Gunmen Kidnap Permanent Secretary In Taraba

CAN Decries Alleged Plot To Disrupt Elections In Taraba

 

Barely five days after the kidnap of the Deputy Registrar of Taraba State University, Mr Sanusi Sa’ad, gunmen have again abducted a Permanent Secretary in the state.

Mrs Susana Jonathan of the State Ministry of Water Resources was captured in her house in Jalingo in the early hours of Sunday.

Some residents of the area claimed gunshots were heard from the men who whisked the permanent secretary away.

READ ALSO: Police Arrest Fleeing Suspect Accused Of Killing Co-Worker In Lagos

Confirming the development to Channels Television, the Commissioner of Police in the state, Alkasim Sanusi, said officers and men of the command are presently in a search operation to rescue her.

The Command also claimed that they are yet to receive any official report from the family on the incident.

Reps To Sanction Permanent Secretary For Disrupting Public Hearing

Reps To Sanction Permanent Secretary For Disrupting Public Hearing
A file photo of the Ministry of Science and Technology

 

The House of Representatives says it will sanction the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Science and Technology, Dr Amina Shamaki, for allegedly disrupting a public hearing.

Deliberating on the matter on Wednesday at the Lower Chamber of the National Assembly, the lawmakers described the action as contempt and breach of the law.

A member of the House from Plateau State, Benny Lar, accused the permanent secretary of threatening the Director-General and other staff of the ministry with sanctions if they remained at the hearing.

The lawmakers further referred the matter to the House Committee on Justice.

On Monday, members of the Academic Staff Union of Research Institutes (ASURI) and workers at the ministry had grounded activities while staging a protest.

Workers called for the removal of the permanent secretary during a protest on June 4, 2018.

 

They had also called for Dr Shamaki’s removal, accusing her of frustrating the activities of the research institutions.

The protesters, who locked up offices at the complex, had also embarked on a three-day warning strike across the nation.

Secretary-General of ASURI, Theophilus Ndubuaku, had also accused the permanent secretary of refusing to recognise top officials appointed by the Minister of Science and Technology.

“These three research institutions are the biggest in Nigeria. She (Shamaki) walked out the acting EVC from a meeting at the research institute some few weeks ago and said that she does not recognise his appointment,” Ndubuaku had told Channels Television.

Katsina Former Top Official Jailed For Fraud

File Photo

A former permanent secretary in the administration of former governor of Katsina State, Ibrahim Shema, Yusuf Saulawa was on Friday, December 29, 2017, convicted of fraud.

Saulawa was convicted by Justice Sanusi Tukur of the Katsina State High Court on one count of obtaining by False Pretense.

Saulawa according to a statement by the Head, Media and Publicity of the EFCC, Wilson Uwujaren committed fraud by collecting the sum of N2,500,000 from the complainant while he was a permanent secretary on the pretext that the Office would award the complainant a contract for the supply of fertilizer to all the Local Government areas in Katsina State.

READ ALSO: Akwa Ibom Jailbreak: 14 Fleeing Prisoners Rearrested

“The convict fraudulently obtained the sum of N2,500,000 from the complainant while he was a permanent secretary attached to the office of the Deputy Governor of Katsina State on the pretext that the Office would award the complainant a contract for the supply of fertilizer to all the Local Government areas in Katsina State.

“Saulawa claimed that the money was for the purchase of bidding documents. It was further alleged that after obtaining the money, the convict cut all contacts with the complainant,” the EFCC said.

In the course of prosecution, EFCC counsel Sa’ad Hanafi Sa’ad called three witnesses and tendered many exhibits.

After both parties closed their case on the 3rd of October, 2017, final written addresses were adopted and the case was subsequently adjourned to December 29 for judgement.

In his judgement, Justice Tukur said he was convinced that the prosecution had proved the case beyond reasonable doubt and pronounced the accused guilty as charged.

Saulawa was then sentenced to seven years imprisonment without an option of fine.

Obaseki Sacks Permanent Secretary, Suspends 3 Others Over N283million Fraud

Obaseki

Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki has sacked a Permanent Secretary in the State Ministry of Youth and Special Duties, Osayuware Idahosa and three other civil servants.

Idahosa, who served as Permanent Secretary in the state Ministry of Education allegedly committed fraud by padding the budget for the conduct of primary school examination to the tune of N283 million.

Other officers involved in the alleged fraud include Barrister Erhunmwunse Edokpayi, Mrs. E.I. Ero-Ugiagbe and Mr Lucky Adagbonyin. They were ordered to proceed on indefinite suspension without pay and their case forwarded to the State Civil Service Commission.

