Labour tackles FG over fuel price increase, demands immediate reversal – Newstrends
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Labour tackles FG over fuel price increase, demands immediate reversal

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The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has condemned the latest hike in the pump price of fuel by the Federal Government and demanded an immediate reversal.

This is coming about three days after the announcement by the Petroleum Products Marketing Company Limited of an increase in the ex-depot price of petrol from N147.67 per litre to N155.17 per litre and directed filling stations to sell the product between N168 and N170 per litre.

But the Nigeria Labour Congress said the action was a breach of the agreement it recently reached with the Federal Government.

President of NLC, Ayuba Wabba, said it also cast in a bad light “our utmost good faith with regard to government’s explanations that it lacks funds to continue bankrolling the so-called subsidy payments” as such would sooner than later cripple the entire economy, throw the country into severe economic crisis, and cause loss of jobs in millions.

He expressed this position in a statement on Monday in Abuja to condemn the increase, alleging that there was no doubt that there was great disquiet in the land over the extraordinary level of inflation.

It said the Federal Government did this despite an agreement that it would take immediate steps to revamp the nation’s ailing refineries.

It said, “The recent increase in the pump price of premium motor spirit (PMS) has only exacerbated the current lev­el of pain and anguish in the country.

“The recent increase in the pump price of the PMS is clearly against the spirit and content of what organised labour agreed with the government at the last negotiations over the last fuel price increase.

“While we await the full recovery of our refineries as contained in our agreement with the government, Nigerians cannot be made to bleed endlessly for the failures of successive governments to properly manage our refiner­ies, ensure value for money for the numerous turn around maintenance (TAM) which were poorly and barely exe­cuted and the horrifying lack of interest in prosecuting pub­lic officials and private busi­ness people who have profited from the rot in our petroleum sector and the collective misery they have imposed on the general population.”

The NLC also said there was a limit to what the citizens could bear if the increases in the price of refined petroleum products and other essential goods and services continued.

It stated, “While we fix our refineries, there are a number of options open to the government to stem the tide of high prices of refined petroleum products. One is for the government to declare a state of emergency in our downstream petroleum sector.

“As a follow up to this, the government should enter into contract refining with refineries closer home to Nigeria.

“This will ensure that the cost of supplying crude oil is negotiated away from prevailing international market rate so that the landing cost of refined petroleum products is significantly reduced.

“Government should also demonstrate the will to stamp out the smuggling of petroleum products out of Nigeria.

“We need to see big time petroleum smugglers arraigned in the court of law and made to pay for their crimes against the Nigerian people. Government has the resources available to it to en­sure this economic justice to Nigerians.

“The question on the minds of many Nigerians is if the government is willing to go headlong against major financiers of the major political parties known to the public as the architects of the current national woe,” he stated.

Labour insisted that information on the distribution of petroleum products to petrol stations be advertised as a way to carry everyone along on with the distribution of refined petroleum products.

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Oba of Benin receives 2 looted ancestral stools from Germany

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Oba of Benin, Omo N’Oba N’Edo, Uku Akpolokpolo, Ewuare II

Oba of Benin receives 2 looted ancestral stools from Germany

The Oba of Benin, Omo N’Oba N’Edo, Uku Akpolokpolo, Ewuare II, has received two looted royal stools carted away during the invasion of Benin City in 1897, from the German government.

The artefacts — bronze and wooden royal stools (Ekete), were looted during the reign of Oba Eresoyen and Oba Esigie several centuries ago.

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The returned artefacts were handed over to the National Commission for Museums and Monuments, NCMM, on behalf of the Nigerian government by the German authorities in 2022.

Presenting the items to the Oba of Benin in his palace, the Director-General of National Commission for Museums and Monuments, Mr Olugbile Holloway, pledged to work-hand-in hand with the Benin Royal Court in uplifting and displaying Edo heritage.

He said as the Benin bronzes and other art works are gradually making their way home (Nigeria), adding that the NCMM will join hands with the Royal Court to create a befitting destination for people around the world to come and appreciate these works.

Oba of Benin receives 2 looted ancestral stools from Germany

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Osun: Obaship tussle rages in Iree as court restrains Gov Adeleke again

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Osun: Obaship tussle rages in Iree as court restrains Gov Adeleke again

A High Court sitting in Osogbo has refused the prayer of the Osun State government to vacate the order preventing Governor Ademola Adeleke from issuing certificates, instruments and staff of office to one Prince Muritala Oyelakin as the Aree of Iree.

The state government, Oyelakin and seven others, through their counsel, Kayode Titilaoye, who is the Director of Legal Reform in the state Ministry of Justice, and Dr. D. A. Ariyoosu, had approached the court to vacate the restraining order granted Oba Raphael Oluponle, which stopped the official presentation of staff of office to Oyelakin on May 3, 2024 and to also refuse the interlocutory injunction sought by Oba Oluponle to restrain Adeleke from taking any further step on Aree stool pending the determination of the substantive matter before the court.

At the hearing last week, counsel to Oba Oluponle, Dr Muritala Abdurasheed, SAN, informed the court that the substantive matter was already before the court and parties had been served accordingly.

He urged the court to grant the interlocutory injunction, arguing that taking further steps on the matter before the court was not only contemptuous of the judiciary but also injurious to Oba Oluponle.

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Justice M.O Awe, in his ruling, refused the application of the state government and Oyelakin and granted interlocutory injunction sought by Oba Oluponle and restrained Governor Adeleke from issuing certificate, instrument and staff of office.

