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FG tasks engineers to apply technological advancements in construction



Image of an Engineer

The Federal Government has urged engineers to apply technological advancement and dynamism in the construction industry that required harnessing local products.

The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, made the call on Thursday at the 6th Conference and Annual General Meeting of the Giri branch of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) in Abuja.

The theme of the conference is “Prospects of Natural Fibres as Viable Local Materials for Building Infrastructures (Bamboo and Fanpalm as case studies).”

Represented by Mr Solomon Labafilo, Director, Public Buildings and Housing Departments, Fashola said the subject matter was important considering the recent inauguration of the Presidential Monitoring and Evaluation Council for the full implementation of the Presidential Executive Order No. 5.

He said the council was established to ensure Planning and Execution of Nigerian Content in Contracts, Science, Engineering and Technology in the country’s desire to improve and expand indigenous capacity.

He observed that the construction industry was confronted with high cost of building materials due to high dependency on imported materials for construction activities.

“The COVID-19 pandemic also created severe economic consequences all over the world, Nigeria not an exception.

“I wish to enjoin the NSE to look inward and position itself in playing a pivotal role in the development of Nigeria by being in tune with technological advancements, competition and dynamism in the construction industry.

“One of the objectives of the economic sustainability plan of the government is to promote the manufacturing and local production at all levels and advocate the use of Made-in-Nigerian goods and services as a way of creating job opportunities.

“This will help achieve sufficiency in critical sectors of our economy and curbing unnecessary demand for foreign exchange,” he said.

He added that the ministry was committed to promoting local content, hence the use of local building materials in the on-going National Housing Programme in 34 states and the FCT.

He reiterated that the country was endowed with numerous natural resources that could be harnessed for construction locally.

Fashola assured the NSE branch of collaboration to advance the sector.

President of the NSE, Babagana Mohammed urged young engineers to get involved in innovative research in engineering to address issues of construction in the country.

Mohammed said that young people should change their mentality toward the profession adding that there was no room for scavenging.

Dr Taiwo Audu, the keynote speaker and a lecturer at the Civil Engineering Department, University of Abuja, said economic burden due to high cost of imported building materials necessitated possible locally available substitutes.

Audu described fibres as hair-like materials that are continous filaments or are in discrete elongated pieces which are similar to thread.

He, however, said that the fear for using fibres in building was the uncertainty of its durability.

According to him, 20 million tons of bamboo is often collected in rural areas by local people which plays an important role in the local economy.

Audu also said that bamboo could be used in construction, for furniture, food, biofuel, fabrics, paper, pulp, charcoal, ornamental garden planting, among others.

He added that if alternative natural fibres would be deployed into building, all aspects of engineering needed to work in synergy.

Mr Abdulrahman Mohammed, Chairman, Giri NSE branch, called on other arms of engineering to join forces with the NSE to build a formidable sector.

Also, Prof. Abdulrasheed Na’Allah, Vice Chancellor, University of Abuja, said there was need for the society branch to collaborate with the academia, especially the university to mentor young engineers.

Represented by Dr Kafeyat Adeyemi, Director, Energy Research Centre, Na’Allah said by mentoring young engineers and engaging in innovative engineering, it would improve the ranking of the institution.

The event featured presentation of awards to notable members of the society and individuals who had contributed to the growth of the society’s branch. (NAN)

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Uba Sani To PDP’s Ashiru: Join Hands With My Govt For Kaduna’s Development 



Kaduna State Governor Uba Sani


Kaduna State Governor, Uba Sani, has hailed the judgement of the Kaduna State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal which upheld his victory in the March 18 gubernatorial election in the state.

Sani, in a statement on Thursday, September 28, 2023, urged his challenger in the election, Isah Mohammed Ashiru of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to join hands with his government to develop Kaduna State.

