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Why B’Haram, ISWAP are surrendering -Theatre Commander

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From Timothy Olanrewaju Maiduguri

Leadership tussle, in-fighting, cut of access to logistic supplies and sustained bombardment of the insurgents’ locations by military troops, led to massive surrendering of Boko Haram and ISWAP members in the Northeast since last year.

Theatre Commander, Military Joint Task Force Northeast, Operation Hadin Kai, Maj Gen Christopher Musa disclosed this at a media parley in Maiduguri at the weekend.

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“There have been in-fighting among the Boko Haram commanders shortly after (Abubakar) Shekau’s death. ISWAP is also exploring this situation to convert Boko Haram members to its side and sometimes killing the Boko Haram guys,” he explained.

He said dozens of Boko Haram members had been killed by ISWAP commanders even as the group also battled with leadership tussle.

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He explained that troops had sustained air bombardment and clearance operations on the terrorists in recent time which forced many of them, their wives and children to flee the bush to surrender to the military, putting the statistics of surrendered insurgents at over 50,000.

Gen Musa said coordination among all members of the armed forces led to the successes of ongoing operations including Operation Desert Sanity, around the Lake Chad fringes at the country’s border areas with Chad, Niger and Cameroon. He said troops had “consistently worked on the blockage” of logistics supplies of Boko Haram/ISWAP to deny them of smooth movements, a development which further pushes many terrorists to surrender.

“They are kept in facilities in Maiduguri and other places. We ensure nobody goes in or comes out of these facilities aside the security personnel attached to the places,” he disclosed.

A presentation by the theatre indicated that 9,163 patrols had been conducted by troops in the area between January and March with some terrorists killed and arm cache seized.

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$200bn investments needed to access clean cooking gas by 2030-Sylva

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From Uche Usim, Abuja

With the global energy transition chants reaching a crescendo, the Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Mr Timipre Sylva has said that an annual investment of around $25 billion in the next eight years could help 2.6 billion people globally access clean cooking by 2030.

He also canvassed for $25 billion annual investments for electricity so that 759 million Africans who currently lack it can enjoy it.

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The Minister, who said these at the annual Symposium and Exhibition of the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE), on Tuesday in Lagos.

However, the Minister stressed that with “approximately 208.62 trillion cubic feet (TCF) of proven gas valued at over $803.9 trillion and potential upside of 600TCF of gas, the most extensive in Africa, and in the top 10 globally.

“And in line with Federal Government’s declaration of years 2021-2030 as the ‘Decade of Gas’, we are taking steps to expand and develop the nation’s huge gas resources through

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enhanced gas exploration, development and utilisation schemes which will lead to gas reserves growth, increased gas production, maturation of the domestic and export gas market, as well as gas flare elimination,” he said.

His suggestions drew inspiration from the United Nations Commission for Africa’s (UNECA) report, which highlighted that Africa needs about $40 billion worth of investments every year if it is to meet its energy needs.

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The Minister, while making reference to the United Nations’ Department of Economic and Social Affairs report, noted that everyone in the world could have access to clean, affordable energy within the next nine to 10 years if countries modestly increase investments in the energy sector.

He said: “A major question that is yet to beanswered is whether Africa will benefit from an equitable share in this global

investment and growth or, will continue to fall further behind global standards as encapsulated in the UN’s 17-SDGs.

“Despite the long-term and required drop in demand for fossil fuels, short-term demand and prices remain robust, providing strong commercial justification for their extraction and a need to smooth the transition”.

Sylva added that the required investment represents only a small fraction of the multi-trillion-dollar global energy investment needed overall.

He noted that despite contributing less than 6% of world energy consumption and 2% of total global emissions, there is a need for the continent to shift to cleaner energy use.

With significantly untapped fossil fuel reserves, which could provide much-needed foreign direct investment and export revenue, Sylva said Africa has the ability to play a leading role and should play a leading role in the transition to a net-zero energy future. According to him, the continent’s enormous resources can be harnessed using clean energy technologies.

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Describing the PIA as a game changer, Sylva said the legislation will help support the continent to alleviate energy poverty.

He said: “The PIA has generous incentives to enable development, distribution, penetration, and utilisation of gas even as it incentivizes entry into the midstream, especially for pipelines with an additional 5-year tax holiday for investment in gas pipelines.

“The PIA is a supply-side enabler, capable of provoking and triggering commercial interests and investments in gas utilization as well as treating gas as a stand-alone commodity.”

“As a nation, we are following a transition pathway that combines technology, investment, business strategies, and government policy that will enable Nigeria to transition from its current energy system to a low-carbon energy system with natural gas playing a pivotal role over the next generation, roughly between now and 2060.

“Natural gas is a key resource for a just energy transition and has all the credentials to support Nigeria and indeed Africa meet up with her commitment with the UN 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“As a major source of wealth and energy in Africa, the development of oil and gas resources proves critical for our

economic growth and revenue expansion,” he added.

The Minister insisted that there must be multiple pathways to the energy transition in order to ensure that no country is left behind in the process of achieving net-zero by 2060.

“As a continent, we need to be

intentional and recognize the need to develop hydrocarbon resources in environmentally and socially responsible ways.

“And as alluded to by the African

Union, we need to be realistic in choosing the energy transition pathways which addresses our unique requirements and circumstances. As well as enhancing policy, legislation and implementation approaches across national, regional, and continental level, to enable a favorable environment for development.

“We need to develop bankable projects to scale up access to funding and investment. And adopt a mix of energy solutions to address the needs of each country including solutions to high tariffs and accessibility to sustainable energy options.

“We need to promote energy efficiency which is necessary for energy transition and focus on building energy infrastructure and strengthening transmission corridors,” Sylva said.

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2023: ADC most credible alternative – Chairman

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The African Democratic Congress (ADC), says it’s the most credible alternative political party that can produce a technocrat, expert and visionary president if given  chance in the 2023 general elections.

Chief  Ralph Nwosu, ADC National Chairman, said this on Thursday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja.

Nwosu described the party as a grassroot party, with a strong youth force made up of young urban professionals with proven capacity to pursue a just course and produce measurable results.

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He said that as the country was gearing toward the 2023 general elections, many powerful and prominent technocrats and experts in their chosen fields were beginning to identify with the party and its vision.

According to him, no doubt, ADC is the most credible alternative political party that can produce the next president of Nigeria.

“As we all know, ADC is a strong political party that has stood the test of time and remains a powerful youth base and grassroots oriented party.

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“As we gear toward 2023, we are beginning to receive calls from highly respected Nigerians who have at one point or the other, held public offices and delivered on its mandates.

“Over 10  experts and technocrats with excellent record of service in the public sector and others with outstanding passion and services to humanity have signified interest to contest for president on our platform,  the ADC,

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“We are ready to give them the desired support.

“The party door is open regardless of the number of aspirants that have bought the party’s form; we will field our best aspirant and the people’s choice.

“We will give him or her all the support needed to contest and win the election,” he said.

Nwosu urged Nigerians to give visionary technocrats and economic experts the opportunity to revive and restore the nation come 2023.

He urged Nigerians, especially youths to get involved and participate actively in all electoral processes in order to have a say in the government at all levels.

Nwosu also encouraged those without a Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) to  get registered and acquire PVCs to vote at the 2023 general polls. (NAN)

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