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Sanwo-Olu Gifts Veteran Actress Mama Awero 3-Bedroom Apartment, Donates Free Apartments To Two Lagos ‘Best’ Teaching Staff [VIDEO]

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Popular grandmother figure in Nollywood’s Yoruba series, Alhaja Lanre Hassan, known by the stage name “Mama Awero”, got a surprise gift from Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Wednesday.

The veteran actor was on the verge of being been ejected from her rented apartment when the Governor intervened. Mama Awero was presented with the key to a new three-bedroom apartment in the 360 units Lagoshoms Phase 2 scheme completed by the Governor in Igbogbo, Ikorodu.

The housing project was formally inaugurated on Wednesday at an event attended by all Government functionaries and traditional rulers in the Ikorodu division. He named the scheme after former Deputy Governor and All Progressives Congress (APC) apex leader in Ikorodu, Prince Abiodun Ogunleye.

The scheme, which is sited on 6.24 hectares of land, was conceived in 2012 under the ex-Governor Babatunde Fashola’s administration. It has 10 blocks each of 120 units of one-bedroom flats, 120 units of two-bedroom flat, and 120 units of three-bedroom apartments.

The project is bordering Oba Adeboruwa Housing Estate, which is the first phase of the housing scheme.

Sanwo-Olu said the decision to complete the Igbogbo housing scheme was in tune with his pledge at the commissioning of Lateef Jakande Estate, Igando in 2019, where he reiterated his commitment to deliver all housing projects inherited by his administration.

He said: “I am elated to be commissioning another housing project in Igbogbo, one of many delivered by this administration. Against all odds, our vision for a revamped housing sector has moved from the drawing table to the level of implementation and delivery. The completion and commissioning of this estate, comprising 360 units is a promise kept and sends a strong message about our determination to make Lagos a 21st-century economy.

“This housing scheme symbolizes our unwavering commitment to the Greater Lagos Project, and our determination to build and deliver modern homes so that irrespective of social or economic class, all Lagosians enjoy the dividends of democracy and good governance. We will continue to bridge the housing deficit by providing decent and affordable houses to our people.”

The Governor said his administration recognized that provision of decent housing was a crucial component of sustainable development, which was why housing schemes were being funded through direct budgetary allocations, as well as public-private-partnerships. The financing model, he said, has yielded remarkable results.

Sanwo-Olu said the State Government had started to prepare for a population surge that would accompany the opening of the project, disclosing that the State had activated the revamping of socio-economic infrastructure on the axis. He said rehabilitation of Government-owned schools was being escalated to cater to additional students’ population.

He said: “We are doing extensive road infrastructure in Igbogbo and we are extending another road from Ibeshe, which will be commissioned next month. The Baiyeku Road needs to be fixed and we will look at it once we are able to push the ongoing Igbogbo road project to significant progress.

“We are still working on Agric-Isawo and Oba Sekumade Road, while we are planning the redevelopment of the roundabout at Ita Elewa. All these projects are being done to bring real development into the Ikorodu division and improve the value of properties on this axis.”

The Governor also presented free three-bedroom apartments to two members of the State’s teaching staff honoured in national education awards for their quality services. They are the Principal of Government Junior College in Ketu-Epe, Mr. Dunni Ikuseyi (Principal of the Year) and recipient of Teacher of the Year, Mrs. Elusakin of Oriwu Model College.

According to the Commissioner for Housing, Hon. Moruf Akinderu-Fatai the housing project was the seventh scheme to be completed and inaugurated by the Sanwo-Olu administration, which catered for the high net individuals and low-income earners.

He said: “As can be seen, the scheme is completed with modern infrastructure that will enhance decent living. Apart from other intrinsic benefits that come with this scheme, we are glad to say that it will definitely change the statistics of the housing deficit in Lagos and stem the usual drift to city centers.

“Our joy is only complete when more people, particularly the low- and medium-income earners become homeowners. In line with present realities, the conventional mortgage system fostered through our Rent-To-Own scheme will be utilized to a large extent in delivering the homes to the end-users.”

Mama Awero, in an emotion-laden voice, expressed gratitude to the Governor, describing the gesture as an “unexpected gift”.

“Anyone who is compassionate to offer his fellow human a comfortable shelter such as this deserves nothing but prayers. I am short of words. Governor Sanwo-Olu, you have put smiles on my face in my moment of despair. May Allah supports you and your Deputy,” the veteran actress said.

