Good morning Nigeria, and welcome to the Ejes Gist News roundup of today’s top newspaper headlines in Nigeria, Tuesday, September 21, 2021.
1. Taking Pictures With Valueless Politicians Not Helping The Country – Peter Obi Slams Buhari
Former Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, has accused President Muhammadu Buhari of sending the wrong message by constantly photographing politicians who have defected to the APC (APC).
Such photo shoots, according to Obi, have done nothing to improve the country’s image or encourage those who have been patriotic and have held the nation’s flag high with credible achievements.
He went on to say that if the President continues to take pictures with politicians, the international community will have a false impression of our national values.
Instead of promoting such behaviour, Obi said, the President should use his good office to identify with Nigerians who are making an impact, noting that such pictures can then serve as further motivation for such people or for those who look up to such accomplishments.
During a Monday interview with Arise TV, the former Governor made his feelings clear.
Taking pictures with defection politicians all the time, in his opinion, “sends the wrong signal that you can be anything and be elevated into something.”
2. Insecurity: Tambuwal Announces Telecommunication Network Shut Down In Sokoto State
As part of efforts to combat insecurity, Sokoto State Governor Aminu Tambuwal has announced the shutdown of telecommunication network services in the state.
According to reports, the extreme measure affects 14 of the state’s 23 local government areas, which are the hardest hit by the attacks.
Ejes Gist News reports, Sokoto has become the third state in Nigeria to take such action, following Zamfara and Katsina, to combat the activities of bandits, kidnappers, terrorists, and other criminals in the area.
The governor of Sokoto confirmed the shutdown to the Voice of America Hausa Service on Monday.
Tambuwal stated that the action was approved by the federal government through Isa Pantami, Minister of Communication and Digital Economy.
3. IPOB’s Sit-At-Home: FG Reveals Fate Of Awaiting Southeast Candidates Who Missed WASSCE
Candidates who missed the 2021 West Africa Senior School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE) in the South-East will be given another chance to write the exam, according to the Federal Ministry of Education.
Ejes Gist News reports, even after the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), the group that started the sit-at-home movement, rescinded the order, the order was followed in parts of the South-East.
Armed men chased away students, teachers, and examiners before setting ablaze motorcycles belonging to the teachers at Comprehensive Secondary School, Nkume, Njaba Local Government Area of Imo State, where the English examination organised by the West Africa Examination Council, WAEC, on Monday was ruthlessly scuttled by armed men.
Mr. Sonny Echono, the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Education, frowned at the disruption of examination centres in the South-East, particularly the incident of September 13, 2021, while monitoring some examination centres in Abuja on Monday.
He did promise, however, that the ministry would put in place procedures to ensure that candidates who missed the exam in the south-East would be given another chance to take it.
4. Gov Sanwo-Olu Signs Lagos Anti-Open Grazing Bill Into Law
The state anti-open grazing bill, signed into law by Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, prohibits the open grazing of animals in the state.
On Monday, September 20, 2021, during a meeting of the State Executive Council, the bill was signed into law.
“By the powers vested in me as the Governor of Lagos State, I am signing the bill on Open Cattle Grazing and Trespass of Cattle on Land into law to prohibit issues associated with open grazing of livestock,” Sanwo-Olu said, ordering security agents to begin immediate enforcement.
The bill had previously been considered and passed by the state House of Assembly before being sent to the Governor for his signature.
Lagos has now joined the list of southern states that have banned open grazing of animals as a result of the signing.
5. Edwin Clark, in an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, rejects the idea of a naval base in Kano.
Chief Edwin Clark, a prominent Ijaw leader and elder statesman, has urged the federal government to reconsider its plans to build a naval base in Kano State.
In an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, Clark described the plan as a poor use of scarce resources and urged the government to reconsider.
According to the elder statesman, a naval base in the desert appears to be a “mission impossible” and a misplaced priority.
Despite the Nigerian Navy’s explanations as to why a base could be built in Kano rather than in a watery area, the plan has sparked heated debate among stakeholders and observers.
6. Buhari Approves the Population Census in 2022
President Muhammadu Buhari has directed the National Population Commission (NPC) to begin planning for a new census in May of the following year.
According to reports, the cost of conducting the population census in 2022 is expected to be $200 billion.
Ejes Gist News gathered, the fund set aside for the exercise will be included in the 2022 budget.
