Full Breakdown Of Nigeria’s ‘2017 Budget Of Recovery And Growth’

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Protocols

  1. It is my pleasure to present the 2017 Budget Proposals to this distinguished Joint Assembly: the Budget of Recovery and Growth.

  2. We propose that the implementation of the Budget will be based on our Economic Recovery and Growth Strategy. The Plan, which builds on our 2016 Budget, provides a clear road map of policy actions and steps designed to bring the economy out of recession and to a path of steady growth and prosperity.

  3. We continue to face the most challenging economic situation in the history of our Nation. Nearly every home and nearly every business in Nigeria is affected one way or the other.

  4. Yet I remain convinced that this is also a time of great opportunity.We have reached a stage when the creativity, talents and resilience of the Nigerian people is being rewarded. Those courageous and patriotic men and women who believed in Nigeria are now seeing the benefits gradually come to fruition. I am talking about the farmers who today are experiencing bumper harvests, the manufacturers who substituted imported goods for local materials and the car assembly companies who today are expanding to meet higher demand.

  5. Distinguished members of National Assembly, for the record:For many years we depended on oil for foreign exchange revenues. In the days of high oil prices,we did not save. We squandered.

  6. We wasted our large foreign exchange reserves to import nearly everything we consume. Our food, Our clothing, Our manufacturing inputs, Our fuel and much more.In the past 18 months when we experienced low oil prices, we saw our foreign exchange earnings cut by about 60%, our reserves eroded and our consumption declined as we could not import to meet our needs.

  7. By importing nearly everything, we provide jobs for young men and women in the countries that produce what we import, while our own young people wander around jobless. By preferring imported goods, we ensure steady jobs for the nationals of other countries, while our own farmers, manufacturers, engineers, and marketers, remain jobless.

  8. I will stand my ground and maintain my position that under my watch, that old Nigeria is slowly but surely disappearing and a new era is rising in which we grow what we eat and consume what we make.
    We will CHANGE our habits and we will CHANGE Nigeria.

  9. By this simple principle, we will increasingly grow and process our own food, we will manufacture what we can and refine our own petroleum products. We will buy ‘Made in Nigeria’ goods. We will encourage garment manufacturing and Nigerian designers, tailors and fashion retailers. We will patronize local entrepreneurs. We will promote the manufacturing powerhouses in Aba, Calabar, Kaduna, Kano, Lagos, Nnewi, Onitsha, and Ota. From light manufacturing to cement production and petrochemicals, our objective is to make Nigeria a new manufacturing hub.

  10. Today, the demand of the urban consumer has presented an opportunity for the rural producer. Across the country, our farmers, traders and transporters are seeing a shift in their fortunes. Nigerians who preferred imported products are now consuming made in Nigeria products. From Argungu in Kebbi to Abakalaki in Ebonyi, rice farmers and millers are seeing their products move. We must replicate such success in other staples like wheat, sugar, soya, tomato and dairy products. Already, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Organised Private Sector and a handful of Nigerian commercial banks, have embarked on an ambitious private sector-led N600 billion program to push us towards self-sufficiency in three years for these products. I hereby make a special appeal to all State Governors to make available land to potential farmers for the purpose of this program.

  11. To achieve self-sufficiency in food and other products, a lot of work needs to be done across the various value chains. For agriculture, inputs must be available and affordable. In the past, basic inputs, like the NPK fertilizer,were imported although key ingredients like urea and limestone are readily available locally. Our local blending plants have been abandoned. Jobs lost and families destroyed. I am pleased to announce today that on 2nd December 2016, Morocco and Nigeria signed an ambitious collaboration agreement to revive the abandoned Nigerian fertilizer blending plants. The agreement focuses on optimizing local materials while only importing items that are not available locally. This program has already commenced and we expect that in the first quarter of 2017, it will create thousands of jobs and save Nigeria US$200 million of foreign exchange and over N60 billion in subsidy.

  12. We must take advantage of current opportunities to export processed agricultural products and manufactured goods. Let it not be lost on anyone that the true drivers of our economic future will be the farmers, small and medium sized manufacturers, agro-allied businesses, dressmakers, entertainers and technology start-ups. They are the engine of our imminent economic recovery. And their needs underpin the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan.

  13. Let me, Mr. Senate President, Right Hon. Speaker, here acknowledge the concerns expressed by the National Assembly and, in particular, acknowledge your very helpful Resolutions on the State of the Economy, which were sent to me for my consideration. The Resolutions contained many useful suggestions, many of which are in line with my thinking and have already been reflected in our Plan. Let me emphasise that close cooperation between the Executive and the Legislature is vital to the success of our recovery and growth plans.

  14. Permit me to briefly outline a few important features of the Plan. The underlying philosophy of our Economic Recovery and Growth Plan is optimizing the use of local content and empowering local businesses. The role of Government must be to facilitate, enable and support the economic activities of the Nigerian businesses as I earlier mentioned. Fiscal, monetary and trade policies will be fully aligned and underpinned by the use of policy instruments to promote import substitution. Government will however at all times ensure the protection of public interest.

  15. First we clearly understand the paradox that to diversify from oil we need oil revenues. You may recall that oil itself was exploited by investment from agricultural surpluses. We will now use oil revenues to revive our agriculture and industries. Though we cannot control the price of crude oil, we are determined to get our production back to at least 2.2 million barrels per day. Consistent with the views which have also been expressed by the National Assembly, we will continue our engagement with the communities in the Niger Delta to ensure that there is minimum disruption to oil production. The National Assembly, State and Local Governments, Traditional Rulers, Civil Society Organisations and Oil Companies must also do their part in this engagement. We must all come together to ensure peace reigns in the Niger Delta.

  16. In addition, we will continue our ongoing reforms to enhance the efficiency of the management of our oil and gas resources. To this effect, from January 2017, the Federal Government will no longer make provision for Joint Venture cash-calls. Going forward, all Joint Venture operations shall be subjected to a new funding mechanism, which will allow for Cost Recovery. This new funding arrangement is expected to boost exploration and production activities, with resultant net positive impact on government revenues which can be allocated to infrastructure, agriculture, solid minerals and manufacturing sectors.

