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  •  Timi Frank congratulates Kenya s President elect Ruto
    Timi Frank congratulates Kenya’s President-elect, Ruto
     Timi Frank congratulates Kenya s President elect Ruto
    Timi Frank congratulates Kenya’s President-elect, Ruto
    General news2 days ago

    Timi Frank congratulates Kenya’s President-elect, Ruto

    Timi Frank congratulates Kenya’s President-elecMr Timi Frank, a former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), has congratulated the President-elect of Kenya, Mr William Ruto. Frank, who is the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) Ambassador to East Africa and Middle East, gave the congratulatory message in a statement he issued on Wednesday in Abuja.

    He lauded the people of Kenya for their peaceful disposition during the election and for voting for change in the East African country.

    Frank called on the people of Kenya to stand with Ruto, who represents a complete break from the established system of political succession in the country.

    He said that the political succession in the country had appeared to be restricted to the offsprings of former leaders who fought for the independence of the country.

    Frank called on President Uhuru Kenyatta to initiate a peace and reconciliation process among the key actors in order to curb the pockets of restiveness in some parts of the country.

    The ULMWP Ambassador urged Kenyatta to follow the precedent laid by President Goodluck Jonathan in 2015 by officially congratulating Ruto. He said: “The people of Kenya have decided that the ‘Hustler-In-Chief-of-Kenya’ should be their next President through the ballot.

    Therefore, let the will of the people prevail.

    “Kenya needs peace to move forward and Kenyatta has a great role to play in bringing parties in the electoral conflict to the discussion table just like he did during the last election whose results were highly disputed.

    “Kenya is a peaceful country; therefore, the political actors must eschew any action that can plunge the nation into a needless political crisis following the emergence of Ruto as president.

    “The election of Ruto marks a new political dawn for Kenya, therefore, let the votes count,” he said.

    Ruto called on the President-elect to be magnanimous in victory by reaching out to his opponents with assurances of his readiness to work with them in the interest of peace and development of the country.

    Frank equally called on the presidential candidate of the opposition party, Raila Odinga, to as a matter of necessity call his supporters to order in the interest of peace for the generality of Kenyans.

    (www.

    nannews.

    ng)
    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Ex President Jonathan leads election observation mission to Kenyan elections
    Ex-President Jonathan leads election observation mission to Kenyan elections
     Ex President Jonathan leads election observation mission to Kenyan elections
    Ex-President Jonathan leads election observation mission to Kenyan elections
    General news2 weeks ago

    Ex-President Jonathan leads election observation mission to Kenyan elections

    Former President Goodluck Jonathan departed Abuja for Nairobi on Friday leading a team of observers to Kenya’s general elections scheduled to hold on Aug. 9. Jonathan would serve as the Head of the Electoral Observation Mission of the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISA).

    EISA has deployed a full-fledged short-term team of observers to Kenya.

    Mr Ikechukwu Eze, Special Adviser, Media, to Jonathan, stated on Friday in Abuja that the EISA team comprises 21 short-term observers drawn from Civil Society Organisations.

    It also comprises Election Management Bodies and representatives of the academia from across the African continent.

    “The observers will be deployed in all the regions and specifically in ten counties, across Kenya.

    “They will observe the final stages of the political parties’ campaigns, Election Day procedures and results aggregation processes.

    “The Mission’s assessment of the electoral process will be guided by the principles and obligations set out in the 2007 African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance.

    “It will also be guided by the 2002 Declaration of the Principles Governing Democratic Elections in Africa, among others,’’ he stated.

    Eze added that the EISA Electoral Observation Mission would issue a preliminary statement on its findings at a news conference on Aug. 11.
    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Stakeholders clamour speedy passage of automobile policy
    Stakeholders clamour speedy passage of automobile policy 
     Stakeholders clamour speedy passage of automobile policy
    Stakeholders clamour speedy passage of automobile policy 
    General news2 weeks ago

    Stakeholders clamour speedy passage of automobile policy 

    Stakeholders in the automobile industry have appealed for the speedy passage of the Automobile Policy to engender growth in the industry.

