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Nigerians will remember Ninth N’Assembly for its achievements – Lawan

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Senate President, Ahmad Lawan and cross section of Senators
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…says security, improved revenue generation to top legislative agenda in 2022 
 
President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, has said that Nigerians will remember the Ninth Assembly under his leadership for its outstanding legislative achievements after the end of its lifespan in June 2023.

Lawan made this known on Wednesday when the Senate Press Corps paid a visit to felicitate with him on the occasion of his 63rd birthday in Abuja.

According to the Senate President, the upper chamber and by extension the National Assembly remains committed to serving the interest of Nigerians in the discharge of its constitutional duties.

He added that no amount of name-calling by critics would deter the upper chamber from considering and passing pro-people legislations needed for the development and advancement of the country.
 
He said, “We believe that there is a price to pay for anything, but we are patriotic. Let us be called any name, what we want to do and achieve is for our country to be better.

“Tomorrow, some of these people that are calling us all types of names will be writing very good commentaries about what we have been able to achieve in this Ninth National Assembly.

“Majority of Nigerians are happy with what we are doing, we are not perfect, we make our errors and we will correct them.

“We identify with our citizens but we will always do what is in the best interest of our country.”

Lawan disclosed that the National Assembly in 2022 would focus on security through oversight of funds appropriated in this year’s budget to the armed forces and security agencies.

He explained that doing so would guarantee transparency in the procurement process and ensure the welfare of military and security personnel tasked with restoring security across parts of the country.

“That takes me to the challenge for the National Assembly, particularly the Senate in 2022.

“So far, we have done over ninety percent of what we set for ourselves in our legislative agenda, but because the country and people are dynamic, we have so many other things to do.

“Today, the security situation still begs for more attention. We will give a lot of attention to the security situation.

“We have appropriated about a trillion for our security agencies and armed forces, now it is for members of the National Assembly to ensure that the procurement process by the armed forces are transparent and everybody there is accountable.

“[And] of course, we should do oversight as much as possible for the welfare of our soldiers and security personnel. They need to continuously be motivated.”

The Senate President added that the upper chamber would also in the first-quarter of this year focus on addressing the challenges of revenue generation, collection and remittance to shore up earnings by the federal government.

According to him, an improvement to the country’s revenue figures would reduce Nigeria’s dependence on external borrowings for the execution of capital projects captured in the national budget.

“We still have a huge responsibility, and, in fact, it is something that we wanted to do last year, but because of the COVID-19 pandemic we couldn’t do so.

“This year, by the grace of God, we are going to resuscitate that plan, and it is to keep and maintain focus on revenue generation, collection and remittance.

“Our Revenue to GDP ratio is very low, and the economists will tell you Nigeria’s problem is not debt but revenue.

“So, if that is the case, it means those of us in government must focus on dealing with the challenges of revenue generation, revenue collection and remittance.

“This year, we are going to have engagements with the revenue generating agencies such as Nigerian Ports Authourity (NPA), Customs, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) and so on, on a quarterly basis, to have their targets set for them, and we want them to come and brief us on their performance every quarter.

“We hope to start the first meeting, which is an exploratory kind of meeting with them either this month or early February.

“We want to see how we can make positive difference in the area of revenue generation.

“Nobody likes taking loans, borrowing or accumulating debts, wether as an individual, a family, a community or as a country.

“But what can you do when you’re not able to generate enough? We are as concerned as anybody else about our level of borrowing, even though we have not saturated, but if we can do better why not reduce, and the best way to reduce is to get more revenues from especially independent sources.

“The government owned enterprises are supposed to give us more money. In 2022, we are expecting maybe about a trillion, I’m not an economist, but I believe that we should be expecting maybe double or triple from them.

“We must support them, we must supervise them, and we must keep them on their toes for us to have more revenues in other to reduce the level of borrowing

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EID El Fitr: Let’s Embrace Ramadan Lessons – Senator Bamidele

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Senate Leader, Senator Michael Opeyemi Bamidele
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Leader of the Senate, Senator Michael Opeyemi Bamidele has rejoiced with the Muslim faithful as they celebrate Eid-el-Fitr nationwide.

