All posts by Jungle Journalist

Incurable OPTIMIST; unrepentant Africanist, highpriest of metaphysics, teacher, writer, journalist, biographer.

PHOTOS: Former President Jonathan Visits Gregory University Uturu, Commends Prof Greg Ibe

The Chancellor of Gregory University Uturu Prof Gregory Ibe has been commended for being a selfless agent of transformation. This commendation was made by the former president of Nigeria Dr Goodluck Jonathan recently during a visit to the University.

Speaking while laying the foundation stone of the institution’s 1000 bed Teaching hospital complex at Ezinnachi, Dr Jonathan lauded Prof Ibe for his famed commitment to healthcare. In his words, “I have confidence in the Chancellor of Gregory University Uturu, Prof Gregory Ibe, when it comes to the provision of quality healthcare to the people. This 1000 bed teaching hospital is a very ambitious project that will change the face of healthcare not just in Nigeria but in Africa”.

While appreciating Prof Ibe’s examplary commitment to societal transformation, the former Nigeria number one citizen however advocated for increased governmental support for private sector driven projects and called on state Governors to attract more private sector investments to their states by creating enabling environment and evolving mutually beneficial partnerships.

During the visit, Dr Goodluck Jonathan also commissioned a 5MVA 33KVA Transformer, that was procured by the university management for the purpose of supplying electricity to Uturu and environs. The former president also performed the re-dedication of the university auditorium (which incidentally is named after him), and was conferred with an honorary doctorate degree in public administration during an extra ordinary convocation ceremony that formed part of the itinerary of his one day visit.

Speaking while commissioning the electric transformer, Dr Jonathan again lauded the magnanimity of Prof Ibe, saying, “Prof Gregory Ibe has shown that with the little God blessed us with, we can change the society positively. The provision of electricity to an entire community is not a joke. Indeed Prof Ibe has shown that he has a large heart”.

He therefore encouraged Enugu Electricity Distribution Company (EEDC) to partner Gregory University Uturu in ensuring achievement of the purpose for procuring the transformer.

Addressing the extra ordinary convocation ceremony, Prof Ibe paid glowing tributes to Dr Jonathan for providing the enabling policy framework as President that encouraged the establishment of many institutions of higher learning, including Gregory University Uturu.

According to him, “when I caught the vision of establishing a world class university that would deliver ethically and morally sound professionally trained entrepreneurs to the global world of work, i was partly inspired by the policy direction of the then Yaradua/Jonathan presidency, which through their ‘Seven Point Agenda’ built on the good legacies of President Olusegun Obasanjo in the education sector. It is therefore not surprising that on assuming office as President, Dr Goodluck Jonathan’s ‘Transformation Agenda’ became a major boost to education, since he implemented a gradual increase of budgetary allocation to the sector from 8.43% in 2011 to an all time high of 10.68% in 2015. Till date that record remains unbroken. It was under this enabling environment that I started the process of securing government approval for this university. I was therefore not surprised when on 28 February 2012, under the watch of His Excellency Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, we were granted provisional license to commence the university”.

In a Goodwill message, the Governor of Abia state, who was represented by his deputy, Rt. Hon. Sir Ude Okochukwu, posited that education remains the trigger of development and praised Prof Ibe for the vision of establishing Gregory University Uturu. Pledging the sustained partnership of Abia state government with management of Gregory University Uturu, he counselled students of the institution to pursue excellence in their academics, while shunning all forms of deviancy, stressing that with knowledge and skills acquisition, they can rule the world.

Highlight of the ceremony was the conferment of honoray doctorate degree in Public Administration on the former president in the presence of a large gathering of eminent personalities including the Interim Administrator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme, Col Milliad Dikio(Rtd.) and former Vice President of ECOWAS Commission, Dr Edward Singhatey.

Sleek Ogbonnaya Ogwo(ANIPR)
Deputy Registrar,Media & Public Relations
March 4, 2021.

Photos:

See FG’s plans to increase states to 42, run a restructured governance economy

A document has been circulating on the social media claiming that the Federal Government of Nigeria will be proposing a bill to increase the state’s to 42 (7 for each geopolitical zone), and restructure the economy.

According to the document, the states will control is own resources.

Jungle Journalist Media Limited has not been able to confirm if the information is genuine, but the allegedly proposed bill is a very interesting one that everyone needs to study.

