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Anambra election will be ‘embarrassingly’ transparent – INEC

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1634461084 INEC

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Saturday assured Nigerians that the November 6 governorship election in Anambra would be “embarrassingly transparent.”

The state’s Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Nwachukwu Orji, stated this during a voter education and sensitisation programme for Persons With Disabilities and women groups in the state.

Orji, who was represented at the forum by INEC Head of Voter Education and Publicity, Samuel Nimen, said all facilities had been put in place to ensure smooth conduct of the election.

He said: “The electoral materials that got burnt recently in an attack have been replaced. Non-sensitive materials have been distributed to all Local Government Areas and training of officials and ad-hoc staff is ongoing as I speak to you.

“We have pasted and presented voters’ register to the political parties fielding candidates. We have published the final list of candidates and we have been engaging stakeholders to ensure security at polling units.

READ ALSO: INEC rules out engagements with IPOB, ESN ahead of Anambra election

“We have increased polling units to 5,720 to increase access to all voters and we are carrying out aggressive voter education and sensitisation, appealing to residents to exercise their civic responsibilities.

“With all facilities in place and with the electronic transmission of results, I tell you that Anambra election will be embarrassingly transparent. This will build confidence in our electoral system.

“PWDs are very important citizens, so we give them special attention by creating an inclusive environment.

“You need to participate fully in the electoral process because you are all citizens of Nigeria and have the right to vote and be voted for. I assure you that we are doing all we can to ensure your safety.”

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NLC begins mobilisation to cripple Nigeria over Buhari’s govt plan to increase fuel pump price to N340

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The Paradise Breaking News
Ayuba Wabba, NLC chairman 

Following the news of the Federal government’s plan to increase fuel pump price to N340, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has vowed to ground economic activities across the country, adding that it has started mobilisation of its members for the showdown.

Recall that the Federal government recently announced that its readiness to withdraw subsidies on petroleum products from next year, saying that the burden of the subsidy was heavy to bear.

Speaking at the opening ceremony of 17th NLC Harmattan School in Ilorin, Kwara State, the NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba vowed that labour would resist the attempt by the government to increase the fuel price without making adequate arrangements to cushion the effect.

He contended that if the government succeeds in the plan, the impact of the price hike will affect every Nigerian, motorists, households, transporters, and others.

Wabba lamented that out of the OPEC member countries, it was only Nigeria that was following the International Monetary Fund (IMF) policies, which he described as neoliberal.

According to him, “The concept of accepting deregulation hook line and sinker anchored on import driven price model is not something that we can accept. We have said that without mincing words.

“If you say we are pushing through our throat to accept deregulation on the basis of importation, basically there will be no end to price increase even the issue of saying that once you deregulate without having the capacity to refine for domestic use will bring down the price of PMS, is not correct.

“When the price of crude oil was almost at a zero level, the price of two items that were deregulated never came down; that is diesel and the price of kerosene. In fact, they kept going up. The market fundamentals, marketers are out there to make maximum profit and usually they will collude and that is what will happen to Nigeria if we accept that policy hook line and sinker

“The implication is not also on the working class because whether we like it or not, the minimum wage gain has been eroded completely as the issue of failing value of our currency so the major issue under contention is actually how do we stabilise the value if the naira. Once you dont stabilise the value if the naira anything imported will have an effect on the larger economy but also on the cost of goods and services.

“This is the reality. So we are actually calling for reviving of the refineries, making them to work, don’t export our jobs let us benefit substantially from what God has given us freely.

“Labour has done a lot of studies out of the OPEC countries. We are the only country trying to adopt this IMF imposed model of deregulation on the basis of import driven price mechanism.

“That will not be good for our economy and that is the idea of our argument that yes you can liberalise but not on this monopoly of making sure that it is only import driven.

“The issue of extending N5,000 to 40 million Nigerians. The impact of the policy of price hike under the name of deregulation will affect every Nigerian citizen either directly or indirectly.

“Either you have a car, a motorcycle or you use a transportation either to move people or bring in farm produce or you are a medium and small enterprise using a small generator, everybody will be impacted and so I dont see the wisdom of saying only 40 million people. We have seen some of these policies where people say they are extending support to Nigerians.

