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Osinbajo Meets IG as Policemen Protest in Maiduguri

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  • Osinbajo Meets IG as Policemen Protest in Maiduguri

Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo on Monday met behind closed doors with the Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Ibrahim Idris, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The meeting came shortly after the news broke that some policemen were protesting against non-payment of their allowances in Maiduguri, Borno State.

It was, however, not clear if Idris was summoned over the protest or he decided on his own to brief Osinbajo on the development.

The meeting, which was held inside the Vice-President’s office, came at a time President Muhammadu Buhari was attending the 31st Ordinary Session of the African Union Assembly of Heads of State and Government in Mauritania.

The agenda of the meeting was not made public.

Idris did not speak with journalists at the end of the meeting.

The Presidency also had yet to issue any press statement on the meeting as of the time of filing this report.

Mobile policemen took to the streets of Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, on Monday morning to protest six months’ unpaid allowances.

It was learnt that the officers were posted to the state in January to beef up the security of the troubled state, which had been bedevilled by Boko Haram insurgency for about a decade.

The protesting policemen, who were fully armed, marched in their hundreds to the Borno State Police Headquarters located on a major highway in the town.

The protesting policemen barricaded the highway, shooting sporadically into the air and scaring off motorists.

Some of the students and workers had to turn back to their homes as they could not pass through the barricade.

Some of the policemen, who spoke to one of our correspondents on condition of anonymity, lamented that since January when they were deployed in the state on a special operation, they had not been paid their allowances.

They complained that many of them had had to endure inhuman treatment as they had to sleep on the corridor of the office on returning from duty at night.

When contacted, the Commissioner of Police in Borno State, Damian Chukwu, said he was aware of the protest.

He, however, said the delay in the payment of the policemen’s allowances might not be unconnected with the late signing of the budget.

It was later learnt that the IG waded into the crisis by directing the commissioner in charge of the Police Mobile Force to immediately relocate to Maiduguri to address the crisis.

In a press statement in Maiduguri, the spokesman for the Borno Police Command, Edet Okon, said, “The IG has consequently directed the Commissioner of Police in charge of Police Mobile Force to relocate to Borno State and address the situation.”

He added, “The Borno State Government has also intervened and pledged to assist to better the condition of the visiting PMF personnel.

“The Police High Command is aware of their plight and liaising with appropriate Federal Government agencies to address the situation.

“We are hopeful that since the 2018 budget has been signed by the Presidency, the allowances will be paid soon.

“Meanwhile, efforts by officers of the command yielded results as the situation was brought under control. Members of the public are, therefore, encouraged to go about their lawful activities without any fear or apprehension.”

However, the Force Spokesman, acting DCP Jimoh Moshood, had in a statement in Abuja denied reports that riot policemen protested over the delay in the payment of their special duty allowances in Maiduguri on Monday.

Moshood said that the policemen simply visited the Borno State Police Command headquarters to enquire about the delay of their allowances.

Moshood’s claim was, however, contrary to pictures circulating online, showing policemen holding leaves and firing their weapons in the air.

Moshood explained that the Inspector-General of Police, Idris, had directed the Commissioner of Police in Borno State to explain to the men why there was a delay in the payment of their allowances and to also assure them that “since the budget has been approved, the allowances will be expeditiously processed and paid without any further delay.”

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Businessinsider, Nasdaq, Entrepreneur.com, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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Government

Ekiti Governor Unveils Multi-Billion Naira Relief Programmes Amid Economic Crisis

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Biodun Oyebanji

Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Biodun Abayomi Oyebanji, has announced a comprehensive relief package aimed at alleviating the hardship faced by the people of the state.

The relief programs encompass various sectors to cushion the impact of the economic downturn.

One of the key initiatives entails clearing salary arrears amounting to over N2.7 billion owed to both State and Local Government workers.

This move signifies the government’s commitment to addressing the financial burdens faced by its workforce.

