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Osinbajo urges Nigerians to support arts



Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo on Saturday urged Nigerians to be keen supporters of arts and cultural heritage.

Osinbajo made the call in Lagos while speaking at the cultural and arts exhibition organised by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Embassy in Nigeria.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that the exhibition is a celebration of cultural diversity through various forms of arts that included music, visual arts, short films and dance.

The exhibition is also aimed at promoting cultural ties between  UAE and Nigeria while creating opportunities for the exchange of information and ideas between artistes and the relevant stakeholders.

According to Osinbajo, the relationship between UAE and Nigeria is deep, fruitful and growing at a very promising rate.

He said that a relationship of such depth was very necessary and expressed optimism about collaborations in the arts sector.

“Nigerians make up some of the most frequent visitors to Dubai, many of whom visit for the cause of tourism in particular.

“I’m sure that in years to come,  we will be visiting both countries for arts and culture in particular,” Osinbajo said.

He said that the creative industry  in Nigeria had seen collaborations with the UAE and cited the case of Nollywood blockbuster: The Wedding Party, which was set in Dubai and became Nigeria’s highest grossing movie.

“The success of the movie was as a result of  the partnership between both countries and we are excited that such collaborations  had yielded  not just money , but other cultural links between our people,” he said.

Osinbajo further said that the arts sector was in the most innovative moment in history.

“The artiste today uses various medium.

“It is no longer arts as we used to know it as there are many innovations now.

“The line up we see today is an impeccable mix of Emirati and Nigerian artistes who use their works to tell stories about identity, language and contemporary contexts.

“I am excited about how the artistes chose to open a dialogue with us through their works and equally excited about how this event will open a dialogue with the UAE at the interactive person to person level,” he said.

He expressed his fascination with all that artistes could say through their works and said they helped humans to connect with one another.

“In painting, we see that the love of an Arab mother for her children and family is as deep as that of the African mother for her children and family.

“It helps us see that our hopes and fears are the same and shows us how flimsy racial discrimination can be when diversities are created by God to be celebrated and enjoyed,” he said.

He added that the UAE had been supportive of Nigeria in many ways, especially, in the area of terrorism and aiding in the recovery of stolen funds.

He also commended the personal commitment shown by Ambassador Fahad AlTaffaq in deepening the bonds between Nigeria and the UAE. (NAN)


Edited by Peter Dada

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Denmark to create 25,000 jobs for Nigerians



The Danish Ambassador to Nigeria, Amb. Jesper Kamp, says his home government is now committed to creating job opportunities for Nigerians than giving them financial aids.

Jesper disclosed this to the Nigeria News Agency at the launch of a partnership between FOSS Analytical Business and Prime Atlantic Global Instruments Ltd. in Lagos on Monday

FOSS Analytical is a Danish leading manufacturer of innovative high-end analytical instruments to boost production, food safety and chemical analysis.

“We are currently focusing very much on market development over aid for the reason that we actually use aid money to foster our projects in Nigeria.

“We now believe in creating jobs for the Nigerian youths. We cannot continue to give aid because it cannot be forever, but business and sustainability are forever.

“Very soon, Arla Foods Global Nigeria, a Danish company, would be creating about 25,000 jobs for Nigerians in its project in Kaduna.

“The essence of this project is to provide Nigerians with the capacity to produce milk for local consumption,’’ he said.

According to him, Denmark is at the front of global discussions around food safety and security, and has since 2016 been hosting the annual ‘World Food Summit’.

He said that the summit was aimed at promoting discussions on ensuring safe, healthy and sustainable food systems for people.

Mr Michael Moller, the Area Sales Manager of FOSS, said that the decision to partner with Prime Atlantic Global Instruments Ltd. (PAGI), a Nigerian company, was because of professionalism.

According to him, the new partnership is meant to provide Nigeria’s food and agro-processing industries with a range of analytical solutions and services that would boost healthy food production.

“We have chosen to cooperate with PAGI because of their professionalism and experience from working with international companies.

