Breaking News This Friday Morning, June 26, 2020


1. Fed Govt to announce date for flight resumption next week.

The Federal Government has said it would announce a date for the commencement of domestic flights next week.

The Aviation Minister, Hadi Sirika, said the sector was stalling the resumption of flights because it still needs to close some gaps.

He said a dry run test would be conducted at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos and Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja as part of the preparation to commence flights.

He also said yesterday during the briefing by the members of the Presidential Task Force on the pandemic, that “since the last announcement that Sunday 21st of June is no longer feasible for the opening of the airports, we would like to report that we have had significant progress in the readiness of the industry to restart.

Sirika, who was represented by the Director-General, Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Captain Musa Nuhu, said: “The gaps have been closed but however, we still have a few gaps within the aviation ecosystem and this will be closed hopefully in the next couple of days.

“I have said it and I will keep saying it; we must get it right the first time both on the issues of technical safety and health safety of all stakeholders and one of the things we are going to use to close some of the gaps is a dry run test of both Lagos and Abuja airport coming up on Saturday.

“After the dry runs, we will observe the gaps that might still be there and close them. After that, we will announce the date of the restart next week.

Meanwhile, ahead of domestic travel restart, Air Peace and Dana Air on Wednesday embarked on out of storage test flights for its 25 aircraft.

The exercise which the carriers described as ” Shakedown Flights ” , according to its spokesman, Stanley Olisa was aimed at ensuring the aircraft are in tip top condition having been grounded for close to three months under very strict storage maintenance.

2. No plan to reopen camp.

The National Youth Service Corps has declared that its orientation camps will reopen when it is very safe, in view of the danger posed by pandemic.

Director, Press and Public Relations of the scheme Mrs. Adenike Adeyemi made this known on Thursday in a statement issued in Abuja.

“The attention of the management of the scheme has been drawn to an online publication stating that the ‘NYSC is set to reopen orientation camps, lists guidelines’, alluding that the scheme will soon resume orientation programme,” Adeyemi said.

She said the scheme placed a very high premium on the lives of corps members, camp officials and other stakeholders, “which was the key reason it suspended 2020 Batch “A” Stream 1 orientation programme in March and shall never act in any way that will compromise their safety”.

Adeyemi urged corps members and prospective corps members to glean information concerning the scheme only from NYSC official sources both the social and mainstream media.

3. Buhari mourns Ajimobi’s death.

President Muhammadu Buhari has mourned the death of former Oyo State governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, who died in Lagos on Thursday.

The President, who recalled the contributions of the late former governor to both his state and the nation, condoled the people and government of Oyo State over his death.

In a statement issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, President Buhari, who also commiserated with the family of the deceased, noted that his would be felt by all, especially by his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC).

“President Muhammadu Buhari condoles with government and people of Oyo State over the passing of a former governor, Isiaka Abiola Ajimobi, whose contributions to the development of the state, and nation, will always be remembered.

“The President commiserates with the family of the former governor, who served the country as a Senator, 2003, before winning the governorship election in 2011, remaining steadfast and consistent in his progressive views, and working assiduously for the creation of the All Progressives Congress.

“As the party chieftain bows out, President Buhari believes he left the world at a crucial moment when the party and the country needed his counsels to heal, and grow, noting that his absence will be sorely felt by all associates, particularly in the APC.

“The President prays that the Almighty God will comfort the family of the former governor, and grant him a peaceful rest”, the statement said.

4. Nigeria admits error over Ghana demolition.

Foreign Affairs Minister Geoffrey Onyeama has said officials of Nigerian High Commission in Accra, Ghana, committed an error that culminated in the demolition of a structure within the premises of the High Commission.

The minister noted that the officials failed to take necessary action to get requisite documents for ownership of the parcel of land the structure was built on.

But he emphasised that such error was not an enough reason for the pulling down of the building by a Ghanaian businessman last weekend.

Onyeama said the Ghanaian government had assumed responsibility for the demolition and promised to rebuild the structure to its original level.

The minister, who addressed reporters on the resolution between Nigeria and Ghana on the demolition, said the Nigerian High Commission failed to obtain legal title for the land, which it had paid for in Year 2000.

Besides, the minister said it also failed to obtain necessary approvals before erecting the building.

“It was clearly a mistake on our side. What the Ghanaians said is that owing to the fact that our High Commission did not obtain a lease, following the allocation letter they got after paying for the plot of land, nor did we proceed to obtain a land title certificate and we didn’t even get a building permit for the new property.

“When other people came claiming ownership of the land, the commission did not see anything in the register because the lease title had not been obtained. It is clearly an error on the side of our High Commission.

“We would learn from that. But clearly, our documenting and record-keeping and processes would need to be sharpened. In terms of how we deal with our officers, this is something that happened in 2000. That was 20 years ago.

“The officials are no longer in service. We rather just learn from our mistake and ensure we have more rigour whenever we are engaging in legal issues in all our missions.

“The Ghanaian government has directed the necessary administrative procedures that were not followed should be done now, meaning that title deeds be formerly given to the High Commission of Nigeria since the documentary proof acknowledged by the Ghanaian land registry of receipt of payment on the property has been done many years ago.”

5. Community policing takes off in Lagos

Community policing has taken off in Lagos with the police command on Thursday inaugurating three Community Policing Committees across the area commands, local council areas and divisions in the state.

These committees were inaugurated by the Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG) Zone two, Ahmed Iliyasu accompanied by Police Commissioner Hakeem Odumosu and Deputy Commissioners of Police.

According to a statement by spokesman Bala Elkana, the committees inaugurated were Area Command Community Policing Advisory committees, Local Government Advisory committees and Divisional Community Policing Committees.

These inaugurations followed the earlier establishment of State Community Policing Advisory Committee and State Community Policing Committee by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to drive community policing policies and strategies approved by the federal government and championed by the police.

Elkana said, “Community policing is both a philosophy and an organisational strategy that allows the police and the community to work closely together in creative ways to solve the problems of crime, illicit drugs, fear of crime and social disorder. It is a partnership between the police and members of the community to fight crime, criminalities and other social issues/disorder within the community which will eventually improve the quality of life for everyone in that community.

“The community policing model being envisioned for Nigeria is one that draws on the legal opportunities provided by the Police Act for the engagement of Special Constables who will serve as Community Policing Officers under the coordination of the Nigeria Police towards evolving a community-focused policing architecture.

“This is necessitated by the fact that crime is community-based and community-based approach is required to effectively address it. In other words, local problems should be given local solutions.”