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Senate faults PTF conversion to PSC, laments doctors strike

The Senate Committee on Health said on Thursday that the Presidency should have consulted the National Assembly before converting the the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 to the Presidential Steering Committee. The panel also expressed surprise that the National Association of Resident Doctors embarked on strike despite the fact that their demands had been met by the Federal Government. Chairman of the Senate panel, Yahaya Oloriegbe, stated these during a public hearing on a bill seeking to establish a Federal Medical Centre in Mubi, Adamawa State. Oloriegbe said, “I was listening to the radio yesterday (Wednesday) and I heard that the PTF (on COVID-19) has been converted to a steering committee. “We were not consulted in terms of what will be the operational mechanism and so on. “I am ...

Amnesty: Russia may be ‘slowly’ killing Alexey Navalny

Alexey Navalny, the prominent opponent of Russian President Vladimir Putin, is imprisoned in conditions that amount to torture and may slowly be killing him, human rights group Amnesty International said on Wednesday. Navalny, who last year was poisoned with a military-grade nerve agent, was now being subjected to sleep deprivation and did not have access to a doctor he could trust in jail, it said. “Russia, the Russian authorities, may be placing him into a situation of a slow death and seeking to hide what is happening to him,” Agnes Callamard, Amnesty International’s secretary general, said ahead of the publication of the group’s annual report. “Clearly the Russian authorities are violating his rights. We have to do more,” she said. “[They] have already attempted to kill him, they are n...

NMA apologises to Nigerians, patients over resident doctors strike

File Photo Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) has apologised to Nigerians, especially patients at various government hospitals, over the strike embarked upon by the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD). Dr Enema Amodu, the Chairman, NMA, Federal Capital Territory (FCT) chapter, made the plea on Sunday in Abuja while addressing newsmen over the NARD strike. According to him, the association is sorry and wishes to apologise to Nigerians over the action. The resident doctors embarked on strike on April 1 to press home their demand for upward review of their N5000 hazard allowance, payment of outstanding COVID-19 inducement allowance, among others. He said “we are not insensitive; we hope that government and those in charge of the discussion with NARD will take it seriously, with a v...

NSF: Edo government pledges better welfare to volunteers

The Edo Government has pledged to do its best to take care of the volunteers who will help in the hosting of the 20th National Sports Festival (NSF) in Benin. The State Deputy Governor, Mr Philips Shaibu, made the pledge on Friday while addressing the volunteers at the Games village, located in the University of Benin. Shaibu, who also is the Chairman of the Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the festival, assured the volunteers that the state would welcome collaboration and cooperation of the team to ensure the success of the sporting fiesta. “This address is to assure you that we will collaborate and cooperate with you to ensure that the game is successful. “Your role as volunteers to help us guide and control our athletes as they come is paramount to the success of the games. “From th...

Arsenal star’s mum dies after coronavirus battle

Arsenal star Lucas Torreira’s mum has died after a battle with Covid-19, as reported by Uruguayan daily Ovacion. Viviana Di Pascua, 53, was recently admitted to intensive care after contracting the coronavirus in Uruguay. Torreira, who is currently on loan at Atletico Madrid, was given special permission by the La Liga club to fly home to Frey Bentos to be by her side. But Viviana’s situation worsened and on Tuesday her death was announced. Gunners midfielder Torreira contracted Covid-19 himself back in November 2020 following international duty. Torreira was the national team’s twelfth individual among players and staff to receive a positive result at the time. The 25-year-old was forced to miss two weeks of football, including a La Liga clash with Barcelona. A statement read at the time:...

Nigerian government mulls TCN’s unbundling, partial concession to boost power supply

The federal government is considering the unbundling and partial concession of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) to boost its efficiency in the government’s bid to improve power supply. Director, Energy, Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Mr. Yunana Malo, said during the March edition of “the Electricity Hub” conversation series on power that the National Council on Privatisation (NCP) had directed that a proper strategy should be mapped out for the unbundling of TCN. He stated that the government believed that all the players in the energy value chain should be able to align with the needs of the power sector seamlessly, adding that the right environment is being created for the transmission component to match generation and distribution. Malo said data was key to making decision...

AMAC chief signs over N10 billion appropriation bill into law

AMAC Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) Chairman, Abdullahi Candido, has signed the Council’s 2021 appropriation bill of over N10 billion to law. He said the legislators have in consideration of some important issues and reviewed the budget upward. Candido made this known at the AMAC Secretariat in Abuja while signing the bill into law. He, however, assured residents within the council area that the budget will give priority attention to existing projects, while also taking care of other things. Candido also appealed to Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) to release shares of the internally generated revenue due to the Area Councils. He hinted that, the councils were democratically elected by the people, therefore it must be accorded all constitutional rights. According to him...

Ekiti by-election: Shot policewoman recuperating – CP

Contrary to the news making the rounds, that a policewoman lost her life during Saturday’s bloody poll, in Ekiti East Constituency 1, the Ekiti State Police Commissioner, Mr Babatunde Mobayo, has clarified that she is alive and responding to treatment. Mobayo said the Policewoman who was shot during Saturday’s House of Assembly bye-election, only sustained gunshot wounds and was immediately rushed to the hospital for medicare. Three persons were on Saturday shot dead by suspected party thugs while five others sustained gunshot wounds during the House of Assembly bye-election conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the state constituency. Speaking with journalists via telephone in Ado Ekiti, on Sunday, Mobayo, who responded through the Command’s spokesman, ASP S...

Minister confirms new date for National Sports Festival

The ministers of youths and sports development, Sunday Dare, yesterday confirmed April 2nd to April 14th as the new date for the 20th National Sports Festival to kick-off. He made the announcement during a visit to the Edo State Government House in Benin City, the Edo State capital. He also announced that Edo State will be used for the National Camp in preparation for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games taking place later this year. Dare said further that the Federal Government is determined to go ahead with the Unity Games which is the sequel to participation at the Tokyo Games. However, he noted that due to logistics under the circumstances occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of athletes has been reduced from 14,000 to 8,000 athletes. Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki in response as...

WTO chief: ‘Safe Schools Initiative’ to stop abduction of students

The Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, on Wednesday expressed hope that the ‘Safe Schools Initiative’ will help stop the incessant abduction of students across Nigeria. Nigerian women on Wednesday came out en masse to welcome Okonjo-Iweala in her first homecoming since she became the director-general of WTO, during a visit to the Ministry of Women Affairs in Abuja. Addressing the crowd which included Senators and members of the National Assembly, former Ministers, wives of former governors, women in the Armed Forces, women societies, female political aspirants, Civil Society Organisations, as well as students, Okonjo-Iweala expressed deep concern about the incessant abduction of girls and boys in schools. The WTO boss who noted that it is shamef...

Rivers governor reacts as critics fault design of new bridge after truck accident

Critics are subjecting the Okoro-nu-Odu overhead bridge commissioned for use on Monday in Port Harcourt by Rivers Governor, Nyesom Wike, to scrutiny after the fall of a heavy duty truck that was trying to make a turn under it. Also, critics have also observed that rather than help alleviate the traffic gridlock in the area, the bridge seemed to have worsened the traffic jam. While commenting on the gridlock around the bridge and the fall of the truck while trying to make a u-turn, one Kachi Welsley said: “basically an engineering design is to address serviceability and human problems, not to compound them. “At the beginning sides of the overhead bridge at Rumuokoro, there ought to be turning points to enable cars coming and trying to get back in opposite directions turn easily without firs...

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