Ogun State Government has said that it would not embark on frivolous spending, but would strategically locate resourses to projects that have direct and positive benefits to the people.
The State Goverrnor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, who stated this at the turning of sod of Ijebu-Ode-Epe road, noted that spending on the road would, apart from taking traffic off the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, would bring relief to people of the areas, engendered the socio-economic growth of the State and save Nigerians valuable time on traffic.
“One of our promises was to provide infrastructure in all parts of our State. In the course of our campaign, I made a promise that our administration will rehabilitate and reconstruct the Ogun end of the Ijebu-Ode-Epe road to bring succour to our people and engender the economic development of the our State.
“Today’s event is yet another instance of promise made and promise kept. As a government that places premium on integrity, we shall continue to keep our promises”, he pledged.
He said his administration was committed to prioritizing and providing interconnecting roads that would link the State with its neighbours.
He regretted the neglect of people at the border areas and promised that they would now enjoy the dividends of democracy as their counterparts from Lagos State.
The Governor noted that business climate in the state has improved in the last nine months tremendously, saying that this was made possible by the public and private partnership emplaced by him.
Prince Abiodun while charging the people of the areas to join hands with goverment and the contractor to ensure speedy completion of the project, added that it was imperative for the elders and youths to see themselves as partners and stakeholders in government efforts at building the State.
He called on the contractor to ensure that youths in the areas area adequately engaged in the project, enjoining the youths to take the opportunity offered by the project to engage themselves in profitable venture.
The Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Engr. Ade Akinsanya, said the road project was a demonstration of government sincerity in providing enduring infrastructure in all parts of the State.
He said the project was germane as it would be easy link to Lagos, thus improving the economic and social well-being of those in the axis, assuring that the road would be completed on record time.
In their goodwill messages, the Awujale of Ijebuland, Oba Sikiru Adetona, represented by Dagburewe of Idowa, Oba Yinusa Adekoya, thanked the State goverment for ensuring even distribution of amenities to all parts of the State, while the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo, appreciated the State goverment for the project, saying it would help in fast tracking the economic well-being of the State.
The Olu of Ilaro, Oba Kehinde Olugbenle appreciated the Goverrnor for taking development to all parts of the State, while the representative of members of the State House of Assembly, Hon.Atinuke Bello, thanked the goverment for siting rhe project in Odogbolu Local Government Area, saying it would create jobs and improve the business fortunes in the areas affected.
NAUB: MR PRESIDENT, WHO ARE THOSE PLANNING TO KILL THE ONLY FEDERAL UNIVERSITY THAT DOES NOT GO ON STRIKE? By Femi Oyewale
NAUB: MR PRESIDENT, WHO ARE THOSE PLANNING TO KILL THE ONLY FEDERAL UNIVERSITY THAT DOES NOT GO ON STRIKE? By Femi Oyewale
Sahara Weekly Reveals That Higher education in Nigeria, quite frankly, is facing immense challenges including but not limited to poor infrastructure, unrealistic academic calendars resulting in extra years against stipulated durations, lack of teaching equipment, social menace, poor funding, amongst others.
Interestingly, Nigerian Army University, Biu (NAUB) is quite unique from other federal universities in the sense that since inception, there has not been any issue of strike, cultism, protest, or anti-social conduct.
Rather, the university is reputed for its excellent condition of learning environment.
This was aptly covered by the Governor of Borno State, H.E Professor Babagana Umara Zulum through his deputy during the maiden edition of the convocation ceremony of NAUB on Saturday, October 28th, 2023 at the University’s main campus ( note not temporary campus within five years of existence) in Biu, Borno State.
The Borno State governor said he was physically present at the groundbreaking ceremony of the foundation laying stone of NAUB five years ago, and he is impressed by what he has seen adding that it must take military precision and focus to put in a full-fledged and functional university on a barren land in such a short period.
The Governor further thanked the Federal Government, the Nigerian Army, the traditional rulers, scholars and academics philanthropist, industrialists, associates and men and women of goodwill from within and outside Borno State for the selfless service of gradually re-modelling the future of Borno State in particular and Nigeria in general and for putting Borno State on the path of further greatness through the Nigerian Army university, Biu.
Why then do we plan to abort such a great independent institution of learning known as a barrier breaker and line crosser by merging it with NDA whose missions and visions are not in tandem with each other .
Why cut short the dreams of such noble ideas via politics?
Are there those who do not want a stable educational system in Nigeria?
Are there external forces or their agents at home trying to destroy a good foundation for a stable educational system in Nigeria?
Is NAUB in competition with the private universities?
Are there big shots who benefit from a chaotic educational system in Nigeria?
Are there some subterranean forces working within the system to achieve the Boko Haram objective that “education is sin”?
The words of Governor Zulum rings a wise bell when he said that Boko Haram insurgents have achieved their objectives if the university is scrapped.
