Thursday, July 21

Customs destroys N12.8million imported frozen poultry

Customs destroys N12.8million imported frozen poultry

The Oyo/Osun Command of the Nigeria Customs on Thursday said it has intercepted Tipper loaded with smuggled imported frozen poultry products after three days of ambush along the Agunrege/Saki axis, in Atisbo Local Government area of Oyo state.

The seized frozen poultry products packed in 1600 cartons were buried and destroyed by the officers.

At the site of the destruction were Customs and police officials, newsmen, members of the public and officials of National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC).

The poultry products which was worth N12.8million, according to the Command was made possible through intelligence gathering.

Speaking at the destruction of the banned poultry products at the Arapaja Dump site at Oluyole Local Government of the state, the Customs Area Comptroller of the Command, Mr Temitope Ogunkua said customs officers would not relent in their effort to stop smuggling of banned products.

“We will continue to chase them and we will reduce smuggling in the Command. What you have seen is one of the antics of smugglers. If you see that vehicle you will think its carrying gravel but from the intelligence we gathered we discovered it was loaded with imported frozen poultry products.

Apart from the fact that poultry product is prohibited what about the health hazard to people who consume these products. I use this opportunity again to appeal to Nigerians that they should stop smuggling and we should be wary of the things they buy “, he said.

Also showcased before newsmen were two fairly used DAF truck with registration numbers AGL 709 XR and LSD 774 XF which were arrested by officers of the Command at different border locations within the state.

The trucks were loaded with smuggled imported 900 bags of 50kg of rice .

The Controller who warned members of the public against consuming imported frozen poultry because of its various health hazards revealed that the Command has devised strategies to beat all methods of concealment used by smugglers.

” The Command wishes to use this medium to reiterate that our resolve to remain resilient and dogged still stands as we continue to re-engineer our operational architecture in the realisation and actualiation of the service core mandate of revenue generation and suppression of smuggling”, Ogunkua said.
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FG fixes boarding fare ahead of Abuja-Kaduna rail commissioning

FG fixes boarding fare ahead of Abuja-Kaduna rail commissioning

As President Muhammadu Buhari prepares to commission the completed Abuja-Kaduna rail project, the Transportation Minister, Rotimi Amaechi on Thursday, fixed boarding fare for passengers who intend to ply the route.

The Minister, who was accompanied by the National Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Oyegun, former Ondo State Governor, Olusegun Oni, and other party chieftains in Abuja, stated that the project has been finalized and ready for commercial operation.


Amaechi said passengers who intend to board executive and economy seats would be charged N900 and N500 respectively.

On perimeter fencing, Amaechi disclosed that the contract has been awarded and work will soon commence at the terminals.

“When we get money, we will start fencing. The contract has been awarded and we are looking for money but we will soon get money and we hope to start fencing in the next two – three months.

“We are expecting new locomotives and when it comes, we will then make arrangement in next year budget to buy more coaches so that we can have one of the trains stopping in all the stations and the other doing Kaduna – Abuja,” the Minister said.

In his remark, Oyegun admitted the project was initiated by the past administration but far from completion.

He added that aside from other additional considerations, the project also gave attention to the disabled persons who may want to access the service.

“Within one year of the present minister, under direction of the president, he set every other thing in place that makes it a railway line. It is functional, ready to roll. It will start rolling commercially,” Oyegun said.

Also speaking, the Managing Director, Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC), Engr. Fidet Okhira said the service will ease pressure on the roads, increase easy delivery of goods and services.

He expressed optimism that before 2017, the railway corridors will also witness fast development.

Okhira said: “This will project will also take a lot pressure off the roads, the roads will last longer and accidents will reduce. You cannot quantify all these in naira and kobo.

“Rail infrastructure brings development. In less than a year you will see industries and estates spring up along the rail corridor because there is means of transportation.

“Right now, we are moving three trains of fertilizers from Lagos to Kaduna for Flour Mills. We started moving for Lafarge from Gombe to Kafanchan and Kaduna. We are still talking with the petroleum suppliers to partner with us.

“Presently we have a few customers we move petroleum products for with our pressurized tanks. We also use some to move our diesel across our stations. We use over 15 trucks of diesel a month.

“On Abuja to Kaduna, we will have parcel wagons but not huge loads. We have 20 rail wagons and open wagons.”


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Senate urges FG to evacuate Nigerians in South Sudan

Senate urges FG to evacuate Nigerians in South Sudan

The Senate on Thursday called on the Federal Government to evacuate Nigerians living in the crisis-ridden South Sudan.

The decision followed a point of order made by the Deputy Spokesman of the Senate, Senator Ben Bruce, at plenary, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.

Bruce while raising the point of order said reports indicated that Nigerians in South Sudan were the only nationals still left in the country despite the crisis.

“As we speak in the Hallowed Chamber, the fate of Nigerians in South Sudan is unknown and there are no indications that they have been evacuated,’’ he said.

Bruce urged the Senate to summon the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama, to explain why Nigerians were allegedly abandoned in South Sudan.

The lawmaker also urged the Senate to mandate the Committee on Diaspora and Non-Governmental Organisations, to carry out holistic investigation into what transpired at the Nigerian Embassy in the country.

In his remarks, the president of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki, said the relevant authorities would be communicated appropriately to ensure that the lives of Nigerians in South Sudan were not in danger.

“Ben Murray Bruce came to discuss this matter with me and I think that based on our rule there will be no debate.

“But we will get the message across to the relevant ministry to see that a thing like this doesn’t happen and action is taken to properly address the matter,’’ Saraki stated.
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Nigerian governors to attend vacation programme in Germany

Nigerian governors to attend vacation programme in Germany

Abdulaziz Yari

The Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), Abdulaziz Yari, on Wednesday night said the governors received presentation on their vacation programme slated for Germany.

Speaking to State House correspondents at the end of the NGF meeting, the Zamfara governor said they were briefed on trip by the Germany Ambassador to Nigeria.

Yari said the governors were also briefed by South African Vodacom on health, agriculture and other areas of partnership.

He said: “As usual before any National Economic Council (NEC) meeting we used to sit down and look at what the agenda is going to look like for the meeting. So we deliberated on that and we also received some presentations from the Germany Ambassador on our trip to Germany for vocation programme as well as the South African Vodacom.

“They also made presentations to us in the area we are going to partner such as health and agriculture.”

Niger State Governor, Abubakar Sani Bello, said: “It was quite an extensive presentation, especially on the health sector.

“In due course, they will provide us more information on how we can benefit from it,” he stated.
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Breaking: Buhari nominates Eko, Augie Supreme Court justices

Breaking: Buhari nominates Eko, Augie Supreme Court justices

President Muhammadu Buhari has asked the Senate to screen and subsequently  confirm  Hon. Justices Ejembi Eko and Amina Augie as Justices of the Supreme Court.

Buhari in a letter to Senate President Bukola Saraki explained that the two nominees will represent North-central and North-west‎ respectively. President Buhari said, “In accordance with Section 231 subsection (1) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended, I have the pleasure to forward for your confirmation, the nomination of the two nominees as Justices of the Supreme Court of Nigeria,”

Also yesterday at Plenary, Senate President Saraki read a letter from President Buhari seeking the screening and approval of names of former   Senate Leader, Victor Ndoma-Egba and 18 others as chairman and members of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC). In the letter, President Buhari pleaded with the Senate to give the request an expeditious consideration and confirmation of the NDDC board of directors’ nominees.

Besides Senator Egba who hails from Cross River state, others appointed by the President are  Nsima Udo Ekere who is to serve as the Managing Director of the Commission. He hails from Akwa Ibom state. Adjogbe Ajenakevwe is to serve as executive director in charge of projects and hails from Delta state.

