Tag Archives: babatunde

COVID-19 Lockdown: Lagos govt retire case against Naira Marley, Gbadamosi.


The Lagos State Government has withdrawn the charges it filed against musician, Naira Marley, and a politician, Babatunde Gbadamosi for violating lockdown.

Naira Marley, Gbadamosi and his wife were charged before the Lagos State Magistrates’ Court in Ogba for attending a crowded birthday party in violation of the government’s social distancing directive to check the spread of coronavirus.


They were scheduled for arraignment on Wednesday but the government, according to one of the defence counsel, Mr Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa (SAN), withdrew the four counts filed against the three defendants.

Policemen had earlier barred journalists from the court premises.

At the end of the proceedings, Adegboruwa briefed journalists on what transpired in the courtroom.

He said the state withdrew the charges on the condition that the defendants would tender an apology to the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), and Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu


#Newsworthy…

Why Nollywood will continue to do Juju film – Yul replies Fashola


Nollywood actor, Yul Edochie, has reacted to the statement made by Babatunde Fashola, the Minister of Works and Housing. The former governor of Lagos State said that Nollywood movies could be fueling kidnapping and ritual killings given the number of persons the police have arrested with human skull and other body parts, with the motive of money ritual.

Yul Edochie had a different view and according to the Anambra State born actor, he is not in support of filmmakers banning such movies because he believes it is all about entertainment and it ends there.

Insecurities: Nollywood movies promoting money rituals – Fashola


#Newsworthy…

APC will rule Lagos State for ever – Alhaji B.A Balogun.

…in terms of infrastructure

Alhaji Babatunde Alade Balogun is the Lagos APC Chairman. In this interview, he talked about the APC’s Next Level mantra and how it has improved the infrastructural development of the country.

What’s your assessment of Governor Sanwo-Olu’s administration especially against complaints by Lagosians?

Of course, he has been performing excellently well. APC, Lagos State as we all know has been in governance for over 20 years now. And over the years, you could see the level of infrastructural development in the state compared to other states, the socio-economic development, and developments in various institutions of the state.

Many states have come to enquire about the possibilities of these structural developments in the state.

Other stakeholders have come to understudy some of the projects that are carried out in Lagos State. As a matter of fact, we had a town hall meeting yesterday on the issue of security trust fund and I must tell you that many states have come to find out how we do it here. Lagos State security trust fund is a fund generated from private voluntary donors like the successful and prominent banks, some of the productive companies. They donate these funds voluntary. And this has been very reliable and effective, and it’s been a transparent fund management that has attracted a lot more donors.

There has never been a bank robbery in Lagos State like there is in other states. Security of lives and property is a top-most priority for this governor Sanwo-Olu’s administration. More importantly, this administration is technology- driven, providing good road network, provision of inland water ways, provision of adequate road transportation, prioritising education, and is actively bent on managing the traffic challenges by employing more traffic wardens. The achievements are inexhaustible. All these policies have worked for us as a state, that is why we have all we need in the state today, and Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu is not doing anything different from his predecesures; he is following the master plan for the betterment of Lagos people. So, I give kudos to Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s administration.

How long do you think APC will control Lagos?

Lagos State is blessed to have governors who have performed excellently well and still performing excellently well concurrently.

Other states envy Lagos because of its good governance. The governor is driven by clear vision, and it’s important I note that the governor who laid the foundation for this good governance and clear vision is Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu during his tenure as Lagos State governor in 1999. He formulated the ten point agenda, for the development of Lagos State. All that is being actualised today, were plans made during the Tinubu-led administration. Including the Lagos State Traffic Agency (LASTMA), you see today was in the ten point agenda of his administration. The agency has become a veritable source for job employment. Everyday we have people trooping in and out of Lagos, because the state is excelling. You find people from all walks of life taking advantage of the quality development of Lagos. What I’m doing is stating the obvious reasons why APC will remain in power for as long as the people want it. And this is what the people need and why they always vote for APC. It’s the people that have always voted the party into power. In my opinion, I think the governor believes APC will remain in governance for as long as the people want, even if it’s forever.

