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Nigerian Army Retires, Replaces 53 Units’ Colours, Issues 28 New ones

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The Nigerian Army on Thursday conducted a historic trooping and presentation of colours parade, retiring and replacing 53 units’ regimental colours and issued 28 new ones for newly established units.

The ceremony was conducted by the President, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, President Muhammadu Buhari, in line with military tradition across the globe.

Historically, the British colonial authority was the first to issue the first colours to then Nigerian Recruitment Training Centre, now Depot Nigerian Army located in Zaria, which was established on Aug.

1, 1924, under the command of Maj. Hassar, then a British Officer.

According to the Nigerian history, there is difference between normal flags and military colours.

“Presentation of colours is a rallying point for troops and match location of the commanders in a better view.

“Eligibility of units to receive colours is another milestone as colours are regarded with great reverence.

“Regimental colours are awarded to formations and units after their formation and are retired when the formation or unit becomes defunct as a result of organization or structural changes.

“Colours are retired ceremoniously where the entire parade will give a final compliment to the colours.”

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that trooping and presentation of colours parade is conducted when retiring the old colours of a regiment/unit and presenting the regiment/unit with a new one.

It entails marching/trooping the old colours past the formed up soldiers of the regiment/unit, retiring the colours, presenting the new colours to the regiment/unit and then consecrating the new colours.

It is usually conducted once in 15 to 20 years as desired by country’s armed forces but the last time such a parade was conducted in Nigeria was in 2007 when 32 units/regiments were issued with new colours.

While commenting on the event, the Director, Army Public Relations, Brig.-Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, who was is anchor of the event, said that colours of several units in the army had either been damaged or worn out since 2007.

Nwachukwu said that several units had also been established an operationalised and deserving of new colours.

According to him, these factors necessitated the approval by the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Faruk Yahaya, for the conduct of the 2023 trooping and presentation of colours parade.

NAN reports that the event involved trooping and retiring of old colours, presentation of new colours, march past, blessing of the colours by the spiritual leaders from the army and presentation of commemorative coin among others.

The event was also graced by the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, members of the federal executive council, traditional rulers, services chiefs and members of the diplomatic community. (NAN)

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Group Urges Gov. Kefas to Probe Alleged Diversion of FG Palliatives

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A group, Taraba Concerned Citizens (TCC), has urged Gov. Agbu Kefas, to investigate alleged diversion of Federal Government (FG) palliatives to 16 local government areas (LGAs) and two development areas of the state.

The group, through its coordinator, Mr Timothy Gayus, and the secretary, Hamisu Salejo, made the call while speaking to newsmen in Jalingo on Sunday.

TCC called on Kefas to probe the local government council chairmen saddled with the responsibility of distributing the palliatives to the vulnerable.

Reports says that there have been widespread allegations of diversion of food palliatives sent to Taraba by the Federal Government, to cushion the effects of the economic hardship.

The items include bags of rice, maize, sorghum, garri and fertilisers, which were allegedly found on sale in major markets in the state.

“We demand to know why the palliatives meant to be distributed free to the masses have dominated all the major markets in the state without getting to the locals.

“Our question is that who sold them to the marketers? The palliatives were given to the state to cushion the present hardship the people are passing through, and not to be sold.

“The people are hungry, but the local government council chairmen chose to sell the palliatives.

“The people behind the diversion of the palliatives must be exposed and made to face the wrath of the law, in order to serve as deterrence to others,” the group said.

When contacted by some of the journalists on phone, Mr Saviour Nokun, Commissioner for Humanitarian Affairs and Special Duties, said that it was the LGAs that first got the allocations.

Nokun assured that the allegations would be investigated and the culprits brought to book.

“Due to widespread outcry of alleged diversion of the commodities, I personally visited the Jalingo main market and found the commodities in some market stalls.

”This is sad and I want to assure you that the government will do everything possible to unmask those behind the diversion,” the commissioner vowed.

Available records from the ministry indicate that Wukari, Sadauna, Jalingo and Gasol LGAs, were given 850 bags each of rice, maize, milet and sugar; while the rest of the LGAs were allocated 800 bags of each of the items. (NAN)

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Reps to Probe NDDC Erosion Protection Contract in Bayelsa

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The House of Representatives has resolved to investigate the abandoned erosion protection contract in Kolokuma/Opokuma in Bayelsa, awarded by the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).

This followed the adoption of a motion by Rep. Abonsizibe Oboku(PDP-Bayelsa) during plenary in Abuja on Wednesday.

Presenting the motion, Oboku said that almost 20 years after, the project had been abandoned, adding that this had resulted into a perennial erosion, affecting a clan comprising 10 communities.

He said that Ayakotoama community had been washed away, adding that a substantial part of Orubiri community had suffered the same fate.

This, he said had led to the loss of lives and property, which he said could have been averted if the contractor and NDDC had lived up to the expectation of the aim and objectives of the said contract.

Adopting the motion, the House mandated the committee on NDDC to investigate the project and report back to the House in four weeks for further legislative action.(NAN)

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C’River Assembly Impeaches Speaker

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The Cross River House of Assembly, on Wednesday, impeached the Speaker, Mr Elvert Anyambem, over issues of gross misconduct and high-handedness.

The speaker’s impeachment was carried out during a sitting of the house in which he was presiding.

The impeachment followed a motion moved by the member representing Calabar South 1, Mr Effiong Ekarika, which was seconded by Mr Charles Omang, representing Bekwara constituency.

The motion was thereafter unanimously supported by other members of the house present at the sitting.

Moving his motion, Ekarika stated that Anyambem had grossly indulged in administrative misconduct, high-handedness and financial misappropriation.

Reports says that 17 out of 25 members of the assembly signed the notice for the speaker’s impeachment.

In the notice, Anyambem was said to have indulged in arbitrary expenditure, contrary to Section 9(1) of the state Legislative Funds Management Law, 2021

The notice stated that he misappropriated the sum of N48 million meant for the payment of the assembly’s electricity bills.

He was also accused of misappropriating N404.6m representing two per cent of the monthly revenue collected by the state Internal Revenue Service, and meant for oversight functions of the assembly.

“The speaker misappropriated the sum of N19.4m being deductions from the local government councils which he willfully failed to disclose to members,” the notice read in parts.

Reports says that after the impeachment, the mace was taken away by the members.

Attempts to speak to the impeached speaker proved abortive as he did not take calls or respond to text messages.(NAN)

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