El-Rufai accepts Dogara’s challenge; Nigeria Customs breaks HND/BSc dichotomy

The Kaduna State governor took up a challenge by publicising his state’s finances while the Customs abolished the HND/BSc dichotomy. These and others were part of our top stories on Monday.

1. El-Rufai accepts Dogara’s challenge, publishes details of salary, Kaduna security vote, others

The Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, on Monday published details of his state’s budget, including his official security votes and personal pay slip.

The unprecedented disclosure was in response to Speaker Yakubu Dogara, who recently dared Mr. El-Rufai to publish details of his state’s expenses, following earlier admonition by the governor that the National Assembly should relax the water-tight secrecy around its budget.

2. Nigeria Customs promotes HND holders, 3,487 senior officers — Hameed Ali

The Nigeria Customs Service has promoted all HND holders on salary level GL 07 to level GL 08, an official said on Monday.

The Director General of the Customs, Hameed Ali, who announced the promotion said a supplementary budget will be made to cater for the salary arrears of the affected staff.

Mr. Ali also said 3,487 senior officers of the Customs have also been promoted.

3. Nigerian govt denies monitoring citizens’ phone calls, social media posts

The Federal Government has described as false, reports circulating on the social media to the effect that under a purported Ministry of Interior regulation, all phone calls and social media posts made by Nigerians are to be monitored and recorded.

In a statement issued in Abuja on Monday, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, described the development as another example of disinformation that has permeated the media space, especially the social media.

The minister said the intention of those behind the false news is to give the impression that the Federal Government is working to stifle freedom of speech, “which is not the case”.

4. Olu Falae’s kidnappers sentenced to life imprisonment

An Ondo State High Court, Akure Division, on Monday sentenced seven Fulani herdsmen to life imprisonment for kidnapping former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Olu Falae.

Justice Williams Olamide found them guilty of the act committed in 2015 as charged by the Ondo State government.

Mr. Falae was taken captive by the herdsmen on September 21, 2015 during his 77th birthday.

He was released four days later after paying about N5 million as ransom.

5. Nigerian judge accused of corruption challenges court’s jurisdiction

A Federal High Court judge, Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia, has challenged the jurisdiction of an Ikeja High Court to hear the ongoing corruption charge brought against her by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

Robert Clarke, Mrs. Ofili-Ajumogobia’s new lead defence counsel, challenged the court’s jurisdiction on Monday in an application brought before Justice Hakeem Oshodi.

6. Missing Petrol Scandal: NNPC ‘sacks’ four top officials

The management of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, has asked four top officials of the agency to leave, multiple sources have told PREMIUM TIMES.

Those asked to step down are the Managing Director of the NNPC Retail, Esther Nnamdi-Ogbue; the General Manager (Operations) of NNPC Retail, Mamza Gwadabe; as well as Ibrahim Bello, another official of NNPC retail. The identity of the last person could not be confirmed as at press time.

The four were asked to depart last Thursday over the ‘missing’ petrol scandal involving Capital Oil & Gas Nigeria Limited owned by businessman, Ifeanyi Ubah.

7. Lagos Assembly confirms fugitive convicted for fraud in U.S. as head of state’s Safety Commission

The Lagos State House of Assembly confirmed the nomination of Hakeem Dickson as head of the state’s Safety Commission despite the nominee being a convicted fraudster and a fugitive, PREMIUM TIMES can report.

Mr. Dickson, a former Internal Auditor at the now defunct Nigeria Airways, was confirmed alongside three others — Jokotola Ogundinmu as the Chairman, Lagos State Audit Service Commission; and Ayo Adebusoye and Mobolaji Aare as members of the Lagos State Public Procurement Board.

8. Reps summon Magu, Emefiele, Baru, five others over ‘stolen’ $17 billion oil money

The House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee investigating alleged $17 billion stolen undeclared oil funds has summoned Ibrahim Magu, acting Chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to appear before it on Tuesday.

The Chairman of the committee, Abdulrazak Namdas, summoned Mr. Magu on Monday in Abuja at the opening of the investigation where all the invited stakeholders sent their subordinates to represent the committee.

The committee has commenced investigation into alleged $17 billion stolen from undeclared crude oil and liquefied natural gas exports to global destinations.

9. After court frees her $5.8 million, Patience Jonathan visits Skye Bank

A former first lady, Patience Jonathan, was on Monday sighted at the Maitama branch of Skye Bank in Abuja.

Mrs. Jonathan’s visit to the bank may not be unconnected with a court decision last week to unfreeze her account at the bank.

The Federal High Court in Lagos on Thursday directed that the freeze order on the account be cancelled. The account is believed to contain about $5.8 million (about N1.8 billion).

10. Agbani Darego, Miss World 2001, marries TY Danjuma’s son

Agbani Darego, 2001 Miss World, got married over the weekend to Ishaya Danjuma, son of former defence minister, Theophilus Danjuma.

The former beauty queen shared the news on her Instagram page with the picture showing her in a wedding dress with her partner turning their backs to the camera at the wedding.

She shared the picture with the caption, “08–04–2017, #Mrs. Danjuma”, which was further confirmed by her friend Elizabeth Elohor.9.

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