    At the Maiden Auto CEOs Forum held in Abuja on Thursday, they also decried lack of an Auto Purchase Credit Scheme for Nigerians purchase vehicles on a staggered payment scheme.

    They argued that if such scheme was made available, people would be able to buy new vehicles and the business of local assemblers in the country would thrive.

    Mr Remi Olaife, Executive Director, Nigeria Automobile Manufacturers Association (NAMA)  said that lack of political will was the main constraint of the industry.

    ”We are not ready as a country to move.

    How long are we going to wait.

    ”The Auto policy was approved  during President Goodluck Jonathan administration and till date they are still trying to make it a law.

    ”All what is said today has already been said.

    If we do not have the political will, nothing gets done.

    The funds are there, it is for us to decide what we want to do.

    Representing the Director-General of BPP, the Director of Procurement, Mr Eze Obasi,  urged the automobile companies to upgrade their status to enable them benefit from the bureau’s policy.

    ”Federal Government have a policy aimed at enabling indeginious firms to grow.

    ”We recommend agencies to patronise upgraded companies who have met all the requirements of tax clearance, CAC registration, PENCOM certifications, ITF and NSITF.

    ”However, there is need for a deliberate collaboration among you.

    You also need to collaborate with smaller firms that can provide  the necessary components  you need to thrive.

    ”If you are not registered with the bureau, you cannot do business with the government,”Obasi said.

    Earlier, the former Acting Director-General, National Automotive Design and Development Council(NADDC), Lukman Mamood, urged the NAMA to come together in one voice.

    He said they should form a formidable force that would engage the government and relevant stakeholders on the way forward for the industry.

    He said the objective of the policy was to establish a dynamic fiscal policy to attract and sustain investments.

    ”It is aimed to one million automobiles for transport, mining and agriculture, attract FDI and renew Nigerian vehicle stock and reverse pressure  on balance of payment and strengthen the naira.

    ”It is also aimed at establishing automotive manufacturing infrastructure and increase industry employment among other things,” Mamood said.

    He said the requirements for the industry’s development, however, entailed incentives and supportive measures, legislation, market and skills development among other things.

    The Controller of Customs, Musa Baba, said that the industry had to be private driven for effective and efficient growth.

    On purchase of vehicles, he said: ”We have to look into financing of the industry, that is the purchase of vehicles.

    ”Also, let us identify people who have true passion to push through the objectives of the forum.

    ”Meanwhile, the Chief Executive Officer, Nord Automobiles Ltd., Oluwatobi Atayi, decried the non financing of automobile business in Nigeria due to high interest rate.

    He urged that the National Automotive Council (NAC) levy on importation of vehicles to the country should be channeled as supposed to the automobile industry.

    The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the forum was attended by stakeholders and players in the industry.


    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Eschew division pursue peace Jonathan advises Africans
    Eschew division, pursue peace, -Jonathan advises Africans
     Eschew division pursue peace Jonathan advises Africans
    Eschew division, pursue peace, -Jonathan advises Africans
    General news2 weeks ago

    Eschew division, pursue peace, -Jonathan advises Africans

    Former President Goodluck Jonathan has called on Africans, especially Nigerians, to eschew division and pursue peace at all time.

    He said this at a peace summit organised by the Universal Peace Federation (UPF) on Tuesday in Abuja.

    The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the summit is aimed at analysing and strategising for peace on the Korean Peninsula and its relevance to the African Region.

    According to him, having suffered the excruciating pain of distrust among African people, especially in the wake of the struggle of independence and liberation, the time has come to toll the part of peace and eschew division.

    “This must begin with the transcending ideals that can overcome the current division of our current world.

    “We must enable people to connect through different religions, races, beliefs and build upon it as a key foundation to peace in families, communities and nations.

    “Let us all rise up to this challenge and constructively recruit every support for the goals to be attained.

    “Let us all work collaboratively at finding lasting solutions to the challenges of our time; promote constructive dialogue and multilateral cooperation for the sake of peace and human development,” he added.

    In his keynote address, the Director, Abuja Leadership Centre University of Abuja, Prof. Philip Afaha, said that one of the resolutions to foster peace in Africa “is centered on confidence building.