Sani contested the gubernatorial election on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

The governor, who commended Ashiru for challenging his victory in the court, stated: “I am extremely delighted and humbled by the ruling of the Election Petition Tribunal affirming my victory in the 2023 Kaduna State Governorship Elections.

“The judgement is an unequivocal affirmation of the popular mandate graciously given to me by the good people of Kaduna State. I commend the Tribunal for their thoroughness and lucidity. They have enriched our jurisprudence and practice of electoral democracy.

“I also commend my dear brother, Hon. Isah Ashiru Kudan for approaching the Tribunal to ventilate his grievances. This is a clear demonstration of his belief in the principles of democracy and the imperative of civility in the conduct of political actors.

“I call on Hon. Isah Ashiru and members of the opposition parties in Kaduna State to join hands with us as we strive to move our dear state to a higher level. We are all stakeholders in Project Kaduna.

“It is not about personal glory. Our people want all hands to be on deck to address the myriad challenges confronting the state. If political actors are united, a clear signal will be sent to our people that the quest for peace, security, progress, and development of our state are the driving forces of our participation in politics.”

He, therefore, enjoined the APC members in Kaduna State to moderate their celebration of his election victory, saying they should extend an olive branch to other members of political parties in the state.

“Instead of celebrating, we should bow down in prayers to the Almighty God for His continued guidance and protection. Let us focus on the tasks ahead,” Governor Sani added.

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Subsidy: NLC, TUC Declare Indefinite Strike From October 3



TUC and NLC symbols


The leaders of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) will commence an indefinite strike on Tuesday, October 3.

This followed a joint press briefing held by both leadership of the union in Abuja, the nation’s capital on Tuesday (today).

The unions also asked their state chapters to mobilize for protests across the country.

It was gathered that the leaders of the two labour centres have resolved their differences that made only NLC embark on a two-day warning strike without the participation of TUC.

According to the notice of meeting signed by the NLC Secretary, Emmanuel Ugboaja, the meeting is holding virtually.

Meanwhile, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Simon Lalong has appealed to the NLC leadership to shelve the planned strike, assuring them that the Federal Government is determined to address the concerns raised.

The minister also noted that one of the major demands of the NLC in their last meeting has been met, which has to do with the release of the leadership of the Nigeria Union of Road Transport workers.

A statement signed by the spokesman of the spokesman of the ministry’s Olajide Oshundu, urged the workers’ unions to give the government a little more time to address other issues.

On Tuesday, September 5 and Wednesday 6, 2023, NLC embarked on a two-day warning strike to force the government to address the mass suffering of Nigerians, especially workers.

Sources privy to the matter said the two sides after their separate organs’ meetings, commenced a joint press briefing at 3 p.m. on Tuesday to announce an indefinite nationwide strike following the Federal Government’s failure to address the suffering and other socioeconomic hardships occasioned by the removal of subsidy on Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), commonly known as petrol.

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Three Injured As Gunmen Kidnap Nasarawa Poly Student





Three students have been injured following an attack by gunmen in Lafia, the Nasarawa State capital.

A student of the Isa Mustapha Agwai Polytechnic in Lafia was abducted by gunmen who struck on Monday night.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Ramhan Nansel, confirmed this to Channels Television in a telephone conversation on Tuesday.

He said the abduction was during a robbery raid at Ombi 1 in Lafia, a student village where most of the enrollees of the polytechnic reside.

According to the police spokesman, a distress call was received by 10 p.m. on Monday over an armed robbery taking place at a house at Ombi 1, Lafia.

“Upon receipt of the report, policemen were immediately drafted to the scene; on arrival, it was discovered that three people were injured,” the police spokesman said.

“The victims were rushed by the police to Dalhatu Araf Specialist Hospital for treatment. Upon their return to the scene of the incident, it was later discovered that one person named Jumoke (surname withheld) was missing.”

The police spokesman assured the public that the command had launched an investigation as the Commissioner of Police had deployed all tactical teams of the command to the area.

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