Wike Assures Investors Of Land And Tax Relief In Rivers State

Wike Assures Investors Of Land And Tax Relief In Rivers StateThe Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has invited foreign and local investors to take advantage of the rapid developmental strides of his administration, to invest in all sectors of the state’s economy, in order to create jobs.

Governor Wike stated that first-time investors in sectors such as tourism and hospitality, housing and property development, as well as agriculture and ICT skills development, would receive attractive tax incentives and easy access to land in the state.

Addressing a group of foreign journalists in Lagos on Wednesday, the State Commissioner for Information and Communication, Dr Austin Tam-George who spoke of the government’s tax plan, also dismissed security concerns about the state, saying that Rivers state is among the safest destinations for investment in the country.

“The narrative that Rivers state is unsafe is an ugly slander against the state by a disgruntled political opposition”, the commissioner said, adding that as the oil and gas hub in the country, Rivers state has offered the highest return on investment in Nigeria since 1958.

Dr Tam-George said that activities marking the Golden Jubilee celebrations in Rivers state in May would showcase the different opportunities for investment in the state.

Present at the media briefing were correspondents from the BBC, AFP, Duetch Welle, VOA, Xinhua, CCTV, the publishers of The Trent, among others.

Channels TV, BBOG Seal Relationship Formally

Channels TV, VOA Seal Relationship FormallyChannels Television and the Broadcasting Board of Governors of the United States of America, BBOG Global, have put pen to paper to concretise the professional media relationship already existing between the two organisations.

At the MoU signing at the headquarters of Channels Television in Lagos, the Chairman/CEO of Channels Media Group, Mr John Momoh said that the MoU was to launch Channels Television’s northern service.

Mr Momoh added that the station has rolled out its Hausa service beginning from Kano state and would soon follow with the Yoruba, pidgin and Igbo languages.

On his part, the Marketing Director of BBOG Global, Mr Doug Boynton, said that the seal offers a wider opportunity between both organisations to connect more in information and goodwill sharing.

South African Troops, Others Join Fight Against Boko Haram

Niger RepublicSouth African troops as well as other foreign soldiers have joined in Nigeria’s offensive against Boko Haram insurgents in the nation’s north east region, engaging in ground combat and flying combat air sorties.

According to VOA, the Federal Government explained that the foreign military personnel were only advisers accompanying military equipment purchased from South Africa, Russia and Ukraine.

Activities of the extremist group seeking to impose Islamic rule in the region have caused the death of several thousands and displaced over 1 million people in northern Nigeria.

“One soldier, who is living alongside the foreign personnel in a barracks in the city of Maiduguri, identified the foreigners as South Africans, Ukrainians and others. He said they were flying aircraft from the Maiduguri airport.”

The corporal, who was also based in the barracks in Maiduguri, said South African pilots had been flying combat missions using Nigerian jets, surveillance planes and helicopters, along with jets he said appeared to be South African.

“All the aerial attacks are being done by the white soldiers using Nigerian and hired military aircraft,” he said.

Another officer, who served as a top aide to the Commander of a Brigade in Borno state, told VOA there were between 100 and 150 foreign soldiers, mainly South African, working out of Maiduguri and they were flying fighter jets daily, out of the Maiduguri airport.

C. African Republic Interim President Orders Military Crackdown To Curb Violence

Central African Republic’s Interim President, on Monday, January 13, warned vigilante groups that the time of pillaging the country was over.

Interim leader, Alexandre-Ferdinand Nguendet, sent hundreds more soldiers onto the streets with orders to shoot anyone disturbing the peace.

The nation has been gripped by months of inter-religious violence, which killed 1,000 people in December alone.

After a coup in March 2013, abuses by rebel Seleka forces led to the creation of Christian self-defence militias and killings that evoked memories of Rwanda’s genocide 20 years ago.

Nguendet became Interim President over the weekend after former interim leader, Michel Djotodia, who was swept into power by the mainly Muslim Seleka rebels, succumbed to international pressure to resign on Friday, January 10.

Joy over Djotodia’s departure gave way to violence over the weekend, with sporadic attacks, particularly at night, on Muslim-owned shops and businesses.

“All of the armed elements, I am warning the anti-Balaka and Seleka that the holiday is over. To the forces of order, I order you to shoot to kill at all those disturbing the public order, so that peace can reign in this country. The break is finished,” Nguendet said in an address to the nation’s armed forces.

Nguendet added that the period of “anarchy” in the country was over.

“I have launched an operation, called “Bangui without gunfire.” There will be a rapid intervention operation put in place, under my command. In case of robbery, this rapid intervention team will be working 24 hours a day and the number will be given to the population. Whenever there is a robbery, or vandalism, in any neighbourhood, minutes later the perpetrators will be neutralised.”

The Red Cross said its workers collected 10 bodies from the streets over the weekend and it had treated some 60 wounded people at the Community Hospital in Bangui.

“The break is over. The robberies are over. The chaos is over. The Central African people must get back their honour to allow the country to live,” Nguendet said.

Former colonial power, France, which had sought to stay out of the latest crisis in a country where it has often intervened, dispatched hundreds of soldiers last month to bolster a beleaguered African peacekeeping force as the killings spiralled.

The National Transitional Council will start work on identifying a new leader on Tuesday, January 14.

Under the country’s transitional charter, Nguendet will lead the country until a new interim president is chosen by the council, within two weeks of Djotodia’s resignation.

Letter To President: Al-Mustapha Challenges Obasanjo To Public Debate

The former Chief Security Officer to late Head of State, Sani Abacha, Hamza Al-Mustapha, has challenged former president Olusegun Obasanjo to an open debate.

This is in reaction to Obasanjo’s letter to President Goodluck Jonathan in which he alleged that he (Al-Mustapha) was released from prison to help the president train snipers to assassinate political opponents.

Al-Mustapha bore his mind and challenged the ex-president to a public debate on the allegations, while speaking to the Hausa Service of the Voice of America, VOA, which was monitored in Abuja on Wednesday.

While admitting that Obasanjo did not mention his name in the controversial open letter, he said that he knew the former president’s assertions were about him.

He expressed disappointment at the former president’s approach: “If he has anything to say on me, he should mention me directly or even challenge me and not make allusions.”

Al-Mustapha vehemently denied the allegations supposedly made by Obasanjo, claiming that training assassins to hunt the president’s political opponents contradicts his known passion for supporting people from Northern Nigeria especially within the military.

He said: “I read Obasanjo’s letter and subsequent comments by Nigerians, I would have responded immediately, but I was away in India receiving treatment.

“Perhaps it is Obasanjo and his cronies that are planning what he was insinuating.”

Al-Mustapha also said: “From 1974 to the present, a lot of things are buried with all sorts of lies, but all would be revealed one day.

“I urge everyone to pray for Obasanjo to accept my challenge for a public debate so that the truth will come out,” he said.

Obama’s acceptance speech aimed at uniting Americans – Sunday Dare

A former head of the Hausa service of the Voice of America, Sunday Dare has claimed that President Barack Obama’s victory speech after his re-election was targeted at uniting Americans because a whole lot of issues brought division into the country before the elections.

Mr Dare was on ground with Sunrise Daily to react to the re-election of President Obama.

He also noted that Obama’s speech is aimed at bringing every American on board to let the American Democracy blossom, be it a Republican or Democrat, to put behind the election and forge ahead.