“We believe this partnership will also give us the opportunity to look for new markets in palm oil, cocoa and coffee,’’ he said.

Mr Bode Balogun, the Deputy Managing Director of PAGI, said that the partnership had become important, especially now that emphasis was being placed on local capacity development.

“We expect to improve quality of food production, whilst at the same time eliminating waste. There is the need for us to improve our food quality from the stage of raw materials to finished products.

“Our aim is to help achieve this in the most efficient and cost-effective way, thereby creating better value for both manufacturers and consumers,’’ he said.

Edited by Tajudeen Atitebi

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Masari swears in 17 commissioners, others



Gov. Aminu Masari of Katsina State on Monday swore in 17 newly appointed Commissioners, six Special Advisers and four Permanent Secretaries.

The governor, during the ceremony, threatened to sanction any of them for non performance, dereliction of duty or abuse office.

“I enjoin you to work with full dedication, loyalty, commitment, high sense of duty, self discipline and ensure good financial management and budgetary discipline.

“Be informed also that your performance will be closely monitored in order to ensure delivery of good governance and application of general financial management.

“Application of appropriate sanction awaits any of you for non performance, dereliction of duty or abuse of office.

“You must take note also that the general financial situation of the state and the county at large calls for moderation and judicious use of resources,” he said.

Masari said that his administration and the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) considered good governance critical and crucial to development.

“We are glad however that majority of the citizens of the state, well meaning individuals and other people of goodwill have kept faith with us as clearly demonstrated in the 2019 general elections across the country,” he said.

The governor gave the assurance that his administration would remain focused and continue to deliver the dividends of democracy to all the nooks and crannies of the state fairly, equitably and justifiably.

Nigeria News Agency reports that the governor however did not announced the portfolios of the commissioners.

Edited by Ejike Obeta/Maharazu Ahmed

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Why we visited Jonathan — APC leaders



Leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Bayelsa, said they visited former President Goodluck Jonathan after Saturday’s governorship elections in recognition of his  position as the father and leader of the state.

Nigeria News Agency reports that the Minister of State for Petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva, led APC leaders including governor-elect David Lyon, to visit the former president’s home on Monday.

Sylva noted that as a former president and leader of the State, Jonathan deserved to be respected and honoured by all Bayelsa people, irrespective of their party leanings.

“Being a former president of the country and a past governor of the State, Jonathan remains an asset to the state and his inputs will always be needed to advance the course of governance in the Bayelsa.

“As such it was important for us to introduce the governor-elect to him and seek his support and guidance in building a better Bayelsa,” he said.

Responding, Jonathan tasked Lyon to put the welfare and interest of the Bayelsa people  above every other issue.

“As a former president of Nigeria, I am a father to all Bayelsans,  hence my doors are open to all citizens  irrespective of their political affiliations.

“I urge you to make the welfare of Bayelsa people  a top priority and carry all of them along irrespective of the party they voted for.

“Elections are over now, so I want you to see yourself as the governor of all and not only to the sections that voted for you. This is the way to move Bayelsa forward,” he stated.

Jonathan also condemned the violence in some parts of the state during the elections, describing it as unfortunate and regrettable.

He said the nation’s democracy would never mature if the violence and irregularities during elections continued.

Edited by Joseph Edeh/Donald Ugwu

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Imo Commissioner commends teenager on pet project on rape



The Commissioner for Information in Imo, Mr Emeka Ebiliekwe, has commended Miss Ezichi Nwulu who won the 2019 Most Beautiful Girl in Imo for her pet project on rape victims.

The commissioner gave the commendation when Queen Ezichi and organisers of the Imo Beauty Pageant 2019 paid him a courtesy visit in his office on Monday.

He observed that rape is associated with a lot of consequences like emotional trauma, fear of the unknown and fear of the opposite sex, while the victim could get pregnant, contract HIV or other sexually transmitted disease.

