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Security Has Improved In North, Nigeria, Buhari Insists

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President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday, said the re-emergence of Argungu Agricultural and Fishing Festival after 11 years of suspension was a signal of improved security in the North and in Nigeria generally.
Buhari assured that the Federal Government will sustain investments in security infrastructure to boost cultural tourism and attract more investments in the entertainment industry.
Speaking at the Argungu Agricultural Fair in Argungu, Kebbi State, Buhari lamented that “insecurity created a lull in tourism and entertainment for many years,” with ripple effects on the economy, by restricting movements, gatherings and investments.
In a statement signed and sent to newsmen by his Media Aide, Femi Adesina, Buhari promised to promote policies that will stimulate more interest in tourism and entertainment.
He said: “Our presence here today is evidence of Government’s commitment to restoring security and expanding domestic food production as core mandate of our programmes.
“We are all aware that this important cultural gathering was suspended for 11 years as a result of insecurity. Today, by the grace of God, this festival is back and I hope back for good.
“We are not only celebrating the reinstatement of this important gathering, but we are also celebrating the remarkable progress made in restoring peace and security to this region and indeed, our country. It is also noteworthy that yesterday in Abuja a motor rally across five states, which will terminate here in Argungu, was flagged off.’’
President Buhari said many international festivals, such as the Argungu Fishing and Cultural Festival, were being celebrated across the country, bringing all Nigerians closer together and improving collective appreciation of the nation’s diversity, while projecting the rich history and culture to foreigners.
“In both instances, massive jobs are created in the tourism sector, which we all agree is still not fully developed. We must therefore continue to encourage, support and promote such festivals.
“Let me use this opportunity to commend Governor of Kebbi State, His Highness, the Emir of Argungu, Minister of Information and Culture, Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria and members of the organising committee at the local, state and federal levels for this remarkable event,’’ he said.

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Fayemi Names Committee For COVID-19 Support Account

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Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State, yesterday, named an eight-man management committee for the COVID-19 Pandemic Support Account recently set up by the state government.
The Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr Yinka Oyebode, in a statement issued in Ado-Ekiti, said this was part of the efforts at curtailing the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic in the state.
He said that the account was opened specifically to receive donations from corporate bodies, philanthropists and well-meaning members of the society, who were willing to support government’s efforts at combating COVID-19.
According to him, the funds will be targeted at providing palliatives for the vulnerable persons in the state.
Oyebode added that the committee was set up in line with the governor’s commitment to transparency and accountability.
He listed members of the committee to include the Secretary to the State Government, Mr Biodun Oyebanji, who would serve as the Chairman, with the Special Adviser to the Governor on Development Partnerships, Mrs Margaret Fagboyo as Secretary.
Other members were the Commissioner for Finance, Mr Ayoola Owolabi, Commissioner for Budget and Economic Planning, Mr Femi Ajayi, Commissioner for Health and Human Services Dr Moji Yaya-Kolade, as well as Commissioner for Special Duties, Alhaji Ayodele Jinadu.
The committee also has Prof. Bolaji Aluko, Special Adviser/Director-General, Office of Transformation and Strategic Development and Dr Hakeem Bakare, Director, Directorate of Inter-Communication Technology as members.

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Coronavirus: UN, AU, Others Must Do More – Obasanjo, Ex-Presidents

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Former President Olusegun Obasanjo and 11 other former leaders have appealed to governments in Africa to do more in the fight against coronavirus.
They also advised international organisations to draw up a concrete, effective and continental emergency plan to combat COVID-19 outbreak in the continent.
The ex-Presidents/Prime Ministers warned that “with porous borders all over Africa, national efforts will not be enough but regional and continental were required”.
Their position was contained in a joint statement yesterday titled: “Appeal for preparation for Africa to confront the onslaught of COVID-19”.
It reads: “We have seen the mitigation effect or otherwise by the preparatory and preventive actions made by different nations and international organisations to combat the killer virus.
“The results have been related to seriousness of preparation and preventive measures taken including the level of healthcare measures and delivery. The epidemiological progression in already affected areas has indicated that the worst case is yet to occur in Africa.
“Taking into account the weak healthcare bases in Africa, the conurbation, and the communal living of our people particularly in ghettos and poverty-stricken areas of our cities, the outbreak of COVID-19 in these areas of African communities and cities will be a monumental disaster.
“We, as concerned African leaders, note the efforts that African governments are making within their limited resources to deal with this global challenge.”
The statesmen urged the African Union (AU), United Nations (UN), World Health Organization (WHO), World Bank and G-20, to urgently come up with a plan to alleviate social and economic effects of the disease.
The call for action was co-signed by Obasanjo, Festus Mogae (Botswana), Hailemariam Desalegn (Ethiopia), John Kufour (Ghana), Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (Liberia), Joyce Banda (Malawi) and Joaquim Chissano (Mozambique).
Others are Thabo Mbeki (South Africa), Kgalema Motlanthe (South Africa) Benjamin Mkapa (Tanzania), Jakaya Kikwete (Tanzania) and Mohamed Marzouki (Tunisia).

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COVID-19: Lawmaker Sets Up Fund, Donates Salaries To Constituents

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The Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs, Rep. Yussuf Buba (APC-Adamawa) has set up a fund and donated all his monthly salaries to his constituents against the deadly Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
In a statement yesterday in Abuja, Buba said that the fund which is to be called the ‘Yusuf Captain Buba Coronavirus Trust Fund’, would provide protective materials to his constituents in Adamawa.
The lawmaker who represents Gombi/ Hong Federal Constituency of Adamawa, underscored the need for information dissemination and preparedness to defeat the virus.
“To be prepared, they say, is to make preparations to win; and we must win in this fight against this new disease.
“To win, therefore, we must take proactive measures that must be aimed at clear information dissemination, emergency preparedness and direct solutions to cases that may arise from the outbreak of the disease or other related incidentals .“Consequent upon the above, I hereby, wish to announce the donation of my entire monthly salary as a member House of Representatives to the fight against COVID 19 in Gombi/ Hong Federal Constituency.
“This donation shall continue as long as the threat of the pandemic and campaign against the disease last,” he said.
Buba said that though Adamawa has not recorded any case, there was need for people and the government to be vigilant.
The lawmaker urged continuous observation of all precautionary measures which Government and health authorities have prescribed to stay safe.
He called on Nigerians to be on the lookout for mild flu-like symptoms that are associated with common cold, headaches, dry cough,  itchy throat, difficulty in breathing and general body and joint pains,among other symptoms.
“We are also called at this time not to treat such people at home, but isolate them from other members of the family while we seek medical help immediately.
“There are toll- free numbers that have been provided through which we can reach officials of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) for further actions and the numbers are; 0809 955 5599 and
0809 700 0010 for Abuja while the nearest to us is for Yobe 0813 183 4764 and 0704 111 6027,” he said.
The rep said that the concept of social distancing must be observed and basic hygiene practices, starting from washing of hands with soap as many times as possible be kept.
Buba said keeping the environment and surfaces of materials in homes clean with soap and water remains paramount.
The parliamentarian said that it is advisable to wear face masks to protect the mouth and nose when going out or when in contact with sick persons.
Buba said that alcohol- based sanitisers, methylated spirit and other disinfectants should often be used to kill any germs or viruses that we may have picked by touching of contaminated surfaces.

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