Some unknown gunmen have killed the village head of Rumache in Kukoki ward of Shiroro local government area of Niger state, Mallam Ahmad Yakubu Rumache and abducted 17 villagers in four other communities in the local government area.
Newsmen have it that the gunmen invaded the village at about 2 am on Friday.
The bandits also dispossessed the villagers of their valuable belongings before setting their houses ablaze. They also reportedly abducted the son of the murdered village head.
The attack came some hours after similar acts by armed bandits on Magami, Gungu, Zongoro and Masuku Villages in Shiroro local government area where 17 people were abducted.
It was gathered that several villagers sustained various degrees of injuries from gunshots and other dangerous weapons used during the attacks.
The Chairman of Shiroro local government area, Mallam Suleiman Dauda Chukuba, confirmed the attacks.
He said; “The attack happened at midnight around 1 to 2 pm. They were many and they took the villagers unaware. No one could ascertain their numbers because it was night.
“As for casualties, only the village head of Rumache was killed while his son was kidnapped. However, a day before, the bandits invaded four communities and kidnapped 17 people in Magami, Gungu, Zongoro and Masuku Villages communities,” he stressed.
He stated that the Police from Erena Division and some vigilantes are currently scouring the bushes and the villages.
The Chairman then appealed for urgent government intervention stressing that Shiroro local government area needs nothing other than prayers and government intervention.
“I need government intervention because of the way this is going, we need government intervention.”
One of the children of the deceased village head, Al-Mustapha Ahmed, also confirmed the death of his father, expressing shock over the attack.
He lamented that the government has deliberately remained complacent on the lingering security challenges rocking the whole Shiroro local government.
According to Ahmed: “Attacks of this nature have almost become a daily routine, thereby constantly subjecting unarmed and peace-loving people to ceaseless tension, fear, anxiety, and panic.
“It is no longer news that inhabitants of these affected parts of the local government have since been robbed of security, forcing us to scamper helter-shelter for security and safety somewhere else. People have been displaced and ironically made circumstantial but avoidable refugees in their own ancestral land.”
FIRS waives penalties, interests on outstanding tax liabilities
Relief has come the way of taxpayers and businesses as the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has granted them full waiver on accumulated penalties and interests for outstanding tax liabilities.
Chairman of the revenue service, Zacch Adedeji, made the decision known in a notice personally signed by him and made available to newsmen through his Special Adviser on Media, Dare Adekanmbi.
The agency imposes penalties and interests for failure by companies to fulfil their tax obligation as and when due as stipulated in extant tax laws.
Adedeji said the forgiveness on piled up penalties and interests was “in recognition of the challenges that many taxpayers have faced in settling their outstanding tax liabilities.”
According to him, the concession also syncs with the commitment of President Bola Tinubu to support businesses to flourish.
He explained that full payment of outstanding original tax liabilities without interest on or before the 31st of December this year must be done by companies wishing to benefit from the peculiar concession.
“Taxpayers are advised that the waiver of interest is subject to the full settlement of outstanding principal on or before the 31 December, 2023.
“Please note that the full penalty and interest shall be reinstated after the expiration of this one-off concession window where the outstanding undisputed liability remains fully or partially unpaid.
“FIRS appreciates all taxpayers who have been diligent in complying with their tax obligations as and when due, while seeking their continued support and cooperation for a more responsive and robust tax system,” Adedeji said.
FG to deploy 100 electric buses
President Bola Tinubu has said Nigeria is taking a significant step towards a sustainable and eco-friendly future by introducing a pioneering initiative to deploy a fleet of 100 electric buses.
The President spoke at a high-level meeting with stakeholders and investors on the Nigeria Carbon Market and Electric Buses Rollout Programme on Saturday in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on the margins of the COP28 climate summit.
President Tinubu explained that the strategic initiative is aimed at significantly reducing Nigeria’s carbon footprint and modernizing the country’s transportation systems as part of a larger effort to position Nigeria and Africa as the pioneering frontier of green manufacturing and industrialization with a focus on natural gas as a transition fuel alongside other renewable energy sources.
To spearhead this transformative plan, the President announced the appointment of the Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mr. Zacch Adedeji, and the Director-General of the National Council on Climate Change (NCCC), Mr. Dahiru Salisu, to co-chair the Nigeria Carbon Market Activation Plan.
”This initiative stands as a testament to our dedication to environmental stewardship as clearly exemplified through our collaboration with the Africa Carbon Market Initiative. Our visionary plan is a strategic guidepost, directing Nigeria towards becoming an investment-friendly destination for carbon market investments.
”We recognize the imperative of fostering an environment that not only attracts investment but also upholds standardized and sustainable industrial practices. As a manifestation of our forward-thinking approach, we are actively looking to implement robust, enabling policies and frameworks that will serve as the catalyst for the burgeoning growth of the carbon market within our national borders.
