Vanguard Newspaper 10 january 2018
8 — VANGUARD, SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 10 , 2018 Alleged N400m fraud: S-Court declines to quash charges against Metuh •Says he has case to answer By Ikechukwu Nnochiri THIS is not the best of times for the bed-ridden former National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh, as the Supreme Court, yesterday held that he has a criminal case to answer. The apex court, in a unanimous judgement by a five-man panel of Justices, said there was merit in the seven-count charge the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, preferred against Metuh and his firm Destra Investment Limited. EFCC alleged that Metuh had before the 2015 Presidential election, received N400million from the Office of the National Security Adviser, ONSA, without executing any contract. The agency alleged that the fund was electronically wired from an account that ONSA operated with the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, to Metuh, via account no. 0040437573, which his firm operated with Diamond Bank Plc. It told the court that the fund which was released to Metuh and his firm by detained former NSA, Col. Sambo Dasuki, retd, was part of about $2.1billion earmarked for the purchase of arms to fight insurgency in the North East. Besides, the prosecution which has already closed its case after it called eight witnesses that testfied before the court, also alleged that Metuh was involved in an illicit transaction that involved the exchange of $2million. However, Metuh who has also opened his defence to the charge, was last Monday, brought before the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court in an ambulance. The embattled ex-PDP spokesman was wheeled into the courtroom in a stretcher by a team of medical experts from the National Hospital, Abuja, even as his lawyers persuaded trial Justice Okon Abang to suspend further hearing on his case, till March 14. Metuh’s bid to finally stop his trial failed yesterday, as the Supreme Court dashed his hopes, saying he should continue his defence before the lower court. The apex court panel unanimously affirmed the May 25, 2016, judgment of the Court of Appeal in Abuja, which earlier held that Metuh had a case to answer. The appellate court had dismissed appeals Metuh and his firm lodged before it for being incompetent, even as it upheld the March 9, 2016 ruling of Justice Abang that dismissed a ‘no-case-submission’ that was made by the THE Department of Biological Sciences, College of Basic and Applied Sciences (CBAS) of the Mountain Top University will hold ‘A 3-day Proposal and Grant Writing Workshop’ from Tuesday, April 17 to Thursday,April 19, 2018. The objective of the threeday workshop is primarily ‘To Impart Knowledge of Proposal writing skills in young academics that are seeking grants for research projects. It is also to give the wouldbe participants the opportunity to have a oneon-one interaction with academic scholars that have secured research grants. defendants who insisted that EFCC failed to establish a prima-facie case to warrant their prosecution. Meantime, the Supreme Court panel, held that the appellate court acted rightly when it dismissed Metuh’s appeal on the ground that he failed to comply with basic constitutional requirement. It concurred with the lower court that Metuh and his company failed to obtain leave as required by the Constitution when filing an appeal against an interlocutory decision, on the grounds of mixed law and facts, before the notice of appeal was filed Mountain Top Varsity holds workshop for grant seekers According to a statement signed by the chairman of Local Organising Committee, LOC and Head of Department, Biological Sciences, Dr. Adesina Adeiga, the three-day workshop will hold at the College of Basic and Applied Sciences (CBAS) Big Lecture Hall of Mountain Top University (MTU) KM 12, Lagos Ibadan, Expressway, Ogun State. Dr. Adeiga added that the programme will attract a registration fee of N35,000. Prof. Elijah Ayolabi, a Professor of Geophysics and Vice-Chancellor, Mountain Top University is the Chief Host. We need good hands to develop Nigeria’s power sector —Lagos Perm. Sec By Ediri Ejoh & Oluchukwu Nkenta THE Lagos State Permanent Secretary of Education, Adebunmi Adekanye, has reiterated the need for competent hands to develop the country’s power sector. This came as the management of Ikeja Electric called for more sensitization of the risks and hazards in the electricity sector so as to guide consumers to embrace tenets of safety. Adekanye made this known during the official unveiling of Power Play, an Interactive Board Game developed by Ikeja Electric (IE) to promote safety in power sector at Stadium Junior Grammar School, Ifako Ijaye, in Lagos. The Permanent Secretary, lauded the management of IE for its creativity in developing the game for the youth to imbibe safety culture, adding that it would encourage youths to pick more interest in the power sector. Adekanye, who was represented by the Director, Administration and Human Resources, Ministry of Education, Mrs. Folashade Ladejo, noted that the game would prepare the youth against the hazard in the sector and how to be saved from the problem associated with electricity. Also speaking, the Director-General, Lagos Safety Commission, Mr. Hakeem Dickson, said the game would impact safety culture on the minds of youth.
