Sahara Reporters Latest News Today Wednesday 15th July 2020

Sahara Reporters Latest News Today Wednesday 15th July 2020

Sahara Reporters Latest News Today and headlines on some of the happenings and news trend in the Country, today 15/07/20

Read also nigeria newspapers Wednesday 15th July 2020

Drama As NDDC Interim Management Committee Fails To Explain N143bn Budget Shortfall

The 2020 budget defence of the Niger Delta Development Commission ended abruptly at the Senate on Tuesday as its Interim Management Committee failed to account for a shortfall of N143bn in its 2019 budget.
Kemebradikumo Pondei, Acting Managing Director of the NDDC, had led other members of the IMC to appear before a joint panel of the National Assembly.
Pondei during the hearing failed to reconcile some differences in the 2019 budget performance of the commission. 
The 2019 budget expired in May. 

The Managing Director, who said the commission spent N122bn but later revised N264bn, could not respond to a question on what the NDDC had left.
“In compliance with the provision of the 2019 Appropriation Act, we implemented the 2019 capital budget till May 31, 2020.
“On the expenditure side, 2019 budget implementation was hindered by the delay in its approval and release coupled with the COVID-19 global pandemic.
“Only the recurrent expenditure which runs from January 1st to December 31st, 2019 was implemented substantially,” Pondei said.
In response, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, House Chairman on NDDC, said, “What you have here, spent is N122bn from what you said from the actual money you received, you received N305,570,683,529.87. “If you received N305bn and you spent N122bn, what you are telling us now is that the available fund as we speak now will be N183,315,748,214.58.
“Would that be a available to be brought forward? What I’m saying is just a simple basic accounting question. You said you generated N305 billion. It is just a yes or no question.”
Pondei responded, saying, “The expenditure is actually N264bn.”
Tunji-Ojo then asked, “So what you are saying on your summary page is wrong?”
Pondei reacted and said, “The real breakdown is in the appendix.”
Other members of the committee pointed out discrepancies in the budget in terms of what was the balance of funds after subtracting the N122bn expenditure.
A back-and-forth aruguement ensued between members of the panel and Pondei, who insisted he was standing by the document while members of the committee said the presentation cannot stand in any Parliament in the world.
The committee further asked the MD if he was ready to sign each page of the document submitted for the purpose of authentication.
The MD first accepted to sign the pages of the document but later declined, requesting for withdrawal of 2019 budget details to enable the commission address the N143bn discrepancy raised by Tunji-Ojo.
Members of the joint panel however, expressed anger over the request for withdrawal of the 2019 budget details already submitted to the Committee made by the MD.

Niger Delta

Politics

Scandal

News

AddThis

Original Author

SaharaReporters, New York

Disable advertisements

UK To Resume Visa Processing In Nigeria On July 28

The British High Commission in Nigeria has said it will commence visa services in Nigeria from July 28.
The High Commission in a tweet on Tuesday said Visa Application Centres will be open in Abuja, Ikeja and Victoria Island, adding that testing will also commence for the International Language Testing System.
The tweet reads, “Visa Application Centres are resuming services in Nigeria from 28 July.
 

“You must have an appointment to visit a VAC and will not be admitted without one. 
“For new applications, we aim to assess within our normal service standards, but there may be some delay. 
“Staff and customer safety remains our top priority with COVID-19 preventative measures in place.
“Our focus now is to deliver our services safely and effectively together.”
 

See Also

Travel

We’ll Reopen For Visa Application In Nigeria Soon —British High Commission

0 Comments

5 Days Ago

Travel

News

AddThis

Original Author

SaharaReporters, New York

Disable advertisements



Police Rescue Soldiers From Boko Haram After Attack In Borno

The Nigeria Police Counter-terrorism operatives have rescued two soldiers earlier abducted by Boko Haram fighters in Borno State.
PRNigeria gathered that the terrorists had killed some security personnel and abducted others after an attack on soldiers on a patrol.
This comes after Nigerian troops repelled an attempt by terrorists to seize an army barrack in Maiduguri on Monday. 

According to a situation report sighted by PRNigeria, it disclosed that “At 14.30 Hrs of July 13, 20120, an army patrol team was attacked by Boko Haram along Auno Road and killed two soldiers and kidnapped others while carting away two of the military’s gun truck, AK 47 rifles and unspecified numbers of ammunition.
“Counter-Terrorism Unit of the Nigerian Police on pin down point (operation), at the area went after the terrorists. After a gun battle recovered one gun-truck, rifles and rescued two soldiers alive.
“All exhibits handed over to the Commissioner of Police Command.”
Meanwhile, in another development, Nigerian troops have thwarted an attempt by Boko Haram terrorists to seize an army barracks in Maiduguri.
PRNigeria learnt that the terrorists had attempted to seize the 333 Artillery Barracks of the Nigerian Army but were resisted after heavy exchanges of fire that lasted for about two hours between Monday night and early Tuesday morning.

