Yabatech Union commends philanthropist for N3.5bn Entrepreneurship Centre donation

The Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Polytechnic (SSANIP), Yabatech Chapter has commended Alhaji Tunde Fanimokun, a philanthropist, for donating N3.5 billion to build an Entrepreneurship Centre for the college.

The Chairman of SSANIP, Yabatech Chapter, Mr Jason Ayodeji, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday that the donation was a welcome development that would add value to the students’ career paths.

NAN reports that the groundbreaking event, which held on Tuesday at the Yusuf Grillo Hall of the college, was in commemoration of Fanimokun’s 80th birthday.

Ayodeji said that the Union was delighted with the donation, which was in honour of late Wahab Folawiyo, the Founding Father of Yinka Folawiyo Conglomerate.

He said that the building which would be named ‘Folawiyo Entrepreneurship Centre’, would provide an enabling environment where students could be taught crucial life skills that would help them navigate the future.

According to him, an entrepreneurship centre plays a critical role in
shaping the future of students.

He said that such centres fostered innovation and creativity among the students, whereby they explore and grow their entrepreneurial skills.

‘This is a laudable step, we are happy and express our gratitude to Fanimokun.

‘The Entrepreneurship Centre will provide the necessary resources, guidance and networking opportunities that will turn students’ ideas to successful ventures.

‘The centre will be a distinguished four-storey building having four lecture theatres, with 320-sitting capacity in each; another with 500-sitting, 19 classrooms, office spaces for staff, various areas for vocational activities, and ample parking facilities,’ he said.

The SSANIP chairman said that the union had noted efforts being put in place by Dr Ibraheem Abdul, the Rector, Yabatech, in securing such a significant endowment for the institution.

‘The present administration under Dr Abdul has been doing a great job, this is another feat and we will continue to support his good work and activities t
o take the College to the next level,’ he said.

The philanthropist, Fanimokun, retired as a Permanent Secretary with the Lagos State Civil Service before being employed as Executive Director, Projects, by late Folawiyo.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


Gunmen invade Oyo State Secretariat, security officials say no cause for alarm

Gunmen suspected to be members of a group calling itself O’odua Nation agitators early Saturday in Ibadan invaded the Oyo State Secretariat at Agodi.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the gunmen’s invasion was however repelled by state security officials.

A security man at one of the commercial banks around the secretariat main gate told NAN that gunmen numbering more than 10 blocked the Secretariat-Total Garden Road.

This was done for other members of their group to force their way into the secretariat complex.

However, when some members of the Amotekun Corps, stationed nearby as part of regular security measures by government, confronted the gunmen, an exchange of gunfire began.

The gunmen who dressed in military camouflage were however subdued with the arrival of more security personnel.

These were from the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), the Nigerian Armed Forces, the Department of State Services (DSS) and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC).

The security men were able to arres
t some of the gunmen while others took to their heels and were pursued into the nearby bushes and forest.

According to eyewitness accounts, the gunmen had headed straight to the State House of Assembly premises located within the secretariat.

They had removed the Nigerian flag and replaced it with their O’odua Nation flag, before the intervention of the security men made up of the Amotekun Corps.

The arrival of more security men as back-up saved the situation, thereby helping to overwhelm the gunmen.

‘It was in the process of their leaving the Assembly complex that we started hearing gun shots and everyone began running for safety,’ an eyewitness said.

NAN reports that the gunmen had arrived in an ash-coloured Hiace bus and two motorcycles, which have now been seized and taken to the State Police Headquarters.

Confirming the incident, Mr Fatai Owoseni, the Special Adviser to Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State on Security, said the situation had been put under control.

Owoseni, who described the gunmen as m
iscreants, said the combined team of personnel from several security agencies had overpowered them, while some of them had been arrested.

‘There is no need to panic. Everything is under control,’ he said.

Adewale Osifeso, the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in the state, confirmed the incident but could not give definite details about the incident.

‘I am aware of the incident. I will get back to you,’ he had said immediately after the incident.

NAN however gathered from unconfirmed sources that a total of 16 suspects had been arrested over the incident, while two of them sustained bullet wounds and some others escaped with gunshots.

