“We will not Allow China Maltreat Nigerians” – Gbajabiamila Confronts Chinese Ambassador
Femi Gbajabiamila, the Speaker of Nigeria’s House of Representatives had a meeting with the Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Zhou Pingjian on April 10 over the maltreatment of Nigerians living in China.
He confronted Pingjian with a protest video in which a Nigerian was seen challenging Chinese officials over the maltreatment. He also demanded that Chinese authorities address the issues.
In some of the videos, some Nigerian citizens were protesting against being forced into another 14-day quarantine after the initial 14- day they spent for same purpose over the COVID-19 pandemic in China.
Commenting on the incident, Gbajabiamila said;
“If the diplomatic relationships between our two countries are for the mutual benefits of our citizens, then there must be respect for our citizens, and we should not compromise it.
“As a government, we will not allow Chinese or other nationals to be maltreated just as we will not allow Nigerians to be maltreated in other countries.
“The way you treat your citizens, we expect that’s how you’ll treat others. We will not tolerate our citizens breaking your laws but the crime of one citizen cannot be used to stigmatize the whole country.
“It appears that’s what happened in this case. You can’t use one brush to smear the whole wall. Whatever the reason, it cannot be used and taken out on the entire community in China”.
Responding to the confrontation, Pingjian promised to take it up with the home government even though he has not been officially informed.
“We take our relationship with Nigeria very seriously. Until we receive a full report from back home, I cannot act but I can assure you it is not a policy issue.
“We treat everyone equally but during the implementation of the COVID-19 measures in China, it is possible for some incidents; all I do is to take it back home, today I will.”
Gbajabiamila further stated that he will be expecting a feedback from Chinese authorities.
“It is better we nip it in the bud so that it doesn’t escalate to another level. So, by Tuesday, if you have the information to give us, if steps have been taken, let’s talk about it and let’s see the way forward.”
UNN ASUU, residents urge FG to prevent another strike
By Gistflash News
July 26, 2021
The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) chapter, has advised the Federal Government to take steps to avert another nationwide strike by the union.
The UNN chapter Chairman, Dr Christian Opata, gave the advice on Monday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Nsukka.
Opata spoke against the backdrop of the recent threat by ASUU to resume the strike suspended on Dec. 24, 2020.
He described federal government’s failure to fulfill agreements entered with the union since 2009 as unfortunate.
He said that federal government would not be exonerated “if the union resumes another strike because of its inability to fulfill an agreement with it”.
The ASUU boss said the UNN chapter of the union was ready to enforce any directive of the national leadership of ASUU at any point in time.
In a similar vein, some residents of the university town also charged the federal government to redeem its agreement with the union to forestall the strike.
A community leader, Mr Innocent Ugwu, said the strike would cause another academic setback for students in public universities, should government allow ASUU to make good its threat.
Ugwu said, “Government should act fast and do everything within its capacity to redeem the agreement it entered with ASUU that led to the suspension of the strike on Dec. 24, 2020.
“This will prevent another strike that will paralyse academic activities in public universities in the country.”
He pleaded with ASUU to avoid another strike and continue to dialogue with government in the interest of students and parents, who were always on the receiving end.
Also, a secondary school teacher, Mrs Amaka Ezema, urged government at all levels to give education special attention.
According to Ezema, the quality of education determines the level of development.
“If government gives special attention to education, there will not be room for strike in public schools.
“Federal government should ensure that ASUU’s current threat to resume strike does not happen by fulfilling the agreement signed with the union in December 2020.
“If ASUU resumes another strike, the academic timetable in public universities will be disrupted again,” Ezema said.
A civil servant, Mr Desmond Ubah, said that incessant strikes in public universities led to the hike in school fees in private universities.
“Private universities are capitalising on incessant strikes in public institutions to increase their school fees arbitrarily.
“These universities know that parents are no longer comfortable with the incessant strikes in public universities since they are no longer sure of when their children will graduate,” Ubah said.
Insecurity: Matawalle tasks northern leaders on unity
By Gistflash News
July 26, 2021
Gov. Bello Matawalle of Zamfara on Sunday appealed to northern leaders to unite and end the incessant banditry and kidnapping ravaging the region.
Matawalle made call in a presentation: “Fight against banditry in North West, Nigeria; challenges and solutions”, at the annual lecture by Arewa Media Writers Association in Kaduna.
Matawalle, represented by his Commissioner for Information, Alhaji Ibrahim Dosara, attributed the lingering security challenges confronting the region to lack of unity among the leaders that allowed criminals turn the region into a killing field.
He noted that banditry ravaging the north western states, if not urgently tackled, would consume the entire northern region and the country at large.
