The World Bank has supported the Cross Rivers State with relief materials to cushion the effects on the destruction of properties in the state during the infamous #EndSARS protests which rocked the state and country simultaneously.
The disclosure was made by the State Commissioner for International Development Cooperation (MIDC), Dr Inyang Asibong as reported by the News Agency of Nigeria.
The support became necessary given the material destruction recorded in some parts of the state. Dr. Asibong stated that the state government through his Ministry had approached the World Bank to seek support, especially in the delivery units of the World Bank Assisted Programme COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus (CARES).
According to Dr. Asibong, two parastatals were severely affected in the state during the protests, namely; FADAMA and Enterprise Development Funding (EDF), with most of the items in the aforementioned agencies looted and vandalized by hoodlums.
In lieu of this, the support from World Bank will be pivotal to re-engineering and preparing members of staff to return to work, in preparation of the Covid-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus (CARES).
What you should know
- Some of the items donated include furniture, 20-seater conference chairs, air conditioners and inverters, laptop computers and printers, virtual meeting equipment, hybrid inverter with solar among others.
- The platforms that will benefit from the equipment include; CSDA, the state coordinating unit, FADAMA, EDF, Smart City, Public Work Fare and the state Cash Transfer Unit.
What they are saying: Dr. Asibong said: “We know that the poverty index in Nigeria is 40.1 per cent and this is really high. Cross River is lower than the national average, 36.3 per cent, we want to further reduce that our percentage to at least a single digit.
“I want to thank the World Bank for coming to our aid at this point in time and we can assure them we will make the best use of these equipment.”
Commenting on the CARES initiative which the relief material is believed to facilitate, Dr. Asibong said, “The CARES is COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus of the government. It is going to be a state-owned project and Gov. Ben Ayade is so committed about improving the lives of residents in the state.”
On the other hand, the Acting General Manager of Community and Social Development Agency (CSDA), Mr Fidel Udie remarked that the donation confirmed the good working relationship between the state government and the World Bank.
Mr Udie stated that the donation would put the state in a good position to participate in the CARES programme. He said: ‘’This programme is basically meant to target the poor and vulnerable in the society. Gov. Ayade was able to follow up with the World Bank and here we have these equipment to help the delivery units to be ready for this programme.’’
Nigeria is committed to security, fulfilling demands of #EndSARS youths in 2021 – Buhari
FG is committed to fulfilling the five demands of #EndSARS youths.
President Muhammadu Buhari has announced that his administration is committed to fulfilling the five demands of #EndSARS youths.
The President disclosed this in his New Year speech on Friday morning.
“Nigeria is a country on a difficult journey to nationhood and greatness. We are standing tall in the committee of nations as one country united under the will of God,” he said.
He added that the past year had posed challenges, from security to economic issues, citing the #EndSARS protests which he said, “were mainly led by youths and served notice to the demand of police reforms and accountability.”
Buhari added that the FG was committed to fulfilling the demands of the protesters with renewed determination in 2021.
“This government heard, listened and committed to fulfilling the 5 demands of our youths fully understanding that we all wish well for Nigeria.
“In the midst of all these challenges, I initially pledged, that as your elected President, I would ensure that these ongoing challenges would be faced head on with renewed determination.
“Your voices have been heard, and we would continue to listen to you and all stakeholders who are committed to the unity of Nigeria to ensure that every region is safe for us all, while guaranteeing the future is also secure for the coming generations.”
Buhari said that Nigeria needed to secure the future of its youths, exhorting young Nigerians as global achievers.
“I wish to also reaffirm my commitment to the people of Nigeria, especially the youth, who need our collective encouragement, and support, in securing this nation, we need to secure the future of our youth.
“Our young people, are the most valuable natural resource; their ingenuity, creativity, innovation and entrepreneurial spirit is evident to all.
“Many of our young people are excelling in various areas of life including sport, entertainment and ICT, commerce and are globally recognized as achievers.”
Buhari said that the FG’s engagement with young Nigerians would turn their passion into ideas, from tech to entertainment.
“As government, we are committed to actively engaging with the creative energies of our young people. We will partner with legislature to develop an enabling environment to turn their passion into ideas that can be supported, groomed, and scaled across regions.
“This will create vast opportunities in fintech, agriculture, business process, startups and the entertainment industry,” he added.
Buhari said his administration would focus on delivering key strategic priorities under the areas of security, economy, and the anti-corruption agenda.
The President said, “We would direct our attention and strength to reenergizing, reorganizing the security personnel of the armed forces and polices…to enhance capacity to engage, pushback and dismantle the operations of extremists and criminal groups.”
Buhari said insecurity was a challenge, with direct repercussions on nation economic sustainability, growth and development. He revealed that in parts of Nigeria where chronic poverty, social exclusion were already problems, Boko Haram had thwarted efforts of the FG to undertake social policy that could make a huge difference in the quality of life of citizens.
“We recognize that we have to move to a more proactive stance, to ensure that this sort of traumatic incident, does not become a norm.
“The administration is fully aware of the responsibility to protect the lives and properties of all Nigerians, and we will not relent in learning and adapting to threats to national security.”
President Buhari stated that the nation had recorded gains and would be looking at reviewing laws to ensure a smooth prosecution process.
“On anti-corruption, we have recorded gains so far, and are committed to continuing on eradicating corruption through collaboration with all the arms of government to effectively prosecute this fight. We will also be looking at reviewing laws to ensure the fight to be more effective.”
On Covid-19 Vaccines
The President said that the FG was finalizing plans to procure and distribute vaccines effectively, but urged Nigerians to maintain social distance protocols.
“I urge you all to observe strict Covid-19 prevention protocols. My pledge to you is same as it has always been. I will play my part without fear; I invite all of us to do same. It is what we owe to the founding generations and also to the coming generation.”
#EndSARS: Kwara Govt awards N181 million grant to business owners whose assets were looted
Governor Abdulrazaq has bailed out business owners whose businesses were destroyed during the #EndSARS protest.
The Governor of Kwara State, Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, has awarded a total grant of N180,775,000 to business owners whose wares and assets were looted by hoodlums during the #EndSARS protest.
This was revealed by the Governor in a press statement issued after the presentation of the grant to the affected business owners yesterday.
Governor Abdulrahman explained that the total N180,775,000 grant awarded to the business owners was based on the recommendations of the independent adjuster/committee that was set up to assess the damage and propose interventions.
The Governor said:
- “We do not have the capacity to give them everything they have lost but the grants given are our token of support to encourage them not to give up.”
He explained that the Government cannot do everything, but emphasized the fact that Business owners are key in the current administration’s goal of evolving Kwara from a civil service state to an enterprising one.
In this vein, he disclosed that the current administration in Kwara State is always willing to help businesses of all sizes to thrive and will continue to support petty traders with micro-loans (Yoruba: Owo Isowo), as well as SMEs to make sure they continue to grow and create more jobs.
Why this matters
The grant, however, will enable affected business owners to come out of the disruption caused to their businesses by the disheartening attacks, vandalism and looting by hoodlums during the #EndSARS protest which spiked civil unrest across the country.
The fund will help to prevent the closure of key businesses in the state, and get them back on their feet towards the path of growth and sustainable expansion.
Today, we issued cheques to 48 business owners whose wares and assets were looted by hoodlums during the EndSARS protest. The total grants awarded to these businesses stood at N180,775,000 and… pic.twitter.com/Xm8FSeXG0T
— Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq (@RealAARahman) December 17, 2020
Police reform bill passes second reading at House of Reps
The bill that seeks to reform the Police Service Commission (PSC) passed a second reading.
The bill that seeks to reform the Police Service Commission (PSC) has passed the second reading on Tuesday at the House of Representatives.
This was disclosed by the Speaker of the House, Femi Gbajabiamila, on Tuesday via his official Twitter handle.
According to him, the draft legislation, which was titled “A Bill for an Act to Repeal the Police Service Commission Act and Enact the Police Service Commission Bill, 2020 is to strengthen the Commission to be more Functional in its Operations and for Related Matters.”
Jointly sponsored by Rep. Yusuf Gagdi and Rep. Henry Nwawuba, the PSS Bill is part of the resolve of the 9th House, as contained in its Updated Legislative Agenda, to reform the Nigeria Police Force.
The Speaker tweeted:
- “Leading the debate on the Bill, Rep @yusufgagdi said the Bill seeks a reform of the Nigeria Police to ensure that the Police Service Commission is well placed to appoint and promote officers, ensure policy formulation for the guidance of officers, employ and train qualified individuals into the police force, sanction erring officers, among others.
He called for the support of Members to ensure the total overhaul of the public image of the Nigerian Police.
- “Contributing, Rep. Jimi Benson said the Bill adds value to the workings of the Nigerian Police and commended the Speaker, Rep. @femigbaja, for his commitment to seeing a better Nigeria Police that will meet international best standards via solid legislation.”
On his part, Rep. Abdulrazak Namdas praised the spirit of the Bill for clarifying the legal tussle between the Police Service Commission and the office of the Inspector General of Police on the issue of recruitment of personnel.
What you should know
It would be recalled that as part of its Public Dialogue Series, the House had in November engaged some stakeholders including the Nigeria Bar Association, PSC, the NPF, the National Human Rights Commission, civil society organizations, among others on the PSC Bill before its introduction on the floor of the House.