Mr Clement Agba, Minister of Budget and National Planning, has restated the Federal Government’s commitment to the promotion of women and girls’ rights.
Agba made the pledge on Tuesday at the official launch of the “Promote My Sister” campaign by UN Population Fund (UNFPA) in Abuja.
The campaign is a call to action by the UNFPA aimed at protecting girls and women while supporting them to achieve their dreams and aspirations.
Agba said that Nigeria, in partnership with relevant stakeholders, would not relent in addressing the menace of Gender-Based Violence and Female Genital Mutilation in the country.
Mr Mathias Schmale, UN Resident Coordinator, said that the UN was working to improve the lives of women and girls while aiming at empowering them.
Schmale called for commitment to a future where women and girls would be safe and live their lives to the fullest.
According to him, women need to occupy prime positions across the globe.
He commended Nigerian women whom he said were exceling around the world, citing the likes of Mrs Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.
On her part, Ms Ulla Mueller, Country Representative, UN Population Fund (UNFPA), said that the essence of the campaign was for girls and women to protect each other.
Mueller, who expressed hope for brighter and better future for women and girls, said that women should be supported to make choices about their reproductive rights.
Meanwhile, Mrs Pauline Tallen, Minister of Women Affairs, commended UNFPA for the launch, saying that it was apt and timely in view of the rising wave of Gender-based violence.
Tallen was represented by Dr Asabe Bashir, Director General National Centre for Women Development.
The minister called for an end to male preference in families and situations where girls were not encouraged to go to school.
The United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) has called for a multi-stakeholder approach for proper utilisation of the new e-learning platform, Nigeria Learning Passport.
Serekeberehan SeyoumDeres, Chief Officer in Charge, UNICEF Nigeria, Kano Field Office, made the call on Tuesday at the launch of the Nigeria Learning Passport in Kano.He said that the Nigeria Learning Passport, an online, offline, and mobile learning platform, would provide children, teachers, and parents with resources for learning at home and in school.
“As we all know, education has faced enormous issues across the world.
Even before COVID-19, the globe was falling off track in realising SDG4.”“At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, sporadic school closures hindered the learning of 50 million students in Nigeria alone and more than 5 million in Kano state.
“Frequent attacks on schools including abduction of children, who should always be safe in school, had complicated the fear of the unknown.
“But together, we are finding solutions.
While nothing can replace the face-to-face interaction with their teachers and peers in the classroom.
”The Nigeria Learning Passport he explained, would provide learning opportunities when face-to-face interaction isn’t feasible or when children need to revise and bridge the learning poverty gap.
The UNICEF representative then, commended the state government for unveiling the creative digital learning solution, saying that it would increase access to excellent learning for all pupils.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Nigeria learning passport is an online learning platform created for Nigerian pupils, with availability of diverse languages and contents.
The innovation was created in partnership between the Federal Ministry of Education, the UNICEF, Microsoft and the Global Partnership for Education (GPE).
Three UN-appointed independent human rights experts returned from Ethiopia on Tuesday after working to negotiate access to areas important for investigations.
The UN International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia is mandated to conduct a thorough and impartial probe into allegations of violations and abuses of international human rights law.
Specifically, it will investigate violations of international humanitarian law and international refugee law in Ethiopia state committed on November 3, 2020 by all parties to the conflict in the Tigray region.
Initially created by the Human Rights Council on December 17, 2021, the three-member commission comprised of Kaari Betty Murungi (Chair), Steven Ratner and Radhika Coomaraswamy.
UN Human Rights Office of the Higher Commissioner, in a statement, stated that the three-member has concluded a five-day visit to the country where they met with the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Justice, and other senior government officials.
The members hoped that their meetings with the officials would result in “immediate and absolute access to visit sites” as well as their ability to gather testimonials.
The commission is also tasked with providing guidance and recommendations on technical assistance to the Ethiopian Government on transitional justice, including accountability, reconciliation, and healing.
Additionally, the members met with members of the National Dialogue Commission and Inter-Ministerial Task Force, the Ethiopia National Human Rights Commission, civil society, diplomats, and UN agencies and staff in Ethiopia to discuss the current human rights situation in the country.
The Commission presented its first update to the Council on 30 June 2022 after the UN-appointed investigators announced that they’d launched a probe into an alleged massacre of at least 200 people in Ethiopia’s Oromia region.
Speaking on the sidelines of the Human Rights Council in Geneva at that time, Murungi said that as it continued its work investigating rights abuses linked to conflict in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region that flared in November 2020, the Commission had received reports of killings in Western Oromia.
Despite many other conflicts around the world, Murungi had stressed that the world must not ignore what was happening in Ethiopia.
“The ongoing spread of violence, fuelled by hate speech and incitement to ethnic-based and gender-based violence, are early-warning indicators of further atrocity crimes against innocent civilians, especially women and children who are more vulnerable”.
