Pro-Biafra Agitators In Failed Bid To Seize Enugu Govt House And Other Newspaper Headlines Today

THE GUARDIAN has disclosed that members of the Biafra Zionists Federation (BZF) made a failed attempt at forcibly taking over the Enugu State government house yesterday. The secessionist group had planned to use the premises to proclaim an independent state of Biafra. About 30 BZF members, including their leader Benjamin Onwuka, were arrested in the process. DAILY INDEPENDENT in its headlines however revealed that two people were killed in the process. The police had told the people to ignore the sit-at-home order on Wednesday, assuring them of safety. The IPOB sit-at-home order was to mark the May 30, 1967 declaration of Biafra by the late Odumegwu Ojukwu who led the Igbos in a civil war between 1967 and 1970 and to honor those who lost their lives within the period. On the 20th of September, 2017, a federal high court had proscribed IPOB and declared it a terrorist organization in Nigeria. NEW TELEGRAPH speaks more about the IPOB situation saying Police, govs moved against the IPOB sit-at-home order.

 

Moving to the issue of corruption in Nigeria, THE NATION, THE PUNCH, NIGERIAN TRIBUNE and DAILY SUN reveals that Ex-Governor Nyame goes to jail for 28 years over N1.64b fraud. A High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in Gudu, Abuja sentenced former Taraba State Governor Jolly Nyame to 28 years in prison. He was not given an option of fine. Justice Adebukola Banjoko convicted the ex-governor on 27 out of the 41 counts contained in the charge filed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in July 2007. Nyame was governor from 1991 to 1993 and 1999 to 2007. The breakdown of the sentence is as follows: 14 years upon conviction for criminal breach of trust; seven years for receiving gratification; five years for obtaining valuable public properties without consideration, and two years for criminal misappropriation. The judge said the sentences would run concurrently, implying that the ex-governor is to spend 14 years in prison.Justice Banjoko, who said the defendant betrayed his claim to be a clergyman and Reverend, wondered why it was only the ex-governor that was prosecuted in view of the level of impunity displayed while Nyame was in office. The judge, in the over 300-page judgment, which she read for over six hours, said after carefully examining all the evidence tendered by the prosecution, she had no option but to conclude that it was “either Nyame entered into office without a corrupt mind, but later became corrupt or he was corrupt ab-initio”. The judge said: “There was such a crazy level of corruption in the air in Taraba State Ministry of Finance. It is, however, amazing that none of the officials was arraigned.” She said the evidence before the court showed that while officials that served under the defendant were returning their loot to the EFCC after they were questioned, Nyame “was still busy committing more crime”. NEW TELEGRAM further reports that Ex-PDP govs are in trouble.

