Britain’s former prime minister David Cameron resigned his seat in the House of Commons on Monday, less than three months after losing an EU referendum in which he had campaigned to stay in the bloc.
Cameron stepped down as prime minister in June, hours after Britain’s dramatic vote to leave the European Union (EU), handing power to his successor Theresa May in July.
“The circumstances of my resignation as prime minister and the realities of modern politics make it very difficult to continue (in parliament)… without the risk of becoming a diversion,” Cameron said in a statement.
“I fully support Theresa May and have every confidence that Britain will thrive under her strong leadership,” the 49-year-old added.
The former premier was pilloried after the shock referendum defeat.
Critics accused him of recklessness in holding the vote in the first place and mismanaging the Remain campaign in the face of anti-EU populism.
His decision to stage the referendum was seen in Westminster as a bid to placate eurosceptic opponents in the centre-right Conservative Party.
His resignation from parliament is unusually quick — former prime ministers have typically retained their seats for a number of years after leaving office.
Cameron denied it was linked to May’s decision last week to let state-funded schools reintroduce selection by academic ability, a controversial move he opposed during his six years in office.
“This decision has got nothing to do with any one individual issue and that way the timing I promise is coincidental,” he told broadcaster ITV in an interview.
“Obviously I have my own views about certain issues. People know that. That’s really the point. As a former PM it’s very difficult to sit as a backbencher and not be an enormous diversion and distraction from what the government is doing,” he said.
May wished Cameron well for the future in a brief statement on Facebook.
“I was proud to serve in David Cameron’s government — and under his leadership we achieved great things,” the former interior minister wrote.
– ‘A life outside Westminster’ –
The suave Eton-educated Cameron has been MP for Witney in the rural county of Oxfordshire, northwest of London, since 2001.
At the time of his resignation as premier, he insisted he was “keen to continue” as a constituency MP and intended to seek re-election at the next general election, due in 2020.
He is not known to have taken on any other roles since stepping down. His media appearances since have been in pictures of him holidaying with his family.
“Obviously I’m going to have to start to build a life outside Westminster,” he told ITV.
“I’m only 49 and I hope I can still contribute in terms of public service and contribute to our country,” he said.
Cameron’s decision was welcomed by allies.
His former finance minister and right hand man George Osborne, who was excluded from the cabinet by May, called it a “sad day” on Twitter.
“I know how difficult this decision has been for him,” Osborne said.
Former foreign secretary William Hague added it was the “right decision”, writing: “Former Prime Ministers are either accused of doing too little or being a distraction.”
Boris Johnson — the current foreign secretary who played an instrumental role in the Leave campaign — praised Cameron on Twitter: “Sad to see @David_Cameron standing down:modernising Tory party – delivered sustained economic recovery – incredible record of public service.”
Angela Eagle, a senior lawmaker in the main opposition Labour party, told the BBC that Cameron had “put his whole country at risk to settle a debate in his own party” through the EU referendum.
“He has now walked away leaving others to clear up the mess,” she added.
The pro-Brexit Daily Mail newspaper reported the resignation as “The Crushing of David Cameron” on its front page, saying his legacy was in ruins.
Despite Cameron’s denial he quit in response to May’s school reform, The Times said the former prime minister wants the freedom to speak out on the matter.
The Daily Telegraph, popular among Conservative voters, said Cameron quit “to avoid split with May”.
Cameron’s decision to resign triggers an obscure parliamentary procedure, because lawmakers are technically not able to resign.
He was named as Crown Steward and Bailiff of the Manor of Northstead and a by-election to pick his successor will be held.
FG Has Paid Fuel marketers N74B in Seven Months — NMDPRA
The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) on Wednesday disclosed that the federal government has paid oil marketers N74 billion as bridging claims in last seven months..
The agency said it was reacting to claims by the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association Nigeria (IPMAN), Suleja branch, that continuing fuel scarcity was caused by non-payment of bridging claims.
The agency said it paid N71.2 billion bridging claims and another N2.7 billion freight differentials to the marketers as of June 6.
In May, IPMAN said the government owed its members half a trillion naira being the cost of transporting petrol across the country.
However, at the time NMDPRA had claimed to have paid oil marketers bridging claims of about N59 billion in five months.
In recent months, fuel scarcity has worsened in Abuja and several other cities across the country.
Marketers had listed the high cost of buying petrol at the depots and the high cost of diesel to truck them as the major factors responsible for the recent queue.
On Monday, the government announced that the nation’s capital petroleum deliveries were up nearly 100 per cent after the government offered additional N10 freight reimbursements to marketers.
The statement by the NMDPRA reads: “The attention of the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) has been drawn to allegations made by the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association Nigeria (IPMAN Suleja Branch) on product scarcity as a result of non-payment of bridging claims.
