NIGERIANS FACING HARDSHIP AS INFLATION INCREASES TO 34.19% IN JUNE Nigeria’s headline inflation increased for the 18th time in June 2024 to 34.19 percent from 33 95 percent recorded in May amid worsening hardship. The National Bureau of Statistics disclosed this in its latest Consumer Price Index and Inflation report released on Monday. Looking at the movement, the June 2024 headline inflation rate showed an increase of 0.24 percent points when compared to the May 2024 headline inflation rate. On a year-on-year basis, the headline inflation rate was 11.40 percent points higher compared to the rate recorded in June 2023, which was 22.79 percent. This shows that the headline inflation rate (year-on-year basis) increased in June 2024 when compared to the same month in the preceding year (i.e. June 2023). Furthermore, on a month-on-month basis, the headline inflation rate in June 2024 was 2.31 percent, which was 0.17 percent higher than the rate recorded in May 2024 (2.14 percent). This means that in June 2024, the rate of increase in the average price level is higher than the rate of increase in the average price level in May 2024. Accordingly, the country’s inflation rate has been on a steady increase since December 2023 when it stood at 28.92 percent. The development has seen the prices of goods and services rise in the period under view.This is as Nigerians continue to groan over the economic hardship caused by price hikes.


NATIONAL ASSEMBLY MAY AMEND CONSTITUTION TO ALLOW INEC CONDUCT LG ELECTIONS The National Assembly is considering amendment to the 1999 constitution to create room for the conduct of local government elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and not the state electoral bodies. This is sequel to last Thursday judgement of the Supreme Court which granted autonomy to local governments following a suit filed by the federal government on the matter. Reacting to the development during a press conference in Abuja, the Senator representing Kogi West, Sunday Karimi, said the National Assembly would ensure that state governments complied with the judgement of the Supreme Court by amending the constitution to address the contentious issues inherent in it. The senator said, “These include grey areas like the transfer of the responsibility of the conduct of elections to the local councils from the various state electoral bodies to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).” The lawmaker noted that the battle was not yet over, saying, “Some state governors will fight back.” “President Tinubu allowed the judiciary a free hand to operate in this particular instance, irrespective of the fact that he is a first term President who may desire a comeback in 2027,” Karimi added. Also, the Senator representing Delta Central, Okakuro Ede Dafinone, said with the new development, the 1999 constitution should be amended to give INEC the legal right to be the sole body saddled with the responsibility of conducting local government elections. He said, “It’s very unfortunate that people at the grassroots level are prevented from participating in our democratic process by state governors to freely elect their councillors and council chairmen. “It’s disheartening that our governors who are products of free and fair elections can’t replicate same in the local government areas of their state. If INEC were to conduct elections the way the governors purportedly tele-guide SIEC to conduct local government polls, many of them will not be governors today. “I think at this point in our national history and democratic journey, we have to put partisan politics aside and work collectively to amend the relevant sections of our constitution to rescue the local government system from the grips of our governors. “I must commend the laudable effort of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for taking the lead in this respect by ensuring financial autonomy for the local governments across the country. “We must do likewise to enthrone democratic principles at the local government level by ensuring that a credible agency, possibly INEC, is charged with the conduct of local government elections across the country in order to guarantee our people’s participation in democratic governance.”Senator Dafinone described last Saturday’s local government election in Delta as a complete sham and a mockery of democracy.


EX-ENUGU LP GUBER CANDIDATE, EDEOGA, CALLS FOR URGENT ABROGATION OF SIECS The governorship candidate of the Labour Party, LP, in Enugu State during the 2023 general election, Barr Chijioke Edeoga has urged the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, to expedite action on a constitutional reform towards towards scrapping State Independent Electoral Commissions, SIECs. Edeoga said this in a statement he made available to DAILY POST on Monday, days after the Supreme Court granted financial autonomy to local government areas. The LP chieftain had earlier last week while reacting to the landmark judgement, urged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit, NFIU, to closely monitor the finances of the local government areas. He has now followed it up with an advice to the AGF, urging him to ensure that the SIECs were abrogated to allow for credible elections in the LGAs. Edeoga said that an Executive Bill to excise Section 197 1(b) of the Constitution which created the state Independence Electoral Commissions should be initiated by the office of the Attorney General of the Federation. According to him, the responsibility should be taken off SIECs and pushed to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC. His statement reads in full: “Following the July 11, 2024 judgement of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, which affirmed full financial autonomy to the 774 local government areas of the country, Nigerians from across political, social, and economic divides have praised the courage and vision of the Federal Government team, led by the Attorney General of the Federation, Prince Lateef Fagbemi, to take further steps towards rescuing Nigeria’s third tier of government from the stranglehold of many state governors in the country. “The profound joy and palpable relief expressed by Nigerians were indicative of the belief people have about local councils as efficacious catalysts of local administration and also speak to the avoidable quiescence in grassroots development occasioned by the chokehold which state governors exercise on their political and financial autonomy. “It must be stressed at this point that local government administration is to national political and infrastructure development what micro, small, and medium-scale enterprises (MSME) are to national economic development – just as MSMEs represent the biggest employers of labour in most economies, council administration touches more lives on the aggregate than both states and federal government. In Nigeria for instance, where MSMEs are said to be capable of employing an equivalent of 84 percent of the population, the 774 local government areas in the country, if granted full financial and administrative autonomy, will have the potential to not just employ more people than all the 36 state governments, but also spike the incubation and growth of more businesses at grassroots level. “The impact of emasculated local councils has been the subject of academic and developmental research for many years. In one, titled, “Causes and Consequences of Rural-Urban Migration in Nigeria” conducted by Omonigho T. Okhankhuele and Olaniyan Z. Opafunso, it was established that rural areas in Nigeria are being affected by several incapacities at various levels of severity such as: inaccessibility, seclusion, underdevelopment, poverty, drabness, boredom, ignorance, depopulation, hunger, and all types of sicknesses. It was also held that migration from rural to urban areas leads to a reduction in the number of rural populaces, with direct consequences on agricultural output and overall GDP of the communities in the area and thus hinders the pace of development in the rural areas. “As a former Local Government Chairman, I am aware of the impact an empowered council can have on all the indicators of economic well-being, including income, unemployment, infrastructure, healthcare delivery, urban migration, and education. The autonomy as is now being fully restored to…


