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FG approves 33 private universities within 16 months

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Abuja—The Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government of Nigeria has approved a total of 33 private universities within 16 months, from January 2021 and April 2022.

According to the Punch, this was revealed in data obtained from the National Universities Commission on Friday.

It was reported that while 21 out of the 33 private universities established were approved in 2021; 12 were approved during the present strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities.

The total number of universities in Nigeria before the establishment of the 33 universities, stood at 186 comprising 49 federal universities; 59 state universities, and 78 private universities.

The following are some of the private universities approved in 2021; Opfaith University, Mkpatak, Akwa Ibom; Thomas Adewumi University, Oko-Irese, Kwara; Maranatha University, Mgbidi, Imo; Ave Maria University, Piyanko, Nasarawa; Al-Istiqama University, Sumaila, Kano; Mudiame University, Irrua, Edo; Havilla University, Nde-Ikom, Cross River; and Claretian University of Nigeria, Nekede, Imo.

Others are NOK University, Kachia, Kaduna; Karl-Kumm University, Vom, Plateau.; James Hope University, Lagos; Maryam Abacha American University of Nigeria, Kano; Capital City University, Kano; Ahman Pategi University, Kwara; University of Offa, Kwara; Mewar University, Masaka, Nasarawa; Edusoko University, Bida, Niger; Philomath University, Kuje, Abuja and Khadija University, Majia, Jigawa, among others

Whereas Private universities established in 2022 include Pen Resource University, Gombe, Gombe State; Al-Ansar University, Maiduguri, Borno State; Margaret Lawrence I -University, Delta State; Khalifa Ishaku Rabiu University, Kano; Sports University Idumuje Ugboko, Delta State;

Others are Bala Ahmed University, Kano; Saisa University of Medical Sciences and Technology, Sokoto State; Nigerian-British University Hasa, Abia State; Peter University Acina-Onene, Anambra State; Newgate University, Minna, Niger State; European University of Nigeria in Duboyi, Abuja and North-West University, Sokoto.

The ongoing strike by ASUU which started on Monday, February 14, 2022, entered its 180th day on Saturday, making it the second longest strike since return to democracy in 1999. The longest strike ever was in 2020 under the regime of Muhammadu Buhari.

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Digital institute calls for implementation of Freedom of Information Act

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Abuja—The Digital Bridge Institute (DBI), on Monday, joined other experts from government ministries, departments, and agencies (MDAs) to make appraisal of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) 2011 and the challenges facing its effective implementation in the country.

According to a statement by the institute on Monday, the DBI management team to the one-day interactive workshop on the appraisal of FOIA was led by the Head of the Public Affairs Unit, Mr. Akin Ogunlade, who was also accompanied by Ms. Temidayo Olaloye.

The statement read, “The round-table solution-oriented workshop, organized by the Bureau of Public Service Reforms (BPSR) is to bring together stakeholders from the state and non-state actors to the interactive workshop to seek a better understanding of the Freedom of Information.

“According to the BPSR, the Forum is also to discuss the challenges facing its implementation, as well as proffer solutions to mitigating those challenges.

“The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) has provided the public the right to request access to records from any federal agency. The FOIA is often described as the law that keeps citizens in the know about their government.

“The workshop has at least two nominees from all MDAs across Nigeria in participation and it was expected that recommendations reached by participants at the workshop, would be drawn up for actionable points to develop policy briefs for the government.”

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Buhari’s intention to lift 100m Nigerians out of poverty intact—Minister

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Lagos—The Minister of State for Power, Goddy Jedy-Agba, has reiterated the Federal Government’s determination to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty by 2030 through its Energy Transition Plan, ETP, according to the Daily Nigerian.

Mr. Jedy-Agba disclosed this during 2022 Nigeria Energy Forum Day 2, Virtual Edition, held on Monday following the Day 1 physical event earlier held in Lagos.

President Muhammadu Buhari had unveiled the government’s plans to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty by 2030.

Kachollum Daju, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Labour and Employment, said this when she addressed newsmen on Sunday in Abuja.

