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Buhari affirms commitment to use technology for enhanced public service delivery

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday in Abuja reaffirmed the commitment of his administration to use technology for enhanced public service delivery. 

 

The president stated this when he received the leadership of Computer Professionals Registration Council of Nigeria (CPCN) and Nigeria Computer Society (NCS) led by its president, Prof. Charles Uwadia.

 

According to the president, technology in public service delivery is no longer a luxury, but a pressing necessity. 

 

While noting that Information Technology is the driving force for social and economic change, the President told the IT professionals that his government, through its actions, has demonstrated its commitment to convert these potentials to reality.

 

‘‘The future belongs to IT. What was unimaginable 20 years ago is a reality today. Accordingly, we have introduced numerous policies and have made substantial investments to ensure the benefits of this technology-driven age is felt by 200 million Nigerians.

 

‘‘Indeed, our strategy for inclusive economic growth can only be achieved by leveraging the technology tools available to us,’’ he said.

 

President Buhari used the occasion of the courtesy visit by representatives of the computing and IT professionals in Nigeria to enumerate some benefits of using technological tools to implement government policies.

 

‘‘Already, we have seen the benefits of using technological tools for lending to farmers as well as monitoring crop performance especially in some of the more remote locations.

 

‘‘We also leveraged technology to fight corruption and reduce leakages and inefficiencies in public service delivery.

 

“You are all aware of the significant investments we made to upgrade our policy and military platforms as we battle pockets of insecurity in parts of the country.

 

‘‘Furthermore, our social investment programs are built on technological platforms that allow us to positively impact the lives of some of poorest members of our society,’’ he said.

 

The President, therefore, requested the computer body to continue to partner with Government at all levels to ensure “the benefits of this tool are realised and at the same time its threats are eliminated’’.

 

In his remarks, Prof. Uwadia commended the President for demonstrating the political will to accelerate national IT development with his physical presence at the e-Nigeria conference and awards, on four consecutive occasions, over the years.

 

On behalf of IT professionals in the country, Uwadia expressed gratitude to President Buhari for appointing two seasoned professionals, Dr Isa Ibrahim Pantami and Kashifu Abdullahi as Minister of Communications and Digital Economy and Director-General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), respectively.

 

‘‘Your Excellency, we the IT professionals, commend you for the immense and giant strides that your administration has made and is still making in nation-building. Within the space of the past four years, you have achieved a lot, using the instrumentality of ICT,’’ he said.

 

The president of CPCN listed some outstanding achievements of the current administration in the sector to include: issuance of Executive Order (EO1) on the promotion of Transparency and Efficiency in the Business Environment and Executive Order (EO3) on Support for Local Content in Public Procurement by the Federal Government

 

Others are Executive Order (EO5) on Planning and Execution of Projects, Promotion of Local Content in Contracts and Science, Engineering and Technology; unveiling of the National Digital Economy Policy at the 2019 e-Nigeria conference, exhibition and awards and implementation and enforcement of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information (IPPIS).

 

The IPPIS has saved the Federal Government of Nigeria billions of naira by eliminating thousands of ghost workers.

 

Edited by: Sadiya Hamza

Entertainment

Minister, Buhari’s Aide, others react as Majek Fashek dies in New York

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The Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Mr Festus Keyamo and Laurreta Onochie, an Aide to President Muhammadu Buhari have reacted to the death of the legendary Reggae star, Majek Fashek.

The Raggae star a.k.a rain maker, died after battling with cancer for nearly a year.

Mr Uzoma Omenka, his manager confirmed the news of his death on the singer’s Instagram page on Tuesday, adding that the Raggae Star also known as Rain Maker died at 11.45 pm on June 1, Nigerian time.

Omenka said the singer died in New York, where he was receiving treatment, adding that the doctors advised he should be moved close to his family, which informed his being moved to New York where his wife and three sons live.

He said contrary to insinuation that the Raggae legend died in London, he was moved from London to New York in September 2020 on the advice of the doctors that he should stay close to the family.

He said Majek was separated from his family for 10 years until last year when they were reunited on the advice of his doctors that he should be close to his family.

