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Senate orders panel to investigate extra judicial killing at idiroko/Ipokia border

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Senate orders panel to investigate extra judicial killing at idiroko/Ipokia border


The Senate has mandated its Committee on Customs to investigate alleged extra judicial killings at the Idiroko/Ipokia borders by operatives of Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) to report back in two weeks.
They commiserated with all those that have been injured and families of those who lost their loved ones in the attacks recent extra judicial killings in the town.
They also observed a minute silence for those that lost their lives in the crises.

This was followed by a motion by Senator Tolulope Odebiyi (APC-Ogun west) during plenary on “The Need to condemn the incessant excesses and the recent extra judicial killings of people by men of the Nigerian Customs Service in Idiroko/Ipokia state constituency.”

Idiroko is a town in Ipokia local government area of Ogun under the senator’s senatorial district.

Debating the motion, Odebiyi said that since the closure of the country’s land borders, men of the customs had been conducting themselves in a very reckless and unruly manner along the Idiroko axis.

He said that it was disturbing that “precisely, on Oct. 7, while we were on break, men of the customs service were alleged to have shot and killed a student including subjecting many students to various degrees of injury.

“The people of Idiroko state constituency are daily being harassed and treated with disdain by men of the Nigerian Customs Service.

“While many of the actions and excesses by the operatives including the recent killings were not only breaches but were done against the state, sadly there are yet to be  any report of any of the officers involved or reprimanded,” he said.

Supporting the motion, Sen. Ibrahim Oloriegbe (APC-Kwara Central) said “we have debated on this floor the reason for the closure of the border and  its importance.

“It is very unfortunate and sad that lives of Nigerians are lost as a result of their actions.

“It is  also sad that those men are not keeping to the code of their various services,” Oloriegbe said.

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Legislature

See Federal legislators demanding justice for killings during #ENDSARS protests

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See Federal legislators demanding justice for killings during #ENDSARS protests

Some legislators have expressed their commitments to setting agenda for
progressive laws in
Nigeria; initiating
progressive laws and speaking against anti-people bills in the
National Assembly.
They said they have
followed carefully
the #ENDSARS
protest by young people across Nigeria for the past two weeks and the killings in several cities including Jos, Kaduna,Abuja, Benin and Lagos
They noted that in
recent past, the protest has been
the most elaborate
that has united young Nigerians across
geography,
ethnic nationality and
religion.
They observed that the protest goes beyond the excesses of the police formation called
Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).
The protests they observed was the result of
frustration by Nigerian youths
who have seen that
governments at all levels have failed to provide public goods
and opportunities for them to
lead a meaningful life.

They also recognised that over
the years, socio-economic
indicators in Nigeria have remained precarious as indices have consistently classified Nigeria
among the 15 worst states that are failing across the world.

They appealed for the utilization of globally
recognised methods of
policing in a democratic society rather than reliance on force,
intimidation and manipulation by government and security
agencies in attempt to break
the protest.

“We are enraged by reports of
shooting of unarmed,
defenceless protesters by
military officers at the Lekki
toll gate in Lagos after the
lights were turned off and CCTVcameras put off.
“We call on the President to
give an immediate order to all
security agencies to stop
shooting at protesters.
“We condemn this action by
government and security
agencies. This is inexcusable
and totally unacceptable.
“There is no justification
whatsoever for security
officials who are paid with tax
payers’ money to kill unarmed
protesters.
“We call on the President to
address the nation and take
concrete actions to respond to
the demand of the protesters.
“He should commit in words
and action to respect and
protect the right to protest.
He should publicly invite the
leaders of the protesters to an urgent dialogue while assuring them of their safety and that
outcomes would be
expeditiously implemented.

“We demand that the
perpetrators of this dastardly
act and all those who gave the orders should be brought to
account in a transparent and accountable manner.
“We ask the President to
immediately identify all the
officers involved and prosecute them for murder.
“We also condemn the attack
and burning of properties of
innocent citizens and
government.
“We call on government to
respond expeditiously to
demand of the protesters and
other lingering issues of
addressing the security
architecture of the country and addressing revelations of
corruption in many governmentagencies.
“As patriots, we will not keep
quiet while the country is
plunged into crisis under any
guise. A stitch in time saves
nine.” They concluded

