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Tinubu Committed to Improving Lives of Vulnerable Communities – Shettima

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Vice-President Kashim Shettima has restated the commitment of President Bola Tinubu’s administration to improve the socio-economic conditions of Nigerians living in the most vulnerable communities.

Shettima stated this on Tuesday when the Presidential Committee on Flood Mitigation, Adaptation, Preparedness and Response submitted a comprehensive report to him at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Reports says that the committee’s report outlined a roadmap for improving the country’s flood response and preparedness.

The report is based on the findings of three previous and ongoing assignments, including the National Economic Council Ad-hoc Committee Report on Flood (ongoing) and the National Flood Emergency, Preparedness and Response Plan (2022).

Others are the report of the Presidential Committee on Development of Comprehensive Plan of Action for Preventing Flood Disasters in Nigeria (2022).

Shettima, who gave a definite position to speculations about the reality or otherwise of the impact of climate change said, “Climate change is real and the existential threat it poses is glaring at us every day.

” From the extreme events being witnessed across the globe to the devastating climate facing Africa. Africa is disproportionately impacted and bringing it home to Nigeria, we have been witnessing drought, flood.

” The saying on the climate crisis is that it is either too much (floods), too little (drought) or too polluted. We are all gathered to find a solution for the too much scenario that is flooding.

” Flood events have, in the past, affected communities with devastating impacts on livelihoods, people and the environment with loss of lives witnessed in some cases such as the last flood witnessed in 2022.”

He described the report as a testament to Tinubu’s commitment to the Renewed Hope Agenda.

Shettima said that in drafting the report, the committee was guided by science and forecasts from agencies such as the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet), the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) and the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA).

The vice-president explained that the report identified vulnerable communities prone to flooding and presents a roadmap with recommendations to address the issue.

Shettima commended the committee for its hard work and dedication.

” I will like to start by thanking this committee for the hard work, commitment and dedication put in to develop the report.

” I particularly thank everyone for the time put in to deliver this assignment within the seven days that I directed when we first met at this very chamber, which meant you all had to work through the weekend.

” The mandate was clear and it was delivered,” Shettima said.

He directed the committee to present the report to the National Economic Council (NEC) for further deliberations and possible ascension by the council.

Earlier in his presentation, Prof. Emmanuel Adanu, a member of the presidential committee and Chairman of the Technical Working Group, identified the major causes of flooding in Nigeria and the strategies for mitigating its impact.

Adamu, who is the Director-General, National Water Resources Institute, said the ultimate objective of the committee was to protect the nation from the devastating impacts of floods, safeguard human lives and property.

He also said that committee was expected to promote the sustainable conservation and enhancement of water-related ecosystems.

According to him, beyond the efforts of stakeholders in the public and private sectors, individuals and communities are required to pay attention to issues relating to drainage maintenance and healthy environmental practices.

Adamu said, ” We had lots of problems with flooding in Nigeria and we have lots of misconception too with the flooding outlook and certain incidences that had happened in Nigeria were blamed on certain things.

” One particularly is that most of the flooding we had in Nigeria used to come from Cameron which is totally false and we tried to explain it very well that it is not so.

” Because the water that come from outside Nigeria into Nigeria is just about 25 or less percent of the total rain or every water in Nigeria.

“So,most of the flooding that we see originate from within Nigeria due to high rainfall and the mobility of the water around drainage patterns, so we try to look at that.” (NAN)

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Court Sentences Lady to Death by Hanging for Killing Enugu Make-up Artiste

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From Sylvia Udegbunam, Enugu

An Enugu State High Court, sitting in Enugu, has sentenced Chiamaka Ifezue to death by hanging for killing an Enugu-based make-up artist, Ijeoma Nweke.

The court, presided over by Justice Kenneth Okpe, in a two-hour judgement on Wednesday, found the accused guilty of killing the victim by forcing her to drink a poisonous substance.

The corpse of the make-up artist was found in Maryland within Enugu Metropolis on Monday.

The deceased, Nweke had left home on Wednesday November 11, 2020, for a job but went missing afterwards.

Her supposed client, having refused to disclose the location for the job, asked the deceased to stop at the Enugu State Broadcasting Service (ESBS) Bus Stop, where she would then be taken to the venue.

Nweke, having perceived foul play, sent the client’s phone number to her brother via text.

Her phones were unreachable after hours leading to suspicion that she might have been kidnapped.

This led to a frantic search for her by friends and relatives until early on Monday morning when her corpse was found at Maryland in Enugu.

Eyewitnesses said that her corpse was mutilated with a substance suspected to be acid.

While delivering the judgement, Justice Okpe, said every evidence pointed to the fact that the convict lured the deceased to her house where she poisoned the deceased and evacuated her body out of her house.

