Fire Guts Nkwerre LGA Secretariat In Imo State

Fire, Imo, NkwerreA fire outbreak has occurred at the secretariat of Nkwerre Local Government Area (LGA) in  Imo State, burning down some offices and buildings within the secretariat premises.

However, one person whose identity is yet to be ascertained as of the time of filing this report has been arrested by the security operatives in connection with the inferno.

A witness told Channels Television crew that the fire started at about 6:00 PM on Saturday and lasted for two hours.

According to the witness, the fire was said to have emanated from a bush close to the secretariat where some persons were burning scrubs ahead of the farming season.

He added that the incident prompted people in the area and some staff of the secretariat to raise an unusual alarm which attracted locals to come to their rescue in finding a way to quench the fire.

Unfortunately before the rescue team could salvage the situation, some structures and other government property had already been destroyed by the inferno.

The Transition Committee Chairman of Nkwerre LGA, Mr Paschal Onwukaike, also confirmed the incident during a telephone interview.

He hinted that no vital document was lost in the fire outbreak, adding that the government has commenced investigation on the real cause of the inferno.

Truck Causes Multiple Accidents In Benin City

accidentSeveral vehicles have been destroyed in a multiple accident involving a truck and six vehicles by the bridge at Upper Mission Road in Benin City, the Edo State capital.

Witnesses told Channels Television correspondent that there was heavy traffic by the bridge as people gathered to view the corpse of a man allegedly assassinated and dumped by the river.

They said the truck driver who was also distracted by the spectacle ran into the vehicles at the bridge.

However, no life was lost in the accident.

Narrating the incident, one of the victims whose car was hit, Coker David, said: “On my way to Upper Mission, I drove down to this place (where) I saw a crowd.

“So I asked somebody what is going on here (and) they said they are looking at someone that fell inside the river”.

David added that his car was hit by a bus on the spot after a truck whose break failed collided with the bus.

Kwara Government Promotes 2,809 LG Workers

Kwara Government Promotes 2,809 LG WorkersThe kwara State Local Government Service Commission has promoted a total of 2,809 workers across the 16 local government areas of the state during the 2016 promotion exercises.

The chairman of the commission, Sarat Adebayo, explained to journalists in Ilorin that although 2,998 names were presented for consideration in the promotion exercise, 2,809 were found eligible.

She stated that about 81 workers were disqualified from the exercise, adding that 108 others could not meet the prerequisites.

She also added that her office was currently working on the 2017 promotion for the staff so as to boost their morale.

Adebayo said the commission had effected massive shake up in its operations with transfer of officers and “injection of new blood”, since her assumption of office in January.

According to the Chairman, her plans included restructuring and reforming the local government administration to meet the policy thrust of the state government for effective service delivery.

Adebayo therefore gave the assured that the era of turning the local government offices to trade centres or market places had gone, warning that anyone found guilty of dereliction of duty would be duly sanctioned.

She also noted that a new template had been designed for the council staff to work with, to fast track development in the third tier of government.

She then enjoined those who cannot key into the policy thrust to excuse themselves from the service.

“When we came on board, part of our policy thrust and term of reference to work with in line with the vision of the state government, was to see to the welfare of our local government staffers and the pensioners. Because as the chairman of local government service, I also double as the chairman, local Government Pension Board.

“We have held a parley with the DPMS and treasurers said to be the heads of the local government administration in the state. We have given them a mandate that the business of local government is not business as usual – They should be on top of the jobs. Laziness will not be condoled in our own time. We have embarked on restructuring and reforming of the local government.

“Truly, local government is the third tier of government. But in the past, people saw it as a dumping ground. They believed the staffers there cannot add any value. Locking of the local government gate will not be condoned. And for anybody that cannot key into our policy thrust, we are ready to flush such person out. On this note, we are moving forward to see that sanity is in the system.

“We have charged the officers of the local government that if they cannot key into our policy thrust of removing nepotism, bureaucracy and corruption in all desk offices, they should be ready to leave.

“To see that we really mean the business, the desk officers across the 16 local government areas have been relieved of their duty posts and transferred.

“We have transferred all the pension staff that have been given us problem in the past and we have injected new blood. What I mean by injection of new blood is that we want to enhance professionalism in our system and be productive in our jobs.

“On this note, the 2017 promotion exercise has commenced. Welfarism of the local government staff is very paramount and topmost on our agenda, and to whom much is given, much is expected,” she stressed.

Furthermore, Adebayo said: “The era of local government staff turned to traders in the offices has gone and we cannot take it again. If you want to be a local government staff, oblige to do the needful. If you want to be a trader, resign and go to the market. All these policies are sustaining. And for anybody that cannot key into these policies, we are ready to flush such a person out of the system.

