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The United Nations World Food Program (WFP) in Liberia, Authorities of the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) and the Liberia Institute of Statistics and Geo-Information Services (LISGIS) have organized a two day Price monitoring training programme for technicians.
The training which was held at Gbarnga, Bong County for 30 technicians was aimed at enhancing price monitoring mainly for basic food commodities in Liberia.
The training was also aimed at capturing and facilitating experience-sharing and equipping MoA, and LISGIS field-level staff engaged in collection, analysis and reporting of market data to better communicate, while also ensuring that there is an improvement in the contents of the monthly market monitoring bulletins, and strengthen partnerships and networks.
WFP Liberia's Vulnerability Analysis and Mapping Officer, Mr. Emmanuel Anderson commended the Liberian government for its enduring partnership with the WFP on price monitoring activities.
''WFP has a global mandate to support some of the most vulnerable members of society, with different social protection interventions," Mr. Anderson stated.
He also said that Liberia was increasingly vulnerable to high food price shocks as has been witnessed since 2008, whilke stressing that the government has been concerned about the rise in food prices, and as such, it has been undertaking regular joint government-WFP market monitoring exercises for which an MoU was signed between the Liberian government (MoA, LISGIS) and WFP.
The Zimbabwe Government has for the past four months withheld the salaries of three leaders of the Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ), who led protests against the Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube's austerity policies in January.
The union leaders and others who were arrested in Macheke and charged with criminal nuisance, appeared in court in Marondera before their case was referred to Harare.
Before they could appear in court they were again arrested in Ruwa just 40km outside the capital, however the court ordered their release.
President of the Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ), secretary general Robson Chere and Mashonaland West chairperson Munyaradzi Ndawana, have however, called on workers not to be deterred by the latest action of government.
"This so-called new dispensation is using every trick in the book to curtail trade unionism in Zimbabwe, the freezing of salaries is a desperate attempt to silence our membership. We will not be cowed into submission by such cowardly acts on an anti-worker establishment, we demand salaries in US dollars or market equivalent. Austerity measures are killing the working class and benefiting the ruling elite, we call upon the working class to rise and crush austerity.
"We are surviving on handouts from well-wishers. It's a difficult situation and cannot even afford paying school fees for our children'' they said.
While other unions seem to have adopted a different tact choosing to negotiate with government, Masaraure and his group have taken the authorities head on.
The Oyo State Fire Service has insisted that even though it has all the requirements to perform its primary functions, it is looking up to the incoming administration for more assistance.
The position of the the Service was made know by its Deputy Director, Mr. Moshood Adewuyi in a chat with People.
''We are always ready in terms of safety. Everyone grows old, so does equipment, we are looking forward to the new administration to take care of our needs. We carry out routine inspection annually. My people are at First Bank premises. The objective is to assess, recommend and implement. We also visit industrial premises, petrol stations, Media houses and several others because their compliance might be 60 per cent. We have been experiencing a reduction in fire incidents, Mr. Adewuyi noted.
He advised members of the public to always be safety conscious saying, ''Keep matches out of reach of children. Making use of handsets in petrol stations should be discourage. We are friends with the public, we are here to save lives and property. We expect maximum cooperation whenever there are incidents, not fighting''.
The All Workers Convergence(AWC) has advised President Muhammadu Buhari to appoint a qualified person with vast experience in labour matters as Minister of Labor.
The AWC gave this advice through its National Coordinator, Comrade Andrew Emelieze.
‘’What is expected from authentic leadership is to put the right persons in the right positions. People who are professionals in their particular fields, who possess not just academic qualifications but also practical experiences.’’
‘’Our expectation is that President Muhammadu Buhari will search for someone who is knowledgeable in the field of industrial relations and other related courses. President Buhari should not resort to political patronage as far as the Ministry of Labor is concerned. The Ministry of Labor should not be an all comers affair as we have seen in the outgoing dispensation, where a Medical Doctor is saddled with the responsibility of industrial relations.’’
‘’Though while giving this advice we know that the President might have his own personal views and approach to such issues, which of course had led to the delay in the appointment of Ministers in this dispensation and we have seen the results. Therefore if the President does not take to popular advice, one might not expect anything extraordinary in terms of performance from his new Ministers. After all, despite all the noticeable shortcomings and non performance of the Ministers, President Buhari was unable to change his cabinet for four years’’, Comrade Emelieze concluded
According to the Minister for Industry and Trade Joseph Kakunda, who made this known recently, the government would also take over 33 others this May, if they failed to submit their investment reports.
The Minister expressed worry over the distress situation of 68 enterprises, amone which some have already closed shop.
Some time in March, the Deputy Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, Constantine Kanyasu , warned that the government would take over some privatized hotels and lodges over alleged mismanagement and poor handling of tourists and visitors.
