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House Directs Works Ministry, FERMA to Rehabilitate River Katsina-Ala Bridge



Femi Gbajabiamila as the Speaker of the 9th Assembly

By Orkula Shaagee, Abuja

‎The House of Representatives yesterday called on the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing and the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) to urgently rehabilitate the River Katsina-Ala bridge to avoid its complete collapse and also reconstruct the road from Wukari-Zaki-Biam–Katsina-Ala-Gboko-Aliade-Otukpo-9th Mile to ameliorate the suffering of commuters.

The resolution was consequent upon the adoption of a motion sponsored by Hon. Richard I. Gbande (PDP, Benue).

The House also mandated the Committees on Works and Legislative Compliance (when constituted) to ensure compliance.

While presenting the motion, Hon. Gbande noted that, “River Katsina-Ala bridge is located on trunk A344 road in Katsina-Ala town, the headquarters of Katsina-Ala Local Government Area of Benue State and harbours an important archaeological site where artefacts of the rich Nok culture were discovered;

He also noted that the bridge, which was constructed in 1976 by Sterling Astaldy, an Italian construction company is long overdue for rehabilitation as it poses a serious threat to commuters plying the route which can easily be deduced from the incessant accidents that occur along the route resulting in loss of lives and properties and the deteriorated part of the bridge has become a den for criminals who take cover under the bridge to terrorize the communities of Katsina-Ala Ugbema Junction, Ikowe, Ayua and Abwa.

He informed that Zaki-Biam, the largest yam market in Africa, which is estimated to dispatch, on a daily basis, over a thousand truckloads of yams may be cut off from business due to the sorry state of the bridge.

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2023: Wamakko Leads Sokoto APC Campaign to Sultan for Fatherly Advice




Sen. Aliyu Wamakko (APC -Sokoto North), has led the Sokoto State All Progressives Congress (APC) gubernatorial campaign council to Sultan Sa’ad Abubukar III, for a fatherly advice ahead of the 2023 general elections.

This development is contained in a statement issued to newsmen in Sokoto on Tuesday by Bashar Abubukar, the Special Adviser to Wamakko on Media and Publicity.

According to Abubukar, the campaign council’s visit was in full recognition of the Sultan’s commitment toward peace and security, as well as peaceful coexistence across the state and the country.

He qouted the lawmaker at the APC Campaign rally in Gwadabawa Local Government Area, saying that the visit is in order for the party to get the blessing of the royal father.

“We were at the place to seek for the Sultan Fatherly and royal advice, which he has concurred with the good plan rolled out by our party,” Wamakko said.

The statement also quoted Alhaji Maigari Dingyadi, the Minister of Police Affairs, calling on people of Sokoto East Senatorial Zone, to come out en masse during the polls to vote for APC.

Dingyadi, who is the Director-General of state campaign council, said that voting for APC candidates will bring succour and the needed dividends of democracy to the people of the state.

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Also speaking, the Senate Leader, Sen. Ibrahim Gobir (APC-Sokoto East), said APC is the party to beat in the 2023 elections.

“Therefore, people of the state should come out massively to depend their votes to ensure the party emerge victorious during the polls,” he said.

The governorship candidate, Alhaji Ahmad Aliyu, promised to ensure people’s friendly government that would enhanced the living standard of the general population. (NAN)

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NBTE Develops 60 Curricula for HND, ND, Others




The National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) has developed over 60 new and reviewed curricula of the National Diploma (ND), and the Higher National Diploma (HND) curricula.

Specifically reviewed are the National Occupational Standards (NOS) and Open, Distance and Flexible e-Learning (ODFeL) Courseware in Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET).

Executive Secretary of NBTE, Prof.

Idris Bugaje, announced this at the public presentation of the new and reviewed ND, HND curricula, NOS and ODFeL in Abuja yesterday.

Bugaje said that the new and reviewed curricula was long overdue as they would help to provide general guide to institutions in determining the body of knowledge and skills, while also addressing the employability problems in the country.

According to him, the number of developed regulatory instruments to be unveiled represent just about 15 per cent of the total on offer.

He, therefore, stressed the need for the board to keep developing and reviewing more to bring them to national and international standards

“The board has a combined total of over 350 curricula, NOS and ODFEL course-ware in the Nigerian TVET system.

“The notable quality of these curricula is that they are industry-driven; developed and/or reviewed with the full participation of the Nigerian industries to address the employability problem that are often encountered by our diplomats upon graduation.

