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FG Can’t Borrow N1.1trn To End ASUU Strike – Festus Keyamo

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Keyamo

…Says Nigeria’s Inflation Is Doing Better Than USA, Canada, Russia, Spain

The Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo, on Friday said it was unrealistic for the Federal Government to borrow money to end the months-long strike embarked by the Academic Staff Union of Universities.

He made the comment while speaking on Channels Television’s Politics Today.

“Should we go and borrow to pay N1.2 trillion yearly?

“You cannot allow one sector of the economy to hold you by the jugular and then blackmail you to go and borrow N1.2 trillion for overheads when our total income would be about N6.1 trillion. And you have roads to build, health centres to build, other sectors to take care of.”

The Minister urged parents across the country to beg ASUU.

“Like the President said the other time, those who know them, appeal to their sense of patriotism,” he said.

“Let them go back to classes. They are not the only one in Nigeria. They are not the only ones feeding from the federal purse. The nation cannot grind to a halt because we want to take care of the demands of ASUU.”

ASUU’s Demands

ASUU embarked on a four-week warning strike on February 14.

On March 14, the union extended the industrial action by another two months to allow the government meet all of its demands. A 12-week extension was announced on May 9.

Since May 9, the union has remained on strike, vowing to persist until its demands are met.

The academics are seeking improved welfare, revitalisation of public universities and academic autonomy among other demands.

One bone of contention for the academics is the non-payment of university revitalisation funds, which amounts to about N1.1 trillion.

But the Federal Government has said it doesn’t have the money to pay such an amount, citing low oil prices during the Muhammadu Buhari administration.

The agreement was reportedly struck in 2009.

Another is the issue of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS).

The academics have proposed an alternative payroll system, the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS).

Meanwhile, Keyamo has said Nigeria is doing better than major countries in the word in terms of the percentage of rise in inflation rate.


According to Keyamo, the nation fared better than the United States of America, Canada, Russia, Spain and others in the way the inflation is increasing.

The Senior Advocate of Nigeria said Nigeria’s rise in inflation in just five per cent increase from 2020 when the world locked down due to COVID-19 pandemic.

According to him, other countries across the world had their inflation rate increased in a percentage that is way higher than that of Nigeria.


“With what we have gone through in the last seven years, Nigeria has done well in a context of macro global economy of major countries across the world.

“The inflation rate was hovering around 13 per cent in 2020 around the pandemic. Now we are doing 18 per cent. Which is about five per cent.

“We are better than major countries around the world like the United States of America, like Canada, like Russia, like Spain, like Germany. Go and fact-check me. I am not saying their inflation is 18 per cent. I am talking about the percentage of increase. In other words, we have tried to keep inflation down more than major countries.

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Suspended NBA General Secretary, Joyce Oduah Sues Exco Members, Challenges Suspension

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The suspended General Secretary of the Nigerian Bar Association, Mrs Joyce Oduah has filed a suit at the Federal High Court, Abuja against the association, its national executives and the Inspector General of Police.

In the suit filed by her Counsel, Murtala Abdul-Rasheed (SAN), Joyce Oduah is challenging her suspension from office after an emergency meeting held by the National Executive Committee on Monday, the 15th of August, 2022.

She claimed that her purported suspension as the General Secretary of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) pursuant to the Resolution of the emergency meeting of the National Executive committee of the NBA held on the 15th day of August 2022 is unconstitutional, null, void and of no effect whatsoever for being a gross violation of Section 36 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), Sections 239, 242 and 288 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020 and the Constitution of the Nigerian Bar Association, 2015 (as amended) in 2021.

She is also asking the court to determine five issues, namely:

