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Julius Berger Work Remains Strongest, Reputable Engineering Integrity Benchmark in Nigeria’s Construction Industry- Gov. Wike



…As Rivers Government Refutes Report of Bridge Collapse

The Rivers State Governor, His Excellency, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, CON, DSSR, POS (Africa), has once again described the technical engineering capabilities and competence of the country’s construction sector leader, Julius Berger Plc, as “…the strongest and most reputable engineering integrity benchmark” in Nigeria.

Governor Wike made the remarks during the commissioning of several high grade infrastructural development projects ably and successfully delivered as contracted and scheduled by the company in Port Harcourt last week.

It was multiple celebrations in the Rivers State capital last week as the newly constructed and commissioned projects included a flyover, a dualized road, a new House of Assembly Quarters, and another road dualization flag off.

The weeklong ceremonies commenced when the Governor of Lagos State, His Excellency, Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu arrived Port Harcourt as Special Guest of Honour to commission the newly completed Orochiri-Worokwu flyover bridge.

The Lagos State Governor congratulated the Rivers State Government and commended the dependable contractor for the good and durable quality of infrastructures being delivered in Rivers State for commissioning for the beneficial use of the people.
Julius Berger’s regional manager, Engr. Juergen Fischer who represented the company’s managing director at the events, on behalf of the executive management and the board, expressed the company’s appreciation to the government and people of Rivers state for the confidence reposed in Julius Berger as the contractor to deliver the key infrastructural projects.

Fischer said the Orochiri-Worokwu flyover was the 7th in the series of successfully constructed flyovers by Julius Berger for the Rivers State Government.

According to Fischer, with the commissioning of the Orochiri/Worokwu Flyover and all its adjoining service roads, turns and roundabouts, , the project closes the last gaps on the strategic Aba expressway within the Rivers State capital, Port Harcourt, freeing it of every travel obstruction. Fischer also proudly recalled Julius Berger’s landmark construction and delivery of the Rebisi, Rumuola, Oro-abali as well as the new GRA flyovers, promising successful deliveries of other ongoing projects being handled by the company for the Rivers State Government.

Another major infrastructural project, the Ogbunabli/Eastern Byepass also constructed by Julius Berger Plc, was also commissioned by the Rivers State Government during the ceremonies.

The Special Guest of Honour for the ceremony was the former Governor of Sokoto State, Senator Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko. He congratulated Governor Wike and the Rivers people for the superb quality of the dualized road and commended Julius Berger for a job well executed.

The self-consisting Rivers State House of Assembly quarters also built by Julius Berger was also commissioned by the Special Guest of Honour, the Rt. Hon. Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila during the serial project commissioning events in Port Harcourt.

For the flag of a new project to be constructed by the ever-reliable Julius Berger for the Rivers State Government, the dualization of the Azikiwe/Iloabuchi road in Port Harcourt, the former Governor of Ondo State, H.E. Dr. Olusegun Mimiko was in Port Harcourt as Special Guest of Honour. At this event, Gov. Wike said that “Julius Berger has continued to prove to us that it can take on any construction and engineering job; they deliver to specification and on time. No delay, no story.”

It would be recalled that earlier in the year, during the commissioning of the Rumuola and GRA flyovers which were also built by Julius Berger in Port Harcourt, Nyesom Wike, a clearly satisfied Executive Governor of Rivers State, had emphatically stated that, “JBN’s work is enviable benchmark for engineering competence, strong technical capacity and unwavering commitment to delivering excellent and lasting quality”.

The Governor further said, “I therefore congratulate Julius Berger for another clear proof of your ability to deliver good jobs, and on schedule….Well done Julius Berger.”

Speaking Engr. Fischer expressed Julius Berger’s appreciation to both the host communities and the JBN project team for the peaceful cooperation that birthed successful execution of the projects.

All through the multiple projects commissioning and flag off events, traditional rulers and leaders of thought, youth and women organizations in Rivers State and from across the country including former and serving Governors, ministers, Senators and members of the National Assembly among others were present.

