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Kogi CAN Chairman, Former minister escape Assassins bullets in Kogi.

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Kogi CAN Chairman, Former minister escape Assassins bullets in Kogi.

The Kogi State Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), chairman Bishop John Ibenu narrowly escaped the bullets of assassins who opened fire on his Land Cruiser Toyota Jeep at Ojodu in Ofu Local Government of the State.
Insecurity in the confluence State has continued unabated with not less than 10 kidnap incidence in the last two weeks.
At another instance a former Minister of State for Health Arc. Gabriel Aduku also escaped assassination as some gunmen numbering six invaded his house in Anyigba.
Speaking to newsmen yesterday in Lokoja on his harrowing experience, Bishop John Ibenu who is presently the Kogi State said he was on his way from his village in Kogi East at about 5.30 pm on Sunday when some 7 suspected Fulani men along Ojodu in Ofu local government area rushed out of the bush and opened fire on his vehicle.

He noted that the 4 of the Fulani men rushed out from the bush and in attempt to make a detour, another 3 Fulani men appeared from the opposite end and open fire on his vehicle.
“It at about 5.30 pm while I was returning from home after Ojodu near Achigili village at the bend, an oncoming trailer flagged us down, when I tried to stop four men looking like fulanis emerged from the bush to block the road.”
“When I tried to make a detour and another three Fulanis came from the bush and opened fire on my vehicle.”
Ibenu who could not identify the men noted that they were not wearing mask but were armed with AK47.
He said the grace of God made it possible for him to escape unscathed.
According to him, four persons were abducted from the vehicle that the occupant of a vehicle ahead of him who were not as lucky as he was.
He called on the state governor to intensify effort in curbing criminal activities in the state.

According to him in the last 11 days about six kidnapping incidents were recorded along Lokija-Ajaokuta road and other places in the state.
He said the worst part is the fact that security agents were not around to help when bullet marks were inflicted on his vehicle.
“Each time these things happen security agents are not anywhere on the road increasing the suspicion of Nigerians on the current insecurity situation that they are aiding and abetting the ugly trend on the highways.
On the recent adoption of the cattle colony muted by the Federal Government the chairman said he had told the Governor on Christmas day during a visit to ensure he critically look in to the issue by calling a comprehensive stakeholders meeting.
He said the views of the stakeholders must be respected and taken into consideration before any decision is taken.
Ibenu said it is pertinent to take into cognizance the unborn generation in order not to jeopardise their future adding that the unborn generation of people of Kogi State also own the State.
He expressed the believe that Bello will do justice in that direction.
Meanwhile the former Minister of Health State, Chief Gabriel Aduku also escaped being assassinated in his country home Anyigba.

Chief Aduku was allegedly attacked by some unknown gunmen men at his personal residence in Anyigba.

According to a statement issued by the Kogi East Elders Council (KEEC) that was signed by the Secretary-General, Mr. Alphonsus Alhassan and made available to the Guardian in Lokoja yesterday, they alleged that “By evening of December 18, 2017, Chief Arc. Gabriel Aduku, who is the Deputy Chairman of the Council was accosted and man-handled at his residence in Anyigba, Kogi State.

They indicated that the hoodlums in their twenties, six in number wearing security outfits carried out the assassination attempt until a cry for help from one of his wards distracted them.
They observed that while three stayed outside the building to mount sentry two others wearing hood entered his sitting room through his kitchen.

“One of them carried a pump action rifle while the other two had pistols which they pointed at his head and informed him they were sent from Abuja to pick him for questioning.

“He refused to accompanied them despite their physically trying to bundle him out as he insisted he would rather die within his compound if need be.”

They noted that they broke down two bedroom doors, seized his telephone sets, those of his aide and other valuables to make it appear like a robbery attack.

“We want to state that the signature of the perpetrators of this crime is not unambiguous.

“We have a very good idea of those behind the shameless and cowardly act. That the attack came a few weeks after the Kogi East Elders’ Council addressed a press conference in Abuja which was replied by a group who were so cowardly that they neither included their names and addresses in the rejoinder which they published in three national newspapers is
a pointer.

“It is obvious that since the hoodlums and their pay masters could not controvert the facts and kernel of our press conference which centred on the unmitigated mis-governance of Kogi State, rather than tow the path of moral rectitude, they have resorted to crude intimidation of elders old enough to be their fathers and grandfathers,” the statement added.

