President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the immediate payment of the February and March, withheld salaries of lecturers in federal universities who have not registered in the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS).
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, made this disclosure in a statement signed by his new media aide, Emmanuel Nzomiwu.
Ngige said the president also directed the Minister of Finance, Budget and Planning, and the Accountant General of the Federation to effect the payment urgently to cushion the deleterious effects of COVID 19 pandemic lockdown on lecturers and members of their family.
The Labour Minister added that all the Vice Chancellors were asked to revalidate the affected lecturers Bank Verification Numbers (BVN) and forward to the Accountant General of the Federation for the payments.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Federal Government had directed all federal tertiary institutions in the country to enroll in the IPPIS from February 2020.
Edited By: Maureen Atuonwu (NAN)
FG set to support 1.7 million businesses, individuals — Minister
Amb. Mariam Katagum, the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, has stated the Federal Government’s resolve to provide financial support for 1.7 million business entities and individuals across the country in the next three months.
The minister made this known at the virtual commissioning of the Fashion Cluster Shared Facility for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) tagged:“Eko Fashion Hub” in Lagos on Friday.
According to her, the initiative is borne out of the Federal Government’s continued commitment to help cushion the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy by saving existing jobs and creating new job opportunities.
She said that the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, through the Economic Sustainability Committee, had announced specific programmes aimed at cushioning the impact of COVID-19 on MSME businesses.
“The Federal Government is fully committed to empowering Nigerians; more so in the face of the COVID-19 Pandemic.
“These programmes include among others, the N75 billion MSME Survival Fund and Guaranteed Off-take Schemes of which I have the honour to chair the Steering Committee for the effective implementation of the projects.
“The project, which will run for an initial period of three months, is targeting 1.7million entities and individuals and has provisions for 45 per cent female-owned businesses and five per cent for those with special needs.
“The registration portal for the schemes is set to open on Monday 21st September, 2020 and I urge you all to take full advantage of the schemes,” she said.
She said that both schemes were at the core of the N2.3 trillion stimulus package also known as the Nigeria Economic Sustainability Plan (NESP) being implemented by the Federal Government.
The minister said that the commissioning of shared facilities was also expected to provide succour and relief for the teeming micro businesses in need of space and infrastructural support.
Katagum expressed appreciation to the Vice-President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo for providing a pragmatic and purposeful leadership in establishing a conducive environment that would seamlessly allow MSMEs to grow and prosper.
She congratulated MSMEs across the country and urged the ones in Lagos State to take full advantage of the shared facility as well as the MSME Survival Fund and Guaranteed Off-take Schemes to improve their businesses.
“This event is a testimony to the continued commitment of the Federal Government of Nigeria to provide a conducive environment for operators in the MSME space.
“The establishment of Shared Common Facilities, is one of the key take-away from the organisation of MSME Clinics across the country.
“It is also imperative to state that the provision of Shared Facilities in support of MSMEs, is being complemented by activities in the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment.
“It has been established, and rightly so, that Shared Facilities have been found to be effective tools to minimise the infrastructural challenges that have inhibited MSMEs overtime”.
“It is my belief that this initiative has come at the right time for MSMEs in Lagos State in particular, and Nigeria in general,” she said.
Edited By: Dianabasi Effiong/Grace Yussuf
Niger Govt opens Minna-Bida road to articulated vehicles
Gov. Sani Bello of Niger has directed the reopening of the Minna-Bida road to articulated vehicles, to ease transportation of goods and services.
He gave the directives at a news conference, after a meeting chaired by the Chief of Staff to the President, the Inspector-General of Police, Director-General of Department of State Service, the Group Managing Director of NNPC and the Minister of Works.
Bello explained that the meeting was to discuss issues arising from the closure of the Minna-Bida road and the state-owned roads.
He said he made a presentation on the deplorable state of the roads in the state, which was unanimously acknowledged to be due to articulated vehicles carrying excessive loads of liquid and dry cargoes.
Bello noted that such action had led to the destruction of the roads and caused hardship on other roads users.
The governor disclosed that as a way forward, the following agreements had been reached:
”That no articulated vehicle carrying petroleum products of more than 45,000 litres or 35 tons of dry cargo will be allowed to ply the roads.