Below is the kite being flown by the Federal Government on Restructuring:

Nigerian Economic Restructuring Bill 2021

[1] Nigeria will be made up of 42 states, with seven per each of her constituent geo-political zone. These shall be:

South-South
[1] Bayelsa State – Yenagoa
[2] Western Ijaw State – Patani
[3] Rivers State – Port Harcourt
[4] Cross River State – Calabar
[5] Akwa Ibom State – Uyo
[6] Edo State – Benin
[7] Delta State – Warri

North East
[1] Mambilla State – Gashaka
[2] Taraba State – Jalingo
[3] Adamawa State – Yola
[4] Borno State – Maiduguri
[5] Yobe State – Damaturu
[6] Bauchi State – Bauchi
[7] Gombe State – Gombe

South-East
[1] Anioma State – Asaba
[2] Orashi State – Omoku
[3] Anambra State – Awka
[4] Imo State – Owerri
[5] Enugu State – Enugu
[6] Abia State – Umuahia
[7] Ebonyi State – Abakaliki

North-Central
[1] Abuja State – Abuja
[2] Gurara State – Kafanchan
[3] Benue State – Makurdi
[4] Plateau State – Jos
[5] Nasarawa State – Lafia
[6] Kogi State – Lokoja
[7] Niger State – Minna

South West
[1] Kwara State – Ilorin
[2] Oyo State – Ibadan
[3] Ogun State – Abeokuta
[4] Lagos State – Ikeja
[5] Ondo – Akure
[6] Ekiti – Ado-Ekiti
[7] Osun – Oshogbo

North West
[1] Sokoto State – Sokoto
[2] Kebbi State – Birnin Kebbi
[3] Kaduna State – Kaduna
[4] Katsina State – Katsina
[5] Kano State – Kano
[6] Jigawa State – Dutse
[7] Zamfara State – Gusua

[2] Each state will be responsible for creating and funding its local governments as it deems fit. Local governments will be funded internally by the charging of a local tax, which will be augmented by a state grant representing no more than 10% of tax.

[3] Over a 35 year period, we gradually migrate back to the 1957/58 revenue sharing formula agreed by our founding fathers at the Lancaster House Conferences in London under which the federating units will control all the resources within their domains and remit 50% to the centre

[4] Our federating units will keep 50% of all the revenue that they generate, put a further 20% into a central pot called the Excess Federation Account to which everyone can have access as the need arises, 10% will go into a geo-political zone account and the remaining 20% will go to into the Federation Account used to run the federal government

[5] With regards to all other resources, we shall move towards this immediately but in the case of oil and gas, the move will have to be gradual due to how dependent we have become on these two resources. A gradual migration shall take place over the next 35 years in this manner: 2000 – 13%, 2021 – 18%, 2023 – 20%, 2025 – 25%, 2030 – 30%, 2035 – 35%, 2040 – 40%, 2045 – 45%, 2050 – 50%

[6] Every one of our 42 states will be set a target of generating at least $2bn in export revenue. Any state government that attracts inward investment to the tune of $1bn, will get a corresponding grant from the federal government

[7] Any state that fails to generate as much revenue as it spends for two consecutive years as from 2020, will be subject to an immediate declaration of a state of emergency. It shall be administered centrally by the federal government until its books are balanced

[8] Every state must seek to generate at least 30% of its internal revenue from manufacturing and services, with a migration away from primary products to value added production

[9] Every state is free to create more local governments provided they meet the necessary criteria which includes holding a referendum and the fact that the local government area is self-sustaining. To be recognised as a local government area, basic facilities that must exist within the domain include 20 primary schools, five secondary schools, a local government headquarters, at least one vocational training college and at least one public health centre

[10] All local and state governments will as a matter of course award supply contracts to companies that manufacture products within Nigeria. Only as a last resort will companies that manufacture products abroad be granted government contracts.

PDP Constitutes Electoral Committee for S’South Zonal Congress, as Senator Mao, Prince Ezeh emerge Chairman, Secretary

The national leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has constituted the South-South Electoral Committee for its zonal Congress.

The Congress, billed to take place on the 9th of March 2021, is for the purpose of electing zonal executive officers and national ex-officio members for the South-South zone.

Senator Mao Ohuabunwa emerged the Committee Chairman, while Prince Lawrence Ezeh is the Secretary.

Other members of the Committee include Prince Ukpong Akpabio, Mrs Lucy Omagbon, and Gabriel Adetokunbo Pearse, PhD.

The exercise would take place at the Zonal Headquarters of the Party, in Port Harcourt.

