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Latest News in Nigeria this Morning (Flliqqa)

Benjamin Ukpabi

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Latest News in Nigeria this Morning (Flliqqa)

Here are the latest NEWS in Nigeria this Morning, Wednesday, November 18, 2020.

152 New Covid-19 Cases, 175 Discharged And 0 Deaths On November 17

On the 17th of November 2020, 152 new confirmed cases were recorded in Nigeria

Till date, 65,457 cases have been confirmed, 61,337 cases have been discharged and 1,163 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (Latest News)

The 152 new cases are reported from 12 states which are;

Lagos-61

Oyo-39

FCT-13

Yobe-10

Bauchi-6

Kaduna-5

Kano-4

Kwara-4

Plateau-4

Edo-2

Ogun-2

Rivers-2

Defection: Wike fumes as Umahi blames injustice in PDP

 

The Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, on Tuesday, alleged that his Ebonyi State counterpart, David Umahi, left the Peoples Democratic Party to pursue a presidential bid.

This is as Umahi at a media briefing in Abakaliki on Tuesday said his decision to dump the Peoples Democratic Party, was premised on his conviction that the All Progressives Congress was more amenable to working in the interest of the South East zone. (Latest News)

Umahi, explained that he was leaving the PDP because of the injustice meted out to the people of the zone despite several years of loyalty.

But Wike said, in a statement by his Special Assistant (Media), Kelvin Ebiri, on Monday, that contrary to Umahi’s claims, the PDP had not been unfair to the South-East.

Wike noted that Umahi’s defection did not come to committed PDP members as a surprise because the Ebonyi State governor had been fraternising with the ruling party over time. (Latest News)

He said, “My friend, Umahi wants to be president. There is no problem about that. You have a right to be president. Nobody can stop you. You are educated. You have been a governor for two terms, so you are qualified to say I want to be president of Nigeria.

“My reaction to Governor Umahi’s defection is not that he has no right to defect, but to say he is defecting because of injustice meted to the South-East that is insulting to the South-East.”

While demanding that Umahi should retract his alleged false claims against the PDP, Wike argued that under the PDP, the South-East had over the years produced Senate Presidents; National Vice Chairman of the PDP and Secretary to the Federal Government. (Latest News)

He urged the PDP National Working Committee and the National Executive Committee to take decisive steps to ensure that PDP does not die in Ebonyi State.

Umahi, at the briefing, had explained that he was leaving the PDP because of the injustice meted out to the people of the zone despite several years of loyalty.

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He equally dismissed speculations that he was dumping the PDP to pursue a presidential ambition.

Umahi said, “I have been a successful governor for two terms and a successful business man in business, where I also have a calling.

“I am not driven by selfish interests but because we need to protest against marginalisation. We have benefited more from the APC government. I didn’t start this protest today. I have no regrets. In life, you have to be courageous. (Latest News)

“The South-East has remained faithful to PDP, voted for its candidates yet had not been considered fairly in Nigerian polity. The APC is amenable working for the South-East zone than the PDP.”

The governor also faulted claims made by the Chairman of the PDP Board of Trustees, Senator Walid Jubrin, that the South-East never requested for the party’s presidential ticket.

Umahi saud contrary to Jibrin’s claims, over 50 organisations, the Ebonyi Assembly, as well as the PDP State Working Committee had demanded that the position should be zoned to the South-East.

According to him, the quest for the emergence of a President of Igbo extraction come 2023, was in the interest of Nigeria’s peace and progress.

However, the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan said, “The PDP is not aware of the defection of any of our governors. Our governor in Ebonyi State raised some issues which as a party, we are looking into them.” (Latest News)

Ikpeazu orders restructuring of Ulonna Farm Settlement

 

The Executive Governor of Abia State, Okezie Ikpeazu has directed the immediate restructuring of the Ulonna Farm Settlement in Ohuhu Umuahia North Local Government Area of the state.

The Governor, who gave the directive on Tuesday, saying it was in line in ensuring that there is food sufficiency, availability of raw materials for export and local use, and job creation for teeming youths through agriculture in Abia State.

He also directed the Commissioner for Agriculture, Prof Ikechi Mgbeoji, to immediately enter into discussions with leaders of Ohuhu Development Foundation (ODF) and other stakeholders to produce a workable plan for the take off of the project.

“Yesterday, I directed that the process of revitalising the Ulonna Farm Settlement in Ohuhu, Umuahia North LGA of our State commence immediately.