  17. I earlier mentioned our ambitions for policy harmonisation. But we all know that one of the peculiar problems of our environment is execution. This phenomenon affects both government carrying out its own functions and the innumerable bureaucratic hurdles in doing business. To this end, I will be issuing some Executive Orders to ensure the facilitation and speeding up of government procurements and approvals. Facilitation of business and commerce must be the major objective of government agencies. Government must not be the bottle neck. Additionally, these Executive Orders will widen the scope of compliance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act by Federal Government owned entities and promote support for local content in Ministries, Department and Agencies.

  18. The Executive will soon place before the National Assembly proposals for legislation to reduce statutorily mandated minimum times for administrative processes in order to speed up business transactions. In addition, I have established the Presidential Enabling Business Council, chaired by the Vice President with a mandate to make doing business in Nigeria easier and more attractive. Getting approvals for business and procurements will be simplified and made faster.

  19. In 2017, we will focus on the rapid development of infrastructure, especially rail, roads and power. Efforts to fast-track the modernization of our railway system is a priority in the 2017 Budget. In 2016, we made a lot of progress getting the necessary studies updated and financing arrangements completed. We also addressed some of the legacy contractor liabilities inherited to enable us to move forward on a clean slate. Many of these tasks are not visible but are very necessary for sustainability of projects. Nigerians will soon begin to see the tangible benefits in 2017.

  20. We also have an ambitious programme for growing our digital platforms in order to modernise the Nigerian economy, support innovation and improve productivity and competitiveness. We will do this through increased spending on critical information technology infrastructure and also by promoting policies that facilitate investments in this vital sector.

  21. During 2016, we conducted a critical assessment of the power sector value chain, which is experiencing major funding issues. Although Government, through the CBN and other Development Finance Institutions has intervened, it is clear that more capital is needed. We must also resolve the problems of liquidity in the sector. On its part, Government has made provisions in its 2017 Budget to clear its outstanding electricity bills. This we hope, will provide the much needed liquidity injection to support the investors.

  22. In the delivery of critical infrastructure, we have developed specific models to partner with private capital, which recognize the constraints of limited public finances and incorporate learnings from the past. These tailor-made public private partnerships are being customized, in collaboration with some global players, to suit various sectors, and we trust that, the benefits of this new approach will come to fruition in 2017.

  23. Fellow Nigerians, although a lot of problems experienced by this Administration were not created by us, we are determined to deal with them. One of such issues that the Federal Government is committed to dealing with frontally, is the issue of its indebtedness to contractors and other third parties. We are at an advanced stage of collating and verifying these obligations, some of which go back ten years, which we estimate at about N2 trillion. We will continue to negotiate a realistic and viable payment plan to ensure legitimate claims are settled.

2016 Budget Performance

  1. In 2016, the budget was prepared on the principles of zero based budgeting to ensure our resources were prudently managed and utilized solely for the public good. This method was a clear departure from the previous incremental budgeting method. We have adopted the same principles in the 2017 Budget.

  2. Distinguished members of the National Assembly may recall that the 2016 Budget was predicated on a benchmark oil price of US$38 per barrel, oil production of 2.2 million barrels per day and an exchange rate of N197 to the US dollar.

  3. On the basis of these assumptions, aggregate revenue was projected at N3.86 trillion while the expenditure outlay was estimated at N6.06 trillion. The deficit of N2.2 trillion, which was about 2.14% of GDP was expected to be mainly financed through borrowing.

  4. The implementation of the 2016 Budget was hampered by the combination of relatively low oil prices in the first quarter of 2016, and disruptions in crude oil production which led to significant shortfalls in projected revenue. This contributed to the economic slow-down that negatively affected revenue collections by the Federal Inland Revenue Service and the Nigerian Customs Service.

  5. As at 30 September 2016, aggregate revenue inflow was N2.17 trillion or 25% less than prorated projections. Similarly, N3.58 trillion had been spent by the same date on both recurrent and capital expenditure. This is equivalent to 79% of the pro rated full year expenditure estimate of N4.54 trillion as at the end of September 2016.

  6. In spite of these challenges, we met both our debt service obligations and personnel costs. Similarly, overhead costs have been largely covered.

  7. Although capital expenditure suffered as a result of project formulation delays and revenue shortfalls, in the five months since the 2016 Budget was passed, the amount of N753.6 billion has been released for capital expenditure as at the end of October 2016. It is important to note that this is one of the highest capital releases recorded in the nation’s recent history. In fact, it exceeds the aggregate capital expenditure budget for 2015.

31.Consequently, work has resumed on a number of stalled infrastructure projects such as the construction of new terminals at the country’s four major airports; numerous major road projects; key power transmission projects; and the completion of the Kaduna – Abuja railway to mention a few.

  1. We remain resolute in our commitment to the security of life and property nationwide. The courageous efforts and sacrifices of our heroes in the armed forces and para military unitsare clear for all to see. The gradual return to normality in the North East is a good example of the results. Our resolve to support them is unwavering. Our spending in the 2016 fiscal year focused on ensuring these gallant men and women are properly equipped and supported. We will continue to prioritise defence spending till all our enemies, within and outside, are subdued.

  2. Stabilisation of sub-national government finances remains a key objective in our plans to stimulate the economy. In June 2016,a conditional Budget Support Programme was introduced, which offered State Governments N566 billion to address their funding shortfalls. To participate, State Governments were required to subscribe to certain fiscal reforms centered around transparency, accountability and efficiency. For example, States as part of this program were required to publish audited accounts and introduce biometric payroll systems with the goal of eliminating ghost workers.

  3. Our efforts on cost containment have continued throughout the year. We have restricted travel costs,reduced board members’ sitting allowances, converted forfeited properties to Government offices to save on rent and eliminated thousands of Ghost workers. These, and many other cost reduction measures will lead to savings of close to N180 billion per annum to be applied to critical areas including health, security and education.

2017 Budget Priorities

  1. Let me now turn to 2017 Budget.Government’s priorities in 2017 will be a continuation of our 2016 plans but adjusted to reflect new additions made in the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan. In order to restore growth, a key objective of the Federal Government will be to bring about stability and greater coherence between monetary, fiscal and trade policies while guaranteeing security for all.

  2. The effort to diversify the economy and create jobs will continue with emphasis on agriculture, manufacturing, solid minerals and services. Mid- and Down-stream oil and gas sectors,are also key priority areas. We will prioritise investments in human capital development especially in education and health, as well as wider social inclusion through job creation, public works and social investments.

