Ad
Ad
Ad
Author

Editor

Browsing

A second lockdown is imminent in Nigeria due to the recent second spike of COVID-19 reported across the country.

In what could be described as a gradual restriction of movements, the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 has this evening of Monday, 21st December 2020 announced a ban on social gatherings, restrictions on religious gatherings, recreational centres and a stay at home for Government workers from Grade Level 12 below.

The message as captured by Channels Television reads “PTF announces fresh COVID-19 restrictions, issues stay at home order for all Government staff from Grade Level 12 and below for the next 5weeks. Schools to remain closed till 18th January, 2021.

” All bars, nightclubs and recreational centres are to remain closed, while restrictions are placed on religious gatherings till further notice”.

With the latest announcement from the PTF, it is expected that states across the country might begin to announce and enforce gradual lockdown from social activities as recommended by the Federal Government.

…Says Harvest of Employment Underway for Akwa Ibom Youths

By Aniedi UKOENANG

The Commissioner for Transport and Solid Minerals, Hon. Uno Etim Uno has applauded Governor Udom Emmanuel for what he described as “a big plus” to the present administration and the Deep Seaport project.

Hon. Uno bared his mind while speaking to selected journalists in Uyo.

According to him, with the latest approval given the project by the Federal Executive Council, the Ibom Deep Seaport project has moved from the drawing board to the actualisation stage.

In his words “it takes a Governor like Udom Emmanuel who has deep vision to understands the value of that project give the necessary mental, physical and financial investment needed to actualize such a big dream.

“These approvals and the job needed to actualize that vision only looks easy from a lay man’s view, but in reality it is a very tasking job and I heartily facilitate with Governor Udom Emmanuel for his unwavery dedication to the actualisation of Ibom deep SEAPORT project “.

Speaking further, the respected politician warned Akwa Ibom youths against laziness, adding that Ibom deep seaport will only reward and benefit youths who are ready to be partakers in the project via their competencies.

“I am urging our youths to buckle up and be prepared to tap into this opportunity. It is not enough to join in the celebrations, this is the time to activate the DAKKADA spirit.
“Let our youths position themselves to benefit from this project. They should find out which specialized programmes and trainings that are relevant to seaport operations and begin to prepare themselves for the massive employment that is on the way. That is the only way they can be part of what is coming to Akwa Ibom through the seaport”. He concluded

A business development expert and immediate past Chairman of Mkpat Enin Local Government Area, Hon. Ekanem Brown has applauded Governor Udom Emmanuel for what he described as “a gigantic leap” given the Ibom Deep Seaport project.

Hon. Brown bared his mind while speaking to selected journalists in Uyo.

According to him, with the latest approval given the project by the Federal Executive Council, the Ibom Deep Seaport project has moved from paper work to the path of fulfillment.

In his words “it takes a Governor like Udom Emmanuel who is visionary and understands the impact of that project to be committed to such a scary gigantic dream project.

“These approvals and the job needed to actualize that vision only looks simple from where we are sitting, in reality it is a daunting task and I heartily congratulate and felicitate with the Governor for his unwavery dedication to the actualisation of Ibom deep SEAPORT project “.

Speaking further, the business mogul warned Akwa Ibom youths against complacency, adding that Ibom deep seaport will only favour and benefit those who are ready to benefit from it.

“I must sound this warning to our youths. It is not enough to join in the celebrations, this is the time to activate the DAKKADA spirit.
“Let our youths position themselves to benefit from this project. They should research on specialized programmes and trainings that are relevant to seaport operations and begin to prepare themselves for the massive employment that is on the way. That is the only way they can benefit from the seaport”. He concluded.

Without much ado, yesterday a very sweet news trended in Akwa Ibom State, the news of the approval granted the State by the Federal Government to go ahead with the full execution of Ibom Deep Seaport project.

