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Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State (left), receiving a t-shirt from the United Nations  Women Representative to Nigeria and ecowas, Grace Ongile, who paid him courtesy visit  in Jos on Monday

Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State (left), receiving a t-shirt from the United Nations Women Representative to Nigeria and ecowas, Grace Ongile, who paid him courtesy visit in Jos on Monday

Adamawa

A former Interior Minister and APC chieftain in Adamawa
State, Alhaji Abdulrahman Adamu,  says the society has a vital role to play in efforts to achieve the December deadline to rout Boko Haram.
Adamu, who was Minister of State for Interior in the administration of the late President Umaru Yar’adua, made the statement in Yola on Sunday during an interview with newsmen.
He said that developments in the on-going fight against Boko Haram had shown that the insurgents had been seriously degraded.
He said what was needed was to mop up some of the insurgents who had mingled with the society and were causing havoc through suicide bomb attacks.
“It is our moral responsibility to help the army by exposing members of Boko Haram even if such suspects are our relations,” Adamu said.

Borno

The Borno State chapter of the Islamic Medical Associa
tion of Nigeria (IMAN) has donated relief materials worth millions of Naira to 40 widows of Boko Haram insurgency in the state capital.
The Chairman of the association, Malam Abba Babagana, stated this during the presentation of the items at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital.
Babagana said that the gesture was to assist the vulnerable victims of the insurgncy who were in dire need of assistance.
He added that the gesture would equally reduce the situation whereby women and children roamed the streets seeking for help.
In his remark, the Chief Medical Director of UMTH, Prof. Abdulrahman Tahir, said catering for the less privilage was paramount.
Tahir said report had shown that Borno had more than 10,000 widows as a result of the insurgency which posed serious problems to the society.

FCT

The Nigerian Association of Technologists in Engineer
ing (NATE), has urged the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) to establish a polytechnic in Abuja in order to enhance technical education in the territory.
The Chairman of NATE, FCT branch, Mr Jubril Kadri, made the call in an interview with newsmen in Abuja.
NATE is a professional body with membership comprising mainly Higher National Diploma (HND) and National Diploma (ND) holders in engineering.
Jibril, who rued the absence of government-owned polytechnics in the FCT, noted that the existing private polytechnics lacked the capacity to provide the necessary equipment to enhance engineering study.

Jigawa

The price of Benny seeds, also known as sesame seeds,
has dropped in major grain markets in Jigawa due to low patronage of the produce.
Our correspondent at Hadejia and Gujungu markets found that the price has dropped by about 50 per cent since the commencement of the harvest season.
It was gathered that a bag of the commodity now sells at N10, 500 as against the N20, 000 it sold for last season.
Traders at the market attributed the situation to increase in supply of the produce from the farms amid low demand.
Alhaji Shehu Malammadori, a trader, said prices would further go down due to lack of buyers.
Malammadori said that the market was flooded with the produce, thus forcing prices down.

Kaduna

The Statistician-General of the Federation, Dr Yemi
Kale, said the demand for data and statistical information had increased as the output of the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) also increased.
Kale told newsmen in Saminaka, Kaduna State, that the reason for the increase in the output was that NBS had become creative in data gathering.
He said that the bureau had become creative in the ways it gathered data and it equally devised more cost effective way in disseminating its data.
“We have gone electronically in most of our activities instead of printing hard copies and that will be more expensive for us.
“I think that is what people mean by saying that our measures are more for the elite, because instead of putting our reports on paper, we put them on website.

Kano

The Kano State Government has advised residents to be vigilant and be more fire-conscious in order to avert fire disasters during harmattan.
Governor Abdullahi Ganduje gave the advice while inspecting the timber section of the Sabongari Market that was gutted by fire.
He called on business men in the market and other markets in the state to take precautionary measures and not allow smokers to throw away lighted cigarette stubs anywhere in the market.
“Ganduje said , “Since investigation had shown that one of the causes of the inferno was lighted cigarettes stubs thrown away indiscriminately within the section, the business operators should ensure they prevent people from doing so.’’
He warned the security men guarding the market to stop making fire to warm their bodies during harmattan.

K
Kebbi

The Kebbi State Government said on Saturday that it planned to rehabilitate the Turai Yar’adua Psychiatric Hospital to ease hardship faced by patients, medical and administrative personnel.
A statement signed by Alhaji Abubakar Mua’azu, Press Secretary to the Governor, on Saturday in Birnin Kebbi, said the governor made the promise while inspecting the hospital.
It said that Governor Atiku Bagudu also addressed staff and patients during the visit promising to ensure affordable healthcare delivery, especially in the rural settlements.
According to the statement, Bagudu also promised to rehabilitate infrastructure, build patient wards, deploy medical and administrative personnel and ensure that adequate and required drugs are provided.
The hospital attends to patients once a week while those who require admission are referred to other specialists hospitals.
Lagos

