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[ Masterweb Reports: Isiaka Wakili reports ] - The Federal Government has cautioned against the use of social media as a platform for spreading fear, hatred and violence. Information Minister Lai Mohammed said this in Abuja yesterday at the public presentation of the Policy Framework and National Action Plan for Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism.
The minister, who noted that Boko Haram had been degraded, urged the media to deny extremist groups "the oxygen of publicity which they badly crave until we collectively dismantle Boko Haram extremist ideologies through constructive alternative narratives."
He urged all Nigerians to join hands with government to make the country a safer place to live by preventing and countering violent extremism through the use of the soft approach.
"Building resilience against violent extremism in our communities requires collective responsibility of all of us, including women and girls, families, faith-based organizations, civil society organizations, media and social media influencers, political leaders, the private sector, community leaders, artists and social mobilisers," he said.
Mohammed said the Federal Government was engaging in dialogue with different stakeholders in order to find possible and lasting solutions to the current herder-farmer conflicts.
The National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno, who presented the policy framework, said climate change, ethno-religious conflicts, herder-farmer clashes and bad politics combined to present imminent security challenges for all Nigerians.
The NSA said the Federal Government was taking steps to strengthen the law enforcement and security agencies in dealing with these threats to national security.
Monguno said government required research, community engagement, involvement of the civil society and all stakeholders to play key roles in building a peaceful and secure country.
*Photo Caption - Nigeria Presidential Seal


[ Masterweb Reports ] - Enugu State Government has announce increase in the allowance for National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members serving in primary healthcare facilities in rural areas in the state.
The Commissioner for Information, Mr Ogbuagu Anikwe, announced this in Enugu on Wednesday while briefing newsmen on the outcome of the State Executive Council meeting.
Anikwe said that medical doctors serving in hospitals in rural areas would henceforth receive N30, 000 monthly from the state government as against N3, 800 being given to them currently.
Similarly, he said, pharmacists, nurses, radiographers, laboratory scientists and statisticians would receive a monthly stipend of N20, 000.
He announced that the government also planned to review the service condition and welfare of other set of corps members in the state.
The commissioner explained that the increase in allowances of the corps members serving in health facilities was to further ensure that health services were taken close to rural dwellers.
"The government has approved that each corps member selected to work as a medical doctor in government hospital in the rural areas will get a monthly stipend of N30, 000.
"All of these will cost the government extra N31.2 million per annum but it is an expense that is worth it. It is to ensure that health facilities are available at the door steps of our people," he said.
Anikwe said that the government noted the challenges of getting medical personnel to work health facilities in rural communities and decided on the incentive.
According to him, the council decided that one sure way to solve the problem is to get health personnel from the NYSC who will be encouraged with an increased stipend.
*Photo Caption - As seen.

[ Masterweb Reports ] - AHEAD of 2019 elections, the designer of Nigeria Masterweb and Africa Masterweb, Chief Charles Okereke has declared interest in the governorship of Abia State with a promise to redeem the state from what he called "perennial bad governance." Okereke, who made the declaration in Umuahia, weekend, said reasonable Abia people are ashamed at the level of development the state has attained over the years. He lamented that all the industries, including Golden Guinea Breweries, Ulonna Farm Settlement and several other industries which Abia State was formerly famed for have been neglected and allowed to go moribund. He said: "We must not lose sight of the fact that Abia, God’s own State, has become........Read More
*Photo Caption - Chief Charles Okereke

