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Senate vs. IGP: 4 months, 1,255 deaths, 85 attacks By Emmanuel OGBECHE


he Senate has explained that contrary to claims by the Inspector General of Police, Mr. Ibrahim Idris, that the

lawmakers were on a personal witchhunt, rather they were shocked by the number of Nigerians killed since the beginning of the year with Idris as the police boss. The Senate and the

IGP have been in a no love lost relationship with the former snubbing three invitations by the Senators for him to appear before them. Last Friday, the Office of the Senate President,

Bukola Saraki, released a shocking list of killings that have occurred in Nigeria in 2018 alone, stressing that it was on this premise the IGP have been invited to explain what the force is doing to curb the killings across

the country. The list shows that Nigerians where killed by armed men on a daily basis in January beginning from the first when 73 people were killed in Logo and Guma local government areas

of Benue state. According to the data, there were 28 attacks in January alone resulting in 623 deaths, while in February there were 11 attacks and 43 Continued on page 3

KIDDIES CORNER >>> PAGE 12 First Published March 2004

Vol. 12 No. 34 ISSN: 1597-2895

May 14 - 20, 2018

Price: 100

As strike bites harder…

Patients flee FCT hospitals By Chuks NZEH


s health workers in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, joined the strike action by the Joint Health Sector Union, JOHESU, patients on admission in most of government facilities in Abuja are not only stranded, but

discharging themselves. Health workers in the nation’s capital joined their federal colleagues last Thursday throwing patients into panic. A visit by our correspondent to some of the general hospitals in Karu, Nyanya, Continued on page 3

APC congress of crises By Austine ELEMUE


or the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, it is a classic case of one congress, one crisis as the weekend local government congresses showed. Before the weekend’s congresses, the ward congress was marred by

violence and irregularities with party chieftains accusing each other of manipulating the system. At the local government congress in Lagos, a member of the party identified as Nurudeen Olanose was shot dead at the party’s Continued on page 3

Minister of Interior, Lt. Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau, left, shares a joke with the Minister of Sports, Solomon Dalong during the Federal Executive Council Meeting In Aso Rock Villa last week. Photo: Sunday Aghaeze, State House

FCT area councils shareN2.2bn Onaiyekan to Presidency: Tell ‘Find alternative to Church, in March >>PAGE 4 Nigerians the truth >>PAGE 8 Mosques demolition’ >>PAGE 14


May 14 - 20, 2018

May 14 - 20, 2018


NEWS Patients flee FCT hospitals Continued from page 1 Asokoro, Life Camp (Gwarinpa) showed that medical treatments and surgeries were being suspended including the National Hospital, Abuja At the National Hospital patients could be seen waiting dejectedly as doctors try to cope with the large number. Also, this newspaper learnt that admissions have ceased while only few operations were being performed. A patient at the male ward told our correspondent that it was unfortunate that the trike has lingered, expressing worry over his surgery wound which he said could get infection as they were no nurses to carry out the daily dressing. A care giver of another patient on Saturday said they were discharging themselves, but was counting the financial implication for her brother that was on admission for bronchial infection. “We are discharging ourselves,” the care giver who did not want to be named said at the National Hospital. “There is nothing we are doing here. His drugs are not coming, only the cleaners and doctors but the doctors cannot do all that is required. See that bed over there, they discharged themselves today.” At the Gwarimpa General Hospital, patients are bemoaning their fate over the ongoing strike by health workers of federal government hospitals, calling on the Federal Government to engage the union and resolve the issues. A patient in the female ward, Casandra Joesph, said “the strike has really affected us adversely, because the nurses used to come from time to time to check my vital signs and give me my medication it is unfortunate that it has gotten this bad, government should have avoid it to save lives. “Nurses are important just as doctors are, they complement each other’s work. A doctor cannot do the job of a nurse. I just saw a doctor come in to check on the patient that required blood transfusion and after that he left. “The work of the nurses is not being done because at this time I should have taken my drugs but they are not here. “Government should

call them to meeting and settle with them.” Another respondent, Ezechina Collins, had this to say; “I flew in my mother from Enugu because of this same strike to Abuja, she is amputated and the other leg is having issues because of diabetes, and since they went on strike, nobody has attended to her even in her critical condition. “We are all disorganised we are now contemplating where to

take her to and you know how expensive private hospitals are. So we are calling on the Federal Government, to do something fast to save lives. “People with critical health conditions are turned back, even accident cases that require emergency. Government should engage them and call off the strike their role is very sensitive to the society.” A senior staff of the hospital, who does not

want his name on print because she was not authorized to speak, said the doctors are not on strike so they are trying to fill in the gap created by the strike. “They have now they stopped receiving new cases because of the strike but are working to ensure that those within get proper care”. Speaking on the strike action, Dr. Aminu Mai, General Manager, FCT Management Board,

explained that they have contingency measures in place in such situations.“According to him, even in normal times, hospitals of the FCTA have manpower challenge as there are grossly understaffed, explaining that as a stop gap measure, the board has deployed NYSC members and interns for basic services while clinical services are all suspended save for emergencies.

President Muhammadu Buhari, FCT Minister Mallam Muhammad Musa Bello, SSAP on Media and Publicity Mallam Garba Shehu as Buhari returns from the United Kingdom at the Presidential Wing of Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja, weekend. Photo: State House

APC congress of crises Continued from page 1 local government congress in Agege, Two others are in critical condition while nine people have been arrested and taken to Area G Police Division in Agege. In Edo, gunshots marred the Congress of the All Owan East Local Government Area as members disagreed over the consensus arrangement proposed by the state leadership of the party. The Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Jimoh Ijegbai, and some other members were said to have scampered to safety as suspected thugs invaded the venue of exercise in Afuze shooting. The congress could not hold in Imo state following protest by APC youths, numbering over

2000. The protesters barricaded major roads in Owerri, causing traffic gridlock in the state capital for hours and later stormed the residence of the National Organizing secretary of the party, Senator Osita Izunaso, demanding his prosecution. It took a police detachment from the state police command, to persuade the embittered youths to leave the major roads. The leader of the youths, Jeff Nwoha, who spoke to journalists at Government roundabout, where they camped for hours, urged the national working committee of the party to discipline the members of the party in the state who had “been causing troubles in the party”. The case was not different in Kogi state as two factions of executives

emerged following parallel congresses at different venues simultaneously. Party members loyal to Governor Yahaya Bello converged at the Lafia Okene venue of the congress, while the Hady Ametuo-led faction held theirs at St Luke’s Model Primary School, Adankolo, where Usman Mamanlafia and Abubakar Nagogo Maiyaki emerged the factional chairman and secretary respectively in a 27-man executive. However, security men invaded the Adankolo venue of the congress, seized the chairs and canopies hired by the organisers. This was after security men allegedly dispersed the delegates, but not before the winners were announced. The Adankolo faction is alleged to be loyal to the embattled state chairman

of APC, Hady Ametuo. In Enugu State, the same scenario played out as two factions of the party held parallel local government congress. In Udi Local Government Area, where the party boasts of chieftains like former governor Sullivan Chime and National Vice Chairman, South East, Chief Emma Eneukwu, it was gathered that a faction loyal to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama and Senior Special Assistant to the President on Judiciary Reforms, Juliet Ibekaku held theirs congress at Community School, UdiAbia, Udi, in Enugu state. In another venue, faction loyal to Eneukwu and Director General of Voice of Nigeria, Osita Okechukwu, assembled at the local government party office, along old Aboh Road, Ninth Mile, Enugu.

Senate vs. IGP: 4 months, 1,255 deaths, 85 attacks Continued from page 1 deaths. In March, attacks were recorded 17 times resulting in 194 deaths. The month of April had 395 deaths from 29 attacks being the highest assault in four months. Last week, the Senate had tagged the IGP enemy of democracy, a tag which the police boss rejected. Spokesman of the Senate, Sen. Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, had accused the the IGP of clutching on straws “let it be known that the IGP by trying to reduce the reason for his invitation by the Senate to the arrest of Sen. Dino Melaye is simply holding on to straw. The issue of Sen. Melaye’s arrest has been overtaken by events. The courts are already handling the related cases. “Our main concern is the security crisis across the country where people are being killed in scores on daily basis. The primary responsibility of the Police is maintenance of law and order as well as protection of lives and property. If there is a breach along the line of this responsibility, we do not see why the IGP should feel he cannot be invited to offer explanation to the arm of government which is constitutionally empowered to ask questions and investigate the breach. “No responsible body of representatives of the people will ignore sad reports given by members on the floor of the Senate. For instance, on April 24, 2 Catholic priests and and 17 members of their congregation were murdered as reported by Senator George Akume,” Abdullahi said.


May 14 - 20, 2018

FCT REPORT Free school feeding: FCTA targets 1,000 pupils

246, 000 uncollected PVCs: FCTA, INEC partner on voter education T

By Austine ELEMUE

By Austine ELEMUE


he Federal Capital Territory Minister, M a l a m Muhammad Bello, has assured the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, of his a d m i n i s t r a t i o n ’s readiness to partner with the commission to sensitize residents to come forward to collect their Personal Voter ’s Cards, PVCs. According to the minister, Abuja is prepared to showcase Nigeria’s democratic testimonials to the world in all elections, stressing that the FCT remains a standard to measure the country from the outside world. Bello, made this declaration when he welcomed the newly appointed FCT Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, Alh. Yahaya Bello, when the latter paid him a courtesy call to his office. The minister, who was represented at the occasion by the FCT Permanent Secretary, Sir Christian Ohaa, assured the electoral commissioner that the administration is willing to collaborate with the commission to sensitise the populace on the ongoing continuous voters’ registration exercise. His words, “we are going to work with all the stakeholders: the Area Councils, traditional rulers as well as faith-based and c o m m u n i t y organizations to ensure that people take advantage of the ongoing exercise to register, in order to be able to vote in the forthcoming elections”. Ohaa assured the REC that the administration would do all that is necessary to mobilize the residents to go and collect their PVCs and to prepare to

participate in the actual voting process. Earlier in his briefing, the new REC, Alh. Yahaya Bello, said he came to signify his arrival to assume office in the FCT. He revealed that FCT electorate, from what he has observed since his assumption of office have demonstrated clear enthusiasm towards the forthcoming polls.

According to him, new persons, especially those who have just attained the voting age of 18 years as well as people coming for transfers have been coming forward to register. Bello, however, lamented that the commission still has many uncollected PVCs a backlog of over 246,000 arising from the 2011,

2014 and 2016 exercises, while calling on the residents to come forward to collect these cards in order to be able to perform their civic obligations. The REC, while commending the FCT Administration for their past support, appealed for greater collaboration in the coming years, especially towards

mobilising the citizenry to use the opportunity of the ongoing continuous voters registration exercise to register for the elections. Yahaya Bello until his appointment as new FCT REC was a former Commissioner of Information in Plateau State and former Regional Manager North of the Daily Times of Nigeria.

FCTA Permanent Secretary, Mr. Chinyeaka Ohaa, R, welcoming the newly appointed FCT Resident Electoral Commissioner, Alh. Yahaya Bello, when the latter paid him a courtesy in his office, in Abuja, last Tuesday.

FCT area councils share N2.2bn in March By Austine ELEMUE


he Federal Capital T e r r i t o r y Administration, FCTA, has disbursed the sum of N2.2 billion to the six area councils as their share of statutory allocation for the month of March 2018. FCT Permanent Secretary, Sir Christian Ohaa, who made the disclosure during the Joint Account

Allocation Committee, JAAC, meeting, charged the council chairmen to step up service delivery to residents of the territory and also ensure workers’ salary is given top priority. The figure shows that Abuja Municipal Area Council, AMAC, got N183 million, Gwagwalada received N167 million and Kuje got N139 m i l l i o n . S i m i l a r l y,

Kwali received N136 million, while Bwari got N129 million and Abaji equally received N129million. Furthermore, statutory deductions from the release includes: primary school teachers gulped N1billion, 15 percent pension funds of N226 million, 1percent Training fund gulped N22 million and 10 percent employer pension contribution

received N58 million. Chairman of Kwali Area Council, who is also the Chairman of FCT Chapter of Association of Local Governments of Nigeria, ALGON, Hon. Joseph Shazin, thanked the FCT Minister and the Permanent Secretary for always ensuring that Area Councils in the Federal Capital Territory get their full allocation and as at when due.

he Federal Capital T e r r i t o r y Administration has revealed that it is targeting 1, 000 pupils in Kwali, Bwari and Gwagwalada area councils in the implementation of National Home Grown Feeding School Programme, HGFSP. Making this disclosure, FCT minister, Malam Muhammad Bello, explained that the administration is kick starting the programme in rural communities across three area councils, because large number of the poorest of the poor reside in rural communities. Bello spoke at a 2-day stakeholders’ workshop with the theme: ‘Developing Sustainable School Feeding Programmes’, aimed at brainstorming on the operation modules of the programme in the FCT. The minister, who was represented at the occasion by the Secretary for Social Development Secretariat, Hon. Oladimeji Ali-Hassan, assured that FCT administration is highly committed to implementation of the programme. “We are starting immediately with Area Councils- Kwali, Bwari and Gwagwalada because we are already behind schedule. So we are starting very soon, in fact in the next few weeks. At least, we can start with three hundred to a thousand children, which will be a good start. “We have done our survey, and that’s why we plan to take the programme to where it’s highly needed. It is children in the rural communities that need the programme the most,” he stressed. Earlier, Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment programmes, Maryam Uwais, said the programme focuses on feeding children of primary one to three, in selected schools.