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority says adequate
preparations have been made ahead of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP) slated for March 2016.
This is contained in a statement by  the NCAA’s General Manager, Public Relations, Mr Sam Adurogboye, on Sunday in Lagos.
The statement said a six-man team from ICAO had recently arrived in Nigeria on technical assistance visit, ahead of the programme and had concluded its assignment.
It said the ICAO delegation was led by Mr John Gratton while other members were Mrs Kristian Dores, Mr Michael Mcdonald, Mr Tahir Siddiqui, Mrs Naomi Mwaugi and Mr Ben Hallberg.
According to the statement, the team has briefed all the stakeholders namely the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Nigerian Airspace Management Agency(NAMA) and the NCAA.
Ogun
The Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), has urged
motorists in Lagos and Ogun States, to obey traffic regulations, before, during and after the Christmas celebrations.
Asst. Corps Marshal, Nseobong Akpabio, in charge of Zone 2, made the appeal on Sunday in Ijebu-Ode, Ogun, in an interview with newsmen Zone 2 comprises Lagos and Ogun Commands.
Akpabio who also met stakeholders’ at the FRSC Unit Command in Ijebu-Ode, assured that the corps’ officers and men would do all they could to ensure the safety of all.
He said that Zone 2 would deploy over 6,000 personnel, including regular and special marshals, during the period to ensure smooth flow of traffic.

Plateau

The National Universities Commission (NUC) panel has
rounded off its accreditation visitation to the Plateau State University (PLASU), Bokkos.
The panel, led by Prof. Joseph Charles, arrived at Bokkos last Monday to accredit courses in the university’s Faculty of Social Sciences. The accreditation visitation was the first since the university was founded 10 years ago.
No fewer than 319 students who graduated from the institution had not been able to go into the labour market due to the non accreditation of its courses by the NUC.
Charles told authorities of the university that his team had concluded its assignment in the faculty, ready for submission to the NUC for consideration.

Sokoto
Sokoto State government said it had resolved to declare a
state of emergency in the education sector.
The state took the decision in order to ‘’ effectively tackle the problems bedeviling education in the state.’’
The government’s decision is contained in a communiqué signed by Prof. Bashir Garba, the Secretary to Sokoto State Government, and made available to newsmen on Sunday in Sokoto.
The communiqué was issued after a retreat organised by the Sokoto State government for its political office holders and senior public officials which ended in Kaduna at the weekend.
“The move becomes imperative not just because standards have fallen, but because education holds the key to tackling virtually all challenges of governance in Sokoto State in particular, and Nigeria in general.

Taraba

The Jukun Muslim community has urged the people of
Wukari in Taraba to eschew violence and live harmoniously with one another to foster peace and development.
A leader of the community, AIhaji Isa Zhema, made the call at a news conference in Jalingo on Sunday.
Zhema said the incessant crisis in the area had brought economic activities in the town to a halt and thereby impoverished the people.
“We want the people of Wukari – Christians, Muslims and traditional worshipers – to eschew violence and tolerate one another’s religion for peace and development,” he said.
Zhena urged the people to support the administration of Governor Darius Ishaku to it to succeed in efforts to address issues of insecurity, poverty, among others.

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Cleric Wants Review Of Retirement Age For Civil Servants To 70

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Rev. Fr. Godfrey Gopep, Parish Priest of St. Finbarr’s Catholic Church, Rayfield, Jos, has appealed to the Federal Government to review the retirement age for civil servants from 60 to 70 years.
Gopep made the plea in his sermon yesterday in Jos, adding that such move would address some of the challenges that retirees in the country were currently facing.
The cleric, who decried the rising spate of unemployment in the country, added that the move would also reduce incidences of falsification of age by people in order to be employed.
He added that it would also enable those who would be employed late to enjoy some good years in service before retiring.
“Because of scarcity of jobs and high rate of unemployment in the country, most people get to be employed are in their 40s.
“So, I want to call on the Federal Government to review the retirement age of civil servants from 60 to 70 years.
“If this is done, those who get employed a bit late can also have a enough time to contribute their quota to the development of the nation.
“It will also curtail the act where people have to reduce their ages just so that they can get employed and also spend some good years in service,” he said.
Gopep called on government at all levels to create job opportunities in the country and an enabling environment for private sector to thrive so as to create jobs as well.

