11 O’CLOCK NEWS UPDATE 21-07-2021

GBAJABIAMILA /INEC-NCC

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, has tasked the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, and the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, to work together to conduct credible elections in the country.

Gbajabiamila gave the charge while addressing reporters in Abuja, pointing out that existing laws in the country empowers INEC to conduct elections, while the NCC has the mandate in terms of technology and capacity.

Commenting on the lower chamber’s decision to pass the electoral amendment bill despite opposing views, the speaker explained that the capacity of the constituents influenced the voting.

He therefore called on Nigerians to desist from blaming lawmakers who were in support or against the electronic voting, urging them to await the recommendation of both INEC and the NCC on the issue.

ZAMFARA/RANSOM

The Zamfara state police command has refuted rumours making the rounds that it paid bandits ransom to secure release of the 100 children, nursing mothers, and others held hostage for 42 days.

Spokesman for the command, Muhammad Shehu, made the denial in a statement released in Gusau, the capital city, insisting the victims were released without ransom.

Shehu, who confirmed that the kidnap victims were released at Kabaro forest in Maru local government area of the state, disclosed that they will be medically checked and debriefed before being reunited with their respective families

It would be recalled that the yet-to-be identified had stormed Manawa village in Mutunji district of Dansadau emirate in Maru local government area on June 8 and abducted 100 villagers including nursing mothers, males, and children.

WORLD BANK/MADAGASCAR

The World Bank has set aside a total sum of 490 million dollars to help Madagascar buy Covid vaccines and finance development projects.

Madagascar’s Economy minister, Richard Randriamandrato, made the announcement to newsmen, noting that the bank will provide a grant of 100 million euros to help the Indian Ocean Island purchase vaccines and boost its health system.

According to Richard, another 40 million dollars, which will come in the form of an emergency grant, will help to finance sustainable and innovative agriculture, particularly in irrigation.

He added that the bank has also set aside 150 million dollars to help tourism, agribusiness and the digital economy, and 200 million dollars to maintain 1,200 kilometers of roads and strengthen their resistance to climate change

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