There are speculations that Lagos State is under a political god-father who controls the affairs of the state. What is your impression about that?

My take on that fallacious speculations is that first, people must realise that the present governor is competent to carry out any task as he is doing right now. He has clear vision of how to run the state.

He is brilliant and experienced in the governance of Lagos State. He has been a commissioner for about two times. He has been a part of the actualisation of Lagos plans. So, he knows what he is doing. Like I earlier said, Lagos State has a plan that is being followed by all sworn in governors, and that plan has worked well for the growth and development of the state. So, any governor who goes against the plan is doing so at his own peril. On this note, I want to clearly correct that unnecessary speculation of Lagos State being under a political god-father. It is baseless, and has no existence in the state.

When you talk about a governor going against the set-out plan for the state, do you refer to the past governor?

Well, all I can say is that there was an election, a free and fair one.

The people voted out whom they didn’t want and voted in whom they wanted. It’s a simple statistic. His administration has began on a good note, it was evident. But the people have the civic right and responsibility to exercise their votes.

What’s your take on the hate speech bill and the death penalty punishment?

If a bill is passed and the people find it not suitable or fair, to raise objections and express their views against it, it is not out of place for people to kick against it if it’s not acceptable. For now they can deliberate on it, that’s why it hasn’t been signed into law yet; it takes a process. This is democracy. We give room for people to be heard. For me, I’ll say the law and legislative arm of government should ensure it undergoes the necessary process and take its final course.

What is your view on some Northerners insisting that power should remain in the North?

When you say Northerners, then you are talking about few of them.

I don’t want to disperse anyone of their view, but that’s in the minority. Every Nigerian has the right to say or express their views.

If the Northerners are insisting that power belongs to them, then that can only be proven by their ability to utilise their voter’s cards to exercise their rights in a civil way. I’m very sure that these few are those who are not well informed and educated on their rights. We are all Nigerians and as far as the law is concerned, every Nigerian is entitled to rule and be ruled.

Shouldn’t the presidency go to the South-East for equity and justice?

It fully depends on Nigerians. If a party chooses its presidential candidate, and the people vote for the candidate, it is their votes that will count who wins and who is sworn in as the president. Every Nigerian, irrespective of tribe, religion, has the right to vote and be voted for. So, if they think it’s time for presidency to go to the South-East, the people should wait till its time and vote for their preferred candidate, and allow the electoral authority have its final say. Voting for a preferred candidate, is the constitutional right of every Nigerian. Presidency is not allocated, it is voted for by the people.

Is the APC’s Next Level mantra synonymous with suffering and hardship as it is currently?

No, it is not and I say that categorically. The APC Next Level mantra is practically synonymous with development. That is an obvious fact.

Look back to the 16 years of misrule of the PDP; President Buhari took over office in 2015; Nigeria is interconnected now with a lot of good road networks, after the deplorable state of Lagos-Ibadan expressway, now that road is under construction as we speak, and before the middle of the new year, Lagos-Ibadan expressway will be completed. The same thing with the Niger Bridge; it was in a deplorable state when the PDP were there. The APC came in 2015 and the fact is obvious. That’s what we mean by next level. We are taking Nigeria to the next level of good governance and excellent leadership, economic development, infrastructural development in the improvement of people’s lives. I need not say more.

How about security improvement?

Yes! We acknowledge there are still security challenges, no doubt. But when you take a close look at other developed countries, you will observe that they also experience security challenges. The most important thing is that the Federal Government is making efforts to combat the lingering insurgency which everyone knows that it’s not an easy task. Insurgency and arm-struggle is the most tactful menace to cub, especially in a densely populated country as Nigeria, where some miscreants have chosen to take violence as a lifestyle. Definitely, the Federal Government has gained an upper hand in tackling it to a minimal level. It’s no more tedious as it was in 2014. So far, there has been a decline in insurgency in Nigeria.

