Five gunmen, suspected to be ritualists yeserday invaded the government hospital in Ado-Ekiti, demanding for new born babies.
Our correspondent reports that the gunmen who were said to be numbering about five, arrived at the hospital at about 1:00 a.m. demanding for day-old babies, and beating up staff who could not give satisfactory answer.
A senior health officer, who pleaded anonymity, said that the armed men invaded the hospital located along Irona area at about 1:00 a.m. and suddenly began molesting medical officials on night duty.
According to the officer, the invaders, who were fully armed, are rhetorically demanding for the whereabouts of a particular baby, said to have been delivered earlier in the day.
“They got more annoyed when they were told that no baby was available in the hospital as at the time they came, it angered then the more and they went berserk,” the officer said.
This development, we learnt angered the men who beat up the hospital staff and injured some of them.
“As a senior person on duty, I tried to convince them that all new born babies have been discharged from the centre in the last couple of days, but they refused to be convinced.
“This angered them the more and they descended on the staff beating us, some of them were busy ransacking the place in search of babies,” the source said.
When contacted, the Chairman of Ado Local Government, Mr Tope Olanipekun confirmed the incident, saying “this is a new twist to crime in the area”.
Olanipekun, who claimed to have visited the hospital to see things for himself, described the incident as “highest point of callousness on the part of the perpetrators.”
“As I speak, the incident actually happened and I want to assure you that we are taking step to forestall a recurrence.”
The chairman said that he had already ordered that night duty be suspended in all the hospitals in the council, pending when tight security measures, which would include fencing of all health centres be taken.
The State Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Victor Babayemi, ASP, who was surprised at the development, however said the incident was yet to be reported to the police command.
JAMB Delists Six Additional CBT Centres
The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has delisted additional six Computer Based Centres (CBT) over poor performance on the second day of the 2021 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).
The board’s Head, Protocol and Public Affairs Dr Fabian Benjamin, disclosed this in a statement made available to journalists in Abuja, yesterday.
It would be recalled that the board had earlier delisted 25 CBT centres across the country over poor performance at the commencement of the 2021 UTME examinations, last Saturday.
Benjamin said candidates who were unable to register during the allowable time for registration despite the extension were graciously directed to visit designated centres to be registered.
He said these categories of candidates that had been scheduled for the 2021 UTME were directed to print their examination notification slip for their schedule for the examination from June 21.
He, however, directed the candidates to print their notification slip from the JAMB’s website
He further said that 464,834 candidates across the country wrote the UTME on June 21, the second day of the examination.
The additional centres delisted include, Dayspring Christian College, Opete town near Otokutu between Ughelli South lga and Udu Local Government, Delta and Fountain of Knowledge International Academy CBT, Azuiyiokwu, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State.
Also, Twelve Apostles College, Ndiaboishiagu Sharon, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State and Lead British International School, 1 Aliyu Mustafa Street, off Wole Soyinka Street, Gwarimpa, Abuja, FCT, were delisted.
Others are Zaria Academy, Km 10, Zaria-Funtua road, Shika, Zaria in Kaduna State and Muhammed Kamaldeen CBT centre proposed by Muhammed Kamaldeen University along FGC, Ogidi, Ilorin in Kwara.
Wike Assents To Contributory Health Protection Programme, PP Bills
The Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has assented to two bills passed into law by the state House of Assembly to enhance access to quality healthcare and enable government fulfil contractual obligations.
The bills signed into law by the governor include, Public Procurement (Amendment) Law No.1 of 2021 and Contributory Health Protection Programme Law No.3 of 2020.
Wike, who signed the bills into law at the Government House, Port Harcourt, last Monday, said with the signing of the Contributory Health Protection Programme bill into law, residents and people of the state who want health insurance can now participate in the scheme.
“Let me on behalf of the Executive Council sincerely thank the Speaker and members of the state House of Assembly for passing into law Public Procurement (Amendment) Law and Contributory Health Protection Programme Law, particularly the second one that has to do with health.
“This is something that has become a reality, today. We have had a lot of pressure from people and also Nigeria Medical Association so as to give health insurance to those who would want to participate. It is not compulsory for those who want to leverage of it in order to promote their health system.”
The governor urged civil servants in the state to leverage on Contributory Health Protection Programme to boost their health status.
Wike further explained that the Public Procurement (Amendment) Law, will enable the state government fulfill its contractual obligations.
He attributed the reason why contractors often ask for contract variation to low percentage of the project sum they receive from government.
According to him, this also results in delays fulfilment of contractual obligations.
“Government ought to a lot pay penalty, because under the law, if a contractor is not paid as at when due, there ought to be sanction against the government.”
The governor said the need for the state government to expedite and fulfill its contractual obligations, necessitated the amendment of the Public Procurement Law.
The Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Ikuinyi-Owaji Ibani, said the two bills signed into law by Wike are critical elements in developing society.
He stated that with the signing of the Contributory Health Protection Programme Law, it is now incumbent on the Ministry of Health and health providers to engage in intense campaign so that residents of the state could avail themselves of the immense benefits of the scheme.
The speaker noted that the huge investment made by Wike in both primary and tertiary healthcare is geared at providing universal health coverage for the entire population.
Speaking on the Public Procurement Law, the speaker said the Assembly saw the lapses in the last law, and decided to amend it, given that the exigencies of today is different from the exigencies of yester years.
Earlier, the Majority Leader of the House, Hon. Martins C. Amaewhule, informed that the state lawmakers, essentially amended Section 32 of the Procurement Law, which actually provided for about 30 per cent mobilisation to contractors to enable government fulfil contractual obligations.
He explained that it had become necessary to amend that section of the principal law to provide enable the Rivers State Executive Council to make provision for over 30 per cent of the contract sum to contractors whenever the need arises.
Rivers Court Jails Three Over Child Theft
A Magistrate Court sitting in Port Harcourt has convicted one Goodnews Thompson and Kperebong Emmason to 24 years’ imprisonment with hard labour for stealing and trafficking two years and four months’ old Etim Gospel George.
The court sentenced the two on three-count charges bothering on child stealing, conspiracy and trafficking of Etim Gospel George on October 18, 2018, at Kom-Kom village in Oyigbo Local Government Area, Rivers State.
He is yet to be seen till date.
Delivering her judgement, last Monday, Chief Magistrate Felicitas Amanze, found Goodnews Thompson, the 1st Defendant; and Sunday Jonah, 2nd Defendant who was deceased while in prison as well as Kperebong Emmason, 3rd Defendant, guilty for stealing and selling little Etim George at the sum of N350,000.00.
The court found them guilty under Section 39 of the Child Rights Act, for stealing an only son of one Mary Gospel George, a widow, who lost her husband sometime last year in a pipeline fire outbreak at Kom-Kom.
Amanze sentenced the convicts to seven years’ imprisonment on count 1, seven years on count 2, and 10 years on count 3, making a total of 24 years’ imprisonment with hard labour, which will run consecutively.
Speaking to newsmen, Counsel representing FIDA, Kemi Ogunaike commended the court for ensuring that justice was served in the matter.
By: Akujobi Amadi
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