Buhari Condoles With General Gowon On Sister’s Death

President Muhammadu Buhari is celebrating a Prince of Sokoto and former Nigeria's High Commissioner to South Africa, Alhaji Shehu Malami, on his 79th birthday.Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, has commiserated with the former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon (rtd), over the passing away of his younger sister, Kande Martha Audu.

The President, who called from London, extended his deepest condolences to General Gowon and his family, urging them to take solace in the fact that Mrs Audu lived a worthy and exemplary life.

“Death is an inevitable end that must come to all mortals, and we must keep praying and working to ensure that we live a life that pleases our Creator and benefits humanity,” Buhari said.

He also prayed that God would comfort the grieving family and grant rest to the soul of Mrs Audu.

General Gowon, who thanked President Buhari for the commiserations, assured him that he would not relent in praying for the unity and progress of the country, adding that Nigerians are also praying for the President’s quick recovery.

This was revealed in a statement signed by Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina.

Okowa Calls For Availability Of Kerosene At Proper Price

Delta Govt. To Partner With NDDC On ProjectsThe Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa has called for necessary actions that would ensure regular supply and appropriate pricing of petroleum products, to ease the suffering of Nigerians.

Okowa made the call while commissioning an ultra-modern oil and gas filling station owned by North-West Petroleum and Gas Company Limited in Asaba, the state capital.

However, the governor observed that it was unacceptable that most Nigerians buy kerosene above the official price, yet the product was not readily available.

He stated that any action which would ease the suffering of the masses would be welcomed, especially in Delta state.

While expressing satisfaction that investors are having more confidence in establishing their business in the state, he urged them to consider the option of establishing modular refineries both in Delta state and the country at large.

He added that his administration was ready to facilitate acquisition of land for such investment.

Government Takes Over Arik Airline

Arik Air Operations Grounded Over Union Protest The Federal Government has taken over Arik Airline, which has been experiencing difficulties in recent times.

According to the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON), the decision to intervene “clearly underscores the government’s commitment to instilling sanity in the country’s aviation sector and prevent a major catastrophe.

The airline will now be managed by Roy Ukpebo Ilegbodu, an aviation expert, under Mr Oluseye Opasanya, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria.

The Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi Sirika expressed the belief that the development will bring about stability in the airline.

“We believe that this appointment is timely and will stabilize the operations of the airline. This will enhance the long term economic value of Arik Air and revitalize the airline’s ailing operations as well as sustain safety standards, in view of Arik Air’s pivotal role in the Nigerian aviation sector.”

The Minister further pledged that the Federal Ministry of Aviation would support the new management of the strategic carrier adding that all necessary steps have been taken to ensure that there would be no undue disruption on Arik’s regular business operations or activities of other stakeholders, on account of the recent changes its leadership and management.

In the same vein, Capt. Ilegbodu, under the receivership of Opasanya, has also assured both staff of the troubled airline and all other stakeholders that his appointment at Arik would among other objectives enhance the value of Arik, improve customer experience, and sustain the safety, reliable and secure operational history of the airline before all those were eroded.

Wike Lauds Nigerian Navy’s Professionalism

nyesom-wike-governor-of-rivers-state-on-panel-probeThe Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has lauded the Nigerian Navy for being professional while performing their duties.

The governor commended the Naval High Command for tracking down Rivers State Fishing Commercial Fishing Trawler, which he said would boost the revenue base of the state.

He made this known when he received the Flag Officer Commanding the Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral James Oluwole and the Commander of the Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) Pathfinder, Commodore I.N Kayoda.

He said unlike other security agencies, the Nigerian Navy has concentrated on the promotion of security, rather than promotion of political interests.

“The Nigerian Navy has lived above board. They have refused to be dragged into politics. We have had rerun elections in the state, but I have had no reason to complain about the conduct of naval personnel”.

He assured the Naval High Command of the support of his administration in terms of the provision of logistics to fight crime.

The governor said that the gunboats being purchased for the Nigerian Navy by the Rivers State Government will be released to the security agency.

He charged the Nigerian Navy to ensure that the gunboats when delivered, should be used strictly for the protection of Rivers waters.

“We are always willing to support security agencies. Nobody will tolerate crime as it hinders development “.

Earlier, the Flag Officer Commanding the Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral James Oluwole announced that the Navy has tracked down the fishing Trawler of the Rivers State, and would soon be handed over to the state government.

He also commended the governor for his commitment to Naval Operations, adding that the 120 Housing Units completed by the administration for the NNS Pathfinder would help solve the accommodation challenges of the personnel at the facility.

Rear Admiral James Oluwole noted that the Nigerian Navy would judiciously use the gunboats when delivered by the Rivers State Government.