On the 2019 coming elections, VANGUARD reports Emirs, general back Tanimu, Tambuwal, Kwankwaso, while also reporting that Obasanjo is at odds with other anti-Buhari leaders. Permutations by high-level stakeholders opposed to a second term for President Muhammadu Buhari have gravitated towards three North-West politicians, Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, Senator Rabiu Kwankwanso and former minister of special duties, Turaki Tanimu. While Governor Tambuwal and Senator Kwankwanso have for long been on the radar, Vanguard has learned of increasing gravitation towards Tanimu by high-level stakeholders who see him as lacking the kind of baggage dogging others, including Tambuwal and Kwakwanso. Despite reports that some influential generals, who had played similar roles in the past, had endorsed him, Vanguard  learned that former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo is, however, drawing back, having apparently stuck his neck out for Senator Kwankwanso. Among those said to have endorsed him are also several emirs who were said to have also been moved by an influential North-West traditional ruler. “Obasanjo has been briefed on him, but he is holding back,” a source privy to the development told Vanguard. An associate of Obasanjo’s did not hide the former president’s preference for Kwankwanso. “Even the manner of his (Tanimu’s) entry into the contest inspires suggestions of some high-level influence pushing his candidacy,” another source privy to the development said. Tanimu’s original aspiration was to be governor of Kebbi State, a source close to him told Vanguard. “But you know that Shehu Shagari’s original aspiration was to be a senator, but the principalities were able to nudge him towards the presidency, and that is the same pattern we see with Tanimu,” a Northern Nigeria-based political player who is already enmeshed in the Tanimu campaign told Vanguard.
BUSINESS DAY reports that IMF outlines 3 major reforms needed to boost Nigeria GDP. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has outlined three major reform areas needed to boost growth rates in Africa’s largest economy. In an exclusive interview with BusinessDay yesterday, May 30, Abebe Aemro Selassie, Director, Africa Department of the Fund said he still expects that the country’s economic growth will hit the 2.0 percent mark this year. Without fundamental reforms, the IMF has forecasted that the country’s real GDP per capita, which is already declining, will continue to decline over the next few years, plunging more people into the poverty trap. Selassie listed some of the deliberate policy actions he believes can help sustain economic growth. However, he admitted most of them are already well laid out in the Economic Growth and Recovery Plan (EGRP) prepared by the federal government. “All the measures needed are already captured in the ERGP. What is needed really is to implement them to the fullest degree,” Selassie said. He listed three reforms that he believes will help facilitate growth. “The first is paying attention to and addressing the big resource needs that the government has. The total revenue envelop for the government is about six percent of GDP. That is too, too low. That needs to go closer to 15 percent of GDP or even higher. Finding revenue handles to increase that so that the government can invest in the necessary infrastructure, in schools, in health is the first important requirement. Second, will be dealing with the energy sector. The provision of electricity, I cannot state enough how important that is both for economic diversification and to facilitate higher productivity. So addressing, in a very lasting way, energy sector problems in Nigeria is fundamental. Third, there remains a need to continue to carry out a lot of structural reforms that facilitate economic diversification and address governance and corruption issues. Good progress has been made on this front under this administration but I think there is still more to be done.” Selassie said that though growth in the first quarter was below the fund’s expectations, they do not plan to review their growth projections downwards. “We still expect growth to accelerate to 2.0 percent. So we are holding our forecast,” Selassie said. Explaining the rational for optimism, he cited strong recovery in global economic growth and improved domestic conditions.

 

 

 

N8.13tr Missing From Federation Account And Other Newspaper Headlines Today

The National Economic Council (NEC) presided over on Thursday by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said the final report on the forensic audit of revenue accruals by revenue generating agencies confirmed massive under-remittances to the Federation Account to the tune of N8.1 trillion. According to DAILY SUN, Governor Ibrahim Dankwambo of Gombe State, while briefing State House correspondents at the end of meeting, said various Revenue Generating Agencies (RGAs) shortchanged the government of N526 billion and $21 billion between 2010 to 2015. Dankwambo, who chaired the NEC ad hoc committee on remittances, said the infractions were identified by KPMG who were contracted by the NEC to carry out a forensic audit of revenue remittances to the Federation Accounts.

Still on the missing funds, NIGERIAN TRIBUNE, THE PUNCH, DAILY INDEPENDENT reveals that NEC asks NNPC, NCS, NPA, others to refund N8.13trh. It would be recalled that in recent times government has complained of difficulties in meeting its salary obligations, however, it had kept mum over the matter in order not to elicit controversies. The Gombe governor said the financial audit consultancy firm of KPMG which covered 18 revenue generating agencies found them culpable of under remittances. The agencies included the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC); Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS); Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA). Others include Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA); Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC); Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN); Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR); Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) and several others.

Moving away from the issue of missing funds, THE VANGUARD records FG saying that efforts to stop killing in S-Africa not working. The Federal Government has expressed helplessness over the continued killing of Nigerians in xenophobic attacks in South Africa. This is as findings revealed that one Nigerian is killed weekly as a result of xenophobic attacks in the country. The figure is the outcome of a breakdown of the number of people, reported killed between 2016 and 2017 in an earlier statement by the Federal Government. The government had reported that 116 people were killed in South Africa in two years. Senior Special Adviser to the President on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, Mrs. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, revealed this in 2017 during a visit to the South African High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Lulu  Mngun. She had said: “In the last two years, 116 Nigerians have been killed in South Africa and according to statistics, 63% of them were killed by the police.”

