THE Ghanaian Government on Wednesday urged the Federal Government to reconsider its stand on border closure with neighbouring West African countries. Ghanaian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Ms Shirley Botchwey, was in Abuja to have audience with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, on the possibility of persuading Nigeria to take a second look at the policy. Ms. Botchwey noted that the closure of the borders with Benin Republic has adversely impacted on Ghanaian traders. She was accompanied by her counterpart, Minister of Trade, Allan Kyerematen and the acting High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mrs. Iva Denoo. Botchwey’s visit to Abuja was a follow-up to her Tuesday’s parley with the Nigerian High Commissioner to Ghana, Mr. Olufemi Abikoye, in Accra. According to her, the situation has become so dire that it could lead to political tension in countries severely affected by the decision. She said: “The closure of the borders has had considerable disruptions to trade in the sub-region, with grave consequential economic effects on Ghanaian traders.” Onyeama, in his remark, pointed out that the reasons for the closure of the borders, saying that it was done to protect the nation’s economy from smugglers, traffickers and illegal migrants. Botchwey assured that the government would exhaust all diplomatic avenues to get Nigeria to reopen its western borders for the free flow of goods from Ghana to the sub-region. She said truckloads of goods from Ghana had been detained at the Seme Border between Benin and Nigeria for weeks, adding that returning the consignments to the seaports would be a major problem as the traders had already lost millions of cedes within the last few weeks.
President Muhammadu Buhari has signed five bills passed by the 8th National Assembly into law. This was according to Mr Umar Yakubu, his Senior Special Assistant on National Assembly Matters (House of Representatives). Yakubu who made the announcement at a news conference on Wednesday in Abuja said that the Acts were to ensure good governance in the country. The bills include the Obafemi Awolowo University Transitional Amendment Act, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi Amendment Act, the University of Maiduguri Amendment Act, the National Fertiliser Quality Control Act and the Nigerian Council of Food Science and Technology Establishment Act. He said that the University Acts specified minimum qualifications for the Chairmen of the Governing Councils which is a university degree or its equivalent. Yakubu said that the Acts stipulated that the persons must be physically fit and be able to chair activities of the councils. He said that the Acts also provided for the regulations of the use of intellectual properties for universities. Yakubu said that the law stated that any staff or student that seeks to sue the university must give notice of one month to the institution concerned. He said that the National Fertiliser Quality Control Act sought to protect farmers’ interest and address the issue of nutrient deficiency in the composition of fertiliser, branding and weight loss among others.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, has warned those using his office for fraudulent acts to desist or face the consequences.
Mr Mustapha gave the warning in a statement issued on Wednesday in Abuja by the Director of Information in the office of the SGF, Willie Bassey.
Mr Mustapha said his attention had been drawn to unrelenting activities of faceless persons to such fraudulent activities.
He said the faceless persons had been using the social media and other platforms to lure unsuspecting members of the public to submit their Curriculum Vitae, at a fee, to his office for federal government appointments.
He said his office was also aware of inaccurate information peddled around, regarding constituency projects being executed under its supervision.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the office of the SGF neither executes nor supervises constituency projects.
Also, the SGF is aware of numerous forged introductory letters purportedly issued from his office seeking diverse favours from individuals and corporate entities for personal gains.
“The general public is by this notice advised to beware of the clandestine activities of these dubious and fraudulent persons and their cohorts going about to fleece unsuspecting members of the public,” he said.
The SGF said government has evolved measures to track these unpatriotic and faceless persons and will bring to justice anyone found engaging in these unwholesome activities.
He said for enquiry and clarification, the official communication channels of his remain: http://www.osgf.gov.ng and firstname.lastname@example.org.