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The Kogi State Head of Service, Deaconess Deborah Ogunmola, has exonerated the state government over the stoppage of the salary of a Director in the State Civil Service who committed suicide, Edward Soje.

The Head of Service gave the explanation in a statement she issued on Sunday.

Ogunmola said Soje, who reportedly committed suicide after his wife gave birth to a set of triplets, had his salary paid till December 2016 until it was discovered that he falsified his age records.

She said he confessed to the crime on records.

The statement by Ogunmola reads in full:

The Kogi State Government is saddened in no small measure by the alleged suicide of Mr. Edward Soje, a level 16 officer and director in the Kogi State Civil Service. He was attached to the Teaching Service Commission.

I am appalled by the media reports on Edward Soje’s death. The certainty by the media that he committed suicide, and that he did it due to non-payment of his salaries by his employer, the Kogi State Government. We wonder at this strange certainty. No media house has approached the Service or the Government with any query on the matter. There is also no single shred of proof provided to back up their banner headlines.

For the records, these are the facts surrounding Mr. Soje’s employment with the Kogi State Government: He continued to receive his salaries till December, 2016 even while the Staff Screening and Verification Exercise was ongoing.

His pay was stopped after proof emerged that he falsified his age records. His confession to the offence is on video.

Following engagements with Labour which spanned several months, the Kogi State Governor magnanimously commuted the disciplinary action due against certain categories of offenders by grant of pardon. Mr. Soje fell into one of the categories.

Pardoned staff were processed for reinstatement and payment in batches. Mr. Soje was in the September 2017 batch and he was aware of this fact.

The Kogi State Teaching Service Commission where he works has forwarded a template for payment to Government and Mr. Soje was aware that he was listed to receive 6 months back pay, leaving only 2 months (August and September) outstanding.

Edward Soje was not just my staff, he was also married to my sister-in-law.. His death is shocking, both as one related to him in some way, and one responsible for him in an official capacity.

I met with him earlier last week and we discussed his situation, including the progress made in resolving his employment issues. There was no hint of this horrible decision in his demeanour neither did he appear to me as one who was depressed, let alone contemplating suicide. I am therefore understandably shocked by all of this.

We use this opportunity to implore the fourth estate of the realm to always strive to verify information before going to the public especially when lives are involved, and to avoid causing unnecessary distress. Facts are sacred and must be so revered.

Government condoles with his family, especially his wife and three children. While we will not intrude into their grief over their sad loss, we will stand with them through this.

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[MUST READ] Wait! Before You Vote Atiku —- Musa Mohammed

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While the clamour for change in government from President Mohammodu Buhari to Atiku Abubakar may have been something that has taken over the national discuss and rightly so as the elections draw near, it may be noteworthy to pause and reflect on the character of the prospected replacement.

The big question on our mind should be can we trust Atiku? What really is the new thing he is coming to offer bearing in mind he was once the number two citizen of this great nation for 8years? If we insist the position of a vice president is not as powerful as the president, haven’t the achievements of Prof. Yemi Osinbajo knocked out such narrative?

The Nigerian vice president has proven times without number that he is as useful as the president of Nigeria and records are there to show for it. Where are the achievements of Mr. Atiku?

If you ask Nigerians, most of what they would remember about his days in office would be the national assets he sold to his colleagues and the long running battle he had with his principal, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo.

Aside from the fact that there should be no vacancy in Aso Rock, Osinbajo is more presidential than Atiku. Don’t take my words for it, below were some of the things his then boss said and wrote about him chronologically.

2003 “I regret picking Atiku Abubakar as my vice”.

2004 “I can no longer work with Atiku, his integrity is in question “.

2005 “Atiku cannot be trusted “.

2006 “Atiku cannot escape justice over corruption cases “

2007 “Do not vote Atiku he is corrupt”.

2008 “Atiku is a corrupt leader”.

2009 “Nigerians can never forgive Atiku”.

2010 “Atiku is not an option to leadership in Nigeria “.

2011 “I have never seen a leader as greedy as Atiku “.

2012 “Nigerians should pray for leaders imbued with integrity not Atiku “.

2013 “Atiku should apologize to Nigerians over his political sins”.

2014 No political party with the aspiration to assume leadership should think of Atiku”.

2015 “Nigeria has grown beyond a corrupt leader like Atiku”.

2016 “I will never reconcile with Atiku “.

2017 “I never knew Atiku was this corrupt ” “I can never be on the same page with Atiku. God forbid!”.

2018 January to August “God will not forgive me if I support Atiku “.

2018 August “Atiku has the capacity to save Nigeria’s economy from collapse”.

If such verdicts could come from Obasanjo who was his direct boss, what doubts should Nigerians have in rejecting such bad market and move on to the next level with the present administration bearing mind that Obasanjo once said, “As an engineer, I know a point I can use tractor to hit and a storey building would come down within few minutes, but it would take years to erect such.”

Nigeria is undergoing transformation. The administration of president Mohammodu Buhari has used his first term to lay a good foundation for him to start building on in 2019 and it only make sense to key in.

God bless Nigeria.

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Nigerian Professionals Getting Involved In 2019

Gbemileke Ajayi

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A group named Nigeria First Professionals has joined the fray of the country’s political landscape, lending it’s voice to the 2019 campaigns.

According to a member of the group, Mr. Sola Fajobi, it has become imperative for true proffessionals to take active part in determining how their country is run, and move away from the docile disposition of the past.

Mr. Fajobi further said it will be incumbent on Nigerians to take a critical look at the resources available to politicians and public officials, and what they’ve either done with it, or what they’re able to do with it.

He added that the Nigeria First Professionals group will assess the issues on ground, consider results, and establish the yearning of Nigerians in order to determine which candidates can best deliver them, and then help the electorate make informed decisions.

According to Mr. Andy Akporugo, another member of the group, the need to facilitate Good Governance should be very dear to every discerning professional, especially as Nigeria was overdue for being counted amongst the world’s most remarkable countries.

Nigeria First Professionals is made up of top Executives and professionals from major walks of life, including Media, Medicine, Law, Aviation, Engineering, etc.

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NEWS

Man Shoots Wife, Two Sons To Death In Edo State

Gbemileke Ajayi

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A 35-year-old man, simply identified as Uwaila, has killed his wife and two sons.

He was arrested in Benin, the Edo State capital, for reportedly shooting his wife and two sons to death.

According to PM News, the incident happened on Sunday morning at Ovbiogie Village in Ovia Northeast Local Government Area.

The suspect, who said his wife accused him of having girlfriends, said that his wife threatened to also go out with other men.

Uwaila said he drove out of the house in anger and came back to see that his wife locked herself and his sons inside one of the rooms.

He said he shot through the door and the bullet hit them on the bed.

Police Commissioner, Hakeem Odumosun, who visited the scene said the suspect would be charged to court after investigation has been concluded

Officials of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) were said to have evacuated​ the corpses to undisclosed mortuary.

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