Saraki Condoles With Victims of Jebba Train Accident

Following report of collision of two trains at Jebba
Bridge bordering Kwara and Niger States in which
some passengers were reported to have died and
several injured, Senate President, Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki has expressed shock and sadness
over the tragic incident while also commiserating
with the families of the deceased.
Saraki also expressed sympathy with those who
sustained injury in the incident and prayed to
Almighty God to heal their wounds. He also urged the management of the Nigeria
Railway Corporation (NRC) to investigate the cause
of the accident and immediately put in place
measures to prevent recurrence.
“As we work to improve rail system in Nigeria, we
have to ensure that we pay attention to safety. Our plan is to make railway the centre of our
transportation system conveying thousands of
people around the country. With such a plan, the
safety consideration must be top in our plan”, he
stated.
The Senate President noted that the overhaul of the rail system for efficiency and safety is part of the
core mandate of the All Progressives Congress
(APC) government which explains why the Lagos
to Kano and Lagos to Calabar rail lines are already
part of the recently signed 2016 budget
“It is my prayer that this kind of tragic incident will not be witnessed in Nigeria again. May Almighty
Allah in His infinite mercy grant the souls of the
departed eternal rest and uphold their families in
this moment of grief and sorrow”, Saraki prayed.

REMARKS BY PRESIDENT MUHAMMADU BUHARI AT THE SIGNING OF THE 2016 APPROPRIATION BILL INTO LAW ON FRIDAY, MAY 6, 2016, ABUJA

1. It gives me great pleasure today to sign the first
full-year budget of this administration into law. I
thank the leadership of the National Assembly, in particular, the Senate President and the Speaker of
the House of Representatives, and indeed all
members of the National Assembly for their
cooperation in making this a reality.
2. The budget is intended to signpost a renewal of
our commitment to restoring the budget as a serious article of faith with the Nigerian people. This
Administration is committed to ensuring that
henceforth the annual appropriation bill is
presented to the National Assembly in time for the
passage of the Act before the beginning of the
fiscal year. 3. Through the 2016 budget, aptly titled “Budget of
Change’’, the government seeks to fulfill its own
side of the social contract. The Budget I have
signed into law provides for aggregate
expenditures of N6.06trn. Further details of the
approved budget, as well as our Strategic Implementation Plan for the 2016 budget, will be
provided by the Honourable Minister of Budget and
National Planning.
4. I shall be speaking in more details about the
Budget, its implementation and the over-all national
economic and social policies of the Government in my address on May 29th, God willing.
5. In designing the 2016 budget, we made a
deliberate choice to pursue an expansionary fiscal
policy despite the huge decline in government
revenues from crude oil exports. This is why we
decided to enlarge the budget deficit at this time, to be financed principally through foreign and
domestic borrowings. All borrowings will however
be applied towards growth-enhancing capital
expenditures.
6. The signing of the budget today will trigger
concerted efforts to reflate the Nigerian economy, a key element of which is an immediate injection of
N350bn into the economy by way of capital
projects. To illustrate our renewed commitment to
infrastructural development, the 2016 budget
allocates over N200bn to road construction as
against a paltry N18bn allocated for same purpose in the 2015 budget.
7. Despite the current difficulties we will work
extra-hard to achieve our revenue projections. Our
revenue generating agencies are coming under
better management and are being re-oriented. The
implementation of the Treasury Single Account (TSA) is expected to contribute significantly to
improving transparency over government
revenues.
8. Our determined fight against corruption is
resulting in improvements in the quality of public
expenditure. The work of the Efficiency Unit, as well as other public financial management initiatives, are
also contributing in this regard. The continuing
efforts to reduce recurrent expenditures should
hopefully free up more funds for capital
expenditure in 2017 and beyond.
9. As I said in my New Year message, living in State House does not in any way alienate me from your
daily struggles. I read the newspapers and listen to
the TV and radio news. I hear your cries. I share
your pains.
10. We are experiencing probably the toughest
economic times in the history of our Nation. I want to commend the sacrifice, resilience and toughness
of all Nigerians young and old who have despite
the hardships continued to have hope and
confidence of a great future for Nigerians. But
permit me to say that this government is also like
none other. We are absolutely committed to changing the structure of the Nigerian economy
once and for all.
11.We are working night and day to diversify the
economy so that we never again have to rely on
one commodity to survive as a country. So that we
can produce the food we eat, make our own textiles, produce most of the things we use. We
intend to create the environment for our young
peoples to be able to innovate and create jobs
through technology.
12. I cannot promise you that this will be an easy
journey, but in the interest of so much and so many we must tread this difficult path. I can assure you
that this government you have freely elected will
work with honesty and dedication, day and night
to ensure that our country prospers and that the
prosperity benefits all Nigerians. God bless Federal
Republic of Nigeria.

