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Slain Catholic Priests: Bishop Adaji, Olorunmolu lead Kogi catholic peaceful protest

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Slain Catholic Priests: Bishop Adaji, Olorunmolu lead Kogi catholic peaceful protest

By John Akubo

The catholic church in Kogi State joined their counterparts across the country to protest the recent killings of the two Catholic priests and 17 other worshippers in Benue State amidst heavy down pour.
While Bishop Martin Olorunmolu led the rosary procession in Lokoja Diocese, Bishop John Adaji led the procession in Idah diocese.
In Lokoja the Kogi state capital te faithful defiled the heavy down pour as they filed out in their hundreds

The faithfuls who gathered at the Bishop’s Court, Government House, Lokoja as early as 8.00am went through major streets in the state capital drenched with rain water as they held their Rosary beads calling on God to intervene.
Earlier, Olorunmolu addressed the crowd saying there was too much blood being shed in the nation and called on the Federal government to do something urgently to address the situation.
He called on the State and Federal Government to wake up from their slumber to decisively tackle terrorism.
He said a country where Christians can no longer worship their God freely for fear of attacks and killings was a serious threat to the peaceful coexistence of such nation and called on politicians to avoid playing politics with human lives

Bishop Olorunmolu who lamented the high rate of poverty and sufferings among the citizens in the state due to non payment of salaries as he called on Governor Yahaya Bello to allow his administration wear a human face.

He said even the schools being run by the Catholic mission in the state are now passing through tougher times as the parents are finding it difficult to pay the school fees of their wards due to non payment of salaries.
“For us in Kogi State, we have been suffering so much, the situation has become too much to bear and so we have to turn to God since our leaders are not doing the needful to help matters.
“So many of our people who are State Government workers have not been paid their salaries for months. Some are being paid only very small percentage of salary every month and so people cannot feed well or take care of their children and dependants.”

The protesters later ended their procession at the Immaculate Catholic Cathedral, Lokoja with prayers and Thanksgiving.
The procession in Idah which took place later in the day started from St. Boniface Cathedral to Our lady of mercy It also took place in all the parishes in Anyigba, Ankpa, Abejukolo and in all the parishes to press home their protests
The Bishop’s of Idah Diocese John Adaji said they have been praying and asking God to change the phase of Nigeria because at the moment the killings are unacceptable.
“It is creating both national and international embarrassment. The other time when the two priest were celebrating mass with their parishioners they came and killed them.
“In Kogi people were also killed in Dekina, Omala and Bassa Local Governments and these are issues that must be tackled urgently.
He said from the look of things the APC Government is losing grounds and losing concentration as there is no real focus.
“A government is not suppose to support criminals to move around freely killing people. It is an economic sabotage in itself.
“So many people are going to be hungry as there is bound to be food crises. The population in the city is no longer into farming as they have been driven from their farmlands.
“If nothing is done about this the government by implication is supporting starvation that would come upon the land so we are angry because there is collapse of administration.”
He said it is unacceptable for a group of criminals to be supported by some elements in Government.
What it portends according to him, is that democracy is under siege and that the whole purpose of democracy is defeated and until there is a drastic change of policies of the Government in Power they are ruining the fortune of democracy.
They used the occasion to pray for families who have lost their loved ones

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FG to provide Solar home systems for 5m households

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FG to provide Solar home systems for 5m households 

Nigeria’s Minister of State for Power Jedy-Agba has disclosed that the country is set for a ‘bounce back’ programme in its green recovery initiative that will provide solar home systems to 5 million households

He spoke at a UK hosted Climate Change Conference Roundtable on Clean Power Transition on 11 January during a virtual visit to the UK on 10–12 January by United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres which he attended. 

The Minister added that off-grid power sources have become more competitive since the removal of fuel subsidies.

He stressed that Nigeria was taking steps to merge its energy access and energy transition plan. 
He acknowledged that the largest population without electricity globally resides within its borders, and identified financing as a major constraint to Nigeria’s clean and renewable energy transition plans. 
According to him, 

“With the help of the international community, we can improve the decentralized renewable energy market to create jobs, provide energy more quickly to those without access, and ensure that we maintain and eventually reduce our emission levels to achieve our net-zero objectives.