Trump Fires Acting Attorney General For Defying Immigration Order

trump-banU.S. President Donald Trump fired top federal government lawyer Sally Yates on Monday after she took the extraordinarily rare step of defying the White House and refused to defend new travel restrictions targeting seven Muslim-majority nations.

It was another dramatic twist in the unusually raucous roll-out of Trump’s directive that put a 120-day hold on allowing refugees into the country, an indefinite ban on refugees from Syria and a 90-day bar on citizens from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

The Friday night ban prompted protests and chaos at airports on the weekend as customs officials struggled to put the order into practise, and the fallout spread to U.S. markets on Monday, where stocks suffered their biggest drop of 2017 and companies affected by the change spoke out against it.

Yates said late on Monday that the Justice Department would not defend the order against court challenges, saying that she did not believe it would be “consistent with this institution’s solemn obligation to always seek justice and stand for what is right.”

Hours later, she was fired. The White House said Yates “has betrayed the Department of Justice by refusing to enforce a legal order designed to protect the citizens of the United States” and portrayed her actions as political.

Trump has argued tougher vetting of immigrants is needed to protect America from terror attacks but critics complain that his order unfairly singles out Muslims and defiles America’s historic reputation as a welcoming place for immigrants.

Yates, an appointee of former Democratic President Barack Obama, was days away from being replaced by Trump’s pick for the top spot at the Justice Department, Republican Senator Jeff Sessions, who is awaiting Senate confirmation.

“Ms. Yates is an Obama Administration appointee who is weak on borders and very weak on illegal immigration,” the White House said in a statement.

Reuters

Aregbesola Says Recession Must End In 2017

Argebesola Stresses Need To Educate Nigerians On RecessionThe Osun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola says Nigeria will move beyond the challenges of economic recession in 2017 to fast track a better standard of living for Nigerians.

Governor, Aregbesola made this known in Osogbo, the Osun State capital during his new year message at the Freedom Park while celebrating the new year with some residents.

The Governor Rauf Aregbesola and some other notable sons and daughters of the state chieftains in the state, joined others to usher in with great musical performances, comedy and fireworks display the year 2017.

The governor said the government at all levels, particularly the Federal Government must engineer a financial plan to return the country back to economic winning ways.

The Osun state governor also embraced Nigerians not to lose sight of the change they voted for few months back by rallying round the government of the day and perform their civic responsibilities.

“We are on the path of re overt. We are moving away from recession into the phase of recovery. This recovery will lead to growth and growth will lead to consolidation. And all this will happen this year.

But what remains for all of us? Those who are employed must be efficient to increase their productivity.”
He further stated that those without work must go back to the land, cultivate it for food production most especially, and cash crops.

“We must earn more money generally. All of us must earn more money and we must reduce our consumption of imported goods. When we do this individually, it will result to the conservation of our resources, effective use of those resources and creation of wealth for all. ‎” the governor explained.

Minister Advocates Passage Of National Disability Bill

Minister Advocates Passage Of National Disability BillMinister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Aisha Alhassan, has implored the National Assembly to prepare for the passage of an approvable National Disability Bill.

This according to her, is aimed at catering for the needs of people living with disabilities in Nigeria.

She was speaking at an event marking the 2016 International Day for Persons With Disabilities in Abuja.

The minister further stated that the implementation of such legislation would enable Nigeria to fully domesticate the United Nations convention on the rights of persons with disabilities

Nigeria is currently a nation in which social stigma, cultural beliefs and infrastructural decline seem to militate against the inclusion and contribution of disabled persons in the country, which is why the Alhassan came up with the initiative.

Addressing a gathering of people with disabilities, she said that while the passage of the National Disability Bill was critical to address their plight, the Federal Government refused to be handicapped by bureaucratic processes.

Though enduring blindness throughout his life, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Disability Matters, Dr Samuel Ankeli, expressed a clear vision for persons living with disabilities in the nation.

He said that President Buhari’s creation of the Presidential Disability-focused Office, was an indication to all aspiring disabled Nigerians that they could become anything in life.

Convener of the joint association of persons with disabilities, Ekaette Umoh, also called on the public, saying that true progress depends on citizen participation.

While several experts advocated the inclusion of disabled people at the political party level to cement their socio-political incorporation, others emphasised that 5% of budgetary allocations to all sectors should be administered to establish disabled-friendly infrastructure.

Reps To Meet Buhari On Insecurity In Nigeria

Insurance FraudThe leadership of the House of Representatives is to meet with President Muhammadu Buhari in a bid to find a solution to the state of insecurity in the country.

This is part of the resolutions reached by lawmakers following a debate on a motion presented by Rep. Simon Arabo on the killing of some people in the southern part of Kaduna State

The House is also calling on the Department of State Security, (DSS) which is in charge of internal security in the country, to rise up to its responsibility.

Gunmen Kill 31 In Kaduna

About 31 people were killed and several others injured, as gunmen attacked four communities in Kauru Local Government Area of Kaduna state.

The fresh attacks came just a day after the launching of public apology billboard by the state governor, Nasir El-Rufai signaling the return of peace and an end to the frequent conflicts between Fulani Herdsmen and natives of Southern part of the state.

Eyewitness account reports that the gunmen invaded the four communities, Ungwan Rimi, Kitakum, Ungwan Magaji and Kigam all in Kauru LGA, on Sunday night, shooting people and burning down houses And farmlands. An indigene of the area told our correspondent on telephone that the entire communities have been deserted as people flee from their homes for fear of being caught up in the

U.N. Syria envoy says local government in rebel-held Aleppo area should stay on

Congo, UNStaffan De Mistura, the United Nations secretary general’s Syria envoy said on Sunday he had proposed that jihadist fighters should leave Aleppo but that the government should let the local administration in rebel-held areas of the city stay in place.

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moalem earlier on Sunday ruled that out, saying it was a “violation of our sovereignty”, but De Mistura told reporters in Damascus that he believed such measures could be temporary and that Aleppo should be treated as a special case.

Alleged N4.9b Fraud: Trial Of Fani-Kayode Stalled

Fani-KayodeThe trial of former Aviation Minister, Mr Femi Fani-Kayode over a 4.9 bilion naira fraud charge could not proceed at the Federal High Court in Lagos on Monday.

This is because he is still in Kuje prison trying to perfect the conditions for his bail granted by a Federal High Court in Abuja on five-count charge of diversion of 26 million naira.

His counsel, Mr Wale Balogun, told the court that he has been in Kuje prisons because he is yet to meet the bail conditions granted him by an Abuja court.

“My lord, the second accused (Fani-Kayode) was kept in custody of the prosecution for 21 days without any word, and finally, arraigned on November 10 before your learned brother, Justice John Tsoho in Abuja, on a five-count charge bordering on N26million.

“He was subsequently remanded at the Kuje prisons, and in view of this, we are helpless, as his bail conditions have not been perfected in spite of frantic efforts by family and friends,” Balogun said.

Mr Fani-Kayode had been facing a 17-count charge of money laundering to the tune of N4.9 billion before he was re-arrested on Friday, October 21 by operatives of the anti-graft agency.

He has been re-arraigned on fresh charges bordering on corruption, criminal breach of trust and diversion of funds by the EFCC.

Fani-Kayode, who was also spokesman for the Goodluck Jonathan Presidential Campaign, has pleaded not guilty to the five-count charge.

Court Grants Fani-Kayode Bail

Fani-KayodeA Federal High Court in Abuja has granted bail to former Aviation Minister, Femi Fani-Kayode, in the sum of 50 million naira and one surety in like sum.

The court says that the surety must be resident in Abuja and own a landed property in the capital city.

The former minister is to submit his passport and other travel documents to the court.

The presiding judge, Justice John Tsoho, has directed that Mr. Fani-Kayode be remanded in Kuje Prison until he meets the conditions of his bail application.

Mr. Fani-Kayode was arrested on Friday, October 21 by operatives of the anti-graft agency, as he left the Federal High Court premises in Lagos.

His arrest is connected to the recent 17-count charge of money laundering to the tune of N4.9 billion filed by the EFCC in Abuja against him.

He has been arraigned on fresh charges bordering on corruption, criminal breach of trust and diversion of funds by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Fani-Kayode, who was also spokesman for the Goodluck Jonathan Presidential Campaign, has pleaded not guilty to the five-count charge.

The former Aviation Minister has described his arrests as efforts to silence him.

Speaking to newsmen while being taken away by operatives of the EFCC as he left the Federal High Court premises in Lagos on Friday, he said: “They will not take my life, I am not scared, I’m not intimidated (and) I will not be silenced.

“I am very proud of the fact that the Nigerian people are beginning to understand what is going on in this country.

“They can re-arrest me a thousand times, torture me, lock me up, beat me, deprive me of food and my phones; they can do anything to me, I will never change.”

Nigeria’s PMI Improves To 52.9 Reading

policy design, Progressive Governors, economic recessionNigeria’s Purchasing Manufacturing Index turned positive at 52.9 reading in October, from a negative reading of 47.9 in September.

The uptick in the manufacturing level according to FBN Quest, was driven by an improvement in all five sub-indices, in October.

FBN Quest is projecting a further contraction of -1.7 percent in the third quarter of 2016, but says the figure could be better, if the oil economy surprises on the upside.

The analysts expect a flat GDP for the fourth quarter of 2016.