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NNPC To Partner EFCC To Fight Corruption In Its Operations —- New NNPC GMD Kyari Blow Hot

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The new Group Managing Director (GMD), Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Malam Mele Kyari says the corporation will partner with Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to fight corruption in its operations.

Kyari disclosed this in his address at the Valedictory Session held for the outgoing GMD, Dr Maikanti Baru, in Abuja on Monday.

Kyari is the 19th GMD to steer the affairs of the corporation since inception.

“There is no corruption where there is no discretion; we will work with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to take out discretion in our system.

“NNPC will not be opaque, we will make what we do known to Nigerians because we are working for them, and not doing them a favour,” he said

He said that his team would be transparent and would not work to make deliberate mistakes.

Kyari added that he would not allow his personal interest to influence his decisions and urged his family members not to accept any gift from anyone.

“I have two sons and I have adopted so many, let me say it now in public, if you accept any gift from anyone, It is not for me.

“For the public, please do not give any gift to my family member, “he said.

He pledged to work with various stakeholders in the sector to sustain Baru’s Legacy

He said that his team would work with the International Oil Companies (OIC) to ensure effective crude production and to further grow the nation’s oil reserve.

Kyari urged the oil workers unions to support the corporation to deliver on its mandate

He added that being a grand Chairman of Petroleum and Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) was a plus to his team to achieve greater height.

“To all NNPC staff, we must work together and build that trust been expected of us which is to ensure NNPC excel as a company.

“We need all the support trust and understanding to deliver NNPC as a global company of excellence,” he said.

While commending Baru on its efforts, he assured him that he would continue from where he stopped and would deliver on the areas of oil and gas production.

“I have been part of the decisions and progress made in the last three years. I guarantee you that we will make NNPC a global company.

“We will remove discretion in doing business to ensure transparency, we will open new ways to meet with all stakeholders and we will be accountable to citizens,” he said.

He further said that his team would deliver on revamping of the four refineries and support every effort to help Dangote refinery come on stream.

“Our expectation is that by 2023 Nigeria will be net exporter of petroleum products and we target to grow the reserve to 40 billion barrel by 2020.

“I will do my work with utmost integrity, after which I hope to stand before my creator to say I have done well,” Kyari said.

The new GMD, who acknowledged that that his selection was divine, assured that he would work to ensure growth and development of the oil and gas sector in Nigeria.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the high point of the event was the handing over ceremony with transfer of NNPC cap from the outgoing GMD to Kyari.

The Cap is the symbol of Legacy left by the First GMD of the Corporation Dr Festus Mario.

About seven past GMDs of the Corporation, Governors, National Assembly members, IOCs, industry players were present at the occasion.

(NAN)

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JUST IN: Orji Uzor Kalu Regains Freedom, Leaves Kuje Prison[PHOTO]

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Barely 24 hours after the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos ordered his release, Senate Chief Whip, and former Abia State governor, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu, has regained freedom after six months of incarceration.

He stepped out of Kuje Correctional Centre this evening after the completion of his release formalities.

The court had transmitted the judgment as well as Warrant of Release duly signed by Justice Liman to the authorities of Kuje Correctional Centre, Abuja this morning to facilitate the senator’s freedom.

Justice Liman of the Federal High Court, Lagos had on Tuesday ordered the immediate release of Kalu. He also set aside the trial, conviction, and sentence of the former governor to 12 years imprisonment on December 5, 2019, in accordance with the earlier ruling of the Supreme Court.

In his ruling, Justice Liman ordered Kalu’s immediate release from prison as well as set aside the earlier trial and order given by Justice MB Idris that Slok Nigeria Limited be wound up and its assets forfeited to Federal Government.

Kalu had gone to court asking for his release in line with the Supreme Court’s judgment last month nullifying his trial and conviction.

The Supreme Court had ruled that since Justice Idris was elevated to the Court of Appeal, he had no jurisdiction to have concluded Kalu’s trial.

The apex court therefore nullified the conviction and ordered a retrial.




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#JusticeForBarakat: 18-Year-Old Undergraduate ‘Gang-Raped’, Murdered In Ibadan

Gbemileke Ajayi

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An 18-year-old girl, identified as Bello Barakat, was reportedly gang-raped and murdered by unknown men in Ibadan, Oyo state capital.

The incident was said to have occurred on Tuesday in the Akinyele area of Ibadan, Oyo state.

It was gathered that her dad found her dead body around their home after her body was examined, they discovered that she was raped, then she got murdered.

Bello Barakat, aged 18, was a year one student of the Federal College of Animal Health and Production in Ibadan.

It was gathered that she has been buried according to Islamic rites.

