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Murdered Fasoranti Daughter To Be Buried On Monday Amidst National Disillusionment Over Herdsmen

20 July 2019 - 3:50am

Olufunke Olakunrin, the daughter of Pa Reuben Fasoranti, the leader of Pan-Yourba socio-political group, Afenifere, would be committed to mother earth on Monday, July 22.

Olakunrin was killed by suspected herdsmen on Benin-Ore road. 

Details of the funeral arrangements of the 58-year-old were contained in a poster seen by SaharaReporters.

In the poster, commendation night of tributes for the deceased will take place on Friday, July 19, at Harbour Point, Wilmot road, Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island in Lagos by 5 pm. 

The burial ceremony will take place at Saint David's Anglican Cathedral Ijomu, Akure, by 11 am while the interment is expected to follow at the church's cemetery.

Born on June 11, 1961, Mrs. Olakunri was survived by her aged father, her husband, Mr. Idowu Olakurin and two daughters, Oyindamola and Oluwafeyisikemi.

Mixed controversial reactions have continued to trail the death of Olakunrin.
See Also Breaking News BREAKING: Killing Of Fasoranti's Daughter Declaration Of War On Yoruba -Odumakin 0 Comments 2 Weeks Ago

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DPR Seals 33 Fuel Stations In Port Harcourt

20 July 2019 - 3:16am

The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) on Friday shut down 33 fuel stations in Port Harcourt, Rivers State over sharp practices.

Mr. Bassey Nkanga, Operations Controller of DPR in Port Harcourt, disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) during a routine inspection of fuel stations in Rivers.

The department, he said, inspected 150 stations, and caught 33 under-dispensing and selling adulterated petroleum products to unsuspecting users.

The affected stations include Conoil Petroleum, Eterna, Forte Oil, Mobil and Oando, among others.

“The filling stations were sealed for cheating the public, in violation of stipulated rules guiding operations in the upstream and downstream petroleum industry.

“So far, of the 150 stations we visited in our ongoing surveillance in Port Harcourt, 33 stations have been sealed for selling adulterated products to the public.

“Other offences committed include operating without valid licence as well as selling products between N148 and N152 per litre, above the government’s approved pump price.

“Consequently, the 33 filling stations are presently under sanction of various fines,” he said.

Nkanga further said the department shut fuel stations which over-dispensed their products.

“For such filling stations, we found out that of every 10 litres dispensed, two litres were mistakenly given to customers free. 

“So, we simply stopped them from dispensing products, pending when such pumps are re-calibrated. We took this measure because we want the marketers to remain in business,” he said.

According to the DPR boss, severe sanctions await marketers caught still dispensing products or tampering with evidence after their stations had been sealed by government.

The department, he said, was currently working with security agencies to end activities of illegal petroleum products refiners and peddlers of adulterated products in the old Port Harcourt.

According to him, the synergy has led to many fuel stations being sealed and operators put out of the illicit businesses.

“We will not relent in our efforts to ensure full compliance to rules as stipulated in the guidelines of the petroleum industry. Severe sanctions await any marketer caught flouting the rules by adjusting their meters; hoarding petroleum products and operating without valid licence,” he added.

Nkanga urged the public to report any erring fuel station, to the department, promising that the department would always take prompt action, News Agency of Nigeria reports.

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Rise Of Cannabis, Tramadol: Buhari Approves Recruitment Of 5,000 Drug Enforcement Agents

20 July 2019 - 3:14am


The Chairman, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Col. Muhammad Abdallah (retd), says President Muhammadu Buhari has approved recruitment of 5,000 personnel for the agency to boost its manpower.

Abdallah made the disclosure on Friday at the public destruction of drug exhibits by Taraba Command of NDLEA in Jalingo.

He said increased consumption of illicit drugs among youths in Taraba was worrisome, appealing to families to live up to their responsibilities.

According to Abdallah, effective drug prevention must involve positive engagement of children, youths and adults with their families, schools, workplace and community.

The acting Commander of NDLEA in the state, Peter Odaudu, stated that the agency had assembled seven tonnes (6,963.80 kilogrammes) of deadly weeds and psychotropic substances for destruction.

Odaudu disclosed that the exhibits were seized between January 2003 and December 2018.

He listed cannabis, diazepam, rophynol, cough syrups with codeine and tramadol as the illicit drugs to be destroyed, adding that a court order for their destruction has been obtained.

Odaudu commended other security agencies in the state for their cooperation in the success recorded by the NDLEA.

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Nigerian Stock Exchange Indicators Up By 0.20% After Downward Trends

20 July 2019 - 3:02am

Nigerian Stock Exchange

Nigerian Stock Exchange African Markets


Market indicators of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) rose marginally by 0.20 per cent on Friday after weeks of downward movement.

The All-Share Index, which opened at 27,864.49, grew by 55.01 points or 0.20 per cent to close at 27,919.30 due to price gains.

Also, the market capitalisation appreciated by N20 billion or 0.20 per cent to close at N13.606 trillion from the N13.579 trillion achieved on Thursday.

