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Quit if you aren’t ready for the Job, Reps tell Humanitarian Minister



Quit if you aren’t ready for the Job, Reps tell Humanitarian Minister

Quit if you aren’t ready for the Job, Reps tell Humanitarian Minister 

The House of Representatives on Tuesday asked the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management, Hajiya Sadiya Farouk to quit as minister if she was not ready for the job.

This followed her incessant failure to appear before various Committees of the House to defend the ministry’s 2023 budget proposal.

Rep. Muktar Betara, Chairman, House Committee on Appropriation said this during an investigative hearing on alleged budget insertion of N206 billion in the 2023 budget of the ministry in Abuja.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the N206,242,395,000 billion is for the National Social Safety Nets Project, which is domiciled in the ministry.

NAN reports that the world bank is the funding sources for the project.

A visibly angry chairman of the committee had queried why the Minister was not present to defend the insertion, adding that if she was not ready for the job she should quit.

“Most times the committee calls the minister, she refuses to come. If she is not ready for the job, she should quit,” Betara said.

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Explaining the error in the ministry budget, the Minister of Finance, Hajiya Zainab Ahmed said the item was wrongly coded by the Budget office.

She added that the minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management should have called the attention of the budget office to the anomaly like her counterparts in other ministries.

She said the minsitry of Defence, Federal Minsitry of Power among others also committed same error.

She called for collaboration among Ministries Department and Agencies of Government (MDAs) in a bid to forestall such oversigth.

The minister said, “the project was correctly described in the submission in the 2023 budget, but unfortunately the Budget Office used wrong cod.

She said this resulted in it being captured as “Purchase of Security Equipment” in the budget preparation system.

She added that the budget preparation had a limited range of encoded programme and project description

NAN also reports that the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management, represented by the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Dr Nasir Gwarzo said the minister directed him to represent her

“The minister said she did not understand the budget code, it was the media that reported the error as padding.

“We did not go to the media refuting the work the committee or the Ministry of Finance have done, but we wrote for clarification which was given.

The amount of money in question was a counterpart funding that was given by the world bank, if it was done without appropriation, Nigerian would not have known what was borrowed,” he said.

In their response the members of the Committee, Rep. Igariwey Enwo (PDP-Ebonyi) and the Deputy Chairman, Appropriation said the budget should not be subjected to controversy.

“We are talking about money we borrowed, we should also know how we spend the money.

“Raising unnecessary controversy about the budget will not augur well. There should be inter agency coordination.

Rep Benjamin Kalu (APC-Abia) said, ” my concern is that the image of our country should be protected in respect of the budget.

” I reached out to the minister of finance on the issue but nothing was done and I could not go ahead to give the media the information its needed at the point in time.”

Quit if you aren’t ready for the Job, Reps tell Humanitarian Minister

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CCNE Applauds Supreme Court for Releasing Local Government Funds




CCNE Applauds Supreme Court for Releasing Local Government Funds

CCNE Applauds Supreme Court for Releasing Local Government Funds

The Concerned Citizens of North East (CCNE), a non-governmental organization dedicated to promoting good governance, transparency, and accountability, has welcomed a recent Supreme Court ruling mandating the immediate release of funds earmarked for local government areas (LGAs).

The was contained in a press statement signed by CCNE’s Secretary General Babangida Inuwa Muhammad, marks a significant victory for grassroots development and governance in the region.

The Supreme Court’s decision addresses longstanding issues of fund misallocation and diversion that have impeded local development efforts.

By upholding constitutional provisions ensuring direct allocation of funds to LGAs, the court has bolstered principles of transparency, accountability, and effective governance.

CCNE views this ruling as pivotal, asserting that it empowers local authorities and strengthens the foundation for sustainable development across communities.

“This landmark decision ensures that LGAs receive the financial resources necessary for development and governance, reinforcing transparency, accountability, and good governance principles,” stated CCNE in their press release.

The organization emphasized the ruling’s potential to revitalize local governance, enabling communities to better tackle their unique challenges through empowered local authorities. CCNE called upon relevant authorities to promptly implement the court’s decision, ensuring funds are utilized judiciously to benefit residents.

“We believe this judgment will enhance LGAs’ capacity to deliver essential services, improve infrastructure, and drive socio-economic development,” CCNE affirmed.

CCNE also urged local officials to transparently and efficiently allocate funds, prioritizing projects that directly benefit residents.

They pledged to monitor the judgment’s implementation closely, collaborating with stakeholders to promote accountability and good governance at all levels within the region.