THE NATION moves to a more daring topic to release a new list of looters of the public treasury, with Diezani, NIMASA, Ikoyi cash haul take top three spots. They are wrong, some stakeholders said in Abuja at the Second Forum of the Anti-Corruption Situation Room, organised by the Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA). Activist-lawyer Femi Falana (SAN) said there was nothing wrong with the listing of looters by the Federal Government, contrary to the claim by the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and some of its leaders. PDP National Chairman Uche Secondus and another top member, Dr. Raymond Dokpesi, have sued Minisster of Information Lai Mohammed and others over the inclusion of their names on the list. Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC) Chairman Prof Itse Sagay (SAN), one of those who defended the action, said: “I still insist that anyone who has a good reason to include a name should put the name.” He said a court ordered the government to publish the names of those who looted the nation’s resources and the list was released in accordance with the court’s directive and in public interest.

Finally on BUSINESS DAY, Buhari, Atiku, others and their economic agenda for 2019 heads the news. Faced with a fragile economic recovery from a recession that threw millions of Nigerians out of jobs, the 2019 election will be about the economy and which presidential candidate has the most viable strategy of putting Nigeria on a sustainable economic growth path.
Ordinarily, the economy should dominate campaign discourses by aspirants wishing to contest for the presidency in 2019. But as yet, very few candidates have been talking about their economic agenda for the country and what they intend to do to tackle the country’s legendary economic challenges.

 

 

 

 

South-South APC Leaders In Stormy Talks Over Oyegun And Other Newspaper Headlines Today

The South-South leaders, elders and caucus of the All Progressives Congress (APC), yesterday, dumped the party’s National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, ahead of the May 14 elective convention. In his stead, the APC leaders endorsed the immediate past governor of Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, as the choice of the zone for the plum job. According to THE NATION, NEW TELEGRAPH and DAILY SUN, The meeting, which lasted for over four hours, attracted who is who from the oil-rich South-South in the party led by its National Vice Chairman (South-South), Mr. Ntufam Hilliard Eta. Also in attendance were Oshiomhole; Governor Godwin Obaseki; former Bayelsa State Governor, Chief Timipre Silva; Senator Magnus Abbe, Alims Agoda; Hon. Eseme Eyiboh; former Military Governor of Ogun State, Chief Sam Ewang; Mrs. Miriam Alli; Senator Francis Alimekhena; Frank Ajobena; Chief Great Ogboru; Hon. Victor Ochei; Dr. Cairo Ojougboh; Senator Domingo Obende; Speaker Kabiru Adjoto and Comrade Frank Kokori.

Members of APC caucus from South-South in the National Assembly were also in attendance. Temper rose during the meeting when some supporters of the former governor of Rivers State and Minister of Transport, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, kicked against the adoption of any candidate. But Amaechi’s supporters and four state chairmen of APC were shouted down by majority of the leaders from the zone.

Moving to the Dino Melaye drama that took major headlines online yesterday, THE PUNCH reveals the Senator saying; ‘There’s a plot to kill me’. NIGERIAN TRIBUNE and DAILY INDEPENDENT also follow the same headline with Tribune saying Sagay, Lawyers Condemn Police Siege To Melaye’s Home. Armed riot policemen on Monday laid siege to Shanga Street, Maitama, Abuja residence of Senator Dino Melaye to arrest him. The security operatives blocked one end of the street with a Toyota Hiace bus with tinted glasses and Abuja number plate, RSH 193 TP, and a pick-up at the other end. They also prevented persons in the building from going out, but later allowed family members, friends and guests to enter and exit the premises. Melaye had, in a hushed tone on the telephone, told one of our correspondents about the police siege at 1.43pm.

THE GUARDIAN reports that PDP urges N’Assembly to sanction Buhari over $1b. The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday urged the National Assembly to sanction President Muhammadu Buhari for allegedly violating his oath of office by withdrawing and spending $1 billion from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) without the constitutionally appropriation.

Finally Vanguard S-African Police Look On As Mob Burns Nigerian. A Nigerian has been burnt alive by a mob, while the Police looked on, in the latest xenophobic attack in South Africa, just as 14 Nigerians, who protested the killing of a fellow citizen in that country’s North West Province in February are still in detention. The incident happened on Sunday. This came as the Federal Government, yesterday,described the development as unfortunate and called on the South African authorities to find a lasting solution to the incessant killing of Nigerians in that country.

