Mr Abdullahi Candido, Chairman, Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC), has felicitated Muslim Faithfuls in the area council and the country, as they celebrate Eid-el-Kabir.
Candido, in his goodwill message on Friday in Abuja, urged them to imbibe the lessons on sacrifice and love, which reflect the true reason for the celebration.
“This is a period of sacrifice and love as Sallah suggests and so, I want to appeal to residents to be their brother’s keepers.
“We must also try to do all we can to support government policies and programmes.
“Let us be prayerful and patient, knowing that things would bounce back and we will be happy again.
“But the spirit behind this occasion, which is total sacrifice, is one of the best things that would help us as citizens of this country,” he said.
The chairman also urged residents of the area council to comply with government’s directives on physical distancing and observance of basic rules on personal hygiene to curb the spread of COVID-19.
He also counseled residents to ensure that they put on their face masks and obey all guidelines as outlined by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
Edited By: Felix Ajide (NAN)
AFAN, OFAB, NABDA advocate use of biotechnology to scale up food production
Following the impact of COVID-19 and banditry activities in the country, some stakeholders in the agriculture sector and scientists have advocated the use of biotechnology to be deployed to scale up food production in the country.
Some of the stakeholders made it known during a webinar session tagged: “Media Summit on Status of Agricultural Biotechnology Research in Nigeria”, in a statement by the organisers – National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA).
The National President of All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), Mr Kabir Ibrahim said it was imperative to explore the option of the use of innovation to upscale food production to bring about food sufficiency to avert hunger due to the ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He, however, emphasised on the need to sensitise smallholder farmers to embrace technological advancement to avert hunger caused by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, saying to achieve food security modern technologies such as biotechnology must be used.
“Already, a lot of work has been going on to commercialise cowpea, maize, cassava, rice, sorghum as well as cotton and the farmers are seeing good results so it is, therefore, easy to get them to embrace biotechnology,” he said.
She said that this move was crucial and necessary for the acceptance and adoption of innovative technology.
Gidado said the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of zero hunger by 2030 was fundamental for national development and well being of Nigeria, adding that the facilitation of adequate understanding of the several ways Nigeria to achieve the goal “is very fundamental”.
She said that with the current population of over 200 million people and projected population of 400 million people by 2050, an outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, Nigeria is faced with the risk of the decreased farming population due to age, decreased arable land, poverty, malnutrition and hunger.
She said that agricultural biotechnology was the solution to Nigeria’s food security. She also said the conventional method of agriculture could no longer meet up with the country’s demand.
“With the current state of agriculture in Nigeria, it has become paramount to also adopt this technology to improve our productivity and revive our industries.”
“The time is now, let us sensitise people on the potential of this innovation to aid decision making and adoption in Nigeria.”
The Acting Director-General, National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA), Prof. Alex Akpa harped on the importance of biotechnology application for the benefits of man, especially in the areas of health, agriculture and environment.
“Biotechnology has other applications; in agriculture, it is massive and that is where most post–COVID-19 is coming, you find out that here in NABDA, using Biotechnology we have started impacting massively in the area of agriculture.
“For instance, in our yam multiplication programme, last year, we were able to produce one million yam seedlings and this year, we are targeting five million yam seedlings, all these things are feasible because of biotechnology,” he said.
Edited By: Grace Yussuf (NAN)
WAEC: KDSG directs schools to open Aug. 10
The state Commissioner for Education, Dr Shehu Makarfi, said in a statement in Kaduna on Monday, that the directive was in compliance with the Federal Ministry of Education resolution for schools to open on Aug. 4.
“Therefore, the Ministry of Education is directing all school principals to arrange to receive SSS 3 boarding students on Aug. 9 and day students on Aug. 10.
“All administrators of public and private schools are to note that the one-week period commencing from today is to allow for necessary preparations and arrangements to meet COVID-19 guidelines for the opening of schools.
“Principals are to ensure compliance to agreed guidelines, which include reduced hours of work/revision to four hours per shift, social distancing in classes, laboratories, libraries and hostels,’’ he said.
He warned that no school should open before Aug. 10, except for boarding schools, where students are expected to arrive on Aug. 9.
The commissioner further directed private secondary schools in the state to report their readiness to open to the schools’ Quality Assurance Authority.
He said that private schools should report, using the appropriate checklist and obtain a written ‘no objection to open’, on clean bill of health.
He also asked that head of higher institutions and principals of secondary schools should report to the relevant department in the ministry.
He called on parents to ensure proper arrangement for safe transportation of their children to and from schools.
“To make the environment safe and conducive for academic activity, the government is doing everything possible to decontaminate and disinfect public schools, including higher institutions and provide hand washing facilities.
“We will also arrange for temperature monitoring of both staff and students, provision of face masks to staff and students, as well as hand sanitisers.
“However, parents are advised to equip their children with extra face masks and small 100ml hand sanitisers for use during their transportation to and from schools,’’ he added.
Makarfi said that appropriate dates for other examinations would be announced in due course, including school opening for the rest of the classes including SSS1, SSS2, JSS 1 to 3 and primary schools.
He encouraged schools to continue the e-learning programme using Google class, Zoom, radio and television and other online platforms until normalcy returned.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)
Edo 2020: Obaseki assures Akoko Edo traditional rulers of better days ahead
Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo has assured the people of the state that he will not disappoint them if re-elected, as he has laid the foundation for greater development in the state.
Obaseki made the pledge at the palace of Otaru of Igarra, Oba Emmanuel Saiki, where he solicited the royal father’s blessings and support for his re-election at the Sept. 19 gubernatorial election in the state.
“I am seeking for a re-election because we have started a revolution of development in the last four years to make governance relevant to Edo people.
“We pay civil servants and pensioners on time; we have trained our teachers to be digital and now our children are learning well.
“We have improved on infrastructure in Igarra land and we will do more.
“Agriculture must be improved on and taken seriously as farming should be a priority because money from Abuja has been cut down.
“What you have seen in the last four years is small, compared to the great things that will follow in my second term. We have the experience that they don’t have.
“Our radical reforms have given us a solid foundation to build on. We will tackle security challenges in the state as we will finance the vigilance groups as they are well organised,” he said.
In his remarks, Oba Saiki, prayed God to continue to guide tne governor in all his ways and urged him to continue to advise youths to shun political thuggery.
Contributing, the Chairman of Akoko Edo Traditional Council, Oba Patrick Okara, lauded Obaseki for his prompt response to COVID-19 pandemic in the state.
Okara further commended him for the rehabilitation of roads in Akoko-Edo, adding that there were more roads begging for attention across the region.
“We have been feeling the impact of your government, but we want to feel it more. We demand for any institution of higher learning in the oldest local government in Nigeria, Akoko-Edo,’’ he said.
Edited By: Ifeyinwa Okonkwo/Ejike Obeta (NAN)
You can send off a player for coughing, English FA tells referees
The instructions to referees taking charge of games when COVID-19 restrictions are in place will come into force immediately and be applied at all levels of the game.
The FA document for referees said action should be taken when “the referee is certain someone deliberately, and from close range, coughed into the face of an opponent or match official…’’
It added that the offence would fall under the category of “using offensive, insulting or abusive language and/or gestures”.
“If the incident was not severe enough to merit a sending-off, a caution could be issued for `unsporting behaviour —– shows a lack of respect for the game’.”
The document added that referees must not look to punish “routine” coughing and should remind players to avoid spitting on the ground, although it is not an act of misconduct.
Edited By: Olawale Alabi) (NAN)