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Expert Reveals Use of Multiple Currencies In ECOWAS Region Hinder Economic Integration

ECOWAS
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By Gloria Ikibah

A Consultant on ECOWAS Common Investment Market, Prof. Jonathan Aremu, has underlined the use of multiple currencies across ECOWAS Member States as one of the constraints of actualizing economic integration in the West African region.

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Aremu revealed this on Tuesday while delivering a lecture on “Conceptual Issues in ECOWAS Integration” at the First 2023 Parliamentary Seminar of the ECOWAS Parliament in Bissau the capital of Guinea Bissau.

Aremu, a Professor of International Economic Relations at the Covenant University in Nigeria, said that the use of a common currency among ECOWAS Countries will help achieve the Economic/Monetary Union of the region.

“Economic/Monetary Union is the last step in an economic integration process; where in addition to a common market, it also requires integration of economic policies in both monetary and fiscal including common currency”, he stated.

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Aremu said that harmonizing the monetary policies of each member state is key to actualizing the ECOWAS economic integration to break trade barriers and the implementation of the ECOWAS Trade Liberalization Scheme (ETLS).

According to him, the ETLS when successfully implemented will make ECOWAS economically stronger and more attractive.

“As ETLS makes West Africa a more integrated market that is attractive to investors both within and outside the region, the initiative indirectly creates a platform that increases Micro, Small and Medium Enterprices (MSMEs) visibility and bargaining power when negotiating further agreements like on trade and investment across the continent into the global trading arrangements under the World Trade Organization (WTO).

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“Effective implementation of ETLS will not only enhance increasing trade between ECOWAS Member states but create a web of positive interactions and interdependency, that would build trust and reduce the risk of conflict between them”, Aremu added.

Aremu however urged the bloc to learn from the experience of other regions that have successfully integrated their regional economies.

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Taraba state government condemns the gruesome murder of Monarch’s family

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Emmanuel Awari-Jalingo

Taraba State Government has Condemned in Strong Terms the gruesome Murder of the two wives and five children of the Chief of Mutum-Biyu HRH.Alhaji Bose Sani Suleiman Mohammed, who were abducted by Men of the underworld some few weeks ago.

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In a statement issued by the Commissioner of Information and Re-Orientation, Mrs. Lois Emmanuel to newsmen in Jalingo, the Government described the act as Barbaric,Ungodly, Inhuman and Uncivilized regretting that it’s sustained efforts to rid the state of Kidnappings and other forms of Banditry was being thwarted by the recent developments in the State.

“The government reiterates it’s resolve to continue to ensure adequate protection of lives and properties of the citizens and vowed to network with the security Agencies in the State to bring to book the perpetrators of the dastardly act.

“The Government Condoled with the Monarch, His Royal Highness and the people of Mutum-Biyu Chiefdom on the unfortunate incident and prayed God to repose the souls of the Deceased and the family the fortitude to bear the irreparable Loss “the statement concluded.

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Insecurity: Taraba monarch confirms finding decomposed bodies of his kidnapped wives, five children

Gunmen
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The Chief of Mutumbiyu Justices Chiefdom in Taraba State, Justice Sani Muhammed (rtd), says the decomposed bodies of his two abducted wives and five children have been found.

The monarch said that the bodies were discovered early Saturday morning and would be buried at Mutumbiyu.

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The bodies of my family members killed by kidnappers was found and will be brought to Mutumbiyu,” he said.

Eight family members of the Monarch were abducted by gunmen suspected to be kidnappers at his Jalingo residence two weeks ago.

But a 14-year-old boy among the abducted families of the monarch escaped from the kidnappers two days ago and was taken to the palace.

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Don’t dare to scuttle this election, ING is an aberation -Wike

Wike, NDDC, Ayu
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Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has warned cabals reportedly trying to scuttle the February 25 and March 11 general elections to desist from the plot, saying no to any form of ‘interim government’.

“Let nobody try to scuttle this election,” the governor warned on Saturday during a campaign in the Opobo/Nkoro Local Government Area of the state.

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain, also berated the Federal Government over the scarcity of the newly redesigned naira notes, saying he believes that President Muhammadu Buhari was misled to approve the policy.

“This policy (naira redesign) is targeted at making people angry so that they will demonstrate and riot and then the election be postponed. Then, they will introduce an interim government,” he said.

“No matter the provocation, don’t protest,” Wike cautioned the people of the state. “This election will hold. This election is by the PVCs. This election is not an election of cabals; it is an election of Nigerians.”

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Interim Government first popped up in Nigeria’s history about three decades ago when then Head of State, Ibrahim Babangida annulled the June 12, 1993 presidential election presumably won by the late philanthropist, Moshood Kashimawo Olawale (MKO) Abiola. The late Ernest Shonekan subsequently emerged the head of the Interim National Government between January and August 1993.

‘Enemies Of Nigeria’
The former minister said those supporting the currency redesign amid the electioneering process are the enemies of the country.

He also knocked the Federal Government over the scarcity of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) popularly known as petrol.

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“You said you want to remove the old currency but we have not seen the new ones. Can you buy fuel? Can you buy anything to eat again? Now, tell me, would you vote for anybody who loves Nigeria and is running for election, who supports this CBN policy?” he asked party supporters decked up in party paraphernalia, many of whom chorused “No”.

“Those supporting this kind of thing are enemies of Nigeria. I believe that they did not tell President Buhari the correct thing because me and the President are going the same time – May 29, the same time, nobody will stay one day more the other.

The governor, however, said he believes that the President will take steps to assuage the pain of the masses.

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“So, I know the man will like to finish well and go and I won’t see what is bad and not advise him. Those plotting all these things are those who don’t like him. But I believe he will hear the cries of Nigerians,” he said.

The PDP stalwart further said the policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is not to fight corruption “What corruption are you fighting when you have three months more?” he queried.

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