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ZULUM: A PRAGMATIC AND PROACTIVE GOVERNOR

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Zulum appoints new Accountant General

ZULUM: A PRAGMATIC AND PROACTIVE GOVERNOR

By: Yusuf Adamu

Borno state governor, Prof. Babagana Umara Zulum, has changed the narrative once again by taking the lead. In his usual character, he has displayed his unique leadership and governance style and unleashed his people-oriented programs, among others, to cushion the effect of subsidy removal amongst the people of the state.

As the good people of Borno State, we are lucky to have him as our leader. May Allah (SWT) continue to guide and protect him as he stirs the affairs of the state to greater heights.

Borno State has been one of the state’s worst hit by the insurgency, a situation that has lasted for over a decade and resulted in the collapse of all state sectors and structures, adding to the loss of lives and properties.

Amidst this condition of recovery from insurgence, COVID-19 and the Naira Re-design Policy emerge in 2019–20 and 2023, respectively. These further worsen the cost and standard of living because the prices of food have increased.

Even non-food items are not exempt, but the Governor has been a strong pillar for the people, especially through his palliative care programs.

With the removal of fuel subsidies by the Federal Government owing to their exclusion in the 2023 appropriation bill, the cost of items further recorded an upward trajectory, which has made the cost of living difficult, especially for the people of the state.

Though the government has proposed a palliative of N500 billion, which is to be distributed among 12 million Nigerians and others for SMEs, farmers, and manufacturers, which was captured in the president’s recent address to the nation,

Our proactive governor never waited. He took the bull by the horn and moved ahead to launch and distribute the state palliatives with a target of 300,000 households with about 6 persons per H/H to reach about 1,800,000 people in need.

READ ALSO: https://newsng.ng/governor-buni-commended-for-constructing-cancer-centre-in-yobe-state-university-teaching-hospital/

Among these palliatives are the following: 80 vehicles were released to ease the transportation costs, which were made up of 50 luxurious buses and 30 pick-up vans for free transportation of farmers and their produce. Distribution of Food and Non-Food items such as Bags of rice, spaghetti, maize grains, wrappers for women and N5,000 each to 23,000 households ( i.e., 13,000 households in Baga town, 3,500 at cross Kauwa and 6,500 in Doro Baga) in  Baga town of Kukawa LGA, Distribution of Food and Non-Food items to over 300,000 IDPs at muna camp the state capital. Shares 400 resettlement houses at Molai, which capture communities like Maibukarti, Jibrinti, Mainari Shuwa, Mainari Kanuri, and Tilori.

Each household received rice, maize, mats, wrappers, and cash. Governor Zulum single-handedly doles out this rich bouquet of palliatives. As this goes around the state, especially to the 1,800,000 persons in need as identified, it will go a long way in relieving them from poverty, improving their standard of living, and reducing crimes, which will invariably have a positive spillover effect on the economy of the state.

*Hon. Yusuf Adamu writes from Maiduguri.

ZULUM: A PRAGMATIC AND PROACTIVE GOVERNOR

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Why Borno residents should support the Zulum Administration

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Why Borno residents should support the Zulum Administration

By: Yusuf Adamu

Unfortunately, the lack of electricity and shortage of water in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital, have continued to turn some sections of the state against the government. While many are thinking it is the government job to provide electricity and water, a lot of people are not looking at the efforts the government is putting in during the phase of challenges from saboteurs and terrorists as it affects the issues of electricity in the state, particularly.

Borno State has been in darkness for the last two weeks, and the governor spoke with concern from faraway Saudi Arabia, where he went to worship, and he was informed of the electricity issue back home. Professor Babagana Umara Zulum has done tremendously well in ensuring that Borno State overcomes the issue of electricity, to the extent that he went beyond his jurisdiction to ensure that he solved the problem.

He went further to collaborate with the NNPC, which informed the setting of a gas plant in Maiduguri to support the epileptic power supply as a result of the continuous attacks on the electricity supply lines feeding Maiduguri. However, the activities of saboteurs, who would rather, out of their greed, overload the gas plant, have constantly resulted in the disruption of the gas plant’s capacity to provide adequate supply.

