These 10 top stories from Nigerian newspapers will make your Wednesday morning.
1. BAYELSA: Lokpobiri’s appeal dismissed for lack of merit – Supreme Court
The Supreme Court on Tuesday affirmed the nomination of David Lyon as the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate in Bayelsa and upheld his victory in the November 16, 2019 election in the state. The five-man panel of the apex court struck out an appeal filed by a former Minister of State for Agriculture, Heineken Lokpobiri, saying it was filed out of the time allowed by law. The Supreme Court also held that Lokpobiri’s appeal lacked merit and accordingly dismissed it. Read more
2. Corruption deep-rooted in Nigeria before I came to power – Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari said on Tuesday corruption was deep-rooted in the country before he came to power in 2015. Buhari, who spoke at the launch of a book “One Step Ahead: Life of a Spy, Detective and Anti-Graft Czar” authored by a former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mrs. Farida Waziri, in Abuja, said the problem was the major reason the impact of his fight against corruption has not permeated in some quarters. He, however, restated his administration’s commitment to eradicating corruption from Nigeria and urged all hands to be on deck in the fight. Read more
3. Three children die daily of malnutrition in Borno – UNICEF
The United Nation Children Fund (UNICEF) said on Tuesday at least 1,115 children have died from acute malnutrition in Borno State between January and December last year. The UNICEF Nutrition Sector Coordinator, Mr. Simon Karanja, who disclosed this at the inauguration of the Borno Steering Committee on Food and Nutrition in Maiduguri, said at least three children died daily from malnutrition in the state.
Karanja said 138,236 children were treated in various Community for Management of Acute Malnutrition centres in the state while 6,399 defaulted treatment during the period under review. According to him, 1,877 children did not recover or relapsed from malnutrition. Read more
4. Senate threatens to demand MDA chiefs’ sack over audit report
The Senate Committee on Public Accounts on Tuesday threatened to demand the removal of heads of Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) for failing to appear before the panel to defend queries issued to them by the Auditor-General of the Federation, Anthony Ayine. The committee also warned the MDAs against sending representatives whenever they are summoned to the legislative complex. The Chairman of the Committee, Mathew Urhoghide, stated this during a public hearing on the Auditor-General’s report querying the MDAs for violating audit laws. Read more
5. Buhari insensitive to Nigerians’ plights – Kukah
The Bishop of Sokoto Catholic Diocese, Matthew Kukah, on Tuesday expressed dismay at the spate of killings in Nigeria and described President Muhammadu Buhari as insensitive to the plights of Nigerians. Kukah, who spoke in Kaduna at the burial of the seminarian killed by kidnappers, said the President has reneged on his promise of protecting Nigerians. Read more
6. INEC releases timetable for Kwara Assembly by-election
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Tuesday released the timetable for the by-election into Patigi Constituency in Kwara State House of Assembly. According to the timetable and schedule of activities signed by the INEC Secretary, Mrs. Rose Anthony, in Ilorin, the conduct of primaries by political parties will hold from February 10 to 16. The submission of Forms EC 9, EC 9B, EC 9D, 13E and 4B (III) will close by 6:00 p.m. on February 18. The Commission said the publication of Form CR00I and the list of nominated candidates would close on February 25. Read more
7. Nigeria hosts largest number of extremely poor people, 87% of them come from the north —World Bank
Northern Nigeria produced 87% of Nigeria’s poor population in 2016, a recent report from the World Bank has said. The World Bank report titled “Advancing Social Protection in a Dynamic Nigeria” was released on 28th January 2020.
It observed that Nigeria “hosts more of the world’s extreme poor today than any other country,” further saying that “Nigeria ranks among the worst seven performers in the World Bank Human Capital Index and the poor lag far behind the rich in every human capital outcome.” The report blamed Nigeria’s escalating poverty rate on factors ranging from unemployment, underemployment and employment in low-productivity jobs to income inequality, conflict and climate change, particularly in the North-East. Read more
8. Buhari okays Diaspora voting, asks Nigerians abroad to liaise with NASS on process
President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday expressed his support for those in the Diaspora to vote during elections in Nigeria. He has also directed Nigerians outside the country who are interested in participating in future elections to approach the National Assembly to amend the constitution to accommodate them in the process. The President also declared that his administration is fully determined to combat terrorism, banditry and other criminalities in the country. Read more
9. CCT dismisses charges against ex-Bayelsa Speaker, four others
The Code of Conduct Tribunal on Tuesday dismissed charges of abuse of office brought against a former Speaker of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly, Friday Komboyein, and four others. The three-man panel of the CCT headed by Danladi Umar took the decision following the inability of the prosecution to produce its witnesses for trial. Other defendants were former clerks of the House – Mr. Aaron Timiye, Mr. Thomas Tamaraodubo (former accountant), Owudogu Edward (the incumbent Clerk) and Mr. Koroye Stephen (the incumbent accountant). Read more
10. Increased VAT has rendered new minimum wage ‘useless’, NANS laments
The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has declared that the recent upward review of workers’ minimum wage from N18,000 to N30,000 has been rendered useless by the increase in Value Added Tax (VAT).
NANS Spokesman, Azeez Adeyemi, in a statement issued on Tuesday told the Federal Government led by President Mohammadu Buhari that the new minimum wage and the increase in the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members allowance were of no effect, considering that people now paid more for goods, phone calls and other essential services.
According to NANS, the level of inflation since the implementation of N18,000 minimum wage, till the current battle for N30, 000 minimum wage, has drastically outweighed the purchasing power of the masses. Read more