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U.S. vice president, Harris to address China’s influence, debt distress in Africa

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U.S. vice president, Harris to address China’s influence, debt distress in Africa

U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris will begin visit to Africa as the country seeks to pitch itself as a better partner than China, which has invested heavily in the continent over several decades.

Senior U.S. officials said Harris would discuss China’s engagement in technology and economic issues in Africa that concern the United States, as well as China’s involvement in debt restructuring.

One of the three countries Harris would visit is Zambia, which was the first African country to default on its sovereign debt during the COVID-19 pandemic, and was working with its creditors, including China, to reach an agreement.

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A senior official said “we are not asking our partners in Africa to choose’’ describing the competition with China, although he added that the U.S. has “real concerns about some of China’s behavior in Africa and its unclear business dealings.

Harris would be in Ghana from March 26-29, then in Tanzania from March 29-31. Her final stop is Zambia, on March 31 and April 1.

She would meet with the three countries’ presidents and planned to announce public- and private-sector investments.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter, said Harris would discuss the best ways for the international community to address debt challenges faced by Ghana and Zambia.

The White House hosted an Africa Leaders Summit in December, and President Joe Biden is expected to travel to Africa this year.

Harris had a personal connection to Zambia. Her maternal grandfather worked in the country, and she visited him there as a girl.

“The Vice President is very much looking forward to returning to Lusaka, which is a part of her family’s story and a source of pride,” one of the officials said.

Harris would also meet with young leaders and business representatives and discuss topics such as climate change and food insecurity.

U.S. vice president, Harris to address China’s influence, debt distress in Africa

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N70,000 Wage Not Solution to Economic Issues

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N70,000 Wage Not Solution to Economic Issues

N70,000 Wage Not Solution to Economic Issues

By Halima Abdulkadiri

Chairman of the Labour Party (LP) in Oyo State, Sadiq Atayese, has stated that the newly-approved N70,000 minimum wage for Nigerian workers is not the solution to the country’s economic challenges.

Atayese made this assertion in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Ibadan.

He emphasized that sustainable solutions to the cost of living require positive economic policies from the government. Atayese highlighted the exchange rate as a key factor influencing fuel costs and subsidies.

He stressed that the government must prioritize fighting corruption and implementing policies beyond just increasing the minimum wage. According to Atayese, corruption in high places accounts for over 90 percent of corruption cases in Nigeria.

“Will this new minimum wage actually assuage the daily rising costs of foods and services? Can it bring a stable solution to the nation’s economic challenges? The answer is No,” he said.

Atayese also urged the government to focus on agricultural development and address issues such as security and funding for effective farming. He believes that addressing these critical issues would have more significant benefits than even a minimum wage of N150,000.

“Labour Party will continue to stand for the wellbeing of the people and development of the society,” he said.

The Federal Government and labor unions recently agreed on N70,000 as the new minimum wage for Nigerian workers. Initially, the government proposed N60,000, which was raised to N62,000, while labor demanded N494,000 before revising it to N250,000. Labor leaders agreed to the N70,000 offer due to additional incentives attached.

N70,000 Wage Not Solution to Economic Issues

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Nigerian Army Reinforces Ban on Camouflage Misuse

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Nigerian Army Reinforces Ban on Camouflage Misuse

Nigerian Army Reinforces Ban on Camouflage Misuse

By Halima Abdulkadiri

The Nigerian Army (NA) has reiterated that the ban on the unauthorized use of military camouflage remains in full effect.

The Director of Army Public Relations, Maj.-Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, emphasized this in a statement on Sunday while addressing a video showing a soldier harassing a civilian for wearing an Army Desert Camouflage uniform.

Nwachukwu clarified that the footage is an old video being circulated by individuals with malicious intent to create tension between the military and civilians.

He stated that only personnel of the Armed Forces of Nigeria and the Nigeria Police Force are legally permitted to wear military camouflage.

Nwachukwu explained that the regulation is necessary because terrorists, insurgents, and impostors have exploited the misuse of military camouflage to commit crimes, posing a significant security threat.

“The Nigerian Army remains committed to upholding the law and ensuring the safety and security of all citizens.

“We urge the public to disregard the re-circulated video and remain vigilant against attempts to sow discord and tension within the country.

“The incident in question occurred in 2021, and the army took immediate and decisive action at that time.

“The soldier involved was arrested, tried, and appropriately punished for his unacceptable behavior, which violated the core values of the Nigerian Army, particularly the respect for others and their fundamental rights,” he said.

Nigerian Army Reinforces Ban on Camouflage Misuse

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Hisbah Destroys N60m Alcohol, Drugs in Katsina

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Hisbah Destroys N60m Alcohol, Drugs in Katsina

Hisbah Destroys N60m Alcohol, Drugs in Katsina

By Halima Abdulkadiri

The Katsina State Hisbah Board has destroyed alcohol and other illicit drugs worth N60 million in Funtua Local Government Area (LGA) of the state.

Dr. Aminu Usman, the Hisbah Commander in the state, disclosed this to newsmen on Sunday.

According to Usman, no fewer than 1,750 crates of alcohol and about 33 jerry cans of locally-brewed beer were recently seized and destroyed in Funtua.

Usman explained that this effort is part of their mandate to ensure good morals among the people in the state.

He commended the board’s officials for their dedication and urged them to redouble their commitment.

He also sought the support of religious leaders, emphasizing that Hisbah does not belong to any particular group or sect. Usman praised Gov. Dikko Radda for his full support in helping the board discharge its responsibilities.

Usman appealed to the public for genuine information on places where immoral behaviors are committed. He called on parents, teachers, and community leaders to intensify efforts in instilling discipline and good morals among youths in their communities.

Hisbah Destroys N60m Alcohol, Drugs in Katsina

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