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Today’s Punch Newspaper Headlines Monday 11th February 2019

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PDP reacts as Buhari says corruption threatens Feb 16 poll
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Six days to the general elections, President Muhammadu Buhari on Sunday raised the alarm that corrupt politicians could use their loot to undermine Saturday’s elections.

Buhari, in an op-ed he personally wrote, justified his administration’s anti-corruption war. However, the Peoples Democratic Party said the President’s declaration was a sign that he was afraid of a looming defeat in the February 16 presidential election.

The President, however, said that corrupt people had humongous resources at their disposal to engage in vote-buying and undermine the polls.

Writing on the title, “Corruption threatens Nigeria – and its election,” he stated, “The battle against graft must be the base on which we secure the country, build our economy, provide decent infrastructure and educate the next generation.

“This is the challenge of our generation: the variable on which our success as a nation shall be determined. But the vested interests at play can make this fight difficult. By way of their looting, the corrupt have powerful resources at their disposal. And they will use them. For when you fight corruption, you can be sure it will fight back.

“It even threatens to undermine the February 16 poll and – by extension – our democracy. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has raised concerns over laundered money being funnelled into vote-buying.

“This is the problem of corruption. It illustrates how it lurks in all and every crevice of public life, manipulating due process in pursuit of self-preservation and perpetuation; protecting personal, political and economic interests at the expense of the common good.”

Buhari said as President he had tried to judiciously exercise the trust vested in him to combat corruption, insecurity and an inequitable economy.
He added, “But amongst them, one stands above the others as both are a cause and aggravator of the rest. It is, of course, corruption.

“A policy programme that does not have fighting corruption at its core is destined to fail. The battle against graft must be the base on which we secure the country, build our economy, provide decent infrastructure and educate the next generation.”

‘Our critics were against our mission to stop corruption’

Buhari argued that those who were against his administration did so because they knew his mission was to stop corruption.

He noted, “Indeed, those who have criticised my administration’s anti-corruption drive are those who oppose its mission. And though their lawyers may craft expensive alibis, they cannot escape that which binds them together: a raft of documents and barely legal (some clearly illegal) mechanisms – whether that be the Panama Papers, the US Congress reports, shell companies or offshore bank accounts.

“Corruption corrodes the trust on which the idea of community is founded, because one rule for the few and another for everyone else is unacceptable to anyone working honestly.”