    “Confidence building among the warring people in Africa, especially the leadership in Africa is important.

    “There has to be a way that the leaders know that they have to build confidence.

    “The leaders must always have fear of the people and there must be dialogue”.

    Earlier in his remark, the Chairman, UPF International, Dr Thomas Walsh, who joined the summit virtually, said that the UPF was committed to promoting peace in Africa and in all countries of the world.

    “We truly believe that Africa can be a shining light and be the way for a turn around of this world that is looking like it is entering into a new cold war era,” he said.

    NAN reports that the highpoint of the event was the induction of no fewer than 10 “Ambassadors of Peace” drawn from across the country.

    Amb. Emonyon Odion, one of the inductees who spoke on the sideline of the event, said that injustice, unfairness and inequity remained a stumbling block to achieving peace in Nigeria.

    Odion, therefore, advised all Nigerians and other critical stakeholders to embrace justice and be fair to all, as this would contribute to advancing peace in the country and the world at large.


    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Jonathan challenges W African pharmacologists to spearhead research for vaccine production
    Jonathan challenges W/African pharmacologists to spearhead research for vaccine production
     Jonathan challenges W African pharmacologists to spearhead research for vaccine production
    Jonathan challenges W/African pharmacologists to spearhead research for vaccine production
    General news4 weeks ago

    Jonathan challenges W/African pharmacologists to spearhead research for vaccine production

    > Former President Goodluck Jonathan has charged members of the West African Society of Pharmacology (WASP) to spearhead research for the production of vaccines to contain epidemics that are endemic in the sub-region.

    Jonathan gave the advice in Abuja on Saturday at a programme of the West African Society of Pharmacology where he was invested as the Grand Patron of the Society The former President said that the world had been experiencing outbreak of viral diseases, some of which were more prevalent in West Africa Jonathan said that pharmacologists and scientists in related disciplines must give their best to ensure that such peculiar health challenges were adequately tackled.

    .

    “Let me therefore, use this opportunity to task and challenge pharmacological scientists in this sub region to invest more energy in finding solutions to medical challenges, especially the ones that are peculiar to us.

    “The sub-region is in dire need of essential Covid-19 vaccines, following the imperative of tracking and halting its mutating variants.

    “We are now accustomed to hearing of the outbreak of new viral diseases, some of which are more prevalent in our part of the world.

    “One of such diseases is the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)which has killed thousands in West Africa.

    In 2014 an outbreak in Guinea spread to many West African countries including Sierra Leone, Liberia and Nigeria.

    “My administration had the good fortune of containing the spread through a clinical contact tracing mechanism which significantly reduced the fatality rate in the country,” he said.

    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  EFCC officer threatened me to indict Jonathan Adoke witness tells court
    EFCC officer threatened me to indict Jonathan, Adoke, witness tells court
     EFCC officer threatened me to indict Jonathan Adoke witness tells court
    EFCC officer threatened me to indict Jonathan, Adoke, witness tells court
    General news1 month ago

    EFCC officer threatened me to indict Jonathan, Adoke, witness tells court

    EFCC officer threatened me to indict Jonathan, Adoke, witness tells court EFCC officer threatened me to indict Jonathan, Adoke, witness tells courtThreatBy Taiye AgbajeAbuja, July 19, 2022 Mr Aliyu Abubakar, a defence witness in the trial-within-trial of the former Minister of Justice, Mohammed Adoke told a Federal High Court, Abuja that an EFCC officer threatened him to indict former President Goodluck Jonathan in alleged money laundering.

    Abubakar, who is also a co-defendant in the suit, told Justice Inyang Ekwo while being led in evidence by his counsel, Wole Olanipekun, SAN, that the officer, Mr Bala Sanga, also threatened him to indict the minister.

    The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Adoke was the Minister of Justice during President Jonathan’s administration between April 6, 2010 and April 29, 2015.

    NAN also reports that Aminu Lawal, the second prosecution witness in the trial-within-trial, had, on May 10, said that Abubakar was neither enforced to make statements nor induced to implicate others in the course of the investigation, and that he was never threatened to be detained.

