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ZMSG spends over N3b on fasting, Sallah welfare – Matawalle

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Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara says his administration had spent over N3 billion on various welfare packages during Ramadan fasting and preparation for Eid-El-Fitr.

The governor announced this in a state-wide broadcast in commemoration of the Sallah festival to mark the end of the 30 days Ramadan fast.

He said that over N2.9 billion was spent in feeding indigents during the fasting period and buying of assorted grains distributed to the state’s civil servants on a subsidised loan.

Matawalle said another N55.2 million was used to buy 280 cows, which were distributed to civil servants, groups and community leaders to mark the Sallah festival.

Similarly, the governor said clothing materials were distributed to 40,000 orphans across the 17 emirates in the 14 Local Government Areas of the state.

He reiterated his administration’s resolve to meet the yearnings of the people through the provision of welfare packages and the early payment of May salary to workers on May 18 to enable them to celebrate Sallah comfortably.

The governor urged people of the state to continue to observe all the COVID-19 preventive guidelines, especially social distancing, the use of face masks, regular hand washing and the use of hand sanitisers.

He urged Muslims to imbibe the teachings derived from the fasting period.

Matawalle also called on them to use the Sallah period to pray against the novel coronavirus disease as well as pray for sustained national unity and wellbeing.

Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)

Abubakar Ahmed: is a graduate and a professionally trained journalist, with experience in national news reporting/editing and verification at the News Agency of Nigeria. NNN is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor[at]nnn.com.ng

Environment

COVID-19: ZMSG expends N22m on fumigation, says Commissioner

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Zamfara Government said that it has spent the sum of N22 million to buy chemicals and other logistics for the fumigation of public places in the state against COVID-19.

The state Commissioner for Environment and Solid Minerals, Dr Nuraddeen Isa, disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria on Tuesday in Gusau.

“We deployed 32 fumigation and sanitation vehicles along with enough manpower, who have worked from evening till early morning hours for 10 days throughout the 14 local government areas of the state, with 48 points in the state capital, Gusau alone.

“We were able to fumigate all the identified areas particularly Mosques, Churches, schools, markets, offices, prisons and all other places where people gather so that these places can remain very safe.

“We have also provided water points fit with hand soaps and sanitisers at various locations manned by our staff to guide people on best practice personal hygiene,” he stated.

The commissioner explained that fumigation of towns and villages would continue in the state even after the fight against the novel coronavirus pandemic.

He added that the state government  ensured that the chemicals used are not injurious to human health.

Edited By: Fela Fashoro and Isaac Ukpoju (NAN)

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Health

COVID – 19: ZMSG orders closure of borders with neighbouring states

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– Governor Bello Matawalle of Zamfara has orderd the total closure of the state’s borders with neighbouring states to check the spread of COVID-19

The governor made the announcement at a press briefing he held at his private residence in Gusau on Thursday, shortly after a security meeting with the state’s security chiefs.

“Following the monumental challenges posed by the impact of coronavirus, we have agreed to completely close our borders from entry or exits from Saturday, March 28.

“This closure affects our borders with all the states of Katsina, Sokoto, Kebbi and Kaduna and l have directed that no one, however highly placed, should be allowed passage into or from the state.

“All security agencies have also been directed to strictly monitor compliance and report any breach to the commissioner of police who will chair the monitoring committee.

“Movement within the state is however not affected by this order but any abuse will be seriously viewed by the law,” the governor said.

He noted that the measures, although stringent,  were for the safety of all citizens and will last for two weeks before it would be reviewed.

The governor also said the state government had taken adequate measures in terms of drugs supply and hand sanitisers which would be distributed throughout the state.

The Nigeria News Agency recalls that the state government had earlier ordered against any gathering of more than 20 persons at a place and had also promised to isolate vehicles coming from long distances and sanitise them before they would be allowed to take new passengers.

Edited By: Isaac Ukpoju
(NAN)

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Defence/Security

ZMSG  to commences  recruitment of community police

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Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara has direct the Advisory Committee on Community Policing to commence screening and recruitment of individual citizens to serve as constabulary in the state.

