Daily Watch – Crude output inches up in October, Ghanaian inflation touches the sky

10th November 2022

Nigeria’s daily crude oil production output rose above 1 million barrels per day for the first time since June this year, according to new data from the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC). In its October report, it said production stood at an average of 1,014,485 barrels per day in October 2022, up from 972,000 BPD in August, and 937,000 in September but just shy of July’s 1,083,899 BPD. The agency had earlier said that the production output from 13 out of Nigeria’s 29 crude oil terminals declined drastically between July and September 2022, which contributed to the falling numbers. According to the NUPRC data, the worst-hit crude terminals are Bonny, Brass, and Forcados, which saw production declines of 79%, 40.5%, and 96.5% respectively during the period under review. Africa’s largest economy has been struggling to improve its oil output to reach its Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) quota. OPEC revealed last month that Angola, Libya, and Algeria produced more crude oil than Nigeria in September

The National Population Commission (NPC) has said it will need ₦532.7 billion to conduct a national census in April 2023. The commission’s chairman Nasir Kwarra made the request to the Senate Committee on National Population and Identity Management during the 2023 budget defence session on Wednesday. The ₦532.7 billion, he said, is purely a proposal for the conduct of the 2023 census which he said would be digitally done. He said the NPC wants to ensure that the 2023 exercise is not only accurate, credible and reliable but also acceptable to all Nigerians. He said the proposed sum for the conduct of the 2023 census covers post enumeration survey and the exercise will be a departure from the past in taking cognisance of the issue of climate change. In the agency’s 2023 budgetary proposal, ₦1.05 billion was earmarked for capital expenditure, ₦655 million for overhead and ₦8.6 billion for personnel. In 2022, ₦206.85 billion was appropriated for the commission, of which ₦107.7 billion was earmarked for capital expenditure, ₦615 million for overhead and ₦7.8 billion for personnel cost. The Senate committee chairman, Sahabi Ya’u (APC, Zamfara North) asked the NPC boss for line-by-line details of 2022 projects and proposed 2023 projects, including ₦5.2 billion spent on a mock census and ₦1.2 billion spent on 37 summits for 2023.

Amnesty International has condemned the sentencing of two TikTok stars in Kano for defaming the state governor Abdullahi Ganduje. The TikTokers, Mubarak Muhammad alias Unique Pikin and Nazifi Muhammad, had pleaded guilty and asked for leniency. But the judge ordered them to be given 20 lashes each, to pay a fine of ₦10,000 and to clean the court premises for 30 days. They were also ordered to publicly apologise to Mr Ganduje on social media. Amnesty International said the “cruel sentences must be quashed” and that the young TikTok stars “must be immediately and unconditionally released”. Parts of the sentences have been carried out. The pair were whipped in public on the court’s premises and have paid the fine. Their lawyer said they would not appeal against the judgement.

Ghana’s annual inflation rate hit 40.4% for October, a rise from 37.2% for the previous month, according to the Ghana Statistical Service. Food inflation for the month under review rose 43.7% year on year compared to 37.8% the month before. The cost of essential commodities like staple food, fuel and utilities have all surged to push price increases to a record high. Inflation for locally produced items was 39.1% compared to 43.7% for currency-induced imported items. On Saturday, hundreds of protesters took to the streets of the capital, Accra, demanding the resignation of President Nana Akufo Addo, Vice-President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia and Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta for failing to deal with the crisis. The national currency, the cedi, recorded one of its worst performances against the US dollar last month and is listed as the world’s worst-performing currency in 2022.