Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode, has approved the recruitment of additional 1,200 teachers for the Junior and Senior Secondary schools in the state.
The Deputy Director of Public Affairs at the State Ministry of Education, Adesegun Ogundeji, revealed this in a statement on Friday.
Governor Ambode had hinted at the recruitment when he addressed residents and stakeholders at the last quarterly town hall meeting held recently at the Ibeju Lekki area of the state.
He promised that his administration would employ more teachers in public schools to meet up with the manpower required to cover all public schools across the state.
Confirming the development in the state, Deputy Governor of the state, Mrs Idiat Adebule, said the 1,200 teachers was an addition to the 1000 teachers which the governor had approved for recruitment into primary schools in the state.
Adebule, who oversees the affairs of the State Ministry of Education, disclosed that guidelines for the application would be released soon in accordance with the Civil Service Rules.
She was hopeful that the development would further aid teaching and learning in the public schools, stressing that it was attracting more enrollment in the last three years.
The deputy governor attributed the progress to the government efforts towards improving infrastructure and welfare of teaching and non-teaching staff in its service.
She noted that the improved facilities and staff motivation were evident in the high-performance rate of the students of the state in local and international competitions.
NOVA Merchant Bank Uplifts 50 Young Lives Through Paediatric Surgical Intervention
NOVA Merchant Bank, a leading merchant bank in Nigeria, has sponsored a Pediatric Surgical Intervention, as part of its 2023 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) program, specifically within its UPLIFT initiative project.
This initiative, conducted in partnership with the Association of Paediatric Surgeons of Nigeria (APSON), positively impacted 50 indigent child patients at Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH) on Monday, September 18, 2023.
APSON is the umbrella body of all Paediatric Surgeons in Nigeria engaged in the treatment of surgical issues in children, the education and training of specialists in Pediatric surgery, and the enhancement and preservation of the high standards and quality of surgical care provided to children.
This collaboration exemplifies NOVA’s unwavering commitment to community development and its dedication to impacting lives through its UPLIFT Initiative projects aimed at creating “Today’s solution for tomorrow’s sustainability (UPLIFT).”
Speaking on the motivation behind NOVA’s intervention, Mr Nath Ude, Managing Director of NOVA Merchant Bank, said, “NOVA envisions a future in which millions of people have free or low-cost access to healthcare and where unnecessary pain caused by preventable illnesses and untimely fatalities can be mitigated. This intervention is a stride towards achieving this vision.” He added that, “No child should be deprived of their promising future due to a lack of healthcare accessibility” noting that the impact of this project will echo through lifetimes to come.
Emphasizing the pivotal role of NOVA’s intervention, the President of APSON, Professor Roland Osuoji, said, “In the past year, Lagos state heavily subsidized paediatric operations for children between the ages 0-12 which have resulted in a growing waiting list, stretching until 2025.” He added that, “This initiative not only reduces the backlog but also saves lives and offers hope to these deserving families.
Commenting on the patient selection process, Dr Omolara Williams, the Local Organizing Committee Chairman of the medical outreach, said, “We surveyed our group of patients from our database and pinpointed those who were on the waiting list due to financial constraints. We made every effort to contact as many of them as possible, and as a result, we now have patients ranging from 1 to 14 years old who will receive treatment for their pediatric conditions through this intervention.” She further emphasized the need for continued regional and national initiatives like this to bridge the gap in paediatric surgical care accessibility.
Expressing appreciation for NOVA’s intervention, the LASUTH Chief Medical Director (CMD), Prof Adetokunbo O. Fabamwo, said, “This collaboration reflects a shared vision of a healthier and brighter future for children in Nigeria.” He noted that this meaningful impact is not just mending bodies but also building dreams.
NOVA Merchant Bank Limited is an investment grade-rated merchant bank in Nigeria, offering an integrated suite of financial solutions encompassing Financial Intermediation, Wholesale and Investment Banking, Asset and Securities Management, Trade Services, Cash Management, Transaction, and Digital Banking.
Vandals Destroy 108 Transmission Towers Across The Nation Between January 2022 To September 2023 — TCN
- Federal Government Alleges Sabotage
A total of 108 power transmission towers were destroyed by vandals in various parts of the country between January 2022 and September this year.
This is according to the data obtained from the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).