The governor gave the directive  on Wednesday in Gusau while inaugurating the state advisory committee saddled with responsibility of overall supervision of community policing in the state.

Matawalle said Community Policing was a strategy of Policing that placed emphasis on building relationships and working closely with members of the communities to bridge communication between community and security agents.

The goals also aimed at building ties,  relationships with the community through interactions with local agencies and members of the police, creating partnerships and strategies for reducing crime and disorder.

Community Policing puts society and quality of living as a priority, as against the traditional policing which placed emphasis on arrest and prosecution.

Also speaking the Inspector-General of Police, Mr Muhammad Adamu, directed all commissioners of Police to consult with the Governors of their respective states with a view to inaugurating the state Community policing Advisory Committee.

The IGP,  represented by Muhammad Mustapha, Assistant Inspector General in charged of Sokoto Zone 10  (AIG), said the concept of community Policing might be viewed as newly-developed policy.

He explained  that in the position of the law the term had been enshrined in our laws from time immemorial.

According to him Police Act and Regulations CAP P19 has outlined the establishment of community Policing through appointment of special constabulary known as special constables.

He stated that the law was extensively outlined from section 49 to 52 of the police Act and of particular attention to section 50 (2&3)  which conferred on the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria power to fix on the recommendation of police council the maximum number of persons at anytime that can be appointed as special constables.

Mustapha also said that section 50 (4) assigned the power to the Inspector-General of Police subject to approval of the president to fix maximum number of special constables in various territories and what particular rank to assign them.

“The recent incidents of armed banditary,  armed  robbery and  kidnapping most especially in Kaduna, Niger, Kogi, Katsina and Zamfara have prompted the need for the full and speedy enrollment of community Policing strategy across the country.

The plan will involve the setting of community Policing Committees (CPCs) at the ward, local government and states level

“The Committees will identify credible and suitable citizens from across each locality for the appointment as special constables who will serve as Community policing officers.”

Nigeria News Agency reports that the inaugural event was held in isolation only attended by the representative of IGP, CP, GOC and  Emir of Anka who is the committees co chairman.

Edited By: Donald Ugwu
(NAN)

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Defence/Security

Military, ZMSG resume full onslaught against bandits in Zamfara

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Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara has revealed that his government has resolved with the military to resume full onslaught against unrepentant bandits in the state.

 

This was contained in a statement  signed by Zailni Bappa, the Special Adviser to the governor on Public Enlightenment, Media and Communications and made available to newsmen on Wednesday in Gusau.

 

Nigeria News Agency , reports that the state had in the last two months recorded a gradual and steady resurgence of armed bandits and kidnappers.

 

According to him, the fire power which had already taken effect in the state had started yielding positive results.

 

“It has led to the rescue of 13 kidnap victims including the District Head of Wuya in Anka Local Government Area, who was kidnapped along with his son and the Chief Imam of the village shortly after their afternoon prayer, last week,’’ he said.

 

He said the rescued victims had since undergone medical checkup at the state government’s health facility and had been reunited with their family members.

 

He said the victims were earlier handed over to Gov. Matawalle by the state Commissioner of Police, Mr Usman Nagogo.

 

Bappa said, while the governor reiterated his administration’s ban on the volunteer security group known as “San sa kai”, it would deal decisively with “any traditional leader found to be supporting the activities of the outlawed group including losing his throne.”

 

He said the renewed military action had also led to the arrest of seven bandit informants, who would soon be moved to Abuja to face the consequences of their actions.

 

Edited By: Abiemwense Moru and Isaac Ukpoju
(NAN)

 

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Defence/Security

Banditry: ZMSG restrategises with military to halt resurgence

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– Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara says the state government has reviewed its strategies with the military in the fight against armed bandits in the state.

The governor stated this in a state-wide broadcast on Monday night, urging citizens in the state not panic over the resurgence of banditry in the midst of Coronavirus pandemic.

Matawalle, who noted that the new attackers were alleged to be coming into Zamfara from Niger, Kaduna and Kebbi states, maintained that the state government’s doors of reconciliation would remain open for those ready to repent.

