Troops kill seven insurgents in Borno village

Boko Haram last night said troops killed seven Boko Haram insurgents in Damasak, Borno State, after a fierce battle.

A statement by the Army spokesperson, Brig.-Gen Texas Chukwu, said troops recovered weapons and destroyed the terrorists’ vehicles. Those who fled were pursued.

The statement reads: “An earlier release by the Army on insurgents’ attack on the location of 145 Battalion at Damasak on Wednesday evening said a fierce battle is on between the troops and Boko Haram insurgents.

“The Army also issued a statement late yesterday night, to correct a publication by Sahara Reporters which said “Boko Haram captures Damasak 24 hours after Buratai’s visit”.

“The Army, therefore, issued a statement and informed the public that troops of 145 Battalion in Damasak, Borno State, are engaging Boko Haram terrorists and that the terrorists were subdued following a superior fire power. “The Army wishes to state that troops of 145 Battalion deployed in Operation Lafiya Dole at Damasak, Mobar Local Government Area of Borno State, on September 12, inflicted many casualties on the Boko Haram terrorists. Seven members of the sect were neutralised while others fled into the bush.

“Items recovered from them include two vehicles; one Anti-Aircraft Gun; four AK-47 rifles; seven magazines; two hand grenades;

one bayonet; 47 rounds of 7.62mm special ammunition and 174 rounds of 7.62mm NATO ammunition.

“Seven soldiers sustained injuries in the attack and they have been evacuated to the military medical facility for treatment.”

Gen. Chukwu added that efforts are on to get the fleeing insurgents.

 

hammed Suleiman, the Executive Secretary of the agency, made the disclosure in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Yola.

Suleiman said hundreds of domestic animals, including cattle, were also lost to the flood.

He said the deaths recorded were particularly from Yola South, Guyuk,  Lamurde and  Song  Local Government Areas of the state.

“Flooding is becoming a serious challenge for us in Adamawa and the situation is indeed alarming.

“We lost 10 people and hundreds of people have been displaced. Domestic animals in large numbers were equally lost to the deadly flood. Also, hectares of farmlands especially in nine local government areas located at the bank of River Benue have been completely submerged,” Suleiman said.

He said the flood was also posing serious challenge to farming activities in the state, adding that it could be a threat to food security in the state.

Suleiman said that more than half of the state population was currently under threat of impending flood and urged residents to be on the alert.

Nine people lost their lives while over 200 houses were destroyed and numerous farm lands washed out by flood in Gombe between May and August, an official has said.

Mrs Lamis Benjamin, Deputy Director, Rescue and Rehabilitation, Gombe State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), disclosed this to newsmen in Gombe on Thursday.

Benjamin said four out of the nine deaths were recorded in May following a downpour in Gombe town.

She said the remaining five deaths were recorded in Cham community of Balanga Local Government Area of the state in August also after a downpour.

The deputy director also said over 200 houses and numerous farm lands were washed away in Nyuwar, Jesu Cham in Balanga and Komta Ayaba in Biliri Local Government Areas.

According to her, the state government through SEMA acted promptly by providing 1,200 bags of maize as relief material to victims in the two councils.

“For now, 1,200 bags of 100kg of maize were distributed as relief material to the affected persons. We are now waiting for the National Emergency Management Agency to come with their relief materials,” she said.

She appealed to wealthy individuals and corporate bodies in the state to assist the needy to ameliorate the plight of the victims.

Massive flooding has destroyed more than 175 houses, rendered at least 3,000 people homeless in Cross River, according to Mr John Inaku, Director-General of State Emergency Management Agency(SEMA).

Inaku gave the update on flood situation in the state yesterday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Calabar.

Inaku, who said that the flood had seriously affected the victims, also told NAN that most of them had since relocated to upper lands for safety.

He, however, said that no life had been lost in the menace,but disclosed that the flood started in the state in July.

According to him, most of the victims are living along the water channels while others in swampy areas.

