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NUPENG, PTD Deny Purported Strike Action

The Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) and its Petroleum Tanker Drivers Branch (PTD) have jointly denied media reports of threats to embark on a nationwide strike over a purported leadership tussle in the union.

Reacting through a press statement on Monday, General Secretary of NUPENG, Olawale Afolabi declared that “there is no plan whatsoever by the Petroleum Tanker Drivers to embark on any protest as there is no division in the union as some desperate individuals and their sponsors want to project. The news item is false and unfounded.”

The NUPENG General Secretary noted that the motive of those behind the press statement was to create panic in the public space and cause artificial scarcity of petroleum products.

The union further tasked security agencies to fish out those behind the news item which it noted was very capable of creating social upheaval and security concerns.

“This press release is compelled in view of the attention of the leadership of both the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers and the Petroleum Tanker Drivers Branch of the union that was drawn to this very misleading, mischievous and unfounded online news of the purported protest of the Petroleum Tanker Drivers across the country and we are deeply compelled to quickly release this press statement to avert any form of panic, that the fake news item is false, unfounded and should be ignored.

“It is intended to create panic in the public and cause artificial scarcity by these desperate individuals. All the Petroleum Tanker Drivers are fully committed to the national services of effective and efficient distribution of petroleum products across the country.

“We earnestly call on the security agencies to urgently fish out the writer of this very misleading and panic-creating news item and make him face the full wrath of the law if he/she cannot prove the source and authority of the fake news item which is very capable of creating social upheaval and security concerns.”

In a similar vein, the National Chairman of the PTD Branch of NUPENG, Comrade Augustine Egbon, also attributed the news item to those bent on creating panic in the supply chain of Petroleum Products distribution in the country.

The PTD-NUPENG National Chairman maintained that there is no division within its rank and there was no need for any form of protest.

The statement reads in part:” The leadership of the Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD) Branch of the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) wishes to alert the general public of the antics of some desperate and mischievous individuals to cause unfounded and dangerous panic in the supply chain of Petroleum Products distribution in the country through spreading of fake and false news items.

“The Petroleum Tanker Drivers are not embarking on any form of protest and we are determined to continue our services to the nation and wholeheartedly support the efforts of the government of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to put our economy on the right track for the good of all of us.

“We wish to further reiterate the fact that there is no division in our union and the branch of Petroleum Tanker Drivers.

“Our members are fully committed and united in our collective struggles as we believe that workers united, can never be defeated.

“The general public is implored to ignore these mischief makers and security agencies are hereby called upon to fully investigate this panic-creating news item as the citizens are already going through enough tough times and situations.

“We shall overcome.”

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Bauchi pays N3.418bn in outstanding gratuities

The Bauchi State Pensions Board has announced that, from May 2019 to date, the state government has paid N3,418,288,11.68 in outstanding gratuities owed to retired civil servants.

The Chairman of the Board, Senator Bala Adamu Kariya, made the disclosure at the ongoing ministerial press briefing in Bauchi, held at the State Secretariat.

Although Senator Kariya did not specify the total gratuity backlog, he noted that it exceeds N20 billion.

He stated that since the inception of the current Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)-led administration in 2019, a total of 4,273 people have retired, and 677 have died while in service, out of 4,948 files processed.

“The Board processes the files of civil servants due for retirement. We are the custodians of the processed files of all state civil servants who have retired,” the chairman stated.

Senator Adamu, however, said that in order to avoid further accumulation of pension and gratuity liabilities, the state government intends to commence the implementation of the proposed contributory pension scheme on June 30, 2021.

“As a sign of commitment, His Excellency, the Executive Governor, Sen. Bala Mohammed Abdulkadir, appointed a 20-member committee, including a staff member of Messrs Premium Pension Ltd for technical guidance under the chairmanship of Mr. Abdon Dalla Gin (Special Adviser on Civil Service Matters).”

