Bells University of Technology, Ota, Ogun State, at the weekend held its first convocation ceremony with a call on the country leaders to take serious steps towards industrial revolution.
The University’s chancellor, Prof. Akin Mabogunje who made the call in his speech also stressed the need for mankind to establish a new relation with its environment “If it is to continue to live and work in relative peace, safety and security.”
Gombe State Commissioner for Health, Dr Muhammad Isa Umar, has said that a bill would soon be presented to the state House of Assembly for the transformation of Gombe State Action Committee on AID (GOMSACA) to a full-fledge agency.
The commissioner disclosed this while delivering a speech during the International Centre for AID Care and Treatment Programmes (ICAP) and local council stakeholders’ forum in Gombe.
A call has been made to the Federal Government to extend part of the Education Intervention Fund (EIF) and Education Trust Fund (ETF) being enjoyed by the public universities to their private counterparts in the country to enhance the development of the nation’s tertiary education system.
The call was made by the Vice Chancellor of Bowen University and Chairman Committee of Vice Chancellors and Registrars Private Universities (CVCRPU), Prof Timothy Olagbemiro.
Speaking during the fourth convocation of Bowen University Iwo, Osun State at the weekend, the vice chancellor noted that the request would assist private universities to fulfill their objective by providing qualitative education for the overall development of the society.
Olagbemino who under scored the role private universities have played since the liberalisation of the educational sector said proprietors of such institutions also deserve the support by the government in the spirit of equity, fair play and social justice.
He urged President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua to consider the demand by CVCRPU saying that the government should also be sensitive to the development in the private educational sector if the objective of revamping the nation’s university system is to be achieved.
The Kaduna State government has donated 200 motorcycles to the state police command in order to check the rising crime rate in the remote areas of the state.
Disclosing this to journalists recently, the state Police Commissioner, Tambari Yabo Muhammad, said the command has all the while received support from the government in order to fight crime.
He said: “Before I came to the state, the government had launched the Operation Yaki exercise and as at today, over 70 Hilux vehicles have been given to the command to check crime. And the interesting aspect of the exercise was the donation of over 200 motorcycles by the state government to curtail crimes in areas that were not accessible to vehicles. All these were tailored toward making the state a crime free state and model to other states of the federation.
“We want to acknowledge that it is not only in the city that crimes are rampant but in the remote areas as well where access is difficult.
With the new motorcycles, I believe my personnel can move in and check the rate of crime. This is a plus to the state government and I am yet to see any state that has done this in recent times,” Muhammad said.
Tambari Mohammad who was formerly at the Lagos Airport added that closed circuit television cameras, connected to the state command, would soon be mounted in particular locations to monitor events throughout the state.
Tragedy struck at the weekend in Oshogbo, Osun State, when a mobile police man shot and killed a septuagerian identified as Mr Jacob Odedeji.
Odedeji and members of his family were returning to Lagos from Oyan, Kwara State, where the wedding of his son took place.
The solemisation of the deceased son’s wedding, according to sources, was held at Saint Peters Anglican Church, Oyan, less than an hour before the incident.
We learnt that Odedeji’s driver allegedly refused to stop when waved down by policemen at a road block in front of the moribund Oshogbo Stell Rolling Company.
Another version of the story had it that the policeman was provoked when the driver refused to part with a N20 graft demanded from him.
Angered by the drivers stance, one of the policeman allegedly shot into the car, killing Odedeji on the spot and injuring another occupant of the car who was later rushed to Osun State General Hospital, Asubiaro, Oshogbo.
The policeman reportedly shot sporadically into the car and escaped the area immediately, apparently for fear of a mob attack.
The shooting engendered a melee in the entire neighbourhood as commuters and motorists scampered for safety, creating a traffic bottleneck.
Osun State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) confirmed the incident.
Governor Gabriel Suswan of Benue State has called on solar energy experts in the country to promote their skills and expertise, so that Nigeria can use them to solve the power problems of the nation.
Speaking at the weekend in Makurdi during the Annual Meeting of the Solar Energy Society of Nigeria, Suswan urged the experts to make themselves more available because those who plan to use solar energy as an alternative means of scheming the power problems of the country were not aware of the existence of local experts in the sector.
The governor stated that Nigeria had abundant sunlight, which is the primary raw material for solar energy, pointing out that there was no need why the country should be importing experts in this area with the huge potential it has.
He declared that with the success of the solar powered streetlights in Makurdi, the Benue State capital, his administration had concluded plans to extend the same facility to the major towns of the state to provide illumination for the people at night.
Suswam said that in the quest to enhance the availability of power in the state for industrial and domestic use, his administration has invited alternative energy experts from Canada to explore the wind energy potential of the state.
He promised to contribute to the programmes and activities of the Solar Energy Society of Nigeria at all times, describing the society as relevant to the growth of the nation.
Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo State has been cautioned to beware of sycophants who could make him to derail and not to perform creditably. He was advised to open his doors to those who have genuine interest to make significant contributions to good governance in the state.
The plea was made at the weekend by Pastor William Oluwole Falae of the Christ Apostolic Church, Oke-Ayo District Headquarters (Assembly centre), at an ordination service in Akure, the state capital.
Falae, who also urged the wife of the governor, Mrs.Olukemi Mimiko, to always pray for her husband so as to bring good governance to the doorsteps of the masses, noted that for them to have meaningful impact in the state, they must do at all times shun wrong advice.
The cleric said people should be very careful when they occupy any exalted office and admonished the governor to have people-oriented programmes so as to move the state forward.
According to him, to bridge the gap between the young and old, there must be recognition of the reality of where we are coming from and where we are heading to which would usher in positive charge.
He also called on the governor to make the villager habitable and comfortable with the provision of basic amenities in order to bridge the gap between the rural and urban centres.
Four siblings have died in Katsina metropolis under circumstances that appear to be mysterious. The four youths, namely Halliru Dalhatu, Muntaka Dalhatu, Bashir Magaji and Zaidu Salihu aged between 19 and 23, were found dead in a shop in Kota Guga, where they had slept the night before.
An eye-witness who spoke with newsmen said the deceased were hale and hearty before they went to sleep in the shop, but were found dead early the next day.
He said it was about 7a.m that shop owners in the area realised that the shop was still close, and the youths had not been seen around.
They raised alarm and forced their way into the shop and found all four of them dead. Police later invited parents of the decease to the scene and the bodies taken to the state’s General Hospital in Katsina for autopsy.
Traders around the scene said they suspected the deceased might have died from suffocation or food poisoning as a local drink, fura denunu, was sold in the shop.
The state Police Commissioner, Mr Dan’ azumi Doma, who confirmed the incident, said the police also suspected food poisoning, as possible cause of death. Doma said the command is expecting medical reports from the General Hospital, while investigation of the case is on going.
The Federal Government has appealed the judgement of a federal High court in Lagos which declared the deportation of the vaswani brothers and thirty other Indians illegal last week
The Government has also urged the court to stay execution of its judgement pending the determination of the appeal filed at the court of appeal in Lagos.
The Vaswani brothers were deported over allegations of evading payment of custom duties on imported rice.
Justice Mohammed Liman of the federal high court voided government’s letters withdrawing the expartiate quota to the foreigners declaring the action as null, void and of no effect whatsoever.
The judge, who held that due process of law and fair hearing was not followed in the entire process culminating in the deportation set aside the decision, further restrained government from confiscating or selling the business premises of the foreigners and disturbing them from carrying out their business.
Citing section 18, 19 and 45 of the Immigration Act, Justice Liman said governments action, “is an administrative one which must be based on law and the constitution empowers the court to determine whether those actions are in accordance with the law.
Kano State Governor, Ibrahim Shekarau has said that the contruction of Kanawa International Market sited in the state capital would cost N15 billion.
Governor Shekarau disclosed this at the weekend while speaking with journalists shortly after the inauguration of the National Executive Council members of the Moslem Students’ Society of Nigeria (MSSN) in Gombe.
He added that the project was conceived to be executed under the Public Private Partnership (PPP), noting that the state government had provided a land for the project in which over N400 million was spent for compensation and resettlement of the villages that were displaced as a result of the project.
According to him, the proposed market, which after completion was expected to be the biggest market in the West African sub-region, would among other facilities, house a telecommunications centre, banks, clinic, school, among others.
The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) administration says it will henceforth sanction any plot owner with overgrown weeds in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
The Minister, Senator Muhammad Adamu Aliero made this threat on Thursday in Abuja during an unscheduled inspection of some strategic locations in some Districts of the Federal Capital City, Abuja aimed at personally assessing the performance of operational departments of the FCT administration.
The Minister reiterated that plot owners should take possession of their property and keep them clean or else the FCT administration will clean them but for a cost.
“The government cannot sit down and fold its arms to see overgrown grasses taking over strategic locations in the Federal Capital City while the men of the underworld gladly take advantage,” he restated.
Senator Aliero warned that all affect property owners are hereby advised to cut such grasses and keep them clean or face sanction by the FCT Administration.
EFCC Re-Arrests Fani-Kayode
A former Aviation Minister, Femi Fani-Kayode has been re-invited by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) following investigations into alleged document falsification
Fani-Kayode alongside a former Minister of State for Finance, Nenandi Usman, is standing trial on alleged N4.6billion money laundering, before Justice Mohammed Aikawa.
Other defendants are Yusuf Danjuma, a former chairman of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON) and a company, Jointrust Dimensions Nigeria Ltd.
They are facing a 17-count charge of money laundering preferred against them by the anti-graft agency.
They had each pleaded not guilty to the charges and were granted bails.
