TOP STORIES: Federal Government workers celebrate Christmas without salaries.

Federal civil servants across the country are grumbling over the delay in payment of their December 2023 salaries. They said it was sad they marked Christmas yesterday without money, a development that affected their families, especially those who had no savings. Many of those who spoke to our correspondent lamented that they did not celebrate Christmas in line with tradition of merriments, heavy cooking, and visitations.

Findings revealed that all the workers in federal ministries, some in the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation (OHoCSF), and others in Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF) said the development was unexpected. It was learnt that the situation was the same with federal universities, polytechnics, colleges of education and associated federal institutions all over the country.

Sources said only workers in revenue generating agencies like NNPC, NPA, NIMASA, NCC, CBN, FIRS, among many others got their salaries for December. In separate interviews with Daily Trust, the distraught workers lamented the inability of the government to pay their salaries, especially in the Christmas celebration season.

“Despite the general misgivings about previous administrations, I cannot remember anytime our December salaries were delayed,” one of the workers said.

“With the way things are ‘tough’ in the country, we don’t even have savings. We were excited when they announced a 50 per cent discount on transportation, but sadly despite the support many people could not travel ahead of Christmas.

“How can we travel and enjoy the so called 50 per cent transport reduction, when we don’t have monies in our pockets?” another civil servant asked. Others who spoke to Daily Trust said that the delay would have a negative impact on their celebration and even in January when the schools would have resumed.

A lecturer at the University of Abuja said he was not happy. “How can you be happy when you cannot make your family happy at this auspicious occasion?” she asked.

I cannot really comprehend where the problem lies, the government should come out and explain the real problem. The minimum expectation of a civil servant is to have his salary paid even if it is nothing to write home about,” he said. “Some years back, apart from salary, some categories of workers get 13th Month bonus, others get all kinds of interventions to support them at the end of the year and encourage them to do better next year. May we witness those moments again,” he said.
Another lecturer said failure to pay salaries by this administration is an indictment.

“There is no excuse whatsoever, to say the truth. They removed the subsidy, they said they have been saving monies since June. This is over six months but we rarely get our salaries before the end of the month.

“I got my November salary in the second week of December. Now that it is the end of the year and it is the Christmas season, we thought they would pay us around the 20th or 22nd. Sadly, they did not…We only went to church, returned home and we are waiting for the public holiday to end so that we can continue with our life,” he said.

A teacher at the Federal Government Girls College, Bajoga, Gombe State, said it was a dull Christmas.  “I managed and bought one chicken for the children, but we thank God for life. We are yet to get our December salary and that is how we celebrated our Christmas. Our prayer is that they should pay us before the end of the month so that we can put a smile on the faces of our children ahead of New Year,” the teacher said.

When contacted, the Director of Communication in the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation (OHoCSF), Mallam Mohammed Ahmed, said that they were not in charge of payment of salaries and that he believed something was being done by the appropriate authorities.

When contacted, the spokesperson for the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation, Mallam Bawa Mokwa, said that the process was ongoing and workers would soon receive their salaries.

However, a top government official confided in Daily Trust that the delay was due to a technical glitch that was being addressed and that workers would be receiving their salaries before the end of the day (Monday).


Seme border: FG orders investigation into unprofessional activities of NIS officers.

The Minister of Interior, Dr. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, has expressed displeasure over the alleged unprofessional activities of Nigeria Immigration Officers at the Seme border control post and has directed that immediate action be taken to ensure that the unacceptable actions are stamped out.

The Comptroller General of Immigration, Caroline Wura-Ola Adepoju, has in compliance with the directive, ordered an investigation into the allegations with the view to sanctioning those found culpable.

Adepoju has declared that the allegations if proven true, would be meted with severe consequences because they are not reflective of the values and standards upheld by the NIS, a statement by the Public Relations Officer of Immigration, Dr Aridegbe Adedotun said on Saturday in Abuja.

According to the statement, CGI expressed her dismay at the alleged behaviour and wants to assure the public that immediate steps are being taken to investigate the matter thoroughly.

She said NIS is committed to upholding the highest standards of professionalism, integrity, and service to the nation. Part of the statement read: “In response to these allegations, the NIS is implementing changes at our borders to ensure the smooth passage of migrants without compromising national security.

The Comptroller General is personally overseeing these changes to address any shortcomings and to reinforce a culture of accountability within the Service.

“The NIS acknowledges the importance of public trust and wishes to encourage the general public to report any unprofessional conduct or provide feedback through the following official platforms: X (Twitter): @Nigimmigration; Instagram: Nigimmigration; NIS Contact Center: 09121900655, 09121556359 and 09121 477092.