What is the position of APC on Tinubu’s presidential ambition in 2023?

I reserve my comment on that, but you must understand that Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu is a Nigerian citizen, and therefore deserves the right to run for presidency like every other citizen and it is the people’s right to choose and vote for him. The most important thing is that he has the political wisdom, he has the acumen, he has political experience for many decades, and he has what it takes to rule a country. That’s all I can say for now until the appropriate time.

What are your thoughts about the border closure by the Federal Government, don’t you think it has contributed to the ongoing hardship in the country?

That was a fantastic decision made by the Federal Government. So far, it has helped improve made in Nigeria products enormously, especially local rice. Nigeria has recorded a high level of revenue now since after the border closure. All these revenue could have gone to the neighboring countries. Local rice farmers are smiling to the banks now. The demand for locally produced rice is on the increase. There has been a massive cultivation of rice since the border closure. The president has led that rice revolution. The same thing applies to the poultry farmers; they are all smiling to the banks, because of the tremendous demand for produce. The border closure has also saved Nigerians health-wise. These neighboring countries used to smuggle tons of expired rice into Nigeria, and denying us of a healthy and nutritious rice. The same thing with vehicles, petrol, arms and other commodities. They used to be smuggled into Nigeria through the borders by these countries. Nigeria was a dumping ground for them. It’s a pathetic situation. So, I strongly support the continuous closure of the border for the economic growth and health improvement of Nigerians.

#Newsworthy…

Babatunde Fowler Hand Over To Abiodun Aina, Thank Presidency.

…We have got a mandate

Immediate past Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, Tunde Fowler, yesterday thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for the privilege he had to serve the nation and for what he was able to do with the support of all Staff.

Waxing biblical, Fowler noted that the taxman job is one of service to one’s fatherland as it gives one the opportunity to serve fellow humans and the nation.

Change, he noted is constant. It is normal that people will always resist change, he noted.

He spoke at arbour 6: 35 pm as he handed over to the Coordinating Director Domestic Taxes Group, Abiodun Aina, who promised to steady the ship of the FIRS.

Said Tunde Fowler in a handover over ceremony at the Boardroom of the FIRS: “Let me thank all of you who are here for what we have been able to do for our country. From the driver to the senior staff, everybody played a role. But with the change, sometimes there is resistance. People will not understand the vision, will not understand the reason for the change. But hope in leaving FIRS, I’ve left behind something, something, positive, that each and every one of you can build on.

“We have got a mandate. That mandate is not just to collect revenue. It’s a mandate to collect the maximum amount of revenue for all concerned for the benefit of all Nigerians.

“There is nothing automatic about having a second Term. Some of you might say it’s a big surprise. It a privilege to serve one’s country. And if you have the privilege of serving your country for one term and you believe you have done your best, you have to thank God for that.

“For those of you we are leaving behind, I do not want to get too scriptural. But I believe that anything that you do, that helps your fellow human being, your neighbour is a blessing. And I believe that this job that we have been given is a job that will continue to help all Nigerians and all people residing in Nigeria.

“We have the opportunity to show the world that Nigeria has a lot to offer. It was during this period that we had a top Director, representing Nigeria and the world at the OECD. It was within this period that Nigeria, for the first time chaired ATAF (African Tax Administration Forum), for two years running. It was within this period that Nigeria through your support was appointed as the 1st Vice-Chairman of the United Nations Committee of Tax Experts. So we have a lot going for us.

“I like you to keep the flag flying, but I hope that sometime when I visit, my picture will be somewhere on the wall.

“One thing, for people who have known me for a while, is that some of them refer to me as a shark. I like to keep people on their toes. Some of you might have thought that I don’t appreciate your contribution. But some of you… might have been able to do things better. And part of my role is to bring out that potentials in you. And I hope I have been able to do that. I am content.

“I like to thank the President for giving me this opportunity of service. It’s a privilege of service to your country. But at the same time, I believe I leave behind a good crop of directors that can move this organisation forward.