“We as government will not allow criminals to give us sleepless nights while under pressure from the coronavirus pandemic, so those who are refusing to surrender from their criminal ways should be ready for the consequences of their actions.

“The military are carrying out a commendable job and we will continue to encourage them in this regard.

“I wish to condole those who lost their loved ones in these recent attacks and to assure those whose relations are in bandits’ captivity that we will soon get them back,”  he said.

On the coronavirus pandemic, governor Matawalle announced that while the state government had closed all types and levels of schools in the state, it had also provided COVID – 19 testing kits at motor parks and sanitisers at strategic places throughout the 14 local government areas of the state.

“We know that as the fasting month of Ramadan approaches, many people are likely to marry and I wish to call on our people to avoid crowded places in order to prevent contact with the disease carriers and its spread.

He said, all measures taken will remain in place until the situation improved.

Edited By: Isaac Ukpoju
(NAN)

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Defence/Security

ZMSG confirms kidnap of district head, 2 others

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Zamfara Commissioner of Security and Home Affairs, Alhaji Abubakar Dauran, has confirmed the kidnap of the District Head of Wuya in Anka Local Government Area of the state.

Speaking to the Nigeria News Agency in Gusau on Saturday, Dauran said, “it is lamentable that these unrepentant bandits can still come into communities to carryout criminal activities in the state.

“It is true the the district head, of Wuya, Alhaji Umar was kidnapped today (Saturday), and immediately on receipt of the unfortunate incident, we mobilised security personnel comprising the army and the police to the bushes in the area.

“Currently they are on trail of the criminals, I can assure you that we will catch them,” he said.

He stated that the security personnel were also supported by some repentant bandits who had earlier embraced peace.

NAN quotes an eye witness, Alhaji Muhammadu Biyu as saying that the monarch, his son, Mannir Umar and the Imam, Liman Murtala were kidnapped at gun point in a mosque during the day’s afternoon prayer by a group of bandits who entered the town on motorcycles.

He said on their arrival, the bandits went straight into the mosque while the people were observing the afternoon congregational prayers and whisked away the victims.

The commissioner reassured the people of the state that the state government would not relent until lasting peace was achieved in the state.

Edited By: Fela Fashoro and Isaac Ukpoju
(NAN)

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Health

COVID-19: ZMSG to quarantine, sanitise long distance vehicles entering the state

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– Zamfara state government has announced that it will henceforth seclude vehicles coming from long journey into the state and sanitise it before it will be released.

The state Commissioner of Information, Alhaji Suleiman Anka, announced this on Friday in Gusau  while briefing newsmen on  government’s effort in the fight against the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic.

“From now, any long distance vehicle. coming into the state will be quarantined for at least an hour during which officials of the Ministry of Health will sanitise it and make sure it is safe to carry other passengers.

“The state government will also station hand washing items and sanitisers at some strategic locations, especially motor parks where people can easily go and clean their hands as they mingle with others so that everyone will be protected,” the commissioner said.

Anka,  who said a temporary isolation centre for coronavirus had been set up at the Federal Medical Center, Gusau also said the state government was expecting experts from the National Center for Disease Control (NCDC) to help the state government in setting up a standard one.

He said while all public and private western and Islamiyya schools would  remain closed for 30 days from the 23rd of March, “we have sensitised all the 17 emirate councils and directed the emirs to step down the sensitisation to all the wards so that our people will be well informed on all issues regarding the disease.”

He assured that the state government would do its best to see that no case of coronavirus is recorded in the state throughout the pandemic.

Edited By: Isaac Ukpoju
(NAN)

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Defence/Security

ZMSG confirms 7 dead in bandits attack

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– Zamfara Commissioner of Security and Home Affairs, Alhaji Abubakar Dauran, on Thursday confirmed the killing of seven persons by bandits at Malele village, Mutunji District of Dansadau emirate in Maru local government area of the state.

Dauran told newsmen in Gusau that the incident occurred on Tuesday at Malele village.

The commissioner said: “The Emir of Dansadau, Alhaji Hussaini Umar had informed me  on the Tuesday Malele village attack by the bandits which left seven innocent persons dead.

