Sokoto Supports Victims of Illela Rainstorm With Relief Materials

Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal has directed the Sokoto State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) to quickly deliver relief materials to victims of rainstorm which wrecked havoc at Illela, Araba, Gati and surrounding villages in Illela local government area of the state.

The storm, which occurred last Friday night,  destroyed houses, livestock and farm produce while rendering many families homeless.

Already, a government delegation, led by the Sokoto State Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress, Alhaji Usman Danmadami, has visited the affected villages to commiserate with the victims.

Speaking at the Palace of the District Head of Illela, Danmadami said government will work with local authorities to assist victims and ensure they are fully rehabilitated to enable the return to their normal activities.

He prayed to Allah to give all the victims strength in these trying moments, and assured that all efforts would be made to make them rebuild their lives.

The delegation later presented cash assistance to the victims.

In his remarks, Wakilin Sarkin Rafin Illela , Alhaji Sahabi Isa, thanked the Governor for his concern and to prayed Allah to reward him abundantly.

Others in the delegation were commissioner for Local Government and Community Development, Manir Dan’Iya, Government House Chief of Staff, Mukhtar Umar Magori, Special Adviser on Political Affairs, Ibrahim Magaji Gusau, State APC Treasurer, Mukhtar Bello Maigona and Director General of SEMA, Ibrahim Haliru Dingyadi.

States Deserve More Money Than FG Currently Offers –Tambuwal

Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State spoke on Monday in Sokoto, when he opened the 2017 Law Week of the state branch of the Nigerian Bar Association, calling for an urgent review of the revenue allocation in favour of the states and local governments.

Tambuwal said: “A situation where the Federal Government is now getting more money than the states and local governments should change.

“The formula should, therefore, be urgently reviewed, so that the states and local governments will get more than what they are getting now.

“This will definitely help them to solve the current economic challenges bedeviling them, as well as execute more people-oriented projects.”

Tambuwal also frowned at the nomination of representatives of the states into federal commissions like the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission, Federal Character Commission and the National Population Commission, among others.

“Rather than the President nominating such representatives, the states should be allowed to do that, while the state assemblies should clear them.

“This will allow for better representation, as well as ensure equity and equality among the states,” he said.

Tambuwal further suggested that states should be allowed to generate, transmit and distribute power to their people, rather than evacuating it to the national grid.

The governor stated that doing so would enable the states to blossom into industrial hubs, as well as enhance socio-economic development.

Tambuwal promised to ensure the sustenance of the existing cordial relationship between the three arms of government in the state.

“The state government will continue to accord priority to the welfare and independence of the judiciary in the state.”

NAN

Gov. Tambuwal Approves Recruitment of Additional Agric Extension Workers

Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State has approved the recruitment of additional extension workers to increase manpower and expertise in wheat value chain in the state.

This is contained in a statement signed by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Public Affairs, Imam Imam and issued to the News Agency of Nigeria ( NAN) in Sokoto on Tuesday.

“Those to be employed are university graduates and holders of national diploma in agricultural science, agricultural economy, crop science and related disciplines.”

It added: ” Having introduced wheat to farmers in the state, government will continue to show keen concern for its development.

“Eighty persons will be employed in the first phase of the recruitment, with more to follow in due course.

”Those to be employed will aid wheat farmers make informed decisions especially as they engage with companies buying their products after harvests.

“The overall objective is to ensure that we achieve the ratio of one extension worker to 500 farmers. As such, more people will be employed in subsequent phases of the recruitment exercise.”

The statement further quoted Tambuwal as saying that the extension officers will also lead consultation with farmers and the various business concerns who have shown interest in partnering with the government to develop agriculture in the state.

According to the statement, the extension workers will be trained in latest trends in the business and will play a key role in efforts to modernize the agricultural sector in the state.

The statement said government would continue to engage farmers with a view to increasing yields and tackling challenges that may arise in the sector.

NAN recalls that the state government had in 2016, trained 115 workers on modern agricultural extension services, to provide agricultural extension services to farmers in the 23 local government areas of the state.

Tambuwal To Nigerians: Don’t Get Tired Of Praying For The President

Sokoto Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal has urged Nigerians, especially the Christian faithful, not to relent in their prayers for total healing for President Muhammadu Buhari.

The Governor spoke in Sokoto Tuesday when the Forum of Directors of Social Communication of the Catholic Church paid him a courtesy visit at the Government House in Sokoto.

