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Vanguard Editorial Rejects NTA $500M Loan

Naijamixed editor

Vanguard Editorial Rejects NTA $500M Loan Vanguard Editorial Rejects NTA $500M Loan

Its said that one  of the great dividends of democracy is that it creates the Legislative arm through which the people are represented and given a voice in government.

Apart from legislation, this arm of government also controls the purse of the nation and the power to mitigate the excesses of the Executive arm.

It is this attribute of our democracy that made it mandatory for the Minister of Information, Mr. Lai Mohammed, to go to the National Assembly to defend the obnoxious proposal for a $500m (about N180bn) loan for the upgrade of facilities to enable the state-owned official propaganda outfit, the Nigerian Television Authority, NTA, compete with the likes of America’s Cable Network News, CNN, as the Minister puts it.

The loan is apparently part of the controversial $29.9bn loan the Muhammadu Buhari regime has been angling to borrow. The uproar that this has raised further justifies the insistence by this newspaper and millions of well-meaning Nigerians that the details of the humongous loan should be made public for scrutiny.

We still insist that the entire purpose of this loan should be disclosed item by item. READ ALSO: With $500m loan NTA will compete with CNN — Lai Mohammed There is absolutely no justification for this loan request.

The NTA, which used to be the pride of the nation when it was a monopoly in the 1970s and 1980s, has lost a lot of public support because it has increasingly become the mouthpiece of the Federal Government.

Nigerians now depend on private newspapers, social media, and radio and television networks for their credible and satisfactory media needs.

It is these elements of the media industry that require the generous policy and waiver supports of government. Government also needs to revive the National Orientation Agency, NOA, to resume its massive public enlightenment duties which have virtually been abandoned.

Since the minister is convinced that the NTA has the technology and manpower to compete with these international private networks, the organisation should be encouraged to go ahead and compete, but not by burdening Nigerians with this loan.

We believe that this is another misplaced priority in a country that lacks adequate infrastructure, power and social amenities.

As the current “poverty capital of the world” what point shall we be proving by attempting to compete with private-owned television networks from the wealthiest countries? We call on the National Assembly to reject this loan request outright.

We fear it might end up, like funds devoted to the digital switchover programme now under EFCC scrutiny, in the private pockets of political appointees and top civil servants. Any money borrowed must be devoted to upgrading our infrastructure to enable our efforts at economic diversification to succeed and not squandered on the elephant projects of politicians and their bureaucrat cohorts. We say no!

Nigerian news

Rotimi Amaechi:Ibadan-Kano Rail to Be Ready By 2023

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Rotimi Amaechi: Ibadan-Kano Rail Line To Be Ready By 2023Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi promises badan-Kano Rail Line To Be Ready By 2023.

The Federal Government of Nigeria through her Minister of Tranaports honorable rotimi  has said the Ibadan-Kano rail line will be ready by 2023.

The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, said this in an interview with journalists in Abuja.

The minister expressed optimism that the project would be ready before the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), leaves office in 2023.

When asked what could be the reason for the delay in completing the Lagos-Ibadan rail project, he said it was not the fault of the contractors but the urban nature of Lagos.

He said, “We have pipes. For instance, for the road to the seaport, we had to bring a company from Italy to identify the pipes and know those who owned them because the companies did not know their pipes.

The next thing is, if we try to dig out the pipes, the power supply will stop in Lagos and there will be no fuel literally for the entire country apart from those from Port Harcourt.

“So, we brought another company that was not part of the contract. We brought another company that came to find the solution to how to build on those pipes without causing damage because one of the problems with those pipes is that once it is not properly done, the whole of Lagos will be gone.

“We have to put enough engineering to protect those pipe and oil that they carry so that we don’t have an explosion.”

The minister also said the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, had directed a Russian firm to partner with Nigeria to construct the Lagos-Calabar rail line.

He said the government was waiting for feedback from a Russian firm for the construction of the Lagos-Calabar rail line.

The government of Russia and Nigeria had reached an agreement for the construction of the Lagos-Calabar rail line during Buhari’s visit to Russia in October last year.

The minister also expressed optimism that the bill of quantity that the Russian firm would present would be cheaper than what the Chinese had proposed.

Nigerian news

Protesters Demands Oshiomhole’s Removal

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Protesters Demands Oshiomhole’s Removal as chairmanProtesters Demands Oshiomhole’s Removal as chairman as they storm Secretariat.

Some aroused Protesters on Monday morning, marched on the national secretariat of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to, among other things demand for the removal of the party’s National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole.

The protesters under the aegis of the APC Young Stakeholders, stormed the party headquarters as early as 11:00am with various placards with inscriptions such as: “Oshiomhole Must Go”, “Oshiomhole go home”, “We are tired of losing” etc.