He said that the agency had embarked on aggressive campaign, to sensitise residents in the state on the need to stop dumping refuse on drainage and building along water channels.

He explained that the flood had affected residents in Boki, Ogoja, Yala, Calabar Municipality, Calabar South and other local government areas in the state.

“Cross River has always been affected by flood during the raining season. Currently, we have over 175 houses destroyed and as a result, over 3,000 persons have been displaced.

“This menace has greatly affected farming activities, especially in Boki, Yala and a few others areas.

“We are looking at NEMA and other corporate organisations to come in and assist the victims,’’ he said.

He listed the flooded areas in Calabar to include, Muritala Mohammed Highway, Ebito, Murray, Target and Nelson Mandela, Atu, Yellow Duke, Parliamentary, Efiote roundabout and Mayne Avenue streets.

He appealed to the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to assist the state with relief materials for the victims.

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has sent delegations to flood-prone states following the flood alerts issued by the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET).

The Director of Legal Services, NEMA, Mr. Umar Mohammed, confirmed the development when he led a five-man delegation to Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, capital.

Speaking in a courtesy visit to the state’s Deputy Governor, Rear Admiral John Jonah (retd), Mohammed said they were in the state to interface with relevant stakeholders concerning the impending flood,.

“NEMA as the coordinating agency on disasters has constituted five teams to visit States that are likely to be affected by flood this year, with a view to assessing their level of preparedness in the event of flood as predicted by NIMET.

“The essence is to articulate some proactive measures , identify flash-points as well as inspect equipment that could be deployed to tackle flood within the shortest possible time”, Mohammed said.

Jonah reiterated the need to build flood shelter stations in all the local government areas of the state to accommodate displaced persons.

He recalled that in 2012, the state government recommended the building of such stations to the Federal Government,  but said no concrete steps had been taken, except the designing of engineering drawings for the project .

“Every flood-prone area should have a high ground identified and a big hall built to accommodate displaced persons whenever there is flood”, he said.

The deputy governor also decried the “situation whereby relevant agencies of government do not do anything concrete concerning flood matters until the next flood season”.

He said instead of the usual fire-brigade approach, proactive measures and early preparations should be made to deal with the perennial issues of flood.

He said the state government appointed Incident officers  for all the local governments in the state with a responsibility to coordinate flood-related activities in their respective councils.

The Rice Famers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN) in Kano state says the recent flood has destroyed over 5,000 hectares of rice farm in some local government areas of the state.

The RIFAN state chairman, Alhaji Abubakar Aliyu, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Kano on Thursday that the rice farms were affected in 10 local government areas of the state.

Aliyu, who spoke through his Assistant Secretary, Alhaji Ado Yakasai, listed the affected local government areas as: Warawa, Minjibir, Bunkure, Wudil, Gaya, Garko, Gabasawa, Kabo, Rimin Gado and Ajingi.

He said the disaster, which occurred in August affected most of the rice farms situated in Fadama areas, pointing out that only farms located upland were not hit by the disaster.

“Each hectare of farm was expected to produce between six and seven tonnes of the commodity but with this disaster, the production will be seriously affected.

“You know most of the rice farms are situated at Fadama areas which are water settlements. So when the incident happened many farms were submerged by water,” he said.

Aliyu said the farmers, who collected loan facility under the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Anchor Borrower Programme, had lost over N5 billion as a result of the flood.

“Each of the farmers collected fertilizer and other inputs worth N210,000 as the total loan package while some of them have even spent additional amount of money on top of the total loan package.

“The association has already reported the incident to the Nigerian Agricultural Insurance Scheme (NAISL) since the farmers are covered by the insurance company,” he said.

He noted that the collapse of an earth dam in Bunkure local government area aggravated the situation.

The chairman, however, called on the Federal and state governments to come to the aid of the affected farmers in view of the huge loss they incurred.

