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$22.7 loan: Nigeria will split if South East is excluded – Igbo Youths warns Buhari

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The Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youth Council Worldwide [OYC] has warned that there will be a crisis in Nigeria if part of the $22.7bn loan approved by the Senate for the President, Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd), is not used to build infrastructures in the South East.

OYC warned that, “South East exclusion will fuel crisis and political uncertainty and push the region out of Nigeria.”

Ohanaeze said it was studying diligently the details of the approved $22.7 bn loan which was meant to address the infrastructural deficiencies in the country and demanded that the government publish the details of the zones that would benefit from it.

The Igbo youth group warned that any plan to exclude Southeast from being beneficiary will send wrong signals capable of shaking the foundation and the unity of the country as “it will not augur well for the administration of President Buhari which we Support.”

“President Muhammadu Buhari’s 2015 electoral promise to revamp Enugu Coal Mine had not been formally addressed since 5 years ago,” a statement signed by the President-General, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, and Mazi Okwu Nnabuike, the Secretary-General of OYC,  saidon Sunday.

“[We] present these Southeast Federal projects that should be factored into the 22.7 billion dollars loan and shouldn’t be denied for any political reasons, they include, completion of 2nd Niger Bridge; drainage of Imo River with establishment of Owerrinta Dry Sea Port in Abia State; Revamp Of Enugu Coal Mine; Resuscitation of Nkalagu Cement Plant and Factory Ebonyi State; Commencement of Federal Roads approved during the valedictory session of the Federal Executive Council on 22nd May 2019, which the Hon Minister of Power, Works and Housing had kept mum on.

“These Federal abandoned Expressways approved are, “reconstruction and dualisation of ABA-Ikot Ekpene Road, rehabilitation and dualization of Umuahia-Ikot Ekpene Road, dualization of Owerri-ABA Expressways, rehabilitation of Akoka-Okigwe Expressway, reconstruction of Abaomege-Ugep Expressway and completions of Enugu-Abakiliki-Ogoja Trans African Highway.

“OYC insists that these Capital Projects should be factored into the 22.7 billion dollars loan on behalf of the Southeast Zone. We are still monitoring the development of ongoing Works on the Enugu-Port Harcourt Expressway, Onitsha- Enugu Expressway and Ohafia-Arochukwu Roads.”  

The organisation warned that tensions are already brewing up in the South East on the rumour that Southeast has been excluded from the 22.7 billion dollars loan.

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OYC called on the Federal Government to publish the beneficiaries of the proposed loan with inclusions of South East projects to douse the tension.

Ohanaeze noted that “silence in these situations will be a provocative attempt to push Southeast zone out of Nigeria.”

The Igbo youth organisation, therefore, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to direct those involved to include the above listed abandoned federal projects to save Nigeria from disintegration.

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Politics

ONDO: Deputy Governor gives Akeredolu 21 days to hand over

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Oluwarotimi Akeredolu

Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Agboola Ajayi, has said that Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu has 21 days to hand over power to him or the constitution would be invoked.

Governor Akeredolu, who is currently receiving treatment for COVID-19, had on Friday vowed that he would not hand over to his Deputy in acting capacity.

Speaking through his Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Donald Ojogo, Akeredolu said his Deputy was the greatest threat to his administration and has since left the ruling All Progressives Congress.

But the Deputy Governor said it was ignorance to proclaim that Governor Akeredolu would not hand over running of government to him because of political differences.

He stated that the venoms and vituperations from Ojogo in the desire and to desecrate his constitutionally established showed the excruciating pains and whammies his exit has caused the ruling party.

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The Deputy Governor who spoke through his Media Adviser, Comrade Allen Sowore, said Section 190(2) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) was apposite in this circumstances even as he continues to pray for Akeredolu’s quickest recovery.

He said the Governor was at liberty to handover or not within 21 days after which the constitution becomes operational.

According to him:

“Refusal and failure of Mr Governor to handover the running of government to his deputy while in self isolation and temporarily incapacitated underscore his absolute disregard for the rule of law; a spite on the people and a direct assault on the provisions of the constitution which he swore to uphold.

“Not only that, his deliberate obstacles to ensure that government continues to run while he’s in self isolation as a result of the fact that he has been tested positive for the COVID-19 puts lips service to his hypocratic war against the ravaging pandemic.

“Our candid advice is that the energy decipates to pull down the office and person of the deputy governor should be channelled towards resolving the lingering crisis in the health sector particularly, the current strike embarked on by medical practitioners in the state, in the middle of this pandemic. Nobody will take us seriously when doctors are on strike and yet we pretend to be fighting a pandemic. It will only indicates that we’re taking the health of the people for granted.

“The Deputy Governor has a track record of performance in the various offices he has held – first as supervisory Councillor, LG Chairman, Member of the National Assembly – where he served as the chairman of the House Committee on NDDC and even now as the Deputy Governor.

“Nothing serves as threat to good governance than the current nepotism and lackadaisical attitude towards the prioritisation of people’s welfare.

“It’s imperative to inform the general public that, Mr Governor and members of his kitchen cabinet have deliberately barred the Deputy Governor from all government activities as all the daily itinerary and work schedules released from Chief Of Protocols, have not allocated any function or duty to the person or office of the Deputy Governor in recent time.

“The Deputy Governor empathises with the good people of Ondo State, at this critical period of our statehood that Mr Governor has decided to personalise administration and governance of our dear state.”

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Politics

Akeredolu appoints new health commissioner

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Following the death of Ondo State Commissioner for Health, Wahab Adegbenro, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu has appointed his Special Adviser on Health, Jibayo Adeyeye, as the state’s Acting Health Commissioner.

The governor also appointed the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Medical Sciences, Ondo, Adesegun Fatusi, as the new chairman of the State Inter-ministerial Committee Against COVID-19.

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Both positions were occupied by the late Adegbenro.

The governor’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Ojo Oyewamide, made this known in a statement on Saturday.

The late Adegbenro died on Thursday of coronavirus complications and was buried on Friday according to Islamic rites.

The statement read in part, “Following the unfortunate demise of the Ondo State Commissioner for Health, Dr Wahab Adegbenro, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu has appointed Professor Adesegun Fatusi new Chairman of the State Inter-ministerial Committee Against COVID-19.

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Nigeria Update

Dave Umahi, aides test positive for COVID-19

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Governor Dave Uamahi of Ebonyi State has tested positive for the novel Coronavirus. The Governor confirmed this in a statement personally signed by him on Saturday, July 4.

According to the governor, he and some of his aides had the test carried out on them and the result came back positive. He said presently they are not showing any symptoms but have since gone into isolation in line with protocols laid down by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).

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He has asked the Deputy Governor, Kelechi Igwe, to take over the frontline coordination of the state’s fight against the pandemic to protect Ebonyi people.

He appealed to residents of the state to take the NCDC protocols more seriously while stating that he’s working from home and will conduct all meetings virtually.

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Ebonyi state currently has 438 confirmed cases of the viral disease. 357 persons have been successfully treated while three have died.

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