One of the leaders of the protesters who gave his name as Mathias Omikpa, said the APC young stakeholders were tired of recording reversals of their victories on account of the tardiness of the party chairman.

He said, “It is time for Oshiomhole to go, we are tired of this downward trend. The National Chairman has brought nothing but misfortunes to our party from Zamfara to Rivers now Bayelsa. We are calling on President Muhammadu Buhari , National Leader, Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu to intervene.”

Nigerian news

BMO Justifies Buhari – “Nigeria Does not have Money”

Naijamixed editor

BMO Justifies Buhari - "Nigeria Does not have Money"BMO Justifies Buhari – “Nigeria Does not have Money”


The Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) has openly  said that Nigeria does not have money. The BMO Chairman, in the person of  Niyi Akinsiju, stated this on Sunday at the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Forum in Abuja.

He stated that due to the situation, President Muhammadu Buhari was only implementing important policies that will positively affect the poor.

Akinsiju said: “We have a President that is considerate that for every policy, the important thing to him would be the consequence to Nigerian poor and the Nigerian people.”

He noted that the government was “thinking of building roads, upgrading schools, upgrading hospitals and all that when we have lesser money to attend to such”.

“So, the reality is that Nigeria does not have money and I personally do not delude myself because we do not have money and the only way we can have money is a pure capitalist system that we are running.

“We would have gone into taxing, removing subsidy and all that, that is what most capitalists of the other worlds are telling us to remove subsidy so that government would have more money.”Akinsiju pointed out that citizens, especially the poor will find it difficult to exist if such advice is taken.

“There was just this 2.5 per cent increase in VAT and there was uproar, meanwhile our capitalist economists are telling us that we should have increased it to 15 per cent VAT, you can only imagine the outcome,” he said.

If government of each particular period had been constructing 100 kilometers of road per year, you can only imagine how many roads would have been constructed”, Akinsiju added

Nigerian news

Shekau Threatens To Attack President Buhari [Full Video]

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Shekau Threatens To Attack President Buhari  [Full Video]

Don’t come again – Shekau Threatens To Attack President Buhari .

Terrorists, Boko Haram Leader, Shekau, Threatens To Attack Buhari, Lists Condition For Chibok Girls’ Release

In a new video released, Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, could be seen threatening to attack President Muhammadu Buhari if he visits Maiduguri, Borno State, again.

Buhari had visited the troubled city on Wednesday to sympathise with the state over the killing of at least 30 persons on Sunday by terrorists in the town of Auno.

But shortly after his visit to the state, Boko Haram insurgents struck again, killing several persons in the process.

Shekau, in the latest video where he also listed conditions for the release of the remaining Chibok school girls, warned that Buhari would be attacked if he visited Maiduguri again.

He said, “Buhari came to Maiduguri pretending to be a good man but he is not. He shouldn’t try to return to Maiduguri again.

“Buhari, fear your Creator. God said you don’t have up to a spider’s web. But you think you are a major general. l swear, you are nothing. Buhari, I am talking to you, you’ll know no peace. Don’t come back to Maiduguri.


“Just go and sit down and think over my comments. And if u think I am the one disrupting your affairs, honestly I am not. You have deceived the people by telling them you are a just leader; carry on!”

Speaking on Chibok girls, Shekau said, “Those shouting Bring Back Our Girls, Bring Back Our Girls, the only way to have those girls back is for our men in prison to be released.”

International news

Presidency Reacts To US Visa Ban On Nigerians

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Presidency Reacts To US Visa Ban On Nigerians

Presidency Reacts To US Visa Ban On Nigerians regarding immigration.


UNITED STATES SUSPENSION OF THE ISSUANCE OF IMMIGRANT VISAS TO NIGERIANS

On 31st January 2020, the United States (U.S) Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced temporary travel restrictions on six (6) countries including Nigeria.

For Nigeria, the restriction is the suspension of the issuance of “immigrant visas” to Nigerian passport holders only.

This suspension shall come into effect on 21st February 2020. The suspension does not apply to other U.S visas such as those for official, business, tourism and student travel.

The DHS states the suspension of “immigrant visas” became necessary following a review and update of the methodology (performance metrics) adopted by the U.S Government to assess compliance of certain security criteria by foreign governments. This resulted in certain enhancements on how information is shared between Nigeria and the U.S.

Nigeria remains committed to maintaining productive relations with the United States and its international allies especially on matters of global security.

Accordingly, President Muhammadu Buhari has established a committee, to be chaired by the Hon. Minister of Interior, to study and address the updated U.S. requirements. The committee will work with the U.S Government, INTERPOL and other stakeholders to ensure all updates are properly implemented.