And while the celebrations were ongoing, and the news freely shared by both Government officials and others, the state government through the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Comrade Ini Ememobong released a formal Press Release to the public concerning the approval by FEC.

That Press Release however has a phrase that is very uncomplimentary, anti-people and even insulting to past Akwa Ibom Governors, especially, Obong Victor Attah whose 1999 to 2007 administration initiated the project and is still passionate about it.

The obnoxious phrase which is very prominent in the third paragraph of the press release reads “…it will be recalled that previous regimes since 1999 have made several attempts at kickstarting the seaport without success”.

The writer, Ini Ememobong goofed seriously by such bias remark, as if the project was initiated in 1965 and not in 1999.

He also comfortably appreciated different members of the Federal Executive Council, and others who are of course working hard to ensure that the project pulls through, but refused to acknowledge the administration that even initiated that deep vision initiative.

This to me is antagonistic to the DAKKADA spirit, this, to me is very petty, anti Akwa Ibom and the phrase was avoidable. It seems the regime of Ini Ememobong as overall information officer or image manager of the state is becoming a one-week-one-trouble affair due to very avoidable emotional actions. I think he should revisit his Harvard School books to enable him shake off the Comradeship and unionism approach to leadership.

Petty remarks like this can cause Akwa Ibom people in privileged positions to sometimes deny a sitting government the support needed to actualize a project beneficial to the whole state and her people.

We should “…rise above biases” and pettiness.

In her 2021 new year message, the State government will likely call for all Akwa Ibom people to join hands and move the state forward, but when the successes are recorded we poke others in the face, in attempt for vain glory. To the best of my knowledge Obong Victor Attah is still passionately contributing superlative ideas and contacts to the success of that seaport, how will he feel assuming he reads this myopic phrase “that past administrations since 1999 attempted… without success “

Meanwhile, I can bet that Udom Emmanuel might not complete that project, so should we be expecting the Governor that will carry out the Commissioning to write that “past administrations, (including that of Udom Emmanuel) attempted to execute Ibom Deep Seaport without success?”
The Ibom Deep seaport project is a huge project that will go beyond the Udom Emmanuel administration and probably take the next decade to actualize. Many Governors will climb the stage, play their role and go, passing the baton to the next fellow.

There are sequence of approvals to the project, and this is not even the 5th approval.

Therefore it is instructive to celebrate with decorum as we may not know whose door we might need to knock for the next stage of the project. Every contribution is very valuable and when we cannot acknowledge all efforts we must not trivialise or disparage any contribution.

Truth is that all administrations from 1999 till date have contributed meaningfully to the progress of Ibom Deep Seaport project.

(Aniedi UKOENANG is a Journalist based in Uyo. 08065566247)

The United States of America is currently witnessing the most intriguing Presidential election in her history as President Donald Trump battles Joe Biden for the White House seat.
In the latest development, Michigan county flips back to Trump, following repair of voting software glitch that misdirected 3000 votes to Democratic nominee, Joe Biden.
Reliably GOP county had originally swung to Biden.

An election-software glitch in Michigan’s Antrim County that had incorrectly directed Democratic votes to presidential candidate Joe Biden was fixed Friday, putting thousands of votes correctly into President Trump’s totals.

The software had reportedly caused a significant number of votes to be allotted to Biden in a county that has for years been reliably red. In the presumed final count, Biden had originally led in the county by roughly 3,000 votes. Revised totals show that Trump won the county by around 2,500.

Addressing the alleged software glitch, Michigan GOP Chairwoman Laura Cox said Friday during a press conference that “47 counties [in Michigan] use this same software in the same capacity.”

“These counties that use this software need to closely examine their results for similar discrepancies,” she said

The Think Right Campaign team of Mkpat Enin Peoples Democratic Party’s Chairmanship candidate, Mr. Aniekpon Ekpo, today received massive support and endorsement of the people as the party toured the fifteen wards to campaign for her candidates.

