Osun West: Battle For Senatorial Ticket Hots Up

The struggle for the successor of the late Senator Isiaka Adeleke has thickened in the Osun West Senatorial District of the state, as the major political parties have been divided over who becomes the party flag bearer in the bye election.

Sequel to the death of Senator Adeleke, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has fixed July 8, 2017 for the bye election.

Investigations revealed that the intending aspirants from both parties have been lobbying to ensure that the ticket is eventually given to one of them.

It was gathered that the PDP in the state is slowing down its race for the ticket to get a clearer picture on whether or not the family would present the late senator’s younger brother, Ademola Adeleke for the race.

A faction of the party in the state is said to have instructed all its members not to make their intention known yet until the stand of Adeleke family is known, with a view to know the direction it would go.

Nevertheless, interetsed aspirants have continued to do their underground political legwork for the race.

It was gathered that the party even sanctioned a dissenting party member who went on social media to announce his intention for betraying the collective agreement of the party.

However, the battle is said to be more intense in the APC, especially as the family had shown strong interest in pushing the Adeleke’s younger brother forward for the race under the platform of the APC against the wish of some party leaders.

It was gathered that in a bid to actualize the objectives, the loyalist of Adeleke has formed a group within the party to help push the aspiration to have Ademola complete the tenure of his elder brother.

The group, known as Adeleke Solidarity Movement (ASM), according to sources, is aimed at fighting some other group within the party to ensure that it is a contending force in the battle for the ticket.

Checks showed that the group already has members cut across all the wards in the state within the short time of its formation.

It was gathered that Dr. Deji Adeleke has vowed to sponsor the aspiration irrespective of the difficulty the family might encounter in the process and do not mind to reach compromise with some alleged dissident within the APC.

It was also learnt that the leader of the party in Iwo axis of the senatorial district is not encouraging any indigene to contest for the post of Senator as a pointer to the fact that the town is working towards the governorship ticket of the party in the 2018 governorship poll.

Though, the Secretary of the APC in the State, Rasaq Salinsile is alleged to be working towards the senatorial ticket, eminent sons and daughters of the town are not in any way in support of his ambition.

According to a source, some leaders of the APC were reported to be rooting for the former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Olubunmi Etteh to fly the party flag for the race.

It was also learnt that a former Chairman, Egbedore Local Government, Bamidele Salaam has also indicated interest to contest for the seat under the platform of the PDP. He is of Soji Adagunodo faction of the party in the state.

Osun Govt Rehabilitates 160 Lunatics, Rescues Over 5000 Victims of Accident

Recently sworn in Commissioner for Information and Strategy in Osun, Mr. Adelani Baderinwa, has said that 160 lunatics have been rehabilitated by the state government, while over 5,000 accident victims were rescued through its health and welfare programmes since 2013.

Baderinwa made this known to newsmen when he visited the NUJ Correspondents’ Chapel in Osogbo, on Wednesday.

He said the O’ Rehabilitation Programme of Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s administration had succeeded in providing cure to 160 insane people who were integrated back into the society.

The commissioner said the rehabilitation programme had also cleaned up streets, cities and towns across the state .

He disclosed that over 5000 accident victims were rescued and evacuated through the Osun Ambulance Service, thereby saving lives of many road users.

Baderinwa who advised media practitioners in the state to embrace developmental journalism, stressed the need to develop robust relationship between journalists and the state government in order to ensure free flow of information on government policies and programmes.

Corruption: Justice Ademola, five others Recalled by NJC

The National Judicial Council has recalled a Federal High Court judge, Adeniyi Ademola, who was suspended alongside seven other judges following allegations of corruption brought against them by the federal government.

In a statement Saturday, the council said Mr. Ademola was recalled alongside five other judges.

Mr. Ademola and seven other judges were suspended in November 2016.

Three of the affected judges were charged to court, but it is only Mr. Ademola’s case that has so far been concluded.

The judge was acquitted of the charge of corruption.

The other recalled judges are: John Inyang Okoro of the Supreme Court, Uwani Aji of the Court of Appeal; Hydiazira Nganjiwa of the Federal High Court; Musa H. Kurya of the Federal High Court; and Agbadu James Fishim of National Industrial Court of Nigeria.

Golden Jubilee: Lagos’ Public Service most Progressive in Nigeria – Ambode

Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode has described the State Public Service as the most progressive in Nigeria.

The governor said this during 2017 summit of the Association of Lagos state Retired Heads of Service and Permanent Secretaries in commemoration of 50th anniversary of Lagos state.

Describing civil servants as the engine room of any government, Governor Ambode said over the years, members of the association had contributed immensely to the growth of the State, and that it was important for them to continue to put their wealth of knowledge at the disposal of the State.