The Adeboruwa of Igbogbo, Oba Semiu Kasali, hailed Sanwo-Olu for keeping his word on the housing scheme.

Some of the comfort features in the housing estate include expansive car parks, streetlights, a water reticulation plant, and a modern sewage treatment plant.

BIG STORY

Arewa Community In Lagos Launches Tinubu Support Group

Gbemileke Ajayi

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The Arewa community in Lagos State has urged All Progressives Congress (APC) National Leader Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu to run for president in 2023.

At a rally in Coker-Aguda and Itire-Ikate Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) of Lagos State to launch a Tinubu support group, the Arewa people said Tinubu possessed the quality needed to continue President Muhammadu Buhari’s developmental projects.

Their leader, Ahmed Abdullahi, noted that the former Lagos State governor had paid his dues in the political terrain; hence he deserved to lead the country.

He said Asiwaju Tinubu remained the most competent person to take over from President Buhari.

“We saw how he transformed Lagos State and made it a place for all to earn a living. He did not discriminate against any tribe by making Lagos home for all of us. We are telling the world; especially the people in the North that Asiwaju (Tinubu) can be trusted. We saw how he stood by President Buhari even when people were against him. This is the time for the North to return good for good because we are not known for betraying people,” he said.

Abdullahi said Coker-Aguda LCDA was picked for the launch because the council chairman is also a detribalized woman.

“She has made Coker-Aguda a home to all Nigerians by appointing non-Yoruba as special advisers,” he said.

Coker-Aguda LCDA Chairman Mrs Omobolanle Akinyemi-Obe thanked the Arewa community for launching a support group for Tinubu.

She said all ethnic groups in the council are routing for Tinubu to run for the president.

“We have confidence in Asiwaju Tinubu to lead our country to greater height and bring smiles to the faces of Nigerians,” she said.

Her counterpart in Itire-Ikate LCDA, Dr. Ahmed Apatira, described Asiwaju Tinubu as the best man to take over from President Buhari.

He said all tribes in the council are ready to support Asiwaju Tinubu.

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South-East Governors Establish ‘Ebube Agu’, Regional Security Outfit, To Rout Criminals

Peter Okunoren

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South-east governors yesterday rolled out a raft of policy decisions, including the establishment of a regional security outfit, ‘Ebube Agu,’ to combat the security challenges facing the zone.

The outfit, with headquarters at Enugu, will complement the efforts of federal security agencies in tackling the security challenges in the region.

The governors, in a communiqué issued in Owerri at the end of a meeting, asked the heads of security agencies in the zone to draw up a comprehensive list of their logistics and material needs that will enhance their efficiency in combating the security challenges in the zone, so that the governors could provide them.

The meeting was the first gathering of the governors since last week’s attacks by gunmen who invaded the headquarters of the state police command, torching about 100 vehicles and freeing some detainees.

The gunmen also attacked the Imo State Correctional Centre and released over 1,800 inmates.

In the communiqué read by the Chairman of the South-east Governors’ Forum and Governor of Ebonyi State, Mr. Dave Umahi, the governors aligned themselves with the efforts of the federal government to find the solution to the security challenges in the country.

They condemned what they called terrorism and banditry in any part of Nigeria, particularly in the South-east.

They condemned the recent burning of police stations, violent attacks on custodial centers with the unlawful release of inmates, and the killing of security personnel, natives/farmers, and herdsmen.

The governors said they were on the same page with the federal government on the need to tackle the security challenges in the country.

They committed themselves to join the federal government to fight terrorists and bandits.

They also “resolved to bring together all the arsenals at their command, as one united zone, to fight and flush out criminals and terrorists from the zone.”

The communiqué noted that to achieve this, “there is a need to galvanize all the relevant stakeholders in the South-east, the political class, the business community, the bureaucrats and the intelligentsia to provide all necessary support to security operatives in the five South-east states to ensure total success in the fight against criminality in the zone.”

According to the communiqué, “The heads of all the security agencies in the South-east have resolved to exchange intelligence in a seamless, effective new order that will help to checkmate crime in the zone.

“To fast-track crime-busting in the South-east, the heads of security agencies have been mandated to draw up a comprehensive list of their logistics and material needs for sustainable success in the fight against criminality, for the immediate provision by the leadership of the South-east.”

The governors also resolved to set up a committee comprising security personnel, government officials and stakeholders, to coordinate and monitor the implementation of the Southeast joint security platform.