Rather than people condemning the government for some of this man-made distraction, I think the people of Borno State should pray for an end to the activities of terrorists and the saboteurs who continuously take advantage of the situation to speak ill of the government. If the opposition is speaking, we would understand, but when citizens say otherwise, we would like to remind them that the governor of Borno State has been doing everything possible to make Borno State great. 

The collaboration with NNPC and the purchase of electric vehicles to ease pain for people are things to see and agree that the governor meant well for his people. This is aside from the numerous projects he was able to achieve in the state. We are also lucky to have the Vice President, who is our own and whose focus is also to see Borno State become great again.

Just yesterday, he was speaking on the issues affecting the state when he arrived in the state for the sallah celebration. He gave hope for a better Borno state and spoke well of the collaboration the federal government is having with Borno state to end the perennial challenges facing the state at the moment. Let us continue to uplift our leaders in prayer and support their dream of making Borno one of the best things that happens to its people in the current administration.

***Yusuf Adamu writes from Maiduguri and is the former political adviser to Kashim Shettima.

Why Borno residents should support the Zulum Administration

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Katampe Estate: An iftar special for both Muslims and Christians in Abuja

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Katampe Estate: An iftar special for both Muslims and Christians in Abuja

By: Dr. James BWALA

Residents of Urban Shelter Katampe Estate, Jahi, in Abuja organize an iftar—breaking of the fast. One may think that this is only for the Muslim community in the estate, but it was special for the residents of the estate to demonstrate love and togetherness as well as promote and showcase peaceful coexistence amongst the adherents of the two major religions in the country. Christians were part of the jolly evening, and I am also there to share the joy and happiness that brought together human beings that are working to bring understanding and support for one another, as should be in the spirit of Ramadan.

iftar at Urban Shelter, Katampe Estate

It was a gathering that brought the lowly and the might men and women. I kept an eye out and captured the mood, which triggered happiness and informed my decision to write on this. Indeed, if everyone would take a line with this example of love amongst the two religions in the country, we would not be asking what is wrong with the system that governs us as a nation.

READ ALSO:https://newsng.ng/borno-why-would-an-ngo-sponsor-a-fire-outbreak-in-idp-camps/

I was invited for iftar as always by my brothers, who are Muslims, but this one was different. It has been a tradition that the Katampe Estate has kept for years. I was told by some people that we were seated at the same table that those who introduced the occasion desire a community where peace is truly said and practiced, and that can only be achieved when both Muslims and Christians understand that we all have to be humans and also understand that we are all created by God for his worship.

The explanation as I listened gave me the understanding that the problem with Nigerians is not about the religion we practice but the individual understanding of the region we all practice. If the residents of the Urban Shelter Katampe Estate in Jahi have this understanding of building a community, I believe there are many lessons we can learn from their coexistence, where a Muslim and a Christian can look into each other’s eyes with love and sincere wishes.

iftar special at Katampe Estate in Jahi

On the table where I sat, the talk and laughter made me see that Nigeria can build a stronger state if there is understanding between humans and everyone wants the good of the other, as everyone was encouraging each other to eat from the variety and trying to help one another get the best of the table. Such selfless understanding should always be practiced. 

Perhaps I write this piece to trigger the adoption of such an attitude not only in a month like Ramadan but also in all days and months in each year of our existence as people and as a nation. If we can all inculcate this and put it as part of our daily lives, there would not be hunger in the land, and everyone, as I see at the Katampe Estate, where both the mighty and the lowly eat together to their satisfaction and more food remains for a takeaway, reminded me of the Biblical feeding of the five thousand. And this, in my opinion, is the gospel.

James BWALA, PhD, writes from Abuja.

Katampe Estate: An iftar special for both Muslims and Christians in Abuja

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UMTH:…and the testimonies of patients and patient relations

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UMTH:…and the testimonies of patients and patient relations

By: Dr. James BWALA

Recently, one of our colleagues was hospitalized at the UMTH, and I have the ability to constantly be in touch from my base. I have spoken to colleagues and relatives, and the testimonies coming from them were spirited about how the UMTH cares for its patients, putting humanity to duty. 

