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 Mmembers of the Bring Back Our  Girls leading the parents and relations of the  abducted Chibok girls to Presidential Villa in Abuja, during a protest march, yesterday.

Mmembers of the Bring Back Our Girls leading the parents and relations of the abducted Chibok girls to Presidential Villa in Abuja, during a protest march, yesterday.

Bauchi
Education sector topped Bauchi State’s 2016 Budget with
an allocation of N26.73 billion out of N135.30 billion budgeted for the state.
The Permanent Secretary, Bauchi State Planning Commission, Alhaji Mohammed Ibrahim, stated this in Bauchi while giving a breakdown of the budget.
Ibrahim said that health, roads and infrastructure development were accorded second and third priority with N19.68 billion and N14.49 billion respectively.
He said that agriculture and water were also accorded priority with the sum of N9.54 billion and N7.31 billion respectively.
Ibrahim said that rural development; and commerce and industry got the least allocations with N3.40 billion and N1.83 billion respectively.

Benue
The Chief Medical Director of the Federal Medical Cen
tre (FMC), Makurdi, Dr Peteru Inunduh, said that there was no case of Lassa fever in the hospital.
In the same vein, his counterpart at the Benue State University Teaching Hospital (BSUTH), Prof. Abraham Malu, said the hospital had yet to record any case of Lassa fever.
The directors, who spoke in separate interviews with in Makurdi, said that they were on the watch out, following the recent outbreak of the disease in the country.
Malu said that although the hospital had received a case suspected to be Lassa fever, the hospital authority had yet to confirm it.

FCT
The Federal Government has reiterated its commitment
to promote decent employment and enhanced welfare for Nigerian workers, a statement has said.
The statement was issued by Mr Samuel Olowookere, Deputy Director of Press in the Ministry of Labour and Employment, in Abuja recently.
It said Mr James Ocholi, the Minister of State, Labour and Employment, made the pledge when the Association of Resident Doctors, FCT chapter, paid him a courtesy visit.
Ocholi said such step was the only way that the country would record economic growth and stability and called on the doctors to support the government’s efforts to ensure industrial peace and harmony in the health sector.

Gombe
Gombe Local Government Council in Gombe State says
it has distributed JAMB forms to 50 less privilege youths in the area to rekindle their interest in education.
The Acting Caretaker Chairman of the council, Alhaji Suleiman Ibrahim, told newsmen in Gombe that the gesture was aimed at assisting the beneficiaries to further their education.
“The beneficiaries were carefully selected based on merit with 18 females and 32 males benefiting.
“This gesture is in line with the priority given to education by the state government and the concern for the youths to develop academically, among other assistance.
“I want youths in this council area to change their attitude positively to further their education for a better tomorrow for themselves, their families and the state at large,’’ said Ibrahim.
He said if they imbibe positive attitudinal change, they would contribute to the development of the state and the country at large.

Kaduna
The Kaduna State Government has solicited the support
of parents and administrators to sustain its school feeding programme.
Addressing newsmen in Kaduna, Dr Shehu Adamu, the Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, said the programme would ease the suffering of pupils and students in the state.
He said the support of parents in particular, would enhance the implementation of the programme for primary and secondary schools.
“The school feeding programme will be formally launched when pupils in government-owned schools resume on January 17.
“Preparation for the take-off of the programme is in top gear as contractors and vendors have been engaged.
“Individual schools will meet with their respective vendors to review the procedures and modalities for effective service delivery.’’
Kwara
The Tsaragi community in Kwara State has rejected the
commission of inquiry set up by the state government to look into the bloody clash between it and the Share community.
The spokesman of the community, Dr Abdullahi Idris, made this known in Ilorin at a news conference.
He said the community has no confidence in the judicial commission of inquiry set up by the state government to find lasting solution to incessant clashes between the two communities.
“We wish to reiterate that the Nupes of Tsaragi community have no confidence and trust in the institution of Judicial Commission of Inquiry set up by Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed
“We have therefore instituted an action in court to challenge the governor’s action.
“The Nupes in Tsaragi community and in general are law abiding and committed to peaceful co-existence with their Share Igbomina speaking neighbours,” Idris added.

Lagos
The Managing Director, Federal Airports Authority of
Nigeria (FAAN), Mr Saleh Dunoma, has given assurance that the Katsina Airport terminal would be ready for commissioning soon.
Dunoma gave the assurance in a statement issued by FAAN’s General Manager, Corporate Affairs, Mr Yakubu Dati, in Lagos recently.
The statement quoted Dunoma as saying that the authority was putting finishing touches for final takeover of the terminal.
He said in the statement that the airport was strategic to key airports in the northern part of the country.
He noted that the terminal would add substantial value to the revenue generation drive of the organisation through the annual Hajj operations.

