1. President Buhari To Travel To Ethiopia For AU Summit
President Muhammadu Buhari will on Thursday leave Abuja for the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, to attend an African Union meeting.
A statement on Wednesday by his spokesman, Femi Adesina, said the President will participate in the 35th Ordinary Session of Assembly of the African Union Heads of State and Government.
He disclosed that the theme of the meeting is “Building Resilience in Nutrition and Food Security on the African Continent: Strengthen Agriculture, Accelerate the Human Capital, Social and Economic Development.”
Adesina said President Buhari will join other African leaders in finding solutions to political, economic and social challenges facing the continent.
He revealed that on the sideline of the AU meeting, Buhari will hold bilateral meetings with some leaders with a shared interest in improving trade relations, partnering to tackle security challenges, and maintaining relations with multilateral institutions for sustainable development.
2. Expect End To Insurgency Soon, Buhari Tells North East Residents
President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday assured residents of the North East that the defeat of Boko Haram insurgents would soon be achieved.
The Nigerian leader reaffirmed his conviction that the North East region will enjoy peace and stability, saying that the military is doing its possible best to win the war against insurgency.
Buhari assured the residents of the region that the nefarious activities of Boko Haram and the Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP) will definitely be curtailed – making it the fourth time the President has promised to end the war against insurgency.
The President vowed that the region will witness a shift away from a protracted insurgency to peacebuilding, stabilization, and ultimately development in the coming months.
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3. Senate Confirms Buhari’s Nominees As INEC National Commissioners, REC
The Senate on Wednesday confirmed the nomination of six persons as National Commissioners for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Also confirmed is the nomination of one person as a Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) for the electoral umpire.
It was reported the confirmation follows the nomination of the persons by President Muhammadu Buhari who forwarded their names to the National Assembly for confirmation in a letter dated December 10, 2021.
The confirmed nominees are Mal. Mohammed Haruna, National Commissioner (Niger – North Central); Mrs. May Agbamuche-Mbu (Delta – South-South); Ukeagu Kenneth Nnamdi (Abia – South East), and Major General A. B. Alkali (rtd) – Adamawa, (North East).
Others are Engr. (Prof.) Rhoda H. Gumus (Bayelsa – South-South), and Mr. Sam Olumekan (Ondo – South West).
Olaniyi Olaleye Ijalaye (Ondo – South West), was confirmed as a Resident Electoral Commissioner.
4. Abdulsalami Reveals Ways To Defeat ISWAP, Boko Haram
Former Head of State, Abdulsalami Abubakar has disclosed ways to defeat terrorists and end the war against insurgency in the North.
Abubakar said one of the ways to defeat the insurgents is through the collaboration between Nigerians living in the North and the security operatives fighting the criminals.
The elder statesman urged Nigerians to join hands in making sure that the military gets enough information needed to flush out the insurgents out of the country.
He noted that the security forces are overstretched, calling on the Federal Government to employ youths into the Nigerian military.
Abubakar made this known on Wednesday in Niger State during the 38th Founders Day and 30th convocation ceremony of the Federal University of Technology Minna.
5. Court Fines Malami ₦200,000 For Delaying Trial Of Nnamdi Kanu’s Co-defendants
The Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, was on Wednesday fined ₦200,000 by Justice Binta Nyako for delaying the trail of four co-defendants of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu on treasonable felony charges.
Justice Nyako in her ruling ordered that each of the defendants be paid ₦50,000 by Malami for the inconveniences they have experienced due to the absence of the lead counsel to the Federal Government, Mr Shuaib Magaji Labaran.
The judge who was not pleased with the development noted that the defendants must be paid before the adjourned date of March 17.
The Federal Government was not represented at Wednesday’s proceeding.
As justice Nyako was about adjourning the case, one Mrs Adewumi Aluko from the Federal Ministry of Justice came in and apologized that the Federal Government’s lead counsel was out of the country.
6. Tinubu: Ambode Can Dislodge His Godfather Like Obaseki – PDP Chieftain
A Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain and a top lawyer, Pelumi Olajengbesi, has urged former governor of Lagos State, Akinwunmi Ambode, to take a bold step and go against his godfather in Lagos State.
