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Critics of open governance can’t distract me, says Makinde

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The Oyo State Governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde has declared that critics of his style of open governance cannot distract his government from recording giant strides in the State.

Governor Makinde, who made the declaration while speaking at the inauguration of the South West Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the United Kingdom, said that he was aware why there has been so much searchlight on his person and his administration.

A statement by Governor Makinde’s Chief Press Secretary, Taiwo Adisa, also quoted the Governor as tasking PDP Stakeholders to readily project the good deeds of the party’s office holders in order not to give room for negative narrative.

Makinde, who observed that interest groups in the United Kingdom had played important roles in the politics of Nigeria, said that no fewer than 200,000 Nigerians now live in the United Kingdom.

He said that the task ahead of the PDP is to regroup and launch chapters everywhere Nigerians are found.

The Governor said:” I am aware of the enormity of the responsibility that rests on me. The searchlight is beamed upon me, and all my actions are being met with the strictest scrutiny.”

“I know that it is the seeming controversial that will be given more attention. My open declaration of my assets is generating furore in certain quarters, but these are unnecessary distractions, my focus and the focus of our administration is on good governance. We shall not be distracted”, he added

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Governor Makinde also seized the opportunity to invite investors to Oyo state, declaring that his efforts so far have been geared towards eradicating the out-of-school children syndrome, which he said, accounts for 400,000 right now, expansion of the state’s economy and promoting security.

“In the past month, I have focused on two things to set Oyo State on the path to greatness: Ensuring that we put the right policies and processes in place, and working with ideas that will help increase Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) in the state.”

He stated that his focus on security was borne out of the fact that without security, businesses cannot thrive adding that he had given his commitment to enhancing security to the Commanders of the Task Force in charge of Oyo and Osun, Operation Burst.

According to the Governor, the decision by the state government to cancel the N3, 000 school levy, and examination fees had resulted in the unprecedented huge turnout of students for placement examination into JSS1, and the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) conducted in the state last week.

The Governor also said that the commitment of the PDP towards strategizing for the future was not in doubt adding that members of the party must also be alive to their responsibilities.

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He said: “The PDP has one job and one job only:  regroup, refocus, re-strategise. Creating Chapters, everywhere in the world where Nigerians are found, shows our commitment to this job. I believe Nigerians have had the opportunity to see clearly which party really means business.

“I have one request to make of you: never stop talking about the good things we are doing. When good things are not given prominence, the consensus is that only bad things are happening. We cannot allow evil narratives about the PDP or its stakeholders to gain any type of momentum. It is our jobs as worthy ambassadors to shut down such narratives, quickly and definitively.”

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Torrential rains destroy shelters for displaced people in northeast Nigeria

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Torrential rain has destroyed makeshift tents and caused severe flooding to temporary displacement camps in northeast Nigeria, leaving vulnerable families homeless. The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) is appealing for urgent financial assistance to address the colossal humanitarian needs and to prevent the spread of deadly cholera.

“Displaced people are suffering due to relentless rains and wind battering their homes the last few days. Large numbers of families, who fled from conflict months ago, are left homeless while others are forced to share overcrowded tents with neighbours or relatives,” said Eric Batonon, Country Director for NRC in Nigeria.

According to NRC’s assessments, over 6,800 people living in displacement camps in Maiduguri have been impacted by floods in recent weeks. In Dikwa, 500 people have been rendered homeless due to flooding and have set up home in disused registration centres.

“They are essentially displaced within a displacement camp,” Batonon added.

“My home is completely destroyed. My floor has turned to mud and water is everywhere. The rain keeps coming and we do not have any choice but to wait for it to stop or share with others,” said displaced mother-of-four Fatima Mohammed (30).

The Adamawa State Government officially declared an outbreak of cholera in three local government areas during the rainy season. The total number of cases reported as of August 16 stands at 633. Four people have so far lost their lives to the disease. Due to recent heavy rain and flooding, more cases could be confirmed over the coming weeks.

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“Displaced people are living in sub-human conditions across the region. There are no sanitation or drainage facilities in most camps. People are going to the toilet in open spaces because there are no facilities for them to use and now that the camps are filled with stagnant flood water, water-borne diseases like cholera quickly spread,” Batonon added.

The United Nations and partners have appealed for $848 million to address the needs in northeast Nigeria this year. About eight months into the year, less than 40 per cent has been received.

“Additional financial support is urgently needed to reach the 6.2 million people targeted for humanitarian aid in 2019. People will die if they don´t receive urgent assistance now,” Batonon said.

Furthermore, heavy rain periods present opportunities by armed groups to infiltrate and target displacement camps. On Tuesday night (August 20) in Dikwa, a female suicide bomber detonated a bomb, killing herself and injuring four civilians. This was the first attack of its kind in the area since December 2018.

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IT’S OFFICIAL: Osinbajo Appoints Ajimobi’s Ex- Documentary Photographer, Tolani Alli

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Nigeria’s Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo has appointed Tolani Alli as his official photographer.

Tolani Alli, the daughter of the immediate past Secretary to the Oyo State Government, Alhaji Olalekan Alli, was the former documentary  photographer to Ex- governor Abiola Ajimobi.

She will be joining Bayo Omoboriowo who is President Muhammadu Buhari’s official photographer.

The Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Digital and New Media, Tolu Ogunlesi, in a tweet, confirmed her appointment

“Looking forward to working with this pair over the next four years. Official Photographers to President Buhari (@bayoomoboriowo) and Vice President Osinbajo (@tolanialli)”, the tweet reads.

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Makinde Congratulates Sunday Dare On Appointment As New Youths & Sports Minister

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Oyo State Governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde, on Thursday congratulated the newly-appointed Minister of Youth and Sports, Mr. Sunday Dare, just as he charged him to bring his wealth of experience to bear in transforming and repositioning the ministry.

The governor urged the Ogbomoso-born minister to be a good ambassador of Oyo State and to showcase the Pacesetter qualities of the State in the new position.

Governor Makinde , in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, added that the government of Oyo State would be looking forward to having a symbiotic relationship with the Federal Government through Dare, who is now an ambassador of the state.

The statement further reads, “On behalf of the good people of Oyo State, I congratulate Mr. Sunday Dare on his appointment as the Minister of Youth and Sports.

“By this appointment, Mr. Dare has become an ambassador of Oyo State, which has always been the pace-setter in all positive ramifications and we charge the new minister to keep that flag of excellence flying.

“I urge him to bring his wealth of experience to bear on the ministry and we will like to state that as a people-oriented Government and one that has made the commitment to bring about positive change in the life of the people of the state, we are ready to have a symbiotic relationship with the Federal Government through Mr. Dare.

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“It is our prayer that he succeeds in the new assignment and win laurels to the admiration of Nigerians”.

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