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Nigeria Has Over 17 Million Unregistered Children -UNICEF

26 August 2019 - 10:40pm


UNICEF

 

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) says no fewer than 17 million children are unregistered during and after birth in Nigeria.

The Child Protection Specialist at UNICEF, Sharon Oladiji, said this in Kano at a two-day media dialogue organised by UNICEF for stakeholders, media and health personals across the 19 northern states.

According to her, among the 10 countries, with the largest number of unregistered children, India has the most by a wide margin of 71 million while Nigeria follows with 17 million.

“10 countries will also contribute massively to the region’s immense population increase in absolute terms between 2015 and 2050. Nigeria is expected to contribute at least 257 million additional inhabitants.

“Kenya and Niger will contribute plus 50 million and Sudan with plus 38 million.

“The possible consequence of a weak birth registration system is planning blindly, incapacity to generate relevant public health data and national estimate and population planning,’’ she said.

Oladiji described poor demand factors as a primary cause for non-registration and low level of public awareness on the importance of birth registration.

The UNICEF specialist explained that the issue of unregistered children during birth in Nigeria was worrisome as it has a lot of implications in the country.

Oladiji said that in all Local Government Areas across the country, there should be an officer responsible for the registration of children immediately after birth.

She called on the participants to start the campaign by ensuring the registration of at least 10 to 20 children daily in their communities.

Oladiji advised media personnel to introduce special programmes, jingles and news sections aimed at educating, enlightening and informing the public, especially at the rural areas on the importance of birth registration.

“The waiver of fees was made in Nigeria as a result of low birth registration. Introducing fees will further limit the already low level of birth registration coverage,’’ she said.

Oladiji said that most children affected by low registration are mostly those of the poor parents, uneducated and leaving in slums, very rural and hard to reach communities.

According to her, these children will never be registered, counted or accounted for to access social services.

She added that children of single mothers, teenage mothers and out of school and uneducated girls have such challenges, News Agency of Nigeria reports.
 

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Real Reasons We're Investigating Winifred Oyo-Ita – EFCC

26 August 2019 - 10:34pm


 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has revealed that its ongoing investigation of Mrs. Winifred Oyo-Ita, Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, was prompted after it received intelligence information about her.

The anti-graft agency said this to dispel claims that investigation was instigated by President Muhammadu Buhari's Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari.

The EFCC in a statement on Monday stated that its investigations are always evidence-based and always triggered by petitions or intelligence.

“For the avoidance of doubt, investigation by the EFCC is evidence-based. Most often,they are triggered by petitions or intelligence. In the case of the HoS (head of service), Oyo-Ita's investigation, it was prompted by intelligence received by the commission,” the EFCC explained.

It added that the EFCC is an independent agency created by law to fight corruption without fear or favour.

“In the discharge of its mandate, the commission does not take instructions from extraneous bodies neither will it lend itself to be used to settle scores by anyone.

“The commission again wishes to appeal to the media to be circumspect in their reportage and not lend themselves to actions that could befuddle the activities of the commission,” the statement added.

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EFCC Arrests 33 Suspected Internet Fraudsters

26 August 2019 - 10:28pm


 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arrested 33 suspected internet fraudsters in Imo State.

The EFCC in a statement said its operatives nabbed the suspects at their hideout in an early morning operation by operatives of the Abuja and Enugu Zonal Office of EFCC on Monday.

The EFCC identified the suspects as Clinton Emere, Obinna Okonkwo, Ogochukwu Ogbonna, Joseph Udom Kousin, Prince Ewunone, Franklin Michael, Tolli Ameiche, Anderson, Berthel, David Franklin, Aboi Etealu, Chinubu Nwosu, Marizu Chidiebere, Dominic Terry Joseph, Christopher Nwosu, Peter Gift Uche, Edinalo Ifeanyichukwu.