“The local government system is to cater for the yearning of the people at the grassroots, it is a tier of government that people have access to. We want to give back to the society that produced us as a government. And on this note, we have given them a template to work with, so that we can enhance productivity, efficiency, effectiveness and above all, sanity in the system of local government,” Adebayo added.

Ali – Modu Sheriff Describes Court Judgement As Victory For All

PDP, Markafi, Sheriff, PDP leadershipFactional Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ali – Modu Sheriff, has described the judgement by the Port -Harcourt Court of Appeal on Friday, as a victory for the party.

He, has however said that the interest of the party supersedes his office as the National Chairman and is willing to relinquish the position for the party to move forward.

He told journalists in Abuja over the weekend that he would be consulting with other leaders of the party to see how a national convention can be held soon to lay to rest the party’s leadership tussle.

The court had on Friday, ruled that the caretaker committee headed by Senator Ahmed Makarfi, is illegal and cannot act on behalf of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Agents of Darkness

In 2016, the Ali-Modu Sheriff faction, had been dissolved by some leaders of the party at a national convention held in Port Harcourt.

The PDP had described the faction of the party as “agents of darkness“, insisting that the former Governor of Borno State, is not the Chairman of the party.

The PDP also stated that the ‘group’, which it described as non-PDP members, had in a statement, tried to sustain it’s illegal claim to the leadership of the Party, but insisted that it would not leave them to continue to deceive Nigerians.

It further urged its loyal members to keep the faith as the Appellate Courts would do justice to the various appeals pending before it, at the appropriate time “to put an end to the antics of these enemies of progress masquerading as members of our Party”.

Meanwhile, the lead Judge, B. A. Sanga, in his judgement on Friday, said that due process was not followed in the decision by the PDP convention to dissolve the faction, hence it should be disregarded.

Russia Wants Pragmatic Relations With U.S.- Lavrov

russiaRussia wants to build pragmatic relations with the United States based on mutual respect, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Saturday.

Addressing the Munich Security Conference, he also described NATO as a “Cold War institution” whose expansion had led to unprecedented tensions in Europe over the past thirty years.

Kwara Assembly To Support Youth Development

kwara, labour leaders, salary paymentThe Kwara State House of Assembly has restated its commitment towards enacting laws that would make youths realize their potentials in the state.

The leader of the House, Hon. Hassan Oyeleke gave the assurance in Ilorin, shortly after receiving an “Icon of Hop” award from the National Association of Polytechnic Students in Nigeria.

Hon. Oyeleke who described youths as beacon of hope of any country, said the House had remained focuses in the performance of its legislative functions and enhanced the well-being of youths, women and children in the state.

He assured that the legislative arm of government in the state under the leadership of the speaker, Dr Ali Ahmad would continue to be responsive and reflect the aspirations of  majority of the people in its legislative functions.

Hon. Oyeleke commended the association for recognizing his modest achievements and assured that, the award would inspire him to rededicate himself more towards serving God and humanity.

The leader of the delegation, Comrade Taiwo Bamigbade and the Senate President of the National Association of the Nigerian Students, Comrade Adedeji Olusegun said his track record of achievements right from his days as a student, councilor, council chairman made him to eminently qualify for the “Icon of Hope” award of the association.

They noted with delight that the legislator had offered scholarship to more than 200 indigent students and enjoined him to sustain his service to humanity, to further enhance the well-being of the Nigerian society.

Youth Empowerment Crucial To National Development – Abdulfatah Ahmed

Abdulfatah-Ahmed, National Discovery, Governor Ahmed, RescessionThe Kwara state government has called on youths to take advantage of all available windows for self-sustainability to empower themselves instead of engaging in endless search for white collar jobs.

Speaking through his Senior Special Assistant on Youth Empowerment, Alhaji Saka Babatunde, at a one-day sensitization workshop on empowerment held in Ilorin, the State Governor, Dr Abdulfatah Ahmed said: “his government believes that when youths are idle, they become susceptible to perpetuate crime and commit all sorts of atrocities”.

This, according to the governor, compelled the state government to intensify and widen the scope of its training programmes for its youths.

“Our intention is to empower youths to be self-reliant and enterprising”, the governor added.

He further explained that apart from several other programmes initiated for the youths, the Malete Youths Integrated Farm since its inception, had trained over 500 students who had in turn, contributed to manpower development in the state.

