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What Nigeria must do for a greater economy — Peter Obi

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Labour Party Presidential Candidate, Peter Obi, has outlined “important” areas Nigeria must tackle “aggressively” for a greater economy.

According to the former governor of Anambra State, investment in intangible assets such as education and power are critical forconomic renaissance.

“What we need to do is the two most intangible assets: security; and law and order . . . provide conducive environment to attract investors, then education and power . . . the economy is driven by these intangible assets,” he said at the opening ceremony of the 2022 Nigerian Bar Association’s Annual General Conference held at the Eko Hotel and Suites in Lagos.

The conference with the theme ‘Bold Transitions’ began on Monday and will run until August 26.

Obi spoke on a panel alongside All Progressives Congress Vice-Presidential Candidate, Kashim Shettima; Peoples Democratic Party’s Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar; amongst others.

Award-winning novelist, Chimamanda Adichie, who gave a keynote address at the event, said Nigerians are starved of heroes and young people have nobody to look up to.

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SEE ALSO:  Governor Peter Mbah to receive Vanguard's Good Governance Award
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Edo Guber: Two candidates emerge from APC parallel congresses

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Edo Guber: Two candidates emerge from APC parallel congresses

There was a controversy yesterday as two governorship candidates emerged winners of the All Progressives Congress (APC) from parallel primaries held ahead of the September 21 governorship election in the state.

While a member of the House of Representative, Dennis Idahosa, was earlier announced winner by the chairman of the APC Primary Election Committee, Governor Hope Uzodimma, at Protea Hotel, Senator Monday Okpephole was declared winner by the Returning Officer for the election, Dr Stanley Ugboaje, at the residence of Pastor Osagie Ize-IyaIdahosa scored 40,453 votes in one of the primaries conducted by Uzodimma to emerge winner, while the parallel primary by Dr Ugboaje saw Sen. Monday Okpepholo polling 12,145 votes to defeat other contestants.Announcing the results, Uzodimma said the exercise was peaceful and duly conducted across the 18 local government areas and 192 wards of the state.

He said, “There was misinformation regarding the venue of the primary; this is the secretariat (Protea Hotel) for the election where results were collated and would be announced.

“Of the 12 aspirants that contested this primary, Clem Agba scored 100 votes, Sen. Monday Okpepholo 100; Hon. Dekeri Anamero 230; Engr. Gideon Ikhine 700 votes; David Imuse, 400 votes; Charles Airhavebere, 163 votes; Prof Osareime Osunbor 180 votes; Dr Blessing Agbomere, 50 votes; Hon Dennis Idahosa 40, 453 votes; Ernest Afolabi Umakhihe two votes; Lucky Imasuen and Pastor Ize-Iyamu scored two votes respectively.

“Therefore, Dennis Idahosa having scored the highest votes cast is hereby declared winner of the primary and hereby returned as the candidate of the party.”

SEE ALSO:  Enugu postpones Local Govt elections

Similarly, the Returning Officer for the election in the second primary, Dr. Stanley Ugboaje, in announcing the results, said Monday Okpepholo emerged winner with 12,145 votes while Idahosa scored 5,536 votes to emerge second.

“I hereby certify that Monday Okpepholo, having scored the highest votes, is declared winner and duly returned as APC candidate for the election,” Ugboaje said.

Earlier, hoodlums suspected to be thugs stormed the result collation centre of the second primary at Lushville Hotel and Suite and disrupted the process, forcing them to move to Pastor Ize-Iyamu’s house to conclude the declaration.

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Several journalists, including NTA camera man, FRCN and Arise TV reporters were manhandled and their equipment damaged.

The results from eight local government areas had already been announced when journalists covering the event were alerted to vacate the centre of the event.

The presence of the State Commissioner of Police, Funsho Adeboye, who was there with officials of the party, did not deter the hoodlums from disrupting the process.

Disregard unauthorised result announcement – APC

Meanwhile, the All Progressives Congress (APC) has urged the general public to disregard the unauthorised announcement of the result of Edo Governorship Primary of the party.

National Publicity Secretary of the party, Felix Morka in a statement yesterday said only the Governor Hope Uzodinma- led Edo State APC Governorship Primary Election Committee is duly authorised to undertake final collation and announcement of results of the primary election in the state

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Governor Peter Mbah to receive Vanguard’s Good Governance Award

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Governor Peter Mbah to receive Vanguard's Good Governance Award
Enugu State Governor, Dr. Peter Mbah

…Determined ‘To get the future right, get education right’

It is not for nothing that Peter Mbah, the forward-thinking and futuristic governor of Enugu State, is making bold moves to implant his paradigmatic approach to business as a private citizen, into the modus operandi of governance in his state. Strange yet impactful, Governor Mbah’s first steps as the chief executive of Enugu State have signposted him as one interested in and, therefore, committed to lifting the state out of the doldrums.

Derisively described as a civil servants’ state, Enugu, as it had been known, wore the sombre looks of a dingy landscape begging for sociopolitical and economic emancipation because of its once rich history as the capital of South East Nigeria.

Therefore, even within his first year in office, Governor Mbah has stamped his imprimatur of seriousness on the state.

First, he made it clear that the psychological masturbatory pleasure derived from the Monday sit-at-home in the entire South East geo-political zone was not only wasteful but also destructive to economic growth. He put a stop to it.

Whereas he had made a campaign commitment to ensure that within his first six months in office, he would fix the water problem in Enugu city, he achieved this as promised. According to him, “If indeed, water is life, Ndi Enugu had lived their lives without water, for years.