[ Masterweb Reports: ABN Reporting ] - Chief Okereke who is one of the pioneers of Internet/Information Technology not only in Nigeria but in Africa as a whole with publications such as Nigeria Masterweb and Africa Masterweb, in a press statement made available to Newsmen in Umuahia, decried that Abia, God’s own State, has become a major scapegoat to bad governance, bad choice of leaders and, above all, an atmosphere of nonchalance and passive carelessness from us towards our political future.
"Take for instance, the Golden Guinea Breweries, Ulonna Farm Settlement and several other industries which Abia State was formally famed for: they have all gone moribund through several regimes of government. Different governments have ruled the State but the seeming inherent unwillingness in the hearts of hitherto elected leaders has maintained a policy of absolute neglect. Worst, few places of note, like the Ariaria market and the expressway, are gradually becoming dump sites for refuse. The led (people), as earlier said, are equally culpable due to the ‘I don’t care’ posture we adopted towards politics and governance" He enthused.
Chief Okereke insisted that there is hope for Abia state despite the many years of darkness if the people will embrace the reality, "At this critical stage in our nation’s polity, especially as it affects our dear own state, Abia, and the several unrests and demonstrations of dissatisfaction by our teeming unemployed youths mostly occasioned by vehement, willful and perpetual bad governance and politics of self, there calls for a deeper reflection on the way we, as a people, perceive and react to politics.
Today, thanks to men of good will, democracy which is the government of the people, by the people and for the people has granted us closer access into how we are represented by our elected sons and daughters.
It has also empowered us with our basic human rights and the rights to demand their implementation whenever and wherever we feel neglected, marginalized or threatened either by regional/political rivalry or by our very own elected representatives, he declared.
He speaks further on the motivation to accept the challenge to serve his people, "As a "son of the soil" and true Abian in every sense and having taken time to study both the political terrain of our dear state and the deficiencies occasioned, not by our inabilities and unworthiness but by sheer neglect and nonchalance, I have, this time and finally, bowed to pressure of cries for help from my Abia brothers and sisters to step out and show true, refined, functional, absolutely productive, enduring and efficient leadership.
Chief Okereke declared that his government will be open, transparent with probity and accountability as its watchword. "Reforming Abia and bringing her into the full statue of the State for God takes more than sheer desire to lead, it takes absolute and unflinching resolve to do the needful.
All moribund industries to be resuscitated and every meaningful and meaningless excuse against it removed; Agriculture will have its full place and will run in full capacity to enable us produce enough for ourselves and for exportation.
Abians have full constitutional right to use the basic resources given them by God – resources like land and waterways. We will process the modalities for and begin the dredging of the Azumini axis to enable it grant, not only Abians but Ndigbo access to the sea. To pilot our dear state to full productive capacity, people will be recognized and employed by merit. We will reconstruct Aba to reflect its true nature: The Enyimba City."
He speaks about the all Hail Biafra Anthem, "By His Grace, I am a gifted poet and composer of Hymns/anthems; my composition ‘God Bless Africa’ won the African Union Anthem Competition and one of my other compositions "All Hail Biafra (Cry of A Biafran Child)" is a household song amongst us. Different oppressed or marginalized groups find solace in All Hail Biafra as anthem. I cried for Ndigbo at the end of the Biafran war and I shed tears as I prepare to lead the redemption of Abia State. I have heeded calls to aspire for the number one seat in our dear state.
I extend my heartfelt gratitude to the leader of our great party UPP, Chief Chekwas Okorie for giving the people the party platform to choose the best to represent them for posterity. Vote for me as your next governor and you will no longer cry nor suffer in Abia.
SOURCE: Abia Breaking News (ABN) -
*Photo Caption - Chief Charles O. Okereke

[ Masterweb Reports: Ojoma Akor reports ] - The World Health Organization (WHO) has promised to donate 20 million doses of vaccines annually towards eradicating yellow fever in the country.
Briefing newsmen yesterday in Abuja, WHO Representative, Dr Fiona Braka said the organization was ready to assist the country in achieving total vaccination of the populace in line with the Elimination of Yellow Epidemics (EYE) by 2026.
"The global community is committed to this course and has pledged 20 million doses annually to achieve the target despite the global vaccine shortfall," Braka said.
There were recent outbreaks of yellow fever in Kogi, Kwara, Zamfara, Niger, Kebbi and Nasarawa states.
Government will kick off the second phase of the preventive mass campaign against yellow fever in four states; Kogi, Kwara , Zamfara and Borno states today. The first phase was completed in 2014 covering 20 states and the Federal Capital Territory. About 10.4 million people were vaccinated in the exercise.
The second phase preventive mass campaign targets persons between 09 months to 45 years.
Braka said people could be protected from yellow fever through vaccination, saying that the planned campaign was part of the preventive measures to halt the spread and also protect the people.
Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) Dr Faisal Shuaib said the global non availability of Yellow Fever vaccines resulted in the plan to phase the campaign for the next nine years.
*Photo Caption - As seen.