Mene Ienyie Derek, executive director is to head finance and ‎administration and hails from Rivers state. Other board members are Donatus Enyinnah (Abia state), Frank Samuel George (Akwa Ibom state); Brambaifa Nelson (Bayelsa state); Sylvester Effefiom Nsa (Cross River state); Ogaga Ifowodo (Delta state); Uwuilekhue Saturday (Edo state) and Osita Bonaventure Izunaso (Imo state).

Olatokunbo Ayotunde Ajasin (Ondo state); Harry Iboroma Dabibi (Rivers state); Bernard Banfa (North-central zone); Yahaya Mohammed (North-east zone); Mustapha Dankadai (North-west ‎zone); Igo Weli (Niger Delta region); Mahmoud Isa-Dutse (Federal Ministry of Finance) and Abdul-Kazeem Kasumi Bayero (Federal Ministry of Environment) also formed  the list.

The consideration and subsequent confirmation of the nominees will be done when the Senate resumes from its 6-week break in September, 2016.

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BREAKING: We are talking with Niger-Delta militants – President Buhari

BREAKING: We are talking with Niger-Delta militants – President Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari says his administration is talking to Niger Delta militants through oil companies and law enforcement agencies to find a lasting solution to insecurity in the region.

This is contained in a statement issued by Mr Femi Adesina, the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the president on Thursday.

Buhari spoke at a farewell audience with Mr Michael Zinner, the outgoing Ambassador of Germany to Nigeria at the State House, Abuja.


He said his administration was studying the instruments of the amnesty programme inherited from the previous administration with a view to carrying out commitments made that were undelivered.

“We understand their feelings. We are studying the instruments.
“We have to secure the environment, otherwise investment will not come. We will do our best for the country,’’ he affirmed.

He expressed appreciation to the government of Germany for its continuing support to Nigeria in the efforts to tackle insecurity and the ongoing rehabilitation and resettlement of displaced citizens in crisis areas in the North-Eastern parts of the country.

The president also thanked Nigeria’s neighbours for their firm and unflinching support in the war against terror.

The outgoing German Ambassador noted that bilateral relations between Nigeria and Germany “had improved very much in the last 12 months of this administration”.

He expressed the readiness of Germany to assist Nigeria in the rehabilitation process in the North-East to help displaced persons return to their villages.

He also expressed the eagerness of German businesses to invest in the country, now that “conditions for investment have been put in place”.

Zinner reiterated the standing invitation of Chancellor Angela Merkel to Buhari to visit Germany.

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House of Reps member, Adewale Oluwatayo is dead

House of Reps member, Adewale Oluwatayo is dead

Mr. Adewale Oluwatayo

A member of the House of Representatives, Mr. Adewale Oluwatayo, is dead. Although Late Oluwatayo last attended the plenary at the National Assembly on Wednesday, he however died in Abuja later same day but the news of his death got to the National Assembly on Thursday.

Late Adewale Oluwatayo represented Ifako-Ijaiye Federal Constituency of Lagos State. He was the Chairman, Ifako-Ijaiye Local Government between 2004 and 2007 before serving as a Special Adviser on Education to Lagos State Government from 2009 to 2011.


Findings indicated that though the Speaker, Mr. Yakubu Dogara, had been briefed on the incident, he did not announce it on the floor to members because the family of the late lawmaker had not been informed. However, in a condolence message soon after the House rose, Dogara consoled with the family.

The condolence message expressed shock over the death of the lawmaker. “The late Hon. Elijah died when his services to the nation were most needed. “We mourn our fallen colleague as one who gave his best in service to God and humanity.

“He was a committed and hard working member, who championed the cause of his people. “Our hearts go out to his immediate family, the people of Ifako/Ijaiye Federal Constituency and Lagos state over this great loss. “I pray God Almighty to give them the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss. We will surely miss him in the Green Chamber”, the message, which was signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Public Affairs, Mr. Turaki Hassan, read.
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Oh No! Curfew Imposed as More People Die in Plateau Crisis...See New Death Toll

Oh No! Curfew Imposed as More People Die in Plateau Crisis...See New Death Toll

Nigerian soldiers

More people have died in the plateau crisis as a curfew is declared to curtail the menace.

The crisis rocking the Plateau State may have taken an upward surge as three more people have died after soldiers opened fire on rampaging youth in Bokkos Local Government Area of the State. One person had earlier been confirmed dead.

According to Premium Times, witnesses have revealed that three of seven people who were injured in the attack, died, bringing the death toll to four.

Soldiers serving with the Special Task Force on Jos crisis on Thursday opened fire on youth who blocked a road in Bokkos in protest of the killing of a monarch and a night attack there Wednesday.

Residents said there is tension in Bokkos town, as many have fled the area to seek refuge elsewhere. The weekly Thursday market in the town could not open due to the crisis.

The military special task force imposed a 24-hour curfew on the town.

A spokesperson for the STF, Ikedichi Iweha, denied that soldiers killed the youth. He however confirmed the death of three of the youth who barricaded the routes.

Mr. Iweha, a captain in the Nigeria Army, told Premium Times via phone that the youth were about to lynch some persons they suspected of being responsible for the killings, when soldiers intervened.

He said the youth shot at soldiers, injuring some of them.

“Our troops didn’t open fire aiming at anyone, they shot in the air to arrest an ugly situation. They youth were about to lynch some persons, our troops intervened; and the rampaging youth opened fire on our men and injured personnel. Three of the protesting youth were found dead, but not as a result of gun shot from our troop,” he said.

Mr. Iweha however said the situation had been brought under control, as officers have taken over Bokkos town.

Plateau State had enjoyed relative calm in recent months after years of ethno-religious conflict that claimed the lives of thousands.

The latest spell of violence began on Monday afternoon when unknown gunmen ambushed and killed Lazarus Agaei, a first class traditional ruler and the Saf Ron Kurele, alongside his wife, son and a police guard.

On Wednesday night, unknown assailants reportedly destroyed homes and attacked residents of the area.

In protest, youth barricaded roads leading to the area on Thursday morning, and blocked the convoy of the police commissioner of Plateau State, Adekunle Oladunjoye. Mr. Oladunjoye was later allowed in.

Lawmakers, traditional and political leaders from the area gathered Thursday morning at the late monarch’s palace to meet the Deputy Inspector General of Police in charge of operations, Habila Joshak, and mourn the slain chief.

Joshua Dariye, a former governor and serving senator representing the district at the National Assembly, broke down into tears after observing a minute silence.

Mr. Dariye pleaded with the family and locals to be calm and allow security agencies investigate the killings.

“Two wrongs cannot make a right, let’s live peacefully, our paramount ruler is no more, no matter the amount of agitations we make, it will not return him to life,” he said. “But we demand that the IG sends a high-powered delegation of police expert to investigate the incident and bring perpetrators to book.”

The police DIG, Mr. Joshak, drafted from Abuja to lead the investigation, said justice will be done.

“No matter how long it will take, we must fish out the killers of the traditional ruler,” he said. “Vengeance is of God, let all of us be law-abiding, though this is a painful death, you can see the senator in tears.”
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Immigration intercepts vehicle transporting underage children in Ebonyi

Immigration intercepts vehicle transporting underage children in Ebonyi

The Nigeria Immigration Service, NIS, Ebonyi State Command on Wednesday intercepted an 18-seater bus conveying suspected victims of human trafficking including underage children.

The bus was intercepted en-route Edo State from Bekwara in Cross River state.

The State Acting Comptroller of NIS, Barrister Okey Ezugwu, who confirmed the report to newsmen at the Command Headquarters in Abakaliki, said the bus with registration number Lagos LDD-468XH with the emblem of ‘Ondo State Sunshine Express’ boldly written on it had 18 passengers travelling in it.


Ezugwu stated that upon interrogation, the victims reported that they were going to Ondo while some were sent to Benin to work in a Cocoa plantation.

The Comptroller stressed that human trafficking was a violation and an abuse of child rights for minors.

While expressing displeasure at the harsh life and inhumane treatment the victims would have been subjected to working on a cocoa farm, Ezugwu said the children had no business going on the trip without being escorted by their parents.

