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Tinubu vows to preserve democracy, protect citizens’ freedom

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Last Updated on June 12, 2024 by Fellow Press

President Bola Tinubu has vowed to preserve democracy and protect the rights, freedom and liberty of citizens.

Tinubu said this in a national broadcast to mark the 2024 Democracy Day and the 25th year of uninterrupted democratic rule in the country.

The President said that as a beneficiary of the historic efforts of the heroes of democracy, he was morally bound to preserve the present form of government.

“I stand uniquely placed in this regard. I was among those who took the risk to midwife the birth of our democracy. I am now a direct and obvious beneficiary of the fruits of those historic efforts.

“As President of this nation, I am morally and constitutionally bound to preserve this precious form of governance.

“I vow to do my utmost best to protect your rights, freedoms, and liberties as citizens of Nigeria.

“Even more than that, I pledge to do whatever is necessary to cement democracy as our way of life,” he said.

The President expressed gratitude to Nigerians for the opportunity to lead the country and promised not to turn his back on them.

He urged Nigerians to beware of those trying to exploit the current challenges in the country to undermine and destroy the democracy for which so much had already been given.

According to him, as Nigerians, we must remind ourselves that no matter how complicated democracy may be, it is the best form of governance in the long run.

“We must also be aware that there are those among us who will try to exploit current challenges to undermine, if not destroy this democracy for which so much has already been given.

“These people do this not to make things better but to subject all other people and things to their control and dominance until the point that, if you are not counted among their elite, then your life will be small and no longer owned by you,” he said.

Tinubu added that “I understand the economic difficulties we face as a nation.

“Our economy has been in desperate need of reform for decades. It has been unbalanced because it was built on the flawed foundation of over-reliance on revenues from the exploitation of oil.

“The reforms we have initiated are intended to create a stronger, better foundation for future growth.

“There is no doubt the reforms have occasioned hardship, yet, they are necessary repairs required to fix the economy over the long run so that everyone has access to economic opportunity, fair pay and compensation for his endeavour and labour,” he said.

Tinubu said his government was aware of the proper way forward to move the country and would take it.

He acknowledged those who laid down their lives, sacrificing everything to pave the way for the nation and pledged to do all that was necessary to cement democracy in the country.

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Nigerians paid N721bn in cash bribes to govt officials in 2023 – NBS

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Last Updated on July 12, 2024 by Fellow Press

A survey by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has revealed that Nigerians paid a staggering N721 billion in cash bribes to public officials in 2023.

The survey, titled “Corruption in Nigeria: Patterns and Trends,” released on Thursday, July 11, revealed that over 95 percent of these bribes were in monetary form.

According to the report, there has been a decline in Nigerians’ confidence in the government’s anti-corruption efforts during the period under review.

The report stated, “Overall, it is estimated that a total of roughly N721 billion ($1.26 billion) was paid in cash bribes to public officials in Nigeria in 2023, corresponding to 0.35 percent of the entire Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Nigeria.”

The report further revealed that bribes paid in a public official’s office and on the street accounted for approximately 35 percent and 36 percent of all bribes respectively while, 11 percent of bribes were paid in respondents’ own homes, while 7 percent occurred in public buildings such as restaurants, malls, or stations.

The report highlighted that healthcare professionals and public utility officers were the most frequent recipients of bribes, accounting for 30 percent and 24 percent of encounters respectively. Police officers followed closely with a contact rate of 20 percent

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Vice President Trump, President Putin Of Ukraine – Biden Goofs At NATO Summit

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Last Updated on July 12, 2024 by Fellow Press

U.S. President Joe Biden had a series of verbal slip-ups on Thursday alongside the NATO summit in Washington, an unfortunate development for the 81-year-old as he tries to move past concerns that he is too old to run for re-election.

Verbal gaffes are not unusual in the long political career of Biden, who overcame a childhood stutter, but there is closer attention on him amid the fallout from his dismal debate performance against Republican candidate Donald Trump last month.

Trump, who is 78, and also has faced concerns about his age, frequently made false claims during the debate and often rambles during campaign speeches.

Below is a summary of Biden’s mistakes on Thursday.

BIDEN MISTAKENLY CALLS ZELENSKIY ‘PUTIN’

Biden mistakenly referred to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy as “President Putin”.

“And now I want to hand it over to the president of Ukraine, who has as much courage as he has determination, ladies and gentlemen, President Putin,” Biden said at the NATO summit, drawing gasps from those in the room.

“Going to beat President Putin, President Zelenskiy. I am so focused on beating Putin,” Biden said while correcting himself.

BIDEN MISTAKENLY REFERS TO HARRIS AS TRUMP
During a news conference on Thursday evening, Biden mixed up the name of his vice president, Kamala Harris, and his rival Trump.

“Look, I wouldn’t have picked Vice President Trump to be vice president if she was not qualified to be president. So start there,” Biden said as he responded to a question from Reuters about his confidence in Harris.

BIDEN FUMBLES ‘CHIEFS OF STAFF’
Biden also struggled at the news conference to find the words “chiefs of staff,” mistakenly referring to the group of the country’s top uniformed military leaders as “commander in chief,” the title he holds as president.

“And so our military is working on following the advice of my commander in chief my, my, my, the chiefs of staff, of the military as well as the secretary of defense and our intelligence people.”

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