MINISTER of Information and Culture Lai Mohammed said yesterday that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFFC) has so far recovered over N540 billion through the Whistle Blower Policy.
He stated this yesterday at the 71st General Assembly of the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON) in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Mohammed said: “To this end, as at May this year, the EFCC, through the Whistle Blower Policy, has recovered over N527 billion, $53 million, and £122,890.”
The minister, who was represented by the Director, Public Relations and Protocol of the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, Mr. Sunny Adejoh Baba, said the EFCC also successfully launched a major onslaught on the seeming high-and-mighty in the society (including senior military officer and their civilian accomplices), who had soiled their hands with shady deals, leading to recovery of choice assets across the country.
He enjoined the media to align itself with the policies and programmes of the Buhari Administration, aimed at ridding the country of the cancer of corruption, in order to free funds for development projects, which will uplift the standard of living of the citizenry.
“This effort should not be seen as the sole effort of Mr. President or the Government alone. The media has a duty to ensure that the programmes of government, meant to uplift the lots of the citizenry, are projected as a national cause and not just as that of Mr. President or the administration,” the minister said.
Mohammed, who said the BON General Assembly is taking place at an auspicious time in view of the forthcoming general elections, urged the broadcasting organisations not to yield their platforms to the purveyors of hate speech and fake news.
He said the broadcasting outfits should instead promote the unity, stability and the development of the country.
“Anything short of this would amount to a criminal abdication of a sacred duty, which could spell doom for our collective national life.
“We have had enough sordid examples to learn from that we ought not to allow a repeat at this critical time of our national development.
“It is, therefore, of utmost importance that the media and specifically, broadcast media, do not allow itself to become a purveyor of fake news and hate speeches,” the minister said.
Mohammed restated the Federal Government’s commitment to allowing the media to carry out its assigned watchdog roles, even as government expects the press to be guided by national interest above every other interests.
The minister said the launch of the Digital Switch Over (DSO) in Jos in April 2016 underscored the administration’s determination to democratise the right to know, the right to knowledge and the right to be informed.
He noted that the changing media landscape and the advent of digital technologies have fundamentally altered the nature and function of media in the society, at times circumventing traditional media and challenging its privileged role as gate-keeper of news and entertainment.
The minister, therefore, urged companies in the broadcasting value-chain to take the advantage of the market and build local stations that would create employment for a diverse segment of the population and also lead to a transfer of technology and free the creative dexterity of the young population.
Julius Berger honours 578 long-serving personnel nationwide
… As Joseph Ogungbe is lauded for 40 years of service to the Company
Nigeria’s most operationally trustworthy, reliable and solution-oriented engineering construction and prime infrastructural development company, Julius Berger Plc, has rewarded hundreds of its long-serving members of staff all across its operations in the country.
At a colourful celebration of its workforce in Abuja last Saturday, the full complement of the executive management of the company was on hand to honour its hardworking, faithful, loyal, competent, and capable personnel from across all of the firm’s operational regions. The Managing Director of Julius Berger, Dr Lars Richter, PhD, expressed appreciation to all the honourees “for reaching milestones in their dedicated service spanning up to 40 years”. This productive feat, Dr Richter said, “is tremendous and truly inspiring”, adding that the occasion was a stock-taking opportunity for the company’s achievements as a whole, especially as it wraps up a very busy work year.
2018, Dr Richter said, was filled with many positive developments and achievements, which he ascribed to a great part to the hard work, faithfulness and loyalty of the company’s staff, especially the long-serving honourees. The MD said Julius Berger, during the course of the year, successfully overcame many tough challenges, made great progress across all aspects of its business, effectively restructured its operations to ensure the best utilization of resources for projects’ needs, and expanded its Executive Management to enable a stronger focus on growth potentials. The company, he added, also very importantly attained the recertification of its Quality Management System to meet the standards of the strategic ISO 9001. These achievements, Dr Richter said, “further advance our Company and serve to support the continued realization of operational goals, financial targets and strategic objectives” which continue to manifest as “strong progress of works across all active sites”.
The MD, described by colleagues as a no-nonsense and target engineering and management professional, is famously reputed to have delivered the Abuja Airport repair works before its scheduled delivery date as Project Manager. Dr Richter, in character with Julius Berger’s operational values, used the occasion to celebrate the company’s capacity for completing works for significant projects to the full satisfaction of its clients. He cited the Azura Independent Power Plant, which was handed over ahead of the scheduled completion date, and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Head Office in Abuja, which was commissioned successfully. Other notable private sector and national priority projects acquired by Julius Berger Plc since the year began include the Bodo-Bonny Road and Bridge, the Second Niger Bridge, Itu-Calabar-Odukpani Road, Lagos Shagamu Expressway, Famfa Oil Tower, the Abuja-Kano Road; and most recently, the Nigerian Immigration Office in Abuja.
Dr Richter said:“These projects add exciting dimension to our longstanding impressive portfolio, especially considering the positive social and economic impact priority projects will provide to Nigeria, when completed”. He added emphatically that “the new innovative cold recycling methodology for road rehabilitation introduced recently into the country by Julius Berger at the Abuja-Kaduna-Kano Road project, further solidifies our leadership position in the construction sector, not only in regards to service and quality, but also in terms of technological innovation.” He expressed confidence that Julius Berger’s successful pioneering of the innovative methodology has the potential to revolutionize road rehabilitation projects across Nigeria, and that Julius Berger will continue to lead the charge in achieving this.
He urged the company’s workers to focus on increasing operational performance, strong technical knowhow, quality workmanship and expertise – all factors that will remain the cornerstone of Julius Berger’s unmatched performance. Speaking directly to the honourees, Dr Richter said, “You are beacons of inspiration for those around you and role models for new hires. I am sincerely honoured to stand before you as Managing Director and feel proud to work with such an outstanding group of professionals”.
Speaking also in the same vein at the event, the company’s Executive Director, Administration, Alhaji Zubairu Ibrahim Bayi stated that “Julius Berger is what it is today as a result of a dedicated and reliable workforce”. He declared that “because the company’s workforce is the greatest asset of the company”, staff welfare and motivation is paramount in everything Julius Berger does. Bayi on behalf of the entire workers and management of Julius Berger Plc then pledged to the MD, Dr Richter, the unwavering support, co-operation and loyalty of all members of the Julius Berger work family to make his tenure as MD a huge success.
In total, 102 members of staff got 20, 25, 30, 35 and 40 years awards for consistent service to the company, and 476 other workers of the Julius Berger corporate family received honours for 10 and 15 years of continuous service to Julius Berger at the event.
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