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Rising Debt: Buhari Stop Mortgaging the Future of Nigerians, Says Timi Frank

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By Abdullahi Mohammed

…Urges China to be Wary of Granting Loans

Former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Timi Frank, has described the astronomical rise in the nation’s Foriegn debt portfolio under the present administration as worrisome with a call on President Muhammadu Buhari to stop mortgaging the future of Nigerians.

Frank who made the declaration in a statement in Abuja also pleaded with the Chinese and other foreign governments to be wary of granting loans to the present administration.

He stated that despite over 100 per cent rise in the nation’s external debt under the Buhari administration, there is little or nothing on ground – in terms of concrete economic, social and infrastructural development to justify the huge debt already incurred by Buhari.

The former APC chieftain said that the goal of Buhari is to return the country to pre-1999 debt level which ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo fought hard to cancel.

“If something is not done urgently to stop these huge loans being amassed by Buhari,, the country’s future will be in jeopardy and our children’s children will certainly turn slaves to our creditors. Unfortunately this is the kind of future that Buhari is preparing for Nigerians – both living and yet unborn,” Frank stated.

He thanked the Chinese Government for recently signing a $328million ICT pact with Buhari but regretted that the loans they have released to the country in the last three years are not being utilized for the purposes they were meant.

“Nigerians only hear of loans that the present administration has incurred in the last three years, but there is nothing on ground to show that such amounts have come into the Federal coffers for development,” he stated.

Frank wondered how the nation’s external debt profile skyrocketed from $10billion in 2015, to $22.08bn as of June 30 this year – representing a whooping 114.05 per cent, according to statistics from the Debt Management Office (DMO).

He lamented that the nation’s local debt also currently stands at N12.15trillion.

He said: “Nigerians have not seen the proposed dividends accruable from these loans, otherwise, Nigeria would not have emerged the poverty capital of the world with over 87 million people living in extreme poverty – according to a report by the Brookings Institution on the World Poverty Clock recently.”

He urged the National Assembly to stop approving foreign loan requests by Buhari while calling on the Chinese and other world governments and international financial Institutions to desist from granting loans to the Buhari’s administration.

“The world ought to know that Buhari is on his way out as the 2019 election approaches. Therefore any loan agreement between Buhari and any entity at this point would be repaid by him in person and not the succeeding government,” he stated.

He called on the National Assembly to probe where and how the over $11billion external loans granted to Buhari’s administration in the last three years have been or are being utilized.

“This is not the way Buhari met Nigeria and he must not be allowed to worsen the economic condition of the country further, having failed to improve it. The National Assembly owes the country a duty to stop approving incessant foreign loan requests by Buhari.

“The world also owes Nigeria a duty to stop granting these loans because they are not being utilized for the welfare of the people,” he stated.

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APC Cautions Secondus on Political Language, Conduct

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The All Progressive Congress (APC) has caution the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus on political language and conduct.

In a statement signed by the Ag. National Publicity Secretary Mr. Yekini Nabena on Tuesday said that the National Chairman of a political party is expected to exhibit the highest sense of patriotism, decency and decorum in public conduct and discourse. Regrettably, the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus has not lived up to these basic expectations.

Mr Nabena said that Weeks ago the PDP National Chairman took the internal matters of the country’s politics to the international scene by writing letters to various international organizations. Again, soon after the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared the Osun State Governorship Election inconclusive, Prince Secondus without basis accused the electoral body of conspiring with the All Progressives Congress (APC) to declare the election inconclusive.

The spokesman stated that the APC would as a rule ignore irresponsible and baseless utterances and actions as exhibited by the PDP National Chairman, but as we prepare for the forthcoming 2019 General elections, it is necessary we give a word of caution on expected behavior required of all political sides. Prince Secondus is respectfully advised to temper his political language and conduct.

” His unfounded allegation on the inconclusive Osun State governorship election is not expected from such highly-placed party official. Accusing the APC of conspiring with INEC, without proof, is taking mudslinging too far” Mr Nabena said.

” We advise Prince Secondus not to descend to the level unexpected of his office, less he enters the boxing ring with its attendant mud and dirt. His action will only bring him personal attacks, ridicule. A word is enough for the wise!” he added.

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Saraki cautions world leaders on SDGs

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Mrs Toyin Ojora Saraki has sounded a warning bell as the United Nations General Assembly convenes in New York.

Saraki cautioned that unless significant progress is made, the Sustainable Development Goals will not be met by the global community.

“Only two countries in Africa – Rwanda and South Africa – have met the Abuja declaration to pledge 15% of their government budgets to health. Meanwhile, tuberculosis kills more than 4,000 people every single day, non-communicable diseases kill over 41 million people every year, and 80% of deaths in childbirth could be avoided with techniques that should be available across the globe. There has also been a distinct lack of progress in delivering upon the World Health Assembly 2017 Sepsis Resolution and improving water, sanitation and hygiene in healthcare facilities, schools and communities.”

Mrs Saraki said that she will be advocating for five key interventions which must be urgently made at UN meeting this week.