Residents protest hike in toll on Lekki-Epe expressway By Monsuru Olowoopejo FOLLOWING increase in toll paid by motorists along Lekki-Epe Expressway, residents of Eti- Osa Local Government, yesterday, stormed the road, protesting the increase describing it as anti-masses policy. The protest came barely nine days after Lekki Concession Company, LCC, increased the toll, apparently to offset the earlier debt incurred on the project by the government after the project was bought back from the lenders five years ago. The protesters, under the aegis of Anti-Lekki Tolling Movement, ALTM, argued that the tolls within the axis should be removed or be made toll-free for every motorist. They stressed that since the road was constructed with tax payers’ money, toll should not be collected from the residents to rehabilitate Lekki-Epe expressway adding that it is the responsibility of the government to cater for the welfare of the residents. Saturday Vanguard gathered that few minutes after the protest commenced, hoodlums stormed the scene with guns and machetes, attacking the protesters and demanded that the protest should be discontinued immediately. The hoodlums also attacked the newsmen at the scene, preventing them from capturing the drama that ensued between both parties. Normalcy however returned when Policemen deployed to the scene intervened and arrested no fewer than five of the hoodlums. A member of the group, Adeboye Adebare, insisted that the government must meet their demands adding that “the government has not reviewed the minimum wage and has not reduced taxes collected from the residents.” In an interview with Saturday Vanguard during the protest, the convener of the protest, Dotun Hassan, demanded that a full audited report on what had been generated from the tolls since the facilities were erected be made public. “LCC should not be collecting toll nor engage in any increment at the toll-gate because the fund is our money. The governor who cancelled the toll plaza at Chevron should not hesitate to immediately remove the facility or reverse to the old fee.” Hassan also explained that hoodlums attacked his members with guns and machetes, to truncate the protest. “It is barbaric in this era because this is a government that had given the residents opportunity to engage with the government. We do not know the sponsors of these hoodlums but this was one of the strategies used to scuttle the protest embarked upon few years ago. We will remain resolute. “We have demanded that all the arrested hoodlums must be prosecuted because they attacked us including journalists, with guns and machete. We believe that this will serve as deterrent to others,” he added. Why Nigeria is partnering Vatican to end poverty — Minister of Science By Chinonso Alozie, Owerri MINISTER of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, said yesterday, that President Muhammadu Buhari’s government has concluded arrangement to partner with Vatican to end poverty in the country through Science and Technology. Onu spoke to newsmen while on facility tour of the Assumpta Science Center, in Ofekata, Orodo in Mbaitoli Local Government Area of Imo state. He also said that the Assumpta Science Center, would serve the African continent. “This is Assumpta Science Center, it is an opportunity for our young people to embrace technology. The federal government entered into partnership with the Vatican. This will serve all African children, from all African countries. We discovered that the difference between a developing and developed country is the level of Science and Technology they have gone through. “We think, if we can get young Africans to study Science and Technology, it will help to develop Africa. It will help in creating jobs, creating wealth, fighting poverty and fighting illiteracy. “ P r e s i d e n t Muhammadu Buhari, inherited this project and as Minister of Science and Technology, I insisted it must be completed. I have been assured it will be commissioned soon. “We intend to do this in other regions of the country, this will be the first one for the Southeast, in Imo state. “The contractor has assured me just like you are seeing the Chemistry laboratory, that in the next few days everything will be ready. We want the very best, this must be compared with the best in the world, so that people can come from Europe to Ambode presents staff of office to traditional rulers By Olasunkanmi Akoni G OVERNOR Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State has presented staff of office and instrument of appointment to newly appointed traditional rulers while also elevating a Baale (a local chief) to the Obaship status. The newly installed Oba are: His Royal Majesty, Oba Basiru Sotonwa as the Sekumade of Ipakodo, Ikorodu West Local Council Development Area of the state and His Royal Majesty, Oba Muritalab Aremu Ogun- Oloko, Adeori–Okin1, the Olu of Iwaya, Yaba Local Government Area. Since the inception of Governor Ambode-led administration, a total of 21 Obas and 128 Baales and Chiefs were installed, while 12 Obas were reclassified across the state. Presenting the staff of office and instrument of appointments to the Obas, Ambode charged them and other traditional rulers in the state to maintain peace and order in their domains. Ambode, who was represented at the ceremony by the Commissioner for Local Government and Community Affairs, Muslim Folami, at Ipakodo community, implored the youths and residents to guide jealously all infrastructure provided by the state government for the betterment of their community and desist from cultism and all forms of hooliganism. The governor expressed determination of his administration not rest on its oars in bringing infrastructural development nearer to the communities, saying that the present administration was committed to running an inclusive government by using the communities as springboard for social and economic development. study here. We want to expose our children to the best possible learning environment and we want to produce first grade engineers.” According to the Chairman Project Monitoring Committee, of the Assumpta Science Center, Mr. Marcel Uzoegbu, “it was aimed at bringing the development of Science and Technology to our door steps. SATURDAY Vanguard, FEBRUARY 10, 2018 — 9 2019: Civil Society engages govt agencies on service delivery By Omeiza Ajayi AHEAD of the 2019 general elections, the League of Civil Societies, a coalition of over 200 Civil Society Organisations CSOs has said it will continue to engage various government agencies with a view to tracking their performances. At a one-day engagement with some federal agencies in Abuja, President of the coalition, Adefila Kamal, said: “Using the words of the President that change begins with us, we brought all the agencies here to strategically engage them so that we may know exactly what they have for the populace and see how we can tap into their programmes and actions. There are agencies we also think should make necessary adjustments even as they implement government policies and we will be facing them with it head on." He said Nigerians would want to know to what extent government programmes have been implemented by its agencies, as the country approaches the 2019 general elections. Community Media group gets excos, laud Ambode, Bamigbetan THE Association of Practitioners of Community Media in Nigeria (APCOM) has praised the Lagos State Governor Akinwunmi Ambode and his Commissioner for Information Honourable Kehinde Bamgbetan for giving community media a voice in the state. Speaking during a press conference and Media Launch of the association, which took place in Lagos, the Publisher of Ilupeju Today, Dayo Akintobi who is the chairman of APCOM said many of the practitioners have benefited from the Lagos State Community Media Forum created by the then Special Adviser to Governor Ambode on Communities and Communications Honourable Bamgbetan and this has practically led to the formation of APCOM. Akintobi said the official registration of the association by the Corporate Affairs Commission CAC, under the Allied Matters Act, 1990 of the Federal Republic of Nigeria took place on December 14, 2017.