He, however, urged parents to desist from the terrible habit of giving their children out to strangers for monetary and material gains.
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Anambra to Supply N300million Worth of Rice to Businessmen

Anambra to Supply N300million Worth of Rice to Businessmen

A South-eastern state in Nigeria seems to be leading in the diversification of the Nigerian economy as advocated by President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration.

Anambra State government has hit a milestone in rice production as some businessmen have decided to patronize the state with millions of naira staked on the deal.

According to a business report on Daily Sun, Anambra State government’s investment in agriculture has started yielding results as the state has received order from some businessmen to supply N300 million worth of rice.

Commissioner for Agriculture, Mechanisation and Export, Mr. Afam Mbanefo, who disclosed this yesterday said the development had shown that the state was on course in its efforts to make the state the biggest producer of rice in Nigeria

Mbanefo, who spoke at the flag off of disbursement of inputs to FADAMA rice farmers in Awka, the state capital, noted that with such orders coming, rice farmers must work harder to increase their yield and assured of state government’s preparedness to give the necessary support to achieve the desired objective.

About 2, 270 farmers from over 100 clusters in various parts of the state were given input vouchers that would cover fertiliser, chemicals, seeds, among other needs, which was 50 per cent of the required input for the farming season.

The affected farmers, according to FADAMA officials, were expected to provide the balance of 50 per cent. He said the expectation of Governor Willie Obiano was to export Anambra rice to Europe in the near future.
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Wild Jubilation as Court of Appeal Grants Right to Wear Hijab in Lagos State Schools

Wild Jubilation as Court of Appeal Grants Right to Wear Hijab in Lagos State Schools

Some students wearing hijabs

There was wild jubilation at the premises of the Court of Appeal in Lagos State when the right to wear Hijab in public primary and secondary schools was granted on Thursday, July 21, 2016.

Muslims were seen praising God and exchanging pleasantries in wild jubilations on Thursday, July 21, 2016, as the Court of Appeal in Lagos State has given school children the green light to wear Hijab (Islamic headscarf) in public primary and secondary schools.

According to DailyPost, most of the Islamic faithfuls were shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’, ‘Alihamdulilah’‎, meaning 'Allah is the greatest' and 'all thanks is due to Allah' respectively.

With the latest verdict by the court, muslim students in Lagos State public schools, now have the right to wear Hijab on their school uniforms both within and outside their school premises without being punished or victimised.

While delivering the verdict on Thursday, the justices set aside the verdict of the lower court (Lagos State High Court), which earlier disallowed the use of Hijab.

The special panel of the Court of Appeal set up to hear the case had previously reserved its judgement on Friday, May 27, as during the panel hearing, the presiding justice, A.B. Gumel, also asked parties involved in the case to update their defence documents.

Other Justices in the five-man panel set up by President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa are Justice M. Fasanmi, Justice A. Jauro, Justice J.S. Ikejegh and Justice I. Jombo Ofor.

While responding to the judgement, the President of Muslim Students’ Society of Nigeria in Lagos State, Saheed Ashafa, expressed delight over the pronouncement by the court, saying the right to wear Hijab was long overdue, and urged all parties to act in accordance with the judgement.

“This is victory for Islam! Victory to Muslims. The words of Allah have come to pass. We are glad that there are few judges whose neutrality has not be stained by sentiment.

“We wonder why we had to face so many challenges before our right is granted. This recognition and truthful interpretation on freedom of religion as enshrined in the Nigeria constitution (Section 36) and United Nations Charter, will further strengthen public trust on the judiciary.

“Today will remain historic in the life of every Muslim in Lagos and Nigeria as a whole. We will remain law abiding and appeal to all and sundry not to act in ways and manners that are contrary to the judgement.

“This should mark the end to harassment, embarrassment, victimisation, cheat and all acts of wickedness unleashed on Muslim female students who wear the Hijab,” he said.

Also, Amirah of MSSN in Lagos State, Hafsah Badru, described Hijab as a religious garment, which should be put on at all times.

“Justice can never prevail over injustice, truth will always prevail over falsehood; the commands of Allah are supreme over all man made laws. Allah is the Greatest. We have not asked anyone not to observe their religious right in respect to legality, we have only asked that ours should not be tampered upon, and as Allah wants it, we have the right granted,” she said.
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Sex Scandal: US Ambassador has no evidence – Foreign Affairs Minister

Sex Scandal: US Ambassador has no evidence – Foreign Affairs Minister

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama Thursday said that there had not been any sufficient evidence to prove that the three members of the House of Representatives accused of sexual misconduct really committed the crime.


The Minister who stated this when he appeared before the House of Representatives Ethics and Privilege Committee and House Committee on Foreign Relations public investigative hearing in Abuja, also disclosed that the outgone United States of American Ambassador to Nigeria, James Entwistle had tendered apology for breaching the diplomatic protocol by writing direct to the Speaker Yakubu Dogara over the allegation instead of passing through the Foreign affairs ministry.

The three members facing allegation of sexual misconduct according to the letter from the U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria to the Speaker, House of Representatives, are Mohammed Garba Gololo (APC, Bauchi); Samuel Ikon (PDP, Akwa Ibom) and Mark Gbillah (APC, Benue).

Entwistle, had in the petition to Dogara alleged that the actions of the three lawmakers at the International Visitor Leadership Programme in Cleveland, Ohio, USA, from 7th to 13th April, 2016, brought disrepute to the parliament by soliciting… More details soon
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I’m for APC… I spent only 30 minutes at PDP caucus event - Saraki claims

I’m for APC… I spent only 30 minutes at PDP caucus event - Saraki claims

Bukola Saraki, Senate President, has expressed his commitment to the ruling All Progressives Congress and the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.

Bamikole Omishore, special assistant to the senate president, said this in a statement released on Thursday.

The statement is coming days after Saraki reaffirmed his loyalty to the APC during the 10th Abuja Housing Show.

Omishore noted that Saraki’s attendance at an event of the Peoples Democratic Party caucus on Wednesday was in official capacity.

“The attention of the Senate President’s Media Team has been drawn to a false publication that is making the rounds on social media that Senator Abubakar Bukola Saraki has defected from the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC). This fabrication is entirely untrue as the Senate President stands committed to the APC; a party that he helped midwife and worked for its victory in the 2015 elections.

“In his official capacity as Senate President and chairman, National Assembly, he attended the end of session event of the PDP caucus yesterday evening and spent only 30 minutes before leaving the members to continue with the event.

“The Senate President would like to assure every Nigerian that he is committed to the APC-led government and appreciates the confidence reposed in him and the APC during the 2015 General Elections.”
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Bukola Saraki Reshuffles Senate Committes, Marafa, Tinubu Affected

Bukola Saraki Reshuffles Senate Committes, Marafa, Tinubu Affected

The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, on Thursday reshuffled the leaderships of the Senate’s committees.

Those affected includes: the most outspoken Saraki's critic, Kabiru Marafa and Mrs Oluremi Tinubu.

Marafa was appointed chairman of the Petroleum (downstream) Committee. He was chairman of the Committee on National Population.

Tinubu, a key member of the anti-Saraki Unity Forum, was named chairperson of the Committee on Environment.

Previously, she headed the Committtee on Women Affairs.

Mr. Saraki made the announcement shortly before the senate adjourned on Thursday.

Suleiman Hukunyi, another critic of the senate president, is now in charge of the Committee on National Identity.

The re-composition of the Senate committees was one of the conditions put forward by Unity Forum Senators for peace to return to the troubled assembly.
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SHOCKER!!! Former Minister of Justice Convicted for Attempted Murder

SHOCKER!!! Former Minister of Justice Convicted for Attempted Murder

Raphael Kasambara

In a controversial case that has rocked an African country, a former Justice Minister along with others has gotten convicted for attempted murder

Raphael Kasambara, a former Malawian Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister, has been convicted for murder by the Malawi High Court.

