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Petroleum marketers back Buhari regime’s 2022 subsidy removal

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The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has backed President Muhammadu Buhari regime’s plan to remove fuel subsidy in 2022.

IPMAN’s president Chinedu Okoronkwo stated on Friday in Lagos that the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) signed into law by Mr Buhari on August 16 had no provision for subsidy.

“We, as marketers, have always advised the government to remove petrol subsidy because it is not in the interest of the development of the downstream sector. We welcome the decision of the government to stop subsidising petrol by 2022, and we are hoping it will attract more investments to the sector, especially with the passage of PIA,” said Mr Okonkwo. “What we want is that a level playing field be provided for everyone in the sector to encourage competition once the subsidy is removed.”

The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, had announced that the government would remove the fuel subsidy and support 40 million “deserving” Nigerians with a N5,000 monthly transport allowance.

Mr Okonkwo, however, advised the regime to reinvest the subsidy savings in critical areas such as healthcare, education, agriculture, and other sectors that would increase revenue accruing to the country.

Also, Tunji Oyebanji, ex-president of the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN), stated that continued subsidising of petrol was not sustainable in light of current economic realities.

According to Mr Oyebanji, the 2022 subsidy removal deadline is realistic. He stated that the coming on stream of the 650,000bpd Dangote Refinery, Bua Group Refinery, Waltersmith Refinery, and other modular refineries might mitigate the policy’s effects.

Mr Oyebanji, however, faulted the plan to replace the subsidy with a cash transfer to Nigerians due to the lack of a reliable database in the country.

(NAN)

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Expert prescribes timeline for sex after childbirth

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An obstetrician and gynaecologist, Abosede Lewu, has said that sexual activities should only commence from 42 days or six weeks after delivery or childbirth if the woman’s overall well-being is great.

“The ‘Puerperium’ is also a critical period in the life of a woman that has just had a pregnancy and it is the first 42 days or six weeks after delivery,” Mrs Lewu said in an interview on Sunday.

Nonetheless, she said, “this 42-day period is not set in stone. The well-being of the woman is what determines when to resume sexual intercourse as a couple”.

She warned that having sexual intercourse immediately after childbirth can result in bleeding, infection, painful sex, and break down of perineal tear in women.

“If she resumes sexual intercourse without allowing the body to recover, there can be complications such as bleeding, infections, poor healing, painful sex, break down of perineal tear and other health problems,”.

She said that the well-being of the woman immediately after birth would determine when to resume sexual intercourse after childbirth.

“The vaginal area can feel sore and painful after childbirth and there might be stitches after perineal tearing during the birth.

“Therefore, the woman’s body after pregnancy needs to recover and go back to normal.”

Mrs Lewu said the time couples could resume sexual intercourse after childbirth had been a topic of controversy and discord in some homes.

“A woman could have had a difficult pregnancy, difficult delivery, postpartum mental health challenges, stress, fatigue, absence of physical or emotional support, loss of libido, and multiple babies.

“And in some instances, she just does not feel like resuming sexual intercourse yet. So, it is inadvisable to say once it is six weeks, a woman must resume sexual intercourse.”

Mrs Lewu further urged husbands, families, and friends to support women immediately after delivery so that they could recover and resume all their activities as soon as they could.

(NAN)

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NGX gains N810bn ahead of first MPC meeting

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NGX

The Nigerian Exchange Ltd. (NGX) has posted a growth of N810 billion ahead of the first 2022 Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) slated for January 24 and 25.

The market capitalisation, which opened last week at N23.951 trillion garnered N810 billion or 3.38 per cent to close at N24.761 trillion, January 21.

Also, the NGX All-Share Index inched higher by 1,502.68 or 3.38 per cent to close at 45,957.35 from 44,454.67 posted in the preceding week due to gains by some blue chips.

Some analysts who spoke to journalists on Sunday in Lagos attributed the rally to share buyback by Dangote Cement and anticipation of improved earnings for the 2021 financial year.

The Managing Director, Morgan Capital Securities Ltd., Rotimi Olubi, said the commencement of the second tranche of shares buyback programme by Dangote Cement during the period contributed to the growth.

“The programme saw the share price of the company advancing from N252 per share to N284 at the close of market on January 21.

“This also drove the NGX ASI index and the market capitalisation by over N500 billion,” Mr Olubi said.

On the expectation of the global and domestic stock market this week, Mr Olubi said the news of soaring inflation and the prospect of further interest rate hikes which dampened the global equities, commodities, and crypto market outlook would determine the direction of the market this week.

The Chief Operating Officer, InvestData Ltd., Ambrose Omordion, said the nation’s equity market started 2022 on a strong momentum due to year-end portfolio rebalancing and repositioning for the new year.

He added that the growth was fuelled by rally in oil price and improved financial earnings announced by some quoted companies during the week under review.

Mr Omordion noted that price appreciation in high cap and blue-chip stocks impacted the market positively as revealed by NGX index that recorded 3.4 per cent on high traded volume and strong buying pressure, ahead of next week’s MPC meeting.

According to him, other factors that shaped the market so far are mixed macroeconomic indices, the listing of BUA Foods, and the Dangote Cement share buyback programme.

Analysts at Cordros Research said the outcome of the MPC would determine the direction and performance of the stock market this week.

Meanwhile, a total turnover of 1.86 billion shares worth N47.49 billion was traded by investors in 20,861 deals.

This was in contrast with 1.60 billion shares valued at N32.72 billion that were exchanged in 22,607 deals in the week before.

The financial service industry (measured by volume) led the activity chart with 815.36 million shares valued at N7.07 billion traded in 10,736 deals.

The sector contributed 43.89 per cent and 14.88 per cent to the total equity turnover volume and value respectively.

The ICT industry followed with 596.58 million shares worth N845.02 million in 1,028 deals.

The third place was the conglomerate’s industry, with a turnover of 161.347 million shares worth N191.189 million in 983 deals.

(NAN)

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Kogi governor calls for calm as angry youths burn down police barracks

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Yahaya Bello

Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi has called for calm over the burning of the old police barracks in the Kabba Bunu Local Government Area of the state.

Mr Bello, according to a statement by his spokesperson, Onogwu Muhammed, also called for an investigation into the matter.

Mr Bello’s directive comes hours after a young motorcyclist was allegedly killed by security operatives on January 22 in Kabba, the statement said.

Trouble reportedly began in the town when some angry youths took to the streets and burnt the old Kabba police barracks following the incident.

The statement also said that Mr Bello, however, called on the youths of the area to remain calm and allow investigation into the matter for necessary actions.

It quoted Bello as saying that the government and security authorities would not tolerate any act capable of disrupting the hard-earned peace in the state.

It noted that the governor pledged that the circumstances around the killing of the motorcyclist would be unraveled and the culprit would be made to face the full wrath of the law.

(NAN)

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