12—Vanguard, TUESDAY, APRIL 10, 2018 :Vanguard News :@vanguardnews :@vanguardnews NEWS HOTLINES: 08052867023, 08052867058 Pastor's kidnapping: Obaseki tasks Police on culprits’ arrest EDO State governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has charged the Police in the state to bring the kidnappers of the late Pastor Pius Eromosele to justice. The governor, in a statement, commiserated with the Eromosele family over the death of their father, assuring that the state will ensure that justice is served and the culprits brought to book. He said, “It is with heavy heart that we received news of the incident, which led to the death of Pastor Eromosele. The state government will ensure that relevant security agencies get to the bottom of this incident and arrest the culprits.” On his part, Edo State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Johnson Kokumo, said the incident that led to Mr. Eromosele’s death, was a clear case of kidnapping. Kokumo who disclosed this in a chat with journalists, said that the state government was working on the directives of Governor Obaseki to track and arrest the suspects. Edo water, sanitation project on course —EU By Simon Ebegbulem B ENIN—THE European Union, EU, yesterday, said that the various water and sanitation projects in Edo State on which it is collaborating with the state government are on course, contrary to an allegation by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. The EU-Niger Delta Support Programme Consultant, Engr. Soji Adeyemi, who disclosed this in Benin City yesterday, explained that the Edo State Government had an “Extensive water sector policy developed by the Godwin Obaseki-led administration while a water sector master plan is being developed by the government in partnership with the EU. “Two agencies of the state government will eventually take over the management of water supply across the state: Small Town, Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency, that will provide water on a sustainable basis to all small towns and rural communities; Edo Urban Water Corporation, which will deal with the supply of water to urban areas and the management of all dams in the state.” Delta South leaders laud lawmaker over empowerment programmes W A By Tare Youdeowei R R I — ITSEKIRI, Ijaw and Isoko Leaders’ Forum of Delta South senatorial district has lauded the various empowerment programmes of Mr Michael Diden, saying that he has been a key factor in facilitating their meetings with the state governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, at critical times in the administration of the affairs of the state. The forum, otherwise known as the 3ices and led by Mr Edward Ekpoko, commended Diden in Warri when he paid a consultative visit to present himself and also inform the leaders of his intention to vie for the Delta South senatorial seat on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in 2019. Speaking on behalf of the leadership of the Forum, Chief Gabriel Etaluku said: “We will do everything to assist you and the others who would come to us for our blessings because all the aspirants are our children. We know you, you do not talk much but do much. You have served us well at some critical point in Asaba." Frozen IRDC funds: I've uncovered plans to attack me, cries Lori-Ogbebor By Charles Kumolu & Kelechukwu Iruoma RIGHTS activist, Chief Rita Lori- Ogbebor, has raised the alarm that some peersons have concluded plans to attack her over the freezing of Itsekiri Regional Development Council, IRDC, accounts, saying should anything happen to her, those who want the accounts unfrozen should be held responsible. She also called on Delta State governor, Sen Ifeanyi Okowa and the Inspector General of Police, IGP, Ibrahim Idris, to take note of the development, adding that she was being targeted as a result of her crusade for accountability in the management of community development funds. Briefing newsmen yesterday in Lagos, she said: “There is a plan to attack me because of my stand on IRDC funds. Those who have joined in the fight against the mismanagement of Itsekiri funds are also being targeted. I got privileged information that people are being mobilised for the mission. I want the world to know about this sinister plan. I have been serving Itsekiri for 30 years and I have given all I have to the Itsekiri nation. I have never asked for anything from Itsekiri people. I just want the best for my people. “Those embezzling our funds want to carry on with their terrible activities. I have served my people well. It is sad to see the wealth of my people being plundered by a few individuals. It is sad that the place I grew up is now a forest because funds meant for development are being embezzled. “I learned that a few people have mobilised youths to attack me because of the court order on the accounts being used to siphon our money. There are people, who believe that Itsekiri development funds belong to them and think they can do anything to ensure that they continue to get free money. “I want to use this medium to inform the governor of Delta State, Sen Okowa that I have been targeted for attack. I will also write a petition to the Inspector General of Police to inform him about the plot against me. Should anything happen to me or anyone associated with this fight for accountability, those people who want the accounts unfrozen should be held responsible. “I am very passionate about my Itsekiri nation and can’t support anything that will bring misery to our people. My people are treated as slaves and refugees. Seeing people suffer is something that breaks my heart. ‘’ Lori-Ogbebor had instituted a suit before a Delta State High