From Ikpa Ibom to Ukpum Minya, Ibiaku to Ikpa Ikono clans, the enthusiasm and warmth receptions were the same, as the campaign train led by both the Chapter Chairman of the Party Rt. Hon. Anietie Sunday, and Director General of the campaign team, Hon. Ubong Ekefre took the ‘FRESH AIR’ mantra to the nooks and crannies of the Local Government Area.

In his message of hope to the supporters, the Chairmanship flag bearer spared nothing at assuring the people that if voted into power, he shall indeed bring in fresh ideas and new approaches to tackle the developmental challenges of the area.

He requested the people to turnout in their numbers and vote for all PDP candidates in their domain, in order to keep on enjoying the domestication of Udom Emmanuel’s excellent performance in the state.
“I am overwhelmed by the show of love and massive support we are already getting from our people. This are indications that indeed better days are coming. I want to assure you that we are coming in with new ideas, fresh approaches to tackle the challenges of our Local Government, and with God on our side, glorious days await us.
“Please, do not fail to come out and vote for PDP on Saturday, PDP has never failed us and we won’t fail you”. He said.

Earlier in his opening remark, the Chapter Chairman of PDP in Mkpat Enin, Rt. Hon. Anietie Sunday applauded the people for keeping faith with PDP since the return of democracy in 1999, he assured the people that the candidates of the party are quality products with the needed capacity for delivery of excellent service to the people. “Across board, the candidates of our party are tested and trusted people, beginning from the Chairmanship candidate, who is an astute academia cum business development expert, if you check the councillorship candidates we have this time around, you will see professionals, such as lawyers, outstanding business men and women, graduates from different fields. These are indications that top class representation and performance awaits us.

“Please let us come out on Saturday and vote for our candidates as usual” he reiterated.

Community leaders, Party leaders at the ward level and other indigenes of Mkpat Enin assured the campaign train of their readiness to ensure that the PDP is given one hundred percent vote come Saturday 31st October 2020.

The Secretary of the Party, Mr. Nse Essien, Publicity Secretary, Hon. Nkeruwem James, Hon. Aniedi Ekanem and many other faithful of the party were in the party’s entourage to the 15 wards in Mkpat Enin Local Government Area.

The Chairman, South-South caucus in the Federal House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Francis Uduyok has made a case for the employment of more youths from the South-South region of Nigeria into the employ of the Federal Government.

According to the Caucus leader, they seized the occasion of the courtesy visit to request, amongst other things, for more employment opportunities in the Federal Civil Service for people of the South-South region, reiterating that as the layers of the golden egg that feeds Nigeria’s treasury, the Southern states and indeed people of Niger Delta region needs more opportunities at the centre.

The two time Reps member who represents Ikot Abasi, Mkpat Enin and Eastern Obolo Federal Constituency in the Green Chambers of the National Assembly made the demand when he led members of the caucus to pay a Courtesy visit on the Minister of State, Labour and Employment, Barr. Festus Keyamo in his office.

In his words “we were on a Courtesy but strategic visit to the Honourable Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Mr. Festus Keyamo, and amongst other discussions we asked for more employment opportunities for our youths. Of course, he assured us that he will be more conscious of our concerns, going forward”.

