A female aspirant to the office of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nkiru Onyejeocha, has called on Femi Gbajabiamila to step down for her.
Ms Onyejeocha, a third term member from Abia State, made the appeal at the National Assembly on Tuesday while briefing journalists.
The two are of the All Progressives Congress (APC) which is expected to produce the next crop of national assembly leaders having emerged the majority party in the two chambers.
The ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) recently adopted Mr Gbajabiamila as its choice for the office at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Tuesday last week.
But the Abia lawmaker has appealed to Mr Gbajabiamila from Lagos State to ‘make due sacrifice’ by giving up his ambition to become speaker “for Nigeria to move forward.”
She urged the party to have a rethink and zone the speakership to the South-east.
She said while she respects the party’s decision, Mr Gbajabiamila should “as a leader pay the sacrifice” for Nigeria to get to the next level.
“I respect my party chairman and what the party has said it intends to do. But I am appealing to them, it is not yet late to withdraw their decision and include a woman from the two geopolitical zones left out in 2015.
“This opportunity comes only once when a leader will look at himself and say, ‘It’s not about me, it’s about Nigeria. I also believe that Nigeria needs healing and somebody has to pay the sacrifice for us to move to the next level, even if it means deciding that speakership should go to another zone.”
She said zoning the speakership to the South-east will address the “demand for equity” from the zone.
“As a woman who has distinguished herself and contributed immensely to the development of Nigeria, the APC should use the opportunity of my expression of interest in the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives to fulfil its promise to Nigerians, that it would increase women participation in the governance of the country.”
Mr Gbajabiamila, representing Surulere 1 federal constituency, was re-elected for the fifth term. He currently serves as the House Leader.
The APC leadership recently declared support for Yobe senator, Ahmed Lawan, to become the next Senate President. The party is also in support of Mr Gbajabiamila’s candidacy for Speaker.
The adoption of Mr Lawan was condemned by some APC lawmakers including Borno senator, Ali Ndume, who also seeks to be the Senate president.
Mr Ndume, from Borno State, has vowed to continue with his ambition, saying he enjoys the support of many elected APC senators.
The APC enjoys a clear majority in the incoming House of Representatives, winning over 200 of the 360 seats
The APC is expected to produce the Speaker, but as it happened in 2015, a different candidate other than that endorsed by the party leadership may contest the election.
While both Messrs Lawan and Gbajabiamila were endorsed by the party for the positions in 2015, Bukola Saraki and Yakubu Dogara emerged as the Senate President and Speaker of the House respectively.
The two winners later defected from the APC to the PDP.
So far, there are at least seven members that have indicated interest in the position of Speaker.
Mr Gbajabiamila is however considered the leading candidate.
FirstBank Wins Best Mobile Banking App, Fastest Growing Retail Bank Awards
FirstBank of Nigeria Limited has been named 2019 “Best Mobile Banking App” and “Fastest Growing Retail Bank” winner by Global Business Outlook. The Global Business Outlook Award recognises and rewards excellence in business in companies across the world, both in the public and private sectors. The award rewards innovation, creativity and the drive to create value.
FirstBank earned the Fastest Growing Retail Bank recognition because of its leading role in promoting financial inclusion in the country, a drive which has resulted in its 44,000 Agent Banking network designed to complement the provision of bespoke financial services at its over 750 branches nationwide.
It also won the Best Mobile Banking App award thanks to its Firstmobile banking app’s capability at performing a wide range of financial transactions in a safe, adaptable, futuristic and efficient manner. The user friendly app is widely renowned for its ease of navigation and state of the art security features to mitigate risk against fraud.