May 14 - 20, 2018


FCT REPORT 48 days of captivity: NCWS calls for Leah’s release

FCTA flags off 2018 farming season, targets 20,000 farmers





he National Council for Women’s Societies, NCWS, has joined millions of Nigerians to urge President Muhammedu Buhari to do everything possible to ensure the release of Leah Sharibu, the only Dapchi school girl yet to be released by Boko Haram terrorists after 48 days in captivity. Mrs. Gloria Shoda, president of NCWS, made the appeal in Abuja stating that though the Federal Government’s rapid response ensured the release of 104 other female students was very commendable, but the delay in releasing the only Christian girl was becoming very worrisome. Recall that 110 female students from Government Girls Science and Technical College, GGSTC, in Dapchi, Yobe were abducted by Boko Haram insurgents on Feb. 19, 2018. The insurgents released 104 of them to their families and school authorities on March 21 after they had spent one month and two days with their abductors. They, however, kept Leah Sharibu in their custody alleging that she refused to convert from Christianity to Islam. According to the council, it’s been 47 days since the release of 104 girls but no news of Leah Sharibu, stressing that as mothers, the council is worried not knowing what her condition is and Nigerian women are praying for her safe return. “I want to believe that we all have freedom of worship. For a girl of 15 years to continuously be held captive for holding on to her faith is a worrisome and I fear for this country. We are not forgetting the over 200 Chibok girls that were abducted in 2014 and over a 100 are yet to be released. “This is not good for our country. We as citizens should have faith in our government to ensure our security but this have not been the case in recent times. We are calling on government at all levels to work hard to ensure the release of our daughters”, she stated.

FCT minister, Muhammad Bello with the permanent secretary, Mr. Chris Ohaa inspecting inspecting some agricultural products at the agric fair in Abuja, recently.

Gbagalape road reaches 70% completion -Yamawo By Edrina EMMANUEL


he Coordinator of Satellite Towns Development Department, STDD, Mr. Ishaku Yamawo, has revealed that the Gbagalape road construction project is about 70 percent completed. He stated this during a site tour of the project with some journalists, last week. According to him, the sum of N501 million was released for the project and about N174 million have been spend so far on the job and the work is 60 to 70 percent completed. He, however, disclosed that certain contingency measures are being considered to introduce side railings along the brinks of the slope in order to make the road safer. According to him, “what we have achieved here is not a miracle but by the kind gesture of the minister release of funds to be able to continue with the work. A month ago, I came to check the work and the contractor has done beyond what I expected him to do in such a short time. I am surprised with the level of work achieved. “We received

complaints that the way the place is sloppy; there is concern that there must be protective railings. We will look at the contingency we have and see how we can bring up the rail on the sides.” Speaking on the road project, chairman of Gbagalape, Wale Ajibolade, stated, “For us it is a super miracle, in the past years anytime it rains, we use to park vehicles far from our places and trek about 1.5km and still get wet. People said it wasn’t possible but the coordinator of STDD has

broken the jinx”. He also called on the contractor for the installation of speed breakers, saying that “the road is yet to be completed, and the speed is too much, let’s guard against unwarranted deaths”. However, residents of Gbagalape have commended the FCT minister for the release of funds for the construction of the road which in time passed many residents have described as valley of death. A resident, Mr. Idde Amenam, told our

correspondent that he has lived there for 9 years and this is the first time work is being done on this road, just as he called on government for the speedy completion of the road project before the rainy season commences. Giving his assurance to the visiting team, the Site Engineer, Proportions Dredging and Construction Company, Engr. Frank Asiegbu, said work has reached 70 percent, adding that the company is working really hard to ensure that the completion date of end of May is achieved.

Bello commissions Five-Star hotel in Abuja By Austine ELEMUE


inister of the Federal Capital Te r r i t o r y, Malam Muhammad Bello, has declared that the territory at its current population and growing at nine percent yearly, is among the fastest growing cities in the world and truly an investor’s haven. Bello, made this disclosure when he represented President Muhammadu Buhari at the commissioning of Fraser Suites –a Five-Star Hotel in Abuja’s Central Business District. Buhari, who cited a

current UN Habitat figures, lauded the Royal Pacific Group, the hotel owners, for their demonstrated faith in investing in the city, while paying growing tributes to the Nasreddin family, also owners of NASCO Foods Jos, for the nearly six decades of their investing in Nigeria. “This is a very important project for us in general and Abuja in particular, especially because we are happy to be the first country and, indeed, the first city in Africa to host the prestigious Fraser Suites”, he stressed. He revealed that the

administration’s support for the landmark hospitality outfit, located in Abuja’s strategic business district bears eloquent testimony of the commitment to assist willing investors settle down in Abuja. The president welcomed the hotel as a major addition to the Abuja skyline, which he indicated, has heightened estate development around the layout, improved land value and very importantly, has created jobs and would boost tourism as well as tax revenue to the FCT Administration.

o ensure adequate food production for the growing population of the FCT, and create other products in the agricultural value chain, the FCT Administration has flagged off the 2018 farming season with the distribution of farm inputs to farmers. The administration said 20,000 farmers have also been targeted for the Accelerated Agriculture Development Scheme, AADS, which is a presidential initiative being executed through the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, and Bank of Agriculture. FCT minister, Malam Muhammad Bello, during the flag-off ceremony in Abuja said the administration has keyed into President Muhammadu Buhari’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, ERGP, through agriculture. Bello stated that the administration is working to improve agricultural practices in the FCT with a view to guaranteeing food security, create jobs and assist the government save on the foreign exchange that was hitherto expended on food imports. He also indicated that the administration is working towards the provision of tractors for improved farming activities in the territory. The minister further disclosed that the administration has strengthened the framework for timely distribution of fertilisers and other farm inputs such as improved seeds and herbicides adding that the sales of these inputs would continue on a regular basis at the agro-service centers located in Karshi, Gwagwa, Abaji, and Gwagwalada among others. “Our presence here today, certainly, bears eloquent testimony of the Administration’s commitment, not only to ensure adequate food production, but also creation other products in the agricultural value chain.


May 14 - 20, 2018


Between Emir Sanusi, Ministers and the Nigerian Economy



he Emir of Kano, His Royal Highness, Muhammadu Sanusi II, recently took a swipe at the Federal Government over what he described as their failure to properly market the country at the last US-Nigeria Investment Summit held in Washington, DC. The Emir lambasted some government officials for missing a meeting with potential investors at an investment summit organized by the Nigerian Embassy in Washington, despite some of the ministers being in the United States. Sanusi described to Nigerians how investors were kept waiting for an hour only to meet with just one out of the eight ministers schedule to be at the summit where Vice President Yemi Osinbajo was expected to lead the Nigerian team. In an interview with journalists at the end of the summit, Sanusi said Nigeria may have lost an opportunity to attract foreign investors due to the attitude of the ministers and the poor arrangement by the embassy. The furious emir recounted; “we had a meeting today with investors, we were supposed to start by 9am; we started at 10. “When I came in, they took me to the Ambassador’s office to sit down, while investors were waiting down there. We had a list of people who were to be there – the Vice President, ministers and some of them are in town but they did not attend the meeting. “The U.S Commerce Secretary and some top investors came for the meeting but Nigerian ministers who were in Washington did not attend the meeting to speak with them on how to invest in Nigeria. That is not how you attract investors. If

At a time when the country is still struggling with recovery following its exit from economic recession, government agencies should seize every opportunity to market Nigeria and attract investment that will lead to the much needed growth. The Nigerian embassy in the US and indeed the concerned Ministers should not have wasted an opportunity to woo the investors, by at least ensuring a representation from key ministries at the summit.

you have this forum in the Rwandan embassy, I assure you President Kagame himself would be there telling people to come to Rwanda.” From the obvious absence of the Vice President Osinbajo and most ministers, to the late commencement of the event and even a faulty public address system, the investors experience at the embassy was anything but encouraging to anyone looking to do business in Nigeria. The royal father and former Governor of Nigeria’s Central Bank, said most times investors are influenced by how a country is packaged and presented to the world. “There is absolutely no reason for the Nigerian embassy to arrange a ‘Nigeria is Open for Business,’ forum with ministers in town, with governors in town and not have the coordination that they are actually here to meet with these investors,” he said. “I think we need to just look at those kinds of things that investors look at and have a very honest conversation – sector by sector, region by region, state by state and what we need to do to make those areas attractive.” Since the emir’s attack, many

ministers have come out to give reasons for their absence, with many claiming not to have either received a formal invitation, to others insisting they had not confirmed their attendance at the event, hence cannot be accused of shunning the event. The Minister of Mines and Steel, Kayode Fayemi, for instance said he was not billed for the investment meeting. Fayemi said; “The minister and a few of his colleagues, during the said period, were attending some investment forum organised by the Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Head of Government Meeting, CHOGM, in London.” The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, further confirmed Fayemi’s claim. He said most of the ministers who were slated to attend the event were not invited and were not in Washington at the time. Though the reasons given by the ministers may be tenable, the federal government, and indeed the embassy staff in Washington, must take responsibility for the less than impressive image of the country that was portrayed to the

global community. The laid-back attitude of most Nigerians to work was once again brought to fore at the US-Nigeria Investment Summit, with the tardiness, faulty equipment and even the inability of organizers to confirm the availability of the ministers’ at the meeting. It is also appalling that while a strong economy like the US will send its Commerce Secretary to the summit, Nigeria failed to make a statement at the meeting with the presence of the VicePresident or even a representative from the ministries of finance, trade and investment, agriculture and other key sectors of the economy. At a time when the country is still struggling with recovery following its exit from economic recession, government agencies should seize every opportunity to market Nigeria and attract investment that will lead to the much needed growth. The Nigerian embassy in the US and indeed the concerned Ministers should not have wasted an opportunity to woo the investors, by at least ensuring a representation from key ministries at the summit. Beyond queries that are hardly ever answered, government agencies must think of devising means to punishing officials who waste government resources and failing to deliver of their responsibilities. The Washington experience should therefore be seen as a wakeup call to rebrand Nigeria. National orientation campaigns like the ‘Good People Great Nation’ should be repackaged and sold to Nigerians, so that citizens would begin to own the Nigerian project and put an end to lackadaisical attitude that could lead to the embarrassment witnessed at the investment summit.

Published by: GAZETTA COMMUNICATIONS LTD Publisher/Editor-in-Chief

Dan Akpovwa Editor Emmanuel Ogbeche Associate Editor Jacob Edi Assistant Editor Austine Elemue Ovie Akpovwa Editor, Lagos Bureau Godwin Uzoma Okoro

Snr. Correspondents Sarah Negedu; Onoriode E. Atavwigho;; Mfon Udo-Ema Correspondents Ambrose Imobhio (Asaba) Scholastica Joseph (Makurdi) Ayinde Olarewaju (Ilorin) Akon Godfrey Chukwuma Nzeh Ateed Yusuf Ere-ebi Agedah Ijeoma Ukazu Ismaila Jimoh Williams Abah

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Company Secretary Bassey E. Offiong Esq.

Advert/Marketing Executive Laraba P. Murey

Legal Adviser Gogo Karibi-Whyte

Photo Editor Wale Elekolusi

Production Consultant Daniel Soetan

May 14 - 20, 2018


El-Rufai descends into the pig sty


t is a given that Mallam Nasir el-Rufa’I the Kaduna state governor has an overwhelming self of sense, but to imagine that he would descend so low in such a short period beggars belief. Today, a lot of those who held him high esteem are not just thoroughly ashamed of his agberoish disposition, but are gravely worried of his psychiatric balance. Since his political battles with the three senators representing the state, it is evident that mallam, what an ironic title, has gone bananas, hurling insults that even the most shrewish of women would be ashamed of. Last Friday, the governor in one of his usual tirades went cussing and swearing even as much as egging his supporters to perpetrate violence against the senators. The tragedy of el-Rufa’I’s post is that he hides under the cloak of religion to justify his inanity. “FRIDAY REMINDER: To the Cursed Kaduna Senators, the Enemies of the people of Kaduna State and their co-travelers - the Words of Allah: - Surah Al-Baqarah (2:9-12) “2:9 “They [think to] deceive Allah and those

who believe, but they deceive not except themselves and perceive [it] not. “2:10 “In their hearts is disease (of doubt, hypocrisy, arrogance and disbelief), so Allah has increased their disease; and for them is a painful punishment because they [habitually] used to lie. “2:11 “And when it is said to them, “Do not cause corruption on the earth,” they say, “We are but reformers. “2:12 “Unquestionably, it is they who are the corrupters, but they perceive (it) not,” the governor posted on his Facebook page. In times like these, one seeks for consolation in the words of The Wise like Steve Maraboli. The life coach in his book, Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience, writes: “I’m not crying because of you; you’re not worth it. I’m crying because my delusion of who you were was shattered by the truth of who you are.” Indeed, many are crying because el-Rufa’I has shown that he is indeed an Accidental Public Servant lacking in decency.