“Investment in family, community and primary healthcare – along with hospitals where needed – to bolster healthcare wherever people need it; in rural areas and urban, cities and villages. The murder of young midwife and mother Saifura Hussaini Ahmed Khorsa in Nigeria last week must spur Governments and global institutions on to strengthen security provisions for frontline health workers. Their training and pay conditions must also be improved. The Wellbeing Foundation Africa’s Emergency Obstetric and Newborn Care programme, operated with its global partners Johnson & Johnson and the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, can serve as the benchmark for health worker training. We have shown that qualified midwives can and do lead the way with quality care. Civil registration and vital statistics systems must be implemented and strengthened to allow Governments to prepare for epidemics and allocate investment where it is needed the most. 1.8 billion people, according to the World Bank’s latest statistics, have no Government identification. Their health needs are consequently highly likely to not be met and they will be especially vulnerable during disease outbreaks,” she said.

She added that “government investment in strengthening health insurance systems is paramount – in Nigeria and around the world, too many people are pushed into poverty by health emergencies that they or their families experience. Non-communicable diseases kill over 41 million people every year. The Director-General of the WHO, Dr. Tedros, has rightly highlighted the NCD crisis and it must be a core focus of all Government programmes. Whilst progress has been made in many areas, I feel compelled to speak out as too many women, children and communities are being left behind. We have the opportunity to change the course of history, but it is a chance that is slipping away. Urgency is the order of the day.”

During the UN General Assembly, Mrs Saraki is also scheduled to meet with fellow African philanthropists and global partners, and to deliver high-level United Nations advocacy speeches on child health and malaria, frontline health workers and the steps required to achieve Universal Health Coverage.

Toyin Saraki is Founder-President of the Wellbeing Foundation Africa, Global Goodwill Ambassador for the International Confederation of Midwives, Special Adviser to the World Health Organization regional office for Africa and Wife of the Senate President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

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2019 Senatorial poll: Nnamdi Kanu can’t return Abaribe to Senate—APC aspirant

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In an assuring mood, Abia South senatorial aspirant on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chinedu Onyeizu, has said that if he is given ticket to contest against Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, he is confidence ofo retiring him, adding that because the incubent Senator helped Nnamdi Kanu out of detention cannot safe him.

Addressing newsmen yesterday in Abuja, the 38 year-old senate aspirant, said that he is banking on the NotTooYoungToRun Act to mobilise Abia youths to retire Abaribe from the senate, promising to empower the youths, provide the needed dividend of democracy.

“That he helped Nnamdi Kanu out of detention does not give me edge over me. It is not enough. I am concerned about the hopelessness of the youths of the Senatorial district, the bad roads in the community, lack of empowerment of the youths and these are more important to my people,” he said.

“The purpose of this press conference is to inform you and Nigerians at large that something is happening right now in Abia State. There is a wind of change blowing across the southern precincts of God’s Own State.

“The people of Abia South are ready for this change. Old and young, market men and women, students, artisans and the rural folk are ready for this change. I am ready to bring this change to Abia South, so that my people may have a strong voice in the Red Chamber of the National Assembly from 2019.

“Change that is now necessary because Abia South senatorial zone has been running in circles for too long. Because for too long, we have replaced purposeful leadership with selfishness and lack of direction. Because issues that matter to most of my people are yet to be settled.

“In the 2019 senatorial election, the people of Abia South have said loud and clear that they have had enough of the same old breed politicians who never fulfilled their election promises. They deserve better. That is why I dare to bring about change. I believe that now is the time to bring about that change.

“I am committed to do things differently if elected. I believe I have what it takes to offer qualitative representation at the Senate. I will leverage my training in political affairs, management of people and resources garnered from reputable institutions around the world and a robust track record of accomplishments to deliver on my promises.

“Many a time people have asked me why at 38 I want to start my political career from the senate. My answer has been simple! I have the skills, qualifications, innovative spirit and the passion to positively impact on lives with any position that I occupy.

“The youths could be the agents of development that our country needs to achieve a breakaway from deprivation and lack that afflict us if their talents are tapped. But we the youth also have to demonstrate that we are ready to put our talents and competences at the disposal of national interest so that we can be the catalyst that is needed to speed up the process of change that we desire.

“Though the task may be daunting yet, we need to step out boldly with a mind-set that we can achieve it and the courage that elsewhere people have achieved it even when they didn’t have all that is required,” he noted.

“We have received trainings designed for a great future of humanity. Training that are fast changing the way business are done, how we communicate with each other and how to leave a happier and eventful life. We also have the demographics to make meaningful impact.

“These trainings are the most critical elements in terms of requirements for high offices. We cannot run away from the fact that in the nearest future, the baton of leadership will be handed over to us whether we like it or not.

“Therefore, I am stepping out to seek nomination of All Progressives Congress on October 2, 2018 to fly the flag of this great party as Abia South senatorial zone representative in the Senate come 2019.

“The time has come for someone to take on responsibilities that will encourage Nigerian youths to actively participate in leadership of this great nation. I am ready to take on this challenge! It can’t be done without you. Let’s work together and make the positive impact that our country deserves.”

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