Others are Ndubuisi Ikenna, John Frank, Anowe Precious, Joseph Levi Chima, Samuel Oria, Tochi Mmerom, Chimezia Cleansman, Okonkwo Obinna, Uchendu Gift, Nkwodi Nnamdi, Izywa Munachi, Ekone Aniche, Opara Donald, Aniche Tochukwu, Anelka Okon and Ebizien Franklin Udochukwu.

The anti-graft agency noted that “items recovered from them include laptop computers, mobile phones, 2 Lexus RX350 SUV and a Toyota Solara saloon car".

It added, “the suspects have made useful statements and will be charged to court as soon as investigation is completed".

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Taraba Killing: Police, Army Show Lack Of Professionalism, Says Air Commodore Anas (retd)

26 August 2019 - 10:28pm


 

Air Commodore Yusuf Anas (retd.), a former spokesperson for the Nigerian Air Force has condemned the chaotic handling of the killings of three police officers by soldiers in Taraba State.

Air Commodore Anas who spoke in Abuja on Monday noted that the matter could have been better managed as it affected the image of the two security agencies involved.

He cited the lack of “strategic communication mechanism”.

According to him, the absence of proper coordination made the matter to degenerate and became a matter of public discussion.

Speaking further, he urged security agencies to avoid matters that will further denigrate the image of the country.

“When security agencies institutions come out in public and begin to trade blames and scathing counter-accusations over an unfortunate incident, when they are actually supposed to work in synergy and mutual collaboration,” Anas stated.

He added, “Both the army and police are critical agencies saddled with the responsibility of providing maximum security for teeming Nigerians and the country itself.

“Thus, they should eschew acts that not only smear their institutional reputations but that of the nation at large.”

 

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#FreeSowore: 53 Rights Organizations To Hold Rally Demanding Sowore's Release

26 August 2019 - 10:16pm


 

About 53 non-governmental organizations under the aegis of Coalition of Human and Civil Rights Organizations(COHCRO) are set to hold a protest calling for the release of Omoyele Sowore, an opponent of President Muhammadu Buhari in the last presidential election.

Sowore was arrested on August 3 by the Nigerian secret police, the Department of State Services (DSS) and has been in detention since then.

He was abducted by the DSS in a Gestapo style in his apartment for organizing a demonstration tagged, #RevolutionNow.

A statement by Comrade Adeniyi Alimi Sulaiman on behalf of the coalition said: “Well-meaning Nigerians and lovers of genuine democracy would grace the event slated for Thursday 5th of September, 2019.

“The planned March protest would draw members from no fewer than 53 organizations across the country and beyond, including artisans, transporters, market men and women, Coalition for Revolution (CORE) and host of others.

“The protest would commence from Ikeja and end up at the Command Headquarters of the State Security Service (SSS) in Shangisha, Lagos, where protest letter would be submitted to the Head of the Command.”

Different civil society organizations have also joined in demanding the freedom of Sowore.

Forty-eight of them writing to the United Nations and the African Union to put pressure on the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration to release Sowore.
 

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Another Kwara Government Official, Navy Commander Arrested, Interrogated Over Illegal Acquisition Of State Properties

26 August 2019 - 10:10pm


 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arrested another Kwara State government official over the illegal acquisition of state properties.

The EFCC also arrested and interrogated a Navy Commander, J.A Taiwo (retd.), on how he acquired lands belonging to the state government without paying a dime.

The said landed properties are located in Harmony Reserved Area of Ilorin and Galadimawa area of Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.

Aside from landed properties, EFCC claimed that movable properties belonging to the government were also looted by highly-placed individuals in the state.

The EFCC further alleged that Adebayo Sanni, the executive director of Kwara State Harmony Holdings, fraudulently and illegally apportioned state’s properties for himself without payment.

“Sanni was found to have allocated five plots of land in Ilorin and Abuja to himself without following due process.”

“Navy Cmdr Taiwo (retired) was found to have been allocated three plots of land in an estate within Harmony Reserved Area, Ilorin and five plots in Galadimawa area of Abuja without paying a dime to the
state government.”

