No single government can solve Nigeria’s problems – Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday said that no single government can solve Nigeria’s problems.
Buhari, at a state- of- nation dialogue on security, economy and administration of justice in Abuja, stated that efforts of successive governments were required to see the country through its challenges
The President hoped that the event, which was organised by the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), would contribute to Nigeria’s development. Buhari, who was represented by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, reminded lawyers that they owed the nation some responsibilities.
“I would say no one government in this country would be able to solve the problems of Nigeria. But as we build on the precedent set by successive governments, not discarding completely what has been put in place, we would in the course of our desire to build a Nigeria of our dreams, be able to pick one or two things, on which we can concentrate and move.
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“As a government, the outcome of this dialogue can be transmitted to us so that whatever resolutions are reached, that would become part of the documents would prepare us as we transit and hand over to an incoming government.”
Kebbi State Governo, Atiku Bagudu, who also attended the event, said one of the ways to tackle insecurity was to give priority to primary education in the country.
He said most of the causes of insecurity were a result of the breakdown of the social contract towards the people.
Bagudu, therefore, advocated more investment in primary education to turn the situation in the country around.
The governor pointed out that in developed countries, as much as $27,000 is spent on a child, while in Nigeria, a rich state like Lagos, spends far less.
He said: “They (children) have not been provided education. The challenges of inclusion are the most current. We need to include more people and so we have to mobilise more resources.”
Bagudu praised the NBA for the theme of the dialogue, which according to him, is holding ahead of the general election.
Deputy Secretary General of the United Nations (UN), Amina Mohammed, condemned the attacks on facilities of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
She also frowned at attacks on some candidates for the general election, as well as fake news and hate speeches focusing on religious and ethnic identities.
The UN chief said: “INEC has been making great strides in improving the transparency, accountability and credibility of Nigeria’s electoral process. The increase in the number of registered voters from 84m to 93m is encouraging and suggests Nigerians are enthusiastic about the electoral process.
“However, we continue to witness attacks against the institution. Fake news, hate speech, based on religious and ethnic identities, violence against candidates as well as INEC facilities and staff since the political campaigns began.”
Mohammed hoped that the elections would provide an opportunity for Nigerians to unite and shape the future of the nation.
She said as Africa’s largest economy with a youthful population, Nigeria cannot afford to fail.
The UN chief said Nigeria must be steeped in economic, social and environmental principles and must be guided by Agenda 2030 and its 17 goals.
“The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are an urgent to-do list, a blueprint for global and local action. We needed it to develop peace and prosperity and a thriving natural environment for current and future generations.”
NBA President Yakubu Maikyau (SAN) said there was a need to continuously engage government at all levels on issues affecting the country and the citizenry.
He urged members of the Bench and Bar to always ensure that justice was served without fear of favour.
The New Chairman of the Police Service Commission, Solomon Arase, encouraged the deployment of technology to secure the country.
Arase, who added that government cannot solve security problems alone, said the establishment of reform panels over insecurity was a waste of time.
Naira scarcity: CBN begins allocation of more cash to banks
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) yesterday began cash allocation to banks to ease the scarcity.
A director confirmed the development to The Nation.
The source said the CBN felt the pains of Nigerians as the cash crunch bit harder.
“We also have family members who were affected by the lack of cash.”
Labour, which last week gave a seven-day ultimatum to the government to end the naira crisis, directed workers to stay off work and picket CBN offices in state capitals from Wednesday.
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The Supreme Court on March 3 ordered that the old and new N1000 and N500 notes should remain legal tender till December 31.
The CBN hesitated before beginning limited compliance with the order as cash scarcity persisted.
The governors that took the Federal Government to court threatened to initiate contempt proceedings against Attorney-General of the Federation Abubakar Malami and CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele.
The NLC lamented that its member could no longer pay transportation fares to work or for basic needs.
The CBN may have moved to forestall the likely economic consequences of a major strike.
Some bank staff confirmed to our correspondent that they got enough cash from the CBN to meet customers’ demands.
It was learnt that the old denominations were released late afternoon and early evening.
Bank sources said with the quantity of cash they had yesterday, customers can now withdraw as much as N100,000 for individuals and N500,000 for corporate bodies over the counter from today.
Disbursements from Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), however, remain uncertain.
It was unclear whether banks outside Abuja also now have enough cash.
Also yesterday, the House of Representatives asked the CBN to direct banks to immediately overhaul their online/electronic banking platforms for efficiency.
Adopting a motion at plenary, the House expressed concern about the difficulties in carrying our banking operations.
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A lawmaker, Sergius Ose Ogun, said many Nigerians have lost money to the inefficiency of the online/internet banking platforms.
