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Niger Delta

NLC Protest: Diri Reassures Solidarity

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Bayelsa state governor, senator Douye Diri has again reassured the academic staff union of universities (ASUU) of his commitment towards an improved welfare and educational standards across the state.
Governor Diri made the commitment in Yenagoa, the state capital during a protest organized by the Bayelsa state chapter of the Nigerian labour congress(NLC), as part of a nationwide protest held by the organized labour in solidarity with ASUU over its protracted Strike.
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The Tide reports that the academic staff union of universities (ASUU) has been on strike for no fewer than five months demanding the Federal government to honour old agreements earlier entered with her which the former stated were aimed at improving the nation’s education sector.
Addressing the protesters, governor Diri restated that no nation can develop without a virile educational system, saying that it was based on this premise that his government have held series of meetings and consultations with the academic staff unions of the state owned higher institutions with a view to finding solutions to the problems facing the state’s universities and sister higher institutions of learning.
“No nation can develop without improving the educational standards of its institutions of learning. I’m in solidarity with the NLC and ASUU.No nation or state can prosper without improvements in its educational system.
”Many of us in leadership positions have past through this system and it was not so during our time, if not we’ld not have been where we’re”, Diri said.
“Due to our resolve to improve the standards of education in our state owned higher institutions, we met with the ASUU chapters of our state owned universities and we’ve resolved to continue the payment of their salaries even though they’re on strike. And we’ve been paying since after our meeting.
“We’ve also as government increased the subventions to the Bayelsa state owned higher institutions for better performance. We as leaders were once students and we’ld not cut the ladder after climbing so that others can climb it too. It’s worrisome that the nation’s ivory tours are still going through all this. We thought we’ve gone past this,” Diri added.
Meanwhile in an address to the government, the state NLC chairman, Comrade, John Ndiomu had lauded governor Diri for his labour friendly policies and programmes.
Ndiomu noted that the nation’s education sector can not continue going through comatose situation, insisting that the protest was amongst a series of activities the NLC tend to use in bringing an end to the Protracted ASUU strike and pummel on the need to improve the nation’s educational sector.
Also speaking, the Chairman of the academic staff union of universities (ASUU) of the state owned Niger Delta university (NDU), Professor Tonbara Kingdom said the protest was not just about ASUU alone, but for all Nigerians and lovers of education, just as he averred that with an improved educational standards the nation would be better-off.

By: Ariwera Ibibo-Howells, Yenagoa

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Niger Delta

Ibom Developers Prioritise Health Through Medical Outreach Programmes In A’Ibom

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On February 6 and 7, 2024, Ibom Developers took a significant step towards improving the health and well-being of residents in the Ikot Okwo, Ikot Ikwot, and Ndauku communities of Ikot Abasi Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State through its two-day comprehensive medical outreach programmes. Operating under the theme ‘Good Health Your Greatest Asset,’ the initiative’s primary goal is to facilitate the early resolution of community health issues, recognising the pivotal role that timely intervention plays in safeguarding the overall well-being of the community.
Good health is vital for the sustainable development of host communities, serving as a foundation for economic and social progress.
A healthy population is more productive, enabling greater workforce participation. Sound health reduces healthcare costs, encouraging economic stability. Socially, it enhances the quality of life, ensuring communities thrive.
Speaking at the events, Mrs. Dorothy Akpan Robert said, ‘‘Our community is grateful for this generous gesture, and we sincerely acknowledge Ibom Developers’ dedicated efforts and compassion. This initiative by the company empowers the community by fostering a culture of health consciousness and preventive care.’’
Public health involves preventing diseases, promoting health, educating communities, providing healthcare access, maintaining a healthy environment, and being prepared for emergencies. This helps build resilient communities, a priority for the company.
Also speaking, Chief Ukpe Uyo Amanama said, ‘‘Ibom Developers’ medical outreach programme is a testament to the transformative impact that community-driven health initiatives can have on the lives of individuals and the health landscape of a region.’’
The medical camps, conducted by Ibom Developers, targeted prevalent health concerns in the region, addressing key diseases that have a substantial impact on the communities, such as malaria, typhoid, blood pressure, cough, and skin rashes. Medical supplies were provided during the medical outreach programmes. Sugar tests were also conducted given the increasing rates of diabetes in the region. Those diagnosed were provided with guidance on lifestyle changes.
Dignitaries present at the programme were Mrs. Dorothy Akpan Robert – Women Leader, Ndauku Community; Prince Felix Albert – Vice Council Secretary, Ndauku Community; Chief Happy Negro Dickson – Compound Head of Dickson Family, Ndauku Community; Chief Akpan Amos – Compound Head of Ikot Esighe Family, Ndauku Community; Chief Akpan Amos – Compound Head of Ikot Esighe Family, Ndauku Community; Chief Ufot Frank Udoekpo – Compound Head of Udoekpo Family, Ndauku .

