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SON destroys N450m worth of substandard LPG cylinders, roofing sheets

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images 2020 08 27T115435.666 SON destroys N450m worth of substandard LPG cylinders, roofing sheets

The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has disclosed that the organisation has destroyed substandard LPG cylinders, aluminium and galvanized roofing sheets worth over N450 million.
The Director, Inspectorate and Compliance Directorate, SON, Obiora Manafa, who made the disclosure noted that these goods failed the minimum requirement of the standards and were destroyed because they were classified as life-endangering and unfit for consumption in the country.
Manafa explained that despite efforts aimed at curbing the menace, these goods still find their way into the nation’s shores, while reaffirming its commitment to leave no stone unturned in its fight against substandard goods.
“We are here to destroy some substandard goods seized from some unscrupulous importers and marketers. Among goods to be destroyed include cylinders, aluminium roofing sheets, galvanised steel roofing sheets. The goods we are destroying are the ones that failed the critical parameters and we cannot allow them to get into circulation because they are life-threatening.”
He noted that these goods came from different sources where some were evacuated from warehouses and intercepted on the high ways.
He stated that the standards for roofing sheets were clear, stressing that the standards for aluminium profile roofing sheets specifies a minimum thickness of 0.4mm.
” Some of these roofing sheets come in 0.2, 0.3mm which are low gauge quality. These are the kind of roofing sheets people use for a short time and they are destroyed and at the end of the day, consumers do not get value for their money spent. We are not happy destroying these goods because it is a loss, not only to the importer but to the nation. One thing about destroying these kind of products is that they are products you burn, but for the gas cylinders we cannot burn them but we will see how we can recycle them to generate revenue for the nation.”
He said some of the products seized were imported from China and Turkey and did not come with SONCAP certificates.
He noted that the SON Act has helped in reducing the preponderance of fake and substandard goods in the country, as the agency also deploys sensitisation programmes to create awareness on the negative impact substandard goods on lives and property.
“Since we have got the backings of the law, it has reduced the preponderance of fake and substandard goods in the country and apart from jailing these dealers of fake and substandard goods, we also do advocacy programmes where we go to the market to create awareness with trade associations to tell them the right thing to do. Since we started this aggressive advocacy, many of these importers have been complying especially those that fake known brands,” he added.
“When we organise sensitisation programmes, we preach to them that there was no point faking known brands, because when they fake, we destroy and prosecute the importers. Many of them have heeded that advice and they are now creating their brands,” he added.
The Group Head, LPG, SON, Nwaoma Olujie, said the destruction exercise was in response to the series of avoidable gas explosions in the nation.
She added that the impact of gas explosions was unquantifiable as lives and property are being destroyed.
“In SON, we classified LPG cylinders as life-endangering products and in recent times, you can take a cue from a gas explosion in Kaduna in January this year and there have also been series of gas explosion in Lagos.We have seen the impact of these gas explosions where lives and property have been destroyed and this is why we are taking a lot of safety precautions to ensure that cylinders imported into the country meet the minimum requirement of the standard.
“We have standards for LPG which is NIS 69 and for all the valves and regulators NIS 220. The valves fitted into these cylinders must comply with NIS 220 as well as the regulators,” she stated.
She pointed out that these importers indulge in this nefarious act to short–change the Nigerian consumers, advising that importation of gas cylinders is not a business for all.
“Importation of cylinders is not an all-comers business, but an aspect where a lot of safety precautions must be put in place. It is a high technical product. Any importer should not engage in the importation of cylinders without following the due process because we ensure that for cylinders to be imported, there must be approvals from SON. Importers must also consistently meet the requirement of the standards,” she warned.
“These LPG cylinders we are destroying today did not pass through our process and procedures.They all failed critical parameters. The minimum burst pressure for cylinders is 67.5 bars, but these cylinders failed at a very low burst pressure and this is a critical thing because once a cylinder is undergoing internal pressure, it is supposed to expand, but these cylinders do not show sign of expansion. These cylinders were also seized as used cylinders and we do not permit the importation of used cylinders in the country,” she added.

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Heritage Bank to manage accounts of 774,000 beneficiaries of public works programme November 1

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images 8 4 Heritage Bank to manage accounts of 774,000 beneficiaries of public works programme November 1

Heritage Bank Plc, said it is set to commence account opening with Bank Verification Numbers (BVN) for 774,000 participants of the SPW programme in branches throughout the 774 Local Government Areas of the country.

The participants are to be paid an allowance of N20, 000 (Twenty thousand Naira) monthly for the programme which kicks off from November 1, 2020, at the 129 LGAs assigned to Heritage Bank Plc.

The SPW is a post-COVID-19 poverty alleviation initiative, approved by President Muhammadu Buhari and the Federal Ministry of State for Labour and Employment to implement 774,000 jobs in all the 774 LGAs in Nigeria, for a period of three (3) months.

As part of modalities for the programme, the six participating banks, including Heritage Bank inclusive were mandated to open accounts for all the beneficiaries and capture their BVN. A special feature form has been provided by the Federal Government to capture participant’s Bio-data for this exercise.

