Buhari FG Working Round the Clock to Revive Economy
President Muhammadu Buhari has said the federal government is working round the clock to revive the economy, explaining that the economic recession in the country is the result of the cumulative effects of worldwide economic downturn and failure in the past to plan and save for difficult times.
“I assure you that this administration is working round the clock to remove the hardships the country is going through,” he said in a short message to Muslim faithful celebrating the Eid-el-Kabir festival yesterday, pleading with Nigerians that the current economic hardships could not be properly understood without an appreciation of the mistakes.
The president’s explanation was complemented by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Yakubu Dogara, and the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) who called on Nigerians to take advantage of the festivities to pray for the quick recovery of the economy and peace in the country.
But the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in its message to the nation’s Muslims told the Buhari administration to stop looking for scapegoats for its inability to run the economy and get down to the task of retrieving the economy from the recess it had pushed it.
“The president and his APC were elected to further better the lots of Nigerians, and not to dish out constant complaints on the situation which they mindlessly created not minding the attendant consequences of their actions on our collective destinies,” the PDP said in a direct reference to the president’s message, adding: “It is, therefore, high time they stopped this unnecessary grumbling and concentrate on how to redeem our economy by providing good governance to the people.”
Saluting Nigerians for their steadfastness in the face of the prevailing harrowing times, the president said that his administration was working hard to shorten the period of the recession and restore prosperity quickly.
Reeling out his plans, Buhari said: “Rail and road constructions, projects in the housing sector, support for farmers and for small and medium scale industries, youth and women’s empowerment programmes, support for revival of industries are all designed to reinvigorate the economy and enhance living standards of ordinary people.”
He said just as he was getting security right and fighting corruption with a reasonable measure of success, he would get the economy right.
The president preached religious harmony, enjoining Muslims to live by the dictates of Islam, keep good relationships with their Christian brothers and sisters and as patriots to maintain the spirit of the Nigerian nation.
Dogara, APC Call for Prayers
Speaker Dogara and his deputy, Yussuff Lasun, while felicitating with the Muslim faithful called for prayers in the face of the economic hardships that Nigerians were going through, telling them to ask Allah for peace and prosperity for Nigeria.
Dogara, in his message, urged Muslims to imbibe the spirit of sacrifice, peace and unity.
He also called for the peaceful co-existence among Nigerians, and prayers for the current economic and security challenges in the country, which he said were not insurmountable.
“As we celebrate Eid-el-Kabir with our friends and families, we must never forget our country and its leadership in our prayers. Eid-el-Kabir celebration is a period of sacrifice and reflection. I urge us all to emulate the virtues of total obedience, sacrifice in faith and selfless service as demonstrated and exemplified by Prophet Ibrahim,” Dogara said.
He expressed confidence that the current administration through its diversification drive would restore Nigeria to the path of development and prosperity.
Dogara also assured Nigerians of the House of Representatives’ determination to continue to work selflessly and tirelessly for the common good and the overall interest of the country through effective, efficient and robust law making, oversight and representation.
Lasun appealed for perseverance among Nigerians especially due to the economic recession, urging Muslims to emulate the Prophet by extending good hands of fellowship to friends and neighbours.
The ruling APC in its message pleaded with Muslims across the country to pray for peace and quick recovery of the economy.
In a statement issued by the National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun yesterday, the party urged Muslims and all Nigerians to use the occasion of Eid-el-Kabir to show love and promote harmonious and peaceful co-existence with one another irrespective of ethnic or religious affiliations.
“Nigeria is today passing through challenging times in its socio-economic life, the party calls on Nigerians to pray and support the administration as it works assiduously to pull the country out of the present hardships and restore the country to the path of growth in all facets,” it said, adding: “Happily, the President Muhammadu Buhari-led APC administration is already employing all legitimate and innovative means to restore the country’s battered economy back to good health in the quickest possible time.”
The party urged Nigerians to support the recently launched National Re-orientation Campaign “Change Begins With Me’’.
“In a bold move to repair our value system that has been badly eroded over the years, on September 8, 2016, President Muhammadu Buhari launched the laudable National Re-orientation Campaign ‘Change Begins With Me’. The party appeals to all Nigerians to be part of this campaign which will institutionalise the best practice and time-honoured values of honesty, hard work, patriotism, abhorrence of corruption, accountability and integrity in our everyday life,” it said.
PDP Tells Government to Stop Grumbling
However, the opposition PDP led by Senator Ahmed Mohammed Makarfi told the APC-led administration to focus on how to get the economy working rather than seeking for a scapegoat.