Idris and the audacity of power T

he Inspector General of Police, Mr. Ibrahim Idris is a lucky man. His luck continues to shine even brighter as the day roll-bye. Right from when he was commissioner in Kano state, Idris has been a man of fortune. It was under his watch that the state Resident Electoral Commissioner, ] Alhaji Mukaila Abdullahi, was burnt to death in his Kano residence along with his wife and two children despite the fact that his house was less than 150 meters from the IGP’s. The IGP as commissioner then was not queried, no investigation was launched into the cause of what is believed to be arson. Fast forward again to June 2016. Idris’s luck, some say his reward for the Kano 2 million vote for Buhari, saw at least 30 superior officersdeputies and assistant inspectors-general of police-

retired prematurely for Idris Kpotum Ibrahim to become the IGP. Given all of these and because there is a pharaoh that knows Idris, he no longer gives a damn about other arms of government. In short, he is the law! His recent faceoff with the Senate and choice of words for the peoples’ representatives is not only baffling, but troubling. Owing to the backing he has, the IGP has lost sight of the hallowed nature of the National Assembly. Is it not said that there is always a day of reckoning? It is germane for those who have the police boss’s ears to remind him that there is always a day in which a pharaoh that does not know Joseph will arise, and when that day comes, the prince becomes a prisoner.

For the greed of property, murder became her name


n a Faustian kind of tragedy, a wife and lawyer, Mrs. Udeme Odibi, sold her soul to the devil for earthly possessions. For those not in the know of Faustian tragedy, it is about Dr. Faustus who sells his soul to the Devil for earthly riches. In a somewhat same but different circumstances, Udeme, now cooling herself in Kirikiri prisons was consumed about owning all of her husband’s property to the exclusion of his daughter from his first marriage. Utterly consumed by the madness despite having no child of her own and in the marriage which is just three years, she decided to redesign the anatomy of her late husband and threw the residents of

Diamond Estate, Sango-Tedo area of Ibeju Lekki, Lagos State, into fear. In a most brutal way, the corpse was found with the manhood severed and placed on his right hand and stomach ripped open with the intestines spilling out. Right from the days of Eve, people like Udeme have put me in agony and pain. Did Helen of Troy not abandoned her husband, Menelaus, to follow Paris and caused the burning down of a city? Did Pharaoh’s wife not plot the fall of Joseph by her seduction? Now, Mr. Otike Odibi, 50, lies cold in his grave because one woman would not see beyond the material greed.


May 14 - 20, 2018


60 young Nigerians for 2018 Mandela Washington Fellowship By Emmanuel OGBECHE


he U.S. Mission to Nigeria has announced that 60 young Nigerians will be part of the 700 from subSaharan Africa participating in the 2018 Mandela Washington Fellowship program for six weeks from June 18 to August 2. The Mandela Washington Fellowship is the flagship program of the Young African Leaders Initiative, YALI. A statement by the U.S. Mission said the program is composed of academic coursework, leadership training, and networking. Five of the 60 fellows will remain in the United States for an additional six weeks to participate in a professional development experience at select companies and organizations. As part of the orientation, the U.S. Embassy invited three leading Nigerian professionals to participate in a m e n t o r i n g workshop: Afolabi Imoukhuede, Senior Special Advisor to the Vice President on Job Creation; Serah MakkaUgbabe, ONE Campaign Country Director; and Lawrence Afere, 2014 MWF alumnus and founder of Springboard

Farms. Speaking at the orientation, Ms. MakkaUgbabe said, “These are the faces we’ve been waiting for,” while Mr. Afere concluded the workshop explaining how his fellowship experience “gave him wings to fly” with his business success. In his remarks, the U.S. Embassy Counselor for Public Affairs, Mr.

Aruna Amirthanayagam, explained that more than 11,000 Nigerians applied to participate in the 2018 Mandela Washington Fellowship program. “After the review by our partner NGO, after a reading by members of the Mission Nigeria community, after an interview in either Abuja, Lagos, Ibadan, Akure, Enugu, Port Harcourt, and Calabar, a

total of 60 young Nigerians were selected”, he said. According to Amirthanayagam, “Nigeria has the largest single cohort from any country in Africa, and this is in recognition of the fact that the U.S.Nigerian relationship is one of the most important, not only in Africa, but in the world.” Also, the U.S. Chargé

d’Affaires, David Young, urged the fellows to be generous with the unique opportunity they had been given. “The United States is making an investment in you through academic coursework, leadership training, and networking; you will return to Nigeria later this summer with increased capital. Share that wealth with others.”

Senior Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment, Mariam Uwais, Secretary, Social Development of the FCTA, Mr Oladimeji Ali-Hassan, Senior Special Adviser to the Vice President on Social Investment, Barr Ismael Ahmed and Programme Manager, National Home Grown School Feeding Programme, Mrs Abimbola Adesanmi during a stakeholders workshop on proposed draft agenda for state HGSF in Abuja. Photo: Wale Elekolusi.

Onaiyekan to Presidency: Tell Nigerians the truth By Ere-ebi AGEDAH


n commemorating this year ’s 2018 W o r l d Communication Day, the Catholic Archbishop of Abuja, John Cardinal Onaiyekan, has urged the Presidency to tell Nigerians the truth at all times as a means to ensure transparency and credibility. While speaking at a public lecture organised by the Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja, with the theme “Journalism for Peace” in Abuja, Onaiyekan noted that it was not enough for

government to speak the truth but must equally showcase the truth through their actions. Onaiyekan tasked journalists in the country on the need to reduce reportage of sensational stories, added that the country was already in a sensitive position which must be handled with caution. “We already have a lot of problems in Nigeria, what we need is solutions, as journalists you do not have to flood the whole nation with fake and false stories. If the story is true and hurtful, I enjoin you to

have a second thought before sharing it, we must join hands to ensure that the peace of the country remains paramount in all our endeavors,” he said In his presentation, Special Adviser to the President On Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, who was represented by Sir Atta Esa, stated that the theme was apt as government was doing well to address the issues of insecurity in the country. According to Adesina, the Nigerian media has an enormous role to play in shaping

the society and urged media practitioners to maintain constrains and watch out against promotion of inciting statements particularly as the nation gears up towards the 2019 elections. The presidential aide called on journalists to be credible in their dealings during the 2019 elections as it will be a test of their integrity, even as he enjoined media practitioners to avoid being used by politicians. In his own presentation, Rev Fr. George Ehusani, who gave the keynote, stated

that journalism was not a job but a mission. Speaking on Journalism for Peace, Ehusani stressed that fake news ultimately leads to hatred and violence which in the long run forms a negative perception in society. Ehusani, who built his speech around the message of Pope Francis 2018 World Communication Day message, noted that the Christian journalist must expunge all materials that violate truth from his reportage, and urged journalists to be instruments of peace.

Northern Christians mourn CAN scribe, Asake By Angela MURREY


he Northern Christian Elders Forum, NOCEF, said it was saddened at the death of one of the General Secretary of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Dr. Musa Asake, who died last Friday. “We are in pains because it is very difficult to use one word or expression to describe Asake,” the body said in a statement by Sunday Oibe, Public Relations Officer. “Asake is an epitome of humility, unassuming and selfless man who is not greedy. In my interaction with him since I met him, Asake keeps telling me that he was born in poverty, enjoys growing in poverty and doesn’t look for money. But he held on to his fate very strongly and his passion for the church in Nigeria, particularly in the North is very wonderful. “Asake is an epitome of humility, his death has created a very big vacuum in the body of Christ in Nigeria, the North, NOCEF and TEKAN/ECWA. Asake is many things to different people. But to us, he’s a hero that deserves celebration,” the statement read. Quoting Philippians Chapter 2, Oibe stated that “you can see the humility of Jesus Christ in him. Anytime we talk, Philippians Chapter 2 guides him. It said, ‘let this man be in you which was also in Christ Jesus.’ He is guided by the spirit of humility, as exemplified by the Lord, Jesus Christ. People who are Junior to Asake will abuse him. And Asake will take it humbly. “He doesn’t fight in defence of himself, he fights in defence of his faith and fights for the less-privileged people; even when people insult and fight him, Asake will say, ‘Jesus is enough to defend me.’ Those of us in NOCEF, we are in pains. We have lost one great man among us, we in the TEKAN/ECWA family have lost a great leader.”

May 14 - 20, 2018



Women demand more inclusion in politics By Angela MURREY


housands of women gathered in Abuja last Thursday to demand more inclusion in politics and governance. A mobiliser, Women for Women, W4W, FCT chapter, Hajiya Binta Ibrahim, described the event as a new beginning for women in the country. Hajiya Binta, who is former President, National Council of Women Societies, NCWS, stated this while speaking with The Abuja Inquirer during the rally at Eagle Square, Abuja. She said the large turnout of women, from all walks of life and the 36 states and FCT, was an indication of the zeal and vigour with which the women will pursue their demands going forward. She explained that the march signifies unity amongst Nigerian women with the aim of achieving one goal including bringing to an end political underrepresentation and exclusion of women and girls, as well as poverty hunger and

insecurity. The mobiliser said a lot of women sponsored themselves to the unity rally from their various states because women no longer want to accept the back seat. According to her, “W4W group is not politically affiliated but

we are here to support any woman that is interested in seeking political office.” Also, speaking to our correspondent, National Woman Leader, National Association of Nigerian Traders and one of the mobilisers for FCT W4W, Mrs Ruth Agbo,

noted that “over the years some people say women are to be seen not heard but it is a new dawn. Women are endowed to make positive change if we can make home comfortable we can in like manner contribute to the leadership of this great nation.”

According to her, women traders contribute a great deal to the GDP of Nigeria and also when it comes to numerical strength women make up about half the population hence if we are not liabilities then we should be recognised as assets.

L-R: Member, Ali Soyode Campaign Group, Mrs. Khairat Animashaun-Ajiboye, former Commissioner of Information Edo State, Mr. Kazeem Afegbua, presidential aspirant, Mr. Ali Soyode and Executive Director, Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Center, CISLAC, Mr. Musa Rafsanjani during Soyode’s declaration for the 2019 presidential race in Abuja, recently. Photo: Wale Elekolusi.

Forum calls for more women support T By Ere-ebi AGEDAH

he Women for Women Forum, W4W, Bayelsa state chapter has called on prominent Ijaw women in the country to support their female counterparts to avoid being manipulated by politicians. The W4W forum said this was necessary to guard against the use of women by politicians as the country moves towards the 2019 elections. The Bayelsa state chairperson, Hon. Stella Dorgu, stated this in Abuja during a one-day rally. The rally, which was

attended by the women from all over the country, aims to address issues that affect women. According to Hon. Dorgu, the W4W is an apolitical group which seeks to give women a

voice in a male dominated environment, also provide a platform for protecting the interests of women. She stated that it was not enough for women to chant their support for

one another but they should go the extra mile to physically and financially support one another to actualize their dreams as women will no longer remain as bench warming

spectators. Dorgu, however, added that women possess a lot of untapped potentials and if properly harnessed will be of benefit to them and the nation at large.

Labour calls for probe of ex NASENI boss By Chuks NZEH


he Academic Staff Union of Research Institutions, ASURI, has called for the probe of the scientific claims of former executive chairman of the National Agency for Science and E n g i n e e r i n g Infrastructure, NASENI, Prof. M. S. Haruna. The union also

frowned at the recommendation by the Minister of Science and Technology, Ogbonnaya Onu, for the reappointment of the outgone executive vice chairman. The union while holding a protest rally at the premises of NASENI in Abuja urged President Muhammadu Buhari to investigate claims of

scientific breakthrough under the former EVC. Addressing journalists during the protest, ASURI Secretary General, Dr. Theophilus Ndubuaku, alleged that the the former NASENI boss claimed to have developed an Unmanned Area Vehicle, UAV, as well as an e-voting machine. He said, “He did not develop anything. We

wants to draw the attention of Nigerians and government. We are calling on government to come and probe all that he said he developed during his five years tenure.” Ndubuaku also said more than one week after a new acting Executive Vice Chairman was appointed for the agency, the former EVC is yet to formally handover.