The decision to punish the Permanent Secretary and the other officers were the outcome of a session of the State Executive Committee meeting, headed by the Obaskei, in Government House, Benin City.

READ ALSO: Edo State Partners Danish Govt On Illegal Migration

It will be recalled that Governor Obaseki vowed to unmask the people that sent a N283 million request for the conduct of primary school examination in the state, which was eventually conducted at the cost of N30 million.

The Commissioner for Communication and Orientation, Paul Ohonbamu after the meeting said that the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Professor Yinka Omorogbe, submitted a report on the panel of enquiry on the conduct of the 2016/2017 Primary School Leaving Certificate Examination and after due consideration of findings and recommendations, the executive council took the decisions.

He said, “Executive council also set up a committee to be chaired by the Commissioner for Employment and Wealth Creation, Emmanuel Usoh to investigate the delisting of about 350 private schools from the list of eligible schools to participate in the Primary School Leaving Certificate Examination and also the conditions that led to the relisting of these schools shortly after they were delisted.”

Court Orders Temporary Forfeiture Of N437m, Properties Linked To Permanent Secretary

Court Remands Woman For Human Trafficking

The Federal High Court Sitting in Lagos has granted an order of interim forfeiture of the sum of N437,348,181 linked to a current Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Clement Illoh Onubuogu.

Justice Abdulaziz Anka granted the order at the instance of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), which says that it reasonably suspects the money to be proceeds of unlawful activity.

The court also granted the interim forfeiture of the sum of N129,826,452.00 found by the Commission in possession of various staffs who worked with the permanent Secretary and are believed to have received the said sum as kickbacks/gratification.

Also mentioned in the forfeiture order is a building described as a mansion situated and located at Ikom Quarters, Issala-Azegba in Delta State and a hotel located at No. 19 Madue Nwafor Street, off Achala Ibuzo Road, Asaba, Delta State.

The EFCC told the court that both buildings belong to the permanent secretary and are also reasonably suspected to be proceeds of unlawful activity.

In documents put before the court, the EFCC says that it received intelligence showing that the funds were meant for various SURE-P programmes under the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment.

Further investigations, the anti-graft agency added, showed that Mr Clement Illoh Onubuogo the Permanent Secretary, of the Ministry, was saddled at the time with the responsibility of the supervision of the SURE-P Programmes viz SURE-P Technical and Vocational Educational Training and Community Service Women and Youth Empowerment Programs under his Ministry.

He allegedly used this opportunity to divert and convert the funds to his personal use.

After granting the interim forfeiture order, Justice Anka directed the EFCC to notify the Permanent Secretary, in whose possession the properties were found, to appear before the court and show cause within 14 days why the properties should not be permanently forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria.

The court also directed the publication of the interim orders in any national newspaper for anyone who is interested in the cash sums and the properties to appear before the judge to show cause within 14 days why the final order of forfeiture of the properties should not be made in favour of the Federal Government of Nigeria.

 

EFCC Arraigns Serving Permanent Secretary

EFCC Arraigns Serving Permanent SecretaryThe Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arraigned a Permanent Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity, Dr. Illoh Onubuogo Clement.

Dr. Clement was arraigned on a three-count charge of non-assets declaration before Justice Babs Kuewunmi of the Federal High Court Sitting in Lagos.

In the first count, the defendant on April 19, 2016 in Lagos allegedly failed to make full disclosure of assets to the tune of 97.3 million Naira, an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 27 Subsection 3c of the EFCC Establishment Act of 2004.

In the second count, he allegedly failed to make a disclosure of the sum of $139,575 dollars, and in the third count, he failed to disclose assets of £10,121 pounds.

He pleaded not guilty to all the charges and the court granted him bail in the sum of 50 million Naira with a surety in like sum.

Trial was subsequently fixed for May 8.

Ogun Govt. Orders Occupants To Vacate Defective Structures

Ogun Govt. Orders Occupants To Vacate Defective StructuresThe Ogun State Government has warned owners and occupants of structurally defective buildings in the state to vacate them or report to the appropriate agency of government for structural assessment to avert possible disaster.

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Urban and Physical Planning, Mrs Yetunde Dina, gave the warning while inspecting a partially collapsed building at Ojo lane, Olomore in Abeokuta which claimed the life of an occupant.

Mrs Dina, who commiserated with the family of the deceased, said the building was reported to be structurally defective with cracks around it before the ill-fated partial collapse.

She noted that the occupants had been earlier directed to vacate the dilapidated building as it had been marked for demolition, affirming that the Ministry would go ahead with the demolition to avert further calamity.

The Permanent Secretary said another four storey building also collapsed on Sunday at Leme along Abiola Way in the Ogun State capital.

She explained that the developers of the building in question, which was under construction before the unfortunate incident, used inferior materials and failed to comply with necessary building standards.

Mrs Dina told reporters that although no casualty was recorded at Leme, government would leave no stone unturned at investigating the immediate and remote causes and bring the culprits to book.

State House Says 5.196b Naira Released From Its 2016 Budget

Jalal Arabi, State House, 2016 Budget
State House Permanent Secretary, Mr Jalal Arabi

The State House says it has received a total of 5.196 billion naira as capital release from the 2016 budget amounting to 47.5% of its budget.

This was disclosed by the Permanent Secretary, Mr Jalal Arabi, who said the released amount of 4.8 billion naira (93.1%) has so far been expended on the projects for which the funds were tied and released.

A balance of 5.745 billion naira representing 52.5% is yet to be released.

Mr Arabi also disclosed that for the 2017 budget, the State House had reprioritised projects in the medical centre and suspended most of its capital expenditure proposals at the moment.

However, he said that the State House would take advantage of the supplementary budget window when necessary.

The Permanent Secretary made the disclosure on Thursday at a meeting with the House of Representatives Committee on Special Duties who were on an oversight visit to the State House in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital.

The committee was inaugurated by the Speaker of the House, Honourable Yakubu Dogara, and has Representative Nasiru Daura as its chairman.

Mr Arabi said that the 2017 budget has been reviewed downwards to 13,567,979,278.72 naira for 2017 from 16,563,395,992.00 naira.

He noted that all allocations for the 2016 recurrent expenditure had been received up to and including the month of December 2016, adding that the capital releases were made for three out of five subheads in the State House budget.

Earlier, Representative Daura said that the lawmakers were at the State House to determine the level of implementation of the 2016 budget, and also on a fact finding mission to inspect completed and ongoing projects at the Presidential Villa.

He observed that the visit would help to correct the ongoing misinformation about State House, as well as curb corruption and ensure that Nigeria comes out of recession.

Osun SUBEB Confirms 8,605 Persons Registered For N-Power

Osun SUBEB Confirms 8,605 Persons Registered For N-PowerNot less than 8,605 participants were registered in Osun state for the Federal Government’s initiative to reduce the menace of unemployment, coined N-Power.

The Permanent Secretary, Osun State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Fatai Kolawole, disclosed this on Thursday, as he commended the federal government for the laudable stride.

According to him, a total number of 10,042 participants registered for the programme in the state, out of which 8,605 eventually turned up for the screening exercise and onward deployment to various areas of assignment.

Fatai explained that the board, in collaboration with the National Orientation Agency (NOA) has embarked on deployment of corps to various areas of assignment and proper education for participants.

He described the scheme as timely and a great complement to the teaching staff in the state, especially at the secondary schools, saying it has afforded the sector ample opportunity of adding more competent hands into its fold.

“As a service delivery agency, we consider it an obligation to listen carefully to complaints of participants and meticulously attend to them.

“Our major challenge is paucity of Information Technology compliance since the whole programme is IT-driven, which required great skill.

“All in all, the initiative is a profound relief for many unemployed youths in the country, it has greatly reduced unemployment in no small way,” he said.

FG Recovers 40 Cars From Former Permanent Secretary

Boko HaramThe Federal Government of Nigeria has recovered 40 vehicles including brand new SUVs and other brands, in possession of a former Federal Permanent Secretary.

The revelation was made on Thursday by Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, while explaining President Muhammadu Buhari’s strategy in the fight against corruption in the country.

He said this while reacting to criticisms that the anti-corruption war lacks strategy.

In a statement issued in Lagos, the Minister said the strategy has proven so effective that it has led to, the recovery of the cars from the Permanent Secretary, among other things.

He explained that the federal government is not just fixated on prosecution alone but is also taking preventive measures to make corruption unattractive.

Whistle Blowing Encouraged

The minister listed the strict enforcement of the Treasury Singles Account (TSA), which has largely reduced the diversion of government funds into various secret accounts, and the constant fishing out of ghost workers in the public service, which many states are now adopting, as some of the preventive measures against corruption.

He however stated that some other measures have been perfected to strengthen the anti-corruption fight, adding that the measures include the establishment of the Presidential Committee on Asset Recovery and the Asset Tracing Committee; the setting up of an Asset Register, and the Whistle Blower Policy.

Furthermore, he explained that the recently approved Whistle Blower policy is designed to further enhance government’s effort to recover looted funds, stating: “People who give credible and useful information to government that leads to recovery of stolen public assets, will be rewarded with between 2.5% – 5% of the recovered fund and government will keep the identity of the whistle blower absolutely confidential”.

Mr Mohammed also announced the plan by the government, through the Code of Conduct Bureau, to commence in 2017, a trial run of electronic asset declaration, in order to facilitate compliance and also to search and retrieve data on the assets of public officers.

In addition, he said, the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption is working with relevant MDAs, especially the National Bureau of Statistics, to improve data collection on corruption indicators generally.

“Once perfected, the data will be shared with government periodically, if possible as regularly as government receives data on inflation and unemployment trends, to indicate trends in corruption and influence government measures to correct the situation before it gets out of hand as we have now,” Mr Mohammed said.

 

Aregbesola Presents Osun 2017 Budget In Absentia

Rauf Aregbesola, Osun, BudgetFor the second year running, the Osun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola, has failed to personally present the state budget before the House of Assembly.

A budget of 138.2 billion naira was formally placed before the lawmakers for perusal and approval by the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Budget and Economic Planning, Segun Olorunsogo, at the Osun State House of Assembly in Osogbo, southwest Nigeria.

The 2017 budget, tagged: “Budget of Recovery”, is over three billion naira less than the 2016 budget of over 141 billion naira.

Governor Aregbesola, however, sent a letter to the House announcing that the budget would have a capital and recurrent expenditure of 62 billion naira and 75.8 billion naira respectively.

He said that the state expects to fund the budget through recurrent revenue of 105 billion naira and capital receipts of 33 billion naira in the 2017 fiscal year.

On the implementation of the 2016 budget, the Governor admitted the poor implementation of past budgets, blaming it on global oil crisis and national economic gloom.

He said his administration’s failure in public finance management has been revealed through the poor performance of the budget of the outgoing fiscal year.

Although the budget was received by the Speaker of the Assembly, Najeem Salaam, the opposition in the House swiftly reacted to the poor implementation of the outgoing fiscal budget.

A member of the Peoples Democratic Party, Representative Dipo Eluwole, noted that the crisis in the education sector was a significant example of the failure of past budgets in the state.

Osun State Govt Proposes 138.2bn Naira For 2017

osun state presents 2017 budget to House of AssemblyThe executive arm of Osun State government has presented a budget of 138.232 billion Naira for the 2017 fiscal year to the state House of Assembly for consideration.

The estimate, which was presented at the plenary on Wednesday, has recurrent expenditure of 75.823 billion Naira and capital expenditure of 62.409 billion Naira.

It also has the recurrent revenue of 105.090 billion Naira and capital receipts of 33.142 billion Naira.

Presenting the budget, tagged ‘Budget of Recovery’, on behalf of the governor, the Permanent Secretary, Budget and Economic Planning, Mr Segun Olorunsogo, said, the economic sector of the budget, including agriculture, rural development, rural and urban electrification, commerce, industry, finance and transportation would gulp 24.911 billion Naira of the total budget.

He also said, the social service sector, including education, health, information and culture, youths, sports and social development would gulp 11.168 billion Naira of the budget.

The regional planning and environmental development sector, which includes water resources, environmental sanitation, housing, town planning, according to him, will gulp 5.315 billion Naira while general administration and other services will gulp 21.014 billion Naira.

According to him, the main focus of the budget would include, “provision of enabling environment that will ensure increase in food production”.

“It focuses on consolidation of social infrastructure that will expand the economic and industrial base of the state; creation of conducive, productive, and active socio-economic environment that ensures job creation and empowerment of youths and women.

“It will also focus on development of opportunities for wealth creation through tourism and culture; improving basic education infrastructure that promotes functional education and enhancement of the capacity of teachers at all levels,” he said.

Mr Olorunsogo stated that in the course of implementing the budget, new revenue sources would be pursued, while the existing mechanism of internal revenue generation would be improved on.

He told the lawmakers that the government was determined to leverage on the revenue generating potentials of both formal and informal sectors and ensure non-reliance on the revenue from the Federal Allocation.

The governor’s representative also said, the government would ensure blockage of leakages in revenue collection through effective monitoring of all officials in charge of such collections.

Receiving the budget, the Speaker, Honourable Najeem Salaam, said the estimate would be properly scrutinised to ensure it was in line with the needs of the state and its people and do justice to all the budget heads.

Commending the administration of Aregbesola for working hard in formulating policies and programmes that would improve the living standard of the people, he said, the Assembly would not be the clog in the progress of the state.

The speaker who stressed that the presentation of the budget had been taken as first reading, noted that, the estimate would be committed to the Committee of Finance and Appropriation for consideration.