Niger State Hosts First Ever Christmas Carol Festival In Minna

Niger State Hosts First Ever Christmas Carol Festival In MinnaThe Niger State Government in partnership with its Ministry of Information, has organized the first ever Christmas carol festival with the theme ‘The Dynamics of Praise and Worship’.

The festival witnessed presentations from different choir groups representing various tribes such as: Nupe, Gbagi, Hausa, Igbo, Tiv, Yoruba, Kamokun and Calabar.

The festival which was its maiden edition also witnessed a large turnout of Christians and surprisingly, Muslims in the state.

Asides signifying oneness amongst the two major religions in the state, top dignitaries were also in attendance and they were full of praise for the Governor, Abubakar Bello, who despite not being a Christian, chose to show concern to the Christian community in the state.

Speaking through his representative, the Commissioner for Justice and Attorney General of Niger State, Nasara Danmallam, said that the Governor was full of praise to the Christian community and appreciated their level of understanding and peaceful coordination amongst the non-Christians in the state.

While promising the sustenance of the festival, he used the opportunity in wishing all Christians in the state and Nigeria in general a peaceful celebration.

The convener of the Christmas carol festival, Commissioner for Information Culture and Tourism, Hon. Jonathan Vatsa could not hide his feelings as he was also full of praise to the Governor.

He also assured the Christian community that the best was yet to come and called on them to come together in unity.

He wished every Christian in the state a happy and peaceful celebration.

Niger State Gov. Presents 108bn Naira Budget For 2017

Niger State Gov. Presents 108bn Naira Budget For 2017The Niger State Governor, Abubakar Sani Bello, has presented 2017 fiscal year budget proposal of over 108 billion Naira to the state House of Assembly for passage.

The budget tagged ‘Budget of Consolidation’ is N22.9 billion and 21.27% more than the 2016 budget.

Governor Bello, while presenting the budget to the members of the state House of Assembly on Friday, said that the proposed budget comprises of a recurrent expenditure of N48,047,960,278 which is 44.45% of the budget and Capital Expenditure of N60,026,337,973 which is 55.55% of the budget size.

The Governor stated that the budget would be generated through Statutory Allocation of N50,695,206,724, Value Added Tax (VAT) of N8,793,474,040, Internally Generated Revenue of N12,403,874,117, Paris Club loan N13,400,000,000 and Capital Receipts of N22,781,770,379.

He further said that the budget would focus on Youth and Women Empowerment as they constitute a large part of the population; completion of projects; enhancement of IGR; re-introduction of teachers’ colleges; transformation of education and development of waterworks.

The Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Ahmed Marafa, in his remark, said that the lawmakers would ensure the passage of the bill in a shortest possible time and would intensify effort in monitoring the 2017 budget performance so as to provide social amenities to the people in the state.

The Commissioner of Information, Culture and Tourism, Hon Jonathan Vatsa,  while reacting to the budget presented by the Governor to the state House of Assembly, says that the Governor has good intentions for the people of the state focusing on youths and women empowerment and re-introduction of teachers colleges, transformation of education in the state.

Niger Governor Approves Revocation Of Land Allocations Within Zuma

Niger state governorThe Niger State Governor, Abubakar  Bello, has approved the revocation of all allocations of parcels of land around the neighbourhood of the famous Zuma Rock in Tafa Local Government Area of  the state.

The Commissioner of Land and Housing, Mr Haliru Jikantoro, in a memo to the Governor on Monday, sought approval for the revocation of the land within Zuma Rock.

Mr Jikantoro explained that Governor Bello gave the approval in exercising the powers conferred on him in consonance with the provisions of Section 28, sub-section 2 (b) of the Land Use Act of 1978.

He noted that the Governor’s action was based on the strategic location of the area, the need to preserve the natural endowment for collective benefits and above all, in the overriding interest of the public.

The Commissioner listed seven beneficiaries with a total of 248 hectares of land  affected.


Mr Jikantoro also directed all affected beneficiaries to return the grant or Certificates of Occupancy in their possession and settle amount outstanding within three months from the date of the revocation.

He, however, stated that beneficiaries with proof of un-exhausted improvement on their revoked plots may be entitled to compensation or alternative allocation of plot where appropriate.

Meanwhile, the State Commissioner for Information, Tourism and Culture, Mr Jonathan Vatsa, warned those engaged in commercial activities such as the local crushing and quarrying of granite behind the famous Zuma Rock to stop forthwith or face the wrath of the law pointing out that such parcels of land belong to his Ministry.

Agriculture: Niger State Government To Re-establish Grains Board

NigerThe Niger State government is re-establishing a Grains Board in order to help farmers reduce poverty in the state.

This was made known in a statement by the Niger State Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Jonathan Vatsa, on Sunday in Minna, the state’s capital.

With the economic challenges faced by the country, Mr Vatsa expressed belief that the board would also create more jobs for the teeming youths.

He said that the board would help to checkmate people who act as middle men that are in the habit of exploiting farmers in the state.

The statement, while calling on the people of the state, especially farmers to embrace the board, stated that the Niger State government had made agriculture one of its topmost priorities since the fall of oil price.

The Commissioner promised that the State government would put everything in place to encourage farmers to achieve their desired goals, assuring the farmers that the government would buy their produce from them.

He said that the three senatorial zones in the state would be identified with a particular crop and they would be assisted to produce such crops to attract international markets.

“Zone ‘A’ is known for the production of rice and banana, zone ‘B’ produces yam and zone ‘C’ is into cotton and rice, which at the end of the day will generate enough revenue to develop the state,” he said.

Mr Vasta admonished the people to go into mechanised farming, adding that the government would simplify ways of farming without stress.

He said that the government has practically demonstrated its commitment in agriculture, youth and women empowerment as contained in the budget recently presented to the State Assembly.

The Commissioner said that Niger State government had resolved to embark on people oriented programmes and projects tailored towards ensuring that the people get value for the lean finances of government.

He promised that the government would constantly engage the people by adequately informing them of its programmes and policy which are in conformity with the direct principle of good governance and rule of law.

Niger House Of Assembly Confirms Eight Commissioners

niger state house of assemblyThe Niger State House of Assembly on Wednesday, confirmed eight persons nominated as commissioners by the Niger State Governor, Abubakar Sani Bello.

The Speaker, Niger State House of Assembly, Honorable Ahmed Marafa, after opening the envelope, said that the Governor submitted the list in line with Section 2 (192) of the 1999 constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.

Those that made the first batch list, are Kabiru Abbas Musa,  Dan Mallam Masara, Ramatu Mohammed Yar’Adua, Mamman Musa, Jonathan Vatsa, Fatima Mudugu and Mustapha Jubrin.

The Speaker further stated that Governor Bello said in the correspondence that the list would come in two batches explaining that the next names would soon be made available to the State Assembly.

APC Rejects Results Of Niger East Senatorial By-Election

APCThe Niger state chapter of All progressive congress (APC) has rejected the results of the just concluded Niger East Senatorial bye Elections.

Speaking at a Press conference in Minna, the party candidate in the election, Mr David Umuru, noted that the exercise was characterised with serious malpractices perpetrated by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

He alleged that money and material such as shoes and wrappers were used openly to buy votes in many polling units.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Sunday declared Dr Shem Zagbai of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) winner of the Niger East Senatorial by-election after a re-run.

The August 30 by-election was declared inconclusive due to electoral malpractice in some polling units.

The re-run was held in polling units in Bosso, Chanchaga, Munya, Paikoro, Rafi and Shiroro Local Government Areas on Saturday.

Returning Officer for the election, Prof. Morenikeji Olakonmi, who announced the results in Minna, said that Zagbai scored 92, 056 votes against Mr David Umaru of the All Progressives Congress (APC) who polled 87, 405 votes.

Isa Bello of All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and Mr Abdulahi Diko of Social Democratic Party (SDP) scored 2,185 and 419 votes respectively.

State Spokesperson of the APC, Mr. Jonathan Vatsa, had on Sunday rejected the results, saying the result announced by the INEC at the early hours of Sunday was “unacceptable” to the party.

He also said though the party was currently studying the result and will make its position known, but “for now the result is unacceptable”.

“Though the party is yet to take a decision on the outcome of the by-election, all I know for is that the result announced by INEC is not acceptable and in due course the official position of the party will be announced.

“The next line of action on the by-election will be taken after consultations at the state level. We are also in touch with the national headquarters of the party and our position will be made known”.