Forte Oil led the price gainers’ table by N1.80 to close at N20.15 per share.

Nigerian Breweries followed with a gain of N1 to close at N59, while MTN Nigeria also appreciated by N1 to close at N128 per share.

Access Bank gained 40k to close at N6.40, while Four Mills also added 40k to close at N14.40 per share.

Conversely, Cement Company of Northern Nigeria recorded the highest price loss of N1.50 to close at N12 per share.

Stanbic IBTC trailed with a loss of 50k to close at N38, while Fidson Healthcare declined by 45k to close at N4.10 per share.

UACN was down by 40k to close at N5.40, while PZ Cussons depreciated by 20k to close at N5.80 per share.

UBA was the most active stock during the day, accounting for 45.29 million shares worth N249.57 million.

Access Bank followed with 42.79 million shares valued at N259.49 million, while FBN Holdings traded 41.93 million shares worth N238.60 million.

GTB traded 26.64 million shares valued at N777.79 million, while Courtville traded 20.15 million shares worth N4.05 million.

In all, a total 274.21 million shares valued at N2.84 billion were exchanged by investors in 2,966 deals.

This was against the 175.36 million shares worth N2.71 billion traded in 2,653 deals on Thursday, News Agency of Nigeria reports. 

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Xenophobic Attacks: Fear Grips Nigerians Abroad

20 July 2019 - 2:55am

Attacks on Nigerians in South Africa

Attacks on Nigerians in South Africa The Guardian Nigeria


The Centre for Protection of Nigerians in the Diaspora (CPND) says many Nigerians living abroad are living in fear as a result of xenophobic attacks, especially in South Africa.

The President of CPND, Alex Orji made the assertion during the candlelight procession in honour of the slain Nigerian, Mrs Elizabeth Ndubuisi-Chukwu, who was killed in a hotel in South Africa.

The procession was held at the Liberty Bridge, Maryland, Lagos.

Orji said that Nigerians deserved better treatment from the South African Government away from the killings being experienced.

“The reason for these ugly incidents was because the government of South Africa refused to act on those killings. It has got to the level that the woman killed was just visiting South Africa, with this ugly trend; there is a need to speak out veraciously. Nigerians have been so good to their South African hosts.

“No one is allowed to take another mans life. The killers should be made to face the full wrath of the law. I will also implore people to always check on their people living abroad since we are now in the age of social media where contacts can be made easily,” he said.

Contributing, Mofe Oyatogun of Star FM, condemned the xenophobic attacks on Nigerians, adding that the killing of Ndubuisi-Chukwu should be a wake-up call for the government.

“The people of South Africa have no reason for killing Nigerians, moreso, they also have their people residing in Nigeria unmolested.

“I remembered all the efforts Nigeria had to put up during the apartheid regime and how my mum fed several South Africans in our home, so is this how they want to reward us?

“Nigerians are wonderful hardworking people in spite of derogatory remarks against us in certain quarters, we deserve to be treated with respect; so we are calling for justice,” she said.

The presidential candidate of the African Action Congress (AAC) during the last general election, Omoyele Sowore, added, “Obianuju was an industrious woman killed in South Africa in spite of the fact that she was not a resident. This type of brutality has been going on too frequently and we need to address it. Nigerians are getting killed almost every day; we need to be protected by our government and the governments of those countries where they reside in either legally or illegally.

“Government needs to constitute strong a diplomatic committee to look into these issues of wanton killings to find a lasting solution. The truth is that most Nigerians are now living in palpable fear of attacks, especially in the South Africa where they are experiencing xenophobic attacks.”

Speaking, Adetola Olubajo, the President of Nigeria Union in South Africa, said there must be justice for the murdered woman and others unjustly killed in the country, News Agency of Nigeria reports.

“What we want is justice for her and nothing more. If we have been fair to the South Africans in the face of provocations, while they have their own businesses here, their government should know better. What we want is for those perpetrators of her murder to be brought to justice,” Olubajo said.

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Atiku, PDP Beg For More Time To Prove Buhari Didn’t Win Election, Tribunal Rejects Request

20 July 2019 - 2:51am


A plea by both Atiku Abubakar and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) asking the presidential election petitions tribunal to grant them more time to close their case has been turned down by Chairman of the tribunal, Justice Mohammed Garba.

This was after PDP lawyer, Chris Uche asked for more time, Channels TV reports.

Atiku and PDP have only called less than 100 of the 400 witnesses they planned to invite.

The tribunal stated that the hearing would go on with proceedings until later in the day to enable Atiku and PDP to close their case.

Earlier at the pre-hearing session, the tribunal granted the petitioners 10 days to conclude their case and the period expired on Friday (yesterday).

Meanwhile, the PDP lawyers had presented more documents to the tribunal on Friday to justify their petition challenging President Muhammadu Buhari’s victory at February 23, 2019, presidential election.

The documents presented by the PDP included an expert report of INEC’s electoral information systems as revealed by whistle-blowers website, downloaded documents from the website, certificate of compliance and executive summary for the 11 states under review.

