Ogun State Government says it has concluded plans to establish mini power plants that will generate 47 megawatts of electricity at N7.2 billion in the first quarter of 2010.
Governor Gbenga Daniel made the announcement in Abeokuta, while receiving a Chinese delegation and officials of CSI Nimbo Electrical Company, a manufacturer of power plants.
Gov. Daniel said government had concluded arrangements to send 20 public servants, including technicians, engineers and administrators to China to acquire necessary skills in the assemblage and management of mini plants.
Gombe State Judiciary said it has disposed-off 17, 153 civil and criminal cases while 2,733 were still pending in the state high and Area courts in the year under review.
The State Chief Judge, Mr Hakila Heman, who disclosed this during the celebration of the 2009/10 legal year in Gombe stated that a total of 19,886 cases were registered in the last legal year as against the preceding year where 19,380 cases were recorded in the state.
Justice Heman said that 2,723 cases were still pending in the state high courts and courts of Appeal Seasons were held in Gombe Dukku and Kaltungo respectively.
He also said that the yearning of establishing registry courts in the state had been taken care of as the state judiciary had obtained the license to establish courts that would oversee marriage contract agreements in the state.
Kaduna state government has denied claims that it is marginalising the Southern part of the state, describing statements credited to some indigenes of the area as “bizarre and mischievous.”
Addressing journalist on the issue, Deputy Governor, Patrick Ibrahim Yakowa said all the actions of Governor Namadi-Sambo, do not harbour sectional, primordial or parochial interests.
Yakowa said despite pledges to develop all sections and all sectors of the state, the government takes special interest in providing social amenities in the southern part of the state as a way of fulfilling promises made by the Governor during his campaigns for gubernatorial seat in 2007.
The ill-health of President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, who is receiving treatment in far way Saudi Arabia, has taken a toll on the act of governance in Bauchi State as the Governor, Malam Isa Yuguda now shuttles between Abuja and Bauchi a development that has slowed down activities at the Government House over last couple of weeks, investigation has revealed.
The development, according to the investigation, was caused by the fact that Yuguda, like his Kebbi State counter part, is the son-in-law to the country’s first family, a situation that is already creating anxiety in the state capital.
While that is going on, investigations have revealed that some of the major projects embarked upon by the administration as soon as it came to power in 2007 including the Ningi Buna Road, Alkakri-Futuk Road as well as the State Secretariat (press centre) of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) have all been abandoned.
Kwara State Governor, Dr Bukola Saraki yesterday denied recent media reports that he was owing the sum of N8.4 billion being outstanding debt of three companies allegedly linked to him.
The governor, in a statement by his chief press secretary, Mr Mas’ud Adebimpe, described the claim as frivolous, mischievous and a calculated attempt to mislead the unsuspecting public and drag his name into the mud.
The governor was reacting to a paid advertorial sponsored by a group called Renaissance professionals in some national dailies of Monday and Tuesday December 7 and 8, 2009, respectively.
According to the governor’s spokesperson, the group had alleged that Dr Saraki owned three companies Linkers Nigeria Limited, Skyview Properties and Joy Petroleum, which all enjoyed the controversial waivers from Intercontinental Bank Plc.
“To put the records straight, it is no longer news that Dr Saraki had resigned his appointment as a director in all companies where he had interests, including the two mentioned in the paid advertorials Linkers Nigeria Limited and Skyview Properties Limited just as he is not involved in the day-to-day operations of the two companies as portrayed by the faceless group.
“Neither the governor nor any member of his family was at any time whatsoever a shareholder or director of Joy Petroleum Limited,” the statement said.
“As regards the other two companies, we wish to state that Linkers Nigeria Limited, which was alleged to be owing the sum of N1.89 billion, has paid N1.7bn, which amounted to over 90 per cent of the loan,” the statement explained.
“Regarding Skyview Properties, the purported loan was a “margin facility,” which gave the total control of the management of the said shares, for which the loan was secured to the bank in addition to the value of the shares, the company went ahead to pay N343 million.
Senate’s proposal to establish a joint monitoring board of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) to investigate allegations of corruption against the anti-graft bodies, received the disapproval of the EFCC chairman, Mrs Farida Waziri.