They are probably one of the few species of beings who possess the ruggedness to live a life devoid of life. As an administration, we were poised to bring life back to our people. No one needed to sermonize to us on the centrality of water to our people’s existence.

SEE ALSO:  Re-run: APGA defeats PDP to reclaim victory in Yenagoa state constituency

Thus, all we planned to achieve as an administration was woven around this central theme of the restoration of life where our people were living suboptimal lives that lacked the life that water brings. Water, to us as a government, was both literal and figurative…. We have recently launched the ultramodern water scheme at Ninth Mile which has a daily production capacity of 70 million cubic meters (70,000,000m3) of clean water, combined with the production of 50 million cubic litres from Oji River.

This gives a total volume of 120 million cubic meters per day as against less than 2,000,000m3 we met on resumption of office. This achievement disrupts over two decades of water scarcity in Enugu urban, and also fulfils our promise to Ndi Enugu to provide Enugu urban residents with water within 180 days.”

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Signature projects of immediate impact are good and desirable but Governor Mbah has moved to the realm of looking ahead. He believes education – and quality education at that – is the future of any society and he is going ahead to demonstrate that in speech and deed.

In a media report, the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, UNESCO, in its Education For All, EFA, paper tagged “a Dakar framework for action, called for a significant increase in financial commitment by national governments and donors to the education sector to accelerate progress toward the EFA goals.

According to the document, the Dakar framework recommended governments to take the lead in increasing financial commitments to EFA, with the EFA high-level steering committee proposing that 15 per cent to 20 per cent of annual budgets be earmarked for education”.

SEE ALSO:  Edo Guber: Two candidates emerge from APC parallel congresses

The media report was in the wake of a controversy raised by former Education Minister, Mallam Adamu Adamu, on whether UNESCO had recommended a threshold allocation of 25%/ 26% budgetary provision to education. For Mbah, the best way to tackle the challenges of the future is through education. That is why he has allocated 33% of his 2024 budget to education, the highest ever by any state government in Nigeria or even by the Federal Government of Nigeria. He plans to build smart schools that would serve multi-dimensional purposes and yield multi-dimensional output and outcomes.

In his words, “As I mentioned earlier, education is a key plank in our strategy to eradicate poverty in our state. Consequently, ?134,587,982,647.78, representing 73.6% of the social sector has been earmarked to help reinvent education in our state by developing the new Smart schools which I mentioned earlier as well as repositioning our senior secondary and tertiary institutions by training and retraining teachers and updating our curricula across all levels of education to infuse technology and technology appreciation and skills. This capital expenditure on education combined with the planned recurrent expenditure in the sector will bring our total spending on education to 33% of the total budget.

“The 2024-2026 Multi-Year Budget is named Budget of Disruptive Economic Growth. This is because it is structured to drive growth in a markedly different pattern than we had attempted to do hitherto. This departure from the usual is most apparent in two main areas.

First, our approach to basic education where we are bringing into effect our cut-off program through the development of the 260 model schools to which I had earlier alluded. These schools are unique, not only in the fact that they will house the entire basic school classes from creche to JS3 but also in terms of the significant changes we are making to the curriculum of the children, where we will be infusing new subject areas like Technology, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, to mention but three.

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In addition, the approach to teaching in these schools will be experiential, with extensive use of practicals, examples, dramatization, gamification, and so on. This naturally requires extensive re-training of our teachers to enable them to grasp these new learning approaches as well as the various technology-based teaching and learning tools which we shall deploy examples of which are tablets, interactive whiteboards, learning management systems, etc.

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Beyond the ‘hard’ elements of learning, we will also infuse many ‘softer’ elements such as ethics, morals, critical thinking and hygiene to prepare our children to become the leaders we need tomorrow”.

The governor is making giant strides in other areas like the health, agriculture and industrial sectors. That is why he is worthy to be a Good Governance Awardee.

Vanguard

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Re-run: APGA defeats PDP to reclaim victory in Yenagoa state constituency

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Re-run: APGA defeats PDP to reclaim victory in Yenagoa state constituency
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has declared Hon Amakoromo Waikumo of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) the winner of the Yenagoa Constituency II House of Assembly rerun held on Saturday.

Waikumo polled a total of 5,959 votes to beat his closest rival, Hon. Ebiuwou Koku-Obiyai, of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who scored 5,263 votes.

Declaring the result at the INEC Collation Centre, Okolobiri, the Returning Officer, Prof. Chris Onyema, Deputy Vice Chancellor of the Federal University, Otuoke, said the APGA candidate scored the highest number of votes and declared winner of the court-ordered rerun for Yenagoa Constituency II.

Recall that before ordered rerun in seven units of the constituency by the Court of Appeal, the APGA candidate had 4,971 votes while PDP got 4,593 during the March 2023 State House of Assembly election.

The votes scored by the candidates at the just-concluded rerun poll were added to what they scored during last year’s election with the APGA again emerging victorious and truncating the third term ambition of Mrs Ebiuwou Koku-Obiyai of the PDP for the state House of Assembly.

Koku-Obiyai, then incumbent lawmaker and Chief Whip of the House of Assembly, rejected the result of the poll over alleged irregularities and malpractices in some polling units and therefore headed for court.

The court ordered a rerun in seven polling units in Gbarain and Ekpetiama.

The conclusion of the rerun poll in the affected polling units has resolved the contention for the constituency 2 seat in the 24-member House or Assembly.

SEE ALSO:  2024 re-run: CLO calls for credible, peaceful elections nationwide
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