 

 

 

 

 

Exposed: Oyegun’s Hidden Agenda’ On Tenure Extension And Other Newspaper Headlines Today

THE NATION reveals on its headline that the tenure elongation is still haunting the All Progressives Congress (APC). Some of its members yesterday cried out over the content of a memo presented to the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting on Monday by Chairman John Odigie-Oyegun. They claimed that a portion of the memo was aimed at achieving tenure extension through the backdoor. But the party leadership denied having any hidden plan to extend its tenure. The NEC rejected tenure elongation for Oyegun and other members of the National Working Committee (NWC). It, however, granted them waivers to recontest at the party’s congresses and convention for which no dates have been fixed.

Buhari’s One-Term Stance Now Invalid, Says Presidency heads THE GUARDIAN today. From the presidency came yesterday a declaration that Muhammadu Buhari’s statement in 2011 that he would only be president for one term was not applicable anymore.The renouncement came barely 24 hours after the president, at the All Progressives Congress (APC) National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Abuja, declared his intention to seek re-election on the platform of the party in 2019. Specifically, Buhari had, in the lead story of a newspaper of February 6, 2011 captioned “2011: Why I’II Serve for Only One Term” given reasons he would not spend more than four years in office if elected president of the country.Below are Buhari’s responses to whether or not he would seek re-election.

Still on the coming presidential elections NIGERIAN TIRBUNE discloses that David Mark, Jonathan’s Minister Target PDP’s Tickets. The announcement of re-election bid by President Muhammadu Buhari has triggered a flurry of activities within the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as indication emerged on Tuesday that former Senate President, David Mark, is set to join the presidential race.

Moving to the issue of security in the country, Gov Ortom urges communities to defend themselves against herdsmen attack in Benue. According to DAILY INDEPENDENT and THE PUNCH the death toll of the recent killings by Fulani herdsmen in some communities in Gwer West Local Government Area (LGA) of Benue state have risen to 24. This is even as the total number of those that have lost their lives to herdsmen attacks since the attacks began in the area in 2011 has been placed at 212. Paramount ruler, Gwer West LGA, the Ter Nagi, Daniel Abomtse, disclosed this when Governor Samuel Ortom paid the people of the area a condolence visit over the recent attacks.

Finally BUSINESS DAY reports that Early Rains Seen Raising Nigeria’s Midcrop Cocoa Output By 15%. Nigeria has seen its cocoa output increase by 15 percent despite huge numbers of old and worn-out cocoa trees across major producing states in the country, as farmers commence midcrop harvest soon. Farmers link the increase in production to early rainfall which has helped in boosting the country’s cocoa pod production in recent months.

 

 

 

Obasanjo Attacks Buhari Again , Says He’s A Failure And Other Newspaper Headlines Today

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Monday called on President Muhammadu Buhari to stop giving Nigerians excuses, adding that the attitude was why he had not achieved results. According to THE PUNCH, NEW TELEGRAM, and the VANGUARD, The former President advised Buhari to buckle down, saying he was presently a failure. He spoke at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library, Abeokuta, Ogun State, while playing host to the New Nigeria 2019 Group, led by the convener, Chima Anyaso, in company with Moses Siasia. As he did in the open letter he wrote about three months ago to the President, Obasanjo accused Buhari and the All Progressives Congress of bringing hardship on Nigerians and running ineffective economic policies which had crippled businesses.

Still on Buhari’s Alleged failure by Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, DAILY INDEPENDENT reports; 2019: It’s Foolish To Re-Elect Buhari, APC, OBJ Warns Again. Nigerian Tribune also has a similar headline which reveals Obsanjo saying; what we have now is failure. Former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Monday again blasted President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC), saying it would be foolhardy to reelect them in 2019.Obasanjo, who bemoaned the blame game by Buhari’s administration, said the ruling party wouldn’t have had a taste of power if not for those challenges which APC is complaining about today.