The Committee is expected to be guided strictly by the PDP Constitution
(2017 as amended), the PDP Electoral Guidelines for the conduct of Ward, LGA, State, Zonal Congresses and the Electoral Act, 2010 as amended.

The members are also expected to adhere to Chapter
1, Section 6(7) of the PDP Constitution which stipulates that not less than 35%
of nomination for Party offices shall be reserved for women.

PIB: Oil Producing Communities in Abia have been Calm, Deserve Adequate Attention – Ikpeazu

Governor Okezie Ikpeazu has expressed concern that despite the long years of oil exploration in the state, there has been no tangible impact of it in the lives of oil producing communities in the state.

Governor Ikpeazu who stated this when he received in audience a delegation of the Senate and House of Representatives Joint Committee on Petroleum Industry Bill led by Senator Albert Bassey at Government House, Umuahia, said that Abia should benefit more from the Petroleum Industry Bill when passed into Law.

He said that Abia oil producing communities have remained peaceful more than any other oil producing Community in Nigeria, emphasising that the peaceful disposition of Abians should serve as a model for the compensation of oil producing communities. He thanked members of the committee for their untiring efforts towards passing into law a Bill that will protect the interest of the oil host communities.

Governor Ikpeazu regretted that petroleum exploration and production companies who do business in the state do not pay taxes in Abia rather reside within neighbouring states and pay their taxes there.

The state Chief Executive expressed the hope that the visit will mark a new beginning for oil host communities as well as nip in the bud issues of agitation arising from various oil producing communities.

He called on relevant government agencies to expedite action in exploring the entire value chain of crude oil as such will generate more revenue for the country.

As it concerns Abia, the Governor said, “Despite the fact that they (oil companies) have received unfettered cooperation from the oil bearing communities in Abia State, you will not notice one signboard of any company anywhere. They don’t live here, they don’t pay taxes here.

“They come, dropped in Coaster buses led by heavily armed soldiers from Port Harcourt everyday and they leave after work by 4pm leaving the communities to their fate.

“Oil communities in Abia State remain very calm and if there’s a State that’s supposed to benefit from what you have come to do, it is Abia. And I recommended at some point that the Abia example should become the focus based on which other host communities should learn.

“But that cannot be taken for granted or weakness…”.

Speaking earlier, leader of the delegation, Senator Albert Bassey Akpan said that the delegation is divided into five committees covering various NDDC states, and that his committee covering Abia and Imo states were in the state to get the inputs of oil producing communities to the Petroleum Industry Bill undergoing consideration at the National Assembly.

Senator Akpan noted that when passed into law, the Bill will create a Trust Fund for the oil host communities without government interference, pointing out that the Bill also places responsibility on the oil host communities to protect the assets in their localities in order to create the necessary balance and stability .

While also noting that the Bill will address the hostilities within the communities, the Senators commended Governor Okezie Ikpeazu for his giant strides in all spheres of the state economy.

The Senator representing Abia South, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, Senator Ifeanyi Uba among other members of the National Assembly were part of the delegation.

Abuja High Court adjourn case between One Love Foundation & FCT Minister/Police to March 29

The case between One Love Foundation and the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Mohammed Bello has been adjourned by the FCT Federal Capital Territory High Court sitting at Gudu, FCT Abuja.

One Love Foundation had in a Public Interest case against the Minister, and the Nigerian Police, challenged the legality of the Minister’s proscription of protests of any kind in the FCT by a Resolution/Public Order dated the 15th October 2020.

According to our correspondent who covered the court proceedings, Justice A Muhammed adjourned the case to the 29th March 2021, the case scheduled for today,4th March 2021, was stalled and adjourned due to the undiligence of the counsel for the Minister of the FCT, who actually filed his counter affidavit and written address on 2nd March 2021, and herein failed to serve same to the Nigerian Police Force.

Counsel to One Love Foundation, Ihensekhien Samuel Jnr (esq) with Omoleye Sowore in court today

In this regard, the information was brought to the attention of the presiding judge by counsel to the applicants, Ihensekhien Samuel Jnr (esq), and applied for cost against the 1st respondents and his counsel, which the court denied.

No legal representation was made for the Nigerian Police Force.

However renowed human rights activist, Omoyele Sowore made a guest appearance in the case, and represented One Love Foundation to monitor the proceedings.

Founder and President of One Love Foundation and human rights activist, Chief Patrick Eholor, had in October 2020 sued the minister and the police for banning all #EndSARS protests in Abuja.