“We earlier have been receiving reports by locals that they noticed the incursion into the state by suspected  armed  bandits who we believe are those running away from the neighbouring states of Kebbi, Kaduna and Niger having been pursued by the security from those states.

“We are however lucky that after the attack on the Malele community, the bandits had disagreement between themselves and they killed each other, but we have no information of an attack on any other community around Dansadau.”

However, Mahammadu Malele, an eye witness told journalists that the bandits had on the day of the attack, blocked the Gusau-Dansadau road, close to Malele village where they killed three persons including a 15-year-old girl, whose name was given as Fatima, before they entered Malele.

He said the bandits also  wreaked  havoc at Babban Kwari; a neighbouring village where they killed scores and burnt their houses and properties.

He said that 16 corpses comprising 14 males and Two females were recovered after the attacks.

He all the victims had been buried according to Islamic rites in the presence of the Emir of Dansadau, Alhaji Hussaini Umar.

Edited By: Isaac Ukpoju
(NAN)

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Defence/Security

“We are under threat from unrepentant bandits’’ group tells ZMSG, security

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A volunteer security outfit in Zamfara known as ‘Yansakai’ has urged the state government and security agencies to tackle the excesses of unrepentant bandits in the state.

The group which is supporting security agencies to address banditry in the state said its members were under constant threats and attacks from bandits.

Alhaji Sani Babban-Doka, Secretary of the group stated this on Monday in Gusau at the continuation of meeting with repentant bandits and members of the volunteer security body, organised by the state’s ministry of security and Home Affairs.

Babban-Doka said most of their members have stopped  attending  security meetings due to fear of attack by bandits.

He said, “although we have obeyed the security directives not to carry fire arms, our members are now living in perpetual fear of threats from both unrepentant bandits and our members who refused to embrace the peace initiative of the state government.

“Even the attendance of this meeting is poor because some of our members could not come due to the fear of being attacked by those who are against the peace accord especially in the most volatile areas.

“Presently, some unrepentant bandits have vowed to kill 10 of our members for every one of their own that is killed,’’ he said.

He therefore appealed to the state government and the security agency to come to their aid by giving them cover and responding promptly when their communities come under attack.

In his contribution, the state Commissioner of Information, Alhaji Suleiman Anka commended the cooperation of the vigilante members.

The Commissioner of Police, Mr Usman Nagogo thanked all those who supported the peace initiative and surrendered their arms to authorities.

“We are aware of all those unrepentant ones and we have received the state government’s permission to handle them appropriately,’’ Nagogo said.

While speaking on last Saturday night attack on Yarkatsinawa village in Bungudu Local Government Area of the state, the CP lamented and described it as unfortunate.

He called on the Yansakai to continue to be law abiding while efforts were on track to arrest the perpetrators.

Col. Alhassan Grema of the 1 Brigade of the Nigeria Army noted that “the law is clear against people taking the laws into their hands but one has the right to defend one self.

“You should continue to give us credible information but do not go looking for innocent Fulani and attack them, we won’t tolerate this,’’ he maintained.

The Commissioner of Security and Home Affairs, Alhaji Abubakar Dauran who expressed satisfaction over the maintenance of peace in the state said his ministry would continue to hold such meetings to sustain the peace.

Nigeria News Agency reports that a renowned Islamic Cleric, Sheik Muhammad Sodangi charged all criminals against killing fellow beings as “Allah will not take it lightly with anyone who takes the life of another.’’

NAN reports that the Yansakai vigilante group was outlawed by the former Governor Abdulaziz Yari administration over alleged infractions.

The group was, however, made to lay down their arms and  reintegrated into the state security architecture following Governor Bello Matawalle peace accord.

Edited By: Cecilia Odey and Isaac Ukpoju
(NAN)

 

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Economy

ZMSG moves to mitigate revenue leakages

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– A committee set up by governor Bello Matawalle of Zamfara to reform the state’s tax laws has resolved to establish a mechanism to mitigate revenue leakages in the state.

This is contained in a communique at the end of a one-day interactive meeting with the state’s informal sector, organized by the Consultation Sub-Committee of the Tax Law Reform Committee and made available to the Nigeria News Agency in Gusau on Thursday.

