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Obiano Bags 2017 Governor Of The Year Award by rawchead [ m ] at 2:34PM on Jan 10, 2018

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Gov. Willie Obiano of Anambra has bagged the “2017 Eastern State and Nigerian Governor of the Year Award’’ of the Nigerian-American with Disabilities in the Diaspora and their Public-Private Partners ( P3 ).

Obiano was chosen for the award by the group after a “massive 2014 to 2017 performance evaluation of the 36 Nigerian state governors, including the Minister of Federal Capital Territory’s works.

“Today, Jan. 8, we the Nigerian-American with Disabilities in the Diaspora and our Public-Private Partners (P3), chooses, Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State, as our 2014-2017 Eastern State and Nigerian Governor of the Year,’’ it said.Chief Eric Ndubueze Ufom, President of Houston, Texas-based Equal Rights for Persons with Disabilities International ( ERPDI ), Incorporated in the U.S. made the disclosure in a statement on Wednesday in Lagos.

Read also: ‘Obiano focused on developing Anambra’
They were assessed based on works on Nigeria’s disability-inclusive and accessible urban/city developments ( building of the first Silicon Valley of Nigeria at Anambra State ), progress, peace and unity, economic, trade and industrial developments.

Other areas of the assessment are agricultural developments, social, human, security, democracy and governance, electoral and political, entrepreneurship, job training and placements and implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of persons with disabilities.

The rest are Disability-Inclusive Development and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 2030 Agenda, especially SDGs 1-5 for women and girls and the late effects of Polio virus infection called Post-Polio Syndrome.

The group said Obiano, broke all records because on November 20, 2017, within less than 48 hours after winning his re-election that took place on November 18, 2017 and also, within 24 hours after he was issued with his re-election Certificate by INEC, he wasted no time to move into positive actions.

It noted that it set to work through his Managing Director, Awka Capital Territory Development Authority, Mr Michael Okonkwo, in collaborations with Nigerians in the Diaspora, led by Chief Eric Ndubueze Ufom.

Others members of the group are Iyom Ifeoma B. Oni-Orisan, Mrs Ngozi Pauline Ikebuaku, Mr Polycarp Onyeachonam Ufom, Ms. Chinyelum Ozumba, Mrs Uche Helen Okafor, Iyom Mabel Ozumba, Mr Frances Okeke, Mrs Ngozi Okeke and Mr. Grace Njideke Ojukwu.

The governor introduced “Willie Obiano’s Silicon Valley of Nigeria’’; the Republic of Korea’s KOICA, UNDP and Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development ( OECD )’s, “Saemaul Initiative Towards Sustainable and Inclusive New Communities ( ISNC ) and A New Rural Development Paradigm and the Inclusion and Sustainable New Community Model Inspired by the Saemaul Undong’’ Institute.

They also undertook Post-Polio Syndrome Clinics and Centres for Diagnostic and Clinical Managements of the late effects of Polio Virus Infection called Post-Polio Syndrome, Employment Developments, Work Readiness and Skills Training, Job Training and Placements.

Also the team developed Therapeutic Recreations, Wellness and Fitness Centres for Micro Enterprise Development, Healthcare’s, sports, social engagements, capacity building and management for all the 36 states of Nigeria.

Other African countries, including Lake Chad Basin Nations, Republic du Niger, Chad and Cameroon, with its headquarters at Enugwu-Ukwu General Hospital, Njikoka Local Government Area, Anambra, as the first projects to be built at the Silicon Valley.

The statement said that the diplomatic meeting where the history was made took place during the UN Africa Industrialisation Day, at the UNDP-Nigeria’s headquarters, Abuja, during a meeting between Anambra, Plateau, Benue, Equal Rights for Persons with Disabilities International, ( ERPDI ) Incorporated and other Government/public-private Partners ( P3 ), with the UNDP-Nigeria’s Country Director, Dr Samuel Bwalya.

“Industrialisation is a primary driver of economic growth and job creation, and will be pivotal in efforts to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Africa Union’s Agenda 2063.

“This year’s Africa Industrialisation Day highlights the links between industrial development and Africa’s moves towards establishing a Continental Free Trade Area,’’ it said.

The statement said it would also be critical to unleash the capacities of Africa’s young people and to strengthen African institutions.

