*Intrigues as feud over National Assembly clerk deepens* *Military Launches ‘Operation Crackdown’ on Sambisa Forest*

*Intrigues as feud over National Assembly clerk deepens* *Military Launches ‘Operation Crackdown’ on Sambisa Forest*

Sabinews Morning News Update for May 3, 2016

National

Intrigues as feud over National Assembly clerk deepens

A serious power play between the leadership of the Senate and the National Assembly Service Commission over the appointment of an acting Clerk of the National Assembly (CNA) is threatening the smooth operation of the legislative arm of government.

The commission, statutorily charged with the appointment and management of the staff of the National Assembly, irked the political leadership of the legislature by the appointment of a new CNA without the approval of the Senate President. Read more

Military Launches ‘Operation Crackdown’ on Sambisa Forest

The Nigerian armed forces have in a final onslaught against the Boko Haram, deployed ground and aerial personnel deep inside Sambisa forest to clear the remnants of the terrorists’ enclave and rescue all hostages, including the Chibok girls who were abducted from their school two years ago.

The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Gen. Abayomi Olonisakin, disclosed this monday while fielding questions from journalists at the Military Command and Control Centre (MCCC), Maiduguri, Borno State. Read more

Troops arrest nine Boko Haram suspects in fox holes, rescue 400

The Nigerian Army yesterday said troops of 22 Brigade Garrison, during a clearance operation in four villages on Sunday, arrested nine Boko Haram suspects hiding in fox holes even as three fighters were killed during the exercise. The army also said 400 hostages were rescued during the operation, which also saw the recovery of items, including guns.

This was made known in a statement signed by the Acting Director, Army Public Relations (DAPR), Colonel Sani Usman. Read more

Rivers killings: Arase deploys homicide team against perpetrators

In a bid to check the recent killings in Rivers State, the Inspector- General of Police (IGP), Solomon Arase, has deployed a team of homicide detectives to the state with a mandate to investigate the killings.

Arase also said that he has tasked the Commissioner of Police, Musa Kimo, to apprehend those behind the killings, noting that it was not possible for a few criminally-minded individuals to hold the state to ransom as according to him, nobody has the right to take the life of another person. The IGP warned that whoever that foments trouble in the state and the country in general will face the full wrath of the law. Read more

Zaria massacre: Army dismisses allegations of human rights abuses

Chief of Army Staff, Lt . Gen. Yakubu. Buratai has dismissed the allegations by the global human rights group, Amnesty International, that troops of the Nigeria Army were involved in premeditated murder of members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria ( IMN) in Zaria, Kaduna State, last year.

Buratai reiterated the position of the Nigeria Army that there was nothing like premeditated murder of the Shittes group as alleged, insisting that on the contrary, it was some members of the said religious sect who attacked his convoy. Read more

Court strikes out suit against Aregbesola

An Osun State High Court sitting in Iwo has dismissed the suit filed by a High Court judge, Justice Folaranmi Olamide against Governor Rauf Aregbesola, seeking the state House of Assembly to investigate and impeach the governor and his deputy Mrs. Grace Laoye Tomori over the allegations of corruption and reckless spending of the state funds.

It can be recalled that the state House of Assembly had through an ad hoc and fact-finding committee of the House had indicted the judge on the petition. Read more

Nigeria lost N2.9trn to corruption in equipment procurement –Osinbajo

Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, (SAN), yesterday lamented the high level of corruption in the country and the extent to which it has negatively affected the socio-economic situation of the country. He disclosed that a total of $15billion or N2.955 trillion, more than half of the current reserves of the country, had been lost to the menace. Read more

No grazing land for herdsmen in Igboland –IWA

The Igbo Women Assembly (IWA) said there would be no grazing lands or ranches for Fulani herdsmen in the South-East geopolitical zone, as doing so, was like giving a tacit approval to the herdsmen to wipe away the Igbo from the surface of the world. The group said that the only one sensible route to the country’s development was for Nigeria to be restructured now.

It added that “intimidation will not work; neither will false accusations.” Read more

Fear grips Ughelli residents over killings, kidnappings

Palpable fear yesterday griped the people of Ughelli in Ughelli North Local Government Area of Delta State, following incessant kidnappings and killings in the area by suspected hoodlums. They have been terrorising the community for some time.

Reports said no fewer than three lawyers and twin brothers have been kidnapped in the community. They include John Okoriko, Fred Erha, a serving councilor in Ethiope East and Naira Idogwu. The others who are twin brothers are Wilson Odibo and Ayo Odibo, while the manager of a popular filling station (name withheld) along the Port Harcourt road was also kidnapped and killed after paying N3 million ransom. Read more

Sacked 13 VCs: NANS gives minister 14-day ultimatum

The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has given the education minister, Mallam Adamu Adamu, a 14-day ultimatum to recall the 13 Vice Chancellors, who were wrongfully sacked by the Federal Government in February.