“The nation will remain grateful for the fervent prayers you have embarked upon while the President was away receiving medical attention. Along with our Muslim brothers, we all prayed and it is gratifying to note that our prayers have been answered. We should not relent on that,” he said.

Tambuwal urged the communication directors, who were led in the visit by the Bishop of Sokoto Diocese of the Catholic Church, Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah, urged them to deploy their knowledge and experiences to promote religious harmony and peaceful coexistence in the country.

He said Sokoto has a history of religious tolerance, and has been open to diverse ethnic and religious groups since the time of reformist scholar, Usman Danfodio.

“We believe the whole country can learn from our rich history of tolerance and moderation. I’m happy you have chosen Sokoto for your meeting. From what you have seen yourselves, you can take the positive message of peace to your dioceses and your homes,” the Governor added.

While wising the delegates a fruitful deliberation, Tambuwal urged them to explore the many historical and tourism sites available in the state.

In their separate remarks, both Kukah and President of the Diocesan/Religious Directors of Communications, Father Pius Ukoh, said they were in Sokoto for their bi-annual retreat, and commended the Sokoto government and the Sultanate Council for their commitment to peaceful coexistence in the state.

FG To Support Sokoto On Grains Cultivation

Minister of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Chief Audu Ogbeh has commended Sokoto state government for giving necessary attention to cultivation of grains and improvement of farming techniques in the state.

Speaking when he received a team from Sokoto State Ministry of Agriculture, led by Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal in Abuja, Ogbeh said paying special attention to crops like rice, sorghum, millet, wheat among others will boost local consumption and prepare grounds for export.

A statement issued Thursday by Tambuwal’s spokesman, Malam Imam Imam, quoted Ogbeh as saying that the Federal Government will support Sokoto farmers with modern harvesters so as to reduce hours wasted when applying manual method to harvest crops.

“In the next few days, we’re deploying modern machineries to you to help our farmers improve yield. We have also included Sokoto among states to benefit from the 600 insemination centres we are establishing to boost milk and meat production,” the minister said.

In his remarks, Tambuwal said agricultural activities have received a huge boost in Sokoto in the last two years, adding that yield have doubled in crops like cowpea, onion, tomato, sesame and rice.

He said the introduction of anchor borrowers’ scheme, in collaboration with Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has helped farmers with finances and equipment.

“We are working round the clock to modernize farming activities in the country, and will welcome any support from the Federal Government in addition to the ones already extended to us so far,” the Governor added.

While commending Ogbeh for his concern for the advancement of small holder farmers, Tambuwal also appealed to the minister to revisit the list of farmers recently enumerated by the FG for its GPS scheme, saying due to lack of adequate enlightenment, majority were not captured.

APC Insists Tambuwal Validly Elected

In compliance with a Supreme Court order, the case challenging the emergence of Aminu Waziri Tambuwal as candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the April 2015 elections returned to the Federal High Court, with all parties making appearance before Justice F. Kolawole.

Senator Umaru Dahiru is challenging the emergence of Tambuwal as APC’s candidate in an election the defendant eventually won and was sworn in as Governor of Sokoto State in May 2015.

At the resumed hearing of the case Monday in Court Six of the Federal High Court, counsel to the APC, JS Okutepa SAN and Aare Muyiwa Akinboro SAN, picked hole in the Applicant’s amended motion which sought an order declaring Dahiru the Governor.

Dahiru, through his lawyer Abdulhamid Muhammed Esq, had brought an amended motion dated Januray 30, and filed on the 31st of January 2017, urging the court to declare his client Governor, a move objected to by the defendants.

In a counter affidavit, Tambuwal, represented by SI Ameh SAN, G Tetengi SAN and 23 others, raised objection to the amended motion, saying all parties are bound by law to commence trial of the originating summons as ruled by the Supreme Court.

Okutepa SAN further observed that allowing the motion to stand will be deviating from the original case.

Justice Kolawole adjourned the case to February 28 for hearing of the motion on notice.

Sokoto To Revoke C of O Of Gas Stations Hoarding Fuel – Tambuwal

Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal said the government will revoke the Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) of any filling station that is found to be hoarding fuel in order to create artificial scarcity or is selling above official rate.

He said the government, along with the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), will set up a joint task force to move round filling stations to ascertain their compliance with laid down rules and regulations guiding their operations.

