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Channels TV: NUJ kicks, says NBC threat fierce

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The Nigeria Union of Journalists on Tuesday called on the National Broadcasting Commission to be circumspect and exercise more restraint in dealing with perceived infringements by broadcast stations in the country.

The union was responding to the reported directive by the NBC to Channels TV to stop a major evening programme, Politics Today, after featuring the spokesperson of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Emma Powerful.

The National President of NUJ, Chris Isiguzo, in a statement titled, ‘NBC should exercise more caution’, demanded that the threat of N5m imposition on Channels TV was outrageous.

He said, “We call on the NBC to exercise more restraint in dealing with perceived infringements by broadcast stations in the country. We are specifically disturbed by the recent threat to suspend the broadcast licence of Channels Television station for hosting the spokesperson of the proscribed IPOB in a live interview programme.

“The fine imposed on Channels TV is outrageous and should be withdrawn immediately.

“While we do not intend to take issues with the NBC, we, however, caution that threats like this will only create unnecessary feuds in an already cracked society.”

Why FG suspended Channels TV programme – IPOB

Meanwhile, the Indigenous People of Biafra on Tuesday said the Federal Governmental of Nigeria suspended the ‘Politics Today’ programme of Channels Television because the broadcast station, in that programme, gave it an opportunity to expose the lies on how security agents killed its Commander, Ikonso.

Also Read: Pantami, part of Buhari’s plan to islamise, says MASSOB

The proscribed group’s Director of Media and Publicity, Emma Powerful, disclosed this in a statement on Tuesday.

The statement read in part, “How many times has the Islamic cleric, Sheikh Gunmi met with Fulani terrorists and Fulani bandits and the outcome of their parley aired on national televisions without NBC batting an eyelid? How many times has the Boko Haram leader, Shekau’s message and threats been aired uncensored on national television without NBC imposing any sanctions on NTA?”

In a related development, a group of public affairs analysts has called on the National Broadcasting Commission to rescind the decision to suspend a Channels Television programme, ‘Politics Today’.

The group, which made this call under the aegis of the Guild of Public Affairs Analysts of Nigeria, also asked the NBC to change its (commission) stance on the N5m fine against the television station.

GPAAN President Mr. Ayo Baje, in a statement on Tuesday condemned the action of the NBC. Baje said, “(GPAAN), views this action by the Federal Government through its regulatory agency, the National Broadcasting Corporation  as one more example of the increasing intolerance of the government for diversity of thought and speech in our country.”

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Leadership

Eid: Buhari asks Nigerians to pray against banditry, kidnapping

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The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), on Wednesday asked Nigerians to pray against kidnapping, banditry and blackmail.

According to a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, the President made the call in his Eid-il-Fitr message.

The statement was titled ‘On the occasion of Eid, President Buhari calls for unity and solidarity’.

Shehu quoted the President as saying, “On this blessed occasion, I wish that the Eid festival brings with it peace, safety, security, brotherhood and love amongst all.

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“Unity and solidarity among all citizens, Muslims and Christians are imperative especially at a time when our country is faced with multiple challenges which are surmountable only when we come together as one.

“It is important that we remember how we share, through our faiths, common bonds that should serve to unite us and not allow ourselves to succumb to those who seek to divide us, using our two great religions, for their own selfish advantages.

“We should jointly pray against the tragic incidents of kidnapping and banditry and the desperate quest for political power expressed through blackmail against the existence of our country as a united entity.

“We must resist the temptation to retreat into our communities. I urge our political and religious leaders as well as traditional rulers to encourage our citizens to turn towards one another in love and compassion.”

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Leadership

Insecurity: Southern Governors ban open grazing, ask Buhari to address nation

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The governors in 17 states of the southern part of Nigeria have demanded the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), to address Nigerians on the challenges of insecurity and restore the confidence of the people.

The Forum stated this in a 12-point communique read by its Chairman, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State, at the end of its four hours meeting held in Asaba, the Delta State capital.

The governors affirmed that the people of Southern Nigeria remain committed to the unity of Nigeria on the basis of justice, fairness, equity, oneness, and peaceful co-existence between and among its peoples with a focus on the attainment of shared goals for economic development and prosperity.

He said, “Southern Governors expressed very grave concern on the security challenges currently plaguing the nation and strongly urged that Mr. President should address Nigerians on the challenges of insecurity and restore the confidence of our people.

“We observed that the incursion of armed herders, criminals, and bandits into the Southern part of the country has presented a severe security challenge such that citizens are not able to live their normal lives including pursuing various productive activities leading to a threat to food supply and general security.

“Consequently, the meeting resolved that open grazing of cattle be banned across Southern Nigeria.

“Agreed that the progress of the nation requires that urgent and bold steps be taken to restructure the Nigerian Federation leading to the evolution of state police, review of revenue allocation formula in favour of the sub-national governments and creation of other institutions which legitimately advance our commitment to and practice of true federalism.

Read Also: [BREAKING] COVID-19: FG returns curfew, restriction on mass gatherings

“In view of widespread agitations among our various peoples for greater inclusiveness in existing governance arrangements, the Federal Government should convoke a national dialogue as a matter of urgency.”

The forum expressed concern about the continued gridlock on the Oshodi-Apapa Expressway.

The meeting, therefore, recommended the activation and establishment of ports in other states of the federation to create new jobs and promote socio-economic activities in the country.

The Southern Governors also expressed concern on the economic implications of another lockdown on the country and therefore suggested greater coordination and cooperation between Federal and State Governments in evolving strategies for dealing with the pandemic.

Fifteen governors were in attendance at the meeting.

They are Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, Dr Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti), Nyesom Wike (Rivers), Godwin Obaseki (Edo), Dapo Abiodun (Ogun), Seyi Makinde (Oyo), and Babajide Sanwo-Olu (Lagos).

Others are Douye Diri (Bayelsa), Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia), Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu), Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo), David Umahi (Ebonyi), Willie Obiano (Anambra). Imo and Akwa Ibom States were represented by their deputy governors, while Osun and Cross Rivers states were absent at the meeting.

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Business

Buhari sends delegation to Ghana over Nigerian traders’ plight

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The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), has directed that a ministerial delegation be sent to Ghana to resolve the prolonged conflict between Nigerian traders and Ghanaian authorities.

The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, disclosed this on Monday.

According to a statement by his Special Adviser on Media, Ifedayo Sayo, the minister spoke at a meeting.

The statement was titled, ‘FG delegation to visit Ghana over Nigerian traders’ conflict with Ghanaian counterparts.’

“President Muhammadu Buhari has directed that a ministerial delegation be sent to Ghana to resolve the lingering conflict between Nigerian traders and Ghanaian authorities,” the minister was quoted as saying.

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Adebayo, who said he would be leading the delegation, added that members of the delegation “will also engage in further dialogue with Ghanaian authorities with a view to finding a lasting solution to the problem.”

He disclosed that the delegation is expected to embark on the visit between May 31 and June 1, 2021.

Other member of the delegation include the Minister of State, Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Zubairu Dada; the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr Nasir Sani-Gwarzo; the Executive Secretary, Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission, Yewande Sadiku; Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Diaspora Commission, Abike Dabiri-Erewa; and the President of National Association of Nigerian Traders, Dr Ken Ukaoha.

There has been lingering controversy over $1 million levy imposed on Nigerian traders and foreign investors by the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre.

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