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Soon, we won’t need federal allocation again: Kaduna Govt

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Kaduna Governor Nasir El Rufai

The Kaduna State Government is working assiduously to stop the dependence on federal allocation in the next few years, the Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Muhammad Sani, has said.

“We are progressing and in the next few years, Kaduna state can provide infrastructure with its own money, so that whatever comes as federal allocation can be an addition,” Mr Sani said at the opening of a public hearing on the state’s 2022 budget on Tuesday.

The commissioner said that the state had recorded a recent boost in its tax collection to meet its target of becoming financially stable.

“In 2015 when this government came in, the highest that was recorded was N13 billion and we are very happy today that we are at N57 billion,” Mr Sani said.

The commissioner said that the state government relies only on 21 per cent of its federal allocation for its finances, while some states cannot do without 70-80 per cent of its finances.

He said that it was the resolve of the state government to be completely financially stable.

“When the government came in 2015, its resolve was that we must be able to fund our salaries from the money realised within the state.

“This means that whatever happens at the federal government level, we will be able to take care of salaries.

“There are states that are owing five to eight months salaries and we must note this and understand that we will bring more and more bills to the House of Assembly and more initiatives.

“We must understand that getting more revenue in the state is the most important thing to do.

“Kaduna State is focused on running the government and providing developmental projects entirely from tax collection,” he added.

The commissioner assured that all useful recommendations made during the public hearing on the budget would be looked into by the state government. 

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We need more money for space technology: Military Strategist

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The commandant of National Defence College, Rear Admiral Oladele Daji, has called for greater investment in Nigeria’s space research and technology.

Mr Daji made the call on Thursday while delivering his keynote address at the 2021 Space Dialogue/National Media Conference on Space, Science and Technology organised by the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA).

“There has to be a deliberate increment in the financial investment drive of the agency to improve the present state of space technology infrastructure, research and human capital development,” he said.

The theme of the conference was “Effective Utilisation, Promotion and Reporting of Space Science, Technology and Innovations in ... COVID-19 Era”.

Mr Daji, while focusing on “Maximising Space Science Technology and Innovations for Enhanced Human Security in ... COVID-19 Era,” said space was the frontier to developing any sector.

According to him, application of space, science and technology is a major way nations of the world measure developments.

He also recognised that COVID-19 pandemic had impacted space science, technology and innovation systems and would transcend to years in the future.

“It would be expedient for NASRDA to engender synergy to optimise deliverables in collaboration with the private sector and other relevant agencies,” the military strategist said.

Mr Daji further recommended an increase in electricity generation from the current level of a little above 8,000 megawatts to power the needed socio-economic activities.

He called for more collaboration of the government and private sector to increase the country’s investments in space and medical research.

He said more funding would boost Nigeria’s capabilities and enhance human security in ... COVID-19 era.

“In order to ensure a desirable level of self sufficiency, Nigeria must largely domesticate its space science technology and innovation activities in terms of human resources in the protection and furtherance of her national interests.”

(NAN)

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All intending Kano couples must obtain HIV/AIDS certificate: Mrs. Ganduje

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All intending couples in Kano are now required to compulsorily undergo screening and obtain the state’s new premarital HIV/AIDS certificate, says Hafsat Ganduje, wife of the state governor Abdullahi Ganduje.

Mrs Ganduje stated this on Thursday as the Kano State Government unveiled the standardised premarital HIV/AIDS screening certificate.

The certificate, unveiled by Mrs Gandujeat the Government House, Kano.

Mrs Ganduje advised all new couples to go for HIV screening before marriage.

In his remarks, Dr Aminu Tsanyawa, the state Commissioner for Health, said the state government had adopted proactive measures to curtail HIV/AIDS transmission in the state.

According to him, about 35,000 people living with HIV/AIDS are currently receiving treatment in the state, adding that efforts had been intensified to encourage voluntary premarital screening.

Also speaking, Dr Sabiu Shanono, Executive Director, Kano State Agency for the Control of AIDS (SACA), said the state had recorded successes in the campaign against mother to child transmission of HIV/AIDS.

He said that the state had scaled up counselling and premarital screening, saying that the state government had accorded premium to the health sector.

Also, Musa Ali-Kachako, (APC – Takai State Constituency), expressed the commitment of the legislature to enact a law on premarital HIV/AIDS screening in the state.

On her part, Kalthum Kassim, in a paper presented on Islamic Perspective of Premarital Health Screening, said the aim was to curtail the spread of diseases among the people.

Mrs Kassim, who is also the deputy commander of the Hisbah Board, said, “the Prophet of Islam had in the past, ordered his disciples to check on the health of women and theirs before marriage.”

She said that the Kano Hisbah Board had adopted the compulsory premarital screening for its mass wedding programmes.

She, therefore, admonished the people to go for voluntary premarital screening for the betterment of the society.

Mrs Ganduje distributed economic strengthening equipment to 200 HIV positive living persons at the event.

The items included sewing and grinding machines, make up kits among others. 

(NAN)

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31,000 litres of petrol in jerry cans intercepted in Seme: Customs

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The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) says it has intercepted 1,050 jerry cans (30 litres each) of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) known as petrol along Seme and Badagry creeks.

The items have a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N5,393,920.00.

Customs spokesman in Seme, Hussain Abdullahi, announced this via a statement issued on Thursday in Seme, Badagry.

Mr Abdullahi quoted the Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Bello Jibo, as saying the interception was made possible by the commitment of his men.

He said that they were committed in suppressing the activities of daredevil smugglers to the barest minimum.

The Controller of Seme Customs Area Command, Comptroller Bello Jibo and his men during the display of intercepted 1050 Jerry cans (30 litres) on Tuesday at Seme, Badagry.

Mr Jibo said the officers and men intercepted large quantities of items in sacks along the creeks and beaches in the axis on December 1.

“The unfortunate scenario is that apart from sabotaging the efforts of Government that is paying huge amount of money to subsidise the products for the benefit of Nigerians, smuggling of petroleum also posses threats to their own lives and most times vehicles get burnt when accident occurs,” Mr Jibo said.

The customs chief reiterated the commitment of officers and men of the command to continue the fight against smuggling and other crimes with a higher tempo.

(NAN)

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