TheScoop Selects five news items you may have missed this week
1. Buhari Is Running
Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Boss Mustapha has said President Buhari will run for a second term in office. As the third most powerful person in the executive branch, when he speaks, you cannot cast it aside. Here is what he said:
“He will continue; The politics of this nation is no more the politics of money or do-or-die politics. Anybody who wants to lead this nation must make sacrifices. Buhari has already transformed and changed the image of leadership and that of our leaders this country, both locally and internationally.”
Lower Milk Prices? Federal Government’s Agric Policy U-Turn
Senator Sabo Mohammed, APC representing Jigawa drew the attention of the public to the reduction in tariff prices on powdered milk by the FG from 10% to 5%. The move would kill local industries, he argued. But he also correctly noted that the new measure goes against the grain of the government’s policy to reduce milk importation. He said:
“Minister of Agriculture unveiled plans by the Federal Government to reduce the importation of powdered milk by 2019, only for the government to make a turn around and encourage importation by reducing [the] tariff on imported powered milk.”
The Senate has put in motion an investigation that would involve the committees on finance, agric and customs.
Social Investment Programme Owns Up To Fraud, Incompetence
Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment, Mrs. Maryam Uwais, is on one part honest about the fraud going on under her watch and the incompetence in the monitoring system of the SIP. She said the state officials under the programme are exploiting the vulnerable beneficiaries. She said:
“We identified seven challenges relating to corrupt practices by some state officials, racketeering, taking advantage of the level of illiteracy of the women who are poor and illiterate. Their vulnerabilities are exploited. We pleaded with state governors to take more interest in what is going on so they can be protected. We are weak in monitoring.”
Ms Uwais specifically noted that the school feeding part of the SIP is yet to commence at some states and she offered an explanation:
“For the school feeding, we asked them to fast track the commencement of the programmes in states where they haven’t started.
“We asked them to assist us in screening the cooks and also training them and also strengthening the monitoring and evaluation because we keep seeing or hearing stories of what is happening and we are trying to curtail those but because of the remoteness of some of these communities, the information doesn’t come to us early enough but we are encouraging everybody to give us feedback; to tell us what kind of food is being fed to the children because we have come to agreement to set menu of nutritional content required for children of that age.”
State Police Osinbajo, 36 Governors In Agreement… But
Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, last week advocated for state police creation at a summit organized by the Senate. And the governors are in agreement with him. Abdulaziz Yari, the chairman of the NGF who spoke for the governors however pointed out that stare police is not something all the states could possibly afford.
“It is not all the states that are supposed to have the state police, those that could, should be able to have it. It is something we cannot take off at the same time. We were created differently,” he remarked.
Saraki Challenges The AGF In Defence Of His Loyal Boy, Dino Melaye
The Office of the Attorney General of the Federation has filed a case at the FCT High Court against Kogi West Senator, Dino Melaye for allegedly misleading the police and making false claims of an attempted assassination attempt on his life. The vocal Dino took to the floor, where he dismissed the suit and vowed to keep fighting. But the Senate President Bukola Saraki had words to chip in.
Saraki said that the suit filed by the OAGF is an affront to democracy and said the senate would stand against it. His remarks:
“I do not see how the issue of arraignment can be a way forward in a matter like this but be that as it may, I want us all to continue to defend democracy and fight for what is right. I can assure you that this institution will continue to stand for what is right.
“Those who think that they are helping the government but sometimes are doing things that are not in the interest of this democracy need to do what is right for the interest of all of us.
“For sure, what is wrong is wrong and I think those who are looking at this will have a review and do what is right.”