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Afenifere Opposes 2023 census Under Buhari



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President Buhari

The apex Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, has opposed the plan of President Muhammadu Buhari to conduct the 2023 National Census.

Afenifere also urged the judiciary to ensure that all petitions in respect of the presidential election be timeously and justly resolved before the end of the tenure of the Buhari administration

These were contained in the communique issued by the group after its general meeting held at Isanya Ogbo, Ogun State, and signed by its national leader, Chief Ayo Adebanjo and the Secretary-General, Chief Sola Ebiseni.

The group said that ” there was no compelling reason why the census must be held by the expiring Buhari administration and called for all steps and preparations in that regard to be stopped forthwith.

” Afenifere decries the most insensitive deployment of over 100 billion Naira on this wasteful exercise as scandalous and an economic offence.”

The statement reads: “Afenifere bemoans the unthinkable insistence of the Buhari administration in conducting the 2023 National Census in spite of the objective realities which make such an important national exercise most inauspicious in timing and impossible in credible implementation.

“Afenifere recalls that in a paper it presented at the National Consultative Forum on the 2023 Census held at the Banquet Hall, State House Abuja on the 11th of August 2022, it reiterated the imperative of census in national development noting that the application and misuse of census data had been our bane as a country where we lie to ourselves and the world about our number indulging in laughable projections sometimes based on assumed and fixed percentage of population growth across different parts notwithstanding glaring variables.

” It is in the light of the importance of credible exercise that, in the August 2022 Conference, we strongly advised against the conduct of the census which, among other reasons, we said could not possibly hold in the same year of a general election.

“Other well-meaning personalities and institutions including the UNFPA Resident Representative in Nigeria at another Conference in Port Harcourt on the 26th-29th March 2023 and most recently the Methodist Church Nigeria, Diocese of Calabarl all have raised concerns on the possibility of reasonable and genuine participation in an acceptable headcount in the current mood of the nation.

“That Afenifere is particularly bemused that Government expects participation in headcount by citizens still incensed and distraught by the trauma of violence and brigandage of the elections or by those in IDP camps within their country in whose ancestral homes terrorists in occupation will now be counted as new indigenes.

“That all factors considered, including its inability to supervise a transparent electoral process, a lesser headcount exercise, the integrity deficiency of this administration is abysmally compounded in conducting census which partisan disputes in Nigeria is often at the level of communities, states and ethnic nationalities having been politicised over time.”

On the judiciary and the 2023 presidential election, Afenifere called “on the judiciary to ensure that all petitions in respect of the Presidential election be timeously and justly resolved before the end of the tenure of the Buhari administration as the only way the confidence of Nigerians in its intervention may be earned. Precedents in this regard have been laid even by less endowed countries in Africa.

Afenifere, also said that the request by President Buhari for pardon by those he might have hurt along the line of his services to the country, was “rather short in statesmanship which demands that such apologies be extended to all Nigerians who have been traumatised especially by the pervasive insecurity and marooned in economic quagmire which in the last 8 years have rendered life most uninspiring, nasty, brutish and short.

“That it is rather shameful and painful that the President would celebrate, as achievement, the purported containment of insecurity in Abuja where the sovereignty of the nation has been wantonly challenged by terrorists routinely routing the Presidential convoy, Correctional Centres attacked and emptied and some Local Governments in neighbouring Niger State in effective occupation by Boko Haram.

” Afenifere further notes the President’s lamentations of his serial loss of elections until “God sent technology to my rescue through the introduction of the PVC” .

” It is rather more lamentable that the manifest desires of Buhari to improve on the efficacy of the technological processes, inherited from Jonathan, by assenting to the 2022 Electoral Act with the BVAS and IREV components, were thwarted by the INEC and security agencies under his watch, while high-level officers of his government were befuddled by partisan considerations to justify relapse to primitivity”,it said.

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BREAKING: NLC, TUC Suspend Planned Strike As Govt, Labour Leaders Meet



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President Bola Tinubu

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) on Monday night suspended their strike scheduled for Wednesday.