Military

Police

News

AddThis

Original Author

SaharaReporters, New York

Disable advertisements

55 Staff, Student Of Secondary School In Ghana Test Positive For COVID-19 After Partial Reopening

Fifty-five persons comprising of staff and students of a secondary school in Accra, Ghana, have tested positive for Coronavirus few weeks after schools reopened partially in the country.
Nana Akufo-Addo, President of Ghana, had asked graduating senior secondary students to resume on June 22 as part of plans to ease the lockdown in the country. 
The Government of Ghana made the development known in statement signed by Kwasi Opoku-Amankwa, Director-General, Ghana Education Service, and Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, Director-General, Ghana Health Service.
Out of 314 staff and students of Accra Girls Senior High School, who were tested for Coronavirus, 55 had their results return positive, the authorities said. 

The statement reads, “Following the first report of COVID-19 cases in some senior high schools in the country on 6th July, 2020, the Ghana Health Service and the Ghana Education Service instituted a number of measures to determine the extent of the outbreak and containment measures. Accra Girls Senior High School has recorded most cases from the first report to date.
“As at 13th July, 2020, a total of 314 persons (student and staff) from the school have been tested. Out of these, 55 have been confirmed positive for COVID-19 while 259 persons tested negative.
“All confirmed cases have been transferred to designated national treatment and isolation centres for management.”

Ghana

PUBLIC HEALTH

News

AddThis

Original Author

SaharaReporters, New York

Disable advertisements

Senate Urges Nigerian Government To Commence Rehabilitation Of Eastern Rail Line

Bad rail track.

The Nigerian Senate on Tuesday urged the executive arm of government to prioritise the commencement of the rehabilitation and concessioning agreement for the Eastern corridor of railway line.
The Senate made this resolution while considering a motion on “urgent need to resuscitate and reactivate the rehabilitation and concession of the Eastern Rail line Project”, sponsored by Orji Uzor Kalu, and co-sponsored by 102 other senators.
Presenting the motion, Kalu pointed out that it became imperative to propel the executive to take the action in view of its huge revenue potentials to the national economy and for movement of people to reduce the burden on dilapidated roads within the Eastern axis of the country.
He lamented that the Eastern rail line had been denied similar attention given to Lagos-Kano (Western) rail line in spite of the fact that investigations revealed that the Eastern rail line remained the most lucrative route in Nigeria. 

Bad rail track.

Google

The lawmaker in his presentation noted that one of the greatest challenges facing the nation as an emerging economy was poor infrastructural development,
He said, “The movement of goods and persons from one point to another is becoming very cumbersome, if not hazardous.
“The Federal Government in 2017 entered into an agreement with General Electric, a Boston, United States based company, under the Rehabilitation and Concessioning of Western and Eastern Railway lines to connect Abia, Rivers, Lagos, Oyo, Ogun, Kwara, Kaduna, Katsina, Enugu, Bauchi, Gombe, Plateau, Borno, Yobe and Kano States.
“And while the Western lines of 1,126 km are from Lagos to Kano and to N guru 230 km, Funtua mom and Kaura Namoda 121 km. The Eastern lines are from Port Harcourt to Kaduna 915 km, Maiduguri 706 km, 105 35 km. 
“In spite of the fact that the railways are more efficient in haulage of bulk loads over long distances in environmental and economic ease including cargoes and petroleum products, the sector suffers neglect especially the Eastern rail line which commences in Port Harcourt in Rivers State, passing through Abia State, Enugu, Benue, Kogi, Kaduna, Kano to Gombe and terminates in Maiduguri, Borno State.
“The Eastern rail line had been denied a similar attention given to Lagos Kano (Western) rail line in spite of the fact that investigations revealed that the Eastern rail line remains the most lucrative route in Nigeria.
“In spite of being the most lucrative route in Nigeria and a distance of about 1402 km having passed through Aba in Abia State, the commercial nerve centre of the South East is regrettably left in a comatose condition resulting in Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) losing at least N208 million each year since 2014.”
The Senate in its resolutions, mandated its Committee on Legislative Compliance to ensure compliance by the executive arm of government and report back to the Senate in three weeks for further legislative action.
 