[ Masterweb Reports: Saawua Terzungwe reports ] - 30 registered political parties ‎in the country have resolved to field and support one presidential candidate within the coalition for the 2019 general elections.
The parties under the aegis of ‎Coalition for a New Nigeria (CNN) has Alhaji Abdulkadir Salam of the Labour Party (LP) as Chairman, Barrister Godson Okoye of the United Democratic Party (UDP) as Secretary and Dr. Yunusa Tanko of the National Conscience Party (NCP) as Spokesman.
This is coming barely two days after former President Olusegun Obasanjo asked President Muhammadu Buhari to forget a second term on grounds of non-performance.
Addressing newsmen on Thursday in Abuja, ‎Dr. Tanko, a former National Chairman of Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC) said the 30 parties were consulting widely to seize power from the APC in 2019.
Dr. Tanko specifically said the overall aim was to put an end to bad governance that had led to poverty, insecurity, nepotism, ethnicity in the country and strengthen the nation's economy.
The political parties said the APC-led government has failed to ‎take decisive action over killings in the country. They accused the government of allowing the nation to gradually slide into the state of anarchy adding that the APC had failed to fulfil its campaign promises to Nigerians.
"We are determined to take over power in 2019, and we are 30 political parties ‎working together. We are concerned about the state of the nation.
"We are going to bring all the 30 political parties together on the 30th to show you how ready and prepared we are. We are working together to support a candidate within the coalition.

‎"We are political parties in this country and we have decided to chart a new course and if other individuals make statements supporting our course, it is a welcome development.
‎"Now that many individuals have started writing letters, it is very imperative for political parties to own up the space in which they are and that is why we don't want any individual to hijack the process.
"This is the only coalition that is geared towards winning elections in 2019," he said.

When Daily Trust sought to know whether the 30 parties were going into merger, Tanko said,"No, it's not going to be a merger. Yes, some political parties are interested in merger, but most of the parties are more interested in alliance."
He added, "We will mobilise all Nigerians to see the difference. Mentioning only two political parties ‎in this country is not good enough. We want to give Nigerians a better choice that can deliver to the people come 2019."
*Photo Caption - As seen.

[ Masterweb Reports: Chris Agabi reports ] - The federal, states and local governments have shared N655.177 billion, being revenue generated in December 2017 and shared in January 2018.
The breakdown showed the total amount shared include N540.446 billion gross statutory revenue received for the month, which is lower than the N549.533 billion shared in the previous month by N9.089 billion.
Another sum of N83.963 billion was received from Valued Added Tax (VAT) as against the N80.426 billion distributed in the preceding month, resulting in N3.537 billion.
"The distributable statutory revenue for the month is N423.961 billion. The total revenue distributable for the current month (including VAT) is N558.082 billion", minister of finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun said while reading out the communiqué of the January meeting to journalists in Abuja.
Adeosun said the decrease in crude oil export sales by 0.59 million barrels resulted in decreased revenue from export sales of $11.65 million.
She however, stated that the average price of crude oil increased from $52.07 to $56.83 per barrel during the period under review.
The Federal Government got N252.543 billion or 52 per cent of the total money shared. All the states of the federation received the total sum of N128.093 billion, representing 26.72 per cent, while Local governments got N98.755 billion or 20.60 per cent of the N655.177 billion shared. The sum of N47.738 was shared among the oil producing states as 13 per cent derivation fund.
The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) remitted N3.638 billion, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) N4.567 billion and Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) N3.104, all less cost of revenue collections.
There is a balance of $2.317 billion in the nation’s Excess Crude Account, which shows that the federal government is yet to deduct the $1 billion approved by the National Economic Council (NEC) for funding of the war against Boko Haram insurgency in the North-East because there hasn’t been an approval from FAAC said the Minister.
*Photo Caption - Naira notes.

