Qubes Magazine




Showing posts with label Nigerians. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Nigerians. Show all posts

Monday, September 19, 2022


"You’ve No Right To Respond If Policeman In Uniform Slaps You"- Police PRO Tells Nigerians

The Police Force Public Relations Officer, CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, has said no Nigerian has the right to confront policemen or retaliate, even if the cop slapped a ‘civilian’.

Speaking through his Twitter account, the Force PRO advised any such victim of Police brutality to rather file a complaint with the law enforcement agency.

He was reacting to a viral video of a man dragging a rifle with a policeman during a heated argument and suspicious molestation over his phone.

Adejobi further stated that if a person assaults police personnel in uniform, it would be seen as ‘an act of disrespect to Nigeria.’

He said:  
“Even if a policeman in uniform slaps a civilian, the civilian has no right to retaliate. More so, if he’s in the uniform, it’s an act of disrespect to Nigeria to beat an officer in the uniform.

“The disrespect is not to the policeman but to our nation and it’s a crime as enshrined in our criminal laws

“So, it’s not a case of what the policeman did that led to it, but the reaction of the civilians who actually assaulted the police.

“If police assault a civilian, you report and actions will be taken to rebuke him, not to take the law into your hands. (sic)

“Let alone, it’s a matter of checking phones, which can be easily reported and addressed. Now they are kept in our 5-star hotel in Lagos and will be in court on Monday.

“Are you going to visit them or send them food, or appear in court to defend them? Don’t support what is bad, ok”


Wednesday, September 14, 2022


FBI busts two Nigerians over $6.2m wire fraud after targeting $25m

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has charged two Nigerians for $6.2million wire fraud after attempts to scam Americans of $25.2million.

The defendants are accused of defrauding nearly two dozen public and private entities around the United States, including at least one in Oregon.

The Department of Justice (DoJ) indictment unsealed in federal court charged Efeturi Ariawhorai a.k.a Efeturi Simeon, 35, a citizen of Nigeria and Vanuatu.

The other is Ikenna Nwajiaku, 41, believed to be residing in or near Lagos. The FBI declared them fugitives.

Ariawhorai and Nwajiaku face 11-count bordering on conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, and aggravated identity theft.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Quinn Harrington said federal law enforcement is determined to pursue cyber criminals and retrieve money mistakenly sent to unknown bank accounts.

The Cyber and National Security Unit Head at U.S. Attorney’s Office for Oregon said when in doubt, anyone who thinks they are the victim of a cyber crime should report to the FBI.

Special Agent in Charge Kieran L. Ramsey said the level of greed it takes to steal from schools and hospitals, especially during the pandemic, “is beyond disturbing”.

“We were able to recover the total loss of nearly $3million for a victim in Oregon and keep that money out of the hands of criminals”, Ramsey disclosed.

The indictment said from June 2019 until January 2021, Ariawhorai and Nwajiaku conspired with others to defraud school districts, universities, colleges, and hospitals.

The duo contacted organizations by email, impersonated employees of the targeted companies or professionals and convinced them to send payments to bank accounts controlled by third parties.

Ariawhorai and Nwajiaku attempted to defraud 20 victim organizations out of more than $25million;15 lost a combined $6.2 million as a result of the scheme.

The alleged crimes are punishable by up to 20 years in prison and three years supervised release. The case, investigated by the FBI, and is being prosecuted by AUSA Harrington.


Friday, September 09, 2022


23 Nigerians Selected For Google Startups Black Founders Fund For Africa

23 Nigerian startups have been selected among the 60 candidates for the second cohort of Google for Startups Black Founders Fund (BFF) for Africa.

Speaking at the unveiling of the cohorts yesterday in Abuja, Google’s Head of Startup Ecosystem, Folarin Aiyegbusi, said each of the selected startups will receive support in the form of a 6-month training programme that includes access to a network of mentors to assist in tackling challenges that are unique to them.