It was gathered that the vandals destroyed 132kV double circuit power transmission lines, 330kV double circuit lines, and carried out soil excavation that threatened transmission towers, as the Federal Government described the development as sabotage.
The vandalism of transmission towers occurred in the Abuja, Lagos, Kano, Enugu, and Benin regions, though the government, through TCN, had contracted out the repairs of some of the vandalised towers.
It had also deployed in-house engineers of the transmission company to work on other vandalised towers.
An analysis of data from the transmission company showed that 27 towers were vandalised in the Abuja region during the review period, while nine towers were destroyed in the Lagos region.
The Kano region recorded the highest number of destroyed transmission towers, as 52 towers were vandalised in the region during the review period, while 10 towers were shattered in each of the regions of Enugu Benin.
Nigeria’s power grid had collapsed twice in September, throwing the country into widespread blackout in both cases. The government and consumers blamed this on sabotage and destruction of transmission facilities.
TCN (in an information obtained by The Punch) said that in 2023 alone, it had recorded over 10 incidents of vandalism at different degrees across its regions, especially attacks on its transmission towers.
It stated, “In the Kano region of TCN, 49nos. towers were vandalised; Osogbo region, 51; Abuja region, 19; Enugu region, 18; among others. Nine towers, from Tower 56 to Tower 65 along the Papalanto/Abeokuta 132kV transmission line, located in the Obafemi Owode area of Ogun State, were all massively vandalised, leading to their collapse on May 23, 2023.
“As a result, Abeokuta and its environs were out of power supply for some days as the company had to supply bulk electricity through an alternate line, to enable Ibadan Disco (distribution company) to distribute electricity to its customers whose supply was affected by the incident.
“In the same vein, there were frequent activities of vandals in the TCN Aba sub-region in August 2023, with repair costs totalling about N23. They include 122No earthing copper conductors and 244No copper cable lugs with N366,000 worth of galvanised bolts and nuts carted away.”
It added that at the Port Harcourt sub-region, some cases of vandalism included Owerri Ahoada 132kv DC Line (T199 – T211), IPP/Elelenwo 132kv DC Line (T40, T43, T52 and T53), Owerri/Ahoada 132kv Line (T203 – T217), Ahoada/Yenagoa 132kv Line (T19 – T31) and IPP/Elelenwo 132kv Line (T40).
“Uyo Work Centre has only one case of vandalism at Itu T/S where an underground cable connected to the generator was vandalised.
“The Benin region was not left out of the nefarious acts as vandals attacked towers 30 to 33 along the Ihovbor-Osogbo-Benin-Osogbo double circuit transmission line, cutting the legs of the four towers, but they did not collapse and therefore did not interrupt bulk power transmission on that line.”
According to the TCN, on June 8, 2023, the linesmen of Benin region while patrolling the Benin/Ihovbor/ Osogbo 330kV double circuit line tower, discovered that Towers 30 to 34 were vandalised.
It stated, “The tower legs were sawed off and left to collapse, which could have been catastrophic, as it could have led to the loss of power supply and revenue and the probability of people getting electrocuted.
“The TCN management condemned the activities of these vandals, stating that their nefarious acts negatively impacted the grid expansion efforts of the company and are considered saboteurs. In addition, resources that would have been used to further improve the grid infrastructure would now be used to replace the vandalised towers.
“TCN is again appealing to host communities to join hands in the fight against vandals, admonishing them to report suspicious movement around transmission towers to security operatives or the TCN office in the vicinity.”
President Tinubu Reviews Document As CBN Investigator Submits Interim Report
George Akume, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, has said the Federal Government will soon unveil the audit report of probe of the Central Bank of Nigeria.
Recall that President Bola Tinubu had on July 28, 2023, named a former Chief Executive Officer of the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria, Jim Obazee, as the Special Investigator for the CBN.
The President asked the special investigator to probe the CBN and key Government Business Entities, adding that the investigator would report directly to the President’s Office.
However, the SGF said on Monday that the probe report of the CBN, when made public, would reveal how poor governance brought the country to the present predicament.
Akume made the disclosure while fielding questions at a press conference in Abuja on the 63rd Independence anniversary of Nigeria.
According to him, the report will enable Nigerians to know what really went wrong and how the country got to its present situation.
