Two policemen, seven civilians were killed and many others were wounded at the hands of armed robbers on Sunday in Lagos. The robbers drove in a Toyota Prado jeep and an Armada, storming several parts of Lagos, including a Bureau de Change at Agege. They escaped with bags containing local and foreign currencies.
A team of eight, six men and two women, started their crime spree early in the morning. A Rapid Response Squad (RRS) gave chase. The police patrol team driver and another policeman were killed. Mohammed Abubukar, Inspector General of Police (IGP), said on Monday: “We can’t fold our arms and policemen must be seen and felt on every road and street in Lagos. The robbery incident is an embarrassment to the force. It can never be accepted anymore.”
The south-south state of Akwa Ibom has completed the construction of a $550 million gas plant. It is the product of the state government’s partnership with a private investor and will be formally opened by President Jonathan in November. The plant will supply gas to Aluminium Smelting Company of Nigeria (ALSCON), as well as the recently-completed Independent Power Plant (IPP) at Ikot Abasi. Large-scale commercial and business users will also benefit from its construction.
£2,204,814.18 ($3.5million) belonging to the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) Superannuation Pension Fund has been traced to an account in the UK. An investigative panel set up by the Federal Government to audit financial activities around the controversial PHCN uncovered the money after the committee presented its findings. The eight-man government audit panel, led by Joseph Ajiboye, presented the report of the investigation to the minister of state for power, Darius Ishaku. It exposed the numerous financial deficiencies in the PHCN. The panel's report indicates that the PHCN has, over the past 21 years, failed to fund its in-house pension scheme. This puts the future of its retiring workers in jeopardy, whilst some of PHCN assets which were assigned to fund the pension scheme had reportedly been sold off.
Nigeria' London 2012 Paralympics team are set to arrive in Lagos today after a total haul of 13 medals. Nigeria ranked 22nd out of 164 countries which took part at the Games and won six gold, five silver and two bronze medals. This was the third highest medal total in Africa. All of Nigeria’s medals were won by weightlifters and two world records were broken. The team are to be rewarded with cash donations - gold medallists will receive $7,500, silver medallists $5,000 and bronze medallists $2,500.
The series of Boko Haram attacks on GSM service providers in the northern part of the country has led the Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) to threaten a pull out of its services from the region. ALTON’s members include the country’s major telecommunications outfits MTN, GLO, Airtel and Etisalat. Up to 26 base stations and masts have been vandalised in the past week, with attacks taking place in Kano, Borno, Yobe, Bauchi and Gombe states. ALTON president, Gbenga Adebayo, stated: “If it becomes impossible to continue to do business in the face of rising attacks on telecoms sites, operators will naturally suspend operations in the area.”
Nigeria’s team for the London 2012 Paralympics earned 13 medals - breaking two world records in the process. The apathy towards the Nigeria Paralympic Committee and its lack of funding meant that even attending qualification events was a struggle. The athletes deserve praise for their achievements in the face of these obstacles.
All the medals won were for weightlifting. Some may be concerned that this reflects a narrow focus on some events at the expense of others. However, Nigeria’s able-bodied failed to win a single medal at the Olympics. The paralympians determination to succeed shows that the disabled sports infrastructure in Nigeria is worthy of further investment. No one cheered the team before they left, it is hoped they receive a hero’s welcome upon their return.
Sunday saw a brazen attack on residents and businesses in various parts of Lagos State by a gang of armed robbers. The attacks were carried out in broad daylight and reports have emanated that local police stations closed their gates once the sound of sporadic gunshots were heard.
The lack of regard that the criminals showed calls into question the reputation and conduct of the police force. Crime in Lagos has undoubtedly decreased in the last 8 years, yet it is evident that improvements still need to be made.
The Inspector General of Police (IGP) Mohammed Abubukar released the following statement: “We cannot fold our hands anymore and allow a few criminals to terrorise residents.” Babatunde Fashola, governor of Lagos, has called upon the police force to “rise to the occasion”.
The Gains Of Jonathan’s Diplomacy by Reuben Abati, the special advisor for media and publicity to President Jonathan, is an attempt to contextualise the current administration’s foreign policy. Abati points to successful foreign investments drives and numerous state visits by Jonathan as an indication of a positive future.
Morning after the Performance Contract, by Alexander Ifeanyichukwu, is optimistic about the recent document signed by all government ministers, heads of agencies and parastatals, which bind them to a performance assessment system. The writer explains the contract initiated by the presidency and assesses which ministers will play a prominent role in development.
The Future Project (TFP) is a social enterprise firm founded in 2005. It is affiliated to Red Media Group. TFP focuses on strong, practical commitment to human and capital development, especially in Nigeria. TFP aims to empower the Nigerian people in practical ways through training days, workshops, seminars, symposia, conferences, internships, networking opportunities, town halls and mentorship programmes. TFP aims to become one of the most respected private sector-driven development platforms in Nigeria, aiding under-privileged and grassroots communities.
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