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Fuel Subsidy: Doctors in Bayelsa Begin Talks on Health Effects

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From Mike Tayese, Yenagoa

The Bayelsa State Branch of the Nigerian Medical Association has commenced discussions on the effects of fuel subsidy on ensuring effective medical care in the state, in line with its 27th annual general meeting.

As part of their activities during the AGM, the doctors organized a Unity Walk that commenced from Ekeki Motor Park and culminated at the Samson Siasia stadium in Yenagoa.

During a press conference at the Samson Siasia Sport Complex, the state chairman of NMA, Dr.

Tombra Koroye, stated that starting the AGM/Scientific Conference with a Unity Walk was aimed at fostering unity among doctors in addressing health-related issues.

He also highlighted that the sporting activities were intended to promote physical and mental well-being. “As we walk down the street, we are also sensitizing people about our activities during the week-long program. Later in the day, we will continue with various games,” Dr. Koroye said.

The event will feature four teams participating in different games, including the Federal Medical Center Yenagoa, Niger Delta University, Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital, private practitioners, and the Ministry of Health and Hospital Management Board.

Dr. Koroye elaborated on the upcoming events, stating, “We will compete in 100, 200, 400 meters, and relay races. Day three will be dedicated to sports such as football, volleyball, basketball, squabble, chess, table tennis, draught, among others.”

Other activities in the program include a free medical outreach in Sampou Community, providing comprehensive medical services to the residents. “We will provide consultations, dental services for those with teeth problems, glasses for those with vision issues, and routine immunization services. Additionally, we will distribute palliatives, mosquito nets, and other health supplies to the Sampou Community,” he added.

Day four will feature the opening ceremony, which is the main day, at the state Banquet Hall. Prof. Brisibe will deliver a lecture on the theme: “Impact Of Fuel Subsidy Removal On Effective Health Care Delivery in Bayelsa State.” There will also be a sub-topic on Artificial Intelligence presented by Prof. Damian Ogoina, focusing on its application in healthcare. Another sub-theme on Health Insurance will be handled by the Executive Secretary of BHIS, Dr. Zuobeni Agada, discussing Bayelsa State’s Health Insurance Scheme.

On Saturday, the doctors will host a Dinner/Award night to honor those who have made significant contributions to the medical field. The week’s activities will culminate in a Thanksgiving service at St. Mathias Church on Sunday.

Dr. Koroye emphasized that the conference aims to educate the public and raise awareness about crucial issues so that policymakers can take appropriate actions to improve healthcare delivery for the common man in the state. He also expressed the desire to showcase the Nigerian Medical Association Bayelsa State’s active role in promoting public health and contributing to the betterment of society.

NEWS

Alleged Defilement: Businessman Docked for Failing to Produce Suspect

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Court Sentences Applicant to 6 Months in Prison for Stealing Cell Phone
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A businessman, Robert Makolo on Monday appeared before an Ikeja Chief Magistrates’ Court, for failing to produce a suspect he stood surety for in a case of defilement.

Makolo had promised to produce the suspect, John, who is his brother in court by the adjourned date.

The Magistrate Mr Lateef Owolabi, adjourned the case until May 30 for mention and to enable the defendant produce the suspect.

Reports says that Makolo had earlier been arraigned on Jan.

22 and stood trial on a two- count charge of conspiracy and perversion of justice.

He had pleaded not guilty.

Magistrate Owolabi, granted the defendant bail in the sum of N200,000 with two sureties in like sum who must produce evidence of 3 years tax payment to the Lagos State Government.

He said that one of the sureties must be a blood relative.

The prosecutor, SP Josephine Ikhayere had told the court that Makolo stood in as surety on  Nov 16, 2023 at the Anthony Police Station.

Ikhayere alleged that Makolo stood as a surety for his brother Paul, who was involved in a case of defilement.

She said the defendant promised to produce his brother the suspect anytime his presence was required at the police station until the case is finally disposed of.

She said that the defendant undertook to produce the suspect on Nov. 30, 2023 but failed.

The prosecutor said that the section contravene the provisions of Section 97 and 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos.(NAN)

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Education

Minimum Entry age to Tertiary Institutions18 Years – FG

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The Federal Government has directed that admission to tertiary institutions should not be given to candidates less than 18 years.

The Minister of Education, Prof. Tahir Mamman gave the directive on Monday during a monitoring exercise of the ongoing 2024 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) in Bwari, Federal Capital Territory.

He decried the activities of some parent, who were pressuring their underage students to get admissions into tertiary institutions,

The minister said that the 18-year benchmark is in line with the 6-3-3-4 system of education.

“The minimum age of entry into the University is 18, but we have seen students who are 15, 16 years going in for the entrance examination.

“Parents should be encouraged not to push there wards too much. Mostly, it is the pressure of parents that is causing this.

“We are going to look at this development because the candidates are too young to understand what the whole university education is all about.

“This is the period when children migrate from controlled to uncontrolled environment; when they are in charge of their own affairs.

“But, if they are too young, they won’t be able to manage properly. I think that is part of what we are seeing in the Universities today,” he said.

On skill acquisition for those who will not be able to gain admissions into tertiary institutions, Mamman said the ministry is taking skills to pupils from primary school.

“ In overall, it is 20 per cent that can be admitted into the University, Polytechnic and Colleges of Education system.

“So, where will the 80 per cent go to? That is why the issue of skills acquisition is very important.

“Any student who is unable to proceed to tertiary institutions should be able to have a meaningful life after primary and secondary school’s education and the only solution to this is skill acquisition,” he said.

Corroborating the minister’s position on the benchmark of 18 years for admission to tertiary institution, the JAMB spokesperson, Dr Fabian Benjamin said 18 years is the is in line with the 6-3-3-4 education system.

The Minister of State for Education, Dr Yusuf Sununu who was in the monitoring team applauded the conduct of the 2024 UTME, particularly, the introduction of online examinations as a way of checking malpractices.

He said the Computer Based Test (CBT) had reduced examination malpractices to the barest minimum.

Sununu commended the Board for setting simple but high standard for the examination. (NAN)

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NEWS

EFCC Arraigns Businessman for Allegedly Tampering with Forfeited Property

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Monday arraigned a businessman, Ifeanyi Bosah-Reginald, before an Ikeja Special Offences Court for allegedly tampering with forfeited property.
Reports says that Bosah-Reginald was arraigned on a count charge alongside Magnificat Homes & Leisure Ltd.

 and fifth Neighborhood Management Ltd.

The EFCC alleged that the defendant ran foul of the offence of dealing with forfeited property without authorisation contrary to Section 12(1) of the EFCC (Establishment) Act 2004.

The defendant, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
The EFCC Counsel, Mr Babatunde Sonoiki, thereafter applied to the court that the defendant should be kept in appropriate custody and also  asked for a trial date.

According to the EFCC, the defendant was alleged to have trespassed property of one  Jokotade Tade Estate Resources Ltd. and that of one Mrs Foloshade Ogundare.
The EFCC said the property, a subject of forfeited order in suit ID/2168/2015, was said to be measuring about 10,687 hectares, situated at Sangotedo Lekki, Lagos State.
It said the property had been forfeited to the Federal Government based on the interim forfeiture order of the court of competent jurisdiction.
Justice Rahman Oshodi ordered the defendant to be remanded in Kirikiri Correctional Centre.
The judge, however, adjourned the case until  May 31 for commencement of trial. (NAN)

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