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No Country Can Develop If Youths Are Lagging Behind – Minister



Humanitarian-Minister sADIQ

Mrs Sadiya Farouk, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development says no country can develop if its youths are lagging behind.

The minister stated this at the empowerment of 60 youths organised by the Citizens’ Health Education and Development Initiative (CHEDI), an NGO, on Tuesday in Abuja.

Represented by Mrs Helen Ikem, Assistant Chief Social Welfare Officer at the ministry, Farouk stressed that the importance of youths empowerment couldn’t be overemphasized, adding that youths are the base of any nation.

She said such gestures create a sense of responsibility and leadership skills in the youth due to which they could feel and identify the actual practical problems of the society affecting the people.

Farouk said: “So many youth empowerment programmes were launched overtime because finally, people have realized that when the youths are empowered, it gives rise to a strengthened nation.”

The minister said that the society would be secured enough when the youths were empowered, saying, ”an empowered youth would never do any harm to the society in which they are living.

” An empowered youth is always passionate and dedicated towards their work and their society and they always dare to do something big for the betterment of society.

“They no longer wait for the high authorities to come and sort out the problem, instead they take some practical steps to solve the problem on their own.

Farouk said that youths empowerment played vital roles in the Federal Government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari via the National Social Investment Poverty Alleviation and Programme.

The minister said: “Under this programme, we have the N-Power which creates opportunities for youths to be trained in various vocations and skills.

“There is also the  Government Enterprise Empowerment Programme GEEP which provides opportunities for upscaling business investments in eradication from society.

”That is why the agriculture and other trades, Conditional Cash Transfer which provides cash grant support for micro level traders.

” And the Home grown School Feeding Programme which provides meal opportunities for school children is to boost school enrolment and prepare them for a decent and literate adolescence.”

Farouk commended the efforts of the CHEDI for complementing the government’s efforts in providing developmental support for the teeming youths.

“We must all realise that a collaborative effort such as this will always go a long way in making the society a safer and better place to live in,” she added.

The minister advised the beneficiaries to assist their peers in skills-building and help them to become financially independent like them.

Earlier, the Executive Director of CHEDI, Mrs Selina Enyioha, said the beneficiaries were drawn from the Federal Capital Territory, Nasarawa State and Niger.

Enyioha said that, hitherto, the NGO focused its empowerment programme on women, children and girls, adding,”we decided to include the youths this year due to high rates of youths unemployment in the country.”

She said that according to the National Bureau of Statistics reports of 2022, youths unemployment in Nigeria was about 53.40 per cent.

Enyioha  said: “That is to say over 80 million Nigerian youths are unemployed. Our targets are unemployed graduates who have been trained and acquired skills in areas of tailoring, barbing saloon and hair dressing.’

“These graduates have had their hopes heightened after acquiring education, but unfortunately their dreams in Nigeria have become a mirage.”

Also, Ms Zara-Binta Goni, Senior Social Development Specialist, World Bank Staff Representatives, assured that the bank would continue to support  the youths and women.

“The World Bank group is one of the largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries.

” Its institution shares a commitment to reducing poverty, increasing shared prosperity and promoting sustainable development and has a unique set of standards that endorse inclusion and empowerment.

” I would like to inform you that this support and resources were received from the staff of the world bank,” she said. 

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NIS Will Focus More On Passport Insurance, Staff Welfare – New Ag. CG



The newly appointed Acting Comptroller General, Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Caroline Adepoju, has promised to promote staff welfare and passport insurance.

Adepoju, therefore, directed all passport offices nationwide to take necessary steps to ensure no Nigerian is subjected to unnecessary delays or substandard treatment in the course of applying for passports.

This was contained in a statement issued by the Service Public Relations Officer (SPRO), Comptroller of Immigration, Mr. Tony Akuneme, in Abuja, yesterday.

The Acting CG read the riot act, when she addressed top management of the NIS minutes after taking over from Alhaji Isah Jere, her immediate predecessor.

Adepoju affirmed that she would focus majorly on passport issues and staff welfare as those two aspects contribute mostly to the complaints of Nigerians and NIS personnel.

She announced that a stakeholders meeting would be convened in the next few days to x-ray the real issues in passport process and proffer far-reaching solutions.

This, she said, would include opening more front offices in the Lagos area, where the bulk of complaints emanate from.