He disclosed that no fewer than 44,800 rice farmers benefited from the Federal Government’s agricultural loan under the Anchor Borrower Programme this wet season.

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has urged the Anambra Government to begin immediate evacuation of people living in flood prone areas to emergency centres.

Mr Vincent Owen, Director of Planning, Research and Forecasting of NEMA, Abuja, made the urgent call when he visited a flood prone area in Enugwu-Otu in Anambra East Local Government Area (LGA) on Thursday.

“There is nothing to wait for in evacuation of the people living in the flood prone areas in Anambra, the indices seen in 2012 flood has manifested in all the areas NEMA visited.

“In Ogbaru LGA, all the towns have been washed with flood, in Enugwu-Otu and Nkpundo Otu, the story is not different,” he said.

The director warned that the forecast of the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) that 2018 flood might come in same magnitude of 2012 should not be treated with kid’s glove.

According to him, the update regarding the flood is so alarming and should not be treated lightly as  all the indices  during the 2012 flood has been seen and the speed at which the river is rising needs proactive actions.

“The Anambra government should as a matter of urgency begin immediate evacuation of people living in the flood prone areas to the emergency shelter centres in the state,” he said.

Owen said NEMA under Mr Mustapha Maihaja, the Director-General of NEMA was committed in providing relief materials to all states either in flood or other emergency issues in the country.

He urged all the 12 states that were in flood prone areas not to play with the forecast and assured them of the agency’s speedy assistance whenever the need arose.

Owen said the Federal Government had received a message from the Cameroon Government of its intentions to open its dams and asked for proactive measures by the affected states.

He said if the forecast was not timely adhered to by the 12 states, it would be worse than 2012 flood experience and “NEMA do not pray for it”.

Owen said NEMA was visiting the states that were flood prone to have a firsthand information on the preparedness of the states in moving the victims to higher grounds and providing decent camps for the affected communities.

Owen said the volume of water noticed in Ogbaru and Enuwgu Otu was alarming and portended disaster if not proactively managed.

He said NEMA was in the state to ascertain the level of preparedness of the government in response to the flood warning signals as issued by NIHSA and urged the government not to delay action .

Mr Cprian Agupugo, Anambra Executive Director of SEMA, said the state government had since embarked on sensitization and enlightenment campaigns on needful actions to be taken by the people.

Agupugo said the state had made ready 28 emergency shelter centres in the flood prone areas of the state and assured the agency that other necessary materials would be provided.

“Now that it is evident that the flood is rising, the displaced persons will be evacuated and taken to centers closest to them in no distant time,” he said.

He said that state government was committed towards safeguarding the lives of its citizens and would run to the NEMA before they exhaust the relief materials in their storage.

Agupugo commended NEMA for reiterating the warning and reassuring SEMA on its willingness to play its part to ensure that nothing hinders the success of evacuation and safe keeping of the people living in the flood prone areas.

Mr Sunday Ochie, a native of Enuguw- Out, said that the flood which started around July had increased beyond their expectation this September and had destroyed their farmland.

Ochie said they were monitoring the rise and was still farming trusting that it was not going to be heavy but it had played out negatively and urged state government to give quick assistance.

Mrs Grace Oneh, a health worker at the Christ the King Maternity in the community, said that the flood had covered the homes of many people adding that most of the victims had gone upland to stay with their relatives.

Oneh said she was watching to see if the flood would recede if not, she would leave to upland where centers had been provided by the state government.

She said that relief material should be distributed on time before it got too rowdy and the distribution should be monitored.

Osun Govt settles debts to workers with N19.6b

Aregbesola Osun

The Osun State government has disbursed N19.8? billion for payment of salaries and pensions to its workers.

The Commissioner for Finance Mr Bola Oyebamiji said the money covers August full salary, backlog of the salaries and the pensions for September to December 2015? as well as leave bonuses.

Oyebamiji said Governor Rauf Aregbesola gave the payment directive after consultation with Labour unions and other stakeholders.

