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Who is the new Acting DG of the DSS? Read is profile

Posted By Theresa Ugwuanyi on Monday, 6 July 2015 | 9:47 a.m.

 As is the case with many career spooks, Lawal Daura is known to abhor publicity, preferring to operate quietly and from all indications with ruthless efficiency.

With great difficulty, our investigative reporters have uncovered an impressive profile of President Buhari's surprise choice to clean up and reposition the much-battered state security apparatus.

Some key facts about him:
Lawal Daura was born on August 5, 1953 in Daura, Katsina state. He attended Ahmadu Bello University between 1977 and 1980 from where he started his career in the Nigerian Security Organidation in and then rose to become a director in the service.

He served as the State Director of Security service in Kano, Sokoto, Edo, Osun, Imo and Lagos States before his retirement. He was also a one-time Deputy Director, Presidential Communication Command and Control Centre at the Presidential Villa Abuja between 2003 and 2007.

During the course of his career, Daura attended various professional courses including a stint at the much-vaunted National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru.

President Buhari recalled him from retirement on July 2, 2015 to be the Acting-Director General of the Directorate of State Security, replacing Ita Ekpeyong who occupied the position between September 7, 2010 and July 2, 2015.

Lawal Daura has a reputation in the intelligence community as an efficient, publicity-shy professional who while in Osun managed quietly the tinder box of Modakeke and Ife. He is also credited with doing an extremely good job while posted to Lagos.

Our sources indicate that the President decided against taking someone from the rank and file of the DSS at this time due to the widespread breakdown of discipline and professionalism within the agency. It would have amounted to trying to find a bad apple in a basket of apples gone bad. Lawal Daura's task now is to do precisely that: to take the DSS back to its glory days by separating the bad from the good. He appears to have taken this assignment to heart with his lightning fast steps in the last few days. Nigerians hope that he will be able to redirect the focus of the agency on improving the appalling security situation of the country.

written by Gbenga Olorunpomi

Sarcastic reactions from Buhari Supporters over under reportage of book Haram attacks

Posted By Theresa Ugwuanyi on Friday, 3 July 2015 | 1:16 p.m.

Mr Sunday Akoji an ardent supporter of President Buhari today, put up a post on his Facebook page in response to accusations from supporters of former president Jonathan that he has never or rarely posted on the incessant attacks from Boko haram since Buhari became president..

Here is his response and some from his friends.

Reversal of Roles:
These says I don't need to listen to the News or read newspaper to know when Boko Haram suicide bombers or terrorists hit a soft target and dispatch many innocent souls to the great beyond.
I don't even need the Director of Defence information to put a figure to the casualties.
I get the information straight off the timelines of some netizens on blogosphere, and I hardly comment on such update.
You know why?

During the reign of King Ebele Da 1st when the bombs were going off per second and souls were being dispatch to the great beyond per second, they modern day "Wailing Wailers," (Femi Adesina, 2015) advised/adviced us to maintain total Radio silence on BOkO Haram attacks. According to them, if you report an attack you are helping to propagate the message of terrorists and that's what they want you to do.

I have imbibed that lesson and this explain why I am no longer a BOKO HARAM reporter. Whenever the insurgents strike, I say a prayer in my heart for the victim(s) and pray the military high command get to the top of the situation and root out the evil Boko Haram incubus out of Nigeria and West Africa as a whole as soon as possible.

But what I find curious is the sudden metamorphosis of those who were at the vanguard of the campaign to blank out news on Boko Haram attack during the era of transformation and clueless reign of the Otuokean suddenly transformed into War Correspondents, reporting every news of Boko Haram's insurgents attack with glee and keeping a daily count of body bags since May 29, 2015. Whatever happened to practice what you preach?
Interestingly they are CLUELESS when you ask them how many people were killed by Boko Haram within the last five years of the Otuokean?

So what happened to them? ‪#‎Chanji? Or they never believed in what they preached?

  Uche Nnadozie commented: Shebi they said Boko Haram is sponsored by APC? They also said Boko Haram Is sponsored by Buhari. They added that Boko Haram was a northern/oyinbo conspiracy to force Jonathan out of Aso Rock. I wonder why this same Boko Haram is now defying its sponsors?

