Issues

Ex-minister: It’s time to convoke sovereign national conference

Former Minister of Education, Oby Ezekwesili, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately convoke a Sovereign National Conference to address the numerous problems facing the nation. Ezekwesili lamented that the nation at this crucial period of crippling political and social dangers needed a conference to address the thorny issues. She said this had become inevitable in view of happenings in the country. Ezekwesili said the problem now was whether the Nigerian government led by Buhari would be willing to hold such an important conference. In her words: “Nigeria, at this time, the crippling political, economic and social dangers make the convocation of a Sovereign National Conversation inevitable. “The question is whether President Muhammadu Buhari’s Nigerian government realizes ...

Wave Of Anti-Trans Bills May Cost 45,000 Youth Gender-Affirming Health Care

On April 6, Arkansas became the first state to pass legislation that would ban transgender youth from receiving gender-affirming care, despite the bill being vetoed by the state’s governor who called it “over broad” and “extreme.” A study by UCLA’s Williams Institute published on Tuesday (April 13) reported that, with a wave of transphobic legislation spreading across the country this year, at least 45,100 trans children are at risk of losing access to their health care. The study reported that in 2021 alone 21 states introduced bills that attempt to thwart trans youth from receiving gender-affirming care, even though a Trevor Project study last year showed that it has been shown to “improve ment...

Afe Babalola seeks sweeping reforms in judicial system

File Photo Senior Advocate and founder of Afe Babalola University, Aare Afe Babalola, has made case for urgent far-reaching reforms in the country’s judicial system particularly in the area bothering on the retirement of judges and aftermath. Babalola also reiterated the need to change the structure of the country, saying, “It is restructuring that would enable each state to curb insecurity, unemployment, poverty, defective justice system and do away with failed leaders. The ABUAD founder, who spoke during the virtual book launch in honour of retired Supreme Court justice, Justice Bode Rhodes-Vivour, which he chaired, said, “The only change that can change the country for the better and pave way for the enhancement of one Nigeria is the change that changes the structure of Nigeria. “It is ...

JAMB scraps use of email for UTME, DE registration

File Photo The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has said the use of email is no longer required for the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) and Direct Entry (DE) registration processes. The Registrar of JAMB, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, who made this known while addressing newsmen on Wednesday in Abuja, said email will only be requested at the successful completion of the registration by candidates to access information on the exam. He said as from Thursday, April 15, 2021, candidates will no longer be required to provide any email address during registration, adding that consequently, candidates will have the options to access their profile during or after registration. He said the options include “mobile APP on the candidates’ phone, on the 55019 option (being desig...

Minister calls for transformation of food system

Minister of Environment, Dr. Muhammad Abubakar, has called for the transformation of the food system to aid rejuvenation of soils and forest covers. Speaking at the 14th National Council of Environment virtually held with the theme: “Managing Emerging Environmental Challenges: Need for Strategic Approach to Sustainable Development in Covid-19 Era and Beyond,” the Minister said: “There is urgent need to transform our food system which has been the major factor in the issue of loss of biodiversity, fresh water and deforestation with its attendant effects on climate change. It is therefore, expected that pertinent issues of climate smart agriculture and agro ecological practices that will aid rejuvenation of soils and forest covers, among others,are discussed during this meeting.” He noted th...

Nasarawa Assembly: No plan to impeach speaker

Nasarawa State Government The Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Monday, said there’s no plan by the lawmakers to impeach the Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Ibrahim Balarabe Abdullahi. The House called on members of the public to disregard the impeachment rumour circulating on social media, even as they gave a vote of confidence on the speaker for his leadership qualities. The Majority leader of the House, Hon Umar Tanko Tunga (APC Awe North) gave the vote of confidence while speaking with newsmen in Lafia, the state capital. According to Tunga, the news circulating on social media captioned ” Tension in Nasarawa over plan to impeach Nasarawa State House of Assembly speaker” is a devilish work bent on distracting the development, obstructing progress and causing confusion in the minds of th...

House speaker: Local council autonomy not for National Assembly to address

Speaker of House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, has said that the issue of local government autonomy is not for the National Assembly to address. Gbajabiamila said this during a two-day leadership capacity training, organised by the Minority Leader of the House, Mr Ndudi Elumelu, for ward councillors from Delta, on Monday in Abuja. He said that since the process of constitutional amendment was ongoing and the areas of possible amendments thrown open, it was for Nigerians to decide whether to have local government autonomy or not. “We did it the last time but when we went back to the states, we could not get the required two-thirds. So it is a process and we have followed the process. “While we were working on constitutional amendment, two-thirds of the states did not agree with us....

How love affair gone bad led to imprisonment of Prophet Israel Oladele

When the Lagos State Court of Appeal granted the Senior Shepherd-in-Charge of the Celestial Church of Christ, Genesis Global, Prophet Israel Oladele Ogundipe, a post-conviction bail last week, on grounds of failing health, quite a number of people, particularly members of his congregation, were very happy with the news. This is because the televangelist’s previous bail applications were all turned down. Oladele was arraigned on seven counts bordering on obtaining by stealing, inducing delivery of money by false pretences, unlawful conversion of property and forgery, fraudulently collected N14m and £12,000 in various tranches from the complainant between August 30, 2002 and 2005. He was found guilty on two counts of stealing and unlawful conversion of property not delivered. And on November...

Plateau senator seeks Nigerian government’s support for victims of yam market fire

Senator representing Plateau South in the National Assembly, Professor Nora Dadu’ut, has appealed to the federal government to support victims of the recent fire incident that engulfed the famous Namu Central Yam Market in Qua’an Pan Local Government Area, of Plateau state which led to the loss of food products and other valuables worth millions of naira. The lawmaker, who made the appeal during a press briefing in Jos, said she was saddened by the heart-rending development, and called on governments at all levels, and well-meaning Nigerians to offer support for the victims to aid their recovery from the tragedy. She said, “We would not rest on our oars until we have done the needful in reducing the damages and ameliorating their challenges through state and federal government intervention...

Sheikh Khalid: Politicians, religious leaders behind Nigeria’s insecurity

Renowned Islamic scholar, Sheikh Muhammad Nuru Khalid, on Thursday, alleged that some influential people, including religious leaders and politicians, were the real sponsors of insecurity in some parts of the country. He stated this in Abuja during the public presentation of a book titled, ‘The Infinite Light, The Pride of Humanity,’ authored by Sheikh Fathullah Gulen a spiritual leader of Hizmet. Khalid claimed that bandits, who were predominantly youths of northern extraction, had been terrorising innocent citizens because they were getting engaged by some prominent politicians and religious leaders working towards the Balkanisation of the nation. So, he urged the government to address the issues of education and unemployment as a solution to the security challenge. The Muslim scholar sa...

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 ...

Kaduna governor: Bandits have lost rights to life, must be wiped out

Gov. Nasir El-rufai of Kaduna State says bandits terrorising Nigeria have lost their rights to life under the constitution and must be wiped out. El-rufai made this known during a town hall meeting on national security organised by the Ministry of Information and Culture held in Kaduna with theme:”Setting Benchmark for Enhanced and National Unity in Nigeria”. ”The bandits are at war with Nigeria and there is no other way to approach the current insurgency but for security forces to take the war to the bandits and recover forests where they are occupying. “The security agencies mostly react to cases of banditry and abduction, we are in a war with these terrorist challenging the sovereignty of the Nigerian state. “Our security forces must collaborate to take the war to the bandits and terror...