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UN security council to meet on Iran protests

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The UN Security Council will hold an emergency meeting Friday to discuss the wave of protests in Iran.

US Ambassador Nikki Haley warned ahead of the meeting that the demonstrations could escalate into full-blown conflict, drawing a comparison with Syria.

“The world has witnessed the horrors that have taken place in Syria, that began with a murderous regime denying its people’s right to peacefully protest,” Haley said in a statement late Thursday.

“We must not let that happen in Iran.”

A total of 21 people have died and hundreds have been arrested since December 28 as protests over economic woes turned against the regime as a whole, with attacks on government buildings and police stations.

The United States formally requested the meeting on Thursday, but Russia and some of the other council members are not convinced that the top UN body should discuss the unrest in Iran, diplomats said.

Russia has criticized the US push for Iran to be discussed at the Security Council and accused Washington of interfering in Iran’s domestic affairs after President Donald Trump backed the anti-government protests.

Diplomats said they expected Russia to request a procedural vote at the start of the meeting to decide whether the situation in Iran should be on the council agenda.

For a new agenda item to be discussed at the Security Council, at least nine of the 15 council members must support holding the meeting. No vetoes apply.

“This is a matter of fundamental human rights for the Iranian people, but it is also a matter of international peace and security,” said Haley.

“It will be telling if any country tries to deny the Security Council from even having this discussion, just as the Iranian regime tries to deny its own people the ability to have their voices heard.”

Source: ( Punch Newspaper )

National News

2020 Finance Bill Exempts Minimum Wage Earners From Tax: Buhari

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President Muhammadu Buhari has revealed that the recently proposed 2020 Finance Bill will exempt workers earning the minimum wage from paying tax.

Buhari disclosed this on Monday in a speech delivered virtually by Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo at the opening session of the 26th Nigerian Economic Summit Group Conference themed: “Building Partnerships for Resilience.”

Also Read: Recession: Nigeria’s Economy On Way To Recovery, Says Osinbajo’s Aide

“We are proposing in the new Finance Act that those who earn minimum wage should be exempted from paying income tax,” he was quoted as saying in a statement issued by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Laolu Akande.

“These provisions which complement the tax breaks given to small businesses last year will not only further stimulate the economy but are also a fulfilment of promises made to take steps to help reduce the cost of transportation and the impact of inflation on ordinary Nigerians.”

 

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Nigeria Will Exit Recession By First Quarter Of 2021 – Finance Minister

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Nigeria Will Exit Recession By First Quarter Of 2021 – Finance Minister

Zainab Ahmed

Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed has revealed that Nigeria would emerge from recession in the fourth quarter of this year or by the first quarter of 2021.

Recall that on Saturday, Nigeria officially went into recession for the second time under President Muhammadu Buhari‘s administration.

Speaking on Monday at the ongoing 26th Nigerian Economic Summit organized by the Nigerian Economic Summit Group and the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, Zainab said the current recession would be short-lived.

Also Read: Recession: Nigeria’s Economy On Way To Recovery, Says Osinbajo’s Aide

She blamed COVID-19 for the current recession, saying it followed the pattern across the world where many countries had entered an economic recession.

“Nigeria is not alone in this, but I will say that Nigeria has outperformed all of these economies in terms of the record of a negative growth,” Ahmed said.

 

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Court Remands Nigerian Senator, Ali Ndume, In Prison

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Court Remands Nigerian Senator, Ali Ndume, In Prison

Ali Ndume

Senator Ali Ndume, the lawmaker representing Borno South Senatorial district has been ordered on Monday by a federal high court to be sent to prison.

The order follows his inability to produce Abdulrasheed Maina, the former Chairman of the defunct Pension Task Team, whom he stood as surety for in his corruption and money laundering trial.

The high court, sitting in Abuja was presided over by Justice Okon Abang and ordered Senator Ndume to be remanded in Kuje correctional centre.

Also Read: Alleged Money Laundering: Court Orders Arrest Of Abdulrasheed Maina

Justice Abang, however, gave three conditions upon which Ndume can regain his freedom namely payment of N500m bail bond into the Federation Account of the Federal Government and present evidence of such payment in court or the FG sells the property situated in Asokoro, Abuja which Ndume pledge as security for the bond and present evidence of sale and payment of the N500m realised into the Federation Account or he (Ndume) produces Maina, who is believed to have now jumped bail, in court.

Shortly after the pronouncement by the Judge, Senator Ndume was led away from the courtroom by security operatives.

 

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