In May of this year, the House of Representatives urged President Muhammadu Buhari to postpone the planned 2021 census until the country’s security challenges subside.
Shehu Beji, a member representing Niger State’s Bosso/Paikoro Federal Constituency, moved the resolution, which was passed by the House.
On Monday, a senior White House official said President Muhammadu Buhari is ready to conduct another census after fifteen years.
7. Ngige to Doctors on Strike: Get Back to Work Now.
The ongoing strike by the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), according to Minister of Labour and Employment Dr Chris Ngige, will cause more damage to the country’s health sector.
In a Sunday interview with Channels Television, Ngige urged the striking doctors to call off their strike and resume talks with the federal government.
As the resident doctors’ strike enters its 59th day, the minister stated that he has always advocated for a peaceful resolution to the impasse.
He advised the Health Ministry and Attorney General’s Office, as well as the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) and the Nigerian Association for Rural Development (NARD), to approach the Labour Ministry to press their demands.
8. 2023 Igbo Presidency: Uzodinma Is A Selfish Traitor – Hope Uzodinma
The governor of Imo State has been branded a traitor who is working against the Ndigbo’s common good in Nigeria.
Ohanaeze Ndigbo, the apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, made the accusation in a statement released on Monday, accusing the Imo Governor of dancing to the tune of his political masters, who have most likely hypnotised him.
It cautioned the governor against becoming a “use-and-dump” figure in the hands of his political masters.
Uzodinma is working against the 2023 Igbo presidency plans, according to the Ohanaeze’s Secretary-General, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, because he has his sights set on the position for 2027 when he will no longer be a governor.
The group warned him, however, that he would not be able to secure the position and would face the consequences of working against his people.
The Ohanaeze group made the statement in response to a statement attributed to Governor Uzodinma, in which he said Igbos should forget about the presidency in 2023 because it was not in the All Progressives Congress (APCbest )’s interests to give the zone a ticket.
9. Terrorists who have repented are surrendering without reason – Army
According to the Nigerian Army, some Boko Haram terrorists who have been surrendering their arms to the military do not understand why they are doing so.
Maj. Gen. Christopher Musa, the Theatre Commander of Joint Task Force (North-East) Operation Hadin Kai, said, “Some of the surrendered insurgents will tell you they don’t even understand how they are surrendering and coming out in droves.”
Musa revealed this to journalists in Abuja while on a media tour to Maiduguri to assess the army’s progress in the fight against terrorism.
He also stated that the theatre of operation has continued its operations in the North-East to root out Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorists.
10. Wike’s Finance Commissioner, has relocated to Abuja to fight VAT with the FIRS.
The battle for the collection of the Value Added Tax in Rivers State has just gotten a lot more intense, with Governor Nyesom Wike reportedly relocating to Abuja to deal with the issue.
Governor Wike made headlines after making a declaration challenging the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, on tax collection in Rivers.
Wike and his Finance Commissioner, Isaac Kamalu, landed in the federal capital city on Sunday, September 19, according to reports reaching Ejes Gist News on Monday.
This is thought to be an attempt to wrest control of River state’s purse from the FIRS.
Wike’s trip to Abuja comes after the Appeal Court said it would reserve its decision on the Lagos State Government’s application for joinder.
11. How B/Haram Crisis Killed 300,000 Children In N/East.
More than 300,000 children lost their lives in the last 12 years because of the insurgency ravaging the North East region, the latest statistics released by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) revealed.
This is just as the Nigerian military said the Islamic State of West African Province (ISWAP), a rival terrorists’ organisation has started massive recruitment of jobless youths into its fold to continue wreaking havoc.
The latest statistics released by UNICEF also disclosed that over one million persons have been displaced within the period under review.
It said no fewer than 5,129 out-of-school children were currently battling mental health challenges as a result of the conflict in the North.
When one of our correspondents attempted to get more information on the factors responsible for the death of 300,000 children, the UNICEF Media Contact in Maiduguri said that the deaths were a summation of direct and indirect attacks on children.
He said, “Children killed in crossfires, Improvised Explosive Device (IEDs), children used as suicide bombers, children killed by malnutrition among others.”
Salihu Bakhari, who is a retired security officer, said he was not surprised by the figures released by UNICEF.
“We are just coming to terms with the reality because the attention in the past was on the frequency of attacks and destruction. We paid little attention to the humanitarian crises including how children were affected.