"The ownership of the hotels will be shifted to other investors who are ready to manage them in the interest of promoting tourism," Kanyasu stated.
20 years ago, the government privatized 176 public firms under the World Bank-funded Presidential Parastatal Sector Reform Commission (PSRC).
The Judiciary in Ethiopia is set to assert its independence as it moves to negotiate its annual budget with the Legislature.
According to the country's first female Chief Justice, Justice Meaza Ashenafi, the Judiciary has submitted its budget request to the Parliament.
''For the first time last week, we submitted our budget request directly to parliament. In the constitution, there is a provision that says the judiciary will directly request and negotiate its budget from parliament, but this never happened. It would go through the executive. So we're changing that trend and this year for the first time we will negotiate with parliament and that, I feel, will give us some independence. We will negotiate for better resources'', Justice Ashenafi stated.
On the issue of corruption in the Judiciary, the Chief Justice said ''part of the problem is lack of communication and understanding of how the judiciary functions. I'm not saying we don't have problems of integrity - we do have them - but most of the time it is perception. Everyone who walks into my office with some sort of complaint says the judge has some sort of relationship with the opponent. This is not always true. Maybe it is true 5% or 10% of the time, I don't know, but there is that perception. We need to build trust, help people understand that the law functions in a very technical way. But we do also need to work on addressing questions of integrity in our judicial system''.
A 300 level law undergraduate has become the first female chairperson of the University of Nairobi Students Association.
Ms Ann Mwangi emerged after polling 24 votes to beat her challengers, Samuel Ayoma whoe scored eight votes Ertiman Oile scored 4 votes .
The process was facilitated through the electoral college and was presided over by Prof. Mohamed Jamaa.
Ms Mwangi will take over from Mr Antony Manyara who has been the chairman of the association since 2018.The election is the second after the signing into law of the Universities Amendment Act in 2016 by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
The Act states that the students association is to be governed by a student council comprising a chairperson and a vice chairperson who must be of the opposite gender, a treasurer, a secretary-general, and three other members to represent special interests of students.
Those elected in leadership positions must reflect national diversity and the council cannot have more than two-thirds of its members being of the same gender.
Alleged attempts by government security forces to break the ranks of the protesters were resisted by soldiers who protected the protesters.
Attacks by students militias, anti-riot policemen and government security forces have not deterred the protesters.
Interestingly, Sudanese traders in Juba have declared that they stand in solidarity with their brothers and sisters back home.
"I support with all my power the change in Sudan because change must be now, at this time on these days. (We) must take al-Bashir out," Isim Assam Abdallah, a trader disclosed
"We want justice and freedom. The government of Sudan is the government of destruction. The government has killed innocent people and has killed many in Darfur since 2004," another trader Abdallah Haman said.
This call was made by the Deputy Director of the Department, Mr. Moshood Adewuyi in a chat with People.
''The department needs prompt attention in terms of equipment that can cope with the present day challenges. We need sophisticated equipment and also we have shortage of outlets which cannot cope with the increasing population. Our personnel also need good welfare package. It is of note that firemen who were recruited sometime ago ran away due to poor renumeration'', Mr. Adewuyi stated.
On the fire incident that occurred at the UMC area of the state capital, Ibadan, recently, the Deputy Director disclosed that communication lag and faulty vehicle hampered the response of the department.
''Although the department's dedicated lines for distress calls are in the public domain, residents of the area did not call, when they went to the Molete office of the department, the fire fighting vehicle with water was faulty. The Molete office has a standard funcitional bore hole, so lack of water was out of it. However, we sent another vehicle from the headquarters to put out the fire'', he concluded.
Not long ago, a building collapsed along Molete/Idi-Arere road in the state capital, this has brought to the fore, the fact that several buildings got quesationable approvals from government for reconstrution. And nothing has been done to address the lapses in governance.
However, the state government, recently, distributed 33 excavators to the 33 Local Governments in the state.
The Judicial Service Commssion(JSC) in Zimbabwe has dismissed allegations that the Judiciary has been compromised.
The Commission made this known through a statement issued by its Acting Secretary, Mr. Walter Chikwana.
"The allegations that the Judiciary is acting under capture of an external force remain unfounded, baseless and unsubstantiated.
"In the meeting held on 22 January 2019, the Chief Justice gave the Law Society of Zimbabwe (LSZ) his assurance that no directive or instruction was given by himself or the JSC to magistrates to dispose of cases before them in a particular manner. He maintains this position,"Mr. Chikwana stated.
The Acting Secretary insisted that the Judcial Officers werw abobe board in the discharge of their duties, saying ''The accusation that magistrates countrywide were acting under some form of directive or instructions to influence their decisions is extremely consequential.The Judiciary cannot take it lightly. All courts in the country and all judicial agents within those courts, must never be interfered with in the dispensation of justice. The Constitution demands it''.