EX-US PRESIDENT, TRUMP, PICKS PRESIDENTIAL RUNNING MATE Former US President Donald Trump has chosen Sen. JD Vance, R-Ohio, as his vice presidential running mate, taking a once-strident critic and elevating him as the leading heir to his political legacy. Vance, who will turn 40 in August, offers a youthful contrast to Trump, 78, and President Joe Biden, 81. He would be the third-youngest vice president in history — behind John Breckinridge (36 years old upon taking office in 1857) and Richard Nixon (40 years and 11 days in 1953). And Vance’s selection comes just days after Trump survived an assassination attempt Saturday, underlining the gravity of the vice presidential selection in stark terms.“After lengthy deliberation and thought, and considering the tremendous talents of many others, I have decided that the person best suited to assume the position of Vice President of the United States is Senator J.D. Vance of the Great State of Ohio,” Trump posted on Truth Social Monday afternoon.


BREAKING: STATES, FCT GET 20 TRUCKS OF RICE EACH TO CUSHION FOOD CRISIS The Federal Government has said it has completed the distribution of 20 trucks of rice to each of the 36 state governments as well as the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, for distribution to the most vulnerable persons as part of efforts to cushion the impact of hunger in the country. Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, disclosed this on Monday, after the weekly Federal Executive Council meeting chaired by President Bola Tinubu. According to the Minister, FEC deliberated extensively on the food crisis rocking the country and has instructed that each state get 20 trucks of rice for distribution to vulnerable persons to help them cushion the effect of hunger in the land. He said, “Council deliberated extensively on food supply and shortage of food in the country, so 20 trucks of rice has already been distributed to each state across the country, including the FCT.“The Federal Government decided on this as a first step to cushion the hardship faced by Nigerians, but the food relief would go to the most vulnerable members of the society.”


WHY I DON’T HAVE HOUSES OUTSIDE NIGERIA – DANGOTE Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, has explained that his passion for an industrialized Nigeria is the sole reason he doesn’t have houses outside Nigeria. During a media parley at the Dangote Petroleum Refinery, Ibeju-Lekki, Lagos State, Dangote revealed that he once had a London house which he sold in 1996. He added that “the reason I don’t have a London or America house is solely because I wanted to focus on industrialization in Nigeria. “I figured that if I had those houses, there will be one reason or the other for me to visit those places thereby causing distraction for me. “I am very passionate about the Nigeria dream and apart from my Lagos house, I have another one in my home state Kano and a rented one in Abuja,” he revealed. In her closing remarks, the Group Executive Director, Commercial Operations, Fatima Dangote, commended Mr Dangote for never giving up on the Nigerian dream. She added that “I have not seen anyone as hardworking as my father, sometimes I wonder how he never gives up.“I wish we have a few more men like my father in Nigeria, the country will be a better place,” she said.


