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Lagos Unveils Dates for Decontamination of Offices, House of Assembly, Others

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Lagos Decontaminates Secretariat

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

The Lagos State government is taking no chances and it is doing everything within its powers to curtail the spread of the second wave of COVID-19 in the metropolis.

On Saturday, it announced the extension of the work-from-home directive to workers on its payroll on Grade 14 below till Monday, February 1, 2021, and during this period, it is decontaminating the offices to make them safe for workers when they fully resume.

For more than two weeks, the state government under the leadership of Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu will fumigate offices in the State Secretariat Complex in Alausa, Ikeja and other others across the state.

According to a statement signed by the Permanent Secretary, Office of Environmental Services, Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, Mrs Belinda Odeneye, the exercise had become necessary to reduce the risk of the spread of COVID-19 in the state secretariat.

She emphasised that the government will continue to adopt measures as part of the safety protocols to ensure that the pandemic does not further spread in the state, saying that the fumigation exercise will be a continuous process until the virus was contained.

Mrs Odeneye said the decontamination exercise commenced on Friday, January 15, 2021, with the Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, Lands Bureau, and Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development is expected to end on Saturday, January 30, 2021.

The PS added that the exercise would commence at 2 pm during weekdays, while it would start at 8 am on weekends and urged all workers to vacate their offices and complex on stipulated days to avoid inhaling chemicals used during the fumigation exercise.

According to the schedule, the Office of the Head of Service/PSO, Ministry of Special Duties & Inter-Governmental Relations, Management Services and Reforms Office, Office of Transformation, Creativity and Innovation, Ministry of Agriculture, Office of Public-Private Partnership, Lagos State Public Procurement Agency and Office of Civic Engagement was fumigated on Saturday, January 16, 2021, while the Office of Secretary to the State Government Cabinet Office, Office of the State Auditor General, Audit Service Commission, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Education, Office of Education Quality Assurance are to be fumigated on Sunday, January 17, 2021.

The Office of the Deputy Governor, Ministry of Local Government & Community Affairs, Civil Service Commission, Ministry of Tourism, Arts & Culture, Ministry of Waterfront Infrastructure will be fumigated on Monday, January 18, 2021, in addition to the Ministry of Works & Infrastructure, Ministry of Housing, Civil Service Pensions Office, Ministry of Information & Strategy and Ministry of Health will be decontaminated on Tuesday, January 19, 2021.

The Staff Clinic, Ministry of Transportation, Ministry of Establishments, Training & Pensions, Central Business Districts Office, Motor Vehicle Administration Agency, Ministry of Commerce, Industry & Cooperatives are slated for fumigation on Wednesday, January 20, 2021, and the Ministry of Wealth Creation & Employment, Ministry of Energy & Mineral Resources, Ministry of Home Affairs, Lagos State Liaison  Office Annexe, Lagos State Valuation Office, Lagos State Real Estate Transaction Department and the Lagos State Planning & Environmental Monitoring Authority are scheduled for Thursday, January 21, 2021.

The State Treasury Office, Ministry of Finance, ABAT CENTRE, SPDV, Ministry of Science & Technology and the Ministry of Youth and Social Development are to be fumigated on Friday, January 22, 2021, while Ministry of Women Affairs & Poverty Alleviation, Lagos State Safety Commission, Ministry of Economic Planning & Budget, Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission and the Lagos Television LTV Complex, Agidingbi, are to be decontaminated on January 23, 2021.

Also, the State House of Assembly Complex, LASEPA Building, LASEMA, Fire Service Office – Alausa, Digital Village and RRS & GMT will be fumigated on Sunday, January 24, 2021.

The exercise moves to the Old Secretariat, Ikeja, on Monday, January 25, 2021, with Local Government Service Commission, Local Government Establishment & Pensions Office, Teachers Establishment & Pensions Office, Office of the Auditor General for Local Governments, Office of Youth & Social Development (COURT), Lagos State Coconut Development Authority, Muslim Pilgrims Board, Christian Pilgrims Board, Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA), Lagos State Electricity Board (LSEB), and Lagos State Urban Renewal Agency (LASURA) on  Monday, January 25, 2021.