However, lawyers to President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC), however, objected to the admissibility of the documents with a promise to give reasons for their objection in their final address.

The Chairman of the tribunal, Justice Mohammed Garba, noted their objections but admitted the documents as exhibits.

The party also called its 59th witness, David Njoga, an ICT expert from Kenya who claimed to have obtained data from INEC server.  See Also Sahara Reporters UPDATE: Tribunal Throws Out Atiku's Request To Inspect Server 0 Comments 1 Month Ago

Under cross-examination, lawyers to President Buhari and the APC disagreed with the witness on the ground that the website where the witness obtained his data does not belong to INEC.

The PDP also tendered forms EC8 A and EC8 B which are the result sheets from seven local government areas in Kano State.

Lawyers to INEC, Buhari, and the APC objected to the admissibility of the documents.

The chairman of the tribunal, however, admitted the documents as exhibits having noted the objection of the respondents.

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Ganduje To Buhari: Abolish Herdsmen Movement From North To South

20 July 2019 - 2:45am


Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to abolish the movement of herdsmen from the north to the south of Nigeria in order to end farmers-herders violent conflicts.

Ganduje said, “The federal government should abolish the movement of herdsmen from the northern part to the southern part of Nigeria because that creates a lot of problems and the only way to do it is the RUGA issue.

“This settlement is a must and to us in Kano state, it’s a task that must be done, because we must improve the quality of lives of the herdsmen so that they become full Nigerians and behave like any other good Nigerian, so that the conflict we are having all over the country can be reduced and at the same time, they can improve the way they breed their cattle.”

The governor revealed that his administration had set up a 16-man committee to identify critical areas of settling herdsmen in Kano.

In an interview with Channels TV, Ganduje said 72 herders’ children have been trained on modern skills in cattle grazing and all herdsmen across the country should come to Kano because of the efforts at getting the economic benefits of cattle breeding.

“We have trained 72 of the herdsmen children in artificial insemination and we have constructed two insemination centres in Kano and with this RUGA settlement which we are starting now so that the breeding system of the cattle will be according to the modern system.

“That is where we are heading to, and that is why we are calling all herdsmen all over the country to come to Kano, we are getting assistance from the Islamic bank so that we develop infrastructure for grazing areas and we believe when they converge, it will be a good omen for the state.

“We are already planning to build an ultramodern abattoir here so that the chain can be built right from bottom to top,” he added.

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I Refused To Share Money With People Who Brought Me To Power, That’s My Offence –Governor Obaseki

20 July 2019 - 2:40am


Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, says the crisis rocking the state’s House of Assembly is because of his refusal to spend public funds on some private individuals who claimed they brought him into power.

But the governor pointed out that at least 300,000 Edo citizens voted him into power and if he took care of them everybody would benefit.

Speaking with a Benin delegation in Abuja, Obaseki said: “The only thing they have said is that I refused to share money; I am not taking care of the people who brought me into office.

“I said 300,000 Edo people voted for me to be governor; if I do for the people, everybody will benefit.”

 The governor earlier pointed out that the party’s National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole was not interested in the peace of the state.

“Is it not ironic that in a state where we have one party ruling, and that has all the 24 seats in the House of Assembly, we have this kind of a crisis?

“At the centre, we have our own person who is supposed to superintend (over) this (matter). So, if your children are fighting and you cannot come and settle them, then what authority do you have to even be a father?”

Thereafter, he suggested that Oshiomhole and his cohorts wanted him to be their pawn.

He said, “I will not allow Edo State to be a pawn in anybody’s political chess game. For me, I keep asking the question, what have I done wrong? What is my offence that they want to now get people to come and create confusion in the state?”

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Buhari Has A Lot To Do, Says Shehu Sani

20 July 2019 - 2:24am

President Buhari and Shehu Sani

President Buhari and Shehu Sani WMC


President Muhammadu Buhari still has a lot to do and the earlier he does the right things, the better, says Senator Shehu Sani.

The major challenges the president should devote more time and energy on, according to Sani, are the economy and the rising level of insecurity in Nigeria.

Sani pointed out that attending town hall meetings had not helped the presidency, calling for more pragmatic approaches.

Appearing as a guest on Channels TV, the former lawmaker said: “From the report which we have heard from the killings still going on, even the personnel of the army were even affected.

“We can still say that President Muhammadu Buhari has two major challenges before him – the economy and security.

“The President still has a lot to do. The earlier he does it, the better. Going for town halls, the meeting has not provided the right result,” he said.

When asked if the killings in the country as claimed by Prof. Wole Soyinka are beyond the Buhari government’s capacity to handle, Sani said he believed the security forces can contain them.

He, however, urged the federal government to collaborate with Cameroon, Niger, and Chad.

Sani stated, “These are things that can still be tackled because we are not isolated from the problem as a nation. Our neighbours too – Niger, Chad and Cameroon Republic are also facing the same problem.”

