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Nigerian Newspapers: 10 things you need to know this Saturday morning

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Good morning! Here is today’s summary from Nigerian Newspapers

1. The Lagos State Building Control Agency on Friday began the demolition of defective buildings.

Those affected are mainly within Lagos Island and over 180 houses will be demolished in the exercise.

2. The United Nations, UN, came together in sadness and solidarity on Friday to honour its 21 staff members, who died on board an Ethiopian Airlines flight which crashed on Sunday.

The ceremonies were held at UN Headquarters in New York and Geneva, to remember the staff members who were among the 157 passengers and crew members on board the ill-fated Ethiopian airplane Flight 302, which crashed near Addis Ababa.

3. The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has chastised the Nigerian Army for the role played by some of its soldiers in the disruption of the electoral processes in Rivers state.

It, however, expressed its determination to ensure the conclusion of the election process very soon.

4. A two-storey building collapsed on Friday in Bode area of Ibadan barely 72 hours after a similar incident in Lagos in which no fewer than 20 persons died.

The spokesman for the police in Oyo State, SP Olugbenga Fadeyi, told newsmen that rescue efforts were on-going at the building site.

5. Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) of the Independent National Electoral Commission in Rivers State, Obo Effanga, has said that four collation officers for the governorship election in Rivers State, who were alleged to be partisan, have been removed.

Effanga said the decision followed a petition about the list of LGA collation officers for the governorship election in Rivers State wherein four of the listed persons were alleged to have partisan inclination.

6. The Social Democratic Party, SDP, has called on the Presidency and the National Assembly to urgently consider and assent the amended electoral bill in order to quell the malpractices that are being experienced in elections.

Hon. Chidi Nwosu, the Abia state chairman of SDP, who made the call in a statement issued to reporters on Friday in Umuahia, condemned the vote buying that characterized the just concluded 2019 Nigeria general elections.

7. The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi on Friday apologised to Nigerians over the suspension of the Iju-Abeokuta free train ride during the 2019 general elections.

Amaechi, who tendered the apology during the monthly rail inspection of the Lagos-Ibadan modernisation project in Ibadan, said that the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) suspended the three months free train ride due to security and safety of passengers.

8. Governorship Candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodinma, has pronounced Governor Rocha Okorocha dead politically.

In a statement in Abuja on Friday, Uzodimma said Okorocha should apologise to Imo indigenes for his misrule rather than looking for scapegoats for his failure.

9. The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) has de-recognised 13 secondary schools and warned 56 others in Kogi for their involvement in examination malpractice during the 2018 West African Senior School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE).

Mr Ademu Amos, WAEC Desk Officer, Kogi Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, who disclosed this at a meeting with the principals, vice principals and examination officers of the affected schools on Thursday in Lokoja, said that 13 secondary schools were de-recognised while 56 others were seriously warned by the council due to examination malpractice.

10. The Action Democratic Party (ADP) has urged the Police and the Department of State Services (DSS) to probe the killing of Rep. Temitope Olatoye.

The Chairman of ADP, Mr. Yabagi Sani, who made the call at a press conference on Friday in Abuja, said that the gruesome murder of Olatoye, the ADP candidate for the 2019 Senatorial election in Oyo State, the violence, irregularities and the inconclusive elections in other states of the federation must be probed.

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  1. Garba A Tukur Auyo

    March 16, 2019 at 10:07 am

    A good site inspection has to be done before running any school in order to avoid collapse

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HDP vs Buhari: What happened in Presidential Tribunal on Tuesday

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The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal on Tuesday reserved ruling on the application seeking the withdrawal of the petition challenging the re-election of President Muhammadu Buhari filed by Hope Democratic Party (HDP).

Justice Mohammed Garba, Chairman of the five-man panel, reserved the application after it was argued by counsel to the parties.

A National Chairman of Hope Democratic Party (HDP), Tapre Poland had approached the tribunal with the application.

The tribunal also reserved its ruling on another application filed by Poland, praying for the substitution of counsel representing the party.

Mr Anthony Agbolahan, counsel for Poland, had adopted and argued the written addresses of the applicant.

The applicant prayed the tribunal to grant the two applications, adding that HDP was no longer interested in contesting the victory of the president in the Feb. 23 general election.

Tapre, a member of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party, assumed the position after the substantive National Chairman, Chief Ambrose Owuru, was suspended by the party.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Owuru, who contested the presidential election on the platform of HDP, is challenging Buhari’s victory in the election.

Mr Chukwunoyerem Njoku, Counsel for both HDP and Owuru, prayed the tribunal to discountenance the two applications, describing the applicant as an “interloper’’.