Furthermore, Governor Oyebanji has approved a substantial increase of N600 million per month in the subvention of autonomous institutions, including the Judiciary and tertiary institutions.

This augmentation is intended to enable these institutions to implement wage awards in alignment with State and Local Government workers’ salaries.

In addition to addressing salary arrears, the relief programs extend to pensioners, with the approval of payments totaling N1.5 billion for two months’ pension arrears.

Moreover, an increase in the monthly gratuity payment to state pensioners and local government pensioners will provide additional financial support, totaling N200 million monthly.

The relief initiatives also encompass agricultural and small-scale business sectors.

The allocation of funds for food production and livestock transformation projects underscores the government’s commitment to enhancing food security and economic sustainability at the grassroots level.

Governor Oyebanji emphasized that these relief programs are part of the state’s concerted efforts to mitigate the adverse effects of the economic downturn and foster shared prosperity.

The comprehensive nature of the initiatives reflects a proactive approach towards addressing the challenges faced by Ekiti State residents.

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President Tinubu Orders Immediate Settlement of N342m Electricity Bill for Presidential Villa

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power project

President Bola Tinubu has directed the prompt settlement of a N342 million outstanding electricity bill owed by the Presidential Villa to the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC).

This move comes in response to the reconciliation of accounts between the State House Management and the AEDC.

The AEDC had earlier threatened to disconnect electricity services to the Presidential Villa and 86 Federal Government Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) over a total outstanding debt of N47.20 billion as of December 2023.

Contrary to the initial claim by the AEDC that the State House owed N923 million in electricity bills, the Presidency clarified that the actual outstanding amount is N342.35 million.

This discrepancy underscores the importance of accurate accounting and reconciliation between entities.

In a statement signed by President Tinubu’s Special Adviser on Information and Strategy, Bayo Onanuga, the Presidency affirmed the commitment to settle the debt promptly.

Chief of Staff Femi Gbajabiamila assured that the debt would be paid to the AEDC before the end of the week.

The directive from the Presidency extends beyond the State House, as Gbajabiamila urged other MDAs to reconcile their accounts with the AEDC and settle their outstanding electricity bills.

The AEDC, on its part, issued a 10-day notice to the affected government agencies to settle their debts or face disconnection.

This development highlights the importance of financial accountability and responsible management of public utilities.

It also underscores the necessity for government entities to fulfill their financial obligations to service providers promptly, ensuring uninterrupted services and avoiding potential disruptions.

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Abuja Electricity Distribution Company Issues Ultimatum to 86 Government Agencies Over N47bn Debt

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Power - Investors King

The Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC) has issued an ultimatum to 86 government agencies, including the Presidential Villa, owing a collective debt of N47 billion.

The notice comes as a response to the prolonged failure of these agencies to settle their outstanding electricity bills.

According to the public notice released by the AEDC management, some of the highest debts are attributed to prominent entities such as the National Security Adviser (owing N95.9 billion), the Chief of Defence staff barracks, and military formations (indebted to the tune of N12 billion).

Also, several ministries, including the Ministry of the Federal Capital Territory and the Ministry of Power, have sizable outstanding bills.

The AEDC has expressed its frustration over the inability of these government bodies to honor their financial obligations despite previous attempts to facilitate payment.

In response, the company has warned of imminent disconnection of services if the outstanding debts are not settled within 10 days of the notice.

The outstanding debts are attributed to various factors including the devaluation of the naira, cash scarcity resulting from demonetization programs, high inflation rates, removal of fuel subsidies, and foreign exchange challenges.

These financial burdens have adversely impacted the operations of the AEDC, contributing to a loss of N99 million in foreign exchange alone.

As the deadline for payment approaches, government agencies are under pressure to address their outstanding debts to avoid service disruptions.

The AEDC remains steadfast in its commitment to ensuring that all entities fulfill their financial obligations, underscoring the importance of prompt payment for uninterrupted electricity services.

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