NLC rejects CBN’s cybersecurity levy

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has rejected the recent directive by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) of 0.5 (0.005) per cent Cybersecurity Levy on electronic transfers.

Mr Joe Ajaero, NLC President stated the NLC position in a statement on Tuesday in Abuja.

Ajaero was reacting to a recent circular issued by the CBN, mandating banks and payment service operators to effect the deductions, effective in two weeks.

The CBN has said that the move, ‘ostensibly aimed at bolstering cybersecurity measures, threatens to exacerbate the financial strain already faced by the populace’.

Ajaero said the NLC vehemently condemned the directives and therefore called for immediate stoppage and reversal of the policy.

According to him, this levy, to be implemented by deduction at the transaction origination, is yet another burden on the shoulders of hardworking Nigerians.

‘The Nigeria Labour Congress recognises the importance of cybersecurity in today’s digital age.

‘However, imposing such a levy on electronic transact
ions, without due consideration for its implications on workers and the vulnerable segments of society, is unjustifiable.

‘This levy stands as another tax too much for Nigerians, burdening them with additional financial responsibilities.

‘We see in this levy as another gang up by the ruling elite to continue its extortion and exploitation of hapless and helpless workers and the masses,’he said.

He noted that while the CBN had exempted interbank transfers and loans transactions from the levy, the broader impact on everyday transactions would not be overlooked.

He added that such deductions directly affect the disposable income of workers and further diminish the purchasing power of the common citizen.

The NLC president also noted that domestic manufacturers and other businesses were already shuttering as a result of the stifling socio-economic environment.

He added that, yet, instead of creating a business-friendly environment to encourage greater investments in the economy, the opposite seems to be what
is being practised.

Ajaero, therefore, called on the Federal Government to reconsider the directives and prioritise policies that alleviate the financial burdens of Nigerians.

‘We urge a collaborative approach between the government, regulatory bodies, and stakeholders to develop sustainable cybersecurity measures that do not unduly burden the populace.

‘We reiterate our commitment to championing the rights and welfare of Nigerian workers and masses,’ he said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Swakop municipality, NHE tackle housing issue with cooperation

SWAKOPMUND: The Swakopmund Municipality and the National Housing Enterprise (NHE) on Tuesday signed a Memorandum of Agreement on the informal settlement upgrading programme.

The programme involves the conversion of shacks to permanent structures, which will not have all the finishes but will be equipped with essential services such as electric boxes and ablution facilities.

Launched in 2020, the programme is an approach to deliver affordable, decent houses for those with very minimal incomes and living in shacks in the DRC informal settlement.

The programme targets people earning between N.dollars 3 000 to N.dollars 5 000 per month and will be able to acquire housing units ranging between N.dollars 90 000 and N.dollars 250 000.

NHE Chief Executive Officer Gisbertus Mukulu said the agreement is meant to address the growing housing backlog in the country.

‘We know a majority of people are not able to afford houses, therefore we came up with this specific programme and established the target group who are c
urrently unable to afford decent housing,’ he explained.

Swakopmund Mayor Dina Namubes emphasised the mandate of local authorities to perform duties that are essential for the improvement of its residents, noting their significant role to providing decent housing and services.

She therefore stressed the importance of cooperation and cross subsidised knowledge, skills, resources, and expertise to combat challenges and improve service delivery for the benefit of the people.

‘As we all know, the banks and other financial institutions only help a specific set of people since they require pay slips, bank statements and employment confirmations.

As a result, those who are able to pay but are unable to produce the required documents are disadvantaged and left behind, which is a really sad and depressing aspect of life, and as the people’s representatives, we must intervene and offer our assistance,’ she expressed.

The mayor pointed out that most kapana vendors and other micro business owners have been able to s
ave as much as N.dollars 100 000 on their bank accounts, making unofficial contributions to the nation’s economic growth and aid in the fight against hunger and poverty.

The programme will commence as soon as funds, which are part of a budget by the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development, are available.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

Fidelity, others distribute food palliatives to families in Keffi

Fidelity Bank Plc in partnership with Abbasid Charity Foundation and Sen. Wadada Ahmed have distributed food palliatives to no fewer than 1,000 families in Keffi, Nasarawa state.

Distributing the food items on Wednesday, Ms Victoria Abuka, the Team Lead, Corporate Social Responsibility, Fidelity Bank said the gesture was to cushion the effects of the high cost of food items.