Senator Bamidele in a statement he signed explains that ‘Eid-el-Fitr marks the end of the 2024 Ramadan fasting, which started from March 10 and ended on April 9. Stressing that Within this timeframe, we must have learnt a lot of lessons, especially at this critical time in our history’

The lawmaker says the period of Ramadan should again remind us about the essence of forgiving others, ministering of compassion to the less privilege, respect for human dignity, promoting peaceful co-existence and upholding propriety and piety in all facets of life, which we must all embrace irrespective of our ethnic and religious leanings.

The statement reads: ‘These lessons are not meant for the period of Ramadan fasting only. Also, they are indeed principles and values, which should always guide and shape the life of every Nigerian, the quest of all businesses and conglomerates, the timeless task of building our fatherland as well as the decisions of the governments at all levels’

‘Now that Ramadan has come to an end, these lessons should reflect in the way we support our governments to resolve the myriad of internal challenges that we are collectively as a federation. It should reflect in the way we intercede the more for this federation to sustain the gains of economic stability and political cohesion that we have started experiencing in recent times. It should also reflect in our approaches to conducting businesses; running governments at all levels and discharging civic responsibilities on a daily basis’

‘Since the sustained implementation of pro-people macro-economic policies under this government, stability has started returning to economic and fiscal spaces. As against ₦1,900/$ in February 2024, the value of Naira is ₦1,117.5/$ as at Wednesday. This represents a gain of about 42% within the space of two months.

Besides, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has settled $7 billion valid foreign exchange backlogs. The federal government has paid back a whopping sum of ₦4.83 trillion out of ₦30 trillion ways and means it obtained from the CBN. And the flow of foreign direct investments is improving by the day.’
‘With these indices, the consumer price index, which measures inflation, will no doubt begin to drop significantly by mid-year as we sustain the drive for economic and fiscal stability. At the National Assembly, we are committed to providing much-needed parliamentary buffers that always support key public institutions to efficiently discharge their mandates consistent with the provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999.’
Sustaining our drive for economic stability, political cohesion and social inclusion no doubt demands the outright adherence to the core essence of Eid-el-Fitr, which in entirety forbids the sabotage of government policies, the quest for profiteering, the exploitation of our collective resources and the sponsoring of internal disharmony, all in the name of selfish interest and political aspiration’

‘Happy Eid-el-Fitr Celebration to all Muslims Nationwide’

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Easter: Senate Leader Calls for Emulation of Sacrificial Spirit of Jesus Christ.

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Senate Leader, Senator Michael Opeyemi Bamidele
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As Nigerians join the rest of the world to celebrate another Easter in remembrance of the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ; the Senate Leader, Senator Micheal Opeyemi Bamidele  has called on them to imbibe the sacrifice and pains the saviour of mankind went through on the cross.

Bamidele who said this in a statement issued by his Directorate of Media and Public Affairs, noted that the price paid by Jesus Christ which eventually saved humanity from eternal damnation could be likened to the economic hardship currently being experienced by Nigerians, a situation he assured will pay off in due course.

He noted that “it is pertinent for us as an individual and citizens of Federal Republic of Nigeria to pick one or two lessons from the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross, though it was a painful sacrifice, but the sacrifice paved the way for our external redemption.

“It is in the interest of nation building for both the leaders and followers to learn the importance of sacrifice as panacea to lay foundation for the future of any nation.

“The sacrifice we are undergoing today may be painful just as it was for Jesus Christ over 2000 years ago, yet I call on the citizenry to remain hopeful and undistracted as there’s light at the end of the tunnel.

“We should not allow pessimists to paint a picture of a failed nation before us, without recourse to the relentless efforts of the current administration of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu,” he assured.

