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Borno Govt evolves 25-year development plan



Borno Govt evolves 25-year development plan

…Rehabilitates 2,000 ex Boko Haram combatants***

In a move that shows uncanny vision and hope beyond the immediate, the Borno Government has developed a 25-year development plan to rebuild the state as it recovered from the insurgency. The Government has also rehabilitated 2,000 ex-Boko Haram combatants.

Dr Mairo Mandara, the Special Adviser to the governor and Coordinator for Sustainable Development, Partnership and Humanitarian Affairs, made this known while briefing newsmen on Wednesday in Maiduguri.

Mandara said that in coming up with the plan, all stakeholders, including religious and traditional rulers, were involved.

She said that in translating the plan into action, Gov. Babagana Zulum has directed for a 10-year implementation plan.

“I can tell you that Borno is the only state in Nigeria that has a 25-year development plan and a 10-year implementation plan.

“We are looking at how to rebuild Borno within the SDGs and the African Union 2030 plan among others,” Mandara said.

She said that the people were focused on eight pillars, including human capital development, social reorientation, agriculture and maintaining a healthy citizenry.

She further said the state had already started moves to coordinate the international and local NGOs working numbering hundreds to ensure that they operate in collaboration with government and in its best interest.

“We have offered NGOs our children to take as interns but some of them are not employable.

”So, we are setting up a system to train our children so that they can be employable in that respect,” the coordinator said.

She explained that analysis had been done on the potential of each local government in the state and establishment of data banks that would help officials in making informed decisions on planning.

“We have also done an assessment of our potential as investment hub (bordering three countries) and were about to do the Borno investment submit, if not for the COVID-19.

”But we have already sensitised international investors and local businessmen.

“The governor also had a round table with people in Abuja and has started a project called ‘back to Borno.

”We are asking the people to set up businesses in the state. We want all indigenes of Borno to at least do something,” Mandara said.

She added that the state had restrategised on how it would attend to displaced persons by not only giving them food but also some little capital to start a new life.

Also read:  ICPC begins phase 2 of project tracking in 16 states

She said that NGOs were also assisting with trainings and starter packs.

According to her, Borno is not a failed state, “so, we must never be treated like Somalia or Afghanistan because we are not”.

In the meantime, the Borno Government has also rehabilitated 2,000 ex-Boko Haram combatants.

The State Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Hajiya Zuwaira Gambo, made this known on Wednesday in Maiduguri while briefing newsmen on achievements of the ministry for the past one year.

Gambo said that many of the ex-combatants, who were trained on various skills, were discovered to be innocent civilians picked up during mass arrests by security agencies.

“The waging of war against insurgents has been on the front burner of this administration.

“Therefore de-radicalisation, rehabilitation and reunification of former insurgents have received great attention through the provision of adequate food, shelter and psychosocial support to former members of the dreaded sect at the Bulumkutu rehabilitation centre.

“During the year under review, a total of 2,000 ex-combatants have been rehabilitated and reunited with their families to practice skills learnt over the years and live life as responsible citizens,” Gambo said.

The commissioner also said that her ministry had conducted 16 days advocacy against gender-based violence, adding that a 24 capacity rape survivors shelter was also provided where survivors were provided shelter and psychosocial support, among others.

“The state government through the wife of the governor and the ministry, provided sewing machines, generators, cap making production materials to 300 internally displaced gender-based violence survivors from 10 different camps to support them practice the skills acquired and become economically independent.

“We also secured the conviction of three rapists within the period under review,” Gambo said.

On the welfare of orphans, Gambo said that apart from the construction of two additional hostels, 200 orphans who lost their parents to the insurgency were taken to school in Kano with the support of Kano Government.

“The plight of the vulnerable in society is the greatest concern of government under the able leadership of the Prof. Babagana Zulum, “hence he quickly identified, renovated, remodeled and furnished the family support nursery and primary school which provides education to children who lost their parents due to insurgency, children of people living with disabilities and those from IDP camps and children of indigent parents,” the commissioner said.



Health and Safety

Over 73m People In Philippines Suffer From Tooth Decay



 At least 73 million Filipinos suffer from dental caries, making the disease a “serious health concern” in the Southeast Asian country, the Philippines’ Department of Health (DOH) said on Wednesday.

“Dental caries is a silent epidemic,” Manuel Vallesteros, a division chief at the DOH’s disease prevention and control bureau, said this after a committee hearing at the House of Representatives.

Vallesteros said the DOH data is based on the 2018 national health survey, noting that the number now is much higher compared to when the COVID-19 pandemic had restricted access to dental services for more than two years.

Merely for illustration…

He noted that eight of 10 Filipino children suffer from “childhood caries” or “decaying baby teeth” because they are fed with sweetened infant formula.

“The oral health status of Filipino children is alarming,” the DOH said, adding the oral disease “continues to be a serious public health problem” in the Philippines.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), dental caries is a major global public health problem and the most widespread non-communicable disease. 

– Xinhua

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Health and Safety

5 Ugborodo Communities Picket Chevron Yard In Escravos



#EndSARS Protest: Hoodlums break into Benin custodial centre

Hundreds of residents of the Ugborodo Community in the Warri South-West Local Government area of Delta on Wednesday besieged the Chevron Yard in Escravos, protesting against the alleged insensitivity of the oil company to their plights.

The protesters were drawn from Ode-Ugborodo, Ogidigben, Ajudaibo, Madangho, and Ijaghala Communities under Ugborodo Federated Communities.

The aggrieved protesters, both young and old, were led by the Eghare-Aja of Ugborodo, Mr. Daniel Uwawah.

They were armed with placards of various inscriptions such as: “We want our PIA as host communities Ugborodo”; “Enough of Chevron Divide and Rule Policies”.

“All local content contracts must be brought to the community through the appointed organ”; “Ugborodo Community demands frequent and regular engagement with Chevron”, among others.

In his remarks, Mr. Terry Atete, the Igbajoh of Ugborodo Community, who spoke on behalf of the Eghare-Aja, said that the federated communities had written several letters to the oil company for dialogue in line with the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), 2021.

The Act is one of the most audacious attempts to overhaul the petroleum sector in Nigeria.

It seeks to provide legal, governance, regulatory and fiscal framework for the Nigerian Petroleum Industry.

If implemented diligently, the PIA will help facilitate Nigeria’s economic development by attracting and creating investment opportunities for local and international investors.

Atete said that since the inception of Eghare-Aja, the Ugborodo Community had also written to Chevron on the Act, concerning the award of contracts and employment.

According to him, the company had deliberately refused to address their grievances.

“We are faulting the PIA process. We are saying that Chevron should come directly and dialogue with our community in line with the PIA Act.

“We are not going to accept it until they come and dialogue with us.

“We will not relent until Chevron comes and dialogue with the host communities, which made up Ugborodo,” he said.

Also, Mrs Oritsematosan Nuko, a Woman Leader in Ugborodo Community, appealed to Chevron and the Federal Government to come to the rescue of the community and shore up the area.

Nuko said that indigenes of the community were almost being chased away by tidal flood.

She, however, urged Chevron to heed to the call and address the demands of the community.

Nuko said the oil company should come forward for a dialogue toward addressing the lingering challenges confronting the federated community, including unemployment and the award of contracts.

Commenting, a Chevron member of staff, who pleaded anonymity, said that all the issues raised by the aggrieved protesters were already being addressed at the company’s headquarters in Lagos.

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Health and Safety

Resident Doctors To Commence 5-day Warning Strike On Wednesday



… As FG fails to negotiate

Those planning to visit the hospital this week may as well think twice as the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), says it will commence a five-day warning strike on Wednesday.

The President of the association, Dr. Innocent Orji, disclosed this on Monday while speaking with newsmen on the outcome of its National Executive Council (NEC) meeting.

According to him, the warning strike will begin by 8 am on Wednesday.

The association had on April 29 issued a two-week notice to the Federal Government to increase the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CONMESS) or risk industrial action.

It said at the time that the increment should be to the tune of 200 percent of the current gross salary of doctors and also be in addition to the new allowances included in the letter written to the Minister of Health in 2022 for the review of CONMESS.

According to the association, it observed that in spite of several engagements with the Federal Government on the need to upwardly review CONMESS, which was last reviewed over 10 years ago, there are no changes.

“The Federal Government has neither called NARD to the negotiation table nor taken any tangible step in addressing the issue.

“This is against the background of the dwindling economic situation in the country, the serial abysmal decline in the value of the Naira, the imminent removal of fuel subsidy, and the consequent damaging effect on the cost of living in the country.

“There have been previous ultimatums issued to the government by NARD on account of this problem of the review of the CONMESS salary structure.”

It added that the previous Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) on CONMESS stated clearly that the salary structure would be due for review after five years, but this has not been done since the implementation in 2014, though the approval was given in 2009.

Orji, however, said that since the issuance of the two-week notice the association had not been called upon by the Federal Government to initiate negotiations.

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