“In line with the Terms of Reference to the Committee, a final report with a draft bill has been carefully produced, tapping from the 2004 Act, 2014 revised Act, and previous efforts of successive state administrations like the 2005 and 2017 draft bills, and was presented to His Excellency, the Executive Governor, Sen. Bala Mohammed Abdulkadir, as appropriate.”

He recalled that Governor Bala Mohammed had presented the report to the State Executive Council for consideration and approval, following which a draft bill was forwarded to the State House of Assembly for further legislative process in line with the laid down constitutional procedure.

“After gathering the necessary stakeholders’ input, the State House of Assembly then ratified the draft and returned the same to the Executive Governor for assent. Consequently, on August 5, 2022, His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Bauchi State, assented to the bill enacted by the State House of Assembly.”

“It was named the Bauchi State and Local Government Contributory Pension Scheme. The law also provided for the establishment of the Bauchi State and Local Government Contributory Pension Commission.”

“The state governor approved the constitution of another high-powered committee under the chairmanship of Ibrahim Muhammad Kashim, the Secretary to the State Government, to facilitate the full implementation process of the new scheme in the state.”

Kariya further explained that prior to this development, the state government appointed two firms of Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs), who have now engaged stakeholders in a massive sensitization, advocacy, and enlightenment of the scheme across the state.

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Two-storey building collapses in Abuja

A two-storey residential building in Phase 2, site 2, Kubwa Abuja has collapsed

The building collapsed on Saturday morning at about 7:00am.

It was learnt that the building was formerly a hotel, Al-Hilal, but was converted to a residential apartment.

It was gathered that several people are currently trapped in the rubble.

As at time of filing this report, emergency responders and security personnel were at the scene.

 

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Police to enforce e-CMR compliance from July 29

The Nigeria Police Force have given all motor users 14 days to register their vehicles with the newly-introduced digitalized Central Motor Registration (e-CMR), which will end on July 29, to begin the enforcement of its compliance in order to checkmate the rate of vehicle-related crimes and other offenses.

In a press release, the Force Public Relations Officer, ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, informed that the move is part of the efforts of the Inspector-General of Police, IGP Kayode Egbetokun, to enhance the security of lives and property and significantly boost the nation’s safety.

The release further stated that the exercise is an advanced form of helping security agencies, mostly the Police Force, in their investigations and operational activities to combat vehicle-related crimes, including terrorism, banditry, kidnapping, and other social vices.

It also stated that the introduction of the e-CMR digitalized system will help streamline the documentation and verification process for vehicle ownership and related transactions.

“Following the directives of the IGP, services such as change of ownership, change of license number, change of engine, and change of chassis/body would become seamless as the e-CMR system would ensure the validation of vehicle genuineness and ownership, enhancing the ability to track and recover stolen vehicles effectively, and preventing the purchase of stolen vehicles by innocent buyers.

“Prior to the enforcement itself, the IGP has ordered full publicity of the e-CMR and its enforcement to all members of the public, intimating them of the requirements, processes, and the enforcement procedures. Members of the public are urged to obtain the digitalized CMR certificate online at https://cmris.npf.gov.ng.

‘For further inquiries, individuals can contact the CMR Command Centre at FHQ Abuja (08117777666, 09169892000) and FHQ Annex Lagos (08117777555, 09169891000). Technical support is also available at cmftech@npfcmr.ng,” the release partly stated.

Following this new development, the Nigeria Police have enjoined members of the public to participate in the exercise by ensuring that all vehicle users comply with the new directive, maintaining that the initiative, which is in line with modern technology, remains a strategic approach to enhance public safety and national security.

ACP Adejobi further stated that the enforcement of the e-CMR is necessary to ensure a safer and more secure environment for vehicle ownership and to decimate the trend of vehicle theft by greatly reducing the possibility of selling stolen vehicles in the country.

“We therefore urge all vehicle owners and users to embrace and participate in this initiative promptly for optimum safety and security,” he stated.

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