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Police To Dismiss 37 Ex-SARS Officers, Prosecute 24

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The report of the Presidential Panel on Reform of Anti-Robbery Squad, (SARS) has recommended the dismissal of 37 ex-SARS personnel and prosecution of 24 others.
Also, the Police Service Commission on Friday, October 16th 2020 met with the National Human Rights Commission and promised to speed up action on the implementation of the Report of the Presidential Panel on Reform of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).
The National Human Rights Commission team led by its Executive Secretary, Tony Ojukwu was in the Police Service Commission to formally present the 2018 Report of the Presidential Panel and to solicit the PSC support in the implementation of the aspects of the Report covered by PSC constitutional mandate.
The Presidential Panel had among other things investigated allegations of human rights violations and abuse of office against SARS and recommended reform or restructuring of the outfit.
Receiving the delegation, PSC Chairman, Musiliu Smith, retired Inspector General of Police, said the PSC will collaborate and support the Human Rights Commission in the promotion of good governance.
He, however, said that for effective reform of the much-maligned SARS, there must be a deliberate effort to select capable, professional and credible people to replace the disbanded outfit.
The selected Officers, he added, must be properly trained and exposed to regular training.
Smith said there must also be close supervision of the newly selected officers so that the nation will not experience the rot that became the fate of the disbanded unit.
Any misconduct, he noted, should be severely and promptly handled.
He, however, said the government should show more concern to the funding of its vital Agencies as these Agencies need funds to do their job.
He also made a case for proper and ‘living accommodation for the Officers of the Nigeria Police, stressing that these Officers need good accommodation to put in their best.
The Executive Secretary of the Human Rights Commission told the PSC Chairman that PSC has all it takes to deal appropriately with the Report of the Presidential Panel on Reform of Anti-Robbery Squad, (SARS).
“We have come to see a PSC determined to play a leading role in the reform of the Nigeria Police Force”, he said.
Ojukwu said the reform is the most topical issue in the country today, adding that a lot is expected from the PSC.
He noted that the Panel called for and received 113 complaints on alleged human rights violations from across the country and 22 memoranda on suggestions on how to reform and restructure SARS and the Nigeria Police in general.
“The Panel also directed the Inspector General of Police to unravel the identity of 22 officers involved in the violation of the human rights of innocent citizens.
A copy of the Report was thereafter presented to the Commission.

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Banks’ CEOs Hold Emergency Meeting Over BDCs’ Forex Ban 

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Bank Chief Executive Officers on Thursday, held an emergency meeting on how to ensure compliance with the new forex directive of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

After the meeting, they spoke during a webinar organised to give an update on the banks’ preparedness to be the main channel of forex distribution, following the recent discontinuity of forex supply to the BDC operators by the CBN.

The executives assured the public that banks would make forex available to customers in accordance with the CBN’s directives.

After the last Monetary Policy Committee meeting, the Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, had ordered all Deposit Money Banks to set up teller points at designated branches across the country to fulfil legitimate FX request for personal travel allowance, business travel allowance, tuition fees, medical payments and SMEs transactions, among others.

Speaking at the webinar, the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Access Bank Plc, Herbert Wigwe, said, “The banking industry as a whole was willing and ready to carry out this function. The banks have very strict compliance measures, in terms of verification and making sure that people who do apply are eligible.

“All Nigerian banks will be able to meet these requirements. If you look at all the branches nationwide, you will know that the banks have more than enough capacity to do this.”

He said if the banks saw any compliance issues, or people attempting to do things cunning, they would be reported to the CBN because the banks would ensure full compliance with the order.

The Group Chief Executive Officer, Guaranty Trust Holding Company Plc, Mr Segun Agbaje, while speaking on the capacity of the banks to meet the customers demand, said, “It is not only the CBN that has the ability to fund the market; the banks also have the resources to meet the demand, and we have agreed collectively that it will start immediately.”

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Nigeria Needs $2.3tn To Address Infrastructure Deficit, Says FG

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Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, said that the country need $2.3tn to address its national integrated infrastructure masterplan.

He said this in Abuja on Thursday at a town hall meeting themed: ‘Nigeria’s infrastructure revolution: Road to a new future’, organised by Business Hallmark.

According to him, the 23-year masterplan (2020-2043) is for the development of infrastructure including roads, railway network and maritime sector.

The event was chaired by a former national chairman of the All Progressives Congress and former governor of Edo State, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun.

Mustapha said, “Conscious of the economic disruption caused by 2016 recession and COVID-19 as well as challenges of previous reforms, the Federal Government revised the 23 year (2020-2043) national integrated infrastructure masterplan that identified critical enablers.

“For the 23-year period, $2.3tn will be required, translating to about $150bn annually and the private sector and other partners have to provide 56 per cent, while Federal Government and state governments will provide 44 per cent of the share of the investment.

“The Federal Government has made important strides towards providing much of our infrastructure and has, in recent years, conducted several infrastructural reforms.

“Specifically, we are extending and upgrading the nation’s railway network and introducing more locomotive couches. The port sector has been converted to landlocked model and terminal.

“Similarly, Public Private Partnership style infrastructure company with an initial seed capital of N1tn envisaging to grow over time to N6tn in assets and capital has been established and will soon commence operation.

“It will be one of the premier finance entities in Africa and will be wholly dedicated to Nigeria’s infrastructure development.

“The reduction in Nigeria’s infrastructural gap will also give the country a competitive advantage under the newly signed Africa Free Continental Area Trade Agreement.”

The Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu, deplored the water crises in Nigeria saying no community in the country enjoyed water supply always.

He said, “In 1992, 30 per cent of the Nigerian population was enjoying pipe-borne water and as of 2015, it had dropped to seven per cent.

“In 2015, we were at 68 per cent national coverage for access to water and as of today, we are at 70 per cent and maybe by the time the result for 2021 comes out, we might be at 71 per cent to 72 per cent.

“As for water quality, 90 per cent of water consumed, including water from the boreholes, are contaminated and water is the basic necessity of life.”

Oyegun, in his contribution at the event, said six years going, the performance of the regime of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), had been mixed.

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NERC: Over 1m Electricity Consumers Have Received Prepaid Meters

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