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Breaking: Lagos Lawmakers Condemn Burning of Rivers Assembly Chamber

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  • want immediate reopening of Rivers Assembly
  • call for autonomy for state legislatures
  • urge IGP to ensure peace, protection of legislative chamber

Members of the Lagos State House of Assembly on Tuesday condemned the burning of the Rivers State legislative chamber by yet to be identified persons.

The members also condemned the alleged interference of the executive arm of government in the affairs of the state legislature saying that the constitution guarantees the independence of the legislature.

This was as the Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, who called in from an official trip outside the country, urged President Bola Tinubu to call on the Inspector-General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun, to reopen the parliament and protect the lawmakers while they perform their duties.

Obasa said the parliament must not be made a victim of political crisis among gladiators as witnessed in Edo, where the roof of the chamber was removed by the governor, and other states where such had happened in the past.

“The constitution must be adhered to at all times. Since the crisis started in the office of the governor, then there is no reason to lock up the Assembly. Even if the lawmakers have issues, they should be allowed to resolve such among themselves without interference from the executive arm.

“The removal of the sitting Speaker behind the door should not be tolerated because it is against the constitution. While we understand that impeachments are democratic, the constitutional procedures must be followed whether for a Speaker or a governor.

“Where did the lawmakers have the sitting where the Speaker was removed and at what time did the sitting hold? How many members voted against the sitting Speaker? The Rivers governor, in saving his neck, must not sacrifice the House of Assembly or turn the legislators against themselves.

“Again, it should be of note that a governor has no power to remove the Chief Judge of a state without the two-third support from lawmakers. Just as the office of the governor or Chief Judge cannot be sealed up, a House of Assembly should not be sealed up,” he said.

Dr. Obasa called on the Senate President, Godswill Akpabio, and Rt. Hon. Tajudeen Abbas of the House of Representatives to urgently intervene to protect the Rivers Assembly and its members.

At plenary on Tuesday, members of the House also called on the governor of Rivers State, Siminalayi Fubara, to adhere to the constitution by not meddling in the affairs of the House just as they further urged the Senate and the House of Representatives to rise up to the crisis.

The House urged the chairman of the Conference of Speakers, Rt. Hon. Debo Ogundoyin, to collaborate with his colleagues to condemn the act and fast-track the process of ensuring autonomy for state legislatures.

Raising the issue under ‘Matter of Urgent Public Importance’, Hon. Desmond Elliot, representative of Surulere 1, said the attack on the chamber was an attack on the sanctity of the parliament, which is very important to democracy.

“How was a new Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly elected? If due process was not followed, we have to condemn it.

“The crisis in Rivers did not emanate from the House of Assembly, so why should it be burnt or closed down?” he asked.

Speaking on the issue, Deputy Majority Leader Richard Kasunmu said reports had it that the governor stormed the House just as he wondered how the new Speaker emerged from a faction of just eight members.

While noting that the Lagos State House of Assembly has always led by example, he expressed worry over the safety of the mace, which he described as the symbol of authority.

Condemning the act, Hon. Adewale Temitope (Ifako-Ijaiye 1), said it was disturbing how eight members could elect a Speaker.

“It is becoming a norm for the executive to interfere in the affairs of the legislature. And where this continues, you are calling for anarchy. I call on my colleagues to come together and solve whatever issues they have among themselves so that they can continue to serve the people,” he said.

Deputy Speaker Mojisola Lasbat Meranda, who presided at the sitting, described the situation in Rivers as sad and heartbreaking.

“Our security agents should also ask questions because the Rivers Assembly is on the same street as the police command in the state. The parliament is the life of democratic government,” she noted.

Eromosele Ebhomele
Media Assistant to the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly.