“The authority chief executive of the NMDPRA, at a meeting held on 17th May 2022 with IPMAN bridging payment was discussed extensively and the processes were explained and agreed upon by IPMAN.
“He assured IPMAN of NMDPRA’s willingness to continue making payments of outstanding claims to promote seamless operations.
“Pursuant to the meeting, the NMDPRA went ahead to make an additional payment of N10 billion in June and sought for an upward review of the freight rate which was approved by President Muhammadu Buhari and is currently being implemented.
“The Authority wishes to reiterate that bridging payment is an ongoing process which is carried out after due verification exercise by the Authority and Marketers.
“So far, the Authority paid N71,233,712,991 bridging claims and another N2,736,179,950.84 freight differentials to the Marketers as at 6th June 2022.
“A breakdown of payment made to Marketers is as follows: Major Marketers (MOMAN) received N9,958,777,487.24, IPMAN members were paid N42,301,923,616.96, NNPC Retails N6,661,459,118.61 while DAPPMAN members were paid N12,303,195,651.57, these translate to a total of N73,969,892,941.84.
“It is disheartening that despite these payments and increase of N10 bridging cost, which was approved by President Muhammadu Buhari two weeks ago, IPMAN could turn around to accuse the NMDPRA of insensitivity,” the statement said.
It said NMDPRA remains committed to ensuring a safe, efficient, and effective conduct of midstream and downstream petroleum operations.
Nigeria-Cameroon Link Bridge up for Inauguration this June – Fashola
The Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola (SAN), has stated that the Nigeria-Cameroon link bridge will be inaugurated this June.
Speaking at the 16th inter-ministerial meeting of the group in Abuja, Fashola who doubles as the Chairman of the five regional ministerial steering committees, explained that the largely funded bridge by the African Development Bank (AfDB) is completed and in hopes that ECOWAS would deliver support for the inauguration.
“We have completed a new link bridge that links Nigeria to Cameroon, and it was funded largely by the AfDB and we are hoping that the ECOWAS commission will give us the necessary support to ensure the formal opening of that bridge sometime in the month of June,” he said.
The commitment to the piece of infrastructure, according to the minister, is to transform the road network into a first-class six-lane motorway, emphasizing that while speed is important, quality must not be lost.
“We’re trying to deliver a better life for five countries and over 40 million people who use that corridor, almost on a daily basis.
“The future is bright, this is an important investment for the people of Africa to achieve the objective of the Africa Union (AU) to create a trans-African highway,” he stated.
Lydie Ehouman, AfDB’s Chief Transport Economist and Project Task Manager, also spoke at the event, stating that the bank had been able to acquire an additional €3.5 million for the road project.
Investors King gathered that the total sum available for the initial financing of the project’s strategic research has increased to $41 million.
“The agreement for the on-lending of this additional grant by the bank to ECOWAS is currently being finalised. Thus, in addition to its substantial contribution of $25 million, the bank will have mobilised €12.63 million in the form of a grant from the European Union.
“This brings the total amount available for the financing of this highly strategic study to the equivalent of about US$ 41 million,” she stated.
She did, however, point out that specialists in member countries’ claims of delays were untrue, because the arrangement was that labor should persist while any differences were aired and rectified.
UNDP, DPGA to Promote Global Digital Goods
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Digital Public Goods Alliance (DPGA), the government of Norway, and Sierra Leone have agreed to promote inclusive digital public infrastructure in countries across the world.
On Wednesday, Investors King gathered that world leaders, development organisations and philanthropic funders are set to invest in a “large-scale technology sharing, funding, and commitment to supporting the international cooperation agenda.”
In its published statement, UNDP stated that the agreement is to improve governance frameworks, which are critical to building a resilient future for countries.
At the event, global leaders committed their efforts to funding and the implementation of digital public infrastructure through a newly established Digital Public Goods Charter (DPG), which serves as a framework to increase international cooperation on this plan.
With its DPG Charter, co-led by the DPGA and the Digital Impact Alliance (DIAL), the UNDP outlines a clear vision for a coordinated global approach to building a safe, trusted, and inclusive digital public infrastructure using DPGs.
“Doing so can enable countries – regardless of income levels – to transform services and service delivery for people and communities everywhere,” the statement read.
The DPG Charter, and the commitments made by global leaders, are especially relevant given the devastating socio-economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and mounting climate disruption.
These challenges, compounded with the unprecedented food, energy, and financial crisis added by the war in Ukraine, are creating an urgent need for global action.
Digital Public Goods are open-source solutions used to build digital public infrastructure (DPI), enabling countries to provide better services and foster inclusive economic growth.
While the Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) involves digital systems like cash transfers, digital identification, and data exchange that enable the adequate provision of essential society-wide functions. It also allows the building of resilient crisis recovery.
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