Ogun Govt. Launches Groundwater Abstraction Scheme

The Ogun State Government, has launched the implementation of the groundwater abstraction scheme, aimed at providing the much needed regulatory intervention for sustainable use of water from such formations.

At a ceremony held at the Cultural Centre, kuto, Abeokuta, the state capital, the state Governor, Ibikunle Amosun, represented by his Deputy, Mrs Yetunde Onanuga, said this became imperative in order to provide a platform for data gathering.

Under the scheme, companies intending to commercialize ground water abstraction for agriculture and manufacturing purposes shall be licensed to withdraw groundwater, as being practiced in developed nations of the world.

“One of the major objectives of the water abstraction control scheme is to provide a platform for data gathering on the various groundwater abstraction facilities in the state, either existing ones or those to be drilled in the future.

“The implementation of the scheme will also provide for continuous monitoring of the quality of water coming out of the aquifers and the quality of the abstraction system.

“The information from such exercise will enable the state to proactively respond to identified area of potential risk through appropriate and timely policy strategic action plans”.

Speaking on behalf of some of the key stakeholders present at the occasion, the chairman of borehole association in the state pledged the unalloyed support of the association for the scheme.

“This is another initiative by the state government and it imperative on us that we must support this, we stand to derive maximum benefit from the scheme if all of us play our roles as expected”.

Water plays a critical and key role in human existence, used for personal hygiene, for domestic and industrial use Government over the years has not been able to meet up with the challenges of providing this essential commodity, hence the involvement of the private sector whose activities have in a way not been effectively regulated.

In effect of this, the state government, policy makers, water resource managers, water tanker operators, borehole drillers, industrialists and other end users are here to launch the implementation of water abstraction scheme in the state to provide platform for data gathering.

To ensure the success of the scheme, the state government said it is reviewing the existing legal frameworks in the state.

Rann Bombing: 54 Victims In Stable Condition, Government Official Says

Rann bombing, accidental bombing
Photo Credit: Reuters

Fifty-four victims of the Nigerian Air Force accidental bombing in Rann, Kala-Balge Local Council of Borno State are in stable conditions at different hospitals where they are receiving treatment, a government official said on Wednesday.

The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Haruna Mshelia, told reporters that the victims were receiving treatment at three hospitals located in Maiduguri.

Giving a breakdown of the locations of the 54 victims, Dr. Mshelia said ‎32 persons were receiving treatment at the State Specialist Hospital; 16 were being treated at Seven Division Military Hospital in Maimalari Barracks while six persons are hospitalised at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital.

The Commissioner said all the 54 hospitalised victims were in stable conditions, with medical experts from the State, humanitarian partners and the military attending to their health needs.

“It is still too early to give an accurate number of deaths because as at the time of issuing the update, evacuation of survivors is still ongoing with four helicopters provided by the United Nations and the Nigerian Air Force airlifting the victims,” he said.

Dr. Mshelia also told reporters that bodies were still being recovered.

The Commissioner said humanitarian partners like the MSF, International Committee of the Red Cross and Red Crescent, the United Nations and different stakeholders have been extremely dedicated to the emergency evacuation and medical response.

Meanwhile Governor Kashim Shettima has since morning deployed his Deputy, Usman Mamman Durkwa and the House of Representatives member, representing Kala-Balge, Bama, Dikwa and Ngala Federal Constituency of Borno State, Mamman Nur Sheriff among other officials to the scene of the incident at Rann, Headquarters of Kala-Balge Local Government Area in order to assess the situation and supervise evacuation of victims to Maiduguri.

The State Ministry of Health has already put in place an emergency medical response team to coordinate rehabilitation of victims, the statement said.

After the bombing, the military said it was a regrettable mistake.

The spokesman for the military Brigadier General Rabe Abubakar, confirmed the incident to Channels Television.

He explained that that it was an error deeply regretted by the military.

The military spokesman said the incident did not occur in an Internally Displaced Persons’ camp, as being reported by in some quarters but a settlement said to be occupied by civilians.

Brigadier General Abubakar explained that soldiers got information of movement of Boko Haram members in the Kala-balge area and deployed ground troops and air cover to tackle the terrorists.

According to him, it was the air support that mistakenly dropped the bomb.

Be Governor To All, Abubakar Bello Tells Edo State’s Obaseki

godwin-obasekiNiger State’s Governor, Abubakar Bello, has urged the newly sworn-in Governor of Edo State, Mr Godwin Obaseki, to operate an all-inclusive government that gives all Edo citizens a sense of belonging.

He believes such leadership ideal would fast-track development in the state.

