Resident Doctors At FMC Lokoja Protest Poor Health Systems

Resident Doctors Threaten To Commence Strike Action In 2017The Association of Resident Doctors, (ARD) in Federal Medical Center, Lokoja, has joined the strike by the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), to register their displeasure with the management of Nigeria’s health system.

Briefing pressmen, the Lokoja ARD President, Dr. Obohwemu Kennedy, said that his members were part and parcel of the NARD and were duty bound to comply with the directive.

The doctors, were seen carrying placards with different inscriptions to press home thier demands from the Federal Government.

On December 19, 2016, NARD gave the Federal Government up to January 2, to implement the National Health Act, 2014, while asking it to also address the lingering issues affecting the health sector, especially as it affects resident doctors.

Explaining further about the reason for the protest, Obohwemu lamented the pitiable state of Nigeria’s health system, citing the need for the Federal Government to urgently intervene and prevent massive exodus of doctors to the outside world for greener pastures.

“Apart from the fact that we are following instructions from our national body, we believe it is time to take the bull by the horn and address these persistent problems once and for all.

“Let the whole world know what resident doctors are going through- Our patients deserve the best of healthcare delivery.

“We cannot do that when we, the healthcare providers, are not in the right frame of mind.

“The medical profession is going through the toughest of times in the recent years, our black jackets and black bands, symbolise the death of our healthcare delivery system.

“We asked for resurrection, a revamping of the system, such that the average Nigerians can confidently access quality healthcare at affordable rates.”

Speaking on behalf of the Medical Director, Dr. Taiwo Olaoluwa who calmed the protesters, said their demands were not out of place.

Although he explained that the hospital was mourning as a result of the death of a Chief Nursing Officer, he then assured them that the Federal Government was working out solutions to their demands.

FG Deploys Midwives To Primary Healthcare Centres Nationwide

Health, midwives FG Deploys Midwives To Primary Healthcare Centres Nationwide The Federal Government is deploying skilled midwives to Primary Healthcare Centers across the country to strengthen service delivery.

The Executive Director of the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency, (NPHDA), Dr Emmanuel Odu, revealed this at the opening of a Midwives Service Orientation Scheme in Abuja.

Dr Odu said that the scheme is a year-long mandatory service for all graduates of nursing, which is aimed at improving their skills on key aspects of primary health.

This comes after series of meetings held by key stakeholders across the nation to discuss ways by which health systems can be improved especially in a critical time when the current economic recession is being experienced in Nigeria.

At such a time, it has become increasingly difficult for the less privileged and vulnerable members of the society to assess Primary Health Care services.

The Nigerian Medical Association recently staged a walk, demanding the implementation of the National Health Act, enacted in 2014.

The association says the passage into law has been stalled as a result of the non-nonchalant attitude of the Federal Government.

In a message from the President of Nigerian Medical Association, Professor Mike Ogirima, the Federal Government was urged to immediately start the operation of the National Health Act without further delay in order to address the numerous challenges of healthcare delivery to Nigerians.

Members of the Nigerian Medical Association, Plateau State Chapter, and Abia state, joined their counterparts across the nation in a nationwide walk to call on the government at all levels to implement the provisions of the National Health Act, 2014.

Fashola Announces 83 Per Cent 2014 Budget Performance

The Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Raji Fashola, fasholahas announced a 83-per cent cumulative performance for the 2014 Budget.

The performance represents the accomplished Budget in the first, second, third and fourth quarters of the year which stood at 67 per cent, 106 per cent, 84 per cent and 77 per cent respectively.

Addressing a press conference at the Lagos State House, Ikeja, Governor Fashola also announced that the fourth quarter budget performance stood at 77 per cent, saying the impact of the fourth quarter performance of the budget was already visible across the State in projects such as, the completed court buildings in Epe and Ikeja.

Governor Fashola also said that other projects that benefitted from the fourth quarter budget were the solar projects in primary health institution, primary schools, progress in road works across the state such as Agiti, Isheri-Oshun bridge behind Jakande Estate which are completed.

On the priorities of his administration in its last days, Governor Fashola promised to continue to do more of what the administration have done in order to close strongly.

“As I said before, in the rain and in the sun we will continue to provide service; that is the role of government.”

Governor Fashola listed other areas of priority to include settling as many obligations as it could, “in spite of the difficult financial situation,” to contractors to accelerate and complete more on-going projects.

Fashola also declared:  “We are issuing more contracts to support small businesses. We are in procurement now for maintenance contracts for about 606 schools which are contracts that range between N2 million and N5 million for small businesses”.

