The Adamawa State Government has alerted that about one million
people in the state are likely to be affected by flood this year.
The Permanent Secretary and Chairman, Adamawa State Emergency Management Agency, Mr Haruna Furo, raised the alarm in an interview with newsmen in Yola.
Furo confirmed that the state office of the agency received a warning message from the National Hydrological Centre that some local government areas of the state would be seriously affected with flood in 2015.
Furo said that among the predicted areas to be affected included Fufore, Yola South, Yola North, Girei and Demsa.
Others, he said, were Numan, Lamurde, Guyuk and Shelleng local government areas.
He recalled that in 2012 over 500,000 people were affected while many lost their lives and property worth billions of Naira destroyed by the flood.
The chairman warned that more than one million people would likely be displaced if precautionary measures were not taken in time.
The Shehu of Borno, Alhaji Abubakar Ibn Garbai, has urged Muslims
to intensify prayers towards seeking divine intervention against Boko Haram insurgency in the country.
Garbai made the call while receiving members of the Indimi Mosque Management Committee, Maiduguri, who paid him a courtesy visit at his palace in Maiduguri.
He lamented that the state had witnessed tremendous setbacks due to the prevailing insurgency, and expressed optimism in the power of prayers to end the problem.
Garbai commended the committee for its numerous efforts in spreading Islamic knowledge in the country.
He also commended the mosque for organising yearly Qur’anic tafsir (preaching) during Ramadan fast to educate Muslims on the religion.
Earlier speaking, Dr Muhammad Abubakar, the Chief Imam of the Mosque who led the delegation, said they were in the palace to pay a yearly visit to the monarch as part of the activities of the committee during Ramadan fast.
Cocoa farmers have been advised to replace their old cocoa trees,
which have reduced yields, with new ones to boost production.
Mr Michael Afolabi, an Agriculture Extension Officer, gave the advice in an interview with newsmen at Usi in Ido/Osi Local Government Area of Ekiti.
Afolabi said that replacement of the old trees would sustain the future of the cocoa industry and allow farmers to begin reaping high quantity and quality cocoa beans in few years of planting.
He called on the Ministry of Agriculture in both state and Federal Ministries in the cocoa producing states to establish nurseries in every local government.
This he said was to enable farmers have enough seedlings of the new variety to replant their old cocoa farms.
Afolabi further appealed to government to introduce more incentives to support young Nigerians who want to venture into the cultivation of cocoa, saying such would motivate them to embrace farming.
He said that urgent steps needed to be taken to attract more young people into cocoa farming, to replace aging farmers.
The Chief of Army Staff, Lt.- Gen. Kenneth Minimah, has called for
more prayers for soldiers in the battle field as the Nigerian Army intensifies efforts to defeat terrorism in the country.
Minimah made the call in Abuja at a special Juma’at Prayer as part of activities to commemorate the 2015 Nigerian Army Day Celebration.
Jumat prayer which was attended by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Mogadishu Cantonment Mosque, witnessed special prayers for the nation.
Minimah, who was represented by Maj.- Gen. Adamu Abubakar, Chief of Army Administration, said that the Juma’at Service was one of the highlights of the 2015 Nigerian Army Day Celebration.
The chief of army staff, who described terrorism as a global phenomenon, which Nigeria was also battling to defeat, expressed optimism that the menace of terrorism would soon be defeated in Nigeria.
The Nigerian Breweries said in Kaduna that it had spent over N100
million on education in the northern region within the last five years.
The company, maker of Maltina and other assorted drinks, said the gesture was part its Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR) to the host communities.
The Brewery Manger in Kaduna, Mr Adebolu Obawole stated this while donating books and other instructional materials to Government Secondary School Makera in Kaduna South Local Government Area.
Obawole explained that the amount was spent on various interventions including construction of class rooms, supply of library
materials, upgrade of laboratories and provision of education materials among others.
The Kebbi State Urban Development Authority (KUDA) said it has
begun evacuation of waste from drains in major towns across the state as preventive measures against flooding.
The General Manager of the authority, Alhaji Muhammad Altine, made this known on Tuesday in an interview with newsmen in Birnin Kebbi.
Altine said the exercise would ensure that drainages in flood prone areas within the metropolis and major towns were cleared.