It would be the turn of the Lagos House/Office of the Governor, Office of Chief of Staff and Lagos Global on Tuesday, January 26, 2021.

The exercise will continue on January 27, 2021, at Lagos State Parks and Gardens Agency (LASPARK), Lagos State Signage and Advertising Agency (LASAA), JJT and Ndubuisi Kanu Parks, Staff Canteen and Adeyemi-Bero Auditorium.

The Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) and Lagos Water Corporation (LWC), Lagos State Printing Corporation, Office Of Surveyor-General, Arts and Culture, Debt Management Office and Lagos State Residents’ Registration Agency (LASRAA) Office are scheduled for Thursday, January 28, 2021.

The fumigation exercise holds in Oshodi on January 29, 2021, at the offices of LASTMA, LASDRI, Lagos State Task Force, KAI Office, Neighbourhood Watch and LAW Reform Commission and would be rounded up on January 30, 2021, with the Lagos State Material Testing Laboratory, Public Works Bureau, Lagos State Cooperative College (Johnson Agiri) Oko-Oba, Agege and Lagos State Records and Archives Bureau.

Modupe Gbadeyanka is a fast-rising journalist with Business Post Nigeria. Her passion for journalism is amazing. She is willing to learn more with a view to becoming one of the best pen-pushers in Nigeria. Her role models are the duo of CNN's Richard Quest and Christiane Amanpour.

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COVID-19: Jesus Christ Would Have Supported Vaccination—APC Group

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Register for COVID-19 Vaccination

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

A group known as the APC Mandate Defenders has slammed Senior Pastor of Dunamis International Gospel Centre, Mr Paul Enenche, for criticising the federal government for directing federal civil servants to receive the COVID-19 vaccination by December 2021.

The cleric had described this directive as one from the pit of hell, while the Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Section on Public Interest and Development Law, Mr Monday Ubani, threatened to sue the federal government if this was enforced.

But in a statement issued on Saturday, the APC group said the central idea behind the vaccination was to save lives, stressing that Jesus Christ would have done the same if he were to be alive in this generation, saying compulsory vaccination is not from the pit of hell.

In the statement issued by the National Publicity Secretary of the organisation, Mr Ifeanyi Emeka, it said it was very proud of Mr Enenche for leading the Christian folks back to God especially the several charitable works and donations made during the lockdowns but then, the pastor ought to have known that COVID-19 was still constantly looking for who to kill on daily basis.

“However, we are praying that God will further open the spiritual eyes of pastor Enenche and other men of God opposed to compulsory vaccination so that they can see how deadly the virus is and probably recommit themselves to the ongoing battle against the virus,” it stated.

APC Mandate Defenders used the opportunity to condemn Mr Ubani for threatening to sue the FG, noting that the virus is a biological war waged against humanity that requires the deployment of all weapons to win the battle, emphasising that the lawyer ought to have known that in war all is fair.

“Since the law is made for man and not man for the law, compulsory vaccination for civil servants is one of the fundamental ways of flattening the curve,” it said.

“Accordingly, Dr Ubani and others opposed to compulsory vaccination should note that civil servants do travel to other countries for training and other essential assignments on behalf of the country and it will not be right if Nigerians are denied access to such countries as a result of their vaccination status or vaccine Passport which is the new normal in the world today.

“As a learned gentleman, Dr Ubani ought to have also known that sometimes, what is right may not be legal and what is legal may not be right.

“Therefore, it is in Nigeria’s national interest that civil servants be forced to take the vaccines for the safety of Nigerians and for the preservation of our corporate existence as members of the inter-connected world.

“We, therefore, advise Nigerians to take the vaccines and join the battle to flatten the curve in the country,” the statement noted.

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UN to Cut Food Rations in North-East Nigeria

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Cut Food Rations

By Adedapo Adesanya

*Internally Displaced Persons Hit 2 million in September

*Needs $55m

The United Nations through its World Food Programme (WFP) has warned that it may soon be forced to cut food rations to more than half a million women, men and children in north-eastern Nigeria.

