•Approves N15.3bn for ICT for 2023 population census
Deji Elumoye in Abuja
The Federal Executive Council (FEC) rose from its weekly meeting in Abuja, yesterday, with the approval of various contracts worth N392.786 billion presented to it by Ministries, Department s and Agencies (MDAs).
Ministers took turns to give details of the approvals they received on behalf of the ministries and agencies under them while speaking with newsmen at the end of the Council meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari.
Among the memoranda that received approvals were two presented on behalf of the National Population Commission (NPC), totaling the sum of N15,300,000,000, for procurement and installation of technology-based gadgets for use in the upcoming 2023 National Population and Housing Census.
Informing reporters about the approvals for the NPC, Presidential spokesperson, Mallam Garba Shehu, said while the first memorandum was worth N10.9 billion, the second one was valued at N4.4 billion.
According to him, “among those memos that were okayed today was the award of the contract for the supply and installation of information and communication technology (ICT) components for the 2023 Population Census. This is for the National Population Commission (NPC). It is meant for census. The ICT component contract was awarded for about N10.9 billion.
“Another contract that was approved for the National Population Commission was the contract for the development and implementation of mobile device management solution for the personal digital assistance devices to be used for the 2023 Population Census.
This is in the sum of about N4.4 billion.” Shehu said FEC also approved a N3.3 billion contract for the development of external cost of infrastructure at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) new training academy.
He added that the sum of N1 billion was equally approved for the contract for the procurement of 19 vehicles for the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA).
He said Council okayed N65 million for variation in the cost for the supply of airport fire crash tenders in the Ministry of Aviation.
Shehu also said FEC approved policy on HIV/AIDS to protect people living with the disease and new regulations on woodworking ecosystem.
According to him, “we don’t have the Minister of Labour and Employment today, but he got two approvals. One is pertaining to the woodworking ecosystem. Government has revised regulations pertaining to woodworking machinery and the entire ecosystem which dated back to 1959.
“New regulations have been put in place as empowered by the law. And by this approval, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice will domicile and gazette these changes that have been approved.
“His other approval is on policy on HIV/AIDS. Basically, this is to guarantee personal human rights over people with HIV in work places so that they are not discriminated against and they are given equal rights.
“So, that is what it is about. They are not discriminated against and they are given all that is due to them. And they are respected, especially with regards to their personal and human rights”, he said.
In his presentation, Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fasola, disclosed that his ministry presented three memoranda, all of which were approved.
According to him, while the first was aimed at digitalising all records of the Ministry at the cost of N916,813,356, the other two were focused on physical road works, including the N36.459 billion Kaduna Eastern Bypass augumentation works to be executed on Sukuk Programme, and a N327.281 billion tax credit scheme granted BUA International Limited for construction of some roads in Kwara State.
On her part, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, disclosed that the Council granted approvals for three contracts for the Nigerian Customs Service, all totaling N20,969,400,000.
Her words: “So this is a Nigerian Customs Service barracks and the contract was issued to two companies. Messrs AMSCO Limited is constructing 15 blocks of six numbers three bedroom flats at the Aviation Village here in Abuja. The contract is in the sum of N5.549 billion naira with a delivery period of 81 weeks.
“The second part of it is the construction of 32 blocks of six two bedroom flats with religious center at the customs service barracks at also at the Aviation Village and this was given to Messrs WARAMS Limited in the sum of N12.843 billion naira with a delivery period of 144 weeks.
“The Federal Executive Council also approved the procurement of 192 motor vehicles for the operations and administrative use of the Nigerian Customs Service. Different mix of vehicles, totaling 192, all of them Toyota brands. So there are Toyota Prado, Corolla, Camry, Land Cruiser and ambulances in the total sum of N9.649 billion naira including VAT with a delivery period of four weeks.
“The third approval that we got was for the award of contract for the purchase of 210 units of residential accommodation at plot 413 Aviation Village, Abuja, for the Nigerian Customs Service, in favour of Messrs Abdulwahab Memorial Nigeria Limited in the sum of N16.125 billion naira, including the VAT,” she said.
Also, the Minister of Mines and Steels Development, Olamilekan Adegbite, on his part told newsmen that FEC granted an approval for a new bill to generate a replacement for Nigeria Mineral and Mining Law 2007, which he said is obsolete.
According to him: “What we did at the council today was just to approve a new bill to go to the National Assembly to replace the old law guiding mining in Nigeria. The law we are operating on now is 2007 Nigeria Mineral and Mining Law and 2007 to date is 16 years.
“It has become obsolete. A lot of new things have come up in mining. There’s a renewed focus and everyone is coming there and as expressed today, it’s a new frontier for economic growth in Nigeria. So we need to update the law to in line modern realities and the laws with some amendments. The bill, the proposed Act, was passed in the Chamber’s with some amendments”.