Imo Civil Servants Enjoy Prolonged Holiday As Private Workers Resume

FILE PHOTO: Imo State Secretariat, Owerri.

As workers across the country resumed work today, December 27, after three days public holiday to mark the Christmas celebration, their counterparts in Imo state are still enjoying the holiday.

Thi is due to the prolonged holiday given by the state Governor Rochas Okorocha.

A visit to the State Secretariat in Owerri, the state capital showed that the secretariat was quiet as all doors were under lock and key since they closed on Friday, December 22, 2017, and expected to resume on Monday, January 8, 2018.

READ ALSO: Ortom Confirms Troops Deployment To Combat Herdsmen Attacks

Workers on essential duties are exempted are however exempted from the prolonged Holiday.

However, for other private offices work started in earnest as people were seen trooping in and out of banks and other private offices within the city.

Olufunso Amosun Reaches Out To Less Privileged In Ogun

Olufunso Amosun, Ogun, Less PrivilegedWife of the Ogun State Governor, Mrs Olufunso Amosun, has reached out to the less privileged in the three senatorial districts of the state.

In the spirit of the Christmas celebration, the Governor’s wife, her children and spouses of government officials embarked on food outreach programme in Ogun State.

The team, under the aegis of the Uplift Development Foundation, the first lady’s pet programme, distributed rice and cash gift to residents of Ijebu Ode, Ado-Odo Ota, Abeokuta, Sagamu, Obada and Ewekoro among other areas in the state in southwest Nigeria.

Highlighting the significance of the exercise, Mrs Amosun said that the economic hardship facing Nigeria made the gesture necessary.

She stressed that the foundation decided to make the people happy and celebrate their Christmas with joy by reaching out to them.

The governor’s wife noted that the foundation would continue to uplift people and provide succor to the less privileged in the society, irrespective of their religion or political affiliation.

Ogun Goverment Assures Workers Of Worthy Welfare

Ogun Govt. Assures Workers Of Worthy WelfareThe Ogun State government has assured its workers that their welfare would always receive utmost attention at all times.

The disclosure was made on Tuesday by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr Taiwo Adeoluwa, during a press conference at the Governor’s Office.

While speaking in Abeokuta, Ogun State’s capital in southwest Nigeria, Mr Adeoluwa the civil servants of best financial practices so as to ensure accountability and transparency in the administration.

The government official also announced the payment of December 2015 salaries as well as a 10 per cent bonus to all categories of the Ogun State government workforce.

He said that the payment of the salaries ahead of the Christmas celebration was to ensure that Ogun State workers would celebrate the yuletide without financial hassles.

Kaduna Transporters Hike Fares As Petrol Scarcity Bites Harder

KadunaThree days to the Christmas celebration, people travelling to various parts of the country from Kaduna and environs for the festivity are groaning with the increasing scarcity of petrol.

This is due the increase of transport fare by commercial drivers who ironically are also complaining of shortage of passengers as a result of the fuel scarcity and increase in fares.

They have called on the Federal government to urgently address the problem in order to reduce their sufferings.

Most filling stations across the state capital have been locked up due to the scarcity of petrol, while those that opened for business sold the product at over 80% of the normal price.

While black marketers of petrol sell a four litre gallon of petrol as high as 1,000 naira, most of the filling stations sell a litre of the product for 200 naira to struggling and impatient motorists and those buying in jerry cans.

The petrol profiteers ruled as long as men of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) were away, but when they storm the stations, they force the managers to revert to the approved pump price or in some cases seal them up.

Transport fare from Kaduna to Akwa-Ibom State and some parts of the south east that used to cost about 6,000 naira has risen to 8,000 naira. Commuters have said that the price is likely to rise if nothing is done by the relevant authorities to address the fuel scarcity.

With no end in sight to the scarcity, many families planning to travel to their villages for the Christmas celebration may have to either suspend their trip or pay through their nose due to the hike in transport fare.

With the cheering news that the Kaduna Refinery and Petrochemical Company has resumed production after it was closed  for repairs some months ago, many Nigerians are appealing to the relevant authorities to address all knotty issues that have brought this unending nightmare to the nation.

Yobe Police Recorded Less Serious Crimes In 2015 – Commissioner

RRS-yobe -policeThe Yobe State Police Command says it has recorded less serious crimes in 2015, compared to the year 2014.

Parading 17 suspects before journalists at the end of the year media briefing in Damaturu, the state capital, the State Commissioner of Police (CP), Zannah Ibrahim, said major crime statistics for the two years indicates that terrorists’ attacks recorded in 2015 stands at 19 cases, as against the 25 of last year.

