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Subsidy removal: Gombe, Bauchi slash transport fare



The Gombe State Government has reduced transport fare for Gombe Line Transport Company to cushion the effect of Petroleum subsidy removal on the residents of the state.

Mr Ismaila Uba-Misilli, Director-General, Press Affairs, Government House, Gombe said this while responding to a survey by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on status of state owned transport companies.

According to him, measures are being put in place to ease transportation burden on the people occasioned by fuel subsidy removal.

He said the company maintained a functional fleet providing effective transport services to boost business activities, ensure comfort and safety of passengers.

He said that governor, Inuwa Yahaya’s administration has transformed the transportation sector in the state since assumption of office.

Uba-Misili said the administration had procured 90 buses between 2019 and 2022 to add to the company’s fleet.
The governor’s aide said the state government also subsidised transportation fare to ensure that residents were able to travel without financial burden.

“The state government has subsidised transportation fare just as fertilisers and inputs to assist residents and other Nigerians accessing the state.

“There is subsidy because Gombe Line charge about N9,000 for passengers travelling to Abuja as against N25,000 charge by commercial vehicle operators, and N13,000 or N14,000 charge by the regular motor parks for the same route.
“This is also part of the palliative measures being rolled out by the government just like the GO-CARES,” he said.

Mr Abubakar Yusuf, a passenger, lauded the gesture, adding that, “I commend the state government for reinvigorating the state-owned transport company, especially with the new buses and subsidised fare”.

Similarly, the Bauchi State Government has procured 30 vehicles for the state owned Yankari Express Transport Corporation.

The Chairman of the company, Alin Bababa, said the company planned to set up motor parks across the senatorial zones to ease transportation difficulties.

The measure, he said, was part of effort to cushion the effect of fuel subsidy removal.

According to him, the company has reintroduced inter-city bus services at subsidised fare in major towns across the state.

“The zonal motor parks will enable passengers to travel to other places without coming to Bauchi metropolis.
“It is part of strategies to ease the impact of fuel subsidy removal on our citizens, especially students,” he said.

However, some residents of Dutse in Jigawa have called for the revival of the state owned comatose transport company, “Jigawa Sunrise”, to enhance transportation services.

They decried lack of public transportation in Dutse and other major towns in the state, adding that the trend forced them to rely on commercial motorcycle riders.

Abubakar Adamu, a civil servant, said the call was imperative to transform the company and mitigate the effect of fuel subsidy removal on the citizens.

He said that most of the workers resorted to trekking to their offices as they could not afford exorbitant transport fare.

Corroborating Adamu, a resident, Halima Aminu, said the revival of the company would reduce transport fare and encourage competition in the sector.
Correspondent of NAN, who visited the company’s office in Dutse, reports that it has been not been in operation for many years.

A former staff of the company, who preferred anonymity, said the management of the company were making effort to enable it to resume operation soon.
When contacted, the state Commissioner for Information, Mr Sagir Musa, said that plans were underway to support the people and mitigate hardships ocasioned by subsidy removal.

He said the State Executive Council (SEC) on July 28, delibrated on how to come up with sound policies and programmes to support the people.

This, he said, was in line with the Federal Government’s directives for states to come up with initiatives to cushion the effect of fuel subsidy removal on people of the state.

“The state governor, Umar Namadi has directed the Ministry of Information to come up with plans to support all category of people in the state,”


Kalu tasks NDDC to extend developmental projects to Abia community



Benjamin Kalu

The Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rep. Benjamin Kalu has tasked the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to ensure even spread of developmental projects to Ukwa community in Abia State.

He further said that the nine states making up the NDDC should not be neglected

Kalu said this during an interactive session with the delegation from Ukwa People’s Consultative Council led by its President General Don Ubani in Abuja

The states are Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Edo, Imo, Ondo and Rivers.

Kalu expressed worry over the concerns raised by the delegation on the “undue marginalisation of Ukwa as an oil producing Community”.

He said there was need to ensure equal spread of intervention projects of the NDDC across the nine states.

According to him, the area is known for oil production and the status of Abia State as a member of NDDC came as a result of its ability to produce oil and gas from Ukwa.

“Interestingly, some of the things you mentioned have been my concerns in the 9th Assembly, in regards to the spread of intervention programmes of the NDDC across the nine states.

He said this led to the first visit of the acting MD that toured Abia, Imo and other states.

Kalu said he insisted that the tour was necessary, to have a proper update of their presence in various parts of the states.

This, according to him, is to be able to establish whether or not, the report they see on papers is the same thing on ground.

“I totally agree with you that, what we have in Abia, as an oil producing state and as a member of NDDC, comparatively speaking, is below average, in terms of developmental interventions.

“A call from the stakeholders that an improvement should take place, is definitely not a wrong call.

The deputy Speaker commended the leadership of Ukwa community for holding their youths and in spite the fact that the development interventions were below average.

He said they kept their heads peacefully and allowed all the IOCs handle their operations peacefully in those communities.

Earlier, Ubani who led the delegation, solicited the support of the House leadership towards ensuring equity and fair distribution of developmental projects to Ukwa community.

He said a time had existed in this system where the entire South East was shut-out, but under the present administration, at least the people have been given a sense of belonging

He said farmers in Ukwa federal constituency could not farm effectively because the fertility of the soil had been diminished due to oil exploration and exploitation.

“Let there be manifestation of concern on the part of NDDC. Nothing so far has given us course to be happy as oil producing area.

“We need to avoid situation that will create youth restiveness and the best way to do it is to make sure that there’s development, ” he said.

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LUTH denies late doctor worked 72-hour call duty



The management of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi-Araba, has denied allegations that one of its house officers, Dr Michael Umoh, died after a 72-hour call.

This is contained in a statement issued by LUTH management team in Lagos on Thursday.

“LUTH management understands the fact that the family of Dr Umoh is presently mourning the death of their beloved son and requested the foreclosure of any media engagement regarding the death of their son. It is important for us as a management to make clarifications regarding the circumstances surrounding his death.

“Dr Umoh died on Sept 17 while in church with his parents. The management was informed, and the death was later confirmed by one of the Consultants in his unit (Neurosurgery).

“The death of Dr Umoh is unfortunate but the narrative of a 72 hours non-stop shift is false.

“The record from Neurosurgery unit shows that the last time he was on call was 13th and 14th September, 2023.

“He was not on call on the 15th, 16th and 17th (the day he died), contrary to the insinuations on social media. He was at home with his parents on Sept. 16 and Sept. 17,” the management said.

Prior to this time, the management said, he was on call on the Sept. 7 and Sept. 8.

”This shows that Dr Umoh was on call for a total number of four days in September, 2023.

“A delegation from LUTH visited the family on Wednesday to commiserate with the family and to get more details of the circumstances surrounding his death.

“The parents gave the details of what they thought must have contributed to his death but pleaded that the wish of the family be respected and that the narrative is not for public consumption,” it said.

The management described Dr Umoh as a hardworking and diligent house-officer, and a very promising young man.

It said he will be sorely missed by his friends and colleagues.

“May his soul rest in peace, and may the Almighty give the family the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss” LUTH said.

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