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Atiku wont get 15% votes in Ogun, says pro-Buhari group
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Tunji Bosun, Abeokuta The Buhari Youth Campaign Organisation, Ogun State chapter, has said that the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, will not get 15% votes in the February 16 presidential election in the state. The organisations state coordinator, Olusegun Clement, stated this on Sunday during a press conference held at the
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Nigeria spends N5.468tn on debt servicing in 39 months
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
EVEREST AMAEFULE reports that in 39 months, the country spent a total of N5.468tn on servicing domestic debt and foreign debt as experts claim that the cost of debt servicing is crowding out public debt expenses Servicing of domestic and foreign debt gulped a total of N5.468tn between July 2015 and September 2018, an analysis
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N3.4bn tax debt: FIRS to sell properties of 52 firms
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Ifeanyi Onuba, Abuja The Federal Inland Revenue Service is to dispose of the properties of 52 companies over tax debts valued at about N3.4bn. Investigations by our correspondent in Abuja showed that already, the Legal Department of the Service had begun the process to sell the properties in a bid to effectively implement the initiative.
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FG targets improved business environment for construction
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi Following the ongoing reforms to improve the ease of doing business in the country, the Federal Government is working to attract more foreign investment into the construction industry. The Senior Special Assistant to the Vice-President on Trade and Investment, Jumoke Oduwole, who was a special guest at the International Real Estate Federation, FIABCI
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PPP projectsll tackle housing shortage Experts
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi Following the recent ground breaking of Alaro City, a new mixed-use satellite city in Lagos, real estate experts have called for more public-private partnership to tackle the countrys housing deficit and also decongest major cities such as Lagos. They noted that the new city would serve as a model modern city development and
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NIMASA detains LPG tanker for flouting Cabotage law
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Anna Okon The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency says it has commenced clampdown on vessels that do not comply with the provisions of the Cabotage Compliance Strategy. The agency added that in line with the development, a detention order for a Liquefied Petroleum Gas motor tanker, MT Navigator Capricorn, had been approved for contravening
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Power distributors must automate their systems, says NERC
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission has directed that power distribution companies are to fully automate their commercial system operations in the sector. NERC said such automation would enable the commission to effectively monitor all the funds collected from power users on behalf of the industry by the Discos, as well as enhance
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Health insurance: Lagos targets over two million residents in one year
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Nike Popoola Lagos State Government says it plans to enrol about 10 per cent of its population under its health insurance scheme in one year. The Commissioner for Health, Dr Jide Idris, disclosed this while making a presentation on Lagos State Health Insurance Scheme, during the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industrys forum in Lagos.
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FG tasks quantity surveyors on low contract cost, value maximisation
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Adelani Adepegba, Abuja The Federal Government has tasked quantity surveyors on low cost of contract and value maximisation, noting that competent professionals, including Quantity Surveyors are needed to ensure that projects are executed at minimal costs. The government pointed out that the challenges associated with the provision, renewal and replacement of critical public infrastructure assets
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Housing deficit: Developer plans one million homes
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi As part of efforts to bridge the countrys housing deficit, investment holding company, Lifepage Group, says it plans to build one million houses for different classes of Nigerians between now and the next two decades. The Chief Executive Officer, Mr Oladipupo Clement, stated that the housing development would take care of both the
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Overcrowding: Nine slump at Atikus rally in Kano
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Olusola Fabiyi and John Alechenu The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, has promised to restore Kanos lost glory as the hub of commence, industry and agriculture if elected. Atiku made the promise while addressing a mammoth crowd of party supporters at the Sani Abacha Stadium in Kano State on Sunday. Movement
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Stocks reverse losses as investors gain N334bn
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Feyisayo Popoola Stock market investors gained a total of N334bn last week as the market closed on a positive note for five straight sessions. The market capitalisation of equities listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange increased from N11.424tn on February 2 to close at N11.758tn on February 8. The stock market plunged to its lowest
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Airports record 15.2 million passengers in one year
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria has said a total of 15.2 million passengers passed through Nigerian airports in 227,834 aircraft movements in 2018. This was revealed in FAANs 2018 Annual Report obtained by the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja on Sunday. The report posted an increase of 2.5 million passengers from 12.7 million
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UN laments IDPs fate
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Olaleye Aluko, Abuja The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs has called for urgent assistance for 8,000 Internally Displaced Persons in Monguno town, Borno State, who sleep in the open after a fire incident. The UN agency said the affected IDPs also lacked food and household items as the fire destroyed most
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How many bank accounts does your business need
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
If you have your own business, whether you like it or not, there is an added layer of complexity to your personal finances. You not only need to consider where your own money goes and how it gets there, but you need to think through the same questions when it comes to the revenue your
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Nigeria is oil dependent not oil rich Expert
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Nike Popoola A full-time member of the faculty at the Lagos Business School and former member of the Central Bank of Nigerias Monetary Policy Committee, Dr Doyin Salami, has described Nigeria as an oil-dependent country and not an oil-rich country. He said this while speaking on Charting 2019: The economic outlook, at the Business Breakfast
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Eight Zamfara APC governorship aspirants reject Yaris appeal
