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Alia Launches Fire Safety Project, 10,000 Youths to Benefit

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From Attah Ede, Makurdi

The Benue State Government has commenced the distribution of fire extinguishers and enforcement of its usage in homes and public places across the State.

Governor Hyacinth Alia, while launching the project on Sunday in Makurdi, said ‘The Nigeria Fire Extinguisher Sticker (NFES)’ project was meant to control fire and ensure prompt response to any fire incident.

Alia explained that the project has provision for the servicing of fire extinguishers as part of efforts to not only ensure safety, but also generate employment.

Represented by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Prof Joseph Alakali, Alia said over 10,000 sustainable employment would be provided under the project.

“It will control situations in which fire extinguishers fail at point of usage. Enable arrest and prosecution of fake and wicked servicing vendors who fill fire extinguisher cylinders with cassava flour which increases fire instead of quenching it at the most critical point of usage.

“It will prevent the use of fire extinguisher cylinders for drug trafficking, terrorism and other crime.

“The process of distribution, servicing and enforcement will provide over 10,000 sustainable employment opportunities. The service will boost the state Internally-generated revenue and block economic loopholes,” he said.

The governor described the project as another rebirth and retooling of the State Fire Service to effectively deliver its mandate of fire prevention, response and investigation.

“To achieve this task, we have reached out to stakeholders in every sector of which fire safety management is one.

As universally said and agreed ‘’Safety First’’. The fire safety sector is one of the most critical sectors of the state and national economy.

“Fire vulnerability of any society grows directly proportional to its development. As your income increases, so your choice of furniture and electronics increases.

“Similarly, our society has a lot of fake electronic, electrical cables, low quality cooking gas cylinders and a lot of other fake products including fire extinguishers. These fake products can be difficult to distinguish from the original ones in the market.

“As a fulfilment of my promise during election and delivery of practical solutions towards the safety of our people, today Benue State is breaking another record of being the first state in Nigeria to flag-off Nigeria Fire Extinguisher Sticker (NFES) project.” he said

National Coordinator, Nigeria Fire Extinguisher Sticker (NFES) concessionaire and N- Alert Technical partner, Ministry of Interior, Benson Olatunji, said the project would be launched in all States and the FCT.

Olatunji said Benue State was chosen to pioneer the project in collaboration with the state Bureau of Entrepreneurship and Wealth Creation, the Bureau of Internal Affairs (Fire Department Unit), and Office of the Special Adviser on Security.

“The objective of the programme is to sensitize the public on the importance of the multiple uses of fire extinguishers.

“The project is a practical demonstration of the whole societal approach to national strategy involving all government security outfits to collaborate to solve internal security and public safety problems.

“Amongst the many benefits of the programme, is the job creation angle where over 1,200 Benue youth were shortlisted and employed immediately as ad-hoc staff who will be employed as career fire service officers at the end of their training.

“Also pertinent to note is that this is the first programme ever to employ such a large number of Benue indigenes across the 23 Local Government Areas in a single exercise in the State,” he said.

He said the project would also boost the Internally-generated revenue of the State with annual estimated projections of over N1.6 billion.

According to him, the programme would also boost inter and intra governmental collaboration between the Federal and State Governments.

He commended the governor for his total support for the project.

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Kidnaping: Police in Adamawa Nab 3 Suspects, Rescue 16-yr-old Female Victim

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The Police Command in Adamawa, says its operatives, in collaboration with Hunters in Gombi Local Government Area (LGA), have arrested three suspected kidnappers, and rescued a 16 year-old female victim.

SP Suleiman Nguroje, the command’s spokesperson, who disclosed this in a statement in Yola on Wednesday, said the operation was carried out by its Crack Squad.

Nguroje said that the operation was launched following a tip-off, and the operatives stormed a kidnapping den at Fotta village of Gombi.

“The suspects were all arrested at a certain house in a remote side of Fotta Village, where they camped their kidnapped female victim and demanded N8,000,000 ransom.

He said the victim, name withheld, was kidnapped three days ago, from Buma Village, Shani LGA of Borno State.

According to the statement, the victim is currently receiving medical attention at an undisclosed health facility.

Nguroje stated that the Commissioner of Police, CP Dankombo Morris, had assured the public that there would be no hiding place for criminals as they would be fished out from anywhere within the state.