Moving away from Obasanjo’s battle with the present administration, THE NATION moves further to report the Big Row Over Looters List. A row broke out yesterday over the updated “list of looters” released at the weekend by the Federal Government. Some lawyers and some of those on the list took on the government, but Lagos lawyer Festus Keyamo (SAN) said the listing of “looters” was in order. Minister of Information Lai Mohammed issued the list of “28 looters” in two instalments, after the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) challenged the government to name those who looted the treasury when the party was in power. On the list are ex-ministers, ex-governors, senators, former party leaders and campaign chiefs, among others.

Moving further to the steps to take down the Boko Haram Insurgent, THE GUARDIAN reports that 29 people have been killed in military, Boko Haram crossfire. It was a black Easter in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno State, as no fewer than 29 persons were feared killed in a crossfire between the Boko Haram insurgents and the military on Sunday.

The confrontation ensued when the Boko Haram insurgents launched a coordinated attack on a military camp and the adjoining Bale Shuwar and Alikaranti communities on the outskirts of Maiduguri in a move to infiltrate the state capital. According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) report, echoes from sporadic gunshots and multiple explosions which lasted for hours on Sunday evening were heard from the outskirts of the city. The insurgents attacked the military base in the Cashew Plantation area at the entrance to the city with suicide bombers, mortars and guns, leading to a prolonged battle.

BUSINESS DAY reveals new development on the stock market saying: Nigerian Stock Exchange Taps EFCC For Milost Investigation. The market regulations unit of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) is putting finishing touches to an on-going investigation that would see anti-graft agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), go after Milost Global, Inc and other market operators found guilty of any wrongdoing or aiding an alleged share pump and dump activity in Nigeria.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How Buhari Killed Plot To Extend Oyegun’s Tenure And Other Interesting Newspaper Headlines Today

This morning almost every newspaper headline revolves around Buhari’s declaration of Oyegun’s Tenure. According to THE NATION, THE GUARDIAN, VANGUARD advocates of tenure elongation for All Progressives Congress (APC) National Chairman John Odigie-Oyegun and National Working Committee (NWC) members suffered a major setback yesterday. President Muhammadu Buhari said the party’s constitution and the Nigerian constitution must be respected. NIGERIAN TRIBUN, DAILY SUN and NEW TELEGRAPH also reports that the President overruled the earlier decision of the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) on the one-year tenure extension earlier granted the NWC and by extension, the state executive chapters of the party.

Moving away from Oyegun’s drama THE PUNCH reports the Taraba incident saying; We informed FG, military of threats, soldiers’ misconduct, says Taraba. The Taraba State Government on Tuesday said the Federal Government and the military were aware of security threats, as well as soldiers’ misconduct in the state, but chose to do nothing about them. In a statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor of Taraba State on Media and Publicity, Mr. Bala Abu, the Taraba State Government cited few instances that the Federal Government and the military were informed about security breach and soldiers’ misconduct, which were allegedly ignored. The state government’s statement was in reaction to the claim made by the Federal Government on Monday that although it got reports of soldiers’ misconduct, there was none from Taraba State.

 

 

 

 

How 104 Abducted Dapchi Girls Regained Freedom, By FG And Other Interesting Newspaper Headlines Today

The Federal Government yesterday explained that the release of 104 out of the 110 Dapchi schoolgirls abducted last month by the Boko Haram sect was secured through back-channel efforts and with the help of some friends of the country. It was learnt that the girls were let go by their abductors around 3:00 a.m. on Wednesday.  According to THE GUARDIAN and DAILY INDEPENDENT they were brought and dumped in a village by suspected Boko Haram terrorists. But five died while one is still being held because she refused to renounce her Christian faith. The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who confirmed the release of the girls in a statement in Abuja, said it was unconditional. THE PUNCH also reports this but reveals that 105 girls instead of guardian’s 104 girls were released and have been taken to Abuja.

THE NATION, NIGERIAN TRIBUNE, VANGUARD, DAILY SUN and NEW TELEGRAPH disclose how 5 of the Dapchi girls died during their release. While each journal had a different arrangement to their story, they all revealed that one of the students of Government Girls Technical Science College, Dapchi, Yobe State, identified as Fasima, said yesterday that some of their colleagues died of exhaustion on the day of the attack by Boko Haram, following the manner they were crammed into the vehicles that took them away. Unfortunately, one of the abducted school girls, names withheld, was not freed as the insurgents insisted they took her back to their hideouts because she refused to denounce her faith (Christianity) and be converted to Islam.