The four-point communique also expressed the committee’s resolve to collaborate with the non formal sector who are mainly small scale entrepreneurs to ensure appropriate tax collection in the state.

Also, while the formal and informal sectors gave their commitment to support the state government on the imperatives of the tax law reform and its implications, the meeting urged the government to ensure effective and judicious utilization of the taxes generated.

They also stressed the need for the state government to impress on the federal government for exploration of the vast mineral resources in the state with a view of getting royalties for development purposes.

The communique was jointly signed by the Chairman of the sub committee and Permanent Secretary, Cabinet Affairs, Alhaji Yakubu Haidara and the Secretary of state’s Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ZACCIMA), Alhaji Lawal Muhammad.

NAN reports that the state’s former Head of Service, Alhaji Mujitaba Isah,  in a keynote address to the meeting, noted that the payment, collection and judicious utilization of tax are critical to development.

Chairman of the Consultation sub-committee and Permanent Secretary, Cabinet Affairs, Alhaji Yakubu Haidara, in his opening remarks said, the meeting was necessitated by the need for the state government to find more revenue sources.

“This is in view of the  dwindling revenue from the Federation Account occasioned by the falling price of crude oil in the international market.” 

Edited By: Isaac Ukpoju (NAN)

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Economy

Taxation: ZMSG engages cleric on awareness campaign

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The Committee set up by Zamfara government to boost  its Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) through taxation has engaged the services of an Islamic Cleric to create awareness for compliance.

The Consultation Sub -Committee on Wednesday in Gusau,  organised an interactive session with small scale entrepreneurs where the Islamic scholar, Sheik Muhammad Sodangi explained the Islamic provisions on the payment of tax by citizens.

Sodangi, who cited many verses from the Holy Qur’an said: “Allah created the universe for human beings to utilise and this can be done by making the land habitable and contributing to its growth.

“If a government is financially resourceful, then it will only require human resources, but if it do not have financial strength, then, the citizens will have to contribute in the form of Zakkat, endowment, tax and others that are done fairly.

“It is compulsory for the rich to help the poor in Islam by giving Zakkat or endowment, it is also mandatory on citizens engaged in businesses to support the government through the payment of taxes so that the government can provide social amenities and security among others,” Sodangi said.

In his keynote address,  former Head of the State Civil Service, Alhaji Mujitaba Isa said bigger nations were what they are,  largely due to their good IGR mechanism.

He urged the state to ensure that big business owners were also appropriately taxed.

Earlier in his remarks, the State Commissioner of Finance, Alhaji Rabiu Garba, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Alhaji Lawal Kaura, assured that under the present leadership of Governor Bello Matawalle, all monies generated as revenue would be judiciously utilised.

Alhaji Yakubu Haidara, Permanent Secretary, Cabinet Affairs, who is also the Chairman of the Consultation Sub Committee, informed the gathering that “the need for reforms in the state’s tax laws is imperative because the state  is still operating the laws established by the colonial masters.

“Even the currency that are used in some of the documents are in pound sterling which is why we need to change and move with modern trends,” he said.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that a communique was expected at the end of the meeting.

Edited By: Chioma Ugboma and Isaac Ukpoju (NAN)

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Education

ZMSG vows to continue with state versity project

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– Zamfara state government has said that it will not reverse its decision to continue with the state-owned university project.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that the project initiated by the immediate past administration of Governor Abdulaziz Yari, is sited  in his home local government headquarters of Talata-Mafara.

The project was however suspended by the present administration of governor Bello Matawalle  based on suspicion  that the contract for construction and supply of materials were not awarded through due process.

Speaking to journalists in Gusau on Saturday, the Special Adviser to the governor on Higher Education, Alhaji Abdullahi Gurbin-Bore said some selfish individuals were using politics to divert the attention of the state government and cause confusion among students of the institution.

Gurbin-Bore said: “having spent over N4 billion on the project, this government under Alhaji Bello Matawalle will ensure the continuation of the project.

“However, having set up four different transition and verification committees whose assignments touched on the university, certain things have to be put right.