"The Chief Justice reminds all and sundry that all judicial officers are required by Section 164(1) of the Constitution to dispense justice expeditiously.
"In doing so, all due process must be followed and rights of accused persons respected," reads the statement.
"The Zimbabwean courts are not, by undertaking expeditious trials, reinventing the wheel. Such trials are common phenomenon across the world in cases involving violence.
"For instance, in England after the 2011 riots, more than 3 000 people were arrested with 1 500 being arraigned before the courts.
"Their trials were fast-tracked. Courts were in session 24 hours until the cases were completed.
"Even juveniles caught up in the riots underwent trial.
"The Chief Justice maintains his position that where suspects are arrested and brought to court, they are entitled to a speedy trial.
"Fast-track trials must, in fact, be the norm, and not a curious exception." Mr. Chikwana concluded.
President Peter Mutharika of Malawi has condemned all forms of violent acts against women.
According to the President who made his position known during a tour of some constituencies in Lilongwe said ''I would like to take this opportunity to condemn various acts of violence against women. It is high time everyone understood that women deserve respect and protection against violence.'''
"As such, everyone should strive to put to an end all forms of gender based violence. Our existence depends on them and it is unfortunate to see some people abusing women. Whether it is your girlfriend, your wife or your mother; this must stop,"
The Resident Electoral Commissioner(REC) in Oyo state, Mr. Mutiu Agboke h has assured the electorate that the Commission would not act in anyway that would compromise the Permanent Voters Cards(PVC) still in its custody.
Mr. Agboke gave this assurance on Tuesday during a Media Briefing at the Commission's office in Ibadan, Nigeria.
''There is no pressure that would make me to compromise your results, there is no pressure that would make me compromise your Permanent Voters Cards. Nobody has put gun in my ears, I am not going to sell your PVCs. Nothing will happen to your PVCs. We are going to harmonize the PVCs and those not collected would be put in the custody of the Central Bank of Nigeria'', he stated.
The Resident Electoral Commissioner also dislosed that the commission was taking the issue of security before, during and after the elections seriously, saying'' the commission is leaving no stone unturned in the area of security of both men and electoral materials on the day of election''.
''That is why the Inter Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security(ICCES), chaired by the Commissioner of Police and co-Chaired by me has been meeting regularly to identify grey areas and flashpoints in the state in collaboration with respective Electoral officers. Security is to be beefed up at both state and local government offices of INEC, inorder to forestall any security threats during election periods'', Mr. Agoke concluded.
The Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC)
The All Workers Convergence(ACW) has declared that workers would no longer respect the Federal Government even if it eventually approves the new national minimum wage.
The AWC made this disclosure through its National Coordinator, Comrade Andrew Emelieze in a chat with Federationews2day.
''Even if the Federal Government eventually approves a new national minimum wage today, government has lost the respect of Nigerian workers. It is a big shame that up till this moment government has not been able to pay the Nigerian workers what is due to them, rather our so called government has been systematically, delaying the process''.
''From one episode of drama to another episode, all has been equal to zero and the Nigerian workers are the ones paying the price. Quite unfortunate, government cannot redeem its image, workers' impression of government, is that of a callous monster, who cares less about fairness and justice, but rather a government that believes that workers must suffer before they get what rightly belongs to them''.
''In conclusion, our government is shooting itself in the leg, with the unfolding drama of the new national minimum wage. Government has been able to make the Nigerian workers know who their real enemy is and this has made workers to increase their level of consciousness'', Comrade Emelieze asserted.
The Committee to Protect Journalists(CPJ) has called on the Government of Cameroon to immediately release two journalists arrested by security agents while covering an event organized by the opposition.
According to CPJ "Théodore Tchopa and David Eyengue Nzima are journalists who were arrested for simply covering a newsworthy event, and must be freed immediately without condition. Cameroonian authorities should stop trying to intimidate and censor journalists who have a duty to keep citizens informed about the political and economic situation."
''CPJ's calls and text messages to the offices of Cameroon's deputy justice minister, Jean De Dieu Momo, and the newly appointed communications minister, René Sadi, went unanswered. The police's national communications chief, Joyce Ndjem, said she does not give comment over the phone and CPJ should come to her office''.
''Cameroon was the third worst jailer of journalists in Africa, after Egypt and Eritrea respectively, with at least seven journalists behind bars for their work as of December 1, 2018, according to CPJ's annual prison census'', CPJ stated.
The Police in Kenya has appointed six women as County Police Commanders.The names of the women were announced on Monday by the Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet at a security meeting at Flamingo Hotel in Mombasa.