She added that the gesture was part of the bank’s initiative known as, ”Fidelity Food Bank’.

Abuka said the initiative which commenced in April, 2003, was aimed at contributing to food security in the country.

She said that since the inauguration of the initiative, over 100,000 food packs had been distributed across the country.

‘One of the major problem in the country now is food. People are hungry and it is difficult to pursue dreams and aspirations.

‘That is why Fidelity Bank, as a socially responsible organisation, started the initiative for food distribution to families in dare need of food.

‘We have visited over 100 communit
ies across the country,’ she said.

Abuka said the bank was working with 19 partners who identified communities to benefit from the initiative.

Hajia Hauwa Abbas, the Founder of Abbasid Foundation, said the food drive started when she was chosen as the bank’s food bank ambassador in the North.

She listed some of the beneficiary states to include Jigawa, Zamfara, Zaria, Kebbi, Bauchi, Kano and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

‘I am very pleased with Fidelity Bank because as much as they are collecting money from us, they are giving us back, especially women.

Sen. Ahmed Wadada, representing Nasarawa West Senatorial District, said he partnered with the Fidelity Bank’s drive to provide food for his people.

Wadada, represented by his wife Zainab, said the move was in continuation of his philanthropic gesture to his constituents especially orphans and widows.

‘We are here today to give back to our people and considering the hardship in the country, this is the little that we can do.

‘I appeal to well-mea
ning Nigerians to try and collaborate to see how we can help the people that do not have some of the opportunities that we have,’ he said.

Mrs Susan Nyikwagh, a recipient of the food pack, commended the bank and other partners for the gesture.

‘I am so happy for receiving this gift in a time like this when things are not easy.

‘The bank and their partners are wonderful,’ she said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the food pack contained one kilogramme of rice, garri and packs of indomie.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Oranjemund town council low-cost-housing scheme approved by MURD

KEETMANSHOOP: Minister of Urban and Rural Development, Erastus Uutoni said his ministry has approved the low-cost housing scheme for the Oranjemund Town Council’s 56 houses set to be constructed in phase one.

Uutoni said the initiative aims to create a safe and thriving environment for all residents, adding that the construction of the houses will be fully funded by the town council at a cost of N.dollars 6 million.

He said while Oranjemund has a rich history and a vibrant community it is no secret that the town faces a significant housing shortage, a challenge that requires concerted efforts from both the public and private sector, as well as from community stakeholders.

The Oranjemund Town Council has serviced about 327 erven in Extension 10 of which 227 are designated for residential use with an effort to help alleviate overcrowding and offer new housing prospects for residents.

In the Extension 6 residential area, the council has about 75 erven set aside for business and industrial purposes, fostering
economic growth and creating jobs while Extension 7 has 104 erven available dedicated to middle- to high-income housing.

The minister on Monday handed over 50 houses to new owners at the town built by the town council in collaboration with the Shack Dwellers Federation of Namibia (SDFN), while 85 new erven were handed over to the federation to construct houses at the town.

Uutoni said Government remains committed to the task of delivering affordable housing to as many Namibians as possible.

‘This is a critical step toward ensuring that every family has a safe place to call home. I encourage the SDFN to maintain its commitment to delivering quality homes to its beneficiaries. The work we do in housing development is not just about constructing buildings; it is about building hope, stability, and opportunity for families,’ he said.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

Rwanda Policy serves as deterrence for illegal migrants – UK envoy

Dr Richard Montgomery, the British High Commissioner in Nigeria says his country’s Rwanda Policy is intended to serve as discouragement to illegal migrants seeking asylum in the European country.

Montgomery said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja.

He explained that the UK Parliament had agreed in a bill passed into law to partner with Rwanda in handling illegal migrants to the UK and deporting them to Rwanda.

According to him, the Rwanda Policy is a way of sending signal to illegal migrants that even if they are able to find their way to the UK through the wrong channel, they would still not succeed in remaining in the UK.

He said that the migrants would be housed, looked after, and if they have genuine asylum concerns, their cases would be assessed and processed.

He however said that the agreement with Rwanda still had to be legally ratified, and to go through its own processes. But I believe that it will be ratified as an international treaty.

‘It is really important t
o stress that this is about illegal migration to the UK. It is about people who are often exploited by criminal gangs to take what is an awfully terribly perilous journey.