“This is in line with my administration’s policy of ensuring food sufficiency, availability of raw materials for export and local use, and job creation for our teeming youths through agriculture.

“This is sequel to the proposal presented to me by representatives of Ohuhu Development Foundation (ODF) led by Chief Onyema Ugochukwu. (Latest News)

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“I have therefore directed the Honourable Commissioner for agriculture, Prof Ikechi Mgbeoji, to immediately enter into discussions with leaders of ODF & other stakeholders to produce a workable plan for the take off of the project.

“As Governor, I am determined to ensure that the impressive footprints of the Late Dr Michael

Okpara are sustained for the good of all Abians.

“This prompted the gigantic strides we have so far recorded in the agricultural sector especially in the areas of rice & oil palm production.

“Our dream of creating an agro cluster in Umuahia for agro value remains alive even as we recognise the need to create a platform to add value to agriculture in Abia as a whole.

“In this era of dwindling resources, agriculture remains a viable hope for a sustainable future, and I am determined to explore its potentials for the benefit of our people,” he said.(Latest News)

Cult gangs on rampage in Edo, kill 20, take control of 3 LGAs

 

No fewer than 20 persons have been killed in battle between cult gangs in Benin, following the degeneration of the security situation in the Edo State capital.

Three police operatives, including an assistant commissioner of police, who doubles as Benin Area Commander, were also victims of the gun-wielding cult members as they were shot around Upper Sakpoba area of the city while responding to a distress call.

The warring cult groups have literally taken control of about three local government areas, namely, Ikpoba Okha, Egor and Ovia North East, in the southern senatorial district of the state.

Areas such as Upper Sakpoba, 3rd Junction, Three House and St. Saviour, all in Ikpoba Okha local government area are under the control of rival cult groups suspected to be members of Black Axe and Eiye confraternities respectively. (Latest News)

The criminal cult gangs are also said to be in full control of areas like Medical Store Road, Textile Mill Road, and Ogida Quarters in Egor local government area, while Ugbowo, Isiohor and Oluku, in Ovia South local government area were also left out of the turf fight.

Taking advantage of the lax security situation as a result of destruction of police stations and patrol vehicles in the violence that trailed the EndSARs protests, the cult gangs now engaged in free-for-all unhindered fight, using dangerous weapons in broad day light, while residents scampered for safety.

In some occasions, the cult gangs engaged in robbery from one shop to another, following the absence of police operatives who have stayed off the streets since the #EndSARS protests.

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It was believed that the security situation was further compounded by the escape of about 2000 inmates from two correctional centres in Benin where there jailbreaks during the violence which followed the EndSARS protest. (Latest News)

The Commissioner of Police in Edo, Johnson Babatunde Kokumo, had attributed the inability of the police to adequately respond to the degenerating security situation to the burning down of three police stations located along Sokponba Road many patrol vehicles in several other parts of the state capital in the violence.

He, however, said that his men were making frantic efforts to restore normalcy to the state.

See young people as asset, UN official advises Nigeria leaders

 

Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations Amina Mohammed has advised Nigeria leaders to see young people as an asset, if they want peaceful retirement.

Mohammed gave the advice during her visit to the Nigeria Governors’ Forum Secretariat, in Abuja on Tuesday as part of her tour of some West African States including Ghana, Sierra Leone, Chad, Niger and Nigeria. (Latest News)

A statement issued by the Head, Media and Public Affairs of NGF, Mr Abdulrazaque Bello-Barkindo, quoted Mohammed as commending the governors for the mature manner with which they handled that EndSARS demonstrations.

She, however, regretted that some ugly influences eventually contaminated the EndSARS protests.

Dr Kayode Fayemi, the NGF Chairman and Governor of Ekiti State, while welcoming the UN General Assembly scribe, stressed the impacts of COVID-19 pandemic on the country and governance at its sub-national level.

Fayemi said that although the virus hit Nigeria in March, its impacts had been ravaging with over 64,090 confirmed cases and 1,154 deaths.

The impacts according to him include the fall in oil prices, contracting tax base, loss of sources of livelihood, unemployment and youth restiveness (EndSARS Protests).

Others impacts according to Fayemi include increasing inflation rate, worsening exchange rate, decline in productivity due to necessary lockdown measures initiated globally and nationally.

Fayemi, explaining how the various states handled the pandemic at the subnational level, said that the governors worked collaboratively, co-opting ideas and welcoming support from critical stakeholders including partners and the private sector.