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Ajimobi: I Don’t Want To Be Minister Under Buhari, Prefer To Be Senator

20 July 2019 - 2:19am


A former governor of Oyo State, Abiola Ajimobi, says he prefers to be a senator in Nigeria to being a minister.

His reasons are not farfetched.

Fielding questions from journalists in Ibadan, the ex-governor infamous for his ‘constituted authority’ statement explained why he would want to be a federal lawmaker in the senate and not a minister under President Muhammadu Buhari.

“I hold President Muhammadu Buhari in high esteem. I will actually prefer a younger person to be considered for the ministerial slot since I am pursuing my senatorial ambition,” he stated.

He added, “I am in court for my senatorial election. I only expressed my preference that I am in court because I prefer the Senate.  See Also Sahara Reporters Ahead Of His Exit, Gov. Ajimobi Names Road After Himself 0 Comments 2 Months Ago

“How can I be pursuing the Senate and ministerial appointment at the same time? I prefer the Senate.”

Ajimobi, however, pointed out that President Buhari had not offered him any ministerial appointment, noting that it was a reason he was committed to the petition the All Progressives Congress filed against Senator Kola Balogun at the tribunal.

Balogun, who contested on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), was declared the winner of the Oyo South senatorial district election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

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Bandit Commanders Agree To Suspend Attacks In Zamfara

20 July 2019 - 2:11am

Inspector-General of Police (IG-P), Mohammed Adamu

Inspector-General of Police (IG-P), Mohammed Adamu


Bandits’ commanders in Birnin-Magaji Local Government Area of Zamfara have agreed to suspend attacks on the state at a dialogue meeting with the state government and security officials.

The bandits also said the coast is now clear for all those displaced by the attacks to return home.

News Agency of Nigeria reports that the agreement was reached at the palace of the Emir of Birnin-Magaji.

Present at the meeting were the state commissioner of police, bandit commanders, leaders of Fulani, the Civilian Joint Task Force and local vigilantes known as ‘Yansakai’.

The meeting, chaired by the police chief, Usman Nagogo, was also attended by Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Security Matters, Abubakar Dauran, and the national leaders of Miyetti-Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN).

The bandits’ commanders at the meeting were Ardo Nashawari, Audu Karki and Muhammad Bello, while the leaders of civilian JTF and vigilantes were Malam Garba Nasarawa-Godal and Alhaji Shuaibu Aliyu.

Speaking on behalf of the bandits, Nashawari, said with the suspension of the attacks, farmers were now free to return to their farms and other residents free to go about their normal businesses.

Nashawari added, “We believe with this dialogue, the Fulani can now go to markets. They can move freely without any hitch.”

The Civilian JTF leader, Alhaji Shuaibu Aliyu, urged the government to ensure immediate disarming of the bandits.

“On behalf of the entire members of civilian JTF and vigilance group in Birnin-Magaji local government area, we commend the state government for this dialogue, we abide by it,” he said.

On his part, the commissioner of police described the meeting as “fruitful” and restated the commitment of the command to rid the state of banditry, kidnapping, and other crimes.

“We are impressed with the comments of the warring factions, both of them have accepted the dialogue,” Nagogo said.

The National President of MACBAN, Alhaji Ardo Kiruwa, described the dialogue as “succeeding”, noting that most of the markets that were hitherto closed due to insecurity have been opened.

“We were told that the Fulani were seen in Shinkafi market yesterday,” he added.

Kiruwa called on the Fulani to cooperate with government and security agencies in order to maintain peace and stability in the state.

Also, Dauran, the special adviser on security, thanked the people of the state for their support and cooperation toward ensuring that the dialogue succeeded.

He cautioned against politicising the state government’s efforts at tackling the security challenges in the state.

“We are aware that some people are using politics to challenge the government’s efforts in this regard,” he noted.

The Emir of Birnin-Magaji, Alhaji Hussaini Maude-Dan’Ali, thanked the state government for initiating the dialogue and urged all parties to adhere to all the agreements reached during the dialogue.

“We are happy with the outcome of this meeting, we are going to continue to support government towards ensuring the success of this dialogue,” the emir said.

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Nigeria's Fragile State Is About Bad Economy – Oritsejafor

20 July 2019 - 2:06am


Pastor Helen Oritsejafor has called for a national dialogue to resolve challenges threatening the peace and unity of Nigeria, saying like a marriage the country would find peace through dialogue.

Oritsejafor, Matriarch of Word of Life Bible Church (WLBC) and Wife of former President of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Ayo Oritsejafor, made the call at a news conference on Friday in Abuja.

Oritsejafor explained that America and Europe went through periods of severe challenges to their nationhood.

According to her, the time has come for the people of Nigeria to sit together and say among themselves ”something must be done”.

“We need to sit down and talk as a people and find a way to bring peace to our country and work towards meaningful development.

“I believe the Nigerian boat will not sink if we all work towards meaningful development of this country and avoid the things that divide us and dwell more on the things that unite us as a nation,” she said.

