Senate To Confirm Appointment Of Acting CJN Tanko Mohammed On Wednesday

The Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Tanko Mohammed will on Wednesday appear before the Senate for screening and confirmation of his appointment, TVC News reports.

President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, disclosed this at Tuesday’s plenary.

Lawan says the CJN would appear before the Committee of the Whole of the Senate to commence his screening exercise.

He said copies of the nominee’s Curriculum Vitae (CV) had been distributed to the lawmakers to enable them have adequate background information about him and his career.

President Muhammadu Buhari had on Thursday forwarded a letter asking the Senate to consider confirmation of the acting chief justice of the federation.

Magu Not On Twitter, Says EFCC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, says it has discovered a fake Twitter account in the name of its Chairman, Mr. Ibrahim Magu with the username @IbrahimMagu.

The anti-graft agency in a statement by its Acting Head of Media and Publicity, Mr. Tony Orilade on Tuesday said tge the commission wishes to “state unequivocally that the said Twitter handle does not belong to him and whatever tweet emanating from it is not from the Chairman, neither represents the views of the Commission.

“In view of this, members of the public are hereby advised not to engage in whatever form with the said handle in any way as it is hereby disclaimed.

“Efforts are being made to trace, apprehend and prosecute the impersonator(s).

“The EFCC can be contacted via its verified handles across FaceBook, Twitter, and Instagram – @OfficialEFCC,” the statement read.

Self Discipline, Ingredient To War Against Graft, Says Magu

The acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, has identified the principle of self-discipline as the most essential ingredient in the fight against graft and its vices.

A statement by the Acting Head of Media and Publicity, Mr. Tony Orilade on Monday, said Magu said this in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, when officers of the EFCC Ibadan Zone, held fitness walk and exercise, with residents of the ancient city on Saturday, July 13, 2019.

The event was the third edition of the Ibadan-based Inspiration 100.5 FM monthly fitness walk, which had the Ibadan Zonal Head of the EFCC, Friday Ebelo, as the lead walker.

Stakeholders across various segments of the society participated in the 10-kilometre walk, which took-off from the Agodi-area office of the radio station and terminated at the popular Lekan Salami Stadium, Adamasingba, where Ebelo led them in a bout of body fitness exercises.

While delivering Magu’s message, Ebelo highlighted the connection between regular physical exercise and the ability to tackle corruption.

He said: “It takes high sense of discipline to engage in regular physical exercises. The effort helps to keep the body fit and pushes sickness away from the body.

“In the same vein, the fight against corruption requires similar level of self-discipline. And the society benefits from the effort as much as the enforcer.”

He further urged Nigerians to join hands with the Commission in order to rid the nation of all forms of corruption.

The walk came 48 hours after the EFCC conducted a nationwide walk to call for repatriation of Africa’s assets stashed away in foreign countries by corrupt leaders, as part of events to mark the 2019 African Union Anti-Corruption Day.

While speaking on the event, the General Manager of Inspiration FM, Fumilayo Olashogba, appreciated the EFCC for the collaboration. She pledged to continue to support the EFCC in the fight against all forms of economic and financial crimes.

Governor Akeredolu Visits Pa Fasoranti, Seeks Urgent Measures To Tackle Insecurity

Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State on Saturday called for urgent measures to tackle the challenge of insecurity in Nigeria.

Akeredolu gave the advice in Akure while speaking with newsmen during a condolence visit to the residence of Chief Reuben Fasoranti, the leader of the Pan – Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, over the death of his daughter, Mrs Funke Olakunrin.

Newsmen recall that Olakunrin was shot dead on Friday by gunmen at Ore Junction in Ondo State.

He also condoled with Mr Idowu Olakunrin, the husband of the deceased.

The governor described the killing of Olakunrin as an ugly incident and a death too many.

“All of us are worried. There are some measures that have to be taken and we must prevent this.

“We must take whatever steps we want to take to tackle this issue of insecurity in order not to allow this happen again.

“It is a personal loss to all of us. For now, it is like we are mourning a relative that has just passed on,” the governor said.

Akeredolu promised that the state government would brief the media adequately about the steps and measures to be taken very soon.

The governor was accompanied by his Chief of Staff, Chief Gbenga Ale, as well as Ade Adetimehin, the Chairman of All Progressives Congress in the state and other members of the State Executive Council.

Governor Akeredolu Visits Pa Fasoranti, Seeks Urgent Measures To Tackle Insecurity

Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State on Saturday called for urgent measures to tackle the challenge of insecurity in Nigeria.

Akeredolu gave the advice in Akure while speaking with newsmen during a condolence visit to the residence of Chief Reuben Fasoranti, the leader of the Pan – Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, over the death of his daughter, Mrs Funke Olakunrin.

Newsmen recall that Olakunrin was shot dead on Friday by gunmen at Ore Junction in Ondo State.

He also condoled with Mr Idowu Olakunrin, the husband of the deceased.

The governor described the killing of Olakunrin as an ugly incident and a death too many.

“All of us are worried. There are some measures that have to be taken and we must prevent this.

“We must take whatever steps we want to take to tackle this issue of insecurity in order not to allow this happen again.

“It is a personal loss to all of us. For now, it is like we are mourning a relative that has just passed on,” the governor said.

Akeredolu promised that the state government would brief the media adequately about the steps and measures to be taken very soon.

The governor was accompanied by his Chief of Staff, Chief Gbenga Ale, as well as Ade Adetimehin, the Chairman of All Progressives Congress in the state and other members of the State Executive Council.

CBN and Textile Industry Revival

The Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN’s) recent strategic move to revive and grow Nigeria’s cotton, textile and garments economic sector and to improve domestic production of cotton from about 80,000 tonnes in 2018 to 300,000 tonnes by 2020, is one of the economic news items that should not be ignored. 

