Ukraine’s navy warned that military threats from Russia and sea mines remain along all shipping routes.

Ukraine announced it will open a “humanitarian corridor” in the Black Sea to release cargo ships trapped in its ports since the outbreak of war, a new test of Russia’s de facto blockade since Moscow abandoned a deal last month to let Kyiv export grain from its sea ports.

At least initially, the corridor, which was announced on Thursday, would apply to vessels such as container ships that have been stuck in Ukrainian ports since the February 2022 invasion by Russian, and were not covered by the deal that opened the ports for grain shipments last year.

But it could be a considerable test of Ukraine’s ability to reopen sea lanes at a time when Russia is trying to re-impose its de-facto blockade, having abandoned the grain deal last month. Shipping and insurance sources expressed concerns about safety.

Local news outlet The Kyiv Independent reported that Ukraine’s navy has warned that military threats from Russia, as well as sea mines, remain along all shipping routes.

“Only vessels whose owners or captains officially confirm their readiness to sail under such conditions will be allowed to pass through,” the news outlet reported on Thursday.

In a statement, the Ukrainian navy said the routes for the corridor had already been proposed by Ukraine directly to the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

The routes would “primarily be used for civilian ships which have been in the Ukrainian ports of Chornomorsk, Odesa, and Pivdennyi since the beginning of the full-scale invasion by Russia on February 24, 2022”.

“Vessels whose owners/captains officially confirm that they are ready to sail in the current conditions will be allowed to pass through the routes,” the navy said in the statement, adding that risks remained from mines and the military threat from Russia.

“The corridor will be very transparent. We will put cameras on the ships and there will be a broadcast to show that this is purely a humanitarian mission and has no military purpose,” Oleh Chalyk, a spokesperson for Ukraine’s navy, told the Reuters news agency.

There was no immediate response to requests for comment from Moscow.

Shipping and insurance sources familiar with Ukraine said they were not informed about the new corridor and there were questions over its viability. It was unlikely most ships would agree to sail at the moment, they said.

“The possibility of multiple seafarer deaths [in the event of a ship being hit] has not been addressed, so this is another major question,” a shipping industry source said.

Approximately 60 commercial ships have been stuck in the Ukrainian ports since Russia’s invasion, their fates unresolved by the deal that allowed grain exports to resume in July last year.

Many of the ships’ crews have been evacuated, leaving locally hired Ukrainian staff to help look after the vessels.

Since abandoning the grain deal, Russia has said it will treat any ships approaching Ukrainian ports as potential military vessels, and their flag countries as combatants on the Ukrainian side.

Kyiv has responded with a similar threat to ships approaching Russian or Russian-held Ukrainian ports.

The United Nations has said Russia’s decision to quit the deal risks worsening a global food crisis, hurting poor countries the worst, by keeping grain from one of the world’s biggest exporters off the market.


Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, have intercepted two imported consignments of Loud, a strong strain of cannabis, with a combined weight of 5,344.1 kilograms along the Epe-Lekki corridor and at the Alfa beach, Lekki area of Lagos state.


A statement released by Femi Babafemi, spokesperson of the anti-narcotic agency, says based on credible intelligence, NDLEA operatives laid ambush for a white truck conveying 50 jumbo bags of the illicit substance weighing 2, 434.1kg along the Epe-Lekki expressway in the early hours of Monday 19th June. The truck driver however jumped out of the vehicle and escaped in a security hilux van escorting the truck, after the anti-narcotics officers successfully demobilized the truck conveying the drug exhibits. 

NDLEA intercepts two imported consignments of Loud along the Epe-Lekki corridor and at the Alfa beach; arrests fake female security agent with Cannabis (photos)


In the same vein, officers of the Marine Command of the Agency the following day, Tuesday 20th also acting on intelligence intercepted a boat loaded with the same imported substance weighing 2,910kg around Alfa Beach upon arrival from Ghana. Two Ghanaians: Monday Saba, 30, and Hakeem Kwana, 27, found with the consignments were promptly arrested.