“At the wake of the pandemic, we worked with the Federal Government to ensure the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Presidential Task Force (PTF), National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development got all the support it required in delivering swift containment measures (Latest News)

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News headlines Thursday November 26th 2020

Benjamin Ukpabi

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News headlines Thursday November 26th 2020

1) EndSARS: Nigerian govt reaches out to UK over parliament’s threat of sanction

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, said on Wednesday the Federal Government has reached out to its British counterpart over the threat by the country’s parliament to impose sanctions on Nigerian officials over their alleged roles in last month’s #EndSARS protests in the West African nation.

Members of the British Parliament on Monday began debate on requests by concerned groups in Nigeria for the parliament to recommend sanctions on some government officials over alleged rights violations during the protest.

Onyeama, who addressed State House correspondents at the end of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting in Abuja, said the Nigerian government has reached out to its British counterpart to present its own side of the story on the matter.

He, however, argued that lawmakers are not responsible for imposing sanctions on individuals or groups. (News headlines)

The minister said: “Yes, we have reached out to the United Kingdom government. The meeting that took place was among the parliamentarians and they do not speak for the UK government which acts for the country. They have also heard the side of the (Nigerian) government regarding everything that has happened.

“So, we have been in touch with them and engaging with them. Of course, as in any democracy, the members of parliament are also needed to air their views.

“But what is important, is that a balanced picture is made available to them, before they take any decision.”

2) Niger govt rules out full payment of salaries to staff over reduction in revenue allocation

(News headlines)
The Niger State government on Wednesday ruled out payment of full salaries to the state’s civil servants due to a reduction in its revenue allocation from the federation account.

The Secretary to the State Government, Ahmed Ibrahim Matane, who disclosed this in a statement, said the reduction in salaries was not a slash, adding that the decision was necessitated by the government’s inability to undertake the payment of full salaries at least for now.

The government has proposed a 70 percent salary to the staff in the interim.

The SSG said the government would meet with the labour on the matter later on Thursday.

He said: “What we discussed with the organised labour was that because of the recession, our FAAC allocation has dropped to a level where we would not be able to pay 100 percent of the salary.

“We called their attention to this. We opened our books in terms of how much we received, the existing commitments, and what is left over.”

3) Presidential committee recommends re-opening of land borders

Nigeria is set to re-open its land borders with neigbouring West African countries, following recommendation by a presidential committee on the matter. (News headlines)

Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed disclosed on on Wednesday in Abuja.

The nation shuts its borders in August 2019 to curtail illegal importation of drugs, small arms and agricultural products into the country from West Africa.

Ahmed, who addressed newsmen in Abuja hinted that the land borders would be re-open soon.

According to her, the presidential committee set up on the matter has completed its job and has recommended the reopening of the borders.

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The minister stated that the committee would soon submit its report to President Muhammadu Buhari.

It is expected that the president would make a formal pronouncement announcing the opening of the borders.

4) EndSARS: PDP urges US, UK, France to sanction Nigerian govt officials for rights violations

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Wednesday commended members of the British Parliament for standing on the side of ordinary Nigerians during last month’s #EndSARS protests in the country. (News headlines)

The party in a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, also praised the British government for considering possible sanctions against individual or group of people behind human rights breaches during the campaign against police brutality in Nigeria.

The British MPs met on Monday to look at the request for sanctions against Nigeria for rights infringement during the protest.

However, the parliament said it would make a definite position on the matter at the end of investigation and reports by the judicial panels of inquiry currently sitting across some states of the federation.

In the statement, PDP urged the United Nations and other international bodies to immediately move against the Federal Government officials that were allegedly involved in the violence that trailed the protests, particularly in Lagos. (News headlines)

5) Presidency rejects proposed Ecological Fund Bill

The presidency on Wednesday rejected a bill in the House of Representatives seeking to regulate the Ecological Fund.

The Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, in a memo to the House Committee on Ecological Fund, said the bill would either clash with or duplicate the existing ones.

He warned that the bill, if passed into law, would impede on the president’s power to use the Fund for emergencies.

The SGF added that the bill as proposed would replace the interventionist posture of the Ecological Fund Office as presently constituted and by implication slow down the quick response in dealing with erosion problems in Nigeria.