The monitoring board, which the Senate Committee on Drugs, Narcotics, Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes, is proposing to include in its amendment of the EFCC an ICPC Acts, according to Senator Solo Akinyede, chairman Senate Committee, would comprise secretaries of both agencies.
But speaking at a session on Wednesday, where she defended EFCC’s 2010, N7.68bn budget, Naziri stated that while she was not against being monitored, she warned that care must be taken to ensure that the proposed body does not create additional problems for the fight against corruption.”
A lecturer at the University of Agriculture Abeokuta (UNAAB), Prof Philips Adetiloye, has urged the Federal Government to deregulate the salaries of public servants alongside the planned deregulation of oil sector.
Making the call at a news conference in Abeokuta, Adetiloye said it would amount to “dishonesty” if the government did not review the salaries and wages of the workers alongside the oil deregulation policy.
He argued that the only antidote to corruption in the public service and institutions was the payment of justifiable wages and salaries to workers.
The federal government has been accused of paying lip service to the proposed reform of the Nigerian Police even as the insecurity of lives and properties in the nation has been hinged on the need to have a “new” police.
This was the view expressed at the workshop organised by a pro-human rights group, Cleen Foundation in Maiduguri where the federal government was advised to be more committed to the proposed reforms of the Nigeria Police as the only alternative to move the force from its conventional policing to scientific one.
At the workshop which was to enlighten policemen on issues bordering on human rights, the deputy-executive director of the foundation, Oluwakemi Okonyodo said government ought to be serious and committed to the reforms of the police.
In its bid to ensure a clean and healthy environment, the Lagos State Government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Konsadem Consortium to develop the 1st Modern Integrated Solid Waste Management System in Lagos.
The Integtrated Solid Waste Management site according to the governor, Mr Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN), located in the Epe area of Lagos will be designed to accept a maximum 900 tons municipal waste daily.
Accordingly, the system to be established comprises of a material recovery facility where glass, plastics, paper and metal are processed for recycling.
In addition, a composting facility for the conversion of food scraps and green waste such as wood and foliage, into organic soil conditioners and a bale fill facility for storing all residual waste in an environmentally friendly manner.
It was a weekend of sadness and agony in the camp of former Oyo State governor, Rasidi Ladoja as 19 persons believed to be his supporters perished along Ado-Awaye-Okeho road on their way to a funeral ceremony.
The victims included, former women leader of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Mrs Bose Adedigba, Hakeem Adokola, Tajudeen Afolabi, Toyin Adeyemi among others.
The former governor, devastated by the incident hurriedly returned home from a social outing and cancelled all forms of meetings and appointments in sympathy and condolence with the fallen aides.
Federal Government has mapped out a ten-year education plan as part of the commitment to restructuring and repositioning the educational sector in response to some identified challenges.
Speaking Saturday at the 37th Convocation of Obafemi Awolowo University, (OAU), Ile Ife, President Musa Yar’Adua, who was represented at the occasion by the Minister of Education, Dr. Sam Egwu, noted that the federal government will soon come out with strategies.
According to the president, the strategies which has been initiated was aimed at making the universities in the country globally competitive, and also make it more liberal and affordable.
Yar’Adua said in the short term, in addition to the increased statutory allocation of funds to education in the national budget, it has streamlined the educational Trust Fund to achieve enhanced focus on the education sector.
Banditry Displaces 151, 380 People In Two Years In Niger
At least over 151, 380 people, mostly peasant farmers, were displaced by the activities of bandits in the last two years in Niger State, the state government has said.
The Secretary to the State Government, Ahmed Matane, who addressed a press conference in Minna said the state’s emergency agency compiled the figure.
However, Mr Matane said the figure could be higher as many displaced persons who took refuge with their relatives could not be captured in the displaced persons register.
He said although the state has two official permanent internally displaced persons camps, most of those registered were at temporary camps opened following incidents of attacks.
Matane said the displaced persons were registered in 13 local government areas of the state, with Rafi council area neighbouring Zamfara and Kaduna topping the chart with 28,987 displaced persons.
In Shiroro Local Government Area, 27,678 persons were displaced in the last two years, while in Munya 19, 712 persons were displaced.
There were 11,678 in Paikoro, 22,754 in Mariga and were displaced 8,913 in Kontagora.