The policy instrument is aimed at addressing a shocking revelation that Nigeria has been spending a whopping N1.23 trillion worth of textile import bill yearly. This is clearly unacceptable. 

To address this development, CBN was reported to have, in Katsina State, launched the distribution of high-yield cotton seeds to more than 100,000 farmers cultivating over 200,000 hectares of farmland. The apex bank additionally, provided such supportive farm inputs as fertilisers and pesticides, among others. The provisions are for the 2019 farming season. 

Given the need for the success of the programme, a National Committee comprising representatives of CBN, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Federal Ministry of Water Resources, Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, governments of Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Gombe and Zamfara states has been set up. 

The committee’s responsibilities include ensuring that farmers who benefit from the CBN intervention comply with whatever rules and guidelines that govern the scheme and to ensure Nigeria’s self-sufficiency in cotton production and textile materials within five years from 2019. 

Ultimately, it can be stated that the success or otherwise of the scheme has been put on the shoulders of the significant committee.

It is encouraging that CBN identified not only the need for the revival of the textiles and garments sector of the economy but has also taken bold steps towards achieving that. The importance of that sector can hardly be a subject of argument. 

As CBN reportedly captured, prior to the sector’s slide from grace to grass, there were about 180 textile mill companies in the country. 

Jointly, they provided employment to about 450,000 people, contributing about 25 per cent of the workforce in the entire manufacturing sector of the country. For instance, some of our active labour and even political leaders are products of the once prosperous textile industry. 

Unfortunately, the sector lost steam, no thanks to a multiplicity of adverse factors including smuggling of textiles and finished clothes into the country, high cost of production occasioned mainly by high energy/power costs, and an insufficient quantity of cotton resulting from low yielding cotton seeds.

With this CBN’s intervention, it will be most desirable for the cotton, textiles and garments sector to bounce back. This promises enormous benefits. For instance, the number of farm hands will increase; more high quality cotton will be produced and enough raw materials made available to keep factories/mills productively busy; more factory hands will be needed and employed; high quality textiles and garments will be produced from the high quality cottons and thus, the craze for imported alternatives will therefore abate. 

What is more, capital flight will be significantly reduced and the country’s foreign exchange reserves will be enhanced. It is also foreseeable that Nigeria can become a net exporter of cotton, textiles and garments especially as the expected new status and capacity of the sector will attract more investors who will expand production further. 

But more important, efforts of CBN through the intervention scheme can be sabotaged if smuggling is not curbed. It is imperative therefore, that the Nigeria Customs should be given marching orders to police the borders effectively – to prevent smuggling. In the main, when the country becomes a net exporter of cotton, textiles and garments, smuggling will be wiped out or drastically reduced without any major threat to the economy.

As CBN has commenced this intervention meant to revive and grow the cotton, textile and garment sector in the country, it is auspicious that the apex bank discloses information on such issues as: the length of time it will take the bank before it exits from the programme. The fund that has been set aside for the period of the programme and the timelines should be explained. Cost of the already provided cotton seeds and other inputs; the overall number of farmers being targeted to benefit from the programme should be disclosed. 

Provision of these and other relevant information will be in the interest of ‘’full disclosure’’ and even aid subsequent appraisal of outcome of the programme.

All told, this bold initiative by the CBN and the resources being deployed and applied to it must not be allowed to go down the drain. It is therefore, necessary for comprehensive policies, rules and guidelines to be developed and put in place. 

The participating farmers and other relevant stakeholders who have contributions to make towards a successful outcome, must be given needed practical training and empowerment. Implementation should be carried out within the policy framework, guidance rules and regulations. Periodic reviews/evaluations must be undertaken. Corrective steps should be taken when and where necessary and of course, deterrent sanctions must be instituted and applied on individuals and organisations who may dispose themselves to sabotaging, stalling or derailing this enterprise. It may be necessary for CBN to consider looking beyond governments in composing the National Committee charged with the realisation of the lofty objectives.

Finally, this is one programme that should not be seen as or allowed to be ‘’business as usual.’’ 

It is important that from the outset, there are established ways and criteria by which the committee and leaders who are mandated to oversee it to success, must be appraised and held accountable. This is critical because since the beginning of this democracy, we have seen such policy instruments backed with huge funds for this kind of revival effort and no one has been punished for failing the nation, in this regard!

This post originally appeared on The Guardian Editorial on July 10, 2019.

Senate Issues Stern Warnings, Calls For Proper Investigation Of Xenophobic Attacks On Nigerians

The Nigerian senate has issued a stern warning to the South African government to halt the frequent killings of Nigerians by its citizens or face grave consequences.

The senate summoned the Nigerian ambassador to South Africa to explain the circumstances that led to the alleged murder of the Deputy Director-General of Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria, Elizabeth Ndubusi-Chukwu.

The murder of Mrs Ndubusi-Chukwu in June, brought to 127, the number of Nigerians that have been killed in South Africa, in the last three and a half years.

The senate urged the South African government to investigate the death of Nigerians who have died in suspicious circumstances in the country.

Sanwo-Olu Declares Lekki, Admiralty Toll Plaza Free On Thursday

Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu has declared Thursday July 11, a toll-free day during the morning and evening peak hours for vehicles plying the Lekki and Admiralty toll plaza in Lekki and Ikoyi, The Nation reports.

The toll plaza would be left open between 6.30am -9.30am and 4.30pm -8.00pm.

The governor stated this while addressing State House Correspondents after a tour of the Victoria Island-Lekki-Ajah axis over traffic gridlock and flooding issues.

The purpose, he said, is for doing traffic situation analysis in the area to find solutions to the issue of traffic gridlock in the area.

 Details shortly…