The man was convicted on Thursday for attempting to murder the country’s former Budget Director, Paul Mphwiyo, in 2013.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria, the court found the former minister and two others, Pika Manondo and Macdonald Kumwembe, guilty of conspiracy to murder and also found the other two guilty of attempted murder.

The attempted murder of the former director took place on the night of Aug. 13, 2013 at the gates of his residence in Lilongwe.

Mphwiyo was shot three times at close range as he awaited the opening of the gate.

He was flown to South Africa for medication where a successful surgery was conducted on his face.

Mphwiyo implicated Kasambara and the other two in the case, claiming that he personally saw them during the shooting.

Malawi High Court Judge, Michael Mtambo, after a rigorous court hearing and submissions over the years, handed down the judgment to the three before a jam-packed court.

The former minister told newsmen that he would appeal the conviction and would overcome in the end, adding that the judge was compromised.

In his reaction, State Assistant Director of Public Prosecution, Enock Chibwana, hailed the judgment, saying the judge analysed the submissions without any bias.

“The shooting and attempted murder of the Malawi former budget director is directly linked to the country’s historical plunder of public funds where billions of dollars were stolen.

“Over 70 have since been arrested and the cases are still in court while over 10, among them top government personnel, having been sent to jail,’’ he said.
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I was Insulted, Betrayed by Christians as CAN President - Pastor Oritsejafor Opens Up

I was Insulted, Betrayed by Christians as CAN President - Pastor Oritsejafor Opens Up

Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor

Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, yesterday opened up on how he weathered the storm as leader of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).

While speaking in Abuja yesterday, the immediate past president of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, disclosed that Christians plotted against him and insulted him even when he put his life on the line for them as president of the national Christian body.

Oritsejafor, who revealed that he took over the mantle of leadership at the most trying times in the country, said;

“We came in a period the challenges of the church had reached a point that lots of Christians in Nigeria had been displaced from their home and churches.

“Some pastors, particularly, in northern Nigeria were closing their churches. Lots of Nigerians had become internally displaced persons in their homes,” Daily Sun quoted him as saying.

The founding and Senior Pastor of Word of Life Bible Church, located in Warri, Nigeria, called on Nigerians, particularly the Christian faithful, to stand behind the new president of the association, Pastor Samson Ayokunle and his team in order to withstand the challenges ahead.

His words, “As we are entering a more challenging period in the history of our nation. Unfortunately, it is also the time that we seem to view CAN with some contempt.

“Yes, CAN may have her challenges, but, for now, we have no other body that unites us. So, we must revere the structure and leadership. Let us continue to pray for our land and leaders,” he said.
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I Got Only N800m, a 10% of My Demand in Campaigning for GEJ - Fani-Kayode Opens Up

I Got Only N800m, a 10% of My Demand in Campaigning for GEJ - Fani-Kayode Opens Up

I Got Only N800m, a 10% of My Demand in Campaigning for GEJ - Fani-Kayode Opens Up

The embattled spokesman of Goodluck Jonathan presidential campaign, Femi Fani-Kayode has said he got N800 million for running the campaign of former president.

Speaking yesterday during a Channels Television programme, "Politics Today", the embattled spokesman of the presidential campaign of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Femi Fani-Kayode, revealed that he got N800 million, being 10% of his demands, for running the campaign of former President Goodluck Jonathan.

While the influential politician faulted the charges filed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Fani-Kayode said he has no regrets working for Jonathan, adding that from the day his party lost the election, he knew that there would be problems, but he refused to flee the country because he had not done anything wrong.

“Our director of finance sent money out to the various directors, including me from our own private company account for us to run our operations. I was given only 10% of what I needed (very small) about 800 million naira to run a campaign for three months and we utilised that money.

“I have done absolutely nothing wrong and neither has any of my co-accused. I saw this coming the day we lost elections and it was announced that the other side had won.

“I refused to leave the country just as I refused to leave the country in 2008 when I was accused of things then.

“I have absolutely no doubt that in the end of this particular exercise I will be declared innocent by the court simply because it is very obvious that this is a politically motivated allegation,” he said.

Watch the full interview below courtesy of Channels Television;





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BREAKING: Spain appoint Lopetegui as coach

BREAKING: Spain appoint Lopetegui as coach

Julen Lopetegui

Spain have appointed former Porto manager Julen Lopetegui as their new coach to replace Vicente del Bosque.


The former goalkeeper, who was recently linked with a move to England to replace Kenny Jackett at Wolverhampton Wanderers, has coached Spain at youth level extensively, having led the national under-19 and under-21s.

Lopetegui has been a free agent since being dismissed by Porto in January. The club acted after going three games without a victory, including a 2-0 loss to leaders Sporting Lisbon.

As a manager, the 49-year-old has coached Rayo Vallecano, Real Madrid reserves and more notably Spain at Under-19, Under-20 and Under-21 level.

After two years in charge of Porto, Lopetegui now joins the national coaching setup, but the appointment causes uncertainty over the managerial situation at Wolverhampton Wanderers as the Championship club were reportedly keen on hiring the Spaniard once a takeover was complete.
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Governors meet behind closed-door in Abuja

Governors meet behind closed-door in Abuja

The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) met behind closed-doors last night at the Old Banquet of the Aso Rock Presidential Villa in Abuja.


The meeting was after the Fedeal Executive Council meeting yesterday

The meeting, which started at 8.00pm til late night.

It was presided over by the chairman of the forum, Governor Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara State.

Dailytrust gathered that the meeting was called to review the state of the nation’s economy.

Governors who attended the meeting included those of Abia, Gombe, Niger, Bauchi, Kebbi, Kaduna, Ogun, Delta, Kano, Sokoto, Adamawa, and Katsina States.

The governors of Rivers, Imo, Borno, Ondo, Ekiti, Enugu, Cross River and Ebonyi States were represented by their deputies.
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Iheanacho Named 9th World Best U-21 Star

Iheanacho Named 9th World Best U-21 Star

Kelechi Iheanacho

Nigeria and Manchester City youngster, Kelechi Iheanacho, has been adjudged the ninth most valuable Under-21 player on the planet earth, according to a report by Soccerex.


The Nigerian international who starred in Manchester City's pre-season defeat against Bayern Munich on Wednesday is worth £16.8m, according to the report Soccerex Prime Time Sport’s Football Value Index study, Completesportsnigeria gathered.

France forward  Anthony Martial was adjudged the most valuable Under-21 player on the planet and was valued at £39.7m, a figure which doubles Iheanacho's worth in the top ten list.

Schalke's Leroy Sane and Bayern Munich's Renato Sanches made up the top three places.

Tottenham Hotspur's Dele Alli, Kingsley Coman, Embolo, Marcus Rashford and Max Meyer, in that order, finished above Iheanacho.
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IG orders arrest of killers of Plateau monarch

IG orders arrest of killers of Plateau monarch

Ibrahim Idris, acting inspector-general of police (IG), has ordered the arrest of the killers of Lazarus Agaie, the traditional ruler of Bokkos in Plateau state.


According to Don Awunah, spokesman of the police, Idris has directed Joshack Habilla, deputy-inspector-general of police (DIG) operations, to proceed to Plateau to lead the task.

Awunah disclosed this in a statement issued in Abuja on Thursday.

The statement said Idris ordered that those behind the gruesome murder of the monarch should be fished out in record time.

It quoted Idris as saying it is pathetic to see the life of any Nigerian, irrespective of his or her status, snuffed out by any criminal gang in whatever name.

“The I-G said the death of the monarch, his family and orderly, were particularly painful, but more painful when people took to reprisal attacks,” the statement read.

“He, therefore, advised the aggrieved to be patient with the Police in their investigation into the murder of the monarch.

“He said the Police would leave no stone unturned in arresting the culprits, but needed the collaboration of everyone with useful information.”

Agaie was murdered alongside his wife, son and police orderly.
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I will not contest for anything after my tenure expires - Gov Fayose

I will not contest for anything after my tenure expires - Gov Fayose

Ekiti state Governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, has stated that he won't contest for any position after his tenure expires in 2018.


"I want to tell you that even after this position, I am not contesting for anything. I am not going to the Senate like most of my colleagues," he said in an interview with newsmen.

He also said that he'll hand over to a PDP governor as well. "If the All Progressives Congress has people in Ekiti State, it should put its house in order and be ready to defeat me in the 2018 governorship election."

He added that his attacks on President Muhammadu Buhari aren't personal and that he's praised him on some occasions.

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'The people need mass jobs not mass weddings' - Sen Ben Bruce advises Kano govt

'The people need mass jobs not mass weddings' - Sen Ben Bruce advises Kano govt

Murray-Bruce

Commonsense Senator, Ben Murray-Bruce has reacted to the registration of 1000 women for mass weddings in Kano state.


Speaking via Social network, Murray-Bruce said, "Really sad that in this period of economic downturn some states are more engaged with mass wedding registries rather than with mass job registries! 18,000 babies are born in Nigeria everyday.

''States are seeking bailouts from the FG, businesses are closing up shop and the Naira is sliding everyday with high inflation and our priority is mass marriage! Really!!! Our priority shouldn't be facilitating mass marriages. It should be how to make our people productive enough to marry for themselves and feed their families
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Pipeline vandalism: OPC offers to help FG protect oil installations from Avengers

Pipeline vandalism: OPC offers to help FG protect oil installations from Avengers


Gani Adams, coordinator of the O’odua Peoples’ Congress (OPC), says the socio-cultural group is ready to help government in checking criminal activities, especially vandals of oil installations.


Speaking with NAN on Wednesday, Adams said the OPC was forced to withdraw its security service after being blacklisted by the government.

He condemned the recent abduction of Goriola Oseni, the traditional ruler of Iba town in Iba local council development area of Lagos state, and other atrocious acts that violent groups have committed in parts of Lagos and Ogun states.

On Saturday, suspected Niger Delta militants abducted Oseni from his palace after shooting one of his wives and killing his guard.

“I condemn the kidnapping of a traditional ruler (Oba) and others in Lagos. I also condemn the killings in some parts of the state in recent time,” he said.

“Vandals have killed a number of persons in Ikorodu area. They are involved in pipeline vandalism before now; they are involved in ritual killings.

“We, OPC, are ready to help the government in providing security if we are invited. We participated in providing security before, but the police took us as criminals.

“We do not want people to misunderstand us again; hence we resolved to provide security for only those that request for our services.

“The federal government should not take the security of Lagos state for granted. It is a state housing all ethnic groups and their investments.”

Adams noted that in spite of OPC’s contributions to security in the south-west, the government or the people had not appreciated its efforts.

He said all hands should be on deck if the security situation must be addressed, adding that the kidnapping of a monarch is an insult to Lagos and Ogun state governments and urged security agencies to step up their operations.
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I’ve forgiven Melaye - Remi Tinubu

I’ve forgiven Melaye - Remi Tinubu

The representative of Lagos-Central Senatorial District in the Senate, Oluremi Tinubu, has said as a Christian she has forgiven her Kogi-West counterpart, Senator Dino Melaye.

But she added that she would not be intimidated by anybody.

Tinubu said this on Wednesday when a delegation of the Lagos State House of Assembly members from Lagos-Central and members of the All Progressives Congress caucus in the Senate as well as some party leaders paid her a solidarity visit at the National Assembly Complex, Abuja, on Wednesday.


The Lagos-Central caucus was led by Senator Muniru Muse, while the National Assembly caucus was led by Senator Gbenga Ashafa.

Tinubu had accused Melaye of assaulting her verbally during an executive session of the Senate last week Tuesday.

Melaye, who denied the allegation, had also made counter-claims that the female lawmaker also assaulted him verbally.

Tinubu said when she started to think about all that transpired in the Senate for some days on Wednesday, she shed tears for the first time on her encounter with Melaye.

She said, “When the Senate President invited me yesterday (Tuesday) and I gave my word. You can see the channel I have taken in the aftermath of the event. I reported to the IGP; I wrote to him also, after I waited for one week. When it happened, it was him I went to. I waited for one week and nothing was done. I also wrote to the party (the APC) chairman.

“I met with the Senate leadership yesterday (Tuesday) after one week; I met with him (Senate President Bukola Saraki) yesterday. And as a Christian, I said I had already forgiven him (Melaye) for the way I was treated. But the point is that what people don’t realise is that I am a very reserved person.

“After I gave my word to him (Saraki) yesterday, I told myself that at 55 I am not a wimp of anybody.

“I witnessed the Sani Abacha regime and I know what I saw and why I am committed to this cause. But now, my hands are tied to say I forgive people. I am a Christian; when I give my word, I must abide by it. But I am not scared to follow this through.

“I am not championing a cause for women. I am only standing in my space and if my space is encroached upon, I have to fight back. Rosa Parks wasn’t an activist; she just decided to sit in her space and not give up her space to anybody in a bus. And that sent a message.

“I want to use this opportunity to thank all Nigerian women who rose up; the women rights groups who are calling, conducting press conferences and doing a lot of things.”

The senator also denied sponsoring women groups to protest on her behalf against Melaye. She stated that she had given her best to her constituency in the past five years and that inspired the protests that had trailed the verbal assault on her.

“I didn’t give anybody anything; I don’t even have N80m in my personal salary account in the Senate. And I don’t think if I have any other savings I want to use it to mobilise women to protest. What about the investments we have put into politics? How much has that done for this country?” Tinubu said.

Earlier on Tuesday, hundreds of women from various groups had besieged the main gate of the National Assembly Complex, asking the leadership of the federal legislature to act on the matter.

The Woman Leader of the APC in South-West, Mrs. Kemi Nelson, stated that the assault on Tinubu was not only on the lawmaker alone but an insult to the women fold.

She argued that the protests were not all about Tinubu but in the general interest of women, more of whom, Nelson said, were now becoming victims of abuses and assault.

She said, “Enough is enough of such assault from Melaye to any woman in the society and the Senate must take a disciplinary action against him. This is impunity and it has to be stopped. We must be accorded out rights.”

Earlier, some members of the Lagos State House of Assembly on Wednesday besieged the National Secretariat of the APC to protest against Melaye.

The protesters including Desmond Elliot were led by the Deputy Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Mr. Wasiu Sani.

They said they were at the party headquarters to register their displeasure over Melaye’s alleged verbal assault on Mrs. Tinubu.

They also alleged that there appeared to be a conspiracy of silence by the leadership of the Senate over the incident, noting that as loyal party members, they could not fold their hands and watch the party’s cherished values of loyalty and respect for leaders being denigrated.

Sani, who later addressed newsmen after the closed door meeting with the party’s National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, said, “We are here to pay solidarity visit to Senator Oluremi Tinubu, that we condemn the act, she should not be intimidated and she should not yield to verbal assault.”

In response to allegations that the protest was sponsored, the lawmaker said, nobody sponsored them as “we are buoyant enough to sponsor ourselves.”

He also commented on allegations that Mrs. Tinubu was fond of causing trouble in the Senate.

The deputy speaker said, “For us, these are mere allegations. They are unproven.”
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EFCC freezes Obanikoro daughter’s account

EFCC freezes Obanikoro daughter’s account

Shalewa Obanikoro

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has frozen an account linked to Shalewa Obanikoro, the daughter of a former Minister of State for Defence, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro.

According to EFCC investigators, about N1.2bn passed through the account which belongs to an oil firm.

Shalewa, who is a signatory to the account, was said to have personally mandated Fidelity Bank to transfer N800m from the account to another account within the bank.

A source in the anti-graft agency on Tuesday said, “We have frozen an account in which Obanikoro’s daughter is a signatory. She specifically mandated the bank to transfer N800m from the account to another account.