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Sunday Aborisade, Abuja Eight governorship aspirants of the All Progressives Congress in Zamfara State have faulted the move by Governor Abdulaziz Yari to enforce the judgement of the state High Court concerning the APC candidates tussle. The aspirants, under the umbrella of G-8, said a novice application filed last Friday by Yari seeking the interim
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President, Atiku to sign fresh pact on poll outcome Wednesday
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Olusola Fabiyi, Friday Olokor and Adelani Adepegba President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress and the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, will lead other presidential candidates to sign a fresh accord to accept the outcome of the February 16 presidential election on Wednesday. A copy of the accord, titled, Renewal
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NIS set to tackle challenges in surveying profession
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi The President, Nigerian Institute of Surveyors, Alabo Charlesye Charles, has said that the profession is challenged by bad governance in the country. The president spoke at the 14th Adekunle Kukoyi memorial lecture organised by the Lagos State Branch of the Nigerias Institute of Surveyor, where he was represented by the Deputy President, Mr
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Lagos waterfront project to gulp N59.8bn
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi A new luxury waterfront development in Lekki Phase 1 area of Lagos is expected to gulp about N59.8bn ($165m), the developers said. The contemporary mixed-use development comprising five 17 to 20 storey residential buildings of one, two and three bedroom apartments is being developed by the Elalan group and African Capital Alliance Group
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Explore real estates potential, expert tells NIESV
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi A real estate expert, Mr Temitope Adegbonmire, has asked estate surveyors and valuers to explore more of the industrys potential to create wealth. Adegbonmire, a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, said some practitioners complained of shortage of jobs in the industry, adding that they were not maximising the opportunities in
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January inflationll drop to 11.40% FSDH
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Nike Popoola January 2019 inflation rate is expected to drop marginally but remained in double digits, the FSDH Merchant Bank has said. It stated this in its Monthly economic and financial markets outlook: Global Developments in January positive for Nigeria. How sustainable’, recently released. In the report, the FSDH Research expected the January 2019 inflation
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Court hears contempt suit against Oshiomhole February 18
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Chidiebube Okeoma, Owerri The suit seeking to commit the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole, to prison filed by the executive of the Imo State chapter of the APC will come up for hearing on February 18. Oshiomhole, had without respect to an existing court order, announced the dissolution of the executive
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CIIN seeks inclusion of insurance as subject in Delta schools
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Nike Popoola The Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria has urged the Delta State government to support the promotion of insurance and facilitate the inclusion of the topic as a subject in secondary schools. The President, CIIN, Mr Eddie Efekoha, solicited the states support, when he led a delegation of the institute and the Insurance Industry
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God bless el-Rufai and his body bags
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Tunde Odesola (<span class=”__cf_email__” data-cfemail=”e195948f85848e858492d3d1d1d2a19880898e8ecf828e8c”>[emailprotected]</span>) In life and in death, Gen Sani Abacha, the unsmiling dictator who ruled Nigeria like a personal prison, was a short man. His military precursor and Public Enemy Extraordinaire, the brutal General from Minna, Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida, isnt a tall man, either. Standing at 56, Italian journalist and the father of fascism,
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NIM to name consensus candidate February 14
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Jesusegun Alagbe The Nigeria Intervention Movement, a member of the Third Force group, has said it is set to pick its consensus presidential candidate. It stated that the presidential candidates of the Social Democratic Party, Donald Duke; Gbenga Olawepo-Hashim (Peoples Trust); Kingsley Moghalu (Young Progressives Party); Omoyele Sowore (African Action Congress); and Fela Durotoye (Alliance
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Dont sell empowerment materials, FG begs Niger Deltans
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Oladimeji Ramon The Federal Government has urged beneficiaries of its empowerment programme in the Niger Delta not to sell the materials given to them but put them to productive usage that will make them self-reliant. The Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta, Prof. Charles Dokubo, gave the advice on Friday during the distribution
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Guinea gets court injunction, halts NAICOM business suspension
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Nike Popoola A Federal High Court in Abuja has given an order restraining the National Insurance Commission from suspending Guinea Insurance Plc from underwriting new insurance businesses. An order signed by Justice Ekwo, which was obtained from the underwriting firm, stated that Guinea Insurance was the plantiff/ applicant, and the NAICOM was the defendant/ respondent.
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Benue lawmaker substitutes varsity degree with school certificate
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Eniola Akinkuotu, Abuja A two-term member of the Benue State House of Assembly, Joseph Ojobo, has substituted his university degree for his West African Examinations Council certificate. Ojobo said he decided to submit his WAEC certificate to the Independent National Electoral Commission in order to avoid the needless controversy surrounding his university degree. The Peoples
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Ekiti wants police posts at border communities
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Abiodun Nejo, Ado Ekiti The Ekiti State Government has called for the creation of more police posts in its communities which share boundaries with neighbouring states to tackle insecurity. The state Deputy Governor, Chief Bisi Egbeyemi, canvassed the establishment of more police posts in such communities, which he said, would check kidnapping and other criminal
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Shell retirees seek better care for senior citizens
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Nike Popoola The Shell Pensioners Association, Lagos Branch, says it wants to commence a campaign that will enshrine the culture of care for the elderly in public places. The Chairman, SPAL, Bili Bakare, said this during the associations Pensioners Day and 2019 New Year celebration in Lagos on Friday. He said, We want to use
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FG earmarks N50bn to rebuild National Library
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Olaleye Aluko, Abuja The Federal Ministry of Education has set aside N50bn to rebuild the dilapidated National Library headquarters in Abuja. The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, who confirmed this in a statement on Sunday, said the government was pursuing alternative sources of funding for the library, especially from special intervention funding windows. Adamu noted