The commissioner broke the news yesterday while addressing reporters at the Ministry of Finance in Osogbo, the state capital.

He said the payment would be from the N16.6 billion latest Paris Club refunds from the Federal Government.

Oyebamiji said the state added additional N3 billion from other sources to the Paris Club refunds to ensure the payment.

According to him, this is not the first time the Aregbesola administration was committing lump sums from the Federal Government to pay salaries and pensions.

The commissioner recalled that in November 2016, the government received N11.4 billion Paris Club refunds and disbursed N13.6 billion the following month ?to pay active and passive workers’ salaries, pensions, leave bonuses and other emoluments, with N8.5 billion covering September to December 2016 salaries.

He also said N924 million was paid in 2016 as leave bonus for September to December, adding that from the same Paris Club refund, N2.5 billion was paid to cover pensions for September to December of the same year.

Oyebamiji added: “?Again, in July 2017, the government received N6.3 billion as the second tranche of Paris Club refund and paid N6 billion as salaries, pensions and leave bonuses. The breakdown is as follows: N3.76 billion as workers’ salaries, N504 million as leave bonuses, N791 million as pension and N935 million as salaries in the local governments.

“Since the commencement of the Aregbesola administration in November 2010, salaries, pensions and workers emoluments had taken not less than 80 per cent of the total revenue of the state. Indeed, a sizeable portion of the state’s debt was incurred on salaries.

“When the administration came, monthly workers’ salary was N1.4 billion while pension was N200 million. However, with the increase of minimum wage from N9,000 to N19,000 and hiking of monthly pensions to N500 million, monthly salaries and pensions rose to N3.6 billion.

“Though there was a steady increase in revenue till the late 2013, however, by 2014, oil price commenced a steady decline, dropping to as low as $22 in 2015 from the height of more than $100 in 2013.”

ABUAD’s 43 pioneer doctors inducted

ABUAD

The Afe Babalola University Ado-Ekiti (ABUAD) yesterday inducted its 43 pioneer medical graduates.

The university’s Best Graduating Student, Azom Esther Adaobi, was the cynosure of all eyes as she received a brand new MG3 automobile valued at N5.7 million, courtesy of an alumnus, Mr Cosmas Maduka.

According to the institution’s management, Azom made a Distinction in Medicine, Surgery and Community Medicine in her final medical examination conducted by the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN).

She had been a five-time beneficiary of ABUAD’s N500,000 scholarship for students with outstanding Cumulative Grade Point (CGP) in each of the programmes run by the university at the end of each academic session.

ABUAD’s Founder, Aare Afe Babalola (SAN), who instituted the scholarship award, also rewarded Azom with another N500,000 cheque.

He also presented a N500,000 cheque to the second and third best graduating students -Igbokwe Chiso and Apata Module Victoria.

Chairman of the event and Ooni of Ife, HRM Oba Enitan Ogunwusi, instituted the ‘ABUAD Class of 43’ with N1 million and N250,000 separately for Azom.

While the N250,000 will be an annual presentation to the Best Graduating Student in Medicine, the N1 million was for the inauguration of the 43 Class which Oba Ogunwusi instituted as a forum for the graduates to give back to their alma mater and continue to relate with one another anywhere in the world.

Oba Ogunwusi said: “I am giving this N1 million for the inauguration of ‘ABUAD Medical Students Class of 43’. As the pioneer set, I want you all to form a bond, add value to ABUAD and the world as you move along.

“You have my support anytime. You can easily reach out to me anytime you need my attention. I am for you all.”

The monarch said aside state-of-the-art facilities, he fell in love with the university’s anthem.

He said the university is living each line of the anthem.

The Ooni, who recalled that he had visited ABUAD twice, added that he would love to visit the institution as many times as he is called upon.

He urged the students to unite and be good ambassadors of ABUAD and Nigeria.