He said Section 2 of the CBN Act saddles it with the duty of promoting a sound financial system in Nigeria.
Ogun said: “In the wake of the recent naira redesign and cash withdrawal limit policy of the CBN, there has been an increase in the use of online and electronic banking services to carry out monetary transactions across the country.
“The use of online or internet banking services by Nigerians in the past three months or thereabouts has been characterised by varying degrees of hitches ranging from unsuccessful electronic bank transfers, Point of Sale (POS) service failure and a host of others.
“The ineffectiveness or difficulty in using internet banking services across the online banking platforms of most banks has brought untold hardship, suffering and difficulties on Nigerians in the past three months.
“If nothing is done by the CBN and the banks to address these difficulties or ineffectiveness, Nigerians will continue to suffer untold hardships and loss of monies to unsuccessful electronic bank transactions.”
Keyamo seeks arrest of Peter Obi over alleged incitement
Minister of State, Labour and Employment, Mr Festus Keyamo (SAN) has petitioned the Department of State Services, demanding the arrest and prosecution of the Labour Party presidential and vice presidential candidates, Peter Obi and Datti Baba-Ahmed, respectively, for allegedly making comments capable of causing rebellion.
In the petition addressed to the Director-General DSS and dated March 23, the minister who is chief spokesperson for the All Progressives Congress, APC, Presidential Campaign Council, PCC, said in a post-election period such as this, there was a need to soothe frayed nerves, lower the temperature and begin the healing process.
“The President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, issued a statement to this effect a few days ago.
“However, it appears the presidentila and vice-presidential candidates of the Labour Party, Mr Peter Obi and Datti Baba-Ahmed are not prepared to toe this conciliatory path for the sake of peace and national cohesion, whilst exercising their rights to pursue duly laid down constitutional means of addressing their grievances,” he stated.
Keyamo noted that since the declaration of the presidential election results, the duo have been hopping from one media house to the other making incendiary comments and claims about the declaration of the President-elect by the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC.
According to him, “These comments and claims are made, not just within the boundaries of exercising their rights to freedom of speech and the freedom to air their grievances publicly, but they have since crossed the line to call for the outright truncation of democracy by insisting on the adoption of other processes outside the contemplation of our Constitution.
“In some cases, their privies have even called for the establishment of an Interim Government.
“The latest of such are the comments made by Datti Baba-Ahmed on behalf of himself and Mr. Peter Obi on Channels TV on Wednesday, March 22, wherein he threatened that if the President-elect was sworn in on May 29, it would ‘signal the end of democracy’.
“Posing as an accuser, a judge and a jury all by himself, he unilaterally declared the duly elected President-elect as ‘unconstitutional’ and, in a subliminal manner, threatened mayhem if the President-elect was sworn in on May 29.
“I also have it on good authority that Mr. Peter Obi and Datti Baba-Ahmed have camped some youths in a popular hotel in Abuja with the sole aim of instructing them to push out inciting messages everyday on social media in order to cause panic and fear within the federation and to incite people to riot and social unrest.
“It is noteworthy that Peter Obi and Datti Baba-Ahmed have submitted elections petitions to the courts for adjudication, but their conducts and utterances amount to a subversion of the processes they have instituted in court and a subversion of our Constitution and the laid-down processes for addressing disputes and grievances.
“These conduct and utterances are a build-up to something more sinister and it is important you rein them in now!
“In the circumstance, I submit this petition in my personal capacity as a patriotic Nigerian to invite/arrest, interrogate and after investigation, if necessary, charge both individuals to court for their conduct which amounts to incitement and treasonable felony.”
President-elect Tinubu travels out to rest – Aide
President-elect, Bola Tinubu, has travelled abroad to rest and plan his transition programme ahead of May 29, 2023 inauguration.
His spokesman, Tunde Rahman, disclosed this in a statement on Wednesday.
He also urged the media to stop publishing unsubstantiated claims about Tinubu.
There were reports that Tinubu travelled abroad for a medical check-up.
But Rahman in a statement said Tinubu decided to take a break after the hectic campaign and the election to rest.
The statement read in part, “After a very exhaustive campaign and election season, President-elect, Asíwájú Bola Tinubu, has travelled abroad to rest and plan his transition programme ahead of May 29, 2023 inauguration.
“The President-elect left the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Ikeja for Europe on Tuesday night.
“The President-elect decided to take a break after the hectic campaign and election season to rest in Paris and London, preparatory to going to Saudi Arabia for Umrah (Lesser Hajj) and the Ramadan Fasting that begins Thursday,” he said.
He noted that while away, Tinubu will use the opportunity to plan his transition programme.
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