Those arrested have been equally moved to the State Police Headquarters at Eleiyele, while security personnel have been stationed at the secretariat gate.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


Gunmen attack Benue governorship aspirant, household while returning from farm

Gunmen attacked one of the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship aspirants in Benue in the 2023 race, Mr Terwase Orbunde, on Friday and abducted his wife and house help, the police declared on Saturday.

Orbunde, Chief of Staff to erstwhile Gov. Samuel Ortom escaped with a gunshot wound to his right arm in the attack.

Police spokesperson in Benue, SP Sewuese Anene, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the gunmen attacked Orbunde and members of his household in the Benue capital as they were returning from the farm.

She said Orbunde reported the attack to the police which despatched a team of detectives to the scene of the assault and recovered the politician’s car.

Anene assured that the assailants would be tracked and arrested and the abducted freed.

Eyewitnesses said Orbunde, his wife and the house help had gone to inspect the weeding of their farm located close to the road.

After paying the workers, five gunmen attacked them and ordered their victims to follow them to an unknown destinati
on, but discarded bleeding Orbunde who was too slow to keep pace.

The gunshot caused villagers and passers-by to scamper to safety in different directions, the eyewitnesses said.

A family source told NAN that the assailants demanded a N100 million ransom on Saturday for the release of the two women abducted.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


Nigeria first to introduce new 5-in-1 vaccine against meningitis – WHO

Nigeria has become the first country in the world to roll out a new vaccine – Men5CV – recommended by World Health Organisation(WHO), to protect people against meningitis.

The world health body, in a statement on Friday, said that the vaccine would protect people against five strains of meningococcus bacteria, and described Nigeria’s feat as historic.

It said that health workers would begin an immunisation campaign aimed at reaching one million people.

The statement said that the vaccine and emergency vaccination activities are funded by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, which funds the global meningitis vaccine stockpile and supports lower-income countries with routine vaccination against meningitis.

According to the WHO, Nigeria is one of the 26 meningitis hyper-endemic countries of Africa, situated in the area known as the African Meningitis Belt.

It noted that in 2023, there was a 50 per cent jump in annual meningitis cases reported across Africa.

‘In Nigeria, an outbreak of Neisseria meningitidis (mening
ococcus) serogroup C outbreak, led to 1,742 suspected meningitis cases, including 101 confirmed cases and 153 deaths in seven of 36 Nigerian state, between October 2023 and March 2024.

The states are Adamawa, Bauchi, Gombe, Jigawa, Katsina, Yobe, Zamfara.

‘To quell the deadly outbreak, a vaccination campaign was undertaken on 25-28 March 2024 to initially reach more than one million people aged 1-29 years,’ it said.

The statement noted that meningitis was a serious infection that leads to the inflammation of the membranes (meninges), that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord.

‘There are multiple causes of meningitis, including viral, bacterial, fungal and parasitic pathogens.

‘Symptoms often include headache, fever and stiff neck. Bacterial meningitis is the most serious, and can also result in septicaemia (blood poisoning). It can seriously disable or kill within 24 hours,’ the statement added.

It quoted Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, as saying that meningitis was an old and dea
dly foe, adding that the new vaccine holds the potential to change the trajectory of the disease, preventing future outbreaks and saving many lives

‘Nigeria’s rollout brings us one step closer to our goal of eliminating meningitis by 2030,’ Ghebreyesus said.

He said that the revolutionary new vaccine offers a powerful shield against the five major strains of the meningococcal bacteria – A, C, W, Y and X – in a single shot.

All five strains cause meningitis and blood poisoning.

According to him, this provides broader protection than the current vaccine used in much of Africa, which is only effective against the A strain.

He said that the new vaccine has the potential to significantly reduce meningitis cases and advance progress in defeating meningitis.

‘This is especially important for countries like Nigeria where multiple serogroups are prevalent.

‘The new vaccine uses the same technology as the meningitis A conjugate vaccine (MenAfriVac®), which wiped out meningococcal A epidemics in Nigeria,’ the WHO
boss said.

The statement quoted Prof. Muhammad Pate, Nigeria’s Minister of Health and Social Welfare, as saying that Northern Nigeria, particularly the states of Jigawa, Bauchi and Yobe, were badly hit by the deadly outbreak of meningitis.

‘This vaccine provides health workers with a new tool to both stop this outbreak and also put the country on a path to elimination,’ Pate said.

According to him, Nigeria has done a lot of work preparing health workers and the health system for the rollout of the new vaccine.