A statement by the spokesman for the Governor, Jibrin Ndace, said the inauguration of Governor Godwin Obaseki and his deputy, Phillip Shuaibu, offered fresh hope for consolidation in the state.

The Governor advised Mr Obaseki to ensure that he would build on what he called ‘solid foundation’ already laid by former Governor Adams Oshoimhole.

Live Up To Your Vision

He pointed out that since the people of Edo state had opted for continuity, it was time to translate the confidence reposed in the APC-led government into improved social welfare and service delivery to the citizens.

The Governor, who expressed confidence in the capacity and ability of Mr Obaseki to meet the yearnings and aspirations of Edo people, enjoined him to live up to campaign promises of ‘EDO PEOPLE: Let’s GO Further, Together’, and APC Manifesto of Relief, Recovery and Reform, urging them to be magnanimous in victory.

“I urge you to live up to your vision of building ‘a modern and progressive Edo State where every citizen is empowered with opportunity to live life in its fullness.’ Above all, you must realise that you are now governor of all, irrespective of political, ideological, religious and ethnic differences,” the Governor said.

Governor Bello further commended the effort of former Comrade-Governor Oshiomhole and urged all stakeholders to rally round Governor Obaseki for the progress and development of the state.

Governor Obaseki, who was elected governor on the platform of the All Progressive Congress(APC) on September 29, was sworn on 12 November.

He is an alumni of the University of Ibadan (UI) and the Columbia University in the United states.

Ondo Election: AD Candidate, Olusola Oke Starts Campaign in Akure

Ondo Election: AD Candidate, Olusola Oke Starts Campaign in AkureAlliance for Democracy (AD) Candidate in the Ondo State governorship election, Olusola Oke and his deputy, Ganny Dauda, have been presented the flag of the party.

‎The event held at the Democracy Park in Akure, the state capital and was witnessed by leaders of the AD, including its National Leader, Senator Mojisoluwa Akinfenwa, the National Chairman, Joseph Avazi and other top officials of the party.

The National Legal Adviser of the party, Kehinde Aworele, who had been in court to challenge the emergence of Oke and his deputy was also present to tell supporters that there was no more crisis in AD.

“There was a court action based on the misunderstanding on the appropriateness of Chief Olusola Oke’s emergence and because his victory is sure we don’t want some people to go to court after his victory to challenge him.

“The fact that I am here addressing this mammoth crowd today shows that there is no more crisis in the party, no cracks within the party, we are one indivisible party.

“There are several means of getting a case out of court; by abandonment, by withdrawal and by discontinuance. There is no more case in court as we have resolved the issues,” he said.

In his address, the National Leader of AD, Senator Mojisoluwa Akinfenwa described Olusola Oke as the inheritor of the Awolowo mores.

He gave the assurance that when Oke is elected and forms his government, Ondo would have set itself on a path to rise again.

“For 13 years, we have been in the wilderness, now it has pleased God to give us a leader that is capable of putting Ondo back on tracks.

“If you look at the PDP, it is full of crises, people deceive people, they are at each other’s throats. The APC too is not faring better, they are an amalgam of strange bed fellows who cannot deliver on their promises.

“But we are happy today that the party of Papa Obafemi Awolowo, that of Papa Adekunle Ajasin and Papa Adebayo Adefarati is here and I want you all to vote for the AD.

“If you vote for Olusola Oke, he will replicate all those good programmes of old, he will revamp our education, bring back the revival of our agricultural sector, education shall also be brought back to reckoning,” the AD leader assured.

Earlier in his short remarks, the AD National Chairman, Joseph Avazi said that the AD was poised to form the next government given the spontaneous show of love for a party that merely came into reckoning in barely two months.

According to him, a new dawn is now breaking in Ondo State and AD is set to bring back the lost glory of the Sunshine State. We have ruled this state before, this is our second coming and we shall not disappoint you.

In his acceptance speech, Olusola Oke promised that under his watch, Ondo State would be better and the people would thrive under his administration.

“Some people have been out on campaigns of calumny against me that I will abandon most of the projects I will meet on ground. I want to assure you all that we are not out to destroy whatever we meet but to build on whatever we meet on ground.”‎

“The priority of my government shall be the good of the people of Ondo State. I greet our mothers, we shall ensure we give you life abundance, we shall give you money to trade. Our workers shall receive their salaries and other entitlements as and when due.

“Our youths shall be gainfully employed as we shall wake up all our dead industries and make them functional again.

“I will be in a hurry to deliver good governance, all our dead industries will be completed in a hurry. We shall all laugh and be glad that we voted the best party, the Alliance for Democracy, into power on November 26, 2016, “Olusola Oke assured the cheering crowd.