NBTE trains Kwarapoly staff on elearning By Muyideen ALIU, Ilorin


he National Board for Technical Education, NBTE, and M8 TIRE Project have trained staff of the Kwara State polytechnic in preparation for the commencement of elearning in about 26 polytechnics in the country. The Director of Institute of Information Communication Technology, Mr Lanre Akewusola, said the training was meant to expose academic staff from all institutions to the rudiments of elearning and who will later train staff in their various departments. The pilot e-learning program attracts National Diploma Certificate in various courses, such as electrical/electronic, civil engineering, leisure and tourism, office technology m a n a g e m e n t , h o s p i t a l i t y management among others. Earlier, the rector of the institution, Alh Mas’ud Elelu, described the training as another milestone in the history of the premier tertiary institution of the state, pointing out the institution will continue to attract the best programmes that would improve the socio-economic development of the nation. Elelu enjoined the staff to take the training seriously, so as to be able to impact what they have learnt on other staff as the polytechnic would provide the enabling environment to sustain the programme in line with NBTE policy. He thanked the Federal government and NBTE for the good gesture and promised to work with relevant agencies government, individuals and organisations to give the course the necessary impetus as one of the prominent programmes of the institution.


May 14 - 20, 2018

NEWS Cardiovascular diseases: Nigerians cautioned on salt intake

FERMA MD inspects repairs of brigde, Okene -Ibillo road By Chuks NZEH


By Muyideen ALIU, Ilorin


call has gone to Nigerians to reduce salt intake, avoid alcohol and cigarette to reduce number of deaths resulting from cardiovascular diseases. Kwara State Vector Control Officer in the Environmental and Occupational Health Division, State Ministry of Health, Dr. Fatimah Lah stated this during the monthly meeting of Women in Technical Education and Employment, WITEDs, State Polytechnic chapter, recently. Lah described cardiovascular disease as a disorder that affects the blood vessel which is found in both males and females. According to her, the common types of cardiovascular disease in our society are cerebrovascular disease commonly known as “stroke” and Hypertensive Heart Disease whose symptoms include chest pain, discomfort or pain radiating to the arm, left shoulder, jaw and back, shortness of breath, severe headache, and leg and ankle swelling among others. She said the World Health Organization, WHO, has identified it as the leading cause of death worldwide which can be prevented through lifestyle modification and routine medical check. Lah, who said cardiovascular disease are non-communicable diseases, are generally not noticed until its complications sets in and urged people to always check their blood pressure, reduce salt intake and avoid alcohol and cigarette. She advised staff of the institution to always increase their fruits and vegetables intake and maintain a blood pressure below 140/ 90mm Hg.

A cross section of women during the Women 4 Women rally in Abuja, last Thursday.

Reports of Tiv youths attack on Hausa community false, inciting -TYO By Scholastica JOSEPH, Makurdi


he Tiv Youths Organization, TYO, has condemned reports in some section of the media stating that Tiv youths attacked the Hausa Community in Makurdi, killed many people and destroyed property, saying the report is not only false but capable of inciting violence in the state. A press statement signed by the organization’s Public Relations Officer, PRO, James Ornguga, noted that several reports in a particular newspaper, which he did not mention, claimed that Tiv youths attacked the Hausa community in Makurdi and killed many people and destroyed property is not only false but a

concerted attempt by the media house to incite violence. According to him, the said newspaper first published a story entitled “Benue: Many Killed in Hausa Community” on 27th April, 2018 and gave a figure of 11 deaths and the destruction of two mosques and other property of members of the community. He recalled that the police authorities and the Deputy Governor of Benue State promptly denied the above stated report which the writer claimed was based on an interview with the Sarkin Hausawa in Makurdi, Alhaji Bello Sallau Abdurrahman. Ornguga also stated that the police described the newspaper report as false, and urged members of the public to disregard the information as it was not aware of any casualty

figures in that community besides the fact that no mosques were set ablaze in Makurdi metropolis or any part of the state. “Unfortunately, the same newspaper which is obviously bent on inciting violent clashes in Benue State rehashed the same contents of the earlier report that was refuted in its edition of 7th May, 2018. “This time it gave a different figure of the dead in the same purported attack and attached an unsubstantiated picture of what looked like dead bodies at a cemetery that could have been taken in any other part of the world. “More worrisome is the fact that in the published picture, which is clear enough for recognition of those around the purported dead bodies, no known faces could be spotted which casts more doubt about where it was taken.

“But the objective of the picture which had no link with Governor Ortom’s visit to the Hausa community is clearly to incite sectarian violence in Makurdi. “The fact that the report has been written by a reporter who is not on ground in the state, other than the state correspondent of the newspaper who lives in Makurdi as well as the inclusion of a dubious picture further underscores the intention of the media house to incite violence in Benue State.” The TYO condemned what it described as false, mischievous, and inciting reports and urged members the public to disregard the newspaper and consider the authors as promoters of hate speech, violence and crisis.

HURIWA calls for SOE in Kaduna, slams el-Rufai’s for hate speech By Ere-ebi AGEDAH


uman Rights W r i t e r s Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has urged the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency in Kaduna State so as to enforce full military measures to battle and combat the growing scourge of armed militancy and deliberate mass killings of innocent villagers in

Birnin Gwari and Southern Kaduna State. In a press statement made available to journalists, HURIWA demanded a comprehensive military action to stop the incessant killings even as the group reminded President Muhammadu Buhari that constitutionally if he can’t stop the killings all over the country, the law demands that either he steps down voluntarily or be

impeached through legislative means. “It is in the selfenlightened interest of our President that he concentrates, suspend political campaign activities for 2019 polls, and remain focus towards finding lasting practical solutions to all these killings’’. According to HURIWA, “we were informed by a security source that several houses in the village of about 5000

residents were also set ablaze even as an erstwhile Birnin Gwari Local Government chairman who does not want his name mentioned for security reasons confirmed the incident to the media and described the attack as the worst in the troubled area.” HURIWA quoted the eye witness as stating thus: “These bandits attacked the village in broad daylight and killed many people.

he Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer of Federal Roads Maintenance Agency, FERMA, Engr. Nuruddeen A. Rafindadi, recently embarked on tour of site where repairs are ongoing inclyding Okene -Ibillo road, Koton Karfe along Abuja- Lokoja express road in Kogi State. In a statement by the Head, Communications/ Public Relations, Mrs. Maryam M. Sanusi, she said the inspection was to ascertain the extent of work on the special repairs of Murtala Muhammed bridge Km. 27+000, Koton-Karfe, along Lokoja – Abuja road in Kogi State and that of the Emergency repairs of failed sections between Ch. 23+500 – Ch.27+500 along Okene – Ibillo road, Edo State Border, in Kogi State. According to her, the tour showed that the “Federal highway along Okene – Ibillo road became impassable to motorists as the affected sections cut into two due to heavy rains that ravaged part of the State causing severe hardship on the users who had to take an alternate route. The damage also affected the economic situation of the people adversely. “The quick intervention of the agency has saved the situation from further deterioration as work on the affected sections has reached an advance stage, which has restored free flow of traffic to the area.” The MD had a stopover at the Murtala Muhammed Bridge to inspect the reinforcement, scarification, excavation, site clearing, expansion work being carried out on the bridge and its base. ”Engr. Rafindadi expressed satisfaction on the level of work done so far on both sections, but enjoined the contractors to ensure the speedy completion of the works.

May 14 - 20, 2018



May 14 - 20, 2018


Don’t desire to walk when you have wings to fly


1. Eritrea, which became the 182nd member of the United Nations in 1993 is in which continent? 2. EFCC stands for? 3. The headquarters of the United Nations are situated in? 4. Which instrument is used to see objects at the surface of water from a submarine under water? 5. Fathometer is used to measure what?

falcon. He said that he would visit them the next day to see if there was any change. The next day, the king was very surprised to see the other falcon fly like the first one to great heights in rapid speed. The king was very happy and gifted the old man a handful of gold coins. Then the king asked the old man what he had done to make the bird fly in a day. The old man simply replied, “I just cut down the branch of the tree where the falcon used to sit.” Many of us are like this. We have wings to fly; we know how to fly, and where to fly. Still we sit doing nothing or doing something that makes us inferior to others. Don’t sit still when you have wings to fly!

Did You Know? 1. Did you know nearly all reptiles lay shelled eggs? 2. Did you know sharks lay the biggest eggs in the world? 3. Did you know insects such as bees, mosquitoes and cicadas make noise by rapidly moving their wings? 4. Did you know Even when a snake has its eyes closed, it can still see through its eyelids? 5. Did you know an average person breathes in around 11,000 litres of air every day?


A plane took off from Accra and crashed between the borders of Nigeria and Benin Republic; where were the survivors buried?


What kind of table can you eat?


What has a bed but doesn’t sleep and a mouth but doesn’t eat?


I fly without wings and cry without eyes; who am I?


What can fall from the tallest building and be fine but dies when dropped in water?


What is white and is read all over?


regret that the other falcon had not moved even a step from day one and had just sat on the branch. The trainer also added that he had tried everything he could but still failed to make the bird move. The king consoled him and told him that he would bring someone more experienced than him to try to train the other falcon. Soon, the king announced that he needed someone to make the falcon move and fly. Hearing this announcement, an old man reached the King’s palace and assured him that he would make the bird fly like the other one. The king asked the head trainer to take the old man to the sanctuary to train the

1. Survivors are alive, you don’t burry them 2. Vegetables 3. A river 4. Clouds 5. Paper 6. A newspaper


nce upon a time, there lived a generous and kind-hearted king. He was fond of birds and animals, and had a huge bird sanctuary in his kingdom. He disliked harming the animals and birds. He did not kill them even for meat. In appreciation of his generosity and kindness towards birds, the king was gifted two beautiful falcons by a businessman. Those two falcons were used to different climatic conditions. The king thanked the businessman and ordered the Head bird trainer to provide all the facilities to those beautiful falcons and make them feel comfortable in their country. The Head trainer took care of the birds. Gradually, the birds got adapted to the country’s climate. One day, the king wanted to see the falcons fly as he had heard that one of those falcons could fly to great heights at very high speed. The bird trainer let the falcon out of the enclosure. It flew very high, very quickly, and came down to the enclosure within minutes. The king was quite surprised, and rewarded the bird trainer with a handful of gold coins. He enquired about the other falcon. The bird trainer stated with


What to do in a fire I

f you are in a room with the door closed when a fire breaks out, you need to take a few extra steps: •Check to see if there’s heat or smoke coming in the cracks around the door. (You’re checking to see if there’s fire on the other side.) •If you see smoke coming under the door — don’t open the door! •If you don’t see smoke — touch the door. If the door is hot or very warm — don’t open the door! •If you don’t see smoke — and the door is not hot — then

use your fingers to lightly touch the doorknob. If the doorknob is hot or very warm — don’t open the door! If the doorknob feels cool, and you can’t see any smoke around the door, you can open the door very carefully and slowly. When you open the door, if you feel a burst of heat or smoke pours into the room, quickly shut the door and make sure it is really closed. If there’s no smoke or heat when you open the door, go toward your escape route exit. From

1. Africa 2. Economic and Financial Crimes Commission 3. New York, USA 4. Periscope 5. Ocean Depth


May 14 - 20, 2018


‘No shaking’ in my marriage, says Mercy Johnson


tar actress Mercy Johnson has dismissed rumours of turbulence in her marriage simply because she deleted all her pictures, including the ones that captured her husband, from her Instagram page. “I did not feel bad when I read the news

that my marriage was hitting the rocks because it was not true. I am very comfortable in my own space and I am not out to please anybody. I am always true to myself and I continue to be a happy person. There was absolutely no problem between my husband

and me, I only deleted the old pictures on my Instagram page. They were old so I deleted them to post new ones. I am not letting my husband go; even when he is angry, I would beg him. You see these beautiful rings that he has given to me, I am never returning them,”

she explained in an interview. The mother of three further revealed that her visit to the labour room was not over as she hopes to have another child. “I am going to have another baby very soon. I am obsessed with children and while growing up, I had always wanted to have four children, so we have to complete the equation,” she said. The actress who doubles as the Senior Special Assistant on Entertainment, Arts and Culture in Kogi State was eager to speak about her most recent project which is a movie title, ‘The Lamb.’ The movie which is subtitled in Igala language, tells the story of a legendary Igala princess warrior, who, despite being the pride of her father and loved by her people, had to be sacrificed for peace.

Wizkid, Tiw a Tiwa Sa Savvage, Annie Idibia, endor se ‘Still endorse ok e’ clo thing Br Brok oke’ clothing


izkid, Tiwa Savage, Annie Idibia and Lilian Esoro have been captured rocking the first of its kind collection of designer underwear ‘Still Broke’ which weekend. The company released a statement via social media; describing the clothing line as unique, affirming customers will enjoy the ‘comfortability’ of the fabric which rivals some of the world’s best underwear brands. The manufacturers of the underwear went on to promise fans that the products are very stylish and affordable. As subtly described by

the CEO, Michael Uyi Agho, popularly referred to as Godson; the brand’s name ‘Still Broke’ promotes positivity; instilling a sense of hard work and responsibility in its wearer. He went on to describe the sole theme of the brand as a tool to evoke appreciation of ones means of living, emphasizing on the need to keep working hard despite recording success. ‘Still Broke’ has in its collection; an array of tracksuit bottoms, sports bras, briefs, among others, which customers can choose from.