I had thought this was because the patient is one of the media personalities, and as such, the hospital was doing everything to ensure the best was offered. At a point, I had the pleasure of seeking some assistance for wavers on the hospital bills on behalf of the said colleague, and the CMD graciously agreed to give such assistance to a colleague in need. 

I thought that was perhaps because of the relationship the media and UMTH had built over time. But again, I was wrong in this judgment because such wavers of assistance and this hand of fellowship by the CMD, Professor Ahmed Ahidjo, had been extended to patients coming from far and near, making UMTH one of the most humane health institutions in the country today.

I have seen bad professionalism and inhumane acts by professionals in public health institutions in the country, especially in the government hospital in Abuja, where patients are being attended to based on the heaviness of their pockets. 

When I learned of the cost of the hospital bed for a VIP side room at the UMTH, I told a colleague that the UMTH is humane compared to what I know of at places like the Aso Koro General Hospital, Nyanya, Maitama, Gwagwalada, and the National Hospital in Abuja, and no amount of complaints or pleading by patients or patient relations can be heard if the pocket does not speak first. And the lowest of the luxurious rooms, not a VIP side room, is going for N10,000 and above. No option!

READ ALSO: https://newsng.ng/umth-how-professor-ahidjos-transformation-agenda-impacted-the-information-unit/

About two weeks ago, I heard a chat with someone whose wife was hospitalized, and he was complaining about the issues of lightening in the hospital. However, after that chat and the issue was fixed, he literally call back to appreciate the speed with which the technical staff took in ensuring that adequate light was provided despite the current situation of a hike in diesel prices and the resources coming to the hospital, in which the generated revenue was not enough to power the hospital’s need for electricity for one month.

From another expression, a Letter of Appreciation for the UMTH Medical Team reads: 

Dear Professor Ahidjo (CMD),

I am writing to express my deepest gratitude to the entire medical team at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital (UMTH) for the exceptional care and support provided to my late son, Shafiq, during his illness.

From the moment Shafiq was admitted to UMTH, your team demonstrated professionalism, compassion, and dedication in attending to his medical needs. Your expertise and tireless efforts in diagnosing and treating his condition were evident, and we felt reassured knowing he was in capable hands.

Moreover, the kindness and empathy shown by every member of the medical staff did not go unnoticed. Your willingness to listen to our concerns, answer our questions, and provide regular updates on Shafiq’s progress was invaluable during such a challenging time for our family.

While the outcome was not what we had hoped for, I want to acknowledge the immense comfort and support your team provided to both Shafiq and our family, particularly the role played by Prof. Ahidjo, Prof. Sandabe, and Prof. Sanusi throughout his stay at UMTH. Your unwavering commitment to delivering quality healthcare, even in the face of adversity, is truly commendable and speaks volumes about the professionalism and compassion of UMTH’s medical staff.

Please convey our heartfelt appreciation to everyone involved in Shafiq’s care, including doctors, nurses, technicians, and support staff. Your dedication to your profession and your patients makes a difference in the lives of so many, and we will forever be grateful for the care and attention Shafiq received under your watchful care.

Thank you once again for your exemplary service and for making a difficult time more bearable for our family.

With sincere appreciation,

Prof. Abdulkarim Ishaq

Perhaps one may think that there has been a longtime relationship with the system among those who are speaking or writing to appreciate the hospital and management team led by Professor Ahmed Ahidjo. The truth is that I have also interacted with patients being referred from far and near who spoke well of the hospital and its kind of professionals in my recent visit to Maiduguri. Some describe the hospital as a hallmark of excellence, and I agree with them. In a video I watched, a patient from Oyo State also spoke volumes of humane and professional lines from his testimony of both the medical and technical teams at the UMTH.

A patient from Ibadan, Oyo state.

When patients or their relatives speak about the treatment they received from medical personnel, they always speak from their heart because, at that moment, they are prompted by either the satisfaction they received or otherwise. And for UMTH, these patients and their relatives have no regrets about meeting the team.

** James BWALA, PhD writes from Abuja

UMTH:…and the testimonies of patients and patient relations

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