The Akwa Ibom State Commissioner of Police, Mr Andrew Amiengheme, has ordered the immediate arrest and detention of a police officer, ASP Joweigha Michael over the death of a prospective NYSC member, Kubiat Isaac.
Police Public Relations Officer, Akwa Ibom State Command, Mr Odiko MacDon disclosed this in a statement made available to newsmen in Uyo at the weekend.
According to MacDon, the CP also ordered that an autopsy be conducted to determine the cause of death.
Isaac who was a graduate of the University of Uyo, awaiting enrollment into the NYSC programme in November, was arrested and was said to have been in police custody when he died.
The incident has since sparked public outcry, especially across social media, with many calling for justice.
Giving details of the incident, the Akwa Ibom PPRO said: “the attention of the Akwa Ibom State Police Command has been drawn to news making the rounds on social media that one Kubiat Isaac who was arrested at Eni Stores was beaten to death by a Police Personnel.
“It is expedient to state that the said Kubiat Isaac was being investigated for the offence of suspected armed robbery and cultism and had been evading arrest for some time. He was traced to and arrested at Eni Stores on the 29th of August, 2021 and taken for questioning.
“On arrival at the Division, the DPO ordered that he be transferred to the State CID where the case was pending for a discreet investigation. Unfortunately, the Suspect said he was sick. He was taken to the Police Clinic for treatment but gave up the ghost in the process.
“The Commissioner of Police, CP Andrew Amiengheme has ordered for an autopsy to be conducted in order to determine the cause of death. The CP who has great respect for fundamental rights notes that contemporary policing isn’t about torture and should not be tolerated, hence, has vowed that a diligent and transparent investigation will be conducted.
“To actualize this, the CP ordered for the immediate arrest and detention for questioning of one ASP Joweigha Michael who preliminary investigation revealed was the officer who carried out the arrest of the said Kubiat”.
The Commissioner of Police condoled with the family of the deceased, assuring them that the full weight of the law would be brought to bear and the officer would be held accountable for his actions if found culpable.
Twenty-five prospective Corps Members, including a nursing mother have tested positive for the coronavirus disease at the Gombe State NYSC camp located in Amada – Akko Local government Area of the state.
The Commissioner for Health, Habu Dahiru confirmed this to Channels Television on Sunday via a telephone interview.
He disclosed that the 25 prospective corps members were tested between the last 3 days and have been moved to the state-owned Infectious Disease Centre in Kwadon.
“Out of 1,291 that were tested 25 persons turned positive by Polymerase Chain Reaction, one is a nursing mother” the Commissioner stated.
“For the sake of coordination the incident management system in Gombe, chaired by myself has conducted a meeting at the Public Health Emergency Operation Centre and we have also moved as required by the guideline to Kwadon Isolation centre.”
On the welfare arrangement of the corps members, Dahiru noted that the state government has made provisions for it at the isolation centre, as well as their medication and security.
He also assured that the patients will be managed at the isolation centre until they test negative and are made to join other corps members, adding that the state government has also put machinery on ground to avoid fear and trauma among them.
The Commissioner added, “We have also provided psychosocial support because some of them may be asymptomatic and may wonder why they are kept there. So we had to educate them that they are at risk to the general public because unconsciously they will be infecting others.
“We have introduced sporting activities such as football, volley ball and also activated satellite dishes with televisions to keep them entertained.”
With the new Delta Variant in Nigeria, Dahiru asked members of the public to observe the protocols, noting that the virus is still raging.
He also called on residents of the state not to relent on the use of the non-pharmaceutical interventions to avert further spread of COVID-19 in the state.
“We have to continue testing, so that the more they come, they get verified and everybody that comes into the camp must be tested.
“We are only telling the community in Gombe that there’s Covid-19 still in transmission and they need to observe the non-pharmaceutical measures and when vaccines are available, we urge them to avail themselves for inoculations,” the commissioner stated further.
Akwa Ibom State Governor, Udom Emmanuel has commiserated with the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and families of prospective corps members from University of Uyo who lost their lives on their way to Camp in Katsina State.
Governor Emmanuel expressed his grief while receiving NYSC Director-General, Brig. Gen Shuaibu Ibrahim who was on a condolence visit to the Government House in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital.
The governor was saddened by the death of the Corps members who lost their lives in an auto crash, noted that as a father, it is painful to lose a child after investing much in raising them educationally and otherwise.
“It is a very sad moment, and a black Wednesday. Well, we cannot question God when things like this happen. It’s God that knows everything and He’s in control of everything, but our heartfelt condolences will always and ever go out to the parents and the families of those corps members,” he said.
