Top Nigerian Newspaper Headlines For Today, Saturday, 4th February, 2023
Good morning Nigeria, welcome to the Naija News roundup of top newspaper headlines in Nigeria for today, Saturday, 4th February 2023.
Naira Re-design: CBN, This Cash Squeeze Is Squeezing Nigerians
The biting scarcity of the new naira notes which has led to the rationing of currency notes in the country should be a grave source of worry to the monetary authorities. Nigerians are exasperated and frustrated as most ATM terminals across the country are not dispensing. The situation has become so dire that there are reports of women in labour dying due to the inability of their loved ones to make cash deposits in the hospitals. Only yesterday, placard-wielding civil society groups marched through the streets of Lagos, demanding that the redesigned Naira notes be made available. It is clearly the failure of leadership that has now brought the country to this sorry pass. Those pushing the citizenry to the wall must be wary of the social unrest which a pushback can cause, particularly in this election season.
It has become so bad that residents of border communities in Sokoto, Zamfara, Katsina, Adamawa and Kwara states have now resorted to CFA franc which is the legal tender in eight West African countries of Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo. This is happening in Nigeria even though Section 2 of the CBN Act makes it clear that the naira is the currency of payment for the domestic supply of goods and services in Nigeria. Nigerians living in these border communities switched to CFA franc following the increasing rejection of the old Naira notes coupled with their inability to access the new naira notes. Should the people then be blamed for finding a way out of a chaotic cash squeeze?
Buhari Seeks 7 Days To Decide On Naira Resigned
President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday met with governors elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The APC Governors met with President Buhari at the council chamber of the State House, Abuja to discuss the naira redesigned policy.
Naija News learnt that the Governors of the ruling party during the meeting appealed to President Buhari to allow both the old and new naira notes to co-exist to ease the suffering of Nigerians.
The Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai while addressing newsmen in the Hausa language disclosed that the governors requested the meeting.
He, however, stated that President Buhari did not decline or approve the request.
Reacting to the request of the Governors, Buhari asked the Governors to give him seven days to decide on their demands.
President Buhari in a statement released through his media aide, Garba Shehu on Friday said Buhari’s request for one week to think is the sequel to a meeting he held with members of the Progressive Governors Forum at the State House.
Buhari gave indications that he would within seven days resolve the cash issue affecting Nigerians following the policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to change some old naira notes to new notes.
El-Rufai Speaks On Osinbajo’s Position Amidst ‘Aso Rock Elements’ Working Against Tinubu
Kaduna state governor, Nasir El-Rufai, has dismissed claims that Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, is among the ‘Aso Rock elements’ working against the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu.
Naija News reports that El-Rufai had claimed a few days ago that there are some cabals within the presidency who wants the party’s flagbearer, to lose the forthcoming election, however, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed debunked the allegation.
El-Rufai in an interview on Arise TV said that the people he was referring to are northerners who failed to plant their presidential candidate as successor to President Buhari.
He insisted that Osinbajo, who also contested the APC presidential primaries was not among the ‘Aso Rock elements’ as widely reported in some news platforms.
Speaking on the Naira redesign, the governor said the decision to change the currency close to the election was inappropriate.
New Naira Policy: ‘Our Business Is Not To Make The People Suffer’ – Wike Tells Buhari
Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has added his voice to the calls for the review of the naira swap policy introduced by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
Governor Wike on Friday told President Muhammadu Buhari that the policy does not in any way fight corruption or vote buying as intended but has brought untold hardship on Nigerians.
Speaking during his address at the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) campaign rally in Okrika Local Government Area (LGA), Rivers State, Governor Wike reminded President Buhari that the business of governance does not include inflicting hardship on the people.
Naija News recalls the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in December 2022, rolled out re-designed N200, N500 and N1,000 notes and set a deadline for Nigerians to replace their old notes with the new notes.
However, the scarcity of the new notes has brought anguish and pain to Nigerians.
Amidst the development, the federal government said its intention was not to bring hardship on Nigerians but to curb vote buying, tackle corruption, counter holders of illicit funds, and fight other vices.
But Wike on Friday said the policy does not have anything to do with fighting corruption but is making the masses suffer.
NBC Slams N2 Million Fine Each On Arise News, TVC
The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has slammed a fine of N two million each on Arise News and TVC for alleged breach of national broadcasting codes.
Naija News reports that this revelation was contained in a letter addressed to both media platforms by the NBC Director General, Balarabe Ilelah, on February 3, 2023.
According to the NBC boss, both outfits are expected to pay their fines two weeks after they receive the letters or the sanction would be increased.
The commission claimed that both media outfits breached the following sections of the Code: 1.10.4; 3.1.2; 3.1.2; 3.3.1(e); 4.2.2 (g); 4.2.2 (g); 4.3.1(e); 5.3.3 (c); 5.3.3 (e); 5.3.3 (f); and 5.5.1 (b).
The agency also alleged that TV News was allowing unfair and unbalanced comments to be broadcast on its station, adding that the trend has become a thing to worry about as it has become their style.