‘That is crossing the English channel in tiny boats run by criminal gangs, with the promise of getting them into the UK. This is really tragic because many people die while crossing’.

The envoy also said it was premature to say whether or not Nigerians were part of the policy at the current stage of the implementation plan.

He noted that it would not be appropriate to talk about individual cases or to talk about operational planning.

He gave an assurance that some safeguards have been put in place to check the entire process.

‘We have been working directly with relevant authorities to ensure that there is a decent standard of housing for the people that will be deported.

‘They will have access to whatever level of education they need from primary to tertiary and vocational education.

‘They will have the right to work in Rwanda. They
are economic migrants, but there will be some people who may have legitimate asylum claims.

‘We have been working with the Rwandan judiciary and their bar association to ensure that the migrants have ‘caseworkers’ and legal representation to go through due process,’ he said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Senate urges completion of Wudil-Gaya-Dutse Dual Carriageway

The Senate has mandated its Committee on Works to interact with the Minister of Works, toward the completion of the Wudil-Gaya-Dutse Dual Carriageway on Kano Maiduguri Expressway.

This followed the adoption of a motion on Urgent Need to Expedite Completion of Wudil-Gaya-Duste Dual Carriageway on Kano Maiduguri Road by Sen. Kawu Suleiman (NNPP – Kano) at Tuesday’s plenary.

Presenting the motion, Suleiman said the expressway was a critical artery for transporting people and agricultural goods in the northern corridor.

He said contract for the construction of the road was awarded by the Federal Government 17 years ago, by the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

He said that successive administrations had failed to complete the road.

‘Also notes that in 2018, the former president Muhammadu Buhari-led administration’s commitment to improving road transportation led to the award of so many road contracts to restore many dilapidated roads in the country.

‘Among these projects was the renewed
contract for the dualisation of the Kano – Maiduguri road.

‘Aware that a major transportation upgrade is on the horizon, a brand new two-lane highway will be built, along with improvements to the existing road.

‘To tackle this ambitious project, it has been divided into five manageable sections.

‘The first section focuses on the Kano – Wudil – Shuwarin road, while subsequent sections cover progressively connect Shuarin to Azare, Azare to Potiskum, Potiskum to Maiduguri, and finally, Maiduguri to Benishek,’ Sumaila said.

He said one of the sections was the most extensive, spanning roughly 202.73 kilometres.

He said as an international route linking Nigeria to Chad, Niger, and Cameroon, the Kano – Maiduguri Road facilitated cross-border trade.

‘The Dantata and Sawoe Construction Company Nigeria Lld., was awarded the contract for section one of the road, but despite initial work, the project appears to be behind schedule.

‘Worried that the unfinished section between Wudil and Gaya in Kano State is particu
larly dangerous.

‘One lane of the planned dual carriageway is complete, forcing drivers to navigate a single lane in both directions, this significantly increases the risk of accidents,’ he said.

He expressed worry that the unfinished section from Wudil to Gaya in Kano State posed grave danger to commuters.

He said the only one lane completed on a planned two-lane road, forced vehicles traveling in both directions to navigate a single lane.

‘This is a recipe for disaster, and immediate action is required to finish construction and ensure driver safety,’ he said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Less than 7% of women hold elective, appointive positions in Nigeria – NILDS

The National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS), says less than seven per cent of women have been represented in elective and appointive positions in Nigeria since 1999.

The institute said that the development was worrisome in spite of the 35 per cent affirmative action.

The NILDS Director-General, Prof. Abubakar Suleiman, said this in Abuja on Wednesday at a Train the Trainer Workshop for NILDS Staff on Gender Mainstreaming.

The workshop was facilitated by the UN Women in partnership with NILDS.

He said the workshop was designed to equip staff of the Institute with necessary tools and competencies to mainstream gender into policies, programs, and budgeting.

According to him, the workshop is expected to train NILDS Staff to improve the institutional capacity in gender policy analysis, equip them with knowledge on gender mainstreaming principles and methodologies.

This, he said, would help integrate gender perspectives into NILDS policies, programs, and activities and result in more
inclusive and gender-responsive initiatives.

‘It is indeed worrisome that despite the extant legal framework that recommends 35 per cent affirmative action of women participation, available data reveals that on the average, women participation and representation in governance since the advent of democratic rule in 1999 is less than seven per cent.’

The DG said the challenge facing all advocates of gender inclusivity in politics today was the wide gap between shared values reflected in the national and international policies and practices.

