Activities in Government House, Port Harcourt began last week with the inauguration of the Committee for Accreditation and Approval of Private Schools in Rivers State.
At the event which took place last Monday the Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, charged the committee to carry out a comprehension reassessment of schools with the objective of reviewing the standard of education.
The governor urged the committee members not to allow themselves to be swayed by prominent persons, especially politicians, noting that the state government carefully selected tested academics to carry out the assignment because it wants good result.
He further stated that his administration jettisoned the use of the Ministry of Education because most private schools have contacts at the ministry, where they compromise the accreditation and approval process.
Stressing the importance of basic education in the sector, Wike charged the committee members to make sure they visit all the schools that have applied for accreditation adding that they have one month to submit their report.
The committee chairman Prof Ozo-Mekuri Ndimele, thanked Governor Wike for his determination to improve the quality of schools in the state through the right accreditation scheme.
Also last week, Governor Wike commenced payment of pensioners under the contributory pension scheme in fulfillment of the promise he made after signing into law, the Rivers State Pension Reform Law N0 4 of 2019.
Head of Service of Rivers State, Barrister Rufus Godwins who disclosed this to newsmen, said about 800 pensioners who have completed their biometrics have been paid.
According to him, further biometric capture of other pensioners under the contributory pensions scheme has been scheduled by the state government in line with Governor Wike’s directive.
The Head of Service who expressed the strong commitment of the Wike-led administration towards ensuring that civil servants and pensioners are catered for, explained that the present administration had to follow due process to amend the law and create the platform for payment of those under the contributory pensions scheme.
Within the week under review, the State Chief Executive played host to the Senate Ad-Hoc committee on Kom-Kom Pipeline Explosion.
The committee was in Government House, Port Harcourt last Thursday and Governor Wike was represented at the event by his deputy, Dr Ipalibo Harry-Banigo.
The governor expressed hope that the findings and recommendations of the committee would put an end to such tragedies in the country. He urged the committee to interact with stakeholders and engage authorities concerned to ensure that the damaged pipes were replaced and to also reach out to those who were affected by the explosion.
He commended the Senate President, Ahmed Lawan and members of the committee for the visit and noted that the visit was a demonstration of concern for the people of the state.
In his remark, the leader of the committee, Senator Ibrahim Gobir, said that senate at its sitting on the 3rd of July 2019 considered a motion sponsored by Senator George Sekibo on Pipeline Explosion in Kom-Kom, Oyigbo Local Government Area of Rivers State which informed the setting up of the ad-hoc committee.
He said the committee had the mandate to condone the government and people of Rivers State and also to investigate the cause of the incident to avert future occurrence.
Another major event last week in Brick House was the official flag-off of the state government’s waiver of user free for person living with HIV/AIDS as promised by Governor Wike.
The event took place at Rivers State University Teaching Hospital, Port Harcourt last Thursday and Governor Wike was represented by his Deputy Dr Ipalibo Harry Banigo.
He said that the state government has made significant progress in curbing the HIV epidemic in the state and expressed commitment towards meeting the health care needs of the people of the state.
Kaduna Guber Contest: PDP Seeks Cancellation Of 515, 951 Votes
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its Governorship candidate, Isah Ashru will today ask the Kaduna State Elections Petition Tribunal to cancel a total 515, 951 votes which it contended were unlawfully added to the total votes cast during the March 9 poll.
The tribunal had fixed Aug. 19 for adoption of final written addresses by counsel in the governorship election case.
A certified copy of the document to be adopted by the PDP was obtained by newsmen on Sunday in Kaduna, yesterday.
In the document, the PDP is asking the tribunal to declare Ashiru as the validly elected governor of the state by majority of lawful votes cast.
The petitioners had called 135 witnesses out of the 685 they assembled to prove massive rigging, ballot stuffing and other irregularities during the poll as contained in their petition.
In their final written addresses, the petitioners alleged that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had added 391,741 votes to Nasiru El-Rufai of APC and a total of 124, 210 unlawful votes to the PDP through wrong or double entry on the result sheets.
The PDP and its candidate contended that declaring El-Rufai winner by INEC was illegal as he did not score majority of lawful votes cast.
The PDP through its legal team of Emmanuel C. Ukala SAN, Donald Denwigwe SAN, Chief Ferdinand O. Orbih SAN, Elisha Y. Kurah SAN and 14 other counsel said a deduction of 391,741 votes from 1,045,427 scored by El-Rufai and 124,210 from Ashiru’s 814, 168 votes will give victory to their candidate.
The counsels further argued that after the deduction of the alleged unlawful votes, Ashiru will be left with 689,958 lawful votes, while El-Rufai will have 653,686 votes.
The petitioners averred that evidence of their witnesses has demonstrated that there were “improper entries in the polling units results, wrongful collation of entries in the ward collation results including unstamped and un-authenticated votes and void or invalid votes were credited to the parties”.
They further argued that a total of 4, 235 votes were wrongfully credited to El-Rufai on form EC8A while 256 votes were also wrongfully entered for Ashiru.