She further likened Nigeria to a family setting, saying the real problems confronting the nation were a reflection of the troubles in the homes.

“What we see as Nigeria’s fragile state is about the economy. It is about meeting needs and being able to keep the homes in order financially.

”The homes in this country are troubled and this has had a ripple effect on the society, the nation is a larger family,” she said.

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Kidnapping: South-west State Assemblies Mull Stiffer Punishment For Kidnappers

20 July 2019 - 1:54am


The South-west state assemblies say they will establish laws that will impose stiffer punishment on kidnappers in the region.

Lagos and Ogun states already have laws prescribing the death penalty for kidnappers.

According to the Deputy Speaker of the Ondo State House of Assembly, Iroju Ogundeji, a bill recommending a death sentence for kidnappers was already in the works in Ondo and was awaiting passage.

The lawmaker, who decried the state of kidnappings and other forms of insecurity in the state, said the assembly was not happy with the development, especially the killing of Olakunrin.

Ogundeji said: “We are not happy with the ugly development; we already have a bill stipulating capital punishment for kidnappers and the bill would soon be passed into law. The bill entails that anybody found guilty of the kidnapping offence will be sentenced to death.”

Timothy Owoeye, the Speaker of the Osun State assembly, stated that the assembly would prescribe life imprisonment for kidnapping.

Owoeye said he had introduced the bill to the parliament and it would discourage kidnapping because of the stiff penalty recommended.

Owoeye said: “The bill which I introduced in June to curb the menace of kidnapping has passed first reading. The bill titled 'State of Osun Kidnapping (Prohibition Bill), 2019' recommends life imprisonment for perpetrators of the dastardly act.

“The bill has passed first reading but the House has decided to conduct public hearings so as to get the input of critical stakeholders as well as kidnap victims.

“On the issue of the death penalty, when the victim of a kidnap dies in the process of kidnapping, it is simply a murder charge; and it will be repetitive to introduce new laws considering there are enacted laws in place to deal with the issue."

The Ekiti assembly has also called for a review of existing laws on kidnapping and banditry with the imposition of more stringent penalties for the offences.

The Speaker of the Ekiti assembly, Funminiyi Afuye, said a law for “very stiff penalties” would be passed “after a meeting of all stakeholders in the South-West".  See Also Exclusive EXCLUSIVE: How Akume, Suswam, Built A Kidnapping Empire In Benue State 0 Comments 1 Week Ago

She said the house would not support death sentence for kidnappers, saying, “For now, a very stiff penalty is okay."

However, the Speaker of the Oyo assembly, Adebo Ogundoyin, said consultations were ongoing over the spate of kidnappings in order to get an enabling law that would cater for all the six states in the South-West.

All the six states' assemblies in the region recently converged on Ibadan for a security summit and agreed to tackle the menace of kidnapping.

Ogundoyin said: “On the issue of whether there would be a death penalty for killer herdsmen or kidnappers, we are going to take a common position on that with other state assemblies in the zone."

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Inside Enugu Where Families Kidnap One Another As Revenge

20 July 2019 - 1:53am


In Nigeria, even so-called men of God fake their own kidnap; same with husbands and wives. Sometimes, children also fake their own kidnap. Kidnapping has become fashionable in Africa’s most populous nation.

There is no end to kidnapping in Nigeria as kidnappers are often handsomely rewarded and sometimes given amnesty.

Even in Zamfara State, bandits who killed, kidnapped and razed houses were given ‘palatial’ treatment as they sat among policemen, traditional rulers, etc., to decide how peace could be maintained in the state. No arrest was made.

You kill, kidnap and commit arson in Nigeria, you are more likely to be respected.

But not every criminal-minded person enjoys that.

At other times, they are idolized and made celebrities. Upon the capture of the ‘billionaire’ kidnapper, Evans, Nigerian policemen excitedly posed for selfies with the alleged notorious kidnapper.

In Enugu, the kidnapping tale in Nigeria has become more intriguing with the news two brothers who kidnapped a member of another family for a bemusing reason, you will only know about in Nollywood movies.

According to PUNCH, two siblings were arrested by operatives of the Enugu State Police Command, on Friday.

They were Hyacinth Okeh and Fredrick Okweli.

Okeh and Okweli claimed that they were forced into kidnapping to avenge the abduction of their sister by their victim’s brothers.

These suspects were aged 20 and 22 respectively, are from Nimbo community in Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Ebere Amaraizu, said they were arrested following their alleged involvement in the kidnap of Enejere Charles, who he claimed was their third victim.

Ebere Amaraizu said N187,000, two automatic pump action guns, charms, and two single-barrelled guns were recovered from the suspects.

But speaking to a source, the two men, who confessed to the crime, said they kidnapped their victim because his brothers, whose names they gave as Ogbonna Michael and Ezea Ifeanyi abducted their sister and collected N600,000 as ransom before her release.

Fredrick Okweli said: “I was arrested with my brother for kidnapping one man from our community. His brother abducted our sister and we kidnapped his brother in retaliation.

