NIGERIA NEWSPAPERS: TODAY'S THE PUNCH NEWSPAPER HEADLINES [29 MARCH, 2018].


Below are the headlines found on The Punch Online Newspaper for today, Thursday, 29 March, 2018.

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
A scheduled meeting between the National Working Committee of the All Progressives Congress and the party’s caucus at the House of Representatives was unceremoniously called off on Wednesday.
 
The National Chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, was scheduled to lead the NWC members to the meeting at 2pm.

Investigations by The PUNCH showed that the venue, Conference Room 034, House of Representatives Wing, National Assembly Complex, was set for the meeting and many members had arrived ahead of 2pm.

The Leader of the House, Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila, had also led some officials to the venue, awaiting the Speaker, Mr. Yakubu Dogara, to receive Odigie-Oyegun.

It was gathered that Oyegun had written the lawmakers on March 15, requesting a meeting with them on happenings in the polity.

The letter, which The PUNCH obtained exclusively in Abuja, read in part, “I wish to request that you arrange an early meeting between the NWC and the APC House Caucus at the National Assembly to discuss a few recent developments in the polity.”

The PUNCH gathered that while Gbajabiamila and other members of the party were waiting for the meeting to start, words came from Odigie-Oyegun that it had been cancelled.

A source said, “The chairman’s advance party and secretariat members of staff had already arrived in the National Assembly.

“But, Odigie-Oyegun called Gbajabiamila on the telephone to say the meeting would no longer be taking place.”
 
It was learnt that the turn of events flowed from the outcome of the party’s Tuesday National Executive Committee meeting, where President Muhammadu Buhari opposed tenure elongation for the Oyegun-led NWC.

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
The Christian Association of Nigeria has called on all churches in the country to pray for the freedom of Leah Sharibu from the captivity of the Boko Haram terrorists on this year’s Good Friday, March 30.


 
The organisation also reminded the Federal Government and the security agencies of the need to free Leah and other captives from the captivity of the Boko Haram terrorists.

The President of CAN, Dr. Samson Ayokunle, in a statement by his Special Assistant, (Media & Communications), Deacon Adebayo Oladeji, obtained by The PUNCH on Wednesday in Jos, said the call for prayer for the release of Leah was in line with the Passion Week when Jesus Christ, with passion, willingly went to the cross in order to pay for the sins of the world.

CAN also called on all Christians to use the Passion Week to pray for the country “to be free from all forces of darkness and for those who have lost their relations or property during the recent terror and herdsmen attacks.”

He said, “Following the trials, Jesus Christ, though sinless, was scourged by the Roman soldiers, and then forced to carry His own instrument of execution (the Cross) through the streets of Jerusalem along what is known as the Way of Sorrow.

“Jesus was then crucified at Golgotha on the day before the Sabbath, was buried and remained in the tomb until Sunday, the day after the Sabbath, and then gloriously resurrected. It is referred to as the Passion Week because in that time, Jesus Christ truly revealed His passion for us in the suffering He willingly went through on our behalf.

“What should our attitude be during the Passion Week? We should be passionate in our worship of Jesus and in our proclamation of His Gospel! As He suffered for us, so should we be willing to suffer for the cause of following Him and proclaiming the message of His death and resurrection.

“It is in the light of this, that the leadership of CAN is calling on every Christian nationwide to stand in the gap for that innocent girl, Leah Sharibu, at 12 noon on Good Friday, asking God to send His angels to deliver her from captivity as He did for Apostle Peter who was jailed unjustly.”


Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Following the escape from custody of six suspects involved in the arms case against Senator Dino Melaye, the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, on Wednesday ordered the immediate removal of the Kogi State Commissioner of Police, Ali Janga.

He also redeployed the Commander, Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad in the state, the Divisional Police Officer ‘A’ Division, Lokoja and other police officers implicated in the escape for negligence, dereliction of duty and gross misconduct.


 
The IG in a statement by the police spokesman, Jimoh Moshood, in Abuja, explained that the policemen had been detained and were facing serious disciplinary action.

