The Accident Investigation Bureau, Nigeria (AIB-N) says it has recovered the flight data recorder (black box) of the military aircraft that crashed in Kaduna state. A Beechcraft 350 belonging to the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) crashed around Kaduna airport on Friday evening. Chief of Army Staff Ibrahim Attahiru and 10 other military officers were on board when the plane crashed. Attahiru was said to be on his way to Kaduna to attend a passing-out parade for army recruits scheduled for Saturday. In a statement on Saturday, AIB spokesman Tunji Oketunbi said the bureau has commenced an investigation into the crash. Oketunbi said the aircraft’s Flight Data Recorder (FDR) and the Cockpit Voice Recorder (CVR) have been recovered for analysis. “The Accident Investigation Bureau, Nigeria (AIB-N) has been mandated by the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) to lead the investigation into the crash of a military aircraft that occurred on Friday in Kaduna, in which the Chief of Army Staff died,” the statement reads. “Investigators will download and analyse vital information contained in the recorders at the AIB-N’s world class Flight Safety Laboratory in Abuja. The remains of the officers who died in the crash have been laid to rest at the National Military Cemetery in Abuja.
The Federal High Court in Abuja has affirmed the right of state governments to implement laws on open grazing. Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu gave the judgment in a suit seeking to compel President Muhammadu Buhari to direct security agencies in the country to enforce the Benue state Open Grazing Prohibition and Establishment Of Ranching Law passed in 2017. The suit brought by Matthew Tile Nyiutsa, a lawyer and Benue indigene, argued Buhari, by his oath of office, has an obligation to uphold and preserve the law of the land, but failed to do so when he refused to implement Benue’s open grazing law. However, the court in its decision said it lacked jurisdiction to compel the president to abide by his oath of office. Ojukwu said the National Assembly has the responsibility to hold the president accountable. She, however, held that since the Open Grazing Prohibition Law 2017 was passed by the Benue House of Assembly and has not been voided by any competent court of law, the state has the power to carry out its implementation. “In my view, the courts do not have the vires to entertain any suit bordering on compliance with the oath of office of the President for the reason that it is not justiciable,” the judge held. “When the person, in this regard, the president, fails to abide by the oath, the National Assembly, in line with the set down procedure, may consider it a misconduct in the performance of the functions of his office and take the appropriate measure under the constitution. It is not the duty of this court to adjudicate on. The plaintiff may have genuine concern in respect of the facts averred, but there are procedures set out by law to address issues concerning citizens’ rights and violations,” she added.
Nigeria’s economic growth quickened in the first quarter as oil output started to recover and manufacturing production increased for the first time in a year. Gross domestic product in Africa’s largest economy expanded 0.5% in the three months through March from a year earlier, the Abuja-based National Bureau of Statistics said in a report published on Twitter on Sunday. That compares with 0.11% growth in the fourth quarter. The slow pickup in growth could reinforce Central Bank of Nigeria Governor Godwin Emefiele’s view that it’s still too early to increase the key interest rate from 11.5%. Emefiele has said the Monetary Policy Committee can only shift to fighting inflation that’s at an almost four-year high once the economy’s recovery from last year’s recession gains some traction. The MPC starts a two-day meeting on Monday and Emefiele will announce the outcome of the deliberations on Tuesday. Crude output rose to 1.72 million barrels per day in the first quarter from 1.56 million in the last quarter of 2020. But production is still below what it was before the coronavirus-linked lockdowns decimated demand and prices fell. Oil GDP contracted by 2.2% compared with a drop of 19.8% in the previous three months. While oil contributes less than 10% of the country’s GDP, it’s a key driver of growth and provides most of the hard currency needed to power other industries and finance the government. The non-oil economy expanded by 0.79% from a year earlier, picking up pace with manufacturing growing 3.4% and telecommunications increasing 7.7%. GDP could grow 2.5% this year and 2.3% in 2022, according to the International Monetary Fund.
The Zamfara government has announced the revocation of all land titles in the state. Yusuf Gusau, media aide to Governor Bello Matawalle disclosed that the decision was announced on Thursday at the flag-off of the issuance of electronic certificates of occupancy. According to him, the decision was taken to address corruption associated with the manual issuance of certificates of occupancy, while property owners have been directed to apply through the Zamfara Geographic Information System (ZAGIS) for “recertification of their respective titles with the new policy of granting electronic certificates”. “All problems associated with land transactions will be resolved with the use of modern technology as the recertification of all land titles will assist in the current fight against banditry and sundry crimes,” Matawalle was quoted to have said. “Owners of all land titles would now have their records available in a secured database; and that the new e-C-of-Os would also make it easier for financial institutions to check the authenticity of certificates for those who choose to use them as collateral for bank loans.” Persons making fresh applications for land titles are also expected to apply through ZAGIS, just as landowners have been urged “to come forward and certify their titles and also to pay their ground rents as and when due”.