Finally on Business Day, Teleology meets deadline to acquire 9mobile. Teleology holdings Limited, preferred bidder for the 9mobile sale has met up with its payment deadline set for today, March 22, 2018 for the sum of $50 million dollars as a non-refundable deposit to acquire the fourth largest telecommunications network in Nigeria, BusinessDay has gathered.

 

 

 

 

 

Nigeria’s Public Debt Hits N21.7tr And Other Newspaper Headlines Today

The Director-General of the Debt Management Office (DMO), Dr. Abraham Nwankwo, has revealed to the Senate Committee on Foreign and Local Debts that the nation’s total debt had risen to N17.36 trillion. This is coming at a time he said the nation’s economic woes had not got to the point of seeking debt forgiveness. According to DAILY SUN Nwankwo told the lawmakers that Nigeria’s total debt profile, which was N2.03 trillion ($10.32billion) as at the end of June 2015, a month after the President Muhammadu Buhari administration assumed office, had risen to N17.36trillion or $57.39 billion as at December 31, 2016. According to the DMO DG, the total debt profile of the country, comprising local and foreign debts, has been on the increase since July 2015, due to prevailing economic challenges. He said while the Federal Government’s domestic debt stock, as at December 31, 2015, was N8.84 trillion, it rose to N11.06 trillion in December 2016.

The abduction of the Dapchi school girl heads the VANGUARD, THE NNATION and PUNCH. The newspapers reveal the ongoing war between former president Goodluck Jonathan and President Buhari  as President Buhari states that his response when the girls were taken was better than Jonathan’s response when the Chibok girls were kidnapped.  Buhari on Wednesday said that while the Federal Government under his watch swung into action immediately after the abduction, the last administration looked the other way when schoolgirls were abducted in Chibok in 2014.

THE GUARDIAN, DAILY INDEPENDENT and NIGERIAN TRIBUNE exposes that National Assembly’s vow to override Buhari’s veto and the court’s decision to stop the passing of the electoral bill. Buhari’s veto of the Electoral Act Amendment Bill might not have long to fly, as Senate steps up moves to override it. Buhari  on Tuesday withheld assent to the controversial bill passed by the lawmakers of February 14, 2018. The bill ordered the sequence of next year’s general election, making the National Assembly first and the presidential last.

NEW TELEGRAM takes a different turn as they inform readers that battle against Oyegun, NWC rages in Lagos and Abuja courts. The battle to nullify the tenure extension granted the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), chief John Odigie-Oyegun and other national officers by the party’s National Executive Council (NEC) raged in Lagos and Abuja courts yesterday. The APC’s NEC had at its February 27 meeting, extended the four-year tension of the National Working Committee (NWC) due to expire on June 30, 2018, by one year.

Finally on BUSINESS DAY, yield to fall as Nigeria cuts back on local debts issuance heads the news. Nigeria’s change of tack over domestic borrowing is leaving debt-hungry investors with too little to feed on, stocking pressure on bond and Treasury bill yields. Debt issuance guidance published this week show the government’s domestic debt appetite has warned significantly, which hardly is a surprise given that Abuja disclosed plans, last year to trim domestic borrowing to manage ballooning debt service costs and free up capital to the private sector.

 

 

Ike Ekweremadu Denies Calling For Military Coup And Other Newspaper Headlines Today

The Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu has denied making any statement which suggests that he was calling for a military coup In the country. According to the GUARDIAN, Ekweremadu spoke at the weekend in Yenogoa, Bayelsa State, when Governor Serake Dickson hosted him and other parliamentarians from African countries to a dinner. Ekweremadu maintained that his comments on the floor of the Senate were misconstrued. The lawmaker said he would never make derogatory statements against the military which he described as one of the best fighting forces on the continent.

Nigerian Army draws battle line against Killer-herdsmen, warning killers to stop their evil act or “face decisive action by troops”. It also warned that commanders who fail to act decisively would “face court martial”. According to THE NATION killings have persisted in Taraba, Benue and Adamawa states, despite the ongoing operation “Cat Race”.