    Lawal was part of the investigators who took the defendant’s statements on Dec.

    31, 2019 and on Jan.

    6, 2020.

    But at the resumed trial on Tuesday, Abubakar, a business mogul, told the judge that the extra-judicial statements he made on Dec.

    31, 2019 and on Jan.

    6, 2020 were not made voluntarily.

    He said on Dec.

    31, 2019 when he was invited to the EFCC’s office, Sanga, threatened to detain him if he refused to make extra-judicial statement.

    Besides, Abubakar said on Jan.

    6, 2022, Sanga, who introduced himself as the new prosecutor in the matter, told him that there was an evidence before him (Sanga) which showed that he (Abubakar) gave the sum of 20 million dollars to Adoke.

    Abubakar also told the court that Sanga informed him that there was another evidence which indicated that he (Abubakar) gave the sum of 50 million dollars to ex-President Jonathan.

    “On the 31st December, 2019, my lawyer, Ahmed Audu, came to me and said one Ibrahim Ahmed from EFCC called him that they needed clarification from me about this case.

    “I followed my lawyer to the EFCC office.

    When I got there, some of the EFCC’s staff like Ibrahim, Babaginda and others came in and told me that I must give a confessional statement.

    “They said that things have changed and somebody has to record me (on video), that his name is Bala Sanga.

    “He introduced himself as the new prosecutor in this case.

    He thanked me and said I should continue to cooperate with them and that they will help me if I continue to cooperate with them.

    “He then asked me questions.

    He asked my lawyer to write for me and I said no that I will not make any more statement because I had already made statements which are with them.

    “He said if I don’t, they will detain me,” Abubakar said.

    He said due to the fact that it was festive period then, he had to succumb to the officer’s instruction.

    “I realised the next day was January 1, 2020, that was why I decided that they should write for me,” he said.

    When Olanipekun asked Abubakar if he had ever met Sanga in the court before, he said: “Yes, I met him here and he is the prosecutor and the one that was investigating me.”Speaking on his experience at the anti-graft agency’s office, he said: “That day we went to the EFCC and they ask us to come the second day.

    Bala Sanga called me to one side that Alhaji, I want to help you in this case.

    “He (Sanga) asked how close I am to Adoke.

    He said you have to sacrifice somebody to be alive.

    “He said there is evidence before him which he will show me at the right time; that he heard information that I gave Adoke 20 million dollars.

    “I said what?

    How did it come?

    “He said may be because me and Adoke are from the same place and that that was why I did not want to say anything.

    “He also said that there is evidence before him that I gave Goodluck Jonathan 50 million dollars.

    “He said if I did not agree to cooperate with him, he would charge me to court.

    “So I said he should go ahead.”Abubakar said the argument by the anti-graft agency that nobody asked him to implicate anybody was untrue.

    Adoke’s counsel, Kanu Agabi, SAN, while crossed-examining Abubakar, asked him to reconfirmed his statement that Sanga told him to implicate Adoke and he answered in affirmative.

    Counsel for the EFCC, Offem Uket, during his cross-examination, told Abubakar that the statements he made on Dec.

    31, 2019, and Jan.

    6, 2020, were voluntarily made.

    He said in the video clip played in the open court in the last adjourned date, Abubakar did not protest against the directive by the agency’s officers on making the extra-judicial statements but the witness disagreed with Uket.

    Also, the second defence witness, Ahmed Audu, who is Abubakar’s lawyer, also testified in the matter after Abubakar was discharged from witness box.

    Audu said he wrote the statement on Abubakar’s behalf on Dec.

    31, 2019.

    “Sanga came in that day and asked my name and I said Barrister Ahmed.

    ” He said he was the new prosecutor in this matter and he took over from one Aliyu Yusuf.

    “He said he needed some clarifications from us and my client rejected because he had written a number of statements over this matter.

    “Ibrahim said anything Sanga asked us to do we should do.

    “While we were there, we heard Magu (former EFCC’s chairman)’s siren coming in and I was even sweating and I felt guilty already.

    “I ask Ibrahim why did he say that anything he ask us to do do it.

