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NBA seeks declaration of state of emergency on insecurity, economy by Tinubu govt

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The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has called on President Bola Tinubu to declare a state of emergency on the insecurity ravaging the nooks and crannies of the country at the moment.

According to NBA, this should be done in addition to ensuring the right investments in security in line with global trends in security without compromising our sovereignty.

The NBA President, Yakubu Maikyau (SAN), made the call in Abuja on Wednesday, while addressing journalists on the state of the nation.

Maikyau said insecurity has left many Nigerians homeless and businesses destroyed, adding that citizens were losing confidence in the federal government to deal with the insecurity plaguing the country.

He said, “Some Nigerians have lost and many more are fast losing confidence in the ability of the Federal Government to deal with the security situation in Nigeria.

“At this time, when public confidence in the sincerity of the government in dealing with insecurity is at its lowest ebb, I strongly recommend a government and people engagement that will at the minimum, inform the people (to the extent that security protocol may allow) about what is being done to secure the nation. Alternatively, let there be clear indicators.

“I call on the President to show a demonstrable commitment to prioritize the security of the lives and properties of Nigerians as already committed by you.

“The government, through our Armed Forces and other security agencies, must ensure that no square inch of the Nigerian territory is left ungoverned; no part of Nigeria should be left under the control of criminal elements by whatever name so-called.

“The Federal Government must adopt a holistic approach to the issue of security while not overlooking the peculiarities of each region and design bespoke measures to deal with them accordingly.

“In this wise, the government must neither be “scared” nor “ashamed” to make the right investments in security, in line with global trends, without compromising our sovereignty.

“To this extent, we must declare a state of emergency on insecurity if we are to make any meaningful progress in this regard. It is time for the government to declare a state of emergency in the area of security and I urge you, Mr president not to waste time and spare no effort in this regard.”

He also lamented the dwindling of the economy as well as the nation’s currency.

“The Nigerian Economy is dwindling, the value of the Naira has been bastardized, prices of foodstuff have skyrocketed, and everything negative seems to be on the rise. The insecurity has equally impacted negatively on food sufficiency and food security as a nation.

“Those who rely on farming as their sole means of livelihood have been thrown into abject poverty because they no longer can go to their farms. While this administration may argue that it is only 7 months into office and is not the cause of present-day experience, the fact remains that it is this government that has the responsibility of stemming the negative tide.”

He urged the president to spell out his plans as well as efforts in revamping the nation’s economy.

Maikyau also called on the president to declare a state of emergency on the economy of the country and state deadlines for specific fundamental economic steps to be taken toward economic recovery.

He said, “Nigerians need to know, as we all are entitled to, in concrete terms, the plans this administration has for the revamping of our economy, it is the government/citizens’ engagement on the strategies for the recovery, reformation, and repositioning of the economy and all other sectors, that will give Nigerians hope to continue to persevere and remain resilient as we have always been.

“Not to do so, will cause a complete loss of confidence in the ability of this administration to truly deliver on the renewed hope agenda, and would be recorded as a monumental failure on the part of government.

“Government must, therefore, as a matter of urgency declare a state of emergency on Nigeria’s state of the economy and announce deadlines for specific fundamental economic steps to be taken towards economic recovery.

”This will enable all stakeholders to assess the performance of government with regards to promises it has made and becomes a basis to hold government accountable to the people.”

The NBA president also threatened to engage in a legal battle with the FG if the Enhanced Trade Investment agreement between Nigeria and the United Kingdom is not reviewed.

He said, “We will fight it. We have the responsibility of protecting the legal space. I come from the village and I know what it means. Do you want those in the village who are struggling to make a living to still have competitors from the UK to take the little he has?

“There are already wholesome practices by few lawyers in this country who would come back to Nigeria and set up offices for English firms, continue to practice because they’ve been called to practice in Nigeria and that is completely unacceptable.

“I have my suspicions and nobody has allayed my suspicions over the deal. We will seek the judiciary interpretation of the propriety of that decision and we are entitled to do that. This is a matter that will go to court. There is no matter about it. We cannot be naive about these things anymore.”

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Damagum returns as National Chairman, urges members to work for party’s success

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Ambassador Umar Damagum has retained his position as the acting National Charman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

On Thursday, the PDP conducted its 98th National Executive Council (NEC) meeting at the party’s secretariat in Abuja.

In a communique after the meeting, the National Publicity Secretary of the party, Barrister Debo Ologunagba said the NEC urged all members to continue to work together for the success of the party for the benefit of Nigerians.

A day earlier, the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party passed a vote of confidence on Damagum.

Ologunagba said: “NEC charges all organs, leaders, critical stakeholders and indeed all members of the PDP to close ranks, put aside every personal or group interests and work together in the overall effort to reposition and return the PDP to power at the center in the interest of the Nigerian people.

“Consequently, NEC received and approved the Timetable for Party Congresses across the country.

“NEC also approved the Reconstitution of the Party Disciplinary and Reconciliation Committees to further ensure the stability of the party.