He warned against the habit of constructing structures along water ways and in areas prone to flood.
According to him, the conversion of farmlands into residential buildings without government’s permit is illegal and unacceptable.
“People should consult the authority-concerned before embarking on building construction as it would complement our efforts in making sure that we avoid the 2014 disastrous flood experience,” Altine said.
The Anglican Bishop of Minna Diocese, Retired Rev. Daniel Yisa, has
condemned the United States of America’s decision to legalise same-sex marriage, describing such marriages as “satanic”..
Yisa made the remark while speaking with journalists after the 100 years (centenary) thanksgiving service at the St. Peter’s Anglican Cathedral Church, on Sunday in Minna.
“Gay is not a Biblical or African practice; if God hates it, we all must hate it.
“We must know the basic truth of the Bible. As far as we are concerned as Nigerians, same sex-marriage is not our portion,’’ he said.
He said whoever wanted to engage in the practice in his country, could do so out of his or her free volition, but should not say that the Bible supported it.
The Bishop urged Nigerian leaders to be firm on moral issues, adding that same sex marriage would destroy whoever practiced it.
“We should be faithful to God, our families and our nation if we want God to heal our land,’’ he said.
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in Osun State, says it will resist
any attempt by the State Government to reduce workers’ salaries by 50 per cent.
NLC Chairman in Osun State, Mr Jacob Adekomi, told newsmen after an emergency meeting of the union in Osogbo on Friday that the government had concluded plans to reduce workers’ salaries.
Although he did not disclose his source of information, it may not be unconnected with the government’s recent 50 per cent reduction in the salaries of political office holders as part of its austerity measures.
He said the financial mess the government found itself was a product of its systemic failure.
According to him, workers will not accept salary cut adding, any attempt to cut the salaries of workers by even one per cent will be vehemently resisted.
“If the plan is imposed on the workers, it will lead to unimaginable chaos. We learnt that the cut will take effect from January 2015”, he said.
Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State says he inherited a cash
balance of N93million and a debt profile of N104 billion from the immediate past administration of former Governor Jonah Jang.
Lalong disclosed this at the 2015 graduation ceremony of Saint Louis College Jos on Saturday.
The governor stated that having started the payment of outstanding workers salaries, his next priority would be on security and education.
He said that he would still give his best to the state, notwithstanding the inherited liabilities.
The Sokoto State Government has promised to assist
the victims of flood disaster in Butuku-Babba village of Bodinga Local Government of the state.
No fewer than 100 houses, 25 livestock, farm produce and stored food items, were washed away by the June 29 flood in the area.
The Director-General, State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Alhaji Hassan Maccido, told newsmen in Sokoto last Saturday that a team of experts had since been dispatched to the village.
Maccido said that the team would ascertain the extent of damage caused by the disaster.
He said that the team would also recommend the types of reliefs to be provided for the victims and proffer solutions to forestall the recurrence of the disaster.
The Taraba StaCoordinator, National Youth Service
Corps (NYSC), Mr Tumba Freeman has said that three 2014 Batch ‘B’ corps members (names withheld) would repeat their service year for misconduct.
Freeman made this known at a news conference in Jalingo, saying that the culprits were punished for absenteeism at their places of primary assignments for three consecutive months.
According to him, three other corp members died in the course of the service as a result of medical complications which they had in an accident during the service year.
The coordinator said that the agency had given awards to 10 corp members for their meritorious service during the service year.
“We rewarded them for their excellent service which they totally deserved. “It may interest you to know that Taraba came second in terms of the number of corp members that received honors in the country.
“What we are simply doing is to recognise their contributions in community development, and to encourage other corps members to follow suit’’, Freeman said.
Yobe State Coordinator, National Youth Service Corps
(NYCS), has said that the management of the scheme would consider re-opening the orientation camp in the state next year.
According to Lass, the reopening depends on if the state government rehabilitates the camp.
He made this known while addressing newsmen during the passing-out ceremony of the 2014 Batch ‘B’ corps members in Damaturu.
He said that NYSC had not been holding orientation camp in the state since 2010 due to persistent security problems.
The coordinator said that holding orientation camp outside the state posed serious challenges to the management of the scheme in the area.