    “That was how we started the statement.

    That was what happened that day.

    “After the statement, I ask Ahmed Ibrahim can I go with my client.

    “They released us around 7.30pm on that day and we protested that I will not sign and my client too.

    “But they said we will not go until we sign.

    So they ask us to come on Jan.

    6, 2020,” he said.

    After Uket’s cross-examined Audu, Justice Ekwo adjourned the matter until Sept 28 for hearing.

    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Omo Agege appoints Orubebe as campaign DG for Delta
    Omo-Agege appoints Orubebe as campaign DG for Delta
     Omo Agege appoints Orubebe as campaign DG for Delta
    Omo-Agege appoints Orubebe as campaign DG for Delta
    General news1 month ago

    Omo-Agege appoints Orubebe as campaign DG for Delta

    The Delta All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate, Sen. Ovie Omo-Agege, has appointed former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Elder God’sday Orubebe, as the Director-General of his Campaign Organisation.

    Mr Ima Niboro, the Director, Communications and Media Strategy of the organisation, said this in a statement in Abuja on Wednesday.

    Niboro quoted Omo-Agege as saying that Orubebe was brought on board toward enriching the organisation with his wealth of experience.

    “Orubebe shall, side by side with me, lead critical engagements and drive consultations and by his renowned robustness, up the ante for the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

    “Together with the rest of the team, we shall show PDP the way out of Government House come May 29, 2023,” he said.

    He said that the selection of the Ijaw-born politician was due to his knowledge, capacity and pedigree.

    “Bringing him on board strengthens the campaign organisation straightaway and builds a strategic redoubt of crucial stakeholders at the grassroots for the contest ahead,’’ he said.

    Orubebe was born June 6, 1959 at Ogbobagbene in Burutu Local Government Area (LGA) of Delta.

    He attended the University of Lagos, where he earned a B.Sc. degree in Political Science in 1985. He later attended Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, where he obtained a Master’s degree in International Relations.

    Orubebe was supervisory councilor and later chairman of Burutu LGA.

    In July 2007, late President Umaru Yar’Adua appointed him as the Minister of Special Duties. He was later to become Minister of State for Niger Delta Affairs when the ministry was created in December 2008.

    Orubebe, who worked with former President Goodluck Jonathan, shared the credit for instituting the Niger Delta Amnesty Programme which successfully won the hearts of most Niger Delta people and brought peace to the region.

    He resigned from office in February 2014 to contest for the governorship of Delta  in the build up to the 2015 general elections.(

    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Tourism Stakeholders seek upgrade of Tafawa Balewa s tomb
    Tourism: Stakeholders seek upgrade of Tafawa Balewa’s tomb
     Tourism Stakeholders seek upgrade of Tafawa Balewa s tomb
    Tourism: Stakeholders seek upgrade of Tafawa Balewa’s tomb
    General news1 month ago

    Tourism: Stakeholders seek upgrade of Tafawa Balewa’s tomb

    Stakeholders in the tourism sector have advocated upgrade of the tomb of Nigeria’s sole Prime Minister, Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa to attract more visitors.

    Some of the stakeholders who spoke in Bauchi, said the mausoleum needed total rehabilitation in line with international standards, to make it more attractive to visitors.

    Balewa’s tomb is one of the monuments, heavily patronised by tourists in Bauchi State.

    It was declared a national monument on Aug. 29, 1979 by the then military administration.

    The construction of the tomb and the building enclosing the grave began in 1977 and inaugurated in July 1979.

    Within the enclosure are reference library, gallery, mosque and grave of the former Nigerian leader, often referred to as the Golden Voice of Africa.

    Balewa was born in December 1912 in Bauchi, and started his education at a Qur’anic school in Bauchi town and later attended Katsina College, now (Barewa College).

    On completion of his secondary education in 1933, he returned home and started teaching at the Bauchi Middle School where he rose to the position of headmaster in 1941.

    In 1944, Balewa went to University of London’s Institute of Education, and on his returned he was appointed Inspector of Schools.

    His political sojourn started in 1946 when he was elected into the Northern Nigeria House of Assembly, and in 1951 elected as the Vice President of the Northern People’s Congress (NPC).