According to his lawyer, Ihensekhien Samuel Jnr, the ban was an infringement on the constitutional rights of residents of the FCT and Nigeria as whole.

He said, “The suit was filed to challenge the ban on #EndSARS protest in Abuja by the Minister of FCT, Muhammed Bello, and the Nigeria Police Force.

“This ban is an infringement on the constitutional rights of residents of the FCT and Nigeria as whole who are on peaceful protest expressing their displeasure over atrocities committed by F-SARS over the years.

“My client, Comrade Patrick Eholor, filed the suit to restrain the FCT Minister and Nigeria Police Force for violating the rights of protesters in the #EndSARS and #EndSWAT debacle with a ban.”

He also added that his client further implored security agencies, “To respect the fundamental rights of peaceful assembly, association, and right to freedom of speech of all #EndSARS protesters in this regard.”

Imo Assembly removes Uche Ogbuagu as Majority Leader

The Speaker of Imo State House of Assembly, Mr Paul Emeziem (APC Onuimo) has announced the removal of Mr Uche Ogbuagu (APC Ikeduru) as the Majority Leader of the House.

The speaker also announced that Ogbuagu would be replaced by the member representing Owerri West, Mr Kanayo Njoku (APC ).

He made the announcement at the plenary of the House on Thursday.

He also said that APC members in the House declared support for the state Gov. Hope Uzodimma for his “capacity and sagacity’.

“After a meeting of the APC caucus of the Imo House of Assembly, the members declared unalloyed support for Gov. Hope Uzodimma for his capacity and sagacity in the leadership of the APC and the state at large.

“We also want to notify the House that Uche Ogbuagu is now a former Majority Leader, while Kanayo Onyemaechi is the current Majority Leader,” the speaker said.

The House has adjourned sitting until March 9.

Meanwhile, the former Majority Leader, Uche Ogbuagu said that he would soon make an official statement on his removal, appealing to his constituents to continue to be calm and resilient.

Goodluck Jonathan Bags Honorary Doctorate Degree from Gregory University, commissions 1000 bed capacity teaching hospital+PHOTOS

Nigeria’s ex President, Goodluck Jonathan has been conferred with an honorary doctorate degree by Gregory University Uturu, Abia State.

Jonathan, who was conferred with an honorary doctorate degree in Public Administration at a special convocation of the University, had earlier participated in the rededication of the school’s main auditorium which was named after him.

He also performed the foundation laying ceremony of a 1000 bed capacity Gregory University Uturu Teaching Hospital Complex located at Ezinnachi, Imo State, and commissioned a 5MVA electricity transformer procured by the Chancellor, Prof Gregory Ibe, for the purpose of distributing power to Uturu and environs.

While speaking at the convocation ceremony held at the Goodluck Jonathan Auditorium in the school, he urged Nigerian universities to aspire to produce the kind of workforce that would advance the nation’s economy on a sustainable basis.

He also emphasised that the universities should serve as hubs for technological innovation, adding that for the country to remain competitive, it must make reasonable contributions to the global body of knowledge, as it pertains to science and technology.

His words: “We must strive to make our universities, solution camps, and ideation grounds. Grounds for the formation of creative minds. Places that produce people pondering on solving the next mankind’s greatest challenges.

“Our universities must function as citadels for purpose-driven human development and hubs for technological innovation.

“For us to make sustainable progress, they must serve as institutions for research, discovery and development of transformative solutions that will reduce hunger, poverty, and unemployment.

“Nations that stand out today as very peaceful, prosperous, and stable are those with well-established educational systems.

“For this reason, every progress-minded society must make conscious and pragmatic efforts to build a proper education system that develops the capacities of its people because education serves as not just the gateway to prosperity but a peacebuilding mechanism.”

The former President further charged the students of the university and all others across the country to work hard to make their years on campus count.

“You must justify the investments made by your parents and guardians by making yourself relevant in the search for solutions to society’s challenges.”

PHOTOS from the event:

Comrade Patrick Eholor sues UBTH, SGF, Min of Health, Polaris Bank over illegal Covid-19 test charges

Frontline activist, Comrade Patrick Eholor has dragged the Management of the University of Benin Teaching Hospital(UBTH) the chairman of presidential task force on Covid-19 Mr Boss Mustapha, who also double as Secretary General of the Federation, the Federal Minister of Health and Polaris Bank Plc, to the Federal High Court, Abuja, over alleged extortion and outright corruptive practices as regards Covid-19 testing procedure.