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“The problem of employers of labour incurring additional cost to retrain our products in order to fit into their operation is hopefully being solved.

” The peculiar type of training that should be given to Polytechnic and Monotechnic students in line with the national objective of encouraging youths economic self-reliance, entrepreneurship as a programme has, more than ever before, become one of the key features of the reviewed curricula,” he said.

He listed some of the new and reviewed curricula as ND/HND in Petroleum and Gas Processing Engineering, Transport, Planning and Management, Strategic Communication and Media Studies, Water Sanitation and Hygiene and Organic Agricultural Technology.

He also listed Homeland Security, Articulated Vehicle Driving, Construction Equipment Operation and Traditional and Herbal Hygiene as part of the new and reviewed NOS for skill training.

Bugaje added that the National Council on Establishment (NCE) at its last meeting in Yola, approved the inclusion of some of these TVET courses into the schemes of service of the Federation, particularly the National Innovation Diploma (NID).

He said that this had made two African countries to show interest in the quality of the country”s system with Rwanda signing Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) while Morocco was also in line to do so.

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The executive secretary, however, called on stakeholders and the government for continuous support in ensuring proper funding of the Skills Sector Council (SSC)  to drive the skill agenda forward.

Meanwhile, the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu said the new development would mark the departure from the old practice where subject experts develop or review curricula without taking cognisance of the expectations of employers of labour.

Adamu, who was represented by the Director of Polytechnic Education and Allied Institutions, Dr Ejeh Usman, said the curricula would no doubt instill fresh ideas in the delivery and learning processes.

” I understand over 30 ND/HND curricula, 16 NOS and 18 Course-ware were either developed or reviewed in the last one and a half years, with the active involvement of the industry and the Organised Private Sector (OPS).

“This is a marked departure from the old practice where subject experts develop/review curricula without taking cognisance of the expectations of employers of labour, thus, making products of TVET institutions either unemployable or costing employers fortunes to retrain.

“It is in this regard that I consider the development of new curricula, especially in new and emerging fields, and the review of old ones, most of which have become obsolete, as very apt.

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“Specifically, it is worthy of note that some of the NOS that were reviewed were first developed in 1963 with the support of the International Labour Organisation (ILO). Since then, there was no effort to review them,” he said.

He said that usually curricula were supposed to be reviewed at most every five years, but some were now being reviewed after 20 years.

He said this called for serious efforts by all stakeholders, including TETFund, to ensure the review was carried out on time.

Responding, the Chairman of Council of Heads of Polytechnics and Colleges if Technology (COHEADS), Dr Samuel Kalagbor promised to ensure the full implementation of the new and reviewed curricula and expand the frontier of students training.

In attendance at the occasion were the Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, Registrar NABTEB, Prof. Ifeoma Isiugo-Abanihe and the Executive Secretary, NCCE, Prof. Paulinus Okwelle, among others. (NAN)

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Suspected Herdsmen Militia Kills DPO in Benue




From David Torough, Makurdi

Gunmen suspected to be Fulani Herdsmen have reportedly ambushed and killed the Divisional Police Officer (DPO), SP. Mamud Abubakar of Naka Division in Benue state.

According to a statement by police PPRO in the state, SP. Anene Sewuese Catherine , “On 31/1/2023 at about 1330hrs information was received at Naka Police Division that armed men blocked Makurdi-Naka road and people were running back to Naka town for safety.


“The Divisional Police Officer (DPO) of Naka Police Division, SP. Mamud Abubakar mobilized a team and moved to the scene. On sighting the police vehicle, the hoodlums engaged them in a gun duel that lasted until the police were able to suppress these hoodlum and rescue people that were held at the road, however, the DPO who led the team sustained gunshot injuries and was rushed to General Hospital Naka where he was eventually confirmed dead.

“The Commissioner of Police, CP. Wale Abass, who received this unfortunate information with dismay stated that Mamud paid the supreme price with his life after doing so much to secure the people of Gwer-west Local Government Area. He prayed that Almighty God will grant the DPO eternal rest.

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“After commiserating with the family of the fallen hero, the CP ordered the immediate deployment of tactical units to be led by CSP. Justin Gberindyer  to the area, to bring perpetrators of this act to book,  prevent further breakdown of law and order, while ensuring that Makurdi -Naka road is accessible.

“He assured the good people of Gwer-west LGA of his commitment to secure them and urged them to remain calm and assist the police with information in dealing with these armed men”. The statement partly read.

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