‘We got an invaluable support from our populations in spite of the fasting period, and from our community leaders, especially the Emir of Gumel in Jigawa, who personally launched the vaccination campaign in the state.

‘We’ll be monitoring progress closely and hopefully expand the immunisation in the coming months and years to accelerate progress,’ he said.

The minister said that the new multivalent conjugate vaccine took 13 years of efforts and was based on a partnership between PATH and the Serum
Institute of India.

‘Financing from the UK government’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office was critical to its development,’ he said.

Pate said that in July 2023, WHO prequalified the new Men5CV vaccine (which has brand name MenFive®), and in October 2023 issued an official recommendation to countries to introduce the new vaccine.

According to him, Gavi allocated resources for the Men5CV rollout in December 2023, which is currently available for outbreak response through the emergency stockpile managed by the International Coordinating Group (ICG), on Vaccine Provision.

He added that the roll-out, through mass preventive campaigns, was expected to start in 2025 across countries of the Meningitis Belt.

Mr Andrew Mitchell, UK Minister for Development and Africa, was also quoted as saying that the rollout of one million vaccines in northern Nigeria would help save lives, prevent long-term illness and boost the goal of defeating meningitis globally by 2030.

‘This is exactly the kind of scientific
innovation, supported by the UK, which I hope is replicated in years to come, to help us drive further breakthroughs, including wiping out other diseases,’ Mitchell said.

He said that WHO has been supporting the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (NCDC), in responding to the meningitis outbreak in the country.

According to him, the areas of support include disease surveillance, active case finding, sample testing and case management.

‘WHO and partners have also played a vital role in supporting Nigeria to prepare for the rollout of the new vaccine and training health workers,’ he said.

Dr Nanthalile Mugala, PATH’s Chief of Africa Region, was also quoted as saying that meningococcal meningitis had tormented countries across Africa, year after year.

‘The introduction of MenFive® in Nigeria heralds a transformative era in the fight against meningococcal meningitis in Africa.

‘Building on the legacy of previous vaccination efforts, this milestone reflects over a decade of unwavering, innovati
ve partnerships.

‘The promise of MenFive® lies not just in its immediate impact but in the countless lives it stands to protect in the years to come, moving us closer to a future free from the threat of this disease,’ Mugala said.

According to her, in 2019, WHO and partners launched the global roadmap to defeating meningitis by 2030.

‘The roadmap sets a comprehensive vision towards a world free of meningitis, and has three goals including the elimination of bacterial meningitis epidemics.

Another goal is the reduction of cases of vaccine-preventable bacterial meningitis by 50 per cent and deaths by 70 per cent, as well as the reduction of disability and improvement of quality of life after meningitis, due to any cause.

Ms Aurélia Nguyen, Chief Programme Officer at Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, was also quoted as saying that with outbreaks of infectious diseases on the rise worldwide, new innovations such as MenFive® were critical in helping the fight back.

She said that Vaccine Alliance funds the global s
tockpile as well as vaccine rollout in lower-income countries.

‘This first shipment signals the start of Gavi support for a multivalent meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MMCV) programme which, with the required donor funding for our next five years of work, will see pentavalent meningococcal conjugate vaccines rolled out in high-risk countries.

‘Thanks to vaccines, we have eliminated large and disruptive outbreaks of meningitis A in Africa, now we have a tool to respond to other serogroups that still cause large outbreaks resulting in long-term disability and deaths,’ Nguyen said.

According to her, following Nigeria’s meningitis vaccine campaign, a major milestone on the road to defeat meningitis is the international summit on meningitis taking place in Paris in April 2024, where leaders will celebrate progress, identify challenges and assess next steps.

‘It is also an opportunity for country leaders and key partners to commit, politically and financially, to accelerate progress towards eliminating meningi
tis as a public health problem by 2030,’ she said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


23 inmates bag varsity degrees at Enugu Custodial Centre

Twenty-three inmates of the Enugu Custodial Centre bagged Masters, first degree and Post Graduate Diploma of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) on Saturday.

Five of them bagged the Master’s degree, 17 bagged their first degrees, while one got a Post-Graduate Diploma.

The 23 are products of NOUN’s study centre at the custodial facility that completed their various courses within four or five years.

