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HOW NAMI’S ADMINISTRATIVE SKILLS HAVE TURNED AROUND FIRS FORTUNES

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Anybody who knew the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) before the advent of the administration of Muhammad Nami would in all fairness concede that he has remarkably used his salient administrative skills to improve the operations of the apex tax body. His dexterity in achieving an upward swing in revenue generation has much to do with his administrative skills than the deployment of technology.

To understand the road Nami traveled before arriving at this destination,  there is a need to look back at the state of affairs in the  Service before he happened. It will not be overstating the fact to say that the state of disrepair, staff disorientation, and demotivation in the Service when Nami took over the reins of leadership, was legendary. There was a backlog of more than ten years of promotions, the reporting line was skewed and obsequious, the structure was straitjacketed, and work ethics were thrown overboard. Staff allowances were not regularly paid which thereby affected staff morale and caused disenchantment.

With this overt climate of the insufferable condition of service prevailing at the time of his assumption of office,  there is no gainsaying the fact that the task he found himself handling required tact, circumspection, and astute administrative skills. And Nami rose to the occasion. He navigated the turbulent economic climate occasioned by the Covid-19 pandemic, the dwindled oil revenue, and the EndSars protest to post an impressive record of revenue generation. Today, the country relies on the non-oil tax revenue being administered by Nami’s leadership.

One thing that stands out for Nami, besides his ability to manage people and resources, is his ability to headhunt and identify resourceful people who are fit for various tasks and offices. The first thing he did when he assumed the mantle of leadership of the Service was to reorganize the structure of the Service. In doing this, he freed up offices, created new departments, additional state coordination, fourteen satellite offices, and more functions thereby making it possible for promotions to happen and staff to aspire to higher offices and responsibilities.

He similarly restored to the staff functions that were given to consultants which made it possible to harness the potentials and initiatives of the staff. One important result of this is the in-house building and implementation of the now famous TaxPro-Max, his baby which is yielding astronomical revenue haul for the country. This remarkable achievement could only have been possible with one that has administrative skills and the foresight to see beyond the here and now.

In the same vein, fixing the right people in the right positions as well as utilizing the experience and expertise of retiring officers of the Service has helped greatly in shoring up some gaps which would have put the Service in a serious manpower deficit. Therefore,  being able to mix both the experienced and the upstarts has helped to entrench mentorship and succession plans in the Service. This trend would surely bring about inbreeding and quality manpower that would be capable of standing up to any headwinds.

From the inception of his administration, Nami has maintained a studious approach to administering the affairs of the Service by setting up some cardinal goals for the organization,  which are rebuilding the FIRS institutional framework, making the Service data-centric, and customer-centric, and having a robust stakeholder collaboration. And these are not just mere concepts.
True to his words, he has religiously fixed his focus on achieving these goals against all odds. That is why presently he has created a department called Intelligence Strategic Data Mining and Analysis in the Service. He equally established Special Tax, Tax Incentives Management, and Special Crimes and Investigation Departments as a way of strengthening the mechanism of tax collection and administration. He has also maintained a close engagement with all facets of stakeholders to enhance the visibility of the Service and enhance its operations.

Nami has equally applied his leadership and administrative skills through wide consultation with both internal and external stakeholders in policy formulation toward enhancing workflow and work ethics within the system. This has resulted in the formulation of the right policies and reduced roles conflict considerably. Reporting lines have also been strengthened and redefined in a way that has put the staff on a sound footing for enhanced productivity. This is done through constant and rigorous performance evaluation.  
 
All these point to the fact that Nami’s administrative skills manifest consummate leadership qualities and performative vision. Nami understands the intricate combination of administration, leadership, and vision for the attainment of organizational goals. That is why he has been able to raise the bar of revenue collection to an all-time high. And in the coming years he will do even better.

Andrew Okonkwo writes from Abuja.

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Business

Dangote Refinery to start production by October and November 2023

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The Dangote Refinery is gearing up to commence refining operations, with plans to produce diesel and jet fuel by October 2023 and petrol by November 30, 2023, according to the Executive Director of the Dangote Group, Devakumar Edwin.

According to reports, Edwin in an interview with newsmen disclosed that the refinery is on track to receive its first crude cargo within two weeks.

Initially, the facility is set to produce up to 370,000 barrels per day of diesel and jet fuel in October 2023.