Court, Warri, against some Itsekiri leaders and Chevron over alleged diversion of funds donated by Chevron and other donors for the development of Itsekiri communities. Also, an Abuja High Court directed the Nigeria Police Force to freeze seven accounts operated by IRDC which contained N2.1 billion. The accounts were frozen after which a Delta State High Court sitting in Warri granted a similar order. INVESTITURE: Obong Nsima Ekere, Managing Director, Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, (middle), being robed during conferment of a honorary Doctor of Management Technology degree on him by the Vice-Chancellor of Federal University of Technology, Owerri, FUTO, Prof. Francis Eze. With them is FUTO's Registrar, Mr. John Nwabuihe. Bayelsa govt to flush out ghost workers, under-aged staff By Ebun Sessou BAYELSA State Government has reiterated its determination to flush out from the state's bloated workforce, ghost workers as well as under-aged workers in the state public service. Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Kemela Okara, who disclosed this to newsmen in Lagos, yesterday, reiterated that the public service reform initiative in the state was meant to produce quality service delivery and not to witch hunt the people of the state. According to him, since the reform started, the state government has been able to cut down the bloated monthly wage bill from N6.7 billion in 2012 to N2.9 billion, saving N3.6 billion in 2018. According to him, “When the governor took office in 2012, one of the things he promised was to give Bayelsans the state they deserve as there was need to look critically at the engine of implementation of public policy which is the public sector, including the civil service, parastatals, government owned enterprises, tertiary institutions among others. This is one policy that the governor has consistently addressed since 2012. “Since 2012, we have been looking at the possibility of making the public service more efficient, how we can better manage the civil service as well as deal with lots of issues which we met, including a bloated workforce, ghost workers, sustainable monthly wage bill and ensure that people who were employed into various places met the lay down criteria. “After six years of Governor Seriake Dickson, nobody can accuse him of being ruthless and careless with the needs of the people. This government has been able to address issues including road infrastructure, quality education and good health care services among other facilities.”
Vanguard, TUESDAY, APRIL 10, 2018—13 :Vanguard News :@vanguardnews :@vanguardnews NEWS HOTLINES: 08052867023, 08052867058 500 youths renounce cultism in Bayelsa By Samuel Oyadongha & Emem Idio Y ENAGOA—NO fewer than 500 youths in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, yesterday, renounced their membership of different secret cults in a ceremony at the state office of Bayelsa Volunteers. Speaking at the event, state chairman of Bayelsa Reps c’ttee orders AuGF to conduct environmental audit in Rivers A B By Emman Ovuakporie U J A — DISTURBED by the appearance of black soot in major cities of Rivers State, the House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts, PAC, yesterday, ordered the Auditor- General of the Federation, AuGF, Mr Anthony Ayine, to conduct an environmental audit in Rivers State with special focus on air pollution. This came after the AuGF made a presentation of its report on environmental audit of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, the first of its kind in Nigeria, to the committee. Members of the committee, after listening to the details of the report, mandated the AuGF to conduct a similar audit in Rivers State, particularly on the appearance of black soot in the air in Port Harcourt and major cities in the state likely caused by oil exploration. Speaking at the interactive session, Chairman of the Volunteers, Prince Douye Koroye, said the youths decided to come out to renounce their membership of cultism following the stringent penalty provided in the state law which stipulates 20 years jail term with no option of fine for convicted cultists. He said: “The only proper thing to do is for us to start from our household being a youth body and today the Bayelsa State Volunteer committee, Kingsley Chinda, PDP, Obio/ Akpor federal constituency of Rivers State, said: “This is a landmark occurence in our history as this is the first time such an audit on our environment will be conducted outside the normal procedure of audits of accounts in our clime. “There is an urgent need to conduct a similar audit in Rivers State on air pollution because of the appearance of soot in the air of major cities of Rivers 2019: Ex-Minister calls for credible PDP candidates By Festus Ahon A SABA—FORMER Minister of Defence and former National Secretary of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Dr Roland Oritsejafor, has advocated credible candidates for the party ahead of the 2019 general election. Similarly, the pioneer Chairman of Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission, DESOPADEC, Chief Wellington Okrika, has stressed the need for PDP Services special squad members, local government coordinators, and others are here to give peace a chance and say no more to cultism. Let us be rest assured that nobody is here to victimize anybody but to give credibility to what the state governor has done. We are here to denounce cultism and to do the right thing. “It is all about credibility. You can see that the policy the government has put in State. This has been directed by the Speaker of the House via a House resolution.” The House had on March 6, mandated the committees