State Coordinator of NOUN, Nigerian Correctional Service, Mrs Jennifer Nwonyi, presented the degrees and diploma to the graduates at a virtual convocation held at the Enugu Custodial Centre.

She noted that the graduates had defied all odds to attain the great heights.

‘I am overwhelmed with joy that God granted these students the grace to successfully complete their studies to become graduates of NOUN.

‘Thank God that these graduates overcame the psychological challenge of attending to rigours of years study while being held at the custodial centre.

‘I say congratulations to our graduates and wish
them great advancements as we have prepared them to face and overcome future challenges when they leave the custodial centre,” Nwonyi said.

Speaking at the ceremony, Mr Sunday Oyakhire, Deputy Controller of Corrections in charge of Enugu Maximum Custodial Centre, thanked NOUN for organising the courses and for providing facilitators.

In his remarks, Mr Arinzechukwu Onovo, the correctional centre’s Desk Officer for NOUN programmes, encouraged the graduates to continue to search for knowledge, saying: ‘it is the key to unlock many potentials.”

‘We had a greater number of graduates of NOUN courses this year than we had last year.

‘We will continue to encourage more inmates to take advantage of free educational reformation available at the correctional facility in partnership with NOUN,” Onovo said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


Nigeria needs visionary leaders to save education from imminent collapse – Author

An author and a retired Executive Director, Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Dr Bulus Danmagaji, says the nation’s education sector needs visionary leadership to save it from imminent collapse.

Danmagaji, who also served as Human Resource Manager, Power Holding Company of Nigeria, spoke in Abuja on Saturday at the launching of a book titled: ‘Leadership and Education Reform in Nigeria’.

The author said the education sector would continue to experience a mirage until the problem of leadership and education quality were adequately tackled.

According to him, education is the most powerful weapon to change the world and Nigerians must learn from the past leadership failure to transform the sector.

‘The corridor of the entire system is in confusion and it is from leadership. How much attention do we give to education and what is the quality of the attention?

‘We must work hard to give birth to effective human capital else we will wake up one day and there will be nobody.

‘We need visionary and committe
d leaders to transform the sector,’ Danmagaji said.

He said if one has corrupt leadership, one will have corrupt followers and if the leadership is committed to education, the country’s future and the future of children will be secured.

Also, a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mrs Sarah Alade called on the government to give priority to education by injecting more funds into the sector.

‘We need quality education in this country to survive. Whatever we are going to do, unless we have that human capital development, we will not get anywhere.

‘At the moment, we need to give education priority by putting more money in the budget for education going by the percentage of GDP.

‘We must have safe schools and ensure that every child that is of school age also goes to school if we are going to make progress,’ Alade said.

In the same vein, the book reviewer, Dr Philip Hayab, said the application of poor administration had impeded the sector, hence the need for a new strategy to correct the e

Hayab, a research fellow at the Institute of Peace and Conflict Resolution, said that the country’s education system needed embodied philosophical ideas that would foster the worth of individual development.

He explained that the book challenged the way children interact with technology while recommending a national conference to access the education policy that would advance the future of education in the country.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


2 die, 13 injured in Sagamu-Ijebu Ode expressway accident

Two people were reported dead while 13 others sustained injuries in an accident at Ajede, after J4, on the Sagamu-Ijebu Ode expressway on Saturday.

Mrs Florence Okpe, the Spokesperson, Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) in Ogun, confirmed the incident to newsmen in Abeokuta.

Okpe explained that the accident occurred at about 12:10 pm and it involved a Toyota Hiace bus marked GUE 59 ZY and a truck with registration number BGT 94 LG.

The FRSC spokesperson explained further that the accident was caused by excessive speeding which made the bus driver to ram into a stationary truck parked by the roadside.

‘Fifteen people were involved in the crash – 10 men and five women and a total of 13 people sustained injuries while two persons died,’ she said.

Okpe added that the injured victims were taken to Hope Hospital at J4 while the deceased were deposited at the Ijebu-Ode General Hospital Morgue.

Mr Anthony Uga, the Sector Commander, cautioned motorists against wrong parking of vehicles on the highway.

Uga further
cautioned motorists against over speeding and advised them to always drive carefully.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


Why we need more special education teachers in schools – Inclusion Advocate

Akhere Aghedo-Akran, Educational Manager, St. Agatha’s Inclusive Learning Centre, Satellite Town, has solicited for the employment of more special education teachers in schools.

