At least 134 local contractors on Wednesday participated in an open bid held for the construction/rehabilitation of 26 urban roads recently advertised by Kwara State Government, conforming to Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq’s insistence that contract awards would be made only after a transparent process.
Yusuf Garba Manjo, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Works and Transport, said the bids were the first phase of the exercise because roads for consideration under the phase 2 are still being compiled and are scheduled for execution in the first and second quarters of 2020.
“The present administration under the leadership of AbdulRazaq is committed to ensuring that construction works are given to competent contractors,” he said. “In furtherance of this, the ministry shall follow due process to ensure qualified contractors are awarded the projects to ensure quality service delivery to the people. We shall ensure strict compliance with the Public Procurement Act.”
He said this road construction/rehabilitation is part of the urban renewal programme of the new administration.
The formal bidding saw the ministry’s officials opening and reading out the figures and other details of the bid, including the technical and financial parts of the proposals, with Manjo saying successful bidders would be communicated after the exhaustive processes have been followed.
Some of the contractors, who spoke with newsmen, commended the state government for the transparency employed in the bidding process which the contractors said was the first in past years.
The 26 roads in the first phase, which had earlier been advertised in the newspapers, included Ipata Market Internal Road network; Emir’s Road Patigi; College of Education Road linking Unilorin Mini campus; townhall/station road, Erin Ile; Market Junction-Emir’s Palace Gwanara; Tsaragi-Market Batakpan road; Museum Road, Esie; Adeta Primary School Road, Kuntu; Queen Elizabeth School Internal Road; Tipper Garage Junction Amuyo-Adesoye College Offa; Shao Township Road; Osi Township Road; Oro-Ago-Oyate Road; Sobi Specialist Hospital—Gaa-Osiris-Medina Road Ilorin; Awolowo Road Tanke-Danialu Primary School; Asadam Lower Road by Railway; and Gberia Township Road Kaiama, among others.
I didn’t kill PDP Women Leader, says suspect
r Ocholi Edicha, one of the alleged killers of the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) Women Leader, Mrs Salome Abuh, has denied the allegation.
Beside, police also presented five other men, allegedly linked to the killing and burning to ashes of the late woman leads in her house at Aji-Obala, Ofu Local Government Area. The five suspects, however, insisted they were armed robbers, not killers.
Late Abuh was on 18th of November, burnt to death at her Ochadamu resident in Ofu Local Government Area of the state.
The Kogi State Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Busari, said police operatives attached to Ofu Police Division in collaboration with local vigilante members, arrested Edicha, Adamu Haruna, Onu Egbunu, Musa Alidu, Attai Haruna Egwu and Attah Eheh.
According to Busari, Edicha during interrogation confessed that he led the gang that burnt the house of elder Simon Abuh, husband to late Abuh at Achejuigu in Ochadamu.
The police boss noted that there was a misunderstanding between Awolu Zekeri and Gowon Simeon, both of Achadamu. In the process, Simeon stabbed Zekeri with a knife on his lap and he died on the way to hospital.
Busari further noted: “Angry youths in the area mobilised to the house of elder Simon Abuh, who is an uncle to the suspect, Simeon, and set the house ablaze, thereby burning the victim to death.”
The CP, while condemning the killing of Abuh and Zekeri, calls for calm and assures members of the public, that all the perpetrators will not go unpunished. Efforts are still on to arrest those that participated in the burning the woman.
Meanwhile, Edicha, while responding to questions from journalists, denied being part of those that set the deceased’s house on fire, thereby burning her alive.
Edicha told journalists that the attack was carried out by youths from Ejule in the same Ofu Local Government Area. Edicha explained that he had an issue with Abuh during the gubernatorial election in Kogi State, but distanced himself from her murder.
He also exonerated the five suspects alleged with him in the crime, insisting that they were not part of those that burnt the house. The five suspects, however, confessed that police arrested them for armed robbery and not for the murder of Abuh.
Vice Principal, two others in EFCC net over exam malpractice
he Ilorin Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arrested three persons, including a Vice-Principal, for allegedly collecting money from students participating in the on-going National Examination Council (NECO) at Government Day Secondary School, Ote in Eiye-Nkorin Area of Kwara State.
The suspects are the Vice- Principal of the school, Issa Abdulrahman, a teacher, Usman Lanre Kayode and a supervisor of the examination in the centre, Saka Isiaka.
The Commission received an intelligence report that the school management and supervisor of the centre were extorting money from the students writing NECO in order to assist them in the examination.