Folarin, while stating that the participants will receive a total of $4million in funding and support to enable them to scale up their ongoing work, said they will also be part of tailored workshops, support networks and community-building sessions.

“The 60 grantees will also get non-dilutive awards of between $50,000 and $100,000 and up to $200,000 in Google Cloud credit.”

He added that the grantees are made up of 50 per cent women-led businesses that specialise in sectors like fintech; healthcare, e-commerce, logistics, agritech, education, hospitality and smart cities.

“The top five countries with the most startups selected for the program are Nigeria with twenty-three grantees, Kenya with twelve grantees, Rwanda with six grantees, South Africa with five grantees and Uganda with four grantees. Botswana and Senegal have one selected startup each, Cameroon and Ghana both have three grantees each while Ethiopia has two selected grantees.”


Tuesday, April 19, 2022


2023: Why Nigerians don’t trust Igbos – Apostle Suleman

Apostle Johnson Suleman of the Omega Fire Ministries has said Nigerians do not trust Igbos because they don’t support themselves.

The cleric, while preaching in his church, said Igbos tear themselves down at any given opportunity.

Citing reference of how Igbos have fought against each other, Suleman said an Igbo Senate President, Evan Enwerem was 

removed by another Igbo man, Chuba Okadigbo.

According to him, Okadigbo was also replaced by Anyim Pius Anyim.

The clergyman explained that someone who could sell his brother would not be trusted by anyone.

‘’Somebody from the South, somebody from the East. You betray your people. Look at this agitation for Biafra. Who are the 

people attacking Biafra most, Igbos. Shameless Igbos.

“Am I in support of Nigeria dividing, No! Am I in support of Nigeria separating, No. Do I believe we should be together? 

Yes. But even if you don’t agree with the man who is your brother, should you say it publicly if you are not a fool? Can’t 

you say it amongst your people?” He said.

He also alleged that if an Igbo man employs an Igbo boy in his shop, the boy will wreck him.

“He will carry all the man’s money, he will buy land. He wouldn’t wait to be settled.

“The problem of Igbo is Igbo. I repeat it, if you sell your brother, even the buyers will not trust you,” he stated. 


Wednesday, April 06, 2022


READ HOW: FG issues interest-free loans to 98,000 Nigerians

Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq


The Federal Government says it has concluded plans to give interest-free loans to 98,000 beneficiaries of its Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme 2.0 nationwide.

The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar-Farouq, disclosed this in a statement by her Special Assistant on Media, Nneka Anibeze, in Abuja on Wednesday.

Umar-Farouq said that this decision was reached following the final verification of Phase 1 applicants, who qualified and were selected to benefit from small loans ranging from N50,000 to N300,000.

She further said that all the beneficiaries of GEEP 2.0 would receive congratulatory and sensitisation text messages in the coming days informing them of their qualification.

According to Umar-Farouq, the money given to the beneficiaries of the empowerment programme is a loan and not a grant and must be repaid within nine months.

“The GEEP 2.0 is a loan scheme designed by the Federal Government to provide financial inclusion and give credit access to the poor and vulnerable individuals including persons with disabilities.

“It also covers persons at the bottom of the economic pyramid, who are engaged in small scale commercial activities under its three flagship schemes.

“These three flagship schemes are MarketMoni, TraderMoni and FarmerMoni.

“Tradermoni targets uplifting under-privileged and marginalised youths aged between 18 and 40 years in Nigeria by providing them with loans of N50,000.

“MarketMoni targets underprivileged and marginalised women aged between 18 and 55 years like widows, divorcees among other vulnerable groups and they get interest-free loans of N50,000 payable within six to nine months.

“While FarmerMoni is for Nigerian farmers aged between 18 and 55 years in rural areas that operate in the agricultural space,’’ she explained.

The minister said that these farmers were provided with loans of N300,000 for farm inputs, adding that the scheme had 12 months including three months moratorium and nine months repayment period.