Aghedo-Akran told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Lagos that this would encourage mainstream settings in the country.

She added that it would also promote lifelong learning opportunities for all and aid implementation of the Salamanca Statement.

She said that the presence of trained special education teachers in mainstream classrooms would assist other teachers who may not have the training.

The educational manager stressed that these different sets of teachers could work hand-in-hand, adding, ‘team work makes the dream work.’

According to her, the presence of graduates with special education certificates will do more good in regular schools as they will be able to successfully integrate and adequately educate children living with disabilities.

‘I will like to relate to the Salamanca Statement, which was adopted an
d widely endorsed at the world conference organised by UNESCO and the Ministry of Education and Science of Spain in 1994.

‘It established the fundamental principles of inclusion at schools – ‘All children should learn together wherever possible, regardless of any difficulties or differences they may have’.

‘It is therefore fundamental to have more graduates with special education certificates in teaching profession, in fact all teachers must have basic knowledge and understanding of diversities of children.

‘Not all disabilities are visible, it is therefore important to note that every child must be treated with equity and have access to a conducive and enabling environment where he or she can survive under inclusive education.

‘Inclusive education basically aims to provide equal learning opportunities for special children, those who have been disenfranchised from access to education or excluded from mainstream ‘regular class’ alongside their peers.

‘It will also enhance social integration, they will be
inspired to embrace skills being carried along with their peers, by these measures, there is a synergy with behavioural learning,’ she added.

The diversity and inclusion advocate identified lack of technical know-how and inadequate resources as challenges that came with inclusive education.

She said that the aforementioned needed to be addressed to enable educators successfully deliver accordingly and equitably teach the special children in mainstream classrooms with neuro-topical children.

On assessment, Aghedo-Akran said it was key to understand exactly the diagnosis and prognosis of children and to seek to understand their levels of achievement or attainment.

‘It’s fundamental to have teachers trained specially for that purpose, because not all teachers are trained to handle or teach children living with disabilities.

‘There is need for continuous training and re-training of teachers, no teacher should be eliminated from this vital training.

‘We also understand that there are different and several le
vels of teachers who might have challenges with their receptivity to this training.

‘This is because some of them might have experience where the norm has always been to teach neuro-topical children or those who do not have any disability that might tamper with their behaviour.

‘So when you bring the idea that they should be trained on these issues, it becomes a problem because some of them fall in the laggard set, where they will refuse information or refuse innovation except there is a consequence or a reward,’ she added.

Aghedo-Akran appealed to organisations and philanthropists to support inclusive education by donations of technological gadgets that could aid learning in schools.

She also urged for funding to employ teachers who would need these gadgets to teach.

She said, ‘we must be ready to improvise, collaborate and source for funding from organisations willing to commit meaningfully to the education of these children.’

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


President Tinubu’s ‘Renewed Hope’ agenda a reality – Wike

The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Mr Nyesom Wike, says that President Bola Tinubu’s ‘Renewed Hope’ agenda is a reality.

Wike stated this when he visited the ongoing construction of the Vice President’s residence, a project that is being executed by Julius Berger, in Abuja on Saturday.

The minister said that the FCT was wearing a new look in terms of infrastructural development in line with Tinubu’s renewed hope agenda.

He said that several projects in FCT would be inaugurated to celebrate Tinubu’s one year in office and in fulfilment of the President’s agenda to renew the lost hope of Nigerians.

He added that key completed projects would be inaugurated to demonstrate the reality of President Tinubu’s promise of renewed hope to the people.

This, according to him, will further strengthen citizen’s trust on the government.

‘Let the residents know that the renewed hope agenda is a reality, because if you don’t tell people this has been done, nobody will know that things have been done.

Let people know that yes, this is the promise we made, and within one year in office, this is what we have been able to achieve, as far as FCT is concerned.

‘Not just the infrastructure, changing the structure of FCT is another achievement,’ the minister said.

On the location of the VP residence, Wike said that the Federal Government decided where the residence should be sited, adding that everything was taken into consideration.

He said that the FCT Administration invited the Office of the National Security Adviser for its advice, adding that the office had looked at the location and made inputs.

On the possibility of traffic congestion, the minister said that the Federal Capital Development Authority and Julius Berger were making the needed amendments where necessary.