‘Despite concerted efforts made by government, NGOs, donor agencies and international partners towards ensuring increased participation and representation of women in politics and governance, there remains a continuous decline in women’s representation and participation in politics and governance.

‘I am optimistic that NILDS is strategically positioned in ensuring that women secure wider participation in governance by guiding policy makers to be able to make informed and
evidence-based policies to enhance gender participation in governance in Nigeria.’

Suleiman, however, said that there was the need to upscale the staff skills and competencies to effectively achieve the objective.

He commended NILDS partner, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), for also considering it a priority and a point of collaboration to put the workshop together despite limited resources.

‘Let me also seize this opportunity to once again reaffirm our commitment to our partnership and our collective drive to strengthen the legislature and other democratic institutions in Nigeria.

‘Women and men have different needs and living conditions and circumstances, including unequal access to and control over power, resources, human rights and institutions, including the justice system.

‘The situations of women and men also differ according to country, region, age, ethnic or social origin, or other factors.

‘The aim of gender mainstreaming is to take into ac
count these differences when designing, implementing and evaluating policies, programmes and projects, so that they benefit both women and men and do not increase inequality but enhance gender equality.

‘Gender mainstreaming aims to solve sometimes hidden- gender inequalities; it is therefore a tool for achieving gender equality.’

Suleiman, a former minister of National Planning, said the Institute had been a frontline vanguard in advocating for gender mainstreaming on all fronts of political, social and economic policies and legislations.

According to him, the fight for gender equality is not only an individual matter, but requires determination and commitment of decision-makers, state institutions in creating policies for reconciliation of different roles men and women play in the society.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Reps query oil coys over environmental degradation in Niger Delta

The House of Representatives Joint Committee on Environment, Petroleum Resources Upstream, Petroleum Resources Downstream and Climate Change has queried oil producing companies operating in the Niger Delta over environmental degradation in the region.

Rep. Pondi Gbabojor, the Chairman of the joint Committee, said this in Abuja on Wednesday at the public hearing on Environmental Damage within the oil-producing communities.

He said that the oil-producing communities had experienced environmental degradation and socio-economic marginalisation following decades of oil exploration and exploitation.

‘The abundant natural resources should have been a source of prosperity and development; rather, the host communities have suffered pollution and land degradation.

‘They also suffer from loss of biodiversity, and deterioration of traditional livelihoods that are inestimable and irreparable,’ he said.

He said that in spite of laws and regulations enacted to safeguard the environment and the established regulatory ag
encies, the environmental damages in oil-producing communities had persisted.

He said the committees would identify erring organisations and hold those responsible accountable.

‘Our environment is not just the backdrop of human action but the very essence of life and our sustenance,’ he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that 40 companies were invited to the hearing, but only 35 honored the invitation, including the Ministry of Environment, Dubi Oil Company, Nigerian Agip Oil Limited

Others were Starling Oil Exploration, Mobil Producing Nigeria Ltd. Resources Exploration and Production Ltd, First Exploration and Petroleum Development Company among others.

The oil companies however requested that the committees visited all the affected states that had experienced environmental degradation, especially the Ogoni Land.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Government committed to addressing workers’ plight: Amutenya

Swapo Party Youth leader Willem Amutenya has said the government is committed to ensuring dignified work and the rights of workers through progressive laws and policies to benefit the workers and continue driving the country’s development.

These laws protect workers’ rights to decent wages and benefits and safe and healthy working conditions.

Amutenya made the remarks during the belated commemoration of Workers’ Day held at Etambo Lyamushi in the Epembe Constituency on Wednesday.

He said the celebration of the crucial role of the working class in their country’s past and present comes with mixed emotions considering the alarmingly high unemployment rate among the Namibian youth.

While the working class are advocating for decent salaries, they also aim to advocate for improved working conditions and workers’ rights as they have qualified and able young people whose right to employment is suppressed.

‘Young people cannot find employment. The economy is also unfavourable that unemployed youth cannot survive
in towns while searching for job opportunities,’ he added.

He then called on the government to invest in rural areas mostly in providing services that encourage local investors and entrepreneurs to invest in rural areas and establish jobs for the youth.

Government, he said, should unlock the economic potential of Communal areas and allow communal land residents to participate in the economy of the 21st century.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

Make Lagos environment friendly for new corps members, Sanwo-Olu tells residents

Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu has called on Lagos residents to make the environment friendly for the new corps members posted to the state.