“Don’t forget that at present, there is no Vice-chancellor nor registrar and other management staff at the university –  these are some of the things the state government is looking at in order to establish a serious institution,” he  stated.

He appealed to the pioneer students of the university to remain calm and assured that the state government is doing its best to give them the best university.

Edited By: Isaac Ukpoju

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Education

Coronavirus: ZMSG cancels foreign study of 20 students to China

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The Zamfara government has canceled the trip of 20 of its youth who were earlier screened to travel to China for studies under the state government’s sponsorship.

The Nigeria News Agency , reports that Gov Bello Matawalle had secured admission for 200 indigent students to study various science and technology-related courses.

They were slated to study in India, Sudan, Cyprus, China, among others.

The state’s Scholarship Board had screened many of the successful candidates, some of whom had left Nigeria for the countries where they would study.

With the recent outbreak of the deadly Coronavirus, however, the students, who were being processed to study in China, were asked to “hold on”.

Malam Lukman Majidadi, the Special Adviser to Gov Matawalle on Scholarship Matters, who confirmed the development to NAN, said that the measure was “for the safety of lives of our young men and women”.

“For the safety of the students and other Nigerians, we decided to cancel the China trip of these 20 youths whose admissions were supposed to be in China.

“We are currently working on the possibility of securing admissions for the affected persons in safer countries.

“We have also informed the affected students not to panic since the governor has given them the opportunity; it is an order and we are bound to send them to school,” Lukman assured.

The Nigeria News Agency , reports that the students are expected to study courses like medicine, radiology, computer technology, architecture, among others.

Edited By: Josephine Obute and Ephraims Sheyin

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Health

ZMSG to construct 147 modern PHCs

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Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara has announced his administration’s resolve to begin the construction of a modem Primary Healthcare Center (PHC) in each of the 147 wards of the state.

This was contained in a press statement signed by Yusuf Idris, the Director-General, Media, Public Enlightenment and Communications to the governor and made available to journalists in Gusau on Monday.

The statement said the governor made this known when he received five councillors from Gusau Local Government Area of the state who defected from the All Progressives Congress (APC) to the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state.

It said all arrangements to start the construction of the PHCs at the designated areas had been completed, and added that the aim of the project was to bring healthcare services closer to rural areas.

The statement lamented over the absence of health facilities in rural communities and the suffering rural dwellers go through in search of healthcare service especially during emergencies.

The governor noted that the situation was responsible for the number of deaths being recorded particularly of women and children.

It assured the councillors that more dividends of democracy would be extended to all the wards of the state and urged those who were yet to join the PDP to do so in order to work with the government to improve the status of the state.

Nigeria News Agency recalls that eight out of the 14 local government chairmen in the state had last week announced their defection from the APC to PDP.

Edited By: Razak Owolabi/Maharazu Ahmed

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Politics

ZMSG reacts to petition written to presidency over roads project

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– Zamfara state government has said that its decision to expand some roads in Gusau the state capital, is meant  to modernise the metropolis contrary to speculations of political vendetta.

Governor Bello Matawalle made  the clarification on Friday in Gusau when he received the state’s Council of Ulama who visited to plead with him to stop the ongoing expansion of some roads in the metropolis.

According to the governor “my resolve to upgrade roads in the state, especially the capital city of Gusau is to make it more urban that will fit into committee of state capitals of the federation and boast of having all it takes to be a major city.

“We intend to have a modern government house, an airport, hotels as well as industries and sustainable power source that will be attractive to all our local and foreign investors already indicating interest to invest in the state.

“It is sad that some people are misrepresenting these good intentions and using politics against us, even going to the extent of petitioning the president, but we will do our best to prove them wrong,” he assured.

Matawalle thanked the ulamas for their concern towards a sustainable peaceful coexistence and urged them not to relent in giving him good   advice for the promotion of the wellbeing of the state and its citizens.

Earlier, Chairman of the council, Sheik Abubakar Fari said the council of ulama as “an impartial arbiter, decided to wade into the matter and urge the Governor to consider altering the road plan on the streets in question because he is the father of all and should listen to his subjects in matters that will not compromise fundamental aspects of governance,” he said.

