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Defence/Security

Enugu FRSC inaugurates 82 Special Marshals

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The Enugu command of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) on Saturday inaugurated 82 Special Marshals as part of the initiatives to boost the performance of the corps in the state.
Speaking at the inauguration and kitting of the special marshals, Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi charged them to be disciplined and educate motorists on the benefits of obeying traffic rules and regulations.
Ugwuanyi, represented by his Special Adviser on Special Duties, Chief Uwakwe Azikiwe, also urged them to discharge their voluntary assignment with dignity and human face.
He said: “I must congratulate you for passing the rigours of the training and bringing yourself out to serve your community and humanity.
“Involving people in government programmes helps to drive the ideals and mandates of such programmes closer and buyable by the people and I hope you will sell all the positive attributes FRSC stands for to our people’’.
Earlier, the Sector Commander, Mr Ogbonnaya Kalu, charged them to strengthen FRSC activities at every level they found themselves.
Kalu hoped that FRSC activities would become more visible on the roads and primary and secondary schools in the state through the activities of the new special marshals.
“You must discharge your duties with human face, humility, courteousness and fairness to all. “As special marshals, insurance covers you as you discharge this national duty,’’ he said.
Also, the state Coordinator of Special Marshals, Chief Lawrence Ologun, said that the group comprised specialists and intellectuals, who came forward to spend their time, money and commitment to help and serve humanity.
“Their participation in our patrols and traffic controls for the past two weeks proved that they are all ready and able to discharge their duty perfectly and in accordance with FRSC corporate goals, rules and objectives.
Mr Crowther Amaechi, who spoke on behalf of the new special marshals, gave assurance that they would carry out their duty with a sense of responsibility and discipline.
“We are committed to serve humanity and the state by contributing to ensure the safety of all and uplift the work and mandate of FRSC anywhere we are,’’ Amaechi said.
KSN/USO
(Edited by Sam Oditah)

 

 

 

 

General news

COVID-19 : Enugu community begins cash transfers to indigent families

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The Okpebe Autonomous Community in Nkanu West Local Government Area, Enugu State, has supported no fewer than 200  indigent households in the area with cash palliatives.

Mr Charles Ngene, the President General of the community, made the disclosure on Sunday at the inauguration of the first phase of the cash transfers to  the beneficiaries.

Ngene said that the intervention was to cushion economic hardship arising from the COVID-19 pandemic among vulnerable households in the area.

The community’s president, who said that the first  beneficiaries were in Ezinato and Umuoha villages, added that well-meaning sons and daughters of the community contributed the money.

Ngene said that the community discovered that  the  beneficiaries were not able to fend for themselves during the lockdown, even when the Local Government Chairman donated food items to some people.

A member of the planning committee, Prof. Osita Ogbu, said that they were sharing N600,000 to 200 indigent households in the first phase, adding that each beneficiary in a household would receive N3,000.

Responding, one of the beneficiaries, Mrs Ngozi Ede, said that it had been difficult for her family to eat well since the lockdown began.

“I was busy thinking of what my family will eat tomorrow, not knowing that this opportunity will come,” she  said.

Other beneficiaries, including Mr Friday Nwobodo and Mrs Promise Ani, thanked the members of the autonomous community for the kind gesture.

Edited /Donald Ugwu

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General news

COVID-19: Enugu govt. decontaminates Ogbete Main Market

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The Enugu State Fire Service has commenced the decontamination and fumigation of Ogbete Main Market, Enugu, against the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Addressing newsmen during the exercise on Saturday, the state’s Chief Fire Officer, Mr Okwudiri Ohaa, said that the exercise would last until Sunday.

It would be recalled that the state fire service carried out the first phase of the exercise in the market on April 1, shortly after the market was shut down by the state government to contain spread of COVID-19 in the state.

During the first phase of the decontamination of the market, the exercise was monitored by Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi and heads of security agencies in the state.

Ohaa said that the state government had been consistent with the exercise to ensure that “the fight against COVID-19 is won in Enugu State”.

He maintained that the decontamination would be a continuous one, saying that “when the market reopens, it will be a weekly event’’.

