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Breaking news: Buhari Reshuffles Cabinet, Sacks Two Ministers

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By Laide Akinboade, Abuja

President Muhammadu Buhari has sacked two ministers from his cabinet.
They are the Ministers of Agriculture, Mohammed Sabo Nanono and his Power counterpart, Engineer Saleh Mamman.
Special Adviser to the President (Media & Publicity), Femi Adesina, announced this on Wednesday.


He said the Minister of Environment, Mohammed Abubakar has been redeployed to the Ministry of Agriculture, while the
Minister of State for Works, Engineer Abubakar Aliyu has been redeployed to take over as Minister of Power.

He said the exercise will continue to fill vacancies as prescribed in the constitution.

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Lagos Residents Decry Non-implementation of free Antenatal, Delivery Services 

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Some residents of Lagos have decried the non-implementation of the state government’s free antenatal and child delivery services at some General Hospitals and Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCs) in the state.

The residents spoke in separate interviews on Sunday in Lagos.

Reports says that Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, had, during a media chat on Feb.

22,  announced sweeping interventions which the state would be implementing in order to reduce the effects of the current economic hardship on its citizens.

On health, Sanwo-Olu  reintroduced free child delivery programme for expectant mothers in all the state-owned General Hospitals and special maternity centres.

According to the governor, the state government will take up the cost of the child delivery, including caesarean section.

It would also reduce the cost of some certain drugs, such as hypertension medication.

The residents said that the free antenatal and child delivery services was a lip-service, stressing that the hospitals charged for every service rendered.

Mrs Funmilayo Olatunji, a trader who delivered at Ikorodu Health Centre, Ita-Elewa, said that delivery wasn’t free at the centre.

“I had normal delivery at the centre in February 2024. We paid N8,000 for child delivery fees, N10,500 for vaginal tear, and a cartoon of Maltina.

“I’m surprised to hear that the child delivery service was meant to be free at government facilities because the reverse was my experience,” she said.

Similarly, Mr Michael Adebiyi, whose wife delivered at Ikorodu General Hospital, Ebute, said he spent over N250,000 for caesarean section delivery and consumables at the hospital.

“My wife gave birth in February, and we paid for everything needed for the delivery from blood to caesarean section charges.

“Nothing was free; in fact, I’m still owing some people because I had to run around to source for the money.

“I was happy when I heard last year that expectant mothers would enjoy free child delivery services at government health facilities as part of relief measures to ease economic burden on families.

“The government should put mechanism in place to ensure that policies made truly impact on the lives of citizens,” he said.

Also, Mrs Stella Nwosu, a hairstylist, said that she switched to a trado-medical centre for antenatal and child delivery due to the high service charges.

“Sometimes in September, I went to Amuwo-Odofin General Hospital to register for antenatal service and was told to pay ₦30,000.

“We couldn’t afford it because every child care item is expensive and to feed is even a challenge. My mother-in-law took me to a traditional birth attendant, and I delivered my baby there,” she said.

A healthcare worker, who pleaded anonymity, said that many pregnant women pay out-of-pocket for antenatal and delivery services at many government-owned facilities.

She opined that the programme required improved planning, compliance monitoring, and management for sustainability.

The healthcare worker noted that the economic situation of the country, which led to increased cost of products, especially medicines and healthcare services, would worsen the plight of couples with unplanned pregnancy.

She advised couples to take smart decisions, stressing that child care was a lifelong socio-economic experience that extends beyond access to free antenatal and child delivery services.

NAN reports that Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, also in 2023, during the state’s Security Council meeting on July 31, 2023, had directed General Hospitals and Primary Health Care Centres to offer free antenatal care and child delivery services.

This is part of relief measures to ease the burden of the fuel subsidy removal.

The medical intervention will cover the cost of antenatal care, including the cost of registration and ANC clinics, as well as normal and cesarean section child delivery services.

It also seeks to increase access to quality maternal and child health services in line with the state government’s Universal Health Coverage attainment drive. (NAN)

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Zamfara Govt. Disburses N2.3bn Gratuity to 1,746 Retirees

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Zamfara Government says it has disbursed over N2.3 billion as gratuity to 1,746 retired civil servants in the state.

Sulaiman Idris, Senior Special Assistant to Gov. Dauda Lawal on Media and Publicity, disclosed this in a statement issued to Newsmen in Gusau on Sunday.

İdris said that a total of 1,746 state and local government retirees in the state had received over N2.

3 billion.

“We have verified 3,079 retirees in an effort to pay the backlog of gratuity owed by the previous administrations.

“Payment for the second tranche of verified pensioners’ gratuity has already commenced on Friday, March 1.

“A total of 413 verified retirees from the state civil service have been paid the sum of N682.

2 million,” he said.

Idris further stated that payment of the second tranche of verified local government retirees had also commenced.

“A total of 403 verified pensioners from the local government areas amounting to N449.6 have been paid,” the governor’s aide said. (NAN)

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Police Arrest 15 Suspects over Warehouse Vandalism in Abuja

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The Police Command in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) said it has arrested 15 suspects in connection with the vandalism of a warehouse belonging to the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCTA) in Abuja.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the FCT,  SP Josephine Adeh, said this in a statement on Sunday in Abuja.

She said two security guards employed by the warehouse management were among the suspects, arrested over the vandalism of the warehouse in Tasha area of Abuja.

Adeh said 26 bags of maize, five Motorcycles and some vandalised aluminum roofing sheets were recovered from the suspects.

“The Police Command in the FCT is fully informed about the impulsive attack on Agric Department Strategic food store located at Tasha area of Abuja, on March 3.

“The attack has resulted to the vandalism and looting of the warehouse.

“The command wishes to state that normalcy has since, been restored to the area and the situation, under control,” she said.

The Agricultural and Rural Development Secretariat of the FCTA had earlier, confirmed the looting of its warehouse on Sunday, by some hoodlums. (NAN)

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