”In further driving my commitment, I have recently approved an Inter-governmental Committee on Carbon Markets to be chaired by the Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service and the Director-General of the National Council on Climate Change to drive this visionary plan,” the President stated.
The President assured prospective investors that this initiative transcends being a mere pilot project.
”It is a concrete manifestation of our unwavering dedication to a carbon-neutral future. I assure you; this is only the commencement of our ambitious plans, with many more impactful initiatives on the horizon,” he said.
President Tinubu, while acknowledging the pressing need for a comprehensive global collaboration on climate-related challenges, called on global partners to join hands in accelerating collective efforts towards a net-zero future.
”As we unveil our initiatives, I challenge other nations to emulate our strides in mapping out their sustainable futures with a clear understanding that Africa is a beacon of innovative solutions to climate-related challenges.
”In this pursuit, we acknowledge the pressing need for comprehensive global collaboration, and we reiterate our commitment to being an active participant in international efforts.
”Nigeria’s plans for a greener and cleaner economy can serve as an inspirational narrative for nations worldwide. Our comprehensive approach, rooted in visionary leadership and pragmatic action supported by our technical partners, is poised to become a blueprint for countries aspiring to also develop and catalyze their markets for sustainable growth,” the President concluded.
In his remarks, FIRS Chairman, Mr. Zacch Adedeji acknowledged the visionary leadership of President Tinubu as the guiding force behind Nigeria’s commitment to harnessing its vast carbon potential.
At COP28, Sanwo-Olu seeks funding to address supply of clean water in Lagos
Governor of Lagos Babajide Sanwo-Olu has sought global support for funding in Lagos state to be able to provide clean water.
The Governor speaking at a side meeting with the theme: “Valuing Water: A Lifeline in Climate Transition”, organised by Business and Philanthropy Climate Forum and Sustainable Market Initiative at the ongoing 28th session of Conference of Parties (COP28) at Dubai Exhibition Centre pitched a sustainable funding proposal in order to raise private and philanthropic funding in addressing inadequate water infrastructure and supply shortages in Lagos.
Sanwo-Olu disclosed that Lagos, with 22 million population, has a daily demand of 700 million gallons of portable water, but said the State could hardly supply 210 million gallons per day due to shortage of infrastructure.
The Governor said, although provision of clean water had been generally considered a social service, it was an essential element of economic necessity, given its importance to keeping humans healthy.
Lagos, he said, is challenged by increasing demand for clean water. Sanwo-Olu said the inadequacy of supply infrastructure could raise disease vulnerability in underserved communities, pointing out that the State, despite being surrounded by abundant water bodies, could only manage to utilise 40 per cent of its installed water facilities.
He said: “Lagos has an investment of about $2.8 billion in water infrastructure, but there is a burden on the huge population, as we need to create an ecosystem where we can have access to basic needs in the 21st century. Given our meagre resources, it is really a challenge but we certainly cannot continue to give excuses. This gap is being felt by underserved communities and the risk to the public is high.”
“We have continued to allocate resources to this sector from our budget, but the intervention is hardly enough to serve the needs of the residents. Four years ago, I gave a commitment of $100 million, but this is like a drop, given the number of investments required to fully explore the potential in the sector. We have huge infrastructure that is not being utilised, making us to operate at less than 40 per cent of the installed capacity.”
“Out of the $1.7 trillion needed globally to address the gap in clean water adequacy, Lagos requires less one per cent of the funds to provide safe water. It is my belief that this conversation would lead to sustainable solution that would meet the needs of millions of people that want water adequacy. Our goal is making committed partners believe in economic viability of their investments.”
Sanwo-Olu listed the country’s energy crisis as another factor slowing down the provision of clean water, stressing that irregular power supply rendered resources allocated to the sector inefficient.
The Governor called for equity in global investment towards accelerating water adequacy, noting that humans, regardless of their gender and geographical location, need equal access to clean water.
With 65 per cent of its population made up of young people of under 30, Sanwo-Olu told the funders that Lagos remained an African asset on which viable investments could be made.
The side meeting, which was moderated by the Secretary General of Insurance Development Forum, Ms. Ekhosuehi Iyahen, had seven other panelists, including Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of WaterAid, Tim Wainright, Chief Sustainability Officer of PepsiCo, and CEO of Dalmia Cement in India, Mahendra Singh.
Others are Chief Operating Officer of Water.org, Vedika Bhandarkar, Managing Partner of AquaForAll, Josien Sluijs, Assistant Director General of Food and Agriculture Organisation at UN, Maximo Torero, and former CEO of Mars, Incorporated, Grant Reid.
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