Sanwo-Olu made the call at the closing ceremony of the 2024 Batch A, Stream II orientation, held on Tuesday at the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) temporary orientation camp, Iyana-Ipaja, Lagos.

He also urged the corps members to make the service year have meaningful impact on the social-economic and political development of Lagos State and Nigeria at large.

‘I implore you to accept your posting to any part of Lagos and see it as an opportunity to participate in the community development programmes, impact your host community and leave indelible legacies.

‘These, your predecessors did in the areas of healthcare delivery system, educational services, social services amongst others, just as your services may be needed in the aforementioned.’

Sanwo-Olu, represented by Mr Ibukun Dosunmu, Director, General Service, Lagos State Ministry of Special Duties and Intergovernmenta
l Relations, said that the state government would continue to recognise and reward outstanding corps members at the end of the service year.

Baderinwa urged the corps members to be good ambassador of the scheme, family and communities in their places of assignment.

She said that it was fundamental for them to obey rules/regulations of NYSC.

‘Let the team spirit you cultivated while in camp guide your conducts, set aside tribal sentiments,

‘I wish you productive service year, remember that any erring corps member will be penalised in line with the NYSC by-law.

‘As these young patriots move to the next stage of their service year, being the primary and secondary assignments, I am optimistic that they’ll perform excellently, having been properly intimated with the tenets of the scheme,’ she added.

The coordinator expressed appreciation to corporate organisations and collaborating partners.

She said that some made impactful presence in the orientation camp, sponsoring social and sporting activities which a
dded colour and variety to the purpose of the course.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that some corps members and camp officials were identified for their outstanding performance during the three-week orientation course and given commendation letters at the event.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


SWAKOPMUND: Nestled within the community of DRC in Swakopmund lies a beacon of hope for disadvantaged youth: Venessa Kindergarten, soon to be renamed Namibian Woman and Children’s Foundation.

Founded by the determined Louisa Kativa, the kindergarten is not just a place of early education, but also a lifeline for teenagers and young mothers facing immense challenges.

Kativa, the current Swakopmund Constituency Councillor, is a former healthcare professional who noticed a dire need for support among pregnant teenage girls, often from underprivileged backgrounds.

These girls, burdened by societal pressures and lack of resources, faced bleak futures.

Determined to make a difference, Kativa embarked on a mission to provide them with educational opportunities and a path to independence.

‘During my past profession in the Ministry of Health, I encountered many young girls who dropped out of school due to teenage pregnancy or having no one to care for their babies when they wanted to go back to school. This then
prompted this initiative in 2018,’ she elaborated.

She explained that the institution operates on a unique model, catering specifically to the needs of teenage mothers, whose babies are cared for during the day, allowing mothers to attend school and breastfeed their infants during breaks while busy with homework.

‘This innovative approach not only supports the teenagers academically, but also fosters a nurturing environment for both mother and child. There are currently over 30 youth enlisted in the programme who depend on donations here and there to enable them to care and feed the needy youth and their children,’ she carried on.

Currently, there is only one caregiver and a few volunteers offering pre-primary education and daycare services.

Despite the institution’s aim to make a difference in society, the journey has not been without challenges as it faces several limitations such as dilapidated infrastructure, very limited space, and insufficient facilities.

The edu-carer at the kindergarten, Evanthia
Kazondunge, who took up the role in 2020, explained that despite the challenges posed by limited resources, the spirit of determination thrives within the walls of this modest institution.

‘The structure is falling apart, the roof is worn out, and the floor, once solid, now has to be covered with a plastic mat, causing water to pool in unexpected places when it rains or is too misty. The number of children is increasing, and they are now becoming crammed in the classroom,’ Kazondunge explained.

Despite these obstacles, the team remains steadfast in their commitment to providing quality education and support to the community’s youth.

The caregiver emphasised the potential of every child, saying they are dedicated to unlocking it, regardless of financial constraints, outlining some of the success stories at the institution.

One of the young people who has benefited and continues to benefit from this programme is 19-year-old Genesis Jafet, who is currently in Grade 10.

Jafet joined the programme last year w
hen she lost her one-year-old baby boy due to illness.

