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Consumer Protection Commission Rejects Airfare Increase

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Consumer Protection Commission Rejects Airfare Increase

The increase in airfares by airlines may not take off soon as opposition has come from the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission.

The commission has ordered airline operators to immediately discontinue the current implementation of airfare increase pending the outcome of its investigation.

The Executive Vice Chairman of the Federal Government’s agency, Mr Babatunde Irukera, said this in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja.

Irukera said the interim order was in line with Sections 17(a),(e),(l),(s),18(3)(a), 157 and 158 of the FCCPAct.

Irukera said that the commission’s investigations revealed that airline operators in supposedly association meetings discussed multiple industry-wide issues; particularly challenges experienced by their members.

He said that credible information revealed that while attendees at the meeting did not arrive at a consensus, the meeting ended in a resolution that encouraged or consented to the coordinated conduct.

According to him, the FCCPA prohibits conduct or any coordination between competitors including on the platform of trade associations.

READ ALSO: Buhari Approves $8.5m For Evacuation Of Nigerians From Ukraine

”Specifically, Section 107 (1)(a) forbids competitors from fixing prices, while Section 108 prohibits any conspiracy, combination, agreement or arrangement between competitors in any manner that unduly restrains or injures competition.

”Coordination in increasing prices otherwise known as cartel is an unambiguous infringement of the FCCPA.

”The current and prevailing Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations (Air Transport Economic Regulations) in Regulation 18.15.2 (i) and (iii) expressly prohibit airlines from engaging in any contract, arrangement, understanding, conspiracy or combination in restraint of competition.

”This includes directly or indirectly fixing a charge, fee, rate, fare or tariff and any collusive action.

”The commission in addition to engaging the relevant stakeholders is entering and dispatching interim orders under Sections 17(a),(e),(l),(s),18(3)(a), 157 and 158 of the FCCPA.

”Prohibiting the performance or continuation of any agreement or arrangement associated with, or resulting from discussions, deliberations, debates, argument or resolutions of/at any meeting.

”Regarding any increase in airfares and or any conduct not necessarily directly in compliance, but in response to changes in the market on account of compliance by others,” he said.

Irukera enjoined scheduled domestic airline operators to ensure strict and prompt compliance with the interim order pending the outcome of the commission’s investigation.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that domestic airline operators resolved to increase airfares by 100 per cent with effect from March 1.

The resolution adopted by all the domestic operators will peg the least economy ticket at N50,000.
(NAN)

 

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Police Arrest ESN, IPOB Members, Uncover Shrine With Python

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NEWSPolice Arrest ESN, IPOB Members, Uncover Shrine With Python

Seven suspected members of the Eastern Security Network (ESN) of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) as well as a live python they used to fortify themselves before attacks have been arrested.

The Imo State Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Micheal Abattam, who confirmed this to newsmen in Owerri, said “the Command’s Tactical Teams, on 18/5/2022 at about 0600 hours hastily mobilized when it received credible information that the native doctor who prepares charms for fortifications against bullets and knives for group has returned after fleeing the community.”

Narrating how the Police raided the camps, the police said, “with the positive revelations made in the course of interrogating the suspects earlier arrested in connection with the killing, the team was able to locate the criminal hideout in Ubah Agwa in Oguta LGA of Imo State and immediately cordoned-off the area and tactically went into the den.

“The hoodlums on sighting the police operatives, attempted to escape only to discover that the whole escape routes had been saturated with police operatives hence, they were arrested. ”

He gave the names of the arrested suspects as “Casmire Mgbugha ‘m’ aged 53 years, Hycent Chimezie ‘m’ aged 30 years, Hycent Azunna ‘m’ aged 28 years, Hycent Ifesinachi ‘m’ aged 26 years, Hycent Chimobi ‘m’ aged 23 years, Chukwuemeka Wisdom ‘m’ aged 22 years and Nnadike Clifford ‘m’ aged 72 years.”

The police said on searching the terror camp, the following items were recovered: one Toyota Camry car with registration number AKD 73 BF LAGOS, one live python, eight locally made pistols, eighteen rounds of live cartridges, one Biafra flag, a pair of police camouflage uniform belonging to the late Inspector Felicia Nwagbara ‘f’, who has been declared missing since 2017 by police authorities

READ ALSO: 107 IPOB Members Arrested In Ghana

While coming out of the terror camp, one of the suspects, Hycent Chimezie for the second time, attempted escaping and was maimed on the leg, the police spokesman said.

The police further said the suspects confessed to have murdered the late Inspector Felicia Nwagbara who was the second wife to one of the suspects – Casmire Mgbugba.

The suspected hoodlums further stated that they were the manufacturers of the locally made guns recovered from them, which they also sell to robbers and kidnappers.

“The command wishes to use this medium to appreciate the good people of Imo State for their undaunting support and assures them of the command’s commitments in sustaining the already improved security architecture in the State,” he said.

 

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Supreme Court Grants Rivers’ Request To Join Electoral Act Suit

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Supreme Court Grants Rivers' Request To Join Electoral Act Suit

The Supreme Court on Monday approved the request of Rivers State to join as an interested party a suit by President Muhammadu Buhari against the National Assembly on the Electoral Act 2022 .

The court has subsequently fixed Thursday, May 26, 2022 for the hearing of the suit.

Rivers State is to be represented in the suit by the Speaker of the State House of Assembly and the Attorney General of the state.

READ ALSO: Lawan Defies Court, Continues With Electoral Act Amendment

Justice Muhammad Musa Datijjo, who led a panel of seven justices of the court, adjourned the matter till Thursday following the concession by Buhari’s lawyer, Prince Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), that the Speaker, Rivers State House of Assembly and the Attorney General of the state be joined as parties in the suit.

Justice Dattijo then ordered the parties to file and exchange necessary processes latest next week Wednesday and return to the court on Thursday for hearing.

 

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Accountant General Ahmed Idris Suspended Over N80b Fraud

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Accountant General Ahmed Idris Suspended Over N80b Fraud

The accountant general of the federation Ahmed Idris has been suspended indefinitely by Zainab Ahmed, the minister of finance, budget and national planning.

This is coming two days after his arrest by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over an alleged N80 billion fraud.

READ ALSO: EFCC Arrests Accountant-General Over Alleged N80bn Fraud

In a letter dated May 18, 2022, Ahmed said the suspension “without pay” was to allow for “proper and unhindered investigation” in line with public service rules.
He is not expected to come to office or contact any official in his office except for any disciplinary hearing that may be advised.

 

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