While further affirming that he would be dedicated to the people’s  welfare, be accountable to them at all times, he pleaded with the people to ensure that they all come out on November 26, 2016 to vote for the Alliance for Democracy.

Alleged Senate Rules Forgery: Saraki, Others’ Trial Stalled

trial, senate president, deputyThe trial of the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki , his deputy, Senator Ike Ekwerenmadu and two others, has yet again been stalled.

This follows the Federal Government’s failure to commence trial on the two counts of forgery proffered against them.

At the resumed hearing before the Federal Capital Territory High Court in Jabi, counsel to the Federal Government, Aliyu Umar told Justice Yusuf Halilu that he was not prepared to proceed with the trial.

According to him, a motion dated September 26, questioning the jurisdiction of the court, had just been served on him and he would need time to adequately respond.

Mr Umar, who led the Federal Government’s Legal Team, informed the court that the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation did not hand him any other motion related to the case.

But Justice Halilu pointed out to him that similar motions had been pending since June 22.

The Federal Government’s counsel consequently applied for an adjournment to enable him put his house in order and also to better prepare his reaction to the motion filed by all the defendants.

Senator Saraki and Senator Ekweremadu had pleaded not guilty to charges of alleged criminal conspiracy and forgery of the Senate Standing Rules, 2015.

The two Senate leaders had been arraigned before the Federal High Court along with a former Clerk of the National Assembly, Mr Salisu Maikasuwa and his deputy, Mr Benedict Efeturi.

All four accused persons pleaded not guilty to the two-count charge.

The Court consequently granted bail to the accused persons.

Justice Halilu asked the them to produce two reasonable sureties who must be Nigerian men or women.

He stated that the sureties must own properties in Asokoro, Maitama, Wuse II or Garki areas in the Federal Capital Territory.

Police Inaugurate ‘Eminent Persons’ Forum To Tackle Crime In Ekiti

Ibrahim Idris, Police Eminent PersonsThe Nigeria Police Force has adopted a monthly interface with prominent persons and stakeholders in Ekiti State to address security challenges and crime.

The eminent Persons forum was an idea of the present Inspector General of Police, Mr Ibrahim Idris, aimed at achieving lasting peace in Nigerian states.

Inaugurating the forum, the State Police Commissioner, Mr Etop James, who was represented by his Deputy, Sagir Abubakar, said the initiative was to involve multifaceted strata of the society, especially the respected and experienced leaders.

He said it was part of the community policing strategies aimed at cross-fertilising ideas and advancing a safer and secured society.

The forum is expected to discuss security issues, with practical step that will involve the people with the aim of enshrining community policing for effective security in the society.

The forum, comprising of traditional rulers, religious and community leaders, retired public servants, leaders of market women associations, youth leaders and leaders of transporters’ union, will meet on monthly basis with resolutions passed to the police high command for deliberations.

The inauguration also witnessed comments from some traditional rulers and relevant stakeholders, as they all gave various suggestions on the importance of such gathering towards having a secured society.

Overcome Grinding Poverty, Former UN Under-Secretary Tells Nigerian Govt

 address povertyThe Nigerian government has been asked to take urgent steps to overcome grinding poverty by growing the economy by creating jobs with particular attention on manufacturing and agriculture.

Presenting an address as the Chancellor of the Kwara State University during its 4th Convocation Ceremony held on Saturday, a former Under-Secretary to United Nations, Professor Ibrahim Gambari, stressed that revamping the economy would ensure that the government’s change mantra would be meaningful.

Professor Gambari also called for positive attitudinal change among Nigerians, stressing that for the change agenda to be sustained it must not depend on one person but must involve a collective endeavour to open a new chapter in national life.

Also at the occasion, the Executive Secretary National University Commission, Professor Julius Eho, who was represented by Professor Oladipi Aina, called on universities to adopt creative funding mechanism for alternative diversified revenues to meet challenges arising from declining public funding.

He also stressed that new universities to be established would be based on merit in accordance with global best practices and quality assurance.

The Kwara State Governor represented by his Deputy, Mr Peter Kishira, explained that for quality education to be achieved and sustained, stakeholders must as a matter of necessity rise to the challenges facing the sector by breaking away from the theoretical and focusing on practical.

Efforts Ongoing To Resolve Crisis In Edo State House Of Assembly

Edo-House-of-Assembly-crisisThe Edo State government is making efforts to resolve the crisis that erupted after the impeachment of the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Victor Edoror and his Deputy, Mr Bright Osayande.

Shortly after the impeachment of the two principal officers of the House, the 16 members, who formed the bulk of those behind the impeachment process, were sighted at the Government House and after a short time, the impeached speaker and lawmakers loyal to him joined his colleagues.