on Environment and Climate Change to check the appearance of black soot in Port Harcourt based on Kingsley Chinda’s motion. The House had mandated both committees to meet with various agencies to probe the remote causes of the to settle for the best at all times to remain ahead of other political parties in the country and the state in particular. Oritsejafor and Okrika spoke separately when they played host to a Delta State House of Assembly aspirant in Warri South- West constituency, Mr Andrew Igban, who was at their residences on consultative visits on his aspiration to represent his people at the state legislature. They described Igban as a good product for PDP, place must be implemented. “We believe that as youths, we must be free from cultism and crime and the only way to be free from crime is what we have done today and I want to believe that Bayelsa youths will take advantage of what we have done and others that we have not reached out to. Very soon, we will reach out to them also." THANK YOU CEREMONY: From left: Richard Nyong, MD/CEO, Lekki Gardens; Adeyeye Ogunwusi, Oni of Ife; Olushola Nyong, wife of the MD/CEO, and Tunji Alapini (AIG retired), during the Lekki Gardens ‘Thank You' ceremony to friends, family and stakeholders, in Lagos. soot which most residents complain causes rashes and other skin diseases. Ayine, earlier in his report on the FCT, had pointed to poor toilet system discharged into the river in areas like Jabi, Nyanya in the FCT, as a major source of concern. The report also indicated poor institutional efforts by those involved in waste management as one of the factors working against good sanitation in the territory. stressing that having worked closely with the members of Delta State House of Assembly since 2003, he has the experience to represent Warri South West constituency in the state legislature. In his remarks at both visits, Mr Andrew Igban said his aspiration was an answer to a clarion call by the people of Warri South West constituency whom he said, have always yearned for quality representation in the Delta State House of Assembly. Oil spills: Environmentalists seek establishment of laboratories in N-Delta E NVIRONMENTAL Right Action/ Friends of the Earth Nigeria, ERA/FoEN, yesterday, solicited the establishment of specialised laboratories for oil spill related tests to resolve spill related conflicts in the Niger Delta region. ERA/FoEN made the appeal in its report on the September 2017 spill incident at Agip’s 10" Tebidaba-Clough-Creek pipeline in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa State. It will be recalled that the clean-up of the oil leak, which discharged about 180 barrels of crude into the environment, was delayed until the Bayelsa State Government intervened to resolve the disagreement. Mr Marco Rodondi, District General Manager, Nigeria Agip Oil Company, said that the conflict between the community and Agip frustrated the clean-up efforts, which had currently reached the final stage. The report urged the federal and state governments as well as interventionist agencies in the Niger Delta region to set up specialised laboratories to facilitate the speedy resolution of oil spill pollution-related conflicts between oil firms and their host communities. Nurses, midwives resist three percent deduction from salaries By Gabriel Enogholase B E N I N — NATIONAL Association of Nurses and Midwives (Federal Health Institutions Sector), has described as illegal, unlawful and unconstitutional, the deduction of three percent from their March, 2018 Consolidated Basic Salaries which they claimed was authorised by the Accountant General of the Federation. In an open letter to the Accountant General of the Federation through their counsel, Olayiwola Afolabi, a Benin-based lawyer, the association said that the deduction of the said three percent from their Consolidated Basic Salaries for the month of March, 2018, was contrary to the provisions of the National Association of Nurses and Midwives, NANNM- Constitution, Article V(1)(a). Afolabi said that the afore mentioned article stated that, “Every member of the Association shall pay a monthly check off due of three percent on monthly basic salary out of which, one percent is professional fees and two percentage actual check off due. “The literal interpretation of the above provision is that the check off dues shall be strictly from the monthly basic salary payable to the individual members of our clients. By necessary implications, this will be exclusive of other allowances and entitlements presently built into the Consolidated Basic Salary." A-Ibom govt tackles flooding in Uyo By Harris-Okon tagged Emmanuel Engagement U YO—COM- MUTERS and residents of Ibrahim Babangida Avenue in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, will soon have cause to smile as the state government makes good its promise to tackle the perennial flooding which has ravaged the road. IBB Avenue, a major road to the capital has remained a nightmare to commuters and businesses with perennial flooding during the rains. At a forum in Uyo at the Traditional Rulers Council Hall on Wellington Bassey Way, “Community and Mobilization for implementation of IBB Avenue Flood Control Scheme,” state Commissioner for Environment and Mineral Resources, Dr. Iniobong Essien, said although the IBB Avenue flooding appears to be minimal, it spans a stretch of 7.5 kilometers. The project is expected to gulp about N17 billlion. Essien who is also Chairman, Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Management Project, Akwa Ibom State NEWMAP Steering Committee said, “The project will run through three local governments of Uyo, Nsit Ibom and Ibesikpo Asutan."