“We discovered that money was paid into the account at various times. The money came in N50m, N20m, N30m and various sums.

“She said the money was for oil and gas transactions. So, we have frozen the account as investigations continue. We want to know where the funds came from. At least N1.2bn has passed through the account.”

The EFCC was said to have made the discovery of Shalewa’s transactions when it was investigating the N4.7bn allegedly paid into the account of Obanikoro’s two sons – Babajide and Gbolahan.

The money, which was paid into the Diamond Bank of Sylvan McNamara, was allegedly shared among Obanikoro, the Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose; and the then governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in Osun State, Senator Iyiola Omisore.

While Omisore is in detention for allegedly receiving N1.3bn, five properties, allegedly belonging to Fayose, have been seized while his three Zenith Bank accounts have been frozen.

A house belonging to Obanikoro’s two sons in Ikoyi, Lagos, has also been seized. Obanikoro and his sons have, however, remained in the United States for the last 14 months.

The anti-graft agency had, last week, quizzed Shalewa and seized her passport to prevent her from travelling to the US.

“We seized her passport because we were told that she was planning on travelling soon. We had to prevent her from travelling since she is part of the investigation,” a detective said.

Apart from the N4.7bn arms scam rocking the Obanikoro family, MOB Integrated Services Ltd, a company headed by Obanikoro’s second son, Gbolahan, was implicated by the Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede-led Presidential Committee on Verification and Reconciliation in 2012 over an alleged petroleum subsidy fraud.

The company was said to have made three transactions valued at N5,393,592,906.62. However, investigations revealed that the company only made one transaction valued at N3,261,263,992.52 verified as legitimate.

The difference of over N2bn was allegedly embezzled as MOB did not make the needed oil supply.

However, sources at the commission told our correspondent that after Obanikoro was appointed the Minister of State for Defence, the case was mysteriously suspended indefinitely.

The oil business linked to Obanikoro’s daughter has therefore opened a new dimension to the subsidy fraud case.

A source at the EFCC said, “Obanikoro’s case is very easy to investigate because unlike other politicians, he used his children to carry out most of his alleged crimes. Out of his four children, we have seen suspicious transactions in the accounts of three of them. There is no way these young guys will have billions in their accounts if they were not fronting for their father.”

Meanwhile, the EFCC on Tuesday grilled a former Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, Dr. Doyin Okupe, for receiving N100m from the embattled former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.).

The EFCC, however, discovered that N15m was also transferred to Okupe from the account of Destra Investment Limited, a company owned by the immediate past National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh, who is on trial for allegedly receiving N400m from Dasuki.

Ironically, Okupe is one of the defence witnesses in the case against Metuh.

A source at the EFCC said, “Okupe came again as usual and we grilled him over the funds he has openly confessed to receiving from Dasuki. He claims to have spent all the money but we keep making fresh discoveries.

“He received about N15m from Destra Investment Limited, owned by Metuh. Okupe is also one of Metuh’s defence witnesses. Okupe had appeared before the Federal High Court to defend Metuh and yet he (Okupe) has confessed to receiving money from Dasuki and he also collected N15m from Metuh.

“When we confronted him with evidence, he was shocked and could not respond.”

Okupe had, on May 19, 2016, told Justice Okon Abang that Metuh received N400m from Jonathan but argued that the fund could not have emanated from the ONSA.

While defending Metuh, Okupe had said, “I am surprised to hear that the Office of the National Security Adviser was used to distribute money for Jonathan’s presidential campaign. However, the President could also use his tremendous goodwill to source funds to assist his party or help to execute special programmes.

“Besides, as the candidate for election, the President has immense capacity to raise funds as a candidate. He did not use any government establishment as his pseudo-sponsor.”

It was learnt that Okupe risked being charged with conspiracy alongside Metuh depending on the outcome of investigations.

An EFCC investigator added, “With this new revelation, it is possible that Okupe knew that Metuh’s N400m emanated from the ONSA but went to court to defend Metuh in order to cover his tracks, having received N15m. We are still investigating the matter.”
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US Ambassador ignores Reps probe over alleged sex-scandal

US Ambassador ignores Reps probe over alleged sex-scandal

James Entwistle

The outgoing United States Ambassador to Nigeria, James Entwistle, yesterday, failed again to appear before the House of Representatives investigative hearing committee on the alleged sex misconduct involving three members of the House.


This is as the three members involved in the sex scandal accused the ambassador of racial discrimination, adding that the allegation, which they claimed never existed, was a plot to smear the image of the country. They also said the absence of the ambassador and the postponement of the investigative hearing on two occasions were a denial in disguise.

The three members facing allegations of sexual misconduct are Mohammed Garba Gololo (APC, Bauchi); Samuel Ikon (PDP, Akwa Ibom) and Mark Gbillah (APC, Benue). Entwistle had, in a petition to Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, alleged that the actions of the three lawmakers at the International Visitor Leadership Programme in Cleveland, Ohio, USA, from 7th to 13th April, 2016, brought disrepute to the parliament.

He alleged that the three lawmakers solicited for sex from prostitutes and grabbed a hotel housekeeper in a bid to rape. Accused members threaten legal action against Entwistle But the lawmakers, who appeared at the Ossai Nicholas Ossai-led Committee, insisted they were innocent of the allegations against them, and demanded that the envoy produced evidence to substantiate his claims.

Testifying before the joint House committee, the accused lawmakers described the allegations by Entwistle as false and baseless. They also threatened legal action against the ambassador and the US government, if they failed to apologize to them or substantiate the allegation, in line with global practice.
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DSS detains Zamfara Speaker, deputy, others over plot to impeach Governor Yari

DSS detains Zamfara Speaker, deputy, others over plot to impeach Governor Yari

Governor Abdulaziz Yari

The Department of State Service, DSS, has detained, in Abuja, Speaker of Zamfara State House of Assembly, Sanusi Rikiji, his deputy, Muhammad Gumi and other principal officers of the Assembly allegedly on the order of Governor Abdulaziz Yari over impeachment move against him.


The Voice of America, Hausa Service, reported, yesterday, that the lawmakers were in detention in Abuja after the governor accused them of plotting to impeach him. Others arrested include the House Majority Leader, Isah Abdulmumini, and the Chief Whip, Abdullahi Dansadau.

Trouble was said to have began for the lawmakers after the Assembly called for a special sitting with Governor Yari to discuss what it called “the difficult situation the state found itself,” especially as regards governance of the state and how to find a way out.

However, the lawmakers said the governor misunderstood their mission and assumed that it was just a ploy to impeach him, hence his decision to order their arrest and detention.

One of the lawmakers, Umaru Faru, told the VOA that everyone knew the precarious situation that the state had found itself. He said: “People accuse the governor of abandoning the state, and they are also complaining about the handling of the state resources, especially the bailout funds released specifically to pay workers’ salaries.

“The money came but no one knows what happened to it. As we speak, local government staff, pensioners have not been paid, in fact, our traditional rulers have not been paid their five per cent constitutional allocation for several months, civil servants pay was cut and some of them were even sacked because of dwindling revenue.

However, they were not paid their entitlement even after the bailout came. That is why we invited them, definitely not for impeachment purposes.” Reports also said the remaining lawmakers have fled the state and were taking refuge in Kaduna State for fear of arrest.

The lawmakers issued a statement late on Tuesday asking President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene, and accused Yari of abuse of office. The statement, which was signed by the Chairman, House Committee on Information, Mannir Gidan Jaja, accused the governor of mismanagement of local government funds.

However, the state Commissioner of Information, Umaru Bukkuyum, denied that the lawmakers were in detention. He said the lawmakers were “just invited to Abuja for a meeting on how to find solution to all the problems.”
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Why FG must seize looters’ assets - RIbadu

Why FG must seize looters’ assets - RIbadu

Nuhu Ribadu

Former Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Chairman Nuhu Ribadu yesterday said seizure of assets of looters is an integral part of the war against corruption.