NDLEA intercepts two imported consignments of Loud along the Epe-Lekki corridor and at the Alfa beach; arrests fake female security agent with Cannabis (photos)


In Niger state, two suspects: Abubakar Mohammed, 32, and Nuhu Sale, 43, were arrested on Sunday 18th June along Abuja expressway, Suleja with 31 jumbo bags of skunk weighing 517kg, while a 30-year-old Amina Alilu was arrested with 171kg of the substance on Wednesday 21st June at Ogbogodo village, Dekina LGA, Kogi state.


NDLEA intercepts two imported consignments of Loud along the Epe-Lekki corridor and at the Alfa beach; arrests fake female security agent with Cannabis (photos)


A suspected fake female security agent, Ogedegbe Dorcas, 34, was also nabbed at Ajegunle Asa Dam Area of Ilorin, Kwara State with 30kg of cannabis on Thursday 22nd June, while in Oyo state, NDLEA operatives intercepted 42-year-old Segun Olajide with 49.2kg of same substance on Saturday 24th June in Oyo town.


Operatives in Edo state stormed Ekudo forest, Uhunmwode LGA where they destroyed a cannabis farm measuring 2.494863 hectares, recovered processed weeds weighing 67kg and arrested six suspects namely: Onyeka Onyedinma; Monday Onyedi; Alex Eboh; Edosa Imariagbe; Godbless Tunde and Godstime Osarobo in the early hours of Monday 19th June.


While commending the officers and men of the Lagos, Kogi, Niger, Kwara, Oyo, Edo and Marine Commands for blocking over five tons of illicit substances from going into circulation in the country in the past week, Chairman/Chief Executive of the Agency, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd) charged them and their compatriots across other formations to remain committed to the corporate goal of ridding Nigeria of the menace of substance abuse and illicit drug trafficking.

One of the rainwater harvesting systems installed in rural settlements in eastern El Salvador, in the Central American Dry Corridor. It is based on a system of pipes and gutters, which run from the rooftop to a polyethylene bag in a rectangular hole dug in the yard. CREDIT: Edgardo Ayala / IPS
  • by Edgardo Ayala (san salvador)
  • Inter Press Service

In the Dry Corridor, the lack of water complicates not only basic hygiene and household activities like bathing, washing clothes or dishes, but also agriculture and food production.

“This is a very difficult place to live, due to the lack of water,” said Marlene Carballo, a 23-year-old Salvadoran farmer from the Jocote Dulce canton, a rural settlement in the Chinameca municipality, in the eastern El Salvador department of San Miguel.

The municipality is one of the 144 in the country that is located in the Dry Corridor, where more than 73 percent of the rural population lives in poverty and 7.1 million suffer from severe food insecurity, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

But poor rural settlements have not stood idly by.

The scarcity of water has prompted community leaders, especially women, who suffer the brunt of the shortage, to organize themselves in rural associations to promote water projects.

In the various villages in Jocote Dulce, rainwater harvesting projects, reforestation and support for the development of small poultry farms have arrived, with the backing of local and international organizations, and funding from European countries.

Rainwater harvesting is based on systems such as the one installed in Carballo’s house: when it rains, the water that falls on the roof runs through a pipe to a huge waterproof bag in the yard, which functions as a catchment tank that can hold up to 80,000 liters.

Other mechanisms also include plastic-lined rectangular-shaped holes dug in the ground.

The harvested water is used to irrigate family gardens, provide water to livestock used in food production such as cows, oxen and horses, and even for aquaculture.

Similar projects have been carried out in the rest of the Central American countries that form part of the Dry Corridor.

In Guatemala, for example, FAO and other organizations have benefited 5,416 families in 80 rural settlements in two departments of the country.

© Inter Press Service (2023) — All Rights ReservedOriginal source: Inter Press Service

Carrillion Consultant MD, Bidemi Amusa Honoured for Accomplishments in the Lagos Lekki Corridor

The popular maxim of “Gold is better sold to someone who knows the value” is best suited to describe the growing dossier of the Managing Director, Carrillion Consultant Limited, Bidemi Amusa. 