GENEVA (21 October 2020) – The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle
Bachelet on Wednesday strongly condemned the use of excessive and disproportionate
force by Nigerian armed forces in Lagos on Tuesday evening. She called on the
Nigerian authorities to take urgent steps to deal decisively with the underlying problem
of persistent violations committed by the security forces, and make a far stronger effort
to bring police and army personnel guilty of crimes against civilians to justice.
“While the number of casualties of yesterday’s shooting at the Lekki toll plaza in Lagos
is still not clear, there is little doubt that this was a case of excessive use of force,
resulting in unlawful killings with live ammunition, by Nigerian armed forces,” Bachelet
said. “Reports that CCTV cameras and lighting were deliberately disabled prior to the
shooting are even more disturbing as, if confirmed, they suggest this deplorable attack
on peaceful protestors was premeditated, planned and coordinated.”
“Nigeria was already at boiling point before this shooting because of the revelations
about years of unchecked violence, including alleged killings, rape, extortion and other
violations, by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS),” the UN Human Rights Chief
continued. “While the authorities have now dissolved SARS and announced a series of
inquiries at both Federal and State levels, there have still been few if any charges
levelled against its members despite abundant evidence against various members of
the squad, as well as members of other security forces and the army.”
Many Nigerians appear not to trust the inquiries and other measures that have been
announced by the authorities, and have continued to take to the streets in several cities
to protest. “I appreciate that the Government has taken a number of measures to
address the protestors’ demands,” Bachelet said. “However, the immediate creation of
another elite police SWAT team to replace the SARS — without first addressing some of
the root causes of police violence and putting in place sufficient safeguards to prevent
future violations — has eroded the public’s trust even further. This latest terrible event in
Lagos is like wantonly adding fuel to a fire that was already starting to rage out of
control.”
Bachelet said the way to restore trust and bring back peace to the streets of Nigeria is
for the authorities to take immediate concrete steps to show they are genuinely
committed to tackling impunity, after years of inaction.

There need to be immediate, independent, transparent and thorough investigations, not
just into last night’s killings, but also into all the previous violations committed by
security forces,” Bachelet said. “Those appointed to carry out such investigations must
not only be independent and impartial but must be widely perceived as such. And,
where sufficient evidence already exists to warrant charges, immediate suspension of
officers – including senior officers — suspected of committing serious crimes, should
take place long before the conclusion of such investigations.”
“After so many years of reported violations that have not been adequately dealt with,
there also needs to be a root and branch re-examination of the entire security sector,
and of its civilian oversight,” the High Commissioner added. “This should include a fullscale review of rules of engagement and training systems and methods.”
Bachelet also called for immediate investigations into reports of violent and provocative
attacks on peaceful protestors by unidentified groups armed with cudgels, cutlasses,
sticks or guns, in some cases apparently with the overt backing of police or other
security forces.
“Nigerians, like everyone else, have a fundamental right to peaceful assembly and
protest,” Bachelet said. “The Government has a responsibility to take positive
measures to ensure the realization of this right, including deterring others who intend to
prevent them from protesting peacefully. The world’s attention is now focused sharply
on how Nigeria’s Government and security forces react over the coming days and
weeks.”
The High Commissioner urged the authorities to grant reparations to the victims and to
open extensive dialogue with youth leaders, students and other groups who have been
prominent among the protestors.
“In a population with such a young median age, it is important to listen to the grievances
of the younger generation and make an effort to address the multiple problems they
face, which include — but are far from confined to — police brutality and violations.”

-End-

The Inspector General of Police, Mr. Adamu Mohamed has ordered the immediate withdrawal of all policemen protecting VIPs of all kinds.

The IGP gave the command this Evening through the special wireless communications channel of the force.

the directive issued to police zonal commands and which is to take immediate effect, only those attached to government houses, the senate president and the speaker of the house of representatives are exempted.

“Inspector-general of police directs you to withdraw all protect personnel attached to all VIPs, except those attached to government houses, senate president, speaker, house of representatives with immediate effect,” the message read.

“Any commander who violates this order will bear the consequences. Any protect personnel found escorting or guarding any VIP with or without firearm is deemed to be deployed by the commander and the commander will be sanctioned.”

The police authority further asks that all the withdrawn policemen should report at their commands for further directives .

An American resident has showcased food items given to him at the church last Sunday as gift from the White House.

The gift according to the video shared by the black American was given to all church members after a church service as welfare package from President Donald Trump.

The man who was however excited for the package said that he will still vote against President Donald Trump at the polls, as the food gift was not enough to change his mind from voting against the President.

Click for video