This development is sequel to a meeting by the representatives of the Federal Government and the Organised Labour at the Presidential Villa on Monday night over fuel subsidy removal.

The Speaker of the House of Representatives and newly appointed Chief of Staff to the President, Femi Gbajabiamila, who disclosed the outcome of the meeting to State House correspondents, read a communique stating the agreement struck between the NLC, TUC and the team set up by President Bola Tinubu to discuss the issues arising from the subsidy removal.

According to him, the Federal Government, the TUC and the NLC would establish a joint committee to review the proposal for any wage increase or award and establish a framework and timeline for implementation.

“The Federal Government, the TUC and the NLC would review World Bank Financed Cash transfer scheme and propose inclusion of low-income earners in the programme.

“The Federal Government, the TUC and the NLC to revive the CNG conversion programme earlier agreed with Labour centres in 2021 and work out detailed implementation and timing.

“The Labour centres and the Federal Government to review issues hindering effective delivery in the education sector and propose solutions for implementation.

“The Labour centres and the Federal Government to review and establish the framework for completion of the rehabilitation of the nation’s refineries.

“The Federal Government to provide a framework for the maintenance of roads and expansion of rail networks across the country.

“All other demands submitted by the TUC to the Federal Government will be assessed by the joint committee.

“Consequently, the parties agreed follows:

“The NLC to suspend the notice of strike forthwith to enable further consultations

“The TUC and the NLC to continue the ongoing engagements with the Federal Government and secure closure on the resolutions above

“The Labour Centres and the Federal Government to meet on June 19, 2023, to agree on an implementation framework.”

Earlier on Monday, the National Industrial Court restrained the Organised Labour from embarking on any form of strike.

Ruling on an exparte application filed before the court, Justice O.Y. Anuwe restrained the defendants (the TUC and the NLC) from embarking on the planned nationwide strike on Wednesday pending the hearing and determination of the motion of notice dated June 5, 2023.

The judge also ordered that the defendants be immediately served with the originating processes, the motion on notice and the order of the court.

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BREAKING:Court Bars NLC, TUC From Strike Over Petrol Subsidy Removal



NLC Suspends Plan To Protest Against Fuel Subsidy Removal
Protesting workers

The National Industrial Court of Nigeria, Abuja division, on Monday restrained the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) from embarking on strike over the removal of petrol subsidy.

The federal government had asked the court for an interim injunction preventing the labour unions from proceeding on the strike scheduled to begin on Wednesday.

Delivering the ruling on Monday, Olufunke Anuwe, the presiding judge, said the unions should halt the planned strike pending the hearing and determination of the ex parte motion filed by the federal government.

On June 2, NLC issued a five-day ultimatum to the federal government to revert to the old price of petrol or face a nationwide strike.

Worker unions, including the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE), Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN), and Nigeria Union of Journalists, have asked their members to join the planned strike.

Owing to the development, the federal government approached the court for an interim injunction.

The presiding judge said the federal government was able to show that the planned strike is capable of disrupting activities in the health and education sectors.

“The defendants/respondents are hereby restrained from embarking on the planned industrial action/or strike of any nature, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice dated 5th June 2023,” the judge said.

“It is ordered that the defendant/respondents be immediately served with the originating processes in this suit, the motion on notice and the order of this court hereby made.

“The motion on notice is hereby fixed for hearing for 19th June 2023. Hearing notices to that effect shall be served on the defendants/respondents along with the other processes.”

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BREAKING: Kwara Govt Reduces Workdays To Three Over Fare Rise



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Kwara State Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazak.

As fares have risen following the removal of fuel subsidy, the Kwara State government has directed that work days be reduced from five days to three per week for every worker in the state.

The state government said on Monday that the reduction of working days had become necessary following the astronomical hike in fares.

This is contained in a statement in Ilorin, by Murtala Atoyebi, the Chief Press Secretary to Gov. Abdulrahman Abdulrazak.

The State Head of Service, Mrs Susan Oluwole, therefore directed all Heads of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to immediately work out a format indicating the alternating work days for each worker under them.

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