BUHARI COMMISERATES WITH SULTAN, SOKOTO STATE GOVT ON PASSING AWAY OF WALIN SOKOTO

President Muhammadu Buhari commiserates with
the Sultanate, the Government and people of
Sokoto State on the passing away of the Walin
Sokoto, Ambassador Hamzat Ahmad, on Saturday. In a condolence letter to the Sokoto State
Government, President Buhari described the late
Walin Sokoto as a reputable public servant and a
highly distinguished diplomat, who spent most of
his life in the service of his country.
The President believes the demise of the former Nigerian Ambassador, who served in London and
Washington DC, is a great loss to his community and
the entire Nigeria.
‘‘I have learnt with deep shock and grief of the
passing away of Alhaji Hamzat Ahmad (Walin
Sokoto). His death is a great loss to Sokoto State, the diplomatic and business communities and to
the Nigerian public service.
‘‘Alhaji Hamzat served meritoriously as a senior civil
servant in the old Northern Nigeria Government
and with the Federal Civil Service. In Lagos, he held
the post of Principal Secretary to the then Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, whom he served
with diligence and loyalty.
‘‘Please convey my sincere condolences to His Royal
Highness, the Sultan of Sokoto, his family and the
good people of Sokoto State on the demise of their
illustrious son,” the President wrote. President Buhari prayed that the Almighty God will
grant the soul of the late Walin Sokoto a peaceful
rest, and grant his family the strength to bear the
loss.

ENDING UPSURGE OF ATTACKS ON COMMUNITIES BY HERDSMEN NOW A NATIONAL PRIORITY

Following continuing reports of attacks by
“herdsmen” on communities across the country,
particularly Monday’s attack on Ukpabi Nimbo in
Enugu State, President Muhammadu Buhari assures all Nigerians, once again, of his administration’s
continued commitment to ensuring the safety of
lives and property in all parts of the country.
President Buhari unreservedly condemns the attack
on Ukpabi Nimbo on other such acts of extreme
violence against communities in other states of the Federation.
Acting on the President’s directive, the Inspector-
General of Police and heads of the nation’s other
security agencies are already taking urgent steps to
fully investigate the attacks, apprehend the
perpetrators and bring them to justice. Ending the recent upsurge of attacks on
communities by herdsmen reportedly armed with
sophisticated weapons is now a priority on the
Buhari Administration’s agenda for enhanced
national security and the Armed Forces and Police
have clear instructions to take all necessary action to stop the carnage.
In keeping with the President’s directive, the
Inspector-General of Police, the General Officer
Commanding the 82nd Division of the Nigerian
Army and the Director of the Department of State
Security in Enugu State have visited Ukapbi Nimbo to personally oversee investigations into the attack
on the community and ongoing efforts to
apprehend the culprits.
Meanwhile, President Buhari is scheduled to meet
with Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi later today to
receive further briefing on the attack on Ukpabi Nimbo and discuss additional measures to forestall
similar attacks and restore public confidence.
The President urges all Nigerians to remain calm
and assured of his administration’s readiness to
deploy all required personnel and resources to
remove this new threat to the collective security of the nation.

NAPS PRESIDENCY: OPEN LETTER TO PRESIDENT MOHAMMEDU BUHARI- Polytechnic Students Demand The Promised Change Now.

Sir, we applaud your
frantic efforts directed at revamping our economy
through several economic policies and measures
capable of salvaging the nation’s treasury from the strongholds of political robbers. With keen interest,
we are following the Anti Graft Campaign, the
sudden reawakening of CCT, the general increase
in prices of basic foods and services-students
having to pay through the nose back to their
respective homes. Anyway, as objective citizens, we are still exercising patience. However, it is better to
clearly point out that our vault of patience on the
dehumanizing HND/ Bsc Dichotomy is exhausted.
The polytechnic graduates or HND holders have
been under this unjust treatment for years. As a
most awaited Messiah, who rode on board of the propagated change, the immediate abolition of the
discrimination against HND Certificate should be
part of the flagship program. Your Excellency sir, I
supposed government is a continuum ; in May
2014, the committee set up by the federal
government to work on the Dichotomy between holders of HND/Bsc was inaugurated. Amongst
others the committee was saddled with the task of
reviewing the content and curriculum of the HND
program to be equivalent to the Bachelor of
Technology, such that this will grant HND holders
the right to reach the highest grade level in the public service. It is no crime for your administration
to consolidate on that. Also, “A Bill for an Act to
abolish and prohibit Dichotomy and Discrimination
between First Degree and Higher National Diploma
in the same profession or Field ” was sponsored by
Senator Ayo Akinyelure (Ondo. Central Senatorial District ), this is an auspicious leverage to effect the
desirable change. Sir, the traumatizing experience
of HND Holders in their places of work, the
continuing injustice, disparity and discrimination
meted on products of polytechnics in Nigeria is
threatening to derail the nation’s core policy thrust of evolving a technological and scientifically based,
self -reliant society in the future. Thousands of
prospective polytechnic and technology students
are contemplating or have decided to opt for
university education because perceived and real
discrimination against HND graduates. Alas! must we occupy the streets of our cities in protests
before we are taking serious? In case of
communication gap, or you have not be properly
briefed, Anti HND/Bsc Dichotomy Rallies have
commenced. I hope, your administration is not
waiting for NAPS NATIONAL DAY OF MASS ACTIONS on same before adequate attention is accorded our
cry. Aluta continua Victoria ascerta. SIGNED:
Adeyeye Olugbenga. president of NAPS