Minister of Education, Prof. Tahir Mamman, yesterday told the House of Representatives Committee on University Education that education was facing a lot of challenges in the country, saying people excelling in their academic pursuits were doing so on personal attributes and not because of the system.
Mamman,who said the challenges included learning crisis, out-of-school children, insecurity, unemployability of graduates who lacked the required skills, lamented that the nation’s polytechnics, which were meant to provide needed skills, lacked basic equipment.
This came as the House committee invited the heads of National University Commission,NUC, Council of Legal Education,Law School, Board of Benchers and the Vice Chancellor of the National Open University of Nigeria,NOUN, for a meeting over the abolition of NOUN’s law programme.
The Vice Chancellor of NOUN, Prof. Olufemi Peters and some aggrieved final-year law students had appeared before the committee, headed by Abubakar Fulata, APC Jigawa, over the law crisis in NOUN.
Recall that NOUN Senate had terminated the the law programme, saying the action was based on the directive of the Council of Legal Education.
Speaking during the meeting, committee chairman, Fulata, appealed to the minister of education and heads of other relevant agencies to work towards eliminating issues impeding the standard of education in the country.
According to him, insecurity, inadequate funding, and infrastructural facilities, among others, can be tackled with the commitment and cooperation of stakeholders, including NASS.
Fulata said this was possible through evolving new but effective methods, while also enforcing the existing ones. This, according to him, involved re-strategising, in addition to providing adequate appropriation for the maintenance of infrastructure.
The lawmaker assured that he would successfully bring improvement to both the nation’s basic and tertiary education sub-sectors.
Ogun State Governor Dapo Abiodun has presented N703.028 billion as a 2024 appropriation bill to the State House of Assembly.
Christened “Budget of Sustained Growth and Development,” Governor Abiodun, while presenting the budget estimates to the state assembly on Thursday, said the budget is to sustain the administration’s quest for shared prosperity through the ISEYA mantra.
In his address to the lawmakers, the governor said N415.66 billion is estimated as capital expenditure, while N287.37 billion is earmarked as recurrent expenditure.
The proposed budget earmarked N95.05bn for personnel costs; consolidated revenue stood at N27.35bn, while the public debt charge was fixed at N59.09bn; and overhead costs were put at N105.88bn for the next fiscal year.
Giving the functional classification and key allocations of the 2024 budget, Governor Abiodun noted that 16% of the total budget amounting to N109.21bn would be expended on Education, 12% resulting into N81.18bn was set aside on health, housing and community development gulps N28.88bn resulting into 4%, N14.21bn being 2% on agriculture and industry, 30% amounting to N209.1bn was set aside for infrastructure, 3% on recreation and culture, with 4% on social protection.
He added that General Public Service- executive organ allotted 4%, and General public service – financial & fiscal affairs allocated 5%.
Others he noted included General public service – general personnel service put at 0.3%, public order & safety allotted 2%, likewise economic affairs given 0.4%, just as Judiciary and Legislature were allocated 1% and 2% respectively with statewide put at 15%.
According to him, “the budget is expected to sustain our administration’s quest for shared prosperity through the ISEYA mantra. Our objective is to create an enabling environment for businesses and industries to thrive through friendly policies and the provision of infrastructure.
“…collaboration, fiscal prudence, and quality service delivery; expanding the revenue base in the area of internally generated revenue; and also ensuring the timely completion of on-going developmental projects through equitable and effective distribution and allocation of available resources.
“Our principal objective in 2024 is to maintain and enlarge our economic base while being strategic toward harnessing economic opportunities in the outer years of our administration,” the governor stated.
Heavy security presence at Ogun Assembly, as inauguration of lawmakers postponed
He added that the state would continue to accord priority attention to the completion of all ongoing projects across the ISEYA Development pillars, including those with revenue potential and those that could enhance employment generation, as well as those consistent with the priorities articulated in the State Economic Development Plan and Strategy 2021–2025.
The governor explained that increasing focus would be on projects that align with the seven thematic areas contained in the Medium-Term National Development Plan 2021-2025, including: economic growth and development; infrastructure; public administration inclusive of governance, security, and international relations; human capital development; social development; regional development; plan implementation, communication, and financing; as well as monitoring and evaluation.
“Our objective is to create an enabling environment for businesses and industries to thrive through friendly policies and the provision of infrastructure; collaboration, fiscal prudence, and quality service delivery; expanding the revenue base in the area of internally generated revenue; and to also ensure timely completion of on-going developmental projects through equitable and effective distribution and allocation of available resources.”
