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Lawan seeks closer parliamentary, economic ties between Nigeria and Turkey, S/Korea

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Senate President Ahmad Lawan
Senate President Ahmad Lawan
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Lawan seeks closer parliamentary, economic ties between Nigeria and Turkey, S/Korea
The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan has advocated for closer collaboration between Nigeria, Turkey and South Korea particularly in parliamentary engagements and also in the areas of economy and technology.
Lawan made the call on Wednesday in separate audiences with the Ambassadors of Turkey,  Hidayet Bayraktar and South Korea, Kim Young-Chae who paid him visits in his office at the National Assembly.
The President of Turkey was on a visit to Nigeria last month during which some agreements were signed between the two countries.
The Senate President told his first guest the Ambassador of Turkey, that the National Assembly, particularly the Senate “will be glad to have a parliamentary relationship with the Turkish Grand Parliament.
“Whatever we do at the executive level and I know so many agreements were signed the last time the President was here.
“The National Assembly can be of help here because some of the agreements need to be actually activated or supported by legislation so that we have a better and more enduring arrangement that withstand the test of time.
“So the relationship between the two parliaments of Nigeria and Turkey is very important.
“We have already established a Senate Nigeria/Turkey Tarliament Friendship Group but we are yet to start any activities.
“So with this visit, I want to tell you clearly that we are ready as a parliament to engage with our colleagues in Turkey and convey our message to the Speaker of the Grand Parliament of Turkey that the Senate particularly is also willing to share experience with them and we are prepared to exchange visits so that we benefit from each other.”
Lawan thanked the Turkish authourities for the support that Nigeria received in the fight against insurgency and also for granting Nigerian students scholarship to study in Turkish Universities.
“We will continue to hope that this relationship is improved further and further at all times and from 1962 to date, definitely the relationship has grown but we want it to be faster and I believe that when we have more economic engagements and more parliamentary relationship, the relationship can be stronger,” Lawan said.
Earlier, the Turkish Ambassador told the Senate President that “during our President’s visit, the thing that we have noticed is that the parliamentary dimension of our relationship is not too strong.
“We are trying to intensify relationship in that field.”
Also speaking to the Ambassador of South Korea, the Senate President applauded the relationship between Nigeria and South Korea.
“The relationship between South Korea and Nigeria can only be better. The growing trade relationship is commendable but we need to improve on it so that we can benefit from your technological advancement in agriculture sector particularly.
“We need to introduce a lot of technology so that we increase and enhance our agricultural performance in many areas including the mechanisation of our system here for better and improved output.
“In the areas of commerce and other businesses, we have a lot to benefit from you just like you also have a lot to benefit from us. I believe that what we want and need more from South Korea is technology that they have been able to develop.
“So we need an adaptation of some of these technology and we need so much investments from the Korean business community here in Nigeria.
“Nigeria has a very big population and we believe that we can provide a good market instead of always importing from other countries which is inimical to our balance of trade.
“We believe that countries like South Korea should be able to locate very appropriate places within our country and bring some of these technology to be adapted in our country.
“The relationship between the two countries has been so good. I believe we can take our relationship as parliaments especially the Senate and South Korean parliament because whatever we do, we need to make it more susteanable and enduring and when we develop the relationship that we hope to develop, we also need to see areas of agreement where the countries will have mutual benefits and that is where the parliament will be of immense help because the parliament can enact laws that will support the kind of agreements that we can reach between the two countries,” Lawan said.

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Supreme Court Orders FG To Pay allocations Directly To LGAs

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The supreme court has ruled that the federal government should henceforth pay allocations directly to local government councils from the federation account.

Delivering judgment in the suit on Thursday, a seven-member panel of justices held that state governments have continued to abuse their powers by retaining and using the funds meant for LGAs.

In May, the federal government filed a suit at the supreme court against governors of the 36 states.

In the suit marked SC/CV/343/2024, the federal government asked for full autonomy for the country’s 774 local governments.

In the suit filed by Lateef Fagbemi, attorney-general of the federation (AGF) and minister of justice, the federal government also requested the supreme court to authorise the direct transfer of funds from the federation account to local governments — in accordance with the constitution.

The suit was hinged on 27 grounds.

“That the constitution of Nigeria recognizes federal, states and local governments as three tiers of government and that the three recognized tiers of government draw funds for their operation and functioning from the federation account created by the constitution,” the originating summons had read.