He commended the governor for listening to them and prayed for the continued unity of the state.

Edited By: Isaac Ukpoju

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General news

ZMSG revokes 3 multi-billion Naira contracts

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Zamfara state government has revoked three contracts worth over N80 billion awarded by the immediate past administration of Gov. Abdul’aziz Yari between 2013 and May 2019.

The state’s Commissioner of Information, Alhaji Suleiman Tunau announced the revocation of the contracts at the end of the maiden state executive council meeting which held at the government House on Wednesday.

According to the commissioner, a contract of rural electrification project across the 14 local government areas of the state was awarded to a firm in 2013, at the cost of over N25.9 billion.

Tunau said over N22.5 billion had been paid to the company but the project had only reached 67 per cent completion over the years.

Similarly, the commissioner stated that a Chinese company was also awarded a contract to construct 84 boreholes for rural water scheme under phase one and two in 2013 and 2018 respectively.

He said the cost of the phase one stood at N27.5 billion and over N19.3 billion was paid with 75 per cent completion

He added that the second phase cost the state government N27.6 billion on which over N14.4 billion was paid to the contractor adding that only 13 per cent work had been achieved.

According to him, all the contracts had been suspended and a Projects Verification Committee had already invited and discussed with the contractors where they were asked to refund the money for not completing the job.

The commissioner said the committee would give details in its report at the end of the verification saying that the state government was not happy over the way the contracts sum were overshot.

The Nigeria News Agency recalls that these two contracts were part of the earlier issues the Matawalle led PDP administration questioned when it took over power in May 2019.

NAN reports that when the issues came up, both the former governor, Abdulaziz Yari and his aides defended the contracts at various meetings with journalists where they gave details regarding the quantum of the projects and the derivable benefits to the people of the state.

Edited by: Angela Okisor/ Tukur Muntari.
(NAN)

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Health

Counter part funding: ZMSG.pledges committment to donor agencies

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Zamfara state government has reiterated its commitment to partner donor agencies to develop health sector in the state.

The Secretary to the state government, Alhaji Bala Bello stated this in Gusau on Wednesday at the flag off of 2019 Second round Maternal New Born Child Health Week at Emir’s palace.

Nigeria News Agency reports that the state Primary Health Care Development Board (PHCDB) has under the Save One Million Lives Programme plans free medical outreach at 147 wards across the 14 local government area of the state.

He said the state government is committed to ensure timely release of all counterpart funding in health care sector to access various health care programmes for the benefit of the people of the state.

“The state government under Gov. Bello Matawalle since its inception has embarked on various programmes to promote health care delivery in the state.

“Apart from release of millions of Naira counter part funding, the state government had distributed modern ambulances to all general hospitals across the state”, he said.

He appealed to the people of the state to always participate in various health programmes in order to gain the benefits.

He urged pregnant women in the state to ensure timely visit to hospitals for their pregnancy test and other needful in maternal health issues.

The emir of Gusau, Alhaji Ibrahim Bello thanked the government for initiating various programmes armed at promoting health care sector and urged stateholders to complement the state government’s effort in health care delivery in the state.

He appealed to health workers in the state to be committed to their dutiess with a view to saving lives.

Earlier, the Permanent Secretar, state Ministry of Health, Dr Habibu Yelwa appreciated the state government for the support and cooperation given to the health sector.

Yelwa said the state government had recently released N100 million counter part funding for Basic Health Care Promotion Fund in addition to another N100 million as UNICEF counterpart funding.

He assured commitment of the ministry to continue to provide healthcare services to the people of the state.

Edited & Vetted By: Tukur Muntari.
(NAN)

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General news

All IDPs have returned home —ZMSG

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Zamfara State Government says no single Internally Displaced Person (IDP) is in camp following the significant improvement recorded in security situation of the state.

Alhaji Yusuf Idris, the Director General on Press Affairs to Gov. Bello Matawalle, made the disclosure at a press briefing held in Gusau on Sunday.

According to him, all the IDPs had returned to their various villages and towns, and have continued with their normal day to day activities without any threat.

