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Electoral disinformation and misinformation: IPC set to hold interface with INEC tomorrow

 

Experts from INEC, the media and the civil society will on Saturday December 10, 2022, assemble in Abuja to brainstorm on the challenge of disinformation and misinformation as the 2023 general elections beckons.

 

The interface between the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and other stakeholders on flashpoints of electoral disinformation and misinformation ahead of the 2023 Elections is being organised by the International Press Centre (IPC), the lead partner of component 4 (Support to media) of the European Union Support to Democratic Governance in Nigeria-Phase II (EUSDGN II) project.

 

To be chaired by Prof. Jibrin Ibrahim, Chairman of the Editorial Board of Premium Times and Senior Fellow of Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), the interface at which Festus Okoye, INEC Commissioner for Information and Voter Education will give the keynote address, is expected to outline measures for curbing fake news in the electoral process.

 

In a statement the Communications Officer of IPC, Ms.  Olutoyin Ayoade said: “if the spread of fake news in the electoral process is left unchecked it could deny the voters the opportunity to make informed choices at the polls while it may also induce hate speech and electoral violence”.

 

“As observed during the Nigeria 2019 elections, fake news can be potentially weaponized, if appropriate measures are not properly established to tackle it”, the statement added.

 

At least 40 stakeholders including editors, correspondents, CSO representatives, the INEC Director of Voter Education, Mr. Ayo Aluko and the Chief Press Secretary to the INEC Chairman, Mr. Rotimi Oyekanmi are expected at the interface.

 

The specific objective of the EU funded media component is to ensure that, “The Media, including New and Social Media, provides fair, accurate, ethical and inclusive coverage of the Electoral Process”.

SGD:

Olutoyin Ayoade

Communications Officer

Component 4 (Support to Media)

EUSDGN II Project

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Bisi Daramola, Segun Akinwumi emerged AAUA Deputy Vice-Chancellors

The Governing Council of Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba Akoko, at its 80th Regular Meeting on Friday, December 9, 2022, ratified the appointment of new Deputy Vice-Chancellors for the Institution.

They are Professor Adebisi Daramola (Administration) and Professor Olusegun Akinwumi (Academic).

The duo had emerged after their nominations alongside two other professors for election by the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Olugbenga Ige, during the 177th Regular Senate Meeting of the University on Wednesday, November 30, 2022.

Prof. Daramola obtained a Nigerian Certificate in Education (NCE) in 1977 at Adeyemi College of Education, Ondo; earned a Bachelor of Education degree in Guidance and Counselling from University of Ibadan in 1981; got a Master of Education degree in Guidance and Counselling from University of Ibadan in 1984 and bagged a Ph.D. in Counselling Psychology from the then Ondo State University, Ado – Ekiti, now Ekiti State University in 1993.

Prof. Daramola, who was among the staffers that relocated to AAUA from the then Ondo State University, Ado – Ekiti, in 1999, joined the services of the University at Ado-Ekiti, in 1989 as a lecturer II. He rose through the rank to become a Professor of Counselling Psychology in 2005.

He had, at different times, served the University in over 50 administrative and academic capacities, including Dean, Faculty of Arts and Education; Dean, Postgraduate School; Dean, Student Affairs; Chairman, AAUA/Akungba Community Relations Committee; and Director, University Linkages and International Programmes Office.

Prof. Daramola, the pioneer Chairman of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, AAUA branch, was an external examiner/assessor to nine local and foreign universities.

While he has published three books, he has written chapters in many books; and has over 30 articles in both local and international journals.

He has presented over 15 seminars/public lectures; and attended over 23 local and international conferences. Prof. Daramola belongs to many professional bodies, such as Counseling Association of Nigeria (CASSON); Chairman, Nigerian Association of Educational Psychologists (NAEP); World Council for Gifted and Talented Children (WCGTC), U.S.A; International Federation for Psychotherapy (IFP) Germany; Nigerian Association of Educational Research and Evaluation (NAERE); Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN); Institute of Personnel Management of Nigeria (AIPM); Luminaries of Professional Educators of Nigeria (LUPEN); and Institute of Industrial Administration of Nigeria (NIIA).

He is a recipient of many honours and awards, including Best Postgraduate Student Award Ondo State University; Man of the Year 2004, American Biographical Institute, U.S.A; First Ph.D Graduate, Ondo State University, Ado Ekiti; Honorary Doctor of Divinity (DD) Asland University, Ohio, U.S.A. 2002; and Fellow, Institute of Industrial Administration of Nigeria (IIAN).

He hails from Ondo in Ondo West Local Government, Ondo State. He is happily married with children and affable wife.

Prof. Akinwumi obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Biological Sciences from the University of Calabar in 1984; proceeded to the University of Ibadan and the Federal University of Technology, Akure, where he bagged a Master’s degree in Zoology (Fisheries and Hydrobiology) and a Ph.D. in Fish Post-Harvest Technology in 1991 and 2006, respectively.

He joined the services of then Ondo State University, Ado-Ekiti, in 1998 as a lecturer II and moved to AAUA in 1999, rising through the rank to become a Professor in 2015.

He has served in over 50 academic and administrative positions in the University, including Head, Department of Animal and Environmental Biology; Chairman, Ceremonies Committee; Chairman, AAUA Committee on Public Lecture Series; pioneer Vice Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, AAUA branch; and Chairman, University’s Farm Management Committee. Prof. Akinwumi is the immediate Dean, Faculty of Science, and a member representing the University Congregation on the University Governing Council.

Prof. Akinwumi has published seven books; edited three others, and has 27 articles published in reputable local and international journals.Prof. Akinwumi, who had undergone various leadership trainings globally, including at the famous Galilee International Management Institute, Israel (2015), and the Shanxi Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Datong, China (2007), has 12 published conference abstracts and presentations.

Prof. Akinwumi is a winner of many research grants, awards and prizes including the Federal Government Postgraduate (M.Sc.) Scholarship (1990), Ondo State Government Postgraduate (Ph.D.) Scholarship (2001), and the University Research grant in 2005 and 2011.

He has membership of several professional bodies among which are: Fisheries Society of Nigeria; Entomological Society of Nigeria; Zoological Society of Nigeria; and Science Association of Nigeria.

Prof. Akinwumi who is happily married with children and amiable wife hails from Akure, in Akure South Local Government, Ondo State.

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FOWOSO is for the good of Ondo women, Centre ‘ll be used for 5th Summit, Mrs Akeredolu declares

.. Women across 18 LGAs smile home with empowerment items, goody bags, as 4th Summit ends

.. Honours Outstanding Girls, He4She Personalities, NGOs

“It’s my pleasure and great delight that the construction of FOWOSO Centre is ongoing and it’s a legacy not just for FOWOSO but for all of us, for all the women in Ondo State. Like I said, generations to come when they pass by the FOWOSO centre, they would say, yes! My mother was part of this effort, my grandmother was part of this effort, it’s a thing of joy”.

Above were the words of Her Excellency, the Wife of the Governor of Ondo State and Founder, Foundation for Wives of Ondo State Officials and Female Political Appointees, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, at the grand finale of 4th Summit of FOWOSO, held at Arcade ground Akure, on Thursday.

Appreciating the individuals who have been supporting the initiative since its establishment, especially the launch of the centre which was performed at the 3rd Summit, Mrs. Akeredolu disclosed that with the generous donations from individuals like Governor Sanwo-Olu of Lagos state and his Rivers counterpart, Governor Wike, the centre would be commissioned for the opening ceremony of 5th Summit.

The Ondo First Lady, noted that FOWOSO was for the good of Ondo women, geared towards promoting their socioeconomic advancement, saying ” FOWOSO has come to stay and all of us should key into this novel initiative that emphasises that women matter”.

She described the 4th Summit as a resounding success as she gave a rundown of discourse at the summit for the benefit of those who didn’t participate on Wednesday.

In her goodwill message, the First Lady of Lagos state Dr. Mrs. Claudiana Sanwolu , congratulated Mrs Akeredolu for the success of the summit and the achievements recorded by FOWOSO in empowering women in the state.

Represented by Mrs. Busola Akosile, the Lagos First Lady further applauded her Ondo counterpart for championing women participation in politics through her slogan ‘Reduce Fila to increase Gele’ which, according to her, had elicited the interest of many women to vie for elective positions and also achieve a number of political appointment for women.

“it’s commendable that since the establishment of FOWOSO in 2018, the Foundation has trained and empowered 3,500 Ondo women in various skills and also supported their businesses with access to credits facility, equipment and capacity development training.

L-R: Representative of Lagos State First Lady discussing with Ondo First Lady
L-R: Mrs Nkem Olusola Oke and Chief Adeleye while addressing guests

“Without a doubt this summit has overtime provided a suitable stage for enriching and thought provoking discourse on matters of national importance vis a vis undisputable rise of women to actively participate in the political process, Nation building and corporate governance”. She added.

The Chairman of the occasion and Special Adviser to Ondo State Governor on Security matters, Chief Adetunji Adeleye, commended Her Excellency for championing the advancement of the girl child through her BeMore Initiative, saying “I see BeMore initiative as a nursery where the future leaders of FOWOSO is being raised”.

According to him, the Summit was a platform to educate, enlighten and sensitise stakeholders on individuals’ roles toward accelerating the attainment of the idea of equal opportunities for women and girls.

“Another milestone is the efforts being made to improve the health prospects of women through prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of cancer. The BRECAN initiative has come to reinforce the fact that cancer is not a death sentence”, he said.

The grand finale featured raffle draw which covered the 18 local government areas of the state. Items shared included sewing machines, grinding machines, hair dryers, bags of rice, generators, kitchen items, amongst others. Each of the local government had their women smile home with every single set of the items due to the approach applied for the raffle draw process.

The event also featured exhibition of products made by graduates of the recently organised Ondo State Skills Acquisition and Empowerment programme, an initiative of FOWOSO; elderly women dance competition and couples competition were also part of activities that added fun to the event and participants also got different categories of gift items.

Individuals who have in one way or the other contributed to the cause of womanhood in the state, especially female-related programmes of the First Lady, were honoured with award of He4She during the summit dinner held on Wednesday.

They include, the Governor of Ondo State , Arakurin Ouwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, CON, for his giant strides in uplifting women, sustainable development and for prioritising security of residents of the state. His deputy, Hon. Lucky Aiyedatiwa , Dr. Jimoh Ibrahim CFR, Chief Olusola Oke, SAN, Prince Jimi Odimayo, Otunba Dele Ologun, Mr. Jide Akinroluyo, Pastor Jide Ipinsagba, Hon. Gbenga Edema, Arch. Oge Odor, Dr. Francis Akanbiemu, got He4She awards for supporting FOWOSO and women programmes.

Mrs Nkem Olusola Oke presenting the Deputy Governor an award while his wife, Ouwaseun watches

Others are Mr. Kunle Adebayo of OSRC for supporting women programmes through the media and Mr Seun Betiku for supporting women in sports, and Prince Uzoma Egbulefu for mobilising Igbos brothers’ support for FOWOSO .

In encouraging young outstanding performances, FOWOSO honoured seven girls with Rising Stars award. They included; Miss Ebunoluwa Igbalaye who emerged third in 2022 UTME in Nigeria and overall first position in Ondo state. The six are BeMore Girls who stood out in different classes of skills during their two weeks summer bootcamp. They are Favour Medahunsi and Gbemisola Fasakin both in Art &Craft, Smile Benjamin and Joy Powei in Breast Cancer advocacy, Christianah Madu in Solar technology and Aminat Eze a hearing impaired girl.

FOWOSO also honoured NGOs for community service, they include Hope Orphanage and Emmanuel Children World Foundation. Two members of the foundation, Mrs Lizzy Akpan and Mrs Mosun Odukale, were recognized as Most Supportive FOWOSITE and Most Valuable FOWOSITE , respectively.

Dr. Jimoh Ibrahim, who chaired the dinner night as a Chief Launcher, supported the FOWOSO centre with a sum of N10,000,000 , and also supported Miss Igbalaye with N1,000,000 for making the state proud in UTME.

Mary Agidi
Special Assistant to the Governor on Media(Office of the First Lady)
Dec., 9, 2022

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AIYEDATIWA LAUDS BETTY AKEREDOLU AS ADVOCATE OF GENDER BALANCE

..As Gov Wike Empowers FOWOSO with N200 million

As Foundation For Wives of Ondo State Officials ( FOWOSO ) started it’s 4th FOWOSO SUMMIT, Ondo State Deputy Governor, Hon Lucky Aiyedatiwa lauded the founder of FOWOSO, who is the wife of Ondo State Governor, Chief (Mrs) Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu for “her purposeful leadership and vision in unlocking the great potentials of our women and girl-child within and outside Ondo State” .

Aiyedatiwa who stood in for the State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN, CON, made this remarks at the opening ceremony of the two-day event held at International Culture and Events Center (The Dome), Alagbaka, Akure on Wednesday.

With Rivers State Governor, His Excellency Nyeson Wike, CON who was represented at the event by Rivers State Head of Service, Mr. Rufus Godwin as Special Guest of Honour, Wife of Ondo State Deputy Governor, H/E Oluwaseun Aiyedatiwa, Ondo State APC Chairman, Engr Ade Adetimehin, the event paraded galaxy of top Government officials led by Secretary to Ondo State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu and women representatives within and outside Ondo State.

Aiyedatiwa noted the remarkable and continued commitment of Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu girl-child education and development, especially through the setting up of her life changing platforms like FOWOSO, BEMORE, SOLAYO, BRECAN, Tennis Summer Bootcamp among others with amazing results.

“I must say that the women folk had never had it so good in the Sunshine State”, declared Aiyedatiwa.

“For us, it is a thing of joy and pride that through the instrumentality of FOWOSO and other gender-based programmes, Ondo State women are beginning to take their rightful place under the sun” .

“The progressive revolution your Excellency has brought to the girl-child through the yearly BEMORE programme is also unprecedented in the history of Nigeria”.

“Thank you, your Excellency, for being an outstanding nation-builder and for all you do for this generation” , he said.

Special Guest of Honour, the Governor of Rivers State, His Excellency Nyeson Wike who was represented by Rivers State Head of Service, Mr Rufus Godwin lauded Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu on the theme of the summit which is, “Bridging the Gender Gap in Political Arena : A case of Nigeria women”, as he called for the breaking of the structural barriers that reinforce discrimination against women and girls through legislation” .

His words, “one relevant way to bridge the gender gap is for Nigerian women to mobilize their votes for all viable women candidates in the 2023 general elections” .

While charging the women folk, Governor Wike said, “I wish to encourage this forum to mobilize the women folk across Nigeria to request the National Assembly to revisit the four gender equality Bills they recently rejected during the recent ammendment process of our constitution” .

While thanking Her Excellency for the pleasure to grace the laudable event, Governor Wike made a donation of Two Hundred million Naira (N200 million) to the foundation.

In her own address, the founder of FOWOSO, wife of Ondo State Governor, Chief Mrs. Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu acknowledged the invaluable contribution of her husband, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN, CON, to the development of her pet projects, FOWOSO inclusive.

While reeling out the laudable achievements of FOWOSO in it’s four years of existence, the first Lady said, “iam proud to announce that we have steadily progressed and there is no looking back” .

“We have put our hands on the plough with amazing results” .

“Our performances are both concrete and measurable: they are no less evident in the number of women whose lives have been transformed through this noble initiative”, she further said.

Kenneth Odusola-Stevenson,
Press Secretary to Governor, Office of Deputy Governor.

Photo Credit : Abayomi Adefolalu.

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‘4th Summit: FOWOSO has justified founding mandate of elevating women’s status’

..contributes to economic, social advancement of women – Gov Wike

..we’ll not squander opportunities to advance women’s cause in Ondo- Gov Akeredolu

Wife of the Governor of Ondo State, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, has affirmed that the Foundation for Wives of Ondo State Officials and Female Political Appointees, FOWOSO, has justified its purpose of establishment as a potent platform for elevating the socioeconomic status of women in the state.

She stated this during her address at the opening ceremony of 4th FOWOSO summit, titled, “Focus on FOWOSO Activities, 2022”, held at the Dome, Akure, the State capital.

She hinted that FOWOSO, founded in 2017, had helped shape the status of women in the political space, by moving away from the absurd style of engaging them as hailers to launder men’s ego.