The PDP House of Representatives aspirant from Oriade/Obokun Federal Constituency in Osun State in 2019 made the call in a statement to newsmen on Wednesday titled, ‘Ambode should learn from Obaseki, godfathers can be unseated’.
Olajengbesi asked Ambode to learn from Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State who fought and defeated ‘godfatherism’.
Olajengbesi recalled that Oshiomhole had vowed that Obaseki won’t return as governor after a term of four years but “Obaseki’s indomitable spirit did not quit after the APC governorship ticket of Edo State was handed over to Osagie Ize-Iyamu, who was Oshiomhole’s anointed candidate.
7. Senate Issues New Directives To Buhari On Insecurity
The Senate has directed the Federal Government to flush out terrorists from their hideouts in the Northern part of the country.
The Upper Legislative Chamber also urged President Muhammadu Buhari to deploy fighter jets to the North West to curtail the activities of bandits in the region.
It was reported that these were some of the resolutions reached during Wednesday’s plenary following a point of order raised by Senator Bello Mandiya (APC Katsina South).
The lawmaker stated that the Federal Government had made a frantic effort in curbing the menace by setting up Operation Sharan Daji and an Inter-Agency Task Force to tackle cases of banditry, cattle rustling, and kidnapping in Katsina state.
Contributing, Senator Kabir Abdullahi Barkiya (Katsina Central), faulted the inability of the military to contain the situation despite several calls for it to act.
In his remarks, Senate President Ahmad Lawan said the repeated cases of kidnappings and killings make it imperative for the military to “wake up” to protect Nigerians.
8. I’ll Deal With Yahoo Boys, Other Criminals – Dapo Abiodun
The Governor of Ogun State, Dapo Abiodun has vowed to deal with internet fraudsters, popularly known as ‘Yahoo Boys’ and other criminals.
Governor Abiodun stated this on Wednesday while noting that the criminals threatened to come after him following his decision to wage war against them.
The Ogun State Governor on January 21, while relaunching the OP-MESA, noted that he will declare war on Yahoo boys as well as kidnappers.
According to Abiodun, on Wednesday, the criminals in the state are feeling the heat of the newly relaunched security outfit.
Abiodun who spoke in a meeting with the Governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde said criminals have decided to go after him because he had made life unbearable for them.
9. Nigeria Facing Huge Economic Challenges – Osinbajo, Lawan Admit
The federal government of Nigeria has admitted that all is not well with the nation’s economic situation and efforts must be re-engineered to correct the situation.
Speaking differently at the same occasion, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and Senate President Ahmad Lawan submitted that despite government efforts and commitment, the economy is facing difficult challenges.
It was reported the two top officials spoke through their representatives at the 40th Anniversary of the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CITN), in Abuja on Tuesday.
In the words of Lawan who was represented by his special adviser on Economic Matters, Prof Nazif Abdullahi Darma, Nigeria’s economy is not growing at the same rate as its population.
He also observed that the amount been spent on debt servicing is on the increase, rising from $2.5 trillion in 2019 to $4.2 trillion in 2021.
On his part, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo pointed out that Nigeria’s tax to GDP ratio is one of the lowest in the world while its comparators are in the neighborhood of about 15 percent to 25 percent.
He lamented the over-reliance of the country’s economy on oil which he said is causing economic imbalance.
10. ‘It’s Retrogressive’ – Shehu Sani Condemns Plan To Scrap NSCDC
A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Shehu Sani, has condemned the proposed plan to scrap the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC).
It was earlier reported that a bill seeking to scrap the security agency passed the first reading in the House of Representatives on Tuesday.
The bill, sponsored by Hon Shina Peller (APC-Oyo State), was read on the floor of the lower legislative chamber during Tuesday’s plenary.
If passed by the National Assembly, the bill will repeal the National Security and Civil Defence Corps (Amendment) Act 2007.
Reacting to the development on Wednesday, the former Kaduna Central Senator described the proposed scrapping of NSCDC as unnecessary and retrogressive.
In a tweet via his verified Twitter handle, Sani said the proposed legislation should be discarded, stressing that the security agency has been playing a distinctive and complementary role in the country’s security system.