Abi PDP don start their own Boko Haram?

A pro PDP supporter put up a defence:

George Onmonya Daniel Talk about Buhari now Sunday Akoji. He isn't doing much on this Boko Haram business, after taking and sending the headquarters of the army to Maiduguri, I thought this is it, but is it? Goodluck Jonathan is history. You should learn from Jaafar Jaafar, a Buhari supporter, who is a critique. He applaud, commend and pick holes when things are going wrong.

Sunday Akoji responded to George: What happened to the gospel you were preaching before May 29? Remember back then it was unpatriotic to report any attack by Boko Haram oooooo. Now that you are at the forefront of reporting these attacks and keeping a head count of body bags, does it mean that you are no longer patriotic?

 In his reaction, Sunkanmi Adesina commented, When Kingsley Iriogbe updated us about the body count yesterday, I pounced on him. Thereafter, I took a trip to his timeline. I clicked 2013, then 2014 - when attacks peaked. Not a single occasion did I see him doing body count on his page.

I don't see anything wrong in reporting happenings around the country, whether good or bad. What I can't stand is the associated hypocrisy. You can't preach against something today and preached for same today.

Anyway, it's simply a reversal of roles. It happens on both sides.
 Chiagozie Ezike akunne responded thus: Me, I don't comment on boko haram bombings because I was made to understand that the bombings are the handiwork of the opposition. I don't know why PDP and Olisah Metuh are terrorizing people like that.

Gov Wada Disgraced Out Of PDP Secretariat In Abuja, Storms out In Anger

Kogi State Governor, Idris Wada was on Thursday kept waiting for hours at the National Secretariat of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in Abuja.

Wada had gone early in the morning to have a meeting with the National Working Committee (NWC), of the party.

His mission was to protest the cancellation of the ad-hoc delegates list for the ward congresses in Kogi State which the NWC cancelled a day earlier.

The NWC, while announcing the cancellation had on Wednesday said that “after a careful review of the reports of the Congress Committee and Appeal Committee in respect of the three-man Adhoc Delegates Ward Congresses in Kogi state of June 27, 2015 decided to cancel the exercise.”

The National Publicity Secretary of PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh, said, “The participation of a ‘Local Organising Committee’ which is unknown to the Constitution of the Party and the Guidelines marred the congresses.
“Consequently, new 3-Man Adhoc Delegates Ward Congresses would commence on the 14th of July 2015.”
But when Wada arrived the secretariat apparently believing that he could still make the party to change its position on the issue, the acting Chairman of the party, Uche Secondus whom he had come to see was not around.
He was subsequently kept outside for over two hours waiting for the chairman.
As if that was not enough, Wada got the shocker of the day when his meeting with the chairman yielded no fruit.
It was gathered that after he met the acting Chairman, he was pointedly told that the days of impunity were over.
He was said to have stormed out of the secretariat in anger for failing to convince the chairman to change his mind.
A member of the NWC said, “The governor got more than he bargained for. He wanted to get the party to reverse itself but he was told that the era was over.
“The party told him to showcase his achievements as they were not enough to secure the ticket for him.”
About four years ago, Alhaji Jubrin Echocho was declared winner of the PDP primary but the victory was short-lived after the court declared that the governorship election should not hold in the state.

This situation gave Wada an opportunity to get the then PDP national leadership to cancel the primary results, which led to Echocho losing out of the race.

It is generally believed that the PDP is facing serious challenges in the state following the not too good performance of the governor.

The party was defeated by the All Progressives Congress during the last general elections.
It was the first time since 12 years that the PDP would suffer such massive defeat in the state.
The NWC member said the party had learnt from its past mistakes.

“We have been adopting undemocratic procedures before on issues like this and that has forced several top members of the PDP defect to All Progressives Congress, which led to the defeat we suffered across the nation during the last general elections election. We have learnt from that,” he said.

source: Abusidiqu

The Profile of Hajia Aisha Buhari an ex-commando

The bio data of Aisha Buhari, wife of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, General Muhammadu Buhari is sparse, particularly online.