“As the COP26 Presidency, the UK Government is committed to supporting the Nigerian government to develop ambitious evidence-based plans to deliver on Nigeria’s own commitments ahead of the COP26 summit in Glasgow in November 2021. 
“The UK supported the solar sector in Nigeria with a £66m programme between 2014 and 2020 which  helped provide energy access to   5.5 million Nigerians since 2015.
He said the UK is delivering ongoing programmes to develop quality standards, financing and manufacturing arrangements for solar home systems.
“Many UK companies are also active in the solar home system market in Nigeria.
“The UK considers the licensing of mobile money to facilitate Pay As You Go arrangements for solar home systems a positive development.”

The United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres at the event challenged developed nations to fulfil their pledges to provide $100 billion annually for developing countries’ clean energy transition.
During the roundtable, the Foreign Secretary announced that the UK will pledge up to £38 million to the Climate Compatible Growth programme, supporting developing countries to accelerate their transition to clean energy while growing their economies.
“The UK is already moving to clean power faster than any major economy, and last year committed to protect at least 30 per cent of its land and ocean by 2030.
“Together these announcements address the two leading sources of global emissions – electricity generation and land use – and demonstrate the UK’s leadership in fighting climate change ahead of the COP26 summit in Glasgow in November.”

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Akpabio denies giving Attorney general $5m bribe over NDDC sole administrator

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Akpabio denies giving Attorney general $5m bribe over NDDC sole administrator

 
The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio has denied paying $5 million bribe to the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami and others to secure the appointment of a Sole Administrator for the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
This was contained in a statement that was issued in Abuja on Sunday by his chief press secretary Anietie Ekong
He described the claim as a piece of fake news.
The statement reads in part,
“We wish to state categorically that this is a piece of malicious concoction manufactured from the pit of hell by mischief -makers.
“It is a figment of the imagination of the author of the fake news. Senator Akpabio denies the story in its entirety. The authors of the fake news should be ready to back up their claim or face the full wrath of the law.
 
“The story is a desperate attempt by some unscrupulous bloggers to impugn the integrity of the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs and the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami as the claim is not only spurious but utterly ridiculous. 
According to him, in a suit number ABJ/CS/617/2020 filed by a Civil Society Organization, Forum for Accountability and Good Governance, at a Federal High Court in Abuja, Justice Ahmed Mohammed had granted an order restraining the Interim Management Committee of the NDDC from performing the functions of the board and accessing the Commission’s offices and files.
 
“The Order clearly listed the Managing Director Professor Kemebradikumo Pondei, Acting Executive Director of Projects Dr Cairo Ojougboh, Mrs Caroline Nagboh and Cecilia Akintomide as those restrained.
He said the Order also asked that “the most senior civil servant or administrator in the Commission be appointed” to take charge of the Commission.
 
“It was based on this order that President Muhammadu Buhari approved the elevation of the Acting Executive Director of Finance and Administration, Mr Effiong Akwa, being the most Senior Administrator to take over the headship of the NDDC as an Interim Administrator pending the completion of the Forensic Audit Exercise.
 
“It is therefore absurd for anyone to even imagine that the Honourable Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio would bribe the Attorney General before an Order of the Court is complied with as the purveyors of the fake news have stated. “
He therefore advised the general public to discountenance the piece of trash.
 
He said, “It is obvious that some persons who are scared of the ongoing forensic audit of the NDDC as ordered by President Muhammadu Buhari are working tirelessly to scuttle the exercise by blackmailing the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio. 
“Their modus operandi is to churn out fake news in a bid to stop Senator Akpabio from sanitizing the NDDC.
“Otherwise, how can a responsible news website make such a grievous allegation without any shred of evidence to back up its claim.”
 
However, he restated the resolve of Senator Akpabio to continue to do the right thing as mandated by President Buhari adding that no amount of sponsored fake news and blackmail would deter him from achieving his mandate. “The Minister has the overwhelming support of the impoverished masses of the Niger Delta who have borne the brunt of underdevelopment of the region over the years.”
 
 

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NEF warns Nigerians against stoking religious war with unguarded statements

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NEF warns Nigerians against stoking religious war with unguarded statements

The Northern Elders Forum (NEF) has asked Nigerians to watch and guard their statements so as to prevent any form of religious war in the country.
This was coming against the backdrop of inflammatory and inciting statements after the Christmas day sermon by fiery Bishop of Sokoto Catholic diocese leading to the issuance of a quit notice on the revered Bishop to leave Sokoto State.

NEF in a statement on Wednesday by its Director of Publicity and Advocacy, Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed warned that Nigeria should not be subjected to further difficult circumstances capable of imposing fear in the mind of citizens.

Baba-Ahmed who expressed worries about certain disturbing comments in the polity, therefore, warned those spreading explosive and inciting statements to check their ways and desist from such acts.

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