Majek was said to have died at age of 57 as he was born March 7, 1963.

However, the minister in a tweet said, ” R.I.P my big brother, Mr. Majekodunmi Fasheke (aka Majek Fashek), the ‘Rain Maker’ and extraordinarily gifted musician.

“They don’t make them like you anymore. Your remake of the song Hotel California remains one of my favorites and, of course, the ever green, Send Down the Rain!” Keyamo said.

Similar, Senator Shehu Sani inrin histhis reaction said, “some years ago I met Majek Fashek near a train station in New York before he returned to Nigeria, he was a shadow of the man many of us loved decades ago.

According to him, Majek rode through a rough and dangerous terrain in life, he tried to pick up and now is gone, he was an unforgettable legend.

Laurreta Onochie, an Aide to President Muhammadu Buhari said ” at last he rests, he escapes the life that held him captive.

According to her, h”escaped a world where talented people are milked till nothing is left; where no vice can touch him.

“But we won’t forget you as younger people, your music moved our feet and gladdened our souls, sleep well,” she said. 

——-


Edited By: Ekemini Ladejobi (NAN)

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Politics

Activist says Buhari’s achievements excites opposition

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Mr Ebubeagu Ekenulo, a renowned activist in the South East, says the landmark achievements recorded by President Muhammadu Buhari is attracting scores of opposition members and their leaders to the ruling All Progressives Congress APC).

Ekenulo made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja on Tuesday.

According to him, the opposition being led in the country by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), are excited with the tremendous development strides achieved by Buhari amidst security challenges, economic recession and COVID-19 pandemic lockdown.

He described the defection of Chief Charles Ezekwem, former PDP chairman in Imo together with other PDP stakeholders to the APC, as a testimony of the President’s APC-led administration’s landmark achievements.

Ekenulo, who described Ezekwem as an astute administrator and visionary politician, said his defection was informed by his passion for good leadership.

The activist explained that Ezekwem was moved by the track records of the Buhari-led APC at both the national and state levels.

Charles Babatunde Ezekwem is not a mole but a patriot and selfless politician with bold heart to return Nigeria and Imo to the path of progress.

“He defected to APC with a large chunk of Imo PDP state and many local government executive members, and multitude of stakeholders to show solidarity to President Buhari and Chief Hope Uzodimma,” he said.

Ekunulo called on the remaining PDP members in Imo to support the APC led administration in the state to restore the lost glory of the state and Nigeria “that was battered by PDP’s failed leadership”.

According to him, Ezekwem left PDP for the greater good of Imo in spite of the fact that he built the party all alone.

Ekenulo, who expressed optimism of a future prosperous Imo, called on politicians to shun campaigns of calumny and discord but close ranks for a prosperous country.

NAN recalls that Ezekwem, immediate past Imo PDP chairman, resigned from the party in January 2020, ahead of the expiration of his tenure in August, this year.


Edited By: Muftau Adediran/Muhammad Suleiman Tola (NAN)

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COVID-19: Aisha Buhari renovates 15-bed capacity facility in Nasarawa

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First Lady Aisha Buhari has renovated and equipped a 15-bed capacity ward in Mararaba Gurku Medical Centre in Nasarawa State to provide conducive atmosphere for COVID-19 patients.

Buhari also built two sanitary and administrative block in the facility.

Buhari, who was represented by Dr Haji Sani, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Women Affairs and Administration, said the facility was part of her effort  towards supporting the state in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic.

She urged the management of the centre to ensure proper maintenance of the facility.

The first lady also distributed personal protective equipments (PPEs), food items and other medical equipments.

Buhari enjoined residents of the state to sustain prayers against the spread of coronavirus pandemic in the country.

In his response, the Nasarawa State deputy governor and Chairman, State Taskforce on COVID-19, Dr Emmanuel Akabe, thanked the first lady for the gesture and promised to make judicious use of the facility.

Akabe said the state government was making frantic efforts towards containing the spread of the pandemic in the state.

