Senator Advocates Use Of Sambisa Forest For Ranching
Senator Christopher Ekpenyong representing Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District in Akwa Ibom State has recommended that the federal government should encourage security forces particularly the military to rescue the Sambisa forest in Borno State from insurgents and bandits and use it for ranching.
Ekpenyong, who spoke in Uyo while reacting to the worsening insecurity in the country occasioned by activities of arms bearing herders in Southern Nigeria, expressed confidence in the approach to bring a lasting solution to the lingering crisis.
His words, “Worsening insecurity in Nigeria today as a result of insurgency, banditry and herders-farmers crisis has become a major cause for concern. Thousands of people have been killed, communities have been destroyed. The orgy of killings and destructions is seriously affecting national cohesion.
“For the Farmers/Herders crisis, a comprehensive approach is necessary to address the escalation. And I recommend that the federal government should take over Sambisa forest from Boko Haram, bandits and create ranches in order to save our country the agony we are going through currently.
“The Sambisa grazing Reserve of 4800 hectares is an ideal and symbolic place to take-off by establishing a ranch run by the military. It will significantly improve the security situation in the northeast zone and encourage cooperation between pastoralists, communities and the military
“In the Northwest, the military should also be encouraged to create ranches in the Gidan Jaja Grazing Reserve (565,000 ha) for the same purpose of improving security and cooperation with Herdsmen. Cattle rearing is a business and must be done as a business, other than trying to seize land by force”
The former deputy governor of Akwa Ibom State added that there was a need for the leadership of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria to liaise with State governors to acquire land on lease to set up ranching, noting that open grazing was no longer practised anywhere in the world.
He stressed that adopting the piecemeal approach in finding lasting solutions to security challenges bedevilling the country in recent times would not suffice.
A’Ibom Doles Out N132m For Hospital Maintenance
The Akwa Ibom State Government has released N132 million for the maintenance of General Hospitals across the 31 Local Government Areas of the state in the last one year.
The State’s Commissioner for Health, Prof. Augustine Umoh, disclosed this during an Inter-Ministerial Briefing, tagged, “Tracking the Promise” in Uyo, recently.
Umoh said Governor Udom Emmanuel is committed to effective healthcare delivery service in the state.
He noted that the State Government is aware of shortage of Nurses and Midwives in the health sector, adding that the shortfall of medical personnel has been addressed through employment of over 300 Doctors and Nurses in hospitals .
The Commissioner, however, said the number of recruited medical personnel was not enough, and government planned to bring back retired Midwives, who are still strong to support existing ones in the healthcare service.
“We will soon bring back retired Midwives who are still strong into the state hospital service. Government will pay them stipends to encourage them in contributing through their acquired experiences in the health sector.
“However, more health personnel would be employed to ensure efficient healthcare delivery in the state”, Umoh said.
He reeled out achievements of the Governor in the health sector in the last eight years to include renovation of hospitals and construction of new ones.
He listed the remodeled hospitals in the state to include; General Hospitals in Ikot Abasi, Eket, Anua and the procurement of medical equipment.
Earlier, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Ini Ememobong, said it became necessary to sensitise the public on the true position of government’s projects, programmes and activities.
Ememobong said it was worrisome that after seven and half years of governance with numerous record of achievements in all sectors, some sordid and disparaging news items are still being spread around.
“We have, therefore, brought every section of the society together here to find out the reason the stories and reports sent out do not correspond with what we have on ground in the State.
“Governor Emmanuel has constructed numerous roads in the State, such as the Uyo-Etinan-Ndon Eyo Road and Ikot Oku Ikono flyover, among others but someone will write that there is no road in Akwa Ibom State,” he said.
UBTH Mourns Former CMD
The management of the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH) has expressed grief over the death of Prof. Michael Ibadin, a former Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the hospital.
In a statement made available to The Tide’s source in Benin yesterday, the CMD, Dr Darlington Obaseki, said the deceased succumbed during a brief illness.
Obaseki described the late Ibadin as a quintessential leader and a mentor to many.
He said his demise was a big loss not only to his family, but also to the hospital community and the medical world.
“With a deep sense of loss and pain in our hearts, we submit to the will of the Almighty God on the passing into the celestial realm of our former CMD, Prof. M.O. Ibadin after a brief illness.
“Until his death, he was a Professor of Paediatrics, a Consultant Pediatric Nephrologist and an astute health administrator.
“He was also a mentor who introduced several persons into hospital administration and management, including myself.
“We commiserate with his immediate family at this time and pray that God himself will console them and grant them the fortitude to bear this irreplaceable loss,” he said.
Reverse Illegal Sack Of Workers, Obaseki Tells AAU Mgt
Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has directed the management of the Ambrose Alli University (AAU), Ekpoma, to immediately reverse all recent disengagement letters issued to some staff of the institution.
The government directive is contained in a statement by the Special Adviser on Media Projects to the Governor, Mr Crusoe Osagie, and made available to newsmen in Benin.
Obaseki, in the statement, said the sack notices issued earlier to some staff of the university were illegal, null and void.
“The management is to retrieve any such illegal letters if they were ever issued and reinstate the affected staff.
“I have ordered an in-depth investigation into what led to the sporadic issuance of illegal sack letters and ensure that anyone found culpable will be brought to book”, the Governor said.
Obaseki reiterated his commitment to the welfare of members of staff, adding that he was working to find solutions to all lingering issues affecting workers in the state-owned institution.
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