Matane said the state has spent over N300 million on the displaced persons within the period, while individual donors and the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs also expended millions of naira in support.
Subsidy: ‘N5,000 Palliative Huge Disgrace’
The Archbishop of the Enugu ecclesiastical province, Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion, Most Rev. Dr. Emmanuel Chukwuma has asked the Federal Government to jettison the idea of paying N5,000 palliative to 40 million Nigerians.
The Federal Government had said the decision was to cushion the effect of the planned removal of fuel subsidy.
But Archbishop Chukwuma, who rejected the removal of subsidy, described the proposed N5,000 palliative “as a huge disgrace.”
He said this during a press conference on the activities lined up for the 50th Anniversary of the Enugu Diocese, Anglican Communion.
While noting that the Enugu Diocese was concerned about the level of governance of Nigeria, he added that “we are also concerned about peace and the unity of Nigeria, as well as infrastructural development.”
He called on the government “to be sensitive about the situation of Nigeria; we frown against the killings, the banditry, the kidnappings, inequality, injustice and all the evils.
“Of late, we can see how ‘Mkpurummiri’ is destroying our youths, it is highly condemnable. We are calling on our youths to please avoid this so that they don’t get their heads out of order. This is not how they will become future leaders.
“Right now, I want to say that the government of Nigeria has not treated the South-East fairly; particularly now that we are getting into the yuletide, Enugu-Onitsha Expressway is a total disaster, Enugu-Port Harcourt they are putting it to use but it is not yet complete.
“We are calling on the minister of works to stop playing pranks and politics with the roads in the South-East. Rail transport should also be extended to the South-East; we see no reason the minister of transport should neglect his own zone.
“It is important for our government to know that most youths are angry; they are angry because they are hungry. I just heard about giving N5,000 to 50 million Nigerians, it is a disgrace. It will not bring any positives on our people. We are also frowning at galloping inflation.
“Our naira is becoming useless and something must be done about it. E-naira or whatever is not the solution at all.”
He also called on the residents of South-East not to toy with the on-going voter’s registration exercise, stressing that “these things count; South-East should stop shortchanging themselves; that’s the only way they will have a say in 2023.”
On the Church’s anniversary, Archbishop Chukwuma disclosed that, “It became a Diocese in August 1970; exactly last year August, Enugu became 50 years of its inauguration with the first Bishop, Rt, Rev. Gideon Nweke Otubelu. By the grace of God, he championed the course of Enugu Diocese for 27 years.
“Last year, when it became 50 years of Enugu’s inauguration as a Diocese, we could not celebrate because of COVID; we had to shift it to this year.
UNICEF Alerts On 152,243 Stunted Children In Enugu
United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), said on Friday that 152,243 children below five years of age are stunted in Enugu State, Nigeria’s South-east.
Its Planning and Monitoring Specialist, Enugu Field Office, Maureen Zubie-Okolo, disclosed this at a policy dialogue with Enugu State executive and legislative councils on investment in nutrition.
Zubie-Okolo attributed the situation to poor nutrition arising from poor maternal, infant and young child feeding practices during the first 1,000 days of birth.
“In Enugu State, only 7.8 per cent of children below five years of age receive the minimum acceptable diet, while less than one-fifth of children 0-5 months are exclusively breastfed.
“This is a call for both the executive and legislative arms to come together to ensure that nutrition is placed on the government’s agenda,” she said.
She said malnutrition had become a silent emergency with “too little attention”.
She said that the meeting was in line with the Sustainable Development Goals agenda of ending all forms of malnutrition by 2030.
Zubie-Okolo said the goals also included achieving the internationally-agreed targets on stunting and wasting in children below five years of age by 2025.
UNICEF was committed to working with its partners, including the state government to achieve the agenda, she said.
Nutrition, according to her, gets low attention in Nigeria and in Enugu State and, therefore, contributes to the high global malnutrition rates.
She said that investment in scaling-up nutrition would yield immediate returns, save lives, and enable children and their mothers to have a better future.
In her contribution, a nutrition specialist, Chizoba Steve-Edemba, said the nutrition indices in Enugu State were so low and needed to be addressed.
Steve-Edemba appealed to the state government to extend maternity leave of nursing mothers to six months.
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