“Unless we all wake up to the situation, the war against banditry in the North West will remain a challenge that has the potential to swallow the region and the country at large. We need to get to the roots of the situation and stop politicising it,” he said.
The governor urged the northern leaders to urgently set aside their differences and proffer lasting solutions to the banditry and kidnapping before the situation got out of hand.
He, however, averred that the activities of the bandits in the region was orchestrated by age-long injustice and leadership failure.
Matawalle said that some politicians were taking advantage of the situation to achieve political goals.
“Unless we all wake up to the situation, the war against banditry in the north west will remain a significant security challenge that has the potential to swallow the region and the country.
“The destruction that banditry is wreaking on the region’s people and economy is unfathomable,” he said.
Matawalle clarified that the much talked about mining in Zamfara was not responsible for banditry as many were made to believe.
He said bandit activities in Shinkafi and Zurmi local governments remained the hotbed even when there are no mining activities in those areas.
“When I took over office on May 29th, 2019, Zamfara State had already been mired in a serious security crisis for over a decade, marked by banditry, livestock rustling, kidnapping and a host of other crimes.
“On almost daily basis, the state was in the news for bloodletting, fire, pillage and significant displacement of people, particularly those living in rural areas.
“The historical, economic, social and cultural ties between the dominant communities of Fulani and Hausa were ruptured; farming activities across the state were halted, and commercial activities were crippled.
“With poverty on the increase and food security seriously affected by the crisis, the state was on the verge of a catastrophic social eruption capable of destabilising our communities and the northwest subregion.
“Rural banditry in Zamfara and other parts of the North, in my opinion, is a result of the progressive degradation of our moral standards and a culture of greed fed by an unfettered need for material goods.
“It is evident, therefore, that we, the leaders, are responsible for the plight of the North. The North lacks responsible leadership to steer it through our time’s uncharted waters.
“Reluctance by the affected states to embrace peace dialogue, which would have deprived the recalcitrant bandits currently tormenting our people of safe corridors in the region.
“Our ruling elite has no vision for the region beyond gaining political power. We have all seen how the elites in the Southeast and Southwest respond in unison to all matters concerning their regions’ development.
“We have seen how they have a defined agenda and are relentless in their pursuit of regional development.
“The reluctance by the affected states to embrace peace dialogue, lack of support from a section of politicians that wish to take advantage of the situation to achieve political ends are top challenges slowing down the peace efforts in the region,” he lamented.
He, therefore, appealed to leaders of the region to wake up from their lethargy and unite in combating this grave challenge of banditry, stressing that “we need to get to the roots of the situation, stop politicising it and act decisively”.
Earlier, the National Secretary of the association, Mr Haider Hashim, said Arewa Media Writers was established for public enlightenment on peaceful coexistence, unity and understanding among Nigerians.
“It is an amalgamated group of different members of teeming youths who are mainly users of social media, seasoned journalists and public affairs analysts with a vast interest in politics, national development and cohesion from the Northern region,” he said.
Buhari attends Education Summit in London, holds bilateral talks with PM Johnson
By Gistflash News
July 26, 2021
President Muhammadu Buhari will on Monday depart Abuja for UK to participate in the Global Education Summit on Financing Global Partnership for Education (GPE) 2021 to 2025.
The President’s spokesman, Mr Femi Adesina, who confirmed this development in a statement in Abuja on Monday, said the summit would be co-hosted by the Prime Minister of the UK, Boris Johnson, and the President of Kenya, Uhuru Kenyatta.
According to him, the summit will bring together Heads of State and Government as well as stakeholders and youth leaders, and provide a platform for partners to chart a way forward towards transforming education systems in partner countries, through exchange of best practices.
“It will also offer the opportunity for leaders to make 5-year pledges to support GPE’s work to help transform education systems in up to 90 countries and territories.
“Deliberations at the Summit will focus on: The Power of Education –A Conversation between Global Champions; Transforming Education for Girls; Financing for Impact and Recovery and; What Now? Priorities for Transforming Education in the Coming Five Years, among others,’’ Adesina stated.
He revealed that the Nigerian leader would also hold a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
He said: “After the Summit, the President will spend a few days for an earlier scheduled medical check-up.
“He is due back by second week of August, 2021.’’
The presidential aide disclosed that Buhari would be accompanied by Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, Minister of State Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, National Security Adviser, retired Maj. Gen. Babagana Monguno and Director-General of National Intelligence Agency, Amb. Ahmed Rufai Abubakar.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the GPE 2021 to 2025 will be a key moment for the global community to come together and support quality education for all children.
A centrepiece of the summit will be the opportunity for leaders to make five-year pledges to support GPE’s work to help transform education systems in up to 90 countries and territories.
The GPE will take place on July 28 and July 29, 2021.
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