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Naira-fuel scarcity bites hard on 2023 politicking as Lagos APC suspends campaign

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By Moses Adeniyi

The consequences of the scarcity of Naira notes and that of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), popularly called petrol, has continued its blow on the political sector as political parties have begun to suspend their campaigns, awaiting normalcy.

On Tuesday, the Lagos State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) joined the train, announcing the suspension of its campaign towards the forth-coming elections.

The disclosure of the suspension was made known in a statement signed by the APC Spokesman in Lagos, Hon. Seye Oladejo.

According to the statement, the State Party Chairman, Hon. Cornelius Ojelabi, said the decision was reached as a result of the ugly state of the nation borne by the scarcity of fuel and pain occasioned by the Naira redesign.

He empathised with the general public, especially the downtrodden who are on the receiving end.

According to the statement, Ojelabi expressed the view that it will be insensitive to forge ahead with the various rallies with the situation of things.

“He emphasised that members of APC are not immuned against the development as he has been inundated with several complaints.

“He joined his voice with those of other well meaning Nigerians to call for the review of the Naira redesign policy to give it a human face and ameliorate the suffering of ordinary Nigerians.

“He equally appealed that petroleum products should be made available in order not to jeopardise the preparation  for the elections and reduce the negative economic impact.

“He enjoined all Lagosians to remain law abiding as all issues are resolved in due course,” the statement disclosed.

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Sanwo-Olu to unveil Eko Cares today

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Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu will today flag off the various interventions deployed to lessen the burden of Lagosians amid the economic hardship.

The interventions – in transportation, education, health and agriculture – are coming under the umbrella of EKO CARES.

The fuel subsidy removal sparked a rise in cost of living. Mr Sanwo-Olu announced a 50% cut in fares on all government transport platforms on February 8, 2024. After a review of the situation, the fare slash was reduced to 25%. For six weeks, the Ounje Eko Sunday market that signalled the reduction of food by 25% has been running. Civil servants from levels one to 14 were asked to work thrice a week. A N35,000 wage award was also given to all civil servants.

About 15,000 women from all the 20 local governments and 35 Local Council Development Areas got N50,000 each to support their businesses. Besides, Mr. Sanwo-Olu announced free delivery for expectant women in all government hospitals, among other initiatives.

To drive the initiatives, the Governor set up a non-partisan Special Dispensation Advisory Council of eminent Nigerians, including rights activists, religious leaders, a youth representative and opposition party chieftains. It is chaired by Mr. Governor; Deputy Governor Dr. Kadri Obafemi Hamzat is alternate Chairman.

Details of other interventions will be unveiled today at a ceremony, which will take place at the Governor’s Office in Alausa, Ikeja

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Nigeria’s future lies in your hands — Bauchi Gov tells corps members

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Rauf Oyewole, Bauchi

The Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed has said that greatness and future of Nigeria will be determined by the youths, particularly the members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).

The Governor said this at the Wailo Orientation Camp of NYSC during the swearing-in of the newly posted Batch A stream II 2024, on Tuesday.

Mohammed, who was represented by the Commissioner for Youth and Sports, Mohammed Salis Gamawa, said, “I implore you to take with utmost seriousness the nation’s clarion call to serve with greater dedication and commitment. The future of this country lies in your hands.”

Mohammed enjoined them to cherish his commendation and become a catalyst for change in the orientation camp and during the entire service year. He further urged them to take with utmost seriousness the noble call and dedicate themselves toward achieving the Scheme’s goal of national unity and development.

“The good people of Bauchi State appreciate and understand the objectives and philosophy of the NYSC. In view of this, we have resolved to join hands with you in every way possible to ensure the success of the Scheme in the State.”

Also, the Bauchi state Coordinator of the NYSC, Mrs Rifkatu Yakubu, warned all the corps members across the country that any act of indiscipline would not be tolerated. According to her, any corps member found indulging in any form of indiscipline would be decisively dealt with in accordance with NYSC by laws.

She said, “You must equally obey all camp officials as they are your guardians. Indiscipline is not tolerated here and I assure you that if you are law abiding you will have a very fruitful and enjoyable camping exercise.

“On our part, we pledge to do our utmost best to ensure that you experience the regimented nature of camp throughout the duration of the orientation course and the entire service year.”

Yakubu commended Governor Bala Mohammed for his approval of the renovation and repairs of damaged camp facilities and the release of funds to augment feeding of corps members for the orientation exercise.

She said that the corps members would be given the opportunity to serve in the various committees set up for the smooth running of the camp. This, she believed, would give them practical experience in administration and a chance to contribute to decisions that affect them.

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Information Minister urges religious leaders, traditional leaders to champion awareness on nutrition

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The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, has appealed to faith-based leaders and traditional rulers to lend their voices in advocating for policies prioritising nutrition and access to nutritious food for their communities and followers.

The Minister made the call in Abuja on Tuesday at a one-day high-level dialogue on nutrition with faith-based leaders and traditional rulers held in the State House.

Idris, who said access to nutrition food, is not just a matter of sustenance but a fundamental human right of all citizens, decried the situation where malnutrition is afflicting millions of Nigerians including children.

“It is agonising that millions of our fellow citizens continue to suffer from malnutrition, depriving them of the opportunity to live healthy and productive lives.

“Therefore, I appeal to each of you gathered here today to seize this moment as an opportunity to catalyze change within your communities. Let us join hands across religious and cultural divides and unite in our pursuit of a healthier and more prosperous nation.”

The Minister said the launch of the awareness campaign on nutrition with faith-based leaders and traditional rulers as the vanguard, would surely make an impact given their tremendous influence that extends far beyond the confines of their respective congregations and Emirates, kingdoms, and chiefdoms, especially in shaping the fabric of the society.

The event, which was held at the instance of Vice-President Kashim Shettima, brought together religious leaders, traditional rulers, representatives of multilateral institutions, development partners, and policymakers to brainstorm and strategize on the awareness campaign for nutrition.

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