Travel

News

AddThis

Original Author

SaharaReporters, New York

Disable advertisements

We’ll Defeat APC, PDP During Governorship Election, Opposition Parties In Ondo Say

Ahead of the Ondo State governorship election, leaders of opposition parties in the state have said that they would wrestle power from the All Progressives Congress.
The Independent National Electoral Commission had fixed October 10, 2020 for the state’s governorship election.
No fewer than 17 political parties have indicated interest to participate in the exercise where the APC and Peoples Democratic Party are viewed as the ‘frontliners’.
Biyi Poroye, Chairman of Mega Party of Nigeria, told SaharaReporters that some of the opposition parties were already coming together under ‘Emerging Political Platform’ to take back power from the APC during the poll. 

He however, noted that there were plans to also collapse the platform into any of the parties in the state with good ideology after governorship primaries of parties.
On his part, Alex Adeniyi, Chairman of the African Action Congress in Ondo State, rejected the view that only the APC and the PDP were the party to beat in the governorship election.
Adeniyi said that the AAC would participate actively in the exercise, adding that the party has continued to be the third force with its following and would wrestle power from the APC in the state.
He said, “As a political party with great ideology, we are capitalising on the failures of the two most corrupt political parties (both APC and PDP) who had held sway in the state since the return of democracy in 1999.
“We intend to tell the residents of the state that we can always do away with these two known parties because they have all failed us and we don’t need them anymore.
“We need a political party with ideology that would bring our dead industries back to life and where education would remain our best legacy and security of lives and properties will matter in governance.
“Since AAC is here, we are ready for the governorship poll and it is not going to be about APC and PDP alone as people are tired of the main parties because it’s now like a game of changing the cover of the same old bottle.”
Chairman of Zenith Labour Party, Joseph Akinlaja, while speaking on the issue, said the party had picked its candidate to show readiness for the governorship election.
He explained that the ZLP do not view the APC and PDP as the main contenders in the election, noting that the outcome of the election would shock the two political parties.
In his own reaction, Mr Oladele Olugbemi Ogunbameru, Acting Chairman of Social Democratic Party, said the party was not interested in discussing other political parties participating in the election.
He noted that the SDP was being strategic ahead of the election as more aspirants were reaching out to contest on its platform.
Other political parties expected to field candidates in the election include Action Alliance, African Democratic Congress, Young Progressives Party, Labour Party, among others.

Elections

Politics

News

AddThis

Original Author

SaharaReporters, New York

Disable advertisements

Former Nigerian President, Jonathan, Appointed ECOWAS Special Envoy To Mali

Goodluck Jonathan

Nigeria’s former President, Goodluck Jonathan, has been appointed by the Economic Community of West African States as a special envoy to lead the sub-regional body’s mediation mission in Mali.
This was made known in a statement issued by his media adviser, Ikechukwu Eze, on Tuesday.
As a special envoy, the former President is expected to facilitate dialogue “with all principal stakeholders in Mali, including President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, opposition leaders, civil society as well as religious organisations, towards resolving the worsening socio-political situation in the West African country”. 

Goodluck Jonathan

Speaking ahead of his scheduled departure for Bamako on Wednesday, Jonathan promised to do his best to ensure that the mission achieves the desired result.
He also thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for the support of the Nigerian Government, including providing an aircraft and other logistics needed to make the assignment successful.
Jonathan, who had led peace missions to many crises-ridden nations in the past, is expected to deploy his enormous goodwill within the continent to facilitate the process of restoring peace in the troubled nation.
His appointment was communicated to him in a letter signed by Mr Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, President of the ECOWAS Commission.
Mali has been hit by protests fuelled by the outcome of parliamentary elections in March and April, perceived discontent over the government’s handling of the nation’s jihadist insurgency and worsening economic situation.

Politics

News

AddThis

Original Author

SaharaReporters, New York

Disable advertisements



Virtual Court Not Unconstitutional, Nigeria’s Supreme Court Rules

Nigeria’s Supreme Court has ruled that virtual court proceedings in the country were not unconstitutional.
The apex court made the ruling while striking out two suits challenging the conducting of court hearings via Internet enabled platforms.
Moyosore Onigbanjo, Attorney-General of Lagos State in a suit with reference number SC/CV/260/2020, asked the court to determine if cases heard over digital platforms were constitutional.
He asked the court to determine, “Whether having regard to Section 36(1), (3) and (4) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) use of technology by remote hearings of any kind, whether by Zoom, Microsoft Teams, WhatsApp, Skype or any other audio-visual or video-conference platform by the Lagos State High Court or any other courts in Nigeria in aid of hearing and determination of cases are constitutional.” 

