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Nigerian Govt’s Plan To Sell National Assets Irresponsible – Atiku

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The campaign organisation of the candidate of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Abubakar Atiku, has described the plan by the Nigerian government to sell some public asset to fund the 2018 budget as irresponsible.

The organisation in a statement on Wednesday likened the decision as selling one’s “family house to take a trip overseas on holiday.”

The government had announced a couple of months ago that it intended to raise N289 billion from the sale of 10 public assets to fund the budget.

But on Wednesday, Mr Atku’s campaign organisation lampooned the decision as ridiculing President Muhammadu Buhari, who had accused the PDP of failing to build public infrastructure in the 16 years it was in power at a lecture in Lagos earlier in the week.

The organisation, which claimed that most of the asset listed for sale were built during successive PDP-led administrations, wondered what asset the government was planning to sell if as the president claimed, the PDP did not build any infrastructure while in power.

The organisation claimed that some of the assets listed for sale were the creation of Mr Atiku, when he was vice-president and head of the Economic Management Committee during the Obasanjo administration.

“His Excellency, Atiku Abubakar, supervised the successful policy of privatisation. Privatisation works because it is a long-term strategy to engender efficiency in the economic system and expand the frontiers of private sector activity. Its primary goal is NOT to raise money for short-term stabilisation of what is clearly a fragile fiscal system. The government’s planned sale of assets will cause long-term pains and only provide short-term gains.”

According to the campaign organisation, rather than sell public assets, what the government needs to devise is alternative means of revenue rather than its almost complete reliance on the proceeds of oil and cutting of recurrent expenditures.

“We knew that such a day would come, which is why His Excellency Atiku Abubakar has on various occasions made it clear that what is needed at this time is fundamentally fiscal restructuring to eliminate our addiction to oil revenues and strengthen our internal revenue generating capacity and a restructuring of the budget in favour of capital spending, the statement explained.

“It makes no sense to sell public assets simply to fund a ‘business-as-usual’ budget that is essentially 70% recurrent. It is irresponsible to part with valuable assets simply to consume the proceeds (Like selling your family house to take a trip overseas on holiday).”

It also tongue-lashed some of the government’s recent fiscal decision which favours spending money on some of its social intervention programmes.

“For instance, last month, the PDP presidential candidate questioned the wisdom behind the Federal Government sharing $322 million Abacha loot to certain Nigerians, only to obtain a $328 million loan from China, allegedly for ICT development.

“Rather than share that money, the Buhari administration ought to have put that $322 million in an escrow account to be used for funding the 2019 budget.

“Also, we recall that $43 million was found in an Ikoyi apartment. While we note the failed promise of the Buhari administration to come clean on who was behind those monies, we make bold to say that those funds should equally have been placed in escrow for use in funding the 2019 budget.”

The campaign organisation added that at the core of agenda of Mr Atiku is the creation of national asset rather than selling them off like the incumbent administration plans to do.

“It is our hope that the Buhari government will accept this patriotic pro bono advice and retrace its step accordingly.”

Sourced From: Premium Times Nigeria

 

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Corona Virus

NIgeria Records 87 New Cases Of COVID-19, Total Infections Now 1,182

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By Abujah Racheal

Nigeria has recorded 87 new cases of the COVID-19, bringing the total infections to 1,182 , according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).

The NCDC, in a tweet via its official handle, said 33 of the new infections were recorded in Lagos, 18 in Borno, 12 in Osun, nine in Katsina, four each in Kano and Ekiti, three each in Edo and Bauchi and one in Imo.

“As at 11:55 pm April 25, there are 1,182 confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported in Nigeria.  The country’s total deaths from the virus now stand at 35, while 222  have been treated and discharged,” it said.

The centre said as at 11:55 pm, April 25, Lagos has 689, FCT-138, Kano-77, Ogun-35, Osun-32, Gombe-30, Katsina-30, Borno-30, Edo-22, Oyo-18, Kwara-11, Akwa Ibom-11, Bauchi-11, Kaduna-10, Ekiti-8 and Ondo-4.

