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L-R: FCT Minister, Senator Bala Mohammed (left), welcoming Vice President Namadi Sambo, during the three-day prayer for the late mother of FCT Minister, in Bauchi last Saturday.

L-R: FCT Minister, Senator Bala Mohammed (left), welcoming Vice President Namadi Sambo, during the three-day prayer for the late mother of FCT Minister, in Bauchi last Saturday.

Bauchi
The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has called on all
politicians and political parties to team up against insurgency and other security challenges bedevilling the country.
The union in a nine point communiqué issued at the end of its national executive council meeting in Bauchi recently urged politicians and the supporters to be mindful of inflammatory statements that are capable of jeopardising the corporate existence of the nation.
NEC further appealed to the striking lecturers of Polytechnics, Colleges of Education and the Federal Government to urgently resolve all the grey areas of disagreement, to enable the resumption of academic activities in the various affected schools in the interest of the students and the nation at large.

Benue
The Benue State House of Assembly has appealed to the
Nigerian Air Force, Tactical Air Command (TAC) Makurdi, to halt the demolition of houses at Akpen village and its environs. The village is in the suburb of Makurdi.
The appeal followed a motion of urgent public importance moved by Mr Benjamin Adanyi, a member representing Makurdi South constituency.
Adanyi told the house that the command had demolished houses at Akpen village, pointing out that as at the time he visited the area, five houses were demolished, rendering the occupants homeless. He said members of the community were in dispute with the command over the parcel of land, adding that the matter was before the assembly.

Gombe
The Society for Family Health (SFH), a non-governmental
organisation, says 35 per cent of expectant mothers in Gombe State delivers their babies in hospitals across the state.
The society said that the figure, which emanated from its monitoring and evaluation of public health facilities, represented an increase from the 28 per cent recorded in 2011.
Managing Director of the society, Mr Bright Ekweremadu, said this in Gombe while presenting the mid term report of the Gates Maternal and Neonatal Health Care project in the state.
According to him, at the commencement of the phase two of the project in 2011, only 28 per cent of expectant mothers accesses skilled care during delivery.
In his remarks, the traditional ruler of Kaltungo, Alhaji Sale Mohammed, said that because of the geographical topography of the state, many communities lacked access to quality health care service.

Jigawa
The Jigawa State Government said it recruited 1,564 teachers
for senior secondary schools across the State in the last six years.
The state Commissioner for Education, Prof. Haruna Wakili, who made this known in an interview in Dutse said the employment, which started in 2008, was done by the administration of Governor Sule Lamido to address shortage of qualified teachers in the state prior to his assumption of office in 2007.
The commissioner said the state government had been collaborating with the National Teachers’ Institute (NTI) for continuous training of teachers to improve their quality.
According to him, 440 classrooms in various senior secondary schools were renovated within six years to make the environment conducive for learning.

Kaduna
Governor Mukhtar Yero of Kaduna State has signed the
law banning the operation of commercial motorcycles in Kaduna metropolis and some other major towns in the state.
Briefing newsmen after the weekly Security Council Meeting, the state Commissioner for Information, Mr Ben Bako, said the ban was aimed at reinforcing security in the state.
Bako said that the ban followed the influx of commercial motorcycles in the state following a similar ban on their operations in some neighbouring states such as Plateau, Niger, Kano and the FCT.
The Commissioner listed the areas affected by the ban to include Kaduna North, Kaduna South, Chikun, Igabi, Zaria, Jema’a, Sabon Gari and Birnin Gwari local government areas.
Niger
The Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON)
has reiterated its call for local government autonomy in order to ensure speedy development of the councils.
The ALGON National Deputy President, Mohammed Kantigi, made the call last Wednesday, in Minna when he appeared before the Niger House of Assembly for screening as a commissioner nominee.
He said, “I will articulate myself of what is expected of me. I will not allow people that brought us into power to cry. “I know that the governor is concerned with the welfare of his workers and surely he will not do anything contrary to that.
“He will bring in best hands to work with him in the State Executive Council because there are specific assignments he gives to people.
“We want to see if we can improve on what has been on ground. “I know the local government system very well and have been playing a role as the state financial secretary of ALGON,” he added.