They added that no member of the Kogi East Elders’ Council appointed himself or herself. They did not even come together on their own will to form the Council, stressing that every single member was appointed in recognition of his or her antecedents and have been discharging this task sacrificially for the good of Kogi East Senatorial District.

“We will therefore not be intimidated or cowered by mannerless hoodlums whose stock-in-trade is gangsterism and terrorism,” he noted.
The police public relations officer Williams Ayah when contacted confirmed the minister’s ordeal but debunked the CAN chairman’s narrative saying the police was not aware of that.

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Group clears Bauchi Governor of Corruption allegation

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Group clears Bauchi Governor of
Corruption allegation

From Ali Sara, Bauchi

Corruption allegations against the Bauchi State Governor, Senator Bala Mohammed Abdulkadir are false, blatant lies being orchestrated by his political enemies, the Bauchi State Coalition Against Financial Crimes and Injustice (BACAFCI) has said.

The National Chairman of BACAFCI Mallam Bibi Dogo stated this on Sunday while fielding questions from newsmen in Bauchi in reaction to the recent petition  filed by alleged stakeholders from Bauchi State.
The group had accused the Governor of corruptly enriching himself and mal administration in the State as reported in some media.
Dogo indicated that the coalition received a copy of the petition which it has studied but found no tangible evidence but blatant lies with the sole aim of bringing the government to disrepute out of envy of his track records and successes.

Dogo who brought dozens of documents in defense of Governor Bala said the anti graft group BACAFCI cleared Bala on all the allegations after they studied the petitions filed by the socalled stakeholders before the Economic Financial Crime Commission EFCC.
Dogo explained further that the allegations of loans for the Purchase of 3.5bn official vehicles for the Political office holders are unfounded as all due processes were followed in the award of the contract.
He said the contract for their purchase was approved by the State House of Assembly through House resolution via a letter sent by the government and duly signed by the clerk of the House Umar Yusuf Gital with reference number BASHA/POL/S/13/VOL.XIX/203 dated 17/July/2019.
He said  the contract was awarded to an indigene of the State after it followed the normal scrutiny where certificate of no objection was issued to the company before it was awarded the contract.
Dogo observed that from their findings, all cars were supplied and put to use by the beneficiaries in the best interest of the State.

He said the allegations that Governor Bala is a director in one of the companies which Bauchi Government patronized is not true as the Governor had resigned his position in the company on 1st May 2019 adding that he was not a Governor at that time because he had not taken the oath of office.
He said their findings were confirmed through Corporate Affairs Commission CAC form no 51180 on the particulars of Directors.

The Chairman also indicated that allegations of awarding road contracts, Building of Palaces, Workshops, assistance to pilgrims, supply of School Uniforms to out of School children, children meals by the government, are all genuine projects that everyone with sincere mind can see.
“Where anyone is in doubt he can go to the relevant government agencies to confirm and verify.
On the issue of School Uniforms and meals for out of school children he said the contract for the supply of uniforms was awarded to the indigenes of the State after due process and the uniforms was supplied.
Dogo indicated that the project was aimed at reducing the number of out of School children, while the Workshop was carried out in the best interest of the state at minimal cost. 

Even the issue of ghost workers, he pointed out that it was Governor Bala who held a public hearing with all stake holders on the issue he is working hard to bring sanity to the system to free some resources and employ more people in to the state Civil Service. 

He said the petitioners were either ignorant of how government operates or it was born outof malice.
“They just decided to paint the governor black due to the large number of physical projects he has execute that has developed the state.

Bibi Dogo said many of the allegations are not directly linked to the Governor but some Civil Servants whom the petitioners didn’t care to accused but the Governor that is making effort to rebuild the State through the provision of genuine infrastructures.

He advised them to always cross check their facts and offer only constructive criticisms not blatant lies.

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Lawan seeks Pakistan support in capacity building for Nigeria’s Defence Industry

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Lawan seeks Pakistan support in capacity building for Nigeria’s Defence Industry

President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan has urged Pakistan to aid Nigeria in the capacity building of her Defence Industry.

Lawan made the call on Friday while receiving in audience a delegation of the Senate of Pakistan which visited him to seek Nigeria’s support for the candidature of the Chairman of the Pakistani Senate for the Presidency of the Inter-Parliamentary Union(IPU).

The Senate President thanked Pakistan for its assistance in the area of training and supply of weapons to Nigeria Armed Forces in the fight against insurgency and other security challenges.
In his words,
“But one area that I think we need to sustain collaboration and partnership is in the area of helping Nigeria to build our Defence Industry.

“We started together in the 70s. For some reasons, we are still struggling to get stronger in the area of manufacturing or producing our needed defence weapons.

“But you have gone higher. We need to learn a lot from you in that respect.

“We have the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria located in Kaduna. They are still working hard to see how they can start producing the kind of weapons that we need in Nigeria.
“It’s going to take a while but I believe that you will graciously help us build the capacity of the people working in that place,” Lawan said.

The Senate President said the friendship between Pakistan and Nigeria which dated back to Nigeria’s Independence in 1960 had transformed into brotherhood.

“In all international fora, Pakistan and Nigeria have always been on the same side. Pakistan has been quite supportive of Nigeria in all ramifications.

“Presently, we do a lot together for our security especially the Armed Forces. You also help us with some of the weapons that we need in fighting the insurgency. We appreciate that and we hope that this kind of relationship and brotherhood will continue,” Lawan said

On the primary reason for the visit, the Senate President said the issue of the candidature of the Chairman of the Pakistani Senate, Muhammad Sadiq Sanjrani for the presidency of IPU “is like one of us running for that office.”

“We will give him the support that he needs from us and if we can go beyond what we can offer as an institution to other areas including the African jurisdiction, we will do so, trying to talk to as many of our colleagues in other jurisdiction within the African region, to see if we can get them on board as well.

“But he is eminently qualified. He’s vastly experienced and Pakistan has been quite prominent and visible in the activities of IPU.

“What we require is reforming IPU to make it more robust and vibrant and also provide opportunity for supporting the various chapters across the globe. And I believe that with his experience and expertise, he will be able to do that and for us he has no problem. He has our support.”

Earlier, the Chairman of the Pakistani Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed who led the delegation said the mission was basically to seek the support of Nigeria’s Senate for the candidacy of the Chairman of the Pakistani Senate, for the presidency of IPU.

“The election is scheduled to hold in the first week of November. We feel that Nigeria’s support will be very critical and because Nigeria is a very important player in the international scenes and in particular with reference to Africa.

“It is in that spirit that we have come personally to solicit your support. And we hope that, God’s willing if we are successful, we will be voice, not just for Asia/Pacific, but the voice of Africa and democratic and civilised community of nation’s,” Sayed said.

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Works and Housing ministry gets lion share of capital expenditure at N404b in 2021 budget

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Works and Housing ministry gets lion share of capital expenditure at N404b in 2021 budget


President Muhammadu Buhari in his budget proposal to the joint session of the national Assembly Thursday has said that the works and Housing Ministry got the lion share of N404b for capital expenditure among other ministries.
The allocation he said is in line with his submission that capital expenditure in 2021 remains focused on the completion of as many ongoing projects as possible, rather than the commencement of new ones.
The president pointed out that, capital allocation to the Works and Housing sector is to facilitate the completion of several critical projects in 2021.
The works and Housing ministry was followed by that of Transportation with N256 billion in terms of heighrachy of importance.
The allocation Buhari said is line with his commitment to investing in Transportation Infrastructure.
According to him, the ministry of defence was allocated N121 billion in capital expenditure while
Power got N198 billion (inclusive of N150 billion for the Power Sector Recovery Plan).
For the ministry of Education N127 billion in capital was earmarked as another N70b was set aside for Universal Basic Education.

Commission
Other key capital expenditures of note are
Water Resources withN153 billion, Agriculture and Rural Development with N110 billion, mknistry of Health N132 billion with
Zonal Intervention Projects gettingN100 billion.
Others are ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment which got N51 billion while Niger Delta Development Commission was earmarked N64 billion.
According to President Buhari the 2021 capital budget is N1.15 trillion higher than the 2020 provision of N2.69 trillion adding that at 29 percent of aggregate expenditure, the provision moves closer to this Administration’s policy target of 30 percent.

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