National President of NANS, Comrade Tijani Usman Shehu, in a letter to the minister, dated April 27, 2016, explained that the ultimatum became necessary following the failure of the minister to take advantage of the window of opportunities provided by Nigerian students to resolve the issue amicably. Read more

Hope rises on new breast cancer treatment

A breakthrough that could help scientists unlock new ways of treating and preventing breast cancer has been made. According to the study, published in Nature, scientists now have a near-perfect picture of the genetic events that cause breast cancer. Breast cancer is cancer that develops from breast tissue. Read more

Budget: Presidency gets preview copy

Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang, yesterday told New Telegraph that his office had taken delivery of a preview copy of the revised 2016 Appropriation Bill. Enang, who spoke to our correspondent on the phone, could not, however, confirm when exactly the document would reach the desk of the president for his final approval and signing into law. Read more

Zoning: Opposition mounts against Sheriff

Despite approval by the National Executive Council (NEC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on the zoning arrangement of the National Working Committee (NWC) offices, opposition has continued to mount against the ambition of the national chairman, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, to succeed himself.

The Governor Udom Emmanuel-led committee had zoned the national chairmanship of the party to the North-East where Sheriff is from. Some party leaders have kicked against the zoning arrangement and Sheriff ’s plot to succeed himself. New Telegraph gathered yesterday that a meeting of some top leaders of the party from the North would hold in Abuja tomorrow to review the arrangement. Read more

Gunmen kill Kaduna monarch, nephew

Unknown gunmen suspected to be Fulani herdsmen have assassinated the District Head of Fadan Karshi, Mr. Bala Madaki and his nephew, Emmanuel Tanko, in Sanga Local Government Area of Kaduna State. Madaki was killed in his room.

The incident took place about 10 p.m. on Sunday. Narrating how the traditional ruler was killed, a community leader from the area, Pastor Mike Makarfi, said that the gunmen stormed the palace and started shooting. Makarfi said: “The weather was very hot on Sunday night and people were sleeping outside. About 10 p.m., the chief moved into his house with his family. Then some gunmen, who our people said were Fulani, stormed his compound and started shooting. They went into his room and shot him point blank. Read more

Kaduna Spends N17.7bn of Budget in First Quarter

The Kaduna State Government has spent N17.7 billion in the first quarter of its budget implementation.
The Commissioner of Finance, Alhaji Suleiman Abdu Kwari, disclosed this while presenting the first quarter budget performance report to the state House of Assembly. Read more

Catholic Bishops Meet Buhari behind Closed Doors

President Muhammadu Buhari monday met behind closed doors with 16 Catholic bishops under the aegis of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria.

The meeting which started at about 9p.m. was held inside the First Lady’s Conference Hall at the Presidential Villa, Abuja. Read more

World Bank to Disclose More Information on Spending of Abacha Loot

Indications have emerged that the World Bank is set to release more information on the spending of recovered loot by late General Sani Abacha as it has referred portion of appeal by a civil society organisation, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), to the Bank Archives Unit for processing for public access.

The development was disclosed Monday in a statement by SERAP’s Executive Director, Adetokunbo Mumuni. Read more

Stop Giving Bailouts to States, Okupe Tells FG

Former Senior Special Assistant to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan on Public Affairs, Dr. Doyin Okupe, monday asked the federal government to stop giving bailouts to the state governments.

Okupe also asked the federal government to tell all the states of the federation to reduce their workforce, noting that virtually all state governments in the federation “have over bloated civil service.” Read more

Rights’ Group Decries Killing of Woman in Effurun

The Executive Director of a human rights group, Centre for the Vulnerable and the Underprivileged (CentreP), Mr. Oghenejabor Ikimi, has decried the alleged shooting and killing of a woman, Mrs Alice Akparobi, by a soldier in Effurun, near Warri, Delta State, last Saturday.

Mrs Akparobi, who was a mother of four children and a typist with the Delta State Judiciary attached to the Magistrate’s Court, was allegedly killed by the soldier at an army checkpoint at Jakpa Junction, Effurun. Read more

Ogun police offer N5 million for information on abducted ex-minister

The Ogun State Police Command yesterday offered N5 million reward for information that could lead to rescue of a former minister, Iyabo Anisulowo, who was kidnapped last week. The 65-year-old, who served in the military regime of Gen. Sani Abacha, has so far spent seven days in captivity.

She was abducted last Wednesday while returning from her farm in Sawonjo in Yewa South Local Council of the state. Officials had earlier briefed newsmen that the abductors demanded N200 million ransom. Read more

No bill on creation of grazing reserves before N’Assembly, says Ekweremadu

The Deputy Senate President, Chief Ike Ekweremadu, has said there was no bill on creation of grazing reserves before the National Assembly.

