Good News! Buhari Set to Increase Workers’ Salaries.

President Muhammadu Buhari, might soon increase workers minimum wage, as a the Federal Government delegation will be having a meeting with the leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, and the Trade Union Congress, TUC, on Tuesday, November 1st, for deliberation on the issue.

 

According to news reports on DailyTimes, the meeting is said to initiate modalities, that will guide negotiations for the new N56,000 minimum wage, proposed by the worker’s union.

It could be recalled that the organised Labour Unions, had on May 1st, during their workers day celebration, demanded for a new minimum wage of N56,000, with the Federal Government agreeing to set up a joint committee to begin negotiations.

The NLC President, Ayuba Wabba, confirming the proposed talks scheduled for today, described the renewed negotiation, as a step in the right direction.

He said, “We have submitted that demand. As I speak with you, the negotiation committee has not even taken off, but what I was informed two days ago, is that the process has been ongoing at different levels, because there are various people driving the process.”

Based on his submission, the Labour leaders met on Monday, October 31st, to finalize their position, preparatory to their meeting with the government team today.

“They will then meet with the government side tomorrow (Tuesday). They want to tidy up the report, including the membership of the team, that is supposed to negotiate the minimum wage,” Wabba said.

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Governor Fayose Suspends Anti Grazing Marshall In Ekiti

Ekiti state governor has suspended the operations of the Grazing Enforcement Marshall, established to enforce the state’s Anti-Grazing Act which prohibits herdsmen from grazing their cattle in non-designated areas.

Governor Fayose suspended the Marshalls operations following a meeting with leaders of the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeder’s Association in Ado-Ekiti where the herdsmen alleged that the Marshalls were indiscriminately ‎killing their cattle.

Fayose on hearing this allegation, immediately suspended the operations of the Marshalls.

“The marshals are not armed. There is total misinformation about killing of cows, shooting of cows. It is pure political and misinformation. So, when we leave here, I am going to go show them their cows, where they are kept and because of the accord and their understanding after the meeting I will release the cows to them for them to know that we are not extremists.

“All I want is people obeying our laws and collaborating together in the overall interest of our state”.

“They have assured me that they are ready to cooperate, they have accepted the marshals. They only want to be part of the marshals so that they can equally enforce these laws with us because they know their people very well and they assured me that nobody among the herdsmen will go and use their cattle to feed on the farmlands and attack any of the citizens,” he said

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Goodluck Jonathan Former Aide, Reuben Abati Ready to Refund N5m to EFCC, Fails to Meet Bail Conditions

A former presidential spokesman, Reuben Abati, has told the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission that he only has N5 million to reimburse the government.

 

Mr. Abati was detained when he reported at the EFCC headquarters a week ago. During the interrogation, he reportedly admitted receiving N50 million from a former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki.

The government said the money was part of $2.1 billion earmarked for the purchase of arms for the fight against Boko Haram. Mr. Dasuki is standing trial for allegedly misappropriating the money.

Sources at the anti-graft agency told Premium Times on Monday night that Mr. Abati offered to refund N5 million to the government. The source said Mr. Abati allegedly failed to furnish the EFCC with records of how the N50 million was disbursed.

The former spokesperson reportedly said he did not keep notes of such expenses as they were doled out to media practitioners across the country as part of the 2015 campaign activities.

Mr. Abati may still be allowed to go home if he is able to meet an administrative bail granted to him last week.

He had not been able to meet the bail requirements, which included presenting a senior federal civil servant from the level of a director as surety.

“He may be released in the coming days despite his refusal to fully cooperate with us,” one EFCC source said.

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Popular Lagos Lawyer and Activist Drags Federal Government to Court…The Case Will Make You Laugh

Chief Malcom Omirhobo, yesterday, asked a Federal High Court Lagos, to declare as unlawful, rescheduling of public holidays.

Defendants in the suit are: the Attorney General of the Federation and the Minister of Interior.

The plaintiff’s suit is brought pursuant to the provisions of order 3 rules six, seven and eight of the Federal High Court Civil Procedure rules of 2009. Omirhobo is seeking an interpretation, as to whether in the face of the Public Holidays Act of 1979, it is legal for the defendants to reschedule public holidays from Saturdays or Sundays to Monday.

The plaintiff seeks an interpretation whether it is lawful for the defendant to even extend public holidays beyond the days set out for them. Omirhobo seeks the following interpretations: “Whether it is lawful for the defendants to have declared May 2 (Monday) as public holidays for the celebration of worker’s day, instead of May 1 (Sunday).

“Whether it is lawful to have declared May 30 (Monday) as public holidays for the celebration of Nigeria’s Democracy day, instead of May 29 (Sunday). “Whether it is lawful to have extended the Eid-el-fitri celebration beyond July 5 and 6, to July 7, making the holidays three days in a roll.

