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Violent Extremism: ONSA, UNDP Partner on Prevention, Response



March 19, 2020 3:06 pm

by sumaila.ogbaje

Abuja, March 19, 2020 (NAN) The Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have resolved to activate community-based platforms for preventing and responding to violent extremism across Nigeria.

The National Security Adviser (NSA), Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno (rtd), disclosed this at the validation meeting of the study on Preventing and Responding to Violent Extremism on Thursday in Abuja.

Monguno, who was represented by the Head of Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (PCVE), ONSA, Mrs Aisha Garba, acknowledged the efforts of the various state governments in countering violent extremism in the country.

He said that ONSA, through the integration of strategic communication into its PCVE programming would embark on advocacy and dialogue.

According to him, it will leverage on the Nigeria Governors Forum to encourage local and state governments to mirror the National Action Plan and develop their States Action Plans for PCVE that are locally relevant.

“In this regards, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) with expertise in peace and conflict are encouraged to partner with the state governments.

“We are working with the Ministry of Budget and National Planning and relevant government agencies to support MDAs in implementing the Presidential Directive by ensuring they are able to identify PCVE tasks annually, budget for such activities and implement appropriately,” he said.

The NSA commended the stakeholders that participated in the survey and the UNDP for providing the required level of support for the validation meeting.

He disclosed that the policy framework and national action plan for PCVE was presented to CSOs, media and international community following its launch by President Muhammadu Buhari in 2017.

Monguno said that ONSA in collaboration with UNDP conducted a survey on the factors facilitating the growth and spread of Violent Extremism in some states, including FCT as part of efforts towards supporting the implementation of the policy framework.

He added that the effort was aimed at tackling the menace of violent extremism in order to ensure enduring peace, security and development in the country.

According to him, the survey identified focal states and interacted with various stakeholders at the grassroots.

He said the study assessed among other issues, the extent of awareness of the action plan in the country; the texture and nature of radicalisation and violent extremism in communities at-risk, or communities affected by violent extremism.

This according to NSA, includes the acts of insurgency linked to the Boko Haram insurgents in order to generate practical recommendations that will improve the contents and implementation of the action plan for PCVE.

The Team Lead, Governance, Peace and Security at UNDP, Mr Matthew Alao, said the essence of the validation meeting was to bring on board the stakeholders that contributed to the research work carried out on PCVE in five states and FCT.

Alao said that the collective mandate of the meeting was to validate the research work which was carried out by a scholar.

He said that ONSA and UNDP needed the people that had contributed to the research work to come and validate if the content of the research work originated from them.

This, according to him, is to ensure that when we publish nobody would come say I don’t know what is there.

Alao disclosed that UNDP had been involved in training and empowerment of the vulnerable persons to violent extremism in different parts of the country.

According to him, UNDP is identifying these people and also empowering them.

“As some of you may be aware, we have done this thing in the north east where we have trained over 600 beneficiaries and empowered them,” he said. (NAN)

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Nigeria Air: Civil Society Group Tackles NASS



Says Committee Chairman’s declaration amounts to ‘giving the dog a bad name in order to hang it’

A civil society group, The Concerned Civil Society Advocacy Group has taken up the outgoing Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Aviation, Nnolim Nnaji on his recent declaration that the national carrier project was a fraud.

According to the group, the declaration, coming in the wake of the recent exhibition of one of aircrafts of Nigeria Air in Abuja, amounted to “giving the dog a bad name so that it can be hanged”

In a statement to the media in Abuja on Wednesday,and signed by the Group’s National Coordinator, Bako Barkindo and National Secretary, Julius Adaji, it described the sustained plot to ensure the failure of the national carrier project as a disservice to the Nigerian people who stand to benefit from its establishment.

Former Aviation Minister, Senator Hadi Sirika

The Statement read:

“The media has been awash with reports that the House of Representatives Committee on Aviation has declared the national carrier project a fraud after a hastily organised ‘public hearing’ whose outcome was obviously predetermined.
As usual, many gullible Nigerians have been deceived through deliberate misinformation by opponents of the Nigerian Air project who have been masquerading their real intentions as national interest.
Everyone knows what the benefits of a national carrier are, and they include; competitive ticket prices, direct flights to international destinations, national pride etc. We therefore wonder why the concerted efforts by some people to ensure that the project fails.

