Top Nigerian Newspaper Headlines For Today, Wednesday, 7th February, 2024
Good morning Nigeria. Welcome to the Naija News roundup of top newspaper headlines in Nigeria for today, Wednesday, 7th February 2024.
President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has implored the Nigerian military and other security agencies to intensify efforts at containing the multi-dimensional security challenges in the country.
He restated his administration’s continued support to the nation’s security forces through the modernization of fleets, training and welfare of personnel.
The President gave the charge on Tuesday during the induction ceremony of two TK-129 ATAK Helicopters and a King Air 360i Aircraft at Nigeria Air (NAF) Base, Makurdi, the Benue State capital.
President Tinubu, who was represented at the event by Vice President Kashim Shettima, recalled the commissioning and induction of four additional Diamond-62 surveillance aircraft into the arsenal of the Nigerian Air Force about two months ago, saying it is a symbol of his government’s enduring commitment to the ideals of patriotism and investment in the nation’s security.
“Indeed, our solemn commitment to safeguarding Nigeria’s security hinges upon the realisation that without vigilant attention to the needs of our Armed Forces who are saddled with the maintenance of peace, law, order and stability, anarchy and lawlessness would surely prevail,” he stated.
Delivering the President’s address, Shettima noted that the acquisition of helicopters and aircraft had become necessary to improve the strategic use of air power in combating terrorism, insurgency and other security challenges plaguing the nation.
The Coordinating Minister of the Economy and Minister of Finance, Wale Edun, on Tuesday claimed that Nigeria is currently better than it was when President Bola Tinubu assumed office on May 29, 2023.
Speaking when he appeared before the House of Representatives, the Minister said the Nigerian economy was almost collapsing before Tinubu assumed power.
He, however, added that the policies introduced by the current administration have now set the country on the road to economic recovery.
The Minister added that under the previous administration, fuel subsidies and wrong foreign exchange policies resulted in wasteful and unsustainable spending.
Edun stated that though inflation has increased and prices of other things have spiked, Tinubu is committed to improving the quality of life of Nigerians and ensure no one is left behind.
The Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at the 2023 presidential election, Atiku Abubakar, says that the Presidency has failed to present a convincing justification for what he described as President Bola Tinubu’s failure to address Nigeria’s economic difficulties.
Naija News reports that the former vice-president, who was responding to Tinubu’s Special Adviser on Information and Strategy, Bayo Onanuga, who accused him of carving out a position as the “opposition-in-chief” to the President and the current government, said that the presidential aide showed a lack of awareness of the events going on around him.
Onanuga had claimed that Atiku took on the new position after failing to realize his lifelong aim of controlling Nigeria.
However, the former vice-president argued that throughout the 2023 presidential campaign, he gave better policy options than Tinubu’s “morbid prescriptions.”
The candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the last governorship election in Ogun State, Ladi Adebutu, was arraigned before the State High Court in Abeokuta on Tuesday.
Naija News reports that Adebutu and nine others were arraigned by the federal government over alleged money laundering.
However, at the court sitting today, the government made changes to the charges filed against the PDP chieftain and the other defendants.
These amendments were made in order to include Adebutu in the ongoing case that was initiated in July 2023, which accuses him of financially influencing voters during the March 18 election.
While the other nine defendants were arraigned by the Federal Government in July 2023, Adebutu was not present as he was reportedly out of the country at the time.
During the court hearing on Tuesday, the Counsel to the Federal Government, Rotimi Jacobs, informed the court that the charges had been amended and Adebutu had been served as the main defendant in the case.
Jacobs requested that the court accept the amended charges, and the defendant’s counsel, Gordy Uche, SAN, did not object to this request.
Consequently, Justice Abiodun Akinyemi granted the application.
Adebutu and six other defendants who were present in court pleaded not guilty to all the charges brought against them.
In a swift response to the wave of protests that swept through several states across the country, key figures in President Bola Tinubu’s administration, including the President’s Chief of Staff, Femi Gbajabiamila, and the National Security Adviser, Nuhu Ribadu, convened an urgent closed-door meeting on Tuesday at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
The session, which commenced at approximately 05:30 pm, also saw the participation of several ministers, highlighting the government’s concern over the escalating public discontent.
The Ministers of Education, Dr. Tahir Mamman; Finance, Wale Edun; Agriculture, Abubakar Kyari; and State for Agriculture, Mustapha Shehuri, were among the cabinet members present.
Their collective presence underscores the multi-dimensional approach the administration is keen on adopting to address the grievances aired by the demonstrators.
The convening of this high-level meeting was precipitated by a series of protests in Minna and Kano, where frustrated youths and women voiced their outrage over the spiralling cost of living that has beleaguered the nation.