“All qualified beneficiaries will soon receive their disbursement alerts. We wish to remind all qualified beneficiaries that this is a loan payable without interest.

“It is not a grant or a government windfall. It is a soft interest-free loan that must be paid back within nine months,’’ she said.

Umar-Farouq said that the Ministry was planning a roll–out of the programme nationwide after which an enumeration exercise to capture beneficiaries’ bio-data would take place.


Thursday, March 17, 2022


Petrol, power shortages: I apologize - Buhari sends message to Nigerians


President Muhammadu Buhari has sent a message to Nigerians, regarding the shortage of petrol and electricity in the country.

Buhari, who apologized, expressed sincere regrets for the inconvenience caused to citizens of the country following a prolonged shortage of petroleum products, something that the administration has successfully averted in its seven years in office.

This was disclosed in a statement by Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, on Wednesday.

According to the President, “the administration knows the fuel shortage has placed a strain on Nigerian citizens and businesses, but relief is on the way. I especially apologize to all sections of society for this.

“The government is working round the clock to attend to this issue. An action plan agreed upon earlier this month is being implemented to address the scarcity. Working together with the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN) and the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), this plan is now bearing fruit. Sufficient fuel supply has returned to a handful of states, with the queues at stations falling. In the coming days, we expect this to be the case across the rest of the country.

“Looking to the longer term, funds are being targeted toward keeping fuel availability affordable for the country. The international energy markets have surged drastically in recent months, the government will, however, ensure that

consumers are protected against these price spikes.”

The President added that he has received information that some people are not behaving properly at the depots and among owners of petrol stations and in this regard, he has directed the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), the NNPC and the entire security apparatus of the nation to take strong action against those responsible.

On the issue of electricity blackouts being experienced across the nation, President Buhari remarked that “the blackouts seen in the national grid are also being addressed. A dip in hydroelectric generation due to seasonal pressures has coincided with technical and supply problems at thermal stations. On this, the government is also working tirelessly to resolve the issues at the latter to guarantee sufficient power flows into the national grid.”

As part of emergency measures put in place following a meeting convened with key stakeholders to address the low power generation in the country, the main challenge was identified as being one of low gas power generation as a result of sabotage of gas pipelines leading to the shutdown of power plants coupled with ongoing routine maintenance on other gas power plants.

To recover over 1000MW, actions were agreed upon between the players in the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) and also NNPC. The actions targeted the National Integrated Power Project (NIPP) plants, (Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) and power plants run under NNPC Joint Ventures, Agip and Shell (NAOC and SPDC) and progress on the key actions have already ensured the restoration to the grid of 375MW after the pipeline from “Okpai 1” was repaired.

To also ramp up the underutilised capacity of the NDPHC capacity, a USD 50 Million Gas Supply agreement is being finalized to secure the sustainability of up to 800MW of underutilized NIPP assets.

The President assures that the government’s attention to these problems will bear fruits very soon. Dailypost 

Saturday, September 11, 2021


Nigerians can now travel across 160 countries without Visa – Agency

Winnington Citizens & Partners, a visa processing and citizenship acquisition agency said on Friday that Nigerians “can travel to as many as 160 countries across the World without Visa requirements.”

Chief Executive Officer of the firm, Mrs Winnie Okoh in an interview with newsmen, said the firms had packages that could ensure such visa-free travels for Nigerians.

She said that with only a “Strong Passport” Nigerians who wish to travel to Caribbean countries and parts of Europe would be provided with the opportunity.

Okoh, who unveiled the various packages available, said the firm could provide the opportunity for Nigerians to acquire second citizenship with ease.

She added that other opportunities available include business opportunities, education, and healthcare services in other countries.

Okoh said the firm is partnering with five countries in the Caribbean to market their citizenship through investment for those who want to acquire second citizenship.

“Business opportunities abound in the Caribbean. I have heard of many people that have missed business opportunities because they were not granted visas.

“But with this passport, they could access the countries. Yours is just to buy a ticket and hop into the plane and avoid all the embassies problems.