In a bid to align with the rudimentary arrangements, the Divisional Head, Corporate Communications, Fela Ibidapo, disclosed that Heritage bank has prepared seamless process flow for the commencement of the BVN enrolment/ account opening documentation of the assigned shortlisted beneficiaries.

He said, “For locations that the bank does not have physical presence, the Agency Banking Team has engaged Super Agents to cover these areas and ensure smooth on-boarding in such locations.” He stated that Heritage Bank would definitely adhere strictly to the beneficiary list forwarded to it by the Federal Government for account opening/BVN enrolment to avoid any infractions and work according to the rules set by the government and its agency, National Directorate of Employment (NDE).

Ibidapo recounted the bank’s success story and legacies in similar exercises sustained through various entrepreneur schemes in the support for economic growth, which had always focused on dependable job-creating sectors, such as agricultural value chain (fish farming, poultry, snail farming), cottage industry, mining and solid minerals, creative industry (tourism, arts and crafts), and Information and Communications Technology (ICT).

About 1,000 participants were drawn each from the 774 local government areas in Nigeria for the Special Public Works Programme. In response to the nature of diversity and remoteness of some participants, the Minister of State for Labour and Productivity, Festus Kenyamo allayed fears of missing out from the registration by the beneficiaries, and has recieved assurances from the banks that even in places where they have no physical presence or branch, registration centres would be provided; hence participants don’t need to travel far.

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You can’t control minerals, FG tells states

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images 87 You can’t control minerals, FG tells states

The Federal Government on Thursday told state governments that they could not control the mineral deposits in their various domains .
Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite , said this at a sensitisation meeting with state commissioners for justice , minerals and environment from the North -Central geopolitical zone .
The issue of resource control had been put in the front burner recently with the unveiling of Zamfara state government plan to establish a gold reserve through buying of gold from artisenal miner indigenes .
Reacting to calls for the amendment of the exclusive list section on minerals in the country ’s constitution to allow states have participatory roles in mining , the minister said doing so would amount to selfishness and would be detrimental to the nation ’s economic system .
Adegbite explained that the oil revenue derived from a section of the country was being used for the overall development of Nigeria.
He told the commissioners that as attention was now focusing on the development of the minerals sector for revenue generation, it must be used for the common good of all .
The minister , in a statement issued in Abuja by the mines ministry ’s Assistant Director , Press , Timothy Akpoili , stated that royalties and other revenues generated from solid minerals mining were paid into the consolidated fund .
He said the fund was shared in accordance with derivation principle during monthly revenue allocation sharing.

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Protests Rock Kano , Kaduna , Katsina , Bauchi, Niger Over Insecurity

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The protest Protests Rock Kano , Kaduna , Katsina , Bauchi, Niger Over Insecurity

The Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) yesterday took to the streets in Kaduna, Bauchi, Niger and Kano States to protest the escalating security challenges facing the North.
In Kaduna, the protesters who marched from Waff Road to the Kaduna State House of Assembly Complex demanded an “immediate end to banditry, terrorism, and Kidnappings in Northern Nigeria.”
They carried placards and banners with various inscriptions such as: “Stop the killings in the North,” “Empower SWAT to end insecurity,” “End Boko Haram now,” End Banditry Now,” “The North is Bleeding,” and “Stop Rape Now.”
The protesters were received by the Chief Whip of the Assembly, Hon. Shehu Yunusa.
Addressing the Chief Whip, the coordinator of the protest, Mr. Sa’ad Bako, said the CNG was compelled to protest the unending insecurity in the North.
The group lamented the recent violent attacks on innocent people in Kaduna, Katsina, Zamfara, Sokoto, Borno, Adamawa and other northern communities and other disturbances across the North.
“This sadly, has ultimately placed the current federal administration of President Muhammad Buhari and a section of the northern political, cultural and spiritual leadership on the wrong side of public opinion – and history.
“The rise in the spate of banditry, kidnappings, cattle rustling and bloodshed in the North has become a major trying point for everyone but the authorities – who have remained detached from the reality,” Bako said.
The group demanded: “An immediate and comprehensive improvement of security all over Northern Nigeria.
“The federal and state administrations should address major failings in their perception of the current desperate situation and their response to the people’s demands for their rights to security.
“A total overhaul of the leadership of the national security agencies, a review of the entire national security architecture and the national security committees in order to inject higher levels of competence, integrity and accountability in the manner they deal with the security challenges in the nation and particular the North.
“The promulgation of legislation to compel the review of the salary and general incentive packages of all men of the security services.”
In the press statement signed by the CNG’s spokesman, Mr. Abdul-Azeez Suleiman, the group said the protest, which would spread across the North-western region of the country is to show concern over deteriorating national security and other pressing issues.
The protesters visited the government house and the state police command in the two states to deliver their messages to the government.
They also backed the creation of Special Weapons And Tactics (SWAT) team, saying it is in a better position to tackle various forms of security threats such as killings, banditry, kidnapping, rape, and Boko Haram terror attacks in the region if they are fully equipped and trained.
In Niger State, the protesters decried the poor condition of road infrastructures in the state, which they describe as death traps.
“This protest is not against any movement, it is not against any government, we are here to only show our grievances that as Nigerians we are not enjoying what we should enjoy,’’ they noted.
They urged the federal government to fix all its roads and address poor power supply in the entire Northern states.

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