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We’ll never cover up Corruption- Saraki

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Senate-President-Bukola-Saraki

Senate President, Bukola Saraki says the present senate under his leadership will never cover corruption except if the information didn’t come to them. Saraki said this while speaking with a team of editors of the London based “The Economist” newspaper at the weekend.

“Under my watch, the Senate will never cover corruption except if the information didn’t come to us”, he said.

According to a statement by his Special Assistant on Public Affairs, Mohammed Isa, Saraki said the Senate is ever ready to partner with President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure the success of the anti-corruption war. The Senate, he said had already demonstrated such commitment through its interventions on many alleged corrupt transactions such as its swift investigation and adoption of a report on the management of the Treasury Single Account (TSA) that saved the nation about N7billion and the exposure of the inconsistencies in the 2016 budget.
The step, he said was a departure from the past where such reports were either watered-down or not presented for debate and adoption. He cited the report he presented to the last Senate on the over N1trillion fuel subsidy scam that never saw the light of the day.
In furtherance to the commitment, the Senate President said Nigerians would in the next few weeks be availed with the details of the National Assembly budget which will be a departure from the tradition of having one line item budget.
“For the first time we promised Nigerians to give out our budget breakdown. The committee will make its report available by next week. We are resolved to break the tradition of one line item,” he said.
Saraki said though party differences exist between the senators, citing example of the leadership tussle, he, however said, national interest and the desire of each senator to fulfil the promises made to Nigerians have become the guiding principle of the senate in their team work.
On the economy, he said the Senate has embarked on series of legislative interventions to create conducive environment for the private sector, as he said, “it is only when the private sector thrives that the issue of unemployment will be addressed and the nation’s GDP will increase.”
“Few days ago, we received a report on the laws that need to be amended in order of priority importance to ease doing business and overall private sector participation in the stimulation of Nigeria’s economy. We will soon commence the implementation of the recommendations in the report in addition to pushing for the amendment of the Procurement Act to stimulate and protect our local industries,” he assured.
He blamed lack of firmness and consistency in policy implementation by the past administrations as the main obstacle for the growth of the private sector.
“If people have confidence that these policies have come to stay, nothing will stop them from coming to invest in the country,” he stressed.
He allayed the fears that the low prices of oil will have negative impact on the implementation of the 2016 budget, saying that, “what we need to do is to block leakages and show more transparency.”
“If we can block leakages, stop the wastages and institute a culture of transparency in governance, the revenue in-flow will not be substantially affected. Without these, even if oil is sold at more than a $100 per barrel, we will continue to witness a decline in revenue in-flow as we witnessed in the past,” Saraki said.

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“I’m An Igbo Man From Abia, Not Just Ijaw” – Asari Dokubo Stirs Controversy

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In a bold and controversial statement, Asari Dokubo, a prominent figure in the Niger Delta region, has declared that the Ikwerre people of Rivers State are indeed Igbos.

Dokubo, who is known for his outspoken views, made this assertion despite being identified as an Ijaw man himself.

According to Dokubo, 80% of Rivers State land is Igboland, and he questioned why some Ikwerre people deny their Igbo identity. He emphasized that the names and language of the Ikwerre people are evident proof of their Igbo heritage.

On his words; “It might not be wrong for me to say that 80% of Rivers State land is Igboland; nobody can deny it. Yes, people see me as an Ijaw man, which I identify with, but the truth is that I am an Igbo man from Abam in Abia State, like many other people in Ijaw land today.

“I don’t understand why some Ikwerre people keep denying their Igbo identity when it is clear to everyone that all Ikwerre are Igbo.

“There is nothing Benin about them. If they like, they can keep on changing their names, but they can’t remove Igbo from their names completely. Ezewuwo, not Obawuwo—Eze is an Igbo word. I don’t know how they changed the other part to wuwo, but they can’t change Eze. It is a shame for a group of grown-up people to be living in lies, deceiving themselves that they are not Igbo. But the truth is that inside, they know that they are Igbo; there’s no doubt about it.”

Dokubo’s statement has sparked a heated debate, with some agreeing with his views and others vehemently opposing them. The Ikwerre people have historically identified as a distinct ethnic group, separate from the Igbo.

This declaration is likely to ignite a fresh discussion on the complex issues of ethnicity and identity in the region.

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Buhari Govt Sold Nigeria’s Future, Says Governor Mutfwang

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“This government inherited an economy where we simply printed money up to the tune of ₦30 trillion and shared. This government inherited an economy where the crude oil we’re yet to take out of the ground has been sold in advance.

“So when you’re talking about the fall of the naira, it’s not rocket time. We sold our future under the last administration. No wonder you’re hearing of riots today, people intercepting food on the way. We are lucky on the Plateau that perhaps we have more food than many other states.

“And I pray that the time will not come on the Plateau that we will see this kind of riot for food, but it means we must roll over our sleeves and get to work. And that is why, for us as a government, when we announced one of the positions that talked about Food Security, people were laughing but it is a serious issue.” -Governor Caleb Mutfwang, Plateau At Swearing-In Of Special Advisers, Heads Of Govt Agencies

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After Meeting NGF Chairman, Akpabio Apologies To state Governors Over N30bn Claim

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The President of the Senate, Godswill Akpabio, has finally apologised to the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) under the leadership of Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq of Kwara State over his comment on the N30bn allowance allegedly given to them to cushion the effect of inflation in food prices.

This was coming after the Senate President held a meeting with the NGF Chairman and some of his counterparts in Abuja yesterday.

Akpabio had, at a plenary sitting last Tuesday, said an “unverified report” indicated that state governors received N30bn each from the Federation Account to cushion the effect of inflation and the high cost of food prices.

The statement has generated controversies in the public space, with some commentators asking governors to come clean about the money they did not collect.

However, on Monday, Akpabio in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Eseme Eyiboh, retracted the statement, saying the SP held the governors in high esteem.

The statement reads below:

“During the session, the President of the Senate commented on the payment of an unverified cumulative sum of about N30bn to the sub-national governments by the Federal Government for various interventions to ameliorate the food situation of our citizens at the sub-national governments.

“The unfortunate conjectures to take away the kernel in the material facts of FAAC payment are rather regretted. In considering the well-intended motive of urging state governments to collaborate with the Federal government of President Bola Tinubu to facilitate strategic interventions to mitigate the prevailing economic situation in the country remains the underpinning motivation in the comment.

“The President of the Senate is not oblivious to the fact that state governments are functional partners in all the efforts of the current administration of President Bola Tinubu and are also valuable stakeholders’ in the various legislative engagements of the legislature in creating the nexus between the legislature and the people.”

Eyiboh added that Akpabio has always demonstrated commitment to team building and shall not do less in the circumstance.

He, therefore, urged the sub-national governments not to be distracted by any misunderstanding of the context and true meaning of the statement.

He added, “The President of the Senate recognises and appreciates the current efforts of the governors at ameliorating the adverse effects of the current inclement socio-economic environment and therefore invites more hands on the plow to complement the renewed hope agenda.”

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