Top Nigerian Newspaper Headlines For Today, Tuesday, 20th February, 2024

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Good morning Nigeria. Welcome to the Naija News roundup of top newspaper headlines in Nigeria for today, Tuesday, 20th February 2024.

President Bola Tinubu has arrived in Abuja after attending the 37th African Union (AU) Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Naija News reports that Tinubu, who departed Addis Ababa on Monday morning, arrived in Abuja around 3:40 pm in the afternoon.

While in Ethiopia, the Nigerian leader actively participated in the 44th Ordinary Session of the Executive council, held bilateral meetings and attended other events on the sidelines on the AU summit.

Tinubu joined other African leaders in high-level meetings on institutional reforms of the African Union; peace and security; specific thematic issues such as climate change, as well as modalities of participation and priorities of the continental body in the G20.

The President, who was accompanied on the trip by some ministers and other top government officials spent three days in the East African country.

The theme of the year’s summit is ‘‘Educate an African fit for the 21st Century: Building resilient education systems for increased access to inclusive, lifelong, quality, and relevant learning in Africa.’’

The Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC) has issued a disconnection notice to 86 various government agencies and departments over outstanding electricity bills amounting to N47.1 billion.

The AEDC, in its notice issued on Monday, said the affected ministries, departments and agencies have ten days from the date of notice to pay up or be disconnected.

Some of those listed include the Presidential Villa, CBN Governor, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), several federal ministries, including the Ministry of Finance and state liaison offices in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The notice falls due on Wednesday, 28th February, 2024, according to the statement issued by the AEDC.

The Labour Party (LP) has described the call by state chairmen of the party for its National Chairman, Julius Abure, to step down as a sustained propaganda.

The Labour Party, in a statement on Monday, said members of the public should disregard the call as it is the former National Publicity Secretary of the party, Abayomi Arabambi, and his rebel group, who assembled touts and labelled them state chairmen.

The party stated this through its national publicity secretary, Obiora Ifoh, in response to fresh calls for Abure to step down over allegations of financial misappropriation.

Naija News recalls the Labour Party (LP), chairmen from the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), collectively passed a vote of no confidence and called for the resignation of the party’s National Chairman, Julius Abure.

Despite Abure’s denial of these accusations, the state chairmen are adamant that he must step down to facilitate a fair and transparent investigation into the matter.

Following the fresh call for Abure’s resignation, Ifoh said those who made the call were fake chairmen, and the real ones recognized by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), would soon issue a statement.

A former member of the House of Representatives, Usman Bugaje, has criticized the incumbent government led by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for the untold hardship in Nigeria following the removal of fuel subsidy.

According to him, Tinubu announced the removal of fuel subsidy without implementing measures to mitigate its effects.

Naija News recalls that during his inauguration on May 29, 2023, Tinubu declared an end to the era of fuel subsidy and also allowed the naira, the country’s currency, to float freely.

This decision resulted in a significant increase in the cost of living and a threefold rise in the price of fuel.

Bugaje argues that Tinubu’s government did not adequately prepare before implementing this policy.

Labour Party’s presidential candidate at the 2023 general election, Peter Obi, has urged President Bola Tinubu and the 36 state governors to step up their efforts towards swiftly ending the insecurity that has ravaged the country over the past months.

Making this call in a post on his official X account, Obi who lamented the rising spate of insecurity, urged President Tinubu and the governors to make every effort to reverse the alarming trend of insecurity while anticipating the introduction of state policing.

Naija News reports that Obi warned that the country’s increasing insecurity, as well as its high levels of hunger and poverty, could lead to a national disaster.

Former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Kingsley Moghalu, has encouraged the Nigerian government to cease funding Nigerian politicians’ lavish lifestyles amid the increasing economic hardship that has plagued the country.

Giving this advice in a statement made available on his official X account on Monday, Moghalu alleged that the President Bola Tinubu-led government had silently re-introduced fuel subsidy to prevent further increase in the pump price of fuel.

Naija News reports that the former apex bank chief argued that subsidizing an effective nationwide public transportation system at a fraction of the cost of the petrol subsidy would have been the smart economic choice given our poor fiscal situation.

He explained that with N500 million a year, the federal government could adequately and effectively subsidize transportation for the Nigerian populace to cushion the impact of the removal of fuel subsidy.

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has decried the payment of two- months’ salaries by the Federal Government out of the seven and the half-month withheld salaries.

Recall President Bola Tinubu had in October 2023 approved the release of four of the eight-month withheld ASUU members’ salaries.

The salaries were withheld when the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari invoked a ‘No Work, No Pay’ policy against ASUU for embarking on a strike that lasted eight months in 2022.

However, Naija News reports that some members of the union in the last two days have started receiving an amputated two-month salary of the seven-and-a-half-month withheld salaries.

Speaking at a press conference in Abuja on Monday, ASUU Abuja zonal coordinator, Comrade Salahu Mohammed Lawal, said the payment of the two months’ salaries is far below the expectation of the union.

Nigeria’s former Minister of Youths and Sports, Solomon Dalung, has berated President Bola Ahmed Tinubu-led government’s consistent practice of attributing Nigeria’s economic challenges to ex-President Muhammad Buhari.

In a series of posts via his X account on Monday, Dalung argued that the Tinubu administration’s reckless policies caused the country’s current economic woes.

According to him, if Tinubu’s administration directed the same level of resources and effort of blame game towards addressing security and economic issues as they did during elections and tribunals, significant improvements could be made.

Dalung emphasized that simply placing blame on Buhari for the country’s economic woes would not alleviate the hardships faced by the people.

Dalung expressed his disdain for the attempts to shift blame onto Buhari and others within his government, stating that it was hypocritical. He questioned whether bulk trading was the only solution proposed by the economic team, highlighting the urgent need to address hunger and the high cost of living.

Furthermore, Dalung criticized the reckless economic policies implemented by Tinubu’s government, such as subsidy withdrawal without adequate measures, currency devaluation without stimulating production, and the high costs of governance.

He argued that blaming Buhari for these issues was unjustified.

Youth leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Edo State, Tony Adun, popularly known as Kabaka, led some angry youths and women on Monday to protest at the party’s secretariat along Airport Road in Benin City, Edo State.

Naija News learnt that the angry protesters demanded the sack of the state executive members led by acting Chairman, Jarret Tenebe.

The protesters reportedly forced their way into the offices, brought the furniture, bags of rice and other equipment, and vowed to stay at the building for seven days.

Speaking with Vanguard, Kabaka said they were protesting against the conduct of the officials at Saturday’s primary election of the party, which threw up three winners.

10. Manufacturers List Conditions To Slash Rising Cement Price

Cement Manufacturers have agreed to sell a 50kg bag of cement at a retail price between N7,000 and N8,000, depending on location nationwide.

However, the manufacturers stated that the price drop from the current market price would depend on the fulfilment of certain government interventions to ameliorate critical challenges faced in the industry.

The Minister of Works, David Umahi disclosed this after a meeting with leading manufacturers on Monday in Abuja.

The meeting was against the backdrop of the ballooning price of the commodity to approximately N13,000 in several retail stores in the Federal Capital Territory, and Enugu, indicating the impact of inflation within the country.

That’s the top Nigerian newspaper headlines for today. Read more Nigerian news on Naija News. See you again tomorrow.

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