The Commission is scheduled to submit a written report to the human rights body on this trip during its next session in September 2022. Special Rapporteurs and independent experts are appointed by the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council to examine and report back on a specific human rights theme or a country situation.
The positions are honorary and the experts are not paid for their work.
Kwara Government has donated 50 mini buses to transporters in the state as part of its empowerment programme.
Gov. Abdulrahman Abdulrazak presented the buses to the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN) on Tuesday in Ilorin.
In a speech, Abdulrazak said the gesture was intended to enhance their business and economy.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the donation was made by the government in partnership with a finance company.
Abdulrazak, represented by the Commissioner for Works, Mr Iliasu Rotimi, also said that the donation was meant to ease the transportation of goods and commuters in the state.
He said that the event was the second phase of his administration’s community transport intervention project.
He said that the first phase of the intervention took place in August 2021. The governor said that the administration also donated 100 tricycles to the Tricycle Owners and Operators Association of Nigeria.
He advised the beneficiaries to take advantage of the government’s kind gesture to enhance their economy.
He also said that they were expected to repay N3.7 million on each of the vehicles within 18 months.
“This intervention is worth N125 million as provided by Self Employment Assistance Program (SEAP) .
“The government on its part guarantees the facility for the benefit of our people,” he said.
Abdulrazak commended the management of SEAP for always supporting the state, particularly in the area of transportation.
He said: “We want to ensure shared prosperity.
“We have also created direct and indirect jobs to take many of our young population out of idleness through various interventions.
“We are confident that your meticulous use of these vehicles will generate more economic values for our people.
“It is my belief that NURTW and RTEAN will continue to partner our government as we strive daily to give our people a new lease of life.
” The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Community Intervention, Mr Kayode Oyin-Zubair, also urged the transporters to make maximum use of the opportunity to improve their economy.
Oyin-Zubair further appealed to them to always save money from their daily proceeds to make repayment easier.
Some commercial drivers in Benin on Tuesday staged blocked major roads in the Edo capital to protest the enforcement of colour code by the state government.
The drivers in their numbers blocked the busy Sapele road, Ring road, Ugbowo road, Aduwawa, First East Circular road and Akpapava to vet their grievances.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the roadblocks caused a serious gridlock in the ancient city and made passengers stranded, with many resorting to trekking.
Speaking with NAN at Sapele road, Mr Samuel Omoriege said the state government was insensitive to the prevailing economic conditions when it gave a month’s notice to obtain colour code and paint their buses in Edo colour.
Omoriege said even though, drivers were saying they will not pay, government would give them six months before the enforcement.
“We are not saying we will not pay, but the notice is too short.
Government is not sensitive to our condition.
“Some of us are graduates without job.
For instance, I am a graduate of Auchi Polytechnic; it is unemployment that drove into this.
So we need time to raise money for the code and painting,” he said.
Speaking in similar vein, Mr James Akpotarie said the recent policies of the government to drive revenue in the state were too unfavourable to transport workers.
Akpotarie said the government had just recently reviewed the daily ticket fee from N600 to N1, 800 and on Sunday N800. “Where is government working on Sunday if not to mount further hardship on commercial drivers.
“We urge Gov. (Godwin) Obaseki to rescind the anti-people policy in order to restore law and order,” said the driver.
Addressing the protesters, Mr Washington Abbe, the Permanent Secretary in the state Ministry of Transportation, said he would convey their request to the governor.
Abbe, however, noted that to appease them, all the vehicles impounded would be released while taskforce would also relax the enforcement pending the state government position on their request.
Prof. Sulyman Abdulkareem, the Vice-Chancellor of University of Ilorin (Unilorin), has urged members of Old Boys Association, Government Secondary School (GSS), Ilorin, to build the right motivations among students of the institution.
Abdulkareem, represented by Prof. Musa Yakubu, the Dean of Student Affairs, of the institution gave the charge while delivering his address as the Guest Speaker during the Prize Giving Day ceremony of the school on Tuesday.
He stressed the need for them to contribute and share the values they imbibed at GSS Ilorin to restore the past glory of its usual radiating academic excellence and not to sit aloof.
According to him, the success is about struggle just as the motto of the school persistently ingrains it in the minds of its students: “Manjada Wajada” in Arabic, meaning “No Struggle, No Success”.
Abdulkareem added that true success entails having a positive mental attitude, persistent struggles against difficulties, setbacks and moments in the pursuit for success.
“True success entails having a positive mental attitude, persistent struggles against difficulties, setbacks and moments in the pursuit for success,” he said.
Abdlukareem, also the Chairman of the Committee of Vice Chancellors in Nigeria (CVCN), expressed gratitude to National Executives of the Old Boys Association, led by the National President, Alhaji Mohammed Adebayo, and the entire management team of the school.
“I am just one of the multitudes of great boys that our great school produced and moulded as models and enviable references.
“Any old boy present at the occasion could have been a better speaker because of the manifestations of the heritage of the academic excellence and character formation known with our school,” he said.