Whether or not having regards to the provisions of Sections 36 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), Sections 11(9), 20 and 21 of the Constitution of the Nigerian Bar Association, 2015 (as amended in 2021) and Sections 239, 242 and 288 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020, the 3rd – 11th Defendants have the vires to suspend the Plaintiff from the office of the General Secretary of the Nigerian Bar Association, (the 1st Defendant herein).
Whether or not having regards to the provisions of Sections 36 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), Sections 11(9), 20 and 21 of the Constitution of the Nigerian Bar Association 2015 (as amended in 2021 and Sections 239, 242 and 288 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020 the purported resolution of the emergency meeting of the National Executive Committee of the Nigerian Bar Association held on the 15th day of August 2022, is null, void, illegal and unconstitutional.
Whether or not having regards to the provisions of Sections 36 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), Sections 11(9), 20 and 21 of the Constitution of the Nigerian Bar Association 2015 (as amended in 2021 and Sections 239, 242 and 288 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020 the notice of the meeting of the National Executive Committee of the Nigerian Bar Association held on the 15th day of August 2022 which did not contain the suspension of the Plaintiff as one of its agenda is null and void ab initio and a breach of the Plaintiff’s right to a fair hearing.
Whether having regards to Sections 36 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), Sections 11(9), 20 and 21 of the Constitution of the Nigerian Bar Association 2015 (as amended in 2021), as well as Sections 239, 242 and 288 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act 2020 the procedure adopted by the National Executive Committee in the purported suspension of the Plaintiff is not unlawful and a breach of the Plaintiff’s right to a fair hearing;
Whether having regards to Sections 36 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), Sections 11(9), 20 and 21 of the Constitution of the Nigerian Bar Association 2015 (as amended in 2021), as well as Sections 239, 242 and 288 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act 2020), the decision by the NBA-NEC to suspend the Plaintiff was not unjust and done in utmost bad faith.
On Monday, the NBA national officers unanimously suspended the general secretary, Mrs Joyce Oduah from office. Nine of the 11 officers who signed the resolution authorizing the suspension also resolved to refer her to the NBA National Executive Council for disciplinary action and to recommend her removal from office for gross misconduct.

The National Executive Council will sit on the 25th of August at the Annual General Meeting of the Annual General Conference of the Association scheduled to hold in Lagos.

It will be the last sitting under the Akpata administration as the President-elect, Yakubu Maikyau (SAN) and his team will be sworn in on Friday the 26th of August.

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Why Wike Must Apologise To Amaechi -HURIWA

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Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has told the Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike to apologise to his predecessor and former boss, Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi.


HURIWA said Wike should apologise to the former Minister of Transportation for what it described as needless political war of vendetta to Amaechi, who entrusted key offices to him whilst he (Amaechi) served as Governor.

On September 14, 2015, Wike had vowed to implement the recommendations of the judicial commission of inquiry probing the sale of the State’s valued assets by the Amaechi administration.

Also, the Justice George Omereji seven-man commission of inquiry concluded its proceeding on the matter over the weekend, warning that the former Minister and some members of his administration who shunned the panel should be prepared to bear the consequences of their action.


HURIWA accused the Commission of reaching predetermined conclusions and indicting Amaechi without hearing his own side of the story.

In a statement by its national Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko,, HURIWA said it thinks “the politically motivated witch-hunt using certain forces in the judiciary against Amaechi is the source of the current political troubles and ‘karma’ afflicting Wike.”

HURIWA also stated that Governor Wike, in the last eight years, has become anti-workers and dictatorial.


Wike had on Monday said that some aggrieved losers in the People Democratic Party, PDP, governorship primary for 2023 which produced former State Accountant-General, Sim Fubara as candidate, were leading an Abuja plot for his downfall.

Wike during activities to celebrate former Governor Peter Odili at 74, pointed at some of the party leaders who, on his 2021 birthday, indicated interest to fly the ticket, but failed in the end, as spearheading the gang up against him.

HURIWA counselled Wike “to put an end to his cantankerous political warfare against his kinsman- Amaechi and end his administration as a democrat and not a quarrelsome tyrant.”

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2023: My Priority Is To Market Tinubu And Not Join Issues With Peter Obi, Says Uzodinma

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Ahead of the 2023 general election, Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State, on Tuesday, said that he doesn’t want to join issue with the Presidential Candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, insisting that his business is to market the Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Ahmed Tinubu, in the South East.

Uzodinma stated this during an interview with Channels TV’s Politics Today.

He noted that there are many loyal members of the APC in the South East who are ‘obedient’ to the party.

Uzodinma said, “I am a politician and my party is APC and I have my candidate in the party. And I know we are consulting and speaking to our people to vote for our candidate.

“I am concerned with campaigning for my party. I don’t want to join issues with Peter Obi, whom you know is not a member of my party. But I know members of APC are obedient to APC.”

The governor added, “I am very confident that the reasonable minds in Imo State will vote for my party. In 2021, I came here as a governor, 99% of our major roads were not passable. Today the major economic roads in Imo State have been managed in a very first-class manner that even the opposition party members are commending my effort.


“From 1999 to date, the members of Imo House of Assembly have no place in the state to sit. They were attached to one local government secretariat here in Owerri. The Imo House of Assembly building that was abandoned for many years has just been rehabilitated.”

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