‘This programme helped me get over the ordeal of losing my baby while encouraging and motivating me to go back to school, which I was forced to drop out of as a result of falling pregnant. I did not have much support from home with my child after losing him. Joining this programme was the best decision I made for my future because I am now back in school and more determined than ever to complete my studies,’ she narrated.

Another such success story is Uakataviza Katjimune, a 27-year-old who is determined to rewrite his academic trajectory.

Despite facing setbacks after high school, Katjimune’s encounter with Venessa Kindergarten reignited his passion for learning.

He migrated from Okakarara to Swakopmund in pursuit of a better life for his parents and family back home and was then referred to the institution, which assisted him with his studies.

‘Through their financial assistance, I was able to upgrade my Grade 12, with an impressive 30 points, and
I would now like to pursue further studies in chartered accountancy. I am forever grateful to this institution for enabling me to come this far in my studies. Had it not been for them, I would not have been able to find myself on this path,’ he expressed.

Venessa Kindergarten is now seeking assistance in securing a larger plot of land to expand its facilities.

Additionally, funding is needed to sponsor university education for deserving students like Katjimune, ensuring that their aspirations are not limited by financial constraints.

Beyond academics, the school envisions a holistic approach to empowerment. Plans for a playground, though limited by space, symbolise the commitment to fostering physical well-being alongside mental growth.

Additionally, initiatives like gardening projects and entrepreneurial mentorship are needed to instil self-sufficiency and resilience within the community.

‘We do not just want hand-out assistance; we want to equip families with the tools to create their opportunities, to
build sustainable livelihoods,’ Kazondunge expressed.

The founder passionately advocated for the future of Namibia’s youth, with a clear message stating that no child should be left behind and through collective effort and support from the community, the programme will continue to be a beacon of hope, illuminating the path towards a brighter future for generations to come.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

Groups identify strategies for improved women’s participation in democracy

Women Advocates Research and Documentation Centre (WARDC) and Women for Women International have identified social and cultural norms as barriers to women’s freedom of speech and participation in democracy in Nigeria.

They made this known on Tuesday in Abuja at a roundtable on the publication of a research project titled ‘Listen to Women: Identifying Barriers to Women’s Freedom of Speech and Participation in Democracy in Nigeria.’

They said that addressing these challenges would not only enhance women freedom of speech, but also enhance adequate participation in democracy.

Dr Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, Founding Director, WARDC, noted that the prevalence of sociocultural norms still affected the ability of women to participate in peace processes in their communities and states.

Akiyode-Afolabi said ‘Women who have information and could support peace processes are being denied the opportunity to participate in spite of the fact that the country has signed the UN security council resolution.

‘The peace securit
y architecture in the state is not allowing women and accepting women to be part of it.

‘The project is called Listen to Women: Identifying the barriers Against Women’s Freedom of Speech and Participation in Democracy. It’s a project that focuses specifically on Plateau State but however has a national coverage.’

She explained that one of the recommendations of the research was for government to engender its security architecture to ensure that more women participate, especially in Plateau State, where the research was carried out.

‘Plateau State has signed the Gender and Equal Opportunity bill into law, which allows for women’s equal participation, so we are calling on the government to ensure that the law becomes activated,’ she said.

Also, Zainab Gbobaniyi, Advocacy Coordinator, Women for Women (WfWI) said the event was aimed at disseminating the research findings.

‘The research being an evidence based and carried out in five communities in Plateau State cutting across three local governments of Jos E
ast, Riyom and Pankshin, tells the stories directly from the women themselves,’ she said.

Also, Adedayo Benjamins-Laniyi, Federal Capital Territory, (FCT), Mandate Secretary, said the direction of the present administration was geared towards promoting the well-being of women, increasing their political participation and empowerment.

Bemjamins-Laniyi, while speaking on domestic violence and early child marriage, said ‘forming coalitions, working with traditional councils and working with male champions have yielded a lot of results and I think that is a very good approach.’

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Oshikoto celebrates Nurses Day by awarding hardworking nurses

OMUTHIYA: The Ministry of Health and Social Services directorate in the Oshikoto Region commemorated International Nurses Day by presenting awards to hardworking nurses in the region.

A total of 50 nurses and student nurses gathered at the Omuthiya District Hospital on Wednesday to commemorate the day in the Oshikoto Region.

The Chief Regional Nurse and Acting Regional Director, John Lumbu has highlighted that nurses are the core of health services and are recognised and appreciated for their contribution to the healing of individuals, families, communities, and the nation at large.