Still on the issue of security, Police nabs herdsman over multiple murders heads DAILY SUN. The Plateau state   police command has arrested a herdsman, Muhammadu Musa Bimini, in connection with a bloody attack that claimed 16 persons in Daffo district of Bokkos Local Government Area of Plateau State. He was caught in possession of a military AK-47 rifle.

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo is leading the move to bring Senate President Bukola Saraki, speaker house of representatives, Yakubu Dogara, Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State and other aggrieved leaders of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) to join the social Democratic Party (SDP), otherwise known as the Third Force movement says Daily Independent.

NIGERIAN TRIBUNE reveals that NBA, Civil Society Groups Insist On Protest Tomorrow on Lagos’ Land Use Charge. It further disclosed that Tension is already mounting in Lagos as the ultimatum issued by the state government to reverse the contentious Land Use charges expires today.  The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) told the Nigerian Tribune on Sunday that the civil action promised to follow the expiration of the ultimatum, starting from tomorrow, remained in place.

Consumers are to pay more for cigarettes, alcohol from June 4th, THE PUNCH has announced. The Federal Government has approved an amendment to excise duty rates for alcoholic beverages and tobacco products. The approval, according to the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, was given by President Muhammadu Buhari, and would take effects from Monday, June 4th 2018.

Moving to the economic sector, Banks record 26,182 fraud, forgery cases worth N12bn heads both the NEW TELEGRAPH and VANGUARD. Deposit Money banks in the country are hiding cases of fraud from industry regulators, Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporations NDIC, revealed this in a statement, yesterday. Head communications and Public Affairs, NDIC, Mr Mohammed Ibrahim, disclosed this in a statement saying: “The NDIC is to investigate some banks for inadequate rendition of returns to the corporation on instances of fraud, forgeries and cases involving members of their staff who were either dismissed or had their appointments terminated on grounds of fraudulent activities.

Finally On BUSINESS DAY, The Math Doesn’t Add Up With Milost  is written boldly. Milost Global Inc, a private equity (PE) firm purportedly based in New York, United State, is in Nigeria making promises it may not keep. Take the firm’s latest announcement to invest some $250 million (90 billion at N360/$) in financial services company, Resort savings and loans- which has a market capitalization of N5.6 billion. According to data on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE)

 

Over 1,000 Houses Burnt As Kaduna Mayhem Worsens And Other Interesting News Headlines

At least 1,000 shops and several vehicles were burnt in the violence that came as a result of Christian and Muslim youth clash in Kaduna. According to The VANGUARD, the large scale destruction that trailed the clash which engulfed Kasuwan Magani town in Kajuru Local Government Area of the state was benumbing. Kaduna State Commissioner of Police, Austin Iwar, who disclosed the new death toll yesterday, said 18 people had also been arrested.
About six newspapers focus on the kidnapped Dapchi students. NEW TELEGRAPH discloses the words of the Speaker of the House of Representative Yakubu Dogara, saying the Army and Police should be held responsible for the missing girls. He also asked that the security agencies should take responsibility for the missing girls.

The remaining five newspapers focus on the details of the abducted schoolgirls unveiled by the Federal Government. While DAILY SUN, THE GUARDIAN, THE PUNCH and Nigerian Tribune publish the names of the students and disclosing that FG had set a panel to probe the incident, THE NATION reveals that Air Force deploys 100 jets in search of 110 schoolgirls. The Air Force has deployed 100 fighter jets in the search for the 110 schoolgirls abducted on February 19, the Federal Government said yesterday. The students of the Government Girls Science and Technical College (GGSTC), Dapchi, Yobe State were abducted from their hostels by terrorists. Twenty of the jets have flown 200 hours as at Monday evening, according to a fact sheet on the search released by Minister of Information, Culture and National Orientation Lai Mohammed.

DAILY INDEPENDENT reveals President Muhammadu Buhari saying Executive, NASS standoff slowing Governance. President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday blamed the standoff between his administration and the National Assembly for the slow pace of governance under the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC). He, however, assured that it will be resolved soon.

