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Nigerian press focuses on planned attack on Abuja, 2 contiguous states by insurgents, others

The security alert on planned attack on Abuja and two contiguous states of Nasarawa and Kogi by insurgents and the…

The security alert on planned attack on Abuja and two contiguous states of Nasarawa and Kogi by insurgents and the heated controversy across the country over the Companies and Allied Matters Act and the reintroduced National Water Resources Bill 2020 are the trending stories in Nigerian newspapers on Monday.

ThisDay reports that security agencies have stepped up surveillance of the Federal Capital Territory of Abuja and the two contiguous states of Nasarawa and Kogi to forestall planned attacks by the Boko Haram and Darul Salam.

The security beef-up followed an intelligence report that suspected terrorists were planning a grand offensive on the FCT and the two states.

The report said that the Nigeria Customs Service, in a circular signed by Comptroller (Enf HQ), Mr. H. A. Sabo, and dated September 4, had raised the alarm that Boko Haram insurgents had camped in and around the FCT and planning to attack selected targets in the nation’s capital.

The Defence Headquarters (DHQ), has, however, reassured the residents of FCT and other adjoining states that the armed forces and other security agencies were on the red alert to combat crime and ensure effective surveillance.

The newspaper says that the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRC) at the weekend said its move to improve audit regulation in the country will help attract more foreign direct investments (FDIs).

The Deputy Director/Head, Directorate of Accounting Standards, Public Sector, FRC, Dr. Iheanyi Anyahara, said this in a keynote address he delivered at a webinar titled: “Strategic Assessment of Financial Reporting Council’s Draft Audit Regulation,” organised by Crown Height Consulting.

Anyahara represented the Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer, FRC, Mr. Daniel Asapokhai, at the webinar. “Great civilisations are built with huge capital which in turn requires the certainty that the discipline and integrity of responsible accounting delivers.

“Responsible audit regulation will strengthen the market to attract more patient capital from the global market. It is our societal duty and privilege to do what we are doing today,” the FRC deputy director said.

The Guardian reports that like the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) that was recently signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari, the reintroduced National Water Resources Bill 2020 is creating fresh and heated controversy across the country.

Only on Monday, the Benue State governor, Samuel Ortom, described the bill, which failed to secure approval of the 8th National Assembly, as another form of RUGA aimed at grabbing land for Fulani cattle rearers. Ortom has vowed to challenge the matter in court should the National Assembly give it an approval as being speculated.

He stated that “the bill, in addition to its provisions, which are at variance with the Land Use Act is a disguised land-grabbing legislation, designed to grant pastoralists unhindered access to river basins, adjacent marine and coastal environments across the country. The bill is another version of RUGA, which objective is to create grazing areas in the 36 states of the federation for herders and their livestock.”

Ortom is not alone in condemning the bill. Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, had stated that the bill was designed to hand the federal government control over the nation’s entire water resources, both over and underground.

The Punch says that the successor National Development Plan 2020-2025 of the Federal Government has sufficient capacity to accelerate the attainment of various regional and global agendas, the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Clem Agba, has said.

Agba said the plan being developed by his ministry would enable Nigeria attain targets including the African Union 2063 agenda, the ECOWAS Integration Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals 2030.

According to him, the plan will be implemented from January 2021 after the expiration of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan in December. The minister said this in a statement issued in Abuja on Sunday by his ministry’s Director of Information, Victoria Agba-Attah.

The statement was titled ‘Successor development plan to accelerate attainment of AU Agenda 2063, SDGs 2030′. Agba had recently given a progress report on the activities of the Technical Working Groups on the development of the National Development Plan 2020-2025.

The newspaper says that the Nigerian Government on Sunday came under more criticism for the increase in electricity tariff and petrol pump price last week. The Centre for Democracy and Development and the Civil Liberties Organisation condemned the government’s actions, saying many Nigerians would be hard hit.

The CDD, a civil rights movement, expressed its support for citizens’ resistance against all anti-people policies, using all constitutional options, including peaceful mass protests and litigation.

The organisation, in a statement by its Director, Idayat Hassan, on Sunday, regretted that at a time when governments around the world were enacting policies and putting in place measures to cushion the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on citizens, “the Nigerian government has chosen to do the direct opposite.”

According to Hassan, the CDD is convinced that the government should have found other creative, sustainable and logical pathways to address the issues which necessitated the price hikes.

The Sun reports that Nigeria imported over N500 billion worth of pharmaceutical products in the last three years, it was leant. It was leant that only 20 percent of pharmaceutical products are being manufactured locally, while 80 percent pharmaceutical are imported from India, United States and Germany.

According to Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Group of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (PMG-MAN), local drug manufacturers may soon close shop since almost all finished pharmaceuticals products were imported majorly by non- pharmacists.

The group blamed the challenge experienced by local drug firms on the inconsistent government policies, which had deterred investors and kills local drug manufacturing from the industry. Data by the International Trade Statistics (ITS) revealed that in the last two years, German exported N52.4 billion ($116.86million) to the country, while U.S supplied ($243.8million) between 2018 and last year.

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