The order reads in part: “It is my view that the complainant’s application for interlocutory injunction ought to succeed. Accordingly, the application succeeds and it is hereby ORDERED AS PRAYED. “Specifically, the 1st, 2nd and 3rd defendants/respondents are hereby restrained from installing the 9th defendant and respondent as Aree of Iree and/or present a staff of office to the said 9th defendant /respondent pending the hearing and the determination of the substantive suit that is the originating summon of the claimant pending before the court.

Parties are to bear their costs.”

It would be recalled that the court, on Friday, May 3, 2024, stopped Governor Adeleke from presenting staff of office to Oyelakin at an event scheduled to hold on Saturday, May 4, 2024 in Iree after preparations had been concluded for the ceremony.

The state government, through his Commissioner for Information and Civic Engagement, Kolapo Alimi, in a statement, said the governor had obeyed the court order and suspended the ceremony till further notice and directed the government legal team to approach the court to vacate the interim order.

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Oba Oluponle had been appointed by the former Governor Gboyega Oyetola’s administration and presented with the certificate and staff of office, but Governor Adeleke later issued an Executive Order that he should vacate the palace, without recourse to the fact that a case was pending in court on the matter as of the time.

The government subsequently issued a White Paper nullifying the appointment of Oba Oluponle and ordered that the case which was instituted against his appointment should be withdrawn before the commencement of a new process.

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Rivers political crisis delayed my administration’s programme – Fubara

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Rivers State Governor, Siminalayi Fubara

Rivers political crisis delayed my administration’s programme – Fubara

Rivers State Governor Siminalayi Fubara has admitted that the political crisis in the state adversely affected his administration.

Indeed, the governor said real governance started only three months ago.

Despite the initial delay, he said his administration’s project and service delivery record had surpassed the achievements of some of the past governments in the state.

Fubara, currently locked in a protracted battle with his predecessor Nyesom Wike, spoke on Saturday at Ngo town during the inauguration of the Andoni section of the Ogoni-Andoni-Opobo Unity Road.

He expressed worry about the low ranking of the state in health service delivery, citing recent statistics.

The governor’s Chief Press Secretary (CPS), Nelson Chukwudi, quoted him as saying the challenge would be handled appropriately.

Fubara said, “I was in Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF) meeting on Wednesday, and we were given an update from the chart on medical position of all the states. It was in zones,” Fubara said.

“You won’t believe that in that chart, everything that has to do with enrollment, even the level of facilities that is on the ground in that assessment, Rivers State was classified as below benchmark. It is a pity.

“It is not something that just happened in a day. It is not something that just happened within my time in government. No, no. It is a statistics collated over a period of time.

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“So, it means when we tell you that our target is education, healthcare and agriculture, we didn’t make any mistake.

“We might have done other things, but those key areas have not been adequately attended to. And we promise our people this afternoon that by the special grace of God, in the next six months, there will be a total change in the health sector of Rivers State.”

He said it was heartwarming that the Ogoni-Andoni-Opobo Unity Road project was successfully delivered at last, having been initiated by former governor Peter Odili.

Fubara said that his driving principle remained putting the people first and vowed not to renege on the promise of internal roads that he made to Andoni people during campaigns.

The governor directed the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Works, to liaise with Monier Construction Company (MCC) to do scoping for commencement of reconstruction of Ngo internal roads and new contract for extension of the road to Oyorokoto Town.

He said, “I know that if it is this road, we are already done with the road. The politicking of the road is already done. I don’t want to politick on this road anymore.

“I want to say here that we need to develop our own, and if we have to do it, we have to do it ourselves. So, I promise my people that we are going to do more jobs, more connecting roads for the Andonis by the special grace of God.

“I remember when we came for campaign we did promise our people that when you support us, we are going to give you the internal roads. And by the special grace of God, the Andonis gave us their support, and the election was won.

“A lot of people were thinking that this place would be empty today. Some people had other plans. But to the glory of God, we are getting natural support.

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“People that we didn’t pay money are here to say that they are identifying with this government and appreciate what this government is doing.

“For that alone, I want to direct the Permanent Secretary to immediately liaise with the contractor to ensure first, that the internal roads in Ngo, and connecting this road to Oyorokoto is immediately awarded.”

Fubara urged the people to have faith in the administration of President Bola Tinubu, and appealed for their total support to the Federal Government so that it could continue to undertake life-changing programmes that would trickle down to the state and local government areas.

He said, “I am also aware that we have issues in the other communities in Andoni. Some of them are flooding issues, which is even the more critical issue.

“I know of a place called Oronija. They are having very serious erosion and flood issues, and other places. We are going to do something about it. It is my promise to my dear people today.

“I also want to say in this gathering, please, support the government at the centre. I am happy when our leader was mentioning the activities of the oil companies here, and said that there is no interruption. I was impressed by that.

“It shows that we are contributing positively, and we understand the meaning and importance of peace. So, let me enjoin you: continue to show this good faith, and be a good host.

“In the governance of this country, the success of the centre is the success of the sub-national. And when the sub-national succeeds, which is the state, the local governments will succeed. And when the local governments succeed, it means more projects, more life-changing activities will be seen in your domain.”

In his welcome address, the member representing Andoni-Opobo/Nkoro Federal Constituency in the National Assembly, Awaji-Inombek Abiante, said the road is less than 30km long but regrettably took three different contractors to deliver it after 24 years.

Abiante explained that this was the first time since the dawn of the current democratic dispensation that the Andoni people would gather for an inauguration of a development project within Ogbolo land.

Rivers political crisis delayed my administration’s programme – Fubara

 

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