On Monday, Chinese authorities set the latest example of strict COVID-19 measures when they sent several thousand students into quarantine.
More than 10,000 students were required to stay in their dormitory rooms or go to quarantine hotels in the northeastern city of Dalian.
The authorities were reacting to an outbreak among students.
There were about 60 infections reported across the city, which has a population of more than six million.
The number of infections stood at more than 200.
The Chinese government is pursuing a strict “zero Covid” policy, including curfews, mass testing, contact tracing, quarantines, and strict entry restrictions.
So far, the rigorous approach has limited the pandemic to smaller outbreaks, which have been brought under control again after a few weeks.
However, new waves have accumulated since the emergence of the much more contagious Delta variant.
With around 50 new infections per day nationwide, the seven-day incidence rate — the number of new infections per 100,000 inhabitants within one week — is 0.004.
FCT-IRS rakes in N118 billion, targets more in 2022: Official
The Federal Capital Territory Internal Revenue Service (FCT-IRS) said it remitted N118 billion into the federal government coffers as of November with a projection of N202 billion in 2022.
Acting Executive Chairman of the service, Haruna Abdullahi, told newsmen on Wednesday that the figure meant the organisation surpassed its target by 108 per cent.
“In spite of the challenges faced by the Service and FCT due to the impact of Covid-19, we were able to achieve and surpass our revenue target of N109 billion by 108 per cent as at the end of November 2021.
“With this, the Service has so far collected and remitted the sum of N118 billion,” Mr Abdullahi stated.
He also said that within the year under review, the Service engaged some consultants to conduct a six-year back duty tax audit of Ministries, Department and Agencies (MDAs), enterprises and corporate organisations in the FCT.
Mr Abdullahi said the engagement had started yielding fruits because liabilities have been established and demand notices have been issued in accordance with Section 54 PITA, CAP P8, LFN, 2004 (as amended).
“It is also important to let you know that we are currently meeting with about 250 MDAs for the review and reconciliation of IPPIS/Personal Income Tax/PAYE.
“This is to address issues of wrong remittance, non-remittance and under-remittance of employees of MDAs in the FCT.
“We are carrying out this exercise in collaboration with the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation and Joint Tax Board.
“Let me use this medium to invite all the MDAs that are yet to come for the exercise to please turn up before the deadline of December 10, 2021,” he said.
The acting chairman said the Service would not rest on its oars until it becomes the highest sub-national revenue-generating agency in the country.
He, therefore, solicited the support of all major stakeholders, including the media, in order to achieve the target.
“Though it is a huge task but with determination and commitment of board members, management, staff and stakeholders like you, we shall achieve the 2022 target,” he said.
He said the Service planned to embark on an aggressive public enlightenment campaign to educate and mobilise prospective taxpayers with a view to boosting the revenue base of the FCT.
The acting chairman explained that since the inception of the service, it had been educating and sensitising the residents and taxpayers to their civic responsibilities.
Mr Abdullahi said that in collaboration with the relevant law enforcement agencies the service would also embark on enforcement of its mandates in 2022.
“This is in accordance with section eight and Part V of the FCT-IRS Act 2015. This resolve has become necessary to address defaulters who insist on shortchanging the FCT Administration,” he said.
Brothers docked for beating police superintendent
Two brothers, Claire Alaga and Vincent Alaga, appeared before an Ojo Magistrates’ Court in Lagos State on Wednesday.
They are accused of alleged assault on an Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP).
The defendants were arraigned before Magistrate Ademola Adesanya on a four-count charge of conspiracy, assault, breach of peace and resisting arrest.
They, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
The prosecutor, Simeon Uche, told the court that the defendants committed the offence on December 1, at ABS Bus Stop on Isashi Road in Ojo.
According to the prosecution, the defendants resisted arrest by a police officer, Adeniyi Clement.
He told the court that the defendants also slapped the police officer and injured him on the left hand in a bid to resist arrest.
The alleged offence contravenes the provisions of Sections 168, 117, 172 and 411 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2015.
The court granted the defendants bail in the sum of N50,000 each, with two sureties each in like sum.
He adjourned the case until February 11, 2022.
Wakanow evolves business model, now offers protection services to South-East travellers
Renowned travel Agency Wakanow has added a new tactic to its travel menu, offering protection services to South-East travellers in its new package.
In a flyer advert seen by Peoples Gazette on Tuesday, the travel agency named the new plan Home Coming to the East. The new plan is expected to motivate South-East travellers of the habit of visiting their hometown to embark on their customary trip despite security worries.
Priced N320,000 for trips from Lagos to any southeastern state, the package is expected to cater for the safe commuting and welfare of passengers and details attached to the trip.
The organisation said the fee will cover transportation in a Toyota Hilux vehicle, two police escorts and a driver.
The travel agency also revealed that those travelling within the South-East region could get access to the special service at a reduced cost of “N260,000 per day”.
Confirming the development to The Gazette via the organisation’s official WhatsApp page, a customer care representative who corroborated the travel rate on the flyer said “if you want a one way, then it is NGN 320,000, if it is a round trip then it is NGN640,000.”
“If you require the service within the East, the fee is NGN 260,000 per day,” the care rep added.
Wakanow’s new strategy comes amidst the expected influx of Igbos to their country homes this Yuletide. The parlous security situation of the region remains dreaded for multitudes of indigenes who traditionally return home from abroad for end-of-year festivities.
In May, Inspector General of Police Usman Baba to launched Operation Restore Peace in the region as strategy to quell incessant attacks on the police and other government establishments by unknown gunmen.
However, the in security in the region did not abate, even threatening the conduct of Anambra governorship election which eventually held after back channel negotiations with separatists.
Though attacks on government facilities have largely quietened since the conduct of the November 6 election, cases of violence and fatal confrontation continue to occur between gunmen and security operatives.
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