“We found the courage of conviction, ab initio, that women deserve better, chose this route against all odds and have since kept faith.
“Five years down the lane, I am proud to announce that we have steadily progressed and there is no looking back. We have put our hands on the plough with amazing results. Our performances are both concrete and measurable; they are no less evident in the number of women whose lives have been transformed through this noble initiative “, she added.

The Ondo First Lady, while highlighting some achievements and impacts of FOWOSO, including breast cancer advocacy, skills acquisitions programmes for women, activism against gender based violence, promoting women participation in politics, amongst others, noted that FOWOSO had justified the theme of the summit, “Bridging the Gender-Gap in Political Arena: A case of Nigerian Women”, through these achievements.

“The astounding scorecard of FOWOSO speaks loudly and convincingly to the urgent need to bridge the gender gap in Nigeria’s political space”, she asserted.

Presenting of appreciation items to Gov Wike by the First Lady while the SSG Princess Oladunni Odu watches

Mrs. Akeredolu opined that the proposed FOWOSO Centre which was launched recently, upon completion, would provide shelter for victims of sexual and gender-based violence, saying that “it is one project that is demonstrating to the country and the world at large that women are capable of rare accomplishments”.

The Special Guest of honour and Governor of Rivers State, Chief Nyesom Wike, CON, commended the Ondo First Lady for the FOWOSO initiative, describing it as a positive trend that contributed to the economic and social rise of women.

Addressing the theme of the summit which he affirmed to be quite impressive, Wike advocated female education and economic empowerment of women as a way of bridging gender gap in political arena.

Represented by the Rivers state Head of Service, Mr. Rufus Godwin, the Special Guest of Honour decried relegation of women in politics and governance, while calling for a break of structural barrier through formulation of policies favourable to the female folk.

Representative of Gov Wike

He bemoaned poor statistics of number of female candidates presented by political parties for the 2023 election, and called for a legal framework that would accommodate at least 30% women delegation in political parties structure.

For women to achieve desired result of their agitation for gender balance in the political space, Gov Wike advised them to mobilise themselves to vote enmasse for fellow female candidates comes 2023 general election. He therefore donated a whooping sum of N200million to support FOWOSO projects.

The Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Hon. Lucky Aiyedatiwa who stood in for the Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN, CON, commended the Founder of FOWOSO, saying her passion for mankind and advancement of women and girls were second to none in the history of First Ladies in Ondo State.

He reiterated the commitment of the state government under the leadership of Governor Akeredolu not to squander any opportunities to advance the cause of women and girls.

According to him, women were known to be trustworthy and sincere in politics, and therefore, enjoined them to reciprocate theove of Governor Akeredolu by voting the ruling party comes 2023.

Earlier in her welcome address, the chairman of the 4th FOWOSO Summit Working Committee, Princess Dora Aroloye, noted that Founder of FOWOSO, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, had employed the platform to champion the cause of women, drive women empowerment and self-actualization programmes in the state since its establishment.

Presentation by Bemore Girls

“Her Excellency is known within and without the shores of this country as a women’s advocate in every ramifications and she has continued to demonstrate this in all her initiatives.

“Her desire to see more women participation in politics, governance and business gave rise to her fast becoming popular phrase “reduce fila and increase gele and it’s gaining ground in Ondo State where we now have more female appointees”. She said.

The event featured panel sessions on ‘Growing a business from scratch: The 4Ps of Marketing ‘, ‘Are men/husbands to be blamed for low women’s participation in politics ‘, ‘Should we talk about sex education in schools? , ‘Fertility options in the 21st century, can a woman decide alone?, and ‘High levels of insecurity: Has Nigeria failed as a country?’.

It also featured demonstration of breast self examination by BeMore girls and Fiwasaye girls.

Mary Agidi
Special Assistant to the Governor of Ondo State on Media
(Office of the First Lady)
Dec. 7, 2022

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Dr D.K. Olukoya appointed as Professor of Biotechnology

Dr Daniel Kolawole Olukoya, the General Overseer of Mountain of Fire and Miracles *Ministries and Chancellor of Mountain Top University has been appointed as Professor of Biotechnology by one of Nigeria’s top Universities.

This is the result of the positive consideration by relevant review Committees and Council of the University following the assessments of his publications by some of the world’s best scholars in Biotechnology, each of whom found him to be eminently appointable as Professor of Biotechnology.

It needs to be underscored that this appointment is indeed well-deserved by Prof. D. K. Olukoya, who is an epitome of all-round excellence.

He bagged a first-class honours degree in Microbiology from the University of Lagos in 1980. He obtained his doctoral degree (Ph.D) at a record time in Molecular Genetics, from the prestigious University of Reading in the United Kingdom, in 1984. Thereafter, he taught Genetics at the University of Lagos and was an external examiner to a number of Universities in and outside Nigeria. He also engaged himself as a distinguished researcher and exceptional Geneticist at the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research between 1984 and 1998, during which he produced more than 70 scientific publications in the best local and international journals in the area of Microbiology and Biotechnology. He has also been cited more than a thousand times by scholars across the world.

Not only has the new Professor of Biotechnology cut a niche for himself among eminent scholars in Microbiology and Biotechnology across the world, he had equally supervised many postgraduate students and continues to serve as a mentor and motivator to many Nigerian Microbiologists and Biotechnologists, many of whom have risen to professorial cadres in Universities in and outside Nigeria.

It needs to be mentioned that Prof. D. K. Olukoya was severally offered this position in 1990s by many Universities. But, he chose to pursue his ministerial destiny, as directed by God.

The authorities, members and friends of the Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries, across the world, heartily congratulate our leader and mentor, Prof. Daniel Kolawole Olukoya, on his very eminently deserved appointment as Professor of Biotechnology.

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GOV AKEREDOLU LAUNCHES URBAN WATER AND SANITATION PROJECT IN ONDO

To Rehabilitate Owena Multipurpose Dam

Says Access To Potable Water Has Been Increased From 4% to 17.6%

Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu,SAN, CON on Tuesday launched the rehabilitation of the Owena Multipurpose Dam project to provide safe and potable water for the people of the six local government areas in Ondo central senatorial district of the state.

The Governor disclosed that his administration has increased access to potable water to 17.6% as against the 4% that was inherited in 2017.

He disclosed that the KAMOMI AKETI project, which is the arrowhead of the policy, has now become the template of provision of rural water in Nigeria.

Governor Akeredolu spoke at the launch of the project tagged “French Development Agency/African Development Bank (AFD/AfDB)-assisted Ondo State Urban Water and Sanitation Project” at the International Culture and Events Centre (DOME) , Akure, the Ondo State capital.

The event was attended by the Director General, AFDB, Nigeria, Lamin Barrow; Speaker of the State House of Assembly, represented by the deputy Speaker, Rt. Hon. Samuel Aderoboye and other members of the Assembly; members of the State Executive Council, led by the Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu; Royal Fathers led by the Chairman, Council of Oba and Deji of Akure, Oba Aladetoyinbo Ogunlade Aladelusi; Chief Imam of Akure, Alhaji Abdulakeem Yayi-Akorede; representative of the CAN chairman; among others.

The Governor said the event was significant as it further demonstrated his Administration’s abiding commitment to improving general access to potable water supply in every nook and cranny of the State.

He explained that when he came on board in 2017, the percentage of water supply and access of the people to potable water was abysmally low 4% as majority of the water schemes across the urban and rural areas of the State had become moribund and were no longer functioning.

The Governor said his administration then took steps to change the narrative by introducing the KAMOMI AKETI Water Policy with the aggressive construction and rehabilitation of boreholes for rural dwellers and the rehabilitation of dysfunctional water schemes in the urban areas.

“It will be recalled that at the inception of our Administration in 2017, we made it abundantly clear to our people, our Action Plan to lay a good foundation for sustainable water supply both in the rural and urban communities. In pursuance of this goal, we took a critical look at the percentage of water supply and access of the people to potable water which surprisingly was revealed to be abysmally low 4%.

“Today, by the special grace of God, we can disclose that the percentage of Ondo State residents that now have unhindered access to potable water has increased to 17.6% and we are not resting on our laurels.

“In our resolve to equally achieve this feat in the urban water sector, we have since embarked on massive investment in the restoration and expansion of existing urban water infrastructure across the State in order to provide water for all in fulfillment of our campaign promise and commitment to the welfare of our people.

“Consequently, Okeigbo, Ako/Oba, Idoani, Okitipupa, Ilutitun and Araromi Obu Water Supply Schemes were rehabilitated and had since been commissioned to ensure provision of sustainable potable water supply to these communities and their environs.

“As you are well aware, one of the largest dams in Nigeria, the Owena Multipurpose Dam is located in our State. You are equally aware that this Multipurpose Dam had been abandoned for a relatively long period of time. Also, the Ondo-Owena Water Supply Scheme, along Ondo Road, had been dysfunctional for a long time.

“The situation of these two viable water schemes was found unacceptable to our administration. In order to rehabilitate the Owena Multipurpose Dam, the State Government, through the Federal Government, approached the French Development Agency (AFD) and secured a credit facility of US$57 million to rehabilitate this Dam so as to ensure the supply of potable water to a good percentage of the Akure metropolis.

“However, the report of a pre-feasibility study of the project revealed that the AFD facility (US$57 million) could not cover the reticulation to the entire Akure metropolis. Hence, the State Government again approached the African Development Bank (AfDB) for a credit facility of US$104.2 million to enable it co-finance the project.

“The AfDB facility will not only cover the reticulation to other parts of Akure metropolis, it will also assist in facilitating the rehabilitation of Owena-Ondo Road Water Supply Scheme to provide water for six local government areas of Akure South, Akure North, Idanre, Ondo East, Ifedore and Ile-Oluji/Oke-Igbo.

“Let me, for the avoidance of doubt, state that these restoration efforts remain a key policy programme of our administration, as more and more communities continue to benefit.

“Rehabilitation of other moribund urban water schemes not covered under the scope of the AFD/AfDB credit facility, such as Awara, Ose/Owo, etc would equally be given attention as efforts are ongoing to secure funding from the Natural Resources Development Fund for their rehabilitation”, the Governor added.

In his welcome address, the Commissioner for Water Resources, Public Sanitation and Hygiene, Fatai Olotu said when the Urban Water Supply and Sanitation Project is completed, it would help facilitate the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals, (SDGs) to fulfill the Governor Akeredolu led government REDEEMED agenda on provision of water to the people of the state.

The Director General, AFDB, Nigeria, Lamin Barrow, in his remarks noted that the Akure Water Sanitation Project is expected to yield significant development benefit to the residents, providing potable water for 24 hours.

He emphasized that one of the unique feature of the project is the establishment of social water supply connection fund.

Richard Olatunde
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Ondo State.
December 6, 2022.

📸 Olawale Abolade

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Pre-FOWOSO Summit: Mrs Akeredolu donates laptop, visits Imafon to support monarch’s educational stride

As part of pre-activities for the forthcoming 4th Summit of the Foundation for Wives of Ondo State Officials and Female Political Appointees (FOWOSO), the Founder and First Lady of Ondo State, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, on Monday presented a brand new HP Laptop to young Eniola Adams to support his computer business.

Presenting the laptop to him in her office at Alagbaka Government house ground, Mrs. Akeredolu said the gesture was to prove that FOWOSO’s focus wasn’t on women alone, but youth inclusive.

She hinted that, Eniola approached her for an assistance via WhatsApp for a laptop to boost his computer business at Ekiti State University, and she didn’t hesitate to approve it and make it part of pre-activities for FOWOSO Summit.

“Dont disappoint us, we know your location and we will monitor you, by next summit we will want to hear that you’ve even expanded your business. I make this presentation for you to expand your business, and also to demonstrate that Nigerian youths are not lazy”. She said.

Responding to the gesture, he appreciated Her Excellency for being a passionate mother, and affirmed that the laptop would take his business to the next level.

The FOWOSO Founder, thereafter, led members of the Foundation to Imafon Community where they were received at the Palace of the Olumafon, Oba Adegbehingbe Aliu.

The visit was prompted by the long-time yearning of the Olumafon for the state government to take over the community Grammar School, which he solely established in order to encourage education in the community.

Addressing the First Lady, Oba Adegbehingbe, the Atonlusi 1 of Imafon, informed Her Excellency how he established the school due to the distance of the community to Alagbaka Grammar School which is the nearest public secondary school to them.

He explained that he had been responsible for employment of teachers and provision of infrastructure, despite the fact that he had notified the then government in 2013 about the challenge they’re facing, but no approval from government.

He narrated how he couldn’t further his education due to the fact that his late father didn’t place much value on education coupled with the non-availability of school buildings, which made him determined not to allow other children of the community suffer such fate.

According to him, due to the challenge impeding the effectiveness and growth of the school, some parents had started withdrawing their children back to farm, a development he was sad about; hence, the reason he pleaded with the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Gender Research and Documentation, Mrs. Temitope Daniyan to help inform the First Lady, knowing she’s a promoter of education.

Responding, Mrs. Akeredolu assured the monarch that the school would be approved.
She lamented the state of the school despite that the community was part of the state capital metropolis, saying “I don’t think it is good enough..whatever is not good enough, we will try to make it good “.

The FOWOSO Founder, who expressed her interest in promoting education in children most importantly, noted that the whole  essence of education is to see children becoming responsible citizens,  to climb the social ladder,  and improve the lot of their families.

She assured that her coming to the community would be memorable, and charged the students to be serious with  education while encouraging the volunteer teachers not to give up.

She informed the monarch about the Summit, saying: “in the spirit of FOWOSO, this is the period that we organise Summit for the benefit of Ondo State women to expand their horizons, our women are coming and will leave better Informed”.

She hinted that no fewer than 7,000 women would be given goodies bag during the Summit, and she shared a portion of the goodies bags in the Palace and for the teachers.

Mrs Akeredolu applauded Mrs Daniyan for taking it upon herself to facilitate support for the community, saying ” If not for her own sense of development, by following my footstep such thing will not bother her”.

Mary Agidi
Special Assistant to the Governor on Media (Office of the First Lady)
Dec. 5, 2022

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GOV AKEREDOLU PRESENTS N272.7 BILLION 2023 BUDGET TO ONDO ASSEMBLY

Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, CON, has presented a budget proposal of N272.736 Billion for the 2023 fiscal year to the State House of Assembly.

Governor Akeredolu presented the budget tagged “Budget of Shared Prosperity” to the lawmakers on Monday during a plenary sitting presided over by the Speaker of the House, Bamidele Oleyelogun, at the newly renovated House of Assembly Complex, Igbatoro road, Akure, which was commissioned last week.

It will be recalled that the House of Assembly complex was renovated by Governor Akeredolu since it was built in 1979 by the late Pa Adekunle Ajasin-led administration.

Governor Akeredolu said N143.511 billion was budgeted for capital expenditure and N129.224 billion for recurrent expenditure.

The 2023 budget proposal is higher than that of the total projected Budget outlay for 2022 Fiscal year which was N199,282,437 billion.

Arakunrin Akeredolu disclosed that the 2023 budget was prepared on the basis of the inputs garnered during the Town Hall meetings with various stakeholders across the state.

He noted that the bugged was tailored towards achieving the REDEEMED agenda of his administration which is also in tandem with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

According to the Governor, the projects and programmes carefully selected in the budget cut across critical areas of infrastructure and environment, education, health, social safety -net, security, industrialisation, among others.

Governor Akeredolu said with the resources available to the State Government, his administration has continued to pursue its developmental agenda in areas of priority.

He added that government has been able to record modest achievements across board in various thematic areas of the REDEEMED agenda.

The Governor listed some of the achievements to include construction of more than 450km of roads across the state; construction of over 238 blocks of classrooms; provision of 16, 874 sets of pupil’s furniture and 3,394 Teacher’s furniture; strengthening of Amotekun and other security Agencies in the State through provision of operational vehicles and equipment; empowerment of over 9,068 Youths through ONDEA; rehabilitation of water supply schemes in Araromi Obu, Oke-Igbo, Oba-Akoko, Idoani, Okitipupa and Ilutitun.

Others are distribution of over One Million Cocoa seedlings to Cocoa farmers; Omotosho-EpeAjah 330KV D/C Transmission line and Osogbo-Benin 330KV D/C line; regular payment of salaries to State Workers; provision of free maternal health care (Abiyamo/Solayo Scheme) for over 40,000 pregnant women and children; and empowering of 48,761 under the ONDO-CARES Programme.