    The party nominated Balewa to Lagos as Member of Parliament in 1952. He was appointed Minister of Works and Transport in the same year.

    In 1957 the NPC won election with majority of the MPs and Balewa was elected as Prime Minister.

    At independence in 1960, Balewa became the Prime Minister of the independent Nigeria and re-elected in 1964. He was killed alongside other prominent Nigerian leaders during the Jan. 15, 1966 coup. Tourists on visit at Balewa’s tomb

     

    According to him, the tomb is in good condition and recording high number of visitors, especially students who are on excursion to learn and see some of the personal belongings of the late prime minister.

    According to the tour guide, visit to the tomb is free, but adult visitors to exhibition section (gallery) are charged N100 per head and N50 for children.

    He disclosed that over 7,000 students from schools across the country visit the tomb annually.

    The tour guide also said that 75 students of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPS), Kuru, Jos, were on study tower at the tomb in September, 2021, while 22 foreign students or tourists also visited the tomb last year.

    He listed important personalities that visited the tomb to include former President Olusegun Obasanjo on July 16, 1999,

    Former President Goodluck Jonathan, in September 2011, and former President of the Senate, Ken Nnamani, and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo in May, 2022, among others.

    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  Bayelsa Govt begins construction of 21 km Nembe Brass road
    Bayelsa Govt. begins construction of 21-km Nembe-Brass road
     Bayelsa Govt begins construction of 21 km Nembe Brass road
    Bayelsa Govt. begins construction of 21-km Nembe-Brass road
    Economy2 months ago

    Bayelsa Govt. begins construction of 21-km Nembe-Brass road

    The Bayelsa Government on Thursday began the construction of first phase of the Nembe-Brass road linking the two coastal local government areas.

    The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the project was inaugurated by the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, at Nembe.

    The project, which is one of the three senatorial roads in the state, had been on the drawing board of successive administrations in the country from the colonial era in the 1940s.

    Bayelsa Gov. Douye Diri’s administration revived the project with the first phase of 21km and 10 bridges awarded to Setraco Nigeria Limited for N54.1billion.

    The road, when completed, will open up the Brass Island, which has key national economic assets.

    The assets include the Agip Oil export terminal, the ongoing Brass Liquefied Natural Gas and the Brass Fertiliser and Petrochemical projects.

    Fashola was represented by Mr Godwin Eke, the Director of Highways South-South, who lauded  Gov Diri for commencing the project.

    The minister urged the ministry to leverage on the government’s current tax credit scheme with the  Nigeria National Petroleum Company (NNPC) to the advantage of the project.

    He stressed that road development was another way of delivering prosperity to the people and congratulated the state government on the strides achieved.

    Gov Diri, in his remark, said the road had suffered several setbacks but that his administration was determined to end them.

    The governor also pledged to end the sufferings of the people of Nembe and Brass in the hands of sea pirates and kidnappers.

    He expressed dismay that the steps initiated by his government to benefit from the Federal Government tax relief scheme were unsuccessful.

    He explained that the efforts which were channeled through the Nigerian Agip Oil Company and the Federal Ministry of Petroleum, were frustrated by some forces at the centre.

    The governor noted that as a government committed to serving the people, it commenced the bidding process for suitable contractors and congratulated Setraco for winning it.

    He assured the people of Nembe and Brass of his government’s commitment to the project, regardless of the dwindling economic situation in the country.

    “Let me appreciate the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing and the Minister, who did not only reply when we wrote but also showed keen interest in this project.

    “We wanted to replicate what was being done in Bonny Island in Rivers State with the tax relief scheme of the present government at the centre.

    “We thought that part of Agip’s tax remitted to the Federal Government can also be ploughed into construction of the Nembe-Brass road.

    “Unfortunately, the reply we got from Agip was not encouraging. We, however, resolved that with or without Agip or any other person, this road must commence this year,” Diri said.

    Gov Diri recalled that the history of the road dated back to pre-independence era, adding that former President Goodluck Jonathan  had awarded the contract for this same road for clearing.

    “This road has suffered several setbacks. No wonder you find all the traditional leadership of Nembe present here today.

    “That tells you the importance the people of Nambe Kingdom attach to this road.

    “For us as a government, ours is to serve our people. These are the legacy projects that will speak for us and our children.” Diri said.

    Diri called on the youth and other stakeholders to take the project as their own and protect it.

    He emphasised the economic advantage of the road to the local economy, as well as its attendant benefits to the nation at large.

    Earlier, Bayelsa Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Mr Moses Teibowei, said the road would attract large investment to Brass Island.

    He said it had the potential of an economic free trade zone and transforming the area to an economic and tourism hub of the state.

    Teibowei explained that the project was divided into three phases with the first commencing from Nembe to Saint Nicolas River.

    The second phase would be a 600 metre bridge crossing the river, while the third phase would be from the bridge to Twon-Brass.

    Also, the Deputy Managing Director of Setraco Nigeria Limited, Mr Ziad Muonanse, thanked the governor for the confidence reposed in his company for construction of major roads in the state.

    He assured that the company would  deliver on the project to the highest standards and within the stipulated time.

    In a goodwill message, the Amanyanabo of Nembe, King Edmund Daukoru, expressed gratitude to Diri for bringing to fruition a dream that had long been on their minds.

    Also, the Amanyanabo of Opu-Nembe, King Josiah Biobelemoye, described Diri as a true reflection of a miracle to the people of Nembe Kingdom through the groundbreaking of the project.

    Similarly, the Amanyanabo  of Okpoama Kingdom, King Ebitimi Banigo, said after more than 50 years, their dream finally came true through the passion shown by Diri.

    He promised that the governor’s gesture would be reciprocated by the people of the area.

    The project is estimated to be completed in 24 to 36 months. (

    NewsSourceCredit: NAN

  •  2023 PRESIDENCY Is it Tinubu Or Atiku
    2023 PRESIDENCY: Is it Tinubu Or Atiku?
     2023 PRESIDENCY Is it Tinubu Or Atiku
    2023 PRESIDENCY: Is it Tinubu Or Atiku?
    Opinion2 months ago

    2023 PRESIDENCY: Is it Tinubu Or Atiku?

    The 2023 Presidential election is still some months away, though what is clear to all became clearer after the APC and PDP presidential primary elections.The PDP and the APC were unsure of, from which region of the country to field their presidential candidates, the urge to also win the 2023 election also trumped all other considerations.While the strongest APC aspirants were from the south, the PDP's strongest aspirants were mostly from the north. Just exactly a reversal of role between PDP and APC in 2015, the only constant there is that the larger chunk of the votes are domiciled in the north, all parties have their eyes on it as against what some people called a consideration for justice and equity or fairness.What most people still find hard to believe is that Zoning is dead, it was killed and buried by President Goodluck Jonathan, and even if zoning were to still be alive, the most equitable zone to produce the next President under PDP was the North; in the north it should be North-east or North-central. The North-west has already produced Yar'adua in PDP and Buhari in APC. Of the 16 years of PDP Obasanjo from the South had Presidency for 8 years, Goodluck Jonathan hard it for 5 years another southerner, totaling 13 years while the north had it for just 2 years and a few months. Jonathan insisted on vying for a second term against Zoning and lost to Buhari of the APC.That said, the major political parties now have their candidates, PDP has Atiku Abubakar from the Northeast while APC has Bola Ahmed Tinubu from the Southwest.The two presidential candidates are more similar than they are different.