He said that beneficiaries would be graduates from the State’s technical and vocational centres who have formed small companies, and members of the society who bid for the contracts as well as those who show “demonstrable capacity”.


Kaduna: Yero Releases N800 Million Pensioners’ Entitlements

Kaduna governorState government has paid the retirement benefits worth over N840 Million Naira to 309 retired civil servants; who have served the state meritoriously.

While speaking during the presentation of cheques to the pensioners, Governor Yero noted that, despite the dwindling revenue accruing to Kaduna, the state government has expended over N2 billion for the payment of gratuities of civil servants who retired between January to July, 2014.

The governor also disclosed that his administration has paid a total of N4.7 billion as backlog of retirement benefits for the state civil servants dating back to seven years, and also cleared the backlog of gratuities and death benefits of retirees and deceased staff in the service.

It was a moment of joy for this senior citizens as they filed out to receive their cheques from the governor, most of whom just retired from service last year.

The beneficiaries are batches 5, 6 and 7 of pensioners who were captured in the months of May, June and July, 2014. They filed out to receive the cheques from the state governor in the admiration of their relations and colleagues.

While pledging the commitment of the State government towards ensuring prompt payment of pensions and other retirement benefits, Governor Yero said his administration remained committed to settling all pension liabilities as part of efforts to raise the production capacity of the civil service.

Some of the beneficiaries expressed appreciation to the state government for the payment of their pension and gratuities, and also promised to reciprocate the gesture by voting massively for the governor, who is seeking a re-election for another four year term.

It is expected that the wealth of experience that this pensioners have acquired over the years in service will be an added advantage in terms of initiating viable ventures with the money.

Madagascar Names New Minister

Hery Rajaonarimampianina says government is ready to alleviate poverty

Madagascar President, Hery Rajaonarimampianina, on Sunday announced the replacement of eight ministers, including a new finance minister, after dissolving the government earlier this month amid mounting public frustration over power and other issues.

Air force commander and businessman, Jean Ravelonarivo, was sworn in as the new premier.

There were innovations in the Ministries of health, culture, trade among others. While 22 other ministers maintained their jobs.

Maurice Gervais Rakotoarimanana, an accountant who has worked with the World Bank, would be the next Minister of Finance and budget.

The president said in a press conference that special attention would be given to building the energy sector saying, “This government is ready to fight. Ready to fight against poverty, ready to fight for the development of infrastructure, for education, for health”.

The mineral-rich island nation has been struggling to rebuild its economy which was crippled after a coup in 2009 that drove away donors and investors.

A peaceful election in 2013 has redeemed the nation a bit, but it is still struggling to impose stable government and economic. Challenges remain such as weaning the nation off fuel and electricity subsidies.

According to analysis by the International Monetary Fund released last week, Madagascar’s economy boosted about 3 percent in 2014, and could also increase by 5 percent this year if it can increase tax revenue and improve the business climate.

Madagascar is one of the world’s poorest countries, despite its reserves of nickel, cobalt, gold, uranium and other minerals.

Court Dismisses Suit Seeking To Reinstate Nyako

NyakoA Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has struck out a suit filed by a lawyer, Olukoya Ogungbeje, seeking the reinstatement of the impeached governor of Adamawa State, Murtala Nyako.

Presiding Justice, Okon Abang, in a ruling, struck out the suit on the ground that the applicant (Ogungbeje) lacked the locus standi to institute the action.

The judge, who described the applicant as a meddlesome interloper in ‘affairs that does not concern him’, said that the rights to challenge the impeachment of July 15 resides solely in Nyako, who was impeached and not the applicant. The judge noted that the applicant should have allowed Nyako to carry his own cross, and not cry more than the bereaved.

“It is Nyako that will benefit from any favourable judgment, and not the public, and so this matter does not rank among public interest litigation, the court held.

“The applicant cannot cry more than the bereaved and he has no justifiable reason to file this suit because as at the time he filed it, it was not established before this court that Nyako was in detention or incapacitated.

“The applicant can also not depose to an affidavit in support of this application on behalf of Nyako who is alive. The facts deposed to by the applicant amounts to documentary hearsay,” Justice Abang ruled.

Justice Abang further held that the suit ought to have been filed in Yola where Nyako was impeached, and not in Lagos.

The court also set aside service of the processes in the matter on the defendants, on the ground that there was no proper service in law.

Besides, Justice Abang held that the applicant served the respondents through the Adamawa State Government liaison office in Lagos on August 15, 2014, while the order for substituted service was actually made on August 26, 2014.

“In other words, the applicant served the respondents before an order of this court was made, apart from the fact that the identity of the person served is unknown.”

The judge further held that the applicant had no cause of action against the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Inspector-General of Police – joined as fifth and sixth respondents respectively.

In the final analysis, Justice Abang held that the suit was incompetent and lacked merit. The court awarded N70, 000 costs in favour of the respondents against the applicant.

In the suit, Ogungbeje had argued that Nyako’s impeachment was a clear derogation from the due process of law and prayed the court for an order reinstating him as a governor.

The Respondents in the suit were former acting governor of Adamawa State, Umaru Fintiri, Adamawa State House of Assembly and the Acting Chief Judge of the State, Justice Ambrose Mammadi. Others were Justice Buba Kajama, Chairman of the seven-member panel that investigated allegations of gross misconduct against Nyako, INEC and the Inspector-General of Police.

Specifically, Ogungbeje had argued that Nyako’s impeachment was a clear departure from the due process of law.

He argued that the failure of the respondents to serve the impeachment notice personally on Nyako was a breach of the impeached governor’s right to fair hearing and fair trial.

Ogungbeje sought a declaration that the inauguration of the seven-member panel by the state Chief Judge after an order stopping the Adamawa State House of Assembly from constituting the panel was biased.

The lawyer had urged the court to declare that the constitution and inauguration of the panel against a subsisting order of court was contemptuous and a flagrant violation of the constitution. He had also urged the court to nullify Nyako’s impeachment of July 15.

Nyako was impeached on July 15, 2014 by the Adamawa State House of Assembly after a panel set up by the Chief Judge of the state indicted him of gross misconduct.

Nyako’s deputy, James Bala Ngilari, who was said to have purportedly resigned moments before the impeachment of his boss, was however subsequently sworn-in as the substantive governor of the state following a judgment of the Federal High Court in Abuja to that effect.

NFF Disqualifies Umeh,Others, Clears Giwa For Election

nff 2The Electoral Panel of the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) has disqualified the acting Chairman, Mike Umeh, ex-internationals, Taiwo Ogunjobi and Segun Odegbami from contesting elections into the office of the chairman.

The Committee on Wednesday, disqualified the three major aspirants for the office of the President of the federation. Those disqualified include ex-Nigerian international and 1980 Nations Cup winner, Segun Odegbami; former scribe of the NFF, Taiwo Ogunjobi; and current Acting Chairman of the Federation, Mike Umeh.

While Chris Giwa, who owns Nigeria Premier League side, Giwa FC, is now the only candidate left in the run.

The NFF elections are scheduled to hold on August 26, 2014.

Minister Rejects Disqualification

Meanwhile, the Minister of Sports, Tamuno Danagogo, said on Wednesday afternoon that the government was opposed to the decision of the electoral committee of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), to disqualify some candidates.

Mr. Danagogo, who is also the chairman of the National Sports Commission, NSC, stated this while addressing journalists in Abuja.

“We do not support any process that looks fraudulent,…, that produced one candidate. We want a situation where all stakeholders will contest and neat result will come out.

“For that reason, to us it is proper and it is acceptable to let the press know that we agree with the aggrieved persons in totality,” he said.

The electoral committee had on Wednesday morning disqualified ex-Nigerian international and 1980 Nations Cup winner, Segun Odegbami; former scribe of the NFF, Taiwo Ogunjobi; and current Acting Chairman of the Federation, Victor Umeh.

Only one candidate, Chris Giwa, owner of Giwa FC, was cleared to contest for President of the NFF.
Mr. Danagogo, however, condemned the electoral process expected to lead to the August 26 election of new leaders of the NFF.

“(This) level of ineptitude is certainly not acceptable. NSC will not conduct elections for them. We will do everything possible to conduct free and fair election.

“If it means we will delay the process or resell the form. Forms should be open to individuals eligible to compete,” he said.

Taraba State Accountant-General Arraigned For Alleged N1.56 Billion Fraud

Joel-J-Lenbang-BNThe Economic and Financial crimes Commission (EFCC) has arraigned the Taraba State Accountant- General,  Mr Joel Joseph Lenbang, over the diversion of  N1.56 billion Naira  state funds  at the Jalingo Federal High Court  .

The Accountant-General was arraigned on Wednesday before Justice Donatus Nwabueze Okorowo for defrauding the Taraba State Government.

Lenbang, was docked on an 8-count charge, including obtaining false pretence and abuse of office, offences contrary to and punishable under the Advanced Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006

EFCC’s Head, Media and publicity, Wilson Uwujaren confirmed that  Mr. Lenbang allegedly disguised and withdrew monies for sundry payments on behalf of the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), as well as payment of Bank Commissions on Turn Over (COT) and Value Added Tax (VAT) which became a monthly affair making a total sum of N1,567,226,557.081 between January 2012 and December 2013.

Although Lenbang pleaded not guilty to the 8-count charge levied against him, the prosecuting counsel, Al Qasim Ja’afar, applied for a date to commence trial but the counsel to the accused filed a motion for bail.

The Judge, Okorowo adjourned the case till July 11, 2014 for hearing and remanded the accused in prison.

Mr Uwajuren said the EFCC swung into action following a petition received from a concerned Taraba State indigene, sometime in February 2014, alleging massive looting of Taraba state funds.

The petition, according to him, triggered investigation of the lifestyle of some of the officers mentioned in the petition and who were believed to be living above their means

LASU Union President Insists On Paying N46, 500 Tuition

lasuThe President, Lagos State University Student Union, Nurudeen Yusuf, has questioned the move by the state to increase the tuition.

He insisted that the government and authorities should revert to the agreement made by the student on April 7, 2014 to pay 46,500 Naira as tuition.

He stated that the school is a State University not a Private University and therefore should be made affordable for the common man.

The government had said that its intention was to improve on the standard of the university, but Mr Yusuf disagreed, stressing that “making the university a more standard university does not go in line with increasing the tuition”.

Mr Yusuf who was a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, on Wednesday urged the State government to increase its commitment towards the school by funding it adequately.

“The State government should fund the university adequately so that education will be made available to the people, so that the aim of the establishment of LASU will not be defeated,” the student union president stated.

He noted that the reasons behind the hike in fees should be explained by the government, and also criticised the recent move for students to pay for teaching practice  and other fees that the student were not meant to pay.

He complained about the school laboratory, stating that for over three years of increase in tuition fee, the school’s laboratories are without chemical, classes are without windows which is preventing the students from having quantitative and qualitative education.

He added that certain things should have been put in place before increasing the fees. He listed some of the areas needing attention to include improved standard of education and up-to-date infrastructures for teaching amongst others, urging the government to pay special attention to education like other developed countries.



Nollywood: Better Avenue To Rebrand Nigeria – Inojie

Nigerian actor, Charles Inojie on Saturday said the Federal Government should have channeled the resources used for the ‘Good People, Great Nation’ rebrand Nigeria project into the movie industry, Nollywood, as that “would have achieved more results.”

“A project like that should have taken the Nollywood on the driver’s seat to achieve greater results,” he said.
The Theatre Arts graduate of the University of Port Harcourt said on Sunrise that the University’s Drama School is the best in the country as it has produced many top wigs presently dominating the industry.

While predicting the turn of events in the industry for 2014, Inojie said: “We can only move forward” as “all hands are on deck to build on the gains of 2013.”

He added that the industry would experience a lot more international collaborations.

Lagos Churches Packed Full For New Year Cross-over Service

Christian faithful trooped out in their numbers to different churches in the city of Lagos to observe the cross-over service in anticipation of the new year.

Correspondent, Olu Phillips went about town to speak with spiritual leaders and church members on their expectations for the new year.

Several of them expressed gratitude to God for making them see the end of 2013 and expressed hopes that 2014 would be better than 2013.

At the Tafawa Balewa square in Lagos, a large congregation massed to give thanks to God for seeing the end of 2013 and to seek God’s involvement in their lives in 2014.


NIKE Withdraws Support For The Lance Armstrong Foundation

Nike Inc., has pulled out of sponsoring the former cyclist champion lance Armstrong’s foundation; The Livestrong Foundation which is cancer foundation, according to the foundation which affirmed that the Sportswear giant as its biggest corporate backer and creator of its well-known yellow wristbands.

Armstrong founded Livestrong in 1997 after he was diagnosed with testicular cancer, and the group flourished during his cycling career, which saw him win the gruelling Tour de France race seven times. The cyclist stepped down from Livestrong after being stripped of his titles last fall amid accusations that he used performance-enhancing drugs.

Armstrong stepped down as chairman of the charity in October as Nike affirmed as at that time that it would still back the charity but no longer sponsor the man behind it.

Nike, which has helped support the foundation since 2004, helped raise more than $100 million through creation of the group’s distinctive yellow wristbands and production of Livestrong apparel and footwear according to a spokesperson said it has decided to end production of its Livestrong gear and apparel after the holiday 2013 line but would continue to support the foundation by funding it directly.

In reaction, a spokeswoman for Livestrong Foundation said the contract with Nike was set to conclude at the end of 2014, and will not be renewed. She said the impact of the Nike move had been factored into the foundation’s fiscal outlook.