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Ecobank Partners Nigeria Chess Federation: To Host 2024 National Schools’ Team Chess Competition

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Lagos, April 15, 2024 – Ecobank Nigeria Limited, a subsidiary of the Ecobank Group, has entered a strategic partnership with Nigeria Chess Federation (NCF) to host the 2024 National Schools’ Team Chess Competition. The competition is scheduled to hold between 24th – 28th May 2024 at the Ecobank Pan African Centre (EPAC) in Victoria Lagos. It is open to students from primary, Secondary and Tertiary education level with prizes of over N10 million to be won. Representatives of the Ministry of Education, Sports and Youth Development, parents, teachers, embassies and several others are expected at the event. Registration and participation are free, and School’s team can register by sending an email to: nationalschoolsteamchess@gmail.com Managing Director/Regional Executive, Ecobank Nigeria, Bolaji Lawal, said the decision of the bank to sponsor the Chess competition was to further showcase Ecobank’s commitment to supporting intellectual and sports development in Nigeria, being part of Ecobank’s strategic human capital development drive.“Children and youth empowerment is part of our shared objective as the pan-African Bank. It aligns with our overall long-term vision of building a world class Pan African bank that contributes to the economic and financial integration of the continent. We are also using the opportunity of this competition to introduce and empower them with convenient, affordable, and accessible digital financial services they can access anytime and anywhere they are. Arrangements are in place to make the competition exciting and fulfilling for both the children and undergraduate students”. He stated.Vice President, Nigeria Chess Federation, Prince Adeyinka Adewole said Chess, the game of Kings and Queens, has proven to be more than just a pastime, stating that it is an educational tool that enhances critical thinking, concentration, and problem-solving skills. While commending Ecobank for being a good ‘corporate citizen’ for sponsoring the competition, he noted that the competition will promote and showcase the skill and talent of chess players from Nigerian schools, while promoting teamwork, fostering a spirit of sportsmanship among participants, and providing networking opportunities to players.He enjoined all the institutions to take advantage of this opportunity to participate in the prestigious event, adding that participation will undoubtedly contribute to the championship’s success and provide an enriching experience for the participating students.Ecobank has embarked on several initiatives to develop youths in the country. The bank through a collaboration with the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), is currently providing training and support services on Agribusiness which includes aquaculture, horticulture, poultry, and value addition to 16,000 youths in Nigeria. Also, Ecobank recently partnered with Learntor to provide capacity building for youths through Agile, Scrum, Data Analytics, Business Analysis, Cyber Security, and Scrum Master Certifications. The bank has also refurbished and donated learning equipment, provided digital training for students and promoted financial literacy in several schools across the country.

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LAWMA Welcomes April Interns  

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LAWMA Academy, the educational arm of the Lagos Waste Management Authority, has welcomed a fresh set of candidates, for its one-month internship for the month of April.The interns were all recent graduates of various universities in the country, across different academic disciplines.Addressing the interns, the Managing Director/CEO of LAWMA, Dr. Muyiwa Gbadegesin, congratulated them for making the internship programme, as it would assist them, to learn as much as possible about waste management and inherent benefits.He noted that waste was really not waste but resource, urging them to embrace the business opportunities offered by the circular economy value chain, where so-called waste becomes wealth and blessing, to individuals, society and the environment.According to him, “This internship will go a long way in exposing you to the positive and rewarding side of waste management. I am sure you are aware that nothing is a waste until you waste them. What used to be waste is now a resource that can be harvested to make money and improve lives. Indeed, it’s a long value-chain you can tap into, depending on your area of interest. It is a promising and highly rewarding venture.”Speaking further, the LAWMA boss urged them to pay good attention to the practical aspects of their training and arm themselves with determination, to become change agents and champions of environmental sustainability.Speaking in the same vein, the Executive Director of LAWMA, Mr. Kunle Adebiyi, urged the interns to maximize the knowledge gained, to leverage their areas of interest along the value-chain, for personal enterprise and good reward.He said, “This is a good opportunity for you to acquire knowledge and make money from modern waste management initiatives. What is important for you here, is to pay attention to the various things you will be taught, so that you can decide where to key in, for future enterprise and handsome financial rewards”.Similarly, LAWMA Academy had last month ran a one-month internship programme for some graduate and post-graduate candidates, representing the first batch of interns for this year. The candidates who enjoyed in-depth training in modern waste management from various departments of the agency, received completion certificates, after presenting their group final project, an illustrative diagram on circular economy, relating to manufacturing industries, to the LAWMA boss.LAWMA Academy, has since the beginning of this year, taken environmental advocacy to more than 5,000 pupils of public schools across the state, in Eti-Osa, Ikeja, Mushin, Ijora –Olopa, Agege, Victoria Island, and other areas.The pupils were enlightened on LAWMA’s diverse operations, effects of indiscriminate waste dumping, making money from recyclables, usage of trash bags and cans, shunning cart pushers and the need to patronise assigned PSP operators.The founding objective was to expand the frontiers of knowledge on waste management, by teaching it as much as possible, to the younger generation for new cultural orientation and perception of waste management, for environmental sustainability. It is the basis for stretching the dragnets to bring in as many young people as possible into the fold, to form the vanguard of environment ambassadors, for a new culture and orientation, for a people-friendly environment.LAWMA Academy Internship, is a monthly programme of environmental and waste management education, for willing candidates.

