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Kick off, 774,000 jobs Tuesday – Keyamo

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After various postponements, the Special Public Works Programme which would engage 774,000 unemployed Nigerians will kick off nationwide on Tuesday.

The Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo, while announcing this on his Twitter handle on Sunday night, said that the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari, has approved the inception of the initiative.

He said via tweeter, “President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the take off of the Special Public Works Programme (engaging 774,000 unemployed itinerant Nigerians) to start nationwide on Tuesday, January 5th, 2021. All NDE state structures are already set for the take-off ceremonies.”

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After various postponements, the Special Public Works Programme which would engage 774,000 unemployed Nigerians will kick off nationwide on Tuesday.

The Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo, while announcing this on his Twitter handle on Sunday night, explained that the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari, has approved the commencement of the initiative.

The programme, sketch  to employ 1,000 Nigerians from each of the 774 local government areas in the country was initially scheduled for launch on October 1, last year but it ran into hitches following the power play between Keyamo and the Director-General, National Directorate of Employment,Nasir Ladan, who was sacked last month. Each of the 774,000 workers will earn N20,000 monthly for three months duration of the job, amounting to about N46.44 billion.

The ministers are expected to begin the programme in their respective states in collaboration with the governors.

 

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Maina: Court Refuses To Grant Ex-pension Boss Bail

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The Federal High Court, Abuja, on Thursday, refused to grant a former Chairman of the defunct Pension Reformed Taskforce Team, Abdulrasheed Maina, bail.

Justice Okon Abang, held that Maina’s application for bail lacked merit.

Justice Abang also said though it was at the court’s discretion to grant bail, the ex-pension reformed boss did not deserve bail after jumping the first bail.

The judge added that Maina did not place sufficient materials before the court to convince the court that he deserves the second bail.

He said the medical report brought from the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital showed that Maina was not under any medical emergency.

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The judge said Maina was not only a flight risk but a proving risk, having fled to the Republic of Niger and Chad in violation of the court order.

“He has disappointed the court,” he said.

Justice Abang, who refused to grant Maina’s application for an order directing the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to release his confiscated property, including a BMW Car, also dismissed his request for an order to set aside the Nov. 18 and Dec. 4, 2020 orders.

The court on November 18, 2020, ordered the trial of Maina in absentia after he jumped bail.

Also on December 4, 2020, the court ordered Maina to be remanded in prison custody pending the hearing and final determination of his matter.

But Maina, who jumped bail last year and fled to the Republic of Niger before his rearrest, had on December 24, 2020, applied for another bail. Maina, through his lawyer, Anayo Adibe, on Jan. 20, approached Justice Abang in a motion on notice.

He argued that the application became necessary over his worsening health condition.

In the motion, the ex-pension boss told the court that he had reasonable and responsible sureties who were willing to act as sureties if granted bail.

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NAF personnel Funeral begins in Abuja

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The funeral of the seven Nigerian Air Force officers who died in the Sunday air crash has commenced at the National Cemetery, Lugbe, Airport Road, Abuja.

The men died in the Beechcraft King Air B350i which crashed a short distance from the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, after reporting engine failure.

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The deceased include the Captain, Fl Lt. Haruna Gadzama; Fl. Lt. Henry Piyo (Co-Pilot); Flying Officer Micheal Okpara (Airborne Tactical Observation System Specialist); Warrant Officer Bassey Etim (ATOS Specialist); Fl. Sgt.

Olasunkanmi Olawunmi (ATOS Specialist); Sgt. Ugochukwu Oluka (ATOS Specialist) and Aircraftman Adewale Johnson (Onboard Technician).

At the funeral service is the Minister of Defence, Maj. Gen. Salihi Magashi (retd.), the Chief of Defence Staff, Maj. Gen Lucky Irabor, the Chief of Army Staff, Ibrahim Atahiru, the Chief of Air Staff, Air Vice Marshal Isiaka Amao and the family members of the deceased.

The coffins draped in the Nigerian flags have already been placed on the open graves. Sitting on each coffin were the shoes and caps of the deceased.

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NDLEA Seizes 614kg Drugs Arrests 90, In Lagos Raids

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The operative of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency have arrested 90 persons, including an Indian, during raids on the hideouts of drug cartels in parts of Lagos State and confiscated 614.396 kilograms of various hard drugs.

The agency also announced the interception of a container load of tramadol at the Apapa seaport in Lagos, estimated at about two million capsules tucked in 554 cartons.

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The Lagos State Command of the NDLEA also raided some drug spots in Agege, Ikorodu, Lekki, Okokomaiko and other parts of the state, and dismantled major drug syndicates, arrested some suspects and seized large quantities of hard drugs.

NDLEA Director of Media and Advocacy, Femi Babafemi, said 90 suspects, including an Indian, were arrested, while over 614kg of various types of drugs were seized during the raids.

Ralph Igwenagu, the state Commander of NDLEA,was quoted as giving the breakdown of the seizures.

Igwenagu said, “A total of 577.020kg of cannabis Sativa was seized; cocaine, 0.183kg; heroine, 0.003kg, Tramadol, 36.202kg (7,697 tablets); Rohypnol, 0.208kg (646 tablets); Diazapam, 0.462kg (2,066 tablets); and Exol-5, 0.52kg (316 tablets), making a total of 614.396kg of different types of hard drugs.

“One of the drug syndicates busted during the raids is coordinated by one Samuel Ebenezer in Lekki, whose cartel imports special sophisticated drugs baked in cakes, biscuits and cookies from the United States and sells to the rich and affluent people in Lekki and Lagos Island.

“The second syndicate is coordinated by an Indian, Inderpreet Singh, alias Bobby, that imports Tramadol 225mg from India and sells in Nigeria from his Osy Agomo Close, Apple Estate, Amuwo Odofin area of Lagos. Mr Singh is also a dealer in tricycle parts and the Managing Director of Rashaan Trading Limited. Arrested with him is a Nigerian, one Sylvester Omorodion.”

The Tramadol were intercepted in the container, which was falsely declared to contain ceramic tiles. The Apapa Seaport Area Commander of the NDLEA,

Samuel Gadzama, said one of the containers bearing the illicit drug had earlier been intercepted and seized in Kenya.

“Though the second container found its way to Nigeria, but the eagle eyes of our narcotic agents discovered it during a joint inspection of the ship. We’re continuing with further investigations”, he stated.

Reacting to the raids and seizures, the Chairman/Chief Executive, NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa (retd), commended the commanders and their officers involved in the operations.

He charged them to remain focussed on the maxim of his leadership, that is, offensive action against illicit drug users, peddlers, traffickers and barons.

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#COVID19NIGERIA Situation Report

The #COVID19Nigeria situation report for 21st July, 2020 has been published. Our daily reports provide a summary of the epidemiological situation & response activities in Nigeria

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@Africa CDC

The African Union and Africa CDC will virtually rollout the Partnership to Accelerate COVID-19 Testing (PACT) in Africa tomorrow 4 June, 2020 at 11.00 am Eastern Africa Time.

The African Union and Africa CDC will virtually rollout the Partnership to Accelerate COVID-19 Testing (PACT) in Africa tomorrow 4 June, 2020 at 11.00 am Eastern Africa Time.

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"Also found worthy of honour was Bashir Abubakar, an Asst Comptroller-General of Customs, who rejected a bribe of $412,000 per container offered him by drug traffickers seeking to bring 40 containers of Tramadol into Nigeria. A fine example of incorruptibility, worthy of emulation"

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