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Labour Day: Gov Ortom Commends Workers

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As Nigeria joins the rest of the world to observe the 2020 International Labour Day, Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom appreciates workers of the state for their commitment, understanding and cooperation, particularly in the fight against COVID-19.

Governor Ortom says the workers have demonstrated uncommon determination and professionalism in all sectors to support the State Government in taking proactive measures to prevent the spread of the disease.

He specially commends workers who are on essential duties such as healthcare and other services for putting in extra hours daily to ensure that Benue does not have additional COVID-19 cases, after the index case.

Governor Ortom says no reward can adequately compensate the workers for their sacrifice to the state, and urges them to sustain that level of patriotism.

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He restates the resolve of his administration to ensure that the welfare of workers especially salaries and pensions remains its priority.

The Governor however explains that Benue, like other states of the Federation, had no option than to revise the 2020 Budget from N189 billion to N119 billion, in response to the impending global economic crisis which is estimated to contract the economy of Nigeria by 3.4%, a situation that will have adverse impact on the states.

Governor Ortom stresses that as a result, his administration has embarked on a number of measures to boost agriculture and increase food production. One of such steps, he says, is the recent sale of 50 tractors to Benue farmers at 60% subsidy.

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He maintains that as part of measures to mitigate the negative effect of the looming recession, the present administration has resolved to take advantage of Benue’s rich agricultural potentials, by not only producing food for consumption but also for commercial purposes.

This, the Governor points out, led to the setting up of the Agriculture Value Chain, Review and Development Cooperation Committee, with him as Chairman.

Governor Ortom encourages workers of the state and other Benue people to take advantage of the COVID-19 period which has forced many of them to stay at home and engage in massive farming.

On the fight against Coronavirus, Governor Ortom commends the people for the impressive level of compliance with the rules on COVID-19.
He expects greater cooperation as the partial lockdown continues, which he describes as painful but necessary in the interest of all.

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The Governor states that though no new case of Coronavirus has been found in Benue, it is important that the people remain vigilant and adhere to preventive measures against the pandemic such as the use of face masks, hand sanitizers, frequent hand washing and social distancing

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Breaking: Labour Suspends Today Planned Strike As FG Reverses Electricity Tariff Hike

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The Nigeria Labour Congress and the Trade Union Congress have suspended the strike scheduled to commence today (Monday).

This followed an agreement reached with the Federal Government at a meeting which started at 8.30pm on Sunday and ended at 2:50am this morning.

After exhaustive deliberations on the issues raised by the labour centres, the meeting agreed to suspend the application of the cost-reflective electricity tariff adjustments for two weeks.

The Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, read the five-page communique signed by the representatives of the government and labour.

The NLC President, Ayuba Wabba; and his Trade Union Congress counterpart, Quadri Olaleye, amongst others signed on behalf of Organised Labour while the Minister of Labour, Chris Ngige; Minister of State Petroleum, Timipre Silva; Minister of State Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo (SAN); Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed; and the Secretary to Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha and others, signed on behalf of the government.

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Olaleye confirmed the development in an interview with The PUNCH on Monday morning.

He said, “Definitely correct. We just left a press conference. We signed a document to suspend the action for two weeks for the government to implement those things that we agreed in the agreement. So, we are suspending for two weeks.

“We don’t need a notice again to re-convene if there is a need to do that.”

The parties agreed to set up a technical committee comprising Ministries, Departments, Agencies, NLC and TUC.

 

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Senator Abbo’s followers Pledge Loyalty To Gov Fintiri

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Some key followers of Sen Ishaku Abbo of Adamawa North District have declared a shifting of loyalty to Governor Ahmadu Fintiri.

Although, Abbo is in the same Peoples Democratic Party ((PDP) with the state governor, Abbo has been a critic of both the party and the governor, waging an unending battle against both.

In an action indicating disaffection against him by some within his own support base on Friday, however, many among his supporters visited Governor Fintiri, pledging their loyalty to him.

Members of the delegation to the Government House in Yola, led by Abbo Support Group’s former Coordinator, Peter Ishaya Kwache, told Fintiri that he now had their “complete shift of loyalty”.

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Mr. Kwache said they were members of the PDP, who worked to ensure the success of all candidates of the party in the 2019 general election, particularly Abbo, but that they had for a while been at a loss about Abbo’s relentless criticism of the party and the government led by Fintiri.

 

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Water Bill: A Northern Agenda To Righten The Noose On The South – Rep Member

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The Member representing Ughelli North, Ughelli South and Udu federal constituency in the House of Representatives, Hon. Francis Waive, has described the Water Resources Bill as a Northern agenda to tighten the noose on the Southern part of the country.

Hon Waive who is a member of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC from Delta State in a statement, weekend while expressing concerns on the bill, explained that though some provisions in the bill are welcoming and warm, because of the nature of governance and the tendencies to misuse powers in the country, “we cannot at this point in time properly handle this kind of a law without causing more harm than good.”

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According to him, “One will be tempted to ask, what is the intention behind this law? Is it really for the general good of the Nigerian people as it states? How well has the various natural resources been managed for the general good?”

Speaking further, he said: “The oil from the Niger Delta region has not positively impacted the life of the people from the Niger Delta and the one who bears the impact of the exploration activities.

“The various River Basins which are currently under the control of the government, has not been properly managed; instead it has been grossly politicized, how then can the government manage and control all the water bodies in the country.

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“According to public opinion this law is a Northern agenda to further tighten the noose on the South, because obviously the majority of the states from the middle belt down south are surrounded by water. There is also a high resemblance of intentions of some provisions of this act with that of the unsuccessful RUGA bill.

“In my opinion, the bill is of no immediate benefit to the generality of the populace at this point in time, plus we have not developed enough as a country to be able to properly manage all the resources we have to now begin to look at water. Water is the least of our problems as a country.”

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