Buhari to tour South-East in a bid to improve relationship with Ṇ́dị́ Ìgbò; Buhari to present 2018 budget on Tuesday next week; MTN Restates Commitment to List on NSE in 6 Months; 500 Nigerians rot in Chinese prisons – Abike-Dabiri; Account Freeze: Patience Jonathan’s Case Gets New Date . . .
President Muhamadu Buhari is to undertake a tour of the five Southeast states in a bid to improve his relationship with Ṇ́dị́ Ìgbò and begin “to begin to show his presence,” the Imo State Governor Rochas Okorocha said on Thursday. According to Rochas, how to warm the president into the hearts of Igbo people was one of the reasons he visited the President at the Villa.
It will be recalled that Rochas is the only governor elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the southeast where the President Buhari scored the least vote in the 2015 presidential election. Roaches said inter alia:
“Luckily, the President will be coming to Ebonyi State, very soon and he will pass through Imo State to Anambra State. So, covering three states within this short time will be a right step in the right direction, because we have come to realise in the Southeast that we are better of in APC than any other party in the Federal Republic of Nigeria.’’
— Rochas Okorocha, Governor of Imo State
President Muhammadu Buhari will next week Tuesday present the 2018 budget proposal to a joint session of the National Assembly. Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, said this on Thursday as he read a letter from the President officially informing the upper legislative chamber of the presentation of the fiscal appropriation bill.
The letter read inter alia: “In pursuant to Section 81 of the 1999 Constitution, may I crave the kind indulgence of the National Assembly to grant me the slot of 1400 hours on Tuesday, November 7, 2017, to formally address a joint session and lay before the NASS the 2018 budget proposal.”
The South African telecoms giant MTN Group has reiterated its commitment to list its subsidiary MTN Nigeria on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) in the next six months as part of the settlement of the $1 billion fine imposed on it in 2015 by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) over the failure by the telecoms company to deactivate 5.2 million unregistered SIM cards on its network.
The chief executive of MTN Group, Mr. Rob Shuter (photo: above), made the disclosure during an interview with Bloomberg Television on Wednesday.
Mr. Shuter said, inter alia:
“MTN Group Ltd. is focused on laying the groundwork for an initial public offering of its Nigerian business and should complete the process in the next six months.
We have a lot of advisers running around getting everything ready. It’s a complicated process and there’s a lot of regulation that needs to be arranged. We are moving forward well with the project and anticipate concluding that in the next six months or so.”
The Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to President Muhammadu Buhari on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, said on Thursday that there were about 500 Nigerians in Chinese prisons detained for various crimes and offences. Hon. Dabiri-Erewa made this known on the side line of an international seminar on Nigeria-China relations in Abuja.
She also refuted claims that there were thousands of Nigerians detained in Chinese prisons and explained that there was no prisoner transfer agreement between both countries. “You hear 2000 but that is exaggerated. I think we have less than 500 Nigerians in Chinese prisons.
The former First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan’s $15.591 million case has been adjourned to a new date. The Federal High Court in Lagos on Thursday adjourned hearing of Mrs. Patience Jonathan’s suit seeking to unfreeze her accounts till December 4, 2017. Justice Mohammed Idris adjourned to enable the EFCC regularize its processes.
The judge on May 8 held that Mrs. Jonathan and other parties must give oral evidence on the money’s ownership. According to him, all the defendants’ counter-affidavits contain disputed facts that could not be decided without oral evidence.
“In the circumstances, the court hereby orders that the parties herein file pleadings in accordance with the Federal High Court Civil Procedure Rules 2009 and trial shall then proceed accordingly,” Justice Idris held. The EFCC had urged the court not to unfreeze the accounts because the money was suspected to be “proceed of crime”.
A bank, Jonathan’s former aide Waripamo-Owei Dudafa, Pluto Property and Investment Company Ltd, Seagate Property Development and Investment Company Ltd, Trans Ocean Property and Investment Company Ltd and Avalon Global Property Development Ltd are the other respondents.