“The Service assures the public that all feedback and complaints will be thoroughly investigated, and appropriate action will be taken to address any misconduct.

“The Comptroller General is confident that, with the continued support of the Honourable Minister of Inter, Dr Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, and his dedication to fostering a disciplined and effective workforce within the NIS, the Service will overcome challenges and strengthen its commitment to professionalism, accountability, and public trust.

“We remain committed to our mandate of ensuring the security of our borders and facilitating the smooth movement of people. We appreciate the cooperation of the public in helping us maintain the highest standards of professionalism and accountability,” it stated



Access, GTB, UBA, Zenith, Others Remove Over N100bn From Customer’s Account for Government.

New data has revealed that financial institutions paid the federal government over N100 billion in Value Added Taxes(VAT)The payments were made by commercial banks and insurance firms Banks are expected to debit the account of the customer accordingly with the cost of the service plus the 5% VAT charged

Nigerian financial institutions, including banks and other financial institutions, remitted N156.94 billion Value Added Tax(VAT) to the federal government’s account.
The amount represents a significant increase of 136.63% when compared to the N78.77 billion VAT remitted in the same period of 2022. Nigerian banks pay more taxes.

The figure was captured in the latest sectorial distribution of Value Added tax report published by the National Bureau of Statistics supplied by the Federal Inland Revenue Service(FIRS).

What is the Bank’s VAT?

The Value Added Tax Act Cap V1 LFN 2004 (as amended) imposes a tax known as Value Added Tax (VAT) on taxable goods and services at a rate of 7.5%. No more N1,220: Naira closes markets gap, set for new week as CBN lifts ban on crypto

Part 2 of the First Schedule to the Act only exempts services rendered by Community banks, people banks and Mortgage institutions from VAT.

Accordingly, all banks and financial institutions, except those exempted, are required to charge VAT on services rendered to their customers and account for the same to the Federal Inland Revenue Service.

How banks have remitted to the government so far in the first quarter of 2023 (January to March), a total of N35.40 billion was removed from customers’ accounts and remitted to the government.This is an increase from N29.27 billion in Q1, 2022.

In the second quarter of 2023, it increased to N57.26 billion from N22.342 billion in the corresponding of 2022.The increase continued in the third quarter to N64.27 billion, an improvement from N27.16 billion in Q3, 2022. Access Bank increases loan to small businesses to complement FG’s N75bn intervention.

Earlier, it was reported that tech companies and other social media platforms such as Facebook, Google, Twitter, Netflix, and other foreign companies operating in Nigeria paid over N1.98 trillion in taxes to the Nigerian government in 15 months. The amount includes both Company Income Tax and Value Added Tax, which are based on data from the NBS.



NAF Air Strike Destroy 6 Illegal Oil Refining Sites in in Opu Arugbana, Rivers State.

Despite the festive season, air operations against criminals in the Niger Delta and other parts of the country continue unabated.

On 23 December 2023, the Air Component of Operation Delta Safe, in continuation of efforts to rid the Niger Delta Region of activities of oil thieves and oil pipeline vandals, destroyed 6 illegal oil refining sites in Opu Arugbana in Degema Local Government Area of Rivers State.

According to Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet in a press statement signed and made available, the 6 illegal sites were sighted clustered within a radius of about 80 metres at a location about 6 nautical miles south of Opu Arugbana.

Gabkwet noted that having been confirmed to be active, authorization was obtained to destroy the 6 sites, thus discouraging the criminals from continuing with their acts of illegality.

The Chief of Air Staff,  Air Marshal Hassan Abubakar, who spent the Christmas day with troops in the Northeast and currently in Katsina to fete troops of Operation Hadarin Daji, has commended the efforts of the Air Component Commanders in all the theatres of operation while calling on them not to rest until criminal activities are reduced to the barest minimum.


‘If He Implements Tinubu’s Peace Deal, He Is In Trouble’ – Tsauri Warns Fubara

A former National Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ibrahim Tsauri , has warned the Governor of Rivers State, Siminalayi Fubara, not to implement the peace deal initiated by President Bola Tinubu.

Tsauri, in an interview with Punch, issued the warning after Governor Fubara agreed to implement the peace deal signed in Aso Villa a few weeks ago over the political crisis in Rivers State.According to Tsauri, Fubara would be committing a political blunder to implement a peace pact against his party’s stand.

The member of the PDP National Executive Council noted said the implementation would be morally right, but politically incorrect.

Tsauri stated, “As a complete gentleman, he went there and signed the agreement, even though without the consent of the party. So implementation will be made by him and not by the party. But certainly, it won’t be in the interest of the party.