Ekweremadu, who stated this after a meeting of the South-East governors and stakeholders in Enugu State, said the National Assembly would not support the creation of grazing reserves anywhere in the country. Read more

Katsina laments loss of N700m monthly to ghost workers

Governor Aminu Bello Masari has disclosed that Katsina State loses over N700 million monthly to ghost workers in the payroll of the civil service, pledging to prosecute those behind the act.

This was revealed during the May Day celebration at Karkandan Stadium, Katsina. He warned that those behind the menace would not be spared no matter their position in the society. Read more

World Bank donates $500m for food, livelihood project in N’East

The National Project Coordinator, Fadama III Additional Financing (AF), Mr. Tayo Adewumi, said that the World Bank has donated $500 million for its North East Food and Livelihood Support Project.

Adewumi told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja yesterday that the project would assist displaced persons from the north eastern part of the country that were affected by insurgency to return to normal life. Read more

Business/Economy

World Bank: It’s tougher doing business in Nigeria now

The World Bank has revealed that it is tougher to do busi-ness in Nigeria now than it was in 2015. The Bank’s report, released yesterday, came hours after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said Nigeria needed a substantial policy reset to reap sub-Saharan Africa’s strong potential. The global bank, in its 2016 ‘Doing Business Report’, noted that Nigeria went up the ease of doing business ranking, but doing business actually got tougher in the largest economy in Africa. Read more

Africa Tourism earns $43.6bn revenue in 2014 –AfDB

Tourism in Africa generated $43.6 billion revenue and received a total of 65.3 million international tourists in 2014, the African Development Bank, AfDB, has said. This is just as the report disclosed that Nigeria, Egypt and Morocco were the greatest beneficiaries from the expansion of hotel chains and the corresponding increase in the number of available rooms. Read more

Chevron Records First Quarter Loss of $725m

The slump in the prices of crude oil has continued to take its tolls on companies’ financial results as Chevron Corporation at the weekend reported a loss of $725 million for first quarter 2016, compared with earnings of $2.6 billion in the 2015 first quarter.

Though the company reported production increases from project ramp-ups in the United States, Nigeria and other areas, it added that these increases were offset by what it called the Partitioned Zone shut-in and normal field declines. Read more

FG Unveils Programme to Generate 36,000 Jobs

The Minister of Industry, Trade and investment, Dr. Okechukwu Enelemah, weekend stated that the federal government was committed to tackling unemployment in the country through the Youth Entrepreneurship Support Programme (YES-Programme), which was expected to generate 36,000 jobs for the nation.

He explained that as part of the federal government’s drive and wealth creation programme, which is aimed at addressing the malaise of youth unemployment, the Bank of Industry (BOI) evolved a N10 billion YES programme. Read more

Telecoms investment hit N6.7trn

Nigeria’s local and foreign direct investments (FDIs) into the nation’s telecommunications market have further increased from $32 billion (N63.6 trillion) to over $34 billion (N6.7 trillion), New Telegraph has learnt. Chairman, Association of Licensed Telephone Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), Mr. Gbenga Adebayo, disclosed this to our correspondent in Lagos.

ALTON is the Umbrella Association for all providers of telecom service in Nigeria, comprising of all providers of mobile telephone services, fixed network services, backbone services, infrastructure providers and all support service companies for the telecom operators. Read more

NCAA: JET A1, week naira worsen airlines’ challenges

The current skyrocketing price of Jet A1 otherwise known as aviation fuel and the deplorable state of the nation’s currency, naira, have been identified as some of the major challenges affecting the growth of the airline sub-sector in Nigeria. Other identified challenges are the high cost of providing standard air transport services, increasing demand for customer satisfaction by air travellers and rising cost of operation.

Director-General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Capt. Muktar Usman, stated these while delivering a paper entitled, ‘The acts of promoting a sustainable air transport economy while maintaining high level of aviation safety standards,’ at the Airport Business Summit and Expo. Read more

NB posts N77.55b revenue, N10.5b profit in Q1

Nigerian Breweries (NB) Plc has posted a revenue of N77.55 billion and profit after tax of N10.45 billion in its first quarter operations.

Specifically, the company’s unaudited result for the first quarter ended March 31, showed 11 per cent increase in revenue from N69.92 billion in 2015 to N77.55 billion in the period under review, while net profit stood at N10.45 billion, a four per cent increase over the N10.10 billion declared in the corresponding period in 2015. Read more

Nigeria’s infrastructural deficit requires N450b, say experts

Experts have given the damning verdict that Nigeria has a huge infrastructural deficit which will require N450 billion to fix within the next 30 years.

