ICYMI: You Cannot Succeed Outside Your Educational Qualification – Buhari

A file photo of a desk in a classroom. Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has advised Nigerian parents to ensure their children are educated and not to take it as a joke.

Speaking during a panel session on Thursday at the Global Education Summit in London, he believes this is important as any child or ward who misses the opportunity of being educated has missed a lot.

The President noted that the size and population of Nigeria were challenges for any administration but despite this, the government and people realised that education was the starting point for success.

“You cannot succeed outside your educational qualification,” he was quoted as saying in a statement by Mr Femi Adesina, his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity.

A file photo of President Muhammadu Buhari.

 

President Buhari added, “Anybody who missed education has missed everything. Nigerians are acutely aware of the priority of education, and parents are making sacrifices to ensure that their children and wards get educated.”

On the panel with President Buhari were Presidents Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana, Faure Gnassingbe of Togo, Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, and Lazarus Chakwera of Malawi.

Each President spoke about the peculiarities of the education sector of his country, and how budgetary provisions would be increased to ameliorate the situation.

They all raised their hands as a sign of commitment to that resolution.

On Wednesday, President Muhammadu pledged to increase the budget for the education sector by as much as 50 per cent over the next two years – in a document titled, ‘Heads of State Call to Action on Education Financing Ahead of the Global Education Summit.’

In the long term, he promised that budgetary allocation to the sector would witness a progressive increase to about 100 per cent in the next four years.

“We commit to progressively increase our annual domestic education expenditure by 50% over the next two years and up to 100% by 2025 beyond the 20% global benchmark,” President Buhari had said.

He had departed Nigeria for the United Kingdom on Monday to participate in the education summit, and for a medical check-up.

JUST IN: Court Sacks Odey, Declares Agom As Senator For Cross River North

A file photo of a court.

 

The Court of Appeal sitting in Calabar has declared Mr Jarigbe Agom as the duly elected Senator for Cross River North.

A three-man panel of justices, led by Justice Chioma Nwosu, made the declaration in a ruling on Friday in the Cross River State capital.

By the decision, the appellate court sacked Senator Stephen Odey who represents the senatorial district in the National Assembly.

It declared Jarigbe as the lawful candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the Cross River North senatorial district by-election conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on December 5, 2020.

The court also invalidated the Certificate of Return earlier issued to Senator Odey by INEC and directed the electoral empire to withdraw it.

More to follow

Nigeria Records Highest Daily COVID-19 Cases In Almost Five Months

File photo.

 

Nigeria’s coronavirus cases maintained a steady since the start of the week with 558 new infections confirmed on Thursday.

The figure was reported by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in its latest update on the outbreak of the disease in the country.

Data from the NCDC – the Federal Government agency responsible for the control of disease outbreaks – revealed that the figure reported on July 29 was the highest in almost five months.

The last time Nigeria reported a daily figure higher than 558 was on March 4, 2021, when a total of 708 cases were confirmed.

In the latest update by the agency, the NCDC explained that the new cases were reported in 15 states across the country, as well as the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Amid fears that the country was already slipping into the third wave of the pandemic, Lagos State reported 376 new infections.

The state was trailed by Oyo which had 33 more cases, Akwa Ibom where 26 new cases were reported, and the FCT which reported 22 fresh infections.

Other states included Imo – 15, Bayelsa – 13, Ekiti – 13, Kano – 12, Ogun – 11, Plateau – 11, Delta – nine, Jigawa – six, Rivers – four, Zamfara – four, Edo – two, and Ebonyi – one.

A total of 708 cases were reported on March 4, 2021.

 

Two deaths were also recorded on Thursday – raising the number of those who have lost the battle to the virus to 2,141.

Since the country recorded its first cases in late February 2020, the NCDC has confirmed a total of 178,821 cases in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

While 164,930 people have recovered from the disease, 2,439,850 samples have been collected and tested across the country.

As Nigeria’s confirmed cases continue to rise with fears and panic from citizens, authorities have yet to officially declare a third wave of the pandemic.

But the Federal Government and some state authorities have reintroduced the initially relaxed protocols, as part of efforts to prevent the disturbing trend.

Among the measures put in place include the mandatory use of face masks in public places, maintaining social distancing, and restriction of crowds in places of worship and social gatherings.