According to the CP, other crimes that recorded decrease in 2015, compared to 2014 include; culpable homicide, kidnapping, unnatural offences, armed robbery, grievous hurt and wounding, as well as breach of public peace.

CP Ibrahim also revealed that rape and indecent assault offences against firearms and forgery of currency notes recorded various increase in 2015.

The Police Commissioner disclosed that four of the paraded suspects are believed to be involved in certificate forgery at the College of Education, Gashua.

While one is responsible for signing, stamping and issuance of forged certificates, two others were canvassing for interested “grandaunts” and the last person specialised in printing the certificate.

Musa Ahmed and Ali Yusuf, who are suspects to the crime, in an interview with newsmen, attributed his offence to an act of the devil.

The CP also disclosed that some of the suspects paraded were found to have engaged in the production and circulation of counterfeit currency, contrary to section 21 of the Penal Code Law.

He said further investigation revealed that the suspects had in their possession fake Nigerian currency totalling about 490, 000 Naira, Identity cards, a bottle containing mercury and forged land sale agreement, among others.

The Commissioner said that some of the suspects will be arraigned for culpable homicide, being in possession of dried leaves believed to be Indian herp or a control substances, suspected homicide and mischief, contrary to sections 221 and 327 of the Penal Code Law of Nigeria.

He appreciated the efforts of the state government, traditional institution, sister security agencies, the media and other security stakeholders in the state for their unflinching support given to the Police in the year under review, hoping similar synergy will be exhibited in the years ahead.

While assuring of a hitch free Christmas celebration, the CP said the command will intensify vehicular, foot and join patrol to ensure a crime free state.

Jonathan Says Boko Haram Must Go

The Federal Government of Nigeria has reassured citizens that the current administration will do its best to ensure that Boko Haram insurgency becomes a thing of the past in the country.

President Goodluck Jonathan gave the assurance while addressing Christian faithful at the Church of Christ in Nations (COCIN) in the Federal Capital Territory, where he participated in the service to mark the first Sunday in the New Year.

President Jonathan, his mother, and some members of the cabinet joined the congregation to thank God for the New Year and to identify with the church at the beginning of the year.

The President commiserated with families hit by the terrorist group, most of them members of the church. He also called on well-meaning Nigerians to join hands with the administration so that the war against terror would collectively be won.

The leader of the Church of Christ in Nations (COCIN), Reverend Dachollom Datri, delivered a message in which he commended the President for his “giant strides” in the administration. He expressed hope that the New Year would be crisis free, so that the church would suffer less as has been the case since the inception of terror attacks in the North.

He also declared the theme for the church in the New Year; ‘knowing the will of God’, emphasizing usefulness as the purpose of God.

The President appreciated the leadership of the church, and called for more prayers for the country, promising that in the midst of challenges especially in the North, Nigerians would soon witness the end of the Boko Haram sect.

The President also reiterated that development cannot be achieved overnight, but that his administration is committed to it, despite the daunting challenges.

The COCIN referred to Dr Jonathan as God’s gift to Nigeria, pledging to support him at all times with the belief that only the will of God shall prevail in the country as the year 2014 unfolds.

Apart from the typical praise, worship and bible readings expected of the service, the congregation, who were excited about the visit also said prayers for the President.

Jonathan Predicts Great Future For The Nigerian Child

Nigeria’s president, Doctor Goodluck Jonathan, has seized the opportunity of the season’s religious festivities to predict a brighter future for Nigerian children.

The President, joined residents of Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, to worship at the Apostolic Faith Church in Jabi, and there he called on Christians to continue to pray for the continuous peace and unity of the country, in the midst of daunting challenges.

He said that despite its diversity, Nigeria has remained as one nation. Therefore citizens need to shun the barriers created by the diversity and embrace togetherness at all times.

The president, who uses the holiday season and yuletide to worship in any church he likes, stressed that if he could make it to the highest place in the land, then no Nigerian child should surfer.

The service, which had all the trappings of end of the year and the festive season, with the traditional over 100-man orchestra, with rich accompaniment of musical instruments, also saw the children presenting a special rendition for Mr President.

The General Overseer, Reverend Emmanuel Adeniran, while noting in his message that the visit of the President on the last Sunday of the year is of great significance, also reminded the congregation that one’s closeness to God matters a lot, above all.

The special guest, while promising to continue to do his best, thanked the church for their prayers and called on Nigerians to join in the prayers while hoping for a better 2014. He shared with the congreation more of his great expectations for Nigerians in the new year, especially the children.

Remarks About Terrorism: Media Misquoted Jonathan – Presidency

The Presidency has called on the Nigerian media to “eschew undue negativity and join hands with the government to promote peace, national security and political stability.”