DJ Cupp Cuppyy wins Ghana A war d Aw ard

‘I Go Dy e’ builds healthcare centre in his community Dye’


otshot comedian, ‘I Go Dye,’ who has become renowned for his social activism and commentaries on national matters has given the political elites food for thought by showing that action speaks louder than words as he has built a healthcare centre in his community of Ovu, Delta State The humour merchant, born Francis Agoda, took to his Instagram page to share the picture of what looks like a state-of-the-art building meant to serve as healthcare hospital for the people of Ovu and environs. “The challenges facing most people across Nigeria is the same, irrespective of our religious, political and

ethnic backgrounds; in line with the United Nations Goal 3, I have commenced the building of an healthcare hospital in my community. We can make life more beautiful than we met it,” he writes to accompany the picture of the hospital. The comedian further averred that he was only fulfilling a promise he made and also fulfilling Goal 3 of the United Nations Millennium Development Goal of which he is an ambassador. “It is the Lord’s doing. God started it and He would complete it in due time. If every one of us can contribute our own quota to uplift the people of the world and promote peace, the world would be a

B wonderful place to live. We can make life more beautiful than we met it,” he quipped. Being described as one of the funniest men alive, ‘I Go Dye’ sees nothing funny in suffering and poverty. He has taken on governments and institutions, challenging

them to do all in their powers to eradicate sufferings and promote peace. I Go Dye has never been equivocal in his fight for the emancipation of the Nigerian youths, his many commentaries in this regard is fast becoming popular to the public acclaim.

illionaire daughter of Femi Otedola, DJ Cuppy, has won ‘Best International NonGhanaian DJ of the Year’ at the 2018 edition of the Ghana DJ Awards. The event, which was hosted by actress Joselyn Dumas, took place last Saturday at the Accra International Conference Centre, Accra, Ghana. Cuppy, who was recently unveiled as Pepsi DJ Ambassador in Lagos, won the award with other DJs like DJ Vyrusky, DJ Slim, DJ Switch, DJ Xpliph, DJ Nyce and iPhone DJ.

The event also witnessed performances from the likes of DJ Mic Smith, DJ Nyce, Kwaw Kese, Patapaa, MzVee and Kidi. Also, DJ Cuppy, whose real name is Florence Otedola, is set to host her summer parties in London. Beginning on Sunday, May 27, 2018, the Summer Rooftop series would also take place on every Sunday in June. Announcing the event on Instagram, Cuppy wrote; “My Afrobeats party @CactusOnTheRoof London is BACK this summer.”


May 14 - 20, 2018


Residents to FCTA: find alternatives to Church, Mosques demolition Following threats by the Abuja Metropolitan Management Council, AMMC, to remove Churches, Mosques, lounges and clubs from residential areas to curb the menace of noise pollution in the territory, some FCT residents who spoke to Ere-Ebi AGEDAH and Edrina EMMANUEL favour alternative solutions to the demolition of Churches and Mosques. Excerpts: RUTH THOMAS: It’s a welcome development. I am sure the churches, mosques and night clubs will be given alternative locations. You will agree with me that noise from night clubs and worship centres within residential areas can be very discomforting. After a hard day at work you are expected to return home and rest but a church close to your home decides to conduct vigil. It is actually very unfair and upsetting. Like I said earlier, I urge the FCT administration to relocate the religious centres and night clubs to designated places far away from residential areas since night life cannot be taken away from some adults. Government should ensure that any land purchased is used for its original purpose, whether residential or business. CHISOM ONYEKWELU: The noise generated by places of worship, Churches and Mosques, in the FCT is alarming. I am of the opinion that worship should be indoors and organised in a way that non-believers are considered. Exercising your freedom of worship should not encroach on other people’s rights. So I am in support of the FCT Administration demolishing all illegal structures. I think a warning can equally be issued to churches that make noise and disturb the peace in residential areas to remove the outdoor speakers so that the noise remains within their premises. As for the clubs and lounges, I think it will be convenient if we have a designated area or street carved out for them, while private residential builders are

provide a new place for me and compensate me for my loss. I can’t take the building on my head to move to where ever you want me to. So for me, it’s not good. The best thing is to relocate them or look for another approach to this matter.

Ruth Thomas

Mal Ugboh

Chisom Onyekwelu

Jeff Usman

enlightened not to build their homes in such areas.

pollution by soundproofing their worship Centres or simply reducing speaker volumes is better. But forcing them out is going to be a problem because of the structures they have already built. I think government should look for another solution to this matter.

ANDY JOSHUA: The people in authority should rethink this decision. I am not against the night clubs being moved. But I am against churches and mosques being demolished. Although it depends on the area and people complaining, I still feel something else can be done by the FCT administration apart from demolishing the worship centres. Warning them to control noise

THANKGOD EFFIAH: Demolishing worship places is unfair. In my own country I bought property and you want me to move? Automatically you will

MAL UGBOH: For me, the main issue is the night clubs. Right from time night clubs have been a noise threat to the residents. When I lived at Karu, there was a night club very close to my house and every Friday night we weren’t able to sleep because of the noise and the kind of people that come there. Night clubs attract a lot of bad people such as prostitutes and armed robbers. It’s not good for anyone to bring up his children in such an environment. When you wake up, you start seeing bottles and condoms. Just imagine your children seeing such. It’s not good at all. For me, it’s a nice move especially for the night clubs. But for the worship centres, I think the government should talk to them about reducing the noise. It won’t be right to remove the churches and the mosques. JEFF USMAN: AMMC’s decision doesn’t make sense to me because people play loud music in their homes and you don’t ask them to move. Yeah, the night clubs are a bad influence but will you say the churches and mosques are also a bad influence? No! AMMC should look for another means of tackling this issue because it is going to be a bigger problem if they demolish. People have the right to worship even in their homes, and that cannot be taken away from them.

May 14 - 20, 2018



Nigeria’s university population rises to two million …FG mulls more years of study Stories by Godfrey AKON


tudent population in Nigerian universities has risen to 2 million, representing about 1 per cent of the total population of the country. Executive Secretary of the National U n i v e r s i t i e s Commission, NUC, Prof Abubakar Rasheed, disclosed this in Abuja at a 2-day retreat for Governing Councils and Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities. Rasheed, who also disclosed that only 61,000 academics are currently in the system, decried the ratio of lecturers to students in the institutions as grossly inadequate, and drew a comparison with Oxford University, London, where there are 17,000 students and 13,000 academics. While noting that governance was at the heart of higher education sectors across the world, he lamented the failure of governance structures and processes in Nigerian universities, stating that they reveal a disheartening situation. He said “Nigerian universities are characterized by poor leadership, corrupt practices, avoidable conflicts, general underperformance, profound parochialism and inadequate teaching and learning environment.” According to him, the consequences of poor leadership and bad governance have combined to undermine the capacity of Nigerian Universities to actualize their core mandates of teaching, research and community service. “Poor leadership and bad governance are constituting themselves into stumbling blocks in the universities and are making it difficult for universities to generate original Knowledge, build character, drive innovation and

contribute significantly towards national development. “To a large extend therefore many of the manifest problems of Nigerian universities today are traceable to the governance and leadership which frustrate effective and efficient management of the institutions’ human, financial material and reputational capitals,” he stated.

Rasheed said the governance problems forced NUC in collaboration with the committee of Pro chancellors to organize the two-day retreat for chairmen of councils, vice chancellors, registrars and bursars of all 42 federal universities in the country. Also speaking, the Minister of State for Education, Prof Anthony Anwukah, who noted

that Nigerian universities are not producing what the industries want, said government was proposing the idea of sending students for one more year of internship after graduation, as an additional year of finishing school. Anwukah said Nigerian Graduates were constantly rejected by the industry and authorities were concerned about

the failure of the relationship between universities and the industry, urging the councils to factor into their discussions ways of improving such relationship. According to him, the programme would replace the student industrial work experience scheme, SIWES, under a new name called one year reschooling.

L-R: Customer Support Manager, Flexisaf Edusoft Ltd, Ms. Nora Omini, convener, Annual School Needs Exhibition, Mrs. Emem Opashi and Head Marketing/Sales, School Kits Ltd, Mr. Ope-Kareem Olurotimi during the 2018 ASNE press briefing in Abuja...Friday. Photo: Wale Elekolusi.

NABTEB tasks staff on fraud-free exams


s the May/June 2018 National Te c h n i c a l Certificate, NTC, and National Business Certificate, NBC, examinations kick off nationwide, the National Business and Technical Examinations Board, NABTEB, has charged its management and staff to ensure a fraud-free conduct of the exercise. Chairman, Governing Board of NABTEB, Prof. Leonard Karshima Shilgba, who gave the charge in a statement by NABTEB’s Media and Publicity Consultant, Tom Chiahemen, urged all monitors of the examinations to name

and shame any exam centre where malpractices are allowed to take place. “Be reminded that any direct or indirect sabotage of your monitoring efforts by any staff or Management staff member of NABTEB is a significant and punishable offence, which you should report for prompt and appropriate deterrent sanctions by the Board,” he said. Shilgba further urged monitors of the exercise not to spare even state officers, zonal coordinators and directors of NABTEB who engage in fraudulent practices such

as extortion of money from examination centre owners and undue delay in retrieval of answer booklets. He told candidates to report anyone or organization who engages in photocopy of question papers before an examination or forces candidates to pay more than N11, 500. “The conduct of examinations is the primary task of NABTEB, and therefore its monitoring is an undeniable assignment for you, the Governing Board members,” he said. He promised to forward a state-by-state list of all NABTEB

examinations centres across Nigeria to all board members, while advising them to monitor both in their state of residence, and state of origin. Shilgba urged the Board members to use their influence and connections to gather information on the conduct of the examinations, particularly on the timely and adequate supply of examination materials to the centres, supervision and coordination of the examinations, and prompt retrieval of answer booklets after a subject examination, among others.

FG investigates federal varsities over tuition fee charges


he Federal Government has vowed to investigate and halt the unwholesome practice of some federal universities collecting fees per course unit. Minister of State for Education, Prof. Anthony Anwuka, who made the disclosure in Abuja, restated the federal government’s policy of non-payment of tuition in federal universities across the country. Anwukah said the issue of tuition was discussed at the Federal Executive Council meeting last Wednesday, where it was noted that according to the Nigerian law, no federal university should charge tuition fees. “And then FEC discussed the issue of school fees in the various universities and noted that as of law, no federal university should charge tuition fees. “We understand some universities now charge fees per course unit and we are going to make sure that we investigate that properly and make it stop. “Students could pay other auxiliary fees but not in excess; various university councils and management should be able to fix what fees students should pay that is affordable and acceptable to the students,” he said. The minister, while noting that it was illegal for any federal university to charge tuition fees, said the national Executive Council has ordered the National Universities Commission to clarify and update the council on the matter He however noted that “the federal government does not determine fees for private and state universities, they only take responsibility for fees paid in the federal universities.”