They held a closed-door meeting with the Governor of Edo State, Adams Oshiomhole and that meeting lasted well into the night.

Trouble started on Tuesday after 16 of the 24 members of the House impeached the Speaker and installed Mrs Elizabeth Ativie, the only female lawmaker in the house in his stead.

Mr Edoror, however, reconvened the Assembly with eight members loyal to him, insisting that he remains the speaker.

He claimed that the move by the lawmakers was unconstitutional, insisting that the House cannot convene without him.

“I was not there when they started. Can you start a sitting without me.

“They never put an allegation before me. I have not heard from them and I think they are frivolous allegations if they are so started,” he said.

The lawmakers had accused both principal officers of incompetence and high-handedness.

About two years ago, lawmakers of the Edo State House of Assembly had a crisis that resulted in a fight.

Governor Seriake Dickson Takes Oath Of Office

dicksonGovernor Seriake Dickson has offered an olive branch to the opposition political party to join him in what he calls consolidation of his achievements of the first four years as Governor of the state.

He made this revelation at the Samson Siasia Sports Complex in Yenagoa as he and his Deputy, Rear Admiral Johnson Jonah (Rtd), took the oath of office for another four years.

Governor Dickson thanked Bayelsans for the overwhelming support during the elections.

He assured the people that he would consolidate on the gains of his first tenure and also ensure more rural development.

He promised to do more in the areas of road development and electrification of communities yet to benefit from his light up the state programmes.

Chief Judge of the state, Kate Abiri, presided over the oath taking ceremony.

Members of the Nigerian Police who wore their ceremonial regalia performed the ceremonial parade while the Governor inspected the guard of honour.

The programme, which many say was well attended, had all PDP governors in attendance.

The acting Chairman of the party, Uche Secondus, members of the National Assembly elected on the platform of the PDP, traditional rulers and other citizens were also present at the event.

Delta Governor Signs Bill Ensuring Access To Quality Medical Care

DeltaThe Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, has signed into law the Delta State Health Insurance Commission (DSHIC) bill which provides easy access to medical health-care to all Deltans.

The bill was presented to the Governor by the Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly, Honourable Monday Igbuya, accompanied by his Deputy, Honourable Friday Osanebi, Clark of the House, Mrs Lyna Ochulor and other principal officers of the Assembly.

Others at the venue were the Commissioner for Health, Nicholas Azinge, other top government functionaries and executive of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).

Giving a speech at the event, the Commissioner for Health, pointed out that good health was very important in achieving the Okowa agenda for Deltans and that the DSHIC Act would culminate in the provision of Contributory Health Insurance Scheme for all Deltans.

While calling for enlightenment campaigns for Deltans to buy into the programme, the Executive Secretary of the NHIS, Mr Akingbade Olufemi, reiterated that Deltans were in for a prosperous future, as good health had been assured them.

Ondo Flags Off Immunization Campaign Against Measles

MeaslesThe Ondo State Government has flagged off the 2016 campaign against Measles, a childhood killer disease.

The 3-day immunization exercise is targeted at children from the age of 9 months to 5 years.

The flag off ceremony was held at the premises of the State Specialist Hospital in Akure, the state capital.

Governor Olusegun Mimiko, who was represented by his Deputy, Alhaji Lasisi Oluboyo, gave the assurance that all eligible children in the state would be immunized against measles.

The State Commissioner for Health, Dayo Adeyanju,‎ urged the gathering to be aware and as well spread the good news that measles is preventable, treatable and curable.

He also gave the assurance that deaths by measles can be reduced by 79%.

A Director at the Ondo State Primary‎ Health Care Development Board, Dr. Yetunde Olagbuji, expressed the readiness of health workers in all the 18 Local Government Areas in the state for the 3-day exercise.

The exercise organised by Ondo State Government, is to complement the National Immunization Schedule‎ by the Federal Ministry of Health.

Seriake Dickson Receives Certificate Of Return

dicksonBayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson, has received his Certificate of Return from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The certificate was presented to the Governor and his Deputy, John Jonah, by a National Commissioner of INEC, Dr Mustapha Lekki, having been declared winners of the governorship election in the state.

Mr Lekki praised the dedication of the staff of the commission in working tirelessly to birth a credible election.

Receiving the certificate, Governor Dickson said his victory in the just concluded election has saved the nation from sliding into a one party state.

The Governor, who dedicated his victory to God and the people of the state, praised their resilience, describing it as the bedrock on which his victory is founded.

Governor Dickson promised to deliver more dividends of democracy during his second tenure.

The Governor also assured victims of electoral violence in the just concluded polls of his administration’s commitment to alleviating their plight.