  3. Our plans also recognise that success in building a dynamic, competitive economy depends on construction of high quality national infrastructure and an improved business environment leveraging locally available resources. To achieve this, we will continue our goal of improving governance by enhancing public service delivery as well as securing life and property.

The 2017 Budget: Assumptions, Revenue Projections and Fiscal Deficit

  1. Distinguished members of the National Assembly, the 2017 Budget is based on a benchmark crude oil price of US$42.5 per barrel; an oil production estimate of 2.2 million barrels per day; and an average exchange rate of N305 to the US dollar.

  2. Based on these assumptions, aggregate revenue available to fund the federal budget is N4.94 trillion. This is 28% higher than 2016 full year projections. Oil is projected to contribute N1.985 trillion of this amount.

  3. Non-oil revenues, largely comprising Companies Income Tax, Value Added Tax, Customs and Excise duties, and Federation Account levies are estimated to contribute N1.373 trillion. We have set a more realistic projection of N807.57 billion for Independent Revenues, while we have projected receipts of N565.1 billion from various Recoveries. Other revenue sources, including mining, amount to N210.9 billion.

  4. With regard to expenditure, we have proposed a budget size of N7.298 trillion which is a nominal 20.4% increase over 2016 estimates. 30.7% of this expenditure will be capital in line with our determination to reflate and pull the economy out of recession as quickly as possible.

  5. This fiscal plan will result in a deficit of N2.36 trillion for 2017 which is about 2.18% of GDP. The deficit will be financed mainly by borrowing which is projected to be about N2.32 trillion. Our intention is to source N1.067 trillion or about 46% of this borrowing from external sources while, N1.254 trillion will be borrowed from the domestic market.

Expenditure Estimates

  1. The proposed aggregate expenditure of N7.298 trillion will comprise:
    i. Statutory transfers of N419.02 billion;
    ii. Debt service of N1.66 trillion;
    iii. Sinking fund of N177.46 billion to retire certain maturing bonds;
    iv. Non-debt recurrent expenditure of N2.98 trillion; and
    v. Capital expenditure of N2.24 trillion (including capital in Statutory Transfers).
    Statutory Transfers

  2. We have increased the budgetary allocation to the Judiciary from N70 billion to N100 billion. This increase in funding is further meant to enhance the independence of the judiciary and enable them to perform their functions effectively.

Recurrent Expenditure

  1. A significant portion of recurrent expenditure has been provisioned for the payment of salaries and overheads in institutions that provide critical public services. The budgeted amounts for these items are:
    · N482.37 billion for the Ministry of Interior;
    · N398.01 billion for Ministry of Education;
    · N325.87 billion for Ministry of Defence; and
    · N252.87 billion for Ministry of Health.

  2. We have maintained personnel costs at about N1.8 trillion.It is important that we complete the work that we have started of ensuring the elimination of all ghost workers from the payroll. Accordingly, adequate provision has been made in the 2017 Budget to ensure all personnel that are not enrolled on the Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System platform are captured.

  3. We have tasked the Efficiency Unit of the Federal Ministry of Finance to cut certain overhead costs by 20%. We must eliminate all non-essential costs so as to free resources to fund our capital expenditure.

Capital Expenditure

  1. The size of the 2017 capital budget of N2.24 trillion (inclusive of capital in Statutory Transfers), or 30.7% of the total budget, reflects our determination to spur economic growth. These capital provisions are targeted at priority sectors and projects.

  2. Specifically, we have maintained substantially higher allocations for infrastructural projects which will have a multiplier effect on productivity, employment and also promote private sector investments into the country.

  3. Key capital spending provisions in the Budget include the following:
    • Power, Works and Housing: N529billion;
    • Transportation: N262 billion;
    • Special Intervention Programmes: N150 billion.
    • Defence: N140 billion;
    • Water Resources: N85 billion;
    • Industry, Trade and Investment: N81 billion;
    • Interior: N63 billion;
    • Education N50 billion
    • Universal Basic Education Commission: N92 billion
    • Health: N51 billion
    • Federal Capital Territory: N37 billion;
    • Niger Delta Ministry: N33 billion; and
    • Niger Delta Development Commission: N61 billion;

  4. N100 billion has been provided in the Special Intervention programme as seed money into the N1 trillion Family Homes Fund that will underpin a new social housing programme. This substantial expenditure is expected to stimulate construction activity throughout the country.

  5. Efforts to fast-track the modernization of our railway system will receive further boost through the allocation of N213.14 billion as counterpart funding for the Lagos-Kano, Calabar-Lagos,Ajaokuta-Itakpe-Warri railway, and Kaduna-Abuja railway projects. As I mentioned earlier, in 2016, we invested a lot of time ensuring the paper work is done properly while negotiating the best deal for Nigeria. I must admit this took longer than expected but I am optimistic that these projects will commence in 2017 for all to see.

  6. Given the emphasis placed on industrialization and supporting SMEs, a sum of N50 billion has been set aside as Federal Government’s contribution for the expansion of existing, as well as the development of new, Export Processing and Special Economic Zones. These will be developed in partnership with the private sector as we continue our efforts to promote and protect Nigerian businesses. Furthermore, as the benefits of agriculture and mining are starting to become visible, I have instructed that the Export Expansion Grant be revived in the form of tax credits to companies. This will further enhance the development of some agriculture and mining sector thereby bringing in more investments and creating more jobs. The sum of N20 billion has been voted for the revival of this program.

  7. Our small- and medium-scale businesses continue to face difficulties in accessing longer term and more affordable credit. To address this situation, a sum of N15 billion has been provided for the recapitalization of the Bank of Industry and the Bank of Agriculture. In addition, the Development Bank of Nigeria will soon start operations with US$1.3 billion focused exclusively on Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises.

  8. Agriculture remains at the heart of our efforts to diversify the economy and the proposed allocation to the sector this year is at a historic high of N92 billion. This sum will complement the existing efforts by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and CBN to boost agricultural productivity through increased intervention funding at single digit interest rate under the Anchor Borrowers Programme, commercial agricultural credit scheme and The Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk-Sharing System for Agricultural Lending.Accordingly, our agricultural policy will focus on the integrated development of the agricultural sector by facilitating access to inputs, improving market access, providing equipment and storage as well as supporting the development of commodity exchanges.

