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Seccession not solution to Nigeria’s current challenges – Ganduje

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Kano State Governor Abdullahi Ganduje
Kano State Governor Abdullahi Ganduje
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Gov. Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State says secession is not the way out of the current challenges afflicting the country.

Ganduje said this at the 2nd quarterly public lecture series of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Press Corps on Thursday in Abuja.

He recommended dialogue as a panacea that should be embraced by secessionists to address perceived grievances.

The theme of the lecture, which was attended by APC chieftains, members of State Executive Councils and legislators, is: “Sustaining A United and Indivisible Nigeria: A Myth or Reality”.

“Let me repeat here that Nigeria is a united and indivisible country; our Constitution has taken care of that, I don’t see secession as the way out of the current challenges afflicting the nation.

“Instead, advocates of secession should have a change of heart and I recommend dialogue as a crucial option for addressing their problems.

“Besides, there is a National Assembly where some of the grievances can be addressed,” Ganduje said.

According to him, dialogue is a far better alternative that costs less than consequences of the wedge that had been erected to frustrate more flow of conversations between government and citizens to arrive at a national consensus.

He said that sooner we face issues such as the huge infrastructure deficit, our shrinking oil revenue and looming food insecurity as a consequence of insecurity in our agriculture zones, the better for us all.

He said that instead of applying energies on self-determination agitation that would only diminish us as a people, there was need  to focus on diversification of the economy and out of school children shame.

Ganduje said it was important at this time that the media was used for the promotion of peace and stability in the country.

He said this was critical to change the view points that could alter public views and sentiment toward a more peaceful resolution of our multi-faceted current crises.

He however noted that while democracy gave citizens the right to air their views, this should not be translated to grievances, violence or bloodshed.

“While the unity of Nigeria should be discussed, the agitators must be strongly cautioned to channel their grievances to the appropriate quarters.

“This should be done without perpetrating acts that could be interpreted as an attempt to enthrone instability and dismember the country,” he said.

He added that those on the streets of South West or South Eastern states, carrying dangerous weapons, attacking security personnel and formations as well as innocent citizens should be cautioned.

The governor stressed that such persons should be cautious not to become cannon fodders for mischief-making.

Ganduje said Nigeria was bigger than all of us and there was no challenge that was bigger than the political class to solve.

“We can make mistakes, but we are matured enough to correct such mistakes as part of our development processes,” he said.

He noted that the leadership of the groups in the two geo-political regions spear heading the bid for secession from Nigeria had gone too far.

This, he said, was especially so because they incite followers to acts of violence against Nigerian security forces and had established a paramilitary wing.

The governor maintained that no serious government would stand by and watch this scenario and go to bed.

He also advised the media not to be used to promote fake news and hate speeches, saying that in the course of its duty, the media should ensure strict observance of the ethics of the profession.

“Let’s not entertain any fear, we have become too fused to be divided.

“Sustaining this unity is possible and it is a reality; we may be historically different in our religion, beliefs and customs, our unity may have been a British invention.

“But if we are willing and ready to shun bitterness, hatred, suspicion and imbibe equity, fairness, brotherly love and tolerance, we will succeed.

“We are too fused, in fact too entropic together to be divided at this time. Let’s repair our broken walls instead and move on,” he said.

He, however, added that we could debate restructuring, not secession or self-determination.

Besides, Ganduje advised that as Nigerians, we should not let the labour of our heroes past to be in vain, adding that we should hail, not hate the country at this time.

Gov. Mai Mala Buni of Yobe and Chairman, APC Caretaker and Extra-ordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC), was represented by former Senate President, Ken Nnamani, at the event.

Buni said it was our responsibility as citizens to make the country more efficient and attractive, adding that “the more united we are, the better we are”.

He noted that when a level playing field is provided for all citizens, issues of agitations would be addressed. (NAN)

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SANWO-OLU URGES RESIDENTS TO STAY CALM OVER CASH SCARCITY

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Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu
Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu
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The Lagos State Government has observed the tension caused by the slow release of cash through Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) and within banking halls.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu today joined a delegation that met with President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja to deliberate on measures to remove the hardship caused by the scarcity of the new currency.

In a statement signed by the Hon. Commissioner for information, Mr Gbenga Omotoso, Mr. Sanwo-Olu urges residents to remain calm as the government is doing everything possible to normalise the situation. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has promised to put measures in place to ensure residents have access to currency notes released to banks.

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Buhari inaugurates new MOFI Board

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President Muhammadu Buhari
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President Muhammadu Buhari has charged the Ministry of Finance Incorporated (MOFI) to grow its Assets Under Management from the current value of N18 trillion to at least N100 trillion in the next 10 years.

The president gave the charge at the launch of the new MOFI and inauguration of the Governing Council and Board of Directors of the body shortly before the commencement of the Federal Executive Council meeting.

