1. No ‘hoarded’ palliatives in FCT – Aliyu
Minister of State in the Federal Capital Territory FCT, Dr Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu, has assured residents of the territory that there are no hoarded palliatives in the various warehouses across the territory.
The minister made the disclosure in a statement signed by his Special Assistant on Media, Mr Austin Elemue.
According to her, items meant for flood victims in the territory are safe and secure, as security agents have been deployed to man the strategic reserves.
Men of the FCT Command of the Nigeria Police Force had foiled an attempt by some youths to break into a warehouse at the Arts and Culture building in Area 10, Garki.
The youths, numbering over 40 had invaded the area on Saturday morning and made attempts to gain entry into the building to evacuate palliatives warehoused in the place by the Federal Capital Territory Administration FCTA.
However, Aliyu who explained that warehouses are supposed to stock supplies for emergency response including the recurrence of COVID-19 pandemic, warning that “unsuspecting members of the public should therefore not be lured into criminality under the guise of ‘hoarded’ palliative food items in the territory”.
The minister, also stated that the FCT Administration had in the past months distributed all items procured and also distributed donated items to the Area Councils, Community Associations, Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs), Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and Professional bodies/associations, stressing that the administration has continued to receive donations that are distributed on a continuous basis and in a transparent manner.
She affirmed that details of such distributions are in the public domain, reaching more than a million households and individuals across the territory, adding that the Administration did ensure that CSOs and the ICPC participated in the distribution exercise to ensure transparency.
2. Access Bank announces N50 billion interest-free loan for businesses
Access Bank has announced N50 billion in support of Nigerians through interest-free loans and grants to support communities, the youths as well as micro, small and medium-sized businesses.
The bank disclosed this through its official LinkedIn page.
It said the move was to support businesses following the crippling COVID-19 lockdown as well as the looting and arson that trailed the #ENDSARS protests.
According to the bank; “Now more than ever, we remain committed to our purpose of impacting lives positively.
” In light of the recent occurrences, we will be supporting Nigerian businesses with N50billion interest-free loans and grants. Watch this space for more information.”
The support by Access Bank is expected to help business owners and entreprenuers alleviate and stimulate economic activities, as well as produce many positive multiplier effects on the economy.
“As a way of supporting SMEs and the working class of the country following the recent damage of properties and livelihoods experienced across the nation, @myaccessbank has rolled out interest free loans of up to N50bn.
“The fund is expected to serve as a kickstart to these affected communities, people and businesses. #AccessCares #All4One,” the bank added.
3. Olumakaiye condemns shootings of protesters
The Diocesan and Missioner of Lagos Anglican Diocese, Rt. Rev. Dr. Humphrey Olumakaiye, has condemned the shooting of protesters at Lekki, Lagos last Tuesday.
Olumakaiye, in a statement, said the incident was a despicable and outrageous act of terror against harmless citizens.
He said: “It is highly depressing the same government, which promised to reform the police and bring an end to police brutality ended up using the military against them.”
The Bishop said the police had acquired notoriety with successive governments paying lip service to quelling their high-handedness despite outcries over the years.
He hoped the government had taken a cue from the violent dimension the protests assumed to accede to the demands of youths.
Olumakaiye, who commended youths for the peaceful protests until hoodlums hijacked them, said it was time to retreat as the government and the whole world have heard their voice.
According to him: “The #EndSARS protest by the youth was no doubt a genuine cause that was acknowledged and appreciated by society.
“For the first time in Nigeria history, the youth rose up to condemn and protest an age-long problem caused by an institution created to protect lives and properties.”
“It is said that what we feared most has now befallen us, such as, burning and destruction of government and private properties, looting of shops, offices, and houses.
“These should not be seen as the solution to our challenges as a nation, as these will only take us backward.”
He challenged the government to ensure victims of the Lekki toll gate shooting and their families have access to justice and compensations.