Both men are classmates of the immediate past governor of the state, Abdulfatah Ahmed.

The EFCC listed others who illegally benefited from the illegal sharing of the choice lands to include Ishola Balogun-Fulani, a political leader in the state; Alhaji Isiaka Oniwa; Alhaji Jimoh
Oniwa; Mrs. Olapeju Fausat Ogunlade among others.

It was, however, noted that some other individuals involved in the alleged illegal acquisition of properties have started making payments for their allocations following their interrogation by EFCC operatives.

The agency said others had promised to make payments before the week runs out.

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Housewife Kills Husband To Remarry Ex-husband In Kebbi

26 August 2019 - 10:04pm


NIgerian Police Force

NIgerian Police Force

 

A housewife in Bagudo Local Government Area of Kebbi State has reportedly killed her husband so that she could go back to her former hubby.

According to the police, the suspect, Auta Singe, conspired with one Garba Hassan and Sahabi Garba at Sabon Gari Village, Illo district area of Bagudo to kill her husband, Abdullahi Shaho, to remarry her ex-spouse.

Commissioner of Police in the state, Garba Danjuma, confirmed the incident during a briefing with journalists.

He said the housewife and the two men conspired with have been arrested.

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African Games: Nigeria Wins Two Medals In Table Tennis

26 August 2019 - 3:47pm


 

The Nigerian pair of Offiong Edem and Cecilia Akpan on Monday in Rabat, Morocco, won the gold medal in the women’s doubles event of the table tennis competition at the 12th African Games.

They beat teammates Funke Oshonaike and Fatimo Bello 3-2 to win the top honour.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Akan and Edem started the game brightly, winning the first two sets 11-7 11-6.

But the pair of Oshonaike and Bello rallied to win the next two sets 11-7 11-2 to take the game to deuce, where Edem and Akan prevailed 13-11 in the game’s fifth set.

The Nigerian teams had on their way to the final beaten Kenya 3-0, Ethiopia 3-0, Chad 3-0 and South Africa 3-0.

They went on to smash Egypt 3-1 and later 3-2, and then Algeria 3-2.

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High Court Judge Declared Missing In Abuja

26 August 2019 - 3:32pm


 

A judge with the Federal High Court, Idrissa Saleh, has been declared missing after failing to return home since Saturday, according to a report by PUNCH.

Family members of the judge reported the incident to the police after Saleh failed to come back after allegedly discharging himself from a hospital at the Central Business District, Abuja.

A family member said the judge left the hospital where he was being treated for an undisclosed ailment without informing the management.

He said, “Justice Saleh was admitted in the hospital and he left in a taxi without disclosing his whereabouts to anyone.

“Even the management of the hospital was not aware of his movement.

“I think he has a problem, which he didn’t share with anyone; but the police are treating it as a case of missing person and they are actively searching for him as we speak.”

Commissioner of Police, Federal Capital Territory, Bala Ciroma, confirmed the incident, noting that an investigation has been launched into the matter.

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Nine Persons Arrested, 502 Bags Of Foreign Rice Impounded By Navy

26 August 2019 - 2:03pm


 

At least nine persons have been arrested while 502 bags of foreign rice were seized by the Nigerian Navy on Parrot Island waterways and Mbo River in Akwa Ibom State.

The Navy Director of Information, Commodore Suleman Dahun, made the disclosure in a statement in Abuja on Monday.

He revealed that the arrest and seizure were made by gunboats deployed from Forward Operating Base in the Ibaka area of the state.

According to him, the 502 bags of rice worth over N10m, adding that three outboard engines and two pumping machines were also seized during the operation.

Speaking further, Dahun said that the FOB had also handed over an arrested barge, Ebizarh, and a tug boat, Hebizarh, with three crew members to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission for prosecution.

