The Late 5: Eliminate Boko Haram from the surface of the earth – Buhari tasks troops; EFCC warns politicians against using public funds for campaigns | Other top stories

These are the stories that drove the conversation today:

President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday declared that the war against terrorism is “a must win,” and has given marching orders to the troops in the North East to totally eradicate the Boko Haram group.

While commending the efforts and sacrifices of the military in safeguarding the peace, security and territorial integrity of the country, the President “encouraged the troops not to be distracted by speculations but remain focused and committed to the task of eliminating Boko Haram from the surface of the earth.”

“I want to reassure you that as your Commander-In-Chief, I will do everything within my power to continue empowering you by providing all the necessary equipment, force multipliers and enablers required for you to prevail on the field,”  he said at the 2018 Chief of Army Staff Annual Conference in Maiduguri.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has said that it will keenly monitor the financial affairs of political parties to ensure that the use of public funds to finance political parties and prosecute campaigns at all levels of government is checked.

Speaking through his Chief of Staff, Acting Chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu while presenting a paper at a one-day retreat for 36 state governors and key election stakeholders said “donations to political parties and the identities of the donors will henceforth be of massive interest to the Commission going forward.”

“In addition, politicians prosecuting campaigns must be required to keep proper records of all donations received by them including the identities of the donors; and to turn their books over to relevant security agencies, and to INEC for inspection after every electioneering cycle, including the costs of litigations arising from the elections and the source of funding for the litigations,” he added.

The federal, states and local governments on Wednesday shared a total of N788.139 billion for the month of October as the Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) meeting ended in Kaduna.

The N788.139 billion shared is higher than the N698.710 billion shared the previous month (September).

According to a statement by the Special Adviser to the Minister of Finance, Paul Ella Abechi, the breakdown of the figures released by the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF) shows that the federal government got N284.396 billion, state governments got N144.249, while the 774 local governments received N111.210 billion.

The Senate on Wednesday resolved to probe an allegation of non-remittance of N177bn operational surplus made by the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) into the Consolidated Federation Account.

The resolution followed a motion raised by a member of the Committee on Marine Transport, Mohammed Hassan from Yobe South who alleged that contrary to the provisions of the 1999 Constitution and extant laws of the NPA, the agency kept to itself N177bn operational surplus it made from accruing revenues in the 2017 fiscal year, without remitting it into the federation account.

In a related development, the Senate at plenary confirmed the appointment of Olanipekun Olukoyede as the Executive Secretary of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Following the encounter between the Edo Governor, Godwin Obaseki and its Managing Director on Tuesday, the management of the Benin Electrcity Distribution Company (BEDC) has explained reasons behind the power outage currently experienced in parts of Benin City.

Spokesman for the company, Adekunle Tayo, who spoke to newsmen on Wednesday, said that the development would soon be a thing of the past, as the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) has made commitment to procure two 60mva transformers to replace the faulty ones that plunged the state into darkness, adding that it has put measures in place to ensure power is restored to affected areas before the two procured 60mva transformers are installed.

He also debunked reports that the state gets more power since the Azura Power Plant generates 600 megawatts of electricity, explaining that whatever is generated at the plant is taken to the national grid before it is transmitted to the Discos across the country.

And stories from around the world:

U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres is willing to meet with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman when he attends the Group of 20 summit in Argentina, Guterres said on Wednesday, as the U.N. chief seeks an end to the war in Yemen. (Reuters)

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said there was no direct evidence connecting Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last month in Istanbul. (Al Jazeera)

US President Donald Trump has said he may cancel a long-awaited summit with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin after a confrontation at sea between Russia and Ukraine led Kiev to warn of the threat of “full-scale war.” (AFP)

Similarly, President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday shrugged off the threat from Trump to cancel the meeting with him due to Moscow’s seizure of three Ukrainian navy ships, accusing Ukraine’s president of orchestrating the crisis. (Reuters)

A no-deal Brexit could send the pound plunging and trigger a worse recession than the financial crisis, the Bank of England has warned.

It said the UK economy could shrink by 8% in the immediate aftermath if there was no transition period, while house prices could fall by almost a third. (BBC)




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