The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has commended the Federal Government’s decision to release N7.45 billion accrued rights and benefits of Federal civil servants to the retirees Retirement Savings Account (RSAs).
Mr Ayuba Wabba, NLC President, gave this commendation in a letter addressed to the Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige, on Tuesday in Abuja.
Wabba said that the gesture by the Federal Government was indeed commendable.
The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that the NLC leadership had, on September 19, 2019, written to the Ministry of Labour and Employment seeking the remittance of accrued rights and benefits of Federal civil servants to the retirees’ RSAs.
“We wish to commend the Federal Government for its recent decision to release the total sum of N7.45 billion Accrued Rights and Benefits into the RSA of Federal retirees covering April and May 2019.
“This responsive and responsible move by the Federal Government has come at a very critical time considering the adversity imposed on our retirees and pensioners by the novel Coronavirus pandemic,” he said.
He called on government to also consider the plight of retirees from June 2019 to July 2020, and expressed optimism that the request would be kindly considered.
Edited By: Oluyinka Fadare (NAN)
COVID-19: Nigeria donates PPEs worth N67m to Sao Tome and Principe
“I am happy to inform you that as ECOWAS champion in the containment of COVID-19 in the West African sub-region, Mr President made a donation of 67 million worth of PPEs and medical supplies to the government and people of Sao Tome and Principe,” Mustapha said.
He said that medical equipment donated includes units of test kits, extraction kits, infrared thermometers, and other items of personal protective equipment to treat and test thousands in Sao Tome and Principe.
Meanwhile, the PTF Chairman appreciated the group of COVID-19 survivors that have added their voices to the campaign against stigmatization and urged others to always remember that COVID-19 was not a death sentence, stressing that “Nigerians need to support one another.
“Most importantly, let’s wear our masks properly, stay at home, especially for those above 60 years, maintain social distancing and continue to take personal responsibility while we encourage others to do same,” he said.
Edited By: Edith Bolokor/Wale Ojetimi (NAN)
School feeding programme gulps over N500m during Lockdown – Minister
The Federal Government expended about N523.3 million on school feeding programme during the lockdown against the coronavirus pandemic.
Farouk made the revelation against the rumours and speculations going around one of our key interventions of the government – the Home Grown School Feeding Programme.
She said that the programmed was modified and implemented in three states following a March 29th, Presidential directive.
“It is critical at this juncture to provide details that will help puncture the tissue of lies being peddled in the public space.
“The provision of ‘Take Home Rations’, under the modified Home Grown School Feeding programme, was not a sole initiative of the MHADMSD.
“The ministry, in obeying the Presidential directive, went into consultations with state governments through the state Governor’s Forum, following which it was resolved that ‘take-home rations’, remained the most viable option for feeding children during the lockdown.
“So, it was a joint resolution of the ministry and the state governments to give out take-home rations.
“The stakeholders also resolved that we would start with the FCT, Lagos and Ogun states, as pilot cases,’’ the minister said.
According to her, each takes home ration was valued at N4,200 and that the figure was arrived at with proper consultation.
“So, each household is assumed to have three children.
“Based on the original design of the Home Grown School Feeding programme, long before it was domiciled in the ministry, every child on the programme receives a meal a day.
“The meal costs N70 per child.
“When you take 20 school days per month, it means a child eats food worth N1,400 per month.
“Three children would then eat food worth N4,200 per month and that was how we arrived at the cost of the ‘take-home ration’.
“The agreement was that the federal government will provide the funding while the states will implement.
“To ensure transparency in the process, we partnered with the World Food Programme (WFP) as technical partners.’’
“TrackaNG monitored and gave daily updates validating the programme.
“In the FCT, 29,609 households were impacted, 37,589 households in Lagos and 60,391 in Ogun, making a total of 124,589 households impacted between May 14, and July 6.
“If 124,589 households received take-home rations valued at N4,200, the amount will be N523,273,800.
Edited By: Bola Akingbehin/Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)
COVID-19: PTF, INEC working on elections protocols- PTF Chairman
Mustapha said: “The national response will continue to guide the adoption of the sector’s specific guidelines and protocols.
“This is just as the PTF is currently concluding discussions with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on the appropriate guidelines to be adopted for elections in some parts of the country.
“The elections will begin with the Aug. 8 by-election in Nasarawa State, to be followed by Edo and Ondo State elections in September and October respectively.
“I, therefore, wish to use this opportunity to implore parties’ leaders, aspirants, members and their supporters to remain mindful of the virulent nature of COVID-19 during electioneering and other election processes.
“We need to remain alive to enjoy the benefits of our democracy.”
He also stated that the PTF would continue to push forward with the community engagement, risk communication and support to the states.
“There is an ongoing surveillance in the high-burden local government areas, just as we ramp up our precision efforts.
“Similarly, the Federal Government is supporting the states to firm up their Incidence Action Plans, preparatory to their accessing the World Bank facility for the fight against COVID-19,” Mustapha said.
According to him, subject to the President’s approval, the report would be presented with the way forward to Nigerians at the next briefing on Aug. 6.
Edited By: Folorunso Poroye/Olagoke Olatoye (NAN)
Presidency says TUC planned protest against EFCC, NDDC, NSITF ill-advised, uncalled for
The Presidency has frowned at the reported plan by the Trade Union Congress (TUC) to embark on a nationwide protest over the alleged President Buhari’s “inaction over the high-level of corruption uncovered at some Federal Government’s commissions.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that both the Executive and Legislative arms are currently investigating alleged cases of misconduct at the Niger Delta Development Agency (NDDC), the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF) and the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC).
Malam Garba Shehu, the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity in a statement in Abuja on Monday, however, described the planned protests against the affected commissions by TUC as ill advised and totally uncalled for.
This is so, according to the presidential aide, in view of the fact that there are ongoing investigations in the cases by both the Executive and Legislative arms of government.
He said that these processes must be allowed to run their full courses.
”It is against the norm in a democratic society as well as the natural laws of justice to seek “action,” meaning punishment against offenders before proper investigation, trial and conviction.
”The President has made it clear that the allegations that have surfaced clearly “constitute a breach of trust” and as the investigations take hold and close out, all those found wanting will face the wrath of the law.
”The TUC, as an enlightened group of labour unionists, should indeed voice their indignation whenever such acts are being unearthed.
”However, the expectation will be for it to also raise the bar higher, in terms of the debate concerning the impact of such allegations on our ability, to create and retain employment, attract investment, improve the living conditions of its members and citizens, and how a preponderance of these heinous crimes decimates any gains being made in other spheres.
According to him, all these ills in their singular or combined form are consuming every nation, and Nigeria is no exception.
He, therefore, maintained that, ”we must hold the line and lock arms that way we rid ourselves of these existential issues whilst we grapple with those that are our own homegrown problems.
”This administration is committed to doing just that, and organisations like the TUC should be extending a hand in supporting such a fight that is in our collective interest,” he said.
Edited By: Felix Ajide (NAN)