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Bakery workers make desserts to meet demands of citizens during lockdown in Sudan



A bakery worker prepares desserts to meet the demands of the citizens who failed to bake the Eid desserts during the lockdown to contain the coronavirus spread, in Khartoum, Sudan, May 22, 2020. (Photo by Mohamed Khidir/Xinhua)


2 men docked for allegedly stealing bakery equipment




Two men, Abayomi Okanlawon, 51, and Ibrahim Tasiu, 24, were on Thursday docked before an Ikeja Chief Magistrates’ Court for allegedly stealing bakery equipment worth N11.2 million.

The defendants, whose house addresses were not provided, are facing charges of conspiracy, stealing and receiving stolen property.

They, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges.

The Prosecutor, Insp. Victor Eruada, told the court that the defendants with some other persons still at large committed the offences on Oct. 15 at 2:30 p.m. at No. 29, Ayodele Ogunkoya St., Ikotun, near Lagos.

Eruada said that Okanlawon, who is a worker in the company stole the bakery equipment, valued at N11.2 million from where it was kept, property of one Abiola Akerele.

The prosecutor said that Tasiu received the stolen equipment and sold some of it.

Eruada said that the offences contravened Sections 287, 328 and 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that Section 287 stipulates three years jail term for stealing.

The Chief Magistrate, Mrs M.I. Dan-Oni, granted them bail in the sum of N250, 000 each with two sureties each in like sum and adjourned the case until Jan. 23 for mention.

Edited by: Silas Nwoha

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Court orders man to demolish bakery erected on his stepmother’s premises





Kaduna, June 11, 2019 A Sharia Court I sitting at Magajin Gari, Kaduna, on Tuesday ordered a man, Jibril Khalid, 32, to demolish a bakery he erected on his stepmother’s premises with in 30 days.

The judge,  Malam Dahiru Lawal, gave the order, after reading the report by the Kaduna State Primary Health Care Development Agency.

He held that the agency investigated and certified that the bakery was not built and located in the right environment.

”The report says that the bakery should be demolished and that it contravened part lV Section 42 sub-section one of the public health law of federal republic of Nigeria 1998.

”The report also indicates that the requirement for erecting a bakery should include an adequate passage, a secluded convenience, a safe  point for baking, a healthy bread store room, light and adequate ventilation and easy passage for movement.

“The inability to fulfill this requirements contravenes chapter V section 42 of the National Environmental health practice regulation of Federal Republic of Nigeria 2007”, he said.

Lawal, therefore ordered the demolition of the bakery.

NAN reports that the complainant, A 55-year-old woman, Barira Salisu, of Kumasi road, Tudun Wada, kaduna, on April 23, dragged her step-son, Jibril Khalid, 32, before the court for erecting a bakery on her premises.

“Khalid’s mother and I live in the same compound, with everybody on her own allocated share. But my step-son erected a bakery in the compound, thereby inconveniencing us”, Salisu said.

edited by Sadiya Hamza

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Bakery manager in court for allegedly stealing employer’s N436, 330



A 49-year-old manager of a bakery, Adelaja Olumuyiwa, was on Thursday charged before an Ikeja Chief Magistrates’ Court for allegedly stealing his employer’s N436,330.

Olimuyiwa, who resides at 10, Oluwatoyin St., Shasha, a suburb of Lagos, is being tried for stealing, to which he pleaded his innocence.

The prosecutor, SP Raji Akeem, told the court that the defendant committed the offence in March at Alausa area of Ikeja.

Akeem said that the defendant failed to remit the sum of N436, 330 to the company’s account.

He, instead, converted the amount to his personal use.

“The complainant and owner of the bakery, Mrs Folasade Bamidele, knew about it when the bakery’s account was audited.

“The case was reported to the police station and the accused was arrested,” he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the offence contravenes Section 287 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015, which stipulates three years’ imprisonment for offenders.

The chief magistrate, Mrs O. A. Layinka, granted the defendant bail in the sum of N100,000 with two sureties in like sum and adjourned the case until June 4.




