The House of Representatives, on Thursday, passed a bill seeking to establish a South-East, South-West, North Central Development Commission. All the six geopolitical zones will now have development commissions, as the Niger Delta Development Commission already exists for the oil-producing states in the South-South and some in the South-East and South-West. Hon. Femi Fakeye, while presenting the report of the Committee on Justice on a Bill for an Act to establish the South-West Development Commission during a penultimate sitting, said the commission will be amongst others, charged with the responsibility to receive and manage funds from allocation of the Federation Account, including donations and gifts, the reconstruction and rehabilitation of roads, houses and other Infrastructural damages suffered by the region. The report for the South-East Development Commission was also presented by the Deputy Chief Whip Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, who stated that the commission will serve as a catalyst to develop the commercial potentials of the South East.
The Independence National Electoral Commission (INEC) has resolved to conduct the Anambra State governorship election on the earlier date of November 6. This is despite threats from the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) to halt the exercise. This was disclosed by the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, during an emergency meeting on Tuesday. INEC however expressed concern that the IPOB threat might affect preparations and possibly the conduct of the Anambra election.
The INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu expressed the concern at an emergency meeting of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) in Abuja on Tuesday. Yakubu said that INEC was particularly concerned about the safety of voters and election duty staff, including security officials who have also become targets of the attacks. He said that INEC was also concerned about the safety of thousands of young Nigerians from National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and university students who were to be engaged in the conduct of the election. Yakubu said that during the last ICCES quarterly meeting on Sept. 9, a major concern was raised by the committee on the security situation in Anambra and the adjoining states.
Yakubu said that unfortunately, the situation had deteriorated since the last meeting, as many innocent lives had been lost and property destroyed in the state. “From reports that we have received, the stated goal of many of the attackers is that the governorship election scheduled for Nov. 6 must not hold. “This is worrisome for the commission. We are deeply concerned that specific electoral facilities and materials could once more become targets of attack,” he said. Yakubu said that in May 2021 the INEC office at Awka was attacked and all the non-sensitive materials assembled for the election were destroyed.
Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo has expressed optimism that Nigeria will come out of all of its problems and emerged stronger. He encouraged Nigerians to exercise confidence because the country will succeed as one entity. He said Nigeria is better off as one nation, that is why it is strong and that is why the country can face the world. Osinbajo stated this on Saturday during an interactive session with top officials of Nigeria’s High Commission in the United Kingdom, held at the Abuja House residence of the High Commissioner in London. Prof. Osinbajo noted that President Muhammadu Buhari is Nigeria’s most popular politician in generations. Senior Special Assistant to the Vice President on Media and Publicity, Laolu Akande, in a statement titled, ‘United as one people, Nigeria will overcome present challenges, says Osinbajo,’ urged Nigerian citizens at home and in the Diaspora should promote the message of one country. According to the Vice President, “If you look at all of us sitting here, we represent all the geo-political zones. This is the Nigeria that will succeed, anything else doesn’t make sense.” According to him, anybody who looks at how Nigeria operates will recognize that it is better off in this system.
The Senate has approved President Muhammadu Buhari’s revised submission of the 2022-2024 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP). The MTEF and FSP are parameters on which yearly Appropriation Bills are predicated. The revised submission was received and referred to the Committee on Finance on Tuesday for expeditious consideration ahead of Thursday’s budget presentation to the National Assembly by President Buhari. In the revised MTEF President Buhari pushed up the projected aggregate expenditure of the federal government for the 2022 fiscal year from N13.98 trillion to N16.45 trillion. President Buhari had explained that the needed adjustments were necessary to reflect “the new fiscal terms in the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA).” The Senate in its recommendation, however, approved N16.39trillion as FG’s projected aggregate expenditure for the year 2022, representing a reduction of N60billion from the N16.45trillion total expenditure proposed by the President.
President Muhammadu Buhari has bagged the Nation Builder Award at an event organised by the All Progressives Congress (APC), United Kingdom chapter, to celebrate Nigeria’s 61st Independence Anniversary in London. The event was staged on Oct. 2, at Dorchester Hotel. Mr. Jacob Ogunseye, the chapter’s Publicity Secretary, said this in a statement made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Abuja. Ogunseye said Sen. Bola Tinubu, the National Leader of the APC, was also nominated for the Leadership Award at the event held on Oct. 2, at Dorchester Hotel, London, UK. Ogunseye said the Pinnacle Award winners were Dr. Ibrahim Emokpaire, Dr. Kenny Ojutalayo, and Dr. Garba Sani. Mrs. Carolyn Adelakun, Hajiya Rakiya Abubakar, and Mrs. Ifeoma Onochie-Faruk received the Extra-ordinary Service Awards. The statement said Mrs. Vivian Osadebay-Ndah and Lady Edith Nwachukwu also received the Extra-ordinary Service Award, while the winners of the Dedication and Service Award were Mrs. Kikelomo Oyebiyi-Oladapo and Mr. Udeme Ukpe. The award was received on behalf of the President by the Nigeria High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, Ambassador Sarafadeen Tunji Isola. The award for Tinubu was received on his behalf by Alhaji Bello Abubakar. Former Managing Director/CEO Gamji Bank, Nigeria.