[ Masterweb Reports ] - The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), has attributed most road crashes on Nigerian roads to human factors and not witchcraft as believed by some people in the country.
Sector Commander of the corps in Imo, Mr Joseph Aremu made this known in Owerri on Wednesday while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
The sector commander advised motorists in the country to always stick to traffic rules and obey all road signs.
Aremu said that contrary to belief by some Nigerians that road crashes was a manipulation of witches, major causes of most auto crashes were over speeding, driving under the influence of alcohol and bad tyres.
According to him, a driver will lose sense of judgment if he decides to drive under the influence of alcohol and when the right judgment is lost, the next result is auto crash.
The commander said that the corps in Imo were doing everything possible to ensure that road users stick to traffic rule, adding that the command will go tough on traffic offenders.
Aremu said that though road crashes had reduced in the state, the FRSC would continue to partner with relevant sister agencies and stakeholders to ensure that the road was safe for all. (NAN)
*Photo Caption - As seen.

[ Masterweb Reports: Isiaka Wakili reports ] - President Muhammadu Buhari's health status will determine whether or not he will seek reelection in 2019, the Presidency has said. The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, said this in an interview.
"Yes, health is wealth. Health is wealth. The president is not a frivolous person. If he thinks that his health cannot carry anything, he will not do it. So, of course, his health will matter a lot. It will be very important, but we need to give the glory to God for the way he is now.
"Everyday you see the president, you see a glow about him, you see a freshness about him. I think he’s even in a better state than when he came in 2015. It’s all to the glory of God.
"So, once he assesses that his health can carry it, there’s nothing wrong if he steps into the fray. But he has the final decision," Adesina said.
Adesina, who said it is Buhari's right to seek reelection or leave office in 2019, noted that the president had not declared his intention.
"Then, talking of his (Buhari's) own personal ambition or lack of it, we have to wait until he blows the whistle. You can’t start a race until the whistle is blown. So, when he blows the whistle and say ‘yes, this is my ambition,’ then, the race start. So, for now, we just say that we keep waiting on him to tell us what direction to go," he said.
Responding to a question on the calls on Buhari to do the Mandela option of four years only, Adesina said: "Of course, this is a democracy. People will always have a right to their opinion. You know one thing about democracy is that there is multiplicity of opinion. So, those who believe in the Mandela option, it is their right. And it is also the right of the president to run or not to run. So, you don’t abridge the right of anybody under a democracy."
Adesina expressed belief that the president had achieved enough to get a second term.
"I believe that if the president wants to run, he can run. I will support him. I will always support him any day. Then, has he done enough? More than enough. In fact, a second term will give him chance to consolidate on what he has done.
"The things he has done are apparent: security, despite the challenges of the moment, you can’t rule out what he has done in security. Economy: economy went into recession, stayed there just for one year, it has come out and the indices are are good. Even the World Bank has projected 2.5% growth for Nigeria this year.
"So, in the economy, the government is doing well. The economy is like a plane with its nose up. As long as you have a plane with its nose up when it’s taking off, it’s good news. Anti-corruption, no friend, no foe. That goes on. So, those three things he appointed for himself, one, to secure the country, two, to fight corruption, three, to revive the economy, they are going well."
*Photo Caption - President Muhammadu Buhari

[ Masterweb Reports: Abbas Jimoh reports ] - Late Dr. Alex Ekwueme, Nigeria’s former vice president who died on November 19, 2017 in a London hospital, will be buried on February 2, according to burial plans unveiled by the Federal Government yesterday in Abuja.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman of the national burial committee, Boss Mustapha, said the plan would ensure the late elder statesman got a befitting burial.
Mustapha, represented by the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Senator Chris Ngige, said government both at the Federal and South East levels would be fully represented.
According to the funeral programme released by the SGF’s office, a Memorial Service would hold today (January 19) by 2pm at Cathedral Church of Christ Marina, Lagos, while Evening of Tributes and Music is slated for 5pm same day at Muson Centre Onikan Lagos.
"On Saturday, at 5pm, Memorial Service will hold at St Marylebone Parish Church London W1 5LT. On Sunday, January 28, 6pm, there will be service of songs and Evening of Tributes at the International Conference Centre, Abuja," he said.
The body of the late Ekwueme would arrive from London on January 29 and would later depart for Enugu, where it would be received by South East governors.
He said the Lying-in-State would be held on February 2 at the late Ekwueme’s residence before his final interment same day at the residence.
*Photo Caption - Late Dr. Alex Ekwueme