It would be recalled that just before the ceremonies, the Rivers State Government released a Press Statement to strongly refute a false and unduly sensationalized report that a flyover under construction in Port Harcourt had collapsed.

In the Press Statement released by the Office of the Hon. Commissioner for Works, the Rivers State Government called it false alarm “an erroneous narrative being shared by mischief-makers with the sole aim of causing unnecessary panic amongst unsuspecting members of the public.”

The Rivers State Government urged the public to disregard the false alarm in its entirety, and assured the general public that the structural integrity of the flyover being constructed by the reputable engineering construction leader, Julius Berger Plc, remains strong.

The Rivers State Government explained that there was only a slight accidental shift of a beam by an excavator driver working on site to remove a broken down vehicle. The Government Press statement also stated that no injury whatsoever was recorded during the incident.

Enquiries by press correspondents at the Ministry of Works in Port Harcourt revealed that routine work have since commenced at the project site, where the shifted beam has been replaced.


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EDSG Trains Batch- 9 Vigilantes, Hunters.



….. As Gov Obaseki Signs Edo Security Corps Bill into law

By Sim Omo- Benin City

As part of efforts to combat crimes, criminalities, cultism and other social vices bedeviling the state, the governor Obaseki led administration has commenced training of batch Nine hunters and operatives of Vigilantes, bringing a total of over ten thousand Vigilantes and hunters so far trained by the state to tighten security in every nook and cranny

Similarly Governor Godwin Obaseki has signed the State security Corps Bill into law

Speaking at the commencement of the batch- nine training exercise at the Police Training School in Ogida, the State Co-ordinator of the Edo security and Vigilantes network , Col. Kole Omomia( Rtd) commended Governor Obaseki and the state government for prioritizing security in the state and its continuous commitment to providing the necessary logistics for the state’s security apparatus to function

He noted that the training of the corps operatives which included the hunters, as in the instance of the batch- 9 who are currently here today, are concerted effort and determination of the state government to put her citizens at the fore front to enjoy peace, tranquility and have an enabling environment that would promote growth, development and investments.

Col. Omomia reiterated that the trainees would undergo series of exercises such as medical fitness, bio-data, teekwando, Judo, Drills, Parades and mental fitness and other activities ancillary to the job

According to the State Cord, the training would cut across the three senatorial districts in the state , with about One thousand, three hundred,(1300) Vigilantes and hunters expected to be trained in Batch- 9

He, however,urged the trainees to key into the program with keen interest and participate fully.

Recall that only recently, the state governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, singed the Bill establishing the State security Corps, formerly known as the Edo State Security Vigilante Network,ESSVN, into law

By the establishing Act, the Corps is now a statutory body recognised by law and would perform its roles as provided by the Act

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Prof Mike Ozekhome, SAN,CON, OFR

The supreme court judgement on

July 11, 2024, directing the Federal Government to pay allocations due to Local Government Areas directly to their account thereby abolishing the old practices of State-Local Government Joint Account,is timely and courageous.

What the judgement has done is more like interpreting section 162 of the Constitution, which provides for a joint State-Local Government Account. In which case, money is normally paid to state governors’ accounts and then for them to disburse to the local governments for them to share. But what has been happening is that, as I noted in 2020,over three years ago, the state governors, have been behaving like ”bandits”, waylaing local governments funds along the way and thus impoverishing them leaving them with nothing to work, just a little for salary. And nothing to actually work for the people whom they represent.
I agree totally with the judgement of the supreme court to grant full financial autonomy so that money is released and paid directly to the 774 local government councils which constitute the third-tier of government,to develop their places because the LGAs are grassrooted and nearest to the people. Rather than allow overbearing state governors throw their weight around and muzzle the local governments and seize their purse,they will now allow LGs breath some air of freedom.

