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Dejavu? 2017 budget missing Senate blames the Nigeria Police

The Senate, on Wednesday, disclosed that the 2017 budget is missing and alleged that the Nigeria Police stole the documents needed to pass the 2017 budget.

The allegations were made following a presentation by the chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriations, Sen. Danjuma Goje, regarding the invasion of his home last week, by officers of the Nigerian Police Force (NPF).

Goje said the policemen took N18 million, $19,000 and four thousand Saudi Riyadh from his house.

“In addition, they also took my laptop and to make matters worse they took 18 files from my office. I am so traumatized now and I don’t know which files is missing, which files is available now. Some of these files have to do with the work I am doing,” Goje said.

“Like I told you, we are holding a meeting on the budget that last Thursday that they came. So from Thursday to now we have not been able to meet because some of the papers are not around, many of us are traumatised, my house as a politician is a beehives of activities; people are coming from all over the country to sympathise with me. I have no time to sit and from today we are trying to start sitting again as appropriation committee to see what we can do with the budget.”

He added: “I want to apologise to my colleagues that we could not keep to the timetable you gave us to lay the budget yesterday (Tuesday) and to get it passed (Wednesday); and I think it is not our own fault, it is the fault of the police because the police interfered with the whole of the budget process and I hope Nigerians will not turn out to blackmail the national assembly because the process were truncated by the police.”

Subsequently, the Upper Legislative Chamber directed the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) , Mr. Ibrahim Idris, to immediately return those documents and a computer which were taken away from the official residence of Sen. Goje. In addition, the Senate also asked the Police to tender a public apology to the National Assembly.

Senate President Bukola Saraki revealed that the Police had informed the Senate Committee on Police Affairs that the operation in Goje’s house was carried out based on a false lead from a whistle blower. He said the Senate would not take that excuse and stated that an immediate official explanation on the operation must be provided to the Senate.

“This matter is very serious, just as Senator Goje has said. It is now over five days with no statement or comments from the Police to tell us why this raid was done or to tell us where these files which are very important to the appropriation process.

“Sadly, I must tell you informally that the chairman of the Police Committee told me this morning (yesterday) that the Police are saying that it has something to do with a whistle blower. If it has to do with a whistle blower, then the whistle blower misled them.

“If a whistle-blower misled them, I think that this matter that has come out publicly like this to embarrass a Senator should be well handled. I think the Police, like in a civilised society, needs to come out and accept responsibility.

“If somebody has given you any wrong informatio, tell the public what you are doing with that person and if it is an intelligence officer that got the house wrong, come out and tell us. For five days now, nothing. I think it is unfortunately.

“I also got an information that the House of Representatives has also set up an adhoc committee on this matter and this committee that is set up should work closely with the House, particularly to ascertain the circumstances surrounding why they went to Senator Goje’s house.

“If truly it was a whistle blower and he gave them wrong information which is what the IG is telling them, what are they doing about that wrong information? Have they come out to make a public apology for this wrong raid?

“These are issues that the committee would look into and the files that are still in Police custody which Goje has told us is affecting the works before us, also needs to be brought publicly and formally to him because it was taken publicly.”

The Senate announced the establishment of an adhoc committee to begin an immediate investigation into the police operation and also to investigate the alleged assassination attempt of Senator Dino Melaye.

The adhoc committee has Senator Jibril Barau (APC, Kano State) as chairman, also includes Senators Isa Misau (APC, Bauchi State), Chukwuka Utazi (PDP, Enugu), David Umoru (APC, Niger State).

Afterwards, IGP, Ibrahim, met privately with the Senate President, Saraki, supposedly to tender an unofficial apology over the invasion.

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Sacked PHCN Staff Electrocuted while doing illegal Connection

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Sacked PHCN Staff Electrocuted while doing illegal Connection

Sacked PHCN Staff Electrocuted while doing illegal Connection

A former staff of the Benin Electricity Distribution Company BEDC, in Agbor, Delta State, who was dismissed in 2009, was, on Tuesday, electrocuted in Agbor.

According to reports, the deceased, identified as Monday Ebor, was illegally working on high tension lines when electricity was restored.

Eboh who was wanted by BEDC for his illegal activities which destroyed many transformers, was said to be illegally diverting lines from one feeder to another when power was restored.

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United Kingdom Accepting Naira Payments from Nigerian Business Owners

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United Kingdom Accepting Naira Payments from Nigerian Business Owners

United Kingdom Accepting Naira Payments from Nigerian Business Owners

Former President of the Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce (NBCC)Dapo Adelegan, has announced that the British Government will henceforth begin accepting Nigerian currency from Nigerian business owners in the UK.

Adelegan made the assertion in an interview on Wednesday in Lagos.

The British Government on February 9, through its export credit agency, UK Export Finance (UKEF), said it will accept Naira payments from Nigerian business owners trading with the UK.

Adelegan said that the initiative was a monumental step that will deepen trade, open more opportunities, expand patronage and market scope of products from both countries.

“If we look at the quality of manufactured equipment and technology; Made-in-Britain is number one.

“Through this, we will access technology transfer, boost the capacity of workforce and impact on our outputs of consumables and products in the market.

“It is a win-win situation that will go beyond procurement, as there are multiple layers of benefits that this will bring to the economy,’’ Adelegan said.

Joyce Akpata, Director-General, Nigerian-American Chamber of Commerce (NACC), also said the initiative will ease importation of goods from the UK to Nigeria and strengthen economic ties.

“The UK has the largest concentration of Nigerians in the diaspora and given cultural ties, it is something that should have happened before now,’’ Akpata said.

The director general said the initiative would improve knowledge sharing and technology transfer.

“We will see a lot of businesses in the UK supplying equipment and machinery backed by this finance to their Nigerian counterparts.

“This will enhance the activities of manufacturers, especially the growing SMEs that are into processing.

“It will also take off issues of foreign exchange challenges and instability in the market,’’ she said.

Akpata noted that the scheme would be a welcome opportunity for most Nigerian businesses that could not access financing locally.

She urged other countries, especially the United States, to take a cue from the UK to evolve initiatives that will assist businesses to maximise opportunities and strengthen trade ties.

Trade experts put the value of trade between Nigeria and the UK at about £8 billion, with oil and gas making up 60 per cent of the figure.

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South Africa’s Embattled President Jacob Zuma resigns

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President Zuma must face corruption charges - Supreme court rules

South Africa’s Embattled President Jacob Zuma resigns

The embattled President of South Africa, Jacob Zuma has resigned his office with immediate effect.

Zuma made the announcement in a televised address to the nation on Wednesday evening.

Earlier, Mr Zuma’s governing ANC party told him to resign or face a vote of no confidence in parliament on Thursday.

The 75-year-old has been under increasing pressure to give way to Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, the ANC’s new leader.

Mr Zuma, who has been in power since 2009, faces numerous allegations of corruption.

His resignation came at the end of a long speech in which he said he disagreed with the way the ANC had acted towards him.

He said he did not fear a motion of no-confidence, adding: “I have served the people of South Africa to the best of my ability.”

According to President Zuma, violence and division within the ANC had influenced his decision to step down.

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