See the breakdown of cases according to states below:

States AffectedNo. of Cases (Lab Confirmed)No. of Cases (on admission)No. DischargedNo. of Deaths
Lagos63,2634,29258,515456
FCT19,9786819,741169
Kaduna9,141119,06565
Plateau9,102379,00857
Rivers7,5731347,337102
Oyo7,0581596,768131
Edo4,934214,728185
Ogun4,757434,65955
Kano4,028223,896110
Ondo3,534403,42866
Kwara3,162393,06855
Delta2,672442,55672
Osun2,588162,52052
Enugu2,490162,44529
Akwa Ibom2,4164661,92624
Nasarawa2,38952,34539
Gombe2,129122,07344
Katsina2,114252,05534
Ebonyi2,04062,00232
Anambra1,909641,82619
Abia1,700-11,67922
Imo1,682211,62437
Bauchi1,55111,53317
Benue1,366151,32724
Borno1,34411,30538
Adamawa1,13441,09832
Taraba1,001097724
Ekiti9496887011
Niger935591317
Bayelsa9332788026
Sokoto7861174728
Jigawa5572052116
Yobe49904909
Kebbi4504239216
Cross River404238418
Zamfara24842368
Kogi5032

Okagbare, Nwokocha Advance To 100m Semis At Tokyo Olympics

A combination of file photos of Nigerian athletes, Blessing Okagbare and Grace Nwokocha.

 

For the first time since 2012, two Nigerian athletes will be running in the semi-finals of the women’s 100m after Blessing Okagbare and Nzubechi Grace Nwokocha qualified from their respective heats at the Tokyo Olympic Games.

Okagbare will be running in her third semis since she made her debut in the event at the London 2012 Olympics. She ran 11.05 seconds to win her first-round heat.

The 32-year-old has been drawn in the first semi-final heat alongside two heavyweights of the event – defending champion Elaine Thompson-Herah of Jamaica who ran 10.82 seconds to win her first-round heat, and Great Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith, the 200m world champion two years ago in Doha, Qatar who ran 11.07 seconds to come second in her first-round heat.

Okagbare, 2008 Beijing Olympics Long Jump silver medallist, will be in action at exactly 11.15 am Nigerian time on Saturday.

Nwokocha, on her part, ran a new personal best of 11.00 seconds to secure her qualification to the semi-finals in her debut at the Olympics.

The 20-year-old has also moved into fifth in the Nigeria all-time list behind Okagbare (10.79), Glory Alozie (10.90), Mary Onyali (10.97), and Damola Osayomi (10.99).

The home-based athlete who posted 11.09 seconds to secure her qualification for the Olympics in March at the MOC Grand Prix in Lagos will, however, need to make further history by breaking the 11 seconds barrier as the fifth Nigerian woman to do so to stand a chance of joining Onyali and Okagbare as debutants who ran all the way to the final of the event.

She has been drawn to run from lane nine in the third semi-final heat with the fastest woman alive, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce of Jamaica, as well as Daryl Neita of Great Britain, Teahna Daniels of the USA, and fellow African, Muriel Ahoure of Ivory Coast.

Matawalle Seeks Tougher Punishment For Human Traffickers, Others

A file photo of Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle.

 

Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle, has called for more stringent measures against all those involved in any form of human trafficking and gender-based violence in the country.

He made the call on Thursday while delivering a message at an event held at the residence of the British High Commissioner in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

At the event organised to commemorate this year’s ‘World Day against Trafficking in People’, the governor proposed that such measures should also handle all those colluding with others to commit the act.

He stressed the importance to ensure that such persons or groups were made to face the full wrath of the law.

Governor Matawalle, who was represented at the event by the Permanent Secretary of the state’s Ministry for Humanitarian Affairs, Bala Umar Tsafe, described this year’s topic – Victims’ Voices Lead the Way – as apt, saying it would certainly put the victims of human trafficking at the centre of the campaign.

According to him, it will also highlight the importance of listening to and learning from survivors of human trafficking and provide a better approach and response against the menace which is like the return of slavery in the age that has recorded the highest pinnacle of development in all spheres of human existence

The governor hinted that his administration has noticed an upsurge in gender-based violence-related issues in Zamfara State.

He explained that the state government set up a high-powered committee led by the first lady in Zamfara with a view to ensuring all policies and programmes would involve women and children, in order to achieve an equal society that would provide a veritable platform for development.

Governor Matawalle commended the organisers and stakeholders at the event for packaging the programme with the hope that all participants would genuinely engage one another towards coming up with a roadmap that would finally nip the act of trafficking in persons and other related issues in the bud.