The trial had begun before Justice Aikawa and witnesses were still being led in evidence until Aikawa was transferred out of the Lagos division.
The charge was consequently, re-assigned to a new judge, Justice Daniel Osaigor, and the defendants were scheduled for re-arraignment on October 27.
Meanwhile, at the last adjourned date, FaniKayode was absent from court and the defence counsel who appeared on his behalf, Mr Fred Ajudua informed the court that he was on admission at Kubwa General Hospital in Abuja.
He had prayed for an adjournment on that ground on behalf of the second defendant
But, the EFCC prosecutor, Mrs BilikisuBuhari, informed the court that the same tactics had always been adopted by the defendant whenever he does not want to attend court.
After going through the court’s records, Justice Osiagor noted that it was clear that the defendant had issued a similar letter of excuse five times.
Abiodun Presents N350.74bn 2022 Budget To Ogun Assembly
Governor Dapo Abiodun has presented the 2022 appropriation bill of N350.74 billion to the Ogun State House of Assembly.
Abiodun, yesterday, presented the bill, tagged ‘Budget of Restoration’ to the lawmakers at the Assembly Complex, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta.
Addressing the assembly members at a ceremony presided over by the Speaker, Olakunle Oluomo, Abiodun reiterated his determination to give priority attention to the completion of existing projects, projects with revenue potential and projects that can enhance employment generation.
According to the governor, the total state funding is estimated at N350.74 billion in 2022.
This, Abiodun said, “includes Ogun State Internal Revenue Service (OGIRS) estimates of N56.30 billion and other Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) estimated at N96.87 billion totaling N153.17 billion. Statutory allocation (i.e. FAAC and VAT) is expected to be N73.01 billion while the capital receipt is estimated at N124.56 billion (i.e. Internal and External loans including Grants and Aids etc).”
On planned expenditure, Abiodun explained that “the aggregate expenditure of N350.74 billion is proposed for the State Government in 2022.”
Under recurrent expenditure, a total of N75B is to be expended in paying salaries and allowances in MDAs; N28b on debt service obligations and N51b on total overhead costs of MDAs and government-owned enterprises.
For capital expenditure, Abiodun said N170 billion is budgeted, being an increase of N10 billion over the 2021 approval of N160 billion.
He added that a total sum of N7.7billion is provided for transfers to the Stabilization Fund to insulate and position the State towards unprecedented activities or economic shocks.
Of the entire budget, Education gulps N56,071.21b, representing 16 percent; while Health takes N35,073.51b, being 10 percent.
Infrastructure takes the largest share of N77,775.77, which is 22 percent of the budget.
The Assembly is expected to legislate on the appropriation bill and return a clean copy to the governor for his assent.
The Speaker assured Abiodun of a speedy and thorough legislative process on the proposed budget with a view to sustaining the tradition of its passage on record time to comply with the January to December cycle in line with the international financial standards.
ICPC Uncovers N20bn Project Duplication, Personnel Budget Fraud In MDAs
The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) says it has uncovered gross abuse of personnel budget as well as duplication of projects by some federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) amounting to over N20.138 billion.
The duplication and padding occurred in the implementation of the 2021 budget and involved about 257 projects, the anti-corruption agency said its review shows.
The anti-graft agency said it is investigating the Ministry of Labour and the University College Hospital Ibadan as well as corrupt staff members in other MDAs suspected of massive illegal recruitment.
ICPC chairperson, Bolaji Owasanoye, made the disclosure in his welcome address at the 3rd National Summit on Diminishing Corruption in the Public Service and Presentation of Public Service Integrity Award on Tuesday.
Themed, ‘Corruption and the Cost of Governance: New Imperatives for Fiscal Transparency’, the event was held at the State House Conference Hall, Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Many dignitaries including the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, were in attendance.
In his address, Owasanoye said ICPC, through its projects tracking, found out that skyrocketing personnel in many MDAs was attributable to massive budgetary scam, including illegal recruitment, unilateral increase in wages, indiscriminate travels, among others.
“The high cost of governance and rising personnel budget in Nigeria is as a result of illegal recruitment, illegal and unilateral increase in wages and remuneration by some MDAs, indiscriminate local and international travels, unreasonable demands by some political appointee board members of MDAs without regard for extant circulars on cost management; procurement fraud, budget padding, etc,” he said.
“This has continued to reflect in the huge wage bill on personnel and operational cost standing at about 70 per cent of annual budget”.
According to Mr Owasanoye, the “malfeasance” the anti-graft agency uncovered in the recruitment process by some MDAs including the labour ministry is perpetrated with the connivance of some staff members of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS). He noted the cases and officials involved were under investigation.
“At another level, a syndicate of corrupt individuals within the service corruptly employ unsuspecting Nigerians, issue them fake letters of employment, fraudulently enrolling them on IPPIS and post them to equally unsuspecting MDAs to commence work”.
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