  9. Government realizes that achieving its goals with regard to job creation, also requires improving the skills of our labour force, especially young people. We have accordingly made provision, including working with the private sector and State Governments, to establish and operate model technical and vocational education institutes.

  10. We propose with regard to healthcare to expand coverage through support to primary healthcare centres and expanding the National Health Insurance Scheme.

  11. The 2017 Budget estimates retains the allocation of N500 billion to the Special Intervention programme consisting of the Home-grown School Feeding Programme, Government Economic Empowerment programme, N-Power Job Creation Programme to provide loans for traders and artisans, Conditional Cash Transfers to the poorest families and the new Family Homes Fund (social housing scheme). The N-Power Programme has recently taken off with the employment of 200,000 graduates across the country, while the School Feeding Programme has commenced in a few States, where the verification of caterers has been completed

  12. As we pursue economic recovery, we must remain mindful of issues of sustainable and inclusive growth and development. The significant vote for the Federal Ministry of Water Resources reflects the importance attached to integrated water resource management. In this regard, many river-basin projects have been prioritized for completion in 2017. Similarly, the increased vote of N9.52 billion for the Federal Ministry of Environment (an increase of 92% over the 2016 allocation) underscores the greater attention to matters of the environment, including climate change and leveraging private sector funding for the clean-up of the Niger Delta.

  13. Provision has also been made in these estimates for activities that will foster a safe and conducive atmosphere for the pursuit of economic and social activities. In this regard, the allocation for the Presidential Amnesty Programme has been increased to N65 billion in the 2017 Budget. Furthermore, N45 billion in funding has been provisioned for the rehabilitation of the North East to complement the funds domiciled at the Presidential Committee on the North East Initiative as well as commitments received from the multinational donors.

Conclusion

  1. Mr. Senate President, Mr. Speaker, distinguished and honourable members of the National Assembly, I cannot end without commending the National Assembly for its support insteering our economy on a path of sustained and inclusive growth. This generation has an opportunity to move our country from an unsustainable growth model – one that is largely dependent on oil earnings and imports, to an economy that focuses on using local labour and local raw materials. We cannot afford to let this opportunity slip by. We must all put our differences aside and work together to make this country succeed. The people that voted us into these esteemed positions are looking to us to make a difference. To change the course of this nation. I have no doubt in my mind that by working together, we will put Nigeria back on the path that its founding fathers envisaged.

  2. This Budget, therefore, represents a major step in delivering on our desired goals through a strong partnership across the arms of government and between the public and private sectors to create inclusive growth. Implementation will move to centre-stage as we proceed with the process of re-balancing our economy, exiting recession and insulating it from future external and domestic shocks.

  3. I thank you all for your patience and patriotism.

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3 Best ‘Love Making’ Positions That Help To Conceive Twins

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3 Best ‘Love Making’ Positions That Help To Conceive Twins

In terms of natural conception, twins occur in about one out of every 89 births. In other words, it’s not everyone who wishes to have a set of twins that can get them!

Qualities Every Woman Wants In A Man

While those who have twins in their families are more likely to conceive twins, experts say many of us may just maintain wishes when it comes to these rare species of humans!

However, sex experts are assuring that there are certain positions you can assume during sex, which can aid you in conceiving twins.

How To Stop A Nigerian Man From Cheating

Try these styles and get back to us in nine months’ time!

  • Doggy style:Here, the woman will assume kneeling position, while the man will enter from behind.
    Advantage: During sexual intercourse, the sperm is able to swim better and reach the cervix of the woman easily.
  • Standing position.This enables the man to have deep penetration.
    Advantage: The sperm can easily reach the egg.
  • Missionary position.This will help the sperm to reach the egg easily. And it’s regarded as the best kind of sexual position.

 

Source: The Punch

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Live Stream: Buhari Currently Presenting 2017 Budget To The National Assembly

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President Muhammadu Buhari is presently presenting the 2017 appropriation bill to a joint session of the National Assembly.

Buhari, who was expected to present the budget at 10am, was late due to his trip to Gambia – and it was subsequently postponed till 2pm.

Click Here To Watch Live Stream By NTA

More details to be added as it develops…

 

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Jurgen Klopp Promises To Play Liverpool’s Youth 

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Jurgen Klopp has given his backing to Liverpool’s set of promising youngsters and insisted they will get opportunities under him.

Prospects Trent Alex-Arnold, Ben Woodburn and Ovie Ejaria have already featured under Klopp this season, predominately in the EFL Cup, while fellow youngsters Sheyi Ojo and Cameron Brannagan have impressed for the club’s development squad.

“I love our young players. They are brilliant but West Ham was not a game to bring them in. We believe in them, of course, and we will use them for sure. It’s not perfect but what can I talk about?” he said.

“We cannot change it in this moment, because you will start asking about what I will do in the transfer window. Players will come back, we will see how another one develops and take our decisions. We take what we get.

“It’s far away from being the perfect situation.”

With a hectic festive schedule on the horizon, the Liverpool manager was also certain that his side’s title rivals will soon have injury problems of their own.

“The difference is, if you want, that we have had our (injury) problems already. Other teams will get them because no one will go through without problems,” he added.

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EFCC Breaks Words Of Admonishment To Nigerians As MMM Breaks 3 Million ‘Hearts’

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The Economic and Financial Commission (EFCC), has admonished Nigerians to “protect” themselves and “not patronise wonder banks,” after popular money making scheme, Mavrodi Mundial Moneybox (MMM), placed a one month freeze on withdrawals.

The Ponzi scheme, which had gained prominence in controversy, had broken the ‘hearts’ of over 3 million Nigerians on Tuesday, after it announced the suspension of payments to participants till January 2017.

Several Nigerians, who had basked in the thought of enjoying the Christmas celebrations with the money they cashed out on the wonder bank, have been left wallowing in the gust of panic and alternatives following the incident.

READ ALSO: MMM Nigeria: Reactions Continue As Ponzi Scheme Shocks 3 Million Nigerians

A letter displayed on pages of participants of the scheme cited “heavy workload on system” as reason for the freeze.

Panic Among Participants As Operations Of MMM Nigeria Get Frozen
EFCC Breaks Words Of Admonishment To Nigerians As MMM Freezes 3 Million Accounts

The letter reads: “One-month Freezing of Confirmed Mavros. Dear members, as usual in the New Year season, the system is experiencing heavy workload. Moreover, it has to deal with the constant frenzy provoked by authorities in the mass media.

“The things are still going well; the participants feel calm; everyone gets paid – as you can see, there haven’t been any payment delays or other problems yet – but… it is better to avoid taking risk. Moreover, there are just three weeks left to the New Year.

“On the basis of the above mentioned, therefore, all confirmed Mavros will be frozen for a month.

“The reason for this measure is evident. We need to prevent any problems during the New Year and then, when everything calms down, this measure will be cancelled, which we will definitely do.

“We hope for your understanding. Administration.”

Sequel to the announcement, the premier anti graft agency was dragged into the ‘livid’ hullabaloo that was triggered in the country’s social media community, after a Twitter user @Lolami_Boo, called out the agency, beckoning on other MMM users to hold them responsible for the alleged crash of the ponzi scheme.

The user wrote: “Where the hell was EFCC? Isn’t it your job to stop crap like this?”

Apparently unwilling to succumb to petty and frivolous accusations, the EFCC, swiftly yet satirically, on its official handle @officialEFCC replied:

 “You mean amongst the plethora of venality we fight daily, Ponzi schemes aren’t sustainable?

“There were a number of warning.”

Later on, the anti graft commission admonished Nigerians, saying:

“If it looks or sounds too good to be true, it almost always is.

“Respect your hard work and be content. Please stay away from quick return schemes. Please.”

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) had earlier informed that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had warned Nigerians against participating in the scheme, which they described as a “Ponzi” scheme.

READ ALSO: Panic Among Participants As MMM Nigeria Freezes All Accounts

In October, the House of Representatives also ordered an investigation into operations of the scheme.

In the wake of the accounts’ suspension by MMM, a man in Makurdi in Benue state of Nigeria was reported to have ingested insecticide after he learnt of the development and was quickly rushed to the hospital.

READ ALSO: ‘MMM Is A Fraud, Don’t Patronize It’ – CBN Warns Nigerians

The report alleged that the man was shocked that he could not collect the returns on his N300,000 investment, which he would have used for his wedding, planned for January 2017.

MMM Nigeria: Safety tips as cases of suicide may arise in any part of the country
MMM Nigeria: Safety tips as cases of suicide may arise in any part of the country

In an attempt to stem the tide and forestall further negative reaction to the crash of the Ponzi scheme, the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) alerted families to be vigilant against possible suicide by subscribers and investors – adding that suicide rate ‘may’ rise in the state.

READ ALSO: Ultimate Cycler: Panic Grips Nigerians In MMM As Another Ponzi Scheme Website Crashes

On its Twitter account yesterday, the agency directed families and friends of subscribers to call 112 in case of or suspicion suicide in any part of the state, Vanguard reports.

Meanwhile, top MMM guider, Chuddy has addressed MMM investors on the one month freeze of accounts.

He said: “This isn’t the first of its kind. It happens when there are excess PANIC in the system It was placed on Zimbabwe and after the duration it was lifted. “As MMM Freezes And Goes Offline Few Weeks Before Christmas This idea is brought forward to Calm the members down on intending Threat the FG and Mass media has planned on the system.’’

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Rafa Benitez Speaks About Chelsea And Liverpool’s Interest In Newcastle Defender Jamal Lascelles 

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Rafael Benitez believes that Jamaal Lascelles will remain at Newcastle in the January transfer window despite interest from his former club Liverpool And Chelsea

“I saw the links about Jamaal, but I have been talking with him and with more people around him,” he told the Northern Echo.

“He’s happy, he’s OK and we think that he’s a good player for us, so I don’t see any big change in January around him, or anyone really.”

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte was linked with an £18million move for Lascelles in October.

Benitez, however, doesn’t envisage anyone leaving St James’s Park in the January window apart from midfielder Cheick Tiote, who is in the final year of his contract.

With Newcastle challenging for promotion, Benitez believes his squad is committed to the challenge on Tyneside.

United could even strengthen next month if the right player is available at the right price.

“(With) the players that are playing a lot of games, with the team at the top and the possibilities of the future, I don’t see anyone who would like to go,” said Benitez.

“I could see maybe someone coming, but still our position is the same.

“Still we are happy with the squad at the monent.

“The players are fine and they are enjoying their football, so I don’t see a big problem now.”

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Tottenham Plan £25 Million Bid For Wilfried Zaha 

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Tottenham are weighing up a January bid for Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha, according to the Metro.

The £25m-rated player is said to want a move elsewhere and White Hart Lane is his ideal destination after Spurs reportedly had a £21m bid turned down for him in the summer.

Pochettino is looking to bolster his attacking options in January with a new winger and Zaha fits the profile of player he is looking for.

Zaha has been in excellent form this season, scoring three goals and registering six assists in 14 Premier League appearances.

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Oscar Confirms Shanghai SIPG Move Is Almost Done

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Brazil international and Chelsea midfielder, Oscar says his move to the Chinese Super League to join Shanghai SIPG is all but done.

Reports have linked the midfielder with a reunion with former Chelsea manager, Andre Villas-Boas in China.

The 25-year-old midfielder is expected to complete the move when the window opens after Chelsea accepted a deal believed to be worth €60 million for his transfer.

“It’s 90 per cent certain,” he is quoted as telling SporTV. “It just depends on a few bureaucratic details.”

Oscar has won the Premier League, the Europa League and the EFL Cup since joining Chelsea from Internacional back in 2012.

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Chelsea, Barcelona And Bayern All Intrested In 15-Year-old Rangers Midfielder Billy Gilmour 

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Chelsea, Barcelona and Bayern Munich want Rangers 15-year-old midfielder Billy Gilmour, according to The Sun.

The teenager has caught the eye playing for the Glasgow side and Scotland, and is being ear-marked as a big playmaker talent for the future.

FIFA rules prohibit them making a move until the Ayrshire schoolboy turns 16 on June 11 next year.

Scouts from Barcelona, Bayern Munich and a clutch of English clubs watched him impress for Scotland in the Victory Shield earlier this season.

FIFA rules mean any club could land Gilmour for as little as £100,000 in cross-border compensation.

Gilmour is under contract at Rangers until the end of the season, but according to ESPN Chelsea have already offered the Scottish club £500,000 to sign the player now rather than wait until he is 16 and try and land him on a compensation fee.

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Stop Worshipping In Uncompleted Buildings – CAN Warns Churches

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In the wake of the tragedy that took place at the Reigners Bible Church Int’l Inc, Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, on Saturday, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has cautioned churches across the country not to worship in uncompleted buildings.

CAN Reacts As Over 200 Worshipers Die In Akwa Ibom Church Collapse

CAN Reacts As Over 200 Worshipers Die In Akwa Ibom Church Collapse

According to a statement signed by the General Secretary of the body, Rev Dr Musa Asake, CAN lamented the disaster and tasked every Christian to identify with the victims through prayers, gifts and condolence visits.

It thereafter urged churches to stop “the idea of holding worship service inside buildings under construction to avoid a repeat of the avoidable tragedy”.

READ ALSO: Gov Emmanuel Escapes Death As Over 200 Worshipers Die In Akwa Ibom Church Collapse

<

p id=”yui_3_16_0_ym19_1_1481644425622_154891″ class=”yiv1724458911MsoNormal”>The statement read:

“We identify with the victims of the tragedy, we pray for their quick recovery as we are asking God to console and comfort all the bereaved. It is very unfortunate that the devil struck when the whole world is getting ready for the celebration of the Birth of the Saviour, Jesus Christ, who came to destroy the work of the devil.

 “We thank God that His Excellency, Governor Udom Emmanuel, who himself narrowly escaped with his life in the tragedy and we welcome his prompt intervention when he said the state government will hold an inquiry to investigate if anyone compromised building standards”.

Asake continued:

“It is no more news that buildings often collapse in the country as a result of contractors using sub-standard materials coupled with lack of building approvals or a thorough supervision by the relevant agencies.

 “We call on the Society of Engineers and other relevant bodies to rise up to the menace of building with sub-standard materials in Nigeria which have led to demise of thousands of innocent people. Until severe sanctioned are met on those who are responsible, they may not be able to stop their satanic antics.”

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Nnamdi Kanu Explodes In Court; “By The Time I Finish Testifying, There Will Be No Nigeria” [VIDEO]

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A viral video has emerged on social media where the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, and Director of Radio Biafra, Mr. Nnamdi Kanu on Tuesday exploded after learning that witnesses that will testify against him will give their testimony in secret.

In the footage, the embattled IPOB leader can be seen fuming in rage and saying he won’t allow President Muhammadu Buhari to jail him.

In the video, Kanu who, during his resumed trial on Tuesday, vehemently rejected the ruling of trial Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court in Abuja who granted the Federal Government the nod to shield identities of witnesses billed to testify against him also threatened that he would expose secrets that will sink Nigeria finally.

“Buhari went on national television to accuse me in public and he wants to try me in secret. I will not allow myself to be subjected to this kind of trial,” he fumed.

“They are mad!” he exclaimed, “tell Buhari that’s what I said- that he is mad!”

“Rubbish!”

“I won’t stand this travesty of justice. Buhari spoke in public, he accused me in public. I must also be allowed to stand my trial in public,” Kanu fumed in court.

The IPOB leader is facing an 11-count charge alongside three other pro-Biafra agitators, Mr. Chidiebere Onwudiwe, Benjamin Madubugwu and David Nwawuisi.

Charges against the accused persons border on reasonable felony and their alleged involvement in acts of terrorism.

He continued: “This is nonsense. I will give testimony before this court. By the time I finish, there will be no Nigeria. This is no Sharia court. It is a court that operates under the common law.

“There will be no screening of witnesses, no fake identities or fake addresses. I cannot be tried in secret. No. Nnamdi Kanu cannot be jailed in secret. They are mad. Why must I be tried in secrecy by a government that does not obey court orders. “

They are killing my people in public. After killing my people, they want to try me in private? That person is mad. I won’t allow it.“

Video source: Naij and EmekaGift via Twitter.

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2017 Budget Presentation Delayed Till 2pm

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The presentation of the 2017 Budget to a joint session of the National Assembly by President Muhammadu Buhari has been delayed till 2pm.

READ ALSO: Buhari Writes National Assembly, To Present N7.3trn Budget For 2017 On Dec 14

The delay was announced by the senate via @nassnigeria and retweeted by Bamikole Omisore, special adviser to the Senate president on new media using its handle @NGRSenate.

It was believed that President Buhari is just returning from his trip to Gambia.

By 2pm, the president will be accompanied to the National Assembly by top federal government functionaries to lay the document which will be the second since he assumed office in May 2015.

READ ALSO: National Assembly Shut As Super Falcons Protest Non-Payment Of Allowances

The House of Representatives on Tuesday adopted the 2017 to 2019 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP), the same document the upper chamber described as empty and document of fraud.

While the Nigerian Senate said the initial N290 per dollar exchange rate is unrealistic when the Naira is currently at N305 and N480 per dollar at the official and black market segments of the forex.

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NCC: Senate Denies Media Report On The Increase Of Data Price

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The Senate on Tuesday, denied reports in some national dailies alleging that it gave its nod to the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), and telecommunication service providers to increase the data tariff which was suspended following public outcry.

A prominent Online Newspaper had reported that the Senate Committee on Communications on Tuesday granted approval to the proposed data price hike by the NCC, saying that the commission has acted in national interest on the issue.

READ ALSO: NCC Bows To Pressure, Suspends Data Price Hike [Read Full Statement]

The Newspaper quoted Senator Solomon Adeola Olamilekan (Lagos West), who spoke on behalf of the committee members, as saying that the NCC had taken some commendable steps to sanitize the telecom industry and the data price hike was one of them.

READ ALSO: Just In: Senate Orders NCC To Halt Planned Data Price Hike

Olamikan, who is the vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Communications, was alleged to have said:

“Each time we invited the leadership of the agency to the National Assembly, they honoured our invitation and responded to our inquiries, particularly during the MTN issue, and of recent the data price floor. They have acted in national interests and Nigerians see NCC as being on their side.”

However, Vanguard newspaper reports that Chief Kayode Odunaro, the Media Adviser to the Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Communications, Senator Olamikan, said there is no truth in the story as the opposite is the case.

The statement read: “Our attention has been drawn to a publication with the misleading title “ Senate Okays Data Price Hike, says NCC Acted in national Interest” in a national daily insinuating that the Senate through its Committee on Communications sanctioned data price increase by telecommunications service providers during an oversight visit to the Nigerian Communication Commission.”

“There is no iota of truth in the misleading title as the contrary is the case from what the Vice chairman of the Committee, Senator Solomon Adeola said in his presentation during the briefing by NCC Executive Vice Chairman, Professor Umaru Dambatta.”

“Senator Adeola while commending the NCC for its achievements in recent times stated that the action it took in suspending the proposed data hike following public outcry was in the national and peoples’ interest stressing that their prompt responses to Senate inquiries on the matter and other related issues and a promise to undertake further scientific study on the data hike issue was commendable.”

“As can be seen from the body of the story, nowhere did the senator ‘okays’ the regulatory agency’s recommended “price floor” which was the issue that gave rise to the proposed data price hike that has since been suspended.”

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Swansea Hoping To Sign Tottenham’s Tom Carroll Permanently In January 

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Swansea manager Bob Bradley has revealed he is keeping an eye on Tottenham midfielder Tom Carroll ahead of the January transfer window.

The emergence of highly-rated Harry Winks has only sent Carroll further down the Spurs pecking order, despite him signing a contract to keep him at the club until 2019 in September, and it appears that Bradley is confident a deal can be struck with Tottenham, though he did maintain that there were other names under consideration at the Liberty Stadium.

The new Swansea manager has made no secret of his desire to add to a squad shorn of Ashley Williams and Andre Ayew in the summer and offered a positive assessment of what Carroll could bring to his side.

“Tom is a player who everyone here knows,” Bradley said. “He’s been around in the past, he’s certainly a good footballer and he’s a player who has been discussed.

“Every player that appears on the table also then gets looked at in comparison to with other players, guys bring different pluses. What Tom brings as a footballer is he is technically sharp, a good passer, and those are qualities a team can use.

“We just have to look at how those attributes compare with other players who pop up.”

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Jose Mourinho Willing To Sell His Players In January 

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Jose Mourinho will not stand in the way of any unsettled Manchester United players who wish to leave the club in the January transfer window.

“I am always open to listen to offers for every player. More than listen to offers, I am always ready to listen to the players themselves,” the manager said.

“So any player who knocks on my door and is not happy and wants to move, when the offers are correct, I will never stop a player from leaving even if it is to a rival.

“When [Juan] Mata left Chelsea to come to Manchester United [in 2014], in my mentality, [it’s] no problem at all. I am always open.”

questioned – was still injured, the United boss replied unconvincingly: “I think so.”

The United boss was asked was then asked if Shaw is his first-choice left back and he replied: “He needs to improve.”

Mourinho then added: “That is normal, he is a kid. I am not expecting a young player to be perfect. A young player makes mistakes, a young players has things to learn, has things to develop. He needs to do that.

“How many matches has he already played for me? A lot. He was injured playing, not on the bench.

“I need him back.” 

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Bayern Munich And Chelsea Could Make Bid For Tottenham’s Eric Dier

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Eric Dier’s involvement at Tottenham is being monitored by several clubs including Bayern Munich and Chelsea, according to The Times.

The England midfielder is reportedly unhappy at his restricted involvement under Mauricio Pochettino this season, and could look for more regular game time elsewhere.

Dier has been deployed in his old centre-back role in recent weeks as cover for Toby Alderweireld but was dropped at the weekend as the Belgian returned.

And, according to The Times, a number of Europe’s top club are monitoring his situation at White Hart Lane, with the star believed to be concerned about his international prospects if he does not win back a place in the Spurs line-up.

England boss Gareth Southgate sees Dier, 22, as a midfielder and is keen for the former Sporting Lisbon ace to forge a partnership with Liverpool’s Jordan Henderson at the core of his new side.

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Antonio Conte Comments On Ruben Lotus-Cheek Chelsea’s Future

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Antonio Conte has admitted that he can ‘always count on’ Ruben Loftus-Cheek when called upon, but hinted that the Chelsea midfielder could soon be loaned out.

Ruben Lotus-Cheek,20, has been given just nine minutes of playing time in the Premier League this term, while also starting twice in the EFL Cup in games against Bristol Rovers and Leicester City early in the competition.

Loftus-Cheek has not featured at all since the 3-0 league win over Leicester in mid-October, however, which Conte largely puts down to his niggling injury issues, and the Italian could now send the youngster away from Stamford Bridge for the short term.

“For now he is in our squad, but this season he has had a few injuries,” he told reporters. “There is a moment when I speak with my club and make the best decision. I think Ruben has good potential – great potential! It’s important to show this in order to improve. I count on him.”

Loftus-Cheek, capped by England at each age-grade level up to and including the Under-21s, was used 17 times by Chelsea last season in all competitions.

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National Assembly Shut As Super Falcons Protest Non-Payment Of Allowances

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The three entry gates of the National Assembly have been shut this morning as the upper chamber prepares for President Muhammadu Buhari’s anticipated visit to present the estimates of the 2017 budget to senators and members of the House of Representatives.

It was gathered that members of staff were denied access and all other organisations rendering services within the complex have been shut out.

READ ALSO: Buhari Writes National Assembly, To Present N7.3trn Budget For 2017 On Dec 14

The news is coming on a morning when the members of the female football national team, the Super Falcons, stormed the National Assembly, protesting the non-payment of their allowances by the Nigerian Football Federation.

The Punch gathered that the team, who won the 10th edition of the African Women championship just held in Cameroon, protested daily on the streets of Abuja and have further threatened never to leave the hotel until their allowances were paid.

READ ALSO: Super Falcons Seize AWCON Trophy Over Unpaid Allowances

The ladies will be hoping that the president – who is due to visit today – see them and show sympathy on their plight.

Some of their placards read, “We are your children, pity us”; “Let us respect women”; “female football deserves respect.”

READ ALSO: Unpaid Allowances: “We Never Knew Falcons Would Win AWCON” – Sports Minister

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MUSIC: Stanley Enow ft. Skriim – Follow Me (House Remix)

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It’s the END of Year and Motherland Empire’s Stanley Enow is giving no chill. The Cameroonian-born raptor teams up with producer Skriim to produce a world class befitting Deep House remix of his latest AfroHit #FollowMe off his Afro series.

Actually working on his second album, Stanley Enow is set to team up with renowned East African Artist for the second wing of his AfroSeries tape before retouching base with HipHop. Meanwhile, Enjoy his #FollowMe House Remix ft Skriim. Rock with Cameroon’s finest.