Idris maintained that kidnapping, rustling and all other forms of banditry had become a thing of the past in all parts of the state.

He said the recent attack on Karaye village in Gummi local government area of the state was a handiwork of some unscrupulous elements who wanted to set the state backward.

He said all those attempts will not distract governor Bello Matawalle’s administration from taking the state to the promised land.

He equally warned all those with evil plans against the state to desist from causing security breach or faced the consequences of their action.

Nigeria News Agency recalls that banditry activities in state have resulted in recording 37,000 internally displaced persons in various camps in the state.

Edited & Vetted By: Tukur Muntari.
(NAN)

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General news

Alleged arms possession: ZMSG urges police to investigate ex-governor Yari

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NNN: , Zamfara state government has called on the police to investigate the state’s immediate past governor, Alhaji Abdulaziz Yari over alleged arms possession as part of measures to stop arm banditry in the state.

The call was made by the Gov. Bello Matawalle’s Director-General of Press Affairs, Mallam Yusuf Idris at a news conference in Gusau on Sunday.

Nigeria News Agency reports that the Publicity Committee of the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state had on Saturday at s press conference berated the PDP controlled government in the state on the way and manner Gov. Matawalle is handling the affairs of the state.

Idris said that the APC in the state should take the blame for allegedly using the outlawed members of the Yansakai group to kill innocent people in the state which is usually followed by reprisals.

He said,”since they (APC) claimed that there are over 3 million guns in circulation in the bushes of the state, Yari and his supporters should be invited by the police so that they can take them to where these firearms are so that the police can retrieve them,” Idris said.

The governor’s aide, who noted that his principal had known the arts of governance since 1992 when he represented Maradun/Bakura at the House of Representatives, assured that the peace initiative introduced by Matawalle about six months ago, had truncated the eight years of insecurity under the leadership of Yari.

He said, “The political maneuvers of Yari and his supporters will not distract Gov. Matawalle from taking our state to the promised land of greatness.”

On the issue of alleged N70 billion collected by Matawalle as stated by the APC, Idris said there was no such thing adding that the only loan request was for N1.5 billion which was still awaiting the approval of the state assembly.

NAN reports that since the Sunday’s bandits attack at Karaye village, the ruling PDP and the main opposition APC in the state have continued to point an accusing finger at each other thereby heating the polity.

Edited & Vetted at NAN By: Tukur Muntari.
(NAN)

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Agriculture

ZMSG to resuscitate 5 abandoned ginneries—-Gov. Matawalle

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Ginneries

By Abubakar Ahmed

Gusau, Nov. 13, 2019, Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara says the state government has concluded plans to resuscitate five abandoned ginneries in the state.

The governor stated this on Wednesday when officials of the State Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture paid him a courtesy visit at the Government House, Gusau.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that there are a total of 15 ginneries in the state that have been abandoned for over a decade.

Matawalle said the state government had developed a plan for resuscitating abandoned industries in the state.

“One of our plans, which has already began, is the contractual agreement between us and the Afreximbank where a total of one billion dollars will be invested in the state.

“Already, the process for building a five star hotel in the state has commenced under this arrangement”, Matawalle said.

He said the state government would also develop a blueprint for proper exploitation of the state’s mineral deposits to ensure acceptable world best practices for the benefit of the state.

“This will also comprise of proper pricing policy and the establishment of a standard office for the business in the state”, he said.

He commended the state chamber of commerce and industry for its commitment to the Industrialisation drive of his administration.

While promising to support the chamber in its planed 10th domestic trade fair billed for next month, the Governor urged them to make it an annual event for the benefit of the state.

“Trade fair is a major avenue through which the world will come to know our industrial, mineral and commercial worth”, he noted.

Earlier, the Chairman of the State Chamber of Commerce and Industries, Alhaji Abdullahi Maiwada commended Matawalle’s administration for bringing peace and harmony to the state.

He said with the attainment of peace, traders needed the state and federal government assistance to bring back their businesses.

“Your Excellency, as a result of banditry in the past, our members have been robbed of much of their capital, we have lost so much that we need the assistance of the government for us to bounce back”, he said.

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