If you take a look at our situation, Nigeria is operating a very lopsided federation,more like a unitary system of government. Where the federal government is supposed to be a small government,it is controlling 67 items on the exclusive legislative list. That is why the federal government gets the lion share of the federation account , the lion share of the money that comes to the federation account to the tune of 52.68%. The states get 26.72% while the entire 774 local government councils in Nigeria get just 20.60% of the monthly allocation by the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission, RLASMC.

The question is, what is the federal government doing with almost 53% of the national income? That is because it is a government that is behemoth.That is elephantine. A government that intrudes and intervenes in areas that should not concern it at all. What is the federal government’s business with licensing cars and trucks for states? What is its business with the Marriage Act, dealing with how people marry and wed in Nigeria and how they live together as husband and wife and separate or divorce? What is the federal government’s business with unity schools? A whole FG operating secondary schools? What is their business? Why is the FG not allowing states generate their own power, operate their own railway stations, if they have the capacity? Why should the federal government not allow states have their own police force? Even for the local governments to have their own police force as we have in the United States and other advanced countries of the world where even tertiary institutions have their own police?

The truth is that the federal government is overbloated and overpampered. That is why it is using too much money and make the centre become too attractive,eating deep into funds that ought to be meant for the states and local government areas. The states take not only that which belongs to the states, but also waylays at source that which is meant for the local government areas. No Nation grows that way.

So, I see this judgment as epochal,having

far-reaching effect because money will now be made available directly to the local government areas who will no longer be subservient, like fawning slaves to state governors. In fact, the judgement even went further to say that no state government has the power henceforth to dissolve local government areas. This is because we have been seeing cases where inspite of the provisions of section 7 of the 1999 constitution that give autonomy to local government areas, states normally go ahead and dissolve local government areas ND appoint caretaker committees for them.This is whimsical and capricious.The Supreme Court has said this can no longer go on and that henceforth, no state government should ever be able to dissolve any local government area in Nigeria for any reason whatsoever and howsoever.

The judgement is salutary, timely and regenerative. It should be upheld by all governments and people in Nigeria for better democratic dividends.I see this as victory for our wobbling democracy, even if we are far removed from true fiscal federalism where the federating units control and utilize their God-given resources while paying royalty or tax to the central government. This case is one big plus for tested court room gladiator, Prince Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, the Attorney General of the Federation, who initiated the case at the apex court, invoking its original jurisdiction.Surely,to jaw-jaw is better than to war-war. God bless Nigeria.

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Ex+Abia gov, Senator Kalu backs part-time legislature




Chairman, Senate Committee on Privatisation, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu has backed calls for part-time legislature at both federal and state levels.

Senator Kalu (APC Abia North) said this would help the nation cut costs and enhance the citizenry’s trust in the polity.

The former Abia governor said this in an interview published on his verified Facebook page over the weekend.

On calls for part-time legislature, Senator Kalu said, “I think it will be a very good idea if my colleagues and other members of the Houses of Assembly will agree that we can sit for three months and do constitutional amendment first.

“So we can sit four times a year and if there’s any emergency, there will be emergency sitting. We can come to do a presidential bid on that basis and go back instead of sitting on a full-time basis.

“Not only the Senate and the House of Representatives, but all the legislative houses in Nigeria will be part-time.”

Senator Kalu maintained that this would be part of austerity measures to reduce cost of governance, arguing that regional government is another viable alternative.

“If we’re going for regional government, it also means that the ministers, the legislators, will be the same. I’ve been tinkering with the idea of how we can save money to run Nigeria because the country needs money.

“I will encourage the President, the National Assembly to make these kind of laws. This will help him, and this will help the system, and this will help everybody,” he said.

The ex-governor explained that contrary to misconceptions among Nigerians, senators are not paid enough.
“But I want Nigerians and my colleagues to do a quick constitutional amendment so we can go and be a part-time sitting Senate and part-time sitting House of Representatives, and other 36 state houses of assembly in Nigeria.

“That will bring trust and bring relief to the Nigerian people,” the ex-governor said.

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