The suspects- Kabiru Seidu a.k.a. Osama, Nuhu Salisu a.k.a. Small, Aliyu Isa, Adams Suleiman, Emmanuel Audu and Musa Mohammed, reportedly escaped on Wednesday morning despite being guarded by 13 policemen at the ‘A’ Division, Lokoja.

The police had alleged that Melaye contracted Seidu and his gang as political thugs, adding that the lawmaker met with the suspect on Airport Road, Abuja inside his (Melaye’s) car in December, 2017.

Seidu was said to have confessed to the police investigative team that Melaye gave him a bag containing an AK47 rifle, two pump action guns and N430,000 to share with his boys.

Shortly before he was removed, the Kogi CP had in a statement declared the fugitives wanted, including Melaye and Mohammed Audu, noting that they had been put on the red alert of the International Police.

“Consequently, all the six suspects, Senator Dino Melaye and Mohammed Audu were put on red alert by the INTERPOL for immediate arrest any where we see them,” the CP stated.

Announcing Janga’s removal, the IG directed Esa Ogbu, Commissioner of Police, Federal Operations, Force Headquarters, Abuja, to immediately proceed to Kogi State and take charge of the command.

He also drafted the IGP’s Intelligence Response Team and Special Tactical Squad, personnel of the Force Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department to work with the state command for immediate re-arrest of the escaped suspects.


Thu, 29 Mar 2018
US President Donald Trump shook up his cabinet once again on Wednesday, sacking embattled Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin and nominating White House doctor Ronny Jackson as his successor.

“I am pleased to announce that I intend to nominate highly respected Admiral Ronny L. Jackson, MD, as the new Secretary of Veterans Affairs,” said Trump, who has also replaced his secretary of state and national security advisor in the last month.

“I am thankful for Dr. David Shulkin’s service to our country and to our GREAT VETERANS!” he said on Twitter.


 
Pentagon official Robert Wilkie would serve as interim department chief until Jackson receives Congressional approval, the president added.

Shulkin’s sacking had been widely predicted after he was accused of spending $122,000 on a nine-day trip to Europe with his wife, which included sightseeing at castles and taking in professional tennis matches.

He was one of the few senior officials in the Trump administration who had also served during the presidency of Barack Obama.

Jackson’s stock with Trump rose after he pronounced in January that the 71-year-old president was in “excellent” health.

After releasing the results from Trump’s physical, Jackson said “he has incredible genes and that’s the way God made him.”

VoteVets, a progressive organization, urged Senators to “ask him blunt, direct questions about how the VA works” during his confirmation hearing.

“We are concerned about his readiness to assume control,” the group wrote on Twitter.

