The Sir Ahmadu Bello Memorial Foundation says it is collaborating with the Peace Revival and Reconciliation Foundation of Nigeria to promote peace and stability in the 19 Northern states.
Mr Abubakar Umar, Managing Director of the foundation said this while receiving the founder of the peace revival and reconciliation foundation, Pastor Yohanna Buru and his entourage on a courtesy visit on Wednesday in Kaduna.
Umar said that ensuring peace in the northern states was a collective responsibility which must be supported by all.
He said that peace revival and reconciliation foundation was a partner in progress which should be embraced by all lovers of peace and societal development.
According to him, the NGO has a major role to play toward promoting peaceful co-existence and tolerance in the society.
He extolled the virtues of the late Premier of Northern Nigeria, Sir Ahmadu Bello for uniting the people of the region irrespective of their religious and ethnic differences.
”Presently the foundation has put machineries in place toward training more women and youths on entrepreneurship to reduce the burden of unemployment,” Umar said.
He said it was regrettable that insecurity has caused serious set back to the entire North, stressing the need for every stakeholder to support states and federal government toward making the region better.
”The north has many problems which include Almajiranci, Boko haram, insecurity, and lack of quality education,” he added.
The managing director further said that the foundation kicked against activities of rapist in the society and called on the authority to punish offenders to serve as lesson to others.
Buru in his remark said that the visit was aimed at familiarising the organisation with activities of Sir Ahmadu Bello memorial foundation and to help in promoting peace in the north.
He stressed that the problems of insecurity bedeviling the northern region needed effective collaboration and support to be addressed.
Buru added that his foundation has supported substantial number of widows and youths on skills acquisition to help them fend for themselves.
He noted that for the past 10 years, he has been visiting top Islamic scholars in the region to strengthen inter-religious tolerance and promote peaceful co-existence among different faith in the region.
The founder of peace foundation said his organisation has contributed a lot in terms of tackling ethno-religious and political crisis in Kaduna and other neighbouring states.
He assured that the reconciliation foundation would continue to partner with the Ahmadu Bello foundation to uplift the region and the entire nation.
Buru called on Muslims and Christians to forgive each other and continue to live in peace with one another.
Edited By: Chinyere Bassey/Maharazu Ahmed (NAN)
Monarch urges strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols
Oba Mufutau Oyekanmi, the traditional ruler of Asipa (the Alasipa of Asipa) Ilufemilloye Fashina V111,
near Ipetumodu in Osun State, has urged Nigerians to support the government on strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols
to curtail the spread of Coronavirus across the country.
He made the call on Monday at Asipa in Ife North Local Government Area of Osun when he met with some journalists in his palace.
The monarch commended the efforts of the local, state and Federal Government on measures put in place to ensure safety of lives of the citizenry in tackling
Oyekanmi said “recently, government took bold steps at the right time to curtail the spread of Coronavirus by not allowing congregational prayers.
“Some people were not happy with the ban of the Muslim Eid festival prayer by the Osun State Government but it is simply because of us so we
can celebrate many more of Eid el-Kabir.
“We thank God by sparing our lives to witness this because it’s the living that celebrates.”
Sikiru Ayedun, former Osun State Commissioner for Home Affairs, Culture and Tourism, said
Ayedun said that the order of the state government on no Eid prayer for the 2020 Eid-el-Kabir was because of the COVID-19 “and a
test of faith.
“Whatever people are doing today is part of sacrifice, because at this point in time, our faith is being tested.”
The former commissioner assured that at the end of the tunnel, there would be a new dawn, but Nigerians should seek peace,
tranquility and live with one another in brotherliness.
Alhaji Eluyera Oyewole, former Education Secretary, Ife South Local Government, Ifetedo, Osun State, said that “everyone has
now realised that COVID-19 is real and that the pandemic is killing both the rich and the poor.
“Osun State Government did not make mistake in banning congregational prayer for the Eid el-Kabir festival, for this can increase human contact
during celebrations and that can cause more infections.
