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Senate confirms Adeleke, South West nominee as NCC Executive Commissioner

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Senate probes N2.5bn NDDC Water Hyacinth Project

…As Ezenwa cries foul, over non-representation of Southeast***

The Senate on Wednesday confirmed the nomination of Mr Adeleke Adewolu the nominee from South West, as Executive Commissioner of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

The confirmation followed a satisfactory report of Senate Committee on Communications.

Presenting the report at plenary, Chairman of the Committee, Sen. Oluremi Tinubu (APC-Lagos) explained that the nominee’s antecedents and competency had been scrutinised and found worthy to serve as NCC executive commissioner.

She said the nominee would replace the former NCC commissioner representing South West Mr Sunday Dare, on the NCC board, if confirmed by the Senate.

“That the Senate do consider the request of Mr President on the confirmation of appointment of Adeleke Adewolu as Executive Commissioner of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) in accordance with section 8 (1) of the Nigerian Communications unit, 2003,’’she said.

Also read:  Senate to invite Finance Minister, FIRS Chairman

Tinubu said the erstwhile commissioner, Dare had been inaugurated as Minister of Sports by President Muhammadu Buhari, hence, the vacuum he left would be filled by the incoming commissioner on the governing board of the NCC.

However, Sen. Uche Ekwunife (PDP-Anambra), raised a concern noting that the South-East did not have a commissioner nominee on the NCC board, adding that it was against the Federal Character principle.

“Mr President, distinguished colleagues, Section (8)1 stated that all the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria should have members serving on the board.
“As I speak sir, South West – 2, North West – 2, South-South – 1, North East – 1, North Central – 2, South West 2.
“South East is completely out and I hereby seek the leave of my colleagues for you to intervene in this matter. This is an opportunity to correct this anomaly.”

Senators Rochas Okorocha (Imo-APC) and Francis Onyewuchi Ezenwa (Imo-PDP) called on the Senate to ensure equitable representation in government boards based on Federal Character Principle.

Ezenwa on his part insisted that the South West nominee be stepped down.

He, however, was overruled by the President of the Senate Ahmad Lawan.
Lawan urged the committee to investigate the matter on the alleged non inclusion of South East and report to plenary on Oct. 15.

He said the Senate would ensure upholding the laws of the nation at all times.

He, however, said the NCC had not done well in the discharge of its responsibility to the nation.
”There are still un-registered sim cards in circulation, the development has contributed to the insecurity in the country,” he said.

He also said the NCC had not done so well in its regulatory responsibilities on operators, noting that Nigerians had not fared better in the services rendered.

Earlier, the senate also received the ad hoc Committee Report on Pipeline explosions.
It also considered the first reading for seven bills.
The bills are -Federal Polytechnic Daura Amendment Act Bill 2019, sponsored by Sen. Ahmad Kaita (APC-Katsina), Modibo Adama University of Technology Establishment Bill 2019, sponsored by Sen. Aisha Ahmed(APC-Adamawa).

Others are National Rice Development Council Bill 2019, sponsored by Sen. Bima Enagi (APC-Niger), National Health Insurance Scheme Bill 2019, sponsored by Sen Oloriegbe Ibrahim(APC-Kwara) and Sexual Harassment Bill, 2019 sponsored by Sen. Ovie Omo-Agege.(APC-Delta).

The rest are- National Institute for Business Studies Nnewi Establishment Bill 2019, sponsored by Sen. Ifeanyi Ubah(YPP-Anambra) and Federal College of Education,Monguno, Borno Establishment Bill 2019, sponsored by Sen Kyari Shaib (APC-Borno).

 

 

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Onslaught: Troops Eliminate 105 Terrorists, Arrest 140 Others In 1 Week – DHQ

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Exercise Enduring Peace recording successes in FCT – Army

The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) says the troops of the Armed Forces of Nigeria operating in different theatres of operation eliminated 105 terrorists and apprehended 140 others in the last one week.

The Director, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. Edward Buba said this at a bi-weekly news briefing on the operations of the armed forces on Thursday in Abuja.

Buba said the troops also arrested 26 perpetrators of oil theft and rescued 86 kidnapped hostages in the South-South region.

He added that the troops recovered 208 assorted weapons and 5,332 assorted ammunition comprising 95 AK47 rifles, one assault rifle, 39 locally fabricated guns, 34 Dane guns, 14 pump action guns, among others.

In the North East, Buba said the troops of Operation Hadin Kai neutralised seven terrorists and arrested four terrorists as well as recovered 20 AK47 rifles, two fabricated guns and 12 dane guns.

He added that 353 rounds of 7.62mm special ammo, 209 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 34 live cartridges, 62 mobile phones and the sum of N100,000, among others, were also recovered.

According to him, 224 ISWAP/JAS terrorists fighters and their families comprising 23 adult males, 126 adult females and 87 children surrendered to troops in the Bama and Konduga areas of Borno within the week.

Army raid kidnappers, rescue C/River commissioner; Police neutralise 3 suspected gunmen, recover 50 arms

In the North Central, Buba said the troops of Operations Safe Haven and Whirl Stroke neutralised 35 insurgents, arrested 65 violent extremists and 15 rescued kidnapped hostages.

He added that troops also recovered various caches of arms and ammunition within different theatres of operation.

In the North Central, the defence spokesman said the troops of Operations Hadarin Daji and Whirl Punch, neutralised 57 insurgents, arrested five and rescued 66 kidnapped hostages during the week.

In the South-South, Buba said the troops of Operation Delta Safe destroyed 18 illegal refining sites and recovered 657,300 litres of stolen crude oil, 23,750 litres of illegally refined AGO and 1,050 litres of DPK.

He added that the troops discovered and destroyed nine dugout pits, 19 boats and 21 storage tanks, 35 cooking ovens, nine vehicles, nine mobile phones, and three pump machines.

According to him, troops rescued three kidnapped hostages and apprehended 50 people suspected of oil theft and other violent extremists/insurgents as well as recovered 20 weapons and 243 ammunition, amongst other items.

In the South East, Buba said the troops of Operation UDO KA neutralised six insurgents, arrested five and recovered various types of arms and ammunition.

“All recovered items, arrested suspects and rescued hostages were handed over to the relevant authorities for further action,” he said.

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Food Prices: Tinubu Directs Immediate Release Of Grains, To Foreclose Crisis

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A little respite in the nation’s food crisis is expected as President Bola Tinubu has directed the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security to release about 42,000 metric tonnes of grain including maize, millet, and garri. The gesture is to douse hunger and prevent looming protests.

Some Nigerians however told the Maritime First that the directive was a lot coming late; and the metric tonnes being expected, too little, for over a hundred million people. Some cynics bluntly blame the President for his inability to tame insurgency and terrorism, which apriori, prevented the farmers from going to work.

ALSO READ:… Nigerians Now Eat Junks as High Food Prices Put Balanced Diet Out Of Reach- Survey

Some states have begun dress rehearsal for the real crisis protests, over galloping food prices. A bag of rice which sold for N62,000 Tuesday, last week in Bodija Market in Ibadan, emerged N69,000 Wednesday morning. less than 24 hours later, throwing calculation to the winds.

The Maritime First can freely indicate that widows, single mothers, and those from polygamous-induced large families are presently, not finding it too easy to cope.

In the meantime,, the Rice Millers Association of Nigeria has also committed to immediately release over 60,000 metric tonnes of rice to the public. The body however failed to indicate why they waited till the Presidential directive, before making their commitment.

The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, disclosed this after the meeting of the Presidential Committee on Emergency Food Intervention on Thursday in Abuja.

The Minister also failed to indicate measures to be adopted, to ensure that middlemen do not hijack and mess up Tinubu’s honest effort.

He said that these were immediate measures taken by the Federal Government to reduce the hardships faced by Nigerians who are made to bear the brunt of high prices of food in the market.

“These will be made available and we know that that is enough to take Nigeria in the next couple of weeks. One month, six weeks, perhaps up to two months.

“Now the whole idea of this is to crush the cost of these food items. And these are measures that will happen immediately.

“Now, the third item is that government is also looking at the possibility of, if it becomes absolutely necessary and as an interim measure, to also import some of these commodities immediately so that these commodities can be made available to Nigerians,” he said.

Idris also said that the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security would further invest massively in the farming process to boost production and ensure the country’s food potential is fully exploited.

He said that government would appeal to persons or groups to stop hoarding these products in order to maximise profit at the detriment of ordinary Nigerians.

“Government of course is also looking at all those who are hoarding these commodities because actually, these commodities are available in the stores of many traders.

“Government is appealing to them that they should open up these doors and make these commodities available in the interest of our nation.

“There is no point when the whole country is looking for this food you are locking up these products where you make more money and then Nigerians suffer. Of course, the government will not fold its arms.

“If they don’t respond by bringing these commodities to the market, the government will take appropriate measures to ensure that these products are made available to Nigerians.”

The Minister said that the government would also take measures to ensure that food continues to be accessible and affordable to Nigerians.

“We ask that Nigerians need to be more patriotic; be our brother’s keepers. Sell this thing, of course at a margin but at a margin that is not also killing to Nigerians.

“This is an emergency. Every nation faces emergency situations. This is our own time to face these challenges.

“The President has directed that whatever it will take, food will be available to Nigerians at a cost that is also very reasonable,” he said.

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President Tinubu Returns After Private Visit To France

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President Bola Tinubu has returned to the country after a two-week private visit to France.

The President arrived in Abuja aboard the presidential flight at about 9:0 pm on Tuesday.

He was received by top government officials led by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Sen. George Akume.

The president left Abuja on Jan. 24 for his first break since assumption of office on May 29, 2023

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