“The PDP will not allow itself to be dragged into that trap, but he failed to consult the party. If he implements it, he is in trouble, if he doesn’t, is in trouble. Implementation of the agreement is like jumping into awaiting problems. And if he fails to implement it, he is going to enter the Federal government’s trouble. So, either way, is trouble for him.”


It’s Sad Nigerians Are Celebrating Christmas In Hunger – PDP Fires Tinubu.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has blasted the All Progressives Congress (APC) and President Bola Tinubu for the suffering and hardship in the country.

The opposition party made this known in a statement issued on Monday by its spokesperson, Debo Ologunagba.

The party asked Nigerians to use the occasion of Christmas to strengthen the bond of love and unity despite the hardship, pain and misery brought upon the nation by the policies of the APC-led federal government.

According to PDP, Nigerians should continue to be their brothers’ keepers during this festive period and not allow the hardship imposed on the nation by the APC administration to change their caring nature.

It said most Nigerian families are economically stranded, socially dislocated and can no longer afford their daily meals and other necessities of life, especially during this festive period.
It said: “The party charges Nigerians to continue to be their brother’s keepers, especially at this trying time and not allow the hardship, difficulties and uncertainties imposed on the nation by the insensitive APC administration to change their caring nature.

“Millions of Nigerian families are economically stranded, socially dislocated and can no longer afford their daily meals and other necessities of life, especially at this festive period.

“Our party is grieved that while families in other climes and nations are celebrating with joy, Nigerians are observing Christmas in hunger and misery because of the anti-people policies of the APC administration.”

The opposition party asked the National Assembly to “be on the side of the people by cutting all provisions for luxury items” in the 2024 budget and “channel such funds to sectors that have a direct bearing on the wellbeing” of Nigerians.

The PDP urged Nigerians not to “succumb to despondency” but to use the occasion and essence of Christmas to “offer prayers as well as renew their hope and trust in the divine intervention of God in the affairs” of the country.


Even if you give Tinubu 30 years nothing will work – Daniel Bwala.

A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Daniel Bwala, has suggested that the current administration of President Bola Tinubu may end up like his predecessor.

He noted that this was exactly how Nigerians were told to be patient for eight years while the Buhari administration was busy doing very little or nothing at all. Bwala said that Tinubu has already spent 31.8 percent of his first term in office and has only succeeded in raising the sufferings of Nigerians during this period.

“When people talk about being patient and waiting, you have to look at the time frame the public officer is expected to execute the work,” Bwala, who was the spokesperson of the PDP Presidential Campaign Council for the 2023 elections, said on Channels TV on Monday.

“The President has just been voted into a term of four years. He is eight months into the term which constitutes 31.8 percent of the total time that he has.“He has less than 70 percent time in government, when is that going to happen?.

When President Buhari took over in 2015 it was the same language and we patiently followed and he finished the first term and finished the second term.

“When there is a fundamental problem with policy, time is irrelevant, 30 years it will not work. Most of the economists I’ve listened to have faulted the President’s budget with which he was supposed to deliver the agenda flat-out…
“We want to see deliverables.

“Nigerians are tired of English, Mathematics, Economics, Science, and Technology. We want to see practical things,” he said.


PDP angry as Governor Fubara defends Tinubu over Aso Rock Resolutions.

Rivers State Governor, Siminalayi Fubara, on Monday defended the peace deal initiated by President Bola Tinubu between him and his predecessor, Nyesom Wike, over the crisis in the state.

Fubara, in a broadcast on Monday, said the resolution brokered by the President to resolve the crisis was not a death sentence, adding that it would ensure lasting peace in the state.

He expressed his commitment to the implementation of the peace agreement in such a way that would restore political stability in the state.

But the Peoples Democratic Party National Working Committee in its reaction warned the governor against implementing the agreement he signed without the input of the party (PDP) on whose platform he was elected.

The crisis rocking the state took a new turn on December 11, 2023, when 27 members of the state House of Assembly defected from the PDP to the All Progressives Congress.

At the instance of Tinubu, Fubara on December 18 signed an eight-point peace agreement with Wike, who is the Federal Capital Territory, in a move to end the political crisis in the state.
However, the PDP officially joined a suit seeking to declare vacant the seats of the lawmakers who defected from the party to the APC.
The party vowed to vigorously pursue the case despite Tinubu’s peace meeting with Rivers State political stakeholders.
Peace deal.

But speaking on the peace pact during his Christmas Day broadcast, the governor pledged to implement the agreement without compromising the interest of the people of the state.

Fubara said, “By this singular effort, our dear President has demonstrated that he loves Rivers State and cherishes nothing short of a reign of perfect peace in our State with his presidential peace proclamation on the 18th of December 2023. Mr President’s Peace Proclamation has naturally elicited mixed reactions from our people and across the country.