“Similarly, NEC approved the extension of the life of the Party Constitution Amendment Committee to allow it to receive new amendment proposals for inclusion in its deliberation and final report for consideration by NEC.

“NEC commended the efforts of the National Working Committee in its effort towards rebranding the Party including the new look PDP Logo which is widely accepted by Party members and Nigerians in general.

“NEC charges all Party members to continue to work together for the success of the PDP for the benefit of Nigerians and sustenance of Democracy in our country.”

Before the NEC meeting, PDP members loyal to the party’s presidential candidate in the last election, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar had moved against Damagum, over allegations that he was working for former governor of Rivers State, Barrister Nyesom Wike.

Wike led a group of five PDP governors that rebelled against Atiku while contesting the presidential election last year.

Atiku lost the election to the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, who appointed Wike as Minister of the Federal Capital Territory.

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Reps Urge Ports Operators To Cooperate For Economic Diversification

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By Gloria Ikibah

The House of Representatives has appealed to ports operators in Nigeria to cooperate and align with Nigeria’s economic diversification move.

The Chairman House Committee on Ports And Harbours, Rep. Nnolim Nnaji, made the call at an interactive Session of the Committee with all Terminal Operators and Nigeria Ports Authority Licensed Agents, on Thursday in Abuja.

He explained that the Committee’s interactive session was very crucial because of the invaluable roles the sector plays in the nation’s economy and national life.

He saud: “It therefore presents us with urgent need to effect changes that will restructure this unique and high-tech sector and position it to strategically compete in the global space.

“This sector is very dynamic and we must constantly review the standards, facilities and operational guidelines to keep pace with its obtainable global best practices.

“I wish to reiterate the Committee’s commitment to ensure that the sector remains one of the best through appropriate legislation and oversight in order to bequeath to Nigerians, a Ports and Harbours that is properly regulated and better managed for greater efficiency”.

The Committee Chairman also said that it was important to harmoniously promote the objective of professionalizing the modus operandi of the sector to improve Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product and revenue generation.

“We intend to collaborate with relevant Stakeholders in the industry to ensure that appropriate avenues are created for its economic development and then make it a hub for better non-oil revenue generation. It is imperative to note that the House of Representatives will continue to support total rehabilitation and upgrading of our Ports and Harbours and allied services. We shall ever be ready to provide the necessary legislation and needed oversight to achieve this purpose”, he added.

Rep. Nnaji disclosed that the purpose of the meeting was to provide the interface for members of the Committee to interact with Stakeholders in the industry, most especially Terminal Operators and NPA Licensed Agents regarding their operations and various activities in the Ports and also create the enabling environment and synergy towards achieving the goals of the Federal Government in the Maritime sector, as well as aligning the sector with its contemporary demands, developmental goals, international standards and best practices.

“It is pertinent to note that the Committee’s role is not only to oversight the NPA, but also to partner with stakeholders in the sector to achieve maximum success taking cognizance of government’s quest on increasing revenue generation, port decongestion and boosting infrastructural development for effective service delivery. Thus, we must be committed to transparency, collaboration and open dialogue with all stakeholders to enhance ease of doing business”, the chairman said.

The lawmaker enjoined the stakeholders to bring their exclusive viewpoints and experiences on board as they will be invaluable in shaping policies and recommendations of the committee.

While briefing the committee, the Registrar and Chief Executive Officer of Council for Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria, Mrs Urunta Chinyere, told the committee that there was the news for the digitization of the operations of the agents.

According to her, if operators can adopt the model, it would enhance revenue generation.

“We observed that most of the terminal operators are doing partial implementation of what we ask for. They are not fully complying to what they are supposed to do”, Chinyere said.

In his response, the Managing Director of Five Star Logistics, Mr. Rigor Nazzari, said that his agency has fully complied with all the models.

According to him, there are operators specific issues at the terminals that need to be addressed by the council.

The committee chairman thereforw called on the terminal operators to comply with the council and upgrade their systems.

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Aisha Yesufu queries Gov. Ododo for trying to prevent EFCC from arresting Yahaya Bello

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By Kayode Sanni-Arewa

Nigerian female social activist, Aisha Yesufu,  has expressed displeasure with the role played by Kogi Stars Governor Ahmed Usman Ododo in stopping the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, from arresting his predecessor, Yahaya Bello.

It was gathered that the Kogi Governor on Wednesday, obstructed the arrest of Bello by operatives of the EFCC.

Recall that the EFCC operatives had stormed Bello’s residence in Abuja in an attempt to arrest him over an ongoing fraud investigation.

But Bello was reportedly smuggled out of his residence by Ododo to evade arrest by the anti-graft agency.

“I cannot imagine I, Aisha Yesufu as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, a Governor will come to Abuja where I am, to prevent @officialEFCC from arresting someone.

“As in, prevent it from carrying out its constitutional sanctioned duty. Nahhhhh!
Kai! Poor Nigeria!”

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