The legislators that appended their signatures are:
Senators Olu Adetumbi, Michael Opeyemi Bamidele, Tolu Odebiyi, and (Dr)
Surajudeen Ajibola Basiru.
House of representatives members that signed: Prof. Julius Ihonvbere,
Hon. Rimamnde Shawulu Kwewum,
Hon. Francis Waive,
Hon. Peter Akpatason,
Hon. Tajudeen Yusuf ( Teejay)
Hon. Umeoji Chukwuma,
Hon. Kingsley Chinda,
Hon. Abubakar Hassan
Nalaraba,
Hon (Dr). Francis Ottah Agbo,
Hon. Unyime Idem,
Hon. Omowumi Olubunmi Ogunlola,
Hon. Ibrahim Kunle Olarewaju,
Hon. Segius Ogun,
Hon. Preye Oseke,
Hon. Ibrahim Obanikoro,
Hon. (Barr) Ifeanyi Chudy Momah,
Hon. Dennis Idahosa,
Hon. Nnolim Nnaji,
Hon. Benjamin Bem Mzondu,
Hon. Timehin Adelegbe,
Hon. Taiwo Olukemi Oluga,
Hon. Benjamin Okezie Kalu,
Hon. Amos Magaji,
Hon (Dr) Olododo Cook Abdulganiyu Saka,
Hon. Igariwey Iduma Enwo,
Hon Olubukola Oyewo,
Hon. Tolulope Akande-Sadipe Oluyole,
Hon Uzoma Nkem Abonta,
Hon. Satomi AlhajiAhmed,
Hon. Wole Oke,
Hon. Miriam Onuoha,
Hon. Ugonna Ozurigbo,
Hon. Nkeiruka C. Onyejeocha,
Hon. Solomon Adaelu,
Hon. Uko Ndukwe Nkole,
Hon (Dr) Paschal Chigozie Ogah
Hon. Nicholas Ossai Ossai,
Hon. Toby Okechukwu,
Hon (Dr.) Muriana Ajibola ,
Hon. Chukwuka Onyema,
Hon. Machin Bagos,
Hon. Solomon Maren,
Hon (Dr.) Abiante Dagomie Innombek,
Hon. Solomon Bolus,Hon. Dan Asuquo,
Hon. Bitrus Laori,
Hon. SolomonBob,
Hon. Tyoe Bob,
Hon. Benjamin Nzomdu,
Hon. Ken Chikere,

Hon. Boma Goodhead,
Hon. Boniface Emerengwa,
Rt. Hon. Dum Dekor,

Hon. Gogo Bright,
Hon. Fred Agbedi,
Hon. Dennis Amadi and Hon. Amos Gwani,

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Legislature

#EndSARS: Senate searches for soft landing, confers with Police, DSS

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#EndSARS: Senate searches for soft landing, confers with Police, DSS

***urges all Nigerians to work towards halting the protests


The leadership of the Senate has conferred with the police and Department of
State Services on the #EndSARS protests to find a soft landing.

It also admonished all well meaning Nigerians to intervene with a view to halting the #EndSARS protests.

The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan made the call after he received security briefings on the protests in some parts of the country.
The Inspector-General of Police, Adamu Mohammed and the Director General of the Department of State Services, Yusuf magaji Bichi were in attendance.

Shortly after the meeting that held in the office of the Senate President, Lawan told reporters that the time had come for the protests to stop as he appealed to all political and religious leaders to stand up with a view to prevailing on the protesters to allow peace a chance.
“I want to thank all Nigerians for the prayers and I want to urge opinion leaders and political leaders across the spectrum that this is of utmost concern to all of us.
“All leaders, regardless of their political affiliations, regardless of our religious passuasion, regardless of our geo-political locations, we must stand up and ensure that these protests come to an end because it is now taking a different dimension from the original protest by those who meant well by asking for SARS to be disbanded.
“Those that are going about the protest at the moment have shown clearly that they have no affiliation, no relationship whatsoever with the original #EndSARS protest.
“I will take this opportunity to urge all well meaning Nigerians that this is our country, that everyone must show interest in its survival and in its peace.
“This is a country that we have to ensure that it works for all of us. People have the right to say this is not the way they want to go once it is a legitimate way to express themselves through peaceful protest but we must never allow ourselves to be taken in the wrong direction of violent protest like we have witnessed in some parts of the country,” Lawan said.

The Senate President told reporters that the leadership of the Senate invited the IGP and the DG of DSS for a briefing on the current situation of the #EndSARS demonstration going on in many parts of the country.
Lawan said “This is for the leadership of the Senate to be properly informed of the situation. But before then, we have been reading in the media, both Electronics and Print what has been going on.
“We have been talking, discussing, consulting with our colleagues in the Senate, in the National Assembly generally and people on the Executive side of government and outside of government on how best we can approach this issue, this challenge, so that we are able to bring it to an end.
“The Senate took two motions so far with respect to the #EndSARS protest. One motion was sponsored by Senator Oluremi Tinubu two weeks ago and the Senate passed resolutions, of course, supporting legitimate and peaceful protest to #EndSARS and urged the security agencies to provide safe environment to protesters.

“The second motion was taken yesterday (Tuesday), sponsored by Senator Biodun Olujimi and of course, co- sponsored by all the Senators in the Senate. Far reaching resolutions were taken and we are absolutely in total support of the legitimate, constitutionally guaranteed right of citizens to peacefully protest in any issue they feel strongly about.
“We are however not in support of any violent protest by anyone. We believe that the #EndSARS protest started very genuinely and those who started it are Patriots who wanted to see change and change was initiated immediately.

“The President himself, President Muhammadu Buhari gave a presidential speech in his remarks to say that SARS was disbanded. And of course, subsequently, five demands of the protesters were accepted by the government generally because we believe that those demands are legitimate and we will continue to insist that the Federal Government must implement those demands it accepted from the protesters.
“But we equally believe that the time has come for the protest to stop. This is necessary for the government to be able to implement those demands that it accepted from the protesters.

Also in attendance were: Deputy Senate president, Ovie OmO-Agege, Senate Leader Yahaya A. Abdullahi, Senate Minority Leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe, Chief Whip of the Senate, Orji U Kalu, Deputy Senate Leader, Prof. Robert A. Boroffice, Senate Minority Whip, Philip T. Aduda, Senate Chairman on National Security And Intelligence, Ibrahim Gobir, Senate chairman Police Affairs, Halliru Jika.

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Legislature

Fashola blames Senators’ petitions for delay in execution of road projects

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Fashola blames Senators’ petitions for delay in execution of road projects

Minister of Works and Housing Babatunde Fashola has blamed senators’ petitions  for delayed execution of road projects in the country.
Fashola who appeared before the Senate committee on works to defend the ministry’s budget told senators that while the nation does not have the resources to fund the entire road projects, those that have funds for their execution were being frustrated by petitions from senators and counter directive from the Presidency.
“This directive came as a result of the petitions from senators to the President.
He said all the lettera were available and on the basis of that, they got directive to change the scope of work, I will furnish you with them,” The minister stated.
Fashola said it was time for the lawmakers in the national assembly to come together and agree that the road projects should be prioritised and completed instead of taking on new roads when the existing ones are yet to be completed.
This followed interrogations from the Senators on the slow pace of work on road construction in the country.
Members of the Senate Committee on works had taken turns to enquire from him the reason for the slow pace of work on roads in their respective senatorial zones.
The minister explained the need to prioritise projects for national development even as he blamed them for the delay of the Abuja-Kaduna road.
His words: “Specifically on the road that has four lanes that is not progressing as perhaps expected, let us first remember that was the last to be awarded of the three roads.
“So it would not run at the same speed. Lagos-Ibadan was awarded before this administration came, 2nd Niger bridge was also awarded before this administration came on board.
“Funding them was our priority, it was after all of that that we awarded Abuja-Kano road, so they will not run at the same speed.
“What I will point out to you sir is that, immediately we awarded that contract for Abuja – Kano road, members of the national Assembly wrote to the President that the scope of the contract should be changed from two lanes to three lanes.
“Once the contractor started, that letter was written, we got a directive from the President to change it from two lanes to three lanes. We couldn’t change it to three lanes without doing a new design.
“To procure a design you have to go through advertisement, that is the procurement law,  evaluation, BPP, no objection, then we move to FEC that took almost a year.
“When FEC approved the  3 X 3 lane the contractor started work and the job consultant was at 95 per cent complete, then we got counter instructions, “go back to 2 X 2” unfortunately, these men and women here cannot come out everyday to say, see what happened. So those who are complaining of delay would have to factor this now.”
Giving further explanation on why  it was impossible to make appreciable progress on road construction nationwide Fashola said paucity of funds was a good reason to decide on the most important roads that would connect more areas to deliver on goods and services.
He pointed out that the budget proposal for the 2021 fiscal year on highway for road construction is N276bn  while the ministry is indebted to about N392bn on jobs already executed.
He pointed out that this has placed the budget in a deficit of N116bn.
“If our revenue is increasing on daily basis and we are not committed to our capacity to even solve the roads we have committed to, it would diminished and we will become poorer.
“Until we complete a road and make it accessible to the public, it cannot create productivity and gain. Even the roads that brings raw materials to site, how are they, they are not special roads.
He cited an example of a road project with a cost of N19bn but had less than N1bn allocation for its construction in the 2020 budget and was later reviewed over the impact of Covid-19.
“Kwunya -Bagura road, the contract is N19bn, appropriation in 2020 is N535m  and by the time we had to do the  Covid 19 amendment, but went to N321m.
“What was not enough was further reduced, let us put ourselves in the shoes of these contractors  who mobilize to site in those circumstances.
On the cost of mobilizaton, he said they acquired sites, they pay for the sites because they rent it set up water treatment plant, power plant, hire security, that is money  going out, when he is not sure of the money coming back.
“It is time for us to start to say, we have seven contracts, we need to prioritize, which of these roads serve our best interest. Let us start to complete somethings,” Fashola stated.
The Minister counselled the senators to allow for a special funding pattern under the SUKUK to be captured under a special heading for the purpose of accounting while the availability of cash which he said is about N600bn could be deployed to road construction.

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