Not many know that she studied at the Nigerian Defence Academy or bagged a graduate degree at Ekpoma. Read the full bio data of the wife of the President below.

She hails from Adamawa state, North-East Region of Nigeria. Her grandfather, Alhaji Mohammed Ribadu, was Nigeria’s first Minister of Defence. Her twenty-five years marriage to the former Head of State is blessed with five children and a granddaughter.

Mrs. Buhari has a Master’s Degree in International Affairs and Strategic Studies (MIASS) from the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA), Kaduna and a Bachelor of Arts (BA) Degree in Public Administration from Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria.

She is currently undertaking a Counseling Course on Co-Dependency in the United Kingdom. Prior to acquiring her higher degrees, Mrs. Buhari had earlier pursued a career in Beauty and fashion and obtained a Diploma in Beauty Therapy from the Carlton Institute of Beauty Therapy, Windsor, United Kingdom and specialized in Permanent Make-up, Mesotherapy and Miocro-dermabrasion.

As well as obtained Certificate from a French beauty school, Estheitique Academie in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Japanese Gold Facial and Towel-folding Techniques.

Her natural passion for beauty and fashion is overwhelming, and this makes her interestingly unique, as she works, teaches and mentors young ones on beauty and fashion. In her almost fifteen years in the beauty industry, Aisha Muhammadu Buhari has trained, mentored and empowered hundreds of Nigerians in her chosen profession, beauty.

She is the Founder/Managing Director of Hanzy Spa and Principal of Hanzy Beauty Institute, Kaduna and Abuja. She is a Resource Person to National Basic Technical Education (NBTE) on Beauty Therapy and Cosmetology and has participated in the curriculum development of Small Medium Enterprises for NBTE. 

She is an advocate of Women and Girl-child education having come from an area that is educationally disadvantaged for the female gender.

Her life philosophy is: “if the environment is safe, if there is no corruption in governance and public life, there would be enough resources in any nation to meet the important needs of the common people including those of women and the youth.”

Source: Pmnews

El Rufai sues over false assets report

Posted By Theresa Ugwuanyi on Thursday, 2 July 2015 | 11:58 a.m.

After a busy few weeks as governor, Malam Nasir El-Rufai is dismayed by the blatant falsehood being practised as journalism by The Union newspapers.

 He has consequently directed his legal team to vigorously enforce his rights to protect his reputation from the vandalism of irresponsible hacks.

The Union chose to write a spurious story alleging N90b as his assets declaration without seeing the declaration made by Malam El Rufai. 

The circle of blackmail that did the story claimed they heard a rumour, and they pursued the rumour so vigorously they transformed it into news. When some of their cohorts made contact with the governor’s media team insisting that they respond to rumour, they were told that it is better if they chose the more legitimate route of agitating for a public asset declaration.

Fair minded people who read the story will notice that it is not grounded in any evidence. It is just the animus of blackmailers who regard Malam Nasir El-Rufai as easy prey. But since his reputation is not based on purchased kudos, he cannot be compelled into accommodation with venal people masquerading as journalists.

Malam Nasir El-Rufai is a privileged Nigerian. He qualified as a chartered Quantity Surveyor early in life and became a dollar millionaire in his twenties. He is a respected leader in in his professional field but as successful as he has been in his career, he certainly has neither N90 billion nor 40 mansions.

He will not be distracted from his total focus on making Kaduna great again. In this endeavour, he will continue to be accessible to practitioners of responsible journalism.

Samuel Aruwan
Special Assistant, Media
02 July 2015

Bayelsa Govt promises to pay 4 months arrear of salaries to LG, health workers

The Bayelsa Government has reiterated its willingness to clear the arrears of four month salaries owed to local government and health workers in the state.

 The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the state government owed four month salary arrears to members of the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees and the Health Workers Union of Nigeria. 

The Commissioner for Information, Mr Esueme Kikile, told NAN on Wednesday that the state government was working round the clock to pay all outstanding arrears of salaries. Kikile said that the payment was a sign of appreciation for the unions heeding the state government’s plea to shelve their planned strike in June.