The governors applauded the initiative of the South-east security summit and to make it a statutory summit that would convene every quarter while its hosting shall rotate among the five South-east states.

“The meeting resolved to maintain a joint security vigilante for the South-east otherwise known as Ebube Agu. The meeting appreciated the formation of South-east joint security outfit code-named Ebube Agu, with headquarters in Enugu to coordinate our vigilante in the South-east,” the communiqué explained.

The governors also requested the Acting Inspector-General of Police (IG), Mr. Usman Baba, to stop the influx of IG monitoring units and allow police commissioners and state and zonal commands to handle their cases.

The governors also requested Baba and other security chiefs to invite the leadership of Ohanaeze Ndigbo and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) to find out the reason for the increasing insecurity of the region.

They also agreed that military policing in the South-east should be adequately funded to become effective.

“Meeting agreed that open grazing has been banned and the security agency should implement the ban.

“The meeting encouraged a peaceful co-existence of farmers and herders to allow governors to succeed in the fight against criminality,” the communiqué added.

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BIG STORY

774,000 Public Jobs Workers Protest Unpaid N20,000 Wage, Beneficiaries Tackle Keyamo

Gbemileke Ajayi

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Participants in the Federal Government’s Special Public Works (SPW) programme are protesting the delay in paying their stipend more than three months after kick-off.

The SPW is an Adhoc programme designed by the government to provide stop-gap three months jobs to mainly artisans to earn N20,000 monthly doing public works.

One thousand youths were hired from each of the 774 local government in the country as beneficiaries, bringing the figure to 774,000 councils.

The programme was inaugurated on January 5. The first batch of beneficiaries have completed their assignment without being paid.

President Muhammadu Buhari on March 20 directed the release of funds to pay the stipends.

Minister of Labour and Employment Festus Keyamo (SAN) hours after, directed the National Directorate of Employment (NDE), the Federal Government agency driving the programme, to start processing the payment plan.

Keyamo, in his official Tweeter handle, (@fkeyamo, assured the participants that they would soon receive alerts of payment.

Twenty-two days after, no payment has been made.

Some of the participants at the weekend took to Keyamo’s Twitter handle to ventilate their frustration.

One of them described the Federal Government as “heartless” for failing to pay them their stipend.

One Dubagari Jnr, tweeted: “What is happening with the SPW? Up till now, we have not been paid and have successfully finished our work. Please Hon. minister we need explanations on why we have not been paid and you have to start the disbursement before fasting (Ramadan).

Another worker, Maikudi Kolo, asked through a tweet: “Una no go pay 774, 000 workers?”

Abdoul Baqee tweeted: “People are hungry regarding the payment of stipends. Please fast track the payment of these people. 774, 000 people waiting anxiously for their payment with hunger and they don’t even have a phone to come to your timeline. When you get hungry just remember those people that work with hunger without their entitlement.”

Yusuf Mohammed Olawuyi asked: “Mr. Honourable minister, what happened to our SPW stipends? You already published that we will start receiving the alert from the beginning of April.”

When contacted, Keyamo directed our correspondent to NDE acting Director-General Abubakar Fikpo.

Fikpo said: “We are still in the process; we have identified some loopholes here and there. We want to verify the BVN of the participants. That is why we are working with the banks.

“We are verifying the BVN of those participants in order to avoid double payments to several people or to three or more accounts.”

About SPW Programme

The Special Public Works Programme is a dry season/off-season transient job for rehabilitation/maintenance of social infrastructure.

The Programme is designed to employ 1,000 persons each from the 774 Local Government Areas.

It is being implemented by the National Directorate of Employment (NDE) under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment.

N52billion was voted for the programme, part of it to pay participants at N20,000 monthly for three months.

The programme was expected to commence on October 1, 2020, but suffered a setback because of internal wranglings between Keyamo and a former Director-General of the NDE, Nasir Ladan. President Muhammadu Buhari fired Ladan.

There was also a big row between the National Assembly and Keyamo over the allocation of slots to hire beneficiaries.

N26 billion was released for the procurement of equipment and for logistics before the programme eventually commenced on January 5.

Keyamo, during the inauguration of the programme, said it will address poverty and hunger.

The minister said the programme was conceived following the success of the pilot scheme in eight states to gauge its impact in addressing the ballooning population of the unemployed and rising insecurity.

Keyamo noted that countries like India and Malaysia used similar programmes to fight poverty.

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