“Both the 2030 Agenda and Agenda 2063 recognise these imperatives,” it quoted the UN Secretary General as saying on Nov. 20, 2017, at the UN Headquarters New York, during the occasion of Africa Industrialisation Day.’’

Reacting to the UN Secretary-General’s call to, “unleash the capacities of Africa’s young people and to strengthen African institutions,’’ Obiano said it would be establishing the first Disability-Inclusive Silicon Valley of Nigeria being designed by Mr Michael Okonkwo, an Architect.

He noted the project was in collaborations with Nigerians in the Diaspora, led by Chief Ufom, to ensure nationwide true local Disability-Inclusive economic developments by Nigerians, regardless of their different ethnic and religious groups, language and disability.

The inauguration of Willie Obiano’s Silicon Valley and its Republic of Korea’s KOICA and other projects under it will be taking place on March 18 and March 19, immediately after Obiano’s swearing in ceremony.

It will be followed by Obiano’s economic summit to be held at Houston, Texas and other selected countries around the world to introduce it to “our Ndi Anambra and Nigerians in the Diaspora’’.

NAN

Obiano bags 2017 Governor of the Year award by rawchead on Open9ja.com

Woman Arrested For Poisoning Husband by rawchead [ m ] at 2:33PM on Jan 10, 2018

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Kano State Police Command on Wednesday confirmed the arrest of a housewife, Sadiya Umar, who allegedly poisoned her husband, Sani Umar, two weeks after their wedding.

The incident occurred at Yakasai Quarters in Kano metropolis.

The late Umar, who ate the poisoned meal served by his newly wedded wife, died a day later at the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital (AKTH).

The command’s spokesman, Magaji Musa Majiya, said the woman was arrested two days after she evaded arrest.

Majiya said: ‘’Three relations of the late husband reported the incident to Kofar Wambai police station in Kano metropolis on Monday. After the police received the report on the incident, they went to the deceased matrimonial home at Yakasai quarters to effect the woman’s arrest, but found that the bride had ran away until yesterday (Wednesday) when she was eventually arrested.”

He said the woman has been handed over to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) for interrogation.

He, however, confirmed that the husband has been buried.

Woman arrested for poisoning husband by rawchead on Open9ja.com

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The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board has fixed February 6, as deadline for the sale of registration form for this year’s unified tertiary matriculation examination (UTME).

JAMB Registrar Prof. Is-haq Oloyede spoke at a meeting on strategic planning, supervision and evaluation of the conduct of 2018 unified tertiary matriculation examination (UTME) in Abuja yesterday.

He said only 283,319 candidates had registered for the examination.

The board also fixed March 9 to17 for the conduct of the UTME in 620 computer based test centres across the country.

The registrar said: “Because of the criticisms that trailed the sale of entry form for a month in the past years, the board has decided to earmark two months so that every willing candidate will be able to purchase, fill and submit the forms.

“We opened entry from December 6, 2017 to February 6, 2018, but one month later, only less than a quarter of the two million candidates expected for the examination this year have registered.”

Prof. Oloyede said its mock examination slated for January 22 would now hold in first week of February.

He blamed the shift of the mock examination on the strike embarked on by members of NASU, noting that the strike made the CBT centres in affected tertiary institutions not available for accreditation.

The JAMB registrar also banned the use of wristwatches, biros, pencils and other devices from the examination hall.

He added that the ban affects both candidates and examination officials.

Oloyede said: “The Board has prohibited additional materials during the 2018 UTME in the examination hall. These include wrist watches, biros, calculator, biros, pencils except the common HB pencil, and any other device that can store data, transmit or receive signal no matter the form. These prohibitions are not only applicable to the candidates but to all examination officials. The reasons for this will be provided shortly.

“Scanned pictures of candidates are no longer accepted for registration, except live capture at the accredited CBT Centres as part of the Registration Procedure. Furthermore, candidates’ pictures will be embossed on all candidates’ documents generated by JAMB henceforth,” he said.

The registrar also disclosed that Minister of Education Malam Adamu Adamu has queried 42 institutions for charging candidates more than N2000 for their post-UTME.

“There is nothing wrong with post-UTME provided that our candidates are not extorted. The honourable minister of education queried about 42 institutions for charging more than N2000. We made recommendation to the minister and the minister said all of them should refund the money. He gave them two weeks and all of them are making refund now.