The gurus, comprising financial eggheads and legal practitioners, handed down the stark reality at Akindelano Legal Practitioners (ALP) Seminar Series held in Lagos with the theme “PPP and Infrastructural Development: Accelerating the diversification of Nigeria’s Economy.” Read more

 

Oil and Gas

‘FG subsidises petrol with N12.62’

The Federal Government yesterday said it was currently subsidising Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) otherwise known as petrol at N12.62 per litre. It said that the subsidy figure was for petrol imported directly by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and dispensed at its retail outlets, while the rate was N12.88 per litre for other oil marketers. Read more

Fresh setback for PIB, oil investments

The seeming dashed hope on passage of the PIB began to resonate on February 8 2016, when the Speaker, House of Representatives, Mr. Yakubu Dogara, declared that the National Assembly (NASS) was tired of the federal government’s foot-dragging on the passage of the bill. He said that the legislative arm of government was working on its own version of PIB to reform the nation’s oil and gas sector.

Earlier, stakeholders in the oil and gas industry had condemned the huge loss, which the alleged unwillingness of the government to get the bill passed had caused the country. Read more

Report Predicts Long-term Crude Oil Shortfall

A new report by Wood Mackenzie has predicted that the current glut in the global crude oil market could reverse within 20 years as exploration in the last four years has been disappointing and gas prone with the price downturn causing large reductions in exploration spend.

The report noted that healthy discoveries during the 2000s with longer lead times mean that there is a strong potential for medium term developments but added that the tough project economics have led to many being deferred. Read more

Oil producers fret as shale production rises

The uncertainties in the international oil market may accentuate soon with some shale producers resuming production after oil prices assumed a rising trend experienced last month.

Already, the crude oil prices recorded a two per cent fall yesterday as data showing higher Middle East oil production and record hedge fund buying sparked profit-taking on the outsized rally. Read more

Sports

Leicester City wins First ever English Premier League title

Leicester City are on course for a windfall of more than $220 million for winning the English Premier League, a new study said.

The money would come from the Premier League’s huge television revenues, playing in the Champions League, new sponsorship and higher gate receipts, the Repucom sports data firm said. Read more

Mikel rejects Turkey move, ready for new Chelsea deal

Super Eagles’ Captain, John Obi Mikel, has put himself in the frame for a fresh Chelsea deal after snubbing a massive move to Turkey.

Galatasaray and Fenerbahce were keen on the midfielder, 29, with a reported £110,000-a-week on the table in January but he chose to stay at the Bridge. Read more

NFF waits on Egyptian court’s May 8 ruling

An official of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) yesterday disclosed that the federation was monitoring events in Egypt following FIFA’s threats to ban the North African country from all football events if the government persisted in interfering in the affairs of the football federation.

FIFA recently warned the North African country’s government against implementing a court decision sacking the Egyptian Football Association following an electoral crisis that has dogged the federation. Read more

Special Olympics Nigeria to Hold 2016 World Malaria Day

Special Olympics Nigeria, has concluded plans to commemorate the World Malaria Day 2016 in Nigeria with the support of ExxonMobil,

The official theme for the day will be “End Malaria for Good”. Read more

World News

Brussels airport reopens after ISIL attacks

The departure hall at Brussels’ Zaventem Airport has partially reopened, 40 days after multiple suicide attacks hit the airport and a metro train, killing 32 people and wounding at least 270 others.

Two attackers detonated suitcase bombs in the departure hall at the airport on March 22 before a third bomber blew himself up on a metro train in the Belgian city. Read more

Kerry in Geneva to bolster Syria ceasefire

United States (U.S.) Secretary of State, John Kerry, arrived in Geneva on Sunday in an urgent bid to revive a U.S.-Russian brokered ceasefire that has all but fallen apart as Syrian government forces intensified their attacks, especially in Syria’s largest city, Aleppo, over the last 10 days.

U.S. officials said Kerry’s top priority is to end the violence in Aleppo and return the whole of Syria to a durable cessation of hostilities that will enable the peace process to resume. To achieve that, the top U.S. diplomat has called for Russia’s help to persuade the Assad government to stop the attacks. Read more

First U.S. cruise ship arrives in Cuba

The first United States (U.S.) cruise ship in nearly 40 years to set sail for Cuba has docked in Havana harbour with more than 700 passengers on board.

The arrival of the Adonia yesterday evening marked the restart of commercial travel between the U.S. and the island-state after five decades of hostile relations brought on by the Cold War. Read more

About The Author

Osigweh Lilian Oluchi is a graduate of the University of Lagos where she obtained a B.A (Hons) in English, Masters in Public and International affairs (MPIA). Currently works with 1stnews as a Database Manager / Writer. [email protected]

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