He commended the Speaker and other members of the House for their passion and timely effort in considering the 2023-2025 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) and the Fiscal Strategy Paper (FSP) as well as the passage of the 2022 Revised Appropriation Bill in response to the exigencies of deepening security, infrastructural development and to cater for the vulnerable.

Governor Akeredolu equally thanked the people of the State for their unflinching belief, confidence, co-operation and support for his Administration.

The Governor informed the Lawmakers that in fulfilling the aims and objectives of the 2023 budget proposal, his administration will pursue policy stance that will entrench efficient spending, curb waste, engender inclusivity, and enable excellent service delivery.

“Notwithstanding the present climate of uncertainty, we are steadfast in our resolve to put the economy on the sustainable path to realize its full growth potential. By the grace of the Almighty God, we shall leave no stone unturned as we continue to build a strong, vibrant and resilient economy, powered by good governance and people-centered programmes,” he added.

Present at the budget presentation are the deputy governor, Hon. Lucky Aiyedatiwa; members of the State Executive Council led by the Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu; state chairman of the APC, Engr. Ade Adetimehin, and several other top government functionaries.

In his speech, the Speaker of the House, Bamidele Oleyelogun, affirmed that the presentation is in tandem with the provision of the Constitution of the Federal Republic or Nigeria 1999 (as Amended).

He noted that the content of every budget, no doubt, has great impact on the life of everybody in the society.

“lt is a reflection on the journey so far in our conscious effort to collectively work for the upliftment of the welfare of our people in terms of ensuring that developmental projects cut across all segments of the State and are people oriented.

“As an arm of government, it is another opportunity to examine the fundamental linkages between our past, as a people, present concerns as well as the vision, hopes and aspirations for the future of our State.

“I want to specially appreciate Mr. Governor for the total overhauling, renovation and commissioning of our Legislative Chamber equipped with the State of the earth materials and gadgets. The ninth (9th) Assembly is particularly proud of you and we are assuring you of our unalloyed loyalty, commitment and dedication to work,” he said.

The Speaker specially commended the Governor for the undiluted attention his administration accorded to every sector of the economy In the
State.

He stressed that it is generally acknowledged that the people have indeed witnessed rapid infrastructural development within the last few years, even in the face of very limited resources.

Richard Olatunde
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Ondo State.
December 5, 2022.

📸 Olawale Abolade.

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GOV SANWO-OLU COMMISSIONS 10KM OKITIPUPA-IGBOKODA BYPASS

•Hails Gov Akeredolu For Developing Ondo With Limited Resources

•This Road Will Solve Horrific Problem Of Traffic Congestions – Gov Akeredolu

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Sunday commissioned the 10 kilometres Okitipupa-Igbokoda bypass which was constructed by the Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, CON.

Governor Sanwo-Olu commissioned the road amidst pomps and pageantry at Erinje Junction in Okitipupa, Okitipupa Local Government Area of the state.

The Lagos State Governor commended Governor Akeredolu for the impactful and significant development happening in the Sunshine state.

Governor Sanwo-olu said: “What we are about, as a party, as brothers, is to continue to do what we call peer review and to continue to encourage one another.

“This is not my first time. It is not my second time of coming to Ondo State. And each time I come, it is because of a significant development that is happening in your state.

“You have seen that, indeed, there is meaningful development that is happening in your state. You can see that, even with the little resources available to the State, Arakunrin Akeredolu is using it well for the betterment of the people and the state. I want to thank you for this sir.

“Earlier today, I was in Owo. I can see new roads. We are here again. This is indeed a First Class road that is worthy to be acknowledged.

“Governor Akeredolu, thank you for holding onto our party. Thank you for giving your people the real essence of democracy. It is only with infrastructure you can see growth and development in all our communities.

“It is only with infrastructure we can commune peacefully from one community to another community, that you can move from one jurisdiction to another, effortlessly.

“Only reward for a good work is more work. And that is why we are in governance. We are in governance to change lives positively. We are in governance to make life more meaningful to our people.

“Tell other communities that with Akeredolu, more purposeful and meaningful development is coming. It is just a case of let us just finish one before we move to another. You can see the quality of this road is next to none.

“On this road, I can imagine how many jobs that have been provided. People were selling sand, people were selling cement, people were selling pure water, food, and all sorts of economic activities happened in the construction of this road.

“You can see that is what governance is all about. It is not an abandoned project, it is not a failed project. Governance is about solution, it is about the people,” Governor Sanwo-Olu added.

Present at the commissioning were the deputy governor, Hon. Lucky Aiyedatiwa; members of the State Executive Council led by the Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu; state chairman of the APC, Engr. Ade Adetimehin; APC chieftains including candidates from the Central and Southern Senatorial Districts; religious leaders; traditional rulers and several other dignitaries.

Earlier, the Host and Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, explained that the road was constructed on a virgin land to permanently solve the horrific problem of traffic congestion in Okitipupa.

Governor Akeredolu said the traffic congestions usually resulted in delay for vehicles plying Okitipupa–Igbokoda Road, and always making a journey which should normally last about 30 minutes to become hours.

He particularly appreciated Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu for finding time out of his busy schedule to honour his invitation to commission the road.

Governor Akeredolu revealed that in infrastructure development and good governance, his administration has raised the bar and set a standard which can hardly be faulted by anyone.

He described his administration as the flagship and reference point for infrastructural development, transformation and good governance in Nigeria.

According to him, as a virgin land, the best contractor was used to construct the road project to standard and specification.

The Governor also appealed to the people to consider all the road projects as both their personal and collective heritage by protecting and preserving them.

He added that his government has achieved a lot in terms of development of infrastructure by emplacing a string of people-oriented projects that have benchmarked Ondo State as a State of repute in Nigeria in terms of quality and speed in project delivery.

“It would be recalled that when we came on board in 2017, we felt, and rightly so, that there is the compelling need to have a flyover bridge at Ore to take care of the apparently unceasing traffic on the road with its attendant carnage occasioned by incessant road accidents.

“We started and completed the Redemption Bridge within two years of the first term of our Administration, thus solving the problem of the carnage and traffic gridlock on the Sagamu–Ore–Benin Road.

“Again, we conceptualised and constructed into a dual carriageway, the ever busy and commercially-active ‘A’-Division–Oba Osupa (Hospital Road)–Oluwatuyi–Ijoka Road which successive administration since the creation of Ondo State were unable to attend to for lack of the political will because virtually all the road setbacks had been fully built by the people.

“These structures had to give way, including those that were formally acquired for demolition to allow for the modern road with attendant huge compensation. I am happy to inform you that the construction of these dual carriageways has attained an appreciable level of completion and it is our hope that it will be completed soonest.

“This dual carriageway projects have also been replicated in other towns such as Owo and Ikare in the Northern Senatorial District, while the one for the Southern Senatorial District, as we speak, is being conceived.

“The construction into a dual carriageway, Phase I of Ikare Akoko township roads has been completed amongst several other completed township roads. This is in addition to over 40 road projects spanning over 350km across the State both inherited from previous administrations and initiated by our own administration,” the Governor added.

The Commissioner for Infrastructure, Lands and Housing, Engr Raimi Aminu, disclosed that the 10 kilometres road network started from Ikoya to Ilutitun to Igbokoda and with spur to Araromi-Lisa community with different features.

There were also goodwill messages from traditional rulers including Olugbo of Ugbo Kingdom, Oba Frederick Akinruntan; Jegun of Idepe Okitipupa, Oba Michael Obatuga; and the APC National Vice Chairman (South-West), Hon. Isaac Kekemeke.

They all commended Governor Akeredolu for his unwavering infrastructural development across the state, saying the development has enhanced socio-economic activities in the affected areas.

Richard Olatunde,
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Ondo State.
December 4, 2022.

📸 Olawale Abolade.

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Ondo First Lady Christened ‘Women’s Mirror’

..charges women to be economically productive and breast aware

Wife of the Governor of Ondo State, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, was on Sunday honoured by the Association of Abia Women in Akure, as a ‘Women’s Mirror’, considering all her efforts towards the betterment of women.

The honour was done to her at the 20th anniversary lunch party of the Akure branch of the association, held at Josemillia hotels.

Responding to the honour, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, appreciated her kinswomen for identifying with her, right from the beginning of her husband’s tenure as the Governor.

The Ada Owere 1 expressed her delight to be given such a dignified pet name, ‘Igogbe  Nwanyi Ji Ahu Uzo’, which means ‘Women’s Mirror ‘.


She charged women to be engaged productively in order to be financially independent, saying such would earn them more respect in the family.

The Ondo First Lady cum Founder of Breast Cancer Association of Nigeria, BRECAN, also encouraged women to prioritize their health, to be breast aware in order defeat breast cancer that’s taking its tolls on women at an alarming rate.

Earlier in her welcome address, the Chairlady of the association, Mrs. Igboegwu Kelechi Clarice, had appreciated the motherly embrace the First Lady accorded them when she resumed office.

Mrs Akeredolu leading cutting of the anniversary cake

She lauded her Widow’s care palliative and the Solayo kits initiatives, which cut across all women in the State, regardless of political parties, religion or ethnic group affiliations.

“The palliative package during COVID-19, the Widow’s care package where seven out of eleven widows in our midst benefitted from. A loan benefit given to one of our women. Solayo kit given to some of our pregnant women and wrappers, among other food items during FOWOSO Summit”, she hinted.

Mary Agidi
Special Assistant to the Governor on Media (Office of the First Lady)
Dec. 4, 2022

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Spend less time on social media, except for productive engagement, Gov Akeredolu charges Students

..as New Church Grammar School, Owo celebrates Diamond Anniversary

Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN, CON, has charged Nigerian students to spend less time on social media except for productive engagements.

The Governor who was represented by his Deputy, Hon Lucky Aiyedatiwa at the 60th Anniversary of The New Church Grammar School ( NCGS ), Owo on Saturday, maintained that, the country is already feeling the negative impacts of social media.

The School was initially christened Swedenborg Memorial Grammar School after the European founder of New Church Doctrine and later changed the school’s name to New Church Grammar School which was founded on 5th February, 1962.

As the name implies, it is a missionary school founded by some elders in the church under the leadership of Bishop Udofia of blessed memory to strengthen and support the church in its quest to propagate Christianity in Owo land.

In his goodwill message, the Governor appealed to the current students of the school to follow the good foundation laid by the Old Students of the school.

“This school has no doubt carved an enviable niche for itself” .

“The foundation that was laid for you ( old students ) while in this school has really served as a springboard upon which you ( old students ) winched up yourself to this current pedestal” , he said.

It will be recalled that the School has produced great people occupying high and esteemed positions within and outside the Country.

Among the products of the school are former Head of Service, many Permanent Secretaries, Bankers, Administrators, Clergymen, Monarchs as well as the current Chief of Staff to Ondo State Governor, Chief Olugbenga Ale.

Speaking particularly to the current students, the Governor said, “you have to study hard to guaranteed of a place in the society” .

“You must be inspired by the success of the old students and make same the guiding principle in your quest for greatness”.

“You must imbibe the culture of reading and spend less time on social media, except for productive engagements… readers of todays are the leaders of tomorrow” , he said.

The Governor specially thanked the Old Students of the school for the success that the school achieved over the years as he looks forward for more successful development.

During the celebration, the Deputy Governor commissioned a brand new 18-Seater Bus donated to the school by the old students.

In his goodwill message, the National President of NCGS Old Students Association, Adewale Olagbaye Doherty encouraged all Alumni of the school not to let down their guards.

“Our will to make NCGS, Owo great is not dependent on our financial status, the degree we have, our social class, but our will to make things work”.

“Let’s therefore continue to contribute positively to the growth of our great Association and our Alma Mater” , he appealed.

In his own speech, the current Principal of the school, Mr P.A Agbayewa thanked the school old students Association for their tremendous assistance as he equally solicited for more supports for the growth and development of the school .

Many Alumni of the school, home and abroad graced the impressive event.

Kenneth Odusola-Stevenson,
Press Secretary to Governor
( Office of Deputy Governor ).

Photo Credit : Abayomi Adefolalu.

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UNIBEN Engineering Faculty produces, showcases Light-Weight utility Vehicle

A Ph.D student from the Faculty of Engineering, University of Benin, has produced and showcased a one-ton utility truck. The vehicle was developed by Engr. Igbinosa Eghosa of the Department of Production Engineering and supervised by Professor Akaehomen Ibhadode, who also led the team to present the wonder on wheels to the University’s Management.

Speaking during the brief ceremony, the project developer opined that the light-weight truck will re-shape and power the growth of the nation’s transport and agriculture industries. He added that with adequate funding, the vehicle could be produced in large quantity as the design was capable of addressing transportation needs even in local communities.

On his part, the project supervisor pointed out that over 80 percent of the materials used for the production of the truck, which runs at a maximum speed of 75km per hour, was sourced locally. He said the motivation behind the project was to encourage and promote the production of low-cost vehicles with very high local content including materials and labour, in Nigeria.

Elated, the Vice Chancellor, Professor Lilian Salami, praised the team for promoting local production through their cutting-edge innovations. She expressed the University’s readiness to partner with the Faculty in the production of some units of the vehicle for the Institution’s use.

(Report by the Public Relations and Protocol Unit)

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You’re a reference point for humanitarian services, Not Too Young To Rule tells Ondo First Lady

..honours her with Best First Lady of the Year award

Wife of the Governor of Ondo State, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, on Saturday, bagged The Best First Lady of the Year award, which was conferred on her by the national body of Not Too Young To Rule.

The honour was done to her during the 2022 national leadership award of excellence, organised by the youths group, at Royal Bird hotel & Towel, Alagbaka Akure, the state capital.

Responding to the honour, Mrs. Akeredolu who is the Matron of the group, encouraged its leadership to mobilise more young Nigerians across the nation towards achieving the purpose for which Not Too Young To Rule bill was approved.

She commended the group for deeming it fit to recognize excellence services to humanity demonstrated by each of the awardees in their various fields of endeavor.

The Iralepo of Isinkan, HRM Oba Olugbenga Ojo , presenting the award to Her Excellency

Earlier in her welcome address, the national Coordinator of Not Too Young To Rule, Hon. Ogundairo Samuel, had hinted that the event was to honour meritorious services to humanity and national development, by conducting background checks of previous track records and contributions of the awardees to national development.

He described the First Lady of Ondo state as a woman with a difference, an excellent reference point for humanitarian services as evident in her various impactful initiatives like BeMore Empowered Foundation, BRECAN, and others.

“She is a role model, a mother with milk of human kindness flowing through her veins and a selfless leader. The magnitude of her love for the betterment of the society is unfathomable” he said.

The Not Too Young To Rule Coordinator, used the medium to commend the Governor Akeredolu-led administration for providing good governance and dividends of democracy for the residents of Ondo State.

“This becomes more pertinent when we consider the high premium he has placed on the youth by giving us the necessary opportunities to serve in various political political and high profile positions”, he added.

Mary Agidi
Special Assistant to the Governor on Media
(Office of the First Lady)
December 3, 2022

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We Don’t Touch Local Governments Funds- Ondo Gov

..Says refund of 13% Oil derivation, others expended on Salaries, Infrastructural projects

Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, CON, has confirmed the receipt of 13 per cent oil derivation, subsidy and SURE-P refunds from the Federation Account in the last two years (2021-2022).

A statement signed by the Governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Richard Olatunde, explained that the refunds received by the state were expended on capital projects and payment of accumulated salary arrears.

The statement also disassociated Governor Akeredolu from those alleged to have been stealing funds meant for the Local Governments from the Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC).

According to the statement, the refunds received from the Federal Government were judiciously expended on some key capital projects across the three senatorial districts of the state.

“Some of the impactful projects undertaken and completed by this administration include the rehabilitation and asphalt overlay of the 32.6km Araromi-Alape road in Ilaje Local Government Area; 16.65km Ikaramu-Akunnu-chainnage 7-Oke Agbe Road in Akoko Northwest Local Government Area; 4.5km Agadagba Obon-New Ajapa Road in Ese-Odo Local Government Area; 3.0km Oke Igbo Township roads, Ile-Oluji/Okeigbo Local Government Area, among others.

