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Niger/Adamawa boats mishap: NIWA MD mourns, condole victims’ families

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Niger/Adamawa boats mishap: NIWA MD mourns, condoles victims” families

Last Updated on September 13, 2023 by Fellow Press

The Managing Director of National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), Dr George Moghalu, has expressed immense grief over Adamawa and Niger States’ boats mishaps that left several persons dead on Friday and Sunday.

Moghalu, in a statement issued in Lokoja on Tuesday, described the two incidents as “very unfortunate” and “saddened”, considering the precious lives lost.

In Lokoja that while 15 persons died in the capsized boat carrying 23 people in Njuwa Lake in Yola South Local Government of Adamawa, reportedly killed 15 people, while 26 died and 44 persons are still missing in a river in Mokwa Local Government Area of Niger.

The Adamawa accident reportedly occurred in the afternoon of Friday (Sept. 8) when the victims were travelling to Yola town.

The boat mishap in Niger sadly occurred at about 8 a.m. of Sunday (Sept. 10) between the Jabba and Kainji dams.

The managing diredctor said, “no doubt what happened at Gurin River, a surburb of Fufore Local Government Area, Adamawa State, as well as at a river in Gbajibo, Mokwa, of Niger state was very unfortunate and saddened”.

“On behalf of management and Staff of NIWA, I am extending our heartfelt sympathies to the families of the dead and the injured.

“The incidents are more disheartening as some of the victims on board were reportedly heading to their farms for farming activities.

“I hereby wish to commend the life-saving work of the first rescuers, local divers and police marine at the scenes of the two incidences.”

Moghalu prayed for the wounded for a speedy recovery and success on the search and rescue of some missing passengers on the capsized boats.

The NIWA boss, however, reiterated call on transporters to ensure strict adherence to safety regulations on the nation’s waterways to avert such unwanted losses, pains and sorrow.

He emphasised on the need for the people in the riverine communities traveling by boats and canoes to use live jackets and avoid overcrowded boats to stay alive.

Besides, he advised against using old or rickety boats and night travels to prevent such mishaps.

The NIWA boss, however, prayed the Almighty God to comfort the grieving relations of the dead at this very difficult time.

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Gunmen kidnap another Catholic priest in Anambra

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Last Updated on June 18, 2024 by Fellow Press

Anambra State based Catholic priest, Reverend Father Christian Ike, has been abducted by assailants.

The clergyman was reportedly taken away by the assailants on Sunday, along Amagu junction, Ndiokpaleke, in Ajali community in Orumba North Local Government Area of Anambra State.

An eyewitness in the area, who narrated the incident our correspondents, said the priest was returning alongside two other persons from an early morning Mass at St. Michael Catholic Church when the assailants double-crossed his vehicle.

The source said unknown gunmen kidnapped the priest and took some personal belongings in the vehicle, but the reason for the incident has yet to be ascertained.

The eyewitness said, “The priest and two other persons were returning from St. Micheal Catholic Church, where they attended morning service.

“On getting to Amagu Junction, their vehicle was double-crossed by armed men operating in three vehicles, while the other two other persons escaped the scene, the criminals took away the priest and some personal belongings of the occupants in the vehicle.”

Confirming the incident, the Anambra State police spokesman, SP Tochukwu Ikenga, said the command had deployed its intelligence and operational assets for the priest’s possible rescue unhurt.

He added that further development will be communicated as it unfolds.

Ikenga said, “Anambra State Police Command received the information of the abduction of Rev Father Christian Ike and has deployed its intelligence and operational assets of the Command for possible rescue unhurt.

“Eyewitness account revealed by 10:30 am on 16/6/2024, the priest and two others were returning from St. Micheal Catholic Church Ndiokpaleke where they attended morning service, along Amagu Junction, they were double-crossed by armed men operating in three vehicles, while the other two escaped the scene, the criminals took away the priest and some personal belongings of the occupants in the vehicle.

“To this end, the Command has activated its intelligence and operational assets for possible arrest of the assailants and rescue unhurt of the priest.”

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Minimum wage: Archbishop urges compromise

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Last Updated on June 9, 2024 by Fellow Press

Archbishop Joseph Ojo, General Overseer of the Calvary Kingdom Church, Okokomaiko, Lagos State, on Saturday urged labour leaders and the Federal Government to reach a compromise as regards a new minimum wage.

Ojo made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.

The archbishop described wage negotiation as a social contract that should be approached with empathy by parties.

According to him compromise is needed in the matter to save the country from anxiety.

“They should consider the fact that the unemployed are much more than the few that are in government employment.

“The federal, states and local governments only employed some workers.

“Others are in firms owned and operated by individuals that might not be able to pay higher wage.

“The higher they push it, the higher the inability of the unemployed to survive, because firms, which struggle to pay staff, may not talk of hiring new ones,” he said.

The cleric said that lack of employment might result in increase in crimes.

“There are private sector employers, who cannot cope with what the federal or states will offer,” he added.

The cleric said that high wage bill might compel private schools to increase school bills to meet up with overhead costs.

“Some parents will not meet up, and their children would be forced to drop out of school,” he said.

He also advised governments to consider subsisting social-economic variables, such as cost of food items, transport and medical bills, and offer a sustainable minimum wage.

“The parties ought to put all these into consideration to achieve progress in their negotiation,” the cleric said.

NAN reports that the Nigeria Labour Congress and the Trade Union Congress are now demanding N250, 000 as a new minimum wage.

The Federal Government has offered to pay N62,000.

Negotiations are ongoing.

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