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‘Senate Not Aware Of N5,000 Monthly For 40m Nigerians’

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'Senate Not Aware Of N5,000 Monthly For 40m Nigerians'

Going by a disclosure of a lawmaker, the Senate is not aware of the provision for N5,000 monthly for 40 million Nigerians as a transportation allowance in the 2022 budget.

The Senator representing Lagos West and Chairman Senate Committee on Finance, Senator Solomon Adeola Olamilekan who spoke with journalists on Wednesday at the National Assembly complex, shortly after submitting his Committee budget proposal before the Senate Committee on Appropriation gave the hint.

The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed had said the federal government would make the sum of N5,000 available to Nigerians, effective from next year to mitigate the economic hardship envisaged in the plan to increase the price of Premium Motor Spirit,( PMS) otherwise called petrol.

But Senator Olamilekan dismissed the disclosure by the Minister of Finance as a mere rumour as he submitted that there was no such provision for the 40 million Nigerians in next year’s budget.

The All Progressives Congress (APC) lawmaker wondered how such an official pronouncement that would cost the nation N2.4 trillion was not accommodated in the budget.

He also expressed strong reservations about the criteria that would be deployed to identify the 40 million beneficiaries of the transportation allowance.

He said: “I don’t want to go into details, if there is something like that, a document needs to come to the National Assembly and how do they want to identify the beneficiaries? This is not provided for in the 2022 budget proposal which is N2.4 trillion.

”For us, we still believe it is news because this budget we are considering contains subsidy and if we are passing a budget with a subsidy in the fiscal document, we can’t speak because that is the document that is currently before us.

“The Minister of Finance, budget and National Planning was quoted as saying that 40 million Nigerians will be paid N5000 as transportation allowance, in lieu of the fuel subsidy.

READ ALSO: Officials Of Federal Civil Service Recruiting Secretly – Senate

“I don’t want to go into details, for now, I believe that if such a proposal is to come to pass, a document to that effect must be sent to the National Assembly for us to see how feasible this is and how do we identify the 40 million Nigerians that are going to benefit from this process? There are still a lot of issues to be deliberated upon and looked into if eventually, this will come to pass and how do we raise this money to pay these 40 million Nigerians because I know that even the revenue being raised and monies that are coming in from this so-called oil and other sources of revenue to the Federal government…

“So, this is not provided for already in the 2022 budget. We don’t have anywhere in the budget where 40 million Nigerians will collect N5000 monthly as transportation allowance totaling N2.4 trillion.

“I know that there must be a budgetary provision for this for us (National Assembly) to consider. That is why I said it is still news out there until it formally comes to the National Assembly for either a virement to the budget or reordering of the budget. For now, I still want to take it as a rumour and as news until it is formally presented before the National Assembly.”

 

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Gumi Protests As Court Declares Bandits As Terrorists

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Gumi Protests As Court Refers To Bandits As Terrorists

Islamic scholar, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, has condemned a court’s declaration of bandits as terrorists as a political decision.

“I think the Federal Government has succumbed to media blackmail by a section of the country.

“It will not have any practical value because even before the declaration they are being fought and treated as terrorists,” he said.

The Abuja Division of the Federal High Court had declared proscribed bandit groups as terrorists.

READ ALSO: Court Declares Bandits As Terrorists

Specifically, the court, in a ruling that was delivered by Justice Taiwo Taiwo, held that activities of Yan Bindiga and Yan Ta’adda bandit groups, constitute acts of terrorism.

In a statement issued by Malam Tukur Mamu ,the Dan-Iyan Fika and Media Consultant to Sheikh Gumi, the Muslim scholar said: “So it’s just a nomenclature which I believe will not change the dynamics on ground.

“If you can remember, IPOB was also declared a terrorist organisation. The declaration was even backed by the order of the court, but as you can see even the international community did not recognise FG’s declaration on IPOB.

“So it has failed to be effective or to achieve the desired results.

“They have not been banned from travelling to other countries, while their citizenship remains intact; it has not been denounced. So what type of declaration is that?