He called on members of the public to give timely information to the Police, especially those with questionable character. (NAN)

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Average Price Per Litre of Kerosene Stood at N1,329.53 in January – NBS

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The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) says the average price of a litre of kerosene dropped from N1,362.27
in December 2023 to N1,329.53 in January 2024.

This is contained in the Bureau’s “Kerosene Price Watch’’ for January 2024 released on Wednesday in Abuja.

The report said the January price represented a 2.

40 per cent decrease compared to what was obtained in December.

The NBS said the average price per litre of kerosene increased on a year-on-year basis by 15.

27 per cent from N1,153.40 recorded in January 2023 to N1,329.53 in January 2024.

On state profile analysis, the report showed that Kaduna recorded the highest average price of N1,833.

33 per litre of kerosene in January, followed by Benue at N1,766.67 and Niger at N1,703.70.

“On the other hand, the lowest price was recorded in Bayelsa at N969.70, followed by Rivers at N1,057.69 and Kwara atN1,066.67.”

The NBS said the analysis further showed that the North-Central recorded the highest average retail price per litre of Kerosene at N1,479.10, followed by the North-East at N1,381.94.

It said the South-South recorded the lowest average retail price per litre of kerosene at N1,225.83.

The report said the average retail price per gallon of Kerosene paid by consumers in January 2024 was N4, 870.83, indicating a 7.53 per cent increase from N4,529.92 recorded in December 2023.

“On a year-on-year basis, the average price per gallon of kerosene increased by 25.34 per cent from N3, 886.11 recorded in January 2023.

On state profile analysis, it showed that Adamawa recorded the highest average retail price at N6,083.33 per gallon of kerosene, followed by Bauchi at N5,800.00 and Kano at N5,777.78.

On the other hand, the report said Delta recorded the lowest price at N4,000.00, followed by Ondo and Enugu at N4,398.03 and N4,409.05, respectively.

Analysis by zone showed that the North-East recorded the highest average price per gallon of Kerosene at N5,526.39, followed by the North- West at N5,062.78.

“The South-East recorded the lowest average price per gallon of kerosene at N4,508.51,” the NBS said.(NAN)

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Protest: DSS Urges Labour to Embrace Dialogue

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The Department of State Services (DSS) has urged  the organised labour to embrace dialogue and negotiation against its planned protest slated for Feb. 27 and Feb. 28.

Dr Peter Afunanya, the Director of Public Relations and Strategic Communications of the DSS,  made the call in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja.

He said the service recognised protest as the legitimate right of the labour movement but call on the body to shelve the planned  action in the interest of peace and public order.

“The attention of the DSS has been drawn to plans by sections of the organised labour to stage protests between Feb.

27 and Feb.  28 in parts of the country over sundry economic issues.

“The DSS appeals to labour  to go after dialogue and negotiation rather than engaging in conducts that can heighten tensions.

“More so,  the service is aware that some elements are planning to use the opportunity of the protest to foment crisis and by extension, widespread violence,” he said.

He said the protest, without doubt, would worsen the socio-economic situation across the country.

According to him, it is common knowledge that all levels of government are striving to ameliorate the prevailing economic condition and as such, should be given a benefit of the doubt.

He said appropriate authorities were working assiduously with a spectrum of stakeholders to fashion out modalities to address the current difficulties.

Afunanya urged citizens to recognise that what remained unsolved in peace time, would not be attained in war-time, adding that everyone would be casualty in time of trouble.

“Ongoing wars in the global scene is a stark reminder of their catastrophic repercussions on the affected countries’ domestic environments thus, the critical need to protect and maintain our internal stability and unity.

“Those exploiting the fault lines in the country need to have a rethink as resort to negativities will endanger our peaceful coexistence with dire consequences.

“Parents and guardians are implored to exert authority in guiding their children and wards from inimical acts capable of jeopardising public safety and harmony,” he added.

He called on all sectors, including political parties, opposition groups, religious and traditional institutions, civil society and non-governmental bodies to eschew violence and demonstrate leadership and statesmanship in the current challenging times.

According to him, making political capital out of the current situation or involving in divisive utterances at a time like this, will be of no benefit to any peace-loving Nigerian.

Afunanya enjoined citizens to be vigilant and not allow fifth columnists and hostile forces or agents to use them to destabilise the peace of the nation. (NAN)

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