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Fayemi Signs Amotekun Bill Into Law

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Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi on Monday signed the bill for the establishment of the state Security Network Agency and Amotekun Corps into law.

The House of Assembly on February 14 passed the bill and forwarded it to the governor for his assent after exhaustive points-by-points and clause-by-clause scrutinization of the bill.

The security outfit was initiated by the six South-West governors to tackle the prevailing security challenges facing the region.

Presenting the bill to the governor at the event held at the popular Jibowu Hall inside the Government House, Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, the Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Funminiyi Afuye, said the House had fulfilled its fundamental responsibility of making people-oriented laws that would guarantee adequuate protection of lives and property of the people of the state.

Afuye expressed optimism that the bill when sign into law would stem the tide of kidnapping, banditry, armed robbery and other manifestation of criminalities that have continued to constitute hindrances to people’s normal social and economic life.

He said the homogeneity of Yoruba race, in terms of politics, culture and history made the Amotekun gained traction in the southwest region.

” It is clear that the police are overwhelmed, overstreched and overburdened. This is where the concept behind Amotekun stemmed from. I want to also douse the tension and clarify that it won’t compete with police but will complement it”, he said.

In his remarks at the event witnessed by top government functionaries and traditional rulers, Fayemi warned criminals to steer clear of Ekiti, boasting that “Amotekun Corps will get you wherever you hide”.

The governor said the security outfit would not be politicised but rather strengthen to ensure that criminals within and outside the state had no breathing space.

The governor said the resilience of Ekiti kete and Yoruba race brought the security outfit to full operation, stressing the scenario leading to the formation of Amotekun corps was novel since the advent of democracy in 1999.

“Since the advent of democracy in 1999, this is the first time when Yoruba people will speak with one voice without political or religious considerations”, he said.

Speaking about the event leading to the formation of the corps, Fayemi said: “As a responsible and responsive government,it is our belief that security is significant and we won’t toy with security of lives and property.

“The current challenges of proliferation of small arms, rutial killings, banditry, youth restiveness , cattle rustling , insurgency and terrorism are daunting.

“In tackling some of these menaces, which surfaced in the southwest region, the governors in the zone officially launched Western Nigeria Security Network in Ibadan on Jan 20, 2020 at and the bill that will form the legal framework was passed by the State House of Assembly .

“Let me clarify that Amotekun will help the police to arrest, gather intelligence and information , arrest and prosecution of criminals , tackle illegal mining, land trespass, cattle rustling, destruction of crops, tresspass into farmlands, cultism, highway robbery, among others.

“Amotekun is not a substitute to the existing security networks , but a complement to it. It is not for Ekiti people alone, but for everbody. As long as you are resident in Ekiti, you enjoy the right to be protected , so it is not for the indigenes alone.

“Crime fighting is a collective responsibility. Those perpetrating crimes are living among us and let us be vigilant and help the Amotekun Corps fish out criminals in our midst”, he said.

Fayemi promised that the handlers of Amotekun will be thorough with the issues of recruitment, training and deployment of the operatives , for efficiency and effectiveness of the network.

“The issues of recruitment, training and deployment will be carefully considered. All the operatives will work in areas where they understand better”.

The governor charged the royal fathers to coalesce efforts with the security network to get rid criminal-minided people at the grassroots.

The Chairman, Ekiti State Council of traditional rulers, Oba Adebanji Alabi , described the signing of the bill as epochal in the annal of history of yorubaland and worthy of celebration.

“You could all remember the events leading to kidnapping, banditry, destruction of crops in the southwest . It was like the region was under siege .

“The governor, Dr Kayoe Fayemi and other colleagues championed the course and worked hard to achieve this success despite encumbrances and obstacles.

“But for Amotekun to be a success, it rests on three things, the recruitment, which must be painstakingly done. The Government and the Obas must make sure we have round pegs in round holes.

“Number two is training , they must be properly trained , groomed in the act of security, information and intelligence gathering , how to guard against sabotage among other skills required of them. The third one is good and strategic deployment, so that we won’t have security operatives that will be ineffective and kleptomaniac”, he advised.

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‘It’s Suicidal ’, Labour Rejects FG’s Plans To Slash Salaries

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The Organised Labour has condemned and rejected the plan by the Federal Government to slash the salaries of workers in the country.

The President of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Ayuba Wabba, who said this in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja, noted that the plan was tantamount to a “mass suicide” wish, for Nigerian workers.

Waba said that NLC was shocked at a statement credited to the Minister of Finance, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, on the plan to reduce the high cost of governance by cutting down on the workers’ salaries.

”The minister also allegedly directed the National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission (NSIWC), to immediately review the salaries of civil servants as well as the number of federal agencies in the country.

”It is almost unthinkable that the government would be contemplating to unilaterally slash the salaries of Nigerian workers at this time,” he said.

Wabba added that, “the question to ask is which salary is the government planning to slash? It certainly cannot be the meager national minimum wage of N30, 000, which right now cannot even buy a bag of rice”.

