Aisha Buhari Promises Children More Support In 2017

Aisha Buhari on Children supportThe Wife of Nigeria’s President, Mrs Aisha Buhari, has promised more support to Nigerian children through her pet project in 2017.

The first lady made the promise through her spokesperson, when she received Nigeria’s first baby of 2017 at the Gwarinpa General Hospital, Abuja.

Nigeria’s first baby of 2017 was born at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s day.

Twenty-eight-year-old, Ann Efe, gave birth to a baby girl weighing 3.9kg at the Gwarinpa General Hospital in Abuja.

On her hospital bed, mother of baby, Flourish Oghenetega, clearly put aside the pains of the operation, as representatives from the first lady’s office stormed the ward to welcome the baby.

As his first child on the first day of the year, it was double celebration for the father.

For many parents with blessings like this, 2017 is another year to be hopeful about.

As the first lady’s entourage toured the children section with baskets of gifts, the Chief Medical Director, Amos Adebayo, seized the opportunity to appeal to the Federal Government to render more support.

Dr. Adebayo called on the government to support the less privileged in the society with free medical services, as more families visit the hospital without funds.

Obasanjo Expresses Hope For A Better Nigeria In 2017

obasanjo, Nigeria, 2017A former President of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo, has expressed hopes that the New Year 2017, will be better than the out gone year 2016.

He said this while addressing a congregation at first church service of the year at Chapel of Christ the Glorious king, Abeokuta, the Ogun state capital, where he joined others including his wife, Mrs Bola Obasanjo.

“My message is a message of encouragement, looking forward with hope of a better year than the one we just got out of and there is no reason why it should not be, in every sense of the word, socially, economically, politically and even spirituality, I am looking forward to a 2017 that will make everything new for Nigeria.”

Furthermore, he called on governments to go to the basics of fundamental of economic recovery, to ensure the growth and development of the economy and the country at large.

“Well, I think we have to go to the fundamentals of economic recovery and growth and I believe if we do that, we will get there” he stated.

Absence of EFCC Counsel Stalls Trial Of Jonathan’s Aide

Judges, Court, Judges, Court, Absence of EFCC Counsel Stalls Trial Of Jonathan's AideThe trial of Waripamo-Owei Emmanuel Dudafa, the former Special Assistant on Domestic Affairs to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, could not go on Tuesday at the Federal High Court in Lagos, owing to the absence of the EFCC’s counsel, Mr Rotimi Oyedepo.

Presiding judge, Justice Muhammad Idris, told the court that he received a letter from the EFCC counsel seeking for an adjournment.

In the letter, Mr Oyedepo asked the court to grant the adjournment to enable him attend to an appeal filed by Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mr Ricky Tarfa against the commission

Counsel to Mr Dudafa, Gboyega Oyewole, did not object to the request for an adjournment. He however informed the court that he was surprised that his client was not present in court.

Upon enquiry from the prison’s officials, Mr Oyewole said he was told that Dudafa is seriously sick.

He complained about the EFCC treatment of his client.

Justice Mohammed Idris has granted the prosecutor’s application and adjourned the matter till Thursday November 10, for the continuation of the defendants’ trial.

Dudafa and one Iwejuo Joseph Nna, are standing trial before Justice Mohammed Idris on alleged 5.1 billion naira fraud.

In the first count, the defendants on or about June 11, 2013 in Lagos allegedly conspired amongst themselves to conceal the sum of 1.667 billion Naira said to be the proceeds of crime.

The Offence was said to be contrary to Section 18(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act, 2012 and punishable under Section 17(a) of the same Act.

In the other charges, Mr Waripamo-Owei also allegedly used six companies – Seagate Property Development and Investment Limited, Avalon Global Property Development Company Limited, Ebiwise Resources, Pluto Property and Investment Company, Rotato Interlink Services and De Jakes Fast Food and Restaurant Nigeria Limited  – to conceal varying sums of money between June 2013 and April 2016.

The EFCC’s Prosecuting Counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, had listed 21 witnesses to testify against the defendants, including Representatives of some banks.

Buhari Nominates Environment Minister Amina Mohammed To AU Committee

Amina Mohammed, Renewable Energy, JatrophaPresident Muhammadu Buhari has approved the nomination of the Minister of Environment, Mrs Amina Mohammed, to serve in the African Union (AU) Reform Steering Committee.

The committee, headed by President Paul Kagame of Rwanda is tasked with ongoing institutional reforms of the AU Commission and its organs.

The committee, which comprises eminent persons from the continent, will work on part-time basis to produce a report for presentation to the 28th African Union Summit in January 2017.

In a statement by a spokesman for the President, Garba Shehu, the Presidency described the Minister as a versatile and accomplished development practitioner in the public, private and civil society sectors.

She has over three decades’ experience and had served as the Senior Special Assistant to the President of Nigeria on MDGs, serving three Presidents over a period of six years.

Until her appointment as a Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in November 2015, she was the Assistant Secretary/Special Advisor to the United Nations Secretary General on Post-2015 Development Planning.

Northeast Humanitarian Crisis: US To Get UK, France’s Support For Nigeria

John Kerry on northeast humanitarian crisisThe United States of America says it will get the United Kingdom, France and other countries to augment its support for Nigeria to address the humanitarian in the oil-rich nation’s northeast.

U.S. Secretary of State Mr John Kerry made the promise on Tuesday while in a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari.

A statement by a spokesman for President Buhari, Femi Adesina, said Mr Kerry told President Buhari that his country was aware that his administration inherited a big problem, but assured him of America’s support.

Mr Kerry also commended the courage of President Buhari in fighting corruption.

He said: “We applaud what you are doing. Corruption creates a ready-made playing field for recruiting extremists.

“You inherited a big problem, and we will support you in any way we can. We will work with you very closely.

“We don’t want to interfere, but will offer opportunities as you require”.

President Buhari had earlier thanked the U.S. for both hard and soft military help it was rendering to Nigeria in the war against terror.

“The training and intelligence that we could not muster ourselves, we received.

“The training has made Boko Haram less of a threat to Nigeria and the Lake Chad Basin region, while the military hardware has given our troops added confidence,” he told Mr Kerry.

President Buhari further assured the American envoy that he would institutionalised the anti-corruption crusade to ensure it would last beyond the life of the current administration.

He said his administration would insist on the standards it was establishing.

“We are laying down administrative and financial instructions in the public service that must be obeyed.

“Any breach will no longer be acceptable.

“We will retrain our staff, so that they understand the new orientation.

“And those who run afoul of these rules will be prosecuted, no matter who is involved,” he stressed.

He, however, stated that the government would be fair, just and act according to the rule of law, assuring the American envoy that “anyone perceived corrupt is innocent till we can prove it”.

Obasanjo Tasks Media On Professionalism, National Unity

Olusegun-Obasanjo-former-Nigeria-PresidentThe former President of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo has tasked the Nigerian Media to be more responsible and responsive to the unity and the sustenance of the nation’s democracy.

He said this is necessary due to socio-economic and political challenges facing the nation currently.

Chief Obasanjo, who was represented by the former Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission, Professor Peter Okebukola, said this at the maiden edition of the Nigerian Union of Journalist’s (NUJ) National Media Summit with the theme ‘The Media and National Unity’.

Speaking on the topic, Prof Okebukola advised against sensationalism, but was quick to call for fair reportage, honesty and responsible journalism.

The gathering, attended by delegates from the 36 states of the federation, was converged for cross fertilisation of ideas on issues bothering on the profession and national unity.

As the society watchdog, the delegates expressed concern over the recent happenings in the polity and stressed the need to be part of the solutions.

The event was also attended by the representatives of the Minister of Interior, Governor of Kwara State and members of the Ogun State Executive Council.

Osinbajo Lists Plans To Revive Nigeria’s Economy

Economic TeamThe Vice President of Nigeria, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, on Thursday reeled out tasks set by the present administration to achieve its economic objectives.

Professor Osinbajo told reporters in Lagos on Thursday that the government strongly believed in public-private dialogue that would enhance the nation’s dwindling economy.

“Our immediate tasks to achieve our economic objectives are: Reduce fiscal and forex imbalances, boost dollar liquidity, curb inflation, lower interest rate and ensure lending to the real sector (as well as) increase FDIs and FPI by sustaining enabling policies,” he said.

The Vice President also expressed sadness at the present economic challenges which had resulted to inflation and the depreciation of the Nigerian Naira among others.

He also lamented the drop in power output which he said was the outcome of the attacks on gas pipelines in Nigeria’s Niger Delta region mostly carried out by a militant group that calls itself the Niger Delta Avengers.

“Earnings from oil declined in the past eight months due to pipeline vandalism and export assets in the Niger Delta.

“Power output fell from 5,000MW in February to about 2,500MW recently on account of over 60% loss in gas production due to pipeline vandalism,” he said.

Steps Taken To Revive The Economy

After stating the problems facing Nigeria’s economy, Osinbajo highlighted steps the government was taking to revive it.

“In order to tackle these problems, permit me to elaborate on some of the steps taken in this regard.

“Priority attention was given to assist the states and local governments pay the salaries of workers, which were several months in arrears.

“We have had three such interventions, including the latest loan of 90 billion Naira, as part of a fiscal responsibility plan for states,” he explained while addressing the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

He said that these interventions had helped to boost household spending, which were key steps to prevent the economy from falling into deep recession.

“We have pledged to keep capital spending in the budget at a minimum of 30%.

“Accordingly, we have already made capital releases of 332 billion Naira, with another 100 billion Naira set to be released in the next few days.

“Other policy instruments used in this regard include the TSA [Treasury Single Account], which has brought transparency into inflows & outflows of government monies.

“A great effort has been made to improve non-oil revenues. This includes bringing an additional 700,000 companies into the tax net as compared to the targeted 500,000 set at the beginning of the year.

“FIRS has achieved 73.17% of its target for the first half of the year. Similarly, milled rice capacity is being increased from three million tons annually to 10 million tons of paddy annually,” Osinbajo added.

Obasanjo Challenges African Leaders To Tackle Unemployment

Olusegun Obasanjo, ECOWAS, AfricaA former president of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo, has challenged African leaders on the worrisome unemployment rate among youths.

He made the clarion call on Monday at his residence in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital in southwest Nigeria.

The former president was speaking when he received the new President of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Mr Marcel Alain de Souza.

He asked the leaders to redouble their effort towards reducing the over 50% unemployment rate among the teaming population of youths on the African continent.

Obasanjo noted that the challenge of unemployment might spell doom for the continent if they fail to tackle it.

He said that the aims and aspirations of the founding fathers of the sub regional organisation have remained and have not been achieved in the last 41 years of its establishment.

While challenging Mr de Souza on critical reforms in the commission, the former president said that the fortunes of the 320 million people of the ECOWAS extraction must be met if the much needed development must be achieved.

EFCC Charges Jonathan’s Aide, Waripamo-Owei

EFCC, Dudafa Waripamo-Owei, Goodluck JonathanThe Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has filed a 23-count charge against the Senior Special Assistant on Domestic Affairs to former President Goodluck Jonathan, Dudafa Waripamo-Owei.

Channels Television’s judiciary correspondent, Shola Soyele, who obtained a copy of the charge, said that Mr Waripamo-Owei was charged alongside one Iwejuo Joseph Nna, also known at various times as Taiwo Ebenezer and Olugbenga Isaiah.

In the first count, the defendants on or about June 11, 2013 in Lagos allegedly conspired amongst themselves to conceal the sum of 1.667 billion Naira said to be the proceeds of crime.

The Offence was said to be contrary to Section 18(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act, 2012 and punishable under Section 17(a) of the same Act.

In the other charges, Mr Waripamo-Owei also allegedly used six companies – Seagate Property Development and Investment Limited, Avalon Global Property Development Company Limited, Ebiwise Resources, Pluto Property and Investment Company, Rotato Interlink Services and De Jakes Fast Food and Restaurant Nigeria Limited  – to conceal varying sums of money between June 2013 and April 2016.

The EFCC’s Prosecuting Counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, had listed 21 witnesses to testify against the defendants, including Representatives of some banks.

The accused have been scheduled for arraignment on Wednesday before Justice Mohammed Idris of the Federal High Court in Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial capital.

Bill On Age Reduction For Elective Offices Passes Second Reading

House-of-Representatives-NigeriaA bill seeking to reduce the qualification age for some key executive and legislative positions, as stipulated in the Nigerian Constitution, has passed second reading in the House of Representatives.

The bill, which seeks to alter sections 65, 106, 131 and 177 of the 1999 Constitution, was sponsored by Honourable Tony Nwulu.

“Young people have been at the forefront of promoting democratic development and nation building.

“Nigeria’s pre-independence struggle was championed by young nationalists… These nationalists were reported to be in their youthful age when they led the independence struggle for this country,” he stressed.

Mr Nwulu further cited South Africa’s law that gave every eligible voter the right to be voted for.

The alteration proposes a qualification age of 30 years for the office of the President, state governors and senators while 25 years has been set for federal and state legislators.

The bill also seeks to introduce independent candidacy as part of Nigeria’s electoral process.

Presently, section 65 of the constitution puts the age limit for anyone vying for a Senate seat at 35 while that of House of Representative was put at 30.

Section 106 of the constitution also puts the age limit for anyone seeking a seat in the State House of Assembly at 30 while section 177 puts the age limit for the governorship position at 35.

The Constitution also puts the age limit for anyone seeking the position of the President of Nigeria at 40 years.

We Must Offer Incentives To Attract Global Investors – Buhari

Global Investors, “To attract global investors, one must offer attractive incentives”. These were the words of the President of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari, at the opening ceremony of the 2016 Katsina State Economic and Investment Summit, holding in the state capital, Katsina.

President Buhari commended the Katsina State Governor for taking the bold step towards building a more vibrant economy, assuring him that the effort would be rewarding in the end.

He also promised support to any state with laudable plans for economic growth as the Katsina State Governor unveiled his strategy to move the state forward.

The Governor, Aminu Masari had said in his welcome address that the essence of the event was to stimulate local investment and attract foreign direct investment to the manufacturing sector.

President Buhari acknowledged that this plan is capable of creating jobs as “employment is the quickest way to escape poverty” but “every player must do his best, including the federal government”.

“For global players, some of whom I am pleased to see represented here to take the deep plunge, they must be offered attractive incentives.

“Liberal set of tax incentives, infrastructural support, faster and shorter government responses to business requests; these generous offers are the minimum required to attract critical investor who is quoted in every country and region of the world,” he said.

President Buhari recalled his pre-election promise to end poverty by ending corruption, growing the economy and creating jobs in Nigeria.

“I hold myself to these promises. It is in this context that today’s summit takes on an additional significance,” he stated.

“The APC-led government of my home state has strongly embraced this vision by assembling the world to be part of this summit.”

Buhari Promises China Speedy Completion Of Mambilla Power Project

Muhammadu-Buhari-in-China-Power-project-promise on Mambilla Power Project Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, has pledged his government’s commitment to honouring all agreements concluded between Nigeria and China especially on power project.

President Buhari gave the assurance in Beijing on Wednesday at a meeting with the Premier of the State Council of the Peoples Republic of China, Mr Li Keqiang.

He said that his administration would conclude all power projects agreed with provious administrations, including the 4,000 megawatts Mambilla Hydro-Electric Power Project.

President Buhari regretted the failure of past governments to meet Nigeria’s obligations in joint projects with China.

A statement by a spokesman for the President, Garba Shehu, said the President told the Chinese Premier that his administration was committed to completing the projects, in the shortest possible time, to ensure that the joint power, rail, road and aviation projects directly and quickly improve the lives of Nigerians.

President Buhari said that he was particularly keen on actualising the Mambilla Power Project because of its huge potential to boost employment and national economic growth.

The Chinese Premier commended ongoing efforts by the Buhari Administration to improve Nigeria’s infrastructure.

He assured the President that China was ready to work with his administration to complete all joint projects, including the Mambilla Power Project.