Mustapha said: “After a careful review of the document, I wish to respectfully bring to the attention of the Honourable chairman and members of the Committee on Ecological Fund, the observations of the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation on the proposed bill as follows:

“The establishment of a Governing Council in the bill is a replication of the erstwhile bogus National Council on Ecological Problems. The large number of membership makes the project selection, procurement, and execution of projects cumbersome and problematic. (News headlines)

“The bill as proposed will replace the emergency/ interventionist posture of the Ecological Fund Office as presently constituted. This will by implication slow down the quick response in dealing with erosion problems in Nigeria.

“Over the years, the Ecological Fund have consistently been placed under the control of the President and disbursed through the EFO under the supervision of the SGF. The proposed bill will therefore negate the nature and original design of the Ecological Fund Office.

“If the bill is passed into law as proposed, it will impede on Mr. President’s power to use the Fund for emergencies if it has to revert to the National Assembly for appropriation and approvals. It is not always feasible to predict emergencies, hence the inability to appropriate or budget for such disasters or ecological emergencies.

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“As the EFO is presently constituted, salaries and allowances of staff are not paid from the Fund. Officers deployed to EFO are mainstream civil servants who draw their emoluments from the federal treasury. It is advisable to sustain less emphasis on recruitment of officers and payment of board members that could be a drain whittling down the impact of the fund on ecological interventions, by increasing government’s Overhead Cost.

6) 2023: El-Rufai Rejects Zoning, Says It Will Lead To Inefficiency

Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has rejected zoning of political officers in the country, stressing that it would lead to inefficiency.

Naija News reports that there has been a clamour for the major political parties in Nigeria to zone their 2023 presidential ticket to the southern part of the country.

Though not constitutionally backed, Nigeria have rotated offices – especially that of the presidency – on the basis of geographical zones, from Olusegun Obasanjo to President Muhamadu Buhari.

But speaking at the Nigerian Economic Summit (#NES26) in Abuja, El-Rufai said no country progresses with such an arrangement.

The Kaduna governor stated that qualified individuals should be given equal opportunity to contest for political positions.

He said: “I do not believe that we should be driven in our politics and economics by distribution whether or not there is a logic behind it,” he said. (News headlines)

“In my honest view, Nigeria went wrong when we focused on distribution rather than production. We like to distribute and it has gone as far as saying that in a state, governorship should rotate; that is absurd.

“There is no country in the world that has made progress in the last 50 years that rotates its leaders. I think if we move away from this fixation about distribution to selecting or picking the best person to get the job done… when the job is done, everybody benefits.

“Right now, we are distributing this and we are not making any progress because the focus is on distribution.”

7) 2023 Igbo Presidency: We Have To Negotiate With The North – Ekweremadu

Senator Ike Ekweremadu has recommended dialogue between the south-east region and the northern region regarding the push for Igbo presidency in 2023.

Ekweremadu, a former Deputy Senate President who has never hidden his support for Igbo presidency in 2023 spoke in Abuja on Wednesday during a book presentation.

In his view, major political parties should zone their presidential tickets to the South-East while the region should also engage in dialogue with other regions on the need for a president of Igbo extraction in 2023.

According to him, “there is clamour for Igbo presidency today. And I believe it can only be realised if we engage ourselves in conversation with northern Nigeria to buy into our initiative”.

He also renewed his call for a decentralization of power from the federal to the state governments so the government can be closer to the people.

He also lashed out at politicians who distance themselves from the people once they are elected into office only to return every four years when they need the peoples’ vote again. (News headlines)

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8) Senate To Invite Communications Minister Over Nigeria’s Security Challenges

The Senate has directed its Committees on Legislative Compliance and Communications to invite the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami.

Members of the two committees were asked to communicate to the minister, the need to implement the resolutions of the Senate regarding security issues related to his ministry.

Lawmakers in the Upper Chamber of the National Assembly in Abuja gave the directive during Wednesday’s plenary following a debate on a motion on the alarming rate of insecurity in the country.

According to him, the challenges have manifested in kidnapping, banditry, armed robbery, and assassination, and other criminal activities in the country.

The lawmaker was also worried about what he described as the growing suspicion of the complicity of officials of the state, saddled with the responsibility of protecting the lives and properties of the citizens, being compromised in the process.

9) LG Elections In Nigeria Are Nothing But Organised Crime – Igini

The Resident Electoral Commissioner for Akwa-Ibom State, Mike Igini on Wednesday said local government elections in Nigeria are nothing but organised crime.

Igini who disclosed this during his appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today, accused state governors of interfering in the conduct of the polls at the grassroots.