Meanwhile, the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) Southwest, zone D has demanded justice for the deceased who was assaulted and murdered.

Her death has continued to attract outrage nationwide as Nigerians have taken to social media to express their displeasure over the rising cases of Rape in Nigeria with the hashtag #JusticeforBarakat.

Recall that Ms Omozuwa, a 100 level Microbiology student of the University of Benin, was assaulted inside a hall in the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Ikpoba Hill, Benin City on May 13, where she went to study.




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COVID-19: If You’re 55 And Above, Avoid Mosques, Churches For Now —- FG

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The Federal Government on Tuesday gave an advisory to Nigerians saying “If you are 55 years old and above, avoid churches and mosques’.

Those with health conditions such as diabetes, cancer, HIV, among others, are also enjoined to stay at home to worship, the government added.

It noted that the advice was necessary because places of worship have been recognised as a major avenue of the potential spread of Coronavirus.

The government stated this through the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 Control. It released the guidelines for states to follow in discussions with religious leaders before the reopening of churches and mosques for worshippers.

The government said the protocols made available would be the baseline which the states are not expected to go below while firming up an agreement with religious leaders.

Nigerians have been pressuring the government to reopen worship centres in spite of the spike in COVID-19 positive cases, leading to easing of restrictions on religious centres.

The PTF National Coordinator, Dr. Aliyu Sani, who announced the guidelines said religious centres should keep a record of attendees.

Dr. Sani said this would allow for contact tracing in the case of virus spread.

He urged worshippers experiencing common symptoms of COVID-19 to stay away from churches and mosques.

He said: “We are strongly advising vulnerable individuals such as those with underlying conditions like diabetes, cardiovascular disease, HIV, cancer and those above the age of 55 years to please stay at home and consider remote participation or non-contact attendance.

“When we look at the death rate for persons who have died from COVID-19 in Nigeria, the case fatality rate; more than half of those that died were above the age of 50.

“Secondly, the case fatality rate if you are above the age of 50, is 17 per cent. If you are above the age of 55, it is 18 per cent. It is almost a one in five chances of dying if you catch COVID-19 and you fall within that group.

“Worshippers should be reminded not to attend in person if experiencing common symptoms of COVID-19, including fever, cough and shortness of breath or have had close contact with an infected person in the last 14 days.

“All worshippers noted to have a temperature or are symptomatic should be turned back and not allowed admission.

“Places of worship should ideally keep up to date record of their staff including contact details and if possible, a record of attendees of church services for instance or an even small mosque to enable contact tracing in the event that somebody comes up positive.

“Considering the dangers posed by the pandemic, we strongly recommend that religious visits to homes by religious clerics should be discouraged.”

The national coordinator said: “It is important to note that due to the nature of religious congregations, places of worship are particularly recognised to have a major potential for spreading COVID -19 infection among worshippers and this has been clearly demonstrated in several outbreaks globally linked to religious gatherings.

“Places of worship that are unable to comply with these measures should not be allowed to operate by state governments.

“Churches are to open from 5 am and close by 8 pm. Each service should be for a maximum of one hour with an interval of 20 minutes in-between services to allow time for disinfection.”

He said the task force will not hesitate to shut down religious centres if they fail to comply with the protocols developed for their reopening.

“These guidelines provide a baseline for the states to then develop their own policies specific to their areas depending on the prevalence of COVID-19, depending on whether or not people are likely to follow and comply fully.

“But we will be reviewing these guidelines from time to time and we will definitely review them if it looks like we are having issues with regards to this relaxation and I plead with the public to understand with us but more importantly, continue to stay safe.

“It is better to stay at home and worship than to go into a place of worship,” he emphasised.

Sani reminded Nigerians of the dangers posed by the virus, noting that now is not the time to relax measures against the pandemic.

“Let me make some clarifications because I understand there has been a lot of concern nationwide about the opening of places of worship.

“There is no doubt that COVID-19 is still around, there is no doubt that it is safer for you to stay at home and there is also no doubt that it is safer for you to worship at home.

“The PTF is providing safety advisory or guidance in the event that you need to upgrade your spiritual needs and you cannot do it at home but we are not making recommendations that people should go to places of worship but if they chose to, we are providing advisory to enable them to do so safely.

“COVID-19 has not gone away. You only need to look at the numbers. We are in the exponential stage of the illness. We have moved as a country right up to the third position in Africa and because of our population, we could also move to the second position or even the first.

“So now is the time to continue to take precautionary measures. Now is not the time to relax. I hope I have made that clear.

“In view of the widespread community transmission of COVID -19, it is important that places of worship operate in a safe manner to ensure the protection of public health, avoid outbreaks and safeguard the health of vulnerable members of the population.”




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