He said, “Most of these problems confronting us are due to bad governance. The present government has confronted and is confronting these challenges. When President Bola Tinubu came on board, he took a very sound decision at the CBN. That singular act led to a massive improvement in the capital market, as experts have told us, it is something that has never happened in the past 15 years.
“We have a new team at the CBN and a special investigator has been in the CBN for some time now and his result will soon be released and Nigerians will know what really went wrong and what brought us to where we are today.”
Tinubu had in a letter dated July 28, 2023, asked Obazee, to ensure the probe revealed government funds in the hands of private individuals.
The letter, which was addressed to the special investigator, read in part, “In accordance with the fundamental objective set forth in Section 15(5) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended), this administration is, today, continuing the fight against corruption by appointing you as a Special Investigator, to investigate the CBN and Related Entities. This appointment shall be with immediate effect and you are to report directly to my office.”
However, findings (by The Punch) revealed on Monday that Obazee had submitted an interim report to the President’s office over a week ago.
Multiple officials said the preliminary report was submitted for necessary action by the President.
“The CBN Special Investigator submitted a preliminary report to the President’s Office over a week ago. The investigation still continues but the preliminary report is meant to give the President an idea of what has been discovered so far,” a top official privy to the development told The PUNCH on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to speak on the matter.
It was gathered that the interim report would enable the president to take some key decisions that would help the country move forward.
Officials said the interim report led to the change of leadership at the CBN last week but this could not be independently verified as of press time.
The president and his team are said to be currently reviewing the report with a view to taking an appropriate decision on it soon.
The CBN special investigator had reportedly faulted the annual financial reports of the CBN which were recently released.
As a result, it was learnt the CBN might be asked to withdraw its audited annual financial reports.
In August, the CBN released its financial accounts for the years 2016 to 2022 amid an ongoing probe of the financial services sector regulator by a Special Investigator appointed by President Bola Tinubu.
SGF On Independence
Meanwhile, the SGF said on Monday no world leader had been invited for the 63rd independence anniversary of Nigeria scheduled for October 1, saying the decision was taken in line with its option for a low-key celebration.
He said, “Low keyed celebration has nothing to do with whether we’re not doing well. Economic times are hard, we are looking at it not just at the national level but also as a family. We have not invited world leaders. During the inauguration of the President, 53 world leaders were invited, so we have not invited any world leader.
“As you are aware, the President has given his approval for this 63rd anniversary to be low-key in line with the present economic realities. The theme of the anniversary is “Nigeria @ 63, Renewed Hope for Unity & Prosperity.”
Speaking on national interest, he said, “We have all agreed to live a united peaceful, united, prosperous country, despite our diversity. Without these, no nation can move forward. Government is making sure our national interest is not undermined.”
According to him, the celebration is particularly important at this time having witnessed an unbroken democratic record since 1999 as well as the seamless, successful and peaceful presidential transition programme from one government to another.
The SGF said, “Despite political tremors and a wave of coups in some parts of the ECOWAS sub-region, Nigerians have fully embraced democracy with its core values and practices as the best form of governance. Democracy affords the citizens the opportunity through elective structures and processes to effectively participate in the affairs of their country.
“The relationship between the people and government in a representative democracy is symbiotic: while the citizens support the government, the government provides security, protects, and enhances their interests.
“The government is fully aware of the economic challenges that Nigerians are confronted with since the removal of the fuel subsidy as well as the impact of the global economic downturn. The government is working assiduously to provide the necessary palliatives so as to mitigate such challenges and also the provision of buses to ease hardship on transportation among others. At the same time, the government is engaging with labour in order to address areas of concern for the well-being of all Nigerian workers and Nigerians generally.
Among the programmes lines up for the event included an anniversary symposium/public Lecture, on Thursday, September 28, 2023 at State House Conference Center @ 10 am; lecture on Friday September 29 2023 at the National Mosque Conference Center by 10 am and Juma’at Prayer at the National Mosque at 1pm.
Akume also announced a presidential broadcast on Sunday, October 12023 at 7am; an inter-denominational church service on Sunday, October 1, 2023 at the National Christian Center at 10:00 am and a military parade on Monday, October 2 2023 at the Presidential Villa, at 9am.
“I therefore call on you as media professionals and patriots to support this administration and build workable partnership in order to transform our country into the land of our dream. Also, I count on you to publicise activities lined up to mark Nigeria’s 63rd Independence anniversary”, he said.
Credit: The Punch
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