Njoku also argued that the applicant had no locus to file for the withdrawal of HDP, adding that he had no official power to do so.

Njoku said Poland was neither the National Chairman of the Party nor contested the Feb. 23 presidential election on the platform of HDP.

He further explained that only the National Working Committee (NEC), chaired by Owuru, who remained the National Chairman of HDP could decide whether or not to press on with the case.

Njoku, therefore, prayed the tribunal to disregard the application by dismissing same.

Justice Garba had earlier granted the petitioners leave to effect typographical corrections in their main petition but however declined additional prayers to file additional list of witnesses.

The chairman of the panel held that the 21 days allowed by law for the filing of a petition that should contain all list of witnesses and other documentary evidence had since lapsed.

Meanwhile, the tribunal adjourned until June 27 to entertain an application filed by INEC seeking the setting aside of the alleged “referendum’’ the petitioners were relying on to have won the presidential election.

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NYSC doctors, others protest against Borno govt over unpaid allowance

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Fifty (50) medical practitioners undertaking the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in Borno State on Monday stormed the government house demanding immediate payment of their over five months allowance.

DAILY POST reports that the corps members, who comprise 2018/2019 Batch B, 2018/ 2019 Batch C and 2019/ 2020 Batch A, threatened not to vacate their accommodation to make room for their incoming colleagues if the government failed to meet their demands.

Dr. Azi Cornelius, who led his colleagues during the peaceful protest in front of the Maiduguri government house, said his members had made frantic efforts to get the authority to offset their monthly allowance but all fell on deaf ears.

The frustrated corps medical personnel explained that they were left with no option than demanding the immediate payment of their monthly allowance, which ranges between N100,000 for doctors and N 50,000 for other health workers.

“The former governor, Kashim Shettima announced payment of N100,000 to each of the medical NYSC doctors and N50,000 to other medical corps members in the health sector, unfortunately, the payment has stopped for a while now.

“We have 64 doctors and other medical corps members which brings our total number to 190.

“We are here to intimate the Borno State Governor of our unpaid stipend. We have written different letters, we even threatened to stop work until two months was paid but the summary of all is that most of us will be passing out on Thursday and we have between five to six months unpaid stipends, we want the government to pay us,” Cornelius said.

The medical corps members leader added that his members constitute over 50 per cent of the medical workforce in the state and have been discharging their duties effectively and efficiently. He urged the Borno government not to discourage other corps members with non-payment of allowance.

“The most demanding thing is that most us do calls – but unfortunately we sleep in the hospital without food. It’s regrettable to say that we lost a corps member last year, Dr Ike Stephen, he had worked for 72 hours, he died while crossing the road to buy watermelon to eat,” Cornelius revealed.

However, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Alhaji Mustapha Alau said the Governor has already directed the Ministry of Finance to pay the corps members.

“I’m going to the office now to effect the governor’s directive, but for now I cannot confirm the number of months to be paid,” Alau said.

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Zamfara: Surrender now or face unprecedented fire – Military warns bandits

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Maj.-Gen. Jide Ogunlade, the Force Commander, Operation Hadarin Daji, on Tuesday issued a 24-hour ultimatum to bandits in Zamfara State to either surrender or face “unprecedented fire-fight”.

Ogunlade issued the warning at a news conference at the command headquarters of the force in Gusau.

The force commander said that the bandits has always taken advantage of the cover offered by the terrain of the community whenever the operatives are after them.

He, however, warned that “this time around we will go to their enclaves and hideouts where there will be collateral damage and neutralise them.”

Ogunlade lamented how the bandits refused to surrender and denounce their unacceptable ways in May when the state’s governor, Alh. Bello Matawalle, offered amnesty to those who surrendered.

“It is disheartening that when the state governor offered them amnesty, within few hours we recorded 20 separate attacks on communities.

“This showed that the criminals were not ready to surrender; that is why I am now giving them the next 24 hours.

“The only option left for them is to immediately cease fire, drop their arms, and surrender or have themselves to blame,” he said.

“l want to assure the people of the state that banditry will very soon be history in Zamfara after this operation that will come up in the next 24 hours.

“We will ensure that farmers carry out their farming activities and displaced villagers return home under conducive atmosphere.”

The commander expressed appreciation to the Federal Government for establishing the operation and praised President Muhammadu Buhari for his support.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Operation Hadarin Daji, which is now focused on Zamfara alone, was inaugurated on May 10, thus replacing the expanded Operation Sharan Daji.

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