He expressed the belief that the proposed slash in salaries was certainly not targeted at the minimum wage and consequential adjustment in salaries that some state governors were still dragging their feet to pay.

According to him, it is in public knowledge that the multiple devaluations of the Naira in a short time, and the prevailing high inflation rate in Nigeria, have knocked out the salaries earned by Nigerian workers across the board.

”Nigerian workers are only surviving by hair’s breadth. Indeed, Nigerian workers are miracles strutting on two legs.

”It is, therefore, extremely horrendous for a minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to pronounce salary slash for Nigerian workers currently.

”This call for salary slash by Mrs Zainab Ahmed is tantamount to a “mass suicide” wish, for Nigerian workers,” he said.

While opposing the move, he demanded an immediate retraction and apology by the Minister of  Finance.

The NLC president, however, said that if there was any salary that needed serious slashing, “it is the humongous remuneration and allowances pocketed by political office holders in Nigeria, who do extraordinarily little but collect so much.

”Workers generate surplus value and revenue for the government.

”We do not constitute any unnecessary cost or burden to governance. It is also important to make the point that salaries are products of contracts governed by laws. They cannot be unilaterally adjusted.”

He said that many countries of the world were increasing the salaries of their workforce and extending social security coverage for their citizens.

According to him, many are providing all forms of palliatives to help their people through the terrible socio-economic dislocations occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Waba said that it would be completely strange for the Nigerian government to be thinking of a salary slash.

“This move is not only at great odds with global best responses to the COVID-19 pandemic but also in violation of relevant ILO Conventions and Declarations on Wages and Decent Work.

“We urge the government as a social partner to quickly respond to the demands by Labour for an upward review of salaries of all Nigerian workers.

“Nigerian workers have shown sufficient understanding with the government through the tough patches of the pandemic.

“Now, Nigerian workers demand reciprocity of our understanding. Nigerian workers demand an increase in their remunerations and allowances,” he said.

NAN

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Paying ransomt To Kidnappers Is Foolishness —Obasanjo

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Former President, Olusegun Obasanjo, on Wednesday, has cautioned against the payment of ransom to kidnappers.

He, however, submitted that the government must develop means to deal with kidnappers and bandits heavily in place of ransom payment.

He noted that the governments of both President Goodluck Jonathan and Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) paid ransom to kidnappers but they denied it.

Obasanjo said he does not believe in payment of ransom to kidnappers and bandits, saying it encouraged criminals indulging in the act.

The former president berated any government that pays ransom, describing them as follies.

Obasanjo spoke on Wednesday at his residence in Abeokuta, Ogun State, while playing host to members of Tiv professionals Group led by Prof Zacharys Anger Gundu.

Obasanjo insisted that it requires a “carrot and stick” approach to fight insecurity challenges to a standstill.

He said “Some people are still reaching out, and hoping that lives can still be saved. But a situation whereby anybody thinks paying ransom is the way out, that person is folly. He is a folly. This is because when you pay ransom, you encourage. But if you are not going to pay ransom, you must have the means to deal heavily with it. You must have the stick to deal with it.

“Government has always paid ransom. Not only this government, even during Jonathan (administration). They paid ransom, but they denied it.”

Obasanjo expressed fears that those beating drums of division in Nigeria don’t think about the interest of the minority ethnic groups.

He added, “Where do we want those minor groups to stand? Wherever they stand, now they are by virtue of Nigeria’s present situation a little bit protected. But if Nigeria breaks up and they are in a smaller country, they will be oppressed. They will always be exterminated. Are we thinking of that?

“I believe that if we will get it right in Nigeria, any leader must look at Nigeria with the prism of the diversity of Nigeria. For as long as you look at Nigeria with the prism of your ethnic group, then you aren’t going anywhere, either your ethnic group or religious group.

“But is there hope? There is hope.”

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Gumi Warns Against Sacking Pantami, Says Nigeria Will Regret If…

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Popular Islamic scholar, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi Monday warned that Nigerians will regret if the embattled Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami is sacked from office.
Gumi who gave the warning during an interview with Roots TV said allegations against the embattled Minister were not true and should be discarded.
You would recall that different groups, politicians have since called for the resignation of the Minister over his past support for terror groups insisting that Pantami’s renunciation was not enough.
But in the interview, Gumi said Nigeria should get more people like Pantami and put them in power instead of calling for his removal.
“You cannot Islamise the whole world. Jesus Christ came; he could not Christianise the whole world. Nobody can Islamise or Christianise Nigeria,” Gumi began.
“All his actions, one hundred percent, shows he is not a terrorist. Those who are terrorists are after his life. The Minister should continue. His presence there is fighting the terrorist ideology.
“Show me, one person, he has killed. He has not killed anybody. He has not ordered the killing of anybody. Discard the fake news.
“The man is stabilizing a government among a section of youths, which we want them to come and join in nation-building. They should not throw him away. Leave him. He is not a terrorist sympathizer.
“And you people are fighting them. No. You should get more people like Pantami and put them in power. It will stabilize. Don’t remove him. You’ll regret,” he stated.

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