It was further gathered that the principal of the school allegedly used to separate the students during the examination. He allegedly used to place students that paid money in a classroom, and those that didn’t in another.
Trouble started after an operative of the Commission, who dressed in a casual manner on 6th of December, pretending to be a passer-by, spied what was going on.
An iPad containing answers to all the questions was recovered from the suspects. The suspects, according to the EFCC, would soon be charged to court.
Yuletide: Lagos to go after firecrackers dealers, users
he Lagos State Government, yesterday, said that selling and usage of firecrackers in the state remain prohibited.
The government also insisted that anyone, caught selling, using or importing the items into the state, would be dealt with according to the law.
The government said that tragedy-free Yuletide was possible if all residents in the state were safety conscious and cooperate with the government.
Speaking at the security sensitisation of residents on Safety of Lagosians, held at the Ifako Ijaiye Local Government Area, the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs Folashade Jaji, said that tragedy resulting from explosion, inferno or other related disasters could be averted, if parents warn their children to desist from the use of firecrackers and focus on other means of celebrating the Yuletide.
The SSG, who also appealed to residents to embrace community policing by watching over happenings in their environments, said that the police alone could not ensure the security of lives and property unless residents join hands with them.
Jaji, who represented the state Governor Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu at the event, said community policing remains key to ensuring peace in the communities.
She added: “Community policing is everyone’s responsibility. Let’s all feel concern about the safety of our neighbours. That’s the whole essence of community policing, which is to ensure safety of everyone. The Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, is passionate about the issue of safety of the residents, and the security of lives and property is one of the cardinal points in the T.H.E.M.E.S.”
The secretary to the local government, Hon. Ayo Jeje, appealed to residents to always relay useful information on strange happenings in their domains to the police or the authority in order to ensure safety of the residents.
Lamenting on the danger of firecrackers, the All Progressive Congress Deputy Chairman, Prince Sunmonu Kamoru, said that residents had greater roles to play in the enforcement of the ban of firecrackers.
According to him, ‘’The best we can do is to discourage our neighbours from selling firecrackers. If they sell, certainly our children will buy from them, and they will use it in the community. So, let’s everyone discourage the sale of the items.”
Gunmen kidnap two expatriates, six Nigerians
he Niger State Police Command, yesterday, confirmed abduction of two expatriates, a Nigerian staff of Triacta Construction Company and five others in Galadima Kogo Village of Erena in Shiroro Local Government Area of the state.
The construction workers were handling construction work on the 52 kilometers roads from Erena Town to Kaure Village, a border town between Niger and Kaduna states, cutting across over 200 villages.
The contract for the road was awarded by a Senator, who,represented Niger East Senatorial District, Senator David Umaru in 2018. He has continued with the work despite his exit from the red chamber.
The Niger State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Adamu Usman, who confirmed the abduction in Minna yesterday, explained that the gunmen wore camouflage and stormed the village in 20 motorcycles.
Usman said the incident occurred on Monday at about 12:45p.m. along Shiroro-Galadima road.
He said:“The victims were seized by the gunmen who came through Kaduna State on motorcycles, ambushed them along the road they were constructing and took them into the bush. They overpowered the policemen on duty and left with the victims on motorcycles.”
He disclosed that the Police had had already launched a manhunt to track the attackers in order to rescue the hostages.
Usman went on: “We have since deployed Operatives of the Inspector-General of Police Special Intelligence Response Team (IRT) and Special Technical Squad as well as Anti-Kidnapping Squad to identified areas with a view to rescuing the victims unhurt. We have also reached out to the Kaduna State Commissioner of Police. We are doing everything humanly possible to rescue the victims unhurt.”
He appealed to rural communities to report to the nearest security agencies any person or group of people with questionable character for prompt security responses.
The chairman of Shiroro Local Government Area, Mallam Suleiman Dauda Chukuba, said the bandits invaded the community in the early hours of Monday and kidnapped the workers.
According to him, several communities in the local government were under siege by bandits. He called on the state government to as a matter of urgency, deploy security agencies to rescue those kidnapped.
Ondo Commissioner, Owolabi, others to receive NIPR Gold Award
he Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR) is set to honour the Ondo State Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Mr. Yemi Olowolabi at its Annual Presidential Dinner and Awards.
Olowolabi, alongside others, who will be conferred with the institute’s Gold Award, is being recognized for his immense and significant contribution to the practice of public relations in the country.