“As a principal participant in the entire saga, I have taken some time to study the terms therein and have come to the conclusion that the peace pact is not as bad as it may be portrayed by those genuinely opposed to it.

“It is certainly not a death sentence. I reaffirm my acceptance and my commitment to implementing both the letter and spirit of the declaration in such a way and manner that will restore political stability to our dear state without compromising the collective interest of our people and our cherished and shared democratic values.”

The governor also confirmed that he had released the allowances of the lawmakers and that the defected lawmakers had withdrawn their ‘purported’ impeachment.
He stated, “Both parties have demonstrated some goodwill in the implementation process with the withdrawal of the purported impeachment notice on their part and the release of hitherto withheld allowances of the members of the State House of Assembly by the Government.

“I have said before there is no price too much to pay for peace and with the realization that the worst peace is better than the best war.

“We will strive to make peace with all segments and interest groups without surrendering our freedom nor jeopardizing the interest and well-being of the good people of Rivers State who graciously entrusted us with their cherished mandate.” He added he would toe a path that would best advance and protect the collective interest of the state and its people.

The governor said, “Let me, therefore, crave your kind understanding and call on you to have confidence in the process we are embarking upon to find lasting peace in our state as we are confident that we can achieve stability and progress without endangering the collective interest of our people.”

He commended President Tinubu for his intervention that has brought some lasting peace to the political crisis in the state, stating that the effort showed that Tinubu loves Rivers State.

He pledged that 2024 would witness a speedy transformation of the state with the completion of several projects and programmes, such as the sections of the Port Harcourt Ring Road, the Andoni section of the Unity Road, the Ahoada-Omoku Road, the Emohua-Degema Road and the commencement of many other laudable projects, both in infrastructure and human capital development, as outlined in our 2024 budget.But, the PDP NWC in its reaction faulted Fubara’s plan to implement Tinubu’s peace deal.

The party Deputy National Youth Leader, Timothy Osadolor, in an interview with The PUNCH, said the peace pact could not be implemented.

He said “ First and foremost the governor is an adult and he was the Rivers State governorship candidate of the PDP in the last election, now the governor of the state. But the issues at stake that President Bola Tinubu bothered himself with are bigger than him. They are also bigger than the governor because they are constitutional issues.

“ The question of the seats of the defected lawmakers being vacant is a clear constitutional issue, not at the wishes and discretion of President Tinubu or any other person. It is a clear constitutional matter.

“ Also, the PDP constitutionally owns the votes, so I don’t see how Governor Fubara will tell the PDP that because he met with the President in Aso Rock, the PDP should not take charge of its votes. As we speak the PDP is in court, the votes belong to the PDP, not to Fubara or the Villa.
“The one within the governor’s purview is to pay salaries and allowances of the lawmakers to the date their seats become vacant. I am sure the governor knows his limit.”

“ The PDP will not allow itself to be dragged into that trap, but he failed to consult the party. If he implements it, he is in trouble, if he doesn’t, is in trouble. Implementation of the agreement is like jumping into awaiting problems. And if he fails to implement it, he is going to enter the Federal government’s trouble. So, either way, is trouble for him.”


Rivers Crisis: You Must Act Like A Statesman In Your Intervention – Secondus Warns Tinubu.

A former National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Uche Secondus has advised President Bola Tinubu to act as a true statesman in his intervention in the political crisis in Rivers State.

The governor of Rivers State, Siminalayi Fubara and his predecessor, Nyesom Wike, after a truce meeting with President Tinubu on December 18, agreed to an 8-point resolution.

The resolution amongst others mandated Fubara to re-present the 2024 appropriation bill he had earlier presented to the four-member state House of Assembly to the full House.

However, Secondus while speaking in a Christmas message on Sunday signed by his media aide, Ike Adonyi, warned that the president’s intervention must not violate the tenets of the constitution.

The statement read in part, “With particular reference to the crisis in Rivers State, the former PDP boss contended that the Intervention of President Bola Tinubu must be by the spirit and letter of our constitution for it to be implementable.

“There are creative ways a political conflict can be resolved if and when the President acts like a statesman and the President of all Nigerians.
“He insisted that Mr President would have violated this sacred role if he acted in such a way and manner that gave an unconstitutional advantage to his political party, the APC, and an individual political godfather. This is the scenario the unenforceable agreement reached at the instance of Mr President purports to foster!”

Secondus, however, urged well-meaning Nigerians to call on the President and other stakeholders to act in the interest of peace in Rivers State and “ensure genuine, unbiased, generally acceptable, and enforceable reconciliation of the crisis.”



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