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D8 meeting: Isiaka gives account of six months stewardship

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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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Maku Emerges DG Of Nasarawa PDP Gubernatorial Candidate Campaign Council, Others

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By David Christopher, Lafia

As preparation for the 2023 General Elections is in top gear, Nasarawa State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) met at the level of the State Caucus Meeting and officially unveiled her State Campaigning Management Committee with the former Commissioner, Deputy Governor and Information/Defence Minister, Mr. Labaran Maku appointed Director General (DG) of the Campaign Council.

This was contained in a press release signed by the head of the party’s media/Publicity team in the state Comrade Adeka Stephen and made available to our correspondent in Lafia on Friday.

while other party gladiators; Senator (Dr) Walid Jibrin (OON), Distinguished Senator Solomon Aku Ewuga, Distinguished Senator Suleiman Asonya Adokwe, His Excellency Dr John Mike Abdul, Alhaji Usman Danlami Bagudu, Major General Nuhu Bala Angbazo (Rtd), Dr. Mike Omeri Agbo, Prof. Abdullahi Jibrin were enlisted as Deputy Directors of various committees.

The statement read In part,”it’s not gonna be business as usual for the failed APC led government, but one man one vote… PDP is more organized/prepared to take over power in the state and the country come 2023″ The party’s chairman in the state Hon. Francis Orogu stressed.

On his part the Gubernatorial Candidate in the state, Rt. Hon/Dr. David Emmanuel Ombugadu (PhD) who spoke through his Deputy, Hon. Usman Yahaya Ohinoyi said,”The suffering and dying Nasarawa electorates will surely decide between the bad APC candidate and the best PDP candidate in 2023.

“If elected into power, I shall move straight to the project ground breaking site from the swearing-in ceremony ground to deliver peoples oriented governance to the People of Nasarawa State”.

Expressing his readiness to lead the state campaign to a successful victory, the former Deputy Governor, Nasarawa State and Information/Defence Minister, Hon. Labaran Maku said, “We will adequately mobilize people to vote/protect the PDP votes to install OMBUGADU (PDP Governor) and Atiku Abubakar (PDP President) in the state and the country at large…our resolution to remain united as one indivisible entity before, during and after the elections is sacrosanct to give Nasarawa State of our dreams a new home and destiny “.

Our correspondent observed that the news of the season orator, political guru and an ardent grassroot mobilizer and a two terms All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) Gubernatorial Candidate in Nasarawa State, Hon. Labaran Maku to sphare head the said campaign and other Politicians of note has prompted PDP supporters to embarked on jubilation across the entire state.

In an exclusive interview with Comrade Adeka Stephen the party’s image maker in the state he said,” With this formidable campaign structure you will agree with me that it is already a defeating threat to the unproductive APC government in the state. Recalled that APC group passed a vote of no confidence on Engr. A.A Sule over porous conduct of party primaries. Surely, the end and judgement day of the APC led government in Nasarawa State is here in 2023.

“PDP landslide victory in 2023 General Elections in Nasarawa State is Clary and crystal clear because, APC votes will be shared to Social Democratic Party (SDP), New Nigerian Peoples Party (NNPP), Action Democratic Congress (ADC) and Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) as most of the key APC players left the party for another after primaries, but the umbrella party PDP house is intact and united combat ready to halt APC Leadership in the state and nation.

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