According to the Principal Assistant Registrar of NIPR, Mr. Kayode Yeku, who emphasised that the event which will come up on 12th December, 2019 at Sheraton Hotels, Lagos, will be another avenue to celebrate members of the institute who were described as ‘stars’ for soaring high as public relations experts.
Yeku said: “The Annual Presidential Dinner and Awards is the premier event of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations held to celebrate excellence in Public Relations practice. The highlight of this year’s event will be the celebration of our Stars – our members who have attained enviable heights in their profession. The event also serves as a great networking platform as it would attract the creme-de-la-creme in the industry. On behalf of the President and Chairman Council of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations, you (Olowolabi) have been found worthy of the conferment of the NIPR Gold Award in recognition of your significant contributions to the public relations practice.
Olowolabi, a PR guru had served as Commissioner for Information in Ondo State as well as the Chief Press Secretary to former Ondo State Governor, late Olusegun Agagu.
The NIPR, which was established in 1963 is the body charged with the responsibility of determining the standard of knowledge and skills needed to be attained by persons seeking to become registered members of the public relations profession.
Church holds Jesus Mega Party in Lekki
n commemoration of the birth of Jesus Christ this festive season, the Father’s House Bible Church, is set to hold a drama, praise and worship concert tagged, ‘Jesus Mega Party’ in Jakande, Lekki area of Lagos State between December 10 and 12.
Speaking with journalists on activities lined up for the concert, Senior Pastor of the Church, Dr Richmond Leigh, said an epic drama, ‘ The Nativity’, which features over 200 cast would be staged to re-enact the birth of the Lord Jesus.
According to Leigh, the three-day concert is aimed at presenting the biblical significance of the birth of Jesus Christ to all and sundry regardless of religious affiliation.
The cleric, who addressed the news parley alongside Pastors Lekan Jenyo and Tony Kadiri, said adequate plans have been put in place to secure participants coming for the concert, adding that Nigeria needs religious harmony to ensure mutual coexistence.
DPR seals 250 illegal gas outlets in Ogun
he Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), yesterday, said it has shut down over 250 illegal gas plants in Ogun State during the outgoing year.
The DPR Operations Controller, Abeokuta Field Office, Mrs. Muinat Bello-Zagi, who disclosed this at the second Annual General Meeting of the agency held in Abeokuta, said it was committed to regularising and standardizing the operation of gas facilities in the state.
Bello-Zagi disclosed that currently, 70 per cent of gas outlets in Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government Area, which is the largest industrial area of the state, were illegal.
According to her, the DPR’s engagement with stakeholders during the current year had been participatory with awareness created and stakeholders educated on the agency’s requirements.
She said: “The engagement process this year was able to reach an estimated number of 5,000 stakeholders. Routine surveillance to all nooks and crannies of Ogun State was stepped up. We observed that safety compliance in retail outlets has improved and this was due to the constant engagement and surveillance.”
The DPR boss lamented the proliferation of Liquefied Petroleum Gas plants in some local government areas, adding that the agency had also observed encroachment on gas pipelines right of way in some areas in the state.
Bello-Zagi, who revealed that certain roads in the state have an average of 10 gas facilities over a stretch of five– 10km, said her agency was currently carrying out “mapping,” which would be used in the issuance of new approvals for gas facilities.
She added: “The DPR in Abeokuta is currently mapping gas facilities in her area of operations. The aim of the exercise was to map the geographical spread, facilities concentration, conduct proximity analysis, ensure safely and as well guide future approval based on the listed elements. The mapping of gas facilities has demonstrated the capacity of technology to monitor and evaluate DPR procedures, enhance surveillance and enforcements. The mapping will also serve as useful advocacy tool for the department to engage stakeholders and other relevant agencies in terms of provision of facilities (fire services), business opportunities and tax collection.”
Bello-Zagi noted that in as much as the DPR would continue to encourage gas utilisation in line with Federal Government’s policy, the agency will not compromise safety and adherence to stipulated regulations.
She expressed the resolve of government to eliminate the use of firewood in the country.
“As you all know, use of firewood is giving hazardous causes that affect the atmosphere. Government’s intention was to reduce the effect of climate change to the barest minimum or even eliminate it. The increase in the use of LPG will reduce the use of firewood and kerosene. This will result in a greener and healthy environment. Some of the vehicles we use in DPR are based on natural gas. And I can tell you that it is about 50 percent cost effective than running petrol. It is safer and we have gas in abundance in Nigeria. That is why in DPR, we have been sensitising the public and encourage the public on the use of gas in their homes, industries, schools and medical sectors,” said Bello-Zagi.