“Our principal objective in 2024 is to maintain and enlarge our economic base while being strategic toward harnessing economic opportunities in the outer years of our administration.”
“To ensure speedy passage of the 2024 Appropriation Bill, I have directed all Commissioners, Accounting Officers, and Heads of Agencies to be personally available for the budget defense,” Abiodun said.
In his remarks, the Speaker of the Ogun State House of Assembly, Olakunle Oluomo, assured that the lawmakers would ensure a scrutiny of the proposed budget with a view to ensuring a timely passage of the budget in line with the standard practice of the state legislature.
The Abia state government said it will start the demolition of unauthorized structures located at Isi Gate, Uzuakoli Road, Corporative, and Aba Road the state capital, from December 1.
This was disclosed by the General Manager of the Umuahia Capital Development Authority (UCDA), Kingsley Agomuo during a meeting with property owners in the affected zones.
According to Agomou, the government has set a deadline of December 1, 2023, for occupants of these illegal structures to vacate the premises.
He advised owners to dismantle the structures themselves, warning that if they failed to do so, they would be responsible for the expenses incurred by the government in demolishing the buildings.
Addressing the well-known Isi Gate market, Agomuo clarified that the market has already been relocated, instructing traders to evacuate the site promptly.
Super Falcons recorded a 5-0 win over Cape Verde in the first leg of the 2024 Women Africa Cup of Nations final round qualifying at the Moshood Abiola Stadium in Abuja on Thursday.
Uchenna Kanu and Esther Okoronkwo scored a brace, and Monday Gift added the other goal to the delight of the supporters.
The Super Falcons made light work of the Cape Verdeans with impressive performance to move a step closer to qualifying for the competition in Morocco.
Monday Gift hit the bar from a 22-yard free kick before Uchenna Kanu took advantage of goalmouth scramble to score the first goal with a close range finish.
Monday Gift added the second goal after the opponents failed to clear their lines in the 25th minute.
Kanu added her second of the day, finishing off a swift counter-attacking move started by Rasheedat Ajibade to make it 3-0 for the hosts.
Esther Okoronkwo added the fourth with a fine individual effort after the hour mark, she completed her brace with another goal 13 minutes from the regulation time to put the Super Falcons in the driving seat of the clash.
The second leg comes up in Praia in Cape Verde on Tuesday, 5th December.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arraigned a former senior banker with Polaris Bank, Mrs. Ugochi Dike and her husband Architect Emmanuel Dike, who is also a popular elder of Seventh Day Adventist Church.
The couple was arraigned before a federal high court sitting in Port Harcourt.
Mrs Ugochi Dike is accused of defrauding a company, Clip Nigeria Ltd, to the tune of 500 million with the guise of investing in contracts execution with NNPC, SPDC and other IOCs with clear terms of return of investments to Clip Nigeria Ltd.
The company alleged that after a period of no returns, they realised they had been defrauded. They then asked for a refund of the principal money from Mrs Ugochi Dike.
Unable to refund the money, Mrs Dike claimed her husband, Arch. Emmanuel Dike invested the money into his Cryptocurrency trading business.
The couple who are facing a 5 counts charge with suit number FHC/PH/458C/23 FRN vs UGOCHI EZIAKU DIKE & ORS were brought to court from the custody of the EFCC on a 5 counts charge which includes: “Count 1: Conspiracy, obtaining money by false pretences contrary to section 8(a) of Advance Free Fraud and other fraud-related offenses Act, 2006 punishable under section 1(3).”
Ajoku granted bail to the accused in the sum of N 1 million each to the couple, noting that the surety must be up to a grade level 12 civil servant in Rivers state and should present a letter of employment and certificate of occupancy.
The court affirmed that the surety must reside within the jurisdiction of the court, produce passport photographs and admonish the lawyer to ensure his clients appear in court during the next sitting.
The court, however, adjourned till January 30, 2024, for trial and remanded the accused persons in the Port Harcourt Correctional Centre, pending when they meet the bail conditions.
Actress Tonto Dikeh has taken to IG to tackle Mr. Joseph Aloba, the father of deceased singer, Ilerioluwa Aloba aka Mohbad. In an open letter shared on her IG page, Tonto asked the bereaved dad how is it that material things or wealth seems to outweigh the love for his own own child. She took him up over the ‘’hurried and undignified burial'' Mohbad had 24 hours after his passing. She wondered why Mohbad's dad has consistently demanded for a DNA during all his interviews when he is yet to ask for one from Wunmi, Mohbad's wife.
