Sunday, October 22, 2017

Unini Chioma

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Tinubu and Buhari

Ihis interview published on page 12 of the Sunday Punch of 15th October, 2017, elder statesman and Afenifere chieftain, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, not only proclaimed the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari a failure, he blamed the former two-term governor of Lagos State and frontline leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, for the emergence of Buhari as president in the historic 2015 presidential election. According to Baba Adebanjo, “I warned Tinubu against supporting Buhari ahead of the 2015 presidential election. What is for Tinubu in this government? He has been sidelined. This government is all about Buhari. The greatest mistake made was for Yoruba to vote for Buhari. The South-west is regretting voting for Buhari. Tinubu is regretting now – he and his supporters are now regretting helping Buhari to become president. It is Tinubu and all his supporters you should be asking: Are you regretting you helped to bring Buhari to power or you’re happy with his administration”?

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UN Deputy Secretary-General, Ms Amina Mohammed

There are 37 career openings for young Nigerians under the United Nations bureaucracy, according to UN deputy secretary-general, Amina Mohammed.

Mrs. Mohammed speaking at a cultural night organised by Nigerians working at the United Nations Systems said the openings are available via the Junior Professional Officers’ (JPO) Programme, including internship for young graduates.

Nigeria, she said, has the opportunity to sponsor its youth for UN careers through the JPO, but regretted that the nation has not seized the opportunity in a long while.

JPO is a programme for the young people to come and grow their career at the UN and it has 37 positions for Nigeria – one for each of the 36 States and the Federal Capital Territory.

The JPO programme provides young professionals with hands-on experience in multilateral technical co-operation, and is one of the best ways to gain entry level positions within the UN system.

JPOs are sponsored by their own government, which fund their placement in one of a range of UN organisations.

At the cultural night, Amina asked older Nigerians to pave the way for the youth by creating leadership opportunities for them.

She urged them to stop competing with the younger ones for employment opportunities. “Whenever there are opportunities, try and pave the way for the young ones; you are getting old and we want to see the young ones in the system.

“We need to give the youth the opportunity because if we don’t give them the opportunities, they can easily fall victims of crimes,” she said.

According to her, the Nigerian employees at the UN system are getting old and there is the need for the Nigerian youth to be allowed to come into the system.

“Home really does need us; there are leaders and we are trying with the professionals that we see in the United Nations.

“The work we need to do is not just to the world but also to remember that at the root of all that, you are only as good as where you come from.

“And it’s really important that we remember, with what we do here, what we can get back home, that we can encourage those at home, and inspire them.

“It’s not just what we do for the world. Can’t we take those expertise back home, Amina said, urging them to make the best use of every opportunity they got. She condemned what she termed alarming gender-based violence in Nigeria, saying it has increased in dimensions that one could never imagine.

“So when I look back home and I see that there are women that are coming back from Boko Haram captivity, they come back with a type of violence that many, for the rest of their lives, can’t recover from.

“But I also see that what is worse is the kind of violence that is visited upon the young girl. She is indoctrinated and convinced to tie a bomb around her and blow it off; that’s violence against girls; that’s violence against women.

“But what I wanted to say was that as we look at the gender-based violence initiative that we put a spotlight on our own nation; we all have a part to play,” she said.

Mohammed also lamented how girls were left behind in education, stressing that everyone needs to have an education – the boys and the girls.

“The boys we didn’t educate are the same ones that kidnap the girls that we educated. “So education for everyone is exposure for everyone; it matters so much; it really does give us the basis, the moral compass to help us navigate through life.” Nigeria’s Ambassador/Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, Samson Itegboje, commended the Nigerians in the UN and particularly lauded the appointment of Mohammed as the UN Deputy Chief.

Itegboje said Nigeria was proud of Mohammed, describing her as an “ultimate authority and a reference point when it comes to Sustainable Development Goals’ issues.”

The Nigerian envoy said: “Nigeria is a great country; we are a happy people, you can’t take that away from us; we have gone through difficult times but we are happy that we have a government that is responsive to the yearnings and aspirations of dear people of Nigeria.”

Col. Jolly Abu (rtd), President, United Nations Staff Recreation Club Nigeria Association, said the cultural night was organised to showcase Nigeria’s culture.

According to him, the Nigerians in the UN are very proud of their culture adding, it is also for them to mingle, rekindle and renew their bonds.

“The UN encourages that we should meet and foster unity among ourselves and also enjoy ourselves; so that’s what we’re doing,” Abu said.

Amb. Audu Kadiri, Ambassador/Permanent Representative of Nigeria to the UN Office and Other International Organisations in Geneva and Nicholas Ella, acting Consul-General in New York also attended the event.

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Mrs. Kemi Adeosun

* Says only Kano, Katsina, Rivers and Lagos can pay salaries without borrowing

Many of the 36 states will have to rev up their internally generated income and cut expenditure and debt to survive over the next few years, according to a newly published Fiscal Sustainability Index.

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    Prof Itse Sagay (SAN)

    The Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee on Anti-Corruption (PACAC), Prof. Itse Sagay, in this interview JOHN CHIKEZIE, speaks about former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Allison-Maduake’s call for her extradition to Nigeria to face various charges against her and his recent virulent criticism of the leadership of the ruling All Progressives Congress.

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    Corporate Affairs Commission

    Shareholders can now register their companies faster and directly without having to go through accredited agents. This was disclosed at a public sensitisation programme organised in Lagos by the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), in collaboration with the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC), on Thursday.

    Nigerian Parliament

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    Members of the Senate ad hoc committee set up to investigate the contract crisis in the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, have denied being...