10 Nigerian Athletes Banned From 2020 Tokyo Olympics

(FILE) Performers assemble the Olympic Rings during the opening ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo, on July 23, 2021. (Photo by Dylan MARTINEZ / POOL / AFP)

 

Ten Nigerian athletes have been declared ineligible to compete at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) said on Wednesday.

AIU, an independent body created by World Athletics to manages all integrity issues – both doping and non-doping, noted that eight athletes from other countries were also declared ineligible while two others were replaced prior to the submission of their entries to World Athletics.

It explained that the affected athletes, who represented some ‘Category A’ Federations, were disqualified from the final entries for the Olympics for failing to meet the minimum testing requirements under Rule 15 of the Anti-Doping Rules.

This comes in spite of the improvements in the domestic testing programmes in various countries.

Part of the statement read, “Under the framework of Rule 15 governing National Federation Anti-Doping Obligations, which came into force in January 2019, National Federations are accountable for ensuring appropriate anti-doping measures are in place in their respective jurisdictions.

“Among other things, the Rule sets out minimum requirements for testing on the national teams of ‘Category A’ federations deemed to have the highest doping risk and considered as a threat to the overall integrity of the sport.

“The key requirement in Rule 15 is that an athlete from a ‘Category A’ country must undergo at least three no-notice out-of-competition tests (urine and blood) conducted no less than three weeks apart in the 10 months leading up to a major event.

“Only then do they become eligible to represent their national team at the World Athletics Championships or the Olympic Games.”

AIU listed the seven identified ‘Category A’ National Federations to include Nigeria, Belarus, Bahrain, Ethiopia, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, and Ukraine.

It noted that ahead of the games, the ‘Category A’ Federations, working with their respective National Anti-Doping Organisations (NADOs), made significant progress with respect to their domestic testing programmes.

Nigeria was list in ‘Category A’ at the start of 2020 after a continued period of weak domestic testing levels.

Nigeria To Increase Education Budget Up To 100% By 2025 – Buhari

A file photo of President Muhammadu Buhari.
A file photo of President Muhammadu Buhari.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has pledged to increase the budget for the education sector by as much as 50 per cent over the next two years.

In the long term, he promised that budgetary allocation to the sector would witness a progressive increase to about 100 per cent in the next four years.

The President made the commitment on Wednesday in a document titled, ‘Heads of State Call to Action on Education Financing Ahead of the Global Education Summit,’ his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, said in a statement.

According to him, the document was signed as a form of commitment at the ongoing summit in London, United Kingdom.

“We commit to progressively increase our annual domestic education expenditure by 50% over the next two years and up to 100% by 2025 beyond the 20% global benchmark,” President Buhari was quoted as saying.

President Buhari departed Nigeria for the United Kingdom on Monday to participate in the summit to be co-hosted by the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson, and the President of Kenya, Uhuru Kenyatta.

The event is expected to bring together Heads of State and Government, as well as stakeholders and youth leaders, and provide a platform for partners to chart a way forward towards transforming education systems in partner countries, through the exchange of best practices.

It will also offer the opportunity for leaders to make five-year pledges to support GPE’s work to help transform education systems in up to 90 countries and territories.

President Buhari was accompanied by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama; the Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba; the National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno (rtd), and the Director-General of National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ambassador Ahmed Rufai.

What We Expected Of Supreme Court’s Verdict On Akeredolu’s Election – PDP

Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, reacts to the Supreme Court verdict of July 28, 2021, at the Government House in Akure.

 

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has faulted the majority judgment of the Supreme Court on the Ondo State governorship election.

In a statement on Wednesday by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, the PDP insisted that the nomination of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu as the All Progressive Congress (APC) candidate was flawed.

It stressed that the split judgment by the apex court on Akeredolu’s nomination proved that there was merit in the appeal against his election as governor.

“While our party restates its utmost respect for the institution of the judiciary, especially the Supreme Court, the PDP had expected the apex court to stand up as the conscience of our nation by halting the absurdities and impunities being entrenched in the political firmament by the APC,” the statement said.

It added, “The party notes that the majority judgement, as presented by the Supreme Court, did not address the impunity in the action of the Yobe State Governor, Mai Mala Buni, in functioning as the Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) while at the same time holding office as a sitting governor, contrary to the provisions of Section 183 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), as well as the constitution of the APC.”

Candidate of the PDP for the 2020 Ondo Governorship election, Eyitayo Jegede, spoke to reporters on September 5, 2020.
A file photo of the PDP candidate in the 2020 Ondo Governorship election, Eyitayo Jegede.