He said the facility would be used as one of the isolation centres to cater for the COVID-19 patients in the state.

Also speaking, the Chief Medical Director, Nasarawa State Hospitals Management Board, Dr Usman George, expressed appreciation to the first lady for the gesture.

George said that the facility was one of the site identified by the state government to treat COVID-19 patients.

”We want to make proper use of this place to have a unilateral flow where you have donning areas where you have personal protective equipments and areas where you remove the personal protective equipments.

”We also intend to put cardiac monitors and one or two ventilators as part of the state government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic,” he said.


Edited By: Ismail Abdulaziz (NAN)

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Politics

Edo APC Primaries: Obaseki visits Aso Villa, seeks Buhari’s blessing

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday met behind closed door with Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports the meeting which was at the instance of the governor, came ahead of the governorship primary election of the All Progressives Congress (APC), scheduled for June, 2020.

Speaking to State House correspondents at the end of the meeting, Obaseki said he was in the Presidential Villa to formally intimate the president of his intention to seek re-election as governor of Edo on the platform of the All Progressive Congress (APC).

The governor, who is believed to be at loggerhead with the APC National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiohmole, over his second term ambition, presented his Expression of Interest form to the president for blessing.

“I came to see Mr President to formally inform him of my desire and intention to seek re-election as governor of Edo State on the platform of the APC in the forthcoming gubernatorial election.

“As a father of the country, as our president I should not just assume or take things for granted – I have to come to inform him and solicit his support in my gubernatorial bid, and the president was quiet warm and quiet welcoming.

“When I showed him my Expression of Interest form, he looked through it and teased me that he would not have to go through this again and wished me good luck and assured me of his support,’’ he said.

On the political tussle in Edo, the governor stated that the crisis was being instigated from outside the state.

Obaseki also described the political misunderstanding between him and Oshiohmole as very unfortunate, saying however that he was ready to reach a truce with all aggrieved members of the APC.

“It is unfortunate that he (Oshiohmole) is taking the position he has taken. I believe that he was not properly guided.

“I am his Governor and it is my responsibility to seek peace for my State and with all my citizens.

“I will continue to strive for peace, I will continue to pursue peace, seek the interest of our people and I am open, that we should talk about how to move things forward.

“The relationship is still frosty but I am doing all I can to try and make it warm just for the sake of Edo people. I am committed to whatever it will take to have peace and not to lose lives in Edo, within the law, whatever I can do that is constitutional, I will do,’’ he stated.

According to the governor, he has the full support of his counterparts, all the governors elected on the platform of the APC, in line with the principles of the party, which encourages continuity.

On the COVID-19 pandemic, the governor revealed that about 300,000 out of the targeted 500,000 indigenes of the state had so far been screened for Coronavirus disease.

Edited By: Sadiya Hamza (NAN)

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Metro

Rep lauds Buhari over appointment of  Obioma as NECO Registrar

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Rep. Benjamin Kalu (APC-Abia), has lauded President Muhammadu Buhari for appointing Prof. Godswill Obioma as Registrar of the National Examinations Council (NECO).
Kalu, who represents Bende Federal Constituency in Abia said this in a statement on Monday in Abuja.
He said  the appointment came at a time, the examination body was confronted with several challenges, which had undermined its operations.
The lawmaker, however, expressed confidence that Obioma’s breadth of experience and wealth of academic achievements would be used to address the challenges.
Kalu disclosed that he had been privileged to preview the registrar’s proposed 11-point roadmap for NECO, which showed a determination to reignite hope in inclusive and quality education for Nigerian children.
“Following the fourth UNESCO COVID-19 Education Webinar, organised on April 9, 2020 to examine the coping strategies currently considered by various countries to manage high-stake exams, it has become clear to me that unique home grown solutions are required for the peculiarities of our own challenges.
NECO’s leadership must figure out exam delivery modes that are complaint with new public health standards and technological realities while remaining inclusive and accessible to the millions of Nigerian children in rural areas.
“This responsibility is an intricate dance which will require the innovativeness and insight of a leader, possessing extensive local and international experience.
“Obioma’s breadth of experience,  academic achievements, as well as his far reaching contributions to education policy reforms in national and global contexts,   distinguishes  him as the right fit for the job; the square peg in a square hole,” he said.


Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Ali Baba-Inuwa (NAN)

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Politics

Edo APC: Former Speaker seeks Buhari intervention

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A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Edo, Alhaji Kabiru Adjoto, has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to step into the party’s crisis in the state.

Adjoto, who was a former Speaker of the state House of Assembly, made the appeal on Monday in Benin while receiving the party leaders from Edo north.

The APC chieftain said that the president’s intervention would ensure the victory of the party in the September governorship election in the state.

Adjoto, noted that the crisis rocking the party in the state was becoming increasingly embarrassing.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has fixed the primaries for the Edo governorship election for June 22, while the gubernatorial election will hold on Sept. 19.

The development has stoked the battle of supremacy between the two factions of the APC in the state.

Adjoto, however, said that “the resolution of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party empowers state chapters to choose a mode of primaries based on peculiarities.

Edo state APC stakeholders have met and agreed on an indirect mode of primaries as the most suitable in the face of COVID-19 and for the fact that the state chapter lacks a comprehensive register of members,’’ he said.

He urged the president and other stakeholders to dialogue with the National Chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomhole, to avert the party being defeated in the September election.

“Obaseki’s victory is certain and he is constant as the Northern star. All those opposing him within and outside the party will eventually bow and vote for him.

“My advice to the National Working Committee (NWC) of APC is to play by the rules to avoid plunging Edo into crisis,’’ Adjoto said.


Edited By: Johnson Eyiangho/Ismail Abdulaziz (NAN)

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President Buhari receives 4th Interim Report on COVID-19 from PTF

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Sunday received the fourth reports of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19  at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, applauding the team for a job well done.

Speaking to State Correspondents at the end of the closed-door meeting, PTF Chairman, Boss Mustapha, said he presented the progress and challenges recorded by the PTF to the President.

According to him, the team also offered suggestions on ways forward in the fight against the spread of the coronavirus in the country.

Mustapha, who is also the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, quoted the President as applauding the achievements of the PTF and other frontline workers and stakeholders.

“What we basically did was to submit the fourth interim report to him and to appraise him of the progress that has been achieved in the course of the last two weeks of the extension of the eased phase one of the lockdown.

“We also discussed some of the challenges that we’ve had and suggested what we need to put in place, going forward.

“As far as the work of the PTF is concerned, he was upfront with commendations.

He (Buhari) assured us that the nation is fully behind us in the work that he has charged us to do and that he’s also appreciative of the work of the frontline workers, particularly the medical personnel, the security personnel and the people who come in contact with the patients in the time of collection of samples, the testing and the care that they are giving,’’ Mustapha said.

According to him, PTF also discussed the issue of compliance and the President said “we should continue to appeal to Nigerians and drive home the point that it’s a personal responsibility for each and every Nigerian to undertake to ensure that he keeps himself safe and by extension keeping his family, loved ones and community safe’’.

He assured that the PTF would continue to drive the message.

“It’s a message of persuasion; it’s a message that should make people take personal responsibility for their own protection and health and we will not relent on that’’.

On the deliberate refusal of Kogi and Cross River states to be in tune with the present reality in the fight against the spread of COVID-19, Mustapha said that the issue was discussed during the PTF meeting with the president.

“We discussed challenges generally and I believe that in the context of those discussions, certain steps will be taken.

“We are doing everything to ensure that the entire nation is on the same page with one response.

“It is very important that we realise that no state is an island unto itself, when you deal with public health matters.

“Whatever happens in a particular locality has the consequences of spilling off to other constituencies.

“That is the message that we’ll continue to drive in our pursuit of getting everybody to be on board.

“I can assure you that there’s no island that exists as far as COVID-19 is concerned in this country.

“We must integrate all the responses from the different segments of the community and the state and have everybody to be on the same page.

“We will continue to pursue that and we must also ensure that it happens.’’

