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Today’s Punch Newspaper Headline, Monday 26th November 2018

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Metele base attack: Probe military budget now, groups, opposition parties, tell Buhari
Mon, 26 Nov 2018

An anti-corruption group, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project; civil society groups and the opposition parties under the aegis of the Coalition of United Political Parties have called on President Muhammadu Buhari to order a probe into the spending of military budgets from 1999 to 2018.

They also called on the President to take before the International Criminal Court all cases of alleged diversion of military funds, including $2bn arms funds allegedly diverted during the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan.

Their call followed the attack on the Metele military base in Borno State by terrorists. The terrorists, believed to be fighters of the Islamic State West African Province, had attacked the army base on November 18, during which scores of soldiers, including a commander and his assistant, were reportedly killed by the insurgents while others fled the base or were abducted.

The army had yet to release any figure of missing or deceased soldiers a week after.

In an open letter on Sunday by its Senior Legal Adviser, Bamisope Adeyanju, SERAP said it believed the inability of the Nigerian troops to respond adequately to attacks by insurgents was tied to inadequate arms.

It said, “We believe that referral of the cases to the ICC would serve as a deterrent and ensure that Nigerians, particularly those in the North-East of the country whose human rights, including the right to life, to human dignity, and to an adequate standard of living have been violated, are not denied justice and effective remedies.

“SERAP is concerned that several billions of naira allocated to the military to defend the country have neither contributed to improving the ability of Nigerian soldiers to fight Boko Haram and other armed groups nor provided the much-needed security, especially for Nigerians in the North-East of the country.”

SERAP urged the President to “move swiftly to implement these recommendations as a way of demonstrating your government’s commitment to end the perception of the lack of transparency and accountability in the spending of military budgets in the context of the conflict in the North-East and to ensure the safety and security of our soldiers and all Nigerians in that part of the country.”

It added, “The military’s inability to respond adequately to the Boko Haram insurgency suggests among other things mismanagement in the spending of the country’s defence budgets.

“Establishing a commission of inquiry to investigate how defence and military budgets have been spent since 29 May, 1999 would help Nigerians to know if the funds meant to defend the country and for the purchase of arms to empower Nigerian soldiers to fight Boko Haram have been transparently and accountably spent.”