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Niger Delta

Edo Labour Party Aspirant Writes INEC Over Party Congress

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Labour Party (LP )aspirant for the Edo State governorship election, Olumide Akpata has said the political party is not ready for its primary poll.
The former President of the Nigerian Bar Association, (NBA), said this in a letter dated February 18 and addressed to Mahmood Yakubu, Chairman of the Independent National ELectoral Commission (IINEC) and alleged that the party leadership is plotting to handpick a candidate for the election.
It would be noted that the Labour Party had initially fixed February 22 as the date for the conduct of its primary but later shifted it to February 23.
The letter reads, “i write to you in my capacity as an aspirant for the Edo State gubernatorial ticket on the platform of the Labour Party.
“The purpose of this letter is to bring to your attention the lack of preparedness and transparency surrounding the labour party’s planned primaries to produce a gubernatorial candidate for the forthcoming gubernatorial elections in edo state.
“As you are aware, the Electoral Act 2022 mandates political parties to conduct transparent primaries to produce candidates and also mandates the Independent National Electoral Commission (“INEC” or “the commission”) to stipulate timelines for conducting these primaries.
“Numerous aspirants, including myself, have observed with dismay the conspicuous absence of transparency in the process, which has led to a mass exodus of aspirants from the race.
“All of the aspirants, without exception, who have withdrawn from the process so far, have voiced concerns about its undemocratic nature.
“While some have diplomatically cited “personal reasons” for withdrawing, others have been more forthcoming in directly alleging that the party leadership plans to handpick a preferred aspirant regardless of the outcome of any primaries held.”
Akpata added that his attempts to get the leadership of the party to provide accountability fell on deaf ears.
“I have become constrained to speak out at this point because my repeated attempts to get the party leadership to see reason and provide transparency around preparations for the primaries have failed to elicit any positive response.
“Rather, my candid inquiries have been met with disdain and an attempt to bully me into silence.
“I am aware that INEC has demonstrated courage in the past to stand on the side of due process in political parties and entrench internal party democracy. the LP’s primaries in Edo State provide you with another opportunity to walk the talk.
“Mr Chairman, if things go awry, it could result in pre-election disputes to which INEC will inevitably be joined as a necessary party, thereby tying down its already meagre resources and leaving the commission to grapple with yet another unnecessary and avoidable display that could have been averted had the right thing been done and the warning signs heeded.”

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Niger Delta

Gunmen Shoot Dead Councillor In Delta As Police Launch Manhunt

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A Councillor representing Owhase Ward in the Udu Local Government Area Legislative Council, Delta State, identified as Honourable Festus, has been shot dead by unknown gunmen.
The Tide’s source gathered that the councillor was shot in the head by gunmen on Monday at his residence.
The source who confirmed the incident to our source said his death was related to cult activities.
The State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Bright Edafe, who also confirmed the incident stated that the police had begun intense discreet investigation and manhunt of the assailants.
“Yes one Festus was shot on his head by unknown assailants, the wife informed the brother. We are searching for his killers,” Edafe said.

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