Bristow Helicopters Sacks 100 Pilots

A file photo of a chopper owned by Bristow Helicopters.

 

The management of Bristow Helicopters Limited has terminated the appointment of 100 pilots.

In a statement issued on Tuesday, the company said the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic necessitated its decision to lay off workers.

While describing the sacking as painful, the airline’s management said the move was inevitable in order to ensure the continuity of its business and delivery of essential services to its clients.

“This decision has not been made lightly, but having considered the state of the business and the very serious constraints caused by the spread of the COVID-19 disease and the downturn in the oil and gas market, the company must now take this painful, but decisive step to ensure the continuity of its business and delivery of essential services to its clients,” the statement partly read.

READ ALSO: Air Peace Sacks Pilots, Slashes Salaries Up To 40%

“One of these measures includes the right-sizing of the business to ensure that the company has the optimal level of personnel to continue the safe delivery of its services to its clients, whilst allowing the appropriate capacity for future growth.

“Accordingly, and with much regret, the company has taken the very difficult decision to release over 100 pilots and engineers (both National and Expatriates) over the next couple of weeks.”

This comes barely 24 hours after Air Peace sacked scores of pilots across its fleet while slashing staff salaries by up to 40 percent.

According to the airline’s spokesman, Mr. Stanley Olise,  the retrenchment, and shedding of workers were not unlinked with the economic devastation wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ondo Assembly Suspends Another Lawmaker

The lawmaker representing Ondo West Constituency 1, Leonard Akinribido

 

The Ondo State House of Assembly has suspended another member, Leonard Akinribido, representing Ondo West Constituency 1 in the House.

He is the only member of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) in the House.

Akinrobido was suspended over gross misconduct and the use of vulgar words in the hallowed chamber.

Three members of the House, including the Deputy Speaker, Iroju Ogundeji were suspended last month for the same offence.

The Lawmaker was ordered to avoid coming to the premises of the House of Assembly while the suspension lasts.

READ ALSO: Ondo Deputy Governor, Ajayi Boycotts PDP Congress

Meanwhile, the Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Agboola Ajayi, on Tuesday, shunned the congress of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Although Ajayi shunned the congress, there are reports that the deputy-governor plans leaving the party.

Channels Television learned he plans to contest the October 10 governorship election under the platform of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP)

This comes two weeks after he failed to clinch the party’s ticket, having lost to Eyitayo Jegede.

Federal High Court Chief Judge Tests Negative For COVID-19

A file photo of the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court of Nigeria, Justice John Tsoho.

 

The Chief Judge of the Federal High Court of Nigeria, Justice John Tsoho, and members of his immediate family have tested negative to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

This was confirmed in a statement issued on Tuesday by the court’s acting Information Officer, Catherine Nwandu.

According to the Nwandu, the results of the two COVID-19 tests carried out on the judge and members of his family came out negative.

The statement adds that the two tests were conducted by officials of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in Abuja.

Nwandu explained that Justice Tsoho’s decision to go on self-isolation was preventive rather than curative because a close aide in his office tested positive to COVID- 19, hence the precautionary measures that followed.

“The Federal High Court of Nigeria is pleased to announce that the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court of Nigeria, the Hon. Justice John T. Tsoho, with members of his immediate family, has undergone two COVID -19 tests that have both turned out negative for all of them.

“The first test was done at the beginning of the 14-day self-isolation, while the confirmatory test came thereafter. Both tests were conducted by the NCDC,” the statement partly read.

Ondo Deputy Governor, Ajayi Boycotts PDP Congress

A file photo of Ondo State Deputy Governor, Agboola Ajayi.

 

The Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Agboola Ajayi, on Tuesday, shunned the congress of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Although Ajayi shunned the congress, there are reports that the deputy-governor plans leaving the party.

Channels Television learned he plans to contest the October 10 governorship election under the platform of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP).

This comes two weeks after he failed to clinch the party’s ticket, having lost to Eyitayo Jegede.

Over 2,000 delegates from across the 18 Local Government Areas of the state converged on Akure, the state capital for the PDP Congress.

READ ALSO: Former AGF Adoke Pleads Not Guilty To Money Laundering Charges

Two aspirants are contesting for the chairmanship of the party: former State Vice Chairman, Fatai Adams, and former National Youth Leader of the party, Dennis Alonge-Niyi.

Members of the party are conducting the exercise to elect the Executive Council Members.

The delegates were made to observe the COVID-19 protocols by using face masks and washing their hands.

 

See photos of the congress below:

China Loans: Why I Told Reps Not To Probe Too Much – Amaechi

The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi speaks on the controversial Chinese Loan during an interview on Politics Today on August 4, 2020.

 

The Minister of Transportation, Mr Rotimi Amaechi, has reacted to the controversy trailing the Federal Government’s planned securement of $500million loan from China.