    • Both are Muslims,
    • Both were elected Governors,
    • Both are stupendously rich,
    • Both have fought for democracy,
    • Both have been around for almost 40years,
    • Both are old men
    And both Muslims and that is where Tinubu's problems starts, who will be his Vice Presidential candidate? Atiku from Muslim majority north is sure to settle for a Christian Southerner, Tinubu may not enjoy such luxury, the current Buhari administration has further widen the religious and regional divide after Jonathan made it obvious.Some are quick to refer to Abiola-Kingibe ticket; a Muslim-Muslim ticket, they forget that Nigeria has descended deeper down the religious intolerance and bigotry pit ever since then. The clerics have also not helped at all, they fan the embers of intolerance, fanaticism and extremism, how did Shekau emerge? IPOB? and even Igboho's Odua noise? now people are first to identify with tribe, religion or region before identifying as Nigerians, this is a bad development which whoever becomes the next President must work hard to reverse.For now, it is a big issue that could mar Tinubu's presidential dream. A northern Christian Vice will never bring any reasonable votes and a northern Muslim Vice will scare away most Christian voters from north and south. Tinubu and APC are in a fix.The choice of a southern Christian Vice will bring in more votes for an Atiku Presidency, especially from south-south, I personally prefer Wike, the current Governor of Rivers, Rivers has the second largest number of voters after Lagos from the South. The choice of a south easterner as Atiku's Vice will not make much difference in the south East except he picks Peter Obi who seems to enjoy the regional support of his kinsmen.On the state by state or region by region breakdown, the Southwest will most likely vote for Tinubu even though the last election showed that Tinubu's dominance of Lagos is gradually whittling, the gap between Atiku and Tinubu's Buhari was a paltry 10,000 votes for a state with over 5 million registered voters. Several people were even blocked from voting, the people are more determined to vote now than ever before.Oyo state in the Southwest will also witness a sharp split, Governor Sheyi Makinde is in the PDP and will work to get a National influence, he is young with a burning urge for National recognition, a Tinubu Presidency will completely bury Sheyi's political future and Sheyi will never want that so Atiku is his sure bet.Ogun, Ekiti, and Osun will most likely go the Tinubu way, but Atiku will likely get the 25% votes from at least 2 of the states.Southeast will go for Peter Obi and Obi will not get the votes to become President, except he is lucky to pick the Atiku's vice presidential ticket, he will still not win, no single region can produce a President alone without an alliance, the south East is PDP traditional zone, Obi will surely split the votes but Atiku will still manage to get the 25% from most of the states.Southsouth is not inclined to any individual, though traditionally PDP stronghold, If Wike gets the Atiku's Vice Presidential ticket then it will be a double bonus for PDP and Atiku, Rivers, Bayelsa, Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Delta and Edo will most likely support one of their own Wike which is coming as a bonus after Jonathan from Bayelsa got 5 years as President.North Central, except Tinubu, picks his Vice from the Zone, the north-central is going Atiku way, Niger Atiku, Kwara is Atiku, with a very few for Tinubu, Benue is going Atiku, Plateau will go Atiku wholly but if Governor Lalong gets the Vice Presidential ticket to Tinubu then it will split, Kogi is surely going Atiku. Governor Yahaya Bello could not even secure the whole of his delegates from the state in his Presidential bid.Northeast! Atiku's region desperately wants the Presidency unlike the North central that had Generals Babangida, Gowon and Abdulsalami who cumulatively spent 18 years as President or Heads of state, the Northeast has never tasted the position and Atiku presents such opportunities, already Governor Zullum despite his street credibility has faced a backlash when he tried to advertise Tinubu, Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, Bauchi, Taraba, Gombe will give Atiku a near 100% of its votes. A Tinubu Vice Presidential slot may not dissuade the zone from giving Atiku its votes.Northwest; Katsina, Kaduna will go Atiku way, Tinubu can't come out with anything from there, Kano will be sharply divided between Kwankwaso's NNPP, APC and PDP, unlike Peter Obi who has a majority of southeast supporting him, Kwankwaso has only a split of Kano, infact in 2019 Atiku only got 21% of the votes despite Kwankwaso been in PDP, Atiku's Percentage will increase this time because Buhari is not on the ballot and Tinubu is not even an issue in kano but Ganduje will fight to prove some points.Still in the Northwest, Zamfara, Sokoto are fully "Atikulated" Tinubu can't pull out anything tangible from those states, Kebbi has just gone into the umbrella wholly.In whole, Head or tail, Atiku seems to have greater chances of becoming the next Nigerian President, even though you cannot waive away the "Nigerian factor" in elections; power of incumbency, Independent Electoral Commission and Security agencies. 
    This is an opinion article by Yahaya Mohammed Usman, Twitter: @boyemdee