4. African Diaspora to #ENDSARS protesters: embrace peace
The Brand Ambassador African Diaspora Forum, Prince Debo Adesina, has appealed to #EndSARS protesters to embrace peace and engage the government on institutional changes that will enhance proper policing and good governance.
In an interview with newsmen, Adesina said: “#EndSARS to me would have been more justifiable had it been that they were able to withdraw after a while and sit on the roundtable for further discussions.
“But instead they (the youths) prolonged the protest and in the process allowed miscreants to hijack a good cause!”
Adesina applauded the commitment of #EndSARS protesters, which according to him, will be recorded in the annals of civil rights movement in Nigeria.
He said: “My stand is that it would be better if the #EndSARS protesters had chosen leaders whom they trusted to speak on behalf of the cause but unfortunately hoodlums and miscreants infiltrated and hijacked what started out so nobly and so beautifully.
“From here on, we should all embrace peace and harmony, and allow the leaders to overturn the current situation to a developmental process by talking to the demands of the people in terms of Policing, and other matters.”
He stressed the need for autonomous policing by regions while the Federal Government focuses more on the Army.
Adesina, who is also the Founder of Nigerian Lives Matter, a rights advocacy initiative based in South Africa, criticised President Muhammadu Buhari in the wake of the violence that followed the protests.
Assessing the speech, he said: “I am sad because he did not seem particularly moved, and made no attempt to put any effort into making a good speech, even in the light of the international communities’ observations and advice.
“He went ahead instead, on his trajectory, and was a bit more of a soldier than a democrat.
“It was not surprising to hear him saying what he said. He made no reference to the killings at the Lekki toll gate but he was able to talk about the Oba of Lagos Palace that was ransacked by irate youths.”
Adesina also condemned the shooting of protesters in Lekki, Lagos.
He said: “Tuesday’s shooting was a Black Tuesday and in a democratic set up like Nigeria, the Army or soldiers should not have been brought into the engagement in such a scenario.
“Anti-riot police should have been deployed to manage the curfew imposed by the Lagos state government.”
He recalledNigerian Lives Matter was borne out of the desperation and determination to change the popular global narrative of Nigerians.
5. Osun re-imposes 24-hour curfew indefinitely
Osun State Government has re-imposed the 24-hour curfew earlier suspended on the state indefinitely.
Governor Adegboyega Oyetola, during a statewide broadcast Today afternoon expressed disappointment with the manner the suspension of the curfew, which was imposed to curtail violence and social disorder, was abused.
He regretted that criminals took advantage of government’s suspension of the curfew to embarked on wanton looting of government and private property across the state.
He adds, “It is with a high sense of responsibility that I address you this afternoon in respect of the unfortunate situation in our Dear State.
“Government notes with huge disappointment, the abuse of the suspension, a day ago, of the 24-hour curfew earlier declared in the State to forestall the breakdown of law and order and protect the lives and property of citizens and residents.
“It is unfortunate that hoodlums and criminals have taken advantage of government’s action to wantonly loot government and private property, including private business premises and homes in several parts of the State this morning. This is unacceptable and it stands condemned.
“After an Emergency Security Meeting this afternoon, where the whole situation was reviewed and assessed, we came to the inevitable conclusion to declare a curfew. Consequently, I hereby declare a 24-hour curfew across the whole State with immediate effect.
“This inevitable conclusion was reached to avert the continuation of this irresponsible act, especially now that the genuine protesters have suspended their protest earlier today.
“My fellow citizens, the declaration of a 24-hour curfew, which will be indefinite until further notice, is to prevent the current state of anarchy from degenerating into large-scale breakdown of law and order.
“For the avoidance of doubt, there shall be no vehicular (including Okada) or human movement during this period. Only those on essential duties will be permitted to move around. These persons too must carry with them proper identification to allow access.
“Violators of the curfew rules shall be prosecuted in line with the extant laws of the State.
“I enjoin all our citizens and residents to return home and remain in their homes until further notice.
“I assure them of their safety during this period, as always, as security operatives have been deployed in all the parts of the State to restore and maintain law and order within the precinct of the law”.
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