Others are Delta-six, Rivers-three, Jigawa-two, Enugu-two, Niger-two, Abia-two, Zamfara-two,  Sokoto-two, Benue-one, Anambra-one, Adamawa-one, Plateau-one and Imo-one.

Sourced From: News Agency of Nigeria

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Daily Trust

2 Women Crushed To Death On Lagos – Ibadan Expressway

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Two women were crushed to death in a road crash involving a Mack truck and a motorcycle around Lotto, beside NNPC filling station on the Lagos – Ibadan expressway.

The accident occurred around 8:02am on Saturday when the truck marked FST 984 XX lost its brakes and hit the moving motorcycle, killing the women.

The spokesperson of Traffic Compliance and Enforcement Corps, Babatunde Akinbiyi,  confirmed the incident to newsmen in Abeokuta.

”The truck and the motorcycle were both on the outbound lane from Lagos when the crash happened due to break failure on the  part of the truck driver.

“The vehicle and the motorcycle are with the police at the Redeemed Police Station, along with the driver of the truck,” he said.  Akinbiyi explained that the rider of the motorcycle was nowhere to be found after the accident.

He disclosed that  the remains of the deceased had been deposited at the morgue of Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital, Sagamu.

Sourced From: Daily Trust

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Tribune

Mentally-Challenged Man Axes 70-Year-Old Father To Death

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A 37-year-old man said to be mentally-challenged has used an axe to kill his father, aged 70 in Unuchiana Village, Aguata Local Government Area of Anambra State.

Tribune Online learnt that the suspect allegedly axed his father to death in their compound.

Confirming the incident in a statement, the Anambra State police command’s public relations officer, SP Haruna Mohammed, said one Timothy Ezeofor reported that his elder brother, 70-year-old Godwin Ezeofor, was allegedly murdered by his son, Chigorom Ezeofor using an axe.

According to Mohammed, at about 9:45am on Friday, one Mr Timothy Ezeofor of Umuezegoro Kindred, Unuchiana Village, reported at Aguata Police Station that at about 8:00am of same day, his elder brother, Godwin Ezeofor of the same address was murdered by his son, one Chigorom Ezeofor, of the same address using an axe.

He said the complainant alleged that the suspect had been mentally ill for the past eight years.

The police spokesman said following the report, police operatives attached to Aguata Division led by the DPO, CSP Ayeni Oluwadare, mobilised to scene and rushed the victim to the hospital where he was pronounced dead by a medical doctor and the corpse has been deposited at a hospital mortuary for autopsy.

He also said the suspect who “looks insane” had been arrested and taken to the station for investigation to ascertain circumstances surrounding the incident.

Sourced From: Tribune Online

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This Day

COVID-19: Police Arrest Bishop For Defying Lockdown To Protest At Chinese Embassy In Lagos

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By Chiemelie Ezeobi.

The Lagos State Police Command has arrested the General Overseer of Resurrection Praise Ministries for Africa alias Jehovah Sharp Sharp, Archbishop Samson Benjamin, for defying the lockdown order to protest at the Chinese Embassy in Lagos.

Benjamin, the police alleged, led about 100 persons to the Chinese Embassy in Victoria Island to protest the maltreatment of Nigerians in China.

According to the cleric, the Chinese were operating freely in Nigeria despite that COVID-19 started in their country but have chosen to maltreat Nigerians and other blacks in China.

It was gathered that officials of the embassy sent a video clip of the alleged invasion to the police which prompted operatives from Victoria Island Division to move to the scene to effect the arrest.

A police source who spoke on anonymity said the cleric was being detained at the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, (SCIID), Yaba and may be arraigned in court on Wednesday.

In the video, the bishop denied going to the embassy with 100 persons, insisting that he was there by himself to register his displeasure over the ill-treatment of Nigerians in China.

Efforts to reach the spokesman for the state police command, DSP Bala Elkana, proved abortive as he didn’t return the message sent to him as at press time.

 

Sourced From: THISDAYLIVE

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