“If you want to go to school abroad we can help you get admission and package you in a legal way. This citizenship will give you access to good healthcare and good education for the children.

“Once you get this passport, it passes from generation to generation. It does not terminate, except you are found wanting or found to be a criminal. With that passport, you can settle in the UK also and without visa,” she said.

According to the CEO, the passport can easily and automatically be renewed when it expires

She said the company “is out to impact the lives of Nigerians positively by providing access to such travel opportunities” that would hitherto been hampered or delayed by visa requirement.  Vanguardngr

Thursday, August 19, 2021


It’s Good That Nigerians Are Barred From Dubai, Other Countries – Nigeria’s Tourism Boss

The Nigerian government through the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) has said the restriction of Nigerians from travelling abroad is a blessing to the nation’s economy and domestic tourism.

Folarin Coker, NTDC’s boss, made the assertion in Abuja on Wednesday.

“If Dubai Emirate Airline is not coming to Nigeria, Nigerians will not pack their naira, change it into dollars to go and buy tickets,” Mr Coker said.

The governments of Nigeria and the United Arab Emirates have been engaged in a diplomatic spat going by the latter’s set of stringent measures to deny Nigerians free access to their country, citing COVID-19 concerns.

Though the Nigerian government insists Nigerians have the rights to travel to the Arabian gulf under extant international laws, its top tourism official calls UAE’s bluff, saying it will save Nigeria the much needed forex to boost local economy.

“We pay a foreign airline to go to a foreign country and stay in a foreign hotel. The naira is N510 to one dollar; let Nigerians stay at home and learn to appreciate the country,’’ he argued.

Coker spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria on the level of the corporation’s preparation toward the South-South Stakeholders Interactive Forum.

Themed “The Use of Digital Technology to Revamp the Tourism and Hospitality Industry amid COVID-19 and Security Challenges in Nigeria,” the forum is scheduled to be held between August 26 and August 27 in Calabar.

Speaking further, the director-general said that the restriction of people from travelling abroad due to COVID-19 had boosted domestic tourism as most Nigerians no longer traveled out of the country.

According to him, Nigerians now look for alternative places within the country to relax and spend their holidays or weekends.

“There are no foreign holidays now, we are all going to enjoy our local music, film, food, fashion, theatre and dance. I think COVID-19 has done the Nigerian tourism industry good,” he said.

Coker said the NTDC would take the message of domestic tourism through the use of technology to the upcoming South-South Stakeholders interactive forum in Calabar.

According to him, the idea is to encourage the stakeholders in the tourism industry to ensure their businesses are driven by technology.

“We are trying to encourage the stakeholders in the entire value chain of the tourism ecosystem that there is a new way and is driven by technology.

“So, we are encouraging them to take advantage of technology to promote domestic tourism.

“There is the need for them to show Nigerians what is good in the country to stand a chance with our own tourism assets rather than something abroad,” Coker said. Saharareporters 

Saturday, April 17, 2021


‘It is really bad’: Nigerians go hungry as food inflation soars

Nigerian merchant Feyintola Bolaji, struggling with stagnant earnings and dwindling sales, is now being squeezed by the ever increasing prices demanded by her food suppliers, leading her to cut down on the amount she can put on her own family’s table.

Bolaji’s belt tightening is being shared by millions across Africa’s most populous nation. Not long after Nigeria’s statistics agency revealed that one in three people in the continent’s largest economy were unemployed, on Thursday it announced that food inflation has accelerated at the highest pace in 15 years, compounding the misery of many households.

“It is really bad, I can’t simply afford to give my children what they really need in terms of food,” said Bolaji, a mother of three in her 50s based in the southwestern city of Ibadan. “I try to make them get the nutrients they need as growing children, but it is not enough,” she said, adding “I have had to cut down on meat and fish.”