Ogun
The Ogun Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board last Tuesday
assured this year’s intending pilgrims from the state of a hitch-free exercise.
The Chairman of the board, Dr Isiaq Yusuf, gave the assurance in Abeokuta at the commencement of a three-day screening exercise organised for intending pilgrims.
According to him, it is expected of a Muslim to perform the pilgrimage once in a lifetime after fulfilling all rights expected of a practising faithful.
He said pilgrims for this year’s exercise would be screened to meet required standards, adding that a total of 1,212 slots were allocated to the state by the National Hajj Commission (NAHCON), Abuja.

Ondo
A Chief Magistrates’ Court in Akure last Thursday
sentenced three Benin citizens to three years in prison each for attempting to sell a 13-year-old boy. They are Kareem Saibu, 39, (father of the victim), Abdullateef Mumuni, 24 and Kadir Rasaq, 24.  The Chief Magistrate, Mr Adebanji Ayeomoni, sentenced each of them without an option of fine.
The accused, of no fixed address, were arraigned on a two-count charge of conspiracy and attempt to sell human being, and they all pleaded guilty to the offences.
Earlier, the prosecutor, ASP Zakari Ibrahim, told the court that the father of the victim and two others conspired to sell the minor for N8 million.
Ibrahim said the father brought the boy from Cotonou in Benin Republic to Nigeria to meet with the other accused persons, who live at Ibadan, to help him find buyers.
Plateau
Senator Gyang Pwajok, (PDP-Plateau), has condemned the
recent communal clash between the people of Irigwe and Rukuba in Bassa Local Government area of the state.
In a statement released in Jos by his Special Assistant on media, Chuwang Dung, the senator cautioned the communities to eschew violence.
Pwajok described “as sad and regrettable”  that the two tribes that had co-existed for decades needed to take arms against each other.
He said that the clash over land matters was uncalled for and urged for dialogue among the leaders of the communities toward resolving the issue through dialogue.
The Senator further advised the warring communities to shun other acts capable of breaching peace in the area.

Sokoto
The Sokoto State government last Tuesday donated four
Ford pick-up vans to the state command of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps.
The vehicles were handed over to the Commandant of the corps, Mr Yusha’u Yamel, by the Permanent Secretary, Careers and Special Services, Alhaji Tukur Mohammed.
Mohammed said the vehicles were donated to enhance the operations of the corps, and to encourage it to provide adequate security for lives and property in the state.
He appealed to officers and men of the corps to make good use of the vehicles, promising that the state government would continue to assist all security agencies in the state to function effectively.

Taraba
The Federal Government said that 400,000 farmers would
benefit from the subsidised fertilisers and seeds under its Growth Enhancement Scheme (GES) in Taraba.
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Akinwunmi Adesina, who made this known at the commencement of the scheme in Jalingo said the Federal Government had subsidised the commodity by 25 per cent, while the state government further subsidised it by another 25 per cent.
Represented by the Regional Director, North-East, Alhaji Ibrahim Arabi, Adesina said each registered farmer would get two bags of fertilisers and a bag of seeds.
The Acting Governor of Taraba, Alhaji Garba Umar, said the initiative would boost agricultural productivity and enhance food security in the state.
Umar said the state government would procure more fertilisers for the farmers to ensure food security and urged farmers to make good use of the inputs to ensure bumper harvests.

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FG Sets Up To Recover Illegally Refined Crude Oil

