Monday, 24 August 2009

Why is Africa Poor?

A thoughtful insight into why poverty plagues the great continent? - Click here.

Friday, 14 August 2009

The Cockroaches come running out!

Yesterday I did Hilary Clinton a disservice by saying she was stating the obvious when she said the Nigeria's biggest problem was its failed leadership. Little did I know how much her statement will rattle them. So Senator Clinton I apologise for my comments, stating the bloody obvious sometimes does have its benefits.

Nigerian Banks Bailed Out N400 billion, Heads Roll.

That the Nigerian government has finally bailed out some of the banks in the country with a staggering $2.5 billion (N400 billion), may come as no surprise to many analysts who have insisted that the Nigerian banking system was on shaky ground despite the constant denial by the former governor of the Central Bank, Emeka Soludo. However what might be surprise a few are the names in the five banks bailed out - Afribank, Finbank, Intercontinental, Oceanic and Union Bank.

With the exception of FinBank, the rest are considered amongst Nigeria's top ten banks. It was also widely believed that Union Bank had enough cash deposits from its numerous customers to weather the the global financial crisis that has now begin to take its toll on Nigerian banks.

The CBN also wasted no time in sacking the CEOs of the affected banks, amongst them two time winner of the African Businesswoman of the Year - Cecilia Ibru of Oceanic Bank, and sealing off their premises with armed police. It has also been quick in replacing the sacked officials.

However with the CBN yet to complete its audit of all Nigerian banks, it may yet find itself bailing out some more banks in the country. How many execs that will join the others on the chopping block and its effects on the volatile stock market remains to be seen.

Hillary,Tell Us Something We Don't Know

On her recent visit to Nigeria, the US Secretary of State declared at Town Hall Meeting jointly organised by the Transition Monitoring Group (TMG) and the U.S. Mission in Nigeria, that Nigerian leadership had failed at all levels - DUH! The last last regime (Obj's) presided over the longest period of sustained high oil prices in the history of the country and the only legacy Obj left for us - a mess!

Thursday, 13 August 2009

The Dangers of Relying on a One-Dimensional Strategy for Power Supply

The present government has long declared that it is going to surprise Nigerians come December 2009 by increasing the nation's power generation to 6000 megawatts. However its insistence on relying on gas powered plants only to achieve this goal has again proven to put those plans into jeopardy as gas supply to the country's largest power plant has been disrupted reducing the country meager output of just 2400 megawatts to 1900 megawatts.

One wonders if the honourable minister for power has any contingency plans in place should in case their one track strategy gets knocked off its path. Shouldn't Nigeria be using a multi-faceted approach to solve its power problems from all angles. We are struggling to exploit our vast gas reserves to meet current demand, let alone have any to power the number of gas plants the government has supposedly made provisions for.

It will be interesting to see if the goal of 6000 megawatts will actually be met, but then again maybe not for the millions of suffering Nigerians and local businesses.