‘So, on the issue of traffic, I don’t think it is a problem,’ he added.

He explained that the visit was to see whether the residence would be ready for inauguration in May, and to ensure that security features and other concerns were ade
quately taken care of.

He assured Nigerians that work was ongoing and everything was being put together to make the residence the best in terms of quality, security and accessibility.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


We’ll continue to promote distance learning to improve access to education – Tinubu

President Bola Tinubu has assured Nigerians that his administration will continue to promote the Open and Distance Learning (ODL) to improve access to higher education in the country.

Tinubu gave the assurance at the 13th Convocation and Investiture of the third Chancellor of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), Ewuare II, the Oba of Benin, on Saturday in Abuja.

‘We will continue to do this in order to improve quality, access and affordability,’ he said.

Tinubu was represented at the event by Dr Biodun Saliu, the Deputy Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission (NUC).

He said the deployment of ODL approach in tertiary education was the major link to achieving the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.

‘Government is, therefore, committed through the Federal Ministry of Education and the NUC to provide the enabling environment to ensure a good delivery of this mode of education in Nigeria,’ he said.

The Vice-Chancellor of NOUN, Prof. Olufemi Peters, said the university had maintained
its leadership role in promoting ODL across the African continent.

This, Peters said, necessitated the re-election of the institution as the 1st Vice-President on the Board of the African Council for Distance Education (ACDE) during the seventh Triennial Conference and General Assembly held in Kenya.

‘The university continues to contribute significantly to Open and Distance e-Learning (ODeL) initiatives. The ACDE is a continental and leading organisation of African universities in ODeL and other higher educational institutions.

‘We take pride in offering education that is both flexible and qualitative, yet affordable and accessible.

‘We prioritise equity and equal opportunities in education at the university level, striving to widen access and promote lifelong learning.

‘Since inception, NOUN has provided scholarships to about 83 inmates in correctional centres, exemplified by a current PHD student in Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution.

‘From a very humble beginning, the university has grown in leaps
and bounds. We have brought smiles to many people who had thought university education was beyond them. Our student enrolment figures have increased.

‘Our programme offerings have also increased. From about 1,230 students in 2003, the student population has now grown to about 170,000 active students in 2024 and over 100,000 alumni, straddling important sectors of our economy.

‘We have grown from relative obscurity, where many in the tertiary education sector and employers within the Nigerian labour market tried to question the quality of our products, to a pre-eminent position as the undisputed leader in Open and Distance Learning in sub-Saharan Africa,’ Peters said.

He noted that the 2024 convocation was unique because of the investiture of the institution’s third Chancellor, the Oba of Benin, Ewuare II.

‘The convocation is also unique because of the award of honorary degrees on Dr Innocent Chukwuma, founder, Innoson Motors and Hajiya Hafsatu Ahmed, the first female Hausa novelist from Northern Nigeria,’
he said.

He said the choice of the awardees reflected the core values at NOUN which centred on entrepreneurial ingenuity and knowledge based content creativity.

‘Indeed, as a mark of the profound admiration of Chukwuma’s entrepreneurial sagacity, the NOUN under my management, has decided henceforth, to acquire only Innoson vehicular products as our operational vehicles,’ Peters added.

The Chancellor, the Oba of Benin, who spoke after his investiture, said he was aware of the responsibility accompanying his position.

‘My vision for the National Open University of Nigeria is one of excellence, innovation, and inclusivity.

‘It is my fervent aspiration to leverage my position as a traditional ruler to enhance the fortunes of this esteemed institution.

‘Without any gainsaying, NOUN holds a unique position as a beacon of hope and opportunity in the realm of Open and Distance e-learning mode of instructional delivery.

‘We will do our best to ensure that this university remains not only a pioneer in Nigeria bu
t also a shining example across the entirety of the sub-Saharan Africa.

‘As we all know, education knows no boundaries, and I am committed to an environment where knowledge transcends borders and transforms lives.

‘Together, we will embark on a journey of advancement and progress, guided by principles of integrity, scholarship and service.

‘I challenge us all to let us work tirelessly to uphold the values upon which this university was founded, and to chart a course towards an even brighter future,’ the chancellor said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that 22,175 students in various disciplines participated in the convocation from NOUN 120 study centres nationwide.