 “Government wishes to restate its commitment to ensuring that local government councils fulfill its obligations to their workers without any further delay.

 “It must be noted that the present administration in the state has demonstrated its commitment to respect local government autonomy and has implemented zero deduction from local government allocations policy. “However, government regrets the inconveniences the delay in payment of salaries of the local government workers and pension for the month of May might have caused.

 “Everything is being done to ensure payment of the outstanding salaries. “It is imperative to state that government is already working round the clock to resolve the issue once and for all and ensure that there is no future recurrence,” Kikile said. He said the state government acknowledged the role of workers in the development of the state and would therefore not do anything to undermine this critical sector. 

However, Chairman of the Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON), Mr Chubby Ben-Walson, absolved council chairmen of blame from the unpaid salaries. Ben-Walson, the Chairman of Yenagoa Local Government, attributed the inability of the local governments to meet its salary obligations to workers to the dwindling allocations to the councils from the Federation Account.

 “The situation we are faced with is a nationwide issue and is not peculiar to Bayelsa. “Allocations to the local governments have been dropping since last year and funds accruing to the councils have reached near zero allocation. “The assumption that local government chairmen refused to pay workers is false, we have cut down on our own welfare, security votes and welfare of the councillors.

 “We are aware of the social contract we have with the people at the grassroots, and we are not the cause of the problem,” Ben-Walson said. NAN reports that the two unions had scheduled to embark on strike and stage street protests on June 24.


See List: Rivers House of Assembly screens nominees for state Civil Service Commission

The Rivers House of Assembly, on Wednesday, screened and approved nominees for the state’s Civil Service Commission, Judicial Service Commission and State Independent Electoral Commission. 

The Speaker of the house, Mr Ikunyi Ibani, made this known at the plenary of the House in Port Harcourt. Ibani said that the names of the nominees, as submitted by Gov. Nyesom Wike, were screened and found to be qualified and experienced to handle the affairs of the state. 

“The candidates are experienced through their curriculum vitae and their past records of service should be approved as members of the commissions. 

“We have heard from their answers to various questions asked to them by this house and we believe that they will serve the interest of the state and not their own interest if appointed.’’ Mr Martins Amaewhul (PDP- Obio/Akpor Constituency 1), supported the approval of the nominees, saying that those nominated for the Judicial Service Commission were qualified and experienced to serve.

 Amaewhule said that the candidates screened to serve the state should know that they were nominated to stand for justice. He also said that they would be removed if they derailed from their assignments. 

Mr Uwaji Nathaniel (PDP- Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Constituency 11), said that the nominees for the State Electoral Commission were not of questionable character and should be approved by the house to serve the state. The house unanimously approved all the nominees for the various Commissions. 

The Nominees for the State Judicial Service Commission are Prof. Nsirim Nduka, Mr Osima Giniah, Mrs Assa Nwinia and Mr Friday Abigo. The nominees for the State Civil Service Commission are Chief Oris Ongiri, Chief Mike Elechi, Mr GodsPower Nwogu, Mr Tony Philmore and Mrs Sotonye Fulton. Those for the State Independent Electoral Commission are Dr Chimaroke Mgbah, Mr Kombo Johnson, Dr. Ebirien Fubara, Dr A. Nwaido and Retired Justice U.I Uriri.

Today Ng

You are not appointed to share cakes, Ebonyi Gov. Umahi tells commissioners

Gov. Dave Umahi of Ebonyi on Wednesday told members of his cabinet that they were not appointed to share cakes as spoils of office.

 Inaugurating 18 commissioners, 27 special assistants and four board chairmen in in Abakaliki, Umahi said the appointees were called to service to bake a big cake for the people of the state to eat.

 He called on the new appointees to use their wealth of experience to enhance the economy of the state and make it the most economically-viable in the country.

 “During the last National Economic Council meeting in Abuja, we were given a sheet of paper showing revenue allocation shared by various states in the country within a year. “Inside the sheet, Akwa Ibom which was the highest got a total of N266 billion while Ebonyi, the lowest, got N44 billion. 