Nigerian news

Buhari appoints Adeniran as Surveyor-General.

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Buhari appoints Adeniran as Surveyor-General of the Federation

President Buhari appoints Adeniran as Surveyor-General of Nigeria

The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) has appointed Taiwo Samuel Adeniran as the Surveyor-General of the Federation.

This was conveyed in a letter with reference FMPW & H/42935/S.1/T2/86, dated January 29, 2020, and signed by the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola.

The Federal Ministry of Works and Housing supervises the Office of the Surveyor-General of the Federation.

Fashola, according to a statement issued by the OSGF in Abuja on Friday, was quoted to have said in the letter that “I am pleased to inform you that the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has approved your appointment as the Surveyor-General of the Federation.

“This is in accordance with the powers conferred on him (President) by Section 171 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).”

According to the letter, the appointment which took effect from January 10, 2020, was for a term of four years in the first instance and was also renewable upon satisfactory performance.

Adeniran until his recent appointment was overseeing the affairs of OSGOF since October 8, 2019, following the retirement of Muhammadu Kurfi, the then Director of Photogrammetry and Remote-Sensing.

Kurfi had superintended in the absence of a substantive surveyor-general between September 10, 2019 to October 7, 2019.

The OSGF said its new boss, Adeniran, was Director of International Boundary and had served in different ministries, departments and agencies of government, manning offices and units that were responsible for surveying activities.

“He has written several award-winning papers. Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Using Geospatial Data is one of such,” the OSGF stated.

Nigerian news

President Buhari Condems the Terrorist Killing of Lawan Andimi

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President Buhari Condems the Killing of Lawan Andimi
The Terrorist killing of Lawan Andimi is Cruel – President Mohammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has condemned the killing of Reverend Lawan Andimi by Boko Haram terrorists.

In a series of the tweets made by the president on Tuesday, the President described the murder of the clergyman as inhuman and vowed to ensure the insurgents pay dearly for their actions.

He said, “The terrorist killing of Lawan Andimi, chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in Michika, Adamawa State is cruel, inhuman and deliberately provocative.

“This barbarism is condemnable. We will ensure that these terrorists pay a heavy price for their evil actions.”

Reverend Andimi, who was abducted by Boko Haram terrorists in early January, was the chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in Michika Local Government Area of Adamawa State.

He was murdered by his captors on Monday, despite calls for his release by various groups, including the national leadership of the Christian body.

In his reaction, President Buhari decried the killing of the clergyman amid indications that the insurgents were going to release him.

He, however, condoled with the family of the slain reverend, the Christian community across the country, as well as the government and people of Adamawa State.

“I am greatly saddened by the fact that the terrorists went on to kill him even while giving signals of a willingness to set him free by releasing him to third parties.

“This incident has further strengthened our resolve as a government, and the resolve of our gallant Armed Forces, to comprehensively defeat all terrorist groups sowing death, violence, and destruction in our country and across West Africa,” the President said.

Nigerian news

Oshiomhole Blames PDP For ‘Third Term Agenda’

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Oshiomhole Blames PDP For ‘Third Term Agenda’

Oshiomhole Blames PDP For ‘Third Term Agenda’. 

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, alleged that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) planted the idea of third term agenda by President Muhammadu Buhari in the sub-conscious of most Nigerians to further confuse the political space.

Oshiohmole stated this when he addressed State House correspondents after the end of a closed door meeting with President Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Thursday the 2nd of January 2020.

The APC chairman said: “I am surprised to see that there are people who begin to wonder why should the President reassure Nigerians that he is not going to do Third Term in office because Third Term was planted by PDP.

“It is still in the sub-consciousness of most Nigerians that the first (sic) Nigerian President tried to do Third Term, emptied the treasury to bribe members of the National Assembly and since that President left, thanks to the National Assembly, no other next President has done eight years in office.

“You can recall that President Yar’Adua unfortunately has since joined his ancestors, and President Jonathan did six years and so by the special grace of God, this President (Buhari) whom we pray will do his eight years complete in line with the provisions of the constitution.

“And because there is a level of idleness within a section of the political class people can sponsor all kinds of publications and to give doubt whether or not the President is planning to stay longer.

“And I think it is his decision that at every interval he needs to remind Nigerians that he is not about to do what a PDP President did. For me it is necessary and in any case it costs us nothing to reassure us that `I am leaving.’’Oshiomhole concluded.

Nigerian news

Buhari Sends Striking New Year Messages to Nigerians

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Buhari Sends Striking New Year Messages to Nigerians

Buhari Sends Striking New Year Messages to Nigerians. 

