By Mathew Dadiya, Abuja
The Presidential Initiative on Continuous Audit (PICA) in the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, has commenced a mop up verification exercise for former workers of the defunct Nigeria Airways, who were not audited during the previous exercise.
The Ministry has in September 2018, conducted a similar exercise in the six geo-political zones and were paid 50 percent of their severance entitlements in line with the directive of President Buhari.
The latest verification, is holding simultaneously in Lagos and Kano, and is meant to ensure that all eligible beneficiaries are audited and paid off their entitlements.
The Permanent Secretary, Special Duties in the Ministry, Dr. Mohammed Dikwa, represented by the Deputy Director Procurement, Mr. Izerebu Iyugun John, stated that, the exercise was in furtherance of the government’s commitment to ensure that all former workers of the defunct airways got their benefits.
Dikwa assured the ex-workers at the two centres that the Federal Government was committed to paying their dues once they were audited, and advised them to cooperate with the verifiers and ensure that they provided all the documents required for the exercise.
Daily Asset recalls that the Nigeria Airways was liquidated in 2004, without its almost 6,000 workers being paid any entitlements.
However, following continued agitations by the workers for their entitlements, President Muhammadu Buhari, in 2018, approved that all audited staff of the organization should be paid 50% of their severance entitlements.
While thanking President Muhammadu Buhari for this bold and commendable step, the Secretary General of Nigeria Airways Pensioners Union, Comrade Segun Adeleke, said his members will ever remain grateful to the President for coming to the rescue of the ex-Nigerian Airways workers, who had lost hope of receiving anything from the government.
Similarly, the National Vice Chairman of the Union (North), Comrade Mohammed Adamu, thanked the Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning for bringing the plights of his members to Mr. President.
Comrade Adamu also noted that only about 500 of the ex-Airways workers would be audited in the mop up as most of all the eligible workers had been audited and paid 50% of their severance package after the earlier exercise in September, last year.
Passengers Stranded as NLC Locks Down Abuja Airport
By Idris Umar Feta Abuja
Many air travellers were left stranded following the closure of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, by officials of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) on Thursday.
A combined team of NLC and Trade Union Congress (TUC) blocked both the entry and exit ways of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport.
The protest was part of the series of actions that the two labour unions say they would zero in on Imo, following the attack on the NLC president, Joe Ajaero.
The NLC and TUC had on Tuesday, declared a nationwide strike, which will commence on Tuesday, November 14, due to the face-off with the Imo State Government.
Soludo Names Airport After Achebe
Anambra State Governor, Professor Charles Soludo has renamed the state’s International Passenger and Cargo Airport after the late Chinua Achebe, a novelist, to immortalise him for making an indelible mark on the history of human civilisation.
Achebe a native of Ogidi in Idemili North Local Government Area of the state, died on March 21, 2013, at age 82, in Boston, Massachusetts.
Soludo said this on Sunday in Awka at the Independence Day parade, to mark Nigeria’s 63rd anniversary, describing Achebe as an example of Africa’s unsung hero.
“Achebe, a Nigerian novelist, poet, and critic, gave the African literature an identity and a voice and he rightly reconstructed and refined the identify of the people,” he said.
The governor said that Achebe was not just an Anambra hero nor a Nigerian hero, but an African and global hero and yet largely unsung at home.
He said that henceforth, the state shall be deliberate in fishing out and celebrating its largely unsung heroes as motivation to children and youths.
“Unfortunately, some people wrongly think of legacies in terms of brick and mortar. Legacy is about impact on human life and human civilisation.
“Achebe was not a president or governor or military. He did not build bridges or roads or airports but he will outlive most presidents, governors and ministers in our minds.
“Achebe rejected Nigeria’s national honours twice in protest against what he perceived as injustice to his home state Anambra. Today, Anambra will finally honour him.
“After wide consultations, there is a broad consensus that no one is more deserving to be named after the first airport in Anambra than Anambra’s all-time greatest literary gift to the world, Chinua Achebe.
“Consequently, we will rename the Anambra International Cargo and Passenger Airport, Umueri, to Chinua Achebe International Airport, Umueri.
“Yes, it has to be an international airport, and we hope to work with the Federal Government to give full effect to its international status,” he said.
Soludo urged Nigerians to be intentional about making the project Nigeria work and believe in the potential greatness of the country.
“We have muddled through the past 63 years with squandered opportunities and yet with the promise of potential greatness
“No country or nation is a perfect. Every nation continues to struggle in its match to a more perfect union. The path to stability, growth and sustainability will be challenging as there are no quick fixes.
“But all of us must collectively think and work Nigeria out of the current challenges. We have no other country but Nigeria, and we must make it to work for everyone, “he said.
The governor said his administration was founded on the true progressive agenda and would continue to create the enabling environment for residents to thrive and survive.
The police, paramilitary organisations and students from different schools took part in the parade. (NAN)
Abiodun flags off Aviation Village construction
Abiodun flags off Aviation Village construction
Gov. Dapo Abiodun of Ogun on Tuesday flagged off the construction of 200 units of two-bedroom expanded bungalows, at the Gateway Aviation Village, Iperu in Ikenne Local Government Area of the state.
The governor, represented by his Special Adviser on Housing, Jagunmolu Omoniyi, said the project would herald the creation of a new city in the town and serve the entire Remo cluster and the state in general.
He said the project was divided into two phases, with the first 100 units to be ready in six months.
According to the governor, the siting of the housing scheme would serve institutions and people who will make use of the Gateway Agro-Cargo Airport.
Abiodun noted that government agencies like the Customs, the Nigerian Air Force and other corporate bodies had already indicated interest in the airport.
He said that the project would create jobs for about 5,000 artisans of various skills in the course of execution.
“This is the people’s project. This housing scheme will complement the airport and serve those who will work in this town.
“I can assure you that within two years, the story of this town will change. We will not engage outsiders to work in this estate, but the people of this town.
“We have done similar projects at Kemta, Idi-Aba and Kobape. The siting of similar housing estate has changed the landscape of Kobape, which was a village before, to a lively city,” he said.
The governor called on prospective buyers to start the process by obtaining their forms, charging the people to support and take ownership of the project for the development of the town.
In his remarks, the Chairman of Ikenne Local Government Area, Mr Segun Ogunleye, expressed gratitude to the governor, saying with the siting of the housing estate and the cargo airport, the development of the town was assured.(NAN)
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