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thisdaylive.comShocking corruption reports says govt

Ritics of the Muhammadu Buhari government's anti-corruption campaign yesterday got an answer - no intimidation or blackmail will stop the war.

Minister of Information and Culture Lai Mohammed said Nigerians should be ready for more mind boggling revelations in the 2014 and 2015 report, which will be not yet been released.

For those questioning the allegations, the minister said the info he provided to understand whether it was authentic or not should be investigated by them.

"Let us talk more about the price of corruption. Have you ever found that whereas Nigeria's national budget has increased from just over N900 billion in 1999 to finished N6 trillion in 2016, poverty has also increased nearly by exactly the same percentage? The reason just isn't far fetched: Appropriated funds have mostly ended up in the pockets of a few looters."

He added: "Do you know that what's so far been revealed as per taking in the Dasukigate is about N54.8billion Whereas, in the entire 2015 all the zonal intervention act cost N52 billion. This is actually the expense of corruption for you personally.

When the cash supposed to construct roads is looted, the end result is that the roads will not be built and the people suffer as well as die in road injuries that are avoidable. We all are perpetually sentenced to darkness, when the cash intended to provide electricity is looted. We are not able to reduce infant and maternal mortality when a few pocket the cash meant for healthcare. All these are the costs of corruption. Let's not only talk about corruption in the abstract, let us be counting its price to our lives to be able to drive home the point that corruption should be tackled decisively for Nigerians to feel the effect of governing."

Mohammed spoke of two courts of corruption - the court of public opinion and also the court of law. "The court of public opinion can be as important as the court of law," he said.

Mohammed raised the alarm that treasury looters had resorted to fighting back, using various means.

But he assured the nation that the administration will not give in to their own distractions.

The authorities, he said, has achieved what it set out to reach, which will be to sensitise Nigerians.

He explained: "Well, I could tell you today that corruption has already been fighting back, which is fighting hard and dirty. Sponsored posts have begun appearing in the newspapers as well as in the social media while 'Talking Heads' have started making the rounds in the electronic media, all deriding this Administration as good as the struggle against corruption. Not stopping there, they have been creating distractions by sponsoring posts label the President a budding authoritarian to deride the Administration's policies typically and even write off his 2016 budget. We realize the sole goal of these assaults would be to divert attention from your war on corruption.

"It's saddening that some otherwise credible voices have unwittingly let themselves to be railroaded to the bandwagon of pro-corruption orchestra. They engage in sophistry to try to beat up Nigerians from the anti-corruption conflict. One hack writer even said the disclosure that 55 Nigerians purportedly stole N1.34 trillion between 2006 and 2013 didn't activate any rage among Nigerians! A disclosure that played widely in the international media made the front page in more than a dozen Nigerian papers and attracted the attention of the world's most powerful country and worldwide financial institutions cannot be dismissed with a wave of the hand.

"Additionally, one of people who gained from the Dasukigate even had the temerity to deride the anti-corruption war as 'discerning', when in saner climes he should have been so ashamed of himself that he would have apologised to the nation and hunkered down...for good. These sponsored assaults will not be about to cease. In the days ahead, they will be extreme and much more organized in fact. But the good thing is the fact that we're winning the war. Nigerians are now talking about corruption. Nigerians are actually counting the cost of corruption to their lives.

"We call on Nigerians never to be taken in by the antics of the sponsored denunciation of the anti-graft war. The treasury looters, who've so much resources in their own kitty, as well as their cohorts will throw everything but the kitchen sink as of this Administration, But we don't have any doubt that Nigerians are discerning enough to be aware of the truth which, in the words of President Muhammadu Buhari, is that unless Nigeria kills corruption, corruption will kill Nigeria.

"This Administration will neither be distracted nor intimidated by anyone into giving up or weakening the fight against corruption, which will be a war of survival for our nation. No amount of other assaults or media will cease the fight. The pseudo-analyzers and hack writers will labour in vain in heir quest to stop the train of the anti-corruption fight."

The minister said the info on corruption was meant to sensitise the country on the evil of corruption.

"Let me restate, for emphasis, that when we give examples of mind boggling acts of corruption, our intention is not to vilify anyone but to sensitise Nigerians as to how dangerous corruption would be to the state as well as the folks. The reality is that what we have shown so far is only the tip of the iceberg. Nigerians should stay tuned for more shocking revelations in the days ahead."

On the elements he gave on alleged treasury looters failed to contain 1999-2005, he explained that only periods were covered by the compilation when the anti-corruption law became completely operational and that was around 2006.

The minister said by some time the facts of 2015 and 2014 are released, the country will be shocked.

His words: "When we make following disclosures, you will be more shocked than you're now."

The government was criticized for disobeying court orders or trampling on the rights of accused people. Mohammed differed.

He said: "What are we even talking about? Is the human right of the 55 men more important than human rights of 170 Nigerians? But again, let me make it clear that we don't disobey court orders".

He explained the simplest way will be to go to the court or the EFCC to find out who they're as they all have one pending case or the other in the court when prodded to supply info on the 55 men.

He also decried the situation where it takes about seven or more years to prosecute the "so-called strong" individuals.