 

According to the opposition party, the fact that three justices out of the seven-man panel upheld its position on the illegality of Akeredolu’s nomination confirms his candidacy as ‘cancerous’.

It described such an action as a brazen violation of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), as well as the constitution of the ruling party.

The PDP noted that that the judgement of the apex court did not disagree with its position that Mr Buni, as Governor of Yobe State, cannot function as the national chairman of a political party and nominate a candidate for election to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

It explained that the quest for a legal pronouncement that would guide the sanctity of the nation’s electoral system was the reason it explored its point of grievance legally to the highest court in the land, in the interest of the nation and not just because of its candidate, Eyitayo Jegede.

The party, however, urged its members in Ondo and across the country not to allow the development make them lose hope, but to remain calm and law-abiding in the general interest of the nation.

Ondo Poll: Buhari Praises Akeredolu, Asks Opposition To Sheathe Its Sword

In this file photo taken on September 4, 2020, President Muhammadu Buhari endorses Governor Rotimi Akeredolu as the APC candidate in the Ondo State governorship election.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has congratulated Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State on his victory at the Supreme Court.

He also commended the judgement of the apex court which upheld the re-election of the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate in the October 10, 2020 polls.

The President praised the governor on Wednesday in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina.

He urged Governor Akeredolu and all elected leaders of the ruling party to always place the people first in their consideration of development programmes and projects.

President Buhari affirmed that the popularity of the APC would continue to depend on performance and acceptance by the electorate.

He also commended the governor for assiduously working for the development of the state, with reforms that continue to attract the goodwill of investors, and insistence that education, health and security take priority.

The President noted that the Supreme Court Judgement, preceded by that of the Court of Appeal, has further bolstered the strength and reach of the APC and its bright chances of consolidation in coming elections.

He called on the opposition to sheathe the sword, work for the development of Ondo State, and wished the government and people a prosperous future.

A seven-man panel of justices of the Supreme Court had upheld the re-election of Governor Akeredolu after hearing the appeal of Mr Eyitayo Jegede of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

While four of the justices held his re-election, the three others disagreed with the majority judgement, stressing that Akeredolu’s candidacy in the October 10, 2020, poll was a nullity.

They held that the appeal filed by the appellants had merit and ought not to be struck out by the appellate court.

Jegede and his party had asked the Court of Appeal in Akure, Ondo State capital to sack Akeredolu because his nomination form was signed by a sitting governor, Mai Mala Buni (of Yobe State), who doubled as the Acting National Chairman of the APC.

The appeal was filed in line with the constitutional provision that forbade a sitting governor from holding executive positions outside their statutory position as governors.

But the appellate court struck out the appeal for lack of merit – a decision which made the appellants seek redress in at the Supreme Court.

Ondo Poll: Jegede Congratulates Akeredolu, Thanks Supporters After Supreme Court Defeat

Candidate of the PDP for the 2020 Ondo Governorship election, Eyitayo Jegede, spoke to reporters on September 5, 2020.
Candidate of the PDP for the 2020 Ondo Governorship election, Eyitayo Jegede, spoke to reporters on September 5, 2020.

 

Mr Eyitayo Jegede of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has congratulated Governor Rotimi Akeredolu following the judgement of the Supreme Court on the Ondo State governorship election.

Jegede, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and PDP’s candidate in the election, made the gesture on Wednesday despite his loss to the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate at the apex court.

“Now that we have explored the grievance procedure permitted by the constitution and the law, it is time to give glory to God,” he said in a statement personally signed by him.

The senior advocate added, “With this outcome, our respect and reverence for the judiciary and our justices of the supreme court has not diminished.”

He also thanked the legal team, led by Dr Onyechi Ikpeazu (SAN), for their commitment, industry, and dedication to the cause, as well as for their sacrifice.

Jegede commended the people of Ondo for their steadfastness, saying the decision to approach the apex court was for service and the collective interest of the majority of the people.

“The outcome of today’s judgement should not deter good and well-meaning individuals from aspiring for leadership in our state and in our country. For all our people who have stood strong, we salute you.

“We thank the national and state leadership and the generality of the members of PDP for providing us with great support. For our governors who provided the required leadership and kept faith with our aspiration, gratitude, history will judge you right,” said the PDP candidate.

 

Jegede and his party had asked the Court of Appeal in Akure, Ondo State capital to sack Akeredolu, saying his nomination form was signed by a sitting governor, Mai Mala Buni (of Yobe State), who doubled as the Acting National Chairman of the APC.