This was disclosed by WFP’s Regional Director for West Africa, Mr Chris Nikoi, in a statement over the weekend, explaining that there was a need for urgent funding to continue life-saving operations in crisis-ridden Borno, Yobe and Adamawa States.

The WFP director stated that the cuts would come just as severe hunger reached a five-year high in the country, in the wake of years of conflict and insecurity, noting that the situation had been worsened by the socio-economic fallout from COVID-19, high food prices and limited food supply.

“Cutting rations means choosing who gets to eat and who goes to bed hungry. We are seeing funding for our life-saving humanitarian work dry up just at the time when hunger is at its most severe,” the director stated.

Mr Nikoi warned that if at least $55 million was not received in a matter of weeks, WFP would have no choice but to cut food rations and reduce the number of people it serves, where assistance is already prioritised for the most vulnerable as early as November.

“Our food assistance is a lifeline for millions whose lives have been upended by conflict and have almost nothing to survive on. “We must act now to save lives and avoid disruptions to this lifeline,” Mr Nikoi added.

He said that the number of Internally Displaced People (IDP) forced to flee their homes in search of safety in northeast Nigeria had been rising steadily, reaching a new all-time high of over 2 million in September 2021.

The WFP director said that current food security analyses showed that 4.4 million people in northeast Nigeria did not know where their next meal would come from, and over 1 million children are already malnourished.

He cited continued attacks on communities by non-state armed groups, harsh lean season conditions amid an economy dealing with the fallout from the COVID-19, as portending great danger for the people.

Mr Nikoi added that high food prices and a severe reduction in household purchasing power had also contributed to a bleak outlook for the most vulnerable people in northeast Nigeria, warning that despite increasing needs, WFP may soon be unable to sustain life-saving operations in the conflict-riddled north-east.

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Land Grabbing: Group Tells Lagos to Obey Supreme Court Judgement

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Shangisha Magodo Supreme Court Judgement

By Mohammed Kerimu

Members of the Shangisha/Magodo Landlord Association of Nigeria have advised the Lagos State Government to obey and execute the judgement of the supreme court ordering the allocation of 549 plots of land them.

This call was made on Friday at a press conference organised by the group, where the Chairman of the association, Mr Adebayo Adeyiga, addressed newsmen in Lagos.

The group appealed to the state government to complement the efforts of President Muhammadu Buhari by executing the court order and not to continue to show attitudes suggesting that the state is operating a different constitution other than the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, which President Buhari and Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State swore to defend.

The body emphasised that as long as Lagos State was still part of the Nigerian federation, it must operate within the context of the law because the state itself is a creation of the Nigerian Constitution.

The group wondered why Lagos State Government that is among the states clamouring for the implementation of a court decision on the collection of Value Added Tax (VAT) even when the matter is still in the court could turn a blind eye to the execution of the supreme court judgement ordering the allocation of 549 plots of land to members of the group.

It will be recalled that about 37 years ago, the Lagos State Government collected Shangisha/Magodo land belonging to members of the association under the guise that it will use it for the construction of an international standard hospital; relying on the over-riding public interest classification of the Land Use Act of Nigeria.

Accordingly, the state evicted the landlords and pulled down their houses and other immovable properties in the area but to the surprise of everyone, the then administration, instead of using the land for its intended purpose, allegedly converted the land to personal properties; allocating plots to their family members, friends and cronies despite the excruciating pains the original owners were subjected to.

Angered by such development, members of the association initiated several court actions up to the apex court before the supreme court finally ruled that the land should be returned to its original owners since the intended objective was not achieved.

However, the state government paid deaf ears to the judgement behaving as if Lagos State was above the law of Nigeria.

The group, therefore, called on President Buhari and the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Mr Abubakar Malami to prevail on Lagos State government to execute the judgement of the apex court, saying justice is distorted when the victim pays for the conducts of the accused.

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