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Cryptotimes Africa and 4 Other Crypto-Focused Publications shaping the narrative of cryptocurrency in Africa

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It’s no doubt that Africa has emerged as a hotbed for cryptocurrencyadoption and innovation. With a growing interest in digital assets andblockchain technology, several publications have sprung up to cater tothe information needs of crypto enthusiasts across the continent.Among these, Cryptotimes Africa stands out as a leading source of newsand insights on the African crypto scene. Let’s take a closer look atCryptotimes Africa and five other noteworthy publications that areshaping the narrative of cryptocurrency in Africa.1. Cryptotimes AfricaAs the name suggests, Cryptotimes Africa is dedicated to covering allthings crypto-related on the African continent. From news updates andmarket analysis to interviews with industry experts, this publicationoffers a comprehensive view of the rapidly evolving crypto landscapein Africa. With a focus on promoting blockchain adoption and financialinclusion, Cryptotimes Africa serves as a valuable resource for bothnewcomers and seasoned veterans in the crypto space.2. Bitcoinke.ioBitcoin Africa is another prominent publication that provides in-depthcoverage of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in Africa. With a teamof experienced writers and analysts, Bitcoin Africa deliversinsightful articles, guides, and reviews to help readers navigate thecomplexities of the crypto market. Whether you’re interested intrading strategies, regulatory developments, or technologicalinnovations, Bitcoin Africa has you covered.3. TechnextTechnext is a broad tech publication with a strong focus on Africanstartups, innovation, and trends, coverage includes articles onblockchain technology, cryptocurrencies beyond Bitcoin, and theirapplications in Africa.4. Tech CabalTech Cabal focuses on providing in-depth analysis and reporting on theAfrican tech ecosystem, including funding rounds, investment trends,and interviews with key players. While its primary coverage is notsolely focused on cryptocurrencies, Tech Cabal features insightfularticles on blockchain technology, cryptocurrency adoption in Africa,and the regulatory landscape. Targeting investors, entrepreneurs, andprofessionals working in the African tech sector, Tech Cabalcontributes valuable insights to the broader conversation on cryptoinnovation in Africa.5. NairametricsNairametrics is a financial and business news platform with a focus onthe Nigerian economy and markets. While covering a wide range offinancial topics, Nairametrics includes articles on cryptocurrenciesas an investment asset class, analysis of their impact on the Nigerianfinancial sector, and regulatory updates. Targeting investors,business people, and those interested in the financial sector inNigeria, Nairametrics provides valuable insights into the evolvinglandscape of cryptocurrencies in Africa’s largest economy.In conclusion, Cryptotimes Africa and the aforementioned publicationsare playing a crucial role in shaping the narrative of cryptocurrencyin Africa. By providing reliable news, analysis, and educationalresources, these platforms are empowering individuals and businessesto participate in the digital economy and seize the opportunitiesoffered by blockchain technology. As the crypto revolution continuesto unfold, these publications will undoubtedly remain essential guidesfor enthusiasts and professionals alike.

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