Tambuwal Swears Commissioners, Assigns Portfolios

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By Abdallah el-Kurebe 

Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Sokoto State, Monday evening tasked newly-sworn-in commissioners to see themselves as servants of the people and shun all acts that would be inimical to the unity and progress of the state.

Held without prior notice, fanfare and in a near-empty hall at the Government House, the event was held in a sombre mood as a respect to Sokoto pilgrims that died during this year’s Hajj.

Tambuwal also urged the commissioners to emulate the honesty, commitment and patriotism of President Muhammadu Buhari in order to realise the laudable aims and objectives of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

“Progress can only be achieved if the appointees consider all issues on merit, and avoid nepotism, bigotry and selfish conducts,” he said.

Reminding them that the era of impunity in government was over, Tambuwal also said that the people gave APC their mandates during the last election so that past wrongs would be done away with.‎ “They voted us to see their lives improved; to see their children enjoy good education, and to see Sokoto among the best states in the country,” he added.

Commissioners sworn in and their portfolios are: Deputy Governor, Ahmad Aliyu will oversee Ministry of Works; Alhaji Sahabi Gada (Higher Education); Umar Tambuwal (Agriculture) and Saidu Umar (Finance).

Others include Abdulkadir Jeli, commissioner of information; Muhammad Arzika Tureta, Water Resources; Jabbi Kilgore, Basic Education; Abdullahi Maigwandu, Rural Development while Sirajo Gatawa will head Social Welfare ministry.

The rest are Tukur Alkali (Animal Health); Mani Maishinku, (Religious Affairs); Bello Sifawa, (Environment); Bello Gwiwa, (Lands and Housing); Sulaiman Usman, (Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice); Nasiru Zarummai, (Science and Technology) and Isah Sadiq Achida (Home Affairs).

Similarly, Aminu Bello Sokoto will take charge in Commerce ministry, Bala Kokani (ministry of Budget and Economic Planning), Bello Goronyo (Solid minerals), Manir Dan’Iya (Local Government), Kulu abdullahi (Women Affairs), Dr. Balarabe Kakale (Health) and Musa Ausa (Youth and Sports.)

Posted by Abdallah el-kurebe

NEPAD to Support Togo on Biosafety Regulatory Frameworks

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By Abdallah el-Kurebe

The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) has pledged Togo on regulatory frameworks in the area of the advancement of science, technology and innovation in the country.

A high-level advocacy team led by Prof. Aggrey Ambali, who represented the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NEPAD Agency and the Michigan State University, expressed the availability of NEPAD Agency to support the work that is being done in Togo to advance science, technology and innovation.

The team encouraged Togo authorities to work towards the adoption of the revised biosafety laws in order to allow Togolese scientists to properly carry out research as well as safely use new technologies to address development challenges in the country.

Ministers from the ministries of Environment, Agriculture and Higher Education and Scientific Research met with the NEPAD team to discuss what needs to be done in order to activate the process of adoption of the revised biosafety law by the National Assembly of Togo.

Responding, the Ministers commended the team, particularly NEPAD Agency for the initiative to build capacity of Togolese regulators as well as the roles being played by the Agency to support the country, especially in agricultural development and capacity building areas.

It could be recalled that Togo signed the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety in July 2004 and passed a biosafety law in January 2009. Togo was also the fifth African country to sign the Nagoya Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress in September 2011. This paved the way for the revision of the “Loi N°2009-001 du 06 janvier 2009 portant Prévention des Risques Biotechnologiques au Togo”.

Also, NEPAD Agency – the African Biosafety Network of Expertise (ABNE) provided technical and material support to local consultants to review the investor-unfriendly biosafety law. The draft revised biosafety law was successfully completed in 2013. A stakeholders’ meeting was organized in 2014 to validate the revised draft, with technical support from the Network.

According to NEPAD, the draft revised bill, including the implementing regulations are ready for submission to the Parliament.

Customs Generates N247.4m in Two Months in Sokoto

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By Abdallah el-Kurebe 

For the first time ever in the history of Sokoto Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service, the Command has recorded an unprecedented achievement by generating the sum of N247,423,000‎ in two months.

Under the leadership if the new Area Comptroller, Kabiru Muhammed whi assumed office in the first week of August 2015, the Command generated a whooping N123,123,000 in August alone.

In the same vein, the Area Command in the first 20 days of September 2015, raked in N90 million and a total of N124,300,000 at the end of the month. 

Also, a total of 48 seizures, 24 each for the months of August and September were made.

Among items seized were parcels of cannabis, ‎mosquito repellent, second-hand clothing and textile materials.

“Also seized were used vehicles (tokunbo cars), bags of rice and spaghetti, drums and jericans of vegetable and palm oil‎ and petroleum products,” Kankara said.

‎The Area Comptroller said that collaboration with neighbouring countries like Niger and Benin Republics would reduce smuggling activities in the region.

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All Pilgrims Will Be Accounted For, Says Gov. Tambuwal

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By Abdallah el-Kurebe ‎

Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto state has assured that all Nigerian Pilgrims to this year’s Hajj in Saudi Arabia would be accounted for in spite of the tragedy that killed so many pilgrims there.

Tambuwal spoke on Thursday when he visited families of those pilgrims from the state that were affected by the tragedy, saying that Hajj officials were working round the clock to ensure all victims were properly identified and documented.

In Sokoto state, the pilgrims most affected are from Illela, Binji and Wamakko local government areas.‎

Addressing the families during a stop in Jamali village of Binji LGA, Tambuwal said that government was still collating the number of pilgrims who died, suffered injuries or classified as missing.

He announced that as soon as the collation was completed,  his administration would assist the families in the best way possible.

The governor appealed to the people to exercise more patience, adding that “many of those earlier thought to have died have been sighted receiving treatment in hospitals in Saudi Arabia.”‎

He announced that the state government will, on Friday organise special prayers for the victims and their families.

“As Muslims, we are encouraged to refer to God at all times. In this our difficult period, we’ll organise prayers for our country men and women for God to heal the injured, bless the dead and bring the missing back to us in good health,” he stressed.‎

Other communities visited include Gidan Hamma, Binji and Wamakko.‎

Posted by Abdallah el-kurebe