Dr. Interior CabiThe six female county police commanders are Naomi Ichami (Bomet), Leah Ngutu (Kirinyaga), Catherine Mugwe (Nyamira), Lydia Ligami (Kitui), Beatrice Gachago (Kajiado) and Esther Seroney (Homa Bay)In his remarks at the meeting, Inspector General of Police said "We are going to have 46 commanders. We don't have a county commander for Nairobi because the regional commander is the county commander. That has been the tradition over the years".
Rivers state Governor, Mr. Nyesome Wike has declared that Nigerians have began to lose confidence in public officers and public institutions.
Mr. Wike who made this declaration when the new Commissioner of Police in the State,Mr Usman Belel, paid him a courtesy call, appealed to the police to improve on their performance .
“People are beginning to lose confidence in public institutions in the country. I believe that as the new police commissioner, you will work for the confidence in the police to return”.
“Your predecessor allowed himself to be used by thugs to invade the courts in Rivers State. The Chief Justice of Nigeria called for the investigation and prosecution of those that invaded the courts, but Zaki Ahmed refused.
“Rivers State will not forget that it was Zaki Ahmed’s time that thugs invaded the Rivers State High Court, which is located near the police headquarters. He didn’t bring anybody to boo
President Edgar Lungu of Zamibia has blamed the increasing rate of child marriages to the poverty level and practices of leaders in the rural areas.
President Lungu made this disclosure during an interaction with some Traditional Chiefs at the State House.
"The challenge we still have is poverty levels especially in rural areas, some traditional leaders still tend to think that marrying off
girls early will bring money in the family but they are forgetting that they are actually denying them chances of bettering their lives
after withdrawing them from school," the President stated.
In their reaction the Traditional Chiefs urged President Lungu to Lobby the African Union to initiate policies that would bring an end toEarly Child Marriages and Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).
The four chiefs led by Chief Chamuka VI , include Chief Chikwanda, Chief Madzimawe and Chieftainess Muweza ahev been to and recently Malawi and Nigeria on consultative and dialogue meetings.
" We recommend that the President who is also the African Union (AU) Chairperson On Ending Child Marriages in Africa should lobby the AU
and partners to scale up resources in support of the implementation of African Traditional Leaders' action plan to address child marriages and gender equality at all levels, the Chiefs stated at a briefing in the State House, they said.
The All workers Convergence(AWC) has warned of the imminent withdrawal of the solidarity of Nigerian workers for their labour leaders if a new national minimum wage is not achieved by end of December 2018.This warning was given by the AWC, through its National Coordinator, Comrade Andrew Emelieze in a chat with People.''Our labour leaders must redeem their image by ensuring that before the end of December, 2018, everything about a reasonable living wage is achieved, else the leaders would seize to enjoy the solidarity of the Nigerian workers. The Nigerian labour movement has missed the target, in the past three and half years, they have been unable to achieve a new national minimum wage for Nigerian workers, despite been part of the Tripartite committee.''''The involvement of labour in that committee was a colossal waste of time as nothing tangible has come out of it. What is painful now, is that the Nigeria Labour Congress(NLC) the Trade Union Congress(TUC) and the United Labour Congress(ULC) have deliberately refused to hit the nail on the head, instead they are romanticizing the situation, begging the question at all times, thereby leaving workers to stray like sheep without shepherd''.''The feeling everywhere is that labour not achieving the new national minimum wage in the past three and half years, is tantamount to failure and since labour has failed the Nigerian workers, the Nigerian workers, of course demand an apology, over the non actualization of a new national minimum wage in the past three and half years''.''Besides, engaging government on the issue of new national minimum wage, labour leaders must also engage themselves and do self-examination, to determine if they are really and truly pursuing the interest of the Nigerian workers. Take a look at the modus operandi of the labour movement, you see a movement that has been pampering government. The conclusion is that the labour movement in Nigeria is not just weak and conservative, but also reactionary. And as a result, there is the urgent need for labour to overhaul and shed its present toga, this would go a long way in redeeming the image of labour'', Comrade Eemlieze asserted.
Police Boss Should Help us Appeal to NURTW to Stop Pulling Down Our Bill Boards-Oyo ADC Guber Candidate
The governorship candidate of the African Democratic Congress(ADC) in Oyo state, Senator Olufemi Lanlehin has called on the state Commissioner of Police to stop members of the state chapter of the National Union of Road Transport Workers(NURTW) from pulling down bill boards belonging to ADC candidates.
Senator Lanlehin made this call on Wednesday during an interaction with journalists in Ibadan, Nigeria.
''NURTW has started bringing down bill boards. We are appealing to the Commissioner of Police ,Mr. Abiodun Odunde who is a fine officer, help us appeal to them so that Oyo state would be peaceful. It is in our interest that everything works. There should be a conflict resolution mechanism in place'', he stated.