Ebiliekwe commended Ezichi for taking the bold step to campaign against rape which he described as one of the social vices in the society and promised to support her in any way possible to enable the project succeed.

The commissioner also commended the organisers of the 2019 Imo Beauty Pageant for being fair to all the contestants and also the committee on the upcoming launch of the pet project.

Queen Ezichi in her remarks, described rape as a very serious vice in the society.

She said she took up the pet project on campaign against rape and its associated stigmatisation to empower young girls who were victims.

Ezich used the opportunity of the visit to invite the commissioner to the launch of the project slated for Nov. 23 at Imo State University (IMSU) Auditorium.

Earlier, Mr Clinton Briggs, the Chairman of the Most Beautiful Girl Beauty Pageant in Imo, said Ezichi emerged winner through a rigorous process in spite of being the youngest of the 17 other contestants in the second edition of the pageant.

He said Ezichi possessed rare qualities of self confidence, boldness and brilliance, adding that her choice of rape as her pet project was a welcome idea.

Briggs described rape is an epidemic that had affected most homes in the country and called on well-meaning Nigerians and Imo people to come out and support the project.

He said part of the project launch was to give the succour to rape victims in their various areas of need.

Edited by Tajudeen Atitebi

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Zamfara Assembly gets new Clerk



Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara, has approved the appointment of Alhaji Shehu Sa’idu, as the new Clerk of the state House of Assembly.

This appointment is contained in a statement signed and issued to newsmen in Gusau on Monday by the Public Relations Officer of the Jouse, Malam Mustafa Jafaru-Kaura.

Jafaru-Kaura said Sa’idu was to replace the former Clerk, Alhaji Isa Abdullahi, who was moved to the office of the Head of Service.

He said, Sa’idu before his new appointment, was the Director of Administration, office of the state Head of Service.

The governor considered the appointment of the new clerk, following his track record of service, experience and dedication to duty.

The appointment takes immediate effect.

Edited by Modupe Adeloye/Yemi Idris-Aduloju

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Boats operating on Lagos waterways due for inspection December, says LASWA



Boats operating on Lagos waterways due for inspection December, says LASWA


Lagos, Nov. 18, 2018 The Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA) says all boats operating on the state’s waterways are due for inspection in December.

The General Manager of the LASWA, Mr Oluwadamilola Emmanuel, disclosed this in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency in Lagos on Monday.

Emmanuel said that the authority needed to step up its safety procedure on waterways in line with Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s renewed commitment toward development of water transportation.

“One of the things we do to further enhance safety on waterways is to carry out biannual inspection on boats. Before the end of the year, I mean before Christmas, boat operators are due for inspection.

“As they come, we carry out checks on them, and wherever there are safety issues, we give them a timeline to do it; if they don’t fix it, we will go after them,” the LASWA boss told NAN.

He said that the authority would inspect all boats to see whether they were worthy to use waterways or not in order to prevent avoidable water mishaps.

The general manager, who noted that the authority relied a lot on information and feedback from passengers, urged them to always report to the authority any threat to safety while on board.

He said: “We rely a lot on information. We have passengers feedback form as a feedback mechanism where passengers report to us if they notice anything on boats.

“We also encourage our passengers to speak up and let us know, and we will make sure that appropriate penalties are issued out to any erring boat operator who doesn’t comply accordingly with the safety procedure.

“Passengers have the responsibility to be the first line safety agent themselves by ensuring that they wear life jackets.”

On prevalent offences committed by boat operators, the general manager highlighted night travel, overloading, and removal life jacket in the middle of the journey, among others.

According to him, there has to be continuous enforcement and control to enhance and sustain safety on waterways.

He said that erring operators caught flouting safety rules and regulations were made to pay fines into the state treasury account as deterrent.

“We have sanctioned between 40 to 50 operators since the beginning of the year. They pay fines to the state government and make sure they sort out whatever safety rule and regulations broken.

“They must fix whatever problem is in their boat before they are allowed to operate on our waterways,” Emmanuel said.

Edited by Oluwole Sogunle

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