“He has put his feet down that all excess charges should be refunded and people can testify to the fact. Where they have the list they are paying them directly and in this case where Vice Chancellors proved clearly that those candidates could not be traced the minister has given appropriate directive.

“Candidates are reporting back to us. In one case where they could not, the minister directed that they should pay the money to a non religious orphanage, orphanage owned by the state or anything because those people couldn’t be traced,” the registrar said.

According to him, the figures being paraded as qualified candidates to write its examination was not true.

JAMB fixes Feb 6 as deadline for UTME registration by rawchead on Open9ja.com

Herdsmen Killings: IGP Arrives Benue by rawchead [ m ] at 2:32PM on Jan 10, 2018

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The Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, on Wednesday arrived Makurdi, Benue, as directed by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The President had on Monday ordered the IGP to move to Benue to restore law and order in the state.

Gunmen had on New Year day killed over 50 persons in Logo and Guma local government areas of the state.

The Force Spokesman, Jimoh Moshood, in a statement said the order followed the recent unfortunate killings of innocent people in Guma and Logo LGAs.

Moshood said in compliance with the Presidential order, the IGP was moving with additional five Units of Mobile Police Force making a total of 10 units deployed to the state.

“More units of the Police Special Forces, Counter Terrorism Units, and Conventional Policemen are already being deployed to the state to comply in totality with the Presidential order.

“The full weight of the law will be applied on anyone arrested for being responsible for the mayhem in the affected areas in the state.

“The commitment of the Nigeria Police Force to ensure law and order and protection of lives and property of all Nigerians throughout the country remains unequivocal and unwavering,” he said.

Idris, who arrived Makurdi at about 10:00 a.m., proceeded straight to Zone 4 Police Command.

NAN

Herdsmen killings: IGP arrives Benue by rawchead on Open9ja.com

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Political parties have been given an October 7 deadline to produce their presidential candidates for the February 16, 2019 presidential election.

Governorship, National/State Assemblies candidates are also to have been picked on the same date.

Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Chairman Prof. Mahmoud Yakubu released the time table and schedule of activities for the 2019 general elections in Abuja yesterday.

He reaffirmed that Presidential and National Assembly elections will hold on February 16, 2019; Governorship/ state Assembly/ FCT Area Council elections are slated March 2, 2019.

The parties have between August 18 and October 7 to pick candidates for all the elections.

The Presidential election campaign will start on November 18 and end on February 14, 2019 while the governorship/state assemblies’ campaign will hold between December 1 and February 28, 2019

Parties are expected to collect forms for all the elections at the INEC headquarters between August 17 and 24.

All the duly filled forms for Presidential and National Assembly candidates are to be submitted latest by October 18 and forms for governorship and state assemblies to be sent in by November 2.

Parties have between November 7 and December 1 to withdraw/replace candidates.

INEC will publish the list of nominated Presidential and National Assembly candidates on January 17, 2019; Governorship and Assemblies elections January 31, 2019.

The commission also fixed January 2, 2018 for the publication of notice for all elections while January 7, 2018 is fixed for the publication of official register of voters for the election.

The political parties are also expected to submit names of their agents for the elections on February 1, 2019 for presidential and National Assembly eections.

Prof Yakubu said INEC would be conducting elections for 1558 constituencies made up of one presidential constituency, 29 governorship constituencies out of 36 as seven governorship elections are staggered, 109 senatorial districts, 360 federal constituencies, 991 state assembly constituencies, 6 Area Council chairmen as well as 62 councilor ship positions for the FCT.

The INEC boss urged all the political parties and all and sundry “to eschew bitterness and conduct their activities with decorum.”

He also assured the country that the commission was determined to better the 2015 general elections which became a watershed in the history of the country’s democracy.

“The commission is determined to build on this legacy by ensuring that our elections keep getting better,” he said, adding: “The decision of the Commission to fix election dates is to engender certainty in our electoral calendar and enable all stakeholders to prepare adequately for elections, as is the case in any mature and developing democracies.”

INEC gives parties Oct 7 deadline to pick presidential candidates by rawchead on Open9ja.com

rawchead on Open9ja
The World Bank forecasts that Nigeria’s economic growth will edge up to at least 2.5 per cent this year, as the country benefits from improved commodity prices, investments and trade.

