NDLEA Charges Mother-Daughter To Court Over Drug Trafficking

ndleaFollowing the arrest of a woman and her daughter in Obosi of Idemili North Local Government Area of Anambra State, over alleged trafficking in cannabis and cocaine, the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has charged them to court in line with the State Government’s directive to fast track trial of crime suspects.

Mrs. Afoma Okagbue and her daughter, Linda, were arraigned before the Federal High Court in Awka, on a 3-count charge of drug offenses which include conspiracy and illegal dealing on narcotic drugs contrary to and punishable under the Drug Law Enforcement Agency Act and Laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

According to the Prosecuting Counsel and Head of the Legal Unit of the NDLEA, Mr. Patrick Eshua, the suspects were arrested at Umuota Village in Obosi, on Tuesday (July 1) by the operatives of the NDLEA with 11.2 kilograms of cocaine and 5.1 kilograms of Cannabis Sativa, otherwise known as Igbo or Indian hemp.

Mr. Eshua said that the prosecution was important to the agency because of the family involvement in the trade in which one of the suspects, Linda, a student was indoctrinated into the trade by her own mother.

However, following an oral application from the defense counsel, Chinwuba Ndukaihe, the Judge granted bail to the two suspects. Seven suspects were altogether arraigned with two being granted bail.

It would be recalled that the present administration of Governor Willie Obiano has restated that the Judiciary has fundamental roles to play in the fight against crime and that includes quick dispensation of justice.

Julius Berger To Partner With Bayelsa Government

Gov-Dickson-Bayelsa-300x173The Bayelsa State Government has signed a Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) with Julius Berger International to develop the Yenagoa/Azikoro Business Park in the State capital.

The Bayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson, signed the Memorandum of Understanding in accordance to the administration’s policy of engendering private sector participation in the development of the state.

At a ceremony marking the MOU signing at the company’s International Headquarters in Wiesbaden, Germany, on Friday, Governor Dickson noted that the new partnership would serve as a veritable framework to fast-track the infrastructural development of the state.

Expressing satisfaction with the performance level of Julius Berger in the execution of projects, the Bayelsa State Chief Executive stated that the relationship between the company and the State Government had been of immense benefit to both parties.

He added that it has brought about the construction of new roads and the expansion of a number of old roads within the state capital and its environs, including the 12 kilometre Isaac Boro road, the NNPC mega station flyover and the Opolo-Imiringi road among others.

While affirming government’s resolve to keep to its side of the MOU, the Governor was of the view that Julius Berger has since grown to be a partner with equal stake in the development of the state and called for a revision of the company’s master plan for the development of the state, in line with the present realities on ground.

In his response, the Managing Director of Julius Berger International, Mr George Marks, expressed gratitude to the Governor and his entourage for embarking on the trip to the company’s headquarters.

As a bid to re-validate the master plan, Mr Mark expressed the company’s gratitude and commitment. He gave assurances that at an agreed time, the company leadership would be on hand to review the master plan and arrange a forum for interaction.


Nasarawa Govt. Disburse 280 million Naira To Students

nassarawa-state-universityJoy knew no bounds as students in Nassarawa State were elated when Government, through the e-bursary programme, disbursed scholarships and whooping sums to various students in Lafia, the state capital.

Speaking at the Nasarawa State University in Keffi on Tuesday, at the flag-off of the programme, the Executive Secretary of the Nasarawa State scholarship Board, Mr Suleiman Abdulwahab, said that the adoption of the e-bursary system was to check and control the process against abuse.

The Nasarawa State Government has disbursed 280 million Naira with over 18,000 students benefiting from the process through the e-bursary platform.

The Nasarawa State bursary initiative, which was meant to lessen the financial burden of the students, had about a total of 19, 678 applicants but 18, 762 were selected as beneficiaries.

The breakdown of the exercise showed that students in the Nigerian Law School were getting 100,000 Naira each, while those in Maritime Academy and College of Aviation Technology got 50,000 Naira each. Students with disability got 20,000 Naira each while students studying other courses were given 10,000 Naira each.

There were also various categories of awards for Medical and Engineering students. The students were elated at the gesture.

The State Government also said that it had spent more than 57 million Naira on 14 students studying Medicine and Engineering in Ukraine, while 38 indigenes from the state were currently enjoying the federal scholarship programme.

Students from various parts of Nasarawa State gathered at the state-owned university for the disbursement of the state scholarship scheme.

Gov Aliyu Distributes Vehicles To Unemployed Youths

The Governor of Niger State, Mu’azu Aliyu has re-affirmed his administration’s commitment to eradicate youth unemployment in the state.

The governor did this at the distribution of 100 vehicles to unemployed graduates in the community.

Speaking at the distribution ceremony, the governor said: “We are doing this to all communities, irrespective of political affiliations…that effective governance is not only in the efforts put into any venture but by the final results and the impact it has on the majority of the population.”

He pointed out that unemployment is one of the causes of youth restiveness, for which reason the State Government is determined to give priority to engaging them in gainful employment.

The governor also appealed to the beneficiaries to make good use of the cars which will be operated on a higher purchase basis.

The Chairman, SURE-P Niger State, Bawa Mu’azu, added that the vehicles are meant to serve a dual purpose of reducing unemployment and easing transportation challenges in the state.

Nigeria’s Survival Dependent On ‘Weak’ FCT – Nwankwo

A member of the Crusade For Justice Group, Richard Nwankwo, has advocated for a strong regional system of governance which will minimize the over-dependence on the Federal Government and make the centre ‘weak.’

Nwankwo, who was speaking on the proposed National Conference, on Sunrise Daily, stated that “for Nigeria to survive, you must have an extremely weak centre,” and grant power to the people to determine how they want to be ruled.

He averred that the current Federal System of governance was copied from the United States of America and is not being practised correctly, as there are several distortions in the system, here in Nigeria.

“You cannot run a presidential system of government predicated on the kind of decree we have, decree of 1999 constitution,” he said.

According to the activist, the National Conference, which has garnered both applause and criticism from different groups and individuals, is “proper at this point” and shows that the “government means well.”

However, President Goodluck Jonathan’s decision, which mandates that the recommendations made on the Conference will pass through the National Assembly, was ill-advised.

“I think the president is not properly being advised.”

Although the Advisory Committee is yet to complete its 6 week assignment of delivering a modus operandi for the Dialogue, Okonkwo stated that its activities so far fall within the picture of a properly organized conference.

However, he advised that all shades of opinion be represented.

Fewer States

Mr Nkwankwo also called for the reduction of the existing 36 states in the Federation, which he believes will reduce the cost of governance.

“It is mathematically impossible to move the nation forward with the number of states we have.

“It is also impossible to have the bloated NASS, with the kind of reckless allocation of funds going to them to talk about development,” he said.

He faulted the number of states in the country, a pattern he said Nigeria ‘copied’ from the United States of America.

“Texas is the 11th most powerful economy in the world. California is the 6th,” he said. In Nigeria, “these states are absolutely, economically redundant.”

He alleged that the states are created to appease political appointees.

Mr Nwankwo advocated that all the states in the different regions be collapsed into one.

“We want to see the possibility of collapsing all the states in the south east into one, all the states in the south west into one.”

This proposition will curtail the financial excesses and the high cost of governance in the country’s recurrent expenditure.

Amosun Launches 150 Air Conditioned Metro Taxis

Ogun state government has launched 150 new and air conditioned metro taxi scheme as part of the on-going reforms in the transport sector of the state economy.

The scheme is part of the calculated attempt at developing efficient, safe transport system, promote and strengthen the transport institution of the state to coordinate and encourage private sector as an engine of economic growth and development.

At a ceremony held at the arcade ground of the governor office in Abeokuta, the state capital, the state governor, Ibikunle Amosun seized the ample opportunity of the event to promise more infrastructural development for socio economic development of the state.

Inaugurating the taxis before members of the state executive council, traditional rulers and benefitting unions, the state governor asked beneficiaries to maintain a high level of discipline on the roads just as seek the support of all stakeholders for the success of the scheme.

While thanking the citizens for their support and understanding, the governor also enlisted the cooperation of all stakeholders to ensure the success of the scheme.

The taxis are expected to be deployed to major towns across the state.

Obiano Wins APGA Anambra Primaries

Ahead of the November 16th Anambra governorship election, the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) concluded its primary election to select a suitable candidate that will be its flag bearer.

After ten hours at the Women Development Center in Awka, Mr. Willie Obiano, from Anambra North Senatorial Zone emerged the governorship candidate with 870 votes.

He was closely followed by Honourable Uche Ekwunife who polled 150 votes.

Before the voting commenced, one of the aspirants, Mr. Patrick Obianwu, announced his withdrawal again from the contest and urged his supporters to go for his counterpart, Mr. Willie Obiano.

Chairman of the electoral panel, Mr. Martin Agbaso, commended the resilience of the aspirants saying each one of them is capable of winning the general election but was only necessary that the best be chosen.

The aspirants included Honourable Uche Ekwunife, Paul Odenigbo, Honorable Emeka Nwogbo, John Nwosu and Willie Obiano. Prince John Emeka had earlier withdrawn in protest. Voting commenced.

While many commended the transparency and credibility of the party, there were others who condemned the whole process citing irregularity in the delegate list and faulty accreditation process.

The state governor, Mr. Peter Obi who had always wished to hand over power to a successor from the north in the spirit of equity and fairness, urged the candidate and the party to work as a team and deliver Anambra for APGA come November 16.

APC Sets Up State Harmonisation Committees

The National Interim EXCO of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has approved the establishment of State Harmonisation Committees, in order not to create a vacuum and also to regulate the activities of the Party at the state level and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

In a statement issued in Lagos on Sunday by its Interim National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, party said the decision to set up the State Harmonization Committees (SHC), followed the adoption of the report of the Masari Committee by the National Interim EXCO which met last week in Abuja.

According to the it, the SHC shall comprise President/Vice President, past and serving, who are members of the Legacy Parties; Governors/Deputy Governors, past and serving, who are members of the Legacy Parties; Serving and former Senators who are members of the Legacy Parties; Serving members of the House of Representatives who are members of the Party and Speakers or Minority Leaders of the States House of Assembly who are members of the Party.

APC listed others as former Ministers who are members of the Legacy Parties; All immediate past National EXCO Members of the Legacy Parties; Immediate past Gubernatorial candidates of legacy Parties, and their Deputies where APC does not have a sitting Governor who are still Members of the Legacy Parties; Nine persons comprising of 3 elders, 3 youths and 3 women, with one of each being from each of the Senatorial Districts of the State; State Chairmen and the Secretaries of the legacy Parties; Members of the National Interim EXCO and Federal Commissioners who are members of the legacy parties.

The party said these persons shall be recommended to the National Interim EXCO, for their approval and inauguration, by National Vice Chairmen in conjunction with Members of the National Interim EXCO from their Zone.

It listed the functions of the SHC as including to harmonize and fuse the structures of legacy Parties into one united, strong and vibrant APC Party in an atmosphere of peace and harmony; Organize and hold meetings of the Party at all levels in the State (that is polling units, wards, LGA, Area Council and State); And to embark on massive mobilization, coordination and consolidation of members into the Party in accordance with stipulated guidelines issued by National interim EXCO.

APC said the SHC shall also take inventory of existing assets of legacy Parties across the State, harmonize same for the effective establishment of the Party structure in all polling units, wards,

Local Government and State in accordance with the directive and guidelines from the National Interim EXCO, and ensure effective implementation of the registration process, such that all persons desiring registration into the Party are afforded the right to be so registered in accordance with the directives from the National Interim EXCO.

”This Committee shall be answerable and report to the Interim National EXCO of its decisions and steps taken in the performance of the assignment through the National Vice Chairman of the zone,” the party said.

Faceoff: Battle For Lagos

APGA Conducts Peaceful State Congress

Barely three days after the sack of the Anambra State All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) chairman, the deputy chairman and the assistant secretary the party has successfully held their congress peacefully at the Women Development Center , Awka under the full supervision of all the relevant bodies including the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.

The State governor, Mr. Peter Obi and his deputy, Mr. Emeka Sibeudu, legislators from both the federal and state levels, party stalwarts and Delegates from the twenty one local government areas of the state all gathered with excitement at the Women Development Center, Awka, to vote and elect for the first time, since the inception of the party, their executive members whose tenure will last for four years.

Accreditation started after eight in the morning after which the congress began by 10:15 am with delegates nominating candidates. Voting commenced at half past eleven. The governor who was also a delegate voted. He spoke alongside other party stalwarts on the essence of the congress.

Voting stopped at 2:20pm and thereafter counting started. Chairman of the congress committee announced the result in which Honorable Egwuoyibo Okoye, a former member of the state house of assembly emerged the winner as he was elected unopposed. The new executive officers were immediately inaugurated into office by the Acting Chairman, APGA Board of Trustee, Dr. Tim Menakaya.

Delegates reacted on the congress.

The party members say they cherish the stability of the party which the congress is one good step towards its achievement, it is therefore hoped that the new executive will also work in line with that vision ahead of the 2014 governorship election.


Gov. Dickson Releases N500M For Gratuity And Pensions

Bayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson, has presented a cheque of N500 million for the payment of pensions and gratuity obligations owed retired civil servants in the state.

Presenting the cheque to the State Head of Civil Service, Mr. Frazer Okuoru, who is also the Chairman of the Pensions and Gratuity Verification Committee in Government House, Yenagoa, Governor Dickson urged the committee to ensure that the funds were disbursed to only genuine retirees.

The governor also asked the Committee to furnish his office with monthly reports on the performance of their job, noting that the release of the N500 million is the first instalment payment of the funds government intends to disburse in tranches to clear the arrears owed retired civil servants.

He described the backlog of pensions and gratuities owed by the state as unfortunate, explaining that the problem predates his administration.

In his response after the presentation of the cheque, The Head of the Civil Service, Mr. Okuoru, assured the governor that the Committee would diligently carry out its responsibilities.

He appealed to the pensioners to show understanding and patience to enable the committee clear the cheque and fine-tune modalities for actual payments to commence.

State Of Police College Dormitory

Channels Television begins the new year 2013 with focus on the rehabilitation of the foremost training college of the Nigeria Police. We shall x-ray the life of students living in the police college.

The report below shows how students of the college live, who will later graduate to become policemen and women that Nigerians would rely on to serve and protect them.