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Report: $15 minimum wage bill would benefit 20.7 million workers

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Senator Ekwunife In A Scandal Of Two Hundred And Fifty-Five Million Naira (₦‎250,000,000) Technology Training Funds

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By Efe Davidson

Information reaching us has it that the Senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District in the 9th Senate, Sen. Lilian Uche Ekwunife is enmeshed in a scandal of diverting funds meant for the training of Youths in her Constituency.

The Federal Government of Nigeria through the Federal Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation released over ₦‎250,000,000 for the ‘Training and Empowerment of Youths in the 7 LGAs of Anambra Central on Renewal Energy and Devices in Anambra State’. The Federal Ministry used Centre For Energy Research and Development Nsukka to facilitate the program.

Sen. Ekwunife who is the Chairman Senate Committee on Science Technology got the money for the program which she went ahead to organize in collaboration with NASENI.

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After the training which started on 22nd November and ended 26th November, 2022, participants started agitating on how they were shortchanged by the organizers. They claimed that Sen. Ekwunife who organized the program did not give them ₦‎25,000 meant for participants logistics for the 5days of the training that was held at International Conference Centre (ICC) Awka. The participants who were initially oblivious of the monetary attachments of the program started their complaints when one of the organizers in course of discussion with one of them asked if they have gotten all the monies accrued to them.

Following up on their agitations, we learnt that the participants supposed to have taken ₦‎25,000 per youth during the program and ₦‎500,000 per youth at the completion of the training. The ₦‎500,000 as approved is meant for start up for those who successfully learnt Solar Installation and Maintenance.

An official of NASENI who spoke on the condition of anonymity explained that they were in Anambra State for a follow-up with the money meant for the training and to monitor the success of the training but was surprised to realize that the participants were not paid their entitlements by the lawmaker.

“We will file our reports and submit them to the Headquarters and it’s up to them to take necessary actions. The report is the only thing we can do in this matter. What happened here is one of those means lawmakers steal public funds. Each of these participants is meant to earn ₦‎500,000 aside their ₦‎25,000 for feeding and accommodation. I will give you documents to back this up because we will definitely file our report. We individually interviewed them and the response was the same. No start-up money was paid as at the time they were receiving their certificates. For the accommodation and feeding, they confided in me that they got only ₦‎10,000 each.” – he concluded.

Another official of the Centre of Energy Research at the University of Nigeria Nsukka where the money was lodged through the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, refused to speak on the issue. One of the Staff of the Centre who also spoke on the condition of anonymity explained that the issue is not new because it has been the culture where politicians propose huge sums of money for a particular program or project and come through the backdoor to take the huge sum for their personal enrichment. He claimed that politicians perfect this style of scam through organizing ineffective programs with loud media publicity for campaign purposes.

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This scandal on Sen. Ekwunife is worrisome because the Senator representing Anambra South Senatorial District, Sen. Ifeanyi Ubah got same money for the Training of Youths in Anambra South Senatorial District and has publicly announced and promised to organize a special program where the Youths will learn and equally get their ₦‎500,000 which is meant for their start-up. Public declaration of this same program by Sen. Ifeanyi Ubah has given credence to this ₦‎250,000,000 million scandal by Sen. Ekwunife.

As at the time of filing this report, none of the Youths who participated in the program has gotten any other fund apart from the ₦‎10,000 given to them on the final day of the program. Davidsblog will equally update the readers when we confirm they have completely received the funds they were supposed to get from the Federal Government.
Sen. Ekwunife is now left with the option of releasing back the money meant for the training of the Anambra Central Youth Technology Training Program. The organizers can still contact the participants for the money accrued to them by the Federal Government.

Efe Davidson
Abuja, Nigeria

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Kidnappers demand ransom in new naira notes

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Gunmen who abducted four persons in Kolo village of Zamfara State have reportedly demanded ransom in new naira notes.

It was learnt that the terrorists demanded N10m and later reduced it to N5m but insisted they won’t collect the old naira notes.

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday unveiled the new naira notes but the new notes may not go into circulation until December 15, 2022.

The terrorists insisted they would keep the victims until the new notes are in circulation.

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“As we were trying to gather the money demanded by the terrorists, they sent another message this morning that they would not collect old naira notes.