“Remember when the organised labour submitted a list of the working poor N50,000 on request to the ministry of Humanitarian Affairs as I speak to you no single person benefitted yet it is being said that everybody benefitted. We dont have empirical data even on the poor of the poorest and so basically it is going to be the same way those other policies have gone and that is why we said no because there will be spiral.inflation and we have seen that each time there is a slight increase in the pump price of PMS, because of its centrality to our economy, the impact will be very humongous.”

He said if the government does not reverse the policy, it would adversely affect wage earners and rubbish the minimum wage, adding that it was on that basis that the organised labour decided to engage the process.

He said, “But engaging the process also has to be open. You don’t have to make a pronouncement before inviting labour to the negotiating table because it is like the deed is done and that is why we are also mobilising our people this time around we are not saying increase N5, you are moving the price from N162 or N163 to N340 or N408.

“If we are to actually go by the recommendations of the governors forum, I don’t see how that can be pushed down the throat of Nigerians looking at the impact. Not even the political considerations, it is about the economic impact on buisness, citizens and the fact that it is going to push more Nigerians below the poverty block. These are the concerns labour has had.”

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Court backs states, strikes out Nigerian govt’s plea to deduct $418m consultancy fee from Paris Club refund

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Abubakar Malami.

The Federal Government’s appeal against a Federal High Court ruling preventing deduction of $418 million from bank accounts of Nigerian states has been struck out.

The 36 states had filed a motion tabled before the high court, asking that the FG should be restricted from deducting $418 million claimed to be consultants’ fee for the Paris Club refund.

Following the restriction granted by the judge, Inyang Ekwo, the FG prayed that the court vacate the order through submissions from 43 defendants, among whom were attorney-general of the federation (AGF), and the Debt Management Office (DMO).

Idumodin Ogumu, counsel to two of the defendants, Panic Alert Security Services Systems Ltd and George Uboh, said the order was no longer effective, as it had expired.

Read also: Malami, NGF in war of words over $418m Paris Club refund payment to consultants

The head of the states’ legal team, Jibrin Okutepa, argued against the submissions, and Justice Ekwo supported his counter argument, maintaining status quo on the initial order.

The judge adjourned the matter to December 13, 2021, further heightening the tension around the controversial consultant fee, which the state said must be audited before payment is made.

This has created a divide between the state governments and the Presidency, which is insisting $418 million be deducted from state confers and handed to the consultants.

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C’River APC goes spiritual, offers mountain prayers for Buhari, Ayade

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Cross River APC goes spiritual offers mountain prayers for Buhari Ayade 5

As Nigeria keep facing economic woes in these last days, the All Progressives Congress, APC has offered prayers for the country and her leaders for revival.

THE PARADISE NEWS gathered the party on Tuesday, December 8, 2021, offered prayers for President Muhammadu Buhari, Governor Ben Ayade, the All Progressives Congress and Nigeria at the Holy Mountain at Obudu Cattle Ranch Mountain Resort.

According to a statement by Erasmus Ekpang, APC State Publicity Secretary (elect), Cross River State, the APC team which consists of the State Executive Members and the Chapter Chairmen of the party was led by Alphonsus Ogar Eba Esq., APC State Chairman, Cross River State.

“Alphonsus Ogar Eba led the Executive members and Chapter Chairmen on an intense prayer at the Holy Mountain for a successful tenure anchored on peace, love, unity and growth of the Party. They prayed for open heavens of resources for the Governor Ben Ayade-led administration – and to enable it carry through with the great projects it has initiated in Cross River State and for President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration to succeed in all its policy implementation.

“In view of the security, economic, health and other challenges facing the country, the Party leaders prayed for God’s intervention”, the statement read in part.

The APC party members who were at the Obudu Mountain Resort also embarked on physical fitness too.

“In a bid to ensure the physical, mental, social and moral fitness of all newly elected members of the Executive of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) Cross River State, the State Chairman-elect, Alphonsus Ogar Eba Esq, on Tuesday led them on a fitness walk at the Obudu Mountain Resort, in Obanliku LGA. Also with the Executive members during the walk were the 18 chapter Chairmen of the Party.

“The Party State Executive members and the Chapter Chairmen were at the Obudu Mountain Resort for a three-day retreat with the theme, Repositioning for Political Evangelism. The retreat is expected to end on Wednesday, 8th of December, 2021”, the statement added.

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