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Woman drags step-son to court for erecting a bakery on her premises




Kaduna, April 23, 2019 A 55-year-old woman, Barira Salisu, on Tuesday, dragged her step-son, Jibril Khalid, 32, before a Sharia Court l, sitting at Magajin Gari, Kaduna State, for erecting a bakery on her premises.

Salisu, who lives on Kumasi road, Tudun Wada, Kaduna, told the court that her step-son built a bakery in the middle of their family house.

“When Khalid’s father died,  his property was shared among his wives and children. I am living with my daughter in my apartment, which was allocated to us.

“Khalid’s mother and I live in the same compound, with everybody on her own allocated share. But my step-don erected a bakery in the compound, thereby inconveniencing us.

The defendant, after hearing the complaint against him, said: “I have done nothing wrong.

“I built the bakery in front of my own apartment and also built a fence so that my customers would not disturb her”.

The Judge, Dahiru Lawal, who adjourned the case until April 30, said that the court would explore avenues to settle the matter amicably.


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Shuaibu Ibrahim: Fostering new reforms in the NYSC



Shuaibu Ibrahim: Fostering new reforms in the NYSC

, News Agency of Nigeria
The National Youth Service Corp (NYSC) established on May 22, 1973 has served as a platform for national cohesion and offered young Nigerians opportunity to know and appreciate Nigeria’s diversities.

There is usually a lot of anticipation for youths preparing to participate in the one-year voluntary service, which offers many a first-time opportunity to leave home to confront the world.

Over time, the scheme has faced numerous challenges, which have led many to query its continued existence.

Among the challenges are decayed infrastructure, poor funding, crisis of deployment, lack of engagement during the service period and low expectations after service against the background of shrinking job opportunities.

All of these and more have compelled the managers of the scheme to introduce reforms to enable it deliver on its mandate of preparing Nigeria’s tertiary education young graduates for the world of work.

When Brig.-Gen. Shuaibu Ibrahim, the Director-General of NYSC, was appointed on May, 10, 2019, he faced challenges that his predecessors had to deal with and more. The first challenge was the issue of mobilisation of unqualified persons with fake or questionable degree certificates.

First, he identified the sources of such certificates and convened a meeting with the registrars of some African Corps Producing Institutions to decide on strategies to deal with the problem. The meeting revealed that many of those with fake credentials were graduates of illegal institutions, mostly in the West African sub-region.

Sixty-five fake prospective NYSC members were apprehended during the 2019 Batch ‘B’ Stream Two Orientation Course and handed over to the security agencies for prosecution. Similarly, out of over 20,000 foreign-trained prospective corps members invited for verification of the documents they uploaded for the 2019 Batch ‘C’ mobilisation, only 3,321 appeared for the exercise.

Prior to the screening, Ibrahim had warned persons with dubious intentions of compromising the integrity of the NYSC mobilisation process to stay away to avoid the consequences.

“Under my watch, no unqualified person will be allowed to participate in the NYSC,” he warned.

As a way of boosting its funding base, NYSC over the years established projects but many of them remained inactive and instead drained the resources of the scheme. Determined to realise the goals of such projects, the Ibrahim-led management reinvigorated NYSC Ventures and Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development programme to improve the resources of the scheme and give corps members opportunity to harness their innate abilities.

The goals led to increased stakeholders’ involvement in the implementation of the programme through engagements with many existing collaborating partners and potential partners.

The effort has made some gains, including the collaboration with Unity Bank PLC on funding of Business Plan Development programmes for NYSC members, partnership. It also led to collaboration with British American Tobacco Nigeria Foundation for empowerment of corps members with agricultural skills and business trainings, farm internship, mentoring and farm input supplies.

Also, there is a research-based collaboration between NYSC and National Centre for Technology Management (NACETEM), OAU, Ile-Ife, (OAUNACETEM) sponsored by a Canadian agency, International Development Research Centre, which seeks to evaluate the impact of the Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development programme with a view to reinvigorating it for more results.

The Ibrahim Administration, determined to improve the financial base of NYSC, sought alternative ways of realising the goal by accelerating the upgrading and repositioning of NYSC Ventures initiatives.

