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RSG Pays Abonnema Wharf Landlords Compensation, Today

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The Rivers State Government yesterday commended the process
of payment of about N2.1bn compensation to landlords and property owners at the
Abonnema Wharf waterfront in Port Harcourt in line with its urban renewal
policy.

Addressing the landlords and other stakeholders at the
auditorium of the Ministry of Justice at the state secretariat, Port Harcourt,
the Hon Commissioner for Urban Development, Hon Tammy Danagogo assured that the
process of payment of the compensation which begins today will be transparent
and inclusive of all genuine interest as no property owner will be left out.

Hon Danagogo, disclosed that modalities had already been put
in place to ensure that the complaints that trailed the payment of compensation
to Njemanze waterfront landlord is properly addressed.

Apart from the valuation, assessment and verification of
existing properties at the Abonnema waterfront, the commissioner said two
committees will be set up to supervise the process of payment and  receive complaints from property owners
respectively.

He explained that the two committees will comprise of the
consultants involved in the exercise and nominees from the ministry.

According to the commissioner, the initiative is to ensure
that the process of payment of the compensation is to a large extent,
independent of the ministry’s involvement.

Hon Danagogo further appealed to the property owners to see
the acquisition of the area as part of their contributions to the development
of the state, and restated the commitment of the Rivers State Government
towards the transformation of the area.

Also speaking, the Hon commissioner for Information and
Communications, Mrs Ibim Semenitari called for the cooperation from the people
of Rivers State to make the urban renewal effort of the government a reality.

The commissioner, said the acquisition of the land was not a
punishment for the people but was geared towards the promotion of the standard
of living of the people.

Stakeholders at the event commended the state government for
its gesture, and called on the government to deal directly with the property
owners in the payment of the compensation.

The Tide recalls that as part of its urban renewal policy,
the Rivers Government had planned demolition of all waterfronts in Port
Harcourt since 2008.

Also at the event were representatives of the World Bank
NGOs and foreign observers.

Meanwhile, the Rivers State Government has ordered the
immediate stoppage of work on all dredging activities in the state.

A statement signed by the state commissioner for
environment, entitled: “Stop Work Order” and made available to The Tide in Port
Harcourt, last Wednesday, listed the form of dredging activities affected by
the order to include surface mining of laterite in the state.

According to the ministry, the order became necessary
following the quest by the state government to protect the environment from the
negative impact of indiscriminate and unregulated dredging operations.

“This became necessary as the government, in her quest to
protect the environment from the negative impact of indiscriminate and
unregulated dredging operations, has decided to re-evaluate and re-engineer
dredging and surface mining of sand and laterite in Rivers State, particularly
around Greater Port Harcourt City axis,” it said.

While warning that any violation of the order shall be met
with the appropriate punishment, the ministry also directed all operators in
the dredging and surface mining industry in the state, to contact the dredging
and monitoring unit of the ministry for further directive.

Meanwhile, the Rivers State Ministry of Environment has
invited all environmental consultants, analytical laboratories and other
professionals to apply for registration with the ministry to undertake services
such as sand search, bathymetric survey and hydrological survey.

They have also been tasked to apply to undertake
hydro-graphic survey, environmental impact assessment (EIA), and environmental
assessment report (EAR).

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IPPIS: FG, ASUU Meet, Today, As Fresh Strike Looms

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Delegations from the Federal Government and Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) are expected to meet, today, in a bid to avert a fresh strike.
The chairmen of ASUU branches had expressed readiness to commence a fresh strike over the non-implementation of their agreement with FG on IPPIS.
One of them, Chairman, ASUU, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi, Dr Ibrahim Inuwa, said the protracted strike, which was to press home the union members’ demands for the continued survival of the public university system in Nigeria, was suspended in December after the two parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the various issues and providing timelines for the implementation of each of the eight items in the agreement.
Inuwa said over seven months after the MoU was signed only two out of the eight issues had been addressed.
He listed some of the outstanding issues to include payment of the earned academic allowance, funding for revitalisation of public universities, salary shortfall, proliferation of state universities and setting up of visitation panels.
Others are renegotiation, replacement of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) with the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) and withheld salaries and non-remittance of check-off dues.
A statement by the Deputy Director, Press and Public Relations at the Ministry of Labour and Employment, Mr. Charles Akpan, said the Minister of Labour, Senator Chris Ngige, will be hosting the leadership of the ASUU to a meeting at the ministry’s Conference Room, Federal Secretariat in Abuja.
“The Minister for Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, will be hosting a meeting with ASUU. The meeting is scheduled for Monday, August 2, 2021 at Minister’s Conference Room,” the letter read.
The National President, ASUU, Prof Emmanuel Osodeke, had said that the union was invited by the Ministry of Labour to discuss issues surrounding the Memorandum of Action, which was signed with the Federal Government in December, 2020.
However, Osodeke, explained the last time the union met with the government was around March/April.
He said, “The Ministry of Education, which is our ministry, has not called us to any meeting since we signed the Memorandum of Action. But the Ministry of Labour, which is just an intervention ministry, around March/April called us to a meeting in which we discussed and they promised to implement all those things.”

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30 Of 65 Private Jets In Nigeria Owe Duties, Customs Insists

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The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) says 30 out of 65 private airplanes verified owe duties to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
The Public Relations Officer, Joseph Attah, made the disclosure to newsmen, yesterday.
He said some of the airplanes came into the country by Temporary Importation Agreement which allows them in without payment because it was secured by bond.
The spokesman noted that many later fail to turn up to pay on the expiration of the agreement.
The customs explained that the verification was not meant to embarrass anyone but to collect payments due to the government.
The service has given another two-week extension which commenced from Monday, July 26, to Friday, August 6.
Attah said with the increasing economic challenge, every revenue is important.
“With this, you can now tie proper ownership to every aircraft or private jet that flies in and out of the country.
“The owners of private jets are highly placed Nigerians who should be respected and approached in a manner that provides convenience. That is what these extensions stand for,” he added.

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FBI Indictment: PSC, IGP Suspend Kyari, Name Inquiry Panel

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The Police Service Commission (PSC) has suspended embattled Deputy Commissioner of Police and Head, Intelligence Response Team (IRT) of the Nigeria Police Force, Abba Kyari, from the exercise of the powers and functions of his office.
Kyari’s suspension was contained in a press statement by the commission’s Head, Press and Public Relations, Ikechukwu Ani, made available to newsmen, yesterday.
The commission said Abba Kyari’s suspension took effect from Saturday, July 31, 2021, and would subsist pending the outcome of the investigation in respect of his indictment by the Federal Bureau of Investigation of the United States.
The commission has also directed the Inspector General of Police to furnish it with information on further development on the matter for necessary further action.
The commission’s decision which was conveyed in a letter with reference, PSC/POL/D/153/vol/V/138 to the Inspector General of Police today, Sunday, August 1st, 2021, was signed by Hon. Justice Clara Bata Ogunbiyi, a retired Justice of the Supreme Court and Honourable Commissioner 1 in the commission for the commission’s Chairman, Alhaji Musiliu Smith, a retired Inspector General of Police who is currently on leave.
Earlier, the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba, had recommended the immediate suspension of DCP Abba Kyari from the service of the Nigeria Police Force, pending the report of the four-man investigative panel constituted to probe him.
A statement by the spokesperson of the Force, CP Frank MBA, last Saturday, the IGP, in his letter to the Police Service Commission (PSC), dated July 31, 2021, noted that the recommendation is in line with the internal disciplinary processes of the force.
According to the IGP, the suspension would also create an enabling environment for the NPF Special Investigation Panel, to carry out its investigations into the allegations against Kyari without interference.
He explained that the suspension is without prejudice to the constitutional presumption of innocence in favour of the officer, the statement said.
The four-man Special Investigation Panel (SIP), is headed by the Deputy Inspector General of Police in-charge of the Force Criminal Investigations Department (FCID), DIG Joseph Egbunike.
“The SIP is to undertake a detailed review of all the allegations against DCP Abba Kyari by the US Government as contained in relevant documents that have been availed the NPF by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
“The SIP is also to obtain detailed representation of DCP Abba Kyari to all the allegations levelled against him, conduct further investigations as it deems fit, and submit recommendations to guide further actions by the Force leadership on the matter,” Mba said.
Meanwhile, the IGP has reaffirmed the commitment of the force to the rule of law, and assured the public of the sanctity of the probe as well as the absolute respect for the rights and privileges of the officer throughout the period of the investigations.

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