While 15,768 are undergraduate degrees, 6,407 earned postgraduate degrees, with the Faculty of Social Sciences producing the highest number.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


2024 Farming season: Edo govt begins input distribution to farmers

Edo Government has flagged-off the distribution of inputs to small-holder farmers in Edo Central Senatorial District ahead of the 2024 farming season.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that a total number of 471 farmers across the five local government areas (LGAs) in Edo central senatorial district benefited from the input distribution.

The flag-off which took place at Irrua, the administrative headquarters of Esan LGA had farmers from Esan North-East, Esan South-East, Esan West and Igueben LGAs in attendance.

NAN also reports that agricultural inputs and Assets were distributed under Edo FADAMA CARES Result Area two programme.

Inputs distributed included 9,900 bundles of cassava stem cuttings, 2,115kg of maize seeds, 1,506 litres of pre- and post-emergence herbicides, 801 bags of NPK fertilizers, 141 bags of urea, 25 multipurpose grinding machines and two tricycle carts.

Gov. Godwin Obaseki, while flagging off the exercise, said the state agricultural policies have impacted positively on farmers
in Edo .

Represented by the state Commissioner for Agriculture and Food Security, Stephen Idehenre, Obaseki noted that the initiative was aimed at supporting over 12,000 small-holder farmers across the state.

He noted that farmers in the state have been empowered with inputs, essential farm kits, vaccines and poultry feeds to weather the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

‘In this programme, our target is to empower 4,179 farmers with farm inputs and services such as crops seeds, cassava cuttings, fertilizers, agro chemicals, fingerlings, day-old chicks, among others.

‘Another 3,441 farmers are to be empowered with irrigation facilities to enhance all-year-round farming and rehabilitation of feeder roads for easy access to the farms.

‘The programme is also targeting 4,875 farmers to benefit from cassava and rice milling machines, motorized sprayers, cold rooms multipurpose grinding machines, de-feathering machines and tricycles,’ Obaseki said.

The governor added that the programme has built over
10 markets and provided water reticulation points, toilets and boreholes in the markets.

According the him, EDO FADAMA CARES programme has implemented over 75 per cent of its targets across the 18 local government areas.

‘Today, as a follow up, the state government is empowering 471 small-holder farmers in Edo Central senatorial district with all this inputs and Assets you are seeing here.

‘As a government, we will continue to ensure that we provide all the farm inputs needed to make 2024 farming season a success,’ he added.

In his welcome address, the State Project Coordinator, Edward Izevbigie, said the inputs and Assets were hybrid varieties that would guarantee high yields for the farmers.

He disclosed that 160 bags of fertilizers, 1,981 bundles of cassava cuttings, 48 bags of Urea, 300 litres of herbicides and 400kg of maize seeds have been allocated to each of the five LGAs.

He also explained that 15 grinding machines and one tricycle was allocated to Igueben local government, Esan West was alloca
ted 10 grinding machines while Esan central got one tricycle in addition to other inputs distributed.

In his remarks, the chairman of Esan Central local government, Mr John Iyoha, who thanked the governor on behalf of the farmers, promised to set up a monitoring team to ensure that the inputs were well utilized.

According to him, this is the first time the whole of Esan land is witnessing this kind of large-scale inputs distribution. It has never happened.

‘We thank Gov. Godwin Obaseki for fulfilling his promises to Esan people,’ he said.

Source: News Agency of Nigeria


Man dies in accident at Ondangwa

The police in the Oshana Region are investigating a culpable homicide case after a 33-year-old man reportedly died in a car accident in Indangungu area of Ondangwa on Friday.

According to the Namibian Police Force (NamPol) Oshana Regional Commander Commissioner Naftali Lungameni Sakaria on Saturday, the accident occurred around 11:30 when the driver of a white Polo Vivo with an Ondangwa registration number lost control over the vehicle at Indangungu curve, causing it to overturn.

The deceased was identified as Ndjoba Henry Nghidipohamba, a resident of Omwandi in Ondangwa and a member of the Namibian Defence Force.

‘Three other occupants, Jafet Kashanu, (30), Jonas Kashipi Shipingana (31) and Natalia Namindi (31) all sustained injuries, with one of them, transferred to Oshakati hospital in a serious condition,’ Sakaria said.

Police investigations continue.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency