Want Emefiele sacked immediately, and charge for treason and felony.
Condemned politicians who refused to speak against the policy.

The Association of Nigerian Artisans and Technicians (ASNAT) vehemently condemned the persistent refusal and unwillingness of Nigeria President, Muhammadu Buhari to put an end to the untold hardship his government’s unpopular naira redesign /swap policy has brought upon Nigerians, particularly Nigerian Artisans and Technicians who relied solely on daily cash earnings to survive.

In a statement personally signed and released to newsmen, the National Coordinator of the Association, Comrade Adeshina Akinyemi said, ‘across the world, currencies are made and changed intermittently without any problems or troubles, sometimes, you don’t even hear of it outside the country except you are living within the affected country; so why is our own very different? Why has our own currency redesign brought so much pangs, anguish and agonies on all Nigerians? Without mincing words, all evidences have showed and proved that the CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele in connivance with some ‘very’ powerful Aso-rock residents are in wars with Nigeria and Nigerians.

Emefiele has not forgotten his loss of the APC Presidential candidate slot and the people who made him loose. So, he and those who sold that dummy idea to him and lost in that political schemes are now fighting the winner of that contest using the conspiracy theory method. This is a ‘Rebounced back anger!’ In their bid to weaken the financial prowess and muscle of a Presidential candidate they lost the Presidential primary to, Emefiele and his looser friends brought out this satanic policy. Or how else can one describe the mopping up of N1.9 trillion old notes from the public and the releasing of a meagre N300 million new notes back? What is he looking for, if not chaos, unrest and protests? Emefiele had envisaged what is happening in the country now, its part of his plans, but, one part of his plans that has failed is the commitment of INEC not to shift or postpone the elections, because that was Emefiele’s real plan.

If it were to be a country where law and order works and are respected, the CBN Governor ought to have resigned voluntarily by now or being sacked by the President for all his atrocities and attempts to bring the country down and make it ungovernable.

As concerned Nigerians who are most hit by Mr Emefiele’s anti Nigerians policy and his ‘I don’t care’ attitude towards the present chaotic situation in the country, we call on the DSS, the Inspector General of Police, The EFCC and other security agencies to as a matter of urgent urgency arrest the CBN Governor and charge him to court for treason and felony.

Our Association also want to register our displeasure and disappointment in the President, Gen. Mohammadu Buhari who significantly refused to bring this matter under control in time and allowed it to degenerate to this point. The President who is the Commander in – Chief of the Armed forces and the Chief Protector of Nigeria and her constitution should have disengaged the CBN governor from his post a long time ago when the CBN governor who suppose to be politically neutral started getting himself enmeshed in murky political tussle.

We called on the President to act as a President of the whole county, to be just, fair and upright in discharging his responsibilities and not to use his remaining ‘few’ days in office to upload a rotten parting memories in the minds of Nigerian Artisans.

The Association of Nigerian Artisans and Technicians also frowned at and condemned those Politicians who have refused to publicly condemned and rebuke this barbaric policy, they are selfish, unprincipled, anti Artisans and anti Nigerians . We therefore commend and appreciates those who have condemned and scolded this mischievous and hyenaic policy. We now know our friends and those we can trust to vouch and speak for us in the face of injustice and oppression.

We also want to use this opportunity to call on Mr Presiden, Gen. Mohammadu Buhari who is the substantial Petroleum Minister to please, make petrol available for Nigerian use. As Artisans and Technicians, in the absence of Electricity which the President has been unable to provide for Nigerians in his eight years of governance, petrol remains our source of power to operate our machineries and tools, but now that petrol is scarcely available, its becoming extremely unbearable for millions of Nigerian Artisans and Technicians to survive and to feed their families

In conclusion, we appeal to the President to tow the part of wisdom and honour and adhere strictly to the advice of the Council of state and all Nigerians to allow the old and new naira notes to continue co existing for the next six months to one year to ease Nigerians pains and sufferings.

Adeshina Akinyemi
National Coordinator
Association Of Nigerian Artisans and Technicians (ASNAT) – 08023611614



On behalf of the APC Youth League, SouthWest Zonal Coordinate, we heartily congratulate our very own Comrade Blessing Akinlosotu, our immediate past Ondo State Coordinator, on his latest appointment as a member of National Climate Change Council, appointed by our President, Muhammad Buhari.

In a statement personally signed and released to the media in Òṣogbo, the Ọ̀ṣun State capital by its Zonal Coordinator, Hon. ‘Muyi Oyewale, the Zonal Chief Servant leader posited that, “we knew how you’ve worked hard to make National Youth Congress a better one since your election as it’s President, hence, we as a formidable Youth group in this Zone, are so happy, that once again, your hardwork, tirelessness and commitment to the development of humanity had again been recognized.”


Your dedication and ability that got you here, will continue to serve you well, as you move along your path. You dreamed big, worked hard and you’ve earned the recognition that comes with your new appointment.

Surely, Success is Yours!

E Signed:

Comrade Adebayo Lawrence
SW Zonal Publicity Director

After 7 Months At Last FGN Lift Twitter Suspension,12 Million Internet Business Subscribers have Lost due NIN-SIM Linkage, NIMC Delay & Demand Money For NIN- Bilesanmi ATCIS President Tell Buhari ~Ajasa-Info

Association of Telephone, Cable TV & Internet Subscribers of Nigeria (ATCIS) is the leading masses advocacy body that promote Subscriber interests as well as defends Subscriber right in Nigeria with over 190 million Subscribers membership strength across the six geopolitical zones in Nigeria. National President of ATCIS, Hon Sina Bilesanmi in a statement released on Saturday January 15, while addressed Journalists at Badargy during BoT & Excos first meeting of the year 2022, thanking GOD first & all members of over 190 million Subscribers across six geopolitical zone in Nigeria for their support to achieved a lot, we really appreciate the president, Muhammadu Buhari has approved the lifting of the suspension of the Twitter operation in Nigeria.

The lifting is coming after 7 months of suspension and will be effective from 12am of January 13, 2022, according to a statement from the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA).
Meanwhile am saying this that the total number of Internet subscribers in Nigeria has dropped by over 11 million plus in 11 months, according to the ATCIS advocacy & latest industry data obtained from the Nigerian Communications Commission.

The NCC data showed that the total number of Internet subscribers fell to 140.4 million in November 2021, from 151.3 million in January 2021.
According to the NCC, mobile data subscriptions have the largest share, while fixed-wired subscriptions and voiceover Internet protocol subscriptions contribute negligible numbers to the Internet connection.
The total number of mobile data subscribers declined to 140.1 million in November 2021 from 150.9 million in January 2021, showing a difference of 10.8 million subscribers.

Fixed wired had 11,545 subscribers in January 2021, and increased to 12,299 subscribers in November 2021; VoIP had 387,169 subscribers in January 2021 and dropped to 339,427 in November 2021.
The data showed that most Internet subscribers opted more for mobile data subscriptions than any other type of Internet subscription in the country.
In the period under review, MTN had the largest number of mobile subscribers, and also witnessed the biggest loss of data subscribers.
Its data subscribers dropped from 64 million in January 2021 to 58.1 million in November 2021.
Airtel saw the number of its data subscribers fall to 36.9 million in November 2021, from 40 million in January 2021.

Globacom’s data subscribers declined to 39.3 million in November 2021 from 40 million in January 2021, while 9mobile saw its data subscribers reduced to 5.8 million from 6.9 million.
ATCIS in her general views, have hinged the drop in the number of Internet subscribers on factors, such as the ban on SIM registration, NIN-SIM policy, telecoms shutdowns, among others. In December 2020, the NCC directed Mobile Network Operators to suspend the sale and activation of new SIM cards to allow an audit of the Subscriber Registration Database.

The association has made over 733 newspaper publications, both local and international as well as online news publications, Radio and National Television Station Interviews with about 232 Success achievements so far to the benefit of Subscribers across the country. The NCC said the suspension was necessary due to the preponderance of pre-registered SIMs and the security implications of the use of such SIMs to facilitate criminal activities.
However, experts said the policy denied new subscribers the opportunity to purchase mobile lines while existing users who want to retrieve their lost lines were not given access.

Hon Sina Bilesanmi has called attention of President Muhammed Buhari that the nation has a long way to go regarding the issuance of the National Identity Numbers, expressing worries over how applicants are being extorted at the various official registration points amid poor service delivery, from ATCIS finding it costs as much as N10,000 to get a NIN within a short period, and N5,000 within one week.

He alleged that officials of the National Identity Management Commission at Alausa- Ikeja now connive with “agents” to extort NIN applicants.

He said, “ Moment our struggle to FG extended till 31st March, 2022. ATCIS committee visited some of the NIN centres, unfortunately, we still have a long way to go. At the independent centres, you have to pay before they attend to you. But when you go to the NIMC office at Alausa, they have agents.

“If you want your NIN that day you register for it, you will have to part with N10,000. If you must collect it the following day or within a week, you will part with N5,000, ATCIS put a call and no response from Dss & NIMC spoke person. The minister Pantami can send someone in mufti to confirm this.

“It is an open racket. It is cheaper outside. If you want to get your NIN from independent agents, you will pay a smaller fee of about N1,000 to N2,000, but they will give you a tracking number for two or more weeks. With them, you won’t be able to get your actual NIN card until much later.”

According to punch publication Friday, January14, 2022 page 18 & Bilesanmi-ATCIS President, said NIMC does not seem to have the capacity to upload all the data it gets and this has created an opportunity for its officials to selectively upload data, and allegedly rip off Nigerian Subscribers.

Bilesanmi added, “The NIMC does not have the capacity to upload all the data that is coming from everywhere in the country. Because of this, they selectively upload data and make money off it at Alausa.

“The capacity of the NIMC is very limited for now, they do not have the capacity for big uploads, and this is fueling the extortion going at the NIMC’s office. They have agents. And this is very unfortunate. You now have to pay to get a NIN.

“Their agents collect money from you, this is extortion and exploitation, and it is uncalled for. This impacts on the people’s willingness to want to get their NINs. ”He added that this would only lead to further delays in the SIM-NIN linkage process.

We want it to be on record that BoT, National Excos & all Telecommunications Subscribers has agreed on subscriber automatically subscription from our network providers according to Barr. Oluwatosin Ogbede “Is there no membership fee? Subscribers should have a yearly subscription or even one time payment that members make to sustain the organization or how do you finance activities? Owing rent is not image friendly at all” ATCIS has spent about #452 million naira since 2014 till date, which has been on self -sponsored by members without government agency’s in Nigeria.

Instagram: atcisnigeria
Twitter: @atcis9ja
Facebook: atcisnigeria ATCIS hotline: 07052713300


President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the re-appointment of Hadiza Bala Usman as Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), for additional five-year tenure.

Also approved is the reconstitution of the Non-Executive Board of the NPA, with Mr Emmanuel Olajide Adesoye (from South-west zone) as Chairman.

Other members of the Board are: Prince Ekenyem Nwafor-Orizu (South-east zone), Akinwunmi Ricketts (South-south zone), Ghazali Mohammed Mijinyawa (North-East zone), Mustapha Amin Dutse (North-West zone), and Abdulwahab Adesina (North-Central zone).

The President has equally approved Board members for the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), who will oversee the selection of a new Managing Director for the organization. They are: Muhammad K. Ahmad, OON, (Chairman), Chief Henry Okolo, Imamudden Talba, Ambassador Usman Sarki, Ali Haruna, Engr. Simeone Atakulu, Zubaida Mahey Rasheed, Dr Mustapha Abiodun Akinkunmi, Engr. Oladele Amoda, and Dr Nkiru Balonwu.

Other members of the TCN Board are: Representatives of Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Ministry of Power, Bureau for Public Enterprise, FGN Power Company Limited, and Executive Management of TCN.


President Muhammadu Buhari Thursday in Abuja directed the Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS) and related government agencies to plug all revenue leakages by ensuring strict compliance of tax payments by foreign companies operating in Nigeria, urging deployment of more digital platforms and seamless connections.

Speaking, virtually, at the First National Tax Dialogue held at the Conference Hall of the State House, the President ordered all government agencies to automate operations and ensure more synergy in advancing the interest of the nation in revenue generation.
“It is not enough that our citizens and local businesses pay their fair share of taxes. Equally, foreign businesses must also not be allowed to continue to exploit our markets and economy without paying appropriate taxes. Accordingly, the FIRS has my mandate to speedily put all measures in place to fully implement programmes to stamp out Base Erosion and Profit Shifting in all their ramifications and generally automate its tax processes.

“In line with this, I have directed all government agencies and business enterprises to grant FIRS access to their systems for seamless connection. FIRS must ensure that its deployment of technology for automation is done in line with international best practices. In particular, FIRS can borrow a leaf from other countries which have successfully automated their tax processes.’’

The President said Nigeria will continue to work with the Inclusive Framework (on equal footing) to develop internationally acceptable rules for taxation of the digital economy, while hoping that “the Inclusive Framework would have evolved into an acceptable multilateral solution that will comprehensively address the tax challenges of the digitalised economy by the middle of 2021.’’

President Buhari assured citizens that the government will continue to pursue its mandate of improving lives through investments in infrastructural projects like railways, roads, electricity, healthcare and education, in spite of dwindling revenues and the challenge of coronavirus.

“Our government has continued to pursue all those projects despite massive decline in government revenues occasioned by a combination of factors among which is the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The devastating effect of COVID-19 on the health and economy of the world is evident across every strata of our society.

It is obvious to every citizen of this country that our economy is not immune from the global economic downturn. As such, we have had to confront the conflicting situations of reflating the economy and at the same time raising revenue to meet our budgetary needs. It is within this context that the government undertook an expansive budgetary projection of over N13 trillion for 2021.’’

The President said the government had “inevitably resorted to deficit budgeting as a result of declining revenues for some years,’’ resulting to increase in Nigeria’s debt profile.

“As we might expect, this has led to increase in Nigeria’s debt profile which stood at about N32 trillion in September 2020. This funding gap created by the dwindling government revenue therefore underscores the importance of the national tax dialogue we are holding today.

“No nation has ever made progress without having to pay for it or make the necessary sacrifice. I therefore call on all Nigerians to be alive to their tax obligations.

This government is strategically restructuring the tax revenue mix in favour of indirect taxes in accordance with our national tax policy document. To this end, FIRS is mandated to do all that is required in order to efficiently collect tax revenue due from transactions carried out using local and foreign online platforms.

The government has made relevant statutory amendment to tax laws in the Finance Act 2020.’’

While urging all citizens to play more active roles in nation building by paying their taxes, the President said “the administration is, however, not seeking to increase the tax burden upon the citizens but to plug the existing tax loopholes or leakages and to ensure even and equitable application of the tax laws.’’

According to him, “this was clearly demonstrated by the provisions in the Finance Act 2019 whereby government exempted small companies from tax and reduced the income tax rate for medium companies from 30% to 20%. In the Finance Act 2020 which I signed into law at the tail end of 2020, we went further to cushion the burden of tax on the low-wage workers by exempting minimum wage from personal income tax.’’
President Buhari said necessary amendments had been made to the FIRS Establishment Act in the Finance Act 2020 in order to provide the legislative framework for the adoption of technology in tax administration.

“Every Nigerian must see tax payment in its proper context, which is, as a solemn and patriotic obligation that is necessary for building a better society.’’

In his keynote presentation, President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr Akinwunmi Adesina, projected a rebound of the Nigerian economy from recession, with a 1.5 per cent growth rate in 2021, and 2 per cent growth in 2022.

Dr Adesina said taxes should be employed as instruments for promoting development by encouraging private sector companies to take up responsibilities in infrastructure, and attracting Foreign Direct Investments, admonishing that prolonged tax holidays could be counterproductive.

He said youths should be incentivised to grow businesses with appropriate tax regimes, adding that Africa loses about 60 billion U S dollars annually from taxes.

Minister of Finance, Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed, said the government will improve its template for tax collection, especially in the face of dwindling revenues due to the coronavirus pandemic, describing 2021 as a year of recovery for the economy.

The minister noted that emphasis on tax collection will be shifted from income to spending and all multinational corporations in the country will be required to fully comply with new directives.

The FIRS Chairman, Muhammad Mamman Nami, called for a new, comprehensive tax payment culture.

Buhari Appoints Buba Marwa to Head NDLEA ~Ajasa-Info

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the appointment of former Military Administrator of Lagos State, Brigadier General Mohammed Buba Marwa Rtd as the New Director-General, DG of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).

Gen. Marwa was until recently the Chairman of the Presidential Committee on Drug Abuse.

Mohammed Buba Marwa was born on September 9, 1953 in Kaduna, Kaduna State, Nigeria. He hails from Michika L.G.A of Adamawa State. He attended the Nigerian Military School, Zaria and the Nigerian Defense Academy, Kaduna. Later, while in the army, he studied at Pittsburgh University, where he obtained a master’s degree in International Relations, and he obtained a master’s degree in Public Administration from Harvard University.

Abiru Urges FG to Implement Presidential Report on SARS ~Ajasa-Info

Commends Buhari for endorsing protesters’ demand
-Canvasses amendment of Nigeria Police Act

The candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC) for senatorial bye-election in Lagos East, Mr. Tokunbo Abiru on Wednesday commended President Muhammadu Buhari for granting a five-point demand of youths that protested the extra-judicial activities of the dissolved Special Anti-Robbery Squads (SARS).

Alongside the five-point demand of the protesters, however, Abiru urged the federal government to completely implement the report of the Presidential Panel on the Reforms of SARS, which according to him, would go a long way to change the public perception of the Nigeria Police.

He canvassed outright implementation of a 2804-page report at a meeting with residents of Agbowa, Ikosi-Ejirin Local Council Development Area (LCDA) on Wednesday, canvassing the amendment of the Nigeria Police Act.

At the meeting are the APC Vice Chairman, Lagos East, Chief Kaoli Olusanya; a former Speaker of Lagos State House of Assembly, Hon. Jokotola Pelumi and husband of Ogun State Deputy Governor, Alhaji Bode Oyedele, among others.

The panel, which submitted its report to the president in June 2019, had recommended the creation of state and local government police as a strategy to strengthen policing and make police officers more accountable nationwide.

After the submission of the report, the president directed the Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Adamu Mohammed to ensure the implementation of the report that recommended the renaming of the SARS to Anti-Robbery Section (ARS) to operate under the intelligence arm of the Nigeria Police.

At Ikosi-Ejirin’s meeting yesterday, the APC candidate commended Buhari’s decision to grant the five-point demand of the aggrieved youths, whose sustained protest culminated in the dissolution of the SARS.

Abiru, a former Commissioner of Finance in Lagos State, observed that IGP’s decision to dissolve the tactical squad “is just the first step in our search for a truly democratic, citizen-centred and community-oriented policing system.”

For this dissolution to achieve its purpose, Abiru urged the federal government “to collaborate with the states of the federation, civil society organisations and other critical stakeholders to initiate far-reaching reforms of the Nigeria Police.”

He, equally, asked the federal government to consider in entirety implement the report of the Presidential Panel on the Reform of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

He observed that implementing the report of the presidential panel “is consistent with Buhari’s directive that the IGP should work out modalities and strategies for the implementation of the report.”

He observed that the disbandment of SARS, a formation of the Nigerian Police, would not unilaterally address brutality and extra-judicial killings been perpetrated by the law enforcement agency across the country.

Abiru added that the solution was for the federal government to review codes and regulations of the entire Nigerian Police to ensure personnel of the law enforcement agency perform their duties in accordance with the international best standards.

As the APC candidate for the forthcoming senatorial bye-election, Abiru said: “I am committed to supporting far-reaching reforms that will re-engineer police operations across the federation.

“If eventually elected on October 31, I will pursue the amendment of the Nigeria Police Act in order to humanise police operations and institutionalise modern policing and law enforcement in Nigeria. We cannot allow the police to become a threat to the people they are set up to protect.

Abiru, the immediate past Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Polaris Bank Limited, further stated that reform of the entire police should include empowering the Police Service Commission (PSC) to carry out its oversight function on the police without any hindrance.

He added: “PSC should have enough independence to develop its own processes and procedures and should have its own investigators. It should not have to rely on the police to investigate allegations of human rights violations”.

To prevent what was currently affecting Nigeria Police after the reform, the APC candidate argued that police officers, including the defunct SARS operatives should undergo training based on human rights standards compliant practices.

Abiru, while advocating for a structural training system, stated that there was need for reorientation of the Nigerian Police as a service-focused law enforcement agency rather than as a paramilitary agency.


•Governor Addresses Demonstrators In Lekki

For the third time in about 10 days, Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu has identified with the protests against the dissolved Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

The Governor braved all odds on Monday to address the protesters in Lekki where crowds of youths camped and blocked the expressway. He urged them to be decorous and peaceful while expressing their grievances against the excessive use of force by SARS.

Sanwo-Olu left the weekly meeting of the State Executive Council and moved to address the EndSARS protesters.

The Governor told the demonstrators that their protest was legitimate, but pleaded with them not to block the roads while passing on their grievances to the authorities.

Sanwo-Olu said he identified with the EndSARS campaigners, noting that their agitations touched the essence of democratic freedom. He said citizens must never be denied the rights to protest, but urged the protesters not to employ wrong methods to drive home their message.

He said: “Your voice has been heard clearly and a clear pronouncement has been made on the activities of SARS. The operation has been dissolved by the police leadership and just a moment ago, Mr. President addressed the nation on the issues you have raised. The President has said all SARS officers that are involved in the killing of innocent people and engaging in human rights abuses will be brought to justice.

“My stance on this EndSARS is unmistakable and I have told you that we identify with this protest because you have legitimate concerns. I am saying it again here that this protest is in good faith. But, we must not be unruly when going out on a protest like this. We want you to be peaceful and decorous in expressing yourselves.”

Sanwo-Olu said he spoke with the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Muhammed Adamu, on Monday to outline the position of the Lagos State Government on police reforms, adding that he will visit President Buhari on Tuesday (tomorrow) and present the demands of Lagos youths on the issues.

The Governor praised the courage of the protesters and urged them not to block the key road.

The protesters were largely uncoordinated. They rebuffed pleas to open the road and demanded the physical presence of President Muhammadu Buhari.

The protesters remained unruly but the Governor made his point – they should not allow their legitimate campaign hijacked by hoodlums who may have another agenda.

Sanwo-Olu agreed with the demand of the protesters on reforms in the operations of law enforcement agencies, adding that the State Government would work with the police leadership on compensation for the family members of victims of SARS brutality in Lagos.

Buhari approves N10 billion for census ~Ajasa-Info

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved release of N10 billion to the National Population Commission (NPC) for continuation of Enumeration Area Demarcation (EAD) in 546 Local Government Areas in the country.

Buhari also approved an additional N4.5 billon to be included in the 2021 Budget for completion of the exercise as part of the preparations for the next census.

Acting Chairman of NPC, Dr. Eyitayo Oyetunji, disclosed these on Monday in Abuja while briefing reporters on release of the funds and the update on the EAD at the NPC headquarters.

Oyetunji said: “The President has graciously followed this up by a further approval of an additional N45 billion to be included in the 2021 Budget for the completion of the exercise as part of preparations for the next census.

“No doubt, this milestone development, under-scores the President’s understanding of the role of data, especially demographic data as the bedrock for informed development planning and allocation of resources, facilities and services.

“The President has by this giant intervention demonstrated his desire to invest in the population, especially our teeming youthful population and to thereby lead the country to harness the demographic dividend.”

Asked when the next census will commence, Oyetunji said: “I can tell you that we are very close to the conduct of the election. You will recall that President Muhammadu Buhari appointed the complete membership of the NPC including a substantive chairman.

“That in itself is an indication that government is working towards the exercise. And you will also agree that at a time like this there was high demand for scarce resources for government to commit a sum of N10 billion to the EAD is an indication that we are truly closer than when we began.

“Like they say in the bible the exert time and date is what we have not yet indicated. With the speed we want to complete the EAD which is the major preparatory activity, for us at the NPC we are ready at any moment and prepared to conduct the census. We just need a nod to do so.”
The NPC boss said 228 LGAs were successfully demarcated across the 36 States and FCT in the previous nine phases.

He said the 10th Phase of the exercise will commence on 5th and end on October 29th 2020, including training and fieldwork.
Oyetunji also disclosed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has entered into a special arrangement with NPC under which the NPC is assisting INEC to create digitised maps of INEC Registration Areas (Wards) for the first time as part of the EAD.
He said it is expected that the output of the collaborative effort will further enhance the accuracy and transparency of future elections.


After more than three decades delay, President Muhammadu Buhari Tuesday commissions the 326 KM Itakpe-Ajaokuta-Warri rail line for commercial operation as well as the ancillary facilities yard, at the recently named Goodluck Jonathan Railway Complex in Agbor (Owa-Oyibu), Delta State.

At the virtual opening of the rail line linking Itakpe to Warri, President Buhari directed the Federal Ministry of Transportation to link all the nation’s ports of origin and destination – Apapa, Tin Can, Warri, Onne, Calabar Ports- to the rail network in order to significantly improve overall transportation and economic capacities.

The President declared that his administration recognised the importance of the railway mode of transportation as a vital backbone to support industrialization and economic development.

”Accordingly, I have approved the prioritization of viable railway routes for either new rail lines or the reconstruction and rehabilitation of some, to achieve effective and efficient train services supporting the country’s trade and commerce.