“Thank God for our government that is 100 per cent proactive, by doing the needful, else, it will have spread the virus.
“Government is doing its best; we urge for support from all by obeying the COVID-19 protocols.”
In the same vein, Alhaji Fatai Kolawole, former Permanent Secretary, Osun State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), commended
the efforts of the state government for trying to save the lives of the citizenry against COVID-19.
Kolawole said that banning congregational prayer for this year’s festival was a welcome idea, saying this is just for a brief period as it would not last forever.
He asked everybody to co-operate with government on directives given, adding that“COVID-19 is a joint task that government alone cannot fight.
“Very soon, COVID-19 will be eradicated, whereby things will be normalised educationally, economically, socially.”
He urged all and sundry to co-operate with local, state and Federal Government in curbing the spread of the Coronavirus by strictly adhering
to the use of face mask, regular washing of hands with soap and sanitizer, as well as keeping social distance, among others.”
Edited By: Hadiza Mohammed-Aliyu (NAN)
`NDDC yet to pay contractors that handled road projects I facilitated’-Orji Kalu
Senate Chief Whip, Dr Orji Kalu, said on Monday that the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) had not paid contractors that handled roads he facilitated in Abia.
Kalu stated this in a statement issued by Mr Emeka Nwala of Office of the Senate Chief Whip and made available to the News Agency of Nigeria
The former governor of Abia was reacting to claims by Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Sen. Godswill Akpabio that 60 per cent contracts awarded by the commission were handled by members of the National Assembly.
Akpabio mentioned ex governors Emmanuel Uduaghan, James Ibori, Sen. Ifeanyi Ararume, Sen. Orji Kalu and others as beneficiaries of several contracts awarded by the NDDC.
“The road projects mentioned by the minister are the interventions I facilitated for the communities as a private citizen before I became a senator,’’ he said.
Kalu argued that his name was mentioned because he used his letter headed paper to write a sympathetic letter to NDDC in 2016 pleading with the commission to rescue roads in Abia.
“I was Governor of Abia between 1999 and 2007 and never held any public office until June 11, 2019 when I was sworn in as a senator.
“Between 2016 and 2018 during my tour to several communities, leaders and welfare unions of most communities pleaded for urgent intervention on some dilapidated roads.
“The NDDC in their consideration which I am very grateful to, awarded the roads to companies that duly tendered for the projects and not myself.
“Whatever link I have with the projects is because it was considered due to my intervention,” Kalu said.
The senate chief whip also noted that the contracts were awarded by fully constituted body of NDDC with its board and not any interim management of the commission.
He said “the roads I requested for intervention as mentioned by the minister were repairs of Ezere-Acha-Ndiokoukwu road, Amaubiri-Eluama-Uru ring road and Lokpaukwu, Umuchieze Ndi Oji Abam-Atan road.
“Others are Okafia-Ozuitem-Bende and Ozu-Amuru-Abam roads.
“The contractors have completed and delivered these roads long time ago except Abam-Atani road, which I learnt from the contractors was slowed down due to rain but still ongoing.
“Meanwhile, the contractors who built these roads have not been paid any dime.
“I am much concerned about roads because I understand the economic importance of good roads.
“As a community leader, I do not intend to stop my interventions on roads in NDDC states because all the states need good roads.
“Good roads help to drive the economy,’’ Kalu said.
He, however, urged the commission to focus on paying contractors that delivered their jobs.
Edited Obike Ukoh
Sen. Ubah, Obikwelu return as Anambra FA Chairman, Vice through e-voting
Sen. Ifeanyi Ubah, President of FC Ifeanyi Ubah has been re-elected as Chairman of Anambra State Football Association (AnSFA) for a second term, in an election conducted through electronic voting on Sunday.
Jude Obikwelu, a long time vice-chairman of the association was returned unopposed.
The result of the elections was signed by Jude Anayadufu, chairman of the 2020 AnSFA electoral committee and issued to newsmen by Obinna Dike, Head of Media and Publicity, on Monday in Awka.