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Visa-seeking Nigerian students lament sad experiences at US embassy
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Samson Folarin Twenty-six-year-old Benjamin had prepared himself and spent five days fasting and praying to secure a student visa at the United States embassy. His widowed mother had spent her savings to pay all the fees leading to the stage and her hopes were hinged on Benjamin scaling through the crucial interview. Like other students
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Atikull carry out responsibilities with dignity Obasanjo
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Hindi Livinus, Yola Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has said that his former deputy, Atiku Abubakar and presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, will carry out any responsibility he is given with dignity. Obasanjo stated this at the turbaning of Atiku as the seventh Wazirin Adamawa by the Lamido of Adamawa, Dr. Mustapha Barkindo. Obasanjo
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Essential accessories for iPhone owners
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Ife Ogunfuwa Whether for the holidays, a birthday, or some other special occasion, if the person you are shopping for is an iPhone user, there are plenty of gifts you can get for them, according to Gadget Hacks. AirPods It is true that every iPhone model comes with a pair of Apples EarPods, and those
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PDP challenges Buhari to debate with Atiku
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Success Nwogu, Abuja The Peoples Democratic Party has challenged President Muhammadu Buhari to a live, one-on-one debate with its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, on critical sectors of national life. The PDP also berated Buhari for allegedly neglecting Nigerian troops fighting in the North East. The PDP National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan in a statement on
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2019: Danjuma, Asemota, Dogonyaro, others warn against APC, PDP
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Friday Olokor, Abuja Few months to the 2019 general elections, a coalition of Christian leaders under the aegis of National Christian Elders Forum has asked Nigerians not to vote for the All Progressives Congress and the Peoples Democratic Party, describing the parties as two evils. The group also faulted the current political composition of Nigeria,
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Nigerians wont vote a fugitive, APC tells Atiku
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Kamarudeen Ogundele, Abuja The All Progressives Congress has told the Peoples Democratic Partys presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, that Nigerians wont vote a fugitive in the 2019 general elections. It challenged the former vice president to clear himself of the alleged travel ban placed on him by the United States of America. Accusing the PDP
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Group faults APC, PDP policy documents
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja A non-governmental organisation ActionAid Nigeria on Sunday released the findings of its review of the manifestos and policy documents of the ruling All Progressives Congress and the Peoples Democratic Party ahead of the 2019 general elections, highlighting the pitfalls of the documents of both parties. The group stated that having analysed these
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Buharis govt most corrupt in Nigerias history Green Party
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Tunji Bosun, Abeokuta The Green Party of Nigeria has described the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari as the most corrupt government that has ever governed the country. The party described the fight against corruption by the present administration as a scam, and challenged the All Progressives Congress-led government to present a case against corruption it
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Oversight largesse divides senators, committee chairmen
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Sunday Aborisade and Leke Baiyewu, Abuja The recent oversight exercise embarked upon by the various committees of the Senate has set tongue wagging among members of the various panels of the red chamber. The senators adjourned plenary early this month to embark on oversight functions aimed at ascertaining the performances of the ministries, departments and
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Mind your language, Abiara tells politicians
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
A former General Evangelist of the Christ Apostolic Church Worldwide, Prophet S.K. Abiara, has warned politicians to mind their language during the electioneering. The cleric spoke during the 33rd anniversary of the CAC, Agbala Itura, Agege, Lagos, a statement said on Sunday. He said, The forthcoming election is just at the door. My piece of
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Ex-Akwa Ibom governor faults automatic tickets for politicians
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Patrick Odey ,Uyo A former governor of Akwa Ibom State, Victor Attah, on Saturday said giving of automatic tickets to politicians for reelection was the beginning of the problems in the electoral process and democracy. He said such would not give people the opportunity to select other candidates of their choice. Attah said this in
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APC urges members to embrace peace committees
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Kamarudeen Ogundele, Abuja The All Progressives Congress has urged its aggrieved members to take advantage of the Peace and Reconciliation Committees it raised to settle grievances arising from the recently concluded primaries. The appeal came following reports that some aggrieved members were bent on prosecuting cases they had instituted against the party in courts. The
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Ezekwesili takes campaign to Abuja streets
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Friday Olokor, Abuja The Presidential Candidate of Allied Congress Party of Nigeria, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, on Sunday took her campaign to Abuja streets where she spoke one-on-one with residents. During the campaign, the former minister of education distributed booklets and leaflets containing her policy action to people. She claimed she was the best candidate among
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APGA says APC has lost anti-terrorism war, wants change of government
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Olalekan Adetayo, Abuja The All Progressives Grand Alliance on Sunday said the All Progressives Congress-led Federal Government had lost the war against terrorism with the recent killing of Nigerian soldiers. It urged Nigerians to ensure a change of government by voting out the APC at the 2019 general elections. The Director Strategic Communication, John Gbor
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Nigeria needs educated President, says Olawepo-Hasim
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Peter Dada, Akure The Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Trust, Mr. Gbenga Olawepo-Hasim, has said Nigeria needs an educated person to become the next President, for the country to move forward. He claimed that the presidential candidates of the All Progressives Congress and Peoples Democratic Party, President Muhammadu Buhari and Atiku Abubakar respectively did not
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e-Dividend mandate: Unclaimed dividends now N60bn
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Since the introduction of the e-dividend mandate management system, capital market operators tell FEYISAYO POPOOLA that the value of unclaimed dividends has dropped by about 50 per cent Over time, the increasing volume of unclaimed dividends in the capital market has been generating arguments among market stakeholders and has become a source of concern for