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Ramon Oladimeji The Federal High Court in Lagos has ordered the Associated Aviation Nigeria Limited to pay the sum of N246m as compensation for the death of a former Commissioner for Culture and Tourism in Ondo State, Deji Falae. Falae, then a serving commissioner, was among the people who lost their lives on October 3, [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Everest Amaefule, Eniola Akinkuotu,Ifeanyi Onuba and Olaleye Aluko The National Assembly Service Commission should be held responsible for the running cost of N13.5m paid to each senator on a monthly basis, the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission has said. In a statement by RMAFC spokesman, Mr. Ibrahim Mohammed, the commission said on Wednesday that [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Oladimeji Ramon The Federal High Court in Lagos has ordered two naval officers Captains Olotu Morakinyo and Ebony Aneke to temporarily forfeit their landed properties located in the highbrow Lekki area of Lagos to the Federal Government. Justice Muslim Hassan made the forfeiture order on Wednesday following an ex parte application by the [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
John Ameh, Abuja The House of Representatives on Wednesday approved the report of a bill seeking to establish a fund for the completion of the Ajaokuta Steel Company. The plant, which has reached 98 per cent completion, needs up to $500m to complete the remaining two per cent. The report was considered and approved in [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Olalekan Adetayo, Abuja The Federal Executive Council on Wednesday approved a contract for the rehabilitation of the Ikorodu-Sagamu Road which links Lagos State to Ogun State. The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, disclosed this to State House correspondents at the end of the councils meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Samson Folarin The General Superintendent of the Deeper Christian Life Ministry, Pastor W.F. Kumuyi, has promised a new era at the churchs Easter retreat. The retreat, themed, Heirs of His Kingdom will hold from Thursday (today) to Sunday at the Deeper Life Conference Centre, KM 42 Lagos-Ibadan Expressway. Kumuyi, in a statement on Wednesday, said [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Ade Adesomoju, Abuja Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court Abuja on Wednesday ordered the senator representing Abia South in the Senate, Enyinnaya Abaribe, and two others to produce the missing leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, in court on June 26. Kanu, who has pending charges of treasonable felony [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Oladimeji Ramon and Afeez Hanafi No fewer than 50 policemen on Wednesday evening reportedly stormed the secretariat of the Ikeja branch of the Nigerian Bar Association. The NBA Ikeja said in a statement on Wednesday evening by its chairman, Adesina Ogunlana, that the squad, which invaded its secretariat at about 4pm, was led by the [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi The National Emergency Management Agency has received another batch of 166 voluntary returnees from Libya. The 56 female adults, four female infants and three female children; and 101 male adults and two male childrens return was facilitated by the International Organisation for Migration on Wednesday. The South-West Zonal Coordinator of NEMA, Alhaji Yakubu [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Sesan Olufowobi The six governors of the South-West region, under the auspices of the Western Nigerian Governors Forum, on Wednesday formally admitted Lagos State into the Odua Investment Company Limited. The state was given a total of 115 million shares, thus growing the share equity of the company to N690m. The governors Akinwunmi Ambode [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
THE fragile unity of Nigeria has moved forcefully once more into the front burner of public discourse, triggered by the forthright intervention of a former military chief, Theophilus Danjuma. His categorical statement that the military are not a neutral force and urging self-defence in the wake of serial massacres, compel urgent, critical introspection by leaders [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Oladimeji Ramon The Ogun State Governor, Ibikunle Amosun, has identified lack of proper documentation and incomplete payment by applicants under the Homeowners Charter Programme as factors responsible for the delay in issuance of Certificates of Occupancy. Amosun, stated this during the 29th edition of presentation of Certificates of Occupancy and Building Plan Approval to another [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
The Police Command in Zamfara State on Wednesday confirmed the killing of three persons at Bawan Daji village in the Anka Local Government Area of the state. The commands spokesman, DSP Mohammed Shehu, told the News Agency of Nigeria in Gusau that the killing was carried out by gunmen. Shehu said the gunmen who came [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Kamarudeen Ogundele, Ado Ekiti The founder of Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti, Aare Afe Babalola, SAN, has advocated increased funding for the nations education sector. He said there must be active and deliberate commitment by Nigerian governments to actively invest in all levels of education to promote availability, affordability and accessibility of quality education. The former [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Prof. Ernest Ojukwu, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, is the immediate past Deputy Director General and Head of Campus, Nigerian Law School, Enugu. In this interview with OLADIMEJI RAMON, he argues that education is a more potent weapon against corruption than prosecution A recent survey you conducted suggested that bribery of judges or corruption [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Oladimeji Ramon The Chief Judge of Lagos State, Justice Opeyemi Oke, on Wednesday unveiled new sentencing guidelines for judges and magistrates in the state. She said the guidelines were to ensure uniformity of punishments imposed on convicts by all the judges and magistrates handling criminal cases in the state. She explained that the sentencing guidelines [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Lagos State Government has said it will continue to support tradesmen and artisans in the state in order to achieve a boom in the economic activities in the state. The Commissioner for Wealth Creation and Employment, Mrs. Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf, stated this at an interactive session with tradesmen and artisans on Tuesday in Ikeja. She said [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Theophilus Onojeghen, Warri A former governorship aspirant of the Peoples Democratic Party in Delta State, Mr. Sunny Onuesoke, has said the All Progressives Congress will collapse before the 2019 general elections following recent happenings in the party. Onuesoke, who is also a leader of the PDP, said the APC had brought hardship to Nigerians. This [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Sesan Olufowobi The Lagos State Government on Wednesday said it had made available Lake Rice for the Easter celebration, adding that the move was part of its commitment to boost food sufficiency. The Commissioner for Agriculture, Mr. Oluwatoyin Suarau, stated that Lake Rice would be sold in all designated centres from Thursday (today). Suarau said, [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
N'Assembly proposes 5% fuel levy Leke Baiyewu, Abuja At the plenary on Wednesday, the Senate passed the harmonised version of the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill. The passage followed the adoption of the report by the Conference Committee on the PIGB, which harmonised the versions earlier passed by the Senate and House of Representatives. The harmonised [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Oyetunji Abioye Mrs. Aisha Ahmad and Mr. Edward Adamu have formally assumed duty as deputy governors of the Central Bank of Nigeria, following the confirmation of their appointments last week by the Senate. The trio of Prof. Adeola Festus Adenikinju, Dr. Robert Asogwa and Dr. Aliyu Rafindadi Sanusi were also at the head office of [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
A civic society accountability organisation, BudgIT has urged Nigerian governments at all levels to invest in people as this is the only guarantee to a safe and sustainable country. This was made known at an event held on Wednesdayin Lagos tagged, Investing in the People of Nigeria. The conversation was held in response to Bill [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
states warn NNPC against revenue underpayment Ifeanyi Onuba, Abuja The Federation Accounts Allocation Committee has resolved the crisis that made it impossible to share the statutory allocation for February on Tuesday to pave the way for the disbursement of funds to the three tiers of government. Tuesday's meeting of FAAC had ended in deadlock following [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Ifeanyi Onuba, Abuja Shareholders of Oando Plc on Wednesday staged a peaceful protest in Abuja to demand the suspension of the management team of the company. The shareholders were led on the demonstration by the Coordinator, Proactive Shareholders Association of Nigeria, Mr. Taiwo Oderinde; Chairman, Trusted Shareholders Association of Nigeria, Mr. Muhtar Muhtar; and their [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Stanley Opara FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange has admitted on its platform, the first ever microfinance bank bond in Nigeria ' the LAPO MFB SPV Plc Series 1 N3.15bn 17.75 per cent five-year Fixed Rate Senior Unsecured Bond under a N20bn bond issuance programme. This is coming as corporate institutions have continued to successfully tap the [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Femi Asu The Mining and Solid Minerals Group of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry has called for a review of the Federal Government's road map for solid minerals development. The Chairman of the group, Mr. Babatunde Alatise, said the LCCI recently reviewed the road map and policy initiatives. 'Our initial study of the [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
adopts strategies to boost investments Everest Amaefule, Abuja and Chukwudi Akasike, Port Harcourt The Minister of Science and Technology Dr. Ogbonnya Onu, has said the Federal Government is vigorously exploring alternative sources of energy for the country. Onu said this when the executive of the International Energy Charter Mission Team on Energy Investment Risk Assessment [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Union Bank of Nigeria Plc has reiterated its commitment to support the growth of Nigerian businesses. This announcement was made by the lender's Chief Executive Officer, Emeka Emuwa, during a customer engagement forum which held recently in Onitsha, Anambra State with leading businessmen and women in the state. The CEO was joined at the forum [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Femi Asu with agency report Royal Dutch Shell has filed a criminal complaint against a former senior employee, Peter Robinson, over suspected bribes in the $390m sale of an oilfield in Nigeria, where the company is already under investigation over a separate deal. Dutch prosecutors confirmed they had received the complaint against Robinson, a former [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