“We took our victim inside the bush and called his people to pay money before we released him.

“They paid the money but when we went to collect it at Ubollo-Afor in Udenu Local Government Area, the police arrested us”.

Hyacinth Okeh said: “After the money was paid and we were going to collect it at Ubollo-Afor, we didn’t know that security operatives had set a trap for us.

“Immediately we got to the place, we were arrested and taken back to the bush where we hid the victim and the gun, we used to carry out the operation.

“We had never kidnapped anybody before. We were forced to do this because Michael and Ifeanyi kidnapped our sister and collected money from us despite pleading with them,” he claimed.

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AFCON 2019: Ighalo Wins Golden Boot, Algeria Conquers Africa As They Beat Senegal 1-0

20 July 2019 - 1:46am

Baghdad Bounedjah’s early goal propelled Algeria to a first Africa Cup of Nations title in 29 years after a fiery 1-0 victory over Senegal in Friday’s final in Cairo.

Bounedjah gave Algeria a dream start in the second minute when his deflected shot looped over Senegal goalkeeper Alfred Gomis, and it proved enough for the 1990 champions to lift the trophy.

Senegal lost to Algeria by the same scoreline in the group stage, and the long wait for a first continental crown goes on as coach Aliou Cisse, the captain of 2002 runners-up again fell short in the final, Voice of Nigeria reports.

Senegal were missing Kalidou Koulibaly, arguably Africa’s best defender, through suspension and his absence was quickly felt.

Algeria sat back and allowed Senegal to claw their way back into the game.

They had a major let-off in the second half when Ismaila Sarr burst down the right and fired a low cross into the middle.  See Also Breaking News 2019 AFCON: Algeria Defeat Nigeria, To Face Senegal In Final 0 Comments 1 Week Ago

Senegal thought they had won a penalty on the hour when Cameroonian referee Alioum Alioum pointed to the spot for a suspected handball by Adlene Guedioura, but the official reversed his decision after a VAR review.

Niang rounded an advancing Mbohli after a searching ball through from Cheikhou Kouyate but the forward sliced wide of the target from a tough angle, with the Algerian keeper then acrobatically tipping over a rasping drive from Youssouf Sabaly.

The final whistle provoked wild celebrations among the large contingent of travelling Algeria fans. It was a fitting end to a tournament that, with 24 teams for the first time, produced plentiful drama.

Player of the tournament

Algeria’s Ismael Bennacer was named best player of the tournament. The 21-year-old has been awarded with the accolade after a string of solid performances, as his country emerged as African champions.

Ismael Bennacer, AFCON 2019 Player of the Tournament

In seven games, Bennacer had three assists and two 'man of the match' awards, with 12 successful dribbles and 10 tackles won in the competition.

Golden Boot winner

Nigeria’s Odion Ighalo won the Golden Boot Award as the highest goalscorer in the tournament with five goals.

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Shi’ite Protest: We Have No Hand In El-Zakzaky’s Detention, Presidency Claims

19 July 2019 - 1:37pm



The Federal Government of Nigeria has denied involvement in the continued detention of the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, Sheik Ibraheem El-Zakaky and his wife despite numerous court orders for his release discarded by the President Muhammadu Buhari led administration.

In a statement by Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to the President on media and publicity, the Presidency says the issue of El-ZakZaky was before the court in Kaduna, urging his supporters to focus on his ongoing trial instead of causing daily damages, disruptions and public nuisance in Abuja.”

The Federal Government called on Shiite members to desist from needless violent street protests and await the decision of the court in Kaduna where their leader is currently being tried.

The statement reads in part, “It is wrong to be in court and resort to violence at the same time to get justice for anybody accused. See Also Sahara Reporters Frail-Looking Picture Of El-Zakzaky, Wife Emerges As Court Adjourns Ruling On Application For Medical Trip Abroad 0 Comments 1 Week Ago

“The destruction of public property in the name of protest is not within the right of this group of Shiite members and no government anywhere would have tolerated a situation where any group would take over public roads in cities as they have done in Abuja and interfere with the rights of other citizens who are prevented from reaching their destinations.

“We imagine a situation where families are taking their loved ones to hospital for emergency treatment and they are held up needlessly by the protesters. No government anywhere in the world would turn a blind eye to this unlawful behaviour.

“As far as this country’s Ministry of Justice is concerned, the case involving El-Zakzaky is no longer in its domain. The Federal Government no more has hands in the matter and to that extent, the government at the centre can be said to be clear of any alleged violations of court orders as being trumpeted every day.”

Shehu added that the open protest was an embarrassment to the President which will lead nowhere.

“These rallies and street dances ostensibly to openly insult the President and other leaders, threatening bloodshed will lead nowhere because President Buhari will not ask the country’s judiciary to abandon due process and set a suspect free. At the same time, the administration is determined to enforce the decision of the court issued. The Buhari administration has absolutely no hand in the on-going court case and the courts are free to determine the bail request and the outcome. See Also Sahara Reporters Indefinite Detention Of El-Zakzaky: Buhari Is Nigeria New Deadliest Dictator By Bayo Oluwasanmi 0 Comments 1 Week Ago

 “The mentality that you are above the law and that your rights are superior to other people's rights is unacceptable.

