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Niger lawmakers get N17m each, plus more stories

NIGER LAWMAKERS GET N17M EACH, STOP ALIYU’S REMOVAL
The impeachment plot against the Niger State Governor, Aliyu Babangida, may have been stalled as the members of the state House of Assembly pushing for the governor’s removal have been paid N17m each. The lawmakers after receiving the N17m each were also promised by the state government that their other demands would soon be met. Consequently, the lawmakers have decided to stop the impeachment move against the governor. Though the Speaker, State House of Assembly, Isah Kawu, refused to comment on the issue when his reaction to the development was sought, sources at the assembly complex including lawmakers, who pleaded anonymity, confirmed the development.

GOVERNORS REUNITE TO FIGHT OKONJO-IWEALA FOR MONEY
The nation’s governors, yesterday, put aside the two-year feud that factionalised the Nigeria Governors Forum, NGF, and demanded an account of the estimated $20 billion they claimed accrued to the Excess Crude Account, ECA, while the NGF crisis lasted. The demand which was directed at the Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, was immediately rebuffed by the minister, who asked the governors to seek clarification from their finance commissioners. Reflective of their new unity, the governors by consensus, adopted Governor Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara State as the new chairman of the NGF to take over from Governor Rotimi Amaechi, who presided at the session. Governor Jonah Jang of Plateau State, who had claimed chairman of the other faction of the NGF, was absent at the meeting that was, however, attended by several members of his faction.

NIGERIA, 7 OTHERS TO BEGIN EBOLA VACCINE TRIALS
NIGERIA is one of eight African countries where clinical trials of a vaccine for the Ebola virus disease will soon commence. The others are Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Cameroun, Ghana, Mali and Senegal. Nigeria’s Minister of State for Health, Fidelis Nwankwo, who disclosed this when he addressed the 68th World Health Assembly in Geneva yesterday, also canvassed the country’s quest to become one of the hubs for the proposed African Centres for Disease Control (CDC). The African CDC is expected to, among other things, help African countries effectively monitor public health, respond to public health emergencies, address complex health challenges, and build needed capacity.

APC CANCELS ZONING, DECLARES SENATE, REPS TOP SEATS OPEN
Contrary to expectations, a former acting National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Chief Bisi Akande, has said that the party will not choose the next President of the Senate through zoning.
Akande, who spoke with some journalists in Ikeja, on Tuesday, explained that zoning was strange to the APC. A member of the APC’s Board of Trustees, Akande said the party’s constitution did not recognise zoning, adding that zoning was a creation of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party.
The former governor of Osun State said the leadership of the party shot down the idea of zoning when it was brought up by the party’s current National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun.

BENIN PROTEA HOTEL STAFF, EDEH BURIED IN ENUGU
THE remains of the late Chibuike Edeh, a worker with Protea Hotel, Benin, who was reported to have died few days after he was arrested by the police for allegedly stealing N48,000 from a hotel guest, have been buried. A brother to the deceased, Chibuzo, told Southern City News on Tuesday the late Edeh was buried on Sunday at his hometown in Nomeh, Nkanu East Local Government Area of Enugu State. He said the body was conveyed from Benin, accompanied by his family members and friends. HAMILTONSTYLE had reported how the death of the young man sparked series of protests by his friends and family members who accused the Nigeria Police and Protea Hotel owners of complicity.

N5B FRAUD: CHIMAROKE NNAMANI’S CO-ACCUSED PLEAD GUILTY
Four of the six companies standing trial alongside a former Governor of Enugu State, Chimaroke Nnamani, accused of N5bn money laundering, have pleaded guilty to amended counts in relation to the offence. The four companies – Rainbownet Nigeria Limited, Cosmos FM, Capital City Automobile Nigeria Limited, and Renaissance University Teaching Hospital – pleaded guilty on Tuesday following their re-arraignment on an amended 10-count. The companies are being prosecuted separately from Nnamani by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to fast-track their trial. The move was to save their assets from being eroded, because the trial had made little or no progress since 2007 when it commenced due to Nnamani’s ill health.

Have a pleasant Wednesday, May 20, 2015 and enjoy our other news and views of today – HAMILTONSTYLE.

Sources: PUNCH|GUARDIAN|VANGUARD|THISDAY

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