NDCN’s Registrar, Dr T. A. B. Sanusi, who conducted Physicians’ Pledge on the new doctors, congratulated ABUAD for ensuring that the students completed their programmes within six and a half years.

He said the council has always insisted on minimum standard that are non-negotiable.

According to him, the induction was the beginning of their careers while they will need to guide their loins as they compete with their contemporaries outside the country.

Sanusi implored the new doctors to comply with the ethics of the profession.

He said: “Being addressed as medical doctors carries a lot of responsibilities. You, therefore, need to comply with the ethical codes.

“Infringement of ethical codes could lead to serious penalties, such as admonition, suspension or erasure of your name from MDCN’s register.

“Once the council found you guilty, it may take you between five years, if you are suspended, or 10 years, if it is erasure. The most painful thing is that even if you are lucky to be restored, the report remains permanently in your resume anywhere you go seeking for job, and your potential employer would see it and want to know what infractions you committed.”

MDCN’s National President, Dr Francis Faduyile who presented the provisional registration certificates to the new doctors, urged them to seek medical advice, especially from older colleagues, anytime they encounter hitches.

He said: “You must henceforth live according to your new status. This is because you will now be held in high esteem in the society.

“This is the beginning of your training. You need to be flexible and adapt yourselves to retraining in order to meet up with new challenges in the medical field.”

The Chief Medical Director of the University of Ibadan (UI), Prof Temitope Oluwagbemiga Alonge, delivered the induction lecture, with the theme: Medicine by Choice or Medicine by Profession.

He offered the mandatory housemanship to the three outstanding students at UI.

Aare Babalola thanked parents of the new doctors for having confidence in him and ABUAD.

The eminent lawyer said the induction confirmed the university’s resolve to bring medical education at same standard as obtained overseas and at 15 per cent less.

He said the university was able to attain the features within six and half years because it complied with standard.

Aare babalola said: “From my experience, there isn’t much compliance with rules and regulations in Nigeria. That is why there has been poor reading culture.

“We are probably the only university in Nigeria that makes its students go to classes between 8 a.m and 3 p.m. There is no room for insolence here. This has paid off handsomely with the comments of the examiners during the final MBBS examination.

“Some of them acknowledged the fact that the standard we set here is very high and that it will not be difficult for most of the new doctors to pass their first professional examination. That is the stuff we are made of here

2019: Don’t run to avoid defeat, APC tells Dogara

Dogara

From the All Progressives Congress (APC) has come a piece of advice for House of Representatives Speaker Yakubu Dogara — he should not recontest his seat. “A humiliating defeat” awaits him, the party said.

Reacting to the defection of the Speaker to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Acting National Organising Secretary Yekini Nabena said it was not surprising Dogara joined the opposition in view of his anti-party activities in the National Assembly.

He said such activities became more glaring when the PDP won his local government of Bogoro during the recently concluded senatorial by-election in Bauchi State.

Nabena said: “We have received several media requests for a reaction to the purported defection of the Speaker, House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara from the All Progressives Congress (APC) to one of the opposition political parties, as reported in the media.

“In reacting, a recent comment by President Muhammadu Buhari aptly sums Dogara’s reported defection: The weakest people whose senses of expectation do not align with our vision have exited our party.”

“Dogara’s reported defection has not come to us as a surprise. It was only a matter of time, judging by Dogara’s anti-party antics in the National Assembly where in connivance with the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, he exploited all available avenues to sabotage and undermine the APC-led executive.

“Dogara’s anti-party activities which enabled one of the opposition Party’s sole victory in Bogoro Local Government Area (Dogara’s council) during the recent Bauchi South Senatorial bye-election won by the APC is another pointer, among several others.

“Indeed, all politics is local. As a party, we empathise with Dogara on his confusion and despair over his bleak political future given the fact that he is not on ground and a political paperweight in his home Bauchi state.