“I will say that for the incoming Chairman, for the incoming Board of Directors, give them the support. The vision, I believe, is the same vision that we have. But how to go about it may differ. Open yourselves up to change. At this point, it gives me the extreme privilege, to hand over the running of this organisation until the Senate approves the new Board, to someone who has been here, to someone who understands the working of the FIRS, to someone who has been part of the change. And I believe that you will give him the support, not even the support you have given me. But more support. SO that when he hands over the organisation to the new board, they will see that this organisation is one that shares the same vision, and of course believes in his mandate. With these few words, I like to say it’s a pleasure working with all of you.

“Some of you might have thought that don’t like you. But I assure you it was work. But I believe in this room, we have got a lot of talent regardless of what happens, keep the flag flying.

“On this note, Mr Aina, I have the privilege of handing over FIRS to you. God bless FIRS. Long live the Republic of Nigeria.

Acting Executive Chairman, FIRS, Abiodun Aina spoke in glowing terms about Fowler. Said Aina: “Thank you very much Mr, Chairman, my boss, my brother, and my good friend Sir. As you hand over to me I say what I’m I running. To have fought a good fight. You laid a very u solid foundation…

“Within the intervening period that I will be holding forte, I promise you to steady the ship, by the grace of God. You have done a lot within the space of four years. You have transformed FIRS. You have modernised it. There has been a lot of innovations. And under you, we have achieved great heights. When we look back in 2015, the section was about N3. 3 trillion. At the end of 2018, with your leadership, we were able to move to N5. 32 Trillion. That was the highest collection ever, in the annals FIRS. You brought dynamism to FIRS.

“You introduced so many programmes that repositioned FIRS: Tax Amnesty Programme implemented VAIDS, increased the no of taxpayers nationwide to over 20 million in a spate of four years, began placing lien on the account of taxpayers to ensure that each capable corporate taxpayers pay his/her dues, fostered collaboration amongst the states through the Joint Tax Board, began robust information sharing amongst states, launched the JTB TIN so that states might have access to data for tax purposes, deepened FIRS’ embrace of technology for tax purposes and many more.

“But like you also mentioned in your speech, change is usually resisted. And so you stepped on toes. That is normal. Leadership is not a popularity contest. And I’m sure you know that very well. And that was why you were focused on carrying out the mandate that was given to you. I can tell you on behalf of my colleagues here that we will miss you. You have left a very big shoe behind. We will do all we can to ensure that we will keep the flag flying.

“Thank you very much for what you have done for us.”

As Aina ended his brief remark, directors and heads of department in attendance, held hands and sang For he’s a jolly good fellow, chorus” for the outgoing executive chairman. Many pumped hands and thanked Fowler for his contribution to the Service.

#Newsworthy…

Former FIRS Chairman, Babatunde Fowler Appreciates Buhari After Re-election Denial.

…says ‘change is constant’

Immediate past Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, Tunde Fowler, has thanked President Buhari for the privilege he had to serve the nation and for what he was able to do with the support of all Staff.

Fowler noted that the taxman job is one of service to one’s fatherland as it gives one the opportunity to serve fellow humans and the nation. Change, he noted is constant. It is normal that people will always resist change, he noted.

He spoke as he handed over to the Coordinating Director Domestic Taxes Group, Abiodun Aina, who promised to steady the ship of the FIRS.

Tunde Fowler in a handover ceremony at the Boardroom of the FIRS said:

“Let me thank all of you who are here for what we have been able to do for our country. From the driver to the senior staff, everybody played a role. But with change, sometimes there is resistance. People will not understand the vision, will not understand the reason for the change. But hope in leaving FIRS, I’ve left behind something, something, positive, that each and every one of you can build on.

“We have got a mandate. That mandate is not just to collect revenue. It’s a mandate to collect the maximum amount of revenue for all concerned for the benefit of all Nigerians. There is nothing automatic about having a second Term. Some of you might say it’s a big surprise. It a privileged to serve one’s country. And if you have the privilege of serving your country for one term and you believe you have done your best, you have to thank God for that.

For those of you we are leaving behind, Ï do not want to get too scriptural. But I believe that anything that you do, that helps your fellow human being, your neighbour is a blessing. And I believe that this job that we have been given is a job that will continue to help all Nigerians and all people residing in Nigeria.

“We have the opportunity to show the world that Nigeria has a lot to offer. It was during this period that we had a top Director, representing Nigeria and the world at the OECD. It was within this period that Nigeria, for the first time chaired ATAF (African Tax Administration Forum), for two years running. It was within this period that Nigeria through your support, was appointed as the 1st Vice Chairman of the United Nations Committee of Tax Experts. So we have a lot going for us.

“I like you to keep the flag flying, But I hope that sometime, when I visit, my picture will be somewhere on the wall. One thing, for people who have known me for a while, is that some of them refer to me as a shark. I like to keep people on their toes. Some of you might have thought that I don’t appreciate your contribution.

But some of you might have been able to do things better. And part of my role is to bring out that s potentials in you. And I hope I have been able to do that. I am content. I like to thank the President for giving me this opportunity of service. It’s a privilege of service to your country. But at the same time, I believe I leave behind a good crop of directors that can move this organisation forward.

I will say that for the incoming Chairman, for the incoming Board of Directors, give them the support. The vision, I believe, is the same vision that we have. But how to go about it may differ. Open yourselves up to change. At this point, it gives me extreme privilege, to hand over the running of this organisation until the Senate approves the new Board, to someone who has been here, to someone who understands the working of the FIRS, to someone who has been part of the change. And I believe that you will give him the support, not even the support you have given me.

But more support. So that when he hands over the organisation to the new board, they will see that this organisation is one that shares the same vision, and of course believes in his mandate. With these few words, I like to say it’s a pleasure working with all of you.

“Some of you might have thought that don’t like you. But I assure you it was work. But I believe in this room, we have got a lot of talent regardless of what happens, keep the flag flying. On this note, Mr. Aina, I have the privilege of handing over FIRS to you. God bless FIRS. Long live the Republic of Nigeria.

#Newsworthy…

Presidency smiles at Muhammad Nami, Shawn Babatunde’s Reappointment As FIRS Chairman.

…bios of Babatunde fowler

President Buhari has rejected the reappointment of Babatunde Fowler as the chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service(FIRS) and appointed Muhammad Nami as Fowler’s successor.

Fowler, who is a childhood friend and former classmate of Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, was appointed as FIRS chairman on August 20th 2015. He was confirmed by the Senate on December 9th 2015. Fowlers tenure of four years, though renewable on the discretion of the President, expired today Monday December 9th.

A statement by the Presidency says Nami’s nomination has been conveyed in a letter sent to the Senate on the composition of a new board for the revenue agency. According to the statement, Nami is a well-trained Tax, Accounting and Management professional with highly rated qualifications and professional practice and licenses from relevant professional bodies”.

He has almost three decades of practical working experience in Auditing, Tax Management and Advisory and Management services to clients in the banking, manufacturing, services and public sectors as well as non- profit organisations.

He attended Bayero University Kano and Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria where he obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology (1991) and a Masters of Business degree (2004) respectively. He is a fellow of Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria, Institute of Debt Recovery Practitioners of Nigeria and Associate Member of Nigerian Institute of Management (Chartered) and Association of National Accountants of Nigeria.

He started his career with PFK in 1993 and rose to the position of a senior Consultant in charge of Tax management and advisory services. He is currently the managing consultant of Manam Professional Services (Chartered Tax Practitioners and Business Advisers) based in Kaduna, Abuja, Niger State.

Mr Muhammad has served, and is still serving, on many companies’ Board and Statutory Board Audit Committees. He was appointed as a member, Presidential Committee on Audit of Recovered Stolen Assets in November, 2017 by President Buhari.

He is married and has children.

Babatunde Fowler is expected to hand over to the most senior director on the board, who will take charge, pending the senate confirmation of the new board.

#Newsworthy…