The president also tasked the new board to “be the clearing house for the management of Federal Government’s investments and assets in line with global best practices with a view to ensuring that these investments are delivering superior risk-adjusted returns to the government.”

He also called on the new MOFI to work with other Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to create a consolidated national assets register with a view to converting them into cash-flow-generating entities.

This, he said, would support the government’s revenue drive.

Buhari urged members of the board to work with the government with a view to using government-owned investments and assets to support the government in delivering on its social and economic obligations to the citizenry.

He, therefore, directed the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Dr  Zainab Ahmed to commence the process of amending the MOFI Act and other legislations to further institutionalize this reform.

According to him, the amendments when carried out, would ensure that MOFI was restructured and repositioned to become a trusted custodian and manager of Federal Government’s investments and assets.

Buhari said the event was significant as the restructured MOFI would help identify “what we own” and how to get the best out of them.

According to the president, the MOFI Act of 1959, now Cap. 229, Laws of the Federation, 2004, explicitly empowers MOFI to enter into commercial transactions of any description on behalf of the Federal Government in its own name.

He said that MOFI was used as a Special Purpose Vehicle across different sectors to invest in commercial entities over the last 64 years, adding that MOFI was created even before Nigeria’s independence.

In her remarks, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning thanked Buhari for his support and approvals that had made the restructuring and repositioning of MOFI possible.

According to the minister, the council members and board will ensure that the new MOFI delivers on its mandates.

The governing council is chaired by the President, with the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Dr Zainab Ahmed, as Vice Chair.

It’s members include: The Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva; Aviation, Hadi Sirika; Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo and Transportation, Mu’azu Sambo.

Others are: Governor of the Central Bank, Dr Godwin Emefiele and three experts appointed by the President, namely: Prof. Muhammad Sagagi, Dr Ayo Teriba and Prof. Ken Ife.

The board members include: Former Finance Minister, Shamsudeen Usman as Chairman, Permanent Secretaries of the Ministries of Finance and Petroleum Resources and acting Accountant-General of the Federation.

Others are; Olawale Edun, Fatima Mede, Ike Chioke, Muhammad Nda, Alheri Nyako and an executive from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) are also members of the board

Members of the Executive Management Team are: Dr Armstrong Takang, Managing Director, Eric solo, Executive Director, Chief Portfolio Officer, Sani Yakubu Chief Investment Officer and Oluwakemi Owonubi, Chief Risk Officer.

 

 

(NAN)

 

 

 

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Polls: NBC warns broadcasters against compromising national unity

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National Broadcasting Commission
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The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has cautioned all broadcasters against compromising national unity while covering forthcoming  general election.

The Director-General of NBC, Malam Balarabe Ilelah issued the warning in a statement, on Wednesday in Abuja.

He said: ”The National Broadcasting Commission wish to again, remind all broadcasters covering the forthcoming general elections to take note of the provisions of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code, and other relevant regulations guiding the broadcast of elections in Nigeria.

”The commission has observed, with deep concerns, how ethics and ethos have been thrown to the winds by politicians using broadcast media platforms.

”This is against the provisions of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code, which provides that in using materials for news and current affairs programmes, the broadcaster shall avoid hate speech, inflammatory, derogatory and divisive remarks or allusions.

”The commission notes that some station now glamorise these situations on their platforms. The NBC reiterates that such stations shall pay for their professional misdemeanor.”

Ilelah said for the avoidance of doubt, broadcasters were advised to note the sections of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code which provides that the broadcaster shall promote human dignity.

He added: “Therefore, hate speech is prohibited. Section 3.11.1 (a) states that all broadcasters should ensure that language or a scene likely to encourage or incite to crime, or lead to disorder, is not broadcast.

“Also, section 3.11.1 (b) advice broadcaster to ensure that no programme contains anything which amounts to subversion of constituted authority or compromises the unity or corporate existence of Nigeria as a sovereign state.

“Similarly, section 5.4.1 (f) prohibit broadcasters from transmitting divisive materials that may threaten or compromise the indivisibility and indissolubility of Nigeria as a sovereign state.”

Ilelah said that section 5.3.3 (g) urged broadcasters to ensure that a political broadcast was clearly identified as such, and not presented in a manner that would mislead the audience to believe that the programme was of any other type.

“Also, section 5.3.3 (j) enjoin broadcasters to ensure that the broadcast of a partisan political campaign, jingle, announcement and any form of partisan political party identification or symbol ends not later than 24 hours before polling day.

“The NBC ACT CAP N11, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004, also prescribes, in the Third Schedule 12(6) that “A Licensee shall be responsible for the content of the Station’s Broadcast.

”The commission enjoins all broadcasters to desist from using or allowing their platforms and facilities to be used by politicians, their supporters and or sympathisers, for the broadcast of contents that may lead to the breakdown of law and order,” Ilelah

He said that broadcasters were therefore expected to perform the role of peace agents by adhering to the principles of responsibility, accuracy and neutrality.

 

 

(NAN)

 

 

 

 

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