Her post reads
‘’MESSAGE TO MOHBAD’S DAD
Mohbad, from the depth of my heart, I extend a profound apology. You deserve so much more, and it pains me to witness your struggles, with steadfast support coming from compassionate souls like “THE CONCERNED CITIZENS.”
It’s a promise we will keep fighting regardless of names called & heart broken.
Papa Mohbad, I can empathize with the harsh realities of poor condition, but when it involves your own flesh and blood, your son, it’s truly heartbreaking. How is it that material things or wealth seems to outweigh the love for your own child?
The hurried and undignified burial of our dear Mohbad within a mere 24 hours of his supposed passing, compounded by insufficient arrangements due to financial constraints after getting a whooping sum of 2million Naria,is deeply distressing considering his status.
Need I remind you of the shameless, senseless and inhumane way mob’s neck was broken?
The decision to exhume your son’s remains stemmed from a collective outcry of Nigerian youth– which is a testament to our shared concern, While we acknowledged that Mohbad is indeed your son, please note, he was a married man, and the responsibility should extend to his wife regardless of any circumstances.
In your quest for global assistance and DNA verification, it’s crucial to address the right of that woman personally, the one who holds the answers.
By the way I totally agree with a DNA, but why are you asking Nigerians for a DNA and not Wunmi?
Your immersion in social media, driven by trivialities and fleeting fame, is disheartening. I find solace in the knowledge that you are not a part of my family, sparing us the pain of witnessing your disregard for your son’s memory.
It’s bewildering that your discontent only surfaced upon witnessing contributions to your grandson in custody of his mother “Your late son’s wife”, BUT YOU NOW CHARGE 10k/15K to be interviewed
Papa Mohbad, how does one fail their own flesh and blood not once, but twice?
My heart aches for the pain you are causing and the deep wounds left unhealed.
But I’ll leave you with this words, DO RIGHT BY YOUR SON.''
A 70-year-old Ugandan woman has given birth to twins after becoming pregnant through IVF treatment.
Safina Namukwaya became the oldest woman to give birth in Africa after she delivered a baby girl and boy on Wednesday afternoon, November 29, the Women's Hospital International and Fertility Centre in the Ugandan capital of Kampala said.
Medics at the hospital said the mother and her two babies are doing well after they were delivered via a caesarean.
Ugandan woman becomes the oldest person to give birth in Africa after welcoming twins at 70
'This story isn't just about medical success; it's about the strength and resilience of the human spirit,' the hospital said.
Ms Namukwaya told the NTV channel that this was her second delivery in three years, after she gave birth to a girl called Sarah in 2020.
The mother said she had suffered some complications and difficulties during her pregnancy, including the father of her children leaving her.
'Men don't like to hear that you are going to have more than one child,' Ms Namukwaya says. 'Even after I was admitted, my man never showed up.'
Ms Namukwaya said in the past she had suffered miscarriages, lost her husband in the 1990s, and faced stigma within her community for not having any children.
'One time, a very young boy heckled at me saying I had been cursed by my mother to die without a child,' she said.
Ms Namukwaya had revealed after the birth of her first child that she had been judged for not giving birth after 40 years of trying.
'Many people judged and abused me for being barren but, I decided to leave everything to the Almighty God who has finally answered my prayers,' she said shortly after the birth of her first daughter in 2020.
In 2019, Erramatti Mangayamma, from India, gave birth to twins through IVF at the age of 74, becoming the world's oldest mother.
Mangayamma, of Andhra Pradesh state, gave birth to two healthy baby girls with her husband of 57 years, Sitarama Rajarao at her side.
The Minister of State of Agriculture and Food Security, Aliyu Abdullahi, has advocated for the National Agriculture Data Centre to attract investors to enhance food and nutrition security in Nigeria.
Abdullahi gave this indication during the meeting with the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) delegation led by the Director, Office of Emergency & Resilience, Rein Paulsen in Abuja.
The minister in a statement signed by the Chief Information Officer, Eremah Anthonia, on Thursday, said substantial data covering farms and farmers will enable the ministry to keep track of development, and challenges faced in the sector.
He said, “Nigeria has 70 per cent of arable land, and yet some number of people are not food secured. This is worrisome.
“The data governing system would attract and encourage investors, also help to define farm types and enable the Ministry to know where farms exist.
