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Dabiri-Erewa assures diaspora investors of enabling environment in Nigeria .

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The Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM), Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa has assured Nigerians abroad, who plan to invest in the nation, of government’s support and enabling environment.

Dabiri-Erewa gave the assurance during a courtesy visit to Marcelle Ruth Cancer Centre and Specialist Hospital in Lagos.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the hospital, founded by Dr Modupe Elebute-Odunsi and her husband, Mr Bolaji Odunsi, was set up in Victoria Island, Lagos about six months ago.

Dabiri-Erewa said it was commendable that one of the best professionals in healthcare, left her comfort zone, took the risk to come back and set up a hospital in Nigeria.

She added that it was an inspiration to many Nigerians abroad who wanted to do likewise.

“I think this is most commendable; to come back home to give back. It is not just giving back but giving the best to your society.

“When we travel abroad, we didn’t get anything better than this and the beauty of this is that it is owned by all Nigerians,” she said.

Acknowledging the challenges the hospital may be experiencing in service delivery, Dabiri-Erewa pledged government’s support in helping the hospital achieve its goals.

“The role of government is to create an enabling environment and the good thing is that we have a diaspora policy that puts all the things we are saying to make life better for those who want to come back.

“This is about the fourth that we are acknowledging; we also have a Stroke Centre in Imo state, set up by a Nigerian in diaspora.

“People are coming from abroad but we don’t see these things, we rather see the negatives. We are here to celebrate positivity.

“Government will support every other Nigerian professional that wants to come back home,” she said.

Dr Modupe Elebute-Odunsi, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Marcelle Ruth Cancer Centre and Specialist Hospital said the desire to contribute to healthcare in Nigeria was not done light-heartedly.

Elebute-Odunsi, who is also a Consultant Haemato-Oncologist, who has about 30 years experience of working internationally, said it took a lot of planning to achieve.

She said her team did not just want to give back to the society but do it properly, by establishing a hospital that was of international standards.

“What we decided to do here was a complete one-stop shop. We see the issues when patients access care, it’s so disjointed.

“They come to see a doctor somewhere then go and see a specialist somewhere else; they do blood test in one place, scan somewhere else, there’s no cohesiveness.

“If they need a biopsy, chemotherapy, surgery, everything, it’s done here.

“Apart from a PET CT Scan, there is no reason why anybody should get on a plane to go and access care for cancer outside Nigeria,” she said.

Speaking further on the equipments, she said that Nigeria needed about 1,000 Linear Accelerator Machines to deliver radiotherapy for her population of cancer patients but currently have only five available.

Elebute-Odunsi commended the Chairman of NIDCOM for her support in ensuring that people in the diaspora who want to come home to contribute to the development of the nation are able to do so.

She urged banks to make financing accessible to people in the diaspora to make it possible for them to thrive.

Also, Mrs Kemi Ogunyemi, Director of Nursing at the hospital said that the aim of the hospital was to ensure that the journey of cancer care remained positive, regardless of what happens during the treatment.

Ogunyemi, who specialises in Oncology and Cancer Care said the period she worked as a Director of Outpatient Clinic in the United States of America had exposed her to quality and standard, which she pledged to maintain.

She urged NIDCOM to fast track the process so Nigerians in the diaspora, who are at the top of their fields and want to come back home to help with the development of the nation.

One of the patients, Mrs Ifeoma Dibia observed that accessing healthcare at the hospital was not different from what she receives when she goes abroad for treatment.

Dibia said the reasons she preferred receiving treatment at the hospital was because she receives the same quality without having to pay for flight tickets, accommodation and being disconnected from her family.

She urged NIDCOM to encourage more professionals to come back home to invest.

“We need them here, in all fields, especially health. There is no hospital you go to in New York you don’t have Nigerians. So let them come home,” she said. (NAN)

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Business & Economy

Kaduna refinery will begin production in December – NNPCL Boss, Kyari

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The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, NNPCL,Mele Kyari has disclosed that the refinery in Kaduna State will be ready for production by December 2024.

He disclosed this during a meeting with the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria and the Major Energy Marketers Association of Nigeria in Abuja.

He disclosed that operations at the Port Harcourt refinery are scheduled to begin in two weeks.

According to Kyari: “We did a mechanical completion of the (Port Harcourt) refinery, that was what we said in December. We now have crude oil already stocked in the refinery. We are doing regulatory compliance tests that must happen in every refinery before you start it, and I assure you that this Port Harcourt refinery will start in the next two weeks.

“Completing the mechanical work means that you are done with the rehabilitation work, now you have to test to see how it works. Of course, we have also completed the mechanical work on the Warri refinery.

“It is also undergoing regulatory compliance; processes that we are doing with our regulator, and this will soon be completed and it will be ready.

“The Kaduna refinery will be ready by December. We have not reached that stage in Kaduna, but we promise Kaduna will be delivered by December.”

 

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Edun Blames Economic Hardship On Free Printing Of Naira During Buhari’s Govt

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Minister of Finance, Wale Edun, stated this on Wednesday when he appeared before the Senate Committee on Finance chaired by Senator Sani Musa.

The Federal Government has disclosed that the free printing of naira notes for eight years, under the previous administration went into the hands of a privileged few, without corresponding productivity, resulting in the country’s current economic situation.

Minister of Finance, Wale Edun, stated this on Wednesday when he appeared before the Senate Committee on Finance chaired by Senator Sani Musa.

While elaborating on measures to revamp the economy, the Finance minister vowed to thoroughly audit the 22.7 trillion naira, and mop up the monies from the market and use it to pay the central bank to give the government a balanced book.

Responding to questions, the finance minister addressed the issue of waivers on customs duty running into trillions of naira, promising to overhaul the system, rejig it and implement a technology and payment system that would correct all anomalies in place.

He further disclosed that a total of 13 trillion naira was collected as non-oil revenue in 2023.

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Harsh Economy: FG To Begin Distribution Of Grains Nationwide 

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The Federal Government will begin the distribution of grains nationwide to cushion the impacts of the hardship in Nigeria.

Minister of Agriculture and Food Security Senator Abubakar Kyari disclosed this on Monday.

“Dear Fellow Nigerians,” he wrote on his official X handle. “In these trying times, I extend my sincere compassion to those affected by the hardships in the country. I understand the gravity of the situation, especially with the unfortunate event of foodstuff warehouse looting.

“Amidst these challenges, I want to assure you that our commitment to your well-being remains resolute. We shall commence the distribution of 42,000 metric tons of grains, as approved by Mr. President, across the 36 states of the federation as one of the programs to be rolled out this week.

“We are working hand in hand with NEMA and the DSS to ensure that the grains get to the right people in the right packages and quantities. Furthermore, 58,500 metric tons of milled rice from mega rice millers will also be released into the market for stabilization.”

The minister who hailed the resilience of the Nigerian people, urged them to back President Bola Tinubu’s government in its quest to address the challenges facing the country.

“I acknowledge the strength of the Nigerian people, and it is this resilience that will guide us through these difficult times. Let us stand together to support Mr. President in his strive for a better Nigeria,” Kyari said.

“Our government under the leadership of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is committed to addressing these challenges and working towards a more secure and prosperous future for all.”

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