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Boat mishaps: Senate orders use of life jackets by water travellers

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Following the December 1 boat mishap that occurred in Lafiagi, Edu local government area of Kwara State in which 19 persons were drowned while travelling across the River Niger, the Senate has directed the National Inland Waterways Agency, NIWA to ensure the mandatory usage of life jackets by passengers travelling across the River Niger, other rivers and oceans in the country.

The upper legislative chamber also urged the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing to urgently intervene in the construction of Lafiagi-Niger State road so as to reduce, if not eliminate the incessant ugly incidents.

The Senate resolutions were sequel to a motion, “The avoidable boat mishap in Lafiagi, Kwara State”, by Senator Mohammed Sha’aba Lafiagi, PDP-Kwara North.

Leading debates on the motion, Senator Lafiagi lamented that the 19 persons who lost their lives in the tragic incident were aged between 12 and 19 years.

He noted that “the use of canoes and boats is the only available means of transportation for the border towns of Lafiagi in Kwara and its neighbours in Niger State”.

This, the former Kwara State governor, explained “is as a result of the abandonment of the 46km road project that should ordinarily link Kwara and Niger States, thus mitigating the incessant occurrence of boat mishaps in the riverine community”.

While lamenting that Lafiagi town “is still in a very mournful mood as s result of the drowning of 19 children”, he informed that “such ugly incident occurs intermittently as a result of lack of access road in the riverine community”.

Senator Lafiagi observed that incessant boat mishaps in the area would have been eliminated or reduced considerably if the government had constructed the only road that links Lafiagi to neighbouring towns, warning that the people of Kwara and Niger States would continue to live on a time bomb waiting to consume them if the trend is not arrested promptly.

“If the 46km road is constructed or a bridge is built across the River Niger, businesses and trade activities will be enhanced with the reduction of the attendant risk to the lives of our people”, he noted.

In his remarks, the deputy senate president, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, charged the federal government as well as Kwara and Niger States governments to ensure the construction of the roads linking the two states in order to avoid further loss of lives through boat mishaps.

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Metro

FG urged to declare state of emergency on federal roads, Senate tasks

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Disturbed by the deplorable conditions of road networks across the country, the Senate on Tuesday, charged the federal government to declare a state of emergency on all federal roads.
This was as the upper legislative chamber mandated  its Committees on Petroleum (Downstream), Federal Roads Maintenance Agency, FERMA and National Planning to investigate the Petroleum Products Price Regulatory Agency, PPPRA on the non-remittance of five percent user charge pump price of petrol.
Besides, the joint committees were also asked to investigate the non remittance of international vehicle transit charge accruing to FERMA and other established state roads maintenance agency.
These resolutions followed deliberations on a motion sponsored under Orders 42 and 52 of the Senate rule by Senator Geshom Bassey (PDP Cross River South)  who lamented the deplorable state of federal roads in the country.
Presenting the motion, Senator Basset expressed concern that several thousands of lives have been lost to road accidents due to bad and un-motorable roads, while bad portion of roads are safe haven for kidnappers and armed robbers on Nigerian highways.
Supporting the motion, Senator Chukwuka Utazi (PDP Enugu North) said the state of the federal highways are highly deplorable and that urgent attention is needed especially within this budget cycle to do something drastic to address the situation.
Utazi said “and like you prayed that the PPPRA should release the fund for totally provided for FERMA to do  it’s job.
“Mr President, the raining season is just gradually coming to an end and this is the opportunity for FERMA to go and start rehabilitating our roads so that Nigerians can move freely.
“This period is also the time for harvest and in order to ensure that farmers that are in the hinterland get to the appropriate market to get adequate prices for their goods, we  have to make sure the roads are properly done.
“You also know that because we don’t have the rail lines that should be in place, most of the goods and services that we move from one place to the other are done through trucking and if you continue to do trucking, you know that the life span of any  major federal highway may not last long.
“This is a very important motion moved at the most appropriate time to get the desired attention and I’m standing here lending my support and full weigh to get that being done knowing fully well that those of us from the south east are the major complainants of the bad roads in this country and we hope that we get the desired attention from FERMA if  this motion scales through.”
In his remark, President of the Senate, Dr. Ahmad Lawan said he believe that every part of the country suffers from this problem of deplorable  roads.
He expressed optimism that the  committees mandated to look into the matter will  swing into action and attend to the issue associated with this motion.
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Metro

SAD… Taraba INEC REC is dead

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The INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner, (REC) in Taraba State, Alhaji Baba Abba Yusuf, is dead.
INEC Secretary, Rose Oriarian-Anthony, said the REC died on Saturday night at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital, Borno State, where he had been on admission.
She said: “The Independent National Electoral Commission regrets to announce the death of the Resident Electoral Commissioner for Taraba State, Alhaji Baba Abba Yusuf.
“He died last (Saturday) night at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital, Borno State, where he was on admission for sometime.
He was buried today (Sunday) September 29 2019 at 4pm in Maiduguri.
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Transgender: Sade Adu’s daughter finally becomes a man (PHOTOS)

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Izaak and Mum

Sade’s transgender son has shared a heartfelt message of thanks to the soul singer, as he completes his transition from female to male.

Izaak Theo Adu, born Mickailia ‘Ila’ Adu, has spent the past six months in recovery after undergoing phalloplasty surgery, the reconstructive procedure typically undergone by transgender and non-binary people.

After returning home to his family, Izaak shared a sweet photo of himself hugging Sade, 60, along with a message praising the iconic singer for her unwavering support. In the Instagram post, Izaak wrote: ‘It’s been a long hard road but We did it!! We are coming home!!!! ‘Thank you for staying by my side these past 6 months Mumma. Thank you for fighting with me to complete the man I am. ‘Thank you for your encouragement when things are hard, for the love you give me. The purest heart. I love you so much. Queen of queens ♥️ #mumma #lioness #queen#iloveyou.’

Izaak is Sade’s only child from her former relationship with reggae music producer Bob Morgan.

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