“I call them corps members because they’ve been called and the have their call-up letters, so I won’t say prospective I say those Corps members who were on their way to orientation camp and unfortunately this has happened. Our prayers will always go to these our beloved sons that lost their lives.
“I received with heavy heart because I could feel the pains as a father, not after you have finished sponsoring your child to primary, secondary and then up to university and then on his way to NYSC camp and this happened.”
He also thanked the NYSC boss for his prompt reaction to the incidence and condolence visit to the state and families of the corps members who lost their lives, describing him as a good shepherd who has demonstrated love and concern over the well-being of his corps members in the country.
The governor vowed to clamp down on any transport agency that students at night on long distances, lamenting that such sad occurrence would have been avoided if the transport agency was not careless and the driver not fatigued on the wheels.
In his remark, Brig. Gen Shuaibu Ibrahim who led the NYSC delegation described the incident as a sad moment for the scheme and leaving the affected families devastated.
He prayed that God would console Akwa Ibom State and the families who lost their wards on their way to camp.
“The entire NYSC family was completely devastated and of course the good people of Akwa Ibom because we lost those corps members,” Shuaibu said.
“Having received the clarion call, they were patriotic Nigerians and were ready to put in their best to the service of the country but unfortunately we lost them. On behalf of the NYSC management, corps members and staff, please accept our heartfelt condolences.”
The affected prospective corps members are; Asuquo Miracle Effiong, Ekikoh Stella Sylvester, Ezuruike Coleman Chikwuado, Upere Innocent Peter and Akpan Victor Joseph.
President Muhammadu Buhari has condoled with the families of the deceased members of the National Youth Service Corps who died on Wednesday in a road accident on Abaji/Kwali expressway, Abuja.
The President in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina sympathised with the families of the victims as well as the board, management, and staff of the NYSC.
President Buhari reaffirmed that the welfare and security of young Nigerians who are called to serve the nation will continue to be a top priority of the government, while the sacrifices of the fallen youths will remain etched in history.
The Director of Press and Public Relations NYSC Adenike Adeyemi, had in the early hours of Wednesday confirmed the incident via a statement.
He commiserated with the government and people of Imo and Akwa Ibom states, where the deceased persons are from, saying “It is with a deep sense of sorrow that the Director-General, Management, and the entire NYSC family commiserate with the families of five Prospective Corps Members that lost their lives in a ghastly motor accident at about 2 am Wednesday, 28th July 2021, along Abaji/ Kwali Expressway,” the statement partly read.
“Indeed, it has been a black Wednesday for the NYSC family. May God grant the families and loved ones the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss. May their souls rest in peace.”
“It is with a deep sense of sorrow that the Director-General, Management, and the entire NYSC family commiserate with the families of five Prospective Corps Members that lost their lives in a ghastly motor accident at about 2 am Wednesday, 28th July 2021, along Abaji/ Kwali Expressway,” the statement partly read.
“Indeed, it has been a black Wednesday for the NYSC family. May God grant the families and loved ones the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss. May their souls rest in peace.”
NYSC Director-General, Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim prayed that the families and loved ones of the deceased will be granted the fortitude to bear the loss.
Taraba State Governor, Darius Ishaku, says that as part of the country’s efforts to combat insecurity, the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) should be extended to two years, and members be allowed to undergo military.
The governor who was a guest on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Wednesday, also said the scheme should be extended to two years with the first involving core military training.
NYSC which runs for a year was designed by the Nigerian government in 1973 to encourage nation-building among graduates.
But the governor believes that an extension of the duration would better equip graduates with self-defence techniques especially at a time like this when national insecurity is now rife.
“The NYSC I will say should be two years. One year for compulsory military training and the other year for the social works that they are doing now so that anybody who graduates as an NYSC person can know how to handle the gun and defend himself,” he said.
“Just as it is done in Israel, Lebanon, etc, you must engage your citizens to be proactive. When you cannot provide security, you must allow the people to protect themselves.”
The governor also reacted to the insurgency and banditry that have ravaged the northeast and northwest regions of the country, noting he has repeatedly asked security agencies who the sponsors of the criminal elements are.
When asked if the issue has political undertones, the governor replied in the affirmative.
Nigeria has been experiencing a series of security threats ranging from terrorism, banditry, militancy, cultism among others in several parts of the country.
The country has been battling terrorism for more than a decade with thousands killed and hundreds of others displaced.
The Islamic State of West African Province (ISWAP) split from the jihadist group Boko Haram in 2016 and has since become a dominant threat in Nigeria, attacking troops and bases while killing and kidnapping passengers at bogus checkpoints.
The Federal Government has approved automatic employment in the Federal Civil Service of one graduate each from the families of the 10 corps members killed in the post-election violence, in Bauchi State, in 2011.
Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare disclosed this on Tuesday during the inauguration of the National Governing Board of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
He added that President Buhari also approved scholarships to the four children of Mr Adowei Elliot, a Delta State indigene killed during the post-election violence.
“It has become an integral part of our national development and unity architecture. Nigerian youth continue to benefit from this scheme.
“As a sign of the Federal Government’s unflinching commitment to the NYSC, President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the automatic employment of 10 direct siblings of the diseased NYSC members, who lost their lives during the 2011 post-election violence in Bauchi State.
“Mr. President also approved appropriate scholarships to the four children of Mr Adowei Elliot,” the Sports Minister said.
The 10 corps members were reported killed in Bauchi State following the 2011 election won by former President Goodluck Jonathan.
The Minister called on the board members to come up with initiatives that will make the NYSC more impactful and increasingly endearing to all Nigerians.
He added that the inauguration of the Board is taking place at a time when all hands must be on deck to further strengthen the NYSC Scheme and charged both the returning and new members to continue to get acquainted with the provisions of the NYSC Act.
He assured that President Buhari and the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development are committed to the continued success of the Scheme.
See the full statement below…
ADDRESS BY THE HONOURABLE MINISTER OF YOUTH AND SPORTS DEVELOPMENT, MR SUNDAY DARE, AT THE INAUGURATION OF THE NYSC NATIONAL GOVERNING BOARD ON TUESDAY, 15TH JUNE, 2021 PROTOCOL It is my pleasure to address you on this occasion of the formal inauguration of the new National Governing Board of the National Youth Service Corps. Let me begin by congratulating the Chairman and Board Members on this unique opportunity to make further contributions to the progress and development of our dear country. I am also delighted at the re-appointment of the Chairman of the immediate past Board, Ambassador Fatima Balla Abubakar, along with most of its members into the new Board in the same capacities. Indeed, this is an eloquent testimony to the confidence of His Excellency, Mr. President in your performance. 2. Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, I wish to reaffirm the full commitment of the Federal Government to the success of NYSC’s mandate. There is no gainsaying the fact that the Scheme has made enormous contributions to the promotion of national unity and integration as well as the acceleration of development in various spheres, including education, health, infrastructural development, sports and social services, amongst others. NYSC, therefore, remains a great source of pride to the Government and the entire people of our dear country. Without doubt, all well-meaning Nigerians strongly recognize the continued relevance of the Scheme, especially at this critical period of our national life. 3. The inauguration of this Board is taking place at a time when all hands must be on deck to further strengthen the Scheme. This underscores the enormity of the task before you. It is pleasing to note that the Chairman and members, who were in the immediate past Board, are adequately informed about the objectives, programmes, achievements and challenges of the Scheme. It is my ardent hope that you will work collectively to build on the successes made by the former Board. In particular, I charge both the returning and new members to continue to get acquainted with the provisions of the NYSC Act, especially as they relate to the roles and responsibilities of major stakeholders, including the Board. 4. Distinguished Chairman and Board Members, I wish to use this unique occasion to once again affirm the satisfaction of the Federal Government with the achievements of the present Management of NYSC, which has enhanced the visibility of the Scheme. Accordingly, I commend the Director-General, the Management team, Staff and Corps members, whose collective efforts resulted in the successes recorded. I expect that members of the Board will deploy the political influence at their disposal to strengthen all levels of engagements aimed at sustaining the legacies of the scheme through continuous engagement with policy makers at various levels. 5. I also commend the excellent synergy between the immediate past Board and the Management, which contributed to the remarkable achievements recently made by the Scheme. I wish to stress the need for the new Board to sustain the harmonious working relationship in line with the expectation of Mr. President. For emphasis, all your actions must be guided by extant regulations. At all times, your major pre-occupation should be the success of NYSC and, by extension, the success of this Administration. 6. I am confident that you will work together to come up with initiatives that will make the Scheme even more impactful and increasingly endearing to all Nigerians. However, it is important to highlight the following guidelines as they affect roles, responsibilities and privileges of Members of the Governing Board as follows: i. The Board shall set up operational and administrative policies in accordance with Government policy directives and supervise the implementation of such policies; ii. The Board shall not be involved directly in the day-to-day management of the Scheme; iii. The Board must only operate on part-time basis in accordance with extant rules that forbids allocation of official quarters to Members on a permanent basis and use of official vehicles by Members on a permanent basis; iv. Estacode allowances are only for overseas travels approved by the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and the Supervising Ministry; v. No Member of the Board shall be allowed to retain official vehicle for use on a permanent basis; vi. On the other hand, the core functions of the Chief Executive Officer include the day-to-day administration of the NYSC. Furthermore, the Board shall perform the following oversight responsibilities: i. Ensure that long-term interest of the Federal Government of Nigeria is served; ii. Work with the Management to determine the Scheme’s mission and long term strategy; iii. Promote sustainable and cost-efficient activities of the NYSC; iv. Establish and promote the objectives and integrity of the Scheme; v. Monitor the performance of the Management in achieving set objectives of the Scheme; and vi. Request appropriate reports from Management. 7. I consider it appropriate to use this forum to once again endorse the proposal made by stakeholders for the establishment of the National Youth Service Corps Trust Fund. I am confident that such an initiative will go a long way in strengthening the Scheme and deepen its impact. Among other benefits, the Fund will make the NYSC Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development programme more functional. It will, especially, serve as a sustainable source of providing start-up capital for the trained Corps members to actualize their business plans and in turn employ more Nigerians. Therefore, I appeal to all and sundry to support the actualization of the proposal. The NYSC Scheme will be sustained. It has become an integral part of our national development and unity architecture. Nigerian youth continue to benefit from this scheme. As a sign of the Federal Government’s unflinching commitment to the NYSC, President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the automatic employment of 10 direct siblings of the diseased NYSC members, who lost their lives during the 2011 post-election violence in Bauchi State. Mr. President also approved appropriate scholarships to the four children of Mr. Adowei Elliot. 8. In conclusion, I wish to reaffirm the unflinching support of His Excellency, Mr. President, and the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development for both the National Governing Board and Management of the NYSC towards the continued success of the Scheme. 9. I now have the pleasure to formally inaugurate the NYSC National Governing Board. Once again, I congratulate you and, as you set out to discharge this important national assignment, I pray the Almighty God to guide you at all times. 10. Thank you and God bless
The Director-General of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim has called on Nigerians to shun division and embrace unity by letting the spirit of NYSC live in them.
This comes amid secessionist agitations in the southeast and southwest regions of the country leading to the latest attacks on security agents and their facilities in the region.
Speaking during an interview on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, the NYSC DG said Nigerians should dwell on their experience in NYSC orientation camps where they lived together in unity with fellow corps from various tribes.
“Cast your mind back to that scenario and let live together. We have no other country except Nigeria. We must be patriotic, put our hands together and see how we can move the country forward. Let the spirit of NYSC live in us.
“If there’s no NYSC what would have happened to our country? There’s no country without its challenges,” he said.
The NYSC boss also noted that the NYSC oath and pledge of unity is binding not only during the service year and appealed for Nigerians to allow peaceful co-existence.
“If we go through the NYSC oath – it is binding even after the NYSC year. I want to appeal to Nigerians to always cast their minds back and think about their lifestyle on NYSC orientation camp where your bunkmate is Igbo while you are a Hausa man while the other person is from Delta.
“If you go to NYSC camp, nobody is talking about Biafra or Arewa because they are united and that is what NYSC is established to promote.”
Calls for secession have become widespread in the southeast and southwest regions of the country.
In the southwest, Sunday ‘Igboho’ Adeyemo who rose to prominence earlier in the year after he issued a quit notice to herders in Oyo State accused of crimes, is leading calls for the creation of a Yoruba nation, threatening to disrupt the 2023 polls.
In the Southeast, IPOB had equally renewed campaigns for the independence of the region with clashes between the secessionist groups and Nigeria’s security forces making headlines.
A member of the House of Representatives from Rivers State, Awaji-Inombek Abiante, is proposing a bill to repeal the National Youth Service Corps Act.
He noted that the NYSC was established to encourage and develop common ties among the Nigerian youths, promote national unity, as well as develop the youths and the country into a great and dynamic economy.
The lawmaker, who represents Andoni-Opobo/Nkoro Federal Constituency, however, lamented that the programme has failed to address the essence of its establishment after several decades.
He decried that several reform efforts have also not yielded desired results but have continued to be a drain on the nation’s scarce resources and exposed families to several nightmares, and even loss of loved ones after so much investment.
Abiante stressed the need to call for the repeal of the law establishing the programme on nine grounds.
He noted the incessant loss of lives of innocent corps members in some parts of the country to banditry, religious extremism, and ethnic violence, as well as the kidnapping of corps members at their places of primary assignment and in transit.
According to the lawmaker, public and private agencies are no longer recruiting able and qualified Nigerian youths, thus relying heavily on the availability of corps members who are not being well remunerated and get discarded with impunity at the end of their service year without any hope of being gainfully employed.
Other grounds listed by the lawmaker are highlighted below:
Due to insecurity across the country, the National Youth Service Corps Management now give considerations to posting corps members to their geo-political zone, thus defeating one of the objectives of setting up the service corps i.e. developing common ties among the Nigerian youths and promote national unity and integration;
Many corps members are being used by their employers for jobs that have no bearing on the skills acquired at institutions of higher learning, thus making them unemployable after their service year;
The available camp facilities/officials are grossly inadequate to contain the number of Nigerian graduates participating in the scheme, thus creating unpleasant situations to the corps members during the orientation programme;
Call-up is no longer automatic;
Some of the female corps members have been savagely raped and gruesomely murdered without any protected from their employers which are avoidable if not for the scheme.
Graduates are made to queue for several years; some wait until they become ineligible for some employment, especially into the military and paramilitary services with stringent age limit prescriptions.
President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the appointment of new members of the National Governing Board for the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
The appointment notice was contained in a statement by the spokesperson of the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, Mohammed Manga.
According to the statement, the appointment is for a three-year period.
“President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the appointments into the National Governing Board of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC),” he said.
“Those appointed are Ambassador Fatima Balla Abubakar as Chairman; Prince Oyekunle Oyewunmi, President’s Nominee; Mrs. Binta Muaza, President’s Nominee, Yusut Umar Nalado, President’s Nominee; Major-Gen B.O. Sawyerr, Representative of the Chief of Army Staff, Commissioner of Police Ede Ayuba, Representing the Inspector General of Police; Architect Sani Aliyu, Representing the Committee of Rectors of Polytechnics; and Professor Sulyman A. Abdulkareem, Representing Committee of Vice-Chancellors.
“Their appointment is for three years The National Governing Board is the highest policy-making organ of the NYSC.”
The Director-General of National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), Brigadier General, Shuaibu Ibrahim, has reacted to claims that a top officer who was posted to the permanent orientation camp in Kano State died of COVID-19 in camp.
Ibrahim in an interview with Channels Television on Wednesday explained that the officer was tested before he entered the camp and was taken to the isolation center after he tested positive and eventually died in isolation.
“It is not true that the officer died in the camp, in line with the PTF and NYSC guidelines all prospective corps members and camp officials that are invited for the orientation exercise were tested. It is mandatory that all must be tested. It is only those that are negative that are allowed into the camp.
“Those that are positive are taken away by the NCDC and state officials for treatment and that was what happened. The officer concerned just like any other NYSC officials underwent the test and when he was positive he was taken by the NCDC to Kano State isolation center and that was where, unfortunately, he passed on, not in the camp,” the DG explained.
The NYSC boss stressed that there are not NYSC members that are positive inside the camp as they were all tested before entry into the orientation camps.
According to him, NYSC orientation camps across the country are supervised by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
“I have always cleared the air that it is only those that are negative that are allowed into the camp. Those that are positive are taken away by NCDC.
“We were the first agency to give NCDC our modalities for camp re-opening and they looked at it critically along with the PTF and the approval was granted.
“Even I was tested along with my officials. None of our officers died in the camp,” the NYSC DG said.
The Federal Government last week threatened to shut down any NYSC orientation camp that violates the COVID-19 protocol.
The Minister of Youth and Sports, Sunday Dare gave the warning at the media briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, held in Abuja.
The Minister said the lives and health of the corps members are a priority to the government and the affected camps will be shut and the corp members will be reposted to nearby states to continue the orientation exercise.
– Camp Testing –
No fewer than 34,685 people were recently tested for COVID-19 across all the NYSC camps in the country.
The Director-General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, disclosed this in November at the briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 in Abuja.
He told reporters that those whose samples were collected included corps members and NYSC officials in various camps.
As the 2020 Batch “B” Stream II Orientation Course commences, the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has admitted corps members in the stream to ensure compliance with the Federal Government’s directive amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
At a visit to the NYSC camp in Lagos State on Tuesday, Channels Television observed that officials renewed safety measures at different institutions to allow daily activities to continue without endangering lives.
NYSC Lagos Coordinator, Eddy Megwa, said the camp authorities had to segment the prospective corps members to 200 to prevent a surge of the virus.
“We wouldn’t like to have an upsurge at the registration point, even right at the gate. And so, they have sectioned them,” he said.
“Maximum, we have reporting in a day here is just 200 or even less than that. All of them will not come at the same time. This is to give room for us to have enough space for us to attend to them individually.”