Governor Ambode, being a product of the public service, as a retired Permanent Secretary in the State, said he was looking forward with confidence to a robust and inspiring communique at the end of the two-day summit.

The governor also commended the association for dedicating this year’s summit to the celebration of the golden jubilee of Lagos state.

Osun Govt appeals to Protesting Doctors to Bear with Government

The State Government of Osun has appealed to doctors in the state to bear with government in the face of the current economic challenges.

The newly swore-in commissioner for health, Dr Rafiu Isamotu made the plea while reacting to a protest staged by the Osun state branch of the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA).

“We take into account plight of every workers’ in the state and are making serious effort to put behind us this economic challenges being experienced in the country which is expected of our Doctors to understand the time we are in now.

It would be recalled members of Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) in Osun State protested at the state House of Assembly over non-payment of their entitlements.

They also want government to implement the new salary scale approved by the federal government for doctors.

Another PDP Senator, Enoh Dumps Party For APC

The senator representing Cross River Central Senatorial District, John Owan Enoh, who was elected on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP in the senate yesterday formally defected to the ruling party, All Progressives Congress, APC, thus further reducing the number of PDP caucus in the upper legislative chamber.
With Enoh’s defection, the number of PDP senators has been reduced to 41 while that of the APC has jumped to 66, including the membership of a Labour Party senator, Ovie Omo-Agege (Delta Central) who also cross-carpeted to the ruling party in March this year.

It would be recalled that Senator Andy Uba, Anambra South, had in February this year dumped the PDP for the APC. Also recall that Senator Uba’s defection came barely a month and two days after Senator Nelson Asuquo Effiong, Akwa Ibom South January 19, dumped the PDP for the APC. Senator Joshua Dariye, PDP, Plateau Central and Senator Yele Omogunwa, PDP, Ondo South had in October and November respectively last year also dumped the PDP for the APC.

Senator Enoh, who came through the Point of Order 43, of the Senate Standing Rule to announce his decision on the floor of the Red Chamber, said he had already resigned his membership of the PDP at the ward level where he has also registered as an APC member.
He was immediately welcomed into the APC’s family by numerous senators from the ruling party, even though as his former colleagues bade him farewell with the help of packing his belongings like the Senate Order Paper when he was about to leave.

NTA Mast Destroyed In Osun by Vandals

Mast belonging to Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) was on Friday vandalised by suspected vandals who normally operate along Oko road in Ejigbo Local Government area of Osun State.

According to an eye witness, this act started yesterday when some men in a van with suspected FG plate number with some policemen were spotted stopping vehicles along Oko road and cautioning motorists that site Engineers were working on a mast.

He further narrated that the vandals gave an impression that the mast could fall any moment; but surprisingly when we got to the site, the men found there are not engineers but some crooks vandalising the mast with some welding machines, gas cylinders and the likes”

It was gathered that Security personnel were not in the known as to claimed by the vandals that they are Engineers contracted by the agency

“If at all the order was from NTA why was the fourteen tyre lorry found at the site loaded with the some bars cut from the mast”, the eyewitness queried.

Osun Finance Commissioner, Oyebamiji Tasks Staff To Be Result Oriented

The newly sworn in Commissioner for Finance, Mr Bola Oyebamiji on Friday charged the entire staff of the Ministry of Finance to be up and doing in their duties to get optimum results.

 

Mr Oyebamiji made the charge while meeting the Management of the Ministry on assumption of office.

 

The Honourable Commissioner seeks for support and collaboration of staff with a view of moving the State forward.

 

He also promised to operate open administration while encouraging staff to be committed, hardworking and prayerful.

He then urged the staff to cultivate the habit of team work, love, tolerance, friendliness and uprightness in their duties. He said by doing this, optimum results would be achieved.
In her response, the Permanent Secretary, Mrs Adebimpe Ogunlumade while welcoming him assured him of unalloyed support and cooperation of the staff to achieve a greater height.

 

Tuition Fee of N2bn Approved For Sokoto Students

Government of Sokoto State has approved two billion naira for the payment of tuition and upkeep allowances of its students studying locally and overseas.

In an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) by the state’s Commissioner for Higher Education, Alhaji Isah Gada disclosed that government approval was secured for the affected students.

He said that the ministry had recently concluded payment of entitlements of students, studying in Bangladesh and Sudan.

Gada said that students in Uganda and other institutions around the globe would soon be paid their payments.

He said that the state’s scholarship board had been receiving tremendous support from the State Government.

The commissioner disclosed that 20,000 fresh and returning students were currently being sponsored by the State Government.

He said that the scholarship board had started processing information on students electronically to make payments to students faster and easier.