May 14 - 20, 2018


Trump’s GGR: Maternal reproductive health in Nigeria at risk T

By Ijeoma UKAZU

here is growing concern among analysts, stakeholders, including mothers over the undermining effects of President Donald Trump’s policy, commonly referred to as the Global Gag Rule (GGR) on Nigeria’s reproductive and overall health goals. Investigations have shown that the alarming impacts of Trump’s GGR on Nigerian women’s sexual and reproductive health range from commodity insecurity to loss of key U.S. health partners, even financial and administrative burden of compliance. Further disturbing effects of the policy termed, ‘Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance,’ are noticeable in diminished health assistance, chilling effects on advocacy with increasingly hostile domestic environment for sexual and reproductive health and rights. This is worsened by the fact that Nigeria, which is the single largest recipient of U.S. international development aid, relies heavily on global health assistance to meet the needs of its large and growing population. GGR is an executive order by the US government that blocks U.S. federal funding for nongovernmental organisations that provide abortion counselling or referrals, advocate to decriminalise abortion or expand abortion services. Reacting to the development, some expectant mothers who were at the Okeira Primary Health Centre 2 for immunisation decried the far-reaching adverse impact of GGR on free access to family planning commodities in the face of fund cut. Mrs. Anne Ugboaja, 37, a seamstress with two children, revealed that she is currently on a family planning method that would last for three years and was administered free at the health centre. She lamented; “But if these FP commodities can no longer be accessible by women, there is a huge problem,” adding, “it will give rise to unintended pregnancies, unsafe abortions, maternal mortality. “With the economy, most of us hardly meet our daily need not to talk of buying family planning commodities to prevent pregnancy.” She prayed the government to look for alternative funding to cater for these services since GGR policy will have a negative effect mostly women. Also, Mrs. Agnes Afolabi, a

trader and mother of three, said that she was able to space her children because of the family planning method she is using. Commenting on the Mexico City Policy, Afolabi said; “If the policy by President Trump which is the expanded GGR is going to affect family planning services, then the Nigerian women are in trouble. She queried; “How do we prevent unintended pregnancies which will lead to abortion and then possible death or serious complications? What is the fate of the average or rural Nigerian woman when the commodities are eventually made available but not affordable? Afolabi however advised the Nigerian government to step up its game and prevent these impending danger that is about to befall on the country. She said, “for a Nation like ours where abortion is illegal, a lot of women who doesn’t want a pregnancy will seek clandestine

ways to terminate it.” The trader reasoned that the trend which will result in quacks patronage will in turn increase maternal mortality thereby putting Nigeria as an unsafe place to live and child bearing. There are deep concerns among experts that GGR would worsen the maternal morbidity and mortality indices in all the developing countries of the world. This is because abortion is legal only when performed to save a woman’s life in Nigeria. Still, abortions are common, and most are unsafe because they are done clandestinely, by unskilled providers. Commenting, chairman, Association for the Advancement of Family Planning (AAFP), Dr Ejike Oji, said; “The GGR which has reproductive rights advocates reeling is significantly broader than similar bans in place intermittently since 1984. Those past actions were limited to about $600 million in

family planning funding.” Dr Oji made the point at meeting for the Network of Reproductive Health Journalists of Nigeria (NRHJN) in Ibadan, Oyo state with the theme: “Historical Antecedents of the GGR and Its Impact on Sexual Reproductive Health and Right, Civil Society Organisation Focal Point for FP 2020. On the GGR impact, he says, “At a small health center in Lagos, Nigeria, a nurse advises women on how to have a healthy pregnancy. The center is supported by the U.N. Population Fund. This centre will be defunded.” In the same vein, Hauwa Shekarau, Country Director, Ipas Nigeria, in her paper, titled; “Barriers to Safe Abortion Services in Nigeria”, says both the Criminal Code and Penal Code on abortion are restrictive and outdated. “The law is obsolete and is not meeting the yearnings of the people. The law was inelegantly drafted,” Shekarau said. Legally restricting reproductive health services such as abortion does not affect the number of abortions that happen,” Shekarau explained. “Legal restrictions on abortion make abortion unsafe, especially for poor women. Where abortion is legal and safe services are available, deaths and disabilities from abortion are greatly reduced.” The Ipas Nigeria Country Director cited Dr. H. Nakajima, Director-General, WHO, 1999, while condemning the country’s restrictive abortion law saying; “Hundreds of pregnant women, alive at sunset last night never saw the sunrise this morning. “Some of them died in labour, some died of hemorrhage in a hospital lacking blood, some died in the painful convulsions of eclampsia and some died on the table of an unskilled abortionist trying to terminate an unwanted pregnancy.” Also, the Guttmacher Institute 2015 fact sheet shows that unsafe abortion is a major contributor to Nigeria’s high levels of maternal death, ill health and disability. Giving a broader view the vicepresident of Marie Stopes International, Marjorie NewmanWilliams said in a statement, “Evidence shows that by blocking funding to the world’s largest NGO providers of modern contraception, unintended pregnancies and abortions go up. As a result, women and girls are less likely to complete their education, have a career, or pursue their dreams for the future.”

May 14 - 20, 2018


WORLD TIT-BITS Kenya’s dam that killed 45 was ‘built illegally’


Kenyan dam that burst killing more than 40 people - was illegal, the country’s water authority says. The Patel dam was one of a number on a sprawling farm near Solai, 190km (120 miles) from the capital, Nairobi. But none of them had a permit, a Water Resources Management Authority (Warma) spokesman said. The farm’s manager has denied any wrongdoing. Dozens of people are still missing from Wednesday’s tragedy. There are fears that the death toll may rise. It stood at 45 on Friday. Almost half the victims found so far were children. An investigation has been launched. W a r m a s p o k e s w o m a n Elizabeth Luvonga said the farm’s dams lack the necessary permissions. “None of them have permits. That is why they are illegal,” she told Reuters news agency. But the general manager of the farm, Vinoj Kumar, denied the accusation. “All these dams were built about 15 to 20 years before. There’s no [nothing] illegal,” he said. The bursting of the dam sent a reported 70 million litres of water towards the homes below. According to Kenya’s Daily Nation newspaper, the wall of water was about 1.5m high and 500m wide. It destroyed everything in its path including a primary school and power lines.

L-R: Editor, The Abuja Inquirer, Emmanuel Ogbeche, US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Stuart Symington, Special Adviser to President Buhari on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina and Executive Editor, Forefront Magazine, Mr. Amos Dunia during the World Press Freedom Day reception held at the US Ambassador's residence in Abuja. Photo: Wale Elekolusi.

North Korea: UN gains ‘unprecedented access’ during visit T

he head of the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP) believes there is a “sense of optimism” among North Korea’s leaders after enjoying what he said was unprecedented access to the country. David Beasley spent two days in the capital, Pyongyang, and two outside it, accompanied by government minders.

He said the country was working hard to meet nutritional standards, and hunger was not as high as in the 1990s. “There is a sense of turning a new page in history,” he told the BBC. Relations between North Korea and the rest of the world have seen a dramatic shift. Last year the North Korean government

carried out a string of nuclear and missile tests. But next month, its leader Kim Jong-un will meet US President Donald Trump, in what would be the first time a sitting US president has ever met a North Korean leader. Confirmation of the meeting came after landmark talks between North and South Korea.

Mr Trump announced the details of the meeting - in Singapore on 12 June earlier this week, hours after he welcomed home three US detainees released from North Korea. “It’s very structured, very organised, every foot and inch of dirt is being toiled with rakes and hoes and shovels and they’re literally planting crops up

to the edge of the road, down embankments, using every available space, because it is a land that’s mostly mountainous. “I didn’t see starvation like you had in the famine back in the 1990s, that’s the good news. But is there a hunger issue, is there under-nutrition? There’s no question about it.”

Ban on former PM Berlusconi holding office scrapped


n Italian court has lifted a ban on former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi holding public office. He was barred in 2013 after receiving a four-year sentence for tax fraud, although he never spent time in prison. The court decision comes just days after the 81-year-old agreed to his right-wing ally, the

League party, talking to the anti-establishment Five Star party about forming a government. If talks fail and a fresh election is called, Mr Berlusconi could now stand. The court in Milan overturned the ban against the four-time prime minister and billionaire, which was due to remain in effect until 2019. His lawyers had

taken his case to the European Court of Human Rights. Following his conviction in 2013, Mr Berlusconi’s sentence was automatically reduced to 12 months. It was then commuted to community service because of his age. But his political influence has remained. Despite being officially barred from public office and

expelled from the Italian Senate, he has continued to head the Forza Italia party, and his name appeared on ballot papers during Italy’s 4 March general election. He has also proven to be a point of contention in talks between League and Five Star - both populist parties - to form a government as at Sunday’s deadline. Five Star had urged

the League to end its links with Mr Berlusconi, whom it sees as a symbol of the corrupt political practises it rejects. Mr Berlusconi, on Wednesday, said he would not stand in the way of coalition between the two parties, although he said his Forza Italia party would not back a confidence motion of it in parliament.

DR Congo crisis: 400,000 children face starvation


ome 400,000 children are at risk of starving to death in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the United Nations says. Thousands of families in the Kasai region fled to the bush, where they stayed for months, short

of food and water, many have already died. The Kasai region, once one of the most prosperous and peaceful in DR Congo, descended into violence in 2016. Long-simmering resentment exploded into rebellion against the

government. In December 2017, the UN declared the crisis in DR Congo as the highest level of emergency - the same as Yemen, Syria and Iraq. The UN children’s agency Unicef has appealed for $88m (£65m)

in aid for Kasai. Unicef spokesperson Christophe Boulierac has just returned from a trip to Kasai. “I was really shocked by what I saw there,” he said. Mr Boulierac said he had visited three hospitals

and seen children suffering from severe acute malnutrition. When he returned a few days later, several of the children had died. “We are not saying that children are at risk of dying of malnutrition in Kasai, we are saying that

children are already dying, they are dying, they have died, in silence, in the bush”. Some of those who fled the fighting are now returning to their destroyed villages, where no crops have been planted.


May 14 - 20, 2018



Contributory pension suffer setback in 23 states Stories by Sarah NEGEDU


ince the establishment of the Contributory Pension Scheme, CPS, over a decade ago, only 11 states including federal capital territory are said to have fully complied with the scheme. Though the scheme is at different stages of implementation in 23 other states, CPS seem to have been completely ignored in others. The Contributory Pension Scheme was established by the Pension Reform Act of 2004. The participation of state governments in the CPS is in line with the pension reform act 2014 which makes it compulsory for states and local governments to implement contributory pension schemes for their employees. Under the CPS arrangement, employees and employers contribute towards the payment of the employee’s pension at retirement. This is to ensure that all employees in the public and private sectors in Nigeria, including selfemployed persons, receive their retirement benefits as and when due. The minimum rate of contributions is 18 percent of the employee’s monthly emoluments, where 10 percent is contributed by the employer and eight percent is contributed by the employee. However, a publication by the National Pension Commission, PenCom, suggests that only 11 out of the 36 states of the federation had commenced full remittance of pension contributions of their workers. They include Lagos, Osun, Ogun, Ondo, Kaduna, Delta, Anambra, Jigawa, Edo

and Ekiti as well as the Federal Capital Territory. The document showing the status of implementation of the scheme by states further indicates that while 13 out of the 23 states had enacted laws to guide the implementation of the scheme, they had yet to commence remittances. The states are Adamawa, Bayelsa,

Ebonyi, Enugu, Gombe, Imo, Kano, Kogi, Nasarawa, Oyo, Sokoto, Taraba and Abia. PenCom also noted that eight out of the 23 states had commenced the framework for the implementation with bills that pending at their respective Houses of Assembly. They are Bauchi, Benue, Borno, Cross River, Katsina,

Kwara, Plateau and Akwa Ibom. While Zamfara, Kebbi and Rivers states are remitting only the employees’ portion of pension contributions, Yobe state is yet to implement the contributory pension scheme in any form. The Pension regulator, PenCom, had recently revealed that

the country’s total pension fund assets had risen to N7.77trillion as of February 2018, due to increase in the enrolment of CPS. The number of contributors under the scheme had grown steadily by over 390,000, increasing from 7.50 million in March 31, 2017 to 7.90 million by February 28, 2018.

L-R: Chief Executive Officer, Transcorp Hotels Plc, Mr. Valentine Ozigbo, Chairman, League Management Company and Vice President, Nigeria Football Federation, Shehu Dikko and Manager Transcorp Hilton, Ahmed AbdelGhafar during the hotel's corporate cocktail...Thursday. Photo: Cityvoix.

Insurance sector not under threat -NAICOM


he National I n s u r a n c e Commission, NAICOM, has dismissed insinuations of a looming collapse of five insurance companies operating in the country, insisting the listed companies are financially strong and solvent The commission’s rebuttal comes after a media report that solvency ratio of five, out of 12 Nigerian insurers companies have fallen below regulatory threshold. A national daily had reported that the five insurers whose solvency ratio are below the

threshold are Aiico Insurance Nigeria Plc with solvency ratio of 55 percent, First Bank Insurance Plc with a ratio reportedly at 59.10, percent, Lead way Assurance Limited: with 76percent, NEM Insurance Plc, 93 percent and Continental Nigeria Plc which the report also said currently stands 90 percent. The report noted that any insurance firm whose insolvency ratio is below the minimum level automatically lose the ability to settle all claims from its clients in an extreme situation. Describing the report

as false and misleading, the Deputy Director and Head, Corporate Affairs, of the commission, Mr. Rasaaq Salami, said while not holding brief for any company, “NAICOM, being the apex Regulatory and Supervisory body of the insurance sector in Nigeria do hereby refutes this claim in its entirety.” Salami in a statement titled: “Re: Solvency ratio of 5 Insurers fall below regulatory threshold,” said the five companies mentioned in the publication are financially strong and solvent. “With the benefit of hindsight, the report is not only false but

misleading as the stated solvency ratios are at variance with the true position,” he said. Section 24(2) of the Insurance Act 2003 stipulates that the solvency margin of an Insurer shall not be less than 15 per centum of the gross premium income less reinsurance premiums paid out during the year under review or the minimum paid up capital whichever is greater. “Suffice it to say that the solvency test of the financials of insurance companies in Nigeria is based on the provision of extant laws.