According to the World Bank’s January 2018 Global Economic Prospect report launched yesterday in Washington DC, Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is expected to grow by 2.8 per cent in 2019 and 2020.

The World Bank forecast that global economic growth will go up to 3.1 per cent in the year 2018.

According to the bank, growth in Sub-Saharan Africa is projected to continue to rise to 3.2 per cent in 2018 and to 3.5 per cent in 2019, on the back of firming commodity prices and gradually strengthening domestic demand.

However, the report showed that growth would remain below pre-crisis averages, partly reflecting a struggle in larger economies to boost private investment.

“South Africa is forecast to tick up to 1.1 per cent growth in 2018 from 0.8 per cent in 2017. The recovery is expected to solidify, as improving business sentiment supports a modest rise in investment.

“However, policy uncertainty was likely to remain and could slow needed structural reforms.

“Nigeria is anticipated to accelerate to a 2.5 per cent rate this year from one per cent growth in the year just ended. An upward revision to Nigeria’s forecast is based on expectation that oil production will continue to recover and that reforms will lift non-oil sector growth.

“Growth in Angola is expected to increase to 1.6 per cent in 2018, as a successful political transition improves the possibility of reforms that ameliorate the business environment,” it stated.

According to the report, Côte d’Ivoire is forecast to expand by 7.2 per cent in 2018, Senegal by 6.9 per cent; Ethiopia by 8.2 per cent, Tanzania by 6.8 per cent, and Kenya by 5.5 per cent as inflation eases.

The World Bank said that the regional outlook for Sub-Saharan Africa was subject to external and domestic risks. It showed that any unexpected activity in the United States and Euro Zone could have a negative impact on the region.

Also, an abrupt slowdown in China could generate adverse spillovers to the region through lower-than-expected commodity prices.

“On the domestic front, excessive external borrowing without forward-looking budget management could worsen debt dynamics and hurt growth in many countries.

“A steeper-than-anticipated tightening of global financing conditions could also lead to a reversal in capital flows to the region. Protracted political and policy uncertainty could further hurt confidence and deter investment in some countries.

“Rising government debt levels highlight the importance of fiscal adjustment to contain fiscal deficits and maintain financial stability.

“Structural policies including education, health, labour market, governance, and business climate reforms could help bolster potential growth,’’ it stated.

The World Bank called on policy makers around the world to focus on human investments to increase their countries’ productivity, and move closer to the goals of ending extreme poverty and boosting shared prosperity.

World Bank predicts 2.5% growth for Nigeria in 2018 by rawchead on Open9ja.com

Gunmen Dispossess Policeman Of Rifle, Phone by rawchead [ m ] at 2:29PM on Jan 10, 2018

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Three men, who allegedly robbed a policeman of his phone and AK 47 rifle at gunpoint, were yesterday remanded in prison by an Ikeja Chief Magistrates’ Court.

Kazeem Oladipo, 30, Rasaq Owolabi, 26, and Segun Alabi, 32, are facing a three-count charge of conspiracy, armed robbery and possession of illegal weapons.

Chief Magistrate T.O. Shomade ordered that they be remanded in Kirikiri Prisons until January 24.

Prosecuting Inspector Raji Akeem told the court that the offence was committed on July 17 on Victory Road, Meiran.

Akeem said the accused waylaid Corporal Aladejare Adedeji at midnight when he was about to enter his apartment.

“The accused robbed the policeman of his mobile phone valued at N40, 000, his AK 47 and 30 rounds of live ammunition, belonging to the police,” he said.

Akeem said the accused also shot the complainant on his left leg after dispossessing him of his service gun. The complainant was rushed to a nearby hospital where he was treated.

“During investigation, the stolen mobile phone was tracked and someone in Abeokuta was found using it. The police traced the phone to the location and made some arrests,’’ he said.

Gunmen dispossess policeman of rifle, phone by rawchead on Open9ja.com

Buhari Presides Over First FEC Meeting Of 2018 by rawchead [ m ] at 2:29PM on Jan 10, 2018

rawchead on Open9ja
President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday presided over the meeting of the Federal Executive Council with Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo and cabinet ministers in attendance.