“We have acquired hectares of land for youths farming and also set aside substantial revolving loan scheme for the youths to access for various kind of farming ranging from poultry, fishing, animal husbandry among others”.

He also disclosed that the present administration had established the International Training and Entrepreneurship College (ITEC), Ajase-Ipo, to provide vocational training for the teeming youths, adding that “the state government just appointed a rector and other management staff of the institution to pave way for the commencement of academic activities in the college in the next few weeks”.

Rate Of Unemployment

Babatunde, who noted that there had been increase in the rate of unemployment across the federation, said youths should develop themselves in entrepreneurial skills that would make them employers of labour.

He opined that if youths can properly utilize all the avenues and opportunities open to them, achieving the united nation’s 2030 agenda for sustainable development would become achievable.

The governor also called on other youths who were still perpetuating crimes to desist from such and take advantage of the several training programmes and empowerment initiatives of his administration to be self-reliant.

Babatunde therefore, urged the general public not to shield criminally-minded youths who were fond of disrupting peaceful co-existence of Kwarans, saying that the government would not tolerate such and would decisively deal with such individuals.

He said the programme which was organized by the Kwara state government in collaboration with the Tony Elemelu Foundation, was aimed at empowering youths in terms of resources which he identified as the major problem in starting business.

Furthermore, he stressed the need for Nigerian higher institutions to tailor their curriculums in line with present reality.

The State Coordinator of Kwara Agro Mall and representative of Tony Elumelu Foundation, Mr Temitope Amoju, said one of the objectives of the programme was to sensitise youths on how to create their own businesses.

He advised the youth to stop blaming the present situation of the country on mismanagement of some past leaders, but rather make the best use of the present situation to empower themselves and boost the economy.

NFF To Include Channels National Kids In Foreign Tour

Federation Cup, NFFThe Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) says the best players from the 2016 Channels National Kids Cup, will feature in an international youth tournament in May.

NFF first Vice President, Seyi Akinwunmi made this known after meeting the Youth Football Development Committee in Abuja on Friday.

Mr Akinwunmi reiterated the federation’s support for the competition, to ensure it grows into an internationally recognised tournament in two years.

The Channels National Kids Cup is a football tournament specifically designed for primary schools in Nigeria.

Group Hails Nigerian Army For Disciplining Soldiers

Military Officers Enjoined To Exhibit Absolute LoyaltyThe Muslim Media Watch Group of Nigeria (MMWG) has described as heart-warming the punishment melted out to the two soldiers who maltreated a physically challenged person in Onitsha, Anambra state.

The two military men were demoted and imprisoned for 21 days and are also to lose 21 days pay.

According to a statement signed by national coordinator, Ibrahim Abdullahi, the group commended the Nigerian Army for the instant justice done on the matter.

“Human right violation by military and police brutality must be a thing of the past for discipline to be maintained by our security organizations”.

In a related development the group has also called on the state government to allow Muslim students the right given to them by the court of competent jurisdiction.

According to the group, the court of appeal has ruled in favour of hijab for Muslim students of Lagos state and the Lagos state government has lost the battle on its appeal, as well as interlocutory injunction to restrain the Muslim students from using hijab.

 

Ekweremadu Appeals To PDP Members For Calm

Ike-Ekweremadu-Senate-Deputy-president-in-NigeriaThe Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu has appealed to members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) not to be anxious over the appeal court ruling, favouring the Ali Modu Sheriff faction of the party.

Senator Ekweremadu, says there is no cause for alarm as the party leadership will meet as soon as possible, to take a decision on the best way forward.

He said the PDP will emerge stronger from its present challenges.

Appeal Court Declares Sheriff As PDP National Chairman

On Friday, a Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt ruled that the caretaker committee headed by Senator Ahmed Makarfi is illegal and cannot act on behalf of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

The judgement, read by two of the three judges on the appeal panel, set aside the judgement by the High court in favour of Ali Modu Sheriff.

The lead Judge, B. A. Sanga, in his judgement said that due process was not followed in the decision by the PDP convention to dissolve the Ali- modu sherrif’s led chairmanship and hence should be disregarded.

Meanwhile a dissenting judgement was given by a third judge, Theresa Orji-Abadua, who upheld the decision of the trial court in favour of the Ahmed Markarfi leadership of the party

The Ali-Modu Sheriff faction, was dissolved by some leaders of the party at a national convention held in Port Harcourt in 2016.

It was the outcome of the convention that led to the intense legal battle.

The party has been thrown into series of court cases in several courts in the country raising concerns over the possibility of two factions.

Friday’s judgement may however, be putting a temporary rest to the crisis rocking the party until a redress is sought in the highest court.