The Senator representing Rivers South-East senatorial District in the National Assembly, Magnus Abe, has empowered no fewer than 60 men, women and youths drawn from the 11 political wards in Opobo/Nkoro Local Government Area of Rivers State.
Some 1,100 women from the area, particularly widows also benefitted from the free wrappers scheme of the wife of the Senator, Mrs. Bariyaah Abe, bringing the total number of beneficiaries of the scheme to 9,000.
Abe arrived at Opobo Town, headquarters of the council to a heroic reception by a mammoth crowd consisting of men, women, and youths of Opobo/Nkoro LGA that trooped out to welcome him and his entourage.
Speaking at the event, the Senator said the empowerment initiated outside his constituency projects was a direct response to the overwhelming support from the people of the Senatorial District and follows the resolve of elected Representatives in Rivers State to ensure personal contact with the electorate.
Abe said; “What is happening in the politics of Nigeria is that there are middle-men, between you and the government. They collect what is meant for you and give you peanuts. I came to tell you that Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi has eliminated political middle-man in the politics of Rivers State. He has brought dividends of democracy directly to you and your children”.
“The middle-men are in Abuja trying to sell your future. They are promising people that if they bring money, they will deliver Rivers State to them. They are not asking you; they are not talking to you; they are not asking you what you think; they are not asking you what you like; they are not coming to look for you, but they are in Abuja collecting money on your behalf”, he stressed.
“We will together, redefine the politics of Rivers State, and you will be the determinant factor. We will banish middle-men from our politics. By the time we finish with them, they will remain in Abuja”. The Chairman Senate Committee on Petroleum (Downstream) declared.
In his speech, a cleric, Venerable Christian John-Jaja predicted that the APC will win the governorship election in Opobo/Nkoro and Rivers State in general come 2015.
Describing Abe as a leader that is ordained by God Almighty, John-Jaja commended the Senator for raising his voice against agents of impunity in the state even at the risk of his life, pointing out that God will continue to lift him higher for choosing to stand with the people, against oppressors.
In their separate goodwill messages, APC Women leader in Opobo/Nkoro, Felicia Pepple; Chairman, APC, Ward 3, Ibim Ogolo; and a Youth Leader in the State, Bethel Oko-Jaja, said it was the first time in the history of the Senatorial District that a serving Senator would come to sit with the people and pledged continued support for Governor Amaechi.
DPR Plans Maximum Economic Recovery Strategy For Oil, Gas Industry
The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) says it is formulating a Maximum Economic Recovery (MER) strategy for Nigeria to attain maximum value delivery from its oil and gas resources.
The Director, DPR, Mr Sarki Auwalu, made the announcement during a keynote address at the 2021 Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) Nigeria Annual International Conference and Exhibition (NAICE), yesterday, in Lagos.
The conference has as its theme, “The Future of Energy –A Trilogy of Determinants: Climate Change, Public Health, and the Global Oil Market.”
Auwalu said the industry initiative was one of the outcomes of the work of the National Oil and Gas Excellence Centre (NOGEC), Lagos inaugurated in January by President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said, “Following an in-depth assessment of the status of the industry, the department identified the need to formulate the ‘Maximum Economic Recovery Strategy for Nigeria’.
“This is to guarantee the actualisation of sustainable resource optimisation and the economic benefits arising therefrom.
“The framework for this industry action plan outlines six pillars or building blocks.”
Auwalu said the pillars were: Reserves Maturation and Production Optimisation, Exploration and Resources Maturation, Improved Oil Recovery and Enhanced Oil Recovery, Implementation Asset Stewardship, Performance Evaluation and Rewards Risk Management.
According to him, the draft framework has been shared with the industry, including professional associations like the SPE and the National Association of Petroleum Explorationists.
He said this was in preparation for an industry collaborative workshop to co-develop and enunciate this strategy for immediate execution.
“We count on the contributions and buy-in of all stakeholders on this crucial national assignment for our overall benefit and industry sustainability,“he said.
Auwalu said Nigeria was rising to the occasion as the ‘trigger’ for continental growth and economic transformation using its oil and gas resources to drive value for national development.
He said the DPR would continue to foster innovative ideas and create opportunities for investments and sustainability in the industry.
Auwalu said, “As always, we are enthusiastic to collaborate with all relevant stakeholders, including the SPE, toward the realisation of government’s aspirations for the oil and gas sector.
“In our role as business enablers and opportunity providers, DPR will continue to promote efficiency to meet the needs of the industry, creating value, enhancing transparency, reducing barriers and transaction costs.”
Pensioners Urge PenCom To Implement Unpaid 15% Increment
Pensioners under the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) have appealed to the National Pension Commission (PenCom) to implement their 15 and 33 per cent pension increment and other benefits.
The Contributory Pensioners Union of Nigeria (CPUN), South-West Zone, made the appeal,yesterday, during a peaceful protest held in Ibadan.
The CPUN President, Mr Joseph Idowu, while addressing newsmen said that PenCom has yet to implement the increment since 2007 and 2010 in spite of various promises.
Idowu said that their counterparts, under the Defined Benefit Scheme (DBS), had been enjoying the increment through the proactive stand of Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD).
“The new consequential adjustment in pension due to the latest increase in workers’ salaries and wages are also being enjoyed by pensioners under DBS, neglecting the CPS pensioners.
“No CPS pensioner has received any interest on their accrued benefits since 2007 till date.
“We require your urgent attention to ensure that arrears on this are calculated and paid at the Federal Government official rate, as at the time of retirement,” Idowu said.
The president said that his members were suffering as some of them collect as low as N3, 000 as their monthly pension which was not accepted.
Idowu also said that his members were not happy with the delay in the payment of their retirement benefits, which the commission now paid after one year of retirement, contrary to PRA Act 2004 (Amended).
He said that Section 16 (5) of PRA Act 2004 says pensioners should be paid not more than three months after retirement.
Idowu, however, commended the commission for prompt payment of their monthly pension, urging them to prioritise welfare of pensioners under the CPS.
Also, a member of the union, Mrs Clara Fumilayo, called on the Federal Government to assist the pensioners,
Fumilayo said that their monthly pension could no more buy any tangible things based on the situation in the country.
‘Only 29% Of Babies Breastfed Due To Reliance On Breast Milk Substitute’
A professor of Paediatric and Child Health, Alice Romoke-Nte, says the aggressive marketing of breast milk substitute by manufacturers was responsible for the gap in breastfeeding of children by mothers in Nigeria.
Nte, who is also the coordinator, Baby Friendly Initiative at the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital (UPTH) said the advertising of these baby food weakens the confidence of the mothers and makes them feel that these breast milk substitutes are better off.
She said this has left only 29 percent of Nigerian babies breastfed as a result.
Nte said the UPTH, Rotary Clubs in Port Harcourt and other stakeholders were using this year’s World Breastfeeding Week to carry out aggressive campaigns to raise awareness for the need of exclusive breastfeeding.
She said the international code of marketing of breast milk substitutes would be included in steps to ensure full compliance of marketing these artificial body foods.
Rotary Clubs in Port Harcourt that joined in the rally yesterday morning for exclusive breastfeeding to mark the World Breastfeeding Week includes, Rotary Club of Port Harcourt Garden City, Top Health, Seaport, Eco, Atlantic City, and Golf Estate.
Others include, Rotary Club of Port Harcourt Gateway, City Valley, Passport, Creek View, Sky Waves, and Rotary Club of Port Harcourt.
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