Insurgency, unrest, and the stand of President Muhammadu Buhari’s government on food imports in a nation where more than half the population lives on less than $2 a day are worsening food insecurity in the African country. Meanwhile, the coronavirus pandemic has robbed 70% of Nigerians of some form of income, according to a Covid-19 impact survey published by the statistics agency last month.

Food inflation rose to 22.95% in March, caused by wide-ranging price increases across items such as cereals, yam, meat, fish and fruits. Those soaring costs have been in part blamed on a worsening conflict between farmers and herders in Nigeria’s agriculture belt that Buhari has struggled to quash.

The unrest, combined with the more than decade-long Boko Haram insurgency in the north, a weakening currency and higher fuel prices have also contributed to rising food prices, according to SBM Intelligence, a Nigerian research firm.

The situation has also been exacerbated by import restrictions on certain staples, such as rice, that have remained in place despite Buhari reopening Nigeria’s land borders in December following a 16-month shutdown in an attempt to end rampant smuggling.
Rising inflation has adversely affected the profitability of producers and is a major contributor to the low export penetration of made-in-Nigeria goods in the international market, the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria said in a statement on Friday.

“There is an urgent need for government to intentionally ensure price stability before the situation becomes deplorable,” the manufacturing body said.

Food prices will remain elevated until the security crisis, which has prevented farmers from returning to their land, is resolved, said Cheta Nwanze, a lead partner with SBM Intelligence. That’s “unless the government does the sensible thing and allows food imports to happen,” he said.

Until then Nigerians, who already spend more than half their earnings on food, have had to cut down. Just over 50% of all households reported reduced consumption between July and December last year due to the twin pressures of falling wages and rising food costs, according to Nigeria’s statistics agency.

Kemi Adedigba, a 42-year-old freelance writer living in Lagos, the country’s financial hub, is among those who has been hit by that double-whammy. Adedigba has two growing teenagers to feed, but is struggling with a steady drop in work even as her monthly food bill climbed by almost 70% since December.

“You are lucky if you get recurring gigs with the way the economy is going down the toilet,” she said. “It is a nightmare.” (Aljazeera)

Tuesday, March 16, 2021


AstraZeneca vaccine safe for Nigerians - FG insists

Despite growing global concerns over possible side effects of the Oxford AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, the Federal Government has maintained it is safe for Nigerians.

National Incident Manager of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, Dr Mukhtar Muhammad said clinical trials had shown that side effects are generally mild.

According to Muhammad, the World Health Organisation (WHO) had in the last three days, through series of briefings, vouched for the vaccine’s safety and efficacy, adding that it had been proven to have about 70% efficacy level.

He advised those who might have received the vaccine but who have felt symptoms of its reactions for about 24 hours to report through right channels at the state level.

“The Nigerian health sector, the Federal Ministry of Health, the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, are working also, not only to reassure Nigerians, but also to make a determination and to continue to get information regarding any side effects that people are experiencing in this country.

“So, with this, I will say that the available information from clinical trials has shown that the vaccine is generally safe and efficacious and that it has an efficacy of about 70%.

“The side effects are usually mild, which include fever, cough, symptoms of cold and maybe the general feeling of unwell,” he said.

He also warned Nigerians to desist from flouting the already laid back COVID-19 protocols, challenging state authorities to intensify enforcement.

He also advised political and religious leaders not to make unverified comments, which he said are capable of sending wrong and misleading signals to the public on the management of the health crisis, advising that expert advise should be sought before directing the public of the situation.

Chairman of the PTF and Secretory to Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Mustapha, assured that government would prioritize the health of Nigerians.

He said: “The Nigerian authorities have tested and authorised the use of the vaccines because it is safe and efficacious.

“I however wish to reassure you that the Government of Nigeria shall always prioritize the health of Nigerians.” Thenationonlineng

Thursday, January 21, 2021


Police Force apologise to Nigerians over SARS operatives’ excesses, protests

The Nigeria Police Force (NPF), yesterday, apologised to Nigerians over the excesses of some police officers that resulted in last year’s #EndSARS protests, stating that the police have learnt their lessons and appropriate steps are being taken to ensure effective policing in the country.

New Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG) in charge of Zone 11, comprising Oyo and Osun states, Agunbiade Oluyemi, stated this during his visit to Oyo State, where the new Commissioner of Police (CP), Mrs. Ngozi Onadeko, received him.

Oluyemi, who met strategic stakeholders in the state’s security architecture including religious, traditional, and market leaders, as well as the Police Community Relation Committee (PCRC), also held a private meeting with top police officers in the state.

He maintained that some Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) operatives missed the point when they started arresting suspected Internet fraudsters, undergraduates, and other youths with laptops on the nation’s roads.

He also urged members of the public to report policemen in mufti, saying the Force Headquarters had mandated all officers who must carry out assignments on the road or highway to wear their uniforms.

He also cautioned people against tagging crime and criminal activities to some particular ethnic group, noting that such acts could cause the ethnic crisis.

“We want all stakeholders to appeal to members of the public that the police are now back stronger and we are ready to work for the people. We will have a robust relationship with the public and we want Nigerians to have confidence in us and give us useful information.

“There is no way criminals will overcome us. The crimes they commit affect all of us in one way or another. We won’t allow criminals to have their way and we have rolled out new strategies in tackling the criminals.

“The new Police Constabularies that were just recruited will be complementing the Force in intelligence gathering for effective service delivery and we have also marked out some strategies that will make our job easier and more effective,” he stated.

Oluyemi explained that he came to rekindle hope in the police officers and stakeholders on the need to partner with each other, saying: “It is also to give them the mantra of the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, as to robust public relations and address our men on the need for training and retraining to enhance the capacity, capability, and competence of the police officers. Theguardianng

Friday, January 15, 2021


COVID-19: Ignore fake lockdown alert - PTF tells Nigerians

The Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 has urged Nigerians to disregard a fake fresh lockdown alert in circulation on social media.

PTF National Coordinator, Dr Sani Aliyu, made this known in a short video statement released on Thursday.

There have been concerns regarding a fresh lockdown as the country battles the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic.

But Aliyu said the government was aware of the economic implication of a fresh lockdown and, therefore, urged Nigerians to adhere to all guidelines to curb the spread of the disease.

He said, “We are aware of a fake message on WhatsApp that we’ve declared a lockdown in the country. This is absolutely not true. I call on the Nigerian public to please ignore this message and continue with normal activities.

“I’m also calling on the public to abide by the non-pharmaceutical interventions including wearing of face masks in the public, washing of hands and maintaining physical distancing.

“There is an established way that we send our messages to the public including declarations when it comes to infection control. So, please ignore what is being going round on WhatsApp.”

The Punch had earlier reported that the Federal Government in March 2020 locked down the Federal Capital Territory as well as Lagos and Ogun States for over five weeks as part of measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 during the first wave of the pandemic. The lockdown had a tremendous effect on economic activities with the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry putting the loss at about N3bn in the period under review.

Many jobs were also lost as airlines, hotels, banks, amongst others cut their workforce due to the crushing effect of the lockdown. (Punch)

Tuesday, January 05, 2021


Northern elders to President Buhari: Sack service chiefs as New Year gift to Nigerians

The Northern elders operating under the auspices of Coalition of North East Elders for Peace and Development have expressed disappointment in the New Year message of President Muhammadu Buhari, saying it does not align with the demands of calls for the sack of security chiefs over worsening security problems in the country.

The elders, who said Buhari’s new year message is disappointing and empty, charged the president to immediately do the needful by not only announcing appointment of new security heads but also ensuring that the new security management team was in line with Nigeria’s federal character principle.

The Northern elders in a statement signed by its national coordinator Zana Goni said they needed a gift of new service chiefs from the president, saying it was the only way the president can convince them of hope for positive results in the ongoing war against insecurity in the region.