“Whether it is lawful to have declared October 3 (Monday) as public holidays for the celebration of Nigeria’s 56th independence, instead of October 1 (Saturday) for which it was originally scheduled.”

The plaintiff therefore, seeks a declaration, that the public holidays Act, is the law guiding the declaration of public holidays in Nigeria, and any declaration of public holidays without compliance with the Act, is unlawful and void. .

Omirhobo now seeks a court order, compelling the defendants not to declare October 2, 2017 (Monday) as public holidays for the celebration of Nigeria’s 57th independence, in place of October 1, 2017 (Sunday).

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Real Reason Jonathan Denies Dasuki Stole $2.2b Arms fund

The Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders (CACOL) has fired former President Goodluck Jonathan over his recent comments attempting to exonerate Sambo Dasuki, his former National Security Adviser (NSA) of acts of corruption.

 

CACOL said it was shocking that Jonathan suddenly found his voice after maintaining sealed lips for more than a year, “even in the face of myriad of palpable accusations directed at the acute misgovernance that characterised his administration.”
Jonathan recently insisted in New York that Sambo Dasuki could not have stolen the $2.2 billion he is alleged to have shared among top members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and some Nigerians.

The former president further outlined his administration’s achievements with reference to ensuring freedom of speech and freedom after speech; empowering institutions while reducing government’s influences over them and enacting the freedom of information act and the administration of criminal justice act 2015.

CACOL’s executive chairman, Mr Debo Adeniran, said in a reaction made available to NAIJ.com that the former president’s attempt at doing a comparative analysis between his time in office and the current administration is baseless, petty and pedestrian.

“A crucial time like this when the country is in recession and Nigerians are going through a very harrowing experience, calls for sober reflections where leaders who are worth their salts ought to project what will positively steer the ship called Nigeria forward particularly by displaying sound understanding of the ongoing anti-corruption drive,” he said.

Jonathan had asserted that his government could not be accused of nepotism, as according to him, there was no preference to tribe and ethnicity in the appointment of members of his cabinet and aides.
But in reaction, Adeniran said: “The former president’s comments are not helping the current situation of the country but rather serving as a distraction from the unpleasant aftermaths of the his administration.

“What he is doing is creating precedents that would lead to his invitation for investigations on issues he has dabbled into by himself.

“However solid his comparisons are, it cannot be faulted that so much irregularities, tragedies and atrocities were perpetrated under his watch.

“Even if it is true that the former president gave institutions leeway, as he claims, it is obvious that he failed to exercise control over its officials and that is why there are issues of corruption affiliated to his administration.

“We have read in the news about several allegations of money laundering and missing funds involving close aides to Jonathan during his time as president.

“Fresh in our minds is the Dasuki Gate scandal and in the light of recent revelations, there have been confessions from Mr. Musiliu Obanikoro that funds were released to Mr Ayodele Fayose, the current governor of Ekiti state, to help finance his election into office,” Adeniran said, adding that Jonathan cannot be objective enough in evaluating himself.

“He would only be focused in branding his administration as competent and failing to address the irregularities that occurred. He should leave such comparison to those who are objective.

“To us in CACOL, we see former president Jonathan’s comments as a way of saving his face in the light of the various corruption allegations linked to his aides, family members, wife and his defunct cabinet members.

“We also see this as a desperate attempt by an individual who is conscious of the reality that he has a lot of questions to answer for when it comes to the corrupt practices that reigned supreme under his watch.

“He has already put himself on ‘trial’! Nigerians are not fools.” Adeniran said.

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President Buhari Is Not INEC Boss, Gov. Lalong Tells Mimiko

Gov. Simon Lalong of Plateau on Monday in Abuja, enjoined Gov. Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo to stop running to President Muhammadu Buhari for solution to his party’s internal problems, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

 

Lalong said this during an interview with State House correspondents after he formally presented Chief Rotimi Akeredolu, the All Progressives Congress’s gubernatorial candidate in Ondo, to President Buhari.

According to him, Buhari is the President of Nigeria, and neither a PDP member nor INEC chairman.

“Let me say it was even wrong for them to start running to Mr President,to help them solve the problem of PDP in their party, Mr President is the President of Nigeria and he is not a member of PDP.

“Even when we have problems in APC, we don’t run to Mr President, if he (Mimiko) has a problem in his state, he is the governor, let him stay there and resolve the matter.

“It is a matter between PDP, and those matters are in court, so, why should you run to the President. Is the President the chief judge of Nigeria? He is not the INEC chairman either.”

Lalong, who is the Chairman of the APC Governorship campaign in Ondo, revealed that President Buhari has endorsed the candidature of Rotimi Akeredolu as APC candidate for the election.