“That all efforts to make the governors comply with the dictates of the 1999 Constitution in terms of putting in place a democratically elected local government system, has not yielded any result and that to continue to disburse funds from the federation account to governors for non-existing democratically elected local governments is to undermine the sanctity of the 1999 constitution.”

The federal government had asked the apex court to invoke sections 1, 4, 5, 7 and 14 of the constitution to declare that the governors and state houses of assembly are under obligation to ensure democratically elected systems at the third tier.

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N33bn Fraud: Ex-Minister Mamman Collapses Outside Court

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Saleh-Mamman
Saleh-Mamman
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The arraignment of Saleh Mamman, the former Minister of Power under ex-President Muhammadu Buhari, was on Thursday, July 11, 2024, stalled at a Federal High Court in Abuja due to ill health.

Mamman, whose plea was fixed for Thursday morning, collapsed outside the courtroom before the case was called.

The former minister’s counsel, Femi Ate (SAN), told the presiding judge Justice James Omotosho shortly when the matter was called for Mamman to take his plea.

Upon resumed hearing, the ex-minister walked into the courtroom and stepped into the dock with part of his clothes drenched.

Justice Omotosho then asked why Mamman was sweating or whether it was raining outside.

The former minister, who responded from the dock, said water was poured on him.

The counsel for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Adeyinka Olumide-Fusika (SAN), while addressing the court, said though the matter was fixed for Mamman’s arraignment, there was a development outside the courtroom.

Olumide-Fusika said he had a discussion with Ate outside the courtroom about Mamman’s ill-health.

“I was informed of an incident outside. I will want my learner senior advocate to tell the honourable court himself,” he said.

Speaking, Ate said Mamman, “upon being brought into the premises of the court collapsed and had to be resuscitated and treated by the medical personnel of the Federal High Court.”

He said his client was served with the charge after he was resuscitated.

N1.6bn fraud: Please give me time to return looted funds, ex-AGF begs court

“He was served this morning,” he added.

The lawyer said he sought the understanding of Olumide-Fusika for an adjournment so that the arraignment could be done on Monday when his client would have been okay.

However, the judge said due to the workload in the court dockets, the arraignment could only be fixed for September ending.

Ate then withdrew the oral application for an adjournment.

The judge, however, asked Mamman if he was fit enough to take his plea today and he responded in the affirmative.

Mamman, however, said he was fit to continue with the arraignment.

“It can happen to anyone,” the judge said.

Justice Omotosho, thereafter, stepped down the arraignment until Thursday afternoon.

The EFCC had filed a 12-count money laundering charge against the Mamman.

He was alleged to have committed money laundering offences to the tune of N33 billion.

The former minister served under former President Buhari from 2019 to 2021.

 

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Olaide Akinremi, House Of Reps Member, Dies At 51

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Olaide Adewale Akinremi, a member of the house of representatives, is dead.

The lawmaker died on Wednesday morning aged 51.

Akinremi represented Ibadan north federal constituency on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

He was a ranking member and house committee chairman on science and research.

In a statement, Akin Rotimi, spokesperson of the house, said the Oyo lawmaker was a “dedicated public servant known for his unwavering commitment to the development of his constituency and the country at large”.

“His passion for service, coupled with his deep understanding of the needs and aspirations of his people, earned him the endearing title of ‘Jagaban’.

“Throughout his tenure, he was a staunch advocate for policies and initiatives that promoted social welfare, economic growth, and scientific research.

“His contributions to legislative debates and his active participation in committee activities were a testament to his dedication and hard work.

“Rep. Akinremi was as much a grassroots politician as he was an astute statesman who leveraged his goodwill and network of relationships to attract positive impact to the people of his constituency.

“He built friendships by being intentional about reaching out and sending goodwill messages to all colleagues on special occasions, fostering camaraderie and unity within the House.

“As a ranking member, Rep. Akinremi had keen institutional memory and was a mentor to many first-time parliamentarians, guiding them with wisdom gained from his extensive experience in legislative affairs.”

Tajudeen Abbas, speaker of the house, also expressed “profound sadness” over the passing of the lawmaker.

“Rep. Akinremi Olaide Adewale was a beacon of dedication and service,” Abbas said.

“His contributions to our legislative work, especially in the area of science and research, were invaluable.

“His passing is a great loss to the House, his constituency, and the nation. We will miss his leadership, wisdom, and the unique passion he brought to his work.”

Akinremi’s death comes weeks after the passing of Isa Dogonyaro, a member of the house of representatives who represented Babura/Garki federal constituency of Jigawa state.

Dogonyaro died in May after a brief illness.

 

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