He said, “The two vessels were arrested at Nigerian Agip Oil Company Terminal in Brass, Bayelsa, for conveying 600 metric tonnes of suspected illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil.”

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Detention Of Sowore, A Diversion From Buhari’s Incompetence –CHRSJ Boss

26 August 2019 - 1:47pm


 

Executive Chairman of CHRSJ, Comrade Adeniyi Sulaiman, has condemned the continued detention of activist and convener of RevolutionNow movement, Omoyele Sowore, by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration as a way divert the attention of Nigerians away from government’s incompetence.

Sulaiman stated that the country is currently suffering from insecurity and economic meltdown, which President Buhari had failed to attend to.

He noted that Sowore did not commit any offence warranting his continue detention, adding that the move was politically motivated and an abuse of power.

He said, “The continued detention of Sowore is a diversionary tactics from the incompetence of President Muhammadu Buhari and his government.

“The allegations lacked modicum of truth and basis in a sane society of the world.

“As a law-abiding and reputable human rights organisations, we would not fold our arms and allow anti-democratic forces and fascist elements pretending to be democrats to subvert the will of Nigerians.”

Sulaiman added that 53 groups would be holding a protest against the illegal and continued detention of Sowore and other political prisoners across the country.

He stated, “The planned march would draw members from no fewer than 53 organisations across the country and beyond, including artisans, transporters, market men and women, Coalition for Revolution and a host of others.

“The protest would commence from Ikeja and end up at the Command Headquarters of the Department of States Services in Shangisha, Lagos, where protest letter would be submitted to the head of the command.”


 

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Pastor Arrested For Rape In Oyo

26 August 2019 - 1:43pm


Nigeria Police

Nigeria Police Guardian Nigeria

 

A pastor, who lures females to his hideout, rapes them before dispossessing them of valuables, has been arrested by the police in Oyo State.

The man was paraded alongside 29 others at the police headquarters in Ibadan, the capital, on Monday, according to a report by the News Agency of Nigeria.

Commissioner of Police in the state, Shina Olukolu, said information about the suspect got to the State Anti Robbery Squad in Oyo on August 15.

Olukolu said that the suspect specialised in luring unsuspecting female victims to his hideout at Awe town where he allegedly rapes them.

According to the police chief, the suspect will thereafter dispose the female victims of their belongings as well as engage in ‘spiritual cleansing’ for ritual purposes.

He said, “One cell phone with which he took obscene pictures of his victims was recovered from him.

“He claimed to be the pastor of one Gospel Ministry Commission based in Bashi Quarters in Awe upon interrogation.

“His confessions led to the arrest of one of his accomplices, an alleged quack medical practitioner who performed abortion on one of his victims.”

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Ten Fake Corps Members Arrested

26 August 2019 - 1:25pm


 

Ten persons pretending to be corps members in various camps where orientation exercises are taking place have been arrested by authorities of the National Youth Service Corps.

Spokesperson for the organisation, Adenike Adeyemi, in a statement said that three of the culprits apprehended in Taraba State claimed to have graduated from Istop University, Cotonou.

They are Nasiru Yau from Mass Communication Department, Sheu Muktar, Computer Science, and Iliyasu Usman from Sociology Department.

The NYSC said it discovered that the culprits could neither write nor say anything logical about their certificates or courses of study.

In a similar vein, NYSC Verification Officers also detected two persons claiming to have graduated from Imo State University in Katsina State orientation camp.

They include Offor Blessing Chinelo and Mezenwa Ngozi Chidinma with call-up-no NYSC/ISU/2019/259331.

Adeyemi added that four persons were also discovered with fake credentials of Imo State University in Kebbi State orientation camp, Dakingari.

They are; Nwachukwu Chimaobi Curtis, Ononuju Amarachi Nwamaka, Francis Joseph Arinze and Chigozie Evidence Chijioke.

Director-General of the NYSC, Brig. Gen. Shuaibu Ibrahim, had warned that anyone caught with fake documents in orientation camