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NBA asks Nigeria to guard its hard earned democracy jealously

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NBA asks Nigeria to guard its hard earned democracy jealously

The National President of Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Malam Abubakar Mahmud has called on the Military and Nigerians to guard the nation’s hard earned democracy jealously.

Mahmud who made the call during the opening ceremony of the NBA National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Lokoja caution the military against the lure for unconstitutional roles.

The NBA President said though there had been the suggestions in the media of possible instigation by politicians for military intervention in governance of the country in statements credited to the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai it warned of the grave consequences.

“The NBA wishes to express its concern and condemn in strong terms any such moves from whatever quarters. The Nigerian democracy and democratic institutions must not be imperiled by any undemocratic change of Government.
“We commend Nigerian military for its role in restoring security in the country especially in the North East region and indeed many other areas of conflict, we urge the military to remain focused on its constitutional duties of protecting the sovereignty of the country and its territorial integrity. 
He said the military must resist and expose any attempt from any quarters to cajole it into any in constitutional role.

“Our country needs to assume its proper leadership in Africa and indeed amongst the comity of nations globally. The journey to democracy is often long and tedious.

“I urge however that we do not become complacent. We must continue to be vigilant in the defence of our democracy and democratic institutions.” He said.
On the agitation for secession from some sections of the country, the NBA National President said Nigerians would fare better together than in smaller enclaves and reaffirmed the commitment of the Bar to national unity.

Mahmud urged both Federal and State Governments to address in concerted and responsible manner, conflicts between herdsmen and farmers in many states as well as sectarian conflicts in Southern Kaduna which he said, was far from being over.
“Nigerian Bar Association wishes to reaffirm its commitment to national unity and the integrity of the Nigerian State. I believe as many of us here do that we are better together than being in our smaller enclaves.
“We recognize however that the task of building a strong, viable and effective federal system which is the most suitable arrangement given our size in diversity must be a continuous process and involves continuous negotiations and adjustments.”
He therefore urged all groups dissatisfied with the present system or federal structure to continue to advocate or agitate for reforms and improvements in peaceful and non violent manner. 
“The NBA commits itself to facilitating any genuine and peaceful initiatives for constitutional reforms in the governance or in the federal structure in the country.”

Also speaking, Chief Judge of the state, Justice Nasir Ajanah said there had been harmonious relationship between the Bar and Bench in the state to enhance proper administration of law and order.

Ajanah however regretted that in majority of states across the country the independence and financial autonomy of the Judiciary as enshrined in section 121(3) of the constitution were yet to be guaranteed.

He therefore, called for strict adherence to the provisions of the constitution while he added his voice to the call by the four branches of the Bar in the state for the establishment of a division of the Appeal Court in Kogi.
In his opening remarks, Governor Yahaya Bello said tyranny could only thrive when the lawyers and judges collude with it adding that the 17 cases he had from inception of his government had reinforced his trust in the Judiciary.
Bello said he had established a filial relationship with the Judiciary and the Legislature saying that the relationship was strong and of equals as no arm was inferior to the other.

The governor however, said he had paid salary to 95 per cent of the state workforce who were cleared after the screening exercise adding that the remaining five per cent where those he granted “Amnesty” and their salaries were being paid.
Earlier in his welcome address, chairman of the Lokoja branch of the NBA Mr Liman Salihu said, “This National Executive Committee meeting is very important and timely in the sense that it will define the position the position and or the future of the NBA
This, he said was in view of the “recent but unfortunate happenings where some of our colleagues resort to acts that are capable of undermining the progress and development of our dear association and the entire legal profession.” 

 

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Humanitarian ministry insists States hoarded palliatives

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Humanitarian ministry insists States hoarded palliatives

The minister of Humanitathas denied having any link with hoarded palliatives meant for distribution to the needy during the COVID-19 pandemic by many states as she restated that all palliatives donated to the ministry were distributed accordingly.
The minister made the disclosure on Monday during a national Press conference in Abuja on the activities of the ministry since inception.
She said, “Recently, the world witnessed the unfortunate incidence of looting of palliatives and relief materials stashed away in warehouses in some states of the country during the #EndSars protest.

“As the Minister of
Humanitarian Affairs, I want to categorically state that the Palliatives
donated to the Ministry by the Nigerian Customs Services, National
Strategic Grain Reserve, and many good willing donors were handed to
State officials for onward distribution to the poor and vulnerable in thier
states.

“The Ministry identifies its strategic role and impact in the everyday lives of the Nigerian. We want to assure the public that we are on ground working every day for Nigerians.”