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Lalong Seeks End To Divisive Actions Among Nigerians

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Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong, yesterday urged Nigerians to shun divisive actions such as hate speeches and fake news for the peace and unity of the country.
The governor made the call at an interdenominational church service in Jos to mark the 61st Independence of Nigeria.
He said such acts were inimical to the nation’s progress, adding: “we must come together and solve our problems because no one can build Nigeria for us.’’
He said the country’s challenges, especially insecurity, would be overcome and urged Nigerians to be grateful for the country’s progress so far in spite of the challenges.
“God has indeed been faithful to Nigeria and we must be grateful,’’ he said.
Governor Lalong said also that Nigeria was blessed with abundant human and natural resources, but required unity, tolerance, sincerity, loyalty and patriotism to maximise such resources for its development.
According to him, commitment from the leadership and followership was critical to achieve the feat.
“There is no nation which is great today that has refused to embrace diversity, tolerance, excellence, good work ethics, and a national philosophy that is based on honesty, reward for hard work and punishment for deviance,’’ he said.
He added that Nigerians were known as a highly religious people which should be demonstrated by showing love to all irrespective of ethnic, religious or political differences.
“We must stop being religious and start being godly,’’ the governor stressed.
He noted that the security challenges were setbacks Plateau’s Progress and assured the people that he was determined to put an end to them while calling for the cooperation of residents especially religious and community leaders to achieve the objective.
“I call on you to play your part in securing your immediate community and giving prompt information to security agencies to be able to act appropriately,’’ he said.
He also called on Nigerians to intensify prayers and vigilance as security agencies and government worked towards defeating perpetrators and sponsors of crises.
Governor Lalong assured Plateau people that the Oct. 9 local council polls in the state would be conducted peacefully.
In his homily, the Deputy Chaplain of Government House Chapel, Rev. Ezekiel Dewan, admonished Nigerians to shun negative narratives as there is power in the tongue.
He called for prayers for God’s intervention and mercy on Plateau and on Nigeria, as God instructs his people to not only pray for their leaders, but also for the cities they live in.
Special prayers were conducted for leaders, governments and the nation at the service.

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Why I Shunned APGA Guber Campaign Flag-Off-Bianca Ojukwu

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Mrs Bianca Ojukwu said in Awka yesterday that she shunned Saturday’s flag-off of APGA governorship campaign to protest “post-mortem disrespect’’ to her deceased husband.
She laid the blame of the “post-mortem disrespect’’ to Dim Chukwuemeka Ojukwu on the doorstep of APGA’s leadership.
Prof. Chukwuma Soludo and Dr Ifeanyi Ibezim, APGA’s governorship and deputy governorship candidates, respectively, kick-started their 2021 campaign at on Saturday.
Bianca was conspicuously absent at the event unlike previous mega political activities held by APGA, a party that branded late Ojukwu as the spiritual leader of the party.
Another obvious sign which made some political observers note that there was serious crack in the party was the removal of Ojukwu’s image on the customised uniform of APGA worn by people at the event.
Some party faithful, however, wore the old uniform bearing the image of the Eze Igbo Gburugburu, Dim Ojukwu, to the event.
Bianca described as an affront, the treatments to her late husband by the present leadership of APGA.
“It is an irony that today Governor Willie Obiano has resuscitated Dim Ojukwu’s pictures for use in campaigning for the upcoming elections in Anambra.
“This is the height of opportunism and hypocrisy. Is Ojukwu not the same man Obiano once described as a dead man who was no longer relevant to the party?
“Why should I permit him to keep trampling on the legacy of my late husband who put his heart and soul into this party?
“Ojukwu should not be like a light switch to be turned on for party campaign, and turned off once the election is won,’’ she said.
The former Nigerian ambassador to Spain, expressed displeasure at the decision of APGA’s leadership to expunge her husband’s image from APGA uniform and other insignia of the party.
“It is most unfortunate that Gov. Obiano decided to remove the picture of Ojukwu and replace same with his picture just to drive home his statement that `he would no longer tie the fate and fortunes of APGA to the memory of a dead man’, obviously in reference to my husband,’’ Bianca said.
She listed other ill-treatments meted to her and the deceased husband and maintained that her presence at Saturday’s flag-off would have been an endorsement to the defrauding of scores of aspirants by the party during the party’s primary in the year 2018.
“It is unfortunate that the same APGA election managers that were responsible for the disastrous 2018 party primaries which resulted in severe damage to the party’s brand were also left to handle APGA’s campaign flag-off.
“Any political party that consistently robs its own members will not endure, APGA inclusive,’’ she noted.
She also lamented that the report of the Sen. Victor Umeh-led Peace and Reconciliation Committee that visited her in Enugu few weeks ago which pointed the way forward for APGA, had been discarded by the governor and the party leadership.
Bianca, however, indicated that she remained hopeful that in spite of APGA’s current travails that the party has a fair chance of producing the next governor of the state.
She described the party as presently constituted as a field of ‘sorrow’ for so many walking wounded…from aggrieved aspirants, party members at the grassroots, as well as party stakeholders.
Reacting to Bianca’s charges, Mr C-Don Adinuba, Director Media, Soludo Governorship Campaign Organisation, said that the omission of Ojukwu’s image on APGA uniform was not a ploy to insult late Ojukwu and his family.
“It was a mistake by the person who handled the recent uniform the party printed,’’ he said.
Adinuba who is also Anambra Commissioner for Information said he was confident that Bianca had nothing against Prof. Soludo as APGA’s candidate.
“I am sure that in the next couple of days Bianca will join the campaign tour of Prof. Soludo,’’ he said.

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