“This should make you realise that you were not appointed to share cakes because there is no cake to share though we are going to create a big cake together,” he said. The governor urged the appointees to be wary of corruption and to be courteous, humble and hardworking in service delivery. He also urged them not to pile unnecessary pressure on themselves.

 “Anybody who is corrupt will be sacked and his position given to his relation or friend to incapacitate and make him politically irrelevant. “You should not be unruly toward those who worked against us as they did so out of loyalty and should therefore be allowed to live having been relegated to the background,” he said. 

Mr Augustine Nwankwagu, a former speaker of the state assembly and now the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, thanked the governor for appointing them, adding that they would justify the confidence reposed in them. 

The commissioners include a former senator, Sen. Emmanuel Onwe, appointed commissioner for information, and a former member of the House of Representatives, Mrs Elizabeth Ogbaga, now the commissioner for commerce and industry. 

Also sworn-in were a former Chief Whip of the state assembly, Mr Uchenna Orji, who is now the commissioner for agriculture and natural resources, Mrs Rebecca Ogbuewu, the wife of a former Nigerian Ambassador to Greece for women affairs and Chief Sunday Inyima, former Chairman of Ohaukwu local government for lands and housing. The special advisers include former South East Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, Chief Ali Odefa and a Catholic priest, Rev. Fr. Abraham Nwali.


The Blame Game continues:As APC blames states unable to pay Salaries on Jonathan's govt

The All Progressives Congress, APC, says the ‘massive looting’ of the nation’s fund by the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan is the reason some states are finding it difficult to pay their workers for months.

 The Director of Publicity, Research and Strategy of APC in Osun State, Mr. Kunle Oyatomi, said this in a statement issued on Wednesday. 

The statement read, “The leadership of the PDP in Osun were recipients of the looted funds which would have been available to pay salaries if the PDP government of Goodluck Jonathan did not steal such humongous sums and wasted the nation’s resources in the most expensive party campaigns for retaining political power that has never been seen in the Continent of Africa. “From the NNPC alone, the PDP stole trillions of Naira. 

The ex-minister of finance spent billions of dollars without authorisation, not to talk of other agencies of the federal government which joined in the looting spree of Nigeria by the PDP.

 “If all these monies the PDP had looted from the federal purse were equitably distributed to the 36 states of Nigeria and the FCT, no working staff anywhere in Nigeria will be owed a kobo in salaries today.”  

Amidst Panic Niger Gov Denies Ordering Salary Deductions

Against the backdrop of rumours of impending salary deductions, the Governor of Niger State, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello, has denied any directive suggesting that salaries of workers be deducted.

The governor who made the clarifications during the opening ceremony for the 13th Niger State Trade Fair on Wednesday said claims of civil servants’ salary deductions are part of deliberate fraudulent actions and sabotage of his government by some individuals he did not name.

While vowing to punish whoever is involved in the act of depriving workers of their hard earned benefits, Bello said his government would have zero-tolerance for corruption as salaries of civil servants which were paid on Monday had shortfalls of N10, 000 and N20, 000 in some cases.

Governor Bello pointed out that, “Workers’ salaries have been reduced by N10, 000 and N20, 000 in some cases. This is an unfortunate situation which sounds and appears to me like a deliberate fraudulent action.” he said.
Expressing doubts over the speculations that the random deductions in salary of workers in the state may be as a result of system failure, Bello set up a panel to look into the issue and report to him by next week Tuesday.

He said: “It could be system failure which has reduced workers salaries. Be that as it may, I have directed the Secretary to the State Government (SSG) to set up a panel with immediate effect to investigate what actually happened and report back to be by Tuesday”.

According to him, “I do hope and pray it is a system mistake, but if it is someone’s effort to deprive the workers of their salaries, whoever is involved will be severely punished.
“I have resolved to move Niger state forward and change the ways of the past.”

Governor Sani Bello however warned government workers who were desperate to make extra money to do so in a legitimate way, reminding them that “it is a crime to shortchange civil servants due to the desperate desire to make more money at all cost.”