“In his emergence as Speaker, Dogara was merely used by his political master to achieve their selfish political ends at the time. They have since moved on to pursue their individual political aspirations and left Dogara in the cold.

“We would advise Dogara against his ill-advised decision to recontest his House of Representatives seat under the opposition party he is linked with because a crushing and humiliating defeat surely awaits him.

“As a party, we remain united and committed to our progressives ideologies. We urge party faithful to consolidate on our strengths and collectively go into the 2019 general elections as a united and strong political fighting force to sustain the Change Agenda we are implementing for the benefit of Nigerians.”

Ebonyi State Subscribes to the Open Budget System


By Udo ONYEKA

BudgIT, under its Open Budget Partnership project, signed a MoU with Ebonyi State Government in September to kick-start a partnership with the state to improve its level of transparency and accountability.
The success of the OpenKaduna initiative, which started in 2016, with support from BudgIT has propelled some states in Nigeria to consider exploring the benefits of sub-national transparency and
accountability.
BudgIT, a civic tech transparency organisation that working to keep
government transparent and accountable thus creating an active citizenry to improve governance is supporting state governments to break the age-long opacity that has denied citizens of access to
quality living.
Ebonyi State Government has shown a willingness to improve the principles of transparency as well as establish the culture of accountability within the 13 local government areas of the state. The state’s effort to join the Open Government Partnership is also a good move in the direction for public sector reforms and efficient service delivery.
BudgIT is therefore committed to supporting the Ebonyi State Government through this process. This will include engagement with key government officials to discuss best practices in making budgets
readily available and quickly developed in line with the International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS).
With the involvement of the state government’ technical team, BudgIT will design an Open State portal for the State government which will serve as a repository for the pre-budget statements, executive budget proposals, enacted budgets, audit reports, implementation reports, financial statements and other public documents. Ultimately, BudgIT will assist the Ebonyi state government in
developing a simplified version of the citizens budget when the annual budget document is released. This document will be available on the state’s Open Budget portal, BudgIT’s website and disseminated across every channel for a structured participatory mechanism designed to capture views of the citizens throughout each budget cycle.
Gabriel Okeowo – BudgIT’s Principal Lead noted during the MoU signing
that ‘open budget system is the win-win course for both the government
and the citizens, as it projects the state’ positively for investment
and development support opportunities, while citizens will enjoy
improved service delivery through public participation and constant
engagement with the government’.

NDIC CALLS FOR STRONGER ETHICAL STANDARD IN BANKING INDUSTRY

The Managing Director and Chief Executive of the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC), Umaru Ibrahim, has stressed the need for effective collaboration between regulators and operators in the banking system for the establishment of sound ethics and professionalism in the banking industry. He made the call during the courtesy visit by the Executive members of the Chartered Institute of Bankers (CIBN) led by the President and Chairman of Council, Dr. Uche Olowu.
The NDIC Boss lamented that instances of abuse of extant regulations and ethical standards impacted negatively on the confidence in the banking industry and the entire financial system in general. He cited the recent involvement of some deposit money banks in illegal forex transfers as a wake-up call for better corporate governance and ethical behaviour by the banks.
Speaking further, the MD/CE assured the CIBN President of his resolve to strengthen collaboration with the institute in the enforcement of good corporate governance among banks as well as the promotion of high ethical standards and professionalism.
He stressed that it was the primary responsibility of regulators to uphold strict compliance with international best practices and ethical standards in order to promote effective risk management and sound corporate governance in the banking industry. This is in line with the Corporation’s drive towards protecting depositors and enhancing public confidence in the financial system.
The CIBN President and Chairman of Council, Dr. Uche Olowu attested to the recognition of the NDIC Academy by the International Association of Deposit Insurers (IADI) as a world class institution in providing capacity building for the banking industry. He said this recognition and the CIBN’s active collaboration with the Corporation to entrench ethical standards is a key driver towards effective service delivery in the industry. He therefore emphasized the need to extend the collaborative efforts to joint research and knowledge-based events to enhance public awareness about the role of deposit insurance in financial system stability.
According to Dr. Olowu, the active participation of the Corporation in the activities of the council as well as its role in the nation’s economic development informed the Council’s visit to formally invite the NDIC MD/CE as a special guest and resource person at the CIBN 11th Annual Banking and Finance Conference.


Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) MD/CE, Umaru Ibrahim, presents the Corporation’s research publications to the President and Chairman of Council, Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN), Dr. Uche Olowu during the Council’s courtesy visit to the NDIC Management at the Corporation’s Head Office, Abuja.


Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) MD/CE, Umaru Ibrahim (2nd left) poses for a group photograph with executive members of the Council, Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) lead by the President and Chairman, Dr. Uche Olowu (2nd Right) and Registrar/CEO, Seyi Awojobi, (1st left) and National Treasurer, Prof. Deji Olarewaju (1st right) during the council’s visit to the NDIC Management at the Corporation’s Head Office, Abuja.

MTN says $10.1Bn Sanction Makes Listing On NSE challenging      

A $10.1 billion demand by Nigerian authorities from South African
telecoms group MTN may make its planned debut listing  on the Nigeria
Stock Exchange, NSE, “pretty challenging and awkward”.
The MTN’s group’s chief financial officer, Ralph Mupita who made this
known on Wednesday said preparation of the company’s the initial
public offering (IPO) prospectus is far advanced,  and would be
hampered by the CBN demand .
Nigeria’s central bank has asked MTN to repatriate $8.1 billion in
monies sent abroad, claiming the funds were sent without proper
certification. The company is also facing a $2 billion tax demand.
PDP Schedules Presidential Primary For October 5 And 6, 2018

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has scheduled its Presidential
primary and National Convention for Friday October 5 to Saturday,
October 6, 2018 as earlier scheduled.
The party disclosed this in a statement by its publicity secretary ,
Kola Ologbondiyan, saying that “In the same vein, the party’s
governorship primary across the states of the federation holds on
Wednesday, September 26, 2018.”
He added that “This will be preceded by senatorial primary on Friday,
September 28, while House of Representatives primary will hold on
Sunday, September 30, 2018.”
The party had also approved Tuesday October 2, 2018 for House of
Assembly primary across the states of the federation.
“This clarification is sequel to enquiries from the public and vast
majority of Nigerians who are now rallying on the platform of our
repositioned PDP to vote out the President Muhammadu Buhari-led All
Progressives Congress (APC) and return our nation to the path of
national cohesion and economic prosperity, come 2019”, he added
EU’s To Offer Free Trade Pact With Africa

The European Union should offer a free trade agreement to the whole of
the African continent and a new investment alliance according to
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in a speech on
Wednesday.
Among various proposals for EU action to bolster prosperity in the
world’s poorest continent and Europe’s close neighbour, the Commission
chief called for a more equal partnership and investment rather than
aid, as Europeans look for ways to stem an economic divide driving
Africans to try to migrate northward.
Juncker said he had talked with African leaders and was proposing an
alliance to boost sustainable investment, which he said could create
up to 10 million jobs in Africa in the next five years.
While it was clear that a free trade pact would be some way off, and
well after Juncker steps down in a year’s time, the EU would look to
take advantage of African efforts to forge a free trade area within
the continent to work towards a comprehensive continent-to-continent
trade agreement.
Trade between Africa and Europe, said Juncker, was not insignificant –
36 percent of Africa’s trade is with the European Union, compared to
16 percent with China and 6 percent with the United States.
“But this is not enough,” Juncker told the European Parliament.
“I believe we should develop the numerous European-African trade
agreements into a continent-to-continent free trade agreement, as an
economic partnership between equals.”
The European Union already has a series of deals with individual
African countries, largely in North Africa, as well as additional
economic partnerships with African blocs, such as the Southern African
Development Community.