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Fresh trouble for Nigeria as oil price plunges
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Femi Asu The international oil benchmark, Brent crude, has fallen to its lowest level this year and below the proposed benchmark for Nigerias 2019 budget, with economic experts describing the development as a cause for concern for the country. Brent, against which Nigerias oil is priced, plunged by $3.80 to $58 per barrel on Sunday
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Nigeria Commodity Exchange moves to reduce N2.7tn post-harvest losses
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Ifeanyi Onuba, Abuja The Nigeria Commodity Exchange has entered into an agreement with the New Nigeria Commodity Marketing Company to ensure a massive boost in the trading of agricultural produce in the country. The Managing Director of NCX, Zaheera Baba-Ari, signed the Memorandum of Understanding on behalf of the Exchange while the Managing Director of
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Postal commission bill threatens 100,000 courier jobs LCCI
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Anna Okon The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry has kicked against the Nigeria Postal Commission Bill currently before the National Assembly. The chamber in a statement signed by its Director General, Mr. Muda Yusuf, on Sunday, expressed reservation about the bill, saying that it was inimical to private sector investments in the courier business.
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FMBN, presidential panel to recover N43bn from debtors
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja The Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria has entered into partnership with the Special Presidential Investigation Panel for the Recovery of Pubic Property to recoup N43bn from the banks debtors within the next 18 months. According to FMBNs Managing Director, Ahmed Dangiwa, the bank had also recorded progress in its loan recovery drive,
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Kaduna got over N13.5bn under FGs social investment programme Finance minister
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Ifeanyi Onuba, Abuja Since inception of the Federal Governments National Social Investment Programme in 2015, Kaduna State has benefitted over N13.5bn, the Federal Government disclosed. The Minister of Finance, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, said this at the Federal College of Education, Zaria, during the disbursement of empowerment funds to women of Kaduna State. She said that
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NCC may share levy with subsidiary institute
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Everest Amaefule, Abuja Going by recommendations of a committee of experts headed by a former Executive Vice- Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission, the Digital Bridge Institute may be transformed into technology innovation hub. To guarantee steady funding for the DBI which is a training subsidiary of the telecommunications regulatory agency, the experts recommended that
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Observe weather before flying, NCAA cautions airlines
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority has asked airline operators and their pilots to observe safety precautions as the harmattan weather begins. The NCAA said all the rules in line with the Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations on flight operations in adverse weather conditions should be observed. According to a statement signed by the General
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Permit: FG audits foreigners working on project sites
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja The Federal Government has conducted an audit to find out the number of foreigners working on 127 works and housing project sites across the country. It also announced that the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing had inaugurated a full audit to ascertain the number of foreigners working on all project
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Emefiele, bankers to provide insights into economy
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Nike Popoola The Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria has said the Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Godwin Emefiele, and other stakeholders in the industry will provide insights into the economy in its upcoming annual dinner this month. The CIBN said in a statement that being the biggest high-profile social forum organised by the
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CBN, ABCONs partnership stabilising naira Gwadabe
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Nike Popoola The President, Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria, Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe, has said the ongoing strategic partnership between the Central Bank of Nigeria and the association has kept the naira stable at both the official and parallel markets, despite huge campaign spending by political parties. He said in a statement that
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Floor safety should be everyones priority, expert says
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi An expert in floor management has said there is a need for everyone to prioritise floor safety as a slippery floor remained one of the leading causes of death and permanent disability. The Managing Director of No-Slips Limited, Mr Charles Igbinidu, told our correspondent that according to statistics, many Nigerians had sustained life-threatening
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Compliance institute reviews corruption, anti-bribery programmes for financial companies
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Nike Popoola The Compliance Institute for Banks and Other Financial Institutions in Nigeria Limited said it has reviewed its syllabus on different topics including corruption and anti-bribery for the institutions. The President/Chairman of Board, Compliance Institute, Nigeria Mr Pattison Boleigha, said this during the second induction ceremony and annual general meeting of the Compliance Institute
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Why your past prevents you from saving money
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Are you constantly thinking about your financial mistakes’ If so, these thoughts are holding you back from saving. You wish you could go back in time to avoid your financial downfalls. But dwelling over your past will only rob you from your future. Instead, reflect on your mistakes and ask yourself what lessons you can
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Stakeholders call for tax incentives for indigenous construction firms
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi For an industry that employs a large number of people, the Federal Government needs to consider giving tax incentives to indigenous construction firms, the Chief Executive Officer, Construction Kaiser, MrIgbuanOkaisabor, has said. According to Okaisabor, indigenous construction companies have the capacity to reduce the countrys unemployment rate, but are rather being squeezed by
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May & Baker rights issue closes this week
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Feyisayo Popoola The application list for the ongoing rights issue of May & Baker Nigeria Plc is scheduled to close on Wednesday. The firm offered 980 million ordinary shares of 50 kobo each at N2.50 per share to existing shareholders, in a bid to raise N2.45bn in new equity funds. The firm said, in a
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RIFAN to boost retail insurance development
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Nike Popoola Retail insurance business in the country has received a boost with the inauguration of Retail Insured Family Association of Nigeria. The National Chairman, RIFAN, Akin Bello, said this during the inauguration in Abuja which was attended by stakeholders from different sectors of the economy. The stakeholders, according to a statement, applauded the formation
