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Why Bayelsa is still backward 26 years after creation – Kpodoh



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From Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa

A founding member of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Bayelsa State, Chief Lokoja Richard Kpodoh, has accused successive governors and leaders of the state of abandoning the development plan drawn by experts after creation of Bayelsa in 1996.

Kpodoh, a former security adviser of the state, said after the creation of Bayelsa by the late Gen. Sani Abacha, experts gathered and produced a plan for the state’s development.

But he regretted that the state’s backwardness started immediately after creation as successive leaders and governors pursued selfish agenda and failed to implement the plan.

Kpodoh in a statement said the self-centredness displayed over the years by successive administrations was the reason for the endemic poverty, hopelessness and underdevelopment despite the rich resources in the state.

“We were lucky to have the late General Sanni Abacha, who created the state. When Bayelsa state was created, some technocrats came up and drew a blueprint for the development of the state, unfortunately governors did not follow that developmental plan, they dumped it. All they are doing in Bayelsa state is guess work.

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“Therefore, we started failing when we shunned a development plan; when governors refused to implement reasonable manifestos and when unprepared persons were handpicked to become governors,” he said.

Kpodoh said Ijaw had persons of integrity and decided winners of elections in their parent old Rivers State but failed to deploy their knowledge and experience to develop their own state.

According to him governorship candidates were fond of making fake and unfulfilled promises even when they knew they had no plan to achieve them.

His words: “When they want to come into power, they will make promises that can’t be achieved. The governors don’t even have a developmental plan to justify their major areas of concentration in terms of development.

“For instance, when you want to build a new house, you must first get your structural drawing and the house plan before you start building. But in Bayelsa state, the reverse has been the case, we don’t have a developmental plan.

“They forgot so soon that the Rivers State that we were created from had a development plan and if you visit that state you don’t need to be told that there is a development plan and it is decent, and you will see how it has been structurally developed. But in Bayelsa, the reverse has been the case, we don’t have it”



6th Anniversary: Commissioner eulogises Yahaya Bello’s giant strides in education



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Kogi State Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Mr Wemi Jones, has eulogised Gov. Yahaya Bello on his giant strides in education sector as he celebrates his 6th year anniversary.

The commissioner in a statement on Thursday, in Lokoja commended the governor for increasing budgetary allocation to education to 30 per cent, which is above UNESCO global recommended benchmark.

‘He  congratulated him on the auspicious occasion of the second year into his second tenure in office.

”It is no gainsaying that you have excelled above every expectation in educational development and the following areas remain indelible among your quantum leaps:

”Increased budgetary allocation for education to 30 per cent which is above UNESCO global recommended benchmark.

”The establishment of specialized Confluence University of Science and Technology (CUSTECH), Osara; construction, renovation, and remodelling of GYB Model Science Colleges in all the 21 local government areas of Kogi,” he said.

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According to him, the signing of Kogi State Education Law 2020, development of the State Education Strategic Plan (SESP) 2021-2030 and Science Education Operational Plan (SEOP) 2021- 2023; and others too numerous to mention.

”Sir, you remain the unbeatable and best education-friendly governor of our times.

”I congratulate you on your ever impactful New Direction Administration as we look forward to more fruitful years of higher uplifting from GYB to PYB,” he said.

NAN reports that Yahaya Bello was sworn in as the 5th Executive Governor of Kogi State for second tenure in office on Jan. 27, 2020. (NAN)


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2023: Ohanaeze Ndigbo rejects Atiku’s proposal



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The Ohanaeze Ndigbo has described Atiku Abubakar’s proposed single four years tenure if elected as president in 2023 as a practical joke.

Raymond Dokpesi, the leader of the technical committee for the Atiku Abubakar presidential campaign, had said the former Vice President would govern Nigeria for a single term if elected as president.

Dokpesi also vowed to go naked if Atiku fails to hand over to the Igbos after his tenure.

However, Ohanaeze Secretary-General, Okechukwu Isiguzoro, said the proposal was a collective disrespect to the people of the southeast.

Isiguzoro also declared that Igbos will reject the vice-presidential slot.

He stressed that the region should be allowed to produce a president in 2023.

Isiguzoro also recounted how Atiku rejected a single-term offer from Igbo elders in 2019.

He said: “Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide has declared openly that attempts to trick and entice the southeast with attractive offers from the ally of former Vice President and 2019 PDP presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, Raymond Dokpesi to get southeast’s support for his principal (Atiku) in 2023 are hoaxes and collective disrespect on the sensibility of the people of southeast, no amount of enticing promises will make southeast to swap their right to 2023 presidency to anyone.

“Atiku Abubakar’s refusal to adhere to a written request from Igbo elders for a Mandela option of a single tenure in 2019 will continue to haunt his 2023 presidential ambitions, instead, he replied to Igbo leaders in 2019 with his then six years economic blueprint for Nigeria (2020-2026) which was a clear understanding of having the ambition of a two-term as president if elected.

“This evidence is now contradictory to the recent request from Atiku’s ally for southeast’s support, as no force can thwart the 2023 Igbo Presidency Project with a vice-presidential offer to the southeast, which is not feasible, as there will be a power shift from the North to the East in 2023.”


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Recruitment: Police announce date for screening of applicants



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By Monday Ijeh

The Nigeria Police has fixed Feb. 1 for commencement of physical and credential screening of applicants who completed the 2021 online registration for recruitment into the constable cadre.

The Force Public Relations Officer (FPRO), Mr Frank Mba disclosed this in a statement on Thursday in Abuja.

He said the screening would be conducted by the Force in conjunction with the Police Service Commission (PSC).

Mba said the exercise, slated to commence on Feb. 1 would end on Feb. 6 at designated venues in states across the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

According to him, all applicants are to proceed to their respective states of origin and appear at the various screening centres in their clean white T-shirts and shorts.

He said other mandatory basic screening requirements were two white flat files with recent passport photographs attached and National Identity Number (NIN).

Mba said other items for the screening were original and duplicate copies of credentials, Certificate of Origin and birth certificate/declaration of age.

He said printout of application submission confirmation/profile page and duly completed guarantor’s form were also, mandatory for the exercise.

Mba said candidates who failed to present the mandatory requirements would not be considered for the screening.

He urged applicants to pay attention to detailed and specific guidelines on the exercise for each state, particularly, the location of screening and dates of screening per local government area.

Mba said the guidelines would be announced by the Police Public Relations Officers in the 36 states of the federation and the FCT.

He said the Inspector General of Police, (I-G) Mr Usman Baba, had assured that the statutory entry requirements into the Force as clearly stated in the Police Act and Regulations, would be followed.

The I-G said the officials deployed for the screening had been directed to ensure that all applicants shortlisted were allowed to participate.

He said the officials were expected to recommend the suitability or otherwise of applicants in the spirit of transparency, accountability and fair hearing using the already established benchmarks as contained in the Act.

Baba said that a total of 135,027 valid applications were received in the online registration.

He expressed satisfaction over the increase in the number and geographic spread of the applications, particularly in the South-East and South-South region of the country following the extension of the online registration.

The I-G said the exercise was free of charge and urged applicants to be wary of criminal elements who would want to take undue advantage of the exercise to perpetrate recruitment related scams.

Baba however, warned that anyone found wanting would be made to face the wrath of the law.


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