Good morning Nigeria, welcome to Naija News roundup of top newspaper headlines in Nigeria for today, Wednesday, 28th June 2023
President Bola Ahmed Tinubu on Tuesday returned to Nigeria after trips to Paris, London.
His arrival is following his first official visit outside the country as president.
Upon his arrival, President Tinubu was received by his Chief of Staff, Femi Gbajabiamila; Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State; National Security Adviser Nuhu Ribadu and others.
The apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo has appealed to the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Richard Montgomery for the sentence against former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu to be reduced.
The organization said it has accepted the verdict of the court against Ekweremadu, his wife, and the doctor involved in the organ harvesting charge but wants Montgomery to help in any way possible for the jail term to be reduced.
Ohanaeze made the appeal when it played host to the British High Commissioner at the National Secretariat of Ohanaeze Ndigbo in Enugu.
One of the leaders of the group, Archbishop Emmanuel Chukwuma, said they would be happy if Ekweremadu’s jail term is reduced.
Vice President Kashim Shettima has made a pledge to Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in Nigeria.
He said the Bola Tinubu led government is committed to ensuring the growth and development of MSMEs in the country.
According to him, it was for this reason that the government is committed to making loan accessible and fast to MSMEs In Nigeria, Naija News learnt.
He appealed to all stakeholders to come together to champion the growth and success of MSMEs to achieve sustainable development in Nigeria.
Shettima, on Tuesday, made this submission in a message to mark the 2023 World Micro Small and Medium Enterprises Day.
President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has celebrated with Muslims in Nigeria and all over the world to mark the 2023 Eid-el-Kabir.
In a statement he personally signed and obtained by Naija News on Tuesday, the President thanked Allah for the grace to witness another Eid.
Tinubu, in the statement titled ‘We Must Multiply Our Good Deeds’, urged Nigerians to remember those who may not be as fortunate to celebrate.
The President said: “Coming as the end of religious activities spanning the first ten days of the Islamic Month of Dhul Hijjah, Eid-el-Kabir enjoins us as Muslims to show mercy and compassion to our fellow humans.
“Eid-el-Kabir is a festival of sacrifice and total obedience to Allah as exemplified in the exceptional action of Prophet Ibrahim.
The Federal Government has sought the support of the European Union (EU) in its quest to deepen and consolidate its democratic practices, particularly, as it concerns its electoral processes.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation, George Akume, made the appeal while receiving the delegation from the European Union Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) led by its Chief Observer, Barry Andrews in his office.
While giving the trajectory of Nigeria’s democratic development, the SGF said the nation has enjoyed a considerable improvement in its electoral processes over the years and therefore appealed for support to consolidate the gains so far achieved since the return to democratic rule in the country.
He thanked the European Union Observation Mission for participating in the 2023 General Election across the country and emphasized the importance of the use of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) in the electoral process which was a game changer during the election.
Akume observed that the country made a lot of progress in the 2023 general elections and called on the EU to continue to support such progress made to advance democratic principles in the country.
Speaking earlier, the leader of the EU Delegation said the purpose of their visit was to present their final report of the 2023 General Election which they monitored after their deployment to Nigeria.
He added that the report comprises six priority recommendations, to include on constitutional, legislative, and administrative.
The presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi has criticized the recent demolitions at the Alaba International Market by the Lagos State Government.
While Obi acknowledged that some of the demolitions might have a reasonable justification, he expressed concerns over the impact on the ordinary people, whom he believes might have been ill-informed or misguided.
According to Obi, the main responsibility of any government is to care for and protect its citizens.
He voiced his concerns on Tuesday through a statement issued via his verified Twitter account.
The former governor of Anambra State asserted that “necessary corrective measures to planning or zoning violations by governments, need not be punitive or unduly insensitive.”
Recall that the Lagos Government commenced the demolition of what it termed as distressed buildings in the Alaba International Market, located in the Ojo Local Government Area, on June 16.
The exercise was carried out by the enforcement team of the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA) and the Lagos State Task Force.
Amidst ensuing controversies, the government maintained that the demolitions were preventative measures against potential disasters.
Despite the government’s explanation, Obi insisted that Nigerian citizens should not be subjected to unexpected hardships due to these governmental actions.
Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, and his wife, Ibijoke, allegedly used invalid voter cards to cast their votes during the last 2023 governorship election in the state.
The allegation was made by a witness at the Lagos State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal headed by Justice Arum Ashom on Monday, June 26,
The witness, Dayo Isreal, who was subpoenaed to testify in the petition filed by the governorship candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour, on the activities of the March 18 election, told the court that card reader used at Sanwo-Olu’s polling unit showed his card was invalid, but that the governor and his wife were allowed to go on with their voting.
While being led in evidence by the Rhodes-Vivour’s lead counsel, Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Olumide Ayeni, the witness told the court that he served as an agent for the Labour Party for Unit 006, Ward 15, Lagos Island Local Government in the Governorship Election.
The Inspector General of Police, Olukayode Egbedokun, has ordered the deployment of patrol on highways and worship centeres nationwide to ensure adequate security throughout the Eid-el-Kabir celebration.
In a statement on Tuesday, the Force Spokesperson, Muyiwa Adejobi, said the police chief directed Zonal Assistant Inspector Generals of Police and Commissioners of Police to deploy personnel and equipment across the country.
He also ordered them to carry out patrols on major highways, flash points, worship and relaxation centres, among others, to have a hitch-free celebration.
Egbetokun, however, warned personnel deployed for various assignments during the celebration to be disciplined, professional and respect the fundamental rights of the citizens.
The police chief also congratulated Muslim Faithful in the country on the occasion of the year 2023 Eid-el-Kabir celebration.
The All Progressives Congress (APC), Nigeria’s ruling party, has set a July 11 date for its National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting, following intense pressure on the National Chairman, Senator Abdullahi Adamu.
The party’s National Vice Chairman, Northwest, Salihu Moh. Lukman has been pushing for the meeting.
Before the NEC meeting, a meeting of the party’s National Caucus will take place on July 10.
The meeting dates were finalized after getting approval from President Bola Tinubu.
He was given three options to choose from and decided on these dates. President Bola Tinubu returned to Nigeria on Tuesday after visits to Paris and London.
This is the second NEC meeting convened by Adamu in over a year since he took office.
His reluctance to hold regular party meetings has caused friction with Lukman, who has criticized Adamu for managing the ruling party like a military command, rather than a democratic institution.
Lukman on different occasions had accused the National Chairman of the ruling party of taking decisions alongside the National Secretary of the party, Iyiola Omisore without the contribution of other members of the NEC.
The Zuba Magistrate Court in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, has ordered the Kuje Correctional facility to continue holding Obiajulu Uja in their custody for further urgent medical treatment for a period of 2 months.
Naija News reports that Uja, in early April, was carried off a Lagos-Abuja flight, after he started a lone protest demanding that President Bola Tinubu (then President-Elect) must never be sworn in as President, on May 29.
The man is said to be mentally-unstable, according to a medical report tendered to the Court at previous hearings, on the case.
But Magistrate Abdulazeez Ismail Muhammad, the trial judge, at the hearing on the matter today, referred him back to the medical facility at Kuje Correctional facility.
After listening to submissions of the prosecutor and defence counsels on bail application as well as the examination of the medical report which presupposed that the defendant is suffering from mental disorder, the magistrate noted that the defendant is of unsound mind and consequently is not fit for trial.