The meeting is the first this year and has in attendance the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha and Head of Service, Mrs Winifrey Oyo-Ita.

Others attending the meeting included the National Security Adviser to the President, retired Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno and Chief of Staff to the President, Malam Abba Kyari.

The heads of agencies of the Federal Ministry of Transportation are expected to brief the council.

The acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr Ibrahim Magu, was also at the venue of the meeting.

NAN

Buhari presides over first FEC meeting of 2018 by rawchead on Open9ja.com

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Thirty contractors will soon face the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over the East-West Road project and other projects, it was learnt yesterday.

Minister of Niger Delta Affairs Usani Uguru Usani broke the news while briefing State House correspondents at the end of Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

He said the FEC approved N16 billion for the completion of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) headquarters building.

According to Usani, the President Muhammadu Buhari administration is doing everything possible to put the East-West Road project on track.

But while responding to a question on why N16 billion was approved for the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) headquarters building when the fund will go a long way to complete the East-West Road project, he said that the East West Road project was designed to fail.

The minister said: “Sometimes when questions or concerns come from the public, you provoke our thoughts to get back to our sense of history.

“The road is a project that has been messed up from inception, naturally designed to fail by all the agreements and designed concepts that we have seen. And here we are making sure that we put things in order so that we can see the terminal point of that project.

“The project started more than a decade ago and in 24 months, we have made the progress we have made on that project, correcting even the construction deficits in the area. Then, I think you should be able to appreciate what we are doing.

“One, you talk of N16 billion as if it is so relevant in completing the East-West Road, I wish to tell you that the outstanding certificate on the road amount to N30 billion. So, if we put N16 billion there, in fact one and the other are not substitutes.

Two of them are essential infrastructure projects that must go on. So, it doesn’t mean that if we put that money on the East-West road, then it satisfies the needs of housing the NDDC.

“The Niger Delta region has a prime position in our preference to develop the area and so there are no substitutes. So, even if we are not going to do the NDDC headquarters, it doesn’t mean we will complete the East-West Road. They are all important and I want you to get that into your mind.”

On how much has been spent on the road, Usani said: “We have spent N300 billion on the East-West Road and yet the project has not made much progress.

“I’m doing a review of the entire contract of the road because without that, nothing will ever happen on that road; talk less of completion. The design, negotiations and contract; everything is wrong. You designed a project of that nature and give it a lifespan or seven years and then no designs in some sectors and yet you are attributing cost to it.

“So, by what means did you have the elements of costing. These are verifiable facts at any time.”

Asked if government plans to prosecute those that designed faulty contracts, the minister said: “Right now, I have gotten some of these contracts and I’m sending them to the EFCC, not just for the East-West Road. I have got a minimum of 30 contractors that I am sending to EFCC.

“On the East-West road, I have taken a private consultants to review the whole cost. So, some contractors will obviously refund money for which the present cost will be discounted.

“So, when you see contractors ganging up and publishing things against me, you should know the foundation. But as far as I am here, I will do something that I feel is right.”

He noted that it would be wise to complete the building instead of spending N2 billion rent yearly in 13 years.

30 contractors to face EFCC over East-West Road project by rawchead on Open9ja.com

Striking Varsity Non-academic Unions Demand N30b by rawchead [ m ] at 3:04PM on Dec 14, 2017

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Striking non-teaching staff in universities have urged the Federal Government to release N30 billion to three unions as a pre-condition to end the action.

The unions under the auspices of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities and National Association of Academic Technologists embarked on another industrial action due to government inability to meet up with the agreement reached with them.

Addressing reporters at the Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA) yesterday, SSANU National Vice President Alfred Jimoh said if the government release the N30 billion, it would be added to the N4.6 billion shared among the three non-teaching staff.

Jimoh said: “Government should release more funds to take care of the arrears of the Earned Allowance of the three non-teaching staff of the Nigerian universities and to commence the immediate implementation of the allowances to forestall further accumulation of the arrears.”

SSANU chief, who accused the government of using divide and rule system among the universities’ workers, declared that the ongoing strike would be total until their demands are met.

He noted that the unions regretted the strike following its effects on parents and the varsities’ students, but they (unions) had no option but to go on strike.

Striking varsity non-academic unions demand N30b by rawchead on Open9ja.com