Daily Independent

Femi Adesina blasts Metuh again, says Buhari was right to appoint Zakari as INEC boss

Femi Adesina, the Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria on Media and Publicity have hit back at Olisa Metuh, the Peoples Democratic Party’s National Publicity Secretary for spreading fallacy regarding the appointment of Mrs Amina Zakari as acting national chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

In a statement issued on Wednesday, Adesina said: “We have noted with regret, the latest tirade against President Muhammadu Buhari issued today by the PDP’s Spokesman, Mr Olisa Metuh.

“Other than boring reporters at his press conference with a rehash of baseless allegations of inaction against the President, Mr Metuh clearly had nothing new to say apart from his charge of nepotism and partisanship in the appointment of the Acting INEC Chairman, which also lacks any factual foundation.

“President Buhari certainly did not “overrule” Prof. Attahiru Jega in appointing Mrs Amina Zakari as the acting INEC Chairman, as Mr Metuh alleged.
Prof. Jega’s purported handing over to another Commissioner cannot be construed as an “appointment” because only the President has the constitutional authority, which he exercised to appoint Mrs Zakari as acting Chairman of INEC.
“Contrary to Mr Metuh’s allegations, President Buhari’s appointment of Mrs Zakari as acting INEC Chariman was based entirely on merit, her vast experience in the internal operations of INEC and the President’s commitment to affirmative action in support of gender equality, because, apart from being fully qualified for the position, Mrs Zakari was the only woman among the six Commissioners considered.

“Due Process was certainly followed in Mrs Zakari’s appointment. Mr Metuh’s spurious claims of her appointment having been influenced by “personal relationship with the Presidency” and a Governor in the North-West “to pave the way for the APC” at election tribunals should be disregarded by the public.

“The allegations are nothing but falsehoods contrived by Mr Metuh to unjustly denigrate a President popularly elected by Nigerians to undo the damage done to the nation by years of PDP rule.

“His claim that the PDP has rejected Mrs Zakari’s appointment is also laughable after he had admitted that the right and power of the President to make such appointments cannot be questioned,” Adesina said in his statement.

Gov Wike Clears Backlog of Salaries in Rivers state

 Rivers State, the governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, has directed the immediate payment of the backlog of salaries owed civil servants in the state.

The governor claimed to have inherited two months unpaid salaries from the immediate past administration in the state which had earlier sparked off a series of protests by workers demanding why the former administration refused to pay them.

Wike assured civil servants that their welfare would be given top priority by his administration, adding that on no account would they be owed salaries.

He expressed  his commitment  to  promoting  the  interest  of  all people  resident in  the  state.

He also stated that funding of projects would not be a challenge in the state government’s commitment to rehabilitate and reconstruct key roads in state capital, Port Harcourt.
Speaking  during  his inspection  tour of  the  East West-Elelenwo-TransAmadi-Garrison Road which has a bridge, on Wednesday, Governor Wike  assured contractors that his administration had taken  steps to  ensure that road projects were adequately funded.

Oshiomhole Hits Back At Okonjo-Iweala

Following a statement by former Minister of Finance, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, on Tuesday, describing claims that she made an unauthorised $2.1 billion expenditure from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) as false, malicious and baseless, Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State, on Wednesday, accused her of being economical with the truth on the state of the economy inherited by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Okonjo-Iweala, former Coordinating Minister for the Economy, in the statement by Paul Nwabuikwu, her media aide, said she was ready to face any panel set up by the new administration.

Oshiomhole, who was guest on the Channels Television talkshow, Sunrise Daily, noted that as pointer to the equally pitiable state the federal treasury inherited by the new government is, the Federal Government would have been in a worse shape than states, but for the resort to borrowing to pay wages.

“I speak on my honour that the federal government is just as broke and that they are borrowing using CBN instruments in trillions of naira to pay salaries,” he affirmed, blaming Okonjo-Iweala for granting waivers running into several billions of naira to various organisations.

According to him: “With all due respect to the former Minister Okonjo-Iweala, she knows how to play around with statistics. I have made the point; she keeps opening part of the pages and not the entire book.