Lass, however, advised corps members deployed to the state not to panic, saying that the security situation in the state had improved tremendously.
He said that a total of 265 corps members served in the 2014 Batch B out of which five got presidential merit award.
NHRC Seeks Prioritisation Of Children’s Rights In National, State Budgets
The Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission, Mr Tony Ojukwu, has called for the prioritisation of child rights issues in both the national and state budgets.
Ojukwu, represented by Abdulrahman Yakubu, director, political and civil education rights in the commission made the call in Abuja at an event organised by the commission to commemorate the 2021 International Day for the African Child (DAC), celebrated every June 16.
He also called for alignment of national implementation plans of the Child’s Rights Act with international action plans like the Agenda 2040 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) agenda to ensure a more holistic and measurable implementation outcome
“While progress has been made on the implementation of the Child’s Rights Act and Laws across the states that have adopted it, challenges bordering on non-prioritisation of child rights in the budget, poverty.
“Harmful traditional practices, inadequate access to educational and health services, armed conflicts and more recently the COVID-19 pandemic have continued to slow down process across all sectors.
“I call on all concerned Ministry , Departments and Agencies and child-focused organisations to explore new tools and innovations like technology and social media to accelerate the implementation of child-based laws and policies in the country,” he said.
He also called for the adoption and implementation of measures to ensure universal health coverage, access to quality health-care services for all while closing all gender and vulnerability gaps.
Ojukwu also called for equal access to compulsory and quality education to all children, including children in rural communities, the girl child, children living with disabilities, children in conflict and humanity settings.
“We must address the root cause of conflict and engage early warning mechanisms to eliminate the impact of armed conflicts on children” he said.
The executive secretary said the DAC serves as a strong advocacy and sensitization tool for implementation of children’s rights.
“Beyond honouring the memory of the fallen heroes, the DAC celebration calls for introspection and self-assessment by the AU member states on the level of child rights implementation in respective countries.
The theme for the 2021 DAC celebration as selected by the African committee of Experts on the Rights and welfare of the child, he said, 30 years after the adoption of the charter: accelerate the implementation of the Agenda 2040 for an Africa fit for children.
In a goodwill message, the Country Representative of UN Women Nigeria, Ms Comfort Lamptey called for education-in-emergencies in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa.
The country representative, represented by Patience Ekeoba, National Programme Officer, UN Women Nigeria, Lamptey said that children of these three conflict affected states need education -in-emergencies.
“ In the north east of Nigeria, 2. 8 million children need education -in-emergencies support. No fewer than 802 schools remained closed and 497 classrooms are listed as destroyed with another 1, 392 damaged but repairable in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa.
“In addition to this, the COVID-19, insecurity and humanitarian crisis and other prevailing challenges have presented new and additional challenges,” she said
“A lot of countries in Africa have robust legal frameworks policies, conventions and other frameworks that guarantee the rights of the child,” she added.
Court Rejects EFCC’s Request To Amend Charge In Ex-NNPC GMD’s Trial
A Federal High Court in Abuja has rejected an application by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to amend its charge in the $9.8million, £74,000 fraud trial of an ex-Group Managing Director (GMD) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Andrew Yakubu.
Justice Ahmed Mohammed, in a ruling, yesterday, held that granting the application by the EFCC would amount to varying a subsisting judgment given by the Court of Appeal, Abuja on April 24, 2020, where it, among others, ordered Yakubu to enter defence in relation to counts three and four of the six counts originally contained in the charge on which he was arraigned.
Justice Mohammed was emphatic that allowing the prosecution (the EFCC) to amend the charge was tantamount to disobeying the subsisting order made by the Court of Appeal in its judgment of April 24, 2020.
The EFCC claimed that its operatives, acting on a tip-off, raided Yakubu’s house located on Chikun Road, Sabon Tasha area of Kaduna South Local Government Area of Kaduna State on February 3, 2017, and recovered the $9,772,800 and £74,000 cash kept in a fire proof safe.
It arraigned Yakubu on March 16, 2017, on a six-count charge relating to money laundering offences.
He was among others, accused of failing to make full disclosure of assets, receiving cash without going through a financial institution, which borders on money laundering and intent to avoid a lawful transaction under law, transported at various times to Kaduna, the aggregate sum of $9,772,800 and £74,000.