“Recently, the Governor commenced the rehabilitation of over 35 kilometers network of roads in Akure, the state capital. The roads being rehabilitated are the existing ones built by past governments several years ago and which are already in bad shapes with potholes and failed sections. The 9.5km Emure- Iporo Road and rehabilitation of 15.2km Akure phase “D” road networks have all begun.

“The 10km Okitipupa-Igbokoda virgin road which will be commissioned by the Lagos State Governor, Mr.Babajide Sanwo-Olu, is another evidence of Governor Akeredolu’s commitment to infrastructural development. These intensive capital projects are financed from these refunds and Internally Generated Revenue.

“The monthly FAAC receipts are devoted to the payment of salaries and pensions as agreed by Labour Leaders at the monthly meetings presided over by the Head of Service and Chairman of Joint Negotiating Council (JNC).

“Despite Governor Akeredolu’s vow to always pay salaries and pensions as and when due, the financial crisis across the country occasioned by the outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic resulted in non-payment of salaries in full for some months. As at January 2022, Government was owing four months salary arrears as against seven months inherited.

“Governor Akeredolu, having promised the civil servants in the state to prioritise payment of salaries, has continued to clear these backlogs of arrears. On three occasions this year, Government has paid double salaries in a month, thereby reducing the number of arrears. All salaries will be cleared before the year ends.

“If the amount expended on these infrastructural projects and payment of salary arrears is juxtaposed with the refunds, it is crystal clear that the monies were not mismanaged in Ondo State.

“The administration of Governor Akeredolu stands on the tripod of Transparency, Accountability and Integrity. We will continue to hoist the flag of transparency in governance while pursuing excellence in the journey to transform the state for the better,” the statement said.

On the allegation that some Governors are stealing Local Government Funds, the statement noted that the Akeredolu administration has not touched funds meant for Local Governments since its inception.

“As a matter of policy, monies meant for Local Governments are shared at their monthly Joint Account Allocation Committee (JAAC). Mr Governor doesn’t touch local governments funds. The local government Chairmen can attest to the fact that they have total freedom in the management of their funds,”the statement added

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Osinbajo inaugurates Omeife, Africa’s first humanoid

Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, on Friday in Abuja inaugurated Omeife, Africa’s first humanoid to boost Artificial Intelligence (AI) and technological development in Nigeria and the continent.

Osinbajo was represented by the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Pantami, who in turn was represented by the Director-General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) Kashifu Inuwa.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Omeife, the first African humanoid robot was developed by the Uniccon Group.

Omrife is with near-human resemblance, language competency, movement, navigation, and behavioural intelligence using AI and computer vision capabilities.

“We are living in an exciting time of advanced technological advancement, where the science fictions of yesterday are becoming the reality in products and services of today,” he said.

Osinbajo said that the Federal Government had the responsibility to ensure the success of the project and urged stakeholders to key into it to ensure the success of the Omeife project and develop new ones.

He also allayed fears that technology or artificial intelligence would take over human jobs and render people jobless, since it was the human that created Omeife and other robots.

Speaking at the event, the CEO, Uniccon Group of Companies, Mr Chucks Ekwueme, said that Africa has been recognised for its contribution to the global tech ecosystem.

Ekwueme said that Omeife had the ability to speak eight different languages, which include: English, Yoruba, Hausa, Igbo, French, Arabic, Kiswahili, Pidgin, Wazobia and Afrikaans.

He said the six-foot-tall female African humanoid provides language as a service for businesses that need to integrate native African audiences, adding that it is a multipurpose and assistance robot.

“We are happy to play a part in helping businesses and people all over Africa to achieve their fullest potential by providing access to the most innovative technologies for efficiency.

“It identifies and tags humans through face and facial expressions, paying attention to a specific item when required.

“It identifies objects, knows their characteristics and also calculates positions and distances of objects it sees,” he said. (NAN)

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Sanwo-Olu to commission 10km Okitipupa-Igbokoda Bye Pass Road constructed by Gov Akeredolu

The 10km Okitipupa-Igbokoda Bye Pass road constructed by Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu,SAN,CON led administration will be commissioned on Sunday, December 4, 2022.

Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-olu will commission the road at the Okitipupa end by 12pm.

The Okitipupa-Igbokoda bye pass road is one of the numerous landmark road projects done by the Governor Akeredolu administration across the State.

The 10km Okitipupa-Igbokoda Road is a virgin road constructed to provide an alternative route to ease heavy traffic in Okitipupa town.

The essence of the road is to divert traffic from inside Okitipupa town and reduced vehicular movement through Okitipupa, particularly the market to Igbokoda.

The Governor Akeredolu administration has recorded giant strides on road construction and other infrastructural development in the state since its inception in 2017.

Over 274.11km of roads across the 18 Local Government Areas of the State have been completed while 120km are ongoing across the three senatorial districts.

Among the completed roads awaiting commissioning are: 4.5km Agadagba Obon-New Ajapa Road in Ese-Odo Local Government Area; 3.0km Oke Igbo Township roads, Ile-Oluji/Okeigbo Local Government;
16.65km Ikaramu-Akunnu- chainnage 7- Oke agbe Road in Akoko Northwest Local Government Area; 1.6km Ikaro Township Road, in Ose Local Government Area; and rehabilitation and asphalt overlay of 32km Araromi-Alape road in Ilaje.

Signed:
Richard Olatunde
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Ondo State.
2nd December, 2022.

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GOV AKEREDOLU CELEBRATES YOUNGER SISTER ON HER 60TH BIRTHDAY

Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu,SAN, CON has celebrated his younger sister, Toyin Akeredolu on her 60th birthday.

The Governor led his other siblings at a special birthday reception organised for friends and family of the celebrant.

The event, held at the Law Hub, Ibadan on Thursday, was attended by the Governor and all his other siblings.

Wife of the Governor, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu also attended the event.

Others who graced the ceremony included; the Deputy Governor, Hon. Lucky Aiyedatiwa; Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu; Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Pastor Femi Agagu; Special Adviser to the Governor on Union Matters and Special Duties, Mr. Dare Aragbaiye and other top government functionaries.

Friends of the Governor, led by Engr. Remi Osiberu; other members of the Akeredolu’s family; well-wishers and colleagues of the celebrant all attended the event.

In his remarks, Governor Akeredolu disclosed that his younger sister was reluctant to celebrate her 60th birthday due to the recent passage of their mum.

The Governor noted that it took the insistence and supports of his siblings to convince the celebrant to celebrate the birthday.

He stressed that their mum lived well, adding that attaining 90 years before she died was worth celebrating.

The Governor described the event as joyous, while promising the celebrant total love and commitment of all members of their family.

“We thank God that we are all here to celebrate you, Toyin, today. Today is a joyous day in the family which all of us have to come together to celebrate Toyin. She is so dear to us. We will not toy with you. We will be there for you all the times”, he added.

Other members of the family including their spouses, who spoke about the celebrant described her as caring, principled, supportive and understanding.

📸 Olawale Abolade & Saidu Abdulrahman

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Gov Akeredolu reaffirms readiness to pay outstanding salaries

..as Ondo State Celebrates Public Service Week

Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN, CON, has re-emphasised that his administration would not relent in prioritizing the workers’ welfare in the State declaring that “all outstanding salaries will be cleared soonest”.

Akeredolu who was represented by his Deputy, Hon Lucky Aiyedatiwa made this promise at the 2022 Public Service Week Celebration held at International Culture and Events Center ( The Dome ), Alagbaka Akure on Thursday.

He said his administration set-out not to owe workers despite meeting arrears of salaries spanning seven months, of which his government have been able to offset six months.

Deputy Governor with the Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu

“Iam glad to listen to your good testimonies on payment of salaries promptly as well as up-to-date promotion with financial benefits, regular elevation to Accounting Officers status, payment of inherited salaries arrears, training and retraining and provision of working tools and enabling environment for the service to thrive, among others” .

“Our Administration will continue to do more” .

“I also want to assure you that, the fraction of outstanding salaries will be cleared soonest” , he assured.

Governor Akeredolu said his government would continue to pursue a policy of enhancement for all and sundry.

“With a feeling of financial security, both for now and in the future, the Public Servants are motivated to give their best…we would, among other things sustain our efforts in this direction” , he declared.

Meanwhile, the Head of Service, Pastor Kayode Ogundele FCIPM charged the civil servants in the State on genuinety and creativity, which was the Hallmark of the 2022 Public Service Week.

“The Public Service Innovation Challenge in collaboration with PPIMU is no doubt one of the steps in the direction of making the Public Service live up to expectation” declared Ogundele.

According to the Head of Service, the winners of this year Public Service Innovation Challenge are :

  • Dr Adeola Richard Alonge came first with a cash prize of #300,000.00
  • Mr Olaseni Olubunmi Foluso was first runner-up with a cash prize of #200,000.00
  • Mrs Oladipo Jocelyn Omobola, was second runner-up with cash prize of #150,000.00.

Photo Credit : Abayomi Adefolalu

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16 days Activism Against GBV: Mrs Akeredolu advocates deliberate actions to curb menace

..charges mothers to raise their boys well

..enjoins women to vote their types to achieve female-friendly policies

Wife of the Governor of Ondo State, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, has called for  deliberate actions towards reducing Sexual and Gender-Based Violence in the society.

To this end, she emphasised the need for women to unite and vote their types in to the House of Assembly, who will champion the cause of female gender and bring about formulation of policies that are favourable to women and girls.

L-R: Olori Agbede of Igbara-Oke, Commissioner for Women Affairs, Dr . Mrs Osadahun

Addressing a Press Conference earlier today at Rotunda government house ground Alagbaka, Akure, the State capital to mark this year’s 16 days Activism Against Gender-Based based violence, the Ondo First Lady, described Sexual and Gender-Based Violence(SGBV) as the most heinous crime against humanity, and called for deliberate actions from every stakeholder
towards curbing the menace.

Mrs Akeredolu who called for enough of annual marking of the 16 days activism without good outcome, charged Women-led NGOs to rise to the situation, by coming up with strategies aimed at protecting female gender from subjugation and ill-treatment.

She stressed the need for girls to be aware of the SGBV right from their tender age as one of the precautionary measures to protect them from falling victim, which, according to her was one of the objectives of her BeMore Summer Bootcamp for girls.

“Girls must begin to show interest in this advocacy and shouldn’t be oblivious of what is happening around them. Let us catch them young, let us groom them at this young age to understand what the issues are; our daughters should be aware of what is going on so that they can also protect themselves. Prevention is better than cure.

“I believe you are aware that we introduce Taekwondo in BEMORE, all the young girls in secondary school should have that skill, it’s fun and at the same time preventive. It’s one of the strategies, sensitisation should begin in school where these girls are very vulnerable”, she averred.

Highlighting the underlying factors responsible for violence against women and girls, Mrs Akeredolu charged mothers to raise their boys to value girls and decried the habit of giving preference to boys over girls.
She said: “How do we raise our boys? Who our sons are is what we made them, they’re watching you at home; that monster husband is the son of one woman”

She also identified harmful traditional practices and traditions as another factor responsible for violence against women, and implored custodians of our culture to desist from such habits that had been proven scientifically, to be of no health benefits to women.

Advocating help for victims of Gender-Based Violence, she affirmed that Foundation for Wives of Ondo State Officials, FOWOSO, was committed to providing shelter for them as part of components of its proposed centre.

Highlighting the interventions made so far in the state under the Akeredolu-led administration towards curbing the menace, Mrs Akeredolu hinted that aside the passage of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Law and establishment of the Agency Against Gender-Based Violence, OSAA-GBV, the law has been translated to Yoruba.

Earlier in her address while speaking to the theme of the event: “UniTe Activism to end Violence against women”, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Gender, Mrs. Olamide Falana, hinted that one in three girls or women suffered one form of SGBV in their lifetime which were usually perpetrated by close relatives.

She urged stakeholders at the event to join forces and stem the tide as she appreciated the First Lady for all her efforts geared towards curbing the menace in Ondo State.

“Her Excellency has ensured that the VAPP Law is signed because this law is the one that empowers State actors to take actions against some various forms of SGBV that were not captured earlier in other extant laws that we have in the country, like abandonment of Wives, FGM and so many others that the laws were silent about have actually be brought under VAPP Law”. She said.

Also speaking, the Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, Dr. Mrs. Adebunmi Osadahun, thanked the First Lady, noting that most of her initiatives targeted the wellbeing of women and girls.

She affirmed that no woman on earth could exonerate herself from experiencing one gender based violence, and enjoined individuals to rise against it, saying: “The way COVID-19 was tackled headlong, the same way we must all get ourselves together, make noise about it, fight it, obey all rules and make sure there’s no sacred cow among the men who’s perpetrating all these; there should be no safe place for any rapist in the state”.

The Executive Secretary of OSAA-GBV, Mrs. Bola Joel-Afolabi, informed that the agency had started sensitising enforcers of the VAPP law across the state for its successful implementation, noting that six local government areas had been informed of its presence in the state through community awareness strategy which will cut across the state.

She called for a concerted efforts to ensure that Gender-Based Violence is eliminated in the society.

Mary Agidi
Special Assistant to the Governor on Media
(Office of the First Lady)
December 1, 2022

📸 Saidu Abdulrahman & Gbenga Fasakin

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IGP reacts to prison sentence, says police not aware of court order

THE Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Usman Baba Alkali, has reacted to the order of an Abuja Federal High Court which sentenced him to three months in prison for contempt.

The IGP’s committal followed a suit filed by a police officer, Patrick Okoli, who was unlawfully and compulsorily retired from the Nigeria Police Force (NPF).

In a statement by the Force Public Relations Officer (FPRO) Olumuyiwa Adejobi, the IGP said he did not disregard the rule of law as the Nigeria Police Force was not aware of the concerned court order.

The statement partly read, “The Nigeria Police Force wishes to state emphatically that the office of the Inspector-General of Police, IGP Usman Alkali Baba, did not disregard Court Order or the rule of law as the Office is not aware of any Court Order, during the current IGP’s tenure, with respect to a matter making the round in the media that the IGP disobeyed a Court Order for the reinstatement of a dismissed officer of the Force.

“It is instructive to note that the case in point concerns an officer who was dismissed as far back as 1992, a few years after the current IGP joined the Nigeria Police Force, based on available facts gleaned from the reports. The most recent judgment on the matter was given in 2011, which should ordinarily not fall under the direct purview of the current administration of the Force. Thus, the news is strange and astonishing.”

The statement said the IGP had directed the Commissioner of Police in charge of the Force Legal Unit to investigate the allegation to ascertain the court’s position and proffer informed legal advice to the IGP for prompt and necessary action.

“The Inspector-General of Police reiterates his commitment to upholding the rule of law and synergizing with the judiciary to ensure quick dispensation of justice for an improved criminal justice system.”

Meanwhile, a lawyer, Festus Ogun, has insisted that the IGP is not above the law and should submit himself to the correctional officers.

“The IGP is not above the law. He must immediately submit himself to the correctional officers. If he fails, refuses or neglects to obey the valid court order, it presupposes that the laws in Nigeria are only applicable to poor and ordinary citizens,” Ogun said

The ICIR reported that the Inspector-General of Police Alkali Baba was sentenced to three months in prison by a Federal High Court in Abuja.

The presiding Judge, Justice M. O. Olajuwon, gave the sentence on Tuesday, November 29. 

The court found the IGP guilty of disobeying a valid court order following a suit filed by a police officer, Patrick Okoli, who was unlawfully and compulsorily retired from the Nigerian Police Force. 

Justice Olajuwon held that the IGP should be imprisoned and detained in custody for three months or until he obeys an order made on October 21, 2011.

The Judge noted that despite a court ordering the reinstatement of Okoli back into the Police Force and the Police Service Commission (PSC) also recommending the same, the IGP refused to comply with the order.

The court had also ordered that N10 million be paid as special and general damages to the applicant.

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Three students arrested for gang raping girl in Ondo

The police in Ondo State have arrested three teenagers for allegedly raping a 14-year-old SSS 1 girl at Akure High School in Akure South local government area of Ondo State.

The trio, who are in SSS 2, attend same school with the victim.

The incident happened on Thursday within the school premises.The victim went into a nearby bush in the school to defecate and on her way back, the three boys waylaid and raped her.

A reliable source said during the break period of the school, the boys monitored and ambushed the female student at the lonely place within the school.

