, reliable  and solution-oriented engineering construction and prime infrastructural development company, Julius Berger Plc, has rewarded hundreds of its long-serving members of staff all across its operations in the country.

At a colourful celebration of its workforce in Abuja last Saturday, the full complement of the executive management of the company was on hand to honour its hardworking, faithful, loyal, competent, and capable personnel from across all of the firm’s operational regions. The Managing Director of Julius Berger, Dr Lars Richter, PhD, expressed appreciation to all the honourees “for reaching milestones in their dedicated service spanning up to 40 years”. This productive feat, Dr Richter said, “is tremendous and truly inspiring”, adding that the occasion was a stock-taking opportunity for the company’s achievements as a whole, especially as it wraps up a very busy work year.

2018, Dr Richter said, was filled with many positive developments and achievements, which he ascribed to a great part to the hard work, faithfulness and loyalty of the company’s staff, especially the long-serving honourees. The MD said Julius Berger, during the course of the year, successfully overcame many tough challenges, made great progress across all aspects of its business, effectively restructured its operations to ensure the best utilization of resources for projects’ needs, and expanded its Executive Management to enable a stronger focus on growth potentials. The company, he added, also very importantly  attained  the  recertification  of  its  Quality   Management  System  to  meet  the standards  of the strategic ISO 9001. These achievements, Dr Richter said, “further advance our Company and serve to support the continued realization of operational goals, financial targets and strategic objectives” which continue to manifest as “strong progress of works across all active sites”.

The MD, described by colleagues as a no-nonsense and target engineering and management professional, is famously reputed to have delivered the Abuja Airport repair works before its scheduled delivery date as Project Manager. Dr Richter, in character with Julius Berger’s operational values, used the occasion to celebrate the company’s capacity for completing works for significant projects to the full satisfaction of its clients. He cited the Azura Independent  Power Plant, which was  handed over ahead of the scheduled completion date, and the Economic and  Financial Crimes Commission Head Office  in Abuja,  which was commissioned  successfully. Other notable private sector and national priority projects acquired by Julius Berger Plc since the year began include the Bodo-Bonny Road and Bridge, the Second Niger Bridge, Itu-Calabar-Odukpani Road, Lagos Shagamu Expressway, Famfa Oil Tower, the Abuja-Kano Road; and most recently, the Nigerian Immigration Office in Abuja.

Dr Richter said:“These projects add exciting dimension to our longstanding impressive portfolio, especially considering the positive social and economic impact priority projects will provide to Nigeria, when completed”. He added emphatically that “the new innovative cold recycling methodology for road rehabilitation introduced recently into the country by Julius Berger at the Abuja-Kaduna-Kano Road project, further solidifies our leadership position in the construction sector, not only in regards to service and quality, but also in terms of technological innovation.” He expressed confidence that Julius Berger’s successful pioneering of the innovative methodology has the potential to revolutionize road rehabilitation projects across Nigeria, and that Julius Berger will continue to lead the charge in achieving this.

He urged the company’s workers to focus on increasing operational performance, strong technical knowhow, quality workmanship and expertise – all factors that will remain the cornerstone of Julius Berger’s unmatched performance. Speaking directly to the honourees, Dr Richter said, “You are beacons of inspiration for those around you and role models for new hires. I am sincerely honoured to stand before you as Managing Director and feel proud to work with such an outstanding group of professionals”.

Speaking also in the same vein at the event, the company’s Executive Director, Administration, Alhaji Zubairu Ibrahim Bayi stated that “Julius Berger is what it is today as a result of a dedicated and reliable workforce”. He declared that “because the company’s workforce is the greatest asset of the company”, staff welfare and motivation is paramount in everything Julius Berger does. Bayi on behalf of the entire workers and management of Julius Berger Plc then pledged to the MD, Dr Richter, the unwavering support, co-operation and loyalty of all members of the Julius Berger work family to make his tenure as MD a huge success.

In total, 102 members of staff got 20, 25, 30, 35 and 40 years awards for consistent service to the company, and 476 other workers of the Julius Berger corporate family received honours for 10 and 15 years of continuous service to Julius Berger at the event.

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