The party, in a message, said it joined other well-meaning Nigerians to felicitate with Muslims worldwide on the occasion of Eid-El-Kabir, the ‘Festival of Sacrifice’.
The message signed by the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Prince Dayo Adeyeye, advised all Nigerians especially, the political and ruling class in the country to emulate Prophet Ibrahim for his willingness and total obedience to the will of God by agreeing to sacrifice his only son.
It called for good governance and peaceful co-existence, urging Nigerians to sacrifice for the greater good of the country.
The PDP said: “We want to use this opportunity once again to celebrate and felicitate with all our Muslim brothers and sisters in Nigeria and across the world on this occasion of Eid-El-Kabir as instituted by Allah through Prophet Ibrahim. We want to also urge Nigerians to use this period and pray for the recovery of our ailing economy, the unity and oneness of this country and continue making sacrifices for Nigeria to become great again.”
“Mr. President in his Salah Message today, again blamed the present Acute Economic Recession on the past administration and global economic downturn. Let Mr. President and his Party, the APC, be reminded that it took a smart and experienced world-class Economic Team in the Year 2010 to lead Nigerians through a cushioned global financial meltdown and beyond. The “Change” is really with them (APC) and their barrage of falsehood.”
Nigeria Immigration Service Reopens Portal With New Passport Application and Payment Process
The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has announced the reopening of its passport application and payment portal.
The assistant comptroller of immigration, Mr Amos Okpu announced in a statement in Abuja on Tuesday.
In the statement, Mr Muhammad Babandede, the Comptroller-General of the service, said the portal became effective for new applications from 12 midnight on Tuesday.
Babandede further said that the portal would allow eligible applicants to apply and make payments for the various categories of passports of their choice.
Mr Muhammad Babandede explained that with the reopening of the portal, a new passport application and payment regime had begun.
The statement in full:
“The Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (CGI), Muhammad Babandede MFR, has announced the reopening of the Passport application and payment portal effective 8th June 2021 by 12 midnight to allow eligible Passport applicants to apply and make payments for the various categories of Passports of their choice.
The Passport portal was closed following the directives of the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola on the 17th of May, 2021to afford the Service the opportunity to clear all backlogs of applications that have piled up across Issuing Centres in the past few months.
With the reopening of the portal, a new Passport application and payment regime have commenced. Under the new Passport regime;
Applications and payments for Passport services shall be made through the Service website www.immigration.gov.ng;
- applicants are expected to visit the portal to apply and upload their support documents for vetting and processing;
- a chat room facility to guide applicants through the application and payment process has been provided on the portal;
- upon successful applications, applicants shall make their online booking interview/enrollment appointment on any day, time and location they consider convenient;
- that the new timeline for Passport production and issuance after a successful enrollment at the selected Issuing Centre shall be six weeks for Fresh applications and three weeks for Re-issue (Renewal applications);
- that no applicant who is yet to make an online application and payment shall be allowed into any of the Passport Issuing Centres for Passport processing;
- applicants will be contacted through email and phone number they provided during application when their Passports are ready;
- a helpline with the number 08021819988 has been provided for feedback mechanism on any challenges.
The Comptroller General, Muhammad Babandede MFR wishes to use this medium to call on Nigerians and indeed Passport applicants to avoid patronizing touts as the entire process has been made seamless for effective and efficient service delivery. He warned Passport racketeers to desist from acts capable of undermining the reform efforts to avoid very strict sanctions.
Signed AMOS OKPU MNIPR
ASSISTANT COMPTROLLER OF IMMIGRATION
SERVICE PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER
For: COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF IMMIGRATION 8TH JUNE, 2021″
INEC To Publish The List Of New Polling Units Next Week
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has pledged to publish a comprehensive list of its new polling units across the nation next week.
The INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, disclosed this on Monday in Abuja.
Yakubu was speaking at the formal handing over of a new state of the art fire truck, deployed to the Commission’s headquarters in Abuja by the Federal Fire Service (FFS).
He said that details of the locations of its registration centers and the procedure for the commencement of online registration for resumption of nationwide Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) would be made available in the second week of May.
He expressed appreciation of the commission to the FFS and all security agencies for the demonstration of their support to protecting INEC facilities
He said that the support was coming on the eve of the resumption of the CVR nationwide in the next three weeks.
“We earlier assured Nigerians that we shall conclude work on the expansion of voter access to polling units and make the new polling units available to citizens ahead of the CVR exercise.