He appreciated the national executives of the association for initiating such event, adding that though every other school organises prize award ceremony annually, that of the school has a greater and nobler purpose.
President Muhammadu Buhari has paid condolences to those who lost their loved ones in the recent terrorist attacks in Sokoto, Kaduna and Plateau states.
In a condolence message issued by his spokesman, Malam Garba Shehu on Tuesday in Abuja, the president reviewed the situation following reports of the loss of several lives in the attacks.
He assured all of possible support from the Federal Government to the states, and said: “we have given security forces full freedom to deal with, and bring this madness to an end.
“I condemn these barbaric attacks on the country.
I assure the states of all possible support from the government of the federation.
“My thoughts are with the bereaved families.
May the injured recover quickly.
World Health Organisation (WHO) has called on global community to invest in the production of vaccine to curb the spread of Monkeypox, especially in African countries.
WHO Assistant Director-General for Emergencies Ibrahima Soce Fall said countries needed to work more together to stop the rapidly spreading outbreak of monkeypox, “no matter the nationality, skin colour or religion of the affected population”.
The official said although a vaccine to prevent Monkeypox was approved in 2019, availability remained limited at the moment.
“We have had many cases in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Nigeria, Central African Republic, Cameroon, and some sporadic cases in countries such as Ghana, Benin etc,.
“I think it is time that the world invests so that these populations that are living in rural areas and in forest areas, can be protected,” Fall said in a statement on Tuesday.
According to Fall, “if we only treat what is happening in Europe and America, we will only treat the symptoms of Monkeypox, but not the real disease”.
“It is important that the world gets mobilised to this kind of disease.
” Fall said that WHO had been working on monkeypox in Africa for several years, but nobody was interested.
Once referred to as a “neglected tropical disease”, he said that WHO had been working on Monkeypox with very few resources.
However, once northern countries began getting affected by the disease, “the world reacted”.
“It was the same with the Zika virus and we have to stop this discrimination,” Fall said.
On July 23, WHO declared the spread of the virus to be a public health emergency of international concern – the organisation’s highest level of alert.
In this way, WHO aims to enhance coordination, the cooperation of nations, and global solidarity.
“The world must be involved to protect these populations, no matter their nationality, their skin colour, or their religion.
“I think it is extremely important and now that more than 70 countries are affected in the world, everyone is getting active,” Fall said.
Until 2022, he said, the virus that caused Monkeypox had rarely spread outside Africa, where it was endemic.
But reports of a handful of cases in Britain in early May signalled that the outbreak had moved into Europe.
“It is important, and we have already been doing so, to accelerate the research and development agenda on Monkeypox so that the most affected African countries can have the resources to prevent and fight against Monkeypox,” Fall said
The Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND) has approved 40 Institution-Based Research (IBR) N60 million grant for the University of Benin (UNIBEN).
The university announced this via a statement issued on Tuesday in Benin by the Public Relations Officer of the institution, Dr Benedicta Ehanire.
The grant, she said, followed efforts by the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Lilian Salami, to reposition the institution’s research innovations for effective service delivery.
She said the vice chancellor was briefed by the Director of Research and Development, Prof. M.
A. Bamikole, who also delivered the letter of award from TETFUND to her.
According to her, the number is unprecedented in the history of IBR grants in the UNIBEN.
“The Vice Chancellor commended the University’s Research and Development Committee (URDC) for the thorough screening and peer review process of the research proposals submitted by staff before they were presented to TETFUND.
“Since research is central to innovations and development, the vice chancellor reaffirmed her commitment to research revolution in the university and congratulated the 40 Lead Researchers and their teams for making the University proud,” the university’s spokesperson said.
Gov. Abubakar Sani-Bello of Niger inaugurated the state’s Traffic Management Agency (NISTMA) in Minna on Tuesday.
He allocated 21 vehicles to the agency to facilitate its operations.
The vehicles are 10 power bikes, six Hilux vans, an ambulance and four tow trucks.
The governor said the creation of the agency was to build a traffic data base that would help to identify traffic offenders and keep adequate data of road users for revenue profiling and planning.
He explained that all modes of transportation were present in the state, thus the need to develop an intra-transport management system by creating NISTMA.
Bello explained that the agency would facilitate traffic law enforcement, curb growing security challenges using technology and expand the Internally Generated Revenue of the state among others.
“This agency will be responsible for the administration, control and management of traffic matters.
“It will do this with a system of operation that is efficient and responsive to the demand of traffic to provide safe and orderly movement of persons and goods on our roads,’’ he said.
The governor tasked the agency to build and develop a culture of law abiding road users through sensitisation and enforcement of regulations that would help reduce to road accidents.
Bello also said government had added 63 buses to the fleet of the state’s transport system and would continue to support the sector to maintain the vehicles.
Earlier, Mr Zakari Tanko, Commissioner for Transport, said Gov. Bello assented to the law establishing NISTMA in July 2021 to achieve an effective and inclusive management of the transportation sector in the state.