Proactive measures were on Monday taken by stakeholders in Imo State to tackle the crisis of farmers and herdsmen clashes.
Police Commissioner in the state, Chris Ezike, on Monday, held a stakeholder meeting with members of the Miyetti Allah, farmers, traditional rulers and security operatives to maintain peaceful coexistence in their various communities.
Ezike said the meeting was necessary even though Imo State is not a flashpoint as regards the crisis between farmers and herdsmen.
“There is need to bring all stakeholders together to put measures in place to prevent any eventuality that might result in the clash between farmers and herdsmen,” he said.
The issues of the Fulani herdsmen and farmers in various parts of the country have remained a major concern to many due to the numerous attacks attributed to the herdsmen claiming several lives and displacing many.
Stakeholders at the meeting agreed that ranching is the best way to address the incessant clashes between herdsmen and farmers.
The Miyetti Allah leaders also agreed to cooperate with farmers, security operatives and traditional rulers to ensure that no clash is recorded in the state.
Ezike at the end of the meeting said the command will continue to engage stakeholders and put all security apparatus in place having in mind justice and fairness.
The Federal government has flagged off its social welfare programme on the Home Grown School Feeding Initiative in Benue State with a three-day workshop for participating schools and food vendors.
Addressing participants and stakeholders on Thursday, Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom said there is a need to come up with practical models of implementing the programme successfully in the state and around the country.
Governor Ortom who pledged his commitment to the programme added that the state government will explore the opportunities of expanding its agricultural potentials and utilize most of its perishable produces through the programme.
He added that as Nigeria’s Food Basket, farm produce like yam and many others can be found in large quantities in the state, making it a pivotal partner of the Federal government Home Grown School Feeding programme.
With the high expectation from the social empowerment of the project, the governor also pledged to ensure the state derives full benefits from the programme.
The team leader from the Office of The Vice President, Abimbola Adesunmi, said the three-day stakeholders workshop holding in Makurdi, the state capital, is aimed at putting the programme component in proper perspective.
Mrs Adesunmi, said she was also on ground at the first day of the workshop to advise the state government and proffer ways of creating a synergy between the state government and stakeholders in the programme.
The Federal Government missed the September target for the commencement of the school feeding initiative which was one the major initiatives promised under the Social Welfare Programmes of the administration.
In July 2016, Mrs. Adesanmi, who is also the National Manager of the programme, said by September, about 5.5 million pupils across the country will be fed daily by the Federal Government under the initiative.
In September, the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun revealed that only N70 billion had been released out of the N500 billion budgeted for the SWP to the Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on social interventions, Maryam Uwais.
The House of Representatives subsequently summoned Mrs. Uwais to explain why none of the programmes under the SWP are yet to begin.
Efforts towards achieving stability in the Niger Delta seem to have begun, following a meeting of key stakeholders in Port-Harcourt the Rivers state capital.
The meeting had in attendance, members of the Niger Delta Contact Group made up of traditional rulers from Bayelsa, Rivers, Akwa Ibom And Delta states, as well as representatives of the Pan Niger Delta group.
They met with development partners from the European Union, the United States and the UK, as well as the Federal Government team, led by the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta Affairs.
In addition to forging a common front for dialogue, the NDCG also canvassed that the forthcoming Niger Delta summit should be held in the region.
A militant group known as Niger Delta Avengers has claimed responsibility for the recent attacks on oil-producing facilities causing the shutdown of oil terminals and a fall in Nigeria’s oil production to its lowest level.
In preparedness ahead of 2018 gubernatorial election in Ekiti State ,the Independence National Electoral Commission (INEC) is set to commence the distributions of Permanent Voters Cards.
Speaking at the interaction session with stakeholders in Ado Ekiti, the Administrative Secretary of the Commission, Dr Musilim Omoleke, who represented the Resident Electoral Commissioner, said the purpose of the meeting is to demonstrate transparency and fairness of the commission.
He stated that the commission still has 224,840 uncollected PVC.
He appealed to all political parties to help educate their supporters and party members on the importance of the PVC.
Meanwhile, the representative of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Taiwo Olatubosun, who is also the party’s Publicity Secretary, said the commission should ensure adequate awareness of the PVC collection exercise.
The Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Ekiti State, Mr Gboyega Oguntuase, said his party is ready to support the commission in achieving a free and fair election come 2018.
The British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Dr Andrew Pocock, has said for the country to overcome the security challenges facing it, the government must properly equip its military, against the backdrop of increasing serial attacks by the Boko Haram insurgents in some parts of the Northeast.
He also said that the Nigerian government can come up with a well-articulated security network, as well as developing a sound economic agenda for the people of the Northeast and other affected areas.
Dr Pocock made this remarks at an interaction with some journalists in Kaduna, North West Nigeria.
The High Commissioner, who attributed the increasing bombings in the Northeast to lack of cohesion among security agencies and other stakeholders, said that the only way to defeat the insurgents is to make Nigeria’s security forces more resilient.
According to him, with the huge amount earmarked for the Defence Sector in its annual budget, Nigeria should be capable of providing adequate weapons for its military, rather than waiting for help from outside countries.
He explained that, rather than assisting Nigeria with weapons or troops in the ongoing war against terror, Britain can only support Nigeria by way of training and retraining of its military personnel in order to enable them be effective on the field.
He also said, the only way the abducted Secondary School girls in Chibok, Borno State can be rescued from their abductors is for the military to defeat the insurgents.
In recent times, several attacks have been recorded in the Northern part of the country which has left hundreds of people dead and thousands injured.
Governor Ibrahim Gaidam has expressed satisfaction with the conduct of the Presidential election.
Following reports from Damaturu, the Yobe State capital, the Governor said that election in the state went on smoothly despite initial fear of security in the troubled north east geopolitical zone of the country.
With successes recorded during accreditation and subsequent voting in the state, the Yobe State Governor praised INEC, security agencies and other stakeholders for the success of the exercise in the state.
Speaking to Journalists after casting his vote at Bukarti town in Yunusari Local Government Area of the state, Governor Gaidam expressed satisfaction with the performance of the card reader in spite of the much anticipated fear of the new technology being introduced into the nation’s electoral process.
Governor Ibrahim Gaidam, who commended the people of the state for their efforts towards giving peace a chance, hoped similar cooperation would be maintained during the governorship and House of Assembly elections.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has organised a stakeholders meeting in Damaturu, Yobe State capital, reassuring them of its readiness to hold hitch free elections.
Presided over by the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in the state, Habu Zarma, the meeting had in attendance representatives of various political parties, security formations, Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) and the media.
The meeting appraised the level of preparedness, ranging from the collection of the Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) to the allocation of polling stations for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP’s) among other issues that will enhance peaceful conduct of the election.
Addressing the gathering, the REC said the PVC collection had reached 91 per cent, stressing that efforts were in progress to ensure that all the IDPs were conveyed to their various polling stations.
Mr Zarma said the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) orientation camp in Fika and two secondary schools in Damaturu had been reserved for Gulani and Gujba IDPs, expressing sadness that initial plans did not make preparations for IDPs.
The REC stated that there were few cases of the IDPs in Bursari, Gaidam and Yunusari, but expressed happiness that security agencies had reported the return of peace in the areas and hope for smooth conduct of the exercise.
Zarma also said the PVCs of some registered voters in the state were yet to be printed. he explained that the National Headquarters had called for the collection of some printed PVCs, saying the electoral officers of the affected areas are on standby to immediately distribute the said PVCS as soon as they arrived the state.
Speaking on the use of the card reader for the voter accreditation, the REC said only voters identified would be allowed to exercise their franchise, saying; “there are enough card reader with back up of three per each electoral wards”.
The REC called on the stakeholders and people across the state to ensure orderliness that will would way for free, fair, peaceful and credible exercise.
Barely a week to the 2015 Presidential polls in the country, 25 political parties, under the aegis of the Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP), Bayelsa State Chapter, have shown their support for President Goodluck Jonathan.
In a statement issued at the end of the meeting attended by the Chairmen and Secretaries of political parties in Yenagoa, they expressed satisfaction with the performance of the incumbent President in all sectors of the economy in his first tenure, pointing out that he deserves a second term in office to consolidate on the gains already achieved.
Addressing journalists after the meeting, which was convened by Governor Seriake Dickson, the State Chairman of the Conference of Nigerian Political Parties, Mr. Lucky Akpeli, stated that the parties were unanimous in their support for President Jonathan and equally pledged their resolve to mobilize their supporters across the state to turn out massively and vote for Goodluck Jonathan.
The forum, which commended Governor Dickson for his all-inclusive and fair minded disposition to governance, especially in handling the affairs of the state, urged him to convene meetings of the forum on a more regular basis to give all stakeholders the opportunity to speak their minds, as well as contribute more meaningfully to the development of the state.
The four-point communiqué also enjoined the leaders of all the political parties to work hard and ensure peaceful and rancour free elections in Bayelsa State.
At least 555 Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) belonging to dead residents from the 21 Local Government Areas of Ogun State have been discovered by the electoral commission while giving out the cards to voters.
The dead residents were registered in 2011.
The discovery was made known on Monday by the Ogun State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Timothy Ibitoye.
Briefing reporters in his office at the Presidential Boulevard in Abeokuta, the state’s capital, Mr Ibitoye gave a breakdown of the number of PVCs distributed so far and the number of registered voters in the state.
While putting the records straight on the number of registered voters, the INEC commissioner said 1,795,794 voters registered in the state, as against 1,370,340, being quoted in some quarters.
Mr Ibitoye said the commission had distributed 860,076 PVCs, representing 63 per cent of the total registered PVCs while about 425,454 were still being expected from Abuja.
However, the Ogun INEC informed the residents of its readiness for the forthcoming election, saying that elections would be conducted in all the 3,210 polling units across the 236 wards of the 20 Local Government Areas of the state.
The Ogun State governor, Ibikunle Amosun, had earlier appealed to the INEC to speed up the distribution of the PVCs in the state.
The State government had organised a mobilisation and sensitisation forum, with the aim of educating the electorates on the forth coming general elections.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Ogun State has expressed its readiness for the general elections that will begin on February 14, saying that proactive measures have been put in place to ensure a hitch free exercise.
The state’s Resident Electoral Commissioner, Mr Timothy Ibitoye, gave the assurance at a mobilisation and sensitisation forum organised by the commission at the June 12 cultural centre in Abeokuta, the state capital.
While addressing the gathering, the Governor the State, Mr Ibikunle amosun, appeal to the INEC to speed up the distribution of the Permanent Voter Card (PVC) which has become an issue, saying that about 35% of residents have so far been able to collect their cards.
The mobilisation and sensitisation forum on the 2015 elections brought together members of political parties, organised private sector, members of the European election observers, security chiefs in the state with the aim of educating the electorates on the forth coming general elections. The issue of the Permanent Voter Card seemed to have generated discourse at the occasion. Participants expressed concerns over the distribution and delay this sentiment was also shared by the governor of the state.
While expressing the readiness of the commission for the election, the Resident Electoral Commissioner said that elections would be conducted in all the 3,210 polling units across the 236 wards of the 20 Local Government Areas of the state.
The commissioner also said that the commission was seeking the understanding and cooperation of all stakeholders in the state in its bid to conduct free, fair and credible elections in the state.
As part of efforts to ensure that electorates get their PVCs, the electoral body shifted the deadline for collection of the voters card to February 8, asking all registered voters to go to collection centres in their Local Government Area and pick up their cards.
It expressed optimism that over 80 per cent of the cards would be picked up before the elections begin.
There have been calls for the postponement of the elections since many electorates have not been able to collect their cards, but the electoral body said it had given enough time for the cards to be picked up.