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Cross River: We Feed 70 Pupils With 2 Loaves Of Bread, One Fowl, Per Term – Vendors

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Cross River: We Feed 70 Pupils With 2 Loaves Of Bread, One Fowl, Per Term - Vendors
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Cross River: We Feed 70 Pupils With 2 Loaves Of Bread, One Fowl, Per Term – Vendors

Food vendors serving government schools in Cross River State under the Federal Government’s School Feeding Programme (SFP) have lamented that they receive two loaves of bread, one live chicken, one crate of egg and 50 sachets of tombrown to feed 70 children in a term.

They have also lamented that since 2020 up till October 2021, they have only been paid once.

Investigation further revealed that the money given to the vendors was half of what they ought to have received.

One of them, Rosemary Jimmy lamented that the quality and quantity of foods given to the children have been very unfortunate.

“You can imagine being given two loaves of bread, one chicken, one crate of egg, fifty sachets of tombrown to feed seventy pupils for one term,” she said.

Rosemary said that they had been afraid to complain because if any vendor complained, her name was swiftly removed from the list of vendors and replaced with those of friends and relatives of the government officials.

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“Last term, we were paid just once and this term nothing has been paid us and no food supplied.

Cross River: We Feed 70 Pupils With 2 Loaves Of Bread, One Fowl, Per Term – Vendors

“The term is fast running out; while our counterparts in Akwa Ibom have since been paid their complete sum to feed the kids we are still waiting and nobody has told us anything. Why is the situation in Cross River different,” she further lamented.

Another vendor, who gave his name as Romanus Eteng said he serves food in a school at Ikom but the programme is poorly managed as officials may have cornered both money and foodstuffs meant for the children.

“My conscience pricks me that I cannot live up to the expectation of the pupils. They daily look forward to the little ration promised them but that is not to be while officials are busy buying exotic cars and building mansions with the funds meant to provide the kids little rations while in school,” he said.

The headmaster of Primary School Ikot Nyong in Akpabuyo told journalists that in the past two years, no ration had been supplied to the pupils in the school.

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“We are just watchers. We as teachers and parents do not have any say because nobody made us supervisors or inspectors to oversee what the vendors serve the pupils or why they have stopped,” he said.

A parent, Mr Livinus Archibong, whose ward is at Government Primary School Atekong in Calabar said: “If the objective of the school feeding programme is to ensure that pupils in public schools across the country have at least a meal a day during school hours, then that essence is completely defeated in the State.”

“Since inception of the programme in 2017, there has been no term that pupils in public primary schools in the State have consistently been given the stated one meal a day during school hours.”

Findings showed that money released to the state by the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs for vendors is usually split into two.

It is alleged that government officials overseeing the programme usually give half to vendors, while ‘coordinators’ for each local government area are given the other half to “purchase food” to be given to vendors to serve the pupils.

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Archibong said the consequence of this was that the food supplied was inadequate, sometimes spoilt, over valued or not supplied at all.

A visit to the Food Programme office along Eyo Etta street, off Barracks Road shows that the staff are all coordinators, making brisk money in the name of supplying food to vendors which they hardly do while the children live in hunger.

Meanwhile, our findings revealed further that the coordinators and government officials have distributed forms, forcing all old vendors to back-date the forms to between January and July 2017 whereas food was not supplied then.

New vendors were also directed to use dates of between January to March 2021.

Both new and old vendors have been directed to send the form to: The Program Manager, NHGSFP, no.2 Eyo Ita str. Calabar for official actions to be taken.

But the commissioner for humanitarian affairs, Blessing Egbara said the allegations were completely false.

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Lifestyle

Defamation: Leave Us Out Of Your Issues With Umukoro, We Gave You Fair Hearing, Oasis Magazine Tells Kigho

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Defamation: Leave Us Out Of Your Issues With Umukoro, We Gave You Fair Hearing, Oasis Magazine Tells Kigho

By Our Reporters

Oasis Magazine has said that the demand by the President of Oruarivie Youth Council (OYC), Efe Kigho, for a retraction over an online story published by the media house was uncalled for.

N.O Ogbodu, ESQ.,
S.G. Ediagbonuvie & CO., (LEGAL PRACTITIONERS)., had said in letter addressed to Oasis Magazine on Wednesday, 13th October, 2021
that the story, “CALL EFE KIGHO TO ORDER, UMUKORO TELLS ORUARIVIE – ABRAKA KINGDOM MONARCH” was defamatory.

In a statement signed by the Publisher & Editor-in-Chief, Daniel Dafe Umukoro, on Thursday, the media house said that with the rejoinder published for Kigho to counter the said story by Umukoro, fair reportage was already served.

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“Journalism is about fair hearing and you have since debunked the said story by the same media you are demanding a retraction from,” the statement added.

Meanwhile, the fast-growing platform through her law partners, IKIMI OGHENEJABOR & CO.,
(LEGAL PRACTITIONERS) at
Suite 4, Favour Plaza,
By Express Junction,
Ovwian,
Delta State, in a letter (yet to be delivered) also waived off the retraction call by Kigho’s lawyer.

The letter dated 21st October, 2021, said: “Having calmly perused the contents of your letter under reference and the separate interviews granted Comrade Kelly Efemena Umukoro by our client on the 27th September, 2021 and published online same day and the rejoinder our client granted your client on the 1st October, 2021 on the issues raised by Comrade Kelly Efemena Umukoro in his earlier interview and published same day online, we are unable to legally advice our client to retract any of the aforesaid publication or to publish any public apology to your client in any two national dailies or pay your client the sum of N50,000,000.00 (Fifty Million naira) as damages as demanded in your letter under reference.”

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Adding: “We are of the legal opinion that our client having granted your client a right of reply and which said reply was published on the 1st October, 2021 our client had exercised fair hearing and fair reportage of all contending issues raised in your letter under reference.”

“In the circumstance, we trust you would advice your client accordingly,” the letter added.

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Lifestyle

Nobody Was Killed At Lekki Tollgate – Pro-Buhari Protesters

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Nobody Was Killed At Lekki Tollgate - Pro-Buhari Protesters
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Nobody Was Killed At Lekki Tollgate – Pro-Buhari Protesters

A group of pro-Buhari protesters has converged on the Unity Fountain in Abuja, saying “nobody died at Lekki tollgate” in Lagos.

The protesters who were conveyed to the venue on a bus, held up placards stating,”#EndSarsProtest; Lekki shooting was a hoax”, and ”Nobody died at Lekki tollgate”.

Okpokwu Ogenyi, leader of the pro-government protesters, said the #EndSARS protesters were mobilised to blackmail the Buhari administration.

“We shall no longer keep quiet while unscrupulous elements are trying to blackmail the Buhari government,” he said.

Some of the protesters TheCable spoke to said they did not know why they were brought to the Unity Fountain.

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Nobody Was Killed At Lekki Tollgate – Pro-Buhari Protesters

Hadisatu, one of the protesters, said she did not know why she was brought to the protest venue, but that she had gone to pray and was brought there after he prayers.

When asked if she was paid to be there, she said, “it’s when we go that we will be paid”.

Also Joy, another protester, said one Miss Bello asked her to show up, adding “I don’t why I am here”.

On October 20, 2020, soldiers reportedly opened fire on protesters campaigning against police brutality at Lekki tollgate.

While some reports, including civil society groups say some protesters were killed in the attack, the federal government has disputed this account.

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Lai Mohammed, minister of information, on Wednesday described the Lekki incident as a ”phantom massacre”.

Nigerians poured into the streets in Lagos, Abuja and other places today to mark the first anniversary of the #EndSARS protest.

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Security Operatives Take Over Lekki Tollgate Ahead Of #EndSARS Memorial Protest

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Security Operatives Take Over Lekki Tollgate Ahead Of #EndSARS Memorial Protest
Security Operatives Take Over Lekki Tollgate Ahead Of #EndSARS Memorial Protest
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Security Operatives Take Over Lekki Tollgate Ahead Of #EndSARS Memorial Protest

Security operatives, including police, soldiers and others have stormed the Lekki toll gate to prevent the first anniversary of #EndSARS nationwide protests.

The police authorities and State Government had warned against another phase of protests.

But the adamant groups have vowed not to back down despite the repeated warnings.

Organisers of the memorial protest have been mobilising on social media platforms.

They vowed to storm the Lekki Tollgate in a car procession.

The Nation reports the tollgate has been shut since October 20, after the EndSARS incident.

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Witnesses told The Nation that heavy presence of armed security operatives was spotted in some parts of Lekki and other areas of the State.

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