COURT PERPETUALLY RESTRAINS BAYERO, FOUR OTHERS FROM PARADING AS EMIRS Kano State High Court 17, presided over by Justice Amina Adamu Aliyu, has perpetually restrained Aminu Ado Bayero and four other dethroned Emirs, of Bichi, Rano, Gaya, and Karaye from parading themselves as Emirs. Delivering the judgment, Monday, the Court further restrained the 15th Emir of Kano and four other Emirs, themselves, servants, privies and any other persons appointed by them from parading themselves as Emirs of Kano, Bichi, Gaya, Rano, Karaye. The Kano State government had filed a case asking the State High to stop the 15th Emir of Aminu Ado Bayero and four other Emirs of Karaye, Bichi, Rano and Gaya from parading themselves as Emirs. The Government also gave the Deposed Emirs 48 hours within which to vacate their respective Palaces after being deposed. However, the Presiding Judge, Justice Amina Adamu Aliyu, while delivering the judgement, said the issue of evicting the Deposed Emir, Aminu Ado Bayero from his Nassarawa palace is a Rent Tribunal matter and should not be before her court. But in her judgement, the judge directed the Deposed Emir, Aminu Ado Bayero and four others to quickly hand over all the Emirate Traditional Royal Artifacts to the government and the substantive Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi ii. Justice Amina Adamu Aliyu, also said the State Assembly Emirate Council Repealed Law 2024, was done according to the law as enshrined in section 4 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. She then ruled that the State Governor, Abba Kabir Yusuf’s assent to the law is also done perfectly according to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.


CHAIRMAN, ENUGU STATE UNIVERSAL BASIC EDUCATION BOARD, GOC AJAH, REMOVED The Chairman of the Enugu State Universal Basic Education Board (ENSUBEB), Dr. G.O.C. Ajah, mni,  has been removed from his position. This was disclosed by Dr. Ajah himself during a briefing with his staff at the ENSUBEB office on Monday, July 15, 2024. Ajah, who was a former Secretary to the State Government, stated that the state government had conducted a minor reshuffling of the Board with immediate effect. The specific reasons behind his removal remain undisclosed. His tenure as the Chairman of ENSUBEB began on August 23, 2023, following his appointment by the incumbent governor, Barr. Peter Mbah. Ajah succeeded Ikeja Asogwa, who had overseen the Board until its reconstitution and the subsequent approval of its political heads by Governor Mbah. The reshuffling has resulted in Dr. Hyginus Bankho, previously Member 2 of the Board, stepping in as the new Chairman of ENSUBEB. Additionally, Dr. Amaka S. Ngene, who served as Member 1, has been reassigned to lead the Science, Technical, and Vocational Schools Management Board (STVSMB) as its Chairman. The Board saw a comprehensive reconstitution under Governor Mbah’s administration, which included the appointment of key members such as Amaka S. Ngene as Member 1, Hyginus Bankho as Member 2, and Nwakaego M. Aja as Member 3 alongside Ajah. As the education community in Enugu State grapples with this sudden change in leadership, stakeholders are keenly awaiting further details on the rationale behind this reshuffling and its implications for the state’s educational policies and initiatives. For now, ENSUBEB staff and the wider educational community in Enugu State will look to Dr. Hyginus Bankho to steer the Board through this transitional period and continue the work of advancing basic education in the state.


BREAKING: PRO-WIKE ASSEMBLY SHUTS DOWN ALL RIVERS EXPENDITURES BY GOV FUBARA The Martin Amaewhule-led Rivers State House of Assembly has shut down all expenditures of the Rivers state governor until Governor Siminalayi Fubara presents his budget before the House. This follows a seven-day ultimatum given to the governor by the House on Monday last week to present his budget before the House. The Leader of the House Major Jack raised the motion informing the House about the expiration of the seven-day ultimatum given to the governor to present the 2024 budget before the House. After deliberation, the House voted to shut down the Rivers State Consolidated Revenue Account thus preventing Governor Fubara’s administration from spending any money on behalf of the state.


TENSION IN RIVERS AS PRO-WIKE LAWMAKERS’ DEADLINE TO FUBARA EXPIRES TODAY There is growing tension in Rivers State as the ultimatum issued to Governor Siminalayi Fubara by the pro-Nyesom Wike lawmakers led by Martins Amaewhule expires today. The Martin Amaewhule-led House of Assembly had issued a 7-day ultimatum to Governor Fubara to resubmit the 2024 budget of the state. As the deadline lapses, there is concerns about the potential actions from the camps of FCT Minister, Wike, and his political rival, Governor Fubara who have been laying claims to the Rivers Assembly and issuing conflicing resolutions. The ultimatum, issued on July 8, followed a motion by Dumle Maol, Chairman of the House Committee on Judiciary and Deputy Speaker of the Pro-Nyesom Wike Assembly. Maol urged the House to instruct the Governor to present the budget again, referencing a recent court ruling that confirmed their membership and validated Amaewhule’s leadership. Re-submitting the budget was a crucial part of the presidential peace pact aimed at resolving the political crisis in the state. However, Governor Fubara had already submitted the ₦800bn budget to the Assembly led by Edison Ehie, which was subsequently passed and signed into law. The current Assembly faction loyal to the Governor is now led by Victor Oko-Jumbo. The demand for re-submitting the 2024 budget seems impractical, as Governor Fubara recently announced his administration was preparing the 2025 budget. Meanwhile, Chijioke Ihunwo, a pro-Fubara politician, dismissed the 7-day ultimatum as laughable and urged Amaewhule to accept his status as a former assembly member.Ihunwo was appointed by the governor as the Caretaker Committee Chairman of Obio/Akpor Local Government Area.