”The Railway Infrastructure that I have the honour to commission today is the rail line from Itakpe via the steel town complex of Ajaokuta to Warri, and is an important link for the country’s economy as the central rail line.

”This Government has also approved to link this line further from Itakpe to Abuja, thereby, connecting the Northern Zone of the country and also extending southwards to link the Warri Ports,” he said.

The President expressed confidence that the project, which serves as a vital link of South-South geopolitical zones of the country to the Northern zones, would be completed during the tenure of this administration.

”It will link people across the cultural divides and expand the frontier of trade and commerce, which will lead to better standards of living for our citizens,” he said.

President Buhari recalled that to further give recognition to Nigerian sons and daughters who have distinguished themselves at nation building and development , 11 railway stations and railway village were named after some deserving citizens.

He listed them as follows: Adamu Attah Station, Itakpe; Abubakar Olusola Saraki Station, Ajaokuta; Augustus Aikhomu Station, Itogbo; George Innih Station, Agenebode; Anthony Enahoro Station, Uromi; Tom Ikimi Station, Ekehen and Samuel Ogbemudia Station, Igbanke.

Others are Goodluck Jonathan Railway Complex, Agbor, Owa-Oyibu; David Ejoor Station, Abraka; Michael Ibru Station, Opara; Alfred Rewane Station, Ujevwu; and Michael Akhigbe Railway Village, Agbor

The President enjoined all Nigerians in the transportation industry, especially the railway sub-sector, to continue to support Government in its stride to achieve other railway infrastructure projects.

He also enlisted the support of all at realizing this milestone of a functional and full-fledged central railway, after more than 30 years during which the project has suffered several setbacks and false starts.

”I implore those who work on this line to uphold maintenance and safety culture necessary for long-lasting service in this difficult terrain.

”By the same token, I urge other sectors who will be primary beneficiaries of this transportation backbone, including, the iron and steel sector, stakeholders in agricultural and mining sectors on this corridor, as well as the host communities to protect and sustain this infrastructure and maximize the benefits that could be derived from it and which is readily available at their doorsteps.

”This project will increase the volume of their trade and kickstart and resuscitate the iron and steel complexes.

”All these, I hope will improve our industrial potentials and capacities as well as boost employment,’’ he said.

President Buhari said projections indicate that the commencement of operation of the Itakpe-Ajaokuta-Warri Rail line will account for close to one million passengers annually and also unleash approximately 3.5 million tonnes capacity of freight annually that will service all off-takers on the corridor and beyond.

Congratulating the Minister of Transportation Hon. Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi and his team on successfully completing the project, the President recognized the host communities on this corridor for their patience during the long wait of over 30 years for the realization of the project.

He also commended the host communities for their cooperation during the completion works by the Federal Government.

He assured Nigerians that his administration would continue, within available resources, to judiciously connect commercial and industrial hubs to boost trade, generate wealth and create employment.

In his remarks, Delta State Governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa commended President Buhari’s bi-partisan approach to governance, saying ‘‘it is a thing of pride and joy that this rail line was completed under your watch.’’

”Deltans are excited that this day has come,’’ he said, adding that the Ika nation is glad of the recognition accorded former President Goodluck Jonathan, in naming the railway complex in Agbor after him.

Okowa urged the private sector to take advantage of the historic corridor by establishing investments that will create jobs for locals, curb youth restiveness and stem the tide of criminality.

”It is imperative that the Federal Government in collaboration with the States provide adequate security cover for this rail line corridor,” he said.

In his remarks, Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki congratulated the President on the feat of completing the project, saying it is quite fortuitous that few days to the country’s 60th independence celebration, the President has achieved the completion of this critical infrastructure.

”For us in Edo State we are excited that we have a few stops that have been completed and we are going to be working with you to utilise this infrastructure,” he said.

The Edo Governor appealed to the minister of transportation to extend the rail line to the industrial park in Benin City to facilitate the movement of goods to the northern part of the country.

In his remarks, Minister Amaechi said the project was fully funded by the Nigerian government, adding that 8 of the 10 stations are in the Niger-Delta/ South South region of the country.

”There is no loan on this project, it was funded from the budget and I had the directive of the President to go and revive it and complete it as soon as possible,’’ he said.

According to the Transportation Minister, the project started under the military era in 1987 but ‘‘underwent protracted hiccups, prolonged abandonment and massive vandalisation,’’ before it was resuscitated by the Buhari administration.