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The Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA) has commenced the annual clearing and removal of water hyacinth across Jetties and terminals in the State.

General Manager Lagos State waterways Authority, Mr Oluwadamilola Emmanuel while speaking to newsmen on Friday 26th of November 2021 explained that pegging and clearing of the Water Hyacinth have commenced at areas with very high infestation and impact on navigation.

Water hyacinth is a problematic invasive species that creates serious impediment to smooth navigation on the Waterways during it’s season. It obstruct the free flow of ferry traffic on the state inland waterways.

Therefore LASWA along side other State MDA’s and Federal Agencies are collaborating and have mobilized adequate Labour force and machinery to commence clearing of the stubborn weed immediately.

The General Manager LASWA added that the first phase of the project is pegging down the water hyacinth to curtail its movement and infestation across ferry channels, followed by proper clearing of the aquatic weed using both manual Labour and weed harvesting machines.

This effort in no doubt will mitigate the occasional damage of Boat Engines caused by this floating aquatic plant and will eliminate delays in travel time while promoting the use of water transport as a viable alternative that is safe, fast and secure.

Mr. Oluwadamilola reiterated the state government’s commitment towards improving safety standards and procedures of the state inland waterways so to achieve the safety of all Waterways users, he advises Boat Captains to always drive with caution during this season while soliciting maximum cooperation of all stakeholders.

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LAGOS DEVELOPS OFF-GRID ELECTRIFICATION STRATEGY, ACTION PLAN

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The Lagos State Government, through the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, has developed the Lagos State Off-Grid Electrification Strategy and Action Plan with support from the British-funded Africa Clean Energy Technical Assistance Facility (ACE-TAF).

The programme, which is being implemented by Tetra Tech International Development and funded by the UK’s Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), is geared towards the improvement of the off-grid energy access in Lagos State.

Speaking during the formal handover ceremony on Monday at the Lagos State Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, the Secretariat, Alausa, Ikeja, the Commissioner for Energy and Mineral Resources, Engr. Olalere Odusote, explained that the Ministry was working tirelessly to improve energy access in the State.

He recalled that in 2021, the government developed the Lagos State Electricity Policy to articulate its vision for creating a viable sub-national electricity sector that caters fully to the needs of its citizens while also enabling significant socio-economic growth.

Odusote explained that with the emergence of the off-grid solar sector as an important component in achieving access to energy – for all – in the State, the Ministry has developed the Lagos State Off-Grid Electrification Strategy and Plan with the support of ACE-TAF to ensure the implementation of the Lagos State Electricity Policy on off-grid electrification.

Also speaking at the event, Mr. Chibuikem Agbaegbu, the ACE-TAF Nigeria Country Manager, expressed delight to see the successful collaboration with Lagos State Government in improving energy access to Lagosians.

He added that in 2021, AC-TAF had committed to supporting the State Government in improving the enabling environment for off-grid solar and has done so through its support in the development of the Lagos State Electricity Policy and the Lagos State Off-Grid Electrification Strategy and Action Plan.

Agbaegbu averred that the Off-Grid Electrification Strategy and Plan further underscore the State Government’s commitment to clean off-grid electrification, thereby enabling private sector investment in its off-grid electricity market.

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STATE GOVERNMENT ON THE PLIGHT OF LAGOS STATE CONTRIBUTORY RETIREES AND PENSIONERS

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LAGOS STATE SETS THE PACE ON PENSION PAYMENTS IN NIGERIA

The administration of Mr. Governor Babajide Sanwo-olu is one poised to set a new record in the payment of accrued rights to its retirees as well as timely and prompt monthly pension contribution of over 100,000 state employees.

This fact is known and well established as there is no state of the Federation with such accomplishment. Since the commencement of this administration in 2019, a total number of 9,128 retirees have been paid an accrued rights of over N34 Billion. It is worthy to note that accrued rights of a minimum of N1 billion monthly is also paid to the State retirees’ Retirement Savings Accounts (RSAs). N1.5 billion was paid into the RSAs of 421 State retirees on 3rd December 2021. The status report on the Contributory Pension Scheme, quarterly published by the National Pension Commission affirms that the State’s pension board is well structured and level of implementation of the Scheme is above average. The State operates a structured payment method in clearing its pension obligation and as such, no one is required to disrupt the system.

Mr. Governor’s administration is one keen on ensuring that retirees have access to their Retirement Savings Accounts (RSA) as soon as they retiree as the government is positioned to clear all pension obligations.

Mr. Governor Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu is a passionate man who operates an open door policy and prioritizes the welfare of the state’s senior citizens. His effort was recognized by the National Union of Pensioners who conferred the award of “Excellence and Greater Commitment to Pensioners’ Welfare”, on him at its 11th Quadrennial National Delegates Conference held at NAF Conference Centre, Abuja recently.

The National Union of Pensioners (NUP) is the only recognized association by law and the Government regularly updates the union on the various programs been undertaken by the state in ensuring that retirement is gratifying for its members.

However, it has been brought to our attention of the several antics in the newspapers and social media of a group called Association of Retirees and PFA Pensioners, this group is not recognized by the State Government and they do not have the legal right to represent the retirees and due to past antecedents, they should be discouraged in acting in such capacity. It was set-up by a retired teacher in the State, one Mr. Michael Omisande and whose accrued benefits have been paid over two (2) years ago without any intervention by another one. His antecedents in misleading unsuspecting retirees is renowned

Lagos State Pension Commission (LASPEC), the State’s Agency responsible for pension administration matters had previously reported this group to the Police in 2019 after which Mr. Omisande and his executives were summoned to appear at the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) on issues bordering on forcefully obtaining money from unsuspecting retirees with the promise of facilitating the payment of their accrued rights and the group signed a commitment to desist from such act.

 

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Management LASPEC

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