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FG should prioritise stable power, low production cost – Rep.

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Last Updated on June 9, 2024 by Fellow Press

A lawmaker, Rep. Ibe Osonwa, representing Arochukwu/Ohafia Federal Constituency of Abia, has advised the Federal Government to prioritise stable electricity supply in the country.

Osonwa gave the advice during an interactive session with newsmen in Umuahia on Saturday.
He said that achieving stable power in the country would help to unlock the productive capacity of Nigerians, scale up exportation and reduce importation.

“Once electricity is stable and affordable and production goes up, prices of goods will become cheaper and affordable,” he said.

According to him, the only way Nigeria can migrate from consumption to production is for the Federal Government to prioritise electricity supply and reduce the cost of production.

“When that is achieved, the country’s manufacturing sector will scale up their production capacity, this will create employment and poverty and hunger will ultimately reduce.

“Nigeria is failing as a country to become productive and I’m hopeful that once the problem of power is solved, the country will become productive.

“We are buying everything and producing nothing because of poor electricity supply.

“This is not good for a country with a huge population as Nigeria,” he said.

According to him, while the economies of India and China depend on the country’s huge population, Nigeria’s large population is not efficiently deployed in enhancing production.

The lawmaker advised that electricity distribution must be given to competent companies with the capacity to perform efficiently.

He argued that such contracts must not necessarily be given to Nigerians.
He contended that the existing contracts could be revoked and awarded to other companies to pave the way for efficiency in power distribution.

He expressed concern over the alleged inability of the existing distribution companies to meet the electricity needs of the country.

He also alleged sharp practices by the industry operators, citing the existence of crazy bills, arising from estimated billing method by the companies.

He recalled an instance where his Ebem Ohafia community was given a N1.2 billion electricity bill, at a time it had no power supply for five years.

Osonwa said that he had been able to show relevance and make impact in the House, having sponsored some bills and motions since the inauguration of the 10th National Assembly (NASS).

He listed some of the bills to include the one for the establishment of a second Federal Medical Centre in Abia to be cited in Ohafia to also service neighbouring communities in Cross River and Akwa Ibom.

The others are the bills to increase and improve businesses as well as the one for freight forwarders.
He said that he also sponsored motions to tackle ecological challenges in his constituency and establishment of a security post in Ohafia to help end the incessant fatal cross-community clashes.

He cited the May 10 attack on Isu Community allegedly by Ukwa Community in Akwa Ibom in which a woman was killed.

Osonwa expressed delight that the House had granted his request that the security post be established and manned by military personnel.

He also said that he had attracted some road projects to his constituency, including the Oboro-Ohafia-Okagwe-Ndi-nku-Abiriba Road.

He said that six of the projects had been awarded and awaiting the release of funds to take off, while 15 others already captured in the budget had yet to be awarded.

Meanwhile, the legislator said that the contract for the rehabilitation of the Umuahia-Bende-Abam-Ohafia Road had been revoked by the Federal Government over alleged non-performance.
He said that the Muri and Omenuko

Bridges on the road were in deplorable condition and deserved urged government’s attention.

Osonwa expressed happiness over the conviviality and spirit of oneness existing among the Abia caucus in the NASS.
He attributed the healthy development to the enviable leadership style of Gov. Alex Otti, saying that the governor’s
sterling performance in office had positively changed the ugly narratives about Abia.

“My governor is the best performing governor in the country today and he is making us proud,” he said.

Entertainment

Nollywood actress, Stella Ikwuegbu, dies

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Last Updated on June 16, 2024 by Fellow Press

The Nigerian Movie Industry has once again been thrown into mourning following the demise of another actress, Sandra Ikwuegbu.

The Veteran Actress is said to have died today, June 16, after a battling with leg cancer,

Her colleagues in the industry have taken to social media to mourn her. Movie Producer, Stanley Ontop , wrote;

‘’Popular Nollywood actress/veteran Mrs stella ikwuegbu is dead.

The Veteran Actress left this world today after battling with Leg cancer. Rest well madam Stella.

Nollywood not again

It’s well

Shalom!”

Another colleague of hers, Ijele Ozioma Christy Ejiofor, who paid a visit to the late actress’s home this afternoon, wrote

‘’Ukwu Gi Dia. Why? You scaled through several, accident s and all. Eniure/Achiere came, and in less than a week, it killed you. Oh my… I feel bad.

Stella Ikwuegbu, nenu Jennifer, you didn’t enjoy a thing. Why? Just why?

Adieu Great Actress Extraordinary…”

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Food shortage in Southwest will be calamitous– Yoruba Group

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Last Updated on June 16, 2024 by Fellow Press

A Yoruba socio-political group, Yoruba Commitment Forum (YCF) has raised an alarm about the looming food shortage in the South West region of the country.

The group said, though, the impending food insecurity is a national crisis, stressing that its impact on Yorubaland is going to be calamitous.

This was contained in a statement jointly signed by Otunba Hon Tayo Onayemi, Barr. Akeem Aponmade, Barr. Femi Mokikan, Otunba Niyi Sodiya, Mrs. Buky Tunde Oshunrinde and Mrs. Sola Maja, and made available to newsmen in Abeokuta, Ogun State capital.

The YCF attributed the looming food shortage to the invasion and destruction of farmlands by rampaging Fulani herders.

The group, while calling for adequate security of farmers and their farmlands, equally appealed to the federal government to adequately compensate whose farmlands were destroyed and as well give them financial incentives, to encourage them to go back to farm.

The statement titled, “Nigeria’s headaches, food insecurity in Yorubaland”, read, “we have observed that for about seven years now, Fulani herdsmen have been engaging in a relentless destruction of farmlands and settlements in Yorubaland. These criminal Fulani elements resorted to kidnapping, raping, maiming and killing of farmers and Yoruba sons and daughters.

“Neither the governments at any level, nor Fulani herdsmen’s apologists would claim ignorance of the atrocious activities of these ruthless people. Video recordings of their wicked actions suffuse the internet. The end result is that farmers began to be scared off their farms gradually until now when farms have been completely abandoned.

“When this started years ago, foresighted individuals raised concerns; they warned about the potential danger of food insecurity beginning with rising food prices and the need to ensure a stable food supply. It appears that Southwest was deliberately targeted and the invasion of our farmlands was the execution of a conscious plan to starve our people to death.

“We, the Yoruba Nation agitators, cried out for help against the brazen onslaught, but none came from the federal government led by a Fulani man.

“Unfortunately, the hens have now come home to roost as the consequences of our action, and inaction, are now here for real with food shortages and very high prices making it increasingly difficult for our people to access the basic necessity of food.

“Before the current situation spirals out of control, we hasten to inform the government that there is no alternative to large scale farming which Fulani herdsmen have destroyed by waging a war against farmers. Subsistence farming through the backyards, as good as it is, cannot serve the purpose of assuring any people of food security. Farmlands in the South West must be made very safe.

“We state emphatically that the situation whereby a basket of tomatoes is sold for #4000 in the North while the same is sold in Yorubaland for #150,000 is callous, ruthless and unacceptable to us.

We also call for assistance to use cheaper rail transport among others to assist our market men and women. Other regions do this, why not here in Yorubaland?

“Secondly, governments must incentivise farmers whose investments have been destroyed during the war of attrition waged against them by Fulani terrorists. Without government’s financial assistance, there is no way most farmers will be able to go back to farming, even if security of their lives and new investments are assured”, the statement concluded.

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