She expressed satisfaction with the success story of one of the Federal Government’s Investment programs, the N-POWER as 109, 823 benefitiaries have successfully started their own businesses

According to her, “After the two-year period, facts and reports show that some of the
beneficiaries of Batch A and Batch B of the programme have established
businesses in their communities, with no fewer than 109,823
beneficiaries of the N-Power Programme who have identified themselves
as business owners.

According to her, “Current Enrolment Status of beneficiaries for N-power Batch C closed in July 2020 and we have received over 5 Million applications since the portal opened.
“The application process will be concluded as soon as possible to provide additional Nigerian youths access to the programme.
“At this juncture, I want to officially announce that the Central Bank of
Nigeria in collaboration with the Ministry has developed a portal to
enable the exited N-Power beneficiaries to log on and apply for the
various economic empowerment and entrepreneurship options provided by the Central Bank such as the AGSMEIS loan and the AnchorBorrowers Program (ABP). “Interested N-Power exited beneficiaries
should log on to the CBN portal for more information.
The website portal is nexit-fmhds.cbn.gov.ng as displayed on the screen.

Farouq also refuted the claim that her ministry has been feeding the Internally Displaced persons with poor nutritious food saying the Ministry has been making different grains available and also allow other bodies who make donations of their choice which the Ministry cannot restrict or limit.

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FG mulls reversal of Fuel price (PMS) as organized labour mounts pressure

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FG mulls reversal of Fuel price (PMS) as organized labour mounts pressure

The Federal Government may be planning to reverse the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) to N160 per litre if the pressure being mounted by the organised Labour on the Federal Government is fruitful.

At the end of the resumed negotiations between government and the labour movement Friday night, the Federal Government indicated willingness to consult widely with the view to reviewing the price downward.

The indication shows that   the new price might be unveiled at the resumed meeting slated for December 7.
The Federal Government said the period between now and then would allow it embark on a wide range consultation over Labour’s request.
Labour had insisted that the pump price must be reviewed downward to N160 before negotiations can proceed on the hike in electricity tariffs and deregulation of the downstream sector of the petroleum industry.
Minister for Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, who disclosed this at the end of the latest meeting between the Federal Government and organised Labour on the recent increases in the pump price of petrol and electricity tariff, added that the meeting agreed to let the government side consult with their principal and every relevant authority on the request of the Labour
He stated: “The message from the organised Labour is clear; they want a reversal of the pump price of PMS. The parties have agreed to let the government side consult their principal on that. We will consult the President, minister of Petroleum and the Economic Management Team.”
The minister noted that though it was no longer the responsibility of government to fix the pump price of PMS as it had been deregulated, the matter still fell within the realm of the economy.
On the issue of the electricity tariff, Ngige said the committee working on it, headed by the Minister of State for Labour, Festus Keyamo, already had an interim report and would use the opportunity created by the adjournment of the meeting to undertake field visits to the different Distribution Companies (DisCos) in Nigeria and come back with a more comprehensive report.

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INEC chair: Lawan denies taking N2b bribe to confirm Yakubu

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INEC chair: Lawan denies taking N2b bribe to confirm Yakubu

By James Ojochegbe

The president of the senate Ahmad Lawan has denied collecting any gratification of N2b to facilitate the confirmation of the INEC chairman as alleged by an online publication.

This contained in a Statement issued in Abuja by his special Adviser on media Ola Awoniyi.
The statement reads, “The attention of the Office of the Senate President has been drawn to a report by SaharaReporters alleging that a group led by the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, collected N2billion from Professor Mahmood Yakubu to facilitate the confirmation of his appointment by President Muhammadu Buhari to a fresh five-year tenure as chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

“It is noteworthy that the publication, as always with its ridiculous fabricated reports, could not even expand the entertainment of its readers by providing the names of members of the fictitious group and where the group operates from.
“To be sure, that group exists only in the mischievious imagination of the writer of the fiction.”
The Statement enjoined Nigerians to ignore the report as yet another incident of hallucination by the comical characters operating the fabricated news platform.

“The online medium has long earmed its notoriety as a purveyor of fake news with high profile public officials as its targets. 
“It is well known that only the President can nominate a candidate for appointment or reappointment as Chairman of INEC.
And only the Senate as a body can confirm or reject the appointment, after due screening of the candidate.
“The parliamentary process for the confirmation of nominations by the President is open and involves all distinguished senators.
“The Senate President is only a presiding officer of the Senate and does not lead any group in or outside the august chamber that acts in any way to circumvent the processes of the Senate. “We reassure Nigerians that the Senate President did not receive any gratification, in his or behalf of others, to help Professor Yakubu get a second term as chairman of INEC.”

He challenged SaharaReporters and the sponsors of the false publication to provide whatever evidence that they can in support of their glib claims, failing which Nigerians should dismiss the report as another cheap blackmail from a platform that has no reputation for credible reportage and ethical journalism practise.”

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