“This ruling signifies a renewed commitment to decentralization and local governance, crucial for addressing community-specific challenges,” CCNE added.

Looking ahead, CCNE reiterated its commitment to advocating for the rights and welfare of Northeastern communities, ensuring local authorities are equipped to drive sustainable development.

They affirmed their ongoing role in safeguarding community interests and fostering an environment conducive to transparent and effective governance.

However, CCNE’s support for the Supreme Court’s decision reflects a broader commitment to advancing accountable governance and empowering local communities.

By championing the efficient use of allocated funds and advocating for sustained development efforts, CCNE aims to foster a region where grassroots needs are met and local governance thrives.

CCNE Applauds Supreme Court for Releasing Local Government Funds

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Minimum Wage: Private sector committed to N57,000 – NECA



Minimum Wage: Private sector committed to N57,000 - NECA

Minimum Wage: Private sector committed to N57,000 – NECA

The Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA), says the private sector remains committed to the N57,000 earlier proposed at the Tripartite Committee meeting on National Minimum Wage.

NECA’s Director-General, Mr Adewale-Smatt Oyerinde, in a statement on Sunday, said the amount represented 90 per cent increase in the national minimum wage.

Oyerinde said that this was notwithstanding ongoing challenges, made worst by rising interest rates, astronomical logistics cost, increasing energy tariff and multiple taxes, levies and fees.

“With organised businesses declaring over one trillion naira in combined losses and many shutting down their businesses for different reasons, while others are relocating to other climes, the ability to pay the prevailing N30,000 was already compromised.

“It will be practically impossible to guarantee enterprise sustainability and job security with the current demands of organised labour,’’ he said.

The director-general, however, said that NECA would continue to support the welfare of workers and the protection of their jobs, which could only be guaranteed by the survival of the enterprise.

Following negotiations on the national minimum wage, he urged the tripartite committee to prioritise job creation and job security.

Oyerinde said that the call was in view of the worrisome and increasing rate of unemployment in the country.

According to him, the committee should refocus its effort on protecting jobs, boost the capacity of the private sector to create more jobs and ensure sustainability and ability to pay.

He said that productivity should be a key driver of higher wages.

“According to the National Bureau of Statistics, the combined rate of unemployment and time-related underemployment as a share of the labour force population (LU2) increased to 17.3 per cent in Q3 2023 from 15.5 per cent in Q2 2023.

“In specific terms, the unemployment rate increased significantly in Q3 2023 at 5.0 per cent.

“With these figures, more efforts should be concentrated on keeping more people in employment, while government continues to implement its planned interventions in transportation, food security and general macro-economic stability,” Oyerinde said.

Minimum Wage: Private sector committed to N57,000 – NECA

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Reps seek free medicare for pregnant women



Reps seek free medicare for pregnant women

Reps seek free medicare for pregnant women

The House of Representatives has urged the Federal Ministry of Health and Social Welfare to mandate public healthcare institutions to provide free medical treatment for pregnant women during and after delivery.

The call was sequel to the adoption of a motion by Rep. Mohammed Shehu (PDP-Bauchi) at plenary on Wednesday.

They also urged the ministry to implement routine checks to ensure continuity, compliance by medical personnel, and sustainability of childbirth processes.

Moving the motion, Shehu said that the government established public healthcare institutions to provide medical services to humanity.

He added that drugs were supplied to the institutions and equipped with modern medical facilities and charged with the responsibility of handling healthcare-related matters.

Shehu said though healthcare services were not restricted to pregnant women, efforts to encourage free treatment for expectant mothers have not been fully realised.

He said that giving the fertility statistics in the country, there was need for free medical treatment for pregnant women to boost the country’s fertility rate.

“Nigeria is grappling with high disease rates, resulting in an annual maternal mortality rate of expectant mothers and children due to pregnancy complications and the polio virus.

“Further aware that government requires public healthcare institutions to have medical professionals, give adequate attention to patients, including pregnant women, during childbirth to address complications and find permanent solutions.

“There is a need for the government to prioritise policy actions aimed at improving healthcare delivery systems, particularly for pregnant women, to alleviate their hardships and boost their confidence,” he said.

In his ruling, the Deputy Speaker, Rep. Benjamin Kalu mandated the Committee on Healthcare Services and Healthcare Institutions to liaise with the Minister of Health and Social Welfare to ensure compliance.

The committee is to report back within four weeks for further legislative action.

Reps seek free medicare for pregnant women

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