Gov. Mohammed Abubakar of Bauchi and Gov. Badaru Abubakar of Jigawa, who were in the Presidential Villa, told the State House correspondents that they discussed security issues with President Buhari.

“We have come to confer (which is usual) with Mr President. But as you can see, I am here with the governor of Jigawa, as you know we share a border with Jigawa.

“We have come to discuss some security concerns with the President to solicit for his support for us to effectively ensure security in the two states, this is basically what we have come to discuss,’’ Gov. Abubakar said.

On Northern governors’ trip to US, Abubakar said that the governors were invited by the United States Peace Institute based in Washington.

According to him, the United States’ government had a great concern in the northern part of Nigeria.

“They believe whatever situation that exists in the northern part of Nigeria have a multiplier effect on the whole nation.

“So, if you are able to solve the problem before it becomes a national problem, it will help, we have discussed with them the root causes of insurgency and illiteracy, poverty, lack of empowerment of youth and women.

“These are points we have discussed and the issues of IDPs in Borno, Bauchi, Taraba, Gombe.

“They have indicated their concern for the humanitarian crisis and especially about the situation of children in the IDP camps, and we have solicited for their immediate support so that we can overcome the challenges,’’ he added

 

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Names of Niger Delta Leaders That Met With President Buhari

Nigeria’s President on Tuesday met with Niger Delta representatives as part of efforts toward finding lasting solutions to the crisis in the region.

Those attending the meeting are Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, some governors, ministers and other political appointees from the Niger Delta region.

Names of those that attended the meeting include:

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Governors of Akwa Ibom – Emmanuel Udom

Governor of Bayelsa state – Seriake Dickson

Governor of Delta – Ifeanyi Okowa

Imo State Governor – Rochas Okorocha and Deputy

Others are:

Service Chiefs, Inspector-General of Police Idris Ibrahim

Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS), Lawal Daura

Some traditional rulers and representatives of militant groups.

Some former governors, civil rights activists and community leaders from the Niger Delta region. They include

Victor Attah

Edwin Clark

Timi Alaibe

Diette Spiff

Ledum Mitee

Florence Ita-Giwa

Tony Uranta

Nkoyo Toyo

Ewa Henshaw

Seminatri Bozimo and

Roland Owei.

The ministers attending the meeting are those of Interior, Justice, Transport, Budget and National Planning as well as Ministers of State for Health, Niger Delta Affairs.

The Chairmen, Senate and House of Representatives committees on Upstream, Downstream as well as Niger Delta are also in the meeting.

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APC Governors Write President Buhari Over Ambassadorial Nominees

All Governors elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) have put forward their complaints on the list of 46 non-career ambassadorial nominees recently sent to the Senate for confirmation and approval by President Muhammadu Buhari.

 

Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom made the disclosure to State House correspondents yesterday.The governor earlier had a closed-door with President Buhari.

The APC governors had presented their grievances to the president at a meeting last Monday. Ortom, however, said he and his colleagues had written to the President on the issue.

He also confirmed that President Buhari was currently attending to their grievances. Ortom said:

“it is the prerogative of Mr. President to do appointments, but where there is need, we always give support.

“We have written where we have reservations, and it is being attended to.”

Recall that some APC leaders across the country, had expressed discontent over the choice of non-career ambassadorial nominees.

The aggrieved APC chieftains allegedly vowed to frustrate the proposed ambassadors whose nomination did not represent the reality and endorsement of party leaders in their states.

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Touble Looms As Obanikoro’s N40m Refund Cheque to EFCC Bounces

A N40 million cheque issued to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) by Former Minister of State for Defense, Musiliu Obanikoro has bounced, according to Sahara Reporters.

It would be recalled that the politicians has been strongly linked as a beneficiary of slush funds from the embattled former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki who has been incarcerated since last year, 2015.

Mr. Obanikoro, who returned from the U.S. two weeks ago and surrendered to the anti-corruption agency following one year on the lam, wrote several cheques to the EFCC to fulfill his promise to refund part of the N4.7 billion laundered through him and his son to finance the election of Governor Ayo Fayose of Ekiti State in 2014.

Mr. Obanikoro, also a former ambassador to Ghana, admitted to embezzling N800m of the funds and promised to refund all of it. The initial agreement with EFCC investigators was for the former minister to refund N100m as a condition for his bail from custody.

However, two weeks after his detention, Mr. Obanikoro has only succeeded in paying back N24m. He then issued a series of cheques to the recovery account of the federal government last week, but EFCC operatives detailed to process the cheques discovered that the account to which they were issued had no money.

Mr. Obanikoro blamed the error on politicians and friends who had visited him in detention and promised to deposit money in the accounts.

