Osinbajo: Great Nations Too Face Security, Economic Challenges

The Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, yesterday, said whatever situation the country was going through was nothing alien to history as many great nations across the world, had and are still encountering the kinds of security and economic challenges that Nigeria currently faces. This is coming at a time the military high command has concluded plans to launch an offensive against the remaining criminals in the North East and the North West as well as other parts of the country, where the criminals have continued to wage war against the state.

Relatedly, the Kaduna State government, as if privy to the new plan by the military high command, has appealed to the Army to deploy more troops to the state to boost the ongoing operations against terrorists, bandits and kidnappers in the state. Osinbajo, who spoke while playing host to a delegation from the Arewa Concerned People for National Unity and Religious Tolerance from Kano, led by Alhaji Auwal Maidabino, stressed that there was no great nation anywhere that has not had the sort of challenge that Nigeria I currently faced with.
This, he claimed was especially so in countries, “where you have a multi-racial, multi-religious setup, and the greatest nations in the world are multi-racial, multi-religious, and multi-ethnic.

“As a matter of fact, some of these things are as important as the economy and security… for the reason that a united people, people who see themselves as one, are more likely to be economically successful, more likely to be able to secure themselves and secure their borders, and more likely to work together for the goodness and greatness of their people.”

The vice president told the delegation that, “It is the duty of the leadership, not just political leadership, but also the leadership of social groups and organisations such as yours, to ensure that we are focused on these issues of unity and tolerance.”

Osinbajo explained further that, “As you know, religious tolerance and unity, is for me, a matter that goes beyond mere advocacy. I believe very strongly that the greatness of nations, wherever those nations may be, have always been on account of leaders, who thought it fit to build those nations on the basis of unity and tolerance.

“I think that it is such an important issue that we cannot afford to discount it. There is a need for us to pay more time and attention to these issues in whatever way we can, because every once in a while, we see some threats to the unity of our country, and we must not allow it to happen at all, we must continue not just in the advocacy, but in action that will bring about unity and religious tolerance”.

Leader of the delegation, Alhaji Maidabino, who spoke earlier, commended Osinbajo for his innovative approach to governance and the several initiatives of the Buhari administration anchored through his office, praying God to provide the opportunity to enable him continue to serve the nation.

He noted that through schemes such as TraderMoni, National Homegrown School Feeding Programme, N-Power, and the Ease of Doing Business initiative, among others, the vice president has impacted many Nigerians across different sectors.
His words: “We wish to commend and congratulate you for your contributions in the area of promotion of good governance, transparency, and efficiency as exemplified with the core principles behind the Ease of Doing Business initiative of this government, and for the continuation of your uncompromising dedication to peace, unity, and economic progress, among others.”


Source: Thisday Live



Jos North tops Plateau LGs in cholera cases, death toll hits 28

As Plateau State continues to grapple with the outbreak of cholera, Jos North Local Government Area has emerged top with the highest number of infections totalling 599, while Mangu has the least with one infection only.

This is indicated by the epidemiology data of cholera outbreak in the state which was shared by the lawmaker representing Pankshin North Constituency and Chairman, House Committee on Health, Philip Dasun, during their plenary presided over by the Speaker, Ayuba Abok, on Wednesday. The data which was obtained by The PUNCH indicated that the state had recorded a total of 1,415 infections while 28 persons had died from the disease.

The data also showed that the disease had spread to all the 17 local government areas except Mikang LGA, which recorded no infection. According to the data, the 16 LGAs that have been hit by the disease include Jos North, 599; Jos South, 423; Bassa, 151;Bokkos, 58; Barkin Ladi, 9; Riyom, 14; Jos East, 20; Wase, 26; Langtang North, 23; Kanam, 41; Qua-anpan, 2; Shendam, 30; Mangu, 1; Langtang South, 2; Kanke, 9; and Pankshin, 7.

The data equally showed that the total number of deaths (28) were recorded in eight LGAs; Jos North, 5; Jos South, 6; Bassa, 7; Bokkos, 3; Shendam, 1; Kanam, 3; Pankshin, 1, and Wase, 1. The House Committee chairman, in a motion, expressed concern over the situation and called on the executive arm of government to direct the Ministry of Health to mitigate the rising number of persons affected by cholera in the state.


Source: Punch



Helicopter with 16 people on board crashes in Russia’s Kamchatka

A helicopter with 16 people on board, most of them tourists, has crashed in the Kamchatka peninsula in Russia’s far east the local government said, with seven passengers unaccounted for. The Mi-8 helicopter came down in Lake Kuril in the Kronotsky nature reserve, it said in a statement on Thursday. According to AP news agency, the helicopter is reportedly lying at a depth of about 100 meters (328 feet) in Lake Kuril, which is up to 316 meters (1,037-feet) deep with an area of 77 square kilometers (30 square miles).

Preliminary information said, “there were three crew members and 13 passengers on board”.

Forty rescuers and divers were dispatched to the scene. Kamchatka is more than 6,000km (3,728 miles) east of Moscow. According to a local health ministry source, nine people were rescued.

“Nine people have been found, they are all alive,” the source told the Interfax news agency, adding that the search operation was continuing.

The fate of the remaining seven was not immediately known.

An investigation has been opened for violation of air safety rules, said the Russian Investigation Committee, which handles air accident probes.

Meanwhile, the Interfax news agency cited officials as saying the helicopter was carrying three crew members and 14 tourists when it went down in deep fog.

Interfax initially quoted regional officials as saying that nine people, including two pilots, survived the crash, but later reported that only eight survivors were found while the search for the others is continuing.

The varying numbers could not be immediately reconciled. The reports did not list the nationalities of the tourists, but said that most of them were from Moscow and St Petersburg.

The area where the crash occurred can only be reached by helicopters and the fog was complicating rescue efforts, the RIA Novosti reported.

The Vityaz-Aero helicopter was transporting the tourists to Khodutka, a volcano near the city of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky.

Russian news reports said Vityaz-Aero is half-owned by Igor Redkin, a millionaire businessman who is a member of the Kamchatka regional legislature. Redkin was placed under house arrest earlier this week after he shot and killed a man who was rummaging in a garbage bin. Redkin said the shooting was accidental after he mistook the victim for a bear.

Kamchatka is a large territory with few inhabitants but is visited by tourists for its volcanoes and scenery.

In July, all 28 people on board of Antonov An-26 twin-engined turboprop died in a crash in Kamchatka.

Russia historically had a poor air safety record but has significantly improved its aviation standards since the 2000s.

The country’s main airlines have shifted from ageing Soviet aircraft to more modern planes.

But maintenance issues and lax compliance with safety rules have remained a problem