‘When the going gets tough, take time out and invite the Lord as a physician and healer to guide you in your ways,’ said Lumbu.

He urged management and support services to ensure that nurses and other health workers are supported and equipped to deliver quality care at all times and integrate innovations to fast-track advances in health care.

‘We know nurses and midwives make a world of difference to people’s lives, therefore
it is with humility that the Oshikoto team thank each of you for all that you do,’ said Lumbu.

International Nurses Day is celebrated globally on 12 May every year in recognition of the tireless contribution of nurses to saving lives and providing quality nursing care for their patients.

This year’s theme is ‘Our nurses, our future, the economic power of care’.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency

FCTA demolishes illegal shanties in Wuse Zone 3

The Department of Development Control, Abuja Metropolitan Management Council of the FCT Administration, has demolished shanties illegally built on a road corridor in Wuse Zone 3.

The Coordinator of the Council, Mr Felix Obuah, told journalists after the exercise in Abuja on Wednesday, that the move was part of efforts to clear all shanties in the city.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the shanties, called by the occupants as Unguwan Yan Lambu, were built over 27 years ago.

The shanties have been demolished several times but were rebuilt by the occupants.

Obuah said that the location was preserved for a road corridor, adding that the illegal occupation has became a security threat, apart from defacing the beauty of the city.

‘Also disturbing is that criminals and miscreants have made this location a safe haven.

‘So, we decided to come and clear all the shanties and remove the criminals that have taken over the road corridor to give Abuja its desired beauty.

‘We can’t allow this again. Our a
im is to beautify the city and make Abuja a city we will all be proud of,’ he said.

He added that a taskforce would be set up to make sure that none of the illegal occupants rebuild any shanty in the area again.

He also announced plans to relocate the occupants to a permanent location to ensure that no one returns.

‘We are going to write a memo to the FCT Minister, Mr Nyesom Wike, to seek his approval and see how far we can go about the relocation plan.

‘From what we can see, there are huge number of people illegally residing here. So, if we can relocate them within a very short possible time, they will not come back here again.

‘We are also going to make provisions to make sure that they do not suffer undue hardship.

‘You see, some of the occupants are very young; some with children, and out of my pocket, I have donated a small amount of money to enable them to relocate immediately.

‘If we don’t take this measure now, they will go to another place and create nuisance,’ Obuah said.

Responding to the d
evelopment, Malam Mohammed Musa, the chairman of the community, said that the area was occupied by about 1,000 people, including women and children.

Musa said that the occupants, predominantly dry season farmers, have been there for about 27 years, with some made up of 15 family members.

He acknowledged receiving a notice of the demolition and thanked the government for allowing them to stay there for over 27 years and to make a living in dry season farming.

He, however, called on the FCT Administration to come to their aid, adding that some of them were displaced from their homes by bandits and other forms of insecurity.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria

Uutoni inaugurates N.dollars 9.5 million fire station at Oranjemund

KEETMANSHOOP: Minister of Urban and Rural Development, Erastus Uutoni, on Tuesday inaugurated a fire station constructed at a cost of N.dollars 9.5 million at Oranjemund.

The construction of the fire station funded by the ministry in collaboration with the Oranjemund Town Council.

Uutoni said the fire station will significantly improve the town’s emergency response capabilities through centralising resources and providing modern equipment, adding that the new fire station ensures that firefighters will be better equipped to respond quickly and effectively to any emergency.

‘Fire is a powerful force and can destroy lives, but if we are well equipped we can conquer these dangerous situations. May this station serve as a beacon of safety and readiness for our community, and may our firefighters always return safely from their duty,’ said Uutoni.

The minister also unveiled a new ambulance acquired by the town council to support the Ministry of Health and Social Services, amongst others by improving response t
imes in emergencies.

‘I am confident that council is better prepared to face emergencies now and that you will continue to build a safer future for all. I urge you as a community to continue working together in order to build a safer and more resilient Oranjemund,’ said the minister.

The event also served as the commemoration of International Firefighters’ Day and Uutoni told emergency responders at the gathering their work is highly appreciated.

‘The government through my ministry continues to fulfil its mandatory obligations to ensure that there are necessary mechanisms in place that will ensure your wellness and that you are operating in a supportive environment. We also remember our brave sons and daughters who have lost their lives or got injured while having boots on the ground,’ Uutoni said.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency