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THE STATES

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Bauchi

The Executive Secretary, Bauchi State Primary Healthcare
Development Agency, Dr Nisser Umar, has refuted reports on the outbreak of new
cases of Diphtheria in the state.

He told The Tide in Bauchi that the cases being reported
occurred two months ago at Duzun in Katagum Local Government area and that 36
children were affected in the incident and only one tested positive to
diptheria.

Umar said that the children were immediately treated, adding
that all children under five years in the community were vaccinated and
provided with nutritional supplements and antibiotics.

The executive secretary said the agency had also organised
awareness campaign on the importance of utilising healthcare services.

 

FCT

A 26-year old actor, Bestwood Chukwuemeka, was last Monday
sentenced to three months imprisonment by a Karu Senior Magistrates’ Court,
Abuja, for having sexual intercourse with another man through the anus.

The convict, who resides at Gidan Mangoro, had pleaded
guilty to the charge.

“I am guilty of the charge against me. I was under the
influence of alcohol and I want the court to temper justice with mercy’’, he
said.

The police prosecutor, Mohammed Umar, had told the court
that the convict committed the offence in August when the complainant was
sleeping in his bed, pointing out that since he had pleaded guilty to the crime
he initially denied, the court should trial him summarily.

 

Gombe

The National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and
Control (NAFDAC) on Monday confiscated many expired, counterfeit and banned
drugs in some patent medicine stores in Gombe State.

The agency seized the drugs during raids on some shops by
different enforcement teams in Gombe, Kaltungo, Billiri and Kumo town.

Mrs Comfort Makanjuola, Deputy Director, Ports Inspection of
NAFDAC, told newsmen that the raids were aimed at ensuring compliance with the
law prohibiting the sale of unwholesome products.

She said “NAFDAC has acquired cutting edge technology,
called truscan technology, for a quick and on-the-spot assessment of
counterfeit and fake drugs.

 

Jigawa

The Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON), has
spent N30 million on the purchase of audio recorders for intending pilgrims
from the state.

The Secretary of the association, Alhaji Abba Daguro, told
The Tide in Dutse that the tapes were meant to assist the pilgrims to record
and learn the etiquette of Hajj.

Abba said that the gesture was a moral obligation on its
part to ensure the success of the pilgrimage.

“Last year, we purchased the same gadgets and it is our hope
that we will continue with the gesture, annually.

 

Jos

The Plateau State Agricultural Development Programme (PADP)
and the ADP-assisted Fadama II has advised farmers in the state to embrace the
Community Seed Multiplication Programme (CSMP) as it has the potential of
increasing production.

Mr. Luka Kefas, the leader of the technical team of the
Fadama II programme made the call during an inspection tour of some selected
farms.

He said that the crop farms were earmarked for seed
multiplication in various parts of the state, adding that the CSMP was aimed at
making improved and high yielding varieties of seeds available to farmers at
affordable prices.

Kefas, who is also the Director of Technical Services of the
PADP, said that the Community Seed Multiplication Programme was necessary to
remove middlemen syndrome in the procurement of farm inputs.

 

Kaduna

The Federal Government on Tuesday declared that the Kaduna
River Bridge was safe for motorists.

Mr Sa’ad Tukur, the Federal Controller of Works, Housing and
Urban Development in Kaduna, told The Tide that the bridge was last maintained
in 2009 and was still safe.

Tukur frowned at speculations in Kaduna metropolis over the
safety of the River Kaduna Bridge, saying that visualisation inspection had
been carried out on the bridge by the ministry to verify and correct the erroneous
impression created by some opposition elements.

Tukur said that the only problem identified during the
inspection was that the walkway slabs had been removed by mobile phone
operators in the state and were not properly replaced.

 

Katsina

The Country Programme Manager, International Fund for
Agricultural Development (IFAD), Ms Atsuko Toda, has stressed the need to
consolidate the impact of the Community-Based Agricultural Development
Programme (CBARDP).

Toda said this in an interview with our correspondent as the
16th Supervision Mission of the IFAD-assisted programme got under way on Monday
in Katsina.

The programme is being implemented in the seven northern
states of Borno, Jigawa, Katsina, Kebbi, Sokoto, Yobe and Zamfara.

While commending what she called “strong buy-in” into the
programme by the State Governments, she underscored the importance of ensuring
the viability and sustainability of programme implementation.

 

Kebbi

Governor Saidu Dakingari of Kebbi State has advised the new
local government council chairmen in the state to ensure accountability and
good governance in the discharge of their duties.

The governor who made the call in Birnin Kebbi during the
swearing-in ceremony of the chairmen, promised to give them free hand to
perform their statutory responsibility of improving the lives of the people.

Dakingari commended the people of the state for the peaceful
election and urged the chairmen to reciprocate the gesture through hard work.