”That there was need for special intervention for remedial works to be executed on Federal roads to serve as alternative routes, for trucks to move their products.
”That the State Government would require support from the Federal Government to carry out remedial work on Farin-Doki-Minna-Bida road, for easy movement.
”The Ministry of Works said there were ongoing road repairs by the Federal Government and reiterated its commitment to completing the project,” he said.
The governor, however, said that he had directed the relevant agencies to temporarily open the closed state roads to ease the hardship of motorists and other road users.
He appealed to the people of the state to be patient with the decision of reopening the roads, adding that the Federal Government’s intervention would be effected soon.
Edited By: Chinyere Nwachukwu/Donald Ugwu
Visa Ban: FG says sanctioning electoral offenders disrespectful to Nigeria’s sovereignty
The Nigerian government has said it considers it disrespectful to the Sovereignty of the country for any outside country to apply punitive measures such as visas restriction on its citizens.
The Nigerian government made this known in a statement issued by Mr Ferdinand Nwonye, Spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday in Abuja.
The News Agency of Nigeria , reports that this comes as a response to the recent announcement of the United States and the United Kingdom to impose visa restrictions on those who undermine electoral processes.
The Nigerian Government said it was committed to providing all necessary logistic, financial and security support to the electoral process.
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs wishes to state that the Nigerian government has taken note of the concerns of some of our partners, especially the United States and UK governments regarding the elections in Edo and Ondo States.
“They have also expressed their intentions to take punitive measures against those who decide to, in what they termed as, undermine democracy.
“It is important to highlight that the responsibility for the conduct of elections in Nigeria solely resides with the Independent National Electoral Commission and State Independent Electoral Commissions.
“The Federal Government, and especially the President, is committed to providing all necessary logistic, financial and security support to the electoral process.
“The President has continually urged all parties and contestants to peacefully conduct themselves before, during and after the elections, and supported patriotic non-governmental initiatives such as the Abdusalami Abubakar-led Peace Committee.
“Furthermore, it should be noted that there are ample provisions in our laws to sanction violators and perpetrators of electoral violence and fraud.
“It would be considered disrespectful of the sovereignty of Nigeria for any outside authority to sit in judgment over the conduct of our citizens and apply punitive measures such as visa restriction, unilaterally.
“While we appreciate the support and encouragement of our international partners such as the EU, we urge our equally valued partners such as the UK and United States to cooperate with our relevant agencies,” the government said.
The government called on the partners to support security agencies by providing them whatever concrete evidence of observed misconduct to allow our laws and regulations to take their course.
The Nigerian government also expressed solidarity with the government and people of the United States as regards their forthcoming election, which it hoped would be free from interference and violence.
Edited By: Abiemwense Moru/Donald Ugwu
Lawmaker promises APC befitting secretariat in Kwara
Rep. Tunji Ajuloopin, member representing Ekiti/Isin/Irepodun/Oke-Ero Federal Constituency of Kwara, has promised a befitting party secretariat for the All Progressives Congress (APC), in Irepodun local government area of the state.
Ajuloopin made the promise in Omu-Aran, the headquarters of the local government, on Friday during an expanded meeting of the party.
The lawmaker said that irrespective of some of the challenges bedeviling the party either at ward, council or state level, it was still on the right path.
Ajuloopin harped on the need for party supremacy and admonished members not to relent in contributing their quota to the growth of the party.
He urged members to sustain their support for Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq’s administration in his bid to deliver on the party’s promises.
He reiterated commitment to the ideal of the party, adding that he would do his best to better the lots of the local government.
Ajuloopin called on all aspirants to remove desperation from their aspiration and support whoever emerged at the party’s primaries, saying the interest of the party should come first.
Mr Shuaib Olarewaju, an APC stalwart, urged all appointees from the local government to familiarise themselves with the structure at the grassroots as there had been complaints of inaccessibility.
He also appealed to the federal government to improve on its job creation so that people could reap more from President Muhammadu Buhari’s led administration.
Edited By: Abiodun Esan/Donald Ugwu