The Minister of Finance, Wale Edun, along with the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Atiku Bagudu, has reassured Nigerians that the current surge in living expenses is being tackled.
The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Olayemi Cardoso, and the Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service, Zacch Adedeji, joined the ministers in calming Nigerians’ concerns regarding the prevailing inflation.
Their statements were made during their participation in a sectoral debate convened by the House of Representatives focusing on the financial sector and its stakeholders, specifically addressing the ongoing rise in the cost of living. This event took place during a Plenary session in Abuja on Tuesday.
Edun, who also serves as the coordinating minister of the economy, said, “Where we are as a nation is a much better place than we were in on May 29, 2023.”
He elaborated that Nigeria faced a potential economic disaster due to fuel subsidies, implying that challenges were anticipated following their removal.
Edun acknowledged the rise in inflation and living costs, emphasizing President Bola Tinubu’s dedication to safeguarding the most impoverished and vulnerable segments of society.
The Commissioner of Police in Nasarawa State, CP Shehu Umar Nadada, has refuted any claims of the command’s participation in the creation of a Fulani Nomad Vigilante team.
Naija News understands that a 1,144-member security team was recently formed in the state by the President of Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore, Abdullahi Bello Bodejo.
During the inauguration ceremony on January 17, Bodejo tasked the team with combating banditry, cattle rustling, and various forms of insecurity in the state.
The development has since generated mixed reactions among concerned Nigerians.
However, during a courtesy visit on Tuesday by members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists at the state police command’s headquarters in Lafia, CP Nadada clarified the command has no knowledge about the formation of the outfit.
Speaking on Tuesday, Nadada said the command was not formally informed about the establishment of the Fulani Nomad Vigilante team. Therefore, they cannot be held responsible for any difficulties they face due to their actions.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) has explained why there are currently long queues at some filling stations in Lagos State.
Punch Newspaper reports that the NNPCL, tied the development to a “brief distribution issue.”
Naija News reports that long lines were seen on Monday at several petrol stations in Lagos. Locals have since been panic-buying over rumours that there would be a new scarcity of fuel.
Long queues were observed at petrol stations across Ikorodu Road, Ikeja, Ojodu Berger and Lagos Ibadan express way while some stations in the listed areas were shut.
NNPCL spokesperson, Femi Soneye denied any suggestion of new fuel scarcity in his remarks on the development on Tuesday.
According to Soneye, the NNPCL’s products were still easily accessible and there were no supply problems.
He, however, said that the problem with distribution in a few places had been fixed.
In a significant address on Tuesday, the Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Prof. Muhammad Pate, raised an alarm over the widespread disregard for the Compulsory Treatment and Care for Victims of Gunshot Act of 2017 across numerous medical facilities.
Despite the clear mandates of the act, which was enthusiastically signed into law by former President Muhammadu Buhari, many healthcare providers continue to falter in their legal and moral obligations towards gunshot victims.
The Act, designed to foster a more compassionate healthcare response, explicitly requires all Nigerian hospitals, regardless of their public or private status, to provide immediate and adequate care to victims of gunshot wounds without the necessity of police clearance.
It also calls upon every individual, including security agents, to assist anyone with gunshot injuries by ensuring they receive prompt medical attention at the nearest facility.
Prof. Pate emphasized the critical nature of gunshot wounds as medical emergencies that demand swift action to save lives.
His concerns are echoed in a statement from the Director of Information at the Federal Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Patricia Deworitshe, highlighting the tragic increase in fatalities due to some health facilities’ refusal to treat gunshot victims and those harmed in “one-chance” incidents without a police report.
The Ogun State House of Assembly, Speaker Oludaisi Elemide, on Tuesday, intervened to halt a motion aimed at suspending former Speaker Olakunle Oluomo, for fourteen legislative days.
The motion, initiated by Babatunde Tella of the Abeokuta North State Constituency and supported by five other lawmakers, sought disciplinary action against Oluomo for unspecified violations of the House’s regulations.
During the session, after the motion was extensively debated by its co-sponsors, Speaker Elemide called for restraint among his colleagues.
He emphasized the importance of peace and tranquillity within the spheres of governance as crucial to the success of the collaborative efforts between the Dapo Abiodun-led executive and the legislature in fostering the state’s development.
Elemide’s plea was grounded in the belief that maintaining a harmonious environment is vital for achieving the desired outcomes for the state’s advancement.
Elemide acknowledged the allegations of regulation violations by Oluomo but argued for a more lenient approach to handling the matter.
He advocated for upholding the dignity and sanctity of the legislative institution, which he described as the symbol of democracy.
By choosing to suspend action on the motion, the Speaker signalled a preference for reconciliation and unity over punitive measures.
That’s the top Nigerian newspaper headlines for today. Read more Nigerian news on Naija News. See you again tomorrow.
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