The prosecution closed its case on October 17, 2018, after calling seven witnesses.
The seventh prosecution witness, an operative of the EFCC, Suleiman Mohammed, spoke about how his team recovered the $9,772,000 and £74,000 cash in Yabubu’s house in Kaduna, which was later deposited in CBN in Kano.
At the closure of the prosecution’s case, Yakubu made a no-case submission, which Justice Mohammed, in a ruling on May 16, 2019, partially upheld by striking out two of the six counts contained in the charge and ordered Yakubu to enter defence in relation to the remaining four counts.
The judge was of the view that the prosecution failed to prove counts five and six of the charge, which related to allegation of unlawful transportation of the money.
“Even though I am tempted to discharge the defendant on counts one to four, I am, however, constrained to ask the defendant to explain how he came about the monies recovered from his house.
“Fortified with my position, the defendant is hereby ordered to enter his defence in respect of counts one to four,” Justice Mohammed said in the May 16, 2019, ruling.
Dissatisfied, Yakubu challenged the decision at the Court of Appeal, Abuja, which, in a ruling on April 24, 2020, upheld Justice Mohammed’s ruling and proceeded to strike out two more counts – one and two – in the charge.
The Court of Appeal, then, ordered Yakubu to enter his defence in respect of the remaining two counts – three and four.
Proceedings later resumed at the Federal High Court, with the defendant commencing his defence as ordered by the Court of Appeal.
But, on March 10 this year, the prosecution applied for leave to amend its charge, arguing among others, that the law allows the prosecution to amend charge at any stage of the proceedings before judgment.
The defence countered, arguing that the Court of Appeal, in its judgment of April 24, 2020, made an order to guide further proceedings in the trial.
It noted that the Court of Appeal ordered that the defendant was only to enter defence in relation to counts three and four in respect of which a prima facie case was established.
The defence urged the court to refuse the prosecution’s application for amendment and allow the defendant to continue with his defence, a prayer Justice Mohammed granted in his ruling, yesterday.
When the judge ended the ruling, yesterday, the defence indicated its intention to proceed with its case, but the court elected to adjourn till June 30 following plea by the prosecution for an adjournment on the grounds that the lead prosecuting lawyer was not immediately available.
Economist Challenges W’Bank’s Prediction On Nigeria’s Inflation Rate
An economist, Prof. Akpan Ekpo, has queried World Bank’s prediction that Nigeria’s inflation rate is expected to rise to fifth highest in Sub-Saharan Africa by the end of 2021.
Ekpo, a professor of Economics and Public Policy at the University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, questioned the prediction in an interview with The Tide source yesterday in Lagos.
Recall the bank’s Lead Economist for Nigeria, Macro Hernandez while presenting its six-monthly update on development in Nigeria on Tuesday, said Nigeria was lagging the rest of sub-Saharan Africa, with food inflation.
Hernandez included heightened insecurity and stalled reforms as slowing growth and increasing poverty.
The professor said: “First of all, we need to examine the methodology the World Bank used to arrive at the conclusion because we know that inflation has declined slightly.”
Ekpo, also Chairman, Foundation for Economic Research and Training in Lagos, said, however, that if government could solve the insecurity problems limiting economic growth and increase Agricultural production, the prediction might not hold.
According to him, there are countries with double digits inflation and still doing well.
“This means you can have inflation and yet your GDP is growing, so, it’s when you have what we call run-away or hyper inflation that is when you get worried.
“Run-away inflation means that prices are increasing everyday or every month without control,” he said.
On predictions that the inflation would push seven million more Nigerians into poverty due to falling purchasing power, Ekpo gave a suggestion to the federal government to stem it.
He urged the Federal Government to seriously implement the National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy Programme and the Economic Sustainability Plan documents.
“I cannot fault them on this one because already, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said about 85 million Nigerians are living in poverty.
“So, World Bank just saying that confirms what our own NBS has already said.
“Now, if the government implements the National Poverty Reduction initiative document as well as the Economic Sustainability plan seriously, then we can begin to reduce the poverty rate.
“Then the economy must grow double digits, that is, 10 per cent and above for us to see reduction in poverty and more jobs creation as well, because poverty is linked to unemployment,” he added.
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