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In a bid to block revenue leakages, the Federal Government, yesterday, inaugurated an Inter-Ministerial Committee to tackle illegal refining of crude oil in the Niger Delta region of the country.
Members of the committee, who took their oath at the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Abubakar Malami, SAN, were drawn from the Ministry of Defence, the Nigerian Army, the Navy, Defence Headquarters, the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), as well as from the Federal Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Environment, the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), and the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA).
The Solicitor-General of the Federation (SGF), and Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Justice, Mr Umar Mohammed, who represented the AGF at the event, said the major mandate of the committee, was “the recovery of illegally refined petroleum products (crude oil) in the dug-up pits found around the creeks of the Niger Delta”.
According to the SGF, “In line with the policy of the current administration on security and economy, as well as the preservation of the environment from negative hazards.
“The office of the Honourable Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, in collaboration with all stakeholders, have put in place a mechanism for effective and efficient management of illegally refined products recovered from dug-up pits found around the creeks of the Niger Delta.
“This mechanism was agreed by the relevant stakeholders and submitted to the Attorney-General of the Federation, who considered and approved the establishment of the Inter-Ministerial Committee for the purpose of implementing the Mechanism known as Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) For the Recovery of Illegally Refined Petroleum Products (Crude Oil) in the Dug-Up Pit found around the creeks of the Niger Delta”.
The SGF said the Federal Ministry of Justice would coordinate the process and the Secretariat of the Inter-Ministerial Committee.
“The responsibility of the Inter-Ministerial Committee is to detect, report, evacuate, assess and ensure transparent disposal of the product with due consideration to the environment.
“The Inter-Ministerial Committee shall be guided by the SOP, developed for the project.
“The content of the SOP is drawn from the provision of the Asset Tracing, Recovery and Management Regulations 2019.
“It is my hope that the proceeds from this exercise will be a source of additional revenue for the country”, the SGF added.

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FRSC Threatens Sanction Against Fleet Operators Over Speed Limit

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The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) says it will sanction any fleet operator found sabotaging the implementation of the Speed Limit Device.
Corps Marshal Boboye Oyeyemi said this during the 2021 annual safety managers retreat yesterday in Abuja.
The retreat aimed at sensitising safety managers on the implementation of the Road Transport Safety Standardisation Scheme to attain best practices in fleet operations.
The theme of the retreat is: “Assessment of Speed Limit Device Implementation in Nigeria: Prospects and Challenges”.
Oyeyemi, represented by Deputy Corps Marshal, Motor Vehicle operations, Mr Hyginus Foumsuk, said that the corps would also sanction Speed Limit Device vendors identified for complicity.
The corps marshal expressed concern on the spate of road accidents and needless loss of lives, especially involving fleet operators.
“These, according to many experts investigations, could have been avoided if the concerned safety managers had been responsive in their duties,” he said.
Oyeyemi said that recent findings by the corps have also revealed a low level of compliance on the installation of Speed Limit Device and associated sharp practices among some fleet operators.
He noted that these practices included tampering with Speed Limit Device and connivance with vendors to deceive enforcement operatives.
This, he said, was with compliance certificates without actual installation of the device, calibration above the approved speed limits and others.
According to him, these shall no longer be tolerated as the corps will not hesitate to sanction violators henceforth.
Oyeyemi urged relevant stakeholders to address the decline on the proper vehicle maintenance as well as implementation of the passenger manifest by fleet operators and the drivers’ recruitment policy.
“We all know the essence of the passenger manifest and the significance of its proper implementation. You are therefore urged to take these issues seriously in the interest of safety.
“Passenger manifest is considered pivotal, thus its enforcement should continue along other traffic offences to compel the needed compliance. It is therefore pertinent that strict adherence to the existing policies be sustained,” he said.
“There is need for fleet operators to introduce improved practices to ensure the safety and comfort of their passengers in compliance with traffic regulations.
The Director-General, Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, Mr Babatunde Irukera, commended the efforts of the corps on road safety.
Irukera noted that injury and fatality on the road were caused by speed, describing speed as a catalyst, aggravator and mitigator.
He urged motorists to take cognisance look into installing Speed Limit Device to avoid road traffic crashes and save lives and property.
He, however, assured FRSC of the commission’s support to punish violators, saying that excessive speed attracts a penalty.

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Sokoto Assembly Approves 2021 Virement Request Of N155m

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The  Sokoto State House of Assembly yesterday approved Governor Aminu Tambuwal’s  request of N155 million virement warrant on some capital projects  in 2021 approved budget.
This approval  followed the consideration of a letter by the state governor presented at the plenary by the Speaker, Alhaji Aminu Achida.
Alhaji Bello Ambarura, the All Progressives Congress (APC) leader in  the assembly, had  moved a motion asking  the lawmakers to consider the request at its plenary session.
Ambarura said that the request was necessitated by the present administration’s commitment to addressing  a number of developmental projects.

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