RMAFC recovers govt. funds held in banks FG eyes more revenue from tax The Federal Government has said it would mobilise more revenues to drive its growth plan for the economy, by increasing it tax payers’ base beyond the current 19million. The Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, stated this at a meeting with a World Bank Mission of 10 executive directors led by Mr. Patrizio Pagano. Adeosun said the current administration is committed to accelerating Nigeria’s growth level and also improve the ‘Ease of Doing Business’ in the country. “The Nigerian Government is working towards accelerating the country’s growth level. The growth will be underpinned by stimulating the ‘Ease of Doing Business’ in Nigeria and improving our capital expenditure which we have done in the last two years. “Nigerians should trust the Government to deliver on its promises of improving the economy and providing s u s t a i n a b l e infrastructure development. We are very optimistic but we will remain vigilant,” Adeosun said. She said that the country’s tax payers’ base had risen from 14 million in 2016 to 19 million in 2018, grossing additional five million tax payers into the system. “By 2019, the growth will be stronger than the present level in 2018. We are optimistic in sustaining Nigeria’s economic growth. That is why we are driving the mobilisation of more revenues. “We have been able to grow the tax payers’ base to 19 million in two years from the 65 million economically active people who are not tax complaint,” she added. On his part, the

May 14 - 20, 2018



FG eyes more revenue from tax Stories by Sarah NEGEDU


he Federal Government has said it would mobilise more revenues to drive its growth plan for the economy, by increasing it tax payers’ base beyond the current 19million. The Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, stated this at a meeting with a World Bank Mission of 10 executive directors led by Mr. Patrizio Pagano. Adeosun said the current administration is committed to accelerating Nigeria’s growth level and also improve the ‘Ease of Doing Business’ in the country. “The Nigerian Government is working towards accelerating the country’s growth level. The growth will be underpinned by stimulating the ‘Ease of Doing Business’ in Nigeria and improving our capital expenditure which we have done in the last two years. “Nigerians should trust the Government to deliver on its promises of improving the economy and providing sustainable infrastructure development. We are very optimistic but we will remain vigilant,” Adeosun said. She said that the country’s tax payers’ base had risen from 14 million in 2016 to 19 million in 2018, grossing additional five million tax payers into the system. “By 2019, the growth will be stronger than the present level in 2018. We are optimistic in sustaining Nigeria’s economic growth. That is why we are driving the mobilisation of more revenues. “We have been able to grow the tax payers’ base to 19 million in two years from the 65 million economically active people who are not tax complaint,” she added. On his part, the Leader of the World Bank Mission to Nigeria, Patrizio Pagano, explained that the team was in the country to acquaint itself with the Government’s growth and power priorities. “We have met with several Nigerian entrepreneurs and have

seen how vibrant the private sector is. We want to understand how the power sector is evolving in Nigeria,” Pagano said. The World Bank officials had earlier met with the organised private sector in Lagos

and undertaken a tour of LAPO Microfinance project in Lagos. The 10 World Bank’s Executive Directors, representing 96 countries, are expected to inspect the Azura Power Plant in Edo State in the course of their

three-day visit to Nigeria. The visit is expected to provide a first-hand impression of the challenges that both the Federal and State Governments face in i m p l e m e n t i n g development projects as

well as ensuring good governance overall. It will further enhance the goal of the Bank for member-countries and the effectiveness of the Executive Directors in providing the necessary support.

L-R: Managing Director of NNPC Retail Ltd, Mr. Yemi Adetunji; GMD NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru, and Chairman of Board of Directors of NNPC Retail Ltd and Chief Operating Officer, Gas and Power of NNPC, Engr. Saidu Mohammed at the Annual General Meeting of NNPC Retail Limited at the NNPC Towers in Abuja.

Bank’s credit to private sector drops by N140bn T

he National Bureau of Statistics, NBS, reports that banks’ credit to the private sector fell by N140billion in the first quarter of 2018, dropping to N15.6trillion in the period. The Bureau, in its latest banking sector report titled “Sectorial Breakdown of Credit, epayment Channels, and Staff Strength Q1’18 Report” reveals that the credit provided by banks reduced from N15.74trillion in the fourth quarter of 2017, to N15.6trillion in the first quarter of 2018. An analysis of the report shows that the mining & quarrying sector, power & energy sector and transportation & storage sector suffered

the highest decline in credit in the first quarter compared to the previous quarter. However, the Oil and Gas and Manufacturing sectors got credit allocation of N3.42 trillion and N2.07 trillion to record the highest credit allocation within the period under review. The information & communication sector, general sector, and ‘other ’ sectors also enjoyed the high increase in credit allocation between January and March 2018. The mining & quarry sector suffered the highest decline as credit to the sector fell by 58percent to N10.5billion in first quarter from N25.2billion in Q4’17. This was followed by credit to power &

energy sector, which fell by 28percent to N426.5billion in Q1’18 from N453.9billion in Q4’17. Credit to the transportation and storage sector (services) also fell by 12.2percent to N291.7 billion in Q1’18 from N332.09billion in Q4’17. On the other hand, credit to the information sector rose by 11.7percent to N865.3 billion in Q1’18 from N774.4 billion in Q4’17. Credit to the general sector also increased by 10.6percent to N1.15trillion from N1.04trillion in Q4’17. Similarly, credit to ‘other’ sectors rose by 8.5percent to N384.9 billion in Q1’18 from the N354.8billion provided in Q4’17. M e a n w h i l e ,

Automated Teller Machines, ATM, transactions from selected Banks across the country, recorded transactions valued at N1.568 billion in first quarter. The NBS reports that a total of 457,226,406 transactions valued at N32.48trillion were recorded in the first quarter on Electronic Payment Channels in the Nigeria Banking Sector. It, however, stated that ATM transactions dominated the volume of businesses recorded by the banking sector which was 212,370,853 transactions. The report also shows that the number of banks staff decreased by -0.93 percent from 90,453 in the fourth quarter of 2017 to 89,608 in the review period.

Tax: Whistle blowers get N439million reward


ourteen whistle blowers have received the sum of N439.27million as reward for providing reliable tips on individuals and companies that evaded their tax obligations to the federal government. The whistle blower policy is a public interest instrument developed in December 2016 to help in the fight against corruption. Under the policy, government promised between 2.5percent to 5percent of recovered funds as incentives to persons who provide actionable tips that leads to the recovery of funds. The whistle blowing bill before the national assembly seeks to protect information providers by making it an offence to disclose the identity of a whistle blower or victimise them. Confirming the latest payment to newsmen in Abuja, the minister of finance Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, said government was able to recover N14.8billion into the tax poll, as a result of the tips provided by the whistle blowers. Although the minister was silent on the identity of the tax defaulters, she said the tips on tax evasion are quite unique and different from the past trend where whistle blowers focus on stolen funds alone. Adeosun is optimistic that the recoveries made and rewards paid, will chart a new course for tax recovery in the country. “The whistle blower policy started in December 2016 and since then we have had 8373 communications of which 1231 of them are actually tips. We have carried out 534 investigations, we’ve got 10 under prosecutions and we have secured 4convictions. “So far the sum of N7.8billion have been shared $378million 27800pounds. But in the recent batch paid this week (last week), for the first time we paid N439,276,099.86k to 14 people who gave us specific tips on tax evasion.


May 14 - 20, 2018


Oriaku stakes APGA’s claim to Abia As preparations for 2019 general election gather momentum, a frontline politician, Hon. Kingsley Oriaku, has assured that All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, will take over Abia state following the alleged lackluster performance of Governor Ikpeazu of the PDP. The politician, who is running for Ikwuano/Umuahia Federal Constituency, stated that Abia must be rescued from the doldrums. He stated that his political career started in Abuja and urged the electorate to embrace APGA as it has what it takes to make a change. Oriaku spoke to The Abuja Inquirer in Abuja. Excerpts:


s the 2019 general elections draw nearer, what are your political plans, if any? Yes, having stayed in Abuja for quite some time, and having participated very well in Abuja politics, since 2007 till date, a time came and I felt that I have to return back and start repairing my own house, because it is said that charity begins at home. We have done it in the Federal Capital Territory and there is a cry for help from my constituency. I want to return to base to see how I could contribute my own quota in building Abia State to what it should be politically. I can tell you that Abia State has gotten it wrong for quite a long time. Now we are asking for a new stage of the All Progressives Grand Alliance. If you remember, a lot of politicians are asking the youths to take over power and we need to go back to the grassroots where the real politics is. So instead of FCT, let me return back to Abia State, not only Abia, but to my constituency. And that is why I am vying for the House of Representatives in Ikwuano/Umuahia Federal Constituency come 2019. What actually are the main reasons for your decision, and what should the people expect? As at today, Abia State has not been properly represented at all levels. For instance, Abia State is housing a War Museum, which is supposed to be a very historical and a tourist centre, not only to Nigerians, but internationally. But unfortunately, nobody knows that such a place exists in the state. There are some policies that we need to put in place to attract people to these places. Also, look at the commercial nature of Aba town, which can sustain any state in the country, but you will see that we need a representative that can promote the town. Again, Abia State has a lot of educated people, but the question is whether there is any provision to accommodate them in the labour market or empower them to find their feet. Those are the things which we want to look at when given the opportunity. We want to bring out the qualities in Abia State that have been hidden in all these years. That is why I said that we have never gotten it right in representation, in all these years. What do you think is responsible for this lack of proper representation all these years? You see, when the foundation is faulty, anything you are doing about

a building, is also faulty. Abia State has not gotten it right since 1999. So, the only thing we are going to do is to dismantle the entire structure and start all over. This is because if we don’t dismantle and start building, whether we like it or not, we will surely come back to the foundation. We got it wrong in 1999, because we have never been opportune in the state. For instance, look at Anambra State. At a time the state got it right. Look at what they are doing today. That is why I believe that in 2019, Abia State is going to take a new look. Recently, there was an exhibition of certain products from Aba in Abuja. What is your take on this? To me, exhibition is not what matters at the moment, rather let’s develop Aba town. Infrastructure and security are what Aba needs, because for someone to come and do business in any place, he has to be sure of the security of his investments and that of his life. We should get the security of Aba town right. The infrastructure is so poor that you don’t feel free to drive around the town. Naturally, you don’t need to come and tell people what you have, because they will see it, because good things smell good. People will naturally come to Aba on their own if the issues of infrastructure and security are addressed. You will find out that tourism will naturally come in. Commercial activities will increase naturally and not exhibition, which I believe is political. If elected as a federal legislator, how are you going to address these challenges? As a federal legislator, you can equally do a lot of economic promotion. You can equally raise a lot of awareness, both in the house and channel it to the federal government and even the state governorthat there is an urgent attention. For the issue of security, it is what you as a legislator can raise as an alarm, because if you don’t announce it, nobody will announce it for you. Moreover it is a team work that you are expected to do. To most people, Umuahia the state capital is overcrowded and dirty. What will you do in thisregard, if elected? We have to widen the town. Did you get what I am saying? That was why I mentioned poor infrastructure.

Hon. Kingsley Oriaku

In development, developers are not asking you to give them money. What they are asking is for you to provide infrastructure and they will come and develop the area. Umuahia needs to be opened and the investors will come. But everybody is choking inside the town. That is where the problems lie. How many federal allocations are we having and how have we put these things in the budget. And not only putting them in the budget but also following it up from the house and the department that is responsible. What we are telling people is to forget politics and provide the needs of the people. What do you think that an APGA-led government can do to convince the people that it is ready for a change? I want to tell you the caliber of people we are fielding under APGA come 2019. I don’t know if you know about Mr. Alex Oti, former CEO of Diamond Bank. He is coming up as our candidate. You will discover that Alex Oti cannot be called a hungry man. He has made a mark in the banking industry. These are the

type of people who are coming to Abia to laylegacies for the state. APGA is a mass movement. The people of Abia State should give APGA an opportunity, because it will never disappoint them, because APGA is like a party for all. As an Abuja politician for a very long time, how are you close to the grassroots in your constituency? For the past two to three months, we have tried to identify on one-onone with those at the wards level in my constituency. We have three local governments under my constituency and in each of the local governments there are 10 wards. I can assure you that we have gone to identify with them. We have met with the wards in the three local governments, including their chairmen and others. We started from primary one, primary two and now we are in primary three. I can tell you that we have met with the wards chairmen, their secretaries, the youth leaders. We have equally met with the three local government chairmen, including their exco. What we are doing at the moment is to see how we can build it together.