The House of Representatives had raised an alarm over clauses in Article 8 (1) of the Commercial Loan Agreement signed between Nigeria and the Export-Import Bank of China.

In the said agreement, Nigeria stands to concede her sovereignty to China should there be a default in the repayment of the $400million for the Nigerian National Information and Communication Technology Infrastructure Backbone phase 2 project signed in 2018.

 

READ ALSO: Falana Calls For Probe Of Conditions In Nigeria’s $79bn Foreign Loans

The controversial clause in the agreement signed by the Federal Ministry of Finance on behalf of Nigeria and Chinese bank on September 5, 2018 provides:

“The borrower hereby irrevocably provides waives any immunity on the grounds of sovereign or otherwise for itself or its property in connection with any arbitration pursuit to Article 85 thereof with the enforcement of any arbitral award  pursuit thereto except for the military asset and diplomatic asset.”

But Amaechi, who appeared as a guest on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Tuesday, explained that he told the National Assembly members not to probe the loan issue too much in order not to scare the lender.

“The reason why I said that is because we have already applied for $5.3billion to execute the rail from Ibadan to Kano. We are about applying for about $3billion to execute the rail from Port Harcourt to Maiduguri.

“Don’t forget the National Assembly approved that loan. It is unconstitutional and impeachable if you take a loan without the approval of the National Assembly. So the same National Assembly that approved the loan is now questioning the same loan and the terms of the loan having looked at it before.

“If I am the lender, I will be worried. If they get worried, they will say ‘No, we will not approve the remaining loans you have applied for,” he said.

Amaechi who described the loan as the cheapest so far, said the Chinese loan is a concessionary loans at 2.8 percent interest.

He explained that before meeting China, the Federal Government had already approached other countries who didn’t approve the request on the ground that they didn’t have money.

Nigeria Records 288 More COVID-19 Cases, Total Infections Exceed 44,000

 

Nigeria has recorded 288 more cases of the novel coronavirus, bringing its total infections to 44,129.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) disclosed this on Monday night via Twitter.

According to the health agency, the new infections were recorded Lagos, the Federal Capital Territory and 13 other states of the federation.

While Lagos topped the list with 88 new cases, the FCT reported 25 fresh infections.

READ ALSO: COVID-19: Buhari Donates PPEs Worth N67m To Sao Tome And Principe

The other states with new cases include Kwara – 33, Osun – 27, Enugu – 25, Abia – 20, Kaduna – 17, Plateau and Rivers – 13, Delta – 10, Gombe – 8.

Confirmed Cases by State

States AffectedNo. of Cases (Lab Confirmed)No. of Cases (on admission)No. DischargedNo. of Deaths
Lagos15,35513,0032,160192
FCT3,9972,7671,18842
Oyo2,7711,3471,39628
Edo2,3112401,98487
Rivers1,8423081,48153
Kano1,5972741,27053
Delta1,5201181,35943
Kaduna1,4982381,24812
Ogun1,4072071,17624
Plateau1,24068653519
Ondo1,20453164825
Enugu84634348518
Ebonyi8084973326
Kwara78650725821
Katsina74626545724
Gombe6206852923
Borno613956935
Abia6021264715
Osun58027429412
Bauchi5612852013
Imo4693211399
Benue356285647
Bayelsa3393428421
Nasarawa3391082238
Jigawa322330811
Niger2237813312
Akwa Ibom221641507
Adamawa164698510
Sokoto154113716
Ekiti15283672
Anambra135487512
Kebbi904797
Zamfara771715
Yobe675548
Cross River5835194
Taraba5443110
Kogi5032

 

Meanwhile, states with fewer cases include Ogun – 4, Oyo – 3, Katsina – 1 and Bauchi – 1.

On a positive note, the country has been able to manage the coronavirus after successfully discharging 20,663 said to have recovered from COVID-19.

However, eight new deaths were reported, thus bringing the total number of fatalities to 896.

 

Global Update

The novel coronavirus has killed at least 689,758 people since the outbreak emerged in China last December, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP at 1100 GMT on Monday.

At least 18,109,730 cases have been registered in 196 countries and territories. Of these, at least 10,505,100 are now considered recovered.

The tallies, using data collected by AFP from national authorities and information from the World Health Organization (WHO), probably reflect only a fraction of the actual number of infections.

Many countries are testing only symptomatic or the most serious cases.

On Sunday, 4,168 new deaths and 217,273 new cases were recorded worldwide. Based on the latest reports, the countries with the newest deaths were India with 771 new deaths, followed by Brazil with 541 and the United States with 515.

The United States is the worst-hit country with 154,860 deaths from 4,667,957 cases. At least 1,468,689 people have been declared recovered.