“They said they would keep the abducted persons in their camps until the release of the new naira notes in December,” Mohammed Ibrahim, a resident, reportedly said.

The Nation

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Agulu-Awka Ward 5 Endorses Baby Awka As Their Leader

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….backs all his preferred candidates for 2023 elections…

On 21st November, 2022, voters in Awka Ward 5, Awka South LGA of Anambra State endorsed Chief Emeka Jude Agumadu popularly known as Baby Awka as their leader who they will follow as the 2023 general Elections draw closer.

In a strategic event organized by Baby Awka in his country home of Umubele Agulu-Awka Ward 5, the crowd numbering over one thousand pledged their allegiance to his preferred choice of candidates. They said that any candidate of any political party adopted by Baby Awka will be the person to vote at the polls in 2023.

Awka Ward 5 is one of the biggest political Wards in Nigeria with over 46 pooling units. It is worthy to note that Awka Ward 5 has taken greater percentage in making Awka South winners of total votes cast in every election year, notable among them are the 2013, 2017 and 2021 Anambra Gubernatorial election.

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Monday 21st November saw another build-up ritual towards next year election where all the stakeholders and voters came with their voters card to endorse any candidate chosen by their own, Chief Emeka Jude Agumadu (Ozodinakachukwu).

Speaking at the event, the Awka South Chairman of All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Hon. Chikaodili Nonyelu while welcoming voters that gathered, appreciated them for their solidarity over the years. She thanked them for massively supporting Chief Emeka Agumadu and APGA in previous elections and assured them that their supports will never be in vain.

The voters who came with their voter’s card spoke differently in acknowledgement of his philanthropic gestures towards them, claiming that it has earned him their loyalty which they have concluded to reciprocate by voting all his candidates as a way of payback for everything he has done for the community and Anambra State at large.

With joy of fulfilment, Chief Emeka Jude Agumadu (Baby Awka) appreciated the crowd who came to endorse him as their Leader. He used the opportunity to intimate them on his political choice and candidates. He later introduced his candidates of All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) which he tagged “The Winning Team”. In Anambra Central, he introduced Hon. Dozie Nwankwo as APGA candidate, in Awka North and South Federal Constituency, he asked his followers to voted for Hon. Obi Nwankwo (Okwu Ego Nibo) as his choice while maintaining that Hon. Samuel Igwedimma Nwofor is the best that must be voted for Awka South 1 State Constituency. He promised that if they support all his candidates, he will make sure they come back to deliver all the campaign promises to the people of Awka South LGA.

The Candidates in their separate speeches reeled out their plans and what they will do for the people of Awka Ward 5 and Awka as a Community.

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During vote of thanks, the former Transition Chairman of Awka South LGA, Hon. Kenechukwu Okoye (Jakpo) thanked the voters in Awka Ward 5 for their solidarity and support to Chief Emeka Agumadu. He narrated that their support over the years has given Baby Awka courage in bargaining for democratic dividends for Awka Ward 5 and the entire Awka Community. He reminded the voters that their support attracted the building of new classroom blocks at Agulu-Awka Primary and Secondary School Awka, and furnishing it with 21st century educational gadgets. Including other projects attracted by the former Senator who represented Anambra Central Senatorial District through Chief Jude Agumadu.

Dignitaries that attended the event are Hon. Dozie Nwankwo ably represented by his Campaign DG, Hon. Ayo Obiadi, Hon. Obi Nwankwo, Hon. Chikaodili Nonyelu, Hon. Samuel Igwedimma Nwofor, Hon. Mrs. Felly Okika , Comr. Obi Ochije, Chief Okwuchukwu Ogbuefvi (CEO Trig Point Hotels, Nibo), Hon. Ekene Obidinma, Hon. Kenechukwu Okoye, Hon. Chinedu Okafor, Chief Alex Chinwuko “D Great” (APGA Awka Ward 5 Chairman), Hon. Chuks Ikebudu, Lady Chimdi Orakwue, Hon. Emmanuel Onwurah Nonyelu (Agu Awka), Ozo Omesilibe, Mr. Igwedimma Arinze (Ogbuefvi Amalazoba), Hon. Patrick Agunobi, Hon. Perol Nosike, Hon. Ogbonna Akabogu (Inspector), Hon. Nonso Nwekweghi, among others.

Written By
Uzoma Ferdinand
Awka, Anambra State

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