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Group Seeks Contaminated Soil Management Centre In Ogoni

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The Ogoni Liberation Initiative (OLI) has called on the Federal Government to build a contaminated soil management centre of excellence in Ogoni land in Rivers State.

It said in a 24-point communiqué issued at the end of a summit held in Bori, that the decayed and polluted Ogoni environment should be comprehensively cleaned-up, restored and continually managed to stem further degradation.

“Decades of spills and pollutions caused by oil exploration and exploitation have impacted negatively on our people, and there should, therefore, be a health audit in Ogoni land and consequent establishment of medical research institute there.

“Ogoni people are ready to participate in all forms of business with the state and federal governments as well as international corporations for the development of our land, provided the businesses are anchored on Ogoni development,’’ the communiqué stated.

The summit, tagged, “Ogoni Economic Recovery, Industrial Development and Investments’’, had investors’ representatives from Nigeria, Kuwait, Turkey, Dubai, the United states of America, Canada, and Japan, in attendance.

Before the communiqué was issued, Mr Steven Barreru, who spoke on behalf of the team of investors. said those polluting the environment anywhere were committing crime, and should be punished.

He said the team was interested in starting with the provision of potable water in Ogoni land, and would immediately sink potable water wells in each community.

He added that the team would also train Ogoni youths in different skills, improve on health and recreational facilities, and requested the support of Ogoni people to actualise the projects.

In his contribution, President of Supreme Council of Ogoni Traditional Rulers, King Godwin Giniwa, commended the team of global investors for their plans, and pledged the support of Ogoni people.

Giniwa, who is also the Gbenemene of Tai Kingdom, assured the team of safety and peaceful environment, and urged Ogoni youths to also support the team for the development of Ogoni land.

The Gbenemene also received a boat gift from one Yousef Ahmod, from Kuwait.

In another address, the Divisional Police Officer in Bori, SP Bako Angbashim, urged Ogoni youths involved in criminal activities to surrender their arms and embrace peace, saying that they should cooperate with the investors to develop Ogoni land.

PDP’s Politics Of Dev, Transforming Rivers’ Communities, Wike Affirms

The Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, says it is a disservice for political leaders to overlook the infrastructural and socio-economic needs of their people and pursue their selfish ambitions.

Such orientation in politics, Wike noted, always sets the community and a greater percentage of the people backward, politically.

The governor made the assertion at the flag-off ceremony for the re-construction of Mgbuitanwo community road by Senator Gabriel Suswan, last Monday, in Emohua Local Government Area.

Wike spoke of how important the Mgbuitanwo Road project was to his administration and the people.

He pointed out that the road project would stand as an undeniable evidence of the difference between a pro-people approach of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the egocentric posture of the All Progressives Congress (APC) politicking.

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NDLEA Arrests 774 Suspects, Seizes 3,874.3kgs Of Drugs In Benue, Nasarawa, Plateau

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NDLEA arrested 774 suspects and seized 3,874.3kgs of various narcotics and psychotropic substances in Nasarawa, Benue and Plateau State in the first half of 2022.
The three states make the Zone D of the narcotics agency.
Zonal Commander in the zone Umoru Ambrose, said this in Lafia yesterday while marking the 2022 UN International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
He said 134 drug suspects were prosecuted during the period, while 378 drug users were counselled and rehabilitated.
He added that states in the zone had intensified their operations in the War against Drug Abuse and sensitisation.
Ambrose called on all stakeholders to get involved in curbing drugs menace in the zone.
In his remarks, NDLEA Commander in Nasarawa State, Peter Odaudu, said the celebrations underscored the need for access to proper treatment for people with drug disorders.
He stressed that the war against drugs must be intensified in Nasarawa State especially given its position as the second highest drug prevalence state in the North Central after Kwara.
“Statistics from the 2018 drug survey showed a very alarming trend, the involvement of females in drug issues.
“We have at least one female out of every four drug users; this development is worrisome and must be reversed,’’ he said.
Odaudu thanked Nasarawa State’s Governor Abdullahi Sule for his support for the NDLEA and solicited urgent intervention in the provision of operational vehicles and the construction of a rehabilitation centre.
Guest speaker, Mr Nwora Okpalaeke, who is coordinator of the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria in Nasarawa State, said 494,000 users died of drug abuse in 2019.
He spoke on “Illicit Drugs in Health and Humanitarian Crises.’’
He said drug abusers suffered liver cirrhosis, stroke, hepatitis, kidney and heart failure, noting that 14.3 million Nigerians are drug addicts, while three million are suffering from drug-related disorders.
“Government should strengthen the system to prevent proliferation of drugs and pay attention to agencies charged with reversing the situation.
“Drug abuse affects economic growth; the higher the abuse the higher the level of insecurity and poverty,’’ he said.
Senior Special Assistant on Primary Healthcare to Governor Sule, Margaret Elayo, commended the NDLEA in the state and assured of partnership to curb drug abuse in Nasarawa State.
The theme for this year’s celebration of the Day is: “Addressing Drug Challenges in Health and Humanitarian Crises.’

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NDLEA Arrests 218 Suspects, Seizes 1,471.314kg Of Drugs In Imo

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The Imo State Command of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has arrested 218 drug suspects made up of 171 males and 47 females.
The agency has also seized 1,471.314kg of drugs between July 2021 and June 2022.
The state commandant, NDLEA, Mr. Reuben Apeh, disclosed this while speaking to The Tide ahead of this year’s International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Drugs Trafficking.
He said that 1,458.49kg of Cannabis Sativa, 1,0513kg of cocaine, 0.2077kg of Heroine, 3.896kg of Methamphetamine and 3.184kg of Tramadol were exhibits seized within the period under review.
Apeh disclosed further that cannabis farm in hectares was also destroyed in Imo State while 0.5278kg of Rohypnol and 2.5135kg of diazepam were among the seized exhibits.
He stated that some of the arrested suspects had been arraigned and convicted for drug related offences at the Federal High Court.
According to him, “Within the period covered, 51 were convicted and 145 were charged and their cases are still on going”.
Apeh described the drug situation in Imo State as worrisome, saying women have joined the illicit trade for financial gains.
He lamented that drug peddling was alarming among the younger generation in the state.
He, therefore, called on the stakeholders to partner with NDLEA to sensitize the society on the dangers of drug abuse.

By: Joe Nwachukwu, Owerri

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NDE Trains 750 Youths On Apprenticeship Skills In Imo

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The National Directorate for Employment (NDE) has commenced the training of 750 youths on various apprenticeship skills in Imo State.
Director-General of the NDE, Mallam Abubakar Nuhu-Fikpo, made this known while flagging off the training programme in Owerri, the Imo State capital.
The Tide reports that the training is captured under the Advanced National Open Apprenticeship Scheme (A-NOAS) and Basic National Apprenticeship Scheme (B-NOAS) of the Directorate’s Department of Vocational Skills Development (VSD).
The training skills include barbing, basic tailoring, hairdressing, welding, event planning, make- up, confectionery and auto mechanic, among others.
Nuhu-Fikpo, represented by the State Coordinator of the NDE in Imo State, Mrs Ngozi Ihenacho, explained that the trainees include youths and women drawn from the 27 local government areas of the state.
According to him, the intensive training programme will take place in the Directorate’s training centres, one in each senatorial district of the state, and last for three months.
He urged the trainees to utilise the opportunity provided by the training programme to acquire viable skills that would enable them become self-reliant, and thereby decongest the labour market, and reduce poverty and hunger.
“In today’s world, opportunities such as these are rare and hardly come on a platter and I  urge you, my dear beneficiaries, to take this opportunity serious, be punctual at the training venue with the aim of liberating yourselves from the chains of poverty and unemployment”, he advised.
Also speaking at the programme, Director of the VSD, Mallam Isa Abdu, explained that the training scheme would run simultaneously, with the beneficiaries receiving transport allowances for the duration of training.
Abdu, represented by a senior staff in VSD, Mr Onyekwelu Igwesi, said that expert trainers had been hired to conduct the training and urged the trainees to justify the opportunity given them to become employers of labour.
“All over the world, as the value of money depreciates, entrepreneurs are adjusting with the times, hence the need for viable skills that can drive the economy. Learn the skills and be your own boss”, he said.
One of the trainees, Miss Oluchi Uchenna, who responded on behalf of his colleagues, thanked the NDE for creating the opportunity for them to thrive in their quest to become economically independent.

By: Joe Nwachukwu, Owerri

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