The Minister harped on the need to actualize the National Agricultural Data in Nigeria in the next two years and pointed out that the present administration was fully committed to making sure that Nigeria was food-secured which was the reason for bringing food security to the front burner.
Abdullahi also emphasized that the ministry had already started taking action to create the enabling environment to make investors’ entry easier with the focus on easing their businesses.
He pointed out that by the time investors come in, it would enhance self-sufficiency, create job opportunities, and inclusiveness of youths and women, amongst others
In his remarks, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr. Ernest Umakhihe reiterated FAO’s support in achieving the ministry’s mandate while urging the FAO to revisit the quarterly meetings usually held in the ministry to bring the issues again to the front burner.
The remains of the late Director of Finance and Administration in Ogun State, Mr Taiwo Oyekanmi, have been laid to rest in his hometown of Ifonyintedo in the Ipokia Local Government Area of the state.
Oyekanmi was shot dead while on official duty on the Kuto flyover in Abeokuta by armed robbers who attacked him on his way to the Governor’s Office while conveying a cash sum of about N112 million carted away by the robbers.
Earlier in the day, Governor Dapo Abiodun paid a condolence visit to the family of the deceased at his Abeokuta home.
Abiodun, during the visit, promised that the state government would take full responsibility for the family left behind by Oyekanmi.
He also assured the family and the people of the state that the perpetrators behind the killing would be caught and brought to justice.
An emotional Governor, Abiodun, described the deceased as diligent, hardworking, honest, and God-fearing.
He said that the Governor’s Office and the entire state workforce have been devastated by the killing, assuring that everything possible will be done to bring the perpetrators to justice.
“How could we imagine yesterday morning that we would be here this morning condoling with this family?
“We are all heavily burdened; the pain is not describable. He has been asking us questions since yesterday afternoon.
“Taiwo was very hardworking, very dedicated, diligent, honest, unassuming, a man who loved God, who served God, and very humble. He was very conscious.
“Let me assure you that we will do everything within my power to bring the perpetrators of this heinous crime to book.
“I will not leave any stone unturned until these criminals are arrested and dealt with; that much I also promise.
“I want to assure the members of his family, particularly his wife and children, that we will not leave you.
“We will take full responsibility for your welfare and your wellbeing,” Prince Abiodun said.
He noted that the death of Oyekanmi was a painful reminder that life is a journey, adding that the deceased lived a life of impact, touched everybody, and was well respected by everyone.
Responding on behalf of the family of the deceased, his younger brother, Tayo Oyekanmi, thanked the Governor for the visit, even as he said destiny has been shattered and dreams cut short, not only for the family but for the entire Ifonyintedo community in the Ipokia Local Government Area of the state.
He urged the governor to unravel the people behind the killing in no distant time to assuage the pains of the family.
Abiodun directed that the national flag be flown at half mast and declared one week of mourning in honour of the deceased.
Anayo Makata, from Igboeze North Local Government Area of Enugu State, Thursday, revealed his ordeal in the hands of kidnappers at Ogwugwu, a border community between Enugu and Kogi states.
Makata, 27, said he was abducted alongside six other passengers from an Abuja-bound Siena bus, which took off from Enugu.
He said they were held for four days and were given no food. According to him, “They were giving us dirty water from some shallow streams that cow dungs were often found in. At a time, we thought we would all die. They charged us N1m each. When nobody could pay, except one woman whose people came and settled hers two days after our capture, no other person could pay.
“We became afraid when they relocated us to the inner bushes, and told us that on the fifth day, we would be killed, and our organs sold. I understand Fulani to some extent. One of them called someone to come on the fifth day. I knew it was to kill us. They told us that they would show us the corpses of those whose organs were harvested. One of us cried, and they almost killed him.
“At a time, my brother, who I contacted, begged them to collect N500, 000. They agreed, and all of us reached out to our relatives. We regained our freedom on Wednesday night. I believe many missing people have been killed in such circumstances. I saw some abandoned shoes and shirts in the bush. The owners might have been killed.”
On the identities of their kidnappers, Makata said, “They are Fulani, but they never allowed us to look at their faces. They are slim generally. In the day time, we laid face down all through. If anyone wanted to ease oneself, the person was escorted by one of them. The way they handle their guns makes me believe that they are well trained gunmen.”
He expressed disapppointment that they could not be rescued by the Nigeria Police.
He said, “My brother told me that while they were borrowing money to settle the ransom, one of my relatives reported the matter to the police. But they could not rescue us. Police told my relative to be careful in negotiating the ransom so that we could regain our freedom without much delay.”