He also said President Muhammadu Buhari has the political will to allow the war to be fought without interference and the eagerness to support it in whatever way possible.

Ribadu said the nation has recorded unprecedented recoveries and high profile cases under EFCC chairman Ibrahim Magu.

He said his own era as the chairman of the anti-graft agency had returned to the EFCC.

But he expressed concern that some lawyers took advantage of the probe of the $180m Halliburton scam to milk the nation dry.


Ribadu made the submissions in a paper at the National Stakeholders Workshop on Recovery and Management of Recovered Assets, organised by the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC) in collaboration with the Commonwealth Secretariat.

He said international cooperation and linkages helped the EFCC in successfully tracing and recovering assets of former governors Joshua Dariye, DSP Alamieyeseigha and James Ibori and Mr. Emmanuel Nwude.

PACAC Chairman, Prof Itsay Sagay (SAN) said if Ribadu had not been removed, maybe corruption would not have become so endemic.

He said developing strategies for recovery of stolen assets would act as a deterrent to looters.

“Seizure of assets is more painful to them than imprisonment,” Sagay said.

Ribadu denied allegations that he was part of those who allegedly re-looted recovered assets, including N1trillion, and expressed surprise that it was a subject of Senate investigation.

He said: “Considering the care we took in handling whatever was in our custody, I find it baffling and disheartening when I hear people make insinuations about how we handled recovered assets.

“It is a most unfair remark but certainly not totally surprising as the fight against corruption is essentially a thankless job, especially in our climes.

“That was why I was telling Prof Sagay: ‘don’t bother sir, people will abuse you; don’t say anything. This is the job’.

“We are hurting people; we are taking things from those who took things and we denied them chance to make use of them and enjoy with their family.

“I’m still paying dearly. In my own madness, I decided to go into politics and I am still paying for it. But I am not bothered. I’ll continue fighting till my last breath. If I’m given the opportunity I’ll do it again.”

Ribadu went on: “Asset forfeiture is an integral component of the anti-corruption work as it serves many purposes within the framework.

“First, it serves as restitution in the sense that what was ill-gotten is returned to the right owner(s). It also functions as deterrence to others as those who illegally enrich themselves get stripped of that wealth overnight.

“Similarly, through proceeds of final assets forfeiture, government can make extra money that can be channelled to projects that would enable growth and development of the state.

“As a specialised element of the anti-corruption process, asset recovery requires professional and dedicated people, comprising investigators, prosecutors and managers to handle it jointly for effectiveness and to derive the maximum benefits.

“A point therefore has to be made on the importance of diligent investigation to successful and fruitful asset recovery and management.

“Whatever success that is made of forfeiture or recoveries depends on the thoroughness of investigation and diligence of prosecution and ability of investigators to trace whatever is traceable and recoverable. The success of asset forfeiture begins with the investigation.

“Surprisingly, however, in spite of the lack of adequate legal guidance and other limitations, Nigeria is perhaps the most successful country in terms of asset recoveries from foreign lands. Over time, a lot of money has been successfully returned to us in assets laundered in several countries.”

Ribadu expressed concern that some lawyers took advantage of the probe of the $180m Halliburton scam to milk the nation dry.

He said: “Contrary to such insinuations about self-enrichment, it was some people, not us or even the government, that made money from some of those cases.

“A case in point is the Halliburton investigation where after we had done the bulk of the work, it was turned into a milking cow for some senior lawyers who made millions of dollars out of it.”

The ex-EFCC chairman said President Muhammadu Buhari has a rare political will to fight corruption.

He also said EFCC chairman Magu and his team have made unprecedented recoveries in the history of Nigeria.

He pleaded with Nigerians to support Buhari’s anti-graft war.

He said: “ For me, this period is an important episode for this work, being a time that we have the most vital tool needed in this war, namely political will. I see in the present leadership, specifically the president, the will to allow the war to be fought without interference and the eagerness to support it in whatever way possible. These two points are important prerequisite in winning the anti-corruption war.

“We are also lucky to have a set of people that are very passionate and committed to be in charge of the process. Added to this, we have a plethora of practitioners, intellectuals, activists and the media that are keen and supportive of the campaign.

PACAC Executive Secretary Prof Bolaji Owasanoye said between $20billion and $40billion is stolen annually from developing countries.

According to him, seizure is important to the asset recovery process as it ensures the blockage or preservation of assets.

Director, Rule of Law Division, Commonwealth Secretariat, Katalaina Sapolu, said the international community and the Commonwealth would support the Buhari administration’s bid to recover stolen funds.

“We do not think that there has been, in many jurisdictions, a really settled view on the approach, because it requires development of policy and establishment of relevant institutional frameworks,” Ms Sapolu said.

According to her, the outcome of the three-day workshop would help in the formulation of such policies.
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First lady, Aisha Buhari sues Governor Fayose

First lady, Aisha Buhari sues Governor Fayose

The wife of President Muhammadu Buhari, Aisha, has sued the Ekiti State Governor, Ayo Fayose, for alleging that she was one of those indicted for involvement in the Halliburton multi-million dollar scandal.

The President’s wife had on many occasions denied involvement in the scam with a threat to sue Fayose if he did not stop dragging her into a fraud she knew nothing about.

A former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim Lamorde, had also declared that Aisha was not one of Nigerians mentioned in the scam or indicted for the scandal.

The EFCC investigated the scam during Lamorde’s tenure as the anti-graft boss.

But in spite of these, Fayose had insisted that the President’s wife was involved in the fraud in which Nigeria lost huge sums of money, alleging that the Federal Government’s anti-corruption war was selective and politically-motivated.

The governor claimed that Aisha Buhari was named in a document that stated she was one of those indicted in the celebrated scandal.

However, a Nigerian online medium, Premium Times reported on Wednesday night that Mrs. Buhari had dragged Fayose to court for maligning her name.

Premium Times stated that it had exclusively obtained the court summons, dated July 20, 2016, that Aisha filed against the governor.
MeasureMeasure

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Wednesday, July 20

11 Nigerians bag first class in Turkey varsity

11 Nigerians bag first class in Turkey varsity

The Registrar, Nigerian Turkish Nile University, Ismail Asan, has said 11 Nigerians bagged first class honours at the institution in the 2015/2016 academic year.

Asan said this at the fourth convocation ceremony of the institution held recently on its campus in Abuja.

According to him, Udeme Eno-Nta, who studied Computer Science, made a CGPA of 4.91 to emerge as the NTNU best graduating student for the 2015/2016 academic year.

While Aneesa Salah of the Department of Electrical and Electronics with a CGPA of 4.87 emerged as the second-best graduating student, Olabanji Opeyemi of the Department of Computer Science came third with a CGPA of 4.83.

Asan said a total of 124 students graduated from the school in 2015/2016 academic year, out of which 68 made Second Class upper degrees, 41 had Second Class lower degrees, while five students had third Class degrees.

“The turnover of graduands from the University has justified our vision and mission statement of producing quality graduates who shall be full of knowledge, skills, and experience to contribute to technological and economic development,” the Vice-Chancellor of the NTNU, Prof. Sert Husenyi, said.

The NTNU, which has received full accreditation from the Nigerian University Commission, has positioned itself as an excellent alternative to studying abroad.

“We have outstanding teaching across the board, and we also support Nigerian home values, and we encourage the elite to send their children to our school instead of abroad where they come back with strange ways,” Prof. Husenyi added.
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Local coach, Salisu Yusuf named new Super Eagles coach, following Paul Le Guen’s rejection of the job

Local coach, Salisu Yusuf named new Super Eagles coach, following Paul Le Guen’s rejection of the job

Salisu Yusuf

The Executive Committee of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has named Salisu Yusuf as the new Super Eagles Head Coach following Frenchman Paul Le Guen’s rejection of the job.

The Technical and Development Committee of the NFF on Monday recommended to its executive committee that Le Guen be appointed Super Eagles Technical Adviser.