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2019 presidency: Daniel hopeful of PDPs victory
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Tunji Bosun, Abeokuta A former governor of Ogun State and Deputy Chairman of Peoples Democratic Party Presidential Campaign (South), Otunba Gbenga Daniel, on Sunday expressed optimism that the PDP would win the forthcoming presidential election. Daniel who claimed that Nigerians had regretted voting for the APC in 2015, said the people were ready to correct
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Court adjourns ex-AGs N1bn suit against Fayose till Feb 28
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Abiodun Nejo, Ado Ekiti An Ado Ekiti High Court on Friday ordered substituted service on a former governor of Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose, in a N1bn suit filed against him by a former Attorney General of the state, Mr Owoseni Ajayi. In his ruling, Justice L.O. Ogundana, who granted the orders as prayed by
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APC, AA partner to win Imo for Buhari Nwosu
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Chidiebube Okeoma, Owerri The governorship candidate of the Action Alliance in Imo State, Uche Nwosu, has described President Muhammadu Buhari as the countrys best presidential candidate for the February 16 presidential election. Nwosu, who is a son-in-law to the outgoing Governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha, said it would be disastrous for Nigeria if Buhari
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Power ministry has no record of runaway contractors, Fashola tells SERAP
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Oladimeji Ramon The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, said the power ministry has no record of corrupt contractors who ran away with government money without executing awarded contracts. Fashola said he had searched the record of the power ministry and he could not find any such contractor. The minister stated this
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SMEs: FG hails Bayelsa
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Samuel Nkemakokem, Yenagoa The Federal Government has lauded efforts of the Bayelsa State Government at assisting local entrepreneurs in small and medium scale enterprises. The commendation was given during the 2019 All Africa Association SME, hosted by the Bayelsa State Government, which ended on Saturday in Yenagoa. The Minister of Trade, who was represented on
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No nepotism in Sukuk fund disbursement FG
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Ademola Babalola, Ibadan The Federal Government says every geo-political zone is benefiting from the ongoing road projects across the country with the Sukuk fund. The Director, Highways, Southwest, Federal Ministry of Works, Power and Housing, Mr Funsho Adebiyi, made the remark in Ibadan while speaking to journalists after the inspection of federal roads across Southwest
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Dont forget Leah Sharibu, family begs FG, UK, US
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Adelani Adepegba, Abuja The family of Leah Sharibu who is being held hostage by the Boko Haram sect for refusing to renounce her Christian faith, has appealed to the Federal Government and the international community to rescue their daughter. The mother of the 15-year-old girl, Rebecca, pleaded with President Muhammadu Buhari, the United States and
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Buharis visit: Confusion in Ogun as Amosun, Osoba make parallel plans
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Tunji Bosun, Abeokuta There was palpable confusion on Sunday in the Ogun State chapter of the All Progressives Congress as the party prepares to host President Muhammadu Buhari. Buhari is billed to visit the state on Monday (today) in pursuit of his re-election. The party in Ogun State has been factionalised. A faction is led
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N17bn judgement debt: Court voids First Bank chairs conviction
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Oladimeji Ramon The Court of Appeal, Lagos Division, has overturned the judgement of the Federal High Court in Lagos, which convicted the Chairman and the Managing Director of First Bank Nigeria Limited, Mrs Ibukun Awosika, and Dr Adesola Adeduntan, respectively, of contempt. Justice Ibrahim Buba had on June 6, 2018 convicted Awosika and Adeduntan of
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Arms scam: FG fails to probe Buharis NSA, minister
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Eniola Akinkuotu, Abuja Over two years after they were recommended for probe, the Federal Government has yet to investigate and charge the National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno; and the Minister of Interior, Lt. Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau (retd.). The two ex-generals were recommended for probe by the Committee on Audit of Defence Equipment Procurement
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Osun investing in education
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Osun State Governor, Gboyega Oyetola, has reassured the citizens of his administrations determination to turn Osun to education hub in Nigeria. He said his administration is investing largely in the education sector so as to bring unparalleled civilisation and development to the state and her people. Oyetola stated this at the weekend during the 25th
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Ex-military gov, Gen David Ejoor, dies at 87
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Theophilus Onojeghen, Warri A former governor of the Mid-Western State and one time Chief of Army Staff, Major General David Ejoor is dead. He died at the age of 87. Ejoor, also a former administrator of the now defunct Mid-Western Region, reportedly died in Lagos on Sunday. Sources told our correspondent that Ejoor, who had
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FG should recover $60 billion lost oil revenues
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Punch Editorial Board The more the Muhammadu Buhari Government trumpets change, the more evidence emerges that Nigeria is stuck in the rut. Fresh proof of this was provided last Tuesday by the news that the treasury lost up to $60 billion in revenues due to the failure of successive governments to review the Production Sharing
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NLC, health workers decry casualisation
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Olufemi Atoyebi, Abuja The Nigeria Labour Congress and stakeholders in the health sector have kicked against casualisation in the sector, describing it as a replica of the abolished slave trade. Reacting to a motion moved by the Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria and Amalgamated Union of Corporation, Civil Service, Technical and Recreational Services
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Despite protest, Egbetokun assumes office as Kwara CP
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Tunde Oyekola, Kwara The newly posted Commissioner of Police to Kwara State, Mr Kayode Egbetokun on Sunday assumed office at the state Police Headquarters, promising to perform his duties diligently with fairness to all political parties in the state in the forthcoming elections. Egbetokun whose posting to Kwara State had been greeted with protests by
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DSS arrests PDP campaign spokesman in Kaduna
Mon, 11 Feb 2019
Godwin Isenyo, Kaduna Security operatives said to be men of the Department of State Services have arrested the Peoples Democratic Party campaign spokesman in Kaduna State, Mr. Ben Bako. Bako, a former Information Commissioner in the state under the PDP administration, was reportedly arrested on Saturday night by the operatives of the secret police. He
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