“As a group that believes that Nigeria deserves a very robust national carrier that is private sector-driven (bearing in mind the issues that led to the death of defunct Nigeria Airways), we have followed the process through which the project had passed, from the appointment of transaction advisers up to the announcement of Ethiopian Airlines as the Strategic partners and other private sector investors before the court injunction obtained by some domestic airline operators. It is therefore surprising that the Chairman, House Committee on Aviation had to come up with such a declaration shortly before the Committee’s tenure ends.

“We are therefore constrained to raise the following questions:
1.Has the Committee chaired by Nnolim Nnaji not been part of the whole process of establishing the airline, or they have been watching from the sidelines, unconcerned with such a flagship project in the sector?
2.Why wait till the wee hours of their departure from the national assembly to hold a make-believe public hearing where the Chairman acted as a sole administrator and did not allow those in charge to make contributions but went ahead to declare the national carrier project a fraud, a position that at variance with that of Senate?
3.Is the Committee not aware of the fact that government equity in the airline is only 5% and the remaining 95% belongs to the strategic partners (Ethiopian Airlines) and other private investors; and that even if government withdraws from the venture, the owners of the 95% will carry on?
4.On the use of the Ethiopian Airlines plane, why didn’t the Committee highlight the 49% ownership of Nigeria Air part of which includes the provision of aeroplanes for take-off?
5.Can the Committee invalidate an Executive Council-approved project that was midwifed by the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) and approved by the President?
6.Why are some members of the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) so vehemently opposed to the national carrier project, if not for the sole purpose of continuous exploitation of air travellers? Should Nigerians be subjected to whims and caprices of these airline operators who have made air transportation in the country unaffordable to the average Nigerian?
7.Why would the Association also claim that they were not carried along in the process when every stage was advertised in most national dailies and some international publications as well as the electronic and social media? Moreover, all the information regarding the airline has been available on websites of the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) and the Ministry of Aviation. Wherein lies the the much-vaunted secrecy?

“As concerned citizens we believe that the establishment of the cational carrier will be of immense benefit to Nigerians with the provision of competitive rates for both domestic and international routes.
It is our belief also that there’s more to this seeming gangup to truncate the project than meets the eye, especially with the close relationship with the major actors in the plot to deprive Nigerians of the inherent benefits.

“We conclude that all the negatives being spread about the Nigeria Air project is only to ‘give a dog a bad name so they can hang it’.

The group appealed to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to ensure the take-off of the airline which,according to them was at that stage before the change of government.

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Jibrin Condemns Destruction of Political Activist’s Hotel in Kogi



Accord Party Candidate in forthcoming gubernatorial election in Kogi State, Admiral Usman Jibrin (rtd) has condemned the attack and wanton destruction of a hotel belonging to a political activist Hon. Kabir Bala aka Okwo’ located at Ejule in Ofu Local Government Area of the state.

Reports have it that the hotel, said to be one of the best in the area, was attacked and completely razed down Wednesday night by people yet to be identified.

Admiral Jibrin in a statement to the media in Abuja, said the attack on the hotel was not only condemnable, but dastardly and unwarranted.

According to the retired Chief of Naval Staff, people should imbibe the spirit of politics without bitterness and eschew the recourse to needless violence in aspiring for positions of power.

He called on the state security apparatus to ensure an urgent and independent investigation and communicate their findings to the public to douse the tension that is building up in Kogi East.

Admiral Usman Jibrin (rtd)
Accord Party Governorship Candidate, Kogi State

The Governorship hopeful, while also calling on the State Governor, Inspector-General of Police and the Department of State Services to quickly take steps to ensure that the electioneering period leading to governorship election is devoid of all forms of criminality.

Admiral Jibrin, popularly called ‘Akpabana’ promised to bring his experience, extensive knowledge of security and universal contacts to bear on ensuring that the people of the state are safe and secure when he takes over the mantra of leadership of the state.

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President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has announced the appointment of Speaker of House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila as Chief of Staff, and Sen. Ibrahim Hassan Hadejia, a former Deputy Governor of Jigawa State, as Deputy Chief of Staff.

Sen. George Akume

A statement by the State House Director of Information, Biodun Olajundoye said President Bola Ahmed Tinubu confirmed the appointment on Friday during a meeting with the Progressives Governors Forum (PGF),

Oladunjoye further stated that the President also named former Governor of Benue State and immediate past Minister of Special Duties, George Akume as the new Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF).


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