The girl was reported to have walked into the classroom with blood stain on her uniform.

According to reports, the three friends have been trailing and disturbing the girl in school.

One of the boys was said to have earlier demanded for sex from the girl, but she turned him down.

So, the boy called on his two friends to join in raping her in an isolated place.

The Hope Metro gathered that the boys who have been arrested by men of the state police command, have been taken to Juvenile children correctional centre.

Source: Hope Newspaper

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Success requires tenacity, says Ondo First Lady, urges youths to resist ‘shortcuts’

..attends LEADS 2022 Awards

Wife of the Governor of Ondo State, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, has implored the younger generation of Nigerians to endure  difficult situations and be determined to succeed in their endeavours, by setting goals.

Speaking as a guest lecturer at the maiden edition of Leadership Excellence And Dignity (LEADS)Awards 2022,  themed: ‘Rewarding Tenacity ‘, held at the Dome Akure, the State Capital, Mrs Akeredolu called for attitudinal change in not being perseverance and enduring hardships, which, according to her contributed to the ills in the society.

In her speech titled: ” Rewarding Tenacity: An Example for the Next Generation”, she maintained that “For any man or woman to grow from nothingness to consequence, the firmness of mind and strong will to follow through a difficult path, even when things look bleak, is essential “.

The Ondo First Lady continued that to be tenacious is to have the mental and moral strength to resist ‘short cuts’ and endure hardship for a worthy eventuality.

She described tenacity as a great quality an individual must possess to attain greater heights in life.

While encouraging the younger generation of Nigerians to set goals for themselves, as she acknowledged that the country is blessed with incredible youthful talents, Mrs. Akeredolu charged them to focus on the future rewards of hardwork, rather than seeking shortcuts to success that has short-term gain.

L-R: CEO of CECI Supermarket, Arch. Oge Odor, Attorney General & Commissioner for Justice, Sir Charles Titiloye, Her Excellency Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, at the event.

Her words: ” I stand before you today as a typical example of Nigerian from a humble background who endured all sorts of temptations and distractions to come this far. My background, training, marriage and attainments are all evident products of Tenacity.

Ondo First Lady receiving a gift from the popular Nigerian female artiste, JODIE, during her performance at the event

“Absence of Tenacity in the younger generation of Nigerians forms part of the problem we battle as a people.
“Of the prized value system that the society seems to have lost, delayed gratification ranks high. By delayed gratification, I mean the ability to suspend the desire for immediate gain in favour of later and greater reward. This value, great as it is, has become virtually non-existent, and its absence, a threat”.

The Ondo Governor’s Wife, while quoting the words of a famous American polymath writer Benjamin Franklin “Haste makes waste”, decried the ills in the society caused by haste, and enjoined young Nigerians to imbibe tenacity by showing capacity for endurance and consistency in order to revive the country.

At the event, the Director General of the Performance and Project Implementation Monitoring Unit(PPIMU), Engr. Babajide Akeredolu, bagged the man of the year award, while the State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice was also honoured as the legal icon of the year; Ceci Supermarket bagged the supermarket of the year in Ondo State, among others.

Mary Agidi
Special Assistant to the Governor on Media (Office of the First Lady)
November 27th, 2022

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Unknown gunmen invade Akoko community, kill and dismember two Guards

It was a sad and tragic day in the community when Some unknown gunmen invaded the Ikare-Akoko community in Akoko North East Local Government Area of Ondo state killing two security guards.

The gunmen invaded a state government-owned Mimiko market and NASFAT Schools in the community, killing the two security guards and dismembered their bodies, leaving their remains in the pool of blood.

According to a source, the bandit who attacked the two places in the middle of the night and said “the deceased were found in the pool of blood this (Saturday) morning.

“The gunmen killed one of the guards and cut off his head and placed the head beside his body.

“The other man’s hand was cut, after he had been killed, the dismembered hand was also placed beside him. The killers did not take anything from the deceased before they left the scene.”

The source added that the way and manner the suspected bandits carried out the attack raised the suspicion of ritual killing.

It was learnt that it was men of Nigeria Police from Ikare Akoko Division that took the corpse of the deceased to the mortuary of the Ondo State Specialists Hospital. Ikare Akoko.

Confirming the incident, the state Police Public Relations Officer, (PPRO) Funmi Odunlami, said investigation had commenced into the incident, assuring that the killers would be arrested.

“We have commenced investigation into the incident, and the criminals will soon be arrested” the PPRO said.

Source: Sunshinetruth

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Okowa mourns Delta- born Gospel Singer, Sammie Okposo

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) vice presidential candidate and governor of Delta, Ifeanyi Okowa, expressed his condolences to the Okposo family and the residents of Isoko in the state over Sammie Okposo’s loss.

The late Okposo was a native of Ivori-Irri in Delta’s Isoko South Local Government Area. He reportedly passed away in Lagos early on November 25. He was 51.

Okowa expressed sadness over the passing of the “Wellu Wellu” crooner in the condolence message delivered by his chief press secretary, Mr. Olisa Ifeajika, in Asaba, saying that it was a significant loss for the deceased’s family, Deltans, and fans of gospel music worldwide.

He claims that the popular gospel musician’s passing is a great loss to music fans, his family, the Ivori-Irri community, and the Isoko nation because of his extraordinary talent and contributions to the development of gospel music both locally and internationally.

The late Okposo was referred to by the governor as a “gentleman gospel artist,” who made contributions to the expansion and modernization of Nigeria’s entertainment industry.

He declared that Okposo, one of the musical industry’s progenitors of the gospel genre, would be sadly missed by both his coworkers and followers.

“I mourn the loss of an illustrious son of our state and a great minister in gospel music on behalf of the government and people of Delta.

He said, “The news of his passing was shocking, and it is indeed a great loss because he was a valued asset to Deltans and Nigerians, especially as his songs continue to encourage many to worship God.”

Okowa prayed to God to accept the soul of the deceased and give the family and friends the strength to bear his passing.

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Your support is important to get FG’s approval of Port Ondo, Igbasan tells Journalists

Ondo State Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Pastor Emmanuel Igbersan has solicited journalists cooperation and support to strengthen the State government’s case for approval of Port Ondo.

Pastor Igbasan made the call in his office when he received in audience leadership of the Ondo State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) on Friday, 18th November, 2022.The Commissioner urged them to use their professional investigative skills and reportage to write, analyse and project to the world the potentials of and benefits, which Port Ondo will bring to Ondo State in particular and Nigeria as a whole.

According to him, the Port Ondo is the only area having the size and depth of a real sea port in the country.
He said, “if you look at all the Ports in Nigeria, from Badagry to Apapa, Onne and Asaba, they are all River Ports. The only place you with all the attributes of a Seaport is in Ondo State. We have done all the paperworks required by law and also paid the required application fee. Use your talents to tell the world that Port Ondo deserves approval.”

He explained that the State government is working on the Information Ministry to make it meet modern day publicity of its activities. He promised that the State will continue to engage the media in its activities to continually portray the government in good light.

Igbasan said the state government has been getting national and international awards and recognition as the best in terms of budgetary transparency. The Commissioner added that a recent Poverty Index Report published by the National Bureau of Statistics says Ondo has the least poverty rate in the country, adding that the state intends to maintain its leading position among states in Nigeria.

In his contribution, the Permanent Secretary, Mr. Bayo Phillip commended journalists for projecting the state favourably to the world.
He appealed to them for more cooperation and support to enable the world know how the government is delivering dividends of democracy to the people.

Earlier, Chairman of the Council, Prince Leke Adegbite had said journalists would always support any government program that benefits the people, such as the Amotekun security network. He commended the government achievements on infrastuctural development and budgetting, saying the accolades coming from local and international organisations are well deserved.

Prince Adegbite appealed to the Commissioner to improve funding of the State media houses and the media as whole, saying the Fourth Estate is the only sector operating without budgetary allocation.

The NUJ Chairman asked the government for streamlining of tax payment system to put an end to multiple taxation in the state.

Signed:
Sunday Ajibola,
Head Media,
Ministry of Economic Planning and Budget.

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Ondo Prophet remanded over death of Church member’s son

A Chief Magistrates’ Court in Akure has remanded a 45-year-old prophet, Samuel Alade-Emin, for allegedly killing his member’s son, Olasupo Abiona.

The Hope Metro gathered that the deceased, who had been declared missing for seven days, died after he was found in the prophet’s custody.

He was said to have died at an undisclosed hospital, after consuming a suspected poisonous substance given to him by the said prophet.

 It was also learnt that the mother of the deceased was the iya-ijo of the church.

The defendant was arraigned before Chief Magistrate, Musa Al-Yunus, on two counts bothering on deprivation of liberty and murder.

According to the prosecution, the defendant commited the offence between August 22 and 27, 2022 at Alagbado village via Ore.

Police prosecutor, Nelson Akintimehin told the court that the prophet unlawfully detained the deceased, who happened to be the son of one of the elders in the church, one Olasupo Abiona, in his custody against his wish, which deprived him of his liberty.

Adetimehin also alleged that the defendant in the process administered a substance suspected to be a poison to the deceased which made him to vomit blood that led to his death.

The offences contravene sections 365 and 316(5) of the Criminal Law of Ondo State, 2006

The prosecutor, in a seven-paragraph remand application urged the court to keep the defendant at the Olokuta Correctional Centre pending the outcome of  advice from the Director of Public Prosecutions(DPP).

The prophet whose plea was not taken, when addressing the court, said he is innocent of the allegations levelled against him.

Alade-Emi said the deceased was under treatment in his church before he got missing.

He added that he was part of the search team looking for the deceased when he was declared  missing for almost six days before the deceased walked into the church premises.

“Immediately he entered the church, I told my wife to call his  mother that his lost son has been found. His mother came, she saw her son and he was immediately rushed to the hospital.

 “It was quite unfortunate that he died in the hospital after ten days of treatment,”he said.

Lawyer to the defendant, A. Motunrayo prayed the court to grant her client bail in most liberal terms, emphasising on his innocence.

 Chief Magistrate Musa Al-Yunus ordered the remand of the defendant pending an advice from the state Director of Public Prosecutions.

Al-Yunus adjourned the case till February 9, 2023.

Source: The Hope

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How Pastor, two others dismembered man, sold parts for 200k

Men of Ogun state Police Command on Saturday, November 19, arrested one pastor and two others for abducting and killing a 39-year-old man identified as Adekunle Muyiwa and dismembering his body for ritual purposes. 


A statement released by the command’s spokesperson, SP Abimbola Oyeyemi, gave the names of the suspects as Idowu Abel, Clement Adeniyi and Pastor Felix Ajadi. He said they were arrested following a report lodged at Owode Yewa divisional headquarters on the 15th of November 2022 by one Oluwaseyi Adekunle, the elder brother of the victim, who reported that his younger brother left home on 10th of November 2022 and hadn’t returned home since then .

”Upon the report, the DPO Owode Yewa division, CSP Mohammed S. Baba, detailed his Crack detectives to unravel the mystery behind the sudden disappearance of the man. 

In the course of their investigation, it was discovered that Idowu Abel was the person who came to pick the missing man from his house on that fateful day.  Upon the discovery, the said Idowu Abel was traced and arrested. 

On interrogation, Idowu Abel confessed that the victim, who happened to be his bossom friend was lured out by him and taken to his second accomplice, Clement Adeniyi”s farm where he was killed and butchered to pieces. 

He confessed further that it was one herbalist who was introduced to him by pastor Felix Ajadi that requested for human head, heart, two hands, and legs. He stated further that the said herbalist who is now at large promised to pay him the sum of #200,000 if he is able to get the listed human parts for him.

He explained further that the herbalist paid #80,000 as advance payment  with the promise to pay the balance of #120,000  on receiving the items. 

After collecting the advance payment, Idowu Abel went to his bossom friend Muyiwa Adekunle and asked him to escort him to somewhere. 

Being a long time friend, the victim who didn’t suspect any foul play followed him innocently, and he was taken to the farm of Clement Adeniyi where they killed him and dismembered his body. His head was cut off, the heart was also removed. 

The remaining parts was hurriedly buried in a shallow grave in the said farm.” the statement in part reads.

Oyeyemi added that the friend’s confession led to the arrest of Clement Adeniyi and Pastor Felix Ajadi, while the herbalist who was simply identified as Abeeb a.k.a Boko has taken to flight. 

Meanwhile, the Commissioner of Police, CP Lanre Bankole, has ordered the immediate transfer of the suspects to Homicide section of the state Criminal Investigation Departments for discreet investigation.  He also directed that the fleeing herbalist must be hunted and brought to book. 

Source: Lindaikeji

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Regent Taiwo Agbona of Aaye appreciates Mrs Akeredolu’s love, Chiefs and Ruling families

..congratulates new king as she announces end of her regency

The Regent of Aaye Community in Ifedore Local Government Area of Ondo State, Princess Taiwo Oyebola Agbona, has announced that her reign over the community ends .

Princess Taiwo who assumed the throne after the demise of his father in 2018, announced this on her Facebook page on Sunday.

“After my father( Oba J.B Agbona) passed on to Glory, I was asked to lead my community until a new king is selected.

I came on the throne as a Regent in 2018. At that beginning of the journey that has come to an end, I felt as if I have been saddled to carry the whole of the world on my fragile shoulder. The fact that it was a duty that I was never prepared for made it even more onerous. Nevertheless, it is needless to complain of cold when one is already in the river. On that promise, I braced up, took the challenge and made up my mind to put in my best.

In course of the Regentship, with the help of God Almighty, Aaye Town evidently witnessed a great deal of progress. The town that was hitherto relatively unknown now has its name on the global map. Benefits were brought to sons and daughters of the town, both towners and non-towners including non-indigenes living among us. Men, women and even children of the town at various times benefitted from state and Federal Government privileges under my headship.

The very firm foundation of this journey remains my quintessential mother( Olori A.A Agbona) who at all times stood firm with me, setting aside her own pursuits to see that I am whatever I am today. She labored day and night, prayed and spent her resources. Her commitment was total and unalloyed.

It is important at this point to mention the unquantifiable support of the entire council of chiefs of Aaye Town. They were in all ways supportive and understanding. I cannot imagine how the journey would have been without their backing and encouragement.

I want to appreciate the various organisations, corporate bodies and media houses who at a time or the other helped in projecting my works and town itself to the larger world. Some of these organisations even found me worthy of awards and special recognitions. I am grateful for the honour.

I also want to use this medium to appreciate Her Excellency , wife of the Governor of Ondo State (Chief Mrs Betty Akeredolu). I acknowledge the love and support you gave me during the course of this journey. You are one the charming garderners who made my flowers blossom.

No amount of words and appreciation can be enough to quantify the love and support I received from the members of my immediate family during my period on the throne. Big thanks to Agbona , Orimoro and Odopetu families of Aaye Kingdom.They stood by me solidly through thick and thin, the advice, encouragement and stimulations were the blocks and materials with which the entire success story was built with.

To everyone, political office holders, Royal fathers, Regents, Friends and Colleagues in various groups (Youths, landlords association and clergy men) who at one point or the other contributed to this journey, I am quite appreciative of your support.

It is therefore my prayer that this new dispensation usher in greater development for Aaye Town and all its dwellers. I pray also that may God Almighty sustain, lead and guide my path in my future endeavours.

FOUR YEARS OF GREAT REIGN!
LONG LIVE AAYE TOWN!
CONGRATULATION TO THE NEW ALAAYE OF AAYE!”

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Court orders INEC to resume voters registration

A Federal High Court, Abuja, on Tuesday, ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to immediately resume the continuous voters registration (CVR) until 90 days before the 2023 general elections.

Justice Inyang Ekwo, in a judgment, also directed the INEC to ensure that eligible Nigerians are not deprived the opportunity to have the voter’s card for the forthcoming poll.

Justice Ekwo held that it was the constitutional responsibility of the electoral umpire to make adequate provision for the exercise in accordance with the Nigerian laws.

“The case of the plaintiffs succeeds on merit,” the judge declared.

NAN reports that Anajat Salmat and three others had sued INEC as sole defendant in a suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/1343/2022.

In the originating summons filed before the court, the plaintiffs argued that INEC cannot stop the CVR contrary to the stipulated provisions of the constitution.

They urged the court to order the electoral umpire to resume the exercise in accordance with the law of the country.