It acquired new tractors and implements for the NYSC rice farm in Ezillo, Ebonyi, for mass production and processing of rice at the NYSC rice mill in the state. It also established a new rice mill for the NYSC rice farm in Saminaka, Kebbi State, and equipment for the mill are currently being installed. It also resuscitated the NYSC Bakery and Water Factory at the FCT Orientation Camp, Kubwa, with their products made available to consumers in the FCT and Nasarawa State.

The administration plans to replicate the ventures in NYSC Orientation Camps across the country to serve the needs of the camps and generate revenue for the scheme. The administration has also sustained the deployment of ICT solutions to drive the operations of the scheme for greater efficiency.

Recruited from an equally challenging role as Registrar at the newly-established Nigerian Army University, Biu, Borno, Ibrahim returned to the NYSC after 20 years when he served as Military Assistant to a former Chief Executive of the organisation.

On assumption of office as Director-General, Ibrahim had declared: “I see my second coming as a privilege and honour. I am determined to sustain what my predecessors started, improve on what they have also done and move the scheme to a higher pedestal.”

With enviable academic laurels and vast experience in administration, he brought to the job an impressive profile that put him in good stead to steer the NYSC to higher heights which exactly is what he has been doing. Ibrahim is a man of many parts; he is a teacher, researcher and author.

In spite of being a Brigadier-General in the Nigerian Army, Ibrahim holds a PhD in Philosophy and has been an astute administrator, which came as a result of his numerous postings in the military.

He displayed a rare ability to adapt and this made it possible for him to fit easily into the role of managing an organisation whose main clients are vibrant graduate youths of institutions of higher learning.

Ibrahim already had his job cut out before arriving at the NYSC headquarters, as he had to contend with the perennial widespread infrastructure deficits in many NYSC Orientation Camps, exponential explosion in corps population, paucity of funds, post service unemployment, among others.

With the knowledge of these challenges, Ibrahim realised he had to hit the ground running and so relied on his knowledge of the scheme in articulating his mission even before setting foot at the National Directorate Headquarters.

On the day he took over the mantle of leadership of the NYSC, Ibrahim unfolded his agenda which included: sustained effective utilisation of the potential of corps members for optimal benefit.

He also resolved to pursue a technologically driven organisation to deepen effective service delivery; improve the welfare and security of corps members and staff and strengthen existing collaboration with stakeholders. He also expressed a determinations to revive existing NYSC projects to achieve desired impacts.

In addition to harnessing the NYSC Integrated System online platform to enthrone a culture of integrity and efficiency in the Scheme’s operations, the administration is looking forward to leveraging on the gains from the advancement of ICT operations in order to raise the revenue of the organisation.

The administration has given priority attention to the security of corps members across the country; promoted communication among corps members and the society through the establishment of NYSC Radio; ensured that staff welfare was not compromised and maintained regular engagements with state governors on the need to develop NYSC facilities in their state as well as involved NYSC members in the fight against COVID-19.

#####If used please the News Agency of Niger and writer

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Feature: Turkish cooks prepare meals for at-risk elderly in Istanbul amid COVID-19 outbreak




More than 90 Turkish cooks, including well-known chefs, have been preparing healthy meals for Isranbul’s at-risk senior citizens who have been locked down at their homes for nearly two months as part of the measures to curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

They have been cooking two meals for at least 2,400 seniors per day in the Kadikoy district on the Asian side of the largest city in Turkey since the pandemic was first seen in the country in around mid-March.

The project has been developed by two chefs, Umut Karakus and Sinan Budeyri, with the aim of delivering healthy food to the elderly who could not cook their meals during the health crisis.

“When we presented the project to the Kadikoy Municipality, it immediately opened its doors to us and took the responsibility of distributing the meals to seniors,” Karakus told Xinhua on Thursday.

Karakus and Budeyri have been determining the menu, with low salt and spices, giving instructions to those in charge of the kitchen each day.

“We have numerous volunteers, including stewardesses, cabin crew members, physicians, architects and engineers,” Karakus said, noting their contributions are priceless as the preparation of meals requires a lot of hard work.

“In some meals, we are using 100 kg of carrots or many more potatoes,” he continued. “We need as much as people to peel them and make them ready in time.”

According to Karakus, around 15 cooks have been working each day in the kitchen.

