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Rivers Under-Represented In MDAs, FCC Laments

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Rivers State is one of the top states that has the least representations in the federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies, The Tide has gathered.
Currently, the state has about 2.2 per cent of positions and employment at the federal level as against 3 per cent as recommended by the law.
The state, alongside Bayelsa, had its highest peak between 2011 – 2013 during the President Goodluck Jonathan administration, when indigenes from the area had the employment quota almost filled, and amply engaged in federal agencies and ministries.
The Tide learnt that the situation may be worse with the multinational and private companies whose employment policies are not regulated by the Act establishing Federal Character Principle.
The state Coordinator of the Federal Character Commission (FCC), Mr. Owonaro Bolou Henry told The Tide that the commission has commence, sensitisation on some agencies on why federal character should be reflected in their employment policies and programmes.
According to him, the law provides that any employment from levels 01-06 should give 75 per cent to host communities or indigenes.
Asked whether federal agencies operating in the state enforce the commission’s law on low cadre jobs, Owonaro said, “They do because we try as much as we can to monitor them”.
The FCC state coordinator revealed that the state loses most of its positions at the federal level because the indigenes refuse to take appointments outside the state.
Besides that, he revealed that people from neighbouring states snatch positions meant for Rivers people through the guise of impersonation and influence from highly placed persons.
Explaining further, he noted, “If the law says that Rivers State has 10 positions and unfortunately they can only provide three, the other seven positions will be thrown open to other states”.
For now, he maintained that Rivers and Bayelsa States are under-represented as two key officials who were represented in the FCC had retired and another resigned.
Owonaro promised that defaulting ministries, parastatals, state government and local councils which fail to adhere to the Principle of Federal Character will sued to court, as he decried poor funds as a major challenge to raise awareness and training of personnel.

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Bloody Friday: Bandits Kill 10 In Kaduna Villages

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Some bandits have invaded communities in three local government areas of Giwa, Igabi and Chikun in Kaduna State, killing 10 people, including a community leader, while injuring no fewer than four persons in the attacks.

The state Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Mr. Samuel Aruwan, who confirmed the attack and counter-attacks, yesterday, was, however, silent on when the attack occurred.

Aruwan also disclosed that crisis was brewing between members of Borno community in the state and the Nigerian Army in Sabon Gari Local Government Area of the state, assuring that the state was in control of the situation.

According to the commissioner, security agencies have reported that bandits invaded Na’ikko Village in Giwa LGA, killing three residents of the area.

“The community volunteers engaged the bandits and in the ensuing gun duel, three residents were killed,” he said.

The commissioner gave the names of those killed as Alhaji Shafiu, Alhaji Balailu Sani and Abdulsamad Hussaini.

He added that in a reprisal attack, youths of Na’ikko Village attacked a nearby Fulani settlement, Rugan Abdulmuminu, and killed two persons whom they alleged to be involved in the earlier attack while identifying those killed as Abdulmuminu Agwai and Samaila Agwai.

Similarly, the commissioner said some bandits also invaded Dakyauro Village, Sabon Birni, Igabi LGA and killed four persons after rustling about 25 cows.

“The four persons killed were listed as Musbahu Yusuf, Basiru Jaafaru, Ja’afaru Yahaya, Umaru Sulaiman. Two persons were injured in the attack: Anas Ibrahim, Aisha Abbas,” he added.

Meanwhile, the commissioner said bandits killed a community leader, Dauda Adamu, at Ungwan Ayaba in Chikun LGA of the state.

“Bandits also invaded farmlands on the outskirts of Gigani Village, Kerawa, Igabi LGA and rustled about 14 bulls being used by farmers to plough the land,” he added.

The commissioner said that the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, while receiving these reports, sent condolences to the families of all those who lost their lives in the attacks as well as prayed for the repose of their souls.

“The governor noted with deep concern the incidents in Na’ikko Village in Giwa LGA and appealed to residents to embrace recourse to law.

“He implored them to avoid killings and reprisal actions that would prove utterly detrimental to peace in the area, as government was working closely with security agencies and stakeholders.

“Governor El-Rufai assured farmers in the Giwa, Igabi, Birnin Gwari, Kajuru and Chikun LGAs of the government’s awareness of their plight, and that active steps are being taken towards ensuring that they would continue to pursue their livelihoods in safety,” he said.

He added that the governor also addressed reports received on brewing tension in Bomo community, Sabon Gari LGA, between residents and the Nigerian Army.

He said, “The governor appealed to members of the community to maintain calm, as the matter had been reported and steps were being taken in conjunction with His Royal Highness, the Emir of Zazzau, to address the situation.

“The Kaduna State Government has urged private schools operating in high-risk areas to adhere to the security advisories issued to them. This followed reports that some schools have continued to operate outside of the guidelines presented to them by the security agencies for the safety of their students and staff.

“The governor is also monitoring the developments in Kauru, Jema’a and Zangon Kataf LGAs, and working assiduously to enhance security and peace in the identified flash-points in these LGAs,” the commissioner added.

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ARMED ROBBERS ATTACK, THE TIDE NEWSPAPER OFFICE AGAIN TONIGHT…

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RSG Tasks FG On East-West Road Repairs

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The Rivers State Government has called on the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency in the deeply failed portions of the East-West Road, especially the Akpajo-Eleme axis which has completely broken down and constituting death trap and huge embarrassment to Nigeria.
This call was made last Monday in Port Harcourt in a statement issued by the Rivers State Commissioner for Information and Communications, Barrister Emma Okah.
According to Okah, the East-West Road belongs to the Federal Government and the Akpajo-Eleme axis leads directly to critical economic infrastructure like the Oil and Gas Free Zone, Onne, Indorama Petrochemical and Fertilizer Companies, Port Harcourt Refinery, Eleme, Notore Fertiliser Company, among others.
“But sadly, while other federal roads in the country are receiving fair attention of the Federal Government, the East-West Road has remained neglected, abandoned and left to further deteriorate”, he lamented.
Okah further said that it was for the reason of acute dilapidation of the road that the Governor Nyesom Wike-led administration, together with some stakeholders, made huge contributions to stabilise the portion of the road with the expectation that the Federal Government will take a cue from there.
He regretted that “unfortunately, and as it has been our lot in this administration, the Federal Government neither appreciated these patriotic efforts and sacrifices of the state government and the other contributors nor repaired the road.
“The East-West Road has become a source of anguish to the people of Rivers State, and our lamentations have only fallen on deaf ears,” Okah said.
The commissioner noted that the deep decay of the road has resulted in huge loss of man-hour, accidents involving trucks and attendant loss of property and human lives which could have been avoided by repairing this axis of the road, hoping that this insensitivity on the part of the Federal Government of Nigeria will end soon.
“For the records, the East-West Road is the most economically strategic road in the Niger Delta region,” Okah reminded the Federal Government.

Susan Serekara-Nwikhana

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