The Frenchman claimed that he rejected the offer before his recommendation to the NFF executive committee. The NFF, however, in a communiqué after its executive committee meeting on Wednesday, said that Yusuf had been appointed following its rejection of the recommendation of its Technical and Development Committee to appoint Le Guen.

“The Executive Committee instructed the Technical and Development Sub-Committee to, within the next seven days, recommend a candidate for the post of Technical Adviser for the Super Eagles. “It noted that the refusal of Le Guen, earlier recommended by the sub-committee o accept to be given targets as well as unwillingness to live in Nigeria made his candidature unacceptable to the board.

“The committee also disapproved of Le Guen’s desire to come to the job with two assistants which will make Nigerian coaches redundant. “The committee further resolved that any candidate that will be recommended by the Technical and Development Sub-Committee must have accepted to be handed targets and must also be willing to live in Nigeria. “In addition, such a candidate must agree to undergo other internal evaluation,’’ the communiqué said.

The communiqué said that Yusuf would combine his Super Eagles job with that of the CHAN Eagles, while Imama Amakapabo would serve as Assistant Coach and Alloy Agu as Goalkeepers’ Trainer. It also approved the recommendation of the Technical and Development Sub-Committee for Bitrus Bewarang to replace late Coach Shaibu Amodu as the new National Technical Director (NTD).

It further approved the recommendation for Nduka Ugbade to return to the U-17 national team as Assistant Coach and mandated all sub-committees to henceforth submit reports of their activities to NFF Board through the general-secretary.

The communiqué said: “Executive committee approved that henceforth, only the head coaches of the various national teams will be on monthly salary, while assistant coaches will receive only bonuses and allowances. “The assistant coaches presently in the NFF’s employ have been given till the end of this year to secure substantive employment elsewhere as the federation deals squarely with its financial constraints’’. (NAN)
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Sam Allardyce set to be named as new England manager

Sam Allardyce set to be named as new England manager

Sam Allardyce will be named as the new England manager - with confirmation expected in the next 24 hours.

Allardyce will leave Sunderland after nine months at the Premier League club.

The 61-year-old replaces Roy Hodgson, who resigned after the surprise defeat by Iceland at this summer's Euro 2016 finals in France.


Allardyce, a former West Ham, Newcastle and Bolton boss, spoke to the Football Association last week and has been chosen ahead of Hull's Steve Bruce.

The only remaining issue to be settled is compensation to Sunderland, with Allardyce having a year left on his contract at the Stadium of Light.

The club issued a statement on Wednesday, saying it was "aware of the intense media speculation", but that Allardyce remained in charge "at the present time".

It added: "We share in the anger and frustration of our supporters and would like to assure them that we are working to conclude the matter in the best interests of Sunderland AFC."

Allardyce was present as Sunderland beat Hartlepool 3-0 in a pre-season friendly on Wednesday.

The FA board meets on Thursday, when it is expected Allardyce's appointment will be officially confirmed.

Both Sunderland and Hull had urged the FA to act quickly, with the new Premier League season less than a month away.

Allardyce was interviewed for the England job following Sven-Goran Eriksson's departure after the 2006 World Cup but Steve McClaren was appointed.

His first competitive game in charge will be a World Cup qualifier in Slovakia on 4 September.

Allardyce will become the 15th permanent England boss, the pinnacle of a managerial career that started at Blackpool in 1994 and has taken in 467 Premier League games - behind only Sir Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger and Harry Redknapp.

He has never won a major trophy but did secure promotion to the Premier League with both Bolton and West Ham, and won Division Three with Notts County in 1998.

As a player, Allardyce started at Bolton in the 1970s before spells at Sunderland, Millwall, Coventry, Huddersfield, West Brom, Irish club Limerick and US side Tampa Bay Rowdies before ending his career at Preston.

(BBC)
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Court remands five persons accused of murdering Kano woman for alleged blasphemy

Court remands five persons accused of murdering Kano woman for alleged blasphemy

A Kano Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday denied bail to the five men who allegedly killed 74-year-old Mrs Bridget Agbahime in Kano on June 2. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Agbahime was murdered at Kofar Wambai Market, Kano, over alleged blasphemy.

The accused persons: Dauda Ahmed, Abdulmumeen Mustafa, Zubairu Abubakar, Abdullahi Abubakar and Musa Abdullahi, were charged with inciting, disturbance, culpable homicide, joint act and mischief.

The presiding judge, Chief Magistrate Muhammad Jibril, in his ruling said the court, under Section 361 of the 1999 Constitution as amended, had the discretion to hear the bail application. But it has no power to grant the accused persons bail, he said. “Though, no material evidence to give the court, first information report is simply information.

“It shows the jurisdiction of a court to admit an accused person to bail, only when there is no evidence to prove the accused person committed an offence.’’ He said that the court had no power to grant the five suspects bail, though the court is convinced that investigation had been completed in the case diary sent to the State Ministry of Justice for legal advice.

Jibril, therefore, ordered the five suspects to be remanded in prison custody and adjourned the case to Aug.18, for further mention.

However, Gambo Abdulsalam, the Defence Counsel for all the suspects, told the court that he would forward the bail application ruling to the High Court, Kano. He said this was to enable him seek for their bail, since the court has the right to grant them bail.


Earlier, Prosecutor Ekwe Sunday had opposed the bail application in view of the gravity of the offence. He said that the suspects committed a capital offence in nature. The prosecutor, therefore, urged the court not to grant the suspects bail because of the sensitive nature of the case.
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USA 2016: Trump apologizes for using Michelle Obama quotes in Melania speech

USA 2016: Trump apologizes for using Michelle Obama quotes in Melania speech

Melania Trump

A Trump staffer apologized Wednesday for using remarks by Michelle Obama in a speech delivered by Melania Trump at the Republican National Convention that ignited a deeply embarrassing plagiarism row.

The speech from the ex-model, watched by millions on television on Monday night, amounted to a nightmarish start for the convention and subjected her husband’s presidential campaign to withering scrutiny.


Melania Trump had “always liked” the Democratic first lady and had “read me some passages from Mrs Obama’s speech” as examples of what she wanted to tell the convention, said staffer Meredith McIver.

“I wrote them down and later included some of the phrasing in the draft that ultimately became the final speech. “I did not check Mrs Obama’s speeches. This was my mistake, and I feel terrible for the chaos I have caused,” she said in a statement released by the Trump campaign. “No harm was meant.” McIver said Trump had refused to accept her resignation, saying that “people make innocent mistakes,” according to her statement.

“I apologize for the confusion and hysteria my mistake has caused,” said McIver, who was identified as an in-house staff writer from the Trump Organization.

“I personally admire the way Mr Trump has handled this situation and I am grateful for his understanding.”

Trump took to Twitter Wednesday to comment on the swirling controversy, saying: “Good news is Melania’s speech got more publicity than any in the history of politics especially if you believe that all press is good press!” He also took a swipe at the media, which he has repeatedly alleged is biased against him and favors Democratic presumptive presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, who herself has recently been mired in an email scandal.

“The media is spending more time doing a forensic analysis of Melania’s speech than the FBI spent on Hillary’s emails,” he wrote. Michelle Obama, a Harvard-educated lawyer, has high approval ratings across the country and in Melania’s home city has been embraced in New York fashion circles for her sense of style and elegance.

With millions watching on television, the Slovenia-born former model delivered an eloquent and seemingly heartfelt defense of her husband. “Donald is, and always has been, an amazing leader,” said the 46-year-old.

“Now, he will go to work for you.” Despite the unmistakable similarities to remarks given by Michelle Obama at the 2008 Democratic convention, the Trump campaign initially denied any wrongdoing, then made a tacit admission before attempting to insulate Melania, adding to a picture of a campaign in chaos.

But at the convention itself, many Republicans were unperturbed, with delegates and party members praising Melania for her grace and poise in delivering a speech in what is thought to be her fifth language.
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