“We were once cooking for a maximum of 200 people in a day, spending hours on a single plate. Now, we are in a quite different position,” Sinan Budeyri told Xinhua.

There are some elderly people in the district, who are completely dependent on these meals and even cannot walk, according to Budeyri.

“Sometimes we knock on their doors, and it takes over 10 minutes for some of them to open it,” Budeyri said. “When I see the conditions of these people, I realize what a right decision we have given by launching this project.

The two chefs said they have worked hard to find sponsorships for the project at the beginning.

“But we know the suppliers very well, and we used our contacts,” Budeyri noted, saying several big brands of dairy products and pulses are now among their contributors.

“We have grabbed a very natural synergy here, and we should carry it to an upper level with new and bigger projects,” Budeyri said.

Karakus owns Muutto Istanbul, a street food and meze bar-restaurant, while Budeyri runs a restaurant named Markus Prime Ribs Society and Nino Bakery in Istanbul.

Lale Gulcan, another chef taking part in the project, said the team has also been cooking for the health care workers in the Tuzla district for at least three weeks now.

“Tomorrow we will make a dessert for 3,000 people,” Gulcan said. “I am very happy and proud to be involved in this project,” she told Xinhua.

Seen as the most vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic, the elderly aged 65 and older across Turkey have been under lockdown since March 21 as part of the government’s measures against the pandemic.


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Group says relocation order to Abuja may erode NCAA’s autonomy



The President, Aviation Roundtable, Dr Gabriel Olowo, says the decision of the Federal Government to relocate headquarters of aviation agencies to Abuja will erode the autonomy status of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).

Olowo made this known in a statement issued in Lagos on Saturday.

He said the relocation of the headquarters to Abuja would cause undue nearness, given the place of influence of the agencies on the nation’s economy.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, had ordered all aviation agencies to relocate their headquarters to Abuja within 45 days.

The minister’s directive was contained in a letter dated May 4, 2020 with reference /7061/T/4 and signed on behalf of the Minister by the Director, Human Resource Management, FMA, Muhammad Shehu.

He, however, reminded the agencies that the order was given by the President in 2012.

Currently, the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) and the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) have their headquarters in Lagos.

The Nigerian Meteorological Agency has its headquarters in Abuja, while the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology has its headquarters in Zaria, Kaduna State.

Olowo said: “Frequent political interference as it were in the past will increase more as we are approaching another election year.’’

He expressed concern about how possible it would be for the workers to relocate during the COVID-19 pandemic following the interstate movement restrictions.

According to him, the strict timeline given aviation businesses will gradually gain speed postCOVID-19, probably at the third quarter of 2020.

He said that in any case, the agencies’ heads had always been in Abuja, safe for their empty seats in Lagos.

Olowo said the Federal Government’s policy statement had been there for a while, saying he thought economic judgement had prevailed on their staying behind all this while.

He said: “Secondly, the Murtala Mohammed Airport (MMA) being the highest revenue earner for FAAN and NAMA will suffer some administrative slack with the seat of direct control being away from Lagos.

“The decision of the Federal Government is like locating the bakery away from the production line and supply of flower.

“This is because direct and on-the-spot decision making by `numero uno’ becomes delegated resulting to unnecessary gaps with timelines.”

Edited By: Edwin Nwachukwu/Adeleye Ajayi (NAN)


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Feature: Turks volunteer to pay bills of needy amid weakening economy




Amid rising unemployment and weakening economy, Turks are volunteering to pay utility bills for people in need, in an example of solidarity in times of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The metropolitan municipality of Istanbul, the nation’s biggest city of over 16 million and also the worst-hit city by the novel coronavirus, launched this week a unique campaign “bill on the hook” where good samaritans are called to pay residents outstanding utility bills.

The campaign aims to provide support for people financially burdened by the coronavirus pandemic. Through, the campaign anonymously matched people with bills with those willing to cover the cost of these bills out of an act of pure solidarity.

The process is simple; you log to the site and choose sither post bill or pay bill. If you choose to pay, there are unpaid debts, some cheap, some costly.

At the end of two days, the campaign generated over 1 million U.S. dollars and helped 57,177 households in Istanbul pay for their water and gas bills, the municipality announced on Thursday evening.