Edited By: Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)

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Tinubu commiserates with Buhari over death of nephew

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Sen. Bola Tinubu, National Leader of All Progressives Congress (APC), on Sunday, commiserated with President Muhammadu Buhari over the death of his nephew, Alhaji Ibrahim Dauda.

Tinubu, in a condolence message by his media adviser, Tunde Rahman, extended his condolences to the family of Dauda, Gov. Aminu Masari, the Daura community and people of Katsina over the tragic loss.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Dauda died in Daura, Katsina State, following a prolonged illness.

APC leader said: “Mr President, please accept my deepest sympathy and condolences over the passing of your nephew, Alhaji Ibrahim Dauda.

“My condolences also to the family left behind by Alhaji Ibrahim Dauda, to Governor Aminu Masari and the people of Daura Community.

“Coming after the recent demise of another family member, this may be further dampening but we cannot question God,” he said.

Tinubu urged Buhari and his family to take solace in the good and deeply religious life Dauda lived and the memories of the time they shared together.

He prayed Allah to give all the family members, particularly the wife and children the fortitude and everlasting succour to live without their patriarch.

“I beseech Allah SWT to support and strengthen you at this time even as you confront the nation’s current existential challenges.

“To the deceased, may Allah reward his good deeds, forgive his sins and grant him Aljannah,” he said.

NAN  recalls that on May 7, the President lost one of his nephew, Alhaji Mutari Dauda, after a brief illness.

Edited By: Debo Oshundun/Wale Ojetimi (NAN)

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Politics

BMO lauds Buhari on Executive Order 10

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The Buhari  Media Organisation (BMO) has lauded the Executive Order 10, signed by President Muhammadu Buhari, saying it would engender better governance and guarantee true independence for states judiciary and legislature.
BMO Chairman, Mr Niyi Akinsiju,  in a statement in Abuja on Sunday, described the order as the long needed game-changer that would bring to effect, the desire for truly independent and accountable judiciary and legislature at the state levels.
The Executive Order 10 signed by Buhari is a masterstroke that will  engender better governance, especially at the state levels, guaranteeing true independence of state judiciary and legislature.
“With this order,  Nigerians will see a renewed improvement in the delivery of good governance at the state level,” the BMO chairman said.
He said that the states play a critical role in the delivery of governance to the Nigerian people.
“They are closer to the people and expectedly should have a better understanding of their problems and needs.
“This is why it is critical that the institutions closest to the people receive the best support for them to carry out their duties and independence to ensure that the delivery of their duties is not tainted by selfish interests.
Through the Implementation of Financial Autonomy of State Legislature and Judiciary Order 2020, Buhari has put in place,  the legal instrument to enforce  that funds belonging to state legislatures and judiciaries get to them.
“We can now be  assured that state judiciary will  not be afraid of any threats to its fundings by state executive who may want them to pander to itscbiddings,” Akinsiju said.
According to him,  this applies as well to the state legislature.
“The outcome we can expect from this is strong institutions delivering good governance and justice at the middle tier of government without fear or favour.
“The order will ensure that the needed funds for these institutions will  be available and accessible for their democratic business and not end up being treated as personal monies of state executives or as second-line items.
“It ensures that the payment of monies due to state legislature and judiciary are matters of priority, they are first-line items and must be immediately paid to the legislature and judiciary,” he said.

He added that the institutions would be the first choice for payments.

“A state that fails to release these funds will have the funds deducted from source by Federal Accounts Allocations Committee, from the money to be allocated to the state.

“The executive order also ensures that there is targeted and strategic budgeting for state judiciary and state legislature.

“A significant item in the Executive Order is the Special Extraordinary Capital Allocations for the judiciary which is an allocation dedicated to the undertaking of capital development projects by the stare judiciary.

“With this fund, more complexes for state judiciary will  be built and those that are dilapidated will be renovated.

“Nigeria’s judiciary has for many years suffered an infrastructure problem, especially at the state level – that is about to become history, thanks to Executive Order 10 signed by President Muhammadu Buhari,” he said.

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Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Ali Baba-Inuwa (NAN)

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