In another polling unit 45,478 votes arising from unstamped result sheets were unlawfully credited to El-Rufai, while 9,655 votes were equally credited to their candidate.
Also 6,840 unlawful votes arising from improper collation figures were entered for El-Rufai while 1,098 vote were credited to Ashiru.
” Some 391,188 void and unlawful votes were also credited to El-Rufai while 113,001 votes were equally credited to the PDP in other polling units in the state,” the petitioners argued.
The party also submitted that it had produced enough material evidence of substantial irregularities to enable the tribunal declare its candidate winner of the March 9 governorship election in Kaduna State.
The PDP cited several authorities in the written address, alleging that INEC, El-Rufai and the APC did not demonstrate the required evidence to counter the relevant materials as well as oral and documentary evidence by their witnesses.
House Committee Condemns Attack On Ekweremadu
The Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs, Rep. Yusuf Buba (APC-Adamawa), has condemned the alleged attack on former Deputy Senate President, Sen. Ike Ekweremadu by some members of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in Germany.
In a statement, yesterday in Abuja, Buba urged Nigeria’s Ambassador to Germany, Amb. Yusuf Tugga to ensure the attackers are made to face justice.
Ekweremadu had on Saturday attended the 2nd Igbo Cultural Festival of Iri Ji in Nuremberg, Germany, as a distinguished guest of honour on the invitation of the Igbo community.
Ekweremadu, who was however, violently attacked by some men believed to be members of the proscribed IPOB group was whisked away in a vehicle as seen in a video that had since gone viral.
The senator who had since released a statement confirming the attack said that he was fine and had received thousands of calls and messages from Nigerians identifying with him.
Buba said that given the high personality profile and the public service record which Ekweremadu parades, it was unthinkable for any individual or group anywhere in the world to attack him in such a manner.
According to Buba, his very own people in the diaspora who ought to know better to contemplate, carried out the despicable public act of shame that was brought upon a well-respected national leader.
Buba described Ekweremadu as an accomplished scholar in the legal profession and a political leader of high standing in society.
He also described Ekweremadu as one of the longest-serving senators, who had also in the last 12 years until June this year, held sway as the deputy president of the Nigerian Senate.
He said that before joining the Senate, Ekweremadu was also secretary to the Enugu State Government and had before then served in various capacities in that state.
“I, therefore, in very strong terms, condemn in its entirety the action of the group of Igbo people, alleged to be members of the outlawed IPOB.
“I also wish to join other Nigerians and leaders to call on the Nigerian Ambassador to Germany, Amb. Yusuf Tugga to investigate and bring to book everyone who was part of that dastardly assault on a serving national leader,” he said.
Kalu Condemns Attack On Ekweramadu In Germany
The Chief Whip of the Ninth Senate, Dr Orji Kalu, has condemned the attack on the former Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweramadu in Germany by some members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
Ekweremadu, who attended the 2nd Annual Igbo Cultural Festival in Nuremberg, Germany, was assaulted physically by some members of the group.
A video showing the assault on Ekweremadu by the group had gone viral across the various social media platforms.
Kalu, a two-time governor of Abia, in a statement issued by his Media Team yesterday in Abuja, described the action of the group as uncivilised, unacceptable and barbaric.
He urged Igbo people to respect leaders at all levels, noting that the only way the South-East zone could be prosperous was to embrace dialogue, peace and unity.
Kalu in the statement made available to newsmen also urged the Embassy of Nigeria in Germany, the German Government and appropriate authorities to bring the perpetrators of the act to book.
“After watching a viral video of the physical attack on former Deputy President of the Senate Sen. Ike Ekweramadu, I was not only disappointed but irritated and disturbed with the action of some members of IPOB.
“The assault on the senator is a slap on Igbo leaders regardless of age, party affiliation and religion,’’ Kalu said.
According to him, the perpetrators of the uncivilised act must face the wrath of the law.
“Sen.Ekweramadu is not only one of the Igbo leaders but also a prominent Nigerian and as such should be accorded due respect by all and sundry at home and abroad.
“For the South-East to move forward, the people of the region must embrace dialogue as a way of resolving pertinent issues and eschew violence.”
Kalu, who appealed to Igbo across the globe to be law-abiding and remain good ambassadors of Nigeria, urged Igbo groups to educate their members on the consequences of social vices.
Politics4 days ago
Guber Aspirtant Wants Electorate To Vote Credible Candidates
Politics4 days ago
NASS Ready To Work For Nigerians -Lawan
Sports4 days ago
I Never Felt Supported By Women In Sport – Semenya
Sports4 days ago
Enugu Grassroots Football Managers Call For Sponsorship
Politics4 days ago
Group Moves To Promote Women’s Participation In Politics
Business4 days ago
AfDB Gets $20m Investment For Energy Inclusion
Sports4 days ago
Nigeria ‘ll Feature In Male, Female Events, Handball -Tech Director
Niger Delta4 days ago
Okowa Wants FG To Resuscitate Warri Port