He advised residents to continue to adhere strictly to all precautionary measures for containment of COVID-19.

Ohaa said the guidelines on personal hygiene protocol by World Health Organisation (WHO) and Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), among others should be adhered to.

Reacting on behalf of the traders in the market, the Chief Security Officer, Mr Justus Ezebinagu, commended Gov. Ugwuanyi for the initiative to decontaminate the market for the second time.

Ezebinagu gave an assurance that the traders would comply strictly with the government’s precautionary measures as well as the laid-down protocols by WHO and NCDC.

“When we were told that the governor directed the fire service to come and fumigate the market, the traders were happy because this is the second time they are coming to fumigate the market since this pandemic started.

“We thank our amiable governor for coming to our aid. We are happy.

“Even though the market is partially open for now, we believe that our governor is going to do more in our collective interest,’’ he said.

Edited By: Emmanuel.Nwoye/Adeleye Ajayi (NAN)

 

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Defence/Security

Police rescue 3 kidnap victims, arrest 1 suspect in Enugu

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The Police Command in Enugu State has rescued three kidnapped victims in two successful operations at separate locations within the state.

ASP Daniel Ndukwe, the Command’s Public Relations Officer, in a statement on Saturday said that the two operations were carried out on May 16 and May 26.

Ndukwe explained that the operation was after engaging the alleged kidnappers in gun duel at their criminal hideout, leading to death of one and arrest of the other with bullets injuries.

The police spokesman said that the police recovered one AK-47 rifle; 20 rounds of live ammunition; two machetes; four handsets and N700 from the suspects after the gun duel.

“Preliminary investigation reveals that two of the victims, a father and daughter, were reported kidnapped on May 15 at about 5 p.m. by armed men at a building site in Eziama Abakpa-Nike and taken to an unknown destination.

On May 16 at about 10 p.m., a combined team of operatives attached to the command’s anti-kidnapping and anti-cult units, acting on intelligence, rescued the victims unhurt inside a forest in the said community, after gun duel with the kidnappers.

“They have since re-united with their family members,” the police spokesperson said.

He said that the third victim was reported kidnapped on May 25 at about 8:30 p.m. in exchange for her son and one other, who were being held by the alleged kidnappers.

“However, following a tactical and intelligence-led operation carried out by operatives of the anti-kidnapping unit at the said forest, the victim was successfully rescued unhurt, after an intense gun battle with the kidnappers.

“The gun battle led to death of one and the arrest of the other with severe bullets injuries and in a critical condition.

Consequently, the Commissioner of Police, Mr Ahmad Abdurrahman, has enjoined residents to always assist the police with credible information required to effectively guard the state

“The commissioner vowed to make life unbearable for criminal elements hell-bent on inflicting pains on citizens in this COVID-19 pandemic,’’ he said.

Ndukwe said that the commissioner directed Area Commanders, Divisional Police Officers and Heads of Operational/Tactical Departments to be proactive in combating crime in the state.

The police spokesman said that residents have been enjoined to remain law abiding, vigilant and promptly report suspected criminals and acts of criminality to the nearest police station.

He also said that people could call the command’s emergency hotlines on: 08032003702, 08075390883, 08086671202 or 08098880172.

Edited By: Chinyere Bassey/Ismail Abdulaziz (NAN)

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Health

Ministry confirms 1 new COVID-19 case in Enugu, discharges 5

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The Ministry of Health in Enugu State has announced one new confirmed COVID-19 positive case, bringing the number in the state to 19.

The State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Ikechukwu Obi, announced this in a statement on Saturday in Enugu.

Obi also said that five old cases were discharged from the state isolation and treatment centre after tested negative to the dreaded virus.

He said that the state is now left with six active cases, having discharged 13 patients.

“One more positive case has been confirmed in the state.

“Total number of cases for Enugu State is now 19, with six active cases and 13 discharged.

“The new COVID-19 patient (Case 19) is a 40-year-old female, who hails from Igbo-Etiti LGA.

“The patient had returned home from Lagos State in violation of the restriction order on inter-state movement,’’ the commissioner said.

