Tanker Drivers Vow To Continue Protest In Niger, Block Major Roads


Tanker drivers have continued their protest for the fourth day in Bida, Niger State, blocking major exits from the town. 

The drivers, who vowed to continue the protest for as long as three months, also said they will not leave until the Minna-Bida Road is reopened. 

One of the drivers, Mohammed Liman, lamented that the poor state of roads in the state has led to the loss of lives and properties. He blamed the Niger State Government for the delay in the construction of the road (Minna-Bida).

Another one, Baba Abdullahi, said some of the tanker drivers were being abducted due to the bad roads; calling for their immediate renovation.

According to Mohammed Tasiu, a tanker driver, the Bida-Lapai-Lambata road has been their route over the years. He, however, claimed the government had abandoned the road, making it a nightmare. 

The road is no longer motorable for them, especially trailers, hence the need for the protest, he added. He also called on the government to open the only alternative – Bida-Minna Road  – for them to ply.

A Worrisome Development 

A screen grab of a section of a road blocked by the protesters.


But some residents of the state have faulted calls for the reopening of the Bida Minna Road for the tanker drivers.

For Usman Suleiman, the protest in Bida is worrisome and the drivers’ action has paralyzed economic activities in the area. 

He insisted that the Minna-Bida Road should not be opened for the trailer drivers because of the adverse effects such would have on the road. According to him, the Federal Government should be blamed for abandoning the dilapidated road for too long. 

One resident, Saidu Isah, expressed sadness over the development. Although he did not blame the drivers for the protest, he decried the effect of their action on the masses. 

The situation, he appealed, should not be allowed to deteriorate into confrontation as he called for dialogue among major stakeholders to tackle the issue. 

No Going Back

Niger State is in North Central Nigeria.


While responding to the development, the Niger State Commissioner for Works and Infrastructural Development, Mamman Musa insisted that the Minna-Bida Road will remain closed, explaining that heavy duty trucks will not be allowed on the road until the work is finished. 

Meanwhile, the National Youth Council of Nigeria (Niger State) and the Coalition of Civil Society Organisations have given a forty-eight hour ultimatum to the Petroleum Tanker Driver’s Association of Nigeria and the Nigerian Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO) to vacate the Suleja-Lambata-Bida Road or face mass civil action.

In  a statement on Saturday, the Chairman of the council, Bello Sheriff, lamented the drivers’ action, adding that it has brought hardship and uncertainty to motorists plying the road.






Several Feared Killed, Others Injured As Students Clash With Indigenes In Niger


Several persons were feared killed and others injured in a clash between students of the Federal Polytechnic, Bida, and some indigenes of the town.

The incident occurred after a disagreement between some of the students and a commercial driver on Saturday.

The driver was alleged to have shortchanged the students and reneged on an earlier agreement to drop them off at a location.

The students were said to have regrouped on Sunday and with the support of some of their colleagues and stormed the park. This resulted in a fight between the students and residents of the community.

The Institution’s Public Relations Officer (PRO), Husseini Enagi confirmed the incident to Channels Television on Monday.

Although he said that the claims about the loss of lives could not be substantiated, he confirmed that several students were injured, and properties destroyed in the clash.

Some of the students, however, told Channels Television that at least five of their colleagues were killed in the clash.

Husseini said the institution’s management will meet to deliberate on the matter and to also ascertain more facts concerning the incident.

Gov. Bello Orders Contractor To Fix Minna Water Works

Niger State, Abubakar Bello,
Niger State governor, Abubakar Bello

The Niger State governor, Abubakar Bello, has ordered the management of the state Water Board and the contractor handling the repairs of Chanchaga Water Works, Minna, to fix it.

He gave the order after inspecting four electric motors imported from Germany to boost water supply to Minna, the state capital, at the premises of the water facility in Chanchaga.

The governor directed the water board and the contractor to double their efforts, work all round the clock and ensure taps are running with water without further delay.

“We have no time to waste. We must fix this water plant and I am not ready to take any excuse from anybody for further delay in fixing this place.

“We must ensure regular and adequate water supply in the state. With the delivery of these electric motors and the locally refurbished high and low lift pumps, the contractor and his men must work 24/7 and fix this place.

“I am taking this water issue personal and I will be coming here to inspect progress made, even at an odd time.

“So anybody that has a problem with fixing this place is permitted to go. We must fix this water plant”, the governor reassured.

He then assured residents of other major cities in the state that the government was committed to ensuring that all the water works are functional and are meeting the need of the people.

“We are moving to Bida, Kontagora and Suleja very soon. So we are going to expedite work on this Minna Water Works to enable us move to other towns”, the governor assured.

Earlier, the contractor handling the project, Mr. Outare Kokobissi, assured the governor that with the arrival of the electric motors and the refurbished pumps and residents of Minna will soon be relieved of lack of portable water.

He promised to work round the clock to ensure delivery.

Niger Govt. Opens Bidding To End Water Scarcity In Minna

water scarcityIn a bid to end water scarcity in some communities in Niger State, the Ministry of Water Resources and Dams Development has opened bidding to overhaul and rehabilitate some water works in the state.

The project, when completed, would enable the State government provide adequate and affordable water to the citizens especially in the five urban cities of Bida, Minna, Suleja, New Bussa and Kontagora respectively.

Opening the bidding at the conference hall of the ministry in Minna on Wednesday, the selected two companies that submitted their bids were China Zhonghao Nigeria limited with 16 and half months completion period at the sum of 19.5 billion Naira, with also 150 days bid security.

Also, the CDC Nigeria Limited submitted its bidding with 18 months completion period at 11.1 billion Naira both for the two treatment plants in Suleja and Chanchaga. The third selected company, Bi-Water, withdrew from the bidding.

The Commissioner of Water Resources and Dams Development, Abubakar Azozo, expressed happiness that it had shown transparency while, assuring the companies that the ministry would be just and fair to them.

He said diligent work would be needed within the shortest period of time.

Mr Azozo, who is optimistic that availability of water to the people of the state is paramount, assured residents that the present administration in the state would do its best to provide adequate and affordable water to the citizens especially in the five urban cities of Bida, Minna, Suleja, New Bussa and Kontagora respectively.

He assured them of adequate monitoring by the ministry’s engineers to ensure standard of the contract agreement when it finally commences as will ensure recouping of whatever the government invested within two years.

The Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Mr Abubakar Sadiq, in his remarks, said that project would involve a complete turn around maintenance to overhaul the two water works in the state to ensure optimal water supply to the citizenry.

He expressed satisfaction over the transparency exhibited during the bidding processes  and gave the assurance that the ministry would go ahead to study the technical aspects of the bidders to ensure the best company wins the contact.

Sadiq added that palliative measures would be put in place, to overcome some of the challenges. In line with this, he said that a 2,000KV generator had been provided to supply power for water pumps.

He noted that the project duration would be achieved if the government on its part would provide funding adequately.

The ministry consultant and Managing Director of Integrated Engineering Associate, Mr Hassan Umar, who also submitted an estimate of nine billion Naira within 18 months completion period stated that nine (9) contractors were invited to access the facilities and submitted their experiences.

He said that that after the bid, selection of the winner would be made within two weeks.

Niger Governor Appoints Yabagi Sule Acting Head Of Service

Niger, Head of Service, Yabagi SuleGovernor Abubakar Bello has appointed Mr Yabagi Sule as the acting Head of Service of the Niger State Civil Service.

A statement by the spokesman for the Governor, Mr Jibrin Ndace, on Monday in Minna, the state’s capital disclosed that Mr Sule replaced Mr Mohammed Lapai, who had proceeded on terminal leave with immediate effect.

Governor Bello commended Mr Lapai for his contributions to the growth of the state civil service, especially during the recent rationalisation of the service in 2015.

Sule, 57, joined the state’s civil service on April 1, 1986 and rose through the ranks before he was appointed Permanent Secretary on May 22, 2012.

He hails from Bida in Bida Local Government of Niger State, north-central Nigeria and he is a product of the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.

He had served in various Ministries, Departments and Agencies, including Local Government Service Commission as Permanent Secretary.

Mr Sule was posted to the Office of the Head of Service as Permanent Secretary (Establishment) on September 14, 2015 before his new appointment.

FMC Bida Set To Install CT Scan Machine

CT Scan, FMC BidaThe Federal Medical Center (FMC), Bida, says it has concluded plans to install a Computerized Tomography (CT) Scan machine.

This aimed at easing procedures for operations of patients and other related illnesses.

The Medical Director of the Centre, Dr Mohammad Aminu Usman, while speaking to journalists in his office, said that three consultants on radiology have been brought in to operate the machine.

He, however, debunked social media reports alleging that the medical institution is worth nothing.

He said the reports were fabricated to distract the management and workers, who have been dedicated, committed and patriotic in their responsibilities despite few challenges.

The Mr Aminu insisted that the allegations are not true, and should be disregarded adding that FMC Bida has the capacity, manpower and equipment to assist other centres in time of need.

Niger DPR Warns Petroleum Marketers Against Sharp Practices

DPR seals petrol service stationThe Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) in Niger state on Sunday warned petroleum marketers to desist from all kinds of sharp practices like diversion, hoarding, selling above official price and under-dispensing of the product or face the wrath of the law.

The State Controller of DPR, Engr Abdullahi Isah Jankara handed down the warning at the weekend after the team surveillance visit to some local governments of Bida, Agaie and Lapai respectively were he expressed dismay over lack of adherence to the new price policy of the Federal Government at N145 per litre.

Jankara reiterated the commitment of the department in ensuring absolute compliance with the regulations sequel to a memo received from the minister of petroleum to effect the new price of petroleum product at N145 in the country as stringent measure await defaulters.

Our correspondent revealed that most of the filling stations visited were selling at between N150 and N170 per litre which were forced to reverse their price but reports received was that they always either stop selling or still jack up immediately DPR leaves.

The state DPR Controller called for the support of President Muhammadu Buhari’s government and urged them to do everything possible to find a lasting solution and ensure availability of the commodity in the country, commending the recent partial deregulation that has started “yielding result”.

During the surveillance together with some journalists, DSS and NSCDC as part of the team, a station was sealed up at Agaie in Agaie Local Government of the state, just as they were found selling at N160 per litre at the same time selling for black marketers who were carrying over 60 jerry cans of 70 litres and over 10 jerry cans of 25 litres at the station with over 10 already served with PMS.

The Controller said that the next concentration of the department would be focused on unlicensed stations buying from third parties to sell above approved price, which he described as illegal, adding that the penalty for diversion of petroleum is N200 per litre of the quantity diverted while selling above the regulated price is N100,000 per pump of PMS in the station.

Etsu Nupe Charges Nigerians To Be Security Conscious

Etsu-NupeThe Chairman, Niger State Council of Traditional Rulers and Etsu Nupe, Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar, has urged Nigerians to be security conscious at any moment, to ensure security of lives and property in the nation.

Abubakar made this disclosure in his Wadata Palace at Bida, during an interview with Channels Television, after the flag off of Senator Mustapha Sani Mohammed’s disbursement of trade capital to over 370 widows.

He said that people should be watchful of strangers in their domain in order to easily fish out those causing mayhem.

Etsu Nupe further charged Nigerians to give their maximum support to President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration’s efforts in fighting corruption and insurgency in the country by participating in the crusade.

He maintained that the President Buhari’s government will only embarked on policies and programs that will have direct impact on the people of Nigeria and should be supported in all ramifications.

Alhaji Abubakar, who presented the cash to the beneficiaries, applauded Senator Mohammed’s initiative which he described as laudable. He urged the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the money to the benefit of their families, as this will go a long way in cushioning the effect of poverty.

Senator Mohammed said that the disbursement of trade capital for widows in his constituency was part of fulfilment of his campaign promise aimed at empowering widows who constitute a group of vulnerable, and assisting them in starting or enhancing those already involved in their businesses.

“Women empowerment, especially widows is a major area of interest to me as I represent our Senatorial District in the 8th Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Economic development hinged on industrialization, employment, infrastructural provision and youth development constitute my priority, ” he said

Speaking on behalf of the lawmaker, Mallam Mohammed Usman disclosed that over 3.5 million Naira was expended on the programme with three persons from each of the 88 wards that constituted the constituency.