“You can't be provoking other citizens by interfering with their rights on public roads and disrupting their businesses and call it democratic freedom. In democratic traditions, their rights end where the rights of others begin.

“Law-abiding citizens must avoid deliberate lawlessness. It is not within the rights of any group to enter protected public institutions such as the National Assembly by force to attack police and destroy public and private property.

“It is always advisable to embrace dialogue and eschew violence in all our actions so that we can continue to live together in peace.

“We, therefore, appeal to the Shiite group to stop deliberate provocations that result in violence and fatalities and allow the trial of El-ZakZaky to take its course.”

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Security Breach At MMIA: FAAN Suspends Security Chiefs Indefinitely

19 July 2019 - 1:19pm

Following the airside incursion at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos on Friday, the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) has suspended indefinitely the aviation security unit heads who were on duty when the incident occurred, pending completion of an ongoing investigation into the security infringement.

Passengers aboard a Port Harcourt-bound flight panicked on Friday after a yet-to-be-identified man climbed the aircraft while it was about to take-off at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja.

According to a viral video shot by one of the passengers in Lagos, the man illegally gained access to the airside with a piece of hand luggage.

The video also showed that the man climbed the aircraft wing and deposited the bag inside one of the engines. The aircraft was at the holding bay expecting clearance for take-off when the incident occurred.

The man’s action caused panic and frenzy as some of the passengers immediately demanded that the pilot and cabin crew open the aircraft doors for them to disembark due to safety concerns.

The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria said the so-called “mad man” who climbed one of the aircraft of Azman Air ready for take-off to Port Harcourt Airport had been arrested and kept in its custody.

FAAN said the investigation into the serious security breach had already started but did not give details, while the name of the intruder was not also revealed.

The agency, in a statement by its General Manager, Corporate Communications, Mrs Henrietta Yakubu said that the aircraft pilot of the aircraft was the one that first raised the alarm to its security outfit, Aviation Security (AVSEC).

According to her, the incident, which involved an aircraft with the registration number 5N-HAI, occurred at 10:09 a.m when the aircraft was ready for takeoff after a clearance from Air Traffic Controllers (ATC).

Yakubu said its officers responded swiftly to the emergency call.

“The pilot of the Azman aircraft with registration number 5N-HAI departing Lagos to Port Harcourt reported the incident and AVSEC officials swiftly responded. The man has been apprehended and is now in AVSEC's custody.”

Yakubu explained that the aircraft immediately taxied back to the apron for a thorough check and departed for Port Harcourt afterwards.

Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) has since suspended indefinitely the aviation security unit heads who were on duty when the incident occurred.

The affected officers are the Airport Chief of Security; Mamman Mohammed Sadiku; International Terminal Security Officer, Oni Adedamola Abiodun; Head of Department Domestic Terminal 2, Owotor Kenneth Okezie and Head of Department Domestic Terminal 1, Badejo Adebowale Ayodele.  

A statement by the General Manager, Public Affairs, FAAN, Mrs Henrietta Yakubu, stated that in the interim, a General Manager of the Authority, Dr Anne Enyinnaya-Egbadon, had been detailed to take charge of security at the airport. Other affected officers have also been replaced.

The current arrangement, she said was aimed at ensuring an efficient and thorough investigation towards the recovery and sustenance of the airport's proactive security integrity. 

FAAN views this breach as a serious security concern and has commenced an investigation to ascertain the remote and immediate causes of this incident to forestall future occurrence.'

Today’s security breach is not the first at the airport. It will be recalled that SaharaReporters had detailed how security at the Domestic Terminal of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, appears compromised as faulty security equipment are being used to screen bags of travellers making use of the airport. See Also Exclusive Nigerian Woman Beats Security, Tries To Sneak Into US-bound Delta Flight 0 Comments 2 Weeks Ago

It was also discovered that security screeners deployed by the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria to MMA Terminal Two are not certified by the National Civil Aviation Authority to carry out the screening.

SaharaReporters had previously reported how a Nigerian woman bypassed all security points at the international wing of the airport and attempted to sneak into a United States of America-bound Delta Air Line. She was, however, arrested by the security of the aeroplane, as she was about to board the plane.

It was reliably gathered that of the not less than 629 staff of FAAN Aviation Security at the Lagos airport, about 85 security personnel are NCAA screeners certified. See Also Exclusive EXCLUSIVE: Lagos Airport Security Compromised By Faulty Equipment, Uncertified Personnel 0 Comments 2 Weeks Ago

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Prosecutor Details How Ramaphosa Misled Parliament Over R500,000 Donation

19 July 2019 - 12:09pm

Busisiwe Mhkwebane, South Africa’s Public Protector, said in a report Friday, that the manner in which a R500,000 donation to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s campaign to become the leader of the African National Congress (ANC) was channeled, raises suspicions of money laundering.

