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Monumental Fraud Rocks Zamfara State …… + How Gov Yari Milked The State Dry Eighteen Years After Creation…..

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Zamfara State till date remains a traditional rural state due to some lapses, gross non-performance and corruption by virtually all the previous administrations of the state. In this analysis, Society Reporters takes a peep at the state and the impediment that deters the progress and revealed that democracy still stands a chance to survive, only if the main actors can give the necessary inputs in real terms. For a long time, Zamfara indigenes have prayed for salvation and solace especially, this is what the political class in Zamfara lack, a sense of dedication, patriotism and commitment. Most of them are not even fair to themselves much less for those that gave them the mandate. Pundits averred that the attitude in itself is inimical to democratic ideals and consequently anti democratic and by extension autocratic, a situation where anything can go when money is involved is very disastrous and unfortunate. Truly, democratic set up in Nigeria were full of corrupt practices. It is the same practice that had hindered the state from economic growth and infrastructural development, despite collecting over N370Billion as statutory allocation from the federation account within the period.
Investigations revealed that Governor Abdul Azees Yari’s administration, has failed by the judgment of majority and in fact by his own admission and to register an appreciable success. His failures were indeed followed by his inability to fight corruption, or better still his choice to allow carefree attitude of people in the corridors of power to continue dominating the system. Our findings revealed that everything remains as it use to be, even worse. Money from the public treasury were used to achieve political ends, an episode where government tendered cash allegedly forwarded to top politicians for victories is still the public funds. And none of them has given any explanation in that respect. This administration has not made sincerity and dedication as their hallmark, which is why they have not built a strong economic base and a conducive Zamfara State. The money they were alleged to have looted is more than the little they spent for public projects during this administration. The evil calamity they inflicted on the masses is still haunting the common masses. The state has been placed into a waste basket. Ask them, is the money they stole into their accounts not enough to service the debt the state owes? After robbing the state of its resources, they still went to disgrace its image in the world. Governor Yari on assuming power, worsened the debt crisis in the state by securing illegal loan of N4Billion allegedly with high interest rate for some supposedly Sharia projects. The facility was secured without the approval of the state House of Assembly and before the constitution of the State Executive Council. Questionable projects that are not priority to the immediate needs of the people but were created to favour the economic interest of friends, associates and conduit pipes was awarded by Yari in violation of due process and from all analysis over inflated. Governor Yari is perhaps today the most widely travelled state governor in Nigeria, with a record of spending over N2Billion on expenses incurred on hotels, food and air craft charter across Nigeria, revealed by an insider that pleaded anonymity. His frequent travels to Dubai, London and Saudi Arabia, according to the source have cost the poor people of Zamfara State more than N500Million within less than one year according to the source. Within the same period, Zamfara owing to Yari’s negligence and disregard to the welfare of the people has lost the services of more than 20 medical doctors, due to nonpayment of their salaries and failure to effect the payment of their allowances and salary increments. Investigation also reveals that nearly 50% of the highly substandard but inflated projects Yari has embarked upon was concentrated in his home town of Talatan Mafara, a move condemned by citizens of the state as irresponsible for a leader that was elected by all the people of the state. Another source who pleaded anonymity told this online media that Yari was warned by his Malam not to relocate to the Government House, hence his illegal decision to remain in his home at Talatan Mafara, since he was elected and incurring huge expenses in the process and subjecting the police and other security agents to divide within the Government House in Gusau and the governor’s house at Talatan Mafara. Among all the former governors of Zamfara State according to those interviewed by Society Reproters, “Yari in less than one year through his conduct, policies and vision has proven to be the most insensitive with no clear policy direction. From creation, the state has never got any direction or focus due to poor financial management by the past leaders of the state. The whole system has become faulty democratically as there was no trust or truth in the system. The influx of the youth to the urban areas increased the rate of political thuggery in the state. According to Malam Bello Gusau, “it is shameful and disgraceful that the world has stepped into a global village, yet Zamfara is yet to locate its level, in dire need of development. The failure of all the government is because they did not have a sense of purpose, direction and focus. The gravity of the whole offence lies drastically and terrifyingly on the past leaders who left power to Governor Abdul’azeez Yari. While Yari had continued to plunder as the case of his predecessors, pundits believed that he inherited virtually nothing from the past governors. But considering the kind of leadership and lack of accountability Zamfara witnessed in the last ten months under Yari, the incumbent governor and his predecessors are to be collectively blamed for the backwardness of the state and for allowing so called contractors to defraud the state with nothing commensurate in return. Pundits also averred that if Yari is indeed serious in fighting corruption he must start with himself by stopping his unnecessary foreign and domestic trips and ensure sanity and transparency in awarding government contracts and in determining who or which company is qualified. They also said that Yari should start the war on corruption by subjecting his blood brother, Ja’afaru Dan’ auta to the EFCC for investigation, because according to them the stupendous wealth Dan’auta is intimidating the people with which he didn’t have prior to the emergence of his brother as governor must be investigated to convince the people that Yari is sincere and committed to fight corruption. They said virtually all the commissioners of Yari are redundant because all issues that has to do with money is now under the authority and monopoly of Dan’auta, Usman Sahabi Kaura and Alhaji Sani Jega. “The situation in Zamfara is unfortunate. Dan’auta is illiterate and has nothing before his brother became governor. Usman Sahabi has been cheating Zamfara and making Millions since Yarima was governor. If the governor is serious Dan’auta, Usman Kaura and Sani Jega must go to jail for the financial crimes they are committing against Zamfara and its citizens”, Bello said. But many believed that if the way Yari has started by reducing government to impact on the economic lives of few privileged in the state is anything to go by, he will go down as the worst governor Zamfara State has ever had. For now and in view of the typical leadership direction of Yari, the hope of getting a governor that will transform the state and its economy has been dashed in Yari.