“Local government elections are nothing but organised crime. They should not be calling them elections at all,” he said.

“Look at the Local Government system in Nigeria. We have lost 774 local governments in Nigeria to every sitting governor of the 36 states in Nigeria.

“What constitutes free, fair and credible elections with respect to INEC-conducted election is different from the local government.

9) Death Of ‘Eternal’ Maradona Plunges Football World Into Mourning

The football world united to pay tribute to one of the game’s greatest-ever players after Argentine legend Diego Maradona died at the age of 60 on Wednesday.

Renowned for inspiring Argentina to win the World Cup in 1986, he was most loved at club level for his spells with Boca Juniors in his homeland and Napoli in Italy, where he won the club’s only two Serie A titles.

“You are eternal in every heart in world football,” the Twitter account of the Argentina national team posted alongside a picture of Maradona holding the World Cup.

Napoli’s Twitter feed said: “Always in our hearts, Ciao Diego.” Boca posted: “Eternal thanks. Eternal Diego. (News headlines)

10) Secure Nigeria Now – Ekweremadu Sends Message To Buhari

Former Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, has urged the federal government led by President Muhammadu Buhari to take urgent steps in addressing the security situation in the country.

The Enugu-West federal lawmaker who spoke on Wednesday said the government can no longer keep doing the same thing and expect different results.

While lamenting the insecurity and economic challenges facing Nigeria, the Senator stressed the need for the government to urgently address the situation.

According to him, “Today, Nigeria is in the full grip of widespread insecurity- insurgency, banditry, abductions, armed robbery, and all manner of violent crimes. Nigerians have been offering solutions towards taming the rising wave of criminality. (News headlines)

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Nigerian Minister looses his 13 year old daughter

Benjamin Ukpabi

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Nigerian Minister looses his 13 year old daughter

The Nigerian Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantimi has lost his 13 year old daughter to the cold hands of death.

The Minister made this known on his Twitter page 12 hours ago as he said,

“Inna lil Laahi wa inna ilaiHi Rajiun!
My 13-year old daughter, Aishah Isa Ali (Amal) passed away just a moment ago.
Due to some necessities, funeral prayer tomorrow at Annur Masjeed, Wuse 2, immediately after Zuhr prayer in sha Allah. May Allah forgive & be Merciful to her.”

The country have shown their sympathy to the Nigerian Minister and prayers are in order.

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Abdurrahman Isa Pantami also known as Abdul Pantami (born 4 October 2000) is a Nigerian entrepreneur, Philanthropist, and youth advocate. He is the first child to the famous islamic scholar and serving Minister of Communication and Digital Economy Isa Ali Pantami.

Abdurrahman Isa Pantami was born Gombe state to Pantami family and raised in Aberdeen Scotland. He attended Kaimhill primary school, he finished his secondary education from Harlaw Academy Aberdeen, Abdurrahman is currently a student of University of Bedfordshire where he is studying Computer Science. Abdurrahman has been an advocate of youth via constructive engagement in economy development, Abdurrahman has spoken in the commemoration international children day in which he decried the rate of illiteracy in the northern part of the country annually as a result of boko haram insurgents he has also called for increased health education support for children of Internally Displaced Persons (IDP’s) in the country.

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May the soul of his daughter rest in peace.

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Woman sets ex-lover’s girlfriend, house ablaze

Benjamin Ukpabi

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Woman sets ex-lover’s girlfriend, house ablaze

The police in Lagos have arrested a 19-year-old girl, Jemila Ibrahim and her friend, Fatima Mohammed, 21, for allegedly setting her estranged lover’s girlfriend, Rabi, on fire.

The duo allegedly torched the residence of her ex-lover, Mohammed Yusuf at Monkey Village with Rabi inside around 5:30pm on November 18.

According to the police, Rabi who was rescued from the fire by Yusuf after he received information about it, died in the hospital on Saturday afternoon. (Woman)

A statement by the police spokesman, Olumuyiwa Adejobi, said that Yusuf had broken up with Ibrahim over alleged infidelity and later fell in love with Rabi.

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“The duo of Jemila Ibrahim, and her friend, Fatimo Mohammed, of Monkey Village, who accompanied Jemila to commit the heinous crime, have been arrested by the police operatives attached to Satellite Division of the command.

“The Commissioner of Police, Lagos State, CP Hakeem Odumosu, who condemned the crime, has ordered that the matter be transferred to the State CID, Panti, for discreet investigation.

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