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FG Says Most Nigerian Weddings Are Illegal, Reveals Marriage Centres



Most worship centres conducting marriages in the country lack the license to do so under the statutory Marriage Act, according to Barr. Georgina E. Ehuriah, permanent secretary in the Ministry of Interior.


This means that most marriages conducted in religious houses in Nigeria could be deemed illegal.


Ehuriah who spoke at a one-day stakeholders’ conference on conduct of statutory marriages in accordance with the Marriage Act cap, M6, LFN 2004 as amended, said that  “the implication of this is that marriages conducted in unlicensed places of worship are not in line with the Marriage Act and cannot serve legal purposes when the need arises, and such unlicensed places of worship are operating contrary to Section 6(1) of the Marriage Act,”.


“At present, only about 4, 689 licensed places of worship in Nigeria have updated their records with the Ministry of Interior, of which only 314 have renewed their licenses.  she said.


According to her, the decision to organize the stakeholders’ conference was necessitated by the ministry’s experience in the discharge of its duties “which pointed to the fact that there are extant issues which require the joint attention of key stakeholders”.


She added that while the ministry was already building a database of all statutory marriages conducted in Nigeria, it had also developed a database of all places of worship licensed for celebration of marriages, urging stakeholders to take advantage of the Conference to discuss the major challenges they face in complying with the provisions of the Act.


The Permanent Secretary said she had already put in place machinery to kick start the process for the amendment of the Marriage Act to adequately meet the needs of citizens in the 21st century.


“Also, arrangements are on-going to give couples whose certificates were not issued in line with the Act the opportunity to bring them to conformity”.


Earlier, Mr. Stephen Okon, director, Citizenship and Business in the ministry, had said the conference was scheduled to hold in three major cities across the geo-political zones, adding that it would provide an avenue to educate the public and create awareness on the key requirements of the Marriage Act while also drawing the attention of stakeholders and the general public to the consequences of non-compliance with the Marriage Act.


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FG to Sanction Banks that Sack Workers



Sen. Chris Ngige, minister of Labour and Employment, has threatened to sanction banks, who sack workers indiscriminately, saying they ought to declare redundancy before taking such decisions.


Ngige, who resumed duty on Thursday alongside Sen. Tayo Alausadura, minister of State for Labour and Employment, said it was worrisome that workers were sacked without recourse to due process of disengagement.


According to him, the ministry has introduced time frame of running agreements that have been reached with trade unions in order to make an insurable industrial climate.


“We also have to monitor job loses, we also have to stem the tide of job losses through a proactive action from this ministry.


“We were all here, when the bank started, we had to stop them because we looked into the matter and discover they didn’t actually declare redundancy, which is in labour sections.


“They must observe the article of redundancy, once they do that, the law is the last to come first to go.


‘We discovered that those banks, having used earlier people, want to dispose them and bring relatives and other friends, the same thing in the oil industry.


” We have created an enabling environment for them, we can do better, we can consolidate on our gains, we can also conciliate in a better way.


“We have introduced time frame of running agreements that have been reached with trade unions in order to make an insurable industrial climate.


“We have done it before, we can do it again, I urge all of you to wear your cap as issue of unemployment rest on the government to stem it,” the minister said.


Ngige said through the department of cooperatives, currently managed by the ministry of agriculture, government will ensure that all states of the federation collaborate to promote self employment.


He pledged commitment to continue working with the labour unions, saying due process would be followed to engender peaceful industrial peace and harmony.


He said he delayed registration of the United Labour Congress, following the issue of not meeting the requirements as a trade Union.


“I remain committed to working with the Labour unions. The Nigeria Labour Congress is a federation of labour unions. You have other federations such as the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria and the United Labour Congress, which has not been officially registered, but there are unions that are there.


N30,000 Minimum Wage: Save Nigeria from looming national strike, Labour tells SGF(Opens in a new browser tab)


“I refused to register the United Labour Congress as a labour federation in his first coming to the ministry because they have not met the legal requirement of having 12 brand new labour unions, even though they currently have about 18 unions in their fold.


“We will also extend our hand of friendship to all the labour unions, before I left, we had some family dispute, there is no family that has no problem.


“However, we have resolved it in a family way and will ensure the wounds heals permanently, this is what I have to say for tripartitism,” the minister said.


He also commended the International Labour Organisation (ILO) for providing an office for Nigeria in Geneva, saying this meant more responsibility for the country as “the whole of Africa now promoted us to take charge of West Africa and Africa region.”

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Nigeria Breaks History, Becomes First to Approve GMO Cowpea



President Muhammadu Buhari

Nigeria has made history by becoming the first country in the world to approve biotech cowpea, thereby adding a new biotech crop to the global biotech basket.


This is according to the Global Status of Commercialised Biotech/GM (Genetically Modified) Crops in 2018 (ISAAA Brief 54), and disclosed in a news release by the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications, ISAAA on Thursday.


The release was issued at the Nigeria Science Cafe and launch of Brief 54, a report on Global Status of Commercialised Biotech/GM Crops event in Abuja.


The release, signed by Dr Margaret Karembu, director, ISAAA AfriCentre in Kenya showed that Africa continued to make steady progress in the adoption of biotech crops.


The ISAAA AfriCentre Director praised Nigeria’s progress in biotech crop development and adoption, noting that the country was leading in agricultural technology approvals enabled by an efficient bio safety system.


“The world is in a technological advancement trajectory, the green revolution that had taken the world by storm in the second half of the 20th century is quickly transitioning into gene revolution.


“We are now progressing into genome editing, a more precise and accurate technology to effectively develop more productive, highly nutritious and climate resilient crops for our rapidly increasing population,’’ she said.


In the ISAAA Brief 54 report, a total of 70 countries adopted biotech crops through cultivation and importation in 2018, the 23rd year of continuous biotech crop adoption.


Also a total of 26 countries with 21 developing and five industrialised countries planted 191.7 million hectares of biotech crops, adding 1.9 million hectares to the record of plantings in 2017.


The Kingdom of Eswanti, former Swaziland, joined South Africa and Sudan in planting biotech crops


in Africa, with commercial planting of insect resistant (IR) Bt cotton on an initial launch of 250 hectares.


This brought the number of African countries currently growing biotech crops to three. Nigeria, Ethiopia, Kenya and Malawi granted approvals for planting biotech cotton as the proof that Africa is ready for biotech crop adoption.


The report further indicated that South Africa alone planted 2.73 million hectares of biotech crops in 2018, sustaining its ranking among the top 19 biotech crop countries in the last two decades.


Most farmers in the country have adopted plant biotechnology with 87 per cent of adoption of biotech maize, 95 per cent biotech soybean and 100 per cent of biotech cotton.


The report further stated that Sudan planted 243,000 hectares of BT cotton, and a total of 3.14 million hectares of biotech crops in Africa.


The report highlighted among others, that the top five countries with the largest area of biotech crops planted by U.S., Brazil, Argentina, Canada and India collectively occupied 91 per cent of global biotech crop area.


It showed that biotech soybean reached the highest adoption worldwide, covering 50 per cent of the global biotech crop area.


The report indicated that farmers in 10 Latin American countries planted 79.4 million hectares of biotech crops among others.


It said that with the continuously increasing adoption of biotech crops worldwide, farmers were at the forefront of reaping numerous benefits.


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Nigeria CommunicationsWeek e-Edition Debuts



As a valued reader, we would like to share with you the new product we just launched


It is the e-Edition  available to interested readers.

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As you are aware, Nigeria CommunicationsWeek, believes that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world.

We value your readership and look forward to continue our services to you in the future.


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