Finally in BUSINESS DAY, non-oil economy gathers momentum in Q4-NBS. Nigeria’s non-oil economy grew 1.5 percent year on year (YOY) in the fourth quarter of 2017, its strongest performance since 2015, according to GDP data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) released yesterday. This is a reversal of the non oil sectors negative growth of -0.76 percent recorded in the third quarter of 2017, its stronger performance since 2015, according to GDP data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) released yesterday.

 

 

Catholic Bishops To Buhari: Your Goodwill Fast Depleting And Other Newspaper Headlines Today

According to the NEW TELEGRAPH, The Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN), yesterday, told President Muhammadu Buhari that his goodwill among Nigerians was fast depleting because of the glaring failures of his administration. The Catholic clerics, who were at the Aso Rock Presidential Villa on a visit, told the President in very blunt language that Nigerians at the grassroots were angry with him and his government.

THE PUNCH also made the same story its headline saying President Buhari, Catholic Bishops In Frank Exchange. The bishops address at the visit, copies of which were made available to journalists, was jointly signed by the CBCN President and Archbishop of Jos, Most Rev. Ignatius Kaigama; and the Secretary who is also the Bishop of Gboko,  Most Rev. William Avenya. The address read in part, “There is no doubt that when you came into office, you had an enormous amount of the goodwill of Nigerians, since many saw you as a person of integrity who would be able to bring sanity into a system that was nearly crippled by endemic corruption. “Nearly three years later, however, one has the feeling that this goodwill is being fast depleted by some glaring failures of government which we have the moral responsibility to bring to your notice, else we would be failing in our duty as spiritual fathers and leaders.”

THE NATION reveals; No Plan To Colonise Any Part Of Nigeria, Says Buhari. While discussing with the bishops, President Muhammadu Buhari promised yesterday to review the appointments made by his administration and take a second look where necessary. He also explained that the proposed cattle colony by the Federal Government in response to the killings and frequent clashes between herdsmen and farmers is not meant to colonise any part of the country.

THE VANGUARD goes with a more dramatic headline; Act Now, Nigeria Under Siege, Catholic Bishops Tell Buhari. According to the news Catholic Bishops of Nigeria, yesterday, in Abuja told President Muhammadu Buhari that the country appeared to be under siege which required proactive measure, as hunger, hopelessness and deprivation are now the order of the day.

Still on the Aso Rock visit, You’re losing Goodwill, Catholic Bishops Tell Buhari heads the INDEPENDENT. Catholic Bishops in another earnest message to President Muhammadu Buhari – have warned that he was fast losing the goodwill that brought him to power in 2015. Similar messages have come from two former leaders within two weeks: Olusegun Obasanjo and Ibrahim Babangida. The clerics, under the auspices of Catholic Bishops of Nigeria, met behind closed doors with President Buhari on Thursday.

Moving away from the Catholic Bishops visit, Insecurity: State Police The Way To Go- Osinbajo, heads NIGERIAN TRIBUNE. The Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, on Thursday, said in view of the nation’s landmass and dynamics of security, state police would be an option to ensure proper policing of the populace.

Govs where Absent As Osinbajo Endorses State Police. None of the 36 governors was in attendance at a security summit yesterday as Vice President Yemi Osinbajo explained why Nigeria is ripe for state police. According to THE GUARDIAN, the inability of governors, as state chief security officers, to commandeer police forces has always been on the front burner of complaints about defects in the nation’s structure.

Killings By Herdsmen: FG Backs State Police appears on the DAILY SUN. The Federal Government said it cannot realistically provide security for Nigeria from the center, explaining that Nigeria has been unable to meet the United Nations’ recommendation of one policeman to 400 persons.

BUSINESS DAY wraps it up for headlines today, disclosing that 9mobile Sale To Be Concluded February 26- Barclays Africa. Barring last minute changes, the sale of 9mobile is expected to be concluded on 26th February, 2018, BusinessDay has gathered. No fewer than 17 bidders expressed interests in the transaction which commenced on 7th September, 2017; following the exit of core investors into Etisalat. Hasnea Varawalla, Barclays Africa Managing Principal disclosed this during the investigative public hearing into the ‘collapse of Etisalat’ held at the instance of House Committee on Telecommunications, chaired by Saheed Fijabi-Akande.