The Governor’s threat followed the excruciating fuel scarcity bedeviling Sokoto town and environs which has been lingering for over two weeks.

Speaking when he inspected sale of fuel at some filling stations in Sokoto Sunday, Tambuwal said government will not fold its arms and watch unscrupulous marketers hold the people to ransom.

He said the supply of the commodity from the Nigeria national Petroleum Cooperation (NNPC) has not altered, as such, no one should create artificial scarcity to burden the people.

The Governor, who was accompanied by the Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Salihu Maidaji, urged all those hoarding the commodity to quickly open their stations.

“The committee will go round, and any filling station found hoarding fuel will face the full wrath of the law,” Tambuwal added.

 

The Governor commended the management of one of the filling stations visited, SAK Petroleum, for discharging the commodity promptly and at official price.

Wike: Niger Deltans Will Not Seek To Divide Nigeria

Leaders and people of Nigeria will always strive to defend the unity of Nigeria, because to them, the country remaining as one indivisible entity is ‘non negotiable’ and of paramount importance, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has said.

Speaking in Sokoto when he paid a visit to Sultan Muhammad Sa’ad at his palace, Wike said the interest of Nigerians and Africans will be better served with Nigeria remaining as one ‘strong and united nation.’

Said he: “Let me first of all sincerely thank you, our father the Sultan, for what you are doing for this country, working tirelessly to ring peace and to bring unity to the people. So for all of us this is what is meant by one Nigeria.

“We cannot run away from this country. The unity of this country is very, very paramount. The unity of this country is non-negotiable. I am from the Niger Delta, from Rivers State to be specific so I cannot see us in a divided country. No way. We stand for the unity of this country,” Wike added.

According to the Governor, his administration has put a lot of time, resources and energy to protect national assets especially the ones in Rivers State.

“In Rivers you hardly find pipeline vandalisation. We are working at all times to protect national assets in our state. In my state, I am governor for all the people living in the state. I am not a governor of a particular political party, but a governor for all the people of Rivers State.”

While commending the Sultan for his leadership of the Muslim community in Nigeria, Wike said he was in Rivers to felicitate with his colleague, Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, who gave out his daughter in marriage on Saturday.

He equally dispelled the notion that his relationship with Tambuwal had political connotation, saying has been his friend for a long time, “long before politics defined who we are now.”

“Tambuwal is my friend for a long time. If anything affects him, it affects me also. If he gives out his daughter in marriage, I have to be here to support him. If any problem happens to him, it affects me as well.

“Your Eminence I am here to seek your royal blessing. You have blessed me before, that is why I am growing. So let me wish you a prosperous new year ahead,” he added.

In their remarks, both the host Governor and Sultan implored Nigerians to live in peace with one another, and wished their countrymen and women a year full of happiness and blessings.

Again, Education Tops Sokoto’s Budget Allocation

For the second year running, education got the highest sectoral allocation after Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal presented Sokoto’s 2017 budget estimate to the state House of Assembly.

Laying the budget before lawmakers Thursday, Tambuwal said education will consume N38,426,266,193, representing 27.3% of the budget’s N204,288,364,741 total outlay.

Of the estimate, 69% was dedicated to capital projects, while 31% has been dedicated to recurrent expenditure.

According to Tambuwal, the policy thrust of the budget is to ensure sustainable economic development through substantial investment in critical sectors like education, agriculture, healthcare delivery, exploration of mineral resources, investment in renewable energy and infrastructure.

“We will prioritise effective resource management and seek intervention in areas with high potentials to create job opportunities, generate income and improve revenue generation,” the Governor said.

He added that though the financial state of affairs in the country is facing huge challenges, the state’s 2017 budget will address key policy issues which include promotion of peaceful coexistence and protection of lives and properties.

“We will work to strengthen capacity building of scheduled ministries to ensure they perform better in their tasks.

“Of great importance to us is the promotion of partnership with the private sector in areas of strategic importance to our development objective.

“We will promote value chain through agro-processing and diversification by way of incentivizing farmers and producers, and creating backward and forward linkages between and among institutions, partners and other stakeholders to accelerate economic growth,” he said.

Allocation to other sectors show that ministry of works and transport got N16.2 billion; ministries of water resources and environment got N10.7 billion, the health sector got N7.7 billion while ministry of housing, lands and survey got N8.2 billion.

Others include ministry rural and community development (N5.6 billion), ministry of solid minerals and natural resources development (N1.7 billion) while the sum of four billion Naira was set aside for ministry of commerce, industries and tourism.