Teenage student jailed for making sexual advances to stepmother
A Sharia Court sitting in Magajin Gari, Kaduna State, on Tuesday, sentenced a teenage student, Anas, to one year imprisonment over sexual encroachment on, and criminal intimidation of, his stepmother.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that after the defendant had pleaded guilty of the offence, he told the court that he was enchanted by his step brothers.
“My step brothers enchanted me and made me become a drug addict. Sometimes, I go naked; and sometimes, I do wake up late at night to pray,” he said.
The Judge, Murtala Nasir, however, granted the convict a bail option of N20,000 and that he must also pay N20,000 as compensation to the complainant.
Earlier, the Police Counsel, Sgt. Aliyu Ibrahim, told the court that on December 5, at about 6.00 pm., one Fatima of Unguan Sanusi, Kaduna, reported the incident to the Metro police division.
The counsel said Anas went into her room while she was asleep and that most times, he would come in naked.
“On December 3, at about 2.30 am., she saw him while using his cell phone’s torch to peep into her window. She came out and held him, while the phone along with a stick of cigarette fell off his hands,” he said.
Ibrahim, who said that the offence was punishable under Section 232 of Sharia Penal Code, prayed the court to sanction Sidi-Baba accordingly and also order him pay N20,000 as compensation for the fear he usually instilled in his stepmother.
72-year-old retiree loses marriage for starving wife of sex
A 72-year-old retiree, Mr Funsho, has lost his marriage for starving his wife of sex for three years.
An Igando Customary Court, in Lagos, on Tuesday granted the request of Mrs Ayo, seeking dissolution of her union to Funsho on the grounds of sex starvation and irreconcilable differences.
The court president, Mr Adeniyi Koledoye, while delivering the judgment, said it appeared that the estranged couple was tired of the marriage and all efforts to reconcile both parties had failed.
“Since both parties consented to the dissolution of their marriage, this court has no choice than to dissolve the marriage.
“The court hereby pronounces the marriage between Ayo and Funsho dissolved today; both of you henceforth cease to be husband and wife.
“Each of you should go on his or her separate ways unmolested, the court wishes both of you well in your future endeavours,” Koledoye ruled.
The 40-year-old businesswoman, Ayo, had earlier approached the court to end her nine years old marriage over sex denial.
“My husband denied me sex for good three years without any reason and he knew that I needed a child,” Ayo said.
The petitioner told the court that the respondent humiliated her because she was yet to have a child for him.
“My husband told me to pack out of his house saying that I am a barren woman and cannot bear children.
“He told me to get another man, that he is no longer interested in me.
“Funsho refused to pay our house and shop rents when both expired, and ordered the landlord to eject me from the house; which the landlord complied with.
“I begged him, even when my family members called him to know if I have offended him in any way, he told them that he was no more interested in me,” Ayo said.
The petitioner said that in August 2018, she begged her husband to divorce her after sending her out of their matrimonial house, but he refused.
“I pleaded with him to divorce me so that I can move on with my life because age is no longer on my side, but he refused.
“He said that no man can marry me again that any woman he had slept with can never get married again, so there is no need for him to divorce me,” she said.
Ayo urged the court to terminate their marriage which had not produced any child so that she can moved on with her life, reports the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
“I have wasted nine-years with him without achieving anything, please divorce the union,” she pleaded.
The respondent, however, conceded to the petitioner’s request for the dissolution of their marriage, saying that he was no longer interested in the union.
“I do not love her anymore, please court, grant her request for the dissolution of our marriage.
“I have six children, some are abroad. I do not even need a child from her,” Funsho said.
Gunmen kidnap 2 expatriates, 6 Nigerian workers in Niger
Police in Niger State say gunmen have kidnapped two expatriates, a Nigerian staff of Triacta Construction Company and five others in Galadima Kogo village of Erena in Shiroro Local Government Area of the state.
The two expatriate workers were said to be handling the construction work on the 52-kilometer road from Erena town to Kaure village, a border town between Niger and Kaduna state, cutting across over 200 villages.
The contract for the road was awarded by the former Senator representing Niger East Senatorial District, Senator David Umaru in 2018 and has continued with the work despite his exit from the red chamber.
The Commissioner of Police, Mr Adamu Usman, who disclosed this in Minna on Tuesday, said the gunmen, who wore military uniforms came to the village on over 20 motorcycles and attacked workers of the construction firm.
Usman said the incident occurred on Monday at about 12:45 hours along Shiroro-Galadima road.
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