In a statement by the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the President, Reuben Abati, the Presidency condemned reports in the media which quoted President Goodluck Jonathan as accepting defeat, expressing helplessness and underestimating the magnitude of challenge posed by terrorism in the country, during a Christmas church service he attended with his family on Christmas day.

Abati said that the reports are “completely untrue and a mischievous misrepresentation” of the President’s actual words.

“President Jonathan’s verifiable remarks at the Cathedral Church of the Advent, Life Camp Abuja were to the effect that in comparison with some other countries which have experienced the scourge of terrorism, Nigeria has made remarkable progress in dealing with the security challenges posed by terrorism and insurgency.”

In an effort to assert the Jonathan administration’s view of the war on terrorism as one it can win and which it is already winning, it frowned at headlines that read ‘Terrorism Has Come to Stay’ and ‘Insurgency Far From Over – Jonathan’, referring to them as inappropriate representation of the President’s remarks, which amounted to taking “extreme editorial liberties” with his comments.

The statement continued: “It is apparent that in their indecent haste to cast the most sensational and negative headlines, some editors never paused to consider that it would have been most absurd for a President whose administration has done so much to reverse the tide of terrorism, to publicly assert the contrary.”

“Interpreting those remarks, which are clearly in tandem with facts available to all objective observers of Nigeria’s war against terrorism, as an expression of defeat or helplessness, amounts to reckless scaremongering which can only serve the purpose of needlessly instigating fear among the populace and bolstering the confidence of criminal and unpatriotic elements,” Abati stated.

It insisted that President Jonathan simply highlighted the global challenge that terrorism has become as increasing source of concern in many countries. Therefore, in comparison to some of these countries, Nigeria has done reasonably well at reducing the rate of terrorist attacks within its territory.

The statement assured that the government, Armed Forces and security agencies will continue to build on the successes they have so far achieved against terrorists, insurgents and their sponsors.

Jonathan At Christmas Worship, Calls For More Prayers

President Goodluck Jonathan, today joined other Christian faithful to worship in one of the Anglican churches in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

The Church of the Advent plays host to the President and members of the first family every year and the 2013 service had all the elements of Christmas, from popular carols to songs of praise and thanksgiving.

The First Lady read the first Bible lesson from the book of Isaiah chapter 9, verses 2 and 7, while the President read the second lesson from the book of Hebrews.

The Primate of the Anglican Church, Nicholas Okoh, spoke about the joy and peace that Christ brought, as they affect Nigerians.

“Do not join anybody to cause trouble, because you may be a recipient of the evil of the trouble. Do not join anybody to cause confusion because we have nowhere to go.”

While reminding the congregation and all Nigerians of the need to shun being used as political pawns, he said: “some of you don’t have international passports, do you? And the people who are telling you to do this, do that do not only have international passports, they have bank accounts, and houses abroad; they can go and stay there and at the end of the whole matter they come back.”

President Jonathan, in his goodwill message after the session called on the Nigerian clergy not to allow politicians to plunge the country into chaos as they want to do.

The president cited examples of events in countries like South Sudan and Pakistan and pledged that his administration will continue to do its best to ensure that the country does not degenerate into crisis.

He made the promise especially now that bitter criticisms of his administration and what he called unwarranted letters appear to be the order of the day, when according to him “we the politicians begin to think about our next elections, doing what we ought not to do, making statements we are supposed not to make, and writing letters we are supposed not to write.”

The President added that the country does not belong to politicians alone and called on men of God to continue to pray for the reign of terror to stop.

Jesus’ Birth, Climax Of God’s Love For Mankind – Fayemi

Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has described the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ as the climax of God’s love for mankind.

The Governor in his Christmas message to the people of the state said that God used the birth of Christ to ensure the salvation of man from sin and rescue man from eternal perdition.

In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Olayinka Oyebode, the Governor advised the people of the state to emulate God’s love by showing love to fellow citizens regardless of their religious belief.

The Governor advised Ekiti people, especially Christians, to spend the Christmas season in sober reflection and self-examination of their relationship with their Creator.

While urging Christians to learn the lesson of humility as demonstrated in the birth of Jesus, Governor Fayemi noted that the birth of Jesus Christ in a manger demonstrated uncommon humility.

The Governor admonished them to use the season to share love and lend a helping hand to others, most especially the less privileged.

Describing this Christmas celebration as the last one to be celebrated before the 2014 governorship election, Governor Fayemi admonished the people of the state to pray for a peaceful and successful conduct of the polls.

He reiterated the readiness of his administration to continue to ensure peaceful coexistence of adherents of all religions in the state and offer them conducive atmosphere to practise their faiths.