“Therefore, we appeal to Mr. President to look into this issue so that the Army University Biu would remain a university… because of the importance of education in this part of the country, where Boko Haram is saying that education is forbidden. And I think that by allowing this Army university to be scrapped, they might have achieved one or two of their objectives,” he said.
The governor noted that, for over a decade, Borno State has been facing a serious crisis that has denied many children access to education.
“Therefore, this university is very important to not only the people of Borno State but our neighbouring states,” he said.
Look at the Western countries that started with military polytechnics that propelled revolution in military equipment development.
Many of these developed countries collaborated jointly through civil-military research.
The Swedish Defence University established like NAUB is Sweden’s leading resource in, and first choice for, education, training and research in the management of crisis, war and periods of tension in the leadership of both civil and military agencies. The Swedish Defence University is an accredited institution for academic education for military and civilian students and researchers where different experiences, approaches, and traditions come together. It has become a hub for both national and international students.
It might shock you to know that American Military University (AMU) and American Public University (APU). APUS is wholly owned by American Public Education, Inc., a publicly traded private-sector corporation that offers associates, bachelors, masters, and doctoral degrees, in addition to dual degrees, certificate programs and learning tracks.
During my NYSC, I served in the Nigerian Army School of Education (NASE), Ilorin, which is a renowned military institution focused on providing high-quality education and training for Nigerian Army personnel and civilians. So why the proposed merger of NAUB?
Interestingly, the Nigerian Army University Biu provides such a platform for the Nigerian military towards technological innovation, research, and development in varied fields for national defence and security breakthroughs like many modern nations. In fact, instead of downgrading the Nigerian Army University, many more Army universities should be established in Nigeria. That is the way out for a caricature type of educational system that has failed to have stability over the years.
Who is not interested in seeing that a federal university graduates its students within the regular course time frame?
Must programmes of all federal universities be easily disrupted. A course of 4 or 5 years ends up taking over 6 to 7 years to complete. The worst part is that many universities end up in a crash programme to be able to cover up for the lost times. The terrible damage to these universities’ products is the very low standard of graduates.
Who wants the Nigerian educational system to collapse completely? These are rhetorical questions the amiable president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and all stakeholders should ask those proposing the merger to answer us publicly, else should let the matter die forever in the abyss of hasty decision.
*Photo Story: Israel Ovirih, Alhaji Adam Nuru Pay Courtesy Visit To Hon. Minister for Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola*
Which Way Nigeria: The Imperatives of A New Economic Direction
*Which Way Nigeria: The Imperatives of A New Economic Direction*
By Dapo Otubanjo, a financial analyst & real estate entreprenuer
After eight months in the Villa, the clock ticking on President Tinubu’s administration has gathered enough time for us to start seeking accountability for his actions, and the delivery of his electoral promises to a Nigeria with an urgent need for national renaissance, and a new economic direction.
The realities of our lives today as Nigerians is gravely incongruous to the promise to renew hopes, and reinvent the economy for a new era of opportunities, and prosperity for all of us. The agony of excruciating economic stagflation is now more widespread, and tending towards a period of national economic depression.
Nigerians understand, and have demonstrated severally in time past, that when time and government change, so must we the people as “new challenges require new responses”. Unfortunately the economic pains of this era are like a disaster with no solution in sight, leaving most folks in the terrifying situation of inadequate household income for survival talkless of a decent living.
Given Nigeria’s precarious economic situation post Buhari’s government of destructive economics, there was no doubt about the need, and urgency for appropriate reforms to reorganize the country for economic recovery, and national security. And whilst the reforms of Tinubunomics are requisite liberal policy prescriptions, the executions are mired in premature timing, terrible implementation, and insensitive partisan gloating over the government’s audacity to introduce the reforms rather than a democratic tolerance for national discussions on the devastating consequences of its impacts as leverage to gauge acceptance, and gather citizens feedbacks for reviews, adjustments, and corrective measures in its areas of deficiencies, and ineffectiveness.
However the opportunity still exist, for correction and, to arrest our miserable spiral towards economic doomsday, and President Tinubu must hurriedly embrace the wisdom to do a reset, and refine the wrong elements of his reforms for the achievement of better outcomes in critical areas of job creation, reducing, and stabilizing both the value of the naira, and inflation, and attracting significant local, and foreign investments for the immediate task of economic recovery, and recreation of a vibrant middle class that was totally wiped out by the previous APC government, and long term goals of industrialization, and sustainable growth in the economy, and our export sector.
The best, and most imperative solution, and palliative for the rising cost of living is immediate wage increase across all sectors. The Federal government must seek to achieve wage increase of two hundred thousand naira for Federal workers, negotiate with the states for one hundred and fifty thousand naira for all state employees, and push the private sector towards fifty thousand naira as the barest minimum for the lowest set of workers to fuel consumer spending that was hitherto dwindling for obvious reasons, and improve households financial resources to minimally mitigate against worsening economic situation.