“The popular choice of the people put you in office and such
popular opinion can remove you from office if you do not perform for the
people” he warned the council bosses.

 

Kwara

Kwara State Government has inaugurated a 22-member committee
for the celebration of the 52nd independence anniversary of the country.

The Commissioner for Sports and Youth Development, Mr
Anthony Towoju, inaugurated the committee in Ilorin on Monday.

Towoju said the committee would design an acceptable
programme and organise a hitch-free ceremony.

The Chairman of the committee, Hajia Aishat Mohammed,
promised that the members would organise a colourful event.

The committee has Alhaji Aliyu Ahmed, an Assistant Director
in the ministry as the Secretary.

 

Lagos

The Minister of Communications Technology, Mrs Omobola
Johnson, has said that the Federal Government would soon formulate a regulatory
framework for the protection of intellectual property rights in the country.

The minister said this at a dinner jointly organised by the
Information Technology Association of Nigeria (ITAN) and the National
Association of Computer and Software Companies of India (NASSCOM).

Represented by her Special Assistant on IT, Mr Ola Ogunleye,
the minister said that the proposed regulatory framework would support the
privileges of local entrepreneurs on technology biased policies like tax
breaks, tariffs, levies and concessions.

She said that the Ministry was creating enabling
infrastructure to boost Information and Communications Technology (ICT).

 

Nasarawa

The Nasarawa State Investment and Property Development Company
(NIPDC) on Tuesday disclosed that about 400 contractors had submitted bids for
the rehabilitation of the Karu International Market in Nasarawa.

Mr Daniel Ajegena, NIPDC General Manager, disclosed this to
our correspondent after the biding process in Lafia.

He said that about 400 bids had been received, adding that
the applications would be scrutinised to determine the technical and financial
capacity of the companies.

He said: “their bids will pass through a consultant who will
evaluate the contractors based on their technical and financial capacities,
adding that that NIPDC advertised for submission of interests for the
renovation of the market three weeks ago.

 

Oyo

The Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), Oyo State
Command, on Monday recovered 224 laptop computers worth N17 million from an
accident scene in Ibadan.

The FRSC Oluyole Unit Commander, Mr Sanya Adeoye, said that
the accident occurred at Onigari area along Lagos-Ibadan express road on Sunday
evening, pointing out that the accident involved a Toyota 18-seater Hiace bus
with registration number Lagos RN 210 AAA.

The commander said the driver of the bus, which had four
occupants, lost control of the vehicle as a result of over-speeding before
skidding off the expressway.

 

Zamfara

An Islamic scholar in Gusau, Sheikh Hamisu Anka, has urged
the Zamfara  State House of Assembly to
drop its plan to reduce the tenure of local government councils in the state to
two years.

Last week, the House said it would soon commence
deliberations on a bill seeking to amend the tenure of the councils from three
years as provided by the existing law to two years.

The Tide reports that the bill has attracted criticisms from
many commentators who viewed the move as an avenue to waste public funds.

Anka, who was speaking at a preaching session in Gusau, said
the legislators should focus on laws that would fight poverty, ignorance and
unemployment among the youths and women of the state.

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NUT Tasks NASS On Teachers’ 65 Years Retirement Age Bill Passage

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The Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), has urged the national assembly to expedite action on passage of the Harmonised Retirement Age for Teachers in Nigeria Bill 2021.
The Secretary-General of NUT, Dr Mike Ike-Ene, made the appeal in an interview with The Tide yesterday in Abuja.
He said the passage of the bill and its eventual signing into law by the President would go a long way in giving teachers the hope that their profession was being given the needed attention.
Ike-Ene said the hope of passage of the bill on June 30, having been mentioned on the Order Paper, was dashed because of the controversy that followed the debate on the Petroleum Industry Bill, now an Act.
“We are expecting that as the national assembly has resumed, the bill will be one of the first few bills to be passed.
“We expected the bill to be passed on June 30 concurrently by the two houses having been mentioned on the Order Paper but the debate of the Petroleum Industry Act and debate of the Electoral Reform Bill took the day.’’
The Secretary-General commended the National Assembly for its commitment to ensuring conclusion of work on the bill.
He expressed optimism that when passed, President Buhari would not hesitate in signing it into law.
He thanked the President for the effort to reposition the teaching profession, saying the union had been in the forefront in the struggle for elongation of tenure for teachers, among other things.
According to him, we have actually been fighting for some of the things the President promised to do for teachers, for instance, the elongation of years.
“We have been agitating for 65 years retirement age or 40 years by service and one of the reasons for the agitation is that we discovered that about 26 states did not recruit a single teacher for over 20 years.
“Yet teachers were retiring in their dozens, in hundreds and more deaths were being recorded as a result of the growing insecurity, particularly in schools.
“Some died naturally, others were resigning, yet teachers were not being employed.”
He further said, “We have also been agitating for Teachers Special Salary Structure (TSS) but hazard allowance was granted instead.
“The hazard allowance accumulated to 27.5 per cent of the basic of teachers’ salaries which were not what we were agitating for.
“We thank God that the Buhari’s administration has promised to implement the TSS and since that pronouncement, NUT, government and other stakeholders have been working to ensure implementation.’’
Ike-Ene disclosed that the promise made to teachers by the president would be implemented at different levels, stressing that while some would be passed into law, others would be implemented as policies.
President Muhammadu Buhari had in June, transmitted a letter on a Bill to increase the retirement age for teachers from 60 years to 65 years.
The Bill also seeks to extend the years of service for teachers from 35years to 40 years.
Meanwhile, the president at the commemoration of the World Teachers Day on October 5, 2020, approved a special salary scale for teachers and special pension scheme.
He also said the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND) will begin to fund teaching practice in universities and colleges of education.
He further promised to ensure provisions for rural posting allowance, science teachers allowance and peculiar allowance.
The president also promised sponsorship of at least one refresher training, construction of low-cost housing for teachers in rural areas and reintroduction of bursary award.
Other promises are, expansion of the annual Presidential Teachers and Schools Awards and payment of stipends to Bachelor of Education students and automatic employment after graduation.

