Tinubu Meets ’99 Govs, Pledges Palliatives in Response to Subsidy Removal Concerns; Ortom Hits Back at Atiku’s Aide, Denies ‘Worst Governor’ Tag | 5 Things That Should Matter Today

  • Tinubu Meets ’99 Govs, Pledges Palliatives in Response to Subsidy Removal Concerns
  • Ogun State Govt Website Hacked, Measures Taken to Restore Services
  • Ortom Hits Back at Atiku’s Aide, Denies ‘Worst Governor’ Tag
  • Nigeria Repays $500m Eurobond Debt
  • PDP Criticizes Governor Uzodinma’s Handling of Insecurity in Imo State

Across Nigeria’s 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, these are the five top Nigerian news stories you shouldn’t miss

Tinubu Meets ’99 Govs, Pledges Palliatives in Response to Subsidy Removal Concerns

President Bola Tinubu has expressed his belief that the removal of fuel subsidy will ultimately benefit a large number of Nigerians, despite the immediate challenges posed by the policy.

During a meeting with former governors, known as the “class of 1999,” President Tinubu acknowledged the difficulties faced by Nigerians due to the price surge in petrol. However, he urged the public to remain patient as his administration works on delivering palliatives to mitigate the effects of the subsidy removal.

In his inaugural speech on May 29, President Tinubu had announced the removal of fuel subsidy, a move that has led to a significant increase in fuel prices, surpassing N500 per litre. This surge in fuel costs has resulted in a corresponding rise in transportation fares and the prices of goods and services across the nation, prompting calls for measures to alleviate the burden on Nigerians.

During the meeting with the “class of 1999” governors, President Tinubu emphasized that the removal of the subsidy was aimed at redirecting the savings towards benefitting a larger segment of the population, as opposed to a few individuals engaged in smuggling and exploitation. He likened the pain experienced by Nigerians to the labor pains of childbirth, emphasizing that the ultimate goal was to witness the rebirth of the country.

Following the meeting, Lucky Igbinedion, the chairperson of the class of 1999 governors, spoke to journalists, urging Nigerians to trust the president’s commitment to providing the promised palliatives. Igbinedion emphasized the need for unity and support, transcending political affiliations, to enable President Tinubu to effectively lead Nigeria towards a brighter future.

President Tinubu himself reiterated his determination to bring about positive change in Nigeria and reassured the public that the decisions made might be painful in the short term. He urged Nigerians to remain patient and have faith in his administration, assuring them that the forthcoming palliatives would bring smiles to the faces of every citizen.

As Nigerians grapple with the immediate effects of the subsidy removal, President Tinubu’s message of hope and his promise of relief through palliatives provide a glimmer of optimism for a population yearning for stability and improvement.

Ogun State Govt Website Hacked, Measures Taken to Restore Services

The Ogun State Government has confirmed that its official website fell victim to a hacking incident. The Secretary to the State Government, Tokunbo Talabi, assured the public that efforts are underway to restore the website while emphasizing that critical data and applications remain secure.

According to Talabi, the State ICT team is diligently working around the clock to regain access to the compromised services and reinstate them promptly. He further stressed the importance of enhancing the cyber security architecture to prevent future breaches and protect sensitive information.

The attack on the Ogun State Government website occurred on Wednesday and was attributed to a group identifying themselves as Aleister Crowley. The hackers, after gaining control of the site, left a message displaying their name: ‘ANONGHOST. Hacked by Aleister Crowley’.

Immediate action is being taken by the Ogun State Government to address the situation and ensure that essential services are restored swiftly. The incident serves as a reminder of the ever-present threat of cyber attacks and highlights the critical need for robust security measures to safeguard digital platforms.

As the State Government works towards restoring its website, it will also focus on fortifying its cybersecurity infrastructure to prevent similar incidents in the future.

Ortom Hits Back at Atiku’s Aide, Denies ‘Worst Governor’ Tag

Samuel Ortom, the former Governor of Benue State, has issued a response to Phrank Shaibu, an aide to the 2023 Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar.

Shaibu had labeled Ortom as the worst governor in Nigeria’s history, accusing him and other G-5 Governors of working against Atiku and seeking personal benefits.

In a statement released by his aide, Terver Akase, Ortom expressed his belief that Atiku should be more concerned about his own status as the first presidential candidate from a major political party to face rejection from key stakeholders and many members of his own party.

Ortom questioned why the G-5 and members of the Integrity Group rejected Atiku’s candidacy, highlighting their stand for justice, equity, and fairness in supporting a presidential candidate from the southern part of the country. According to Ortom, Nigerians recognized these principles and voted for a candidate from the south.