Adepoju equally said she would adopt a bottom-top approach in tackling officers’ welfare.

“We will start by meeting all cadres of staff to hear their genuine needs, in a bid to hit the ground running with a blue print that will be based on an all inclusive needs assessment,” she said.

She appreciated the immediate past Comptroller General for making positive impact on the service during his tenure and asked God to guide him in his future endeavours.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Adepoju had served in various locations during her career in the NIS.

Until her appointment, she was the Deputy Comptroller General in charge of Finance.

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Tinubu Reinstates Sanity As DSS, EFCC Squabble Over Property In Lagos




A protracted conflict between Department of State Services (DSS) and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over a building at No. 15 Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos, appeared to have taken a dirty twist, yesterday.

The incident, however, earned a place in the archive of the new administration as one of the first interventions by President Bola Tinubu, who was sworn in barely 24 hours earlier.

Operatives of the DSS had barricaded entrance to the EFCC’s office, located at the said building, leading the anti-graft agency to issue a protest statement.

Meanwhile, the DSS issued a counter statement, denying it barricaded the premises, and claiming it was “only occupying its own” facility.

According to a statement released by presidential spokesman, Tunde Rahman, Tinubu “directed DSS to immediately vacate the office of the EFCC in Ikoyi, Lagos,” adding, “if there were issues between the two important agencies of government, they would be resolved amicably.”

EFCC’s spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, described the incident as bizarre, given that both agencies had shared the controversial facility for decades.

The statement reads: “Operatives of the Lagos Command of the EFCC arrived at their office on No. 15 Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, this morning, May 30, 2023, to be denied entry by agents of the DSS, who had barricaded the entrance with armoured personnel carriers.

“This development is strange to the Commission, given that we have cohabited with the DSS in that facility for 20 years without incident.

“By denying operatives access to their offices, the Commission’s operations at its largest hub, with over 500 personnel, hundreds of exhibits, and many suspects in detention have been disrupted.

Cases scheduled for court hearing today have been aborted, while many suspects who had been invited for questioning are left unattended.

“Even more alarming is that suspects in detention are left without care, with grave implications for their rights as inmates. All of these have wider implications for the nation’s fight against economic and financial crimes.

“The siege is inconsistent with the synergy expected of agencies working for the same government and nation, especially when there are ongoing discussions on the matter.”

DSS spokesman, Peter Afunanya, however, said: “It is not correct that the DSS barricaded EFCC from entering its office. No. It is not true. The Service is only occupying its own facility where it is carrying out its official and statutory responsibility.

“By the way, there is no controversy over No 15 Awolowo Road, as being insinuated by the media. Did the EFCC tell you it is contesting ownership of the building? I will be surprised if it is contesting the ownership.

“Awolowo Road was NSO headquarters. SSS/DSS started from there. It is a common knowledge. It is a historical fact. Check it out.

“There is no rivalry between the Service and the EFCC over and about anything. Please, do not create any imaginary one. They are great partners working for the good of the nation. Dismiss any falsehood of a fight.”


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Three Killed While Travelling To Attend Inauguration Of New Ebonyi Governor, Nwifuru




The victims who hailed, from Izzi Local Government Area, the home town of the new governor, Francis Nwifuru, were said to have died in a ghastly motor accident on their way to Abakaliki.

Three persons travelling to attend Monday’s swearing-in ceremony in Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital, Southeast Nigeria, have reportedly been killed.

The victims who hailed, from Izzi Local Government Area, the home town of the new governor, Francis Nwifuru, were said to have died in a ghastly motor accident on their way to Abakaliki.

Although the details of the accident were still sketchy, reports claimed many others also sustained varying degrees of injury.

According to one report, the vehicle carrying the victims had gone to Izzi to pick up villagers. Unfortunately, while they were travelling from the local government area to Abakaliki, one of the car tyres was deflated. 

Those injured in the accident have reportedly been moved to the Ebonyi Federal Teaching Hospital in Abakaliki.

The swearing-in ceremony in the state, like it is happening across the country today (Monday), is holding at the Pa Ngele Oruta Township Stadium, Abakaliki.

Meanwhile, efforts made by SaharaReporters to speak with the State Police Public Relations Officer SP, Onome Onovwakpoyeya, were unsuccessful as she didn’t answer her calls.

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