According to the minister, ETP will lift no fewer than 100 Nigerians out of poverty and drive the economic growth of the country.

“It will also bring modern energy services to the full population and managing the expected long-term job loss in the oil sector due to global decarbonization.

“The plan focuses on the rapid build-out of sustainable energy systems to tackle energy poverty in the nation,” the minister said.

He said in designing the plan, key targets from relevant policies and initiatives such as the 2020 Economic Sustainability Plan, the Nigeria Electrification Project, the National Decarbonization Programme, and the Presidential Power Initiative.

“The ETP is geared towards low-carbon development of Energy systems across 5 key sectors; Power, Industry, Cooking, Transport, and Oil and Gas.”

Mr Jedy-Agba said the plan had been approved by the Federal Executive Council and adopted as National Policy.

“An Energy Transition Implementation Working Group (ETWG) has been established to drive the implementation of the ETP along with key International Partners.

“The ETWG is chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and comprises of several key ministers including the Ministers for Environment, Finance, Works and Housing, Petroleum Resources, Foreign Affairs, and Power.

“The Working Group and its secretariat, the Energy Transition Office, have been engaging with in-country stakeholders, development partners, financiers, and the international community for the delivery of the plan,” he said.

He said the ETP analysis shows that delivering Nigeria’s net-zero target requires 1.9 trillion dollars in spending up to 2060, including 410 billion dollars above business-as-usual spending.

Speaking on the plan, Inga Stefanowicz, the Team Leader, Green Economy Co-operation Section, EU Delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS, said Nigeria was not standing aloof on the ongoing transition.

According to her, the EU will contribute some 400 million Euros worth of projects and programmes to the ETP.

“This amount may seem modest when compared with the needs and the ETP estimates, but it is also the role of our funds to act as catalysers of change, reforms, private sector, and international development finance investment.

“We are proud to have achieved such positive spillovers for Nigeria already and we look forward to working together more,” she said.

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Machina defeats senate president, Lawan again in Appeal Court

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Abuja—The Court of Appeal in Abuja has upheld the senatorial candidacy of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate for Yobe North, Bashir Sheriff Machina.

According toSaharaReporters, the Appeal Court in a unanimous judgment affirmed the earlier decision of the Federal High Court, Damaturu which declared Machina as the rightful senatorial candidate of APC for Yobe North.

The court dismissed the petition filed by the ruling party for being unmeritorious and awarded N1 million to Machina.

President of the Court, Justice Monica Dongban-Mensem who delivered the judgement held that the lower court was right when it validated the May 28th APC senatorial primary election that produced Machina because it was duly monitored by INEC.

In June, a Federal High Court in Damaturu, Yobe State had declared Machina as the party’s senatorial candidate for Yobe North having emerged from a valid primary election that was conducted on May 28, 2022.

Though Lawan initially accepted the verdict and made public his decision not to appeal the judgement, he, however, made a U-turn and secretly sponsored an appeal at the Court of Appeal, Abuja.

SaharaReporters earlier reported that Lawan; the APC National Chairman, Abdullahi Adamu and some key officials of the presidency were working round the clock to upturn the decision of the lower court using President Muhammadu Buhari’s name to intimidate the Justices of the panel.

Machina won the primary election organised by the APC in May 2022, while Lawan opted to contest the presidential primary election organised by the APC in June.

Lawan lost the APC presidential ticket to former Lagos governor, Bola Tinubu.

However, Machina was asked to step down for Lawan but he insisted that he would not withdraw for the Senate President.

Amid the controversy, the APC submitted the Senate President’s name to INEC as its senatorial candidate for Yobe North.

Miffed by the development, Machina headed to court to seek redress. Specifically, Machina in his suit asked the court to declare him as the validly elected senatorial candidate of the APC for the 2023 election.

Justice Aminu nullified the parallel primary election that produced Lawan on June 9, 2022.

Consequently, the trial judge ordered the APC to forward the name of Machina to INEC as the authentic winner of the primary held in May.

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