Mr Babatunde Irukera, Executive Vice Chairman of the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) has said that the Commission is working towards making estimated billing unattractive for power holding companies so as to enable them make prepaid meters available for consumers.
Irukera who said this during an interaction with journalists on Tuesday in Abuja, wondered why power distribution companies should issue exorbitant estimated billings to consumers when they have not given light for a while.
He lamented the difficulties in procuring pre-paid meters, describing some billings as arbitrary.
He said, “How can you be billing people who you have not given light for a while?
“We are working towards making estimated billing unattractive for Discos to enable them to see reasons to make prepaid meters available for consumers”.
Speaking on the recent raids on loan sharks, Irukera, said no fewer than 30 bank accounts operated by illegal loan organisations.
He said that the Commission was currently engaging some major loan companies affected by the Commission’s raid, saying that the move is to ensure sanity in the sector and prevent abuse of consumer rights.
Irukera said: “The day we conducted the raid, we have some limited information about the bank accounts that some of the loan companies operated.
“All the bank accounts that were provided were immediately blocked but these companies operate multiple bank accounts with multiple names.
“Between the time we raided and now, we have discovered additional 30 accounts and all have been frozen and we will continue to freeze as we discover them.
“I am certain that with the actions that we have taken and the nature of the engagement we are having with the loan companies, at least three of the major ones that their businesses have been severely affected by either our search or the account closure, they are modifying.
“It will take some time but I can assure you that the space is changing now”.
He said that the Commission had engaged Google and Apple Stores to take down some loan applications from their stores, noting that there were certain processes required for that to happen.
Breaking: DSS arrests Doyin Okupe at Lagos airport
The immediate past Director-General of the Labour Party (LP) Presidential Campaign Council, Doyin Okupe, has reportedly been arrested by the operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS).
It was gathered that Okupe was arrested at the Murtala Muhammed Airport in Ikeja, Lagos State, while on his way to London, the United Kingdom.
According to one of Okupe’s lawyers, Tolu Babaleye who spoke on the subject matter, on Thursday, said the DSS asked him to provide court processes where he paid the fine option following his money laundering conviction by the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja.
When contacted on the report of Okupe’s arrest, Dr Peter Afunanya, DSS Public Relations Officer confirmed that the former Director-General of the Labour Party Presidential Campaign Council was intercepted by the DSS at Terminal 1 of Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos.
“Doyin Okupe was intercepted by the DSS at Terminal 1 of Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos this morning at the instance of the EFCC.
“He has long been handed over to the Commisson which requested for the action. “Okupe was billed to fly to London via Virgin Atlantic” He said.
WE ARE AWARE OF PLANS TO SMEAR THE NAME OF OUR DG AND KEY OFFICIALS OF THE SERVICE – DSS SAYS.
The Department of State Services (DSS) on Tuesday said the service has uncovered plans by some politicians and disgruntled elements within and outside the government to sponsor smear campaigns against the DGSS, Yusuf Magaji Bichi and his key officials over the Service’s uncompromising stance on some critical governance and policy issues.
Public Relations Officer of the service, Peter Afunanya in a statement says, those behind the plot have engaged Civil Society and Non-Governmental Organisations to not only sustain but stage further rallies, road-shows and press conferences and use the occasions to discredit Bichi.
The statement further added that sections of the media have been briefed to implement the strategy through sponsored articles, commentaries and features to malign the DG, his family and select officials of the Service.
” The Service is monitoring developments and will allow the plotters to either exhaust themselves or rescind the plan of action. Otherwise, no amount of intimidation, harassment and blackmail will deter it from discharging its duties. However, it would not idly watch a group of dissatisfied gang to undermine the Service and its highly dedicated Leadership and Management.” Afunanya stated.
The DSS, therefore, wishes to inform the public to be wary of these tendencies and ignore the antics of dark forces out to impugn the character of the DG. It restates its unalloyed support to the President on his resolve to continue to confront head-on, threats to national security as well as create the enabling environment necessary for the 2023 general elections to hold.
INSECURITY: Those Fighting Me in Imo State Knows We Have Done Well – Hope Uzodinma
Imo state governor Hope Uzodinma says those fighting him in his home state knows he has done well but only llookin for whom to blame as a way of de-marketing him.
Briefing State House Correspondents After a closed door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja,
The former senator said no one has accused him or his administration of corruption
In his words, ” Those who are fighting me in my state are not saying we’re not working, they are not saying we are not developing the place, they are not accusing us of corruption. All they are saying is that they are contriving, instigating insecurity out of desperation, and then blaming the security on my government.”
“I’ve seen at the sub national that critical security measures are managed and controlled by the federal government. So I cannot be blamed for insecurity, because you cannot single out imo state. National security is about the 36 states of the Federation and FCT inclusive.
“So, I think we’ve done so well. And I’m happy by the grace of God, as soon as we’re able to bring the security to naught, we’ll have an environment that we will all celebrate and be happy with.
“During this season, we had relative peace in imo state, and Christmas is a very critical period for us and the new year is also very critical. And apart from a few scratches in the hinterland we are on top of the security situation now in Imo state.”
Speaking on his mission to the seat of Power, Uzodinma said he had come to see President Buhari in order to appeal to him to approve technology deployment to enable the region deal effectively with the rising cases of insecurity and other violent Crimes which the President has agreed to.
According to him, ” with the president’s approval, advanced surveillance equipment will soon be delivered to the region that will enhance the fight against insecurity without collateral damage.”
He said he was also at the Presidential Villa to thanked the president for what he has done for the region including the recent conversion of the Federal Medical Center Owerri to a university teaching hospital for the Federal University of Technology, and the approval that converted Alvan Ikoku College of Education to a federal college of education.
“The approval to convert Federal Medical Center Owerri to a university teaching hospital for the Federal University of Technology, the approval that converted Alvan Ikoku College of Education to a federal college of education amongst other things is something to be proud of in the region.
” Only two weeks ago, Igbos that came home from Lagos and outside South East enjoyed the benefit of the second Niger Bridge something that is worthy of of commendation.
“I also appealed to him for further support, to support us with some technological deployments, we have planned to be able to do an advanced kind of security control in the South East. And he has also given his approval to that.
“And any moment from now, we’ll be getting some surveillance equipment and some modern technologies that will help us manage security so that we can fight crime with little or no collateral damage to the environment.”
On assurance for Imo State in the New Year, he stated: “Well, my people are enthusiastic and committed Nigerians and we believe in the unity of the country. And we believe that for us to grow as a people, we need the support and cooperation of federal government, and that I’ve always stood for. So, going forward, I know 2023 will be better than 2022. And the level of development, we witnessed from 2020 to 2022 will be improved upon.
“ my people have seen a lot of thing. If you go to South East, in imo State for instance, we got approval of Mr. President, that has now enabling the government imo partnering with the Nigerian navy to dredge oguta river to orashi River to the sea, that is opening up that maritime route, then if there is a naval base, that we will now manage and control, pipelines vandalism, crude oil theft, and all forms of criminality that besieged that area for a very long time. And the crime is has gone down tremendously, since the Navel base was established.
“So I think we have hope for a better Nigeria. The road that we just completed that was commissioned by Mr president, the Owerri to orlu, dualised expressway, Mr President has approved that imo state government be refunded.
“The good news is every day I come to Mr president, one positive approval or the other. So our people are happy, we’re committed, we’re happy, we have never had it so good. that is why I continue to tell you, that the party to beat in my state is APC” He concluded .
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