set to become third-largest exporter by 2020 'Femi Asu the United States is gradually making inroads into export markets that Nigeria sends its Liquefied Natural Gas cargoes to as the North American country's LNG exports quadrupled in 2017. With two projects scheduled to come online this year and another two in 2019, the country is [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Femi Asu Powergas Nigeria has struck a partnership with an Austrian clean tech company, ETEFA, to facilitate the conversion of city buses and trucks in Lagos and the Niger Delta to run on natural gas, as part of efforts to reduce gas flaring in the country. The companies announced the alliance during a briefing on [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Oyetunji Abioye The Principal Partner, ROAC Chartered Accountants, a leading accounting and tax advisory firm, Mr. Gbenga Akinyemi, says taxpayers must take advantage of the tax amnesty being offered by the Federal Government through the Voluntary Assets and Income Declaration Scheme. The VAIDS is an initiative of the Ministry of Finance and Federal Inland Revenue [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Nike Popoola Twenty-seven states have enacted statutory laws to adopt the Contributory Pension Scheme for their workers. According to the update on the implementation of the scheme by the state governments, obtained from the National Pension Commission by our correspondent, only 12 of the states have commenced remittances into their workers' Retirement Savings Accounts, while [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Femi Asu The Renewable Energy Association of Nigeria, a private sector renewable energy group, has said its members are being forced to pay between five per cent and 10 per cent import duty on solar panels by the Nigeria Customs Service. REAN said in a statement on Wednesday that under the CET code 8541.4010.00 [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Afam Power Plc, Olumide Obademi, has announced that the $186m Afam III Fast Power project will be ready for inauguration next month. According to him, construction work on the plant, which targets adding 240 megawatts of electricity to the country's power grid, is currently in its final [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Bureau de change operators under the aegis of the Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria are collaborating with the Nigeria Inter-bank Settlement System Plc to automate their operations for online real time returns rendition. The Acting President, ABCON, Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe, made the disclosure in Lagos, a statement by the association indicated. Gwadabe [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Afriland Properties Plc has reported a profit after tax of N1.02bn for the year ended, December 31, 2017, representing 233 per cent increase compared to N307m reported in the corresponding period of 2016. The firm's total assets for the year under review stood at N19.8bn which represents 17.9 per cent increase over N16.8bn recorded in [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
The Corporate Affairs Commission says it has postponed its Quarterly Customer's Forum. The organisation said the postponement became necessary because of President Muhammadu Buhari's visit to Lagos State. The meeting was scheduled to take place onThursday, March 29, 2018, a day declared as work-free by theLagos State Government. CAC's Public Affairs Manager, Godfrey Ike, in [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Greg Odogwu gregodogwu@yahoo.com 08063601665 When the Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Dakuku Peterside, in a recent report, urged African leaders to provide investment opportunities to support the growth of the blue economy in order to improve governance, and generate revenue and employment, we were once again reminded of yet another [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Thursday withAbimbola Adelakunaadelakun@punchng.com After reading the speech Bill Gates delivered in Abuja that supposedly rattled off our leaders, I fail to see what he said that should be deemed controversial. Just to be sure, I read it twice and what I saw is a respectful engagement with Nigerian leaders. Gates came with facts and figures, [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Niran Adedokun nadedokun@gmail.com Partisans, political hirelings and ethnic apologists have taken serial swipes at the former Chief of Army Staff and Minister of Defence, Gen Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma, for that shocking outburst at the convocation of the Taraba State University in Jalingo last weekend. The one-time Chief of Army Staff ruffled feathers when he called [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
J.K. Randle Continued from Wednesday While the railways flourished, students at Kings College were provided with warrants to enable them spend their Long Vacation anywhere in the country. For them, travelling by train or Ojukwu Transport Service lorries was free. Then, came the Jalupon disaster in 1958 when students from Lagos who were on their [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Samson Folarin Three weeks after operatives of the Department of State Services allegedly abducted a port worker, Moruf Ajao, at his home in the Aguda, Surulere area of Lagos State, his lawyers and family members have yet to see him. Our correspondent learnt that a letter to the Director General of the DSS, Lawan Daura, [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Adelani Adepegba,Abuja A car wash attendant, Mohammed Chado, has been arrested by the police in Abuja for allegedly selling a Toyota Camry that was given to him for washing. The suspect, who worked at a car wash outlet in Apo, Abuja, allegedly made away with the car and sold it for N450,000, which he used [] 

Thu, 29 Mar 2018
Success Nwogu, Ilorin A 32-year-old Lagos tailor, Mr. Suleiman Ajenifuja, has been arrested with three suspected human skulls. The father of two, who also claimed to be working as a street sweeper in Lagos, said he was taking the skulls to an Islamic cleric for spiritual purposes when he was arrested. He said he combined [] 
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