Nasarawa
Rev. Fr. Lawrence Soja-Anyembugu of St. Sylvester
Catholic Church, New Nyanya, Karu, Nasarawa State, has inaugurated a computer training centre to enable youths to acquire computer knowledge.
Soja-Anyembugu , who inaugurated the centre in Akun Development Area of the state, urged the youths to take advantage of the free computer training to acquire computer knowledge.
He said the computer centre would enable the children of poor to acquire computer knowledge so as to be able to take computer-based examinations.
“ICT knowledge is needed by all, especially the students because one cannot sit for JAMB, post UTME without having computer knowledge.
“That is why it has become imperative for the youths and other Nigerians to acquire computer knowledge in order to be self-reliant and to contribute their quota to national development.
Niger
Sheikh Muhammadu Isah-Kutigi, has urged political
leaders to abide by oath of office and remember the day of judgment in the discharge of their duties.
Isah-Kutigi, proprietor, Madarasatul Faitul Islam in Dutsen Kura Gwari, made the call during Qura’nic Graduation (Wolimat) of 114 students in Minna recently.
He said the society would experience the much desired dividends of democracy when elected and appointed leaders lived above board.
“They should always remember that they have either sworn with Holy Qur’an or Holy Bible, and as such, should not renege on such oaths”, he said.
The cleric also advised leaders to shun materialism, adding that they should fear God in the discharge of their duties to the people.

Plateau
The Plateau State Ministry of Health has confirmed the
death of one person in Mangu Local Government Area of the state from Lassa fever infection.
The Commissioner for Health, Dr Kudun Deyin, said at a press briefing in Jos that the victim, a woman, was on transit from Abuja.
He said a specimen from the deceased was sent to Irrua in Edo for confirmation.
He said that the ministry’s Disease and Surveillance Notification Officer had been sent to the private hospital where the lady was admitted to carry out further investigation and to forestall the spread of the disease.
Deyin, however, said that there were other cases in Shendam, Langtang South, Jos North and Pankshin local government areas, which had yet to be confirmed.
He described Lassa fever as an acute haemorrhagic illness caused by the Lassa virus, a member of the arena- virus.

Sokoto
The Sokoto State Government says it has concluded
plans to recruit 500 additional teachers for secondary schools across the state.
The Head of the Civil Service (HOS) of the state, Alhaji Bature Shinkafi, made this known in Sokoto when he addressed newsmen on efforts to transform the sector.
Our correspondent reports that the move is coming barely one month after the state government declared a “state of emergency’’ in the education sector.
Shinkafi said that the teachers to be recruited would be graduates and holders of the Nigeria Certificate in Education (NCE).
He said: “The committee set up to conduct the recruitment had submitted its report to my office on January 6.”

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SON Destroys Substandard Tyres, Cables, Others In Lagos 

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Lagos Metropolis, on Wednesday, witnessed mass destruction of substandard electric cables, engine oil, LPG cylinders, stuffed new tyres, unapproved cigarettes and low grade roofing sheets by the Standard Organization Of Nigeria (SON).
Director General, SON, Farouk Salim, while destroying the substandard products, Wednesday, noted that the substandard products affected the nation’s economy negatively.
Mr Salim revealed that all the products destroyed were imported into the country and smuggled through the ports.
He, therefore, called for the return of SON to the ports to help minimise the damage done by substandard products to the nation’s economy.
According to him, the burning of the substandard products is to assure Nigerians that SON is actually destroying them after obtaining a court order to that effect.
“Most of these substandard products were captured in the market where they are ready to be sold to customers and the unfortunate thing is that they passed through our ports.
“It will be much easier for these substandard products to be detected if our employees are at the source of the import of these products”, he said.
Salim regretted that SON was not always invited for joint inspection, adding that invitations for joint inspection are rare and far between.
“I guarantee you that if our officers have opportunity to inspect these products, the moment they look at it from experience, they will be able to detect the substandard goods.
“Don’t forget that officers of the customs service are trained to check for duty, they have no idea of how to detect substandard products easily, and our personnel are trained on how to check these products”, he said.
The SON boss denied that its officers had no unfettered access as stipulated by the constitution.
“Unless the law is changed by the National Assembly, signed by the president, the law says SON must and should be at the port, not at the discretion of any organisation”, he said.
Assistant Chief Scientific Officer and Sector Head (Domestic Rubber), National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA), Lagos Liaison Office, Bisiriyu Adesewa said NESREA was present to ensure proper disposal of the products.
“We appreciate SON for ensuring that substandard products don’t enter the market, but we are particular about what happens to these things after the destruction.
“We understand that most of them are going to recycling companies and the only one not recyclable for now is the oil and we will link SON with a facility that can help them dispose it so that there will be zero waste.
“The disposal process here is in line with our rules and regulations. The first thing is to dismantle and seperate them, which they have already done, next is the recycling”, she said.
Also, Head, Federal Competition and Consumption Protection Commission (FCCPC), Lagos Office, Susie Onwuka, said the commission had a Memorandum of Understanding with SON and different sector regulators on removal of substandard goods from the market.
She commended SON for the massive seizures, noting that more work needs to be done.
The Assistant Commissioner of Police, Force Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Annex, Alagbon, Lagos, Lawrence Iwodi, said the police was working with SON to ensure that standard was met in relation to goods imported into the country.

