UN says Nigeria lost $2.8bn in revenue in 2018

UN says Nigeria lost $2.8bn in revenue in 2018

- A new report by the secretary-general of the UN says maritime crime and piracy off the coast of West Africa continues to pose a threat to peace, security and development in the region

- The report notes that there was an increase in drug trafficking throughout West Africa and the Sahel in 2018

- The UN says during the reporting period, conflicts between farmers and herders resulted in loss of lives, destruction of livelihoods and property, population displacements and human rights violations and abuses

The United Nations say Nigeria lost an estimated 2.8 billion dollars in revenues in 2018, mainly due to oil-related crimes.

This is according to a new report by the secretary-general on the activities of the United Nations Office for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS)’ on Monday, January 7, in New York.

The report, which covered from July 1, 2018 to December 31, 2018, said maritime crime and piracy off the coast of West Africa continued to pose a threat to peace, security and development in the region, The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.

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“Oil-related crimes resulted in the loss of nearly 2.8 billion dollars in revenues last year in Nigeria, according to government figures.

“Between January 1 and November 23, there were 82 reported incidents of maritime crime and piracy in the Gulf of Guinea.’

The report also noted that compared to the situation reflected in the previous report, there was an increase in drug trafficking throughout West Africa and the Sahel.

“In Benin, the Gambia and Nigeria, more than 50 kilogrammes of cocaine were seized between July and October by joint airport interdiction task forces.

“During the same period, joint airport interdiction task forces seized more than six kilogrammes of methamphetamines, eight kilogramme of heroin (double the amount in the first half of 2018) and 2.6 tonnes of cannabis.

“Drug production across the region was also reportedly on the rise, with more than 100 kilogrammes of ephedrine and phenacetin seized by competent authorities,’’ the report said.

During the reporting period, it said that conflicts between farmers and herders resulted in loss of lives, destruction of livelihoods and property, population displacements and human rights violations and abuses.

The report said outbreaks of violence were recorded in many states across Nigeria, although with more frequency in the Middle Belt region, as well as Adamawa and Taraba.

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It said the spike in conflict between farmers and herders was closely linked with demographic pressures, desertification and the attendant loss of grazing reserves and transhumance routes, which had been exacerbated by climate change.

Others were challenges in the implementation of effective land management and climate change adaptation policies, and limited enforcement of existing pastoral laws.

Political and economic interests, the erosion of traditional conflict resolution mechanisms, and weapons proliferation, were other factors attributed to the increased cases of herders-farmers conflict.

Meanwhile, the Nigerian military troops have neutralised over 100 Boko Haram terrorists in recent various clearance operations in Yobe and Borno, the army said in a statement on Monday, January 7.

Brigadier General Sani Usman, the spokesman of the Army said the terrorists were killed at Goniri in Yobe, Damasak, Kross Kauwa and Monguno, among other locations in Borno, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).

According to him, various caliber of arms and ammunition were recovered from them. Usman said the Nigerian Air Force Air Task Force component of Operation Lafiya Dole had been giving close air support to ground troops and also facilitates the pursuit of fleeing terrorists.

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