On Tuesday, the Attorney-General of the Federation told the court that the National Assembly is already taking steps to amend the constitution to accommodate virtual court sittings.
He said the parliament lacks the powers to do so as section 274 of the constitution gives powers to the heads of courts to regulate the rules of court.
Delivering the ruling, the seven-man panel of justices of the apex court held that the suit was immature and speculative.
The panel said, “Can we at this stage speculate the outcome of the national assembly? Even if we can, the amendment must have occurred before the suit matures.
“Even the devil knows not the intent of a man. Your suit is speculative and it is a fundamental law that we don’t act on speculations. Wait for them to pass the law and see if it will affect your own rules of court.”
Onigbanjo in response said, “Having listened and taken the hint of this court, I humbly withdraw the application.”
Giving its ruling, the panel added that, “As of today, virtual court sitting is constitutional. This suit is speculative and on that basis, it is struck out.”
 

Legal

News

AddThis

Original Author

SaharaReporters, New York

Disable advertisements

Director-General Of NAPTIP, Okah-Donli, In Alleged Multi-million Naira Contract Fraud

SaharaReporters has uncovered details of how Mrs Julie Okah-Donli, Director-General of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, allegedly awarded fraudulent contracts without recourse to procedure and due process.
In one of the documents seen by our correspondent, Okah-Donli awarded fake contract for the renovation NAPTIP shelter in Abuja and Benin to Bijimi Integrated Services Limited in the sum of N45m despite the fact that the Federal Inland Revenue Services had renovated the two shelters as part of its corporate social responsibility in 2019. 

To perfect the deal, the NAPTIP boss paid the sum in three tranches.
In the first tranche, the sum of N12,552,485.72 was paid, followed by N15,433,649.33 while last payment to the company was N17,164,477.86. 
In yet another corruption saga, Okah-Donli and some staff of the agency forged documents and diverted the sum of N100m appropriated in 2017 for a project.
SaharaReporters gathered that the N100m appropriated by NAPTIP was to develop framework protocol for Safe Return/Repatriation and Reintegration of Victims of human Trafficking from destination countries.
In the fund, workshops were meant to be held in some ECOWAS countries, however, such workshops and activities were never carried out in any country.
Okah-Donli and the agency’s Director of Programme Development and Research, Godwin Morka, forged documents, retired the funds and claimed the workshops were carried out.
Documents forged were air tickets, hotel receipts, payments of experts, consultants as well as printing and dissemination of the protocol attendance list and others.
According to a staff of the agency, who spoke with SaharaReporters, only one workshop was carried out by NAPTIP.
He said the European Union, United Kingdom, United States and Spanish Embassies in Nigeria took financial responsibility of participants during the three-day workshop held in Calabar, Cross River State, between March 26 and 28, 2018.
When contacted over the issue, the NAPTIP boss declined to speak, demanding that our correspondent comes to the agency’s office with an authorisation letter to be briefed by the finance department.
She said, “I will give your number to the Director of Procurement and Director of Finance. I don’t deal with those issues that has to do with finance, they will get back to you.”
DOCUMENTS:

 
Petition by Sahara Reporters on Scribd

Annexure A by Sahara Reporters on Scribd

Annexure B by Sahara Reporters on Scribd

Annexure C by Sahara Reporters on Scribd

Annexure D by Sahara Reporters on Scribd

Protocol for Identification of Victims of Trafficking by Sahara Reporters on Scribd

Corruption

Scandal

News

Reports

AddThis

Original Author

SaharaReporters, New York

Disable advertisements

Ignore National Assembly, Go Ahead With 774,000 Jobs, President Buhari Tells Keyamo

President Muhammadu Buhari has asked the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo, to proceed with the execution of the Special Public Works Programme. 
Keyamo in an interview with journalists on Tuesday said that the President directed him to continue with the exercise, which was earlier suspended by the National Assembly following a disagreement with the minister.
He said, “I have the instructions of my boss, Mr President, to proceed with the supervision of the preparation for the execution of the programme in accordance with the law.” 

The minister and lawmakers had been at loggerheads over the implementation of the programme.
He was accused of trying to hijack the scheme from the National Directorate of Employment, the implementing agency of the project.
But Keyamo, who appeared before members of the National Assembly Joint Committee on Labour on June 30, accused them of seeking to control the implementation of the programme.
After engaging in a shouting match with members of the NASS Joint Committee, Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, called for the suspension of the programme.
The Special Public Works Programme is designed to employ 1,000 persons from each of the 774 Local Government Areas of the country.
Nigerians enlisted on the programme are expected to carry out public services such as street sweeping, waste disposal and the like.
The programme is aimed at engaging young unemployed citizens as well as providing a means of sustenance for them.

See Also

Politics

774,000 Jobs: Keyamo, Nigerian Lawmakers Engage In Rowdy Session Over N52bn Allocation

0 Comments

2 Weeks Ago

Politics

News

AddThis

Featured Image

Original Author

SaharaReporters, New York

Disable advertisements

Read also Nigerian Newspapers Today and Nigeria News Today

Sahara Reporters Latest News today

You can also check Sahara Reporters Newspaper Headlines Today