“In Istanbul, millions of people whose livelihoods depend on precarious work have been unable to find jobs for nearly 2 months. Life is getting harder by the day. This situation shows us that we need to strengthen our solidarity,” mayor Emrem Imamoglu said on Twitter.

The campaign borrows its name from a longstanding Turkish tradition that dates back centuries, whereby a person would go to a bakery and pay for two loaves of bread instead of one, telling the baker that the other loaf will be “on the hook,” meaning that a person in need may take it.

This extra contribution would then be held alongside others, and when people unable to afford bread would come in throughout the day and ask “Is there bread on the hook?”, they would be able to get a loaf of bread for free. This way, the person paying for the extra bread on the hook would be paying it forward.

One of those benefactors told Xinhua that “It is only natural to help people in need in these difficult times.”

“I closed temporarily my business because of the virus outbreak, but I also have some savings that I wanted to share with people who are in dire straits because they are possibly unable to work and provide for their families,” said Rafet to Xinhua, asking specifically to be remained anonymous.

In capital Ankara and several big cities across the country, a similar but a bit different method is in place since the start of the outbreak where good samaritans and well-off business owners are called by municipality’s to clear outstanding grocery bills of poor people.

In impoverished neighborhoods, several hundreds of outstanding grocery bills have been paid by modern day Robin Hood’s amid rising concerns for Turkey’s vulnerable economy which was slowly recovering from a recession when the outbreak began.

In western Nazilli city, a benefactor cleared outstanding bills of 18 families totaling an amount of 3,000 U.S. dollars, newspapers reported.

“Someone came and asked me to show him the notebook where I record customers’ debts,” Murat Halal, the owner of the grocery shop told T24 news site.

“There were 18 families with large amounts outstanding and he payed all the debt and asked me afterwards to burn my notebook, which I gladly did,” Halal said.

Turkey has reported over 133,000 cases of COVID-19 and 3,641 deaths.

Food and essential good prices have soared since the start of the year and the coronavirus outbreak makes things worse for most households in Turkey where unemployment is rising due to weakening economic indicators and the lockdown imposed to curb the spread of the virus.


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Master bakers want FG to regulate prices of baking materials



Abuja Master Bakers and Caterers of Nigeria (AMBCN) on Wednesday appealed to the Federal Government to regulate the prices of baking materials, saying price increase has affected the bread industry.

Alhaji Ishaq Abdulraheem, the FCT Chairman of the association, made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja.

Abdulraheem said that a bag of flour that sold for N9,000 before the COVID-19 pandemic now goes for N12,000, adding that a bag of sugar that sold for N13,000 now goes for N21,000.

“We are appealing to the federal government to urgently intervene in prices of baking materials.

“The high cost of baking materials is ‘killing’ the bakery business,” he said.

He discloed that he was informed by one of the flour miller’s that there would be additional increase in price of flour soon.

“Bakers are finding it difficult to make profits due to the high cost of the materials and some bakeries have been forced out of business.

“A bag of flour that cost N9,000 before COVID-19, now goes for N12,000, while a bag of sugar now cost N21,000 as against the former price of N13,000.

“Butter now cost N9,000 against N6,000. Bread packaging cost N12 as against N10. The prices of salt, yeast and other baking materials have increased also,’’ he added.

Mr Nura Musa, the Public Relation Officer of the association, also said that there was need for the federal government to intervene in regulating the prices of baking materials in order to sustain the bread industry.

He noted that instability of foreign exchange, high cost of diesel and other baking materials were reasons given by flour millers for the hike in the prices of baking materials.

“We have appealed to flour millers and other people involved in the selling of baking materials to reduce their prices, but they have not responded.

“This is why we are pleading with federal government to intervene in this matter by talking to flour millers and baking material sellers to bring the prices down since dollar exchange and that of diesel have come down.

“Master bakers association is the largest employer of labour in the country and if any bakery should fold up, many people will lose their jobs,” Musa said.

According to him, the prices of bread may increase by 50 per cent, if nothing is done to regulate the prices of baking materials.

Edited By: Edwin Nwachukwu/Muhammad Suleiman Tola (NAN)

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