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Eurobonds provide opportunities for investors
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Nike Popoola There are investment opportunities in Eurobonds for investors with dollar liquidity in Nigeria, FSDH Research has said. According to a report on fixed income market investment ideas, the yields on most of the Federal Government of Nigerias Eurobonds are now higher than their respective coupon rates, in line with the expectation of FSDH
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Environmentalists demand restoration of mangroves, reclamation of desert
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi Environmentalists have called for more efforts to restore the countrys depleting mangrove as well as the reclamation of the desert. According to them, Nigeria has one-third of the entire mangroves in Africa but it is currently being degraded by human activities while the country is also losing about 351,000 hectares of its land
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Expert seeks implementation of minimum pension payment
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Nike Popoola An actuarial scientist and chartered insurer, Dr Pius Apere, has said it is necessary to implement the minimum pension payments for all retirees under the Contributory Pension Scheme. He said this while speaking on the rationale and implications for introducing the enhanced pension programme for only the Programmed Withdrawal pensioners. It is clear
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Persistent sell-offs drag market index 1.18% lower
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Feyisayo Popoola Persistent sell-offs witnessed in the nations stock market last week dragged the All-Share Index lower by 1.18 per cent. The market capitalisation dropped from N11.676tn recorded on Thursday to N11.565tn on Friday, while the ASI shed 305.9 basis points to close at 31,678.70bps. The market opened for four trading days last week as
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Gassim restates commitment to construction industry development
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Ifeanyi Onuba, Abuja A project management company and a major operator in the building construction industry, Gassim, has restated its commitment to support the development of the key sectors of building construction and hospitality in the Nigerian economy. The Managing Director, Gassim Project Management, Mr Yves Dumont, said this while speaking at a cocktail party
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NAICOM restructures, creates new directorates
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Nike Popoola The governing board of the National Insurance Commission has approved the restructuring of the commission to accommodate new directorates and state branch offices across the country. It said under the new structure, three more directorates were created in the commission, bringing the total number of directorates to nine The new directorates are commissioner
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How small businesses can leverage technology to grow
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
I want you to put this into perspective: Amazon, a tech company, just purchased one of the biggest retail food chains in the nation, Whole Foods. Only two months later, Whole Foods significantly reduced the price of their food. According to Forbes, some start-ups with 10 people cant even make decisions and execute in less
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How to protect your bank cards from fraud
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
The risk of a fraudster accessing your bank account through the card you use at the ATM or a shop terminal is very real. In fact, card fraud accounts for several billions annually, according to www.macquarie.com. But there are a few simple steps anyone can take to minimise the risk of people accessing our accounts
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CITN signs MoU with ANAN
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Nike Popoola The Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Association of National Accountants of Nigeria on membership and examination issues. The President/Chairman of Council, CITN, Dr Cyril Ede, said in a statement that the MoU was in furtherance of its agenda to enhance collaboration with relevant stakeholders.
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Strike: FG, ASUU hold another crucial meeting today
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Olaleye Aluko, Abuja The Federal Government is expected to hold another emergency meeting with the Academic Staff Union of Universities on Monday in a bid to end the ongoing strike in public universities. The last meeting between the two parties took place on November 15. Despite the meeting lasting for six hours, the strike was
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2015: Obamas video broadcast violated Nigerias sovereignty Ozekhome
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Oladimeji Ramon A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Chief Mike Ozekhome, says the alleged video broadcast by ex-American President, Barack Obama, on the 2015 presidential election violated Nigerias sovereignty. According to Ozekhome, Obamas alleged interference in the 2015 presidential poll, coupled with his support for gay marriage, has made the former US President lose his popularity
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Never again will Nigeria be governed by opportunists Oshiomhole
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Ted Odogwu, Kano The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Mr Adams Oshiomhole, on Sunday berated the Peoples Democratic Party and ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo, saying never again would Nigeria be ruled by opportunists. He said attempts being made by Obasanjo to impose a proxy president on the country in 2019 would never see the
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Jonathan, Ortom congratulate Atiku at 72
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
John Charles and Olusola Fabiyi Ex-President Dr Goodluck Jonathan and Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, have congratulated former Vice-President and the Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, on the occasion of his 72nd birthday. In a goodwill message, Jonathan noted that Atiku had made significant contributions to the growth and development of
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Gowon urges Christians to fight extremists with love
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Samson Folarin A former Head of State, Yakubu Gowon, has asked Nigerian Christians to shun the temptation to retaliate attacks by some religious extremists in the country. The convener of Nigeria Prays, a non-governmental organisation, said instead, Christians should seek to win over their enemies through prayers and love, adding that vengeance belonged to God.
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2019 polls, another game of integrity and performance test Ex-Speaker
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Abiodun Nejo, Ado Ekiti Former Speaker, Ekiti State House of Assembly, Femi Bamisile, has urged Nigerians to see the 2019 general elections as another game of integrity and performance test. According to Bamisile, the elections will give Nigerians an opportunity to decide which direction they want the country to go. The All Progressives Congress House
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Police parade 33 IPOB members over Inspectors killing
Mon, 26 Nov 2018
Tony Okafor, Awka The police on Sunday paraded 33 suspected Indigenous People of Biafra members who allegedly killed a police Inspector and wounded others when they clashed with the police in Nnewi on Friday. The suspects allegedly seized the slain officers rifle along with other guns which they snatched from other officers when the police
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