“The logic of transparency is that every minister must publish in full what is accruing to the Federation Account month to month, and what is distributed to them. What she has been publishing is that this is what went to the Federal Government, this is what went to the state government and this is what goes to the local government.

“What she never published simultaneously, is what accrued during the period out of which this was distributed. So we can now know what was collected to what was distributed, so we can know what is left in the excess crude account. You can see her changing the goal post.

Reacting to a statement by the ex-minister that the decisions on such expenditures were discussed at meetings of the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC), attended by Finance Commissioners from the 36 states,  the governor retorted: “Look at the constitution and tell me which section gives the Commissioner of Finance the power, all of them, they are unknown to ballot, they are not elected, but the membership of NEC is clear, Governors chaired by the Vice President representing the President, the CBN and other relevant ministries. How will she avoid this level of accountability?”

The governor insisted that only the NEC, which is a creation of the constitution, has the power to authorise spending from the excess crude account and not any other administrative arrangement.
He insisted that as a member of the council, “I am on record as telling her, ‘don’t give us verbal reports on matters of federation account, give us written report’ and the power to spend is not vested on Commissioners.

“The $2 billion is her last sum, because in her last report, she said we had $4.1 billion, she said so orally, but it was captured in the minutes, only for her to come around again at the last minute to say “X” figure is left. We asked her, what did you pay for?”

“The federal finances are even worst hit. Over the past 9 months under the past government, federal government could not and have not been able to pay salaries from her legitimate income. What she has been doing which states could not do; was to borrow, uses the CBN through various instruments termed security, etc  and basically draw down the pension funds because they are the ones who have liquidity to patronise the bond market.

“So if we were to be able to stop the Federal Government from borrowing to pay salaries, it would have defaulted in payment of salaries much earlier than states and the number of months the federal government would have been owing would be worse than the worst state in the federation.

“Just look at the budget of the Federal Government over the past four years and you will see the level of deficit finances that was built into the budget. So in trying to understand the financial crisis, you shouldn’t limit yourself to those who can pay.” Continuing, the governor lamented: “Even those who purport to pay, look at their source of funding the payment. If you do, you will find out that whereas the federal government frees itself to borrow quite recklessly, reckless in the sense that no serious manager goes month after month to borrow for the payment of salaries.

Bad Weather Forces Diversion Of Calabar Bound Aero Flight To Port Harcourt

Hundreds of passengers today escaped death as Aero Contractors flight from Lagos to Calabar was diverted to Port Harcourt due to what the Calabar Airport Manager, Mr. Sani described as bad weather.
The 4pm flight which was supposed to land in Calabar by 5pm could not land after coming low, according to eyewitnesses in Calabar and was later diverted to the Port Harcourt airport to avert any danger.
While some of the passengers who reached out to CrossRiverWatch alleged that the divertion was due to navigational instrument failure, a staff of Aero who spoke to our reporter as well as the Airport Manager debunked the claim and said it was bad weather.
According to the Aero staff who did not want to be named, “Yes, there was a small issue that caused our plane not to land this evening. The weather was too bad and I think the most reasonable thing to do was to land elsewhere. I think the bad weather even extended to Uyo because of the rains so the pilot had to head for Port Harcourt. It is in no way related to any navigational equipment.” said the staff.
According to Mr. Sani the Calabar Airport Manager, he told CrossRiverWatch that, “It has been raining very heavily in Calabar for days now and it has affected visibility badly which made the weather risky for landing. The pilot actually intended to land like that but we thought it was not safe to do that since visibility was not good, that is why he was directed to Port Harcourt.
“The equipment in this airport are all in good shape. Some of them are even new because renovation work in the airport is even still ongoing so there is no issue about failure of equipment. If that was the case, we will tell you people so that government can intervene and fix it but honestly the issue was weather and not equipment related.” He said.

Cross River Watch

Suicide Bombers attack Maiduguri while vice president visits camps

Two suicide bombers blew themselves up near a hospital in Maiduguri in northeast Nigeria on Wednesday, shortly after Vice President Yemi Osinbajo arrived in the city to visit camps for people fleeing a militant Islamist insurgency.