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Healthcare: Osinbajo Calls For Improvement, Cooperation Among West African States 

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Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has called on West African countries to improve their levels of cooperation to better address problems of healthcare access and out-of-school children, among other human development indices.
Osinbajo said this at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Wednesday, when he received the Prime Minister of Guinea-Bissau, Mr Nuno Nabiam, ahead of yesterday’s ECOWAS Integrated Regional Human Capital Development Forum hosted by the National Economic Council.
According to a statement signed late Wednesday by the Senior Special Assistant to the Vice President on Media and Publicity, Laolu Akande, the Vice President thanked Mr Nabiam for honouring the invitation to attend the conference, saying, “The Human Capital Development meeting is very important, it is an opportunity to share experience and help each other”.
Prof. Osinbajo noted that Nigeria’s “National Economic Council has done a lot of work on Human Capital Development, focusing on various challenges including questions around out-of-school and healthcare access” and would “significantly improve the human development indices in West Africa”.
He, however, acknowledged that the indices show that a lot more work still needed to be done.
The Vice President commended President Umaro Embalo of Guinea Bissau for his strong support for Nigeria, describing him as a very good friend of President Muhammadu Buhari and the country.
He noted that Guinea Bissau and President Embalo had always supported Nigeria internationally and congratulated the country for recently warding off a coup détat that would have ousted his government.
On his part, the Prime Minister extolled the leadership qualities of President Buhari and Vice President Osinbajo, stating, “What the President of Nigeria and Vice President are doing inspires us too”.

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Fuel Scarcity: Stop Panic Buying, IPMAN Tells Nigerians

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The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has backtracked on the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), otherwise known as petroleum.
The Association advised Nigerians to stop panic buying, saying its members would sell petrol at government approved price of N165 per litre.
President of the Association, Elder Chinedu Okoronkwo, spoke at a press conference on Wednesday against the backdrop of earlier indications by petroleum dealers that the pump price of N165 per litre was no longer sustainable.
The Tide recalls that the IPMAN Secretary in Lagos State, Mr Akeem Balogun, had on Monday, declared a PMS pump price of N180 per litre.
But Okoronkwo at the press briefing, reversed the declaration and urged members of IPMAN to maintain the “status quo ante” of N165 per litre.
He said the Nigeria National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) and the Petroleum Products Marketers Company (PPMC) had released petroleum products from their tank farms that could sustain the nation for the next 32 days, hence, there was no need for panic buying.
According to him, “The status quo ante must be maintained moving forward since the NNPC and the PPMC have responded positively by releasing products from their tank farms that can sustain the product needs of the country for 32 days”.
Explaining why the IPMAN Secretary in Lagos arrived at N180 per litre on Monday, the President said: “The decision was taken because its members could no longer operate at a loss.
“While the government had fixed N165 per litre as the pump price of petrol, the current realities in the market showed that the minimum the product should be retailed at the stations should be N180.
“I told you the cost of doing business has changed and my members in Lagos before they did what they did, they called me and told me that they are now getting this product at N162 to N165 per litre with transportation another N8.00, aggregating to about N170 to N173, even the N10.00 which is supposed to be our gain has been eroded, what do we do?
“Now you know and I know that it is only NNPC that imports this product into Nigeria. Some of these tank farm owners who have gone to collect this product, don’t blame them because the cost of doing business has also changed.
“It became so difficult for them to sell at N148.17, but yesterday (Wednesday), I want to tell you that NNPC and PPMC went to their tank farms and released products.

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