They noted that the continued retention of the service chiefs many years after expiration of their retirement date in service was not only unconstitutional but that it had also weakened the morale of military personnel and the front line troops.

Noting also that the continued stay of the security chiefs was not adding value to the nation’s security management team, the elders regretted that the rising wave of insecurity in the North was being downplayed by the media.

According to the group, “many people are dying daily in the North as a result of banditry and insurgency but the situation is being underreported.”

The group which appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to listen to the voice of reason by relieving the security chiefs of their offices,said such action coupled with increment in defence budget were the only ways to go for Nigeria’s security situation to regain its glorious place in history.

They advised President Buhari to try different hands in the security architecture, saying such action could not only bring back the high morale but also zeal and vigour in addition to career development in the military.

The group noted that sending the service chiefs packing from their offices without increment in the nation’s defence budget could also not get the country out of the woods.

They insisted that the president must stop looking at the service chiefs as indispensable, saying there were more efficient and tactically trained officers in the military with valour to confront the adversaries headlong and end the nation’s over a decade long insecurity, especially insurgency and terrorism in the North.

“We listened to the New Year speech of Mr President to Nigerians with rapt attention believing that he was going to give us a New Year gift in new service chiefs but the president to our disappointment, was silent on this key issue in the lip of every Nigerian,” the statement said.

“At the moment, the most important thing to every Nigerian is security. They want their lives to be protected first. The National Assembly has since understood this and that is why as representatives of the people, they have since been calling for a more robust,efficient and effective security management for the country.

“The recognized that this cannot be achieved without emplacing a complete new security architecture in place. That is why the two chambers of the legislature came up with resolutions seeking replacement of service chiefs but after many months of this genuine and patriotic call by the people’s representatives, President Buhari is yet to accede to their request. This is unfair to Nigerians whose lives are being cut down on daily basis.

“We still stand by the position of the National Assembly where members unanimously resolved that you relieve the security chiefs of their positions to pave way for not only fresh hands but also fresh ideas in our security management strategies.”

“Sacking the current chiefs and subsequently replacing them with new ones will automatically change the game of insecurity as the morale of fighting officers will be boosted, new strategies will be launched besides the flow of intelligence information among the security agencies,” the group said. Theguardianng

Saturday, December 05, 2020


US removes reciprocity visa fees for Nigerians

The United States has removed all visa reciprocity fees for Nigerians seeking visas to the US with effect from December 3, the Federal Government has said.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs disclosed on Saturday that the development was sequel to the removal of excess visa application, processing and biometric fees for American citizens applying for Nigerian visas.

The Donald Trump administration had in 2019 imposed the reciprocity fee for all approved non-immigrant visa applications by Nigerians.

The fee was charged in addition to visa application fees for only applicants who are issued visas.

The additional reciprocity fees which ranged from $80 to $303 depending on the class of visa, took effect from August 29 last year.

The US Embassy in Nigeria said the reciprocity fees were in response to unsuccessful talks with Nigeria to adjust the fees it charges American applicants.

It argued that the total cost for a US citizen to obtain a visa to Nigeria was higher than the total cost for a Nigerian to obtain a comparable visa to the United States.

The Mission insisted that the reciprocity fee was meant to eliminate the cost difference as required by US laws.

Announcing the removal of the reciprocity fee in a statement, the MFA spokesman, Ferdinand Nwonye, said, “The Ministry of Foreign Affairs wishes to inform that the United States Government has removed all visa reciprocity fees for Nigerian citizens seeking visas to the United States.

“The positive development is in line with the removal of excess visa application, processing and biometric fees for United States citizens applying for Nigerian visas by the Nigerian
“The United States Government has, therefore, eliminated reciprocity fees for Nigerian citizens with effect from December 3, 2020.”

The statement titled, ‘Update on removal of visa fees for Nigerian citizens by the US Government,’ advised prospective travellers to the US to visit www.travel.state.gov for details.”

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