The blasts injured two people and happened at about 11.30 a.m. (1030 GMT) near the gates of a hospital where suicide bombers killed three people and injured 16 last Saturday, a military source and a witness told Reuters.

"The second blast occurred two minutes after the first one, killed the bomber and injured two other people nearby," said Mohammed Haruna, who helped to evacuate people from the scene.
Maiduguri has been the target of several attacks since Muhammadu Buhari, president of Africa's most populous nation and biggest economy, made it the command center for the campaign against Boko Haram militants after being inaugurated on May 29.

It was not immediately clear whether the bombers had been targeting the hospital again or whether the bombs had gone off accidently.
The hospital is one of the few public buildings in an area called Molai, which is on the outskirts of Maiduguri and where security is not always as tight as in the center of the state capital of Borno.

Osinbajo was visiting a camp about 10 km (6 miles) away that houses some of the 1.5 million people displaced by Boko Haram during the militant group's six-year fight to establish an Islamic caliphate in the northeast.

What it means to be female in Nigeria

Nigerian writer Chimamanda Adichie

Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, whose book inspired #BeingFemaleInNigeria
What does it mean to be female in Nigeria? Women in Nigeria are using a hashtag on Twitter to share their experiences of everyday gender discrimination.
It started with a small book club meeting in the capital of Abuja on Sunday. Its members were discussing Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's "We Should All Be Feminists", based on the writer's popular talk. "We started describing our own experiences and challenges and thought we should bring the discussion to a larger group," says the book club's Florence Warmate. The area sales manager began totweet her thoughts with the hashtag #BeingFemaleinNigeria, and soon the timeline flooded with other women sharing the unique situations they face because of their gender.
The hashtag, which has been mentioned more than 80,000 times on Twitter, has been used by both women and men to debate gender identity and describe how women face sexism in their workplace, public places and even in their homes.
"#BeingfemaleinNigeria is being told countless times that I will never find a husband because I am 'too ambitious' and outspoken," said one tweet.
Several tweets explained how they had to deal with gender stereotypes at work or being judged even based on the kind of vehicle they drove. "I learnt that if you graciously cook food & take to work for male colleagues, you must clear their dirty plates too," said one woman. "If you own an SUV, it's your sugar daddy/ married lover that bought it for you," tweeted another user.
"You can't go to club on your own to have a solo drink, you're a prostitute," read a tweet about the problems faced while going out. "Having to bear the trauma of your rape alone because your rapist is a highly respected family member," said another.
Another post referenced #BringBackOurGirls, the global online campaign which called for the release of the Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram fighters: "You get kidnapped and killed because you are being educated."
Warmate says she does not expect society to change overnight. "But this can enlighten people and change perceptions about women. When women work hard, respect that." Nigeria is currently ranked 118th out of 142 countries in the Gender Gap Index 2014 of the World Economic Forum. In a new survey the 'Global Women Entrepreneur Leadership Scorecard', Nigeria scored the highest when it came to women who thought they have the skills to become entrepreneurs, but scored the least among 31 countries for 'business environment'.
While several men have also actively encouraged the stories coming out of #BeingFemaleinNigeria, some responded with another hashtag:#BeingMaleinNigeria. "You must pay for lunch/dinner/movies/etc because masculinity = money," tweeted one man, while another said, "You are responsible, hardworking, morally upright. But stereotype of Nigerian men by women will overshadow your efforts."
Warmate clarifies her trend is not meant to put men down. "This is about gender equality. It's about how if a man did the same thing we did, no-one would ask him anything," she tells Trending. "It's not male bashing. It's not feminism." When asked why she thinks the trend is not linked to feminism, she explained that feminism is a broad subject with different definitions for different people, and it can be associated with a 'negative agenda'.
The conversation that started in Nigeria has resonated with women across the world and has sprouted posts about what it means to be women in other Africancountries like Ghana, and also Bangladesh. "Hashtags #BeingFemaleInGhana #beingfemaleinZimbabwe #BeingFemaleInNigeria just show that it's tough being a woman. Simple. But we're strong!," summarised one user.

BBC Report


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