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D8 meeting: Isiaka gives account of six months stewardship



The Secretary General of the D-8 Organization for Economic Cooperation, Ambassador Isiaka Abdulqadir Imam, has assured that with the positive acceptance of D-8 Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) which will serve as catalyst in boosting intra-trade relations among member countries, its operationalization will take off later this year as agreed.

While presenting the Commission and the Council of Ministers as the Chief Scribe of the Organization on his six months stewardship at the just–concluded meetings of 45th Session of D-8 Commission and the 20th Session of the Council of Ministers held in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Isiaka restated his commitment to his vision of increasing intra-trade relations amongst member countries of D-8, as well as increasing the visibility of the organization within and outside member states, through project implementation and partnership with the Organized Private Sector and Development Partners.

Speaking further, the Secretary General told the August gathering that significant progress had been achieved in the area of trade cooperation among member states with the conclusion of all issues around Trade Facilitation Strategy (TFS) and Dispute Settlement Mechanism (DSM) of the D-8 Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA).

In her inaugural address to the Council of Ministers, through virtual platform, the Prime Minister of the Peoples Republic of Bangladesh and current Chair of the D-8 Organization, Honourable Sheikh Hasina, stressed the need for implementing the PTA within the Grouping to make it a strong economic bloc. She urged member countries to work together to provide the impetus for harnessing the potential towards a prosperous future. Honourable Prime Minister Hasina expressed her satisfaction with the finalization of D-8 PTA which she hoped would help harmonize intra-country trade, liberalize the barriers, and stimulate trade and economic cooperation among the member states.

In similar vein, at the D-8 Chambers of Commerce and Industry (D-8 CCI) Business and Expo Forum organized from 26-27 July 2022 on the sidelines of the Council of Ministers meeting, Mr. Sheikh Fazle Fahim, who is the President of D-8 CCI, stated in his opening remarks, that the Expo would pave the path to expanding businesses among the member countries.  

In his address to the Council of Ministers, Dr. A.K. Abdul Momen, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bangladesh, who chaired the Council meeting, lauded the Secretary General and his team at the Secretariat for their proactive measures and novel initiatives to help member countries advance the goals of the organization. 

He said that the volume of intra-trade among member states at the inception of the organization 25 years ago was 13 billion dollars, which has now reached 129 billion dollars.

He expressed hope that within the next 10 years intra-trade will increase by 10 times or at least to 1.3 trillion dollars.

Speaking further, the Minister underscored the importance of the youths in member countries to the overall development agenda of the D-8 organization. He called on member countries to tap into the ideas and fearless energy of the youths to bring the much-needed change, which could be utilized by providing them with education and job opportunities.

On the role of women, Dr. Momen described women power as a major force in every country, adding that the time has come to recognize their potential and involve them in economic development. To achieve this, he said, priority must be given to female education, skills training, and also create a conducive environment for women to enable them contribute to economic development.

Aside the issue of trade, other key issues deliberated on by the meetings included administrative and financial matters and the issue of enlargement objectives of the Organization, as well as the current and future activities of the five D-8 affiliate bodies, namely, the D-8 Health and Social Protection Program, D-8 Technology Transfer and Exchange Network, D-8 International University, D-8 Network of Pioneers for Research and Innovation and D-8 Agricultural Research Centre.

The Ministers and representatives of the member countries reiterated the commitments of their respective countries to provide continuous support to the D-8 Organization.

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North East Commission; Group Heads For Court Over Reappointment of Former MD. Mohamed Alkali



…. Exposed How Billion was looted

Crises situations in the North East, might assume another dimension, as the North East Commission statutory established to address humanitarian crisis and infrastructural deficit, as a result of insurgency , is embedded in management crises over the appointment of the management Director.

Just as the Reappointment of Mohammed Alkali Goni, after serving his five years as tenure in office as the managing Director has become a matter of litigations, allegations of mismanagement of resources in the Commission has emerged over the weekend in Abuja .

Addressing newsmen, in Abuja on Saturday, North East pressure Group, said that the appointment of management Staff of the Commission has been politicise to a level where every appointment zone to the North East has been taken over by Borno state

The Coordinator of the group , Dr. Haruna Garus Gololo, a political activist, who led the group in a terse press Statement said that the group will be left with no option than to approach the Court to seek redress , if the concerned authorities failed to address the rot in the Commission.

” We are constraint, to draw the attention of the President and Commander of the Armed Forces, Ahmed Bola Tinubu, to the abuse of the Act. establishing the North East Commission ( NEC), by his Vice president, Senator Kashim Shettima over the statutory appointment of the managing Director of the Commission “

” The Act . clearly defined the procedures and laid down rules on the appointment of the Managing Director upon the approval by the National Assembly, which stipulates five years tenure, it is this act that has been subjected to gross Constitutional abuse with the Reappointment of Alkali, after years in Office ” he said.

Dr. Gololo, also an All progressive Congress ( APC), Chieftain said that
” Since the inceptions of this administration, every Federal appointments meant for North East is being taken to Borno state with impunity .”

Continue, the one coordinator of the All progressive Congress (APC), pointed at the appointment of the Minister of Agriculture and the recent Reappointment of Mohammed Alkali Goni, for another five years as against the Constitutional provisions “

” There are about six states in the North East, Gombe , Bauchi, Yobe and Borno, but all the appointment have been to Borno”
He warned that” we have concluded our investigations using some auditors and discovered the billions of stolen in the Commission, rather than addressing the challenges in North East, the management has become part of the crises because of their desperation to cover up the monumental Corruption”

Gololo, accused the Vice president, Senator Kashim Shettima of the implications of supporting the Reappointment of Alkali, as this may further create another crises in the Commission.

” We are given the presidency only Seven days to reverse the Reappointment of Alkali, because it is the turn of Gombe state, we have competent people in Gombe and Bauchi “

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