On the function of the judiciary in the struggle against corruption, the minister reiterated his earlier appeal that both Bar and Bench should begin to see the fight as a national effort.

He said " and I can ensure you that we have made a demonstration As Well As the judiciary is willing and able to cooperate with us. So we know that judiciary is vital, and we are reaching out to them, we're appealing to understand that there are several structural reforms that require to take place and we're working on them.

"On our own component also, we make sure when the management of legal justice is actualised, it'll reduce the length of time it takes now to prosecute a case because under that law, I believe the most time allowed for adjournment is two."


Nigeria: New Nigerian Releases Special Edition in the Memory of Sardauna

The New Nigerian Newspapers (NNN) Ltd, publishers of the New Nigerian number of newspapers, published a special edition Friday in memory of its founder, the late Premier of Northern Nigeria and Sardauna of Sokoto, Sir Ahmadu Bello who died on January 15, 1966; merely two weeks after creating the newspaper on January 1, 1966. On the edition's front cover is the lead headline, In Memoriam, using the rider, 50th Commemoration of the passing of Premier having a big graphic of the hero in his trademark dress; of the defunct northern Area Sir Ahmadu Bello.

Much as the management and staff of the NNN made a statement by coming up with the special version of honouring the mythical creator of the newspaper, their expectations from current leaders of the North were cut short. Lately, the 50th commemoration of the passing on of the late Sardauna was held with eminent personalities in the North in attendance and element of the programme was the launching of some variants of the New Nigerian published for the occasion. The concept was to raise money for NNN to commence operations again.

And about three hundred copies of NNN edition were rolled out. However, the result wasn't the first aim as the Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai merely enjoined folks to purchase the special publication, saying that it's details of times and the late Sardauna's life. Daily Trust on Sunday consequently assembled the copies sold at the occasion weren't up to 40 (at N300 each), while the remaining copies were distributed to the vendors.

It could be remembered that creation was ceased by the workers of NNN following the inability of the direction to keep on paying their wages since January 2013. Workers were owed several months of salaries and other entitlements as well as the reason behind the default was said to be operational. Since that time, there have been repeated efforts to revitalize the business to no accessible First, two variants: New Nigerian Weekly and New Nigerian on Sunday were suspended. The daily edition was printing less than 2,000 copies.

In addition, some were removed by the management 'redundant' staff but didn't pay them their benefits. Daily Trust on Sunday gathered that the months of unpaid salaries and quit of work influenced on the staff. Later on, the Joint Workers Consultative Union of the New Nigerian Paper (NNN), Kaduna called off the 31-month strike which started on January 22, 2013. A statement to that effect was signed by Abdull-Azeez Ahmed Kadir, Chairman NNN Chapel of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) and Bulus Shabayan, Chairman National Union of Printing, Publishing and Paper Products Workers (NUPPPPROW) NNN Chapel. The workers said they had concluded to resume obligation. But upon the management as well as the workers not supplied resumption of obligation, materials for work managed to commence online publication. And because NNN was clearly one of the leading heritages of the late Sardauna along with the duty of the 19-state Northern authorities, attempts were made by the workers and management to re-launch it to businesses during the 50th commemoration of his demise. But the move was unsuccessful.

One of the workers of NNN who spoke to Daily Trust said now that the move to raise capital for NNN at the 50th commemoration of Sardauna's demise has failed, it'll be back to status quo along with the battle will continue. He said the claims and counterclaims between the workers as well as the direction and between the workers along with the 19 Northern authorities will even continue. According to him, if any ceremony demands and project its interest and related to Sardauna cannot give the focus that was desired to NNN, he wondered what else can. On whether the governors and dignitaries knew they were to raise cash he said because it was in the programme, they ought to have understood.


Nigeria: Press awash with Buhari's vacation, trial of senate president, airline takeover

The five days vacation taken by President Muhammadu Buhari, Supreme Court's nod for the trial of senate president as well as the state takeover of Aero Contractor airline headed many Nigerian papers on Saturday.National Mirror clarified that eight months after he took over power from former President Goodluck Jonathan on May 29, 2015, President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday carried on on vacation.

It said Vice President Yemi Osinbajo would do the functions of the President.

Country is excited that the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) on Friday got the green light in the Supreme Court to proceed together with the 13-count bogus strength declaration charge brought against Senate President Bukola Saraki from the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB).

thisdaylive.comThis Day reported that the assumption of full possession of Aero Contractors, a premium airline in Nigeria, is not going to change its flight operations, as Asset Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON), takes within the airline as a result of debt.

Vanguard said President Buhari has revealed that his government has within three months saved N2.2 trillion for the country through the enforcement of the Treasury Single Account, TSA.

Guardian said as difficulties of inferior power supply, lack of facilities, excess billings, lack of care and others endure, Nigerians have questioned the rationale supporting the hike in electricity tariff.

Daily Independent said Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige, will hold a joint meeting with leaders of the Nigeria Labour Congress and top executives of Electricity Supply Businesses next week to avert the planned picketing of the Discos by members of the NLC.

The Sun reported that five military personnel deployed to checkmate conduit~line vandals at Abule area of Ikorodu, Lagos State were killed in the early hours of Friday as they engaged the vandals who were armed to the teeth.