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#EndSARS: Anger In Nigeria Worries Govs

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The Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi said, yesterday, that he and his colleagues in the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) were concerned about discontent, hunger and anger in the country and would be ready to work with other stakeholders to find a lasting solution.
Fayemi, who is the NGF chairman, said the raging nationwide #ENDSARS protests resulted from years of pent-up emotion, anger and hunger in the land, adding that the governors are committed to larger reform of the polity not only much-taunted police reform.
The governor spoke, yesterday at the special thanksgiving mass held at St. Patrick’s Catholic Cathedral, Old Garage, Ado-Ekiti, as part of activities to mark the second anniversary of his administration in office.
Fayemi said he understood the frustration of the young Nigerian citizens who had taken to the streets for the past one week, noting that he had used his younger years to participate in similar protests against bad governance, especially military dictatorship.
He lent his voice to the view of the Catholic Bishop of Ekiti Diocese, the Most Reverend Felix Ajakaye, who had called for an immediate suspension of the nationwide protests for the authorities to act on the protesters’ demand.
The service was attended by the Ondo State Governor, Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu; Ekiti State Deputy Governor, Otunba Bisi Egbeyemi; Ondo State Deputy Governor-elect, Mr. Lucky Ayedatiwa; Ekiti State First Lady, Erelu Bisi Fayemi; former Ekiti State Governor, and now Minister of Trade, Industries and Investments, Otunba Niyi Adebayo; Ekiti State former deputy governors, Chief Paul Alabi; Chief Abiodun Aluko and Prof. Modupe Adelabu; Speaker, Ekiti State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Funminiyi Afuye; cabinet members, state lawmakers, traditional rulers, Bishop Emeritus of Ekiti, Olatunji Fagun, leaders of market women and community leaders, among others.
Fayemi, who described himself as a product of God’s mercy, sought for forgiveness from those who he might have offended in the discharge of his duties as the state’s Chief Executive.
According to him, he had sworn to an oath to do what is just and fair noting that his actions so far in the office were based on fairness and justice.
Speaking on the state of the nation, Fayemi said: “There is a lot of anger in the land, there is a lot of hunger in the land, pent-up emotion. There is disillusion in the land. As a young man who spent much time in the barricades protesting bad governance, I can understand what is going on now.
“I and my colleagues are concerned and we are committed to reforms not just about SARS because we will be making a mistake that the general disaffection in the land is all about SARS.
“Like Your Lordship (the Bishop) had said, the government should be allowed to address the problems that have cropped up.”
The governor said he would always be thankful to God for giving him the grace to serve Ekiti people again, saying he sees himself as an instrument in God’s hands and sees the governorship seat as missionary work.
He added: “If I had gotten my second term normally. I would have ceased being governor now and I know I wouldn’t have been NGF Chairman now. God has a purpose in our lives.”
Speaking on the wave of protests rocking the country on alleged police brutality in his sermon, Bishop Felix Ajakaye called for an immediate end to the protests to allow the authorities to implement police reforms.
The cleric also urged the Federal Government to address the grievances of Nigerians on the state of the nation, insecurity, insurgency and hardship being faced in the country.
As the Ekiti State Security Network (Amotekun) is launched, today, Ajakaye admonished its operatives to be apolitical and work with integrity and fear of God.
He further called for a synergy between security agencies in Ekiti, including the Amotekun operatives to make the state safe for everybody to live in.
He said: “The Federal Government should listen to the grievances of the people not only on #ENDSARS but on terrorism and other things that are wrong in our country. #ENDSARS protest should end, leaders’ indifference to people’s life, bad governance, insincerity and distrust should end.
“There is hunger and anger in the land and the government should act promptly. The protesters should suspend their protest immediately because if it continues, it may be counterproductive. We have those among them who are using the protest to protect their criminal activity.”
The bishop further charged Governor Fayemi to use the remaining two years in office to build worthy legacies for the benefit of the people.
The cleric also enjoined the governor to use the opportunity of his mid-term to re-strategize and execute more people-oriented policies and projects since “time waits for no man.”
Ajakaye, however, told the congregation that he carried out an independent investigation of one of the ongoing signature projects being executed in the state and the World Bank attested to the governor’s accountability and integrity in governance.
He said: “I have gone round to see your projects and I went to see the massive Water Corporation building along Iworoko Road, and I called a top World Bank officer to tell him what I saw. The officer told me what do I expect, he told me that the governor is accountable.”
Ajakaye enjoined the governor to build strong structures that are greater than strong people because “while strong structures last, strong people will fade away.”
The bishop urged Fayemi to be focused in the discharge of his duties and look beyond his years in office, saying “success without a worthy successor is a failure in reality.
“This is your half time and half time in football is a time of re-strategizing. Your wife was born in Liverpool and she supports Liverpool (Football Club), You Will Never Walk Alone.
“But recently when Liverpool played against Aston Villa, a team that was nearly relegated last season, they beat Liverpool 7-2. This is your mid-term, use it to rebuild your strategy, use it to rebuild your office and execute more people-oriented policies and projects because time waits for no man.
“Success without a successor is a failure in reality. There is a need for maintenance culture and continuity in the good work you are doing. You are a leader, a quality one, who has a listening ear. I thank you for listening to your people.”

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NDLEA Seizes 442 Meth In Smoked Fish At Lagos Airport …Another Suspect Excretes 77 Pellets Of Cocaine

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The operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have intercepted no fewer than 442 parcels of Crystal Methamphetamine concealed in heads of fishes packed in cartons for export to Dubai, the United Arab Emirates through the SAHCO shed of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos State.
The 11.90kg consignment was brought to the SAHCO export shed of the airport on Friday, August 5 by a 32-year-old freight agent, Adekunle Oluwapelumi Paul, from Yagba West Local Government Area of Kogi State.
This was disclosed via a statement issued and made available to The Tide source yesterday by the NDLEA Director, Media and Advocacy, Femi Babafemi.
Babafemi stated that the suspect was arrested upon the discovery that the seven cartons he presented for export contained parcels of the dangerous drug wrapped with foil paper and concealed in the heads of hundreds of smoked catfish.
The NDLEA spokesman added that another consignment containing 1.45kg cannabis concealed inside granulated melon and crayfish and packed among other food condiments going to Dubai, UAE was also intercepted by the operatives of the anti-drug agency on Saturday, August 6.
He noted that the NDLEA officers arrested the freight agent, Ajisefini Lateef, who presented the consignment for export at the SAHCO shed.
Babafemi said the 39-year-old agent hails from Abeokuta West Local Government Area of Ogun State.
He further stated that the anti-narcotic officers arrested a 50-year-old Mgbeobuna Victor Eberechukwu for ingesting 77 pellets of cocaine at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu.
The NDLEA spokesperson said Eberechukwu was arrested on Saturday, August 6 following his arrival from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia onboard an Ethiopian airline flight.
According to Babafemi, the suspect who hails from Idemili South Local Government Area of Anambra State passed out the 77 wraps of the illicit drug in eight excretions spanning four days.
“The suspect, who hails from Idemili South LGA, Anambra State passed out the 77 wraps of the illicit drug in eight excretions spanning four days,” he said.
Babafemi added that in Kaduna, three suspects: Saifullahi Sani, Salisu Nafi’u and Abdulrazaq Mamman, were arrested in Zaria on Thursday, on 11 August with 1,112,350 tablets of Tramadol (225mg and 100mg) weighing 38.3kg.
He said in Kano, a female drug dealer, Saratu Abdullahi, 28, from Wurno council area of the state was nabbed at Hotoro with 541 blocks of cannabis weighing 245kg.
“In Lagos, NDLEA operatives recovered a total of 1,773.25kg cannabis sativa at Ebutte-Meta and Akala in Mushin areas of the state in separate raid operations between 9th and 10th August.
“At the Tin Can seaport in Lagos, 86 parcels of cannabis indica (Colorado) weighing 43kg were recovered from a 40ft container during a joint examination with Customs and other security agencies.
“The illegal consignment seized on Friday 12th Aug came from Toronto via Montreal, Canada and concealed in two drums inside a Mercedes Benz SUV in the container,” Babafemi stated.
The Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Brig.-Gen. Mohammed Buba Marwa (rtd), commended the anti-narcotic officers for the arrests and seizures.
Marwa also charged them and their compatriots across the country to always remain steps ahead of the drug cartels.