Comrade Patrick Eholor

Patriot Eholor who is also the Founder of One Love Foundation, in the writ of summons filed before abuse, Federal High Court, narrated his ordeal at the hands of management of UBTH, and avered that he was compelled to cough out thirty thousand Naira for the test and another illegal three hundred and seventy five Naira for what he said the hospital referred to as administrative costs.

Barr Samuel Ihensekhien

Further in what he filed before the Abuja Federal High Court, he narrated that in strict compliance with acquisition of Covid-19 certification before travelling abroad last year, he went to UBTH to undertake the compulsory test only to be asked to pay thirty thousand Naira as covid-19 test cost.

SGF Boss Mustapha

On getting to the cash registry of UBTH, he was told that there is a service charge for additional three hundred and seventy five Naira, and that in the circumstances above, he had no option than to instruct accordingly and vide the legal team of his foundation, One Love Foundation, to approach the Abuja Federal High Court to determine the legality for the outrageous payment for Covid-19 test and illegal extra excessive charges for same, which ought to be free in line with National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) guidelines in this regard.

Minister of Health Dr Osagie Ehanire

Speaking to newsmen last night, Head of Legal Team, Samuel Ihensekhien, (an activist and fiery human rights lawyer) stated that the case and all evidence attached to the writ of summons is water tight and this case will expose the fraud as regards illegal charges for Covid-19 testing all over Nigeria.

As at press time on 3rd March 2021, the case has yet to be assigned to any Federal High Court Judge in this regard.

Northern farmers, cattle dealers call off strike, resume lifting of food to south

The leadership of the northern cattle and foodstuff dealers under the aegis of Amalgamated Union of Foodstuff and Cattle Dealers of Nigeria (AUFCDN), has agreed to end the blockade of food supplies to the south.

The association commenced its strike on Thursday, February 25, 2021, asking for N475 billion in compensation from the federal government for the destruction of their businesses and property in Ondo and Oyo States in January and February.

While the strike lasted, the prices of foodstuff, including beef and vegetables, soared in Lagos, Nigeria’s most populous city and economic capital.

Baskets of tomatoes, pepper and onions were also left to rot in the north as food-laden trucks were impounded and sometimes burnt around the Ilorin, Benue and Niger corridors.

However, northern farmers and traders have now agreed that trucks of cattle and food supplies heading south will no longer be impounded.

The agreement was reached after the group’s meeting with some state governors in Abuja, the nation’s capital, on Wednesday, March 3, 2021.

Abdullahi Tom, a youth leader of the cattle dealers in Lagos, said Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello was one of the leaders who appealed to them to end the food blockade.

Bunny Wailer, Last Living Member of the Wailers, Dies at 73

Bunny Wailer, the reggae icon who was the last living original member of the Wailers, has died at the age of 73.

According to the Jamaican Observer, Wailer’s manager, Maxine Stowe, confirmed that he died at 8 a.m. this morning (March 2) and she was by his side.

No cause of death has been revealed, but the Observer reports that Wailer had been in and out of the hospital since having a second stroke in July 2020.

Born Neville Livingston in Kingston’s Trench Town on April 10, 1947, Wailer and Bob Marley were stepbrothers. The duo, and Peter Tosh, formed the Wailers (then known as the Wailing Wailers) in 1963.

Despite breaking up for a brief period in the ’60s when Marley left Jamaica for the U.S. and Wailer went to jail for possession of marijuana, the group became international superstars as Bob Marley and the Wailers in the 1970s.

Wailer’s role in the group was laying down the harmonies that became an integral part of the group’s sound.

Despite leaving the group in 1973 to this dislike of touring and his Rastafarian faith, Wailer carved out a successful solo career, in particular with 1976’s Blackheart Man being the standout. That collection featured his single “Dreamland.”

He won three Grammys in the ’90s — a Best Reggae Album award in 1994 for Crucial! Roots Classics and one in 1996 for Hall Of Fame – A Tribute To Bob Marley’s 50th Anniversary. His other Grammy win was for Best Reggae Recording in 1991 for Time Will Tell – A Tribute To Bob Marley.

In 2013, Wailer recorded with Snoop Dogg when he was making his Snoop Lion album.
In 2017, Wailer was awarded the Order of Merit by the Jamaican government and in 2019, received the Reggae Gold Award for his contributions to the country’s music culture.