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News and Report

Just In: President Tinubu approves N70,000 minimum wage

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President Bola Tinubu has approved N70,000 as the new minimum wage for Nigerian workers with a promise to review the national minimum wage law every three years.

 

More details later…

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Gov. Zulum Clarifies Son’s Purported Killing Of Chinese National At Indian Nightclub

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The Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum, has denied reports alleging that one of the sons has been arrested and sentenced to prison for the murder of some Indian citizens.

Reports has it that there were unverified rumours, especially on social media platforms, alleging that the first son of the governor, Umar Zulum Umara, killed the Chinese national during a fight at an Indian nightclub.

However, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on New Media, Abdurrahman Ahmed Bundi, dismissed the reports in a statement on Wednesday.

According to him, no son of the governor was arrested or charged with any crime.

The statement read, “attention of the Borno State Governor’s Media Unit has been drawn to rumours circulating that the son of the Borno State Governor has been arrested for the alleged murder of some Indian citizens.

“This misinformation was published in an online blog, Nairaland, titled “Son of Borno State Governor Murders Someone In India—Politics.” The blog claimed that the Governor also travelled to India, attempting to use diplomatic status to resolve the matter.

“It is on record that Governor Babagana Zulum was on a one-month vacation in Saudi Arabia for the 2024 Hajj and later travelled to Egypt to attend the annual ASUWAN forum conference in Cairo.

“The Media Unit would like to clarify and set the record straight that Nairaland and other online blogs have mischievously spread defamatory content without any speck of truth.

“We hereby warned Nairaland and all those who have spread the false information to pull down this misinformation from its website and platforms within the next 24 hours and offer an unreserved apology to Governor Zulum, his son, and the entire family, or risk legal action. The Governor shall also not hesitate to take legal action against any media outlet that continues to publicise this defamatory information on its platform.

“We would like to inform the public that none of Governor’s Zulum’s son was either arrested or charged with any crime, or involved in any unlawful activities anywhere.

“We urge the public to exercise caution when consuming and sharing information, particularly when it comes from unverified sources and blogs instead of credible media outlets.

“We enjoin all media organisations to engage in responsible journalism of truth and factual verification while recognising the potential harm and psychological trauma the spread of false information might have caused to the Governor’s family.”

 

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Over 600,000 Nigerians sought asylum abroad under Buhari – Report

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Over 600,000 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries between 2016 and 2023, which were years under the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari.

Buhari was President from 2015 to 2023 and handed over to President Bola Tinubu who was sworn in on May 29, 2023, after winning in the general elections the same year.

According to a report released on Wednesday, July 17, 2024, by Statisense, a data collection organisation, of a total of 664,384 in eight years, 355,792 persons sought asylum between 2016 and 2019 while 308,592 sought asylum between 2020 and 2023.

On a year-by-year basis, 66,862 sought asylum in 2016, 91,924 in 2017, 84,624 (2018), 112,382 (2019), 73,233 (2020), 83,105 (2021), 83,402 (2022), and 68,852 in 2023.

The figures indicate a surge from the past years, as Statisense noted that within 12 years – 2004 to 2015 – only 204,791 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries.

In total, 869,175 Nigerians filed for asylum in the last 20 years, notably from 2004 to 2023.

The report was posted on the organisation’s X.com handle @StatiSense, citing the United Nations Refugee Agency.

In another report shared by the organisation on Wednesday, it was stated that the Republic of Niger topped countries with the most Nigerian refugees in 2023 with about 200,497 Nigerians and a total of 1,268,464 Nigerian refugees between 2015 and 2023.

Niger, a border country, shares proximity with Nigeria’s north, where residents battle a spate of insecurity in the region ranging from banditry, terrorism and herdsmen-farmers crisis.

Another report also revealed that Nigerians topped the list of African countries who sought asylum in Canada in 2023 with about 10,111 asylum seekers followed by Kenya with 1,345.  It stated that 1,345 Nigerians however sought asylum in the United Kingdom and 5,136 in the United States of America.

Source: The Punch

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