The Big 5: Peter Obi says senator’s allowance is nothing compared to governors, Mugabe says Zimbabwe coup d’etat must be undone and other top stories

These are the stories we should be monitoring today.

Close to three months into 2018, President Muhammadu Buhari has directed Ministries, Agencies and Departments (MDAs) yet to defend their 2018 budget proposal before the National Assembly to do so without further delay.

According to the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, who addressed newsmen after a meeting held between the President and NASS principal officers at the State House, the directive is to speed up the passing of the 2018 budget and be able to spend the money on key national needs including security and development infrastructure.

The Nigerian Police Force, Borno Command, on Thursday said they have uncovered plans by Boko Haram terrorists to carry out bomb attacks in Maiduguri metropolis.

The Assistant Commissioner of Police in charge of Administration, Ahmed Bello, said the insurgents’ plan to attack soft targets and crowded areas.

The Command advised residents to be vigilant and report any suspicious persons or objects to security agencies.

The Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, has said that no one will be able to rig the 2019 General Elections.

Ekweremadu, through his Special Adviser on Media, Uche Anichukwu, vowed that the National Assembly caucus of the PDP would not be intimidated from holding the government accountable and would continue to speak the truth in defence of democracy.

Ekweremadu said this when he received PDP youth leaders from the national, zonal and state levels

President Buhari has said that Nigeria’s economy has made “considerable progress” on its way out of recession.

While commissioning a sugarcane farm in Niger said, “this project could not have come at a better time. As Nigeria makes her journey out of recession and the economy continues to show considerable progress, we’re reminded of one of the cardinal objectives of this administration, which is to look inwards as we focus on our natural endowments in agriculture and other non-oil sectors for inclusive growth and development“.

The former governor of Anambra, Peter Obi, said that the outrage will be greater if Nigerians knew what governors took home at the end of the month.

Obi said, as a panellist at the dialogue organised by Ripples Centre for Data and Investigative Journalism in Lagos, “none of you know what a governor earns, quote me anywhere if you know you won’t be here. It is something you can’t imagine. You just know the salary of Senators and you’re shouting but, what if you know that of the governors?”

And stories from around the world…

Tens of thousands of people in Rio de Janeiro and other cities across Brazil have taken to the streets to mourn a murdered politician who had campaigned against police brutality.

The 38-year-old Marielle Franco was a city councillor for the left-wing Socialism and Liberty Party.

Brazilian president Michel Temer called her murder an attack on democracy and the rule of law.

In comments broadcast by a Ugandan TV channel, a lawmaker – Onesmus Twinamasiko – advised men to beat their wives in order to discipline and has now sparked outrage among rights activists both within and outside the country.

Twinamasiko said in a TV interview, “You need to discipline your wife. You need to, you know, touch her a bit and you tackle her and you beat her somehow, you know, to really streamline her“.

Twinamasiko’s remarks were a reaction to the speech by President Yoweri Museveni on Women’s Day on March 8.

Museveni had condemned assaults on women by husbands and called it cowardly.

According to CNN, Ambassador Joseph Yun, former US point man on North Korea said the regime has expressed its surprise that US President Donald Trump agreed to the offer of a meeting with hesitation.

Japanese official who committed suicide but left a note said he was forced to alter records linked to sale of public land at 85 percent discount.

The finance ministry admitted this week that it had altered 14 documents surrounding the sale of public land at an 85 percent discount to a nationalistic school operator with links to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe‘s wife, Akie.

Robert Mugabe has said that the military take over and the leadership of President Mnangagwa is “illegal” and “unconstitutional”.

Mugabe has, in his first TV interview since he was ousted, described his departure in November as a “coup d’etat” that “we must undo”.

He said, “I say it was a coup d’etat – some people have refused to call it a coup d’etat.

We must undo this this disgrace which we have imposed on ourselves, we don’t deserve it, Zimbabwe doesn’t deserve it“.

He continued, “People must be chosen in government in a proper way. I’m willing to discuss, willing to assist in that process – but I must be invited“.

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