The appeal was filed in line with the constitutional provision that forbade a sitting governor from holding executive positions outside their statutory position as governors.

But the appellate court struck out the appeal for lack of merit – a decision which made the appellants seek redress in at the Supreme Court.

On Wednesday, a seven-man panel of justices of the Supreme Court had upheld the re-election of Governor Akeredolu in a majority judgement of four against three.

The three justices disagreed with the majority judgement, stressing that Akeredolu’s candidacy in the October 10, 2020 poll was a nullity.

They held that the appeal filed by the appellants had merit and ought not to be struck out by the appellate court.

Governor Akeredolu polled 292,830 votes to defeat Jegede who scored 195,791 votes, and Agboola Ajayi of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) who came third in the election with 69,127 votes.

It was the second time the governor would defeat his PDP rival candidate.

Operatives Arrest Wanted ‘Notorious Bandit’ Bello Galaduma In Sokoto

A photo released on July 28, 2021 by the NSCDC headquarters in Abuja shows Bello Galaduma being paraded by security operatives.

 

Security operatives have arrested a notorious bandit, Bello Galaduma, who has been on the wanted list of security agencies for over two years.

The 40-year-old suspect was nabbed by operatives of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) in Sokoto State, the agency’s Director of Public Relations, Olusola Odumosu, disclosed in a statement on Wednesday.

He explained that Galaduma had gone to buy drugs and also to satisfy his sexual urge in the Aliyu Jodi area of Sokoto State before he was apprehended.

Odumosu noted that security operatives attached to the Sokoto State Command of the NSCDC acted on a piece of information on the suspect’s whereabouts, laid a siege, and wasted no time in ending his reign of banditry.

According to him, Galaduma specialises in liaising with kidnappers by giving them information about persons to be kidnapped and assists kidnappers in buying drugs and other items used for their nefarious activities.

“The captured bandit according to reliable intel, was formerly operating in Niger State before relocating to Sokoto State where luck ran out on him leading to his capture and arrest by operatives of the NSCDC,” the security outfit’s spokesman said.

He added, “Bello Galaduma is in the custody of NSCDC operatives and is presently under interrogation and helping with useful information to apprehend other culprits.”

In his reaction, the NSCDC Commandant-General, Ahmed Audi, commended the operatives for a job well done in arresting the suspect, saying the agency has zero tolerance for all forms of criminal behaviour in the society.

He seized the opportunity to call on the other criminals to have a change of heart before their time would run out, warning that the law of the land would take its course at that juncture.

Audi gave the assurance that the NSCDC would continue to strive for a better society where the security of the lives and property of the people would be guaranteed.

CBN Bans Sale Of Foreign Exchange To BDC Operators

A file photo of the CBN Headquarters in Abuja.

 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced an end to the weekly allocation and sale of foreign exchange to Bureau De Change (BDC) operators in the country.

CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, made the announcement on Tuesday while briefing reporters on the outcomes of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

“In total disregard of the difficulty that the (apex) bank is facing in meeting its mandate of maintaining the country’s foreign exchange reserves to safeguard the value of the naira, we have continued to observe that stakeholders in some of the sub-sectors have not been helpful in this direction,” he lamented.

Emefiele added, “In particular, we have noted with disappointment and great concerns that our Bureau De Change operators have abandoned the original objective of their establishment which was to serve retail end users who need $5,000 or less.

“Instead, they have become (illegal) wholesale dealers in foreign exchange to the tune of millions of dollars per transaction.”

He accused the BDC operators of facilitating grafts, illicit financial flows, and money laundering in the country.

According to the CBN chief, the nation’s financial regulator will not hesitate to sanction any bank operating in the country found to be collaborating with BDC operators to facilitate illegal forex dealings.

He also accused international organisations, development finance organisations, and embassies of patronising BDC operators to fund local operations contravening Nigeria’s foreign exchange regulations.

“Despite the fact that Nigeria is the only country in the world today where a central bank sells dollars directly to Bureau De Change operators, operators in the Nigerian Bureau De Change segment have not reciprocated the bank’s gesture to help maintain price stability in that market.

“Given this behaviour, it is not surprising that since the CBN began to sell foreign exchange to Bureau De Change, the number of operators has risen from a mere 74 in 2005 to over 2,700 in 2016 – and almost 5,500 BDCs as of today (July 27, 2021),” Emefiele said.