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El-Rufai dumps ministerial job five days after Senate rejection



Former Kaduna State governor Nasir El-Rufai, has thrown in the towel, five days after the Senate failed to clear him as one of the ministers in the government of President Ahmed Bola Tinubu, saying he was no longer interested in the job, instead, reportedly recommending his own replacement.

The former governor, said to have been nailed by security report from the office of Nuhu Ribadu, National Security Adviser (NSA), was one of the three nominees, whose clearance at the Senate, were kept pending after its sitting on Monday, when it announced the names of other 45 nominees, for the federal cabinet.

El-Rufai, a staunch supporter of Tinubu’s presidential ambition before the election, and two other ministerial nominees – Stella Okotete from Delta State and Sani A Danladi from Taraba State were not confirmed by the Senate due to problems with security clearance.

PREMIUM TIMES, quoting the Presidency, reports that the former governor, whose eight years in office in Kaduna State, was characterised by multiple cases of carnages arising from ethnic conflicts and religious schisms, was also steeped into serious controversy recently, when a video of him castigating Christians in Nigeria surfaced in the social media, had informed Tinubu that he was no longer interested in the job.

Though he was said to have told the President that he was no longer interested in being a minister in his government, he was said to have pledged to continue contributing his quota to national development as a private citizen, and thereafter, recommended Jafaru Ibrahim Sani who served as commissioner in three ministries – Local Government Education and Environment in Kaduna State – as his replacement.

El-Rufai, who catapulted himself into public reckoning, when he embarked on massive demolitions of structures termed illegal as former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), after his appointment from the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), where he was the Director General, was said to have informed the President that he ‘needed time to focus on his doctorate programme at a university in The Netherlands’ and assured the president that he would find Sani ‘very useful and resourceful’ in the government.

Though the paper said the story was yet to be confirmed by the former governor’s camp, as Muyiwa Adekeye, his spokesman was yet to speak on the matter, added that Tinubu, while acknowledging the move, asked him for time to review the petitions written against him and the report of the Department of State Services (DSS), said to be responsible for the Senate not clearing him.

The Senate confirmed all 45 other ministerial nominees including former minister of state for labour and employment Festus Keyamo whose nomination was most recent and faced stiff opposition with the lawmakers during his screening.

Those confirmed include Ekperikpe Ekpo (Akwa Ibom), Heineken Lolokpobri (Bayelsa), Betta Edu (Cross River), John Owan Enoh (Cross River), Festus Keyamo (Delta), Abubakar Momoh (Edo), Nyesom Wike (Rivers), Tahir Mamman (Adamawa), Yusuf Maitama Tuggar (Adamawa), Ali Pate (Bauchi), Abubakar Kyari (Borno), Alkali Ahmed Saidu (Gombe), Uba Maigari Ahmadu (Taraba), Ibrahim Geidam (Yobe), Mohamed Badaru (Jigawa), Mariya Mahmoud Bunkure (Kano) and Abdullahi Tijjani Gwarzo (Kano).

Others confirmed are Ahmad Dangiwa (Katsina), Hannatu Musawa (Katsina), Yusuf Tanko Sununu (Kebbi), Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi), Bello M Goronyo (Sokoto), Bello Matawwalle (Zamfara), Nkiru Onyejiocha (Abia), Uju Ohaneye (Anambra), David Umahi (Ebonyi), Uche Nnaji (Enugu), Doris Uzoka (Imo), Dele Alake (Ekiti), Tunji Alausa and Lola Ade John from Lagos State.

Amongst ministerial nominees confirmed also is Ishak Salako, Bosun Tijani and Olawale Edun from Ogun State, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo (Ondo), Adegboyega Oyetola (Osun), Adebayo Adelabu (Oyo), Joseph Utsev (Benue), Zaphaniah Bitrus Jisalo (FCT), Shaibu Abubakar Audu (Kogi), Lateef Fagbemi (Kwara), Imaan Sulaiman-Ibrahim (Nasarawa), Mohammed Idris and Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi from Niger State and Simon Bako Lalong (Plateau).


BREAKING: Mother of all strikes! D-Day, October 3! *Stockpile food, essentials – NLC, TUC   



The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC)) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) on Tuesday, announced midnight Tuesday, October 3 as the date for the commencement of total strike by their workers to get the Federal Government accede to their demands to end the current sufferings of their members and Nigerians at large.

The two labour centres representing the organised labour in Nigeria, which arrived at the decision after they had met separately at their local levels directed their affiliates to mobilise for protests from October 3, saying they took the decisions were approved at the meeting of the joint National Executive Council of the two unions on Tuesday, September 26, in Abuja.

Joe Ajaero, President of the NLC, speaking on behalf of his group, while urging Nigerians to stock their homes ahead the total strike, bemoaned the situation where the government had ignored the demands of the workers, saying it “substantially failed to meet its demands after the removal of fuel subsidy,” added that adding that the grace period given by the two labour centres had expired.

The organised labour, is demanding wage awards for public workers and a new minimum wage, apart from the removal of tax exemptions and allowances to public sector workers, provision of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) buses, the release of modalities for the N70billion for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and immediate reversal of all anti-poor policies of the Federal Government.

The union, which on September 5th and 6th, the NLC embarked on a two-day warning strike which led to the partial crippling of economic activities in some states and gave the government a 21-day ultimatum to meet its demands, is also demanding a stop to the increase in public school fees, the release of the eight months withheld salaries of university teachers and workers as well as the increase in Value Added Tax (VAT).

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BREAKING: Total strike looms! *NLC, TUC, finally meet, agree on action



The Federal Government, may have finally lost the move to stop the impending strike by organised labour, or at least mitigate it by dividing its membership, following a meeting of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC), hitherto in disagreement over the issue.

In fact, the two bodies representing the junior and senior workers in Nigeria are reportedly meeting currently to announce a statewide indefinite strike, a move coming about three weeks after the NLC held a warning strike on Tuesday, September 5, and Wednesday 6, 2023, without the TUC, which it explained was to call attention of the FG to the painful suffering of Nigerians, particularly workers.

However, indications, suggests that having agreed to come to an understanding in the interest of the working masses of Nigeria, both camps, having also met separately in their different local organs, decided to hold a joint press conference at 3 p.m. on Tuesday to announce an indefinite nationwide strike in response to the FG’s failure to address the suffering and other socioeconomic hardships caused by the removal of subsidies on Premium Motor, PMS, commonly known as petrol.

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Tinubu will shock Atiku and his gang – APC *Why meeting with Biden didn’t hold



Having met with Joe Biden, at a parley of the G20 group in India, it was unnecessary for President Bola Tinubu to hold another session with his US counterpart at the recent United Nation General Assembly (UNGA) in New York, the All Progressives Congress (APC), explained on Monday.

Felix Morka, spokesman of the party, in a statement, also explain other issues in a quick riposte to the attacks of Atiku Abubakar, presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who claimed that the POTUS avoided Tinubu at UNGA because he did not want to be associated with the putrid stains trailing his Nigerian counterpart.

Morka, National Publicity Secretary of the party, also dismissed Atiku’s claims through his spokesman, Phrank Shaibu that fuel subsidy, which the Tinubu administration said it has jettisoned having dismissed it as a drain on the nation’s resources, had returned through the backdoor, saying the payment of the mark up in the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), in August, was to ensure stability.

Hear him: ”Shaibu’s claim that fuel subsidy is back is not correct. The government’s intervention to ensure some measure of price stability and predictability does not amount to the return of the ruinous fuel subsidy of the recent past.

“Lifting the Visa ban on Nigerians by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) authorities should ordinarily make any well-meaning Nigerian happy. Diplomatic rapprochement between Nigeria and UAE authorities is ongoing and details of outcomes will soon be made public.

“The matter of the proposed meeting with United States of America President Joe Biden does not even require elaboration. Having met with President Tinubu on the sidelines of the G-20 Nations summit in India, another meeting with President Biden during the United Nation’s General Assembly (UNGA) had become unnecessary and was not even on President Tinubu’s schedule, contrary to preliminary indications on the matter.

“Nigeria is facing pressing challenges that require focused efforts and undivided attention. Issues such as economic recovery, security of lives and property, infrastructure development, and social welfare demand continuous, sustained and innovative efforts.

“President Tinubu is committed to ensuring an inclusive, honest, transparent and accountable governance system. We encourage citizens to actively participate in democratic processes, ventilate their views, and contribute constructively to national conversations. As the discerning people that we are, we remain confident that Nigerians will continue to differentiate between genuine, constructive and development-oriented criticisms and those driven by self-interest, mercenary considerations and disruptive political agenda.

“While we urge Nigerians to ignore purveyors of fake news and other inanities, it is obvious that Shaibu and his likes will stop at nothing in their desperation to distort facts and give oxygen to their politically knocked-out principal. But that can only worsen his infamy in the light of the President’s determined commitment and strides to improving the social and economic conditions for all Nigerians.

“The PDP and all its agents of misinformation should know by now that no amount of sleazy propaganda, muckraking, lies, half-truths, misrepresentations, misinformation or disinformation will confer the presidency of Nigeria on their candidate.

“Nigerians have freely chosen our party, the APC, and President Bola Tinubu, to continue to steer the ship of state. And the President is making good his campaign promises to deliver purposeful leadership to remake Nigeria, open the economy to rewarding investments, promote inclusive growth, create jobs, secure lives and property and renew hope for a vibrant future.”

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