The president of Nigeria, Mohammadu Buhari has sent a very striking message to Nigerians marking theney decade, 2020.

 

According to President Buhari, Today marks a new decade. It is a time of hope, optimism and fresh possibilities.

 

We look forward as a nation to the 2020s as the opportunity to build on the foundations we have laid together on security, diversification of our economy and taking on the curse of corruption.

These are the pledges on which I have been twice elected President and remain the framework for a stable, sustainable and more prosperous future.

Elections are the cornerstone of our democracy. I salute the commitment of the millions who voted in peace last February and of those leaders who contested for office vigorously but fairly, submitting to the authority of the electorate, the Independent National Electoral Commission and judicial process.

 

I understand very well the frustrations our system has in the past triggered. I will be standing down in 2023 and will not be available in any future elections.

But I am determined to help strengthen the electoral process both in Nigeria and across the region, where several ECOWAS members go to the polls this year.

As Commander-in-Chief, my primary concern is the security of the nation and the safety of our citizens. When I assumed office in May 2015 my first task was to rally our neighbours so that we could confront Boko Haram on a coordinated regional basis. Chaos is not a neighbour any of us hope for.

We have been fighting on several fronts: violent extremists, cultists and organised criminal networks.

It has not been easy. But as we are winning the war, we also look to the challenge of winning the peace, the reconstruction of lives, communities and markets. The North East Development Commission will work with local and international stakeholders to help create a new beginning for the North East.

The Federal Government will continue to work with State Governors, neighbouring states and our international partners to tackle the root causes of violent extremism and the networks that help finance and organise terror.

 

Our security forces will receive the best training and modern weaponry, and in turn will be held to the highest standards of professionalism, and respect for human rights.

 

We will use all the human and emerging technological resources available to tackle kidnapping, banditry and armed robbery.

The new Ministry of Police Affairs increased recruitment of officers and the security reforms being introduced will build on what we are already delivering. We will work tirelessly at home and with our allies in support of our policies to protect the security of life and property.

 

Our actions at all times will be governed by the rule of law. At the same time, we shall look always to engage with all well-meaning leaders and citizens of goodwill to promote dialogue, partnership and understanding.

We need a democratic government that can guarantee peace and security to realise the full potential of our ingenious, entrepreneurial and hard-working people. Our policies are designed to promote genuine, balanced growth that delivers jobs and rewards industry.

 

Our new Economic Advisory Council brings together respected and independent thinkers to advise me on a strategy that champions inclusive and balanced growth, and above all fight poverty and safeguard national economic interests.

As we have sat down to celebrate with friends and family over this holiday season, for the first time in a generation our food plates have not all been filled with imports of products we know can easily be produced here at home.

The revolution in agriculture is already a reality in all corners of the country. New agreements with Morocco, Russia and others will help us access on attractive terms the inputs we need to accelerate the transformation in farming that is taking place.

A good example of commitment to this inclusive growth is the signing of the African Continental Free Trade Area and the creation of the National Action Committee to oversee its implementation and ensure the necessary safeguards are in place to allow us to fully capitalise on regional and continental markets.

The joint land border security exercise currently taking place is meant to safeguard Nigeria’s economy and security. No one can doubt that we have been good neighbours and good citizens.

 

We have been the helpers and shock-absorbers of the sub-region but we cannot allow our well-planned economic regeneration plans to be sabotaged. As soon as we are satisfied that the safeguards are adequate, normal cross-border movements will be resumed.

Already, we are making key infrastructure investments to enhance our ease of doing business.

On transportation, we are making significant progress on key roads such as the Second Niger Bridge, Lagos – Ibadan Expressway and the Abuja – Kano highway. 2020 will also see tangible progress on the Lagos to Kano Rail line.

Through Executive Order 007, we are also using alternative funding programmes in collaboration with private sector partners to fix strategic roads such as the Apapa-Oworonshoki Express way. Abuja and Port Harcourt have new international airport terminals, as will Kano and Lagos in 2020. When completed, all these projects will positively impact business operations in the country. These projects are not small and do not come without some temporary disruption; we are doing now what should have been done a long time ago. I thank you for your patience and look forward to the dividends that we and future generations will long enjoy.

Power has been a problem for a generation. We know we need to pick up the pace of progress.

We have solutions to help separate parts of the value chain to work better together. In the past few months, we have engaged extensively with stakeholders to develop a series of comprehensive solutions to improve the reliability and availability of electricity across the country.

 

These solutions include ensuring fiscal sustainability for the sector, increasing both government and private sector investments in the power transmission and distribution segments, improving payment transparency through the deployment of smart meters and ensuring regulatory actions maximise service delivery.it was delivered through Femi Adesina on Twitter

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