Furthermore, Edwin outlined the refinery’s strategy for gradually increasing petrol production, to reach an impressive 650,000 barrels per day by November 30.

He expressed the refinery’s readiness to receive crude oil:

  • “Right now, I’m ready to receive crude. We are just waiting for the first vessel. And so, as soon as it comes in, we can start.”

Regarding the shift in the original timeline, Edwin explained that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited (NNPCL) had already committed their crude oil to another entity on a forward basis, causing a temporary delay.

He assured that this setback is momentary, and the refinery will exclusively use Nigerian crude oil from November 2023 onwards.

Edwin highlighted that the Nigerian oil will be purchased in US dollars, not in naira, as the refinery operates within a free trade zone on the outskirts of Lagos. However, due to its equity stake, the NNPCL will supply some crude at discounted prices.

The Dangote refinery is equipped to process various crudes, including most African grades, Middle Eastern Arab Light, and even US light-tight oil.

Edwin stated,

  • “We can take even some of the Russian grades… if the global system opens up to allow us to receive them. If you look at our production profile, 50% of my production will meet 100% of the requirements of the country.”

Excess gasoline, meeting 10 ppm sulfur Euro 5 quality, will be exported to other African markets, the US, and South America, albeit in relatively small volumes.

Jet fuel will be exported to Europe, while diesel will be sold in sub-Saharan Africa.

Edwin emphasized that the refinery would benefit Nigeria significantly, providing a reliable supply of environmentally friendly refined products and generating substantial foreign exchange for the country.

Furthermore, he noted that the Dangote refinery will play a pivotal role in addressing fuel supply challenges faced by import-dependent West Africa, particularly following Nigeria’s removal of fuel subsidies, which had resulted in a thriving illicit gasoline market due to price fluctuations.

Edwin added that the revenues generated from the refinery’s operations will be reinvested in further developments, underscoring Aliko Dangote’s commitment to Nigeria.

  • “The money will be coming back in, and it will go for further investments,” he affirmed, highlighting Dangote’s dedication to the nation.
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Business

G20: Tony Elumelu Co-Chairs Business Council in India with President Tinubu

Tony Elumelu, Chairman of Heirs Holdings and CFR, will co-chair the G20 Business Council in India, joining President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for the Nigeria-India Presidential roundtable during the G20 summit in New Delhi.

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G20: Tony Elumelu Co-Chairs Business Council in India

 

This collaborative event, organized by the Nigerian High Commission in India, CII, and NIBC, highlights President Tinubu’s address.

The G20 Business Council, also known as the Business 20 (B20), serves as the official G20 dialogue forum with the global business community.

Established in 2010, the B20 is one of the most prominent Engagement Groups within the G20 framework, bringing together companies and business organizations to provide their perspectives on global economic and trade governance.

It speaks with a unified voice on behalf of the entire G20 business community.

One of the key objectives of the B20 is to promote economic integration in Africa. As stated on the B20 India website, the B20 aims to “offer extensive support to make this process a success and work towards African economic development.”

This agenda is expected to benefit not only nations within Africa but also have broader implications for global economic growth and cooperation.

The G20, comprised of the world’s largest and most advanced economies, is the foremost platform for international economic cooperation. Nigeria’s President, President Tinubu, was extended a special invitation by India, the current G20 host, earlier in the year, underscoring the nation’s role in shaping global economic discourse and collaboration.

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Tinubu appoints Khalil Halilu as EVC/CEO of NASENI

President Tinubu has appointed Khalil Suleiman Halilu to be the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI).

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Tinubu appoints Khalil Halilu as EVC/CEO of NASENI

 

Mr. Halilu’s appointment as Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer was confirmed by the Presidency on Friday, 1 September, according to the statement released by Ajuri Ngelale, the Special Adviser to President Tinubu on Media and Publicity.

As EVC/CEO of NASENI, Mr Halilu is expected to bring his significant experience as an innovator and technology expert to bear in this important new national assignment.

The newly appointed Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of NASENI who is 32 years old will serve an initial term of five years as specified by relevant sections of the NASENI Act, 2014, the statement revealed.

Mr. Halilu’s appointment hereby terminates the tenure of Dr. Bashir Gwandu as EVC/CEO of the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI).

 

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