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NLNG Train 7: TUC Affiliates Mull Strike Over Imposition Of Union On Workers

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A setback appears to be unfolding in the on-going Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Train 7 gas plant construction in Bonny Local Government Area of Rivers State, following the threat by one of the affiliates of Trade Union Congress (TUC), National Association of Plant Operators (NAPO), to proceed on industrial action to press home their displeasure over the imposition of union on workers in the facility.
This is because members of NAPO, the major construction workers in NLNG Train 7 have threatened to organise and mobilise for a total industrial action that would jeopardise and shut down the project over the decision by the management of Deawoo Engineering and Construction Nigeria Limited, a key contracting firm handling the project, to force workers to join a particular union against their own preferred choice.
The National President of NAPO, Comrade Harold Bestowe, gave this indication while addressing journalists in Port Harcourt over the weekend.
Bestowe, an indigene of Bonny, averred that the action of Deawoo management was an aberration to Section 40 of 1999 Constitution, and Article 1, 2, 3, nos 83, 1948 of International Labour Organisation (ILO) Charter, which according to him, allow workers to freely belong to any industrial union of their choice without any form of interference by anybody.
The NAPO boss, therefore, urged the management of Deawoo E and C to respect the views and rights of their workers, and allow them to freely choose the labour unions of their choice, which they feel can represent them very well.
“What we are saying in this regard is that the management cannot determine to workers the union they should be belonging. By so doing, the management has violated Section 40 of 1999 Constitution as well as Article 1, 2, 3, nos 83 of ILO Charter, and that we will resist it”, he stated.
Harold opined that the workers have written to the management that they want to be unionised by NAPO through several letters, and appealed to the management of the lead constructing company in the project to respect the views and rights of the workers.
The Bonny-born unionist used the opportunity to call on various stakeholders in the ongoing NLNG Train 7 project to call to order the management of the giant construction company to respect the laws of the country in other to avoid industrial unrest in the oceanic city.

By: Akujobi Amadi

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We Can’t Feed Everybody, Nwanosike Tells Empowerment Projects’ Beneficiaries

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The Chairman of Ikwerre Local Government Area in Rivers State, Engr Samuel Nwanosike, has urged the people of the area to use what the council has given them to provide food, pay their children’s school fees, change their clothes, and live happily as all their needs cannot be provided for by the government.
Nwanosike made this appeal when he defiled heavy down pour to continue his Back-to-Farm, Back-to-School, and Business Support Empowerment Programme of 80 people at Ward 2, Isiokpo.
According to him, “Today, we are in Ward 2, Isiokpo, in continuation of our Back-to-Farm Programme, Business Support Empowerment, and Back-to-School Programme.
“What we have come to say here today is that this is the farming season, we are peasant farmers, the council has made provision for you to go and support your farming system.
“We can’t feed everybody in Ikwerre Local Government, but if you use what the council has given to you to do the actual farming, few weeks from now, the result will show. We will have enough food in our market, we will have opportunity to pay our children’s school fees, we will have opportunity to change our clothes and live happily”.
Nwanosike pleaded with those who were not empowered to wait for another turn, saying that Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, was the leader of South-South people and believed in a South-South presidential pursuit.
He said, “Government cannot do everything for everybody at the same time. There are those who did not get yesterday, but got today. There are those who did not get yesterday, and today but will get tomorrow. What is important is that you should remain consistent with your party, and know that Chief Nyesom Wike is the leader of the South-South people.
“He is not a betrayer. He agreed with the other governors of the South-South states to say power should go to the South, and he has remained consistent in that pursuit.
“And what we are saying clearly is: if you take Chief Nyesom Wike for granted, Rivers people will take you for granted at the polling units”.
While speaking, the Supervisor for Education, Ikwerre LGA, Hon. Victor Wagor, assured Nwanosike that the people of Ward 2 were 100perrcent loyal to him for always carrying them along.
In their separate speeches, the Councillor representing Ward 2 and Leader of Ikwerre Legislative Assembly, Hon Nwobuisi Chikwe-Tasie; Ward 2 Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Darosha Kinika; Personal Assistant to the Chairman of Ikwerre LGA, Mrs Ethel Kinika; amongst others, thanked Nwanosike for building a 1,000-capacity hall, appointment of over 18 Ward 2 people into his government, and yearly empowerment of the people, while assuring that Ward 2 would always vote for PDP.
On their parts, the member representing Ikwerre/Emuoha Federal Constituency at the National Assembly, Barrister Boniface Emerengwa; and the PDP candidate for Ikwerre Constituency at the Rivers State House of Assembly, Hon. Prince Lemchi Nyeche; commended Nwanosike for always making the people feel the impact of his administration through his human capital development programmes.
Highlight of the event was the defection of an All Progressive Congress (APC) social media influencer in Ward 2, Mr Kelvin Amadi Chinwe, who dumped his party for the PDP.
Speaking at the event, Chinwe begged the leadership of PDP, especially Nwanosike, to forgive and accept him into PDP because he has found light in PDP.
Chinwe was received by the Acting Chairman of PDP in Ikwerre LGA, Hon. Charles Wobodo, and was handed over to the Ward 2 PDP chairman for proper documentation.

By: Nelson Chukwudi

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