Bamidele further expressed optimism that whatever sacrifice Nigerians may be going through shall not be in vain; adding that the Federal Government is on top of the situation and laying the foundation for a prosperous Nigeria.

He said current economic indices can attest to the fact that there are unprecedented rapid reforms taking place across key sectors of the life of the nation.

He gave the instance of the Foreign Exchange that had hit the roof top few weeks ago but now drastically dropping by 32.6 percent as a result of pragmatic steps taken by President Tinubu and and his economic team.

Bamidele further assured that investors are currently trooping into the country with job creating opportunities, while the National Assembly is prepared to give the President all the needed legislative backing to ensure that the sacrifices of Nigerians are soon rewarded.

The Senate Leader therefore urged Nigerians; as they continue to celebrate this year’s Easter to remember the leadership of the country in their prayers for divine wisdom and direction to pilot our affairs to a safe location.

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Constituency Projects: Oyebanji Joins Senate Leader On Tour Of Project Sites in Ekiti

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Ekiti State Governor, Biodun Oyebanji and Senate Leader, Sen. Michael Opeyemi Bamidele
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Ekiti State Governor, Biodun Oyebanji has commended the members of the State Caucus in the National Assembly for their dedication to the advancement of development in the State.

The Governor praised their efforts in initiating constituency projects that directly tackle pressing needs and improve the lives of citizens.

Oyebanji gave the commendation in Ado-Ekiti, the State Capital on Tuesday when he joined the Senator representing Ekiti Central Senatorial District and Leader of the Senate, Senator Michael Opeyemi Bamidele, on a tour of his constituency projects spanning various local government areas within the senatorial district.

The Governor said he is delighted at the remarkable partnership between the state government and National Assembly members, which according to him is now yielding positive results for the people of the state.

He explained that the projects are testimonials to what is possible when there is unity of purpose between the Executive and the legislative arms of government, commending Senator Bamidele’s commitment to grassroots development, dedication to service, and relentless pursuit of initiatives that directly impact the people.

While expressing his gratitude to Senator Bamidele, the Governor lauded the Senate Leader’s proactive approach to governance and his ability to mobilize resources to effectively implement impactful projects that uplift the socio-economic status of the people.

Governor Oyebanji reiterated his administration’s support for the projects and pledged continued collaboration with National Assembly members to advance sustainable development in the state, adding that he was confident that with the Senator’s visionary leadership and collective efforts of all stakeholders, Ekiti would continue to experience greater strides in development and prosperity.

“I am excited, happy and extremely grateful to God for this partnership that is working in the interest of Ekiti people, like the Senate Leader said, this is what we have when there is unity of purpose and collective ownership of vision to develop the state. A vision to run with the Renewed Hope Agenda of Mr President, and this tells me that I need to dig deeper in ensuring that there is continuous unity among the stakeholders in the National Assembly, “ the Governor said.

Earlier in his remarks, Senator Bamidele who thanked the Governor for his support and cooperation in realizing various development projects, said the purpose of the inspection is to assess the progress and impact of the projects across his constituency.

The Senate Leader, while emphasizing the significance of teamwork between the executive and legislative arms in driving positive change and progress in the state, restated his commitment to representing the interests of Ekiti people and working closely with the state government to address the people’s needs.

Senator Bamidele attributed various development projects in the state to purposeful and exemplary leadership provided by the Governor and assured the people that he would continue to work tirelessly to ensure the advancement of the interests of the people and promote development within the state.

“Part of the reason why this is going on is because am at peace with myself, am at peace with the state government and I don’t have any reason to want to isolate myself from what the state government is doing and we thank God Almighty”. He asserted.

Projects inspected included EKSU internal roads and the newly built medical student’s hostels, the newly built state Library in Ado Ekiti, the Mini stadium and sports complex in Erijiyan Ekiti, Intensive Care Unit and Amenities Center at Aramoko General Hospital, Ijero township road, newly built Iyin Ekiti General Hospital Intensive care Unit and Amenities Center, Iyin – Ilawe road, among others.

 

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