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Femi Fani-Kayode’s Aide Slams Bishop Matthew Kukah for Visiting EFCC Detainees

The visit by Bishop of Catholic Diocese of Sokoto to the trio of Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, Musiliu Obanikoro and Dr Reuben Abati in EFCC custody, Monday, has been criticised by Chief Femi Fani-Kayode’s aide saying that the report that the Chief Femi Fani-Kayode and others were ‘cheerful’ in detention was a lie and that ‘what is there in EFCC for anyone to be cheerful about especially when someone is being illegally detained.’

 

The statement signed by Jude Ndukwe said further that the EFCC’s spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, press statement concerning the Catholic cleric visit was ‘woven with disheartening lies’.

Jude also said that for some of EFCC’s facilities to be ‘‘clean and orderly’ does not give them the liberty to illegally detain Nigerians for as long as they wish. Even if EFCC converts a five-star hotel to its facility, it can never be good enough to illegally keep citizens on account of their political leanings.’

The statement read thus ‘On Monday, October 31, 2016, the highly revered Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, His Lordship, Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah, paid a visit to the trio of Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, Musiliu Obanikoro and Dr Reuben Abati in EFCC custody.
On his arrival there, he met them at the clinic and afterwards had some private moments with them away from the prying eyes of journalists. Bishop Kukah spoke inspirational words of encouragement to the trio wherein he encouraged them to be strong and see this as a trying period for them.

He prayed for them before departing. It was therefore very shocking to us to read that the Commission’s spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, released a press statement wherein he alluded a lot of things supposedly said by the Catholic cleric and wove disheartening lies around them.

Even if we decide to agree that Kukah said the clinic and detention area of the commission was ‘clean and orderly’, we reject the notion that Kukah said the trio was ‘cheerful’.

This was obviously added to make a caricature of the seriousness of the condition of the detainees. What is there in EFCC for anyone to be cheerful about especially when someone is being illegally detained.

It is all part of EFCC’s deliberate and wicked manipulation of the media against the trio who were met at the EFCC clinic by the bishop while undergoing some medical attention to say that they were cheerful. Also, that some of EFCC’s facilities were reportedly said to be ‘clean and orderly’ does not give them the liberty to illegally detain Nigerians for as long as they wish.

Even if EFCC converts a five-star hotel to its facility, it can never be good enough to illegally keep citizens on account of their political leanings.

For the avoidance of doubt, we wish to reiterate for the umpteenth time that the EFCC is holding Chief Femi Fani-Kayode illegally based on the following events: 1)His re-arrest at the premises of the Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos on the 21st of October was done without a warrant 2)The arrest was done after the presiding judge on the day’s matter had advised that it would be unwise to re-arrest a man who had honoured their invitations, had been on bail from both EFCC and the courts, has never been declared wanted and had appeared in court of his own accord 3)He has been held for close to two weeks without even their usual questionable detention order which they used in holding him earlier for 67 days Rather than feed Nigerians with a new mundane ‘clean and orderly’ campaign at the expense of More serious issues bordering on illegal incarceration of citizens based on their opinions on national matters, Uwujaren and his paymasters should tell Nigerians why they have allowed themselves to toe the path of this administration’s vindictiveness, vengeance, vendetta and persecutions rather than diligent prosecutions according to our laws.
Until then, visits of people like Bishop Kukah would remain a constant reminder to them that power is transient and that light can never overcome darkness.’

Father Matthew Hassan Kukah during his unscheduled visit, yesterday to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission office in Abuja, where some top-ranking Peoples Democratic Party officials are being detained over graft-related issues said after the inspection tour, said “I discussed with some detained suspects like Femi Fani-Kayode, Musiliu Obanikoro and Reuben Abati; and I am quite pleased they are looking cheerful.

“I was also happy with the humility of the acting Chairman who took me round and the way he interacted with the detainees. This is what is important for our country so that nobody takes these kinds of things personal. I am happy I came.

“We are all staff of EFCC to the extent that we want a better country and we are doing what needs to be done. We’ll continue praying that God guides you, keeps you safe and ensure that we build a country that we all will be proud of. This country has suffered so much, but we hope and pray that we can bring the suffering and trauma to an end as we collectively fight corruption.”

The revered priest who expressed delight that the detainees appeared in high spirits despite the discomfort of temporary restriction also urged them not to be downcast and to see their current travail as divine.

EFCC Chairman, Ibrahim Magu, told Kukah that the work the commission was doing for Nigeria was not personal but geared towards changing the country for the better.

Magu also cleared the air on the detention of the PDP top shots, saying that it was not personal. “It is not personal. This is all about Nigeria and making it better. And I think there is a consensus around this,” he said

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