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I want Bemore Girls to translate capacities to wealth – Ondo First Lady

Wife of the Governor of Ondo State and founder of BEMORE Empowered Girls’ Foundation, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, has expressed plans to assist girls who have acquired the various life-enhancing competencies through the annual BEMORE Summer Boot Camp to translate the skills to wealth.

The governor’s wife made the disclosure on Tuesday during a meeting with the Founder & CEO of MicroGen Renewables, Mr Martyn Cowsill, at Southern Sun Hotel, Ikoyi, Lagos State.

In five editions, the all-female two-week boot camp which was established in 2017 by Mrs Akeredolu has trained about 2,000 girls from the various parts of the country.

According to the First Lady: “The BEMORE girls have convincingly demonstrated capacity in the various spheres of their training, particularly in the aspect of renewable energy.

“And having demonstrated capacity, the next level is to help them to earn a living with their capacities, create wealth and contribute meaningfully to the development of their various communities. The cliché: “When you train a woman, you train a nation” explains this need.”

The Microgen Renewables Group is a consortium of companies that promotes the renewable energy industry with a mission to acclererate the rate of new electrification of rural communities in Sub-Saharan Africa by widespread installation of micro hydropower mini-grids.

Mr Cowsill, through his company, is preparing a project which will install decentralised micro hydropower mini-grids in some of the remote, off-grid communities of rural Nigeria. He is also keen to develop female employment right across the supply chain by partnering with BEMORE and wavelength IPS for the project in Nigeria.

The meeting has in attendance the Technical Director of the BEMORE Empowered Girls’ Foundation, Mr Bassey Obeten.

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Ondo SOCU hails Akeredolu as NBS ranks Ondo as state with the lowest poverty index

Ondo State Operations Coordinating Unit (SOCU) Commends the State Government on the new Multidimensional Poverty Index report as released by the National Bureau of Statistics where the state has the least poverty index in Nigeria.

Ondo State Operation Coordinating Unit, one of the lead government Agencies with mandate for poverty eradication in Ondo State has welcomed the latest report of the Multidimensional Poverty Index which rates the State to have the least poverty rate in Nigeria. This performance, according to the SOCU Coordinator Olaoluwa Bankole esq is as a result of collective efforts of stakeholders in Social Protection space strongly supported by the administration of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu, SAN (CON).

Olaoluwa added that this further proves the unwavering commitment of the state government in ensuring that poverty is reduced to the barest in the state, and this is evident in testimonies that abound from various beneficiciaries of interventions within the state.

SOCU enjoins the stakeholders not to rest on their Oars in the quest to make Ondo State an egalitarian Society.

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Employ communication tool for smooth marital journey, Mrs Akeredolu advises newlyweds

..as Hon. Ronke Ojo’s son ties knot with hearthrob

Wife of the Governor of Ondo State, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, has emphasised the need for constant communication between couples to enhance sustainable marital journey.

Speaking as the Chairperson of the wedding reception between Oluwafemi Ojo and Oluwatobi Ogunyebi, held at
Canaanland event centre, Limson Road, Ojodu Lagos State, the Ondo First Lady admonished the newly-weds not to allow third party’s interference, their parents inclusive, rather utilise communication tool to sort out differences.

Appreciating the profession of the bride as a military officer which made the ceremony to observe special parade for the couple, Mrs. Akeredolu described it as an evidence that what a man can do, a woman can do even better, saying that “And what that connotes is female leadership”.

“Let me advise you as a couple, the journey of marriage ‘no be rice and beans’ let me confess to you; it’s never smooth nobody can ever claimed that the journey in marriage is smooth, it’s full of ups and downs”.

For them to have a smooth marital life, the Ondo First Lady, advised further that: ” You must have one powerful tool or skill and that is communication.  You should be able to talk to each other”.

She advised couples to settle misunderstandings among themselves rather than reporting to their parents. “You should be able to work out differences”, she added.

She, therefore, congratulated the couple and wished them a fruitful marital life.

In attendance included the wife of the deputy governor, Mrs. Oluwaseun Aiyedatiwa, and members of the Foundation for Wives of Ondo State Officials and Female Political Appointees, FOWOSO.

Mary Agidi
Special Assistant to the Governor on Media
(Office of the First Lady)
Nov. 19th, 2022

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S/West APC Publicists applaud Fayemi’s contributions to national development

..Describe him as Emeritus Governor

The State Publicity Secretaries of the All Progressives Congress ( APC) in the South West zone have described the immediate past governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, CON as an Emeritus Governor who served both his state and country meritoriously.

The team of publicists visited Fayemi in his Ado Ekiti private residence at the weekend, where they urged the ex-Ekiti helmsman not to relent in giving more of himself to Nigeria and humanity as a whole, despite his serving out his two-term as a governor as statutorily required

They described as patriotic and statesmanlike the decision of the ex-Governor to drop his ambition to rule the country, and pulled his political weight behind Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who eventually emerged as the party’s presidential candidate.

It would be recalled that the former minister of solid minerals made a surprise withdrawal from the presidential primary of the APC, and declared support for Senator Tinubu, and has since been working assiduously to ensure his (Tinubu’s) victory at the 2023 presidential poll.

Responding, Dr. Fayemi assured his visitors that he was ready to be at the forefront of campaigns to ensure victory for the candidates of his party in the 2023 general election.

Dr. Fayemi, who made history as the first governor to handover to a successor in Ekiti State, warned that Nigeria should not be allowed to fall into wrong hands.

“We should do everything possible to ensure the nation continues its journey along the path of stability, prosperity and greatness”, he added.

The former Chairman, Nigeria Governors’ Forum continued: “As a progressive party, populated by resourceful and passionate patriots, we must ensure that no stone is left unturned to mobilize support for our presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who is clearly the best among the pack of those seeking to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari in office come May 2023. We have the wherewithal to run a successful campaign for our presidential and other candidates. The presidential election, in particular, is ours to lose.”

Highpoint of the courtesy visit was the proclamation of the immediate past Ekiti State helmsman as an Emeritus Governor on account of his high-profile stewardship, characterised by numerous achievements and enviable record of service to the country.

The party publicists at the meeting included Hons Tunde Oladunjoye (Ogun), Segun Dipe (Ekiti), Alex Kalejaye (Ondo), Adunola Oyewole (Osun), Olawale Sadare (Oyo) while Seye Oladejo (Lagos) was unavoidably absent.

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Gov Akeredolu bags new Telegraph’s ‘Governor of the YEAR 2022 AWARD ON SECURITY’

..State Police will soon Becomes a Reality, says Gov Akeredolu

Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN CON has won, “Year 2022 New Telegraph Governor of the Year Award on Security” .

The highly glamorous event was held at Balmoral Event Center, Federal Palace Hotel, Victoria Island on Friday.

Ondo State Deputy Governor, Hon Lucky Aiyedatiwa while receiving the award on behalf of the Governor said, Akeredolu’s administration investments in health care, education, security, employment, rural-urban development, roads and workers welfare were so significant that latest data from National Bureau of Statistics ( NBS ), has disclosed that Ondo State has lowest poverty level in the Country with 27 percent.

“We believe development can only happen in an atmosphere of peace and security, hence our investment in security, especially the AMOTEKUN Corp that is complimenting the efforts of security agencies effectively”.

“Today, despite the challenges of equipment and the needed fire power to perform efficiently, our AMOTEKUN Corp as most of us are aware and have heard are performing very well”.

“Like I have said severally, I don’t understand why the federal government will allow private security firms to give sophisticated weapons to their personnel and the States security outfits are not allowed to do same”, the governor wondered.

He however believed that the issue of state police would soon become reality.

While thanking National Telegraph Newspaper for the honour and recognition, Aiyedatiwa said the Award would spur Mr Governor to do more in good governance.

Top government officials, business community, politicians, journalists and other eminent personalities were in attendance at the well attended event.

Photo Credit : Abayomi Adefolalu.

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Ondo has the lowest poverty level in Nigeria – FG

…gets Award of Excellence on Fiscal Transparency and Accountability

…It’s A Result Of Our Deliberate Developmental Efforts – Akeredolu

The federal government has disclosed that Ondo State has the lowest poverty level in the country with 27 percent.

The figure was presented during the launch of Nigeria’s Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) Survey in Abuja on Thursday.

The survey was conducted by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the National Social Safety-Nets Coordinating Office (NASSCO), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI).

According to the report, the measure used to calculate the figure was based on Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) with five components of health, living standard, education, security and unemployment.

The survey, which reveled that 63 percent of persons within Nigeria, 133 million, are living in poverty, identified Sokoto State as having the highest poverty level among the states in the country with 91 percent while Ondo has the lowest with 27 percent.

This is even as the state also received an Award of Excellence on the World Bank’s States Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability (SFTAS) for being a very good performer on Fiscal Transparency and Accountability.

The award was received in Abuja at an event tagged, “Federal Government of Nigeria/World Bank States Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability (SFTAS) recognition dinner with Governors/Awards Night.”

Reacting to the development, Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, who spoke through his Chief Press Secretary, Richard Olatunde, said his administration has continued to prioritise the need to lift the people of the state out of poverty.

He noted that his administration’s programmes and policies are tailored towards addressing the needs of the people and providing succor for even generations unborn.

“It is clear from the measure used to calculate the figure which was based on Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) with five components of health, living standard, education, security and unemployment.

“The Governor Akeredolu administration has continued to record giant strides in all these areas, thereby reducing poverty levels in the state and promoting more economic activities.

“On health, this administration inherited two Mother and Child hospitals in Akure and Ondo town which services had already been suspended on account of backlog of debts incurred on consumables, most significantly on drugs.

“Governor Akeredolu revived services at these facilities and expanded the mother and child hospitals from just two to seven across the three senatorial districts of the state.

“Similarly, On the 6th of February, 2018, Governor Akeredolu signed into Law the bill establishing the Ondo State Contributory Health Commission (ODCHC) and the Ondo State Contributory Health Scheme (ODCHS). The ODCHC has a five bespoke health insurance products for all strata of the teeming population of Ondo state under the ODCHS cover, including the Abiyamo Maternal & Child Health Insurance Scheme (AMCHIS).

“The Abiyamo Maternal & Child Health Insurance Scheme (AMCHIS) is a State Equity Scheme for two sets of Vulnerables – Pregnant women and Under-5 children. This program is fully funded by the State Government.

“Governor Akeredolu launched this scheme on the 3rd of December, 2019. Since the inception of the scheme, it has made provision of maternal and child care free and sustainable. It gives access to Antenatal care, delivery (including Caesarean section), post-natal care for the mother (up to 6 weeks after delivery), neonatal care (first 30 days of baby’s life) and treatment of common illnesses in children till they attain the age of five years. Beneficiaries do not pay for services.

“The pre-qualification criterion to enjoy this scheme is the Kaadi Igbeayo (Ondo State Residency Card), which is issued to residents of Ondo State by the State Information Technology Agency (SITA). Governor Akeredolu has also ensured that the card is issued at NO COST to pregnant women willing to become AMCHIS beneficiaries.

“It should also be known that the premium for AMCHIS is solely paid by the Ondo State Government and there is a state budgetary line yearly to this effect. Till date, AMCHIS has recorded over 22,500 beneficiaries (pregnant women and children below five years of age).

“Since this scheme was launched on the 3rd of December, 2019, a total number of 24,678 including Pregnant Women and Children under 5 have benefited till date. At the Mother and Child Hospital, Akure alone, over 4,842 total number of Pregnant Women have accessed Ante-Natal Care till date with 3,432 total deliveries.

“As we speak, there is an ongoing construction of a modern world-class 250-bed University of Medical Sciences Teaching Hospital complexes in Akure and Ondo town respectively. This is aside the regular provision of medical equipment at the teaching hospital and Mother and Child hospitals.

“On Education, Governor Akeredolu has reconstructed over 800 public primary schools in the state with perimeter fence and modern equipment. This has increased enrollment in the public schools and encouraged parents and guardians to send their children or wards to schools with ease.

“The adequate security in the state has continued to attract investors. The hospitality business is growing in Akure, the state capital, and other parts of the state. Over the last five years, Governor Akeredolu has regularly equipped the police, Army, Navy, Civil Defence, the DSS and other security agencies in the state.

“The establishment of the Amotekun corps has reinforced confidence among our people. The usual fear that accompanied inter-state trading and other economic activities within the state has been eroded by the galant efforts of Amotekun corps. Ondo is safe for business.

“In Ore, the Ondo-Linyi industrial hub which has also continued to provide jobs and oil the state’s economy is another giant leap taken by the Governor Akeredolu administration. Today, there are over eight companies including textile industry, MDF factory, HDF factory, cassava to ethanol pant, Truck assembly plant, and other investments at the industrial hub.

“The Ondo State Government in partnership with the Linyi Municipal in China made this happened. Many indigenes and dweller of the state are employed into these industries and many more. Just as the growing hospitality industry in the state are providing jobs for the unemployed.

“Unlike before when investors drove for hours to come to Ondo State, there are three major airlines that fly Lagos-Akure-Abuja route. Undoubtedly, these have promoted investment opportunities, driven provision of employment and promote economic activities in the Sunshine State.

“At the Ondo State Internal Revenue Service where Governor Akeredolu built the first of its kind Revenue House, over 500 young graduates have been employed. This is aside the recruitment of over one thousand teachers, over 425 health workers including Consultants, Nursing officers, Staff Nurses/Midwives, Medial doctors, Pharmacists, Radiographers among others.

“Also, the State Primary Healthcare Development Agency has recruited 804 health personnel. The UNIMEDTH wasn’t left out. Over 400 medical personnel have so far been recruited. At the Mother and Child hospital in Akure, there are 434 health workers presently working at the facility.”

“Lastly, the infrastructural development in the state is massive. Over 274.11km of roads have been completed across the 18 Local Government Areas of the State while 120km are ongoing.

Among the completed roads awaiting commissioning are the 4.5km Agadagba Obon-New Ajapa Road in Ese-Odo Local Government Area; 10.0km Okitipupa-Igbokoda Bye pass, Okitipupa Local Government Area; 3.0km Oke Igbo Township roads, Ile-Oluji/Okeigbo Local Government; 8.05km Ikaramu-Akunnu Road in Akoko Northwest Local Government Area and 1.6km Ikaro Township Road, in Ose Local Government Area.”

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BRECAN embraces Global Strategy to eliminate cervical cancer, engages Ondo students on prevention

..enjoins women to participate in the ongoing free screening

In observance of the November 17 Global Strategy to accelerate the elimination of cervical cancer, the Breast Cancer Association of Nigeria, BRECAN, organised an interactive session in Akure, the Ondo State capital for students of selected secondary and primary schools.

The interactive session, which was held at the BRECAN House ijapo Estate, featured essay Competition on cervical cancer awareness amongst students from ijapo high school, Aquinas college, Seaba model school, St. Peter’s unity school, St. Michael Catholic school, Oyemekun grammar school, Federal Government Girls College, and African Church comprehensive high school.

In her welcome address, the State Chairperson of BRECAN, Mrs. Chinyere Iyke-Nneke, asserted that the Founder of BRECAN and First Lady of Ondo State, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, due to her passion to prevent women from dying needlessly, keyed in to the global strategy to eliminate cervical cancer which was birthed by the World Health Organisation in 2018.

BRECAN Chairperson

“And in 2020, the strategy was launched, and the Founder of BRECAN, being a woman who has strong passion for women the reason for which she established BRECAN 25years ago to prevent women from needless death of breast cancer, with the same passion keys in to the global cervical cancer awareness strategy. Today, we are keying in to that strategy to eliminate cervical cancer and we thought we should catch them young , interact with the secondary schools to know the awareness level that we have around us and see how BRECAN can improve on its awareness creation “, she said.

The BRECAN Chairperson used the medium to encouraged women to seize the opportunity of the ongoing free cervical cancer screening, championed by the First Lady in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and the WHO, across the health centres in the state.

She also enjoined men to allow their Wives to access the screening and spiritual leaders not to prevent women from seeking medical attention.

Adding to the knowledge of the students on cervical cancer, Dr. Johnson Olaniyi who spoke on ‘Eliminating Cervical Cancer’, described the disease as the second most common cancer in women and commonest genital cancer, which develops slowly and could take between 15-20years before resulting to full-blown cancer.

According to him, 274,000 deaths occur every year with 85% of the death and 80% new cases occurred in developing countries like Nigeria. He added that, about 80% of women presented in advance stages which made it a leading cause of cancer mortality in Nigeria.

Dr. Ndidi Okunniga showing cervical cancer awareness colour of Teal ribbon

Dr. Olaniyi pinpointed high risk types 16&18 of Humanpapiloma Virus(HPV), as causes of cervical cancer; as he listed multiple Sexual partners, early collarche, multiparity, cigarette smoking, women marriage to uncircumcised men and previous history of sexually transmitted disease as factors responsible for it.

The event also featured demonstration of Breast Self Examination, the students were taught how to check for lumps in their breast with the use of BRECAN’s adopted SEKEM fun dance.

The Global Strategy to Accelerate the Elimination of Cervical cancer proposes 90-70-90 targets that must be met by 2030 for countries to be on the path towards cervical cancer elimination.

It includes 90% of girls fully vaccinated with HPV vaccine by age 15 years, 70% of women are screened with a high-performance test by 35 years of age and again by 45 years of age, 90% of women identified with cervical disease receive treatment (90% of women with precancer treated, and 90% of women with invasive cancer managed).

Story Credit: Mary Agidi
Photos: Saidu Abdulrahman

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657 days away, family demands whereabout of ex-NNPC director, two staff


*Appeal to Governor Akeredolu to help fish out perpetrators, rescue kinsman



*Accuse Security Agencies of Complicity

FAMILIES of a former staff of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr. Segun Akinmeji, who was kidnapped under suspicious circumstances for the past 21 months, have appealed to Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, to help find his whereabout.

They lamented that their son had only retired home to contribute to the economic development of his country and help reduce unemployment as a responsible citizen by investing millions of Naira in the state but was preyed upon by the wicked.

Mr Akinmeji (62yrs), who retired from NNPC and got all his retirement benefits in December 2020 as a director and top management staff, a native of Irele Local Government Area of Ondo State, was abducted alongside two of his workers.

Other victims are: Mr. Azeez Sikiru, a bricklayer and a tiler identified as Ibrahim, who were said to be kidnapped alongside their boss by unknown gunmen at his farm located in Iju-Itaogbolu, Akure North Local Government Area of the state, on Saturday January 30, 2021.

The “Guardian” reported that it was the last Saturday of the month and environmental sanitation day, which restricts human and vehicular movement from 7:00am to 10:00am monthly. The whereabout of the trip has since been a mystery.

While speaking to our correspondent in Akure, the family spokesperson and representative of the Akinmeji family, Mr. Samson Akinmeji, lamented that the entire family in Irele Local Government Area of the state have been thrown into despair for the past 657 days.

Akinmeji, who is a brother to the former NNPC staff, recounted that the immediate family and wife of the victim told the family that they were kidnapped on January 30 while sources in Iju reported that it was on January 15, 2021.

He narrated that “The circumstances surrounding their sudden disappearance for the past 21 months show that it was an abduction orchestrated by persons that are very close to him, not leaving the immediate family and workers on the farm out of any benefit of doubt.

“Mr. Akinmeji just retired from NNPC service in December 2020 and the kidnappers must have beeen aware that he just got his pension and gratuities, which will definitely be a huge amount of money.”

He added that “On that fateful day, all the regular staff of the farm, who had accommodation on the farm, were also absent; giving suspicious alibi as defence from the scene of crime.

“Being a sanitation day, Sikiru, who has been working on the farm and close confidant with Mr Akinmeji, contacted two other persons to work on an ongoing project in the farm. The three persons are: Sikiru, Ibrahim and one Aliu Akeem; they left earlier to the farm on Sikiru’s motorcycle before sanitation began by 7:00am.”

According to him, “It was revealed by tracking on Mr Akinmeji’s line that Sikiru, who was the head job-man, called his boss severally, perhaps waiting for him to come.

“It was learnt that the farm owner got there between 11:00pm to noon; and the unknown gunmen pounced on them shortly he arrived the farm. So, it was premeditated.

“The unknown gunmen whisked away three out of the four persons they met on the farm: Mr. Akinmeji, Sikiru and Ibrahim, while Akeem managed to escape the abduction. He ran away with Sikiru’s bike, reported at Iju Police Station but with a fake name; and disappeared into the thin air for many months.

“He neither returned to Sikiru’s wife to report the incident nor return her husband’s motorcycle,” he revealed.

Speaking on the complicity of the kidnapping, as reported by the wife, Mrs Comfort Akinmeji, he added that “The police sprang into action and organized a search party alongside Amotekun Security Outfit, local hunters and OPC members to no avail.

“In one of the searches, after the kidnappers had contacted the family members for N100m ransom, an OPC member, who was later discovered to be a former staff of the farm owner, was overzealous and didn’t wait to be teamed amongst the search groups: went alone to the bush and was killed by the kidnappers.

“After awhile, the search groups returned to the rendezvous, where they had departed, but the deceased OPC member was missing.

“They went back to the bush to look for him but found him murdered in cold blood under suspicious circumstances: his face was covered, his hands and legs were tied, and was shot at very close range.”

He revealed further that “As confirmed by the immediate past Commissioner for Police, Mr. Bolaji Salami, the OPC member must have identified the kidnappers, who killed him to cover up their tracks and identities.

“The kidnappers only contacted the family the first week of February and the ransom was negotiated to N20m, which was raised by relatives overseas and well-wishers at home.

“While speaking with family members from the kidnappers’ den, my brother asked the family to give his abductors whatever they wanted, informing them that his captors were people who know him very well and know that he could afford their demands.”

He disclosed that the attempt to pay ransom was to no avail, lamenting that the security agencies failed to give a clue on the whereabout of the former NNPC staff. He also expressed frustration at the huge money spent at Anti-Kidnapping Units of the police that yielded no result.

Meanwhile independent investigation, however, revealed that the farm owner, Mr Akinmeji and his two staff, were not kidnapped on Saturday January 30, 2021 as claimed by the wife but Friday January 15, 2021.

Sources in Iju, the town where the farm is located, reported that the incident became public on February 2, 2021 after the OPC man was killed by the suspected kidnappers.

According to them, the wife and immediate family of the victim also resumed operations at the Iju farm few weeks after her husband and their father was still declared missing, spiking the suspicion of the people against them.

Some residents of the town, who spoke to our correspondent under anonymity terms, mentioned that the farm owner had been released to his wife Comfort, who was said to have taken him to unknown destination for treatment.

Also, the Monarch of Iju Town, on several occasions noted that the farm owner had been released to his wife, Comfort, whom the family alleged of undermining every move to unravel the mystery behind her husband’s disappearance.

The brother of the ex-NNPC staff, Samson, confirmed that the wife did not inform any member of the family that his husband was kidnapped until the OPC member was killed and the news went viral across the state.

“There is also a conspiracy theory that suggested that Mr. Segun Akinmeji has been released by the kidnappers but hidden by his wife and children. Some people in Iju town, where the farm is situated, believe that he has been released to his wife and children.

“And whenever family members at home and overseas call them on efforts to rescue him, the wife and children would scorn them, responding with ease that their father and husband will soon come home but nowhere to be found for the past 16 weeks,” the brother said.

He lamented that several efforts made to reach the police, Amotekun Corps and other security agencies in the state did not yield any fruitful result, alleging the Anti-kidnapping Unit of the Nigeria Police Force, Alagbaka, of conspiracy.

“The family was asked to bring N250,000 to track the phone of the victims and suspects, but till today we did not get any reasonable results on the call-logs from the police. Even the Department of State Security (DSS) and Amotekun Corps left the family in the lurch.

“Several letters were submitted at the Governor’s Office, Alagbaka, to register our frustrations and seek the prompt intervention of the state government. But it appeared there was a deliberate move to jeopardize our efforts to rescue our kinsman.”

He lamented that the sister-in-law, Comfort, who hails from Cross-River State, alongside her children, had not been cooperating with the family in the bid to find the missing man, revealing that their attitudes point to the fact that they have skeleton in their cupboard.

The family appealed to Ondo State government, DSS, police, NSCDC, Amotekun Corps and other relevant security agencies to wade into the matter to unravel the circumstances surrounding the mysterious disappearance of their kinsman.

“Our son and brother is the pride of the family and Ondo State at large and should not just be missing like that without any clue to his whereabouts. He is a benefactor to everyone that came his way and we cannot afford to miss such a rare gem.

“We appeal to the state Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, to intervene in this matter. Our ‘Talk-and-do-Governor, should re-open this matter by keeping the security agencies on their toes, especially the Amotekun Corps that have been unraveling such security matters in the state.

“For years, he has been managing diabetes and keeping him perpetually away from home would further complicate his health condition. Mr Governor, as the Chief Security Officer of the state, help us bring back our kinsman.”

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FG is committed to Ondo deep Sea Port~ Osinbajo

*** As Aiyedatiwa Visits Vice President.

The proposed Ondo Deep Seaport got a big boost on Wednesday as Nigeria’s Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo declared that, the Federal Government would support Ondo State Government to ensure the port becomes a reality.

The Vice President made the commitment during Ondo State Acting Governor/Deputy Governor, Hon Lucky Aiyedatiwa’s visit to the Vice President, at Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Aiyedatiwa was accompanied on the visit by the Chairman/CEO , Nigeria in Diaspora Commission ( NIDCOM ), Hon Dr Abike Dabiri-Erewa.

Osinbajo commended Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN, CON, for his vision on the Deep Seaport, believed to be the needed turning point in the Sunshine State.

Responding, Aiyedatiwa thanked the Vice President for the audience and federal Government’s commitment to the actualization of the seaport, promising that Governor Akeredolu’s administration would not relent in it’s efforts for a new and prosperous Ondo State.

Ondo State Executive Council led by the Chief of Staff to Governor, Chief Olugbenga Ale accompanied Acting Governor/Deputy Governor’s visit.

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Police arrest 9 suspected Bank hackers

The Delta State Commissioner of Police, Mohammed Ali, on Monday, confirmed the arrest of nine suspected bank account hackers in the state.

Ali, while addressing journalists on the development, said the syndicate specialised in using tricycles to rob passengers of their valuables in the state.

He said, “In a bid to get rid of the syndicate who uses tricycles to rob passengers of their valuables, phones, hack into their accounts and withdraw their money.

“I directed the command’s D-Coy squad to investigate and ensure that members of the syndicate are arrested and brought to book.

“In compliance with my directive, the team embarked on an intelligence-led investigation, stormed their hideout behind Point Hotel in Iyiagu Estate, in Anambra State, and arrested one Ikechukwu Ayigbe, 26, who is the gang’s bank account hacker.

“Others arrested were Tobi James, 30, who buys the stolen phones and waybills them to Lagos, and seven other suspects, with over 60 SIM cards recovered.”

Ali, who said the investigation was ongoing to bring the perpetrators to book, commanded residents in the state for their support to the police.

He urged the public to provide useful and timely information that would aid the command in crime fighting, adding that their identities would be treated with the utmost confidentiality.

Punch

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We’ve dragged Soludo to Igbo deities over comment on Obi, says Ohanaeze Worldwide

Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, an Igbo socio-cultural association, has tackled Chukwuma Soludo, governor of Anambra, over his recent comment about Peter Obi, presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP).

The association is different from Ohanaeze Ndigbo, the group headed by George Obiozor.

In an article published on Monday, Soludo had said Obi knows that “he can’t and won’t win” the presidential election.

Reacting in a statement issued on Tuesday, Okechukwu Isiguzoro, secretary-general of the association, said the group has taken Soludo begore “two famous divinities and deities” over his comment.


The group said it is “unreasonable public behaviour” for Soludo to “cast aspersions” on Obi who is his kinsman and presidential candidate from the south-east.

“Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide has advised Anambra State Governor, Professor Chukwuma Soludo to concentrate on the current crisis in Anambra State and APGA and halt casting innuendo and aspersions on the person of Mr Peter Obi who is not in the same political party nor fighting the Anambra State Government,” the statement reads.

“Governor Soludo transgressed in choosing to revolt against the Labour Party Presidential candidate, Mr Peter Obi, who is his brother and predecessor.

“Ndigbo has dragged Governor Chukwuma Soludo to the two famous divinities and deities (Chokoleze in Mbaise and ubiniukpabi in Arochuku) for his unreasonable public behavior.

“The Governor behaves like he was fighting Peter Obi over his future ambition to be President in 2031.

“Our direct response to Governor Soludo’s verbal diarrhoea against Peter Obi is that Governor Soludo’s actions are ridiculous, unreasonable and premature. There was no locus for the Governor’s outburst, and the Igbo sanctions against Soludo to face Igbo deities will serve as a deterrent to southeast politicians who have been hired by enemies of Ndigbo and Nigerians to derail Obi’s Presidency in 2023.

“Governor Soludo exposed and indicted himself of treachery when he discredited APGA and Labour Party’s Presidential candidates as not viable alternatives to win the 2023 elections.”

The group said Nigerians should “disregard” Soludo’s comment about Obi and Philip Umeadi, presidential candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA).

“He had confirmed that he is the number one enemy of the New Nigeria and was hired by an unpopular Presidential candidate who is looking for Igbo politicians to pull down Obi’s popularity ahead of 2023,” the group added.

TheCableNews

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Ekiti gets new Speaker as Gov appoints 8 Cabinet members

The representative of Ikole 1 Constituency in the Ekiti State House of Assembly, Gboyega Aribisogan, has been elected as the new speaker of the assembly.

Aribisogan, who is a two-term lawmaker,  was elected at plenary on Tuesday, having polled 15 votes to defeat Olubunmi Adelugba (Emure Constituency) who got 10 votes.

He replaced the former Ekiti State Assembly speaker, Funminiyi Afuye, who died on October 19, 2022, after suffering cardiac arrest.

At the plenary, Tajudeen Akingbolu (Ekiti West 1) nominated Aribisogan and the nomination was seconded by Adegoke Olajide (Efon Constituency), while Bode Oyekola (Ekiti West 2) nominated Olubunmi Adelugba and seconded by Ojo Martin (Ijero Constituency).

Aribisogan was sworn in as speaker by the clerk of the house, Mr Tola Esan, following his victory in the election.

In his reaction, the new speaker expressed gratitude to his colleagues for the confidence reposed in him.

Aribisogan said, “I pledge to discharge my duties to the best of my ability and protect the constitution of the country and standing rules of the House of Assembly. I promise to remain committed to my duties as speaker of this honourable assembly.”

Meanwhile,

Ekiti State Governor, Biodun Oyebanji, has approved the appointment of eight special advisers.

The Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Yinka Oyebode, announced this in a statement in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.

He said the appointments were made to give the new administration the desired solid foundation and move the state forward.

He explained that the new special advisers were of cabinet rank.

Oyebode gave the names of the new appointees as Mr Niyi Adebayo, Budget, Economic Planning, and Performance Management; Mrs Tayo Adeola, Investment, Trade, and Industry.

Others are: Ebenezer Boluwade, Agriculture and Food Security; Kofoworola Aderiye, Education, Science and Technology; Chief Jide Awe, Political and Inter-Party Affairs; Tope Ogunleye, Bureau of Special Project; Seun Fakuade, Governance, Reforms and Innovation; and Yinka Oyebode, Media and Strategy/Chief Press Secretary.

Oyebode said the governor urged the appointees to see their appointments as an opportunity to contribute their time, talent, and expertise to the overall development of the state.

He said they would be sworn-in on Friday.

Oyebode also disclosed that General Ebenezer Ogundana had been re-appointed as Security Adviser to the Governor, with immediate effect.

NAN/Punch

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Contractor in court over N6m missing kerosene

A defendant, Isaac Bassey, has told Magistrate S.K. Matepo of the Samuel Ilori Courthouse in Ogbà, Lagos State, that he is not part of the contract that led to the disappearance of 33,000 litres of kerosene in the state.

Bassey, alongside one Peter, are on trial for allegedly stealing 33,000 litres of kerosene worth N6m and disposing of the delivery truck.

The defendant, who was led in evidence by the defence counsel, U.E. Udo, told the court that he was not a party to the matter.

He said one Ndubuisi contacted him for a delivery truck that could transport 33,000 litres of kerosene, but he could not provide it.