The commissioner said, however, that there were pressing challenges facing the board, including a lack of operational vehicles.

“There is a lack of vehicles required for effective running of the board and monitoring of our students in various institutions of higher learning across the country.’’

He said that the board was also lacking access to internet facilities for easier communication and monitoring of students within and outside the country.

(NAN)

Ebonyi Governor, Umahi Reshuffles Cabinet

The Ebonyi State Governor, Mr David Umahi has carried out a major cabinet reshuffle where four commissioners, two Senior Special Assistants and 11 Senior Assistants swapped positions.

Commissioner for Information, Senator Emmanuel Onwe made this known in Abakaliki while briefing newsmen on the outcome of the state Executive Council meeting.

According to Onwe, the state Commissioner for Solid Minerals, Chief Sabinus Nwakwegu, will take charge of Ministry of Border, Peace and Conflict Resolution, while his Economic Empowerment counterpart, Chief Donatus Njoku, takes over Environment ministry.

“The Commissioner for Border, Peace and Conflict Resolution, Dr Francis Orji, takes over the Solid Minerals ministry, while the Commissioner for Environment, Chief Moses Ogodo-Ali will head the Ministry of Economic Empowerment,’’ he said.

Onwe said that the SSA on House of Assembly Matters, Mr Ikechukwu Ogbu, will be in charge of Salt and Cement Production, while the SSA on Salt and Cement Production, Mr Sunday Ugwuocha, will take over Assembly Matters.

“The SA on Talent Development, Mrs Jacinta Nworie, will be in charge of Income Tax, SA on Primary Health (Ebonyi North), Dr Chris Achi, takes over Information and Communication Technology (ICT), and SA, Primary Heath (Ebonyi South), Chikere Omebe, takes over Training.

Onwe announced that the suspended state Accountant-General, Mrs Queen Agwu, had been restored to her position.

According to him, the state’s Executive Committee on IGR has been dissolved and a new one constituted.

“The new committee on IGR is led by the state Deputy Governor, Dr Kelechi Igwe.

“It includes the Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Bernard Odoh, and SSA on Welfare and Religious Matters, Rev. Fr. Abraham Nwali,” he said.

Onwe said that the appointments took immediate effect.

(NAN)

Paris Refund: Governors Promise to Pay Workers’ Salaries

Governors of 36 states have promised to offset the backlog of salaries and pension arrears owed civil servants in the country as soon as the next tranche of payment from the Paris-London Club loan refunds are made.

This resolution was reach on Thursday in Abuja at a meeting hosted by the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum and governor of Zamfara State, Alhaji Abdulaziz Yari Abubakar at his Maitama Residence.

A statement on behalf of the governors was issued by the Head, Media & Public Affairs of the NGF Abulrazaque Bello-Barkindo.

He said the governors met in anticipation of the release of the other half of the Paris-London Club refund which has been gratuitously approved for payment by the Vice-President Professor Yemi Osibanjo. The funds are expected to hit the states accounts within the month.

According to him the governors who are not oblivious of the hue and cry over the non-payment of the backlog of salaries and pension arrears and the precarious predicament of the Nigerian worker deliberated on the matter and concluded that in order to set the country on the path of growth, something immediate must be done to ameliorate workers plight by offsetting the backlog of their pay and emoluments.

The governors therefore resolved as a matter of urgency, to pay workers their due as soon as this half of the Paris Club refunds are made.

“We all agreed that a substantial amount from the next tranche of the Paris-London refunds be used in the settlement of workers salary and pension arrears,” the NGF Chairman, Abdulaziz Yari Abubakar disclosed.

Out of the N522.74bn owed N388.304 was paid to states last December.

Similarly, he pointed out that the governors committed to the verification of the input of all the consultants who claim to having worked towards the harmonization of the refunds regarding what is due to which state, since 2005 when the demand for the refunds commenced.

“At the moment, there are litigations from more than ten different consultants still agitating for settlement for their roles in the quest to have the refunds made to states.

” In this regard, a committee was set up under the headship of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo state with the governors of Bauchi, Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar, Sokoto’s Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, Plateau’s Simon Lalong, Bayelsa’s Seriaki Dickson, Rivers’ Nyesom Wike and former Accountant General of the Federation and Gombe state governor, Ibrahim Dankwambo as members.”

“This committee is expected to finally provide a solution to the demands by consultants on the Paris-London Club refunds to states” he said.

“There is no how you’d mention any political development in Nigeria without mentioning governors. Governors are a bloc and a key component of this democracy. Therefore, we have set up a seven-man committee to look into the development surrounding the unity of the forum and the development of the country. The idea is for governors to be speaking with one voice,” Governor Yari concluded.