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Dickson appoints aide, 22 perm secs

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Governor of Bayelsa State, Mr. Seriake Dickson, has inaugurated 22 newly-appointed permanent secretaries to fill existing vacancies in the state civil service.

Dickson also swore in a new Special Adviser on Inter-Governmental Affairs, Mr. Austin Adigio, to replace Chief Rufus Abadi, who has defected from the Peoples Democratic Party, a statement on Tuesday by his media aide, Mr. Daniel Iworiso-Markson, said.

The governor, who used the opportunity to reconstitute the management boards of some state agencies, said the appointments were part of ongoing efforts to properly reposition the Bayelsa State public service to achieve greater efficiency.

The reconstituted boards are the Bayelsa State Physical Planning and Development Board, Hospitals Management Board, Scholarships Board and the Post-Primary Schools Board.

Dickson noted that the new permanent secretaries were appointed strictly on merit and in recognition of their hard work and contributions to the state public service over the years.

While congratulating them on their elevation, he described the selection process that threw them up as fair and competitive, stressing that the appointments were devoid of political considerations, in line with his administration’s policy of depoliticising the service.

The Governor was also full of appreciation for civil servants and some of their past leaders, including Sir Fraser Okuoru and Dr. Josephine Igodo, two former Heads of Service, for their innovative contributions.

He restated his commitment to prioritising workers’ welfare, especially in the area of payment of salaries and pension entitlements, despite the financial crisis rocking the state and the country in general.

Expressing concern over the issue of gratuities, he called on retirees to be a little more patient with the government, noting that if not for the shortfall in revenues, his administration would have reduced the backlog it inherited to a significant level by now.

He asked the new permanent secretaries to work closely with their respective commissioners to promote professionalism and improved service delivery in the various ministries.

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Deborah Samuel: Gov Tambuwal relaxes curfew

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Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State government has relaxed the 24-hour curfew he imposed on the state capital following violent protest over the arrest of some youths allegedly involved in the killing Deborah Samuel, a 200-level student.

Tambuwal in a statement issued by his Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Isah Bajini, said the revised curfew will now be from dusk to dawn in Sokoto township.

The statement noted that “Sequel to the briefing by the security heads in the State, the State Governor, Rt Hon Aminu Waziri Tambuwal has ordered the relaxation of the 24-hour curfew in force in Sokoto metropolis

“The revised curfew will now be from dusk to dawn in Sokoto township. This is with a view to affording people the window to pursue their legitimate businesses and other means of livelihood.”

Recall that following the lynching of the 200-level student for allegedly insulting Prophet Mohammed, the State’s police command arrested some persons linked to the incident.

However, a large number of Muslim boys who were angered by the arrest, stormed the streets in the State on Saturday, demanding the release of the suspects.

The development, which triggered tension in several parts of the State, made the Governor to impose the curfew.

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Arsonists burn down LG secretariat, Magistrate Court in Anambra

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Suspected arsonists have burnt down Idemili North Local Government secretariat in Ogidi and a Magistrate Court in the area.

Sources said the arsonists entered the premises on Sunday night to perpetuate the act, burning down all files, properties in the secretariat, including the secretariat building.

Videos and pictures circulating online showed that the entire buildings were reduced to rubbles, while vehicles parked inside the Local Government secretariat were also burnt to ashes.

The State Police Command has also confirmed the development, attributing it to unidentified arsonists.

DSP Toochukwu Ikenga, the spokesperson of the State Police Command said: “Yes, the incident was confirmed, and our men were there to restore normalcy.

“Right now, the fire has been put off, and calm has been restored to the area,” Ikenga said.

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National Assembly transmits amended Electoral Act to Buhari

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Senate

The National Assembly has transmitted the amended Electoral Act 2022 to the Presiden Muhammadu Buhari for assent.

The bill was transmitted to the Presidency on Friday.

Sources in the Presidency and the National Assembly confirmed the transmission.

A source in the Presidency, who spoke on the condition of anonymity as he had not been authorised to announce the development officially, said, “Yes, it has been transmitted. But wait till Monday when it may be announced when the President will sign it.”

Another source in the National Assembly said, “It was transmitted on Friday. I needed to confirm it before saying anything.”

It was further learnt that Buhari would sign the amendment ahead of primaries of political parties beginning next week.

The Senate and the House of Representatives had last week passed an amendment to the Act to recognise statutory delegates at primaries, congresses, and conventions of political parties.

The lawmakers particularly amended Section 84(8) of the Act to provide automatic or statutory delegates, ahead of the forthcoming party primaries, from where candidates would emerge for the 2023 general elections.
In March, the National Assembly had passed the bill for the Act while the President signed it into law.

While political parties are close to conducting primaries to elect candidates for the 2023 general elections, the Act did not allow members elected into public offices and executives of the parties, known as statutory delegates, to participate and vote in the conventions, congresses, or meetings of parties.

The chambers had described the omission as “a fundamental error.”

Without the provision by the law, Buhari; the Vice-President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo (SAN); members of the National Assembly, governors and their deputies, members of the State Houses of Assembly, chairmen of local government areas, councillors, executives of political parties, amongst others, would have been disenfranchised.

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