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Selfishness Bane Of LG Development – Lawmaker

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The Chairman, Rivers State House of Assembly, Commissioner on Local Government, Hon. Ibaani Ikuinye has identified greed and selfishness as factors militating against development of the third tier government in the state.

Hon. Ikuinye made the assertion on Thursday while speaking with newsmen in his office on the dissolution of Ogba/Egbema/ Ndoni Local Government Council by the State House of Assembly.

He stated that local government arm of the government was created to complement both federal and state governments effort in bringing development nearer to the rural areas regretting that those who are entrusted with the leadership position in the local government only pursue their own personal ambitions.

The lawmaker averred that without a concerted effort, dedication and commitment by the leaders in the local government councils, it would be impossible to achieve the much touted development in the country by 2010.

He urged the elected council chairmen in the state and the country at large to always strive to improve on the lives of the people within their various local government area adding that in doing so, the state and the country will move forward.

The House Committee chairman urged the council chairmen in the state to make judicious use of the funds allocated to them for development noting that corruption can lead to insecurity in the society if not averted.

‘The local government council chairmen in the state should be able to justify the funds they received and account for it adequately.  Corruption can breed insecurity and protest in the society, when people’s funds are misused by those elected to protect it” he stated.

The lawmaker opined that the only way forward to a better local government administration in the state is the enthronement of selfless service by those placed with the responsibility of governance in the local government areas.

According to him, if the chairmen and councilors do away with greed and egocentric attitudes in the governance, development, he said would be achieved adding that non performance has become a recurring decimal pervading the local government administration in the state and the country at large.

 

Akujobi Amadi/Elizabeth Ephraim

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C’River Is Not Well-Governed, Says Ex-Dep Gov

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Former Deputy Governor of Cross River State, Efiok Cobham, has expressed dissatisfaction with the way  the state is currently governed.
He spoke in Calabar on Thursday while answering questions from newsmen about his quest to governor of the state in 2023 on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
He said, “The way Cross River State is being governed today is a far cry from how government should be operated. Government should be for the people and not just for a select few. One of the levels of success of any government is the level of social inclusiveness.
“I am bringing to the table a desire to remove the deficit of confidence that exists today between the governor and the populace. I am coming with a desire to stabilise our body polity and ensure the growth and development of our state.
“I am bringing to the table first my level of experience and my knowledge of Cross River and I believe I am endowed with the capacity to get things done better than they are today. I am bringing to the table innovation in governance that will make Cross River State be what it used to be rather than what it is today. We are going to bring reforms into the civil service and reforms into our value system which is very critical, educational system, health and of course governance.”
On the issue of zoning, he said that the PDP constitution recognises zoning even up to the national level, adding, “I like zoning but I am not running basically because of zoning. I am not against zoning. I used to ask my colleagues in the South (Southern Senatorial District), what if the party remains mute about zoning? Is our region not capable to produce somebody to occupy the position of the governor there.
“There are more than enough materials in any Senatorial District to run for the position of governor of the state.
“Maybe because of our peculiar circumstances in our country, not just our state alone, we have come to bring in zoning but definitely it should not be the main thing. I am not running because of zoning but I stand firmly that zoning is right. I am a Cross Riverian first.”
He said he would renegotiate the state’s debt if he became governor, and would not allow the industries established by Ben Ayade administration to rot away but would rather create a conducive environment for the private sector to thrive.

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2023: Group To Create Awareness In Rivers

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A Non-Governmental Organisation and political pressure group under the auspices of Abele Wobo Development Foundation, says it will embark on sensitisation campaigns at the grassroots to mobilise the citizenry to participate in democratic processes.
The group which is also known as Abele Wobo Solidarity Movement (AWSOM) also listed youths empowerment, community health care and promotion of citizens rights , among others as its top priorities.
President and founder of the body, Comrade Abele Wobo, disclosed this during the formal inauguration of the foundation in Port Harcourt, on Saturday.
Addressing the Ward representative council members in the 20 wards of Port Harcourt City Local Government Area, the President said the vision was to promote citizen’s participation in democracy and good governance by educating the youths to play active roles in governance.
He noted that the strength of the youths in any democratic process could not be undermined, adding that the under-utilisation of such massive youth potentials and voting strength has worked in the advantage of the emerging political class who further alienate them after getting into leadership positions.
According to the youth leader and philanthropist, such tendency has stifled the development capacity of youths but can be reversed through proper reorientation and political education.
Wobo, a former President of Elekahia Youth Association and stalwart of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) decried the dearth of citizens awareness on democratic ideals and noted that,  “The best way to secure our democracy and check electoral fraud is to have an informed and duly mobilised citizenry that will vote and ensure that their votes count”.
He charged the inaugurated ward executives to work towards achieving the objectives of the body, especially as the country approaches a democratic transition.

By: Taneh Beemene

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Masari Demands N10bn From NUJ For Alleged Defamation

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Governor Aminu Masari of Katsina State has asked the FCT Chapter of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) to pay him N10 billion as damages for wrongly accusing him of orchestrating the arrest of one of its members.
The  Tide source gathered that the union made the allegation but later withdrew it and apologised to the governor.
The Tide source also reported how the governor disputed the NUJ claim that he was behind the arrest of Nelson Omonu, a journalist with Summit Post News.
The union had withdrawn its allegation after ‘finding out’ that the arrest was orchestrated by the Vice Chancellor of the Federal University Dutsin Ma. It also apologised to Governor. Masari.
The arrest of the journalist had also prompted the Coalition for Whistleblower Protection and Press Freedom (CWPPF) to task Governor. Masari on press freedom.
The Katsina State governor is now seeking N10 billion for what his lawyers called defamation of Masari’s character by the chairperson and secretary of the FCT NUJ chapter, Emmanuel Ogbeche and Ochaika Ugwu.
Masari’s lawyer, E.O Obunadike, said the apology the two journalists tendered was inadequate, hence, the demand for compensation.
While addressing journalists in Katsina on Thursday, the lawyer said the press statement had injured the character of the governor.
“Members of the public, after reading the said offensive and obnoxious material in several print and online newspapers, now regard our client as grossly incompetent in his administration and management of the affairs of Katsina State,” he added.
He added that an apology letter should also be published in eight national daily newspapers.
Mr Obunadike said the initial statement by the journalists had defamed the character of the governor.
“In no small measure, the statment had blisteringly defamed, injured the character and hard earned reputation of our client, which was painstakingly built and nurtured over decades thereby exposing him to a lot of embarrassment, public ridicule and condemnation.
“The retraction of the first press statement should be done in eight national daily newspapers and N10 billion be paid as compensatory damages.”
The lawyer gave the journalists seven days to “respond positively” or risk being taken to court.
“If after seven days, we do not receive any positive response, we shall be constrained in perfecting our client’s final instructions by taking legitimate steps in accordance with the provisions of the law towards initiating both criminal and civil proceedings without further correspondence”.

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