The NBC observed that the alleged unprofessional broadcasts by TVC include the Joint media Directorate of the APC Presidential Campaign Council press briefing where Festus Keyamo said “Obasanjo and Atiku run a criminal enterprise, an empire of fraud in Abuja…” and alleged that some goons of Atiku Abubakar were planning to eliminate Michael Achimugu, a whistleblower.
TVC News was also faulted for not giving equal news coverage to other political parties in all their news.
Naija News gathered that in the letter sent to Arise News, NBC as well claimed that the platform breached the following sections of the code: 1.10.4; 3.1.2; 3.3.1(e); 5.3.3 (e); 5.3.3 (f); 5.5.1 (b); 5.5.1 (d); and 5.5.6.
IGP Orders Arrest, Prosecution Of Nigerians Selling, Abusing Naira
The Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Baba Usman Alkali has ordered his operatives to arrest and prosecute all individuals engaged in the sale or abuse of the Naira notes issued by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
Naija News reports that this was made known in a statement on Friday by the Force Public Relations Officer, CSP Muyiwa Adejobi.
He disclosed that the IGP’s directive was given to Deputy Inspector-General of Police in charge of the Force Criminal Investigations Department and the Assistant Inspector-General of Police in charge of the Force Intelligence Bureau to place officers and men of the Department and the Bureau across the nation on high alert.
According to the Police spokesperson, the order was in furtherance of the Federal Government’s policy and drives to uphold the provisions of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act, 2007, and dignify Nigeria’s currency.
Naira Redesign: APC Governors Make Demand From President Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday met with Progressive Governors Forum (PGF) in Abuja.
Naija News had earlier reported that the meeting between the governors elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the President is being held at the council chamber of the State House, Abuja.
The APC Governors during the meeting appealed to President Buhari to allow both the old and new naira notes to co-exist to ease the suffering of Nigerians.
This is coming days after the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele stated that the old notes would seize to be acceptable starting from February 10th, 2023.
The Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai on Friday disclosed that the governors made the request when they met with President Buhari in Abuja.
According to El-Rufai, President Buhari did not decline or approve the request.
El-Rufai, who spoke to some journalists in Hausa language on Friday, said that while the CBN. mopped up over N2 trillion of the old notes, it printed only N300 billion, which he said is not enough.
2023: Even If You Put A Knife In My Neck, I Will Not Change – Wike Gives Update On PDP Crisis
Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has declared that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) can’t win the 2023 presidential election without the support of the G5 Governors.
Speaking on Friday during the party’s campaign rally at Okrika Local Government Area (LGA) of the state, Wike declared that even if a knife is put to his neck, he won’t change his mind until the PDP does the right thing.
Addressing the party supporters during the PDP’s campaign rally, Wike said those thinking a cabal within the presidency would help them win have been disappointed already.
He called on the PDP national leadership to reach out to the G5 Governors because regardless of what some others might have assured them, they need the aggrieved Governors to win elections.
Naija News recalls the G5 Governors comprising Nyesom Wike (Rivers), Seyi Makinde (Oyo), Samuel Ortom (Benue), Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia), and Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu) have vowed not to support the PDP presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar except the party’s National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu resigns from his post and is replaced by a southerner.
Ex-Minister Fires Buhari For Not Endorsing Tinubu, Says APC Candidate Not Responsible For FG’s Failure
Former Minister of Communications Adebayo Shittu has slammed President Muhammadu Buhari for failing to openly endorse the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
The former Minister, who served under Buhari from 2015 to 2019, stated this while speaking on “Focus Nigeria,” a programme on the African Independent Television (AIT), on Thursday.
Speaking, Shittu stated that Tinubu, a former Lagos State governor, is not part of Buhari’s administration failure.
According to the member of the Presidential Campaign Council of APC, Buhari must take responsibility for the policies of his administration.
He said: “Tinubu is a member of the APC, but he is not part of the Buhari government.
“They are making Tinubu a victim of a policy he has no idea of. The government does not report to him, and he doesn’t give instructions to the president.
“It’s not fair to say that because Tinubu helped install people in the government, then he should take the blame for their failure.”
Biafra: DSS Source Gives Update On Nnamdi Kanu’s Health, Exposes IPOB Leader’s Plan
The detained leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, is reportedly getting good treatment in the custody of the Department of State Services (DSS).
Naija News reports that allegations had emerged claiming that the pro-Biafra agitator was being denied access to his doctors, not well fed and treated poorly, leading to the deterioration of his health.
But a source told The Nation that the reports were false and aimed to tarnish the image of the service.
According to the source, the DSS always complies with standard operating procedures in the discharge of its duties.
The DSS source said: “He has his own health condition, like everyone else who is either managing one thing or the other. As we speak, he is hale and hearty.
“He is even given the food of his choice at his request. Whatever he wants, whether pounded yam and various kinds of soup, rice, yam, vegetable soup, pepper soup, afang soup, and others. Whatever he asks for is provided for him and he is well taken care of.”