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FCTA Disburses N4.82bn to Area Councils, Teachers, Pension Scheme  

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The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has disbursed N4.82 billion to the six area councils of the FCT, teachers and pension scheme as statutory allocation for December 2023.

The Minister of State for FCT, Dr Mariya Mahmoud, disclosed this on Wednesday while presiding over the 185th Joint Account Allocation Committee (JAAC) meeting in Abuja.

According to the minister, the amount represents a slight increase when compared to N4.

73 billion shared in November of the same year.

“A breakdown for the amount shows that N2.36 billion was disbursed to the six area councils, while N2.

45 billion was disbursed to other stakeholders.

“Of the N2.

36 billion distributed to the area councils, Abuja Municipal Area Council got N549.98 million, Gwagwalada got N371.09 million while Kuje received N402.34 million.

“Also, Bwari Area Council received N364.67 million, Abaji N313.34 million, while Kwali got N362.73 million.

“For teachers and pension scheme, primary school teachers got N2.07 billion, N226.48 earmarked as 15 per cent pension funds, N107.85 million as 10 per cent employer pension contribution, while N48.16 million was earmarked as 1 per cent training fund.”

The minister commended the synergy between the Satellite Towns Development Department and the area councils, particularly in waste collections and management. (NAN)

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FCTA Gives Quit Notice to Traders in Gwarinpa Illegal Market

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By Laide Akinboade, Abuja

The Department of Development Control in the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), has served a quit notice on ‘Ya Kasuwa’ market along the 16 road corridor in Gwarinpa, saying they must quit latest by Wednesday as clearance operations would commence on Thursday.

Director of the department, Mukhtar Galadima gave the order during a meeting with stakeholders including representatives of the traders union.

He said the contract for the full scope development of the arterial road had since been awarded by the FCT Administration and that the contractors had been engaging the traders since last September but that the traders kept asking for more time, a development he said could no longer be tolerated.

According to him, the timeframe for the contract had since been eaten into by the traders’ refusal to quit, saying if the contract is not executed as scheduled, the cost of materials would keep rising and could lead to demands for contract variation, which is against the policy of the present Administration.

“We want to tell them that yes the FCT Administration gave out this contract from Ring Road 2 to Ring Road 3. The Ring Road 2 starts from Katampe Extension to Life Camp to Jabi Mbora up to Galadima roundabout and in between, there is Ring Road 3.

“The contract has been awarded and we are calling on all those people doing business on the corridor to leave. All structures existing in that corridor are to be removed. We are calling on you traders and others there to please cooperate with us. Start removing your valuables before we come there.

“We are coming to clear the place. We are giving you up till Wednesday to clear your things. By Thursday, we are going to start”, he added.

According to him, the contractors had begun discussions with the traders since September 2023 and that “granting further extensions would eat into the contract time which could lead to contract variations and more costs”.

On request by the local council revenue collector for a new market site, the director said since markets are under the councils, it is incumbent on them to look within and allocate a new market to the affected traders.

Secretary of the traders union, Mohammed, said they had operated the market for over 20 years, saying he would convey the government’s message to the traders.

“We have been there over 20 years ago and now it has come to our notice that the road is to be constructed. We are grateful to have been invited and ours is to now go and sensitize our people so that the traders can look elsewhere. We are asking for more time as we are already concluding plans to relocate”, he stated.

Meanwhile, the department has pulled down a structure within an estate in the Karmo district, for obstructing a flood plain.

An official of the department, Garba Jubril said the developer had been so recalcitrant to the extent of even enlisting policemen to frustrate the department from carrying out enforcement duties on the estate.

He said; “We are on Plot 840 Cadastral Zone CO1 Karmo District. It is an estate development, but the challenge we have here is an issue of a recalcitrant developer. This structure we are removing has been marked right from the outset at the foundation level.

“While efforts to bring to the attention of the developer that this plot is outside his boundary, it is on the green area and on the flood plain. You can see the building, just a few metres to the stream here. So that means it is not safe for habitation. So, all efforts to bring this to his attention proved abortive. Sometimes, when we come here, we meet stiff opposition from the forces that are behind the man. So, we had so many such challenges here.

“There are about 12 structures that are affected. Some are on the green verge, some are on the floodplain, and some are on the road corridor.

“The developer came, and ironically, he came with his own force. In fact, if you look up there, you can see some policemen in red caps against our own policemen that we came with. In fact, they almost outnumbered our policemen. So, when they came initially,  they wanted to confront us and force us to stop, but we proved to them that we cannot stop the demolition as it is a directive from above. So eventually, he had to come down and plead after seeing that force can’t work.

“They should obey the law. Abuja is a planned city. Whoever wants to build knows what to do. Once you secure a duly allocated land, you should apply for the building approval. And one thing is to get approval, another thing is at the point of implementation, or they invite our building inspector to come and assess what they are doing because even the quality of structures here is questionable”, he added.

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