 
Note: There is a file embedded within this post, please visit this post to download the file.

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VIDEO: Sheyman – Cover Me

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Fresh off the mini tour to promote his hit single “Ball Properly”. The King of Melody a.k.a Mr Ball Properly Sheyman returns with another dope visuals for his brand-new hit record “Cover Me. The track “Cover Me” was produced by fast rising producer ‘Krisbeatz’ and video shot and directed by Mr. Amazing Patrick Elis in Atlanta, USA.

Sheyman is super excited about this new song “Cover Me “it was inspired by different things that happened around him and is also a way of praying to God for protection while thanking him for the good things that have happened in his life, especially during this festive season.

 

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#WakaKenya Chioma Akpotha and Uche Jombo star in Carnivores the movie #MagicalKenya

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In case you’ve missed Uche Jombo & Chioma Akpotha’s Magical Kenya journey so far with Goge Africa’s #WakaKenya, the photos of all the exciting places they went to in Kenya (Nairobi, Mombasa, Nanyuki) are here –Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 & 4

So we woke up to the beautiful scenery of the private beach at Vovager hotel & Resort in Mombasa.

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We said our farewell to the beautiful Voyager Beach Resort and set off to catch our flight back to Nairobi for the final leg of our discovering Magical Kenya.

On arrival, we went to have lunch at Carnivore Restaurant. A place we would recommend you visit if you are ever in Nairobi. Totally worth it.

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After lunch we headed down to the Giraffe Center to see Noah and the other giraffes. Such beautiful creatures.

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We then did a little shopping at the Maasai market before heading back to the Fairmont Hotel, the Norfolk for cocktails with the Kenyan Tourism Board.

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LtR: Fred Okeyo (Ag Director of Marketing, Kenya Tourism Board), Isaac Moses, Chioma Akpotha, Nneka Moses, Uche Jombo

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That’s all folks! Make sure you experience the Magic of Kenya… Till next time. Peace

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2017 UTME: JAMB To Start Using CCTV Cameras During Examination

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In a bid to curtail malpractices during its examination, the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has insisted that henceforth, all computer-based test centre proprietors must install closed circuit televisions (CCTV) as one of the requirements for operations.

READ ALSO: 2017 UTME: JAMB To Meet CBT Centre Owners On Tuesday

Speaking on Tuesday during a standardisation meeting with CBT centre proprietors at the University of Lagos (UNILAG), the JAMB Registrar, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede said the move was part of the measures being taken by JAMB to avoid errors of the past and ensure that the best is offered to Nigerians.

Among other newly approved standardisation methods, the board said the CCTV must show live recordings of the “entry door (from the inside), exit door (from the outside), cross sectional coverage for examination rooms, external building and server rooms.’’

READ ALSO: We’ve Not Started Sales Of 2017 UTME Forms – JAMB

The Registrar also stated that a total sum of N6,200, covering  the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination form, CBT centre service fee and the JAMB textbook which would be paid by prospective candidates in 2017.

Oloyede further made it known that more than one million candidates sat for the CBT variety of the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination in 2015.

He faulted the operators of the centres of sending fake messages to defraud candidates and providing mandatory training for same.

READ ALSO: JAMB Closes 2016 Admission Into Federal, State Universities; Grants Extension To Polytechnics, Others

The JAMB Registrar also accused CBT centres of “extorting candidates by charging above approved rates, subletting access codes to cyber cafes, encouraging multiple registration and punishing uncompromising candidates by changing their centres and/or institutions without their knowledge/consent,’’ among other infractions.

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Ronald Koeman Hails Everton’s ‘Fighting Spirit’ After Defeating Arsenal

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Everton manager Ronald Koeman has praised his side for recovering from a poor start against Arsenal to eventually claim a 2-1 win at Goodison Park.

Arsenal took the lead through a deflected Alexis Sanchez free kick, but goals from Seamus Coleman and Ashley Williams gave the Toffees all three points.

Koeman told BBC Sport after the game:

“The first 20 minutes, that was really poor. We were very nervous and unsure. Every ball back. Mistakes and no aggression.

“After that we played face to face and showed unbelievable spirit to come back and we deserved the win. We were lucky in the last situation but we played great football and the support of the fans, it makes Goodison Park really difficult to beat us here.

“Sometimes it is difficult to understand why we start so poorly at the beginning. Of course there is some lack of confidence but show your personality. We showed big personality.”

The result, Everton’s first win in six Premier League games, sees the Merseyside club climb to seventh in the table.

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Arsene Wenger Claims His Side Where Unlucky To Lose To Everton

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Arsenal Manager Arsene Wenger has said that his side were “unlucky to lose” against Everton after falling to a 2-1 defeat at Goodison Park.

Arsenal took the lead through a deflected Alexis Sanchez free kick, but goals from defenders Seamus Coleman and Ashley Williams gave the Toffees all three points.

Wenger told BT Sport: “It was a very physical game, we faced many physical challenges and that disturbed our game but we were a bit unlucky to lose as well.

“We had chances in the first half, especially from Mesut. They defended well, they played a cup game, and at the end of the day it was two defenders in their team who scored.

“They were a bit scared at first but they got their confidence. We did fight, I cannot fault that.”

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No Points Deducted : Chelsea And Manchester City Given Heavy Fines

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Manchester City and Chelsea have both been fined for a breach of Football Association rules after their players clashed on the field during their Premier League meeting earlier this month.

Manchester City have been made to pay £35,000 and Chelsea £100,000, following an incident that was sparked by Sergio Aguero’s knee-high challenge on David Luiz in the closing stages of the Blues’ 3-1 victory on December 3.

Tensions flared after the horror foul and Fernandinho joined Aguero in being shown a straight-red card for grabbing Cesc Fabregas by the throat and pushing him over the advertising hoardings.

Chelsea feared that they would potentially by hit by a points deduction, with this their fifth charge in the space of 19 months, but that does not appear to be the case with a hefty fine – more than double that of City’s – instead being passed down.

An FA statement read: “Following an Independent Regulatory Commission hearing, Manchester City and Chelsea have been fined £35,000 and £100,000 respectively after both admitted a breach of FA Rule E20(a).

“The two clubs were charged for failing to ensure their players conducted themselves in an orderly fashion and/or refrained from provocative behaviour. It followed an incident in the 95th minute of their game on Saturday 3 December 2016.”

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