“I sincerely hope that Nigerians will not take the herdsmen as terrorists, but should regard the criminality of the few among them against innocent people as acts of terrorism just as we see IPOB and their attacks on security agencies and other northern citizens as acts of terrorism.

“Very few herdsmen are bandits if you go through their population.

“I hope this declaration will not give the licence to people to be profiling herdsmen in general as terrorists and taking laws into their hands against them.

“It will cause more mayhem. The declaration will not change anything, it will not change the dynamics. Already the military is engaging them.

“It didn’t stop them from kidnappings and killings. The declaration will not end their aggression against the society.
‘It is a socio-political problem’

“The Fulani banditry is a socio-economic problem. We have seen it, we interacted widely with them.

READ ALSO: Nigeria Will Be In Ruins If Bandits Are Declared As Terrorists – Gumi

“We told the federal government the way out. It can only be won through engagement, dialogue and justice.

“That is why today there is relative peace in the Niger Delta because government has accepted the painful reality of rehabilitating and empowering them.

“There has to be equitable distribution of wealth in Nigeria and justice for every one.

“People don’t want to accept it. Before the issue of banditry that now affects all of us, the Fulani have suffered so much.

“They have lost their legitimate means of livelihood; I mean their cows through cattle rustling and extortion by security agencies.

“That has to be addressed as a means of genuine reconciliation and integration. They should have sense of belonging.”

 

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Court Declares Bandits As Terrorists

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Court Declares Bandits As Terrorists

Justice Taiwo Taiwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja, has declared the activities of bandits in Nigeria as acts of terrorism.

In a landmark judgment on Thursday, the court said “Yan Bindiga group”, “Yan Ta’adda group” and others alike are active terrorists.

M. B. Abubakar, Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Federal Ministry of Justice, filed an ex-parte motion.

A supporting affidavit, filed by Aminu Kayode Alilu of the ministry, explained why the application was made.

The government told the court that bandits were responsible for several acts of criminality in different parts of the country.

The oath pointed out that Yan Bindiga, Yan Ta’adda and others were responsible for “wanton destruction of lives and property in Nigeria, particularly in the Northwest and North-central states”.

READ ALSO: El-Rufai Asks Buhari To Declare Bandits As Terrorists

It mentioned, “kidnappings for ransom, kidnapping for marriage, mass abductions of school children and other citizens, cattle rustling, enslavement, imprisonment, severe deprivation of physical liberty, torture, rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy, other forms of sexual violence, attacks and killings”.

The government said the outlaws were carrying out “acts of terrorism that can lead to a breakdown of public order and safety and is a threat to national security and the corporate existence of Nigeria”.

In his pronouncement, Justice Taiwo proscribed Yan Bindiga, Yan Ta’adda and all bandit clusters “either in groups or as individuals by whatever names they are called”.

The judge directed the Federal Government to publish the proscription order in the official gazette and two national dailies.

 

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Telecoms Services Restored In Kaduna

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Telecoms Services Restored In Kaduna

Following the return of peace to the troubled parts of Kaduna, the state government has ordered the immediate restoration of telecommunication service in areas where the facility was earlier suspended for security reasons.

The Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Mr Samuel Aruwan, said this while addressing newsmen in Kaduna.

He said, the state government had contacted relevant federal agencies to effect the immediate restoration of the services.

He recalled that in October 2021 security agencies had requested the shutdown as part of the measures to address the problem of banditry and related crimes.

READ ALSO: El-Rufai Asks Buhari To Declare Bandits As Terrorists

“The security agencies have notified he government that telecoms services can now be restored.

“The initial shutdown, along with other measures, had helped the security agencies to achieve some results“, Aruwan said

He said it was unfortunate that the measure, had its negative impact on the legitimate activities of citizens and businesses.

He assured residents that the restoration of full services in the affected area would be full achieved in few days.
While commending the sacrifices made by residents during the temporary shutdown he expressed regrets for inconveniences caused the affected areas.

The commissioner, however, said other measures, on security measures aimed at combating crimes in the affected areas remained in force.

“These include; prohibition of movement of motorcycle, the ban on weekly market, transportation of cattle and sales of cattle across the state,” he said.

 

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