While urging the lawmakers to do a diligent job in handling the budget document, Tambuwal said his administration, as shown since it came to power, will prioritise meeting the aspirations of the people of the state.

“I want to emphasise the need for us to work as a team so that together we can move our dear state forward,” he added.

Sokoto Establishes Agency For Malaria Control

In an effort to bolster the fight against malaria, Sokoto Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal has approved the establishment of a dedicated agency for the control of the dreaded tropical disease.

To be known as the Sokoto Agency for Malaria Control, the new body will take off in January 2017 and will be the focal point of implementing all policies related to malaria prevention and treatment in the state.
With this approval, Sokoto becomes the first state in Nigeria to create such an agency.

A statement issued in Sokoto Sunday by Tambuwal’s spokesman, Malam Imam Imam, said the new agency will provide administrative, secretarial, communications, and logistical support in push to contain malaria and related diseases.
It added that the agency will also fulfil roles supporting working and technical groups set up by both the state and federal governments, as well as development partners and other stakeholders.
Other responsibilities include offering and providing technical support to other health agencies and partners to improve the health of the people through prevention and control.
Similarly, the agency will support policy makers in designing and implementing evidence-based interventions, assessing the burden of the disease and monitoring progress towards reducing mortality, by integrating these activities with management and dissemination of technical knowledge through strengthening of disease surveillance and response systems and public health programmes and services.
Meanwhile, Sokoto State Government has commended the Nigeria Army for banning the sale of illicit drugs and its decision to seal shops selling same at the Giginya Barracks in the state capital.
The government said years of subtle diplomacy over the issue has paid dividends when the army authorities saw reason in banning the illicit trade.

Supreme Court Orders High Court To Retry Sen Dahiru’s Case

The Supreme Court Friday declined to remove Sokoto State Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal from office.

Instead, the appellate court ruled that a case filed by Senator Umaru Dahiru challenging the nomination of Tambuwal as candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the April 2015 governorship election be retried at the Federal High Court.

Dahiru contested for the governorship election in the December 2014 primaries of the APC, but lost to Tambuwal, who eventually went on to win the gubernatorial poll conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in April 2015 and was subsequently sworn-in as Governor on May 29 of the same year.

Friday’s ruling followed an earlier judgement given by the Supreme Court in June this year which dismissed application by the Sokoto State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and it’s governorship candidate, Senator Abdallah Wali, to be joined as parties to Dahiru’s suit.

In a judgement written by Hon Justice Musa Dattijo Muhammed JSC and read by Hon Justice CC Nweze JSC, the court held that rather than consider the case as mere academic exercise, the High Court should retry the case on its merit.

Counsel to Tambuwal, Paul M. Kassim Esq, who led six other lawyers, said the defence are are satisfied with the ruling and will get set for trial at the Federal High Court.

“Our position remains unchanged, that our client was validly nominated by the APC and was duly elected Governor by the good people of Sokoto State,” he told reporters after the judgement.

In the June ruling by now retired Justice Sulaiman Galadima JSC, the Supreme Court held that PDP and Wali lacked the locus standi to apply to be joined in the suit, describing the two as interlopers who should not take part in a matter purely involving another party.

Even though Sokoto PDP had announced that they will not challenge the election of Tambuwal in 2015, they however, through case number SC/67/2016, sought to be joined as parties in Dahiru’s suit on the grounds that if it succeeds, Wali should be declared winner of the election.

In a notice of motion for joinder filed at the apex court by EK Ashiekaa SAN, Wali and PDP contended that having participated in the 2015 governorship election, and having scored the next highest number of votes cast after that of Tambuwal, they have sufficient grounds to be joined in the case.

They said the reliefs sought by Dahiru would have an effect on the outcome of the Sokoto governorship election by creating a vacuum.

“That the vacuum likely to be created by the success of the Appellants appeal can only be filled by the applicant who scored the next highest returned votes,” they argued.

Justice Galadima however struck out the application, foreclosing any move by the PDP to get APC removed from power in Sokoto through the back door.

No date yet has been set for hearing on the interlocutory appeal filed by Senator Umar Dahiru challenging the ruling of the Appeal Court which held that his case at the Federal High Court against Tambuwal’s emergence as APC candidate for the April 2015 governorship election could not proceed since it has been overtaken by events and will be a mere academic exercise if it proceeds.