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795 Houses To Be Demolished For Lagos Fourth Mainland Bridge

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The Federal and Lagos State governments have said 795 houses might be demolished to pave the way for the construction of the proposed 37-kilometer Fourth Mainland Bridge.

The two authorities said a lot of efforts had been made to reduce the number of affected structures from about 9,000 to less than 800.

This was even as the state government assured that owners of the affected property would be adequately compensated, despite the prevailing economic circumstances.

It said all stakeholders would be satisfactorily considered in the execution of the project.

Speaking at the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment Stakeholders’ scoping workshop with the Federal Ministry of Environment in Lagos, Environment Minister Mahmoud Abubakar said there should be a sincere commitment on the part of the Lagos State government on the compensation for owners of affected properties.

The minister, who was represented by a director in the ministry, James Kolawole, explained that though the project would have about 16 alignments, the best had been selected.

“There was an alignment that will affect about 9,000 structures along the corridor, but we have reviewed it and gone for the alignment that will affect about 795 houses, instead of the one that will take more houses. It is an ongoing thing on how best to minimize the negative impact,” he said.

The State Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development said the bridge, which will connect Lagos and Ogun states, will pass through Abraham Adesanya in Lagos and Sparklight Estate near the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway in Ogun State.

A town planner in the ministry, Mr. Abayomi Omolola Amos said the alignment of the project had been carefully designed to reduce the number of houses that should be demolished.

The Federal Government said the proposed bridge will boost economic growth and enhance international trade.

Abubakar said the Lagos State government had been working on the project for about four years and had made several representations to the Federal Government.

The minister, who spoke through Kolawole, said the project would enhance commerce and international trade to improve the people’s livelihoods.

He congratulated the state government on the laudable project while stressing the need to take cognizance of both the positive and negative impacts of the project on stakeholders.

According to him, doing this will ensure all issues are addressed to avoid compromising the comfort of future generations.

“For us as a ministry, we are happy with the positive impact, but there is a need to resolve the negative aspects: what we need is sustainable development,” he said.

BIG STORY

PTF: COVID Vaccination Certificate Will Become A Travel Requirement

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Boss Mustapha, chairman of the presidential task force (PTF) on COVID-19 and secretary to the government of the federation, says the COVID-19 vaccination certificate will “very soon” become a requirement for travels.

Mustapha stated this, on Saturday, after President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo received doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, at the presidential villa, Abuja.

He noted that some countries have started placing restrictions on receiving visitors on the basis of the COVID-19 vaccination certificate.

“Vaccine hesitancy will have to give way to the reality because the truth about it, your excellency, is that very soon, nobody will be able to travel the world unless you produce the certificate that you have been given,” he said.

“I have not confirmed this but reliably, some countries have started putting restrictions for receiving visitors, even for exercising activities of their faith, without a COVID-19 vaccination certificate.”

Recently, Saudi Arabia’s health ministry said only people who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 will be allowed to attend the 2021 Hajj.

Speaking further, he urged Nigerians not to listen to conspiracy theories and misinformation on vaccines and make themselves available when it is their turn to do so.

“They (vaccines) have been tested. Our strategic leaders have received them this morning. They are safe. They are efficacious and it is for the good and wellbeing of our people,” he said.

“I urge Nigerians to make themselves available, not to listen to conspiracy theories and misinformation but to make themselves available, eligible Nigerians when it is their time to do so.”

Mustapha commended Buhari for always approving the proposals and memos sent to him by the PTF in the fight against the pandemic.

On Friday, Nigeria commenced its COVID-19 vaccination with frontline health workers in Abuja

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BREAKING: Buhari, Osinbajo Receive COVID-19 Vaccines In Aso Villa [VIDEO]

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The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), and Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo were on Saturday vaccinated against COVID-19.

Buhari was vaccinated by his personal physician, Dr. Suhayb Sanusi, at about 11.51 am at a brief ceremony witnessed by top government officials at the New Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Shortly after the President, Osinbajo was also vaccinated by his personal physician, Dr. Nicholas Audifferen, at about 11.57 am.

The President and his deputy were the first among the nation’s strategic leaders to take the vaccine after some frontline health workers at the treatment center of the National Hospital, Abuja, were vaccinated on Friday.

The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control had early on Friday cleared the 3.924m doses of AstraZeneca vaccine which arrived in Nigeria on Tuesday for usage in the country.

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Nationwide Covid-19 Vaccine Roll-Out To Gulp N10.6bn Transportation Cost

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The Federal Government, through the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, has budgeted the sum of N10.6bn to transport the COVID-19 vaccine to the 36 states and the 774 local government areas as well as the Federal Capital Territory and the six area councils.

Also, about N1.4bn was set aside for the procurement of Personal Protective Equipment while N373m was earmarked for the purchase of Adverse Events Following Immunisation kits otherwise known as AEFI kits.

This is according to a document obtained by the media on Friday, which was presented to the 36 governors during a meeting between representatives of the Federal Ministry of Health and the Nigeria Governors Forum on Thursday.

The document titled, ‘Estimated Budget for States Rollout of COVID-19 Vaccines (end-to-end),’ showed that Kano State, which has 44 local government areas, has the highest budget for transportation at N685.4m while N558.6m will be spent on distributing the vaccines to Lagos State, which is the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic.

About N476m would be spent on distributing vaccines in the President’s home state of Katsina while N396.3m will be spent in Oyo State.

Bayelsa, which has just eight local government areas, has the lowest budget for vaccine transportation which is N121m.

The total amount of money earmarked for the transportation of vaccine, procurement of Personal Protective Equipment, AEFI kits, and sensitization was summed up at N12.7bn.

The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, on December 22, 2020, told the Senate that the Federal Government would need about N400bn to vaccinate 70 percent of Nigeria’s population.

The Senate leadership subsequently asked Ehanire to bring a budget while they promised to give it quick consideration.

However, it was learnt that as of Friday, no supplementary budget had been sent to the National Assembly.

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