Mhkwebane, whose office is saddled with investigating allegations of corruption against public leaders, said the money was moved through several accounts including that of Ramaphosa’s campaign account.

The corruption prosecutor, found Ramaphosa guilty of an act which is inconsistent with his office. He was also accused of violating the constitution by lying to parliament.

She noted that he misled lawmakers when he denied knowing of the donation in November 2018. The question was posed to him by Musi Maimane, leader of the opposition Democratic Alliance.

Ramaphosa told lawmakers that the payment was for consultancy work done by his son Andile for Bosasa— now African Global. He subsequently admitted that the money was meant to support his campaign to replace his boss Jacob Zuma as leader of the ANC.

In her submission, Mhkwebane said. "Although President Ramaphosa may have been justified to correct the earlier statement on erroneous or incomplete information at his disposal, he indeed misled parliament."

She noted that the President,"Should have allowed himself sufficient time to research a well-informed response," before responding to a question from the main opposition Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane.

"I, therefore, find that President Ramaphosa's conduct ... although ostensibly in good faith, to be inconsistent with his office".

Al Jazeera reports that Mhkwebane will submit a report to the Ethics Committee of Parliament, who would decide to investigate further.

"This is likely to set the path to Ramaphosa facing a no confidence ballot. His predecessor, faced that ballot eight times before he received the boot. Ramaphosa promised to fight corruption in the ANC."

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Save Lagos From Child Cultism, African Action Congress Tells Sanwo-Olu

19 July 2019 - 11:39am

The Lagos State Chapter of the African Action Congress has called on Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to immediately address child cultism and insecurity in Lagos.

The party stated that the terror of child cultism was rapidly growing in the state, estimating that 'six out of every ten children' in Lagos are cultists.

The party said, "a 72-hour mass violence of child cultism with different names like "Omo Kesari" , "Awawa" "One Million Boys," Seven Street Boys in Oshodi; Judas Iscariot Boys in Ejigbo; and others in Idimu, Ikotun and other areas vindicate the reports that Lagos is one of the most underdeveloped states in Nigeria, given the wealth owned by the state and the fact that its debt is second only to the Federal Government."

Kunle Wizeman Ajayi, Acting State Chair of AAC, heaped the blame of child cultism on the low quality of education in the state, adding that the political leaders further impoverished the people by taking over all local trade places in the state.

“The reign of child cultism today can be attributed to the general collapse of public education in Lagos as well as the mass unemployment in the state. Private schools are times three of public schools.

“It is also appalling that most of the trading power of our poor people like markets, mechanic villages, and sports arenas have all been destroyed, seized.

"Then what kind of government is ignoring the night economy? This is a lucrative economy that can even resolve unemployment as well as reduce child cultism,” Wizeman said.

He stressed that the Lagos State government must put measures in place to equip and ensure all children have access to free education.

He also urged the state governor to desist from the indiscriminate arrest of innocent citizens through the machinery of the state government.

"Child cultists can be trained to become the greats of the future with democratic, pro-people standards!

“Governor Sanwo-Olu must also not resort to setting the Lagos Task Force loose to arrest traders, innocent citizens, and Okada riders. Face the real issues and tackle the problems headlong.

“Even if a government wants to prevent trade littering the streets, is it not much more correct to create alternative spaces for these traders instead of violent repression.

“Lagos AAC calls on Lagos towns to immediately build independent community Vigilance Teams. Then we all need to demand that Lagos is truly made working at all levels through free functional and compulsory education.

"Massive industrialisation and creative development of the night economy are needed to cater for employment and reducing poverty,” Wizeman stated.

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After SaharaReporters Story, Justice Ekwo Releases AAC Judgment Copy

19 July 2019 - 10:33am

Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court in Abuja has released the true copy of the judgment he passed in the case between the leadership of the AAC and the expelled Secretary of the party, Leonard Ezenwa.

It will be recalled that Justice Ekwo upheld the suspension of the National Chairman of the AAC, Omoyele Sowore, and Deputy National Chairman, Malcolm Fabiyi, on July 12, 2019.

The move came after a story by SaharaReporters revealed that Justice Ekwo was withholding the true copy of the judgment to prevent the Sowore's AAC from appealing the judgment within the stipulated period of appeal. 

He had said the judgment would not be ready until after his vacation in September. See Also Sahara Reporters Federal Judge Inyang Ekwo Refuses AAC Copy Of Judgement 0 Comments 1 Week Ago

On Friday afternoon, however, AAC lawyers representing Omoyele Sowore got a call to pick up the judgment. 

According to Section 294 (1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) states thus: 294. (1) "Every court established under this Constitution shall deliver its decision in writing not later than ninety days after the conclusion of the evidence and final addresses and furnish all parties to the cause or matter determined with duly authenticated copies of the decision within seven days of the delivery thereof."

The AAC had planned to petition the National Judicial Council or sue Justice Ekwo.

SaharaReporters confirms that the judge was under immense pressure to release the judgment after its report.

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