May 14 - 20, 2018



he worst thing that can happen to an individual is to deploy his/her strength and capability to the wrong vocation. Vocation will make you earn a living but the discovery and harnessing of purpose will make you an impact or a legacy. Purpose cannot be overemphasized but until you explore your potentials in terms of your passion, then will you only be fulfilled. A great scholar wrote: “When the purpose of a thing is not known, abuse is inevitable”. The discovery of your passion is an equivalent to your purpose and it is your purpose that will make you a legend in your dispensation. We must endeavour to encourage people to live their life according to their good desires and aspirations. We cannot determine the future of any man by insisting on what we want them to do, especially, parent cussing their children/ward for a choice of course. God is the final and supreme being responsible for our fulfilment and greatness. Proverbs 29:18 “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.” John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Vision is having a mental picture of your preferred future. The activities of your day to day lifestyle is a reflection of your future. What you act and see is a replica of your

God’s purpose for your life vision. Your vision can only be achieved when you are deplored or you deploy yourself to the related field of your passion. 1 Corinthians 9:16 “For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!” The Kingdom of God or secular world are filled with accomplished people who attained their vision through hard-work. The desire and urge to fulfil purpose becomes a priority. The God factor is very keen and pertinent in advancement and achievements of your purpose. Diligence: key factor in accomplishing your purpose 1. It is a commandment: There is no sudden star and the stage is never for one person. The continuous practice

leaves you a star. Laziness is a killer of diligence. Continuity and persistency is the reward for relevance. Diligence will put you in a place where you are gifted and even certified by education. Luke 19:13 “And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come.” 2. It keeps you healthy: Diligence by work keeps your mind active and healthy. The routine of working will make you an asset and not a liability. Laziness makes you sickly and repulsive to people, that might even want to help you. Going to work serves as an exercise that can keep you away from hypertension, arthritis, etc. Ecclesiastes 10:18 “By much slothfulness the building decayeth; and through idleness of the hands the house droppeth through.”

3. It gives God a channel to bless you: God blesses something and not nothing. God gives us jobs, so we can pay our tithes, offerrings, vows, etc. Idleness is a slap, because it averts blessings from God and Man. Luke 6:38 “Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.” Psalm 1:1-6 “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord ; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper. The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.” 4. Working brings fulfilment as you have daily obligations to meet: Deuteronomy 33:7 “And this is the blessing of Judah: and he said, Hear, Lord , the voice of Judah, and bring him unto his people: let his hands be sufficient for him; and be thou an help to him from his enemies.”


Addiction: FG bans codeine production, importation By Williams ABAH


he Federal Ministry of Health has directed the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, to ban with immediate effect further issuance of permits for the importation of codeine as well as pharmaceutical ingredients for cough preparations. Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, made this known in his office in Abuja, stating that the directive became necessary due to the gross abuse of codeine usage in the country. The minister said codeine containing cough syrups should be replaced with dextromethorphan which is less addictive, while directing the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria, PCN and NAFDAC to supervise the recall for labelling and audit trailing of all codeine containing cough syrups in the

country. He noted that the NAFDAC had an emergency meeting with the Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Group, PMGMAN, to inform them that there is an embargo on all new applications for

registration of codeinecontaining cough syrups as well as applications for renewal has been abolished. The Pharmacists Council of Nigeria, PCN, has been directed to continue enforcement activities on Pharmacies,

Patent and Proprietary Medicine Vendor ’s Shops and outlets throughout the country The minister stated that the ministry shall ensure collaboration among regulatory agencies namely, NAFDAC, PCN,

National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria, NMCN, for e f f e c t i v e implementation of extant Acts, regulations, policies and guidelines on codeine

control and usage. Adewole also said that these agencies shall work together to i n c r e a s e pharmacovigilance around codeine, tramadol and other related substances of abuse.

FRSC trains personnel on rescue operation in Dutse By Ateed YUSUF


he Dutse unit command of the Federal Road Safety, FRSC, has put measures in place to train personnel on successful rescue operation during accidents. The unit

commanding officer of Dutse in Bwari area council, Mr. Livinus Okonkwo, disclosed this to The Abuja Inquirer at the end of a seminar organised by the command to provide rescue tips to FRSC officers. Okonkwo said that the command under his

watch would continue to enhance the capacity of staff through in-house training to equip them on modern methods of rescue operations in line with international best practices. The commanding officer noted that FRSC officials need necessary training and re-training,

just as he said that specialization is one of the things that make rescue operators to save the lives of accident victims. He stated that when officers lack the technicality and efficiency to conduct successful operation there were possibilities

Police, stakeholders meet over “one chance” in Zuba By Ateed YUSUF


he Divisional Police Officer, DPO, in charge of Zuba, a suburb of Gwagwaldada area council, Sani Fodio has solicited the support of stakeholders to tackle the menace of “one chance”

and robbery in the area. He made this known while interacting with residents of the area when they paid him a courtesy call on assumption of duty, while encouraging them to always provide useful information in the fight against crime.

Fodio, who is a Chief Superintendent of Police, CSP, assured the residents that he would propagate community policing, and implored them to regard security as a collective responsibility. The Zuba police boss reiterated his

commitment to members of the vigilante, Police Community Relations Committee, PCRC, to make them efficient, even as he tasked ward and village heads as well as Fulani vigilante to forward the list of their members for scrutiny.

of having an increase in number of casualties. The unit commander said the seminar also equipped staff with knowledge of accident investigation procedure, noting that rescue operators faced challenges to include lack of adequate logistics, poor road condition and aggression from the onlookers while carrying out rescue. Okonkwo also stated that the command is collaborating with stakeholders such as NURTW and hospital management with a view to giving FRSC officials opportunity to carry out rescue mission efficiently.


May 14 - 20, 2018


At UTC Abuja, the hustle is real By Chuks NZEH


oung Nigerians have over the years proven to be industrious and innovative especially in the trade, technology and entertainment. The evidence of this was further buttressed with the visit of Facebook’s founder, Mark Zuckerberg, to Nigeria in 2016, when he made satisfying remarks about young Nigerians making exploit in various field. Zuckerberg during the tech tour, was amazed at the level of innovation he witnessed in some of the places he visited. From the Co-creation Hub in Yaba Lagos, to the Afrinolly creative hub, the young billionaire was impressed with the young Nigerians he interacted with. Like Lagos, the popular UTC market in Area 7 Abuja, is also a meeting point for hard working Nigerian youths. Though not a technological hub, the market is notable for the volume of printing jobs carried out daily. The market under the management of the Abuja Investment Company, provides the rendezvous for over 1,000 young people to interact with potential customers thereby contributing their quota to national development. The market manager, Mrs. Peace Okoh, said about 90 percentage of the traders in this market are young people who are determined to contribute their quota to the Gross Domestic Product, GDP, of the country, because they have made the market more popular and known for quality printing works. According to Mrs. Okoh, “We have 471 shops and most shops have about 7, person attached to it just to ensure they have a place to do something tangible to make a living for themselves and they are not doing bad at all. “People come from all parts of the country to patronise the works of these young people, men and women alike, because of the quality and affordability of their works, and they make enough money to meet their daily needs, for those in school, they pay their way through, secondary and even tertiary.” Some printers who spoke to METRO, said the obvious challenges they face in the market include interrupted power supply, especially considering that they require constant power supply. They however disclosed that government recently provided them with 800 KVA, generator to augment, what the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company, AEDC, is supplying to the market for effective productivity. Another challenge business owners

Some workers at the UTC, Abuja

in UTC face is the rising electricity tariff. For instance they said, the complex’ electricity bill rose from N2million in recent past, to N4million. This huge increase has not gone down well with the traders who say they are forced to pay huge bills even when they hardly have power supply and are forced to contribute for diesel to power the generator. The manager said, “The AEDC, has assured us of constant power for production to continue and we have been having effective power supply, except for last month when it dropped, but now it is better and the authorities have told the traders to contact them directly when they have issues concerning the electricity supply instead of approaching the Garki office and I think it would get better.” Another challenge confronting them at the market is that of touting, where some young men who are not attached to any of our shops, harass customers who come into the market for printing jobs. “We urge people not to patronise them because it is dangerous most of them are not traceable to any shop and most times they produce substandard jobs and it is bringing disrepute to the integrity of the market built over the years. “We are working with the Abuja

Environmental Protection Board, AEPB, task force to arrest them and we want them to station a vehicle around the market to discourage them from continuing that trend. Though some of them are willing to work and that is why we would like government to expand the market to accommodate some of the young people who are willing to come into the market and do it right. “What some of them need is the opportunity, to get an affordable shop space where they can practice their trade legally because they have the potentials, but cannot afford the shops for now. The garden market across the road is an illegal market, and government is losing revenue from there to the tune over N190 million annually, if government can reorganise the market hand it over to the Abuja Investment to manage, it would go a long way to increase revenue for government and take these youths of the street. Also speaking on the issue, Mr. Wilfred Okolo, Managing Director, Willy-Tex, Integrated Ventures, a stationeries and computer accessories dealer, said that young people in the market are trying but for the high cost of renting the shops “for instance this my shop goes for N500, 000:00, so most of them cannot afford it but they are still

hustling at least to put food on the table, they want support to grow. The lazy ones are at home sleeping or wait for the night to go for robbery.” A ‘mobile printer’ attached to one of the shops Balogun Aliyu told this reporter that some shops have up to 20 persons attached to them and everybody is hustling at the same time. “You only come to the office when you get a client to show where to locate you. For instance you can see I am going to deliver this printing job, that is how we survive we have people who we work for, they trust us because we deliver according to their specification. A female printer, Aisha Abdullahi said she has an Ordinary National Diploma, and have been in the business for close to 6 years now and has been paying her bills from printing at UTC. She said if government can support young people, “we are willing to be productive, some people ask me why I am doing men’s work but I ask them if man is written on any profession and they will never answer that question.” Emeka Nwachukwu of Tip Top Digital Concept, said government should work towards reducing rent for shops to make it more affordable so that more people can be engaged, people who share shops do not like it like that but it is because it is not affordable.

May 14 - 20, 2018


May 14 - 20, 2018

Dani Alv es tto o Alves miss World Cup with knee injur injuryy


razil rightback Dani Alves will miss this summer’s World Cup with a knee injury. The 35-year-old damaged the cruciate ligament in his right knee in PSG’s French Cup final win this week. It was hoped he would recover in time for the tournament in Russia but the Brazilian federation said on Friday that it was “impossible.” The former Barcelona and Juventus defender has won 106 caps and played in the 2010 and 2014 World Cups. Five-time winners Brazil will face Switzerland, Costa Rica and Serbia in Group E.

lInjured Dani

Neymar, Messi and Saurez during a Barcelona match

I miss Messi and Suarez -Neymar N

eymar has admitted that he misses playing with Barcelona stars Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez on a daily basis. The Brazil international became the world’s most expensive player when he moved to Paris SaintGermain for a fee of •222 million (£200m/ $271m) from the Camp Nou side last summer. He has admitted that he misses the partners that he made the

famous ‘MSN’ strike trio up with. “The friendship that we had was something very beautiful. What I miss from Barcelona and about Barcelona is these two, due to the joy we had on a daily basis,” he told Zico during an interview broadcast on YouTube. “There was a game where I dribbled several

players and then gave a pass. “Messi dribbled several players in another play and Suarez tried to do the same dribbling and then a backflip pass. “We started to laugh at him. We were so intimate that we could laugh at each other when one couldn’t do things.

And then he arrives at the locker room and says: ‘Well, I saw you dribbling and I tried to do the same!’” However, the 26year-old has suggested that he will not leave PSG this summer, despite persistent rumours linking him with a move back to Spain – either to Barcelona or Real

Madrid. On Saturday, he posted a tweet that seemed to pledge his immediate future to the French treble winners. “Proud to wear the new jersey and to continue giving you joy,” read his caption, with an image accompanying it of him in the club’s new kit.

Buffon charged over ref Oliver comments


uventus’ Gianluigi Buffon has been charged by Uefa over comments about referee Michael Oliver after their Champions League defeat by Real Madrid. Buffon was sent off for dissent after Oliver awarded Real a late penalty, which they scored to go through. Following the quarter-final second leg on 11 April, Italian Buffon said the official had “a bag of rubbish” rather than “a heart” and should “sit in the stands” and “eat crisps”. Real progressed 4-3 on aggregate.

Uefa says the 40year-old Italy goalkeeper has been charged with breaching its “general principles of conduct” after his outburst against the English referee. European football’s governing body, which also charged Buffon for the red card, said in a statement the case will be dealt with on 31 May. Referee Oliver and wife Lucy were offered police support after both were targeted on social media following the incident, with police also investigating threatening text messages.

Immediately after the game, Juventus captain Buffon said: “It was a tenth of a penalty. “I know the referee saw what he saw, but it was certainly a dubious incident. Not clear-cut. And a dubious incident at the 93rd minute when we had a clear penalty denied in the first leg, you cannot award that at this point. “The team gave its all, but a human being cannot destroy dreams like that at the end of an extraordinary comeback on a dubious situation. “Clearly you cannot have a heart in your chest, but a bag of rubbish. On top of that,

if you don’t have the character to walk on a pitch like this in a stadium like this, you can sit in the stands with your wife, your kids, having your drink and eating crisps. “You cannot ruin the dreams of a team. I could’ve told the referee anything at that moment, but he had to understand the degree of the disaster he was creating. “If you can’t handle the pressure and have the courage to make a decision, then you should just sit in the stands and eat your crisps.”

The Abuja Inquirer is published by Gazetta Communications Limited. HEAD OFFICE: Plot 207, Jumai Kwanashie Crescent (Formerly 44 Crescent) CITEC Villas, Gwarimpa II, ABUJA, NIGERIA. Tel: 08033027995 E-mail: Website: Publisher-Editor-in-Chief: DAN AKPOVWA

Edition 34  
Edition 34