He said, “He sent one Morris to meet me. That day, I was sitting with Mr Peter (co-defendant). I told Morris that I didn’t have what Ndubuisi asked for. Mr Peter said he had a truck of 33,000 litres.”

Bassey said his involvement ended when Mr Peter called the owner of the truck who handed the truck to Ndubuisi, adding that Ndubuisi and his escorts loaded kerosene to the container and left.

He said Ndubuisi called him two days later to complain that the driver could not be reached.

He, however, noted that he received the same complaint the following Monday.

The witness said the union officers and the police were informed when the truck and the 33,000 litres of kerosene got missing.

Bassey said the police remanded him and Peter on Monday and asked Ndubuisi to come on Tuesday, but he did not show up until Friday.

“The owner of the kerosene told the police to lock up Ndubuisi because he was the one that diverted the product. The DPO said he was going to lock him up that Friday because he also had not shown up since Monday.

“But Ndubuisi called SARS operatives. They came that Friday evening and took us to their base in Ikeja, where I and Peter were remanded for two weeks,” Bassey added.

He said he was not part of the contract, adding that Ndubuisi falsified the loading and delivery documents.

Source: The Punch

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Photos of activities as Gov Akeredolu and Siblings bury their mother

Mother of the Governor of Ondo State, Late Lady Evangelist Grace Bosede Akeredolu , has been buried amidst pomp and pageantry in her husband’s country home, Owo, Ondo state.

Below are pictures of the three days activities which started in Ibadan on Wednesday, where she resided throughout her lifetime.

Sunday thanksgiving pictures

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BETTY AKEREDOLU, AIYEDATIWA, OTHERS ATTEND SPECIAL THANKSGIVING SERVICE FOR LATE GRACE AKEREDOLU

Wife of Ondo State Governor, Chief Mrs Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu and Ondo State Deputy Governor, Hon Lucky Aiyedatiwa, family members, political leaders and well wishers attended the special Church Thanksgiving Service held in honour of Late Lady Grace Bosede Akeredolu JP at St Andrew’s Cathedral, Imola Street Owo, on Sunday .

The late Grace Akeredolu was the mother of Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN CON.

She died at the age of 90 and was buried yesterday in Owo.

She will always be remembered as a kind person who loved people like herself and was nice to everybody around her.

Others in attendance were, Wife of Ondo State Deputy Governor, H.E Oluwaseun Aiyedatiwa, Secretary to Ondo State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu, Chief of Staff to Governor, Chief Olugbenga Ale and his wife, Jumoke, Special Adviser to Governor on Union Matters and Special Duties, Mr Dare Aragbaye, Executive Chairman of Owo Local Government, Prince Samuel Adegbegi, Chairman of Ondo State Internal Revenue Service, Mr Tolu Adegbie, Clergymen and others.

Photo Credit : Abayomi Adefolalu.

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GOV AKEREDOLU BURIES MUM IN GRAND STLYE

•Osinbajo, Tinubu, Govs, Others In Owo For Burial Service

The Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, and the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2023 general elections, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, were among several other eminent personalities who joined the Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, CON, and his siblings to bid their mother, Lady Evangelist Grace Bosede Akeredolu (JP), farewell.

Other dignitaries at the Funeral Service held at the Cathedral Church of St Andrew’s, Imola, Owo, on Saturday included Governors of Ogun, Prince Dapo Abiodun; Lagos, Babajide Sanwo-Olu; Osun, Gboyega Oyetola, and Oyo, Engr Seyi Makinde, represented by his wife, Olufunke.

Mrs Akeredolu with the First Lady of Oyo State

Also in attendance were former Governors of Ekiti state, Dr Kayode Fayemi and wife, Erelu Bisi; Ogun, Senator Ibikunle Amosun; Ondo, Dr Olusegun Mimiko; Minister of Youth and Sports, Sunday Dare, and Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Olorunnimbe Mamora.

Mrs Akeredolu with Erelu Bisi Fayemi

Other are members of the National Assembly; Ondo State deputy Governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, and wife, Oluwaseun; members of Ondo State House of Assembly led by the Speaker, Bamidele Oleyelogun; members of the State Executive Council led by the Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni; Local Government Chairmen, led by the ALCON Chair, Augustine Oloruntogbe; several Bishops both serving and retired; serving and retired Justices; Heads of security agencies in the state; Afenifere leaders including Basorun Seinde Arogbofa; DG DAWN Commission, Seye Oyeleye; members of the Bar and the Bench; captains of industry; political associates; technocrats; Chief Akin Olujimi, SAN; Chief Bisi Akande; Titi Laoye-Tomori; representatives of traditional rulers; senator Iyiola Omisore; Chief Femi Falana, SAN, among several other dignitaries.

In their separate tributes, Prof Yemi Osinbajo and Asiwaju Bola Tinubu described late Lady Evangelist Grace Akeredolu as a true Christian who lived a life worthy of emulation and celebration.

Osinbajo said the late Grace Akeredolu lived a good life of service to God and mankind.

He congratulated Governor Akeredolu and his siblings on behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria and President Muhammadu Buhari for surviving their aged mother.

The Vice President advised the children to sustain the good legacy of their late mother.

On his part, the Presidential Candidate of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who equally rejoiced with the children of the deceased for surviving their aged mother, prayed God to continue to be with them even after the demise of their mother.

Earlier in his sermon, the Bishop of Owo Anglican Diocese, Dr. Stephen Fagbemi, said God was merciful and gracious to late Lady Evangelist Grace Bosede Akeredolu throughout her lifetime.

While congratulating Governor Akeredolu and his siblings, the Bishop commended the children for taking good care of their mother until her death.

He said he was happy that the late mother lived a fulfilled life as a child of God, as an Evangelist and as a good mother.

Bishop Fagbemi noted that life is not equal and it brings different things to different people, adding that it is God who showed mercy on the late mother and made her die at the ripe age of 90 years.

The Bishop, who observed that nothing is as certain as death, admonished the congregation to be careful about how they live their lives so that they can be remembered for good when they die.

Speaking on the next year’s election, Bishop Fagbemi noted that Nigeria needs a leader that will ensure the security of lives and property of the citizens and as well eradicate poverty in the land.

The first child of the nonagenarian and Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Akeredolu, appreciated everyone at the event including Prof Yemi Osinbajo, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, South West Governors and other dignitaries for honouring them with their presence.

Richard Oatunde,
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Ondo State.
November 12, 2022.

📸 Olawale Abolade.

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Adetimehin inaugurates Ondo APC’s Senatorial Exco

The Ondo State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has inaugurated executive committees in three senatorial districts.
State Assistant Legal Adviser, Barr. Henry Akingbesote was on duty for the exercise.

Addressing the party officers, State Chairman, Engr. Ade Adetimehin, charged them to draw from their wealth of experiences to ensure the party wins in all the elections.

He said they were considered for the various positions because of their political exploits and knowledge.

He explained that the officers were to work with the senatorial chairmen, and assist in the overall development of the party at that level.

The party chieftain advised them to dedicate themselves to their respective assignments for the success of the party.

Six officers, in each of the senatorial districts, were appointed. This is in addition to Senatorial Women and Youth Leaders.

Responding on behalf of the newly inaugurated officers, the southern Senatorial District Publicity Secretary,
Princess Nenuwa Funmilayo, described their appointment as “a call to duty”, and assured they would not disappoint the leadership of the party.

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GOV AKEREDOLU LEADS FAMILY TO HOLD COMMENDATION SERVICE FOR LATE MUM

..Ibadan Anglican Bishop Lauds Mama Akeredolu, Husband Over Commitment To God’s Work

Commendation Service for the late Lady Evangelist Grace Bosede Akeredolu (JP) was on Friday held at the Diocese of Ibadan (Anglican Communion), St Anne’s Church, Molete, Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.

Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, CON, led his siblings and other family members to the well-attended Commendation Service.

He was joined by his wife, Chief Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu; members of the State Executive Council led by the Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu; and several other dignitaries.

The expansive Church auditorium of St Anne’s, Molete, Ibadan, was filled to the brim as friends, political associates, colleagues and other dignitaries joined the Akeredolu family for the service.

The remains of the late Lady Evangelist Grace Bosede Akeredolu (JP) arrived at the Church premises before 9am.

Governor Akeredolu and his siblings with their spouses were decked in beautiful white attires while the grandchildren and great grandchildren were all decked in lovely uniform ‘Ankara’ attires.

In his sermon,The Lord Bishop of Ibadan Diocese, the Most Rev (Dr)Joseph Akinfenwa, who led several other Bishops at the service, expressed joy that the late Lady Evangelist Grace Bosede Akeredolu lived a fulfilled Christian life till the end.

In his sermon titled “Which is Your Choice”, he particularly congratulated the Governor and his siblings for surviving their aged mother.

The Bishop equally extolled the virtues of their late father, Jacob Akeredolu, who also served as Reverend in the church.

Bishop Akinfenwa told Governor Akeredolu and his siblings that their father and mother have passed the baton of faith to them, adding that they must be ready to take over from where their parents stopped.

Noting that the late lady Evangelist Grace Akeredolu had chosen the appropriate time to go, the Bishop said the nonagenarian succeeded in raising successful children.

He described both Rev Jacob and Lady Evangelist Grace Akeredolu as a man and woman of good characters who loved, feared and served the Lord and humanity in their lifetime.

“She was a Lady Evangelist and that means a lot. She served the Lord to the end,” the Bishop stressed.

He also admonished the children of the departed to continue in the good ways of their father and mother.

The Burial arrangements continue later today with Service of Songs at St Andrew’s Anglican Church, Imola Street, Owo.

The Christian Wake follows immediately at the Jacob and Grace residence in Oke-Ogun, Owo.

Richard Olatunde
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Ondo State.
November 11, 2022.

📸 Olawale Abolade

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THINKING OUT LOUD ON SEX EDUCATION BY BETTY ANYANWU-AKEREDOLU

In 1770, Edmund Burke made a vital statement about living and I quote:
“The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing”.
More than two centuries after, this parable rings true still and reverberates in almost every sphere of life and human endeavours while finding usefulness in driving positive changes and ensuring that the battle of good over evil is won.


Many times, one factor that may lead to the triumph of evil over good is misinformation or complete lack of knowledge. Therefore, according to the British philosopher, one thing that can constitute action is for people who are knowledgeable about certain issues to speak up and debunk myths. An example of such a myth is that sex education in schools destroys the moral and religious fabric of our society.


In his keynote address delivered on November 2nd, 2022, the Honourable Minister of Education Mallam Adamu Adamu made a shocking statement which has since become a burning national issue. In my opinion, this has not received the attention it deserves especially from gender advocates, feminists, civil society organisations, local and international NGOs, parents and indeed the general Nigerian populace.


His remarks have the tendency to blow off course our fight against gender inequality and gender-based violence in the country and if we do not rise to speak passionately about this and set the facts right, we could be allowing the evil of patriarchy to triumph over respect for the fundamental human rights of our women and girls. Let me assume that some of us may have been distracted by other happenings in Nigeria and the world over and for the benefit of doubt I would explain what was said and the implications it could have.


The Honourable Minister in his speech openly declared that he is a believer of the myth that sex education should not be taught in schools and has consequently directed the Nigeria Educational Research and Development Council to “quickly review the curriculum and expunge any sexual education content”. According to him, one of three ways sex education can be taught was through religious and cultural instructions because “advocacy for sex education in schools is targeted at undermining and destroying the moral and religious fibres of our society”.

Simply put, the Honourable Minister has put sex education solely in the hands of parents, wards, and community and religious leaders. This template is a disaster waiting to happen. It is retrogressive and cannot work in present day Nigeria. To say the least, it is a dictatorial approach peculiar only to emperors.

Out of sheer respect, I will assume the Minister has been misinformed and must have been led to believe that his recent assertion about sex education was the right path to follow. As a feminist and gender-advocate, I will therefore join my voice with the voices of other Nigerian women who have openly condemned the remarks and throw some light into the issue.

Perhaps, the Minister will find this write-up useful and take necessary steps to withdraw his initial comments.


First, the sex education cycle cannot be complete in the absence of formal educational settings which can only be provided in schools. Without any doubt, children can get the information they need (including sex education) from home, however, young people need more than a one-time chat about their private areas.

It is an on-going discussion with age-appropriate topics which should be delivered in structured curricula within the walls of a classroom where children spend the most of their time during the day.

Honourable Minister, reputable research has proven that sex education does not encourage sex, instead it was found that it is the most cost-effective intervention by which young people can protect themselves against abuse, exploitations, unintended pregnancies sexually transmitted infections and HIV/AIDS.


Dairo and Adeomi, (2011), in a research conducted in Osun state, pointedly showed that 88.8% of parents who participated supported sex education. You will agree with me that this is a very good percentage to assume public opinion. The same research showed that lack of skill among parents was the most common reason why 33.3% of parents did not practice sex education at home.

This means we would be taking a great risk if we leave sex education to parents alone since many of them are unskilled at delivering effective sex education.


Parental and cultural settings where sex education is practiced focus on abstinence-only education and once again, research has shown that abstinence-only education does not work-it doesn’t affect the rate at which teenagers decide to have sex. On the contrary, comprehensive school-based sex education has influenced important behaviours such as delaying sexual initiation, reducing the number of sexual partners, and increasing the use of condoms among youths who are sexually active.

This is not a Nigerian factor alone. The World Health Organization has attempted to scientifically resolve this debate as well. In their research, the world top’s health body reviewed 47 sex education programs in both developed and developing countries and found out that overwhelmingly, sex education did not lead to either the initiation of sexual activity or an increase in the frequency of sex among young people.


Second, as the First Lady of a state in Nigeria, I have often found myself at the centre of cases of rape and sexual violence too many to mention. May I inform the Honourable Minister that many of these cases included a father sleeping with his own daughter for five years (until she was bold enough to speak to her teacher in school), a traditional ruler raping a minor, a 5 year old daughter of a disabled woman raped by her neighbour, a 9 years’ old girl raped and killed while urinating in a nearby bush by a total stranger in her community, and many more devastating cases.

Two years ago, a pastor in Warri, Delta state was arrested for raping a 19-year-old girl who went to his church for deliverance. In Kaduna state, a 13-year-old girl was raped and impregnated by seven men including an Imam.

This year alone, the media has been sputtered with shocking news of no less than 10 men arrested for raping their minor daughters, some as young as 7 years old. Many more remain unnoticed and continue to happen unabated.


The nature of silence is the singular most important factor why gender-based violence has become a perennial problem. Knowledge which can be obtained through sex education at any age can greatly influence the ability of young girls to speak up and give a good account of their sexual interactions. In addition, the common denominator in the cases I have mentioned is that they all have occurred within parental and cultural settings.


These are the same settings on which the Minister intends to entrust sex education, while condemning its teaching in schools. May I remind the Honourable Minister that in the first place, the incorporation of sex education into the Nigerian curriculum was not influenced by emotions, sentiments, or personal interest. It was the product of advocacy, research and public health intervention backed up by several international legislation to which Nigeria is signatory. These include the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child, the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), the U.N. World Program of Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond, and the 2001 U.N. General Assembly Special Session on HIV/AIDS, and these have all affirmed the needs of young people for information, counselling, and high quality sexual and reproductive health services.

These culminated to the Federal Ministry of Education approving the teaching of sexuality and life planning education in the secondary schools in 2002 paving the way for development of a national curriculum.


Finally, I strongly believe that the progress we have made so far fighting gender-based violence has largely been influenced by the implementation of this curriculum and we need sustained policy environment if we are to make more progress. We cannot afford to expunge the sex education curriculum as this will negatively impact the lives of our young girls especially.

I therefore call on all well-meaning Nigerians, women organizations, civil society, and anyone who cares about the future of the women in Nigeria to speak up and stand against this attempt to silence the voice of Nigerian women. That voice is empowered through education, and we must make sure it never stops speaking. Nigeria is a democratic nation, and the Minister cannot impose his biased mindset about sex education on schools on the country.

I recommend that the Honourable Minister commissions local research on the issue and make informed decisions using facts and following internationally adaptable best practices. Most importantly, I demand that the Honourable Minister, as a matter of urgency, retracts his initial comments and apologize to Nigerian women.

God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Chief (Mrs) Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu
First Lady of Ondo State,
Founder Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu Foundation &
BEMORE Empowered Girls’ Foundation.