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Traffic Congestion: FG Builds Three Flyovers, Interchange

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The Federal Government is collaborating with Ogun State Government to secure the Right of Way (RoW) for the construction of three bridges and an interchange on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, said this during an inspection of the highway last Wednesday.
Fashola, who was joined by Gov. Dapo Abiodun at the Lotto Bridge under construction, said the highway accommodated over 40,000 vehicles daily, hence the urgent need for additional flyovers and interchanges for decongestion.
The bridges are under construction at Makun, MFM and Lotto (Mowe) areas on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
“We are trying to execute an interchange that will separate the main carriageway and give commuters choice, especially those going to religious places to worship, those going to universities and so on and so forth.
“So that what used to cause the congestion is limited to the barest minimum if not totally eradicated when the road is finished.
“So, we now require additional land to build the interchange, that is why I called the governor (Dapo Abiodun),” he said.
He said that the Buhari administration inherited several stalled projects which he was committed to completing by adequately funding the projects
Fashola expressed satisfaction with progress of work on the ongoing reconstruction/rehabilitation of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.
On his part, Gov. Abiodun assured that the state government would give all the land and support needed.
Earlier, the Federal Controller of Works in Lagos, Mr Olukayode Popoola, gave the measurements and dimensions needed for the bridges and interchange.
Popoola also gave details on the number of buildings and services on the Right of Way of the bridges which, without paying compensations, would stall the project.
He said that section one of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway project, which spans from Ojota in Lagos to Sagamu Interchange, “has achieved 56 per cent completion”.
Also, during inspection of section two of the project, which spans from the Sagamu Interchange to Ojoo in Ibadan, the Federal Controller of Works in Ogun, Mr Umar Bakare, said that the section was 63 per cent completed.

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NEDC Flags Off Construction Of 500 Housing Units In Bauchi

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North-East Development Commission (NEDC) in collaboration with the Bauchi State Government has commenced the construction of 500 mass housing units in Bauchi, to address housing deficit in the state.
NEDC’s Managing Director, Alhaji Mohammed Goni-Alkali, stated this at the ground breaking ceremony of the project yesterday in Bauchi.
Goni-Alkali said that 300 houses would be built in Bauchi metropolis while 200 others would be spread across the 20 local government areas of the state.
According to him, the project is to ease the accommodation problems as well as fast track the rapid social and economic development of the state, to mitigate the devastation caused by the insurgency.
Goni-Alkali said that the commission had so far constructed 1,000 housing units in Marte LGA of Borno, adding that the houses had been handed over to the state government.
He said that the commission would also construct one primary school in each of the senatorial districts across the six states in the region, to promote educational development.
The managing director said that the commission had presented food and non-food items to the Bauchi State Government for distribution to the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
He listed the items to include 10,000 bags of rice; 2,000 bags of sugar; 10,000 gallons of palm oil; 3,000 cartons of pasta; 2,000 blankets; 2,000 plastic mats and 1,000 mosquito nets.
In his remarks, Gov. Bala Mohammed, lauded the impact of the commission in the North-East with regard to the construction of schools and roads.
Mohammed also commended NEDC for the provision of other essential services since inception in 2019.
He said that the commission had constructed one block of six classrooms each across the 20 local government areas of the state.
“We have recieved the intervention of the commission in health and agriculture,” he said.
Mohammed promised to distribute the donated items judiciously to the deserving families.
The Goni-Alkali and other officials of the commission would inspect road projects in Alkaleri and Kirfi, and  Visco Vaginal Fistula (VVF) Centre in Ningi

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