The Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has vowed that all the lands belonging to the State Government but encroached upon by individuals would be reclaimed .
The Governor made the vow recently when the Executive Committee of Comprehensive Old Boys Association (COBA) paid him a courtesy visit at Government House, Port Harcourt.
Governor Wike lamented the rate at which government lands, especially in public schools, were being taken by individuals and declared that government would no longer fold its hands and allow that happen.
He said the matter has become so embarrassing that in some public schools, private houses are built near classrooms, saying that “enough is enough”.
Noting that the battle would start from somewhere, the Governor directed the Surveyor General of the state to map out all lands belonging to Comprehensive Secondary school, Port Harcourt.
He also directed the Permanent Secretary, Rivers State Ministry of Lands and Housing to issues those whose properties are identified to have encroached upon the school’s land, one month notice. “Nobody will be happy with what is happening in Comprehensive College, Port Harcourt “, he said.
He stated that Comprehensive is one of the schools the state is proud of and that the State Government would do everything possible to bring the school back to what it used to be.
The State Chief Executive emphasised the passion of his administration to the development of education and commended the delegation for the visit.
Earlier, National President of COBA, Dr Noble Abe, congratulated Governor Wike for his hard-earned victory at the Supreme Court .
He also commended the Governor for what he called the monumental projects he commissioned and the ones that are ongoing and the desired attention his administration is giving to education.
He remarked that Comprehensive College, Port Harcourt, has produced many eminent persons across the nation and many of her old students occupy prominent positions in Wike’s administration.
He however said, “we in COBA are very saddened because of the present state of the school”.
Expressing regret that hoodlums now use the school as sanctuary for their nefarious activities and even turned some of the classrooms to their toilets, the National President of COBA further stated that individuals have encroached upon the land belonging to the school.
“In appreciating you for what you have already done, we wish to ask you to ensure that all lands encroached upon are recovered”, the COBA president urged the Governor.
He informed the Governor of the forthcoming End of Year activity of the school, scheduled to hold at Hotel Presidential and officially appealed to him to grace the event.
Highlight of the event was the honouring of Governor Wike as the first Honorary Member of the association.
By: Chris Oluoh
The Ijaw Youth Congress (IYC), has expressed worries over the proliferation of bills on the floor of the 9th National Assembly for the establishment of regional development agencies.
President, IYC worldwide, Roland Pereotubo Oweilaemi, in a statement in Lagos on Wednesday, questioned the rationale for the establishments of such regional agencies, especially as it concerns their funding.
He maintained that while the IYC was not against the establishment of such regional development agencies, the issue of how the Federal Government would fund them should be of concern to every Nigerian, including the lawmakers.
“With the way and manner the 9th Assembly is introducing these bodies such as North Central Development Commission, North West Development Commission, etc, after the North East Development Commission came on stream through the 8th Assembly, IYC fears that history may want to repeat itself about the funding.
“We believe that these agencies are not going to be funded with oil money from the Niger Delta. The funding of the North East Development Commission is shrouded in secrecy as we believe strongly that it is being funded with oil money. This broad day robbery of our exclusive economic right should not be replicated in the incoming bodies,” he stressed.
He maintained that just as the governors from the South East had made it clear that the South East Development Commission would be jointly funded by them, the governors from the north should also come clear on how they want their regional development agencies to be funded.
He said: “This was how the then Supreme Military Council (SMC) under the chairmanship of General Olusegun Obasanjo exercised legislative powers at the federal level, made the greatest mockery of the Ijaws by promulgating River Basin Development Authorities Decree and the Niger Delta Basin Development Authority Decree.
“The former established 10 other River Basin Development Authorities for every river, rivulet, creek and brook in the rest of Nigeria. The latter established the Niger Delta Basin Development Authority.”
Edo Speaker Declares Vacant Seats Of 12 Lawmakers
The Speaker of Edo State House of Assembly, Francis Okiye, on Wednesday, declared vacant the seats of 12 members-elect for deliberately refusing to present their certificates of return to the Clerk of the Assembly for inauguration.
Also during plenary, the seats of Messrs Uyi Ekhosuehi and Henry Okaka, representing Oredo East and Owan East respectively, were declared vacant for allegedly absconding from plenary after the inauguration of the Seventh Assembly on June 17.
According to the speaker, even if the lawmakers-elect come for sitting now, they cannot meet the mandatory 180 sitting days as enshrined in the constitution.
The affected members-elect are Vincent Uwadiae, Ovia North-East II; Ugiagbe Dumez, Ovia North-East I; Washington Osifo, Uhunmwode; Victor Edoror, Esan Central; Kingsley Ugabi, Etsako East and Michael Ohio-Ezomo, Owan West.
Others are Sunday Aghedo, Ovia South-West; Chris Okaeben, Oredo West; Crosby Eribo, Egor; Aliyu Oshiomhole, Etsako West II; Oshomah Ahmed, Etsako Central and Ganiyu Audu, Etsako West I.
Okiye, while declaring the seats vacant, said that the 12 members-elect ‘defiantly refused’ to come forward to do necessary documentation as part of the conditions for their inauguration as members of the Assembly.
He said: “12 out of the 24 members-elect, who completed their screening and documentation process, were inaugurated on June 17, out of whom two have refused to discharge their legislative duties.
“They have refused to represent their constituents in the Assembly, invariably denying them effective representation.
“At this point, I am declaring the seats of the 12 members-elect vacant, in accordance with Section 109, subsection 1(F) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended),” he said.
Okiye consequently called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct by-elections within 90 days in the affected constituencies.
Police Confirm Burning Of Two Suspected Kidnappers In Bayelsa
The Bayelsa State Police Command on Wednesday confirmed the burning of two suspected kidnappers in Otuagala Community in Ogbia Local Government Area of the state by mob.
The suspected criminals were involved in the kidnap of three students of the College of Health and Technology, Otuogidi.
The police spokesman in the state, SP Asinim Butswat, said the two kidnappers were arrested on Tuesday evening.
He said shortly after men of the command arrested the criminals, mob from the community overpowered the security operatives and burned the kidnappers to death.
He said: “Following a tip off, on December 3, at about 1625 hours, a combined team of policemen and the vigilance group, combed Otuagala forest, in Ogbia Local Government Area.
“The team rescued the three students of College of Health and Technology Otuogidi, who were kidnapped by unknown gunmen on the December 2.
“The victims were in good condition. Meanwhile, two kidnappers were arrested and two wooden carved guns that resemble AK 47 Rifles were recovered from them.
“However, angry mob from the community overpowered the security operatives and burned the kidnappers to death,” he said.
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