After the US, the hardest-hit countries are Brazil with 94,104 deaths from 2,733,677 cases, Mexico with 47,746 deaths from 439,046 cases, Britain with 46,201 deaths from 304,695 cases, and India with 38,135 deaths from 1,803,695 cases.

The country with the highest number of deaths compared to its population is Belgium with 85 fatalities per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by Britain with 68, Spain 61, Peru 59, and Italy 58.

China — excluding Hong Kong and Macau — has to date declared 84,428 cases, including 4,634 deaths, and 79,013 recoveries.

Europe overall has 210,698 deaths from 3,205,646 cases, Latin America and the Caribbean 201,893 deaths from 4,982,627 infections and the United States and Canada 163,839 deaths from 4,784,815 cases.

Asia has 64,795 deaths from 2,982,092 cases, Middle East 27,980 deaths from 1,174,863 cases, Africa 20,300 deaths from 959,620 cases, and Oceania 253 deaths from 20,075 cases.

As a result of corrections by national authorities or late publication of data, the figures updated over the past 24 hours may not correspond exactly to the previous day’s tallies.

Mother Of Victim Killed By Fallen Container Demands Justice

A week after a freak accident claimed the lives of some bus passengers at Ilasamaja bus stop in Lagos State, the mother of one of the victims is seeking for justice.

Mrs Chineze Ajoku who is a widow and mother of 27-year-old Chidinma Ajoku who died alongside her colleague while returning from work, wants the state government and other relevant agencies to see to it that unlatched container-laden trucks are prohibited on our roads.

Mrs Chineze Ajoku is calling for the prosecution of the truck driver said to have killed her daughter on July 26, 2020.

 

Her daughter, Chidinma died when a container fell on the bus she was travelling in on Sunday, July 26.

“I am not coping, I am heartbroken. My heart is shattered in pieces. Her siblings, sometimes I wake up and they cry.

The truck said to have killed Chidinma and another passenger on Sunday.

 

“If she was sick, it would have been better for us. She was just killed in cold blood like that. How can we just accept this thing? You don’t just kill people on the road carelessly and everybody just folds their arms and expects it as a norm.

“Let them investigate and know who the driver is and the owner of the vehicle, why it is not latched the way it is supposed to be,” she said.

READ ALSO: Dele Adesina Calls For Fresh NBA Elections

While calling for the prosecution of the driver of the truck, Ajoku noted that the move by the state government will serve as a deterrent to other erring drivers.

According to her, this is to prevent further loss of lives and safeguard other residents of Lagos and road users.

Channels Television learned that the truck fell on the commercial bus while discharging passengers at Ilasamaja bus-stop, leading to the death of two, while three others sustained injuries.

Mother of the 27-year-old Chidinma Ajoku looks at the picture of her daughter on her phone. Chidinma was killed in a Lagos road accident on July 26 while returning from work.

 

The Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) described the accident as ‘an avoidable accident’ given that reckless driving of the truck driver led to its attached 20ft container falling on a commercial bus.

Dele Adesina Calls For Fresh NBA Elections

Alleged Bribery: Witness Testifies As Rickey Tarfa’s Trial Continues
File photo

 

One of the presidential candidates in the 2020 elections of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Dele Adesina, has asked the Body of Trustees of the association to cancel the just concluded polls.

In his 11 page petition to the body, Adesina described the election as “electronic fraud, illegal and unconstitutional.”

The elections were conducted electronically on July 29th to July 30th at the end of which, the immediate past chairman of the NBA’s Section on Business Law, Olumide Akpata emerged the winner.

He defeated Dr. Babatunde Ajibade and Mr Dele Adesina.

READ ALSO: School Resumption: Lagos Govt Puts In Place Safety Measures

But reacting to the outcome, Adesina called on the Chairman of NBA Board of Trustees, Olisa Agbakoba  to “rise up and save the Association by cancelling the elections and conducting a fresh one.”

Adesina said he was one of the builders of the association and his call was driven by the members’ interest.

He cited some pre-election concerns and agitations which were studiedly neglected and disregarded by the electoral committee and alleged among other things that the Voters’ Register used in the 2020 Election was a sham, illegal, doctored and manipulated.

The candidate also alleged that the data in the election results monitoring site was programmed to produce a premeditated result and many voters were also disenfranchised.

Police Arrest Two Nurses In Katsina Over Baby Trafficking

The spokesman of the Katsina State Police Command, Gambo Isah, holds a baby said to have been trafficked by two nurses during a conference on August 3, 2020.

 

Police authorities in Katsina State have arrested two nurses for allegedly trafficking a newly born baby girl.

Speaking during a press conference on Monday, the spokesman of the State Police Command, Gambo Isah, said the nurses – Misira Tijjani, and Grace Ejigu – were arrested on July 28 after a tip-off.

According to Isah, they conspired and sold the child to one Eucharia Onyema, aged 45 years of Sabuwar Kasuwa quarters in the state.

