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Wheelbarrow Empowerment: I Have No Apology — Nsukka LG Boss

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The Transition Committee Chairman, Nsukka LGA of Enugu State, Mrs. Chinwe Ugwu, has said she would not be blackmailed into apologising for giving out wheelbarrows to indigent persons from the area to assist them economically.

Recall that Ugwu on Monday donated 30 new wheelbarrows to some wheelbarrow pushers, who hitherto hired them to earn a living by conveying people’s goods.

She said that some individuals and organisations had criticised her for initiating such a programme, which she called “poverty alleviation”.

Addressing newsmen in Enugu on Tuesday, she said that she was not done yet, adding that she would increase the number to 100.

She said: “I don’t feel bad at all. I don’t see anything bad in what I have done. I have no apology for anybody.

“People, who don’t understand what I have done, can go ahead and say whatever they liked. I even want to make it up to 100.

“These are poor people who cannot afford to buy wheelbarrow but had to hire for between N200 and N300 per day.

“Some youths came to me and made the request on behalf of the wheelbarrow pushers and I told them to go and write down the names of those that cannot afford to buy their own.

“You need to see how happy they were that they now have their own, which was given to them free of charge.

“They were asked to write whatever inscription they liked on the wheelbarrow because it now belonged to them.

“They were so happy that some of them came to me, asking, Mayor, can we touch you? You need to have seen them.

“They were so happy and I have no apology. I’ll even do more. I heard that some labourers hire shovels and head pans for mason and concrete work.

“I’ll also buy head pans and shovels for them so that they can feed their families.

“All my life, my heart has been going to the poorest of the poor and you know that they are all over the world

“Will you phase out wheelbarrow pushing because of Chinwe Ugwu?”

Meanwhile, Ugwu has continued to attract criticism for the gesture, with critics saying that it was demeaning to give out wheelbarrows as empowerment to Nsukka youths.

Commenting on the gesture, Mr. Mark Onuora of the Enugu State Youth Assembly said it was a wicked act that the Nsukka Mayor should “belittle the youths by giving them wheelbarrows.”

“Madam should have consulted well before embarking on this wicked youth empowerment.

“As for the wicked act, the world will hear about it. It is wicked and barbaric to the youths of Nsukka and she even had the guts to put Gov. Ugwuanyi’s face on this shame.

“This nonsense must stop in 2020,” he said.

Also, the leader of Coal City Youths Initiative, Mr. Johnpaul Ani, described the poverty alleviation donations as a charade.

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Rivers Confirms Second Case Of Coronavirus

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The Rivers state government on Tuesday announced that the index case of the novel Coronavirus pandemic in the state, has tested negative and discharged from the state treatment centre.

The state Commissioner for Health, Prof. Chike Chikere, announced this in Port Harcourt the state capital while briefing newsmen on the latest case in the state.

The first case, a 19-year-old lady, a Model reportedly travelled to Italy, Greece and Brazil for her job before returning to the state, where she became symptomatic and was prompted quarantined for treatment, while her 105 contacts were traced and placed under monitoring for further development.

However, a 62-year-old male retiree who reportedly returned from the United Kingdom has replaced the young female model in the treatment centre as he tested positive to the Virus as announced by the National Centre for Disease Control(NCDC), in Abuja Monday night.

Six new cases of COVID-19 was announced in the country, Monday, Rivers state was among the States the new cases were recorded.

The state Commissioner for Health, said the second case has been taken to the treatment centre for management while those he had contact with are already being traced for the needful.

He said, “our first case was diagnosed on March 25, 2020, the young Lady is doing very well and now has two COVID negative PCR results. She will be discharged home Tuesday to reunite with her family.

“The remaining 15 of her 105 lines listed, will exit our surveillance system by Thursday, God willing.

”However, of the six new results announced by the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control(NCDC), Rivers state recorded a new case. A 62-year-old retiree, who spent about a most nth in the United Kingdom and returned to Nigeria through Lagos International Airport on March 20, 2020, he eventually came back to his home in Port Harcourt the next day through Aero contractors flight on March 21, 2020.

“He, however, has been in self-isolation under the state surveillance system in his family house and developed flu symptoms on March 25, 2020.

“The rapid respond team collected samples from him and the test results are positive for COVID-19 and has been moved to the state treatment centre and presently receiving prompt and adequate treatment in line with the establishes treatment guidelines for his general condition.”

The commissioner further stated that contact tracing has already commenced and samples being collected from high-risk contacts for RT-PCR analysis. He added that risk communication and community engagement will continue unabated.

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[BREAKING] COVID-19: Gov Ganduje Extends Stay At Home Order For 2 Weeks

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Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje has extended the stay at home order issued to civil servants in the state to allow his intervention measures against the dreaded Coronavirus to take full effect.

The Governor said more time was needed to actively cover the entire State with government interventions.

Ganduje issued an additional two weeks stay at home for the civil servants on Monday while receiving a report of the COVID-19 Fundraising Committee at Government house.

The Governor stressed that extension of the stay at home directive became imperatives following the increasing number of cases of COVID- 19 recorded in the country.

Although Kano state has not recorded any case so far, the governor said the border closure and partial lockdown of social activities would remain to keep the state safe.

Meanwhile, the fundraising committee on COVID- 19 has identified 300,000 households for distribution of food items and cash as palliative measures against the coronavirus.

Presenting the preliminary report of his committee, Chairman Professor Mohammad Yahuza Bello said the committee has mapped out the 300, 000 households across the 484 political wards.

Earlier, Professor Bello said the committee had received a total sum of N354, 695, 780.50k cash donation.

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COVID-19: FG Gave N10bn To Lagos But Not A Dime For Rivers That Produces Greater Percentage Of Nigeria’s Wealth — Wike

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Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, says while the federal government approved N10 billion for Lagos, his state is yet to receive any monetary support from the federal government for the fight against coronavirus.

Writing via his Twitter handle, Wike accused the government of politicising efforts to fight the disease.

While Rivers is being controlled by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Lagos, is under the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Lagos has so far recorded 120 cases of the coronavirus while Rivers has one case.

But the governor asked if the federal government is waiting for a state to have more than 50 cases before rendering support.

“While Lagos State received a grant of N10billion as a commercial hub, Rivers State as the nation’s oil and gas hub that produces a greater percentage of the nation’s wealth has not received any support from the Federal Government,” he wrote.

“One wonders why Federal Government should single out a state out of 36 States to give support. Does it mean that support will come when a State has a record of over 50 infected persons before it gets support.

“No state should be seen as more important than any other state. This is a Federal Republic. No state is superior to others.”

He said Rivers is entitled to support from the federal government, adding: “Every day, we are inundated with letters from the Federal Government to allow oil companies to fly in expatriates to drill oil.

“Then we ask, what is the status of those coming from Lagos? Nobody has told us their status as regards coronavirus.

“If they come to come Rivers without us knowing their status, what will be implication assuming they have the virus.”

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