In the course of 2019, FirstBank bagged numerous awards across various areas of its business operations. The awards comprise Women Empowerment Category – Sustainable Banking Awards by CBN Bankers Committee, Best Private Bank in Nigeria 2019 by Global Finance Magazine and World Finance Magazine respectively; Best Process Automation Initiative, Application or Programme by Asian Banker International Excellence in Retail Financial Services; Best Banking Brand Nigeria 2019 by Global Brands Magazine; Best Retail Bank in Nigeria by Global Banking and Finance Review and Asian Banker International Excellence in Retail Financial Services Awards respectively; Cashless Driver: Highest Volume in Bill Payments and Highest Transaction Volume in Real-Time Payments by CBN Electronic Payments Incentive Scheme (EPIS) – Efficiency Awards; Long Service Corporate Award by Nigerian Economic Summit Group; Best Financial Inclusion Program – Nigeria 2019 and Bank of The Year – Nigeria 2019 by International Investor, amongst many others.
Speaking on the awards, Folake Ani-Mumuney, the Bank’s Group Head, Marketing & Corporate Communications said, ”We appreciate these awards and the recognition by the respective awarding bodies. The awards are dedicated to all our customers across the globe as their continued patronage of our services is appreciated. We remain steadfast and would not rest on our laurels at rendering bespoke financial services tailored to meet the financial needs of our valued customers, irrespective of where they may be.”
UK-Based Techpreneur, Popoola, Makes Case for Siting of Proposed Federal College of Education in Gbongan
Popoola spoke in the light of the Federal Government’s decision to establish six new federal colleges of education in each of the six geo-political areas in the country to compliment the 22 already existing ones. This the government said is intended to increase the number of quality teachers in the country.
According to the public relations officer of National Commission for Colleges of Education, Mr Ameh Isaac, the newly approved institutions would be situated in Bauchi, Benue, Ebonyi, Osun, Sokoto, and Edo states, where there were no presence of Federal Colleges of Education.
During a press conference in Gbongan City Hall on January 15, 2020, the paramount ruler of Gbongan kingdom,
Nigeria Needs 300,000 Medical Doctors to Meet WHO Recommendation, Says NUC
The National Universities Commission says Nigeria needs about 300,000 medical doctors to meet the doctor-patient ratio of 1:600 recommended by the World Health Organisation.
The Executive Secretary, NUC, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, said this during the maiden matriculation of the Bayelsa Medical University held on the university campus, Amarata, Yenagoa, on Wednesday.
About 208 pioneer students took the matriculation oath on the occasion.
The BMU, which started on January 31, 2018, received the NUC accreditation five months’ after.
Rasheed said the current “doctor-patient ratio in the country stands at 1: 3,500,” stressing that this was among the several challenges bedeviling the nation’s health sector.
According to him, the nation’s medical schools produce about 3,000 doctors yearly and this is not enough to achieve the WHO standards to deliver on health care services.
The NUC boss, who was represented by the Director, Protocol and Special Duties, Mr Chris Maiyaki, said, “With less than 40,000 registered medical doctors practising in Nigeria, the doctor-patient ratio in the country is about 1:3,500.
“What this means is that we need about 300,000 doctors to meet the World Health Organisation’s recommended doctor-patient ratio of 1:600.
“It is also common knowledge that the Nigerian health care sector continues to face myriad of challenges, chief among which is the brain-drain syndrome occasioned by an absence of the enabling environment for medical practitioners to thrive.”
Rasheed further noted that medical tourism embarked upon by patients seeking “robust health care systems of other countries” had also significantly affected the Nigeria’s health care system.
He said there was an urgent need for huge investment in health education and health care services by all stakeholders to mitigate the acute shortage of manpower and services in the sector.
In his address, the pioneer Vice-Chancellor of BMU, Prof. Ebitimitula Etebu, said the institution was equipped with state-of-the-art facilities to aid teaching, learning and research.
Also speaking, the Pro-Chancellor, BMU and a former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Port Harcourt, Emeritus Professor Nimi Briggs, described the medical university as “a dream come true in our section of the country.”
He commended Governor Seriake Dickson for conceiving the idea of a specialised medical school and charged the students to focus on their studies as the institution had given them hope of an assured future.
Dickson, in his remarks, said the establishment of the BMU was “a strategic decision to maximize the state’s investment in education and development.”
The outgoing governor called on the incoming government to support the university to achieve the objectives for which it was established.