The inflationary effects of an unstable naira need a freeze otherwise the application of wage increase will be futile, and become a continuous demand. It is imperative for the government to return the provision of interventions in the FX market through partial exchange rates management until all foreign investors seeking full liberalization are willing to bring in their funds, and/or when the sale of government assets, and export earnings are sufficient enough to provide adequate supply for FX demands. The arbitrage gains of FX trading in the previous APC government made FX business highly profitable with devastating practices of round tripping, and speculative FX trading that continuously encourage a large number of folks to hoard, and hold on to a large pool of foreign currencies at the expense of a free fall in the value of the naira.
Through the CBN, the government need to urgently introduce appropriate monetary measures to curb these practices, and incentivize the release of more foreign currencies into the market.
Our national challenges cannot be resolved by government alone but the government have a crucial role to play in setting the agenda, and transforming the private sector into a pivot for growth, and national development. President Tinubu should as a matter of national emergency deploy all presidential support for the Dangote, and other refineries to achieve refining capacity sufficient enough for local fuel consumption, and make provisions to export excess supply to the West African sub region. And use the support, and other regulatory instruments to negotiate a stable fuel price over three to five year period as further safeguard against inflation, and forex pressure on the naira.
So many of our Federal assets are wallowing in the inefficiencies of terrible operations, corrupt government practices, and nepotistic managements delivering inadequate, and unreasonable returns for the Nigerian state. There should be an urgent consideration for their privatization, and sales to generate requisite, and significant revenues to shore up the economy, and engineer a long term foundation for sustainable growth, and national prosperity.
Our demands, and exploration for foreign investments must seek prospects in the Middle East, and some parts of Asia where there are abundance of liquidity for investment capital, and great probability for immediate result. The president should constantly deploy his most brilliant envoys to the region for continuous negotiations, and schedule all presidential investment travels around the region for closing of appropriate investment deals.
Recently, the government launched over a hundred billion naira housing programme. As good, and commendable that is, it is still a drop in the ocean, and too meagre for any significant social, and economic impact for a nation of over two hundred million population. We must seek to raise trillions of naira within a short term for the substantial growth of the sector, and its exponential impacts on the economy, and provide complementary infrastructure for urbanization, rural connections, and the financial reform of our mortgage system to reduce interest rates, increase period, and affordability, and expand access to more households. We have a large pool of idle funds in various pension schemes, and must explore a viable government means for these funds to find profitable returns in real estate business opportunities.
The erosion of value in our banking sector capitalization levels are critical challenges for our national ambitions, and obviously needs urgent rounds of renewal towards the trillions of naira capitalization threshold to adequately fund the expansion of national productivity, manufacturing, sustainable large scale credit industry, and a new middle class.
And those super highways (SHW) the president promised us need to start coming alive in urgent, and huge contract awards, and accelerated construction works as credible means to connect communities, and states across the country, and ease the movement of people, and products. Our rail networks need significant improvements, and expansion with appropriate security measures to complement the comprehensive renewal, and expansion of our transport means, and its impact in the boosting of trade, and commerce.
Generations of Nigerians have endured economic crises at different times of bad governance often with the deceptive cliché that the situation will eventually get better. President Tinubu must make a departure from that decades old political narrative, and explore credible means within the limitless possibilities of our potentials to stimulate immediate economic recovery, and long term sustainable growth, secure, and unite the country, and deliver the promise of a developing nation.
Today’s worsening economic situation is not a new territory for Nigeria as we have often travelled through tough national periods of economic stagnation, and recession, widespread poverty, and underdevelopment. The president should reasonably review thoroughly the economic reforms of the democratic government of 1999 – 2007, and draw appropriate economic lessons from the successful economic reforms of that era in reasonable FX market, and inflation management, naira stabilization, privatization, bank consolidation, the commencement of a credit system that was subsequently unscaled, a widening middle class, and amazing economic growth that put Nigeria at the forefront of the globally acclaimed narrative of Africa rising. And essentially gave a national rebirth to the audacious can do spirit of the Nigerian folks. It was an era of incredible demonstration of what we can achieve together through collective actions, and visionary leadership, and we must seek to replicate the same economic results as a navigating path out of our current economic downturn.
The current generation of Nigerians possess all that we require to transform ourselves from a nation perpetually travelling in the wrong direction into a developing country of proud citizens. The onus is essentially the president’s to lead from the front, and set forth a clear vision with opportunity for everyone to make appropriate contributions towards sustainable growth, and national development.
Tough times define great leaders. And time, and chance they say happen to all of us. There is a great moment for the president to seize, and more importantly for the sake of our nation, we hope he takes this period as an incredible chance to cement the foundation of his legacy, and unfold the greatness of Nigeria.
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