Barely 24 hours he was honoured for his outstanding performance in the real estate industry by Nigerian Institute of Building (NIoB), Lagos State Chapter, the Innovative Managing Director of Carrillion Consultant Limited, Engr. Bidemi Amusa has been nominated for yet another national award. 

Amusa, a graduate of Havard Business School, was on October 20, 2022 awarded the Most Prestigious Real Estate Firm for outstanding performance within the Lekki corridors by Nigerian Institute of Building (NIoB), Lagos State chapter at the 31st Lagos Builders’ Conference held at the podium, Lekki.

A top official of the NIoB said Bidemi Amusa was recognized for building luxury homes not only in Nigeria but Africa with a touch of gold.

Amusa, has also carved a niche for itself in building high-end but pocket-friendly houses in different parts of Lagos State.

His real estate firm, Carrillion Consultants has revolutionized property landscape of Nigeria with his signature projects already visible in Lekki, Agunyi Bakare Estate, Agnes Contemporary, Anifowose, Ajoke, Alexander in Ikoyi, Amusa White Sand, The Amusa 2, Lekki, The Amusa 3, The Amusa Heights, The Ruby Gardens, Megamond, Osapa London, Bernard, Crystal House, and Royal Gardens, among several others. 


Carrillion Consultant MD, Bidemi Amusa Honoured for Accomplishments in the Lagos Lekki Corridor


Amusa’s commitments to delivering homes that combine high-class contemporary architectural design with high-level finishing has become the toast of high socialites and movers and shakers of Nigeria’s industrial sector.

After coasting home the prestigious NIoB’s Real Estate Firm award on Friday, one of the well-read National Newspapers in Nigeria, New Telegraph, has once again nominated Bidemi Amusa’s Carillion Construction Company for the Best Estate Company of the Year.

According to another letter of nomination signed the newspaper’s Managing Director/Editor-in-Chief, Ayodele Aminu, Carillion Consultants Limited has grown into one of the strongest Real Estate companies in the country within a short time.

The Newspaper company equally described Carillion as a real estate firm that has carved a niche for himself in building high-end but pocket-friendly houses in different parts of Lagos state especially in the Lekki Corridors.

The letter reads partly “We have watched with excitement as Carrillion Limited grows into one of the strongest Real Estate companies in the country within a short time.

“The company is not just one of the leading real estate companies in the country; it has also carved a niche for itself in building high end but pocket friendly houses in different parts of Lagos State. We are also aware of the plans to spread to other states in order to increase the reach of the company.

“We believe that Carrillion is about to revolutionize property landscape with your signature projects already visible in Lekki, Agunyi Bakare Estate, Agnes Contemporary, Anifowose, Ajoke, Alexander in Ikoyi, Amusa White Sand, The Amusa 2, Lekki, The Amusa 3, The Amusa Heights, The Ruby Gardens, Megamond, Osapa London, Bernard, Crystal House and Royal Gardens, among several others. Your commitments to delivering homes that combine high class contemporary architectural design with high level finishing are of particular interest to us.

“After a careful consideration of the feats and projection into the future of the company by our panel of judges and editors, we, at New Telegraph are pleased to nominate, Carrillion Limited, the Best Real Estate Company of the Year 2022 at the New Telegraph 2022 Awards Ceremony”.

The conference hall of Federal Palace Hotel, Victoria Island, Lagos will definitely become Mecca of sorts on November 18, 2022 as friends, associates, business colleagues, and family members will throng out to celebrate the enigmatic Bidemi Amusa.

The minister, represented by Mr Kamaru Busari, Acting Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources, said vandalism and oil theft had resulted in Nigeria producing less than one million barrels of crude oil per day.

Sylva said the country’s inability to meet its Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) quota had deprived it of the much needed oil revenue when oil prices were very high in the international market.

He said, nevertheless, the government was engaging host communities, security agencies and deploying technology to address the issue in order to boost investors’ confidence in the sector.

On his part, Malam Mele Kyari, Group Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd. (NNPCL), said the company was not unmindful of the current challenges, particularly security in the operational areas and cash call arrears settlement.

