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Ogun Gov, Abiodun backs controversial social media bill

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Governor Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State has expressed support for the proposed law to regulate social media in Nigeria.

Speaking at an event to mark 160 years of journalism in Abeokuta, the state capital, on Monday, Abiodun said the law will help sanitise the social media and stem the rise of misinformation.

A statement from Kunle Somorin, his Chief Press Secretary, also quoted the Governor as saying such law will hold citizen journalists accountable.

The bill, which has scaled second reading at Senate, has been condemned by many Nigerians as an attempt to clamp down on free speech.

Abiodun said while he does not support extreme measures like death penalty for offences like misinformation, the law will end the “rise of malicious and deliberate misinformation by some unethical social media users.”

He accused some persons of misusing information to target other Nigerians “for character assassination and portray people in bad light.”

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“We have to find a win-win situation. The idea is not to gag the media in any form or manner, but to ensure that the media is held responsible for carrying out their responsibility; and of cause, the issue of death penalty is not called for,” he said.

Abiodun also accused “unscrupulous elements” of triggering calls for extreme measures for people found guilty of deliberately misinforming the public.

“This has prompted a lot of reactions from different quarters, with some even calling for death penalties for people who are found guilty of what has now become popularly referred to as the hate speech,” he said.

“It is, therefore, imperative that journalists should always be on their guard against forces that seek to take advantage of the formidable power of the profession for their selfish aims,” he added.

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Federal High Court, National Industrial Court get new Chief Judge, President

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The Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Muhammad, on Friday swore in Justice John Tsoho as the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court of Nigeria.

He also swore in Honourable Justice Benedict Bakwaph Kanyip, as President of the National Industrial Court.

The ceremony took place at the Ceremonial Court of the Supreme Court in Abuja.

The Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom was in attendance at the event.

After they took their oath of office, the CJN asked Chief Judge and President of the National Industrial Court not to allow anybody disturb their principles as they justifies the oath of office they took

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Muhammad said, “The Law is not respecter of anybody; deal with the situation as they are presented before you. Don’t have personal interest in any case before you,” the CJN cautioned.

Justice Tsoho was born on June 24, 1959 in Mbaduku in Benue State.

He obtained his law degree from the University of Lagos in 1984 and was called to Bar in 1985.

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Enugu IGR boost, fallout out from Ugwuanyi’s measures – ESIRS

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The Enugu State Internal Revenue Service (ESIRS) has attributed the sustainable increase in the state’s Internally Generated Revenues (IGR) to the well-thought-out measures adopted by Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi’s administration.

Speaking during the taxpayers’ sensitization and enlightenment programme, organized by the Enugu State Internal Revenue Service (ESIRS), in conjunction with the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN), held at Enugu, the Chairman of ESIRS, Prince Emeka Odo, disclosed that the state government “has been implementing a cocktail of measures designed to make tax payment easier for tax payers in the state”.

The chairman stated that the event, which also witnessed the investiture of the State Accountant-General, Sir. Paschal Okolie, as Chairman, Enugu and District Society, Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria, was to deepen the relationship between the tax authority and tax payers.

Odo noted that Ugwuanyi’s administration has been implementing “an ambitious four-point development agenda” aimed at positively impacting the lives of the people and stressed that such feat requires that government harnesses all the potential sources of internally generated revenues in the state without additional pressure on the people.

The chairman added that it was in the light of the above that the agency in conjunction with other related agencies of government embarked on the programme for effective result.

He disclosed that the revenue generation measures adopted by the state government include, early adoption of Treasury Single Account (TSA) platform for accounting system, direct bank lodgment system, restructuring and strengthening of the revenue agency, automation of all revenue generating MDAs, vigorous tax payers’ enlightenment programmes in the media and streamlining of overlapping laws to address the issue of multiple taxation.

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Odo who revealed that voluntary tax compliance in the state has been on the increase as a result of the state government adopted measures, added that “it has also reflected positively on the IGR figures of the state which has risen progressively from about N14 billion in 2016 to N22 billion last year”. He said that “the figure for this year is expected to be much higher than that of last year”.

On her part, the Commissioner for Finance, Mrs. Adaonah Kene-Uyanwune, pointed out that tax matters are collective responsibility aimed at generating more revenues to the state for rapid development and socio-economic growth.

Maintaining that tax administrators, practitioners and payers are major players in taxation, the finance commissioner stressed that without taxation government will not meet up with its obligations to the public.

Mrs. Uyanwune stated that the era of focusing attention on oil as major source of government revenue is over, enjoining the public to always pay their tax for them to continue enjoying meaningful developments.

She, therefore, applauded Gov. Ugwuanyi for his untiring efforts in repositioning the state Internal Revenue Service as well as the revenue agency for achieving an enviable landmark in revenue generation for the state.

In his acceptance speech, the newly inaugurated Chairman of Enugu and District Society, CITN, Sir. Okolie, appreciated members of the body for finding him worthy to serve and promised to discharge his duties diligently and with the fear of God.

  1. “I would like to thank the entire members of Enugu and District Society for unanimously choosing me to superintend over the affairs of the district at this time, without rancour”, he said.

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Mechanic bags 12 months jail term for fraud

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An Ejigbo Magistrate Court in Lagos State has sentenced one Olayemi Olowo, a mechanic to 12 months imprisonment for defrauding his customer to the tune of N150,000.

The complaint, Noah Okeke, is said to be Olowo’s regular customer who usually got his vehicles repaired at his workshop at Peter Agha Street, Ejigbo.

The prosecutor, Kenneth Asibor, explained that sometimes in August 2019, Noah asked Olowo, being a mechanic, to help him get a mini bus popularly called korope.

He explained: “They both went round on market survey to get the price and Olowo being a mechanic, was thought to know the best vehicle. The two of them, after the survey, concluded that they could get the bus at the rate of N150,000, which was given to him (Olowo) at the Jari Filling Station, Oke-Afa Ejigbo, Lagos to get the bus.

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“After collecting the money, the defendant disappeared with the money and was nowhere to be found.

“The complaint then reported the matter to the police who later arrested Olowo and charged him to court after he had confessed to the offence.”

At the court sitting, the defendant pleaded guilty of the offence.

The presiding magistrate, Mr. Teslim Shomade, therefore sentenced him to 12 months imprisonment with hard labour with the alternative of N100,000 fine.

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