According to him, the ministry of health is providing treatment for the existing cases, responding to emergency alerts, carrying out contact tracing and following up on suspects.

He urged the public to strictly adhere to the directives of the Federal and Enugu State governments as well as the public health advisories of the Federal Ministry of Health, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, and the state ministry of health.

Edited By: Chidinma Agu/Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)

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Environment

ECTDA partners town planners for rapid infrastructural development in Enugu

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The Enugu Capital Territory Development Authority (ECTDA) says it will partner town planners to increase speed of development of infrastructure in Enugu metropolis and its environs.

The Chairman of ECTDA, Mr Joseph Onoh disclosed this on Thursday in Enugu when professionals in the built environment paid him a courtesy visit in his office.

The built environment professionals comprises Nigerian Institute of Town planners (NITP), Nigerian Institute of Builders (NIOB), Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), Nigerian Institute of Architects (NIA) and Nigerian Institution of Surveyor (NIS) among other.

Onoh decried the delay in approval of developers’ plan by the council chairmen, and urged council engineers and town planners to send their scheduled plan to ECTDA for approval and create effective working environment.

He said that the agency would work with all the professional bodies to ensure that anybody given an approval, actually fulfilled all the provisions of the law, adding that such would avert building collapse in the city.

“The delay in approval is human error, which could have been restored and handled immediately.

“The essence of this meeting is for ECTDA in accordance with the stipulated provision of law establishing it to have a harmonious existence with the town planners and be able to have a schedule of all submitted plans from the various local governments areas of the state.

“And also, if we have the specific numbers of these schedules; we will be able to anticipate when the approval will be given.

“We wish to do this to create effective environment where as we take the approval and move forward to check development in the various construction/building sites.

“We believe this will help increase the speedy development of infrastructure in the state.

“We work with all professional bodies to ensure that once we give you an approval, you have actually fulfilled all the provisions of the law and we will make it possible that there will be no more building collapse in the city,’’ Onoh said.

The ECTDA boss, who attributed collapse of structure to developers’ disobedient to government order, however, warned that any structure illegally built, would be demolished.

“We also wish to cut down on the building collapses and structure defects in the town during the process of execution but the coronavirus pandemic has delayed our enforcement,’’ he said.

Earlier, Chairman, Nigerian Institute of Town Planners, Enugu chapter, Mr Emmanuel Asadu, who spoke on behalf of other planning associations, commended the  ECTDA chairman for his unrelenting effort to return Enugu city to its original glory and avert building collapses.

Asadu said that the professionals’ were committed to work with the plans of ECTDA to make Enugu state enviable and a comfort city for developers.

ECTDA has its own agenda and plans in its best way to move the building/environment development plan forward.

“The building/environment planning professional will key into it because all we are looking for is to get the approval of plans done within two weeks to make our developer comfortable with everything.

“The challenge of delay in approving plan is not the problem of town planners because we have so many masters that we are serving.

Master A will tell you to do this; while Master B will tell you do not do this, at the end of the day, even when you receive a plan, work on it quickly and send for approval, it will get stocked there,’’ he said.

Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Grace Yussuf (NAN)

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Agriculture

Enugu farmers beg govt. to provide fertiliser at subsidised rate

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Some farmers in Enugu have appealed to the state government to provide  them with fertilisers at subsidised rates.

Some of the farmers, who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria on Friday in Enugu, decried the delay in the fertiliser’s distribution to farmers in the state.

The farmers said that they were yet to get fertiliser from the state government.

They added that if government could sell fertilisers to farmers at subsidized rates, it would go a long way to boost food production as there would be food surplus from next harvesting season.

A yam farmer, Mr Felix Azubike said that fertiliser subsidies had been one of the major policy instruments used to increase agricultural productivity.

According to Azubike, in order to create healthy crops full of nutrients, farmers need to be given fertiliser at subsidised rate.

Another farmer, Mr James Duru urged the state government to help farmers to get the necessary inputs they required to motivate them and increase food in the state.

“Obtaining fertiliser for our crops at the moment is difficult for some farmers, especially the farmers in rural areas as its price is not affordable by some of them,” he said.