READ ALSO: Man Saved From Jumping Into Lagos Lagoon Over N500,000 Debt

“On July 25th 2020 at about 10:00hrs, one Shamsiyya Sani, aged 25 years of Dandagoro quarters, Katsina was delivered of a baby girl at Okomos Clinic, Kofar Kaura, Katsina.

“She later abandoned the child at the hospital with a handwritten note stating that she was born out of wedlock hence the abandonment.

“Nemesis caught up with them when they were arrested on their way from the hospital to their houses with the child through the help of a Keke Napep rider who suspected them of stealing of the child. An investigation is ongoing,” he said.

Falana Calls For Probe Of Conditions In Nigeria’s $79bn Foreign Loans

 

Human rights lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr Femi Falana has called on the National Assembly to probe the conditions of Nigeria’s foreign loans totalling about $79.5bn.

Speaking during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Monday, Falana wondered why much emphasis should just be on the $3.1billion to be secured from China.

According to him, the masses are being misled by leaders of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and those of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

READ ALSO: WAEC: Kano Govt To Reopen Schools On August 10

“We are being misled. What is the basis of this cessation about Chinese loan which is only $3.1billion out of $79billion loan?

A file photo of Mr Femi Falana.

“Why are we not talking about the remaining $76billion whose conditionality is much worse than the Chinese loans we are talking about?

“So, why don’t you look at the entire loan portfolio? Look at the conditions. For instance, some of the western loans are to the effect that the government should increase electricity tariff, increase fuel price and so on and so forth,” he said.

Falana also knocked the federal lawmakers for “not complaining about those multiple taxations dictated by western imperialism.”

While admitting that every country has the right to enter into an agreement with issues relating to loans, the senior lawyer maintained that the National Assembly is required by law to look at the terms and conditions.

In doing this, Falana asked the Ministry of Justice to always scrutinise the terms and conditions of the agreements to the benefits of all Nigerians.

WAEC: Kano Govt To Reopen Schools On August 10

 

Kano State Government has approved the reopening of Senior Secondary Schools in the state on August 10 to enable exit students to sit for their final examinations.

This was disclosed in a statement issued on Monday by the state Commissioner of Education, Sunusi Kiru.

The Commissioner explained that Governor Abdullahi Ganduje approved the resumption date to enable SS3 students to write their West African Senior School Certificate Examination scheduled to commence on August 17.

According to Kiru, the state government has directed all principals and proprietors of secondary schools to note that they have only a week from August 3 to commence preparation and put adequate measures against COVID 19.

READ ALSO: Wike Asks Heads Of Courts To Tackle Judicial Corruption

Following this development, schools have been warned against reopening before the planned date.

Also, principals are expected to ensure that working hours are reduced in the schools while adhering to the social distancing guidelines.

Meanwhile, the resumption dates for other examinations and for the rest of the classes including the SS1, SS2, and JSS 1-3 as well as primary schools will be announced in due course.

While noting that the Ministry of Education is encouraging the e-learning education program and other online platforms until full normalcy is fully returned, Kiru commended the efforts of stakeholders for their continued support.

Wike Signs Revised N300bn 2020 Budget

A file photo of Rivers state Governor, Nyesom Wike.
A file photo of Rivers state Governor, Nyesom Wike.

 

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has signed into law the revised 2020 budget of N300.3billion.

The budget represents a 48 per cent decrease after a downward review from N530.8billion initially proposed last year.

Governor Wike signed the budget on Wednesday in the presence of the deputy governor, the Speaker of the House, members of the State Executive Council, among other top government functionaries.

This followed the presentation of the budget by the Majority Leader of the State House of Assembly, Martin Amaewhule, to him at the Government House in Port Harcourt, the state capital.

In his remark, the governor said the unfortunate effect of the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly in the country, necessitated the review.

READ ALSO: Nigeria Records 288 More COVID-19 Cases, Total Infections Exceed 44,000

Wike said that despite the reduction in capital and expenditure estimates, his administration will still be focused on delivering developmental projects to the people of the state.

“It is most unfortunate that everybody is living a different life now because of the pandemic, which calls for us to face the economic reality

“The COVID-19 has affected economic activities and revenues of government, and so it became necessary to review our budget.

“We are the only State that has not cut down the salaries of political appointees and elected officers. Virtually all the States have cut down 20 to 30 percent of salaries of political appointees. Having cut down the recurrent expenditures, the overhead will no longer be the same,” he said.

Speaking also, the Speaker of the House, Ikuinyi-Owaji Ibani commended Governor Wike for implementing policies and programmes to the benefit of the Rivers people.

He said the revised budget and revised medium-term expenditure framework stipulate actions of government to better the fortunes of the state and establish an enduring legacy for posterity.