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Anambra Speaker Makes Case For Girl Child

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The Speaker of the Anambra House of Assembly, Mr Uche Okafor, has advised parents to provide the girl-child the opportunity to harness and realise their full potential in life.
The speaker gave the advice in his goodwill message issued in Awka to commemorate the 2020 International Day of the Girl-Child yesterday.
He described the theme of the celebration: “My Voice, Our Equal Future” as apt and encouraged every girl-child in the state to remain confident and focused in the pursuit of their goals in life.
He admonished parents and government to create an enabling environment for the girl-child to occupy her rightful position in society.
Okafor urged parents to pay priority attention to the future of their girl-child because of her potential as a future mother.
He warned parents against exposing the girl-child to negative cultural practices and hawking during school hours.
According to him, such actions often affect the moral and academic disposition of the child.
He restated the commitment of the legislature to always make good laws meant to eliminate all forms of discrimination against the girl-child in the state.
Okafor lauded the efforts of the Wife of the Governor,  Dr Ebelechukwu Obiano, to improve the socio-economic status of the girl-child in Anambra through quality education and skills acquisition.
He urged mothers and other well-meaning indigenes to join hands with her to create a better future for the girl-child.
Okafor urged community leaders and other social agents to prescribe severe punishments for those who maltreat or endanger the happiness, security and safety of the girl-child.
A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party in the state, Mr  Godwin Ezeemo, appealed to government at all levels to take the welfare and security of the girl child seriously.
Ezeemo told newsmen that “the girl child all over the world is demanding a life free from gender-based violence, access to health, skills, recognition and investment as leaders of social change.
“We need to make laws to reassure our girl-child how much we truly care about giving her a voice in the political space and career,” he said.
He said that although some progress had been made in ensuring the girl-child grew and developed in good health, she still battled with early marriage, rape and other challenges.
Mr Christian Mbachi said that the right of a girl-child to inheritance and decision-making process on issues affecting her should be respected.
Mmesoma Chiadikaobi, 18, canvassed for policies that would allow the girl child the liberty to freely and regularly speak on issues that affect her wellbeing outside the international day celebrations.
“A girl-child should be able to discuss freely with her parents on which course or relationship she wishes to follow without undue parental or societal interference,” Chiadikaobi said.
The day focuses attention on the need to address the challenges girls face and promote girls’ empowerment and fulfilment of their human rights.
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Govs To Hold Virtual Meeting On Judicial, Legislative Autonomy

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The Governors of the 36 states of the federation will hold a virtual meeting today to further discuss the issue of financial autonomy to judicial and legislative arms in states.
This is contained in a statement by NGF Head of Media and Public Affairs, Mr Abdulrazaque Bello-Barkindo on Monday in Abuja.
Bello-Barkindo said efforts were already being made in all states to either constitute State Accounts Allocation Committees (SAAC) or inaugurate them.
This, according to him, is preparatory to the granting of full autonomy to the two arms of government at the subnational level.
The Judicial Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) and the Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria (PASAN) had since embarked on a nationwide strike on the issue.
He said the governors had been working day and night to establish modalities for the autonomy in conformity with the provisions of the Constitution.
He said that the governors would also be updated on the activities of the Presidential Steering Committee on Covid-19 by Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta, who headed the governors’ interface with the committee.
Bello-Barkindo said that the meeting would also review the agenda of the National Executive Council (NEC), which would take place a day after.
“Other items on the agenda include the regular update on the States’ Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability for results (SFTAS) to provide states’ status on their DLI’s and upcoming deadlines.
The meeting would also receive presentation from the Director General, Bureau of Public Enterprises, regarding unlocking liquidity through sale/optimisation of state-owned redundant/sub-optimal assets,” he said.
He added that the Policy Development Facility (PDF) bridge programme would also discuss diversification and non-oil export opportunities for states in post Covid-19 era.

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2023: PDP Flexes Muscle Over C’ River

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Leading members of the main opposition PDP converged in Calabar, Cross River at the weekend to strategise on how to retain its grip on power in the state.
This is contained in a statement e-mailed to newsmen in Abuja, yesterday.
The Tide source reports that the PDP has been in power in Cross River since the return of democracy in the country 22 years ago but the defection of the current governor appears to mark a turning point.
Political pundits argue that the defection of the state Governor Ben Ayade from the PDP to the ruling APC may affect the fortunes of the PDP in the years ahead.
The governor’s departure is now seen as a major test for the PDP in what is now seen as a game of wits between the PDP and the APC.
Addressing the party’s chieftains, the National Chairman of the party, Mr Uche Secondus, declared that Cross River would “remain the stronghold of the PDP, in spite of Gov. Ayade’s defection.
“PDP will work to retain the confidence the people of Cross River State reposed in our party and retain its dominance in the state.
“Our party has governed since the return of party politics in 1999.
“Cross River will remain the stronghold of our party well after 2023,’’ said Secondus, flanked by other chieftains of the party, including Sen. Bukola Saraki and Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State.
Secondus told PDP members in the state to remain resolute to make the party retain power in the upcoming general elections.
Also speaking, a former governor of the state, Sen. Liyel Imoke, gave assurance that no other party would take the state from the PDP, “being the dominant party in the state.
“PDP is the only party known to our people. I assure the leadership of our party that we will deliver victory in 2023,’’ he stated.
Imoke governed the state from 2007 to 2015 when he handed over to Ayade now of the APC.
Other PDP chieftains, who were present at the event included former Governor Peter Obi of Anambra, former Gov. Donald Duke of Cross River and the Chairman of the party’s Caretaker Committee, Mr Efiok Cobham.
Also present were Hon. Daniel Asuquo, Hon. Etta Mbora and Hon. Essien Ayi, all serving members of the House of Representatives among other party’s chieftains.

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…Vows To Take Over Anambra

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The Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Anambra, Chief Ndubuisi Nwobu, says the party remains focused to take over the state in the upcoming governorship poll.
Nwobu said this in an interview with newsmen in Awka yesterday, adding that he would not be distracted by those trying to destabilise the party in the state.
He lauded the National Executive Committee of the party for organising successful ward congresses in the state.
He described the success of the exercise as a sure step to the party’s free, fair and credible primary election.
“We want to conduct our primary election, where party people will freely vote and produce a candidate that will be acceptable to Anambra people at the November 6 poll.
“This is not time for distractions. We are focused on taking over government from the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA).
“The party has shortchanged millions of Anambra people in terms of governance.
Nwobu said he remained the valid chairman of PDP in Anambra, having emerged from a valid process that was upheld by a Federal High Court in its May 24, 2018 judgment.
He said the judgment had not been reversed by any higher court and was “unfazed by any court judgment”, which purportedly removed him.
“My leadership is still subsisting, no superior court has set that judgment aside and a court of coordinate jurisdiction cannot do that.
“Our team of legal experts is taking care of that. The decision to appeal will be advised,” the PDP chairman said.
The Tide source reports that Chief Chukwudi Umeaba at the weekend announced that he had taken over the party in the state as the Acting Chairman of the Caretaker Committee.
Umeaba, who announced the suspension of the ward congresses, said his action was predicated on the judgment of an Abuja Federal High Court.
According to him, the judgment delivered on June 9, nullified the process that produced Nwobu’s leadership.

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