Mrs Maria Nwankwo, a cassava farmer said that farmers had to turn to fertiliser because it enhanced the natural fertility of the soil and it replaced the chemical elements taken from the soil by previous crops.

“As farmers, we are in dare need of fertiliser for our crops to be healthy, so we are calling on the state government to begin the distribution of fertiliser because some of us can not buy from the open market due its high price,” Nwakwo said.

She said that a bag of NKP fertiliser was now being sold between N8,000 and N11,000, adding the increase had made the commodity to be out of her reach.

Edited By: Tayo Ikujuni/Grace Yussuf (NAN)

 

 

 

 

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Politics

Stakeholders urge Enugu Assembly to review state urban, regional plan law

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Planning

Enugu, May 28 Some stakeholders in Enugu State have urged the state House of Assembly to do everything possible to restore the original master plan of the state capital.

They made the call in Enugu on Thursday during a public hearing on a bill for a law to make provision for Urban and Regional Planning in the state.

In his submission, the state Commissioner  for Lands and Urban Development, Mr. Victor Nnam, commended the Assembly for the bold step of repealing the old Urban and Regional law guiding the state.

Nnam however, faulted the composition of the proposed Urban and Regional Planning Board without any representative from the ministry.

The commissioner further observed that some functions of the Board were conflicting with functions of other agencies and asked the lawmakers to address it to avoid unnecessary litigation in future.

Also, the representative of the Enugu Capital Territory Development Authority (ECTDA), Mr. Chinedu Akilo, drew the attention of the lawmakers to the law establishing the agency in 2009.

Akilo said the law empowered the authority to solely approve any structure within the metropolis.

He expressed fear that the bill might not be effectively implemented, if the 2009 was not repealed.

The Traditional Ruler of Etiti Obeleagu Umana and former Director, Town Planning in Enugu state, HRH Igwe Charles Ude, stressed the need for the state to have a new and updated Urban and Regional Planning law.

According to him, Enugu state is still operating with the urban and regional planning law of 1946. This is unacceptable for Enugu state that was the former capital of the Eastern region,” he said.

Declaring the hearing open, the Speaker of the assembly, Chief Edward Ubosi expressed its determination to assist the state government in the Urban and Regional Planning of the state.

The Speaker said the public hearing had afforded the stakeholders an opportunity to contribute their quota in shaping the pace of legislation aimed at organising the state’s urban centres.

Ubosi noted that the public hearing was in line with the process “of passing critical bill into law”, stressing that the bill on would benefit every residents of the state.

He assured the stakeholders that the seventh Assembly would not hesitate to engage the public on matters that required their contributions.

The chairman of the Joint Committee on Urban and Regional Planning, Mr. Ibenaku Onoh, reiterated that the bill when passed, would go a long way in restoring the original master plan of the Enugu Metropolis.

Onoh representing Enugu North Constituency added that more urban centres would be created through the implementation of the bill, thereby opening the state for more local and foreign investment.

Edited By: Maureen Atuonwu (NAN)

 

 

 

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General news

Gov. Ugwuanyi inaugurates 13-kilometre road in Enugu East council

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Gov Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State on Thursday inaugurated a 13-kilometre road that linked Abakpa Nike Lake Junction to Orie Emene to ease traffic flow in the Enugu East Local Government Area.

Inaugurating the road in Enugu on Thursday, Ugwuanyi said the project was conceived by his administration as the first bypass to ease the traffic flow in Enugu East local government.

He said that it would serve as diversion for interstate vehicular movements as recommended by the Enugu State Urban Renewal Committee.

According to him, the bypass opens up development at the Harmony Estate in Amorji Nike, Adoration Pilgrimage Centre and also provides access to the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu currently undergoing massive rehabilitation.

The governor also said that the completion of the entire road project was consistent with his administration’s procurement policy of  starting and completion of projects.

He said the stretch from Airport roundabout to Eke Obinagu in Emene had been duly completed and inaugurated by his administration.

”It has elevated the status of Emene and its environs  from a semi urban city to an urban city within Enugu Capital Territory.

Ugwuanyi pointed out that the project would help to reflate the local economy of concerned communities and open a new economic corridor through stimulation of commerce, creation of employment and job opportunities for the teeming youths.

In appreciation, the Spiritual Director of Adoration Ministry, Enugu Nigeria, Rev. Fr. Ejike Mbaka, described the road project as unprecedented and a miracle taking off in the state.

Mbaka disclosed that the area of the ultra modern road built by Ugwuanyi before now was a thick forest.

The cleric said that he had dreamt of  the road, envisioned it while the governor actualised it.

May God be glorified and may the governor of Enugu State be blessed in Jesus Name, Amen, ” he prayed.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the road was constructed with drainage channels  across five rivers including culverts and Bridges that linked a busy and thickly populated Abakpa Nike with Emene satellite town.

Personalities at the event included Speaker of the Enugu House of Assembly, Chief Edward Ubosi, the Chief Judge of the State, Justice Ngozi Emehelu.

Others were, the member representing Enugu East and Isi-Uzo Federal Constituency, Mr Cornelius Nnaji, the PDP State Chairman, Mr Augustine Nnamani, the Enugu East Council Chairman, Mr Alex Ugwu, among others.

Edited By: Emmanuel Nwoye/Maureen Atuonwu (NAN)

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General news

WaterAid, others donate ultra modern hand wash facility to Enugu Isolation center

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An NGO, WaterAid, Nigeria, South Sahara Social Development (SSDO), in collaboration with Enugu State Ministry of Water Resources has equipped the state isolation centers with hand washing facilities.

The State Commissioner for Health, Dr Emmanuel Obi while inaugurating the hand washing project on Thursday at the Ultra – modern Diagnostic Center, Enugu (State Isolation Centre) appreciated the gesture.

Obi said that the health sector could not do without water hence the collaboration between Water Resources and health Ministries was very key at this time.

”As we all know, COVID-19 pandemic that we are going through has a lot of issues around water as one of the biggest for its prevention.

”To prevent the spread, we need to wash our hands for 20 seconds under clean running water.

SSDO came up to collaborate with WaterAid in conjunction with the state Ministry for Water Resources to provide washing facilities at the isolation centers and public places,” he said.

Obi said the project was a big contribution to prevention of the pandemic.

”We appreciated it and we call on other organizations to emulate this kind of gesture as nothing given is too big in fighting this pandemic,” he said

The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Water Resources, Mr Anthony Onyia, said that the ultra modern hand washing facility had been installed in the isolation centers.

Onyia said similar equipment were also kept at hospitals and major markets as directed by the Governor to prevent further spread of the pandemic.

”We have the hand washing facility at the Enugu Ultra Modern Diagnostic Centre, Park Lane Hospital, Nsukka isolation centre and Ogbete main market.

”Others are installed at the New market, Garki market, Ogige market at Nsukka, Orie orba market,  9th mile and Nsukka General Hospital.

”I cannot thank WaterAid, Nigeria, SSDO enough for this kind gesture they showed to the state, ” he said.

According to him, the state government has been fighting tirelessly to contain the spread of the pandemic by providing and equipping the isolation centres.

Earlier, Dr Stanley Ilechukwu, the SSDO director, noted that they were happy to be witnessing another intervention from WaterAid in partnership with SSDO and Enugu State Ministry for Water Resources.

”The purpose of this hand washing facility is to help stop the spread of Coronavirus that have been ravaging the country and the World at large.

”We have implemented many projects since our inception in 2001 and this projects includes, Educational projects, Orphans and Vulnerable projects in Enugu State.

SSDO is glad to partner with WaterAid today to commission this laudable project here and other location in the three senatorial zones of the state, ” he said.

The coordinator of the isolation centre, Mr Chikezie Obasi, thanked the donors for coming to their aid.

”We know that hand washing is the first thing that should be observed whenever you come into an environment at this pandemic era,” he said.

Chikezie said that the staff would not forget this gesture and promised that the facility would be judiciously put to use and maintained.

Edited By: Modupe Adeloye/Maureen Atuonwu (NAN)

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