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Lagos EndSARS panel illegal, waste of time – Keyamo

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Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo

states can’t probe military, police

Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo, has said the panel set up the Lagos State Government to probe police brutality was illegal and a waste of time.

He said state government had no powers to probe the military and police being agencies of the Federal Goverbnent,

Keyamo, however, said his comment was not the position of the Federal Government but his personal opinion as a Senior Advocate of Nigeria.

The National Economic Council (NEC) had in the wake of violent EndSARS protests against police brutality of 2020, directed states to constitute Judicial Panels of Inquiry to investigate complaints against the Special Anti-Robbery Squads (SARS) and other police units.

A total of 28 states had set up panels, which submitted their reports to the governors.

However, trouble started after the Lagos panel submitted its report, which was eventually leaked.

In the report, the panel indicted the military and the state government while it declared that 11 people lost their lives at Lekki tollgate.

It also recommended the prosecution of soldiers and some policemen.

The Federal Government had earlier dismissed the report as fake, insisting that it was “tales by moonlight”.

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When he appeared on a live programme of Channels TV, Keyamo said the panel lacked the locus standi to probe the military and the police by virtue of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

He added that only the Federal Government can investigate the military and police.

He said, “I will not answer this question as a sitting minister, I will answer this question as a Senior Advocate of Nigeria; a member of the inner bar; and so I’m entitled to my opinion. This is not the federal government opinion.

“For me, that panel was an illegal panel. It is totally illegal. All lawyers who are listening to me should go back and read to the Tribunal of Inquiry Act of Lagos state.

“It says that the governor will have power to inquire into the conduct of any person and chieftaincy matters and any matter that would promote the good of the public.

“However, any person there was defined in section 21 to mean public officers of the state. It is defined to mean somebody within the public service of the Lagos state or the local government as the case may be.

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“However, if you look at section 21 again of the tribunal of inquiry law, it says that it has to be within the legislative competence of Lagos state.

“In other words, it is only a person over which whom the Lagos state has control that they can inquire into their conduct. If you don’t have control over me, you can’t inquire into my conduct.

“The policemen, the armed forces, the military are not officers of Lagos state. They are officers of the federal government.

“By virtue of the constitution, it is only the federal government that can control the conduct of policemen and the military. Lagos state cannot be in control, cannot legislate too regarding police matters and military matters.

“To inquire into the conduct of policemen and military, no state government can’t do that.”

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2022 National Honours list in circulation doctored, says FG

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The Federal Government has disowned the list of nominees for the 2022 National Honours that has been trending on some social and traditional media platforms.

Spokesperson for the Federal Ministry of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, Julie Osagie-Jacobs, on Monday, said the list had been doctored by mischievous persons to cause national disharmony.

She said that the authentic list had been compiled by the ministry for the National Honours but yet to be made public.

Controversy and wide condemnation by opinion leaders and public analysts had greeted the inclusion of certain names and omission of some found to have excelled in their callings over the years.

Osagie-Jacobs said, “The attention of the Federal Ministry of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs has been drawn to a purported list of nominees for National Honours being circulated by some online media organisations.

“While it is true that President Muhammadu Buhari will be conferring National Honours on deserving Nigerians and friends of Nigeria on October 11, 2022, the authentic list of nominees is yet to be released to the public. The Federal Ministry of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs will publish the list at the appropriate time and medium.

“Members of the public are hereby enjoined to discountenance the list in circulation as it is an attempt by overzealous reporters whose aim is to break news even when such news is fake.”

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ASUU strike: Adamu doesn’t deserve national honour – NANS

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Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu

The National Association of Nigerian Students has kicked against the move by President Muhammadu Buhari to confer National Honours Award on the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu.

Adamu’s name is among notable individuals Buhari listed to be honoured on October 11.

Reacting in a statement by its National Public Relations Officer, Giwa Temitope, on Monday, NANS said it was an insult to the collective intelligence of Nigerian students who had been locked out of schools for close to eight months due to the ongoing strike action of the Academic Staff Union of Universities which Adamu had failed to resolve.

“It constitutes an insult to the collective intelligence of Nigerian students both home and in the diaspora that the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, under whose nose university students have been home for close to eight months is to be awarded the National Honours of Commander of the Order of Niger.

“This act of the Buhari’s administration is a clear pointer to the fact that Nigerian students have been taken for a ride. And, we see this as the final straw that breaks the back of the camel of Buhari’s much touted integrity.

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“Over the years, successive administrations in the country have shown to the Nigerian people that the National Honours is more of recognition of patronage than recognition of excellence. But Buhari has taken a step further to show the mass of Nigerian students that we are not on the priority list of the administration.

“It is so unfortunate that a country which offered so much in hope and possibilities at independence has today become a land of suffering, insecurity and near hopelessness signposted by youth unemployment and underfunded educational sector,” the statement partly read.

NANS said that, in a functioning country, both the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, who “shamefully walked out” of a meeting with the national leadership of ASUU at the instance of the House of Representatives, and his Education counterpart would have been fired before now. “But, the reverse is the case as Adamu under whose watch the educational sector of the country has totally collapsed is to be recognised with a National Honour for a job ‘well-done’, it added.

“As an association, we reiterate that we pass a vote of no confidence in both Adamu and Ngige. And, we maintain that we shall be back to the streets in protest against the recklessness of this administration until the Federal Government settles every issue with ASUU for Nigerian students to return to classes,” it concluded.

ASUU has been on strike since February 14, 2022.  ASUU, which is the umbrella for university lecturers in Nigeria, is asking for improved welfare conditions for its members, adequate funding for universities, and the replacement of the government-introduced payment platform- Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System, with the University Transparency and Accountability Solution. UTAS was designed by ASUU following complaints against the IPPIS over alleged poor standardisation and incompatibility with the university system.

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I Criticise Buhari For Failing To End Killings In Benue — Ortom

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Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State

Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has said that he only criticises President Muhammadu Buhari for not being able to end killings in the country.

 The governor’s explanation was in reaction to a statement credited to the president by the Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Tertiary Education, Aminu Suleiman Goro, during the inauguration of some projects at the renamed Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi.

He had during the occasion asked Ortom to endeavour to acknowledge his administration’s capital projects in Benue State rather than cast aspersions on the president.

 But, the governor in his speech at the Independence Day Interdenominational Church Service held at Faith Cathedral of All Nations Evangelism Ministry, Old GRA, Makurdi said he held no personal grudges against the president.

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 The event was organised by the state government in conjunction with the state chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).

Ortom said, “I will not stop until the killings stop. If the federal government had taken to my counsel which was divine, we wouldn’t be where we are today. In 2016, I started voicing out about insecurity. The essence of a dog barking in a house is to inform the owner of the danger coming. 

 “Instead of taking my counsel, I have been intimidated. Now, insecurity has escalated in many states and here people cannot go to farm. I will never be happy with this development,” he said.

 The governor wondered why the government had not disarmed nomads carrying sophisticated weapons and killing innocent people but had continued to deny lawful state security outfits the right to acquire arms to protect lives and property.

Earlier, Archbishop Yiman Orkwar, who preached on the topic, “The Tripod of Justice,’’ said that for Nigeria to move forward there must be justice, equity and fairness.

 In his remarks, the state CAN Chairman, Reverend Akpen Leva, urged Nigerians not to lose hope in the country.

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