The former Benue State Governor also pointed out another reason behind Atiku’s criticism, stating that his boldness in speaking out against unstatesmanlike comments made by Atiku regarding the killing of Benue people by Fulani herdsmen had caused friction between them.

Ortom reminded that Atiku expressed bitterness toward him for enacting a law to prohibit open grazing in the state.

Ortom interpreted Atiku’s diatribe as a manifestation of frustration over his loss in the 2023 election. He criticized Atiku for his failure to humble himself and unite the PDP, opting for arrogance even when defeat seemed apparent.

In response to Atiku’s allegations of corruption, Ortom argued that Atiku lacked the moral standing to accuse others, referencing statements made by former President Olusegun Obasanjo in his book, “My Watch.” Obasanjo described Atiku as a corrupt individual, citing investigations by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in Nigeria and the United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) that resulted in searches of Atiku’s residence.

Ortom concluded his statement by urging Nigerians to disregard Atiku’s unfounded allegations, considering them as nothing more than cheap blackmail. He emphasized his commitment to the rule of law, highlighting his willingness to honor invitations from anti-graft agencies when seeking clarifications regarding his administration’s actions.

Nigeria Repays $500m Eurobond Debt

In a significant development, the Federal Government of Nigeria, under the purview of the Debt Management Office (DMO), has successfully redeemed a $500 million Eurobond on its scheduled due date of July 12, 2023. The DMO confirmed this achievement in a statement posted on its official website.

Providing context, the Eurobond in question was originally issued as part of a dual-tranche $1 billion Eurobond in July 2013. It had a tenor of ten years and carried an annual coupon rate of 6.375 percent.

This redemption marks another milestone in Nigeria’s debt management strategy. Prior to this, the country had redeemed a $500 million Eurobond in July 2018, followed by another $500 million Eurobond in January 2021. Additionally, a $300 million Diaspora Bond was redeemed in June 2022. Collectively, these successful redemptions amount to a total of $1.8 billion in securities redeemed by Nigeria in the International Capital Market (ICM).

The DMO emphasized that Nigeria’s ability to consistently redeem its Eurobonds and Diaspora Bonds in the ICM over the past six years is a testament to its robust debt management operations and meticulous planning. This accomplishment underscores the government’s commitment to responsible financial management and highlights its capacity to meet its financial obligations promptly.

The successful redemption of the $500 million Eurobond reaffirms Nigeria’s credibility in the international financial market and instills confidence among investors. It also reflects the country’s prudent approach to debt management, ensuring the sustainability of its financial obligations.

As Nigeria continues to navigate its fiscal landscape, effective debt management remains a cornerstone of its financial strategy. The government’s commitment to sound debt practices and responsible financial planning sets a positive trajectory for the country’s economic development and instills confidence among its stakeholders.

PDP Criticizes Governor Uzodinma’s Handling of Insecurity in Imo Stat

The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has voiced its disapproval of Governor Hope Uzodinma’s handling of the escalating insecurity in Imo State.

During a press conference held in Owerri, the state capital, Barr. Gozie Nwachukwu, the spokesman for the PDP’s 2023 Gubernatorial campaign in Imo State, expressed concern over the governor’s lack of action in addressing the security challenges.

Nwachukwu, accompanied by Dumebi Ifeanyichukwu, the director of New Media for the Imo PDP 2023 gubernatorial campaign organization, criticized Governor Uzodinma for his prolonged absence from the state.

According to Nwachukwu, the governor has been absent for over 40 days since the swearing-in of the Tinubu government, with reports suggesting that he has relocated to Abuja, thus neglecting his constitutional responsibility of ensuring the safety and security of Imo State residents.

The PDP spokesman further alleged that non-state actors recruited by Governor Uzodinma have assumed the roles of security agencies in the state, possibly contributing to the deteriorating security situation.

Nwachukwu emphasized the urgent need for President Bola Tinubu to establish an independent and impartial investigation into the rampant killings in the state, devoid of any influence from Governor Uzodinma and his associates.

Expressing deep sympathy, Nwachukwu conveyed heartfelt condolences from the PDP’s Gubernatorial Candidate, Senator Samuel Nnaemeka Anyanwu, to those who have suffered irreparable losses due to the collapsed security architecture in Imo State.

The PDP’s criticism comes in the wake of a recent incident where suspected gunmen set fire to part of the Amaraku market in Isiala Mbano Local Government Area of Imo State. The attackers also destroyed vehicles and goods belonging to traders, predominantly women, before fleeing to the nearby community of Obolo, where they burned additional commercial vehicles.

Furthermore, a non-governmental organization, The International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law, Intersociety, claimed that between January 2021 and May 2023, approximately 1,600 unarmed citizens of Imo State have been killed, while 300 others remain missing.

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