“I am glad to report that we have accomplished this task for the first time in 25 years.
“A comprehensive list of the new polling units will be published next week.
“Similarly, details of the locations of the registration centers and the procedure for the commencement of online registration will also be made available after a series of regular consultative meetings with stakeholders next week,” Yakubu said.
He said that as a member of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) FFS had been as concerned as other security agencies about the recent attacks on our offices across the country.
“This is particularly so because out of the 42 attacks on our facilities nationwide, 18 incidents resulted from arson and three more by a combination of arson and vandalisation.”
Yakubu recalled that concerned by those incidents, the commission convened an emergency meeting of ICCES last week of April, where the security agencies renewed their determination to collaborate more with the commission.
According to him, they pledged to assist the commission address the challenge beyond the routine protection of INEC assets and the security of its officials, voters, observers, the media, candidates and their agents during elections.
“On its part, the Federal Fire Service offered to deploy an additional state-of-the-art fire engine to the INEC headquarters to complement the two existing trucks.
“At the same time, it directed its state offices to take additional protective measures around other INEC facilities nationwide.
“Today’s inauguration of the new fire engine is another affirmation of the support to the commission from the FFS whose personnel, already deployed permanently to the commission
“The personnel will continue to operate and maintain the fire engines and other firefighting equipment installed by INEC,” Yakubu said.
Speaking earlier, the Controller-General (CG) of FFS, Alhaji Liman Ibrahim said the deployment of the firefighting truck was premised on recent fire attacks on INEC offices in different parts of the country.
Ibrahim, represented by the Assistant Controller-General of the service, Mr Samson Karebo, said the deployed truck would serve as fire cover for the premises of INEC headquarters and the entire Maitama vicinity of Abuja.
“The FFS is taking this step as a proactive measure to protect our critical infrastructure and help to protect our economy by forming synergy with all stakeholders in protecting our environments.
“Our center is focused on bringing firefighting operations to every part of the country as part of our statutory duties by having a presence in virtually every state in Nigeria
“The FFS will very soon be moving into all senatorial headquarters in the country. That is how we want to operate for now so that we can touch every corner of this country,” Ibrahim said.
He called for the cooperation of all for the service to better serve the nation by not molesting FFS staff in the line of duty.
In his remarks, the National Security Adviser (NSA) retired Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno, who is also Co-Chair of ICCES, described the deployment of the truck as a demonstration of President Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment to sustain Nigeria’s democracy and address insecurity.
Monguno said that the gesture also symbolised commitment to a clear affirmation of Buhari toward protecting institutions of government, toward securing their property, toward fighting acts of irresponsibility, vandalisation and outright criminality.
“The President is determined as much as he can within the confines of legality to suppress any kind of criminality and destruction of public property.
“This is something that he is determined to do regardless of whatever the challenges are.
“He will apply all the resources in his disposal in his capacity as the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces to ensure the wider Nigerian society is safe, stable and is allowed to carry out its legitimate undertaking, free from any act of insecurity,” he said
Monguno urged all other security agencies not to relent in ensuring that they continued to protect lives and property.
The Inspector-General of Police, Mr Usman Baba pledged commitment to security agencies to work with INEC and protect INEC’s facilities, citizens’ life and property.
Also at the occasion was the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, represented by Director of Joint Services, Mr Peter Obodo; as well as the representative of Director-General, Directorate of State Services, Tony Adikweruka.
Recovered Assets: Ad-hoch Committee Gives Emefiele, Others 72 Hours Ultimatum
The House of Representatives ad-hoc committee, investigating recovered assets, has given the Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, and National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno, 72 hours to appear before it.
The committee also issued same ultimatum to the Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali, and the Director-General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Bashir Jamoh.
The summon was issued on Monday, after Mr Emefiele and the others failed to appear before the committee.
The government officials had sent representatives, but the committee chairman, Adejoro Adeogun (APC, Ondo), said they failed to forward letters to that effect.
He said allowing representatives without a proper letter of introduction would be akin to allowing “impersonators.”
“You are indirectly insulting the House of Representatives. You are undermining the House of Representatives,” an angry Mr Adeogun said.
Moving a motion to give the agencies 72hours to appear before the committee, Ibrahim Isiaka (APC, Ogun), said the agencies created by Acts of the parliament “should not be undermining the parliament”.
The motion was unanimously adopted by the committee.
Mr Isiaka suggested that the House should shut down its activities if the agencies fail to appear before them.
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