Philip Balepo, a veteran journalist was also elected into the board as a first timer.
Other elected members of the board were Joe Amene, Uduh Kingsley, Amuzie Cyprain, Obiefune Collins, Adinnu Okezie and Ada Edward.
Elections were also successfully conducted into 19 Local Football Councils (LFC) while in Orumba South, forms were returned late and bye election would be held on a later date.
“The elections held on August 2, 2020 with Obinna Dike as the Returning Officer for the LFC, while Godwin Madubuko was the Returning Officer for the Board Elections.
“In the LFC elections, there was a tie in the Chairmanship position for Onitsha South with option of a coin toss. A bye election will be conducted for Orumba South LFC which returned forms late. Other 19 LFCs were through”, the statement said.
“The Electoral Committee thanks the candidates, delegates, agents, stakeholders, media and the government for their collaboration in ensuring a smooth electoral process.
“Appreciation also goes to the Nigeria Football Federation and Sports Ministry for their roles in the elections,” it stated.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Anambra FA elections originally scheduled for July 27 and July 28 were suspended on the orders of the state government that it would violate COVID-19 rules.
The election had reached advanced stage with conclusion of sales and return of forms, screening, appeal and final briefing for all candidates and delegates eligible to participate in the quadrennial election before it was called off by government.
The electoral committee communicated the development to the AnSFA which met and gave it powers to conduct the election through virtual processes.
Edited By: Angela Okisor/Maharazu Ahmed (NAN)
NIPOST: LCCI wants regulatory framework reviewed
Dr Muda Yusuf, LCCI Director-General, said in a statement on Sunday in Lagos that a framework in which NIPOST was both a regulator and an operator was detrimental to the development of courier business in the country, and inconsistent with best practices globally.
He said the LCCI had strong reservations particularly over a provision in the courier regulation guidelines prescribing contribution by an operator, a sum equal to 2 per cent of its total annual revenue, to the postal fund.
This is to be used for postal development and delivery of postal services in rural and underserved areas.
“We submit that this provision will put too much burden on courier and logistics businesses and make them unsustainable.
“These businesses are already grappling with multitude of taxes and levies in the course of their daily operations.
“We request that this provision be expunged immediately in the interest of investments and investors in the courier and logistics sector of the Nigeria economy.
“Currently, NIPOST is vested with powers to regulate its competitors; this arrangement is unfair, inequitable, and inherently repressive”, Yusuf argued
According to him, it is a negation of the ease of doing business policy of the Federal Government and inconsistent with the extant competition law of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“We, therefore, urge the federal government and the National Assembly to urgently remedy the situation,” he said.
Yusuf also called for the review of the provision in the courier regulation which vests with the Minister the powers to compel any licensed courier and/or logistics services operator to undertake free delivery service for the purpose of universal postal service obligations/or any social service delivery in national interest.
He argued that the provision bordered on overbearing power with little regard for the interest of investors.
“This provision will undermine the confidence of investors in the courier and logistics business and should be immediately be repealed.
“It is a negation of the efforts of the federal government to attract investment, create jobs and grow the economy.
“The reality is that many corporate organisations are already undertaking various forms of Corporate Social Responsibility projects without being compelled or coerced to do so”.
Yusuf also noted that citizens should not be compelled to patronise NIPOST irrespective of the size or weight of an item as stated in a courier regulation.
He referred to the stipulation that says: ”All courier items/articles such as Right Issues, Shares Certificates, Statement of Accounts, Cheques, Letters or Offer documents, etc weighing below 0.5kg brought to a courier/logistics service operator shall be recorded and referred to the nearest Post Office of the Nigerian Postal Service for processing and delivery.
“Failure to do so will attract payment to Nigerian Postal Service of a penalty of 90 per cent of the amount charged on the item by the erring Operator”.
Yusuf described it as an unfair provision and an infringement on the rights of citizens and in conflict with the principle of fairness.
Edited By: Angela Okisor/Oluwole Sogunle (NAN)