Kyari, represented by Mr Dapo Segun, Deputy General Manager, Treasury, NNPCL, however, maintained that the company was resilient and would work with other stakeholders to overcome the security challenges.

He said: “We have deployed creative solutions to tackle security challenges in the operational areas.

“Technological intervention for both monitoring and prompt intervention would also be set up. The tackling of the menace is a top priority for NNPCL.

“Also, our new governance framework provides us autonomy and opportunity for self-accounting hence cash-call settlement including arrears would be settled and handled promptly going forward.”

Earlier in his address of welcome, Mr Rick Kennedy, Chairman OPTS, said OPTS had made significant contributions to the development of the Nigerian oil and gas industry over the past 60 years.

Kennedy, represented by Mr Osagie Okunbor, Vice Chairman, OPTS, said.

OPTS members had demonstrated resilience and commitment in the face of economic, security, environmental and funding challenges.

He said: “We have continued to make significant contributions to Nigeria’s development.

“As a group, OPTS member companies account about 90 per cent of Nigeria oil production and contributes significantly to the domestic and export gas production and supply.

“Over the last decade, OPTS member companies accounted for 40-60 per cent of government revenue and 85 to 95 per cent of export earnings.

“OPTS member companies are also proud to have paid tens of billions of dollars in taxes, levies, royalties, rents, and license fees to the Nigerian government.”

Kennedy, who is also the Managing Director, Chevron Nigeria/Mid-Africa Business Unit, said the OPTS companies had also created over 600,000 direct and indirect jobs for Nigerians.

Also, Mr Bunmi Toyobo, Executive Director,OPTS, thanked the 29 companies who were members of the OPTS for their contributions to its achievements in the past 60 years.

“This celebration is to demonstrate our abiding faith in Nigeria as a group and belief in the boundless growth potential of our country, given the enabling environment,” he said.

Russia outlines plans to seize Ukraine

Russia has outlined plans to seize the entire Donbas and the south of Ukraine in the second phase of its offensive to create a land corridor stretching to Moldova.


The deputy commander of Russia’s central military district, Rustam Minnekayev, said Russia planned to forge a corridor between Crimea, the Black Sea peninsula which Russia annexed in 2014, and the Donbas in eastern Ukraine.


Mariupol sits between areas held by Russian separatists and Crimea and its capture would allow Russia to link the two areas.


It comes as Russia continues to pound the Donbas, striking 58 targets overnight, but the Kremlin is still suffering heavy blows with claims their death toll has risen to 30,000.


Minnekayev said taking control of southern Ukraine would improve Russian access to Moldova’s pro-Russian breakaway region of Transdniestria, which borders Ukraine and which Kyiv fears could be used as a launching pad for new attacks.


Kyiv earlier this month said that an airfield in the region was being prepared to receive aircraft and could be used by Moscow to fly in Ukraine-bound troops.


‘Control over the south of Ukraine is another way to Transdniestria, where there is also evidence that the Russian-speaking population is being oppressed,’ TASS quoted Minnekayev as saying at a meeting in Russia’s central Sverdlovsk region.


Ukraine’s Defence Ministry denounced the plans announced by Russia to take full control of Donbas and southern Ukraine as ‘imperialism’.


‘They stopped hiding it,’ the ministry said on Twitter. It said Russia had ‘acknowledged that the goal of the ‘second phase’ of the war is not victory over the mythical Nazis, but simply the occupation of eastern and southern Ukraine. Imperialism as it is.’


Elsewhere in Ukraine today, at least one person died and two were injured when a transport plane crashed over the centre of the country, the latest incident involving accident-prone Soviet-era aircraft.


‘An AN-26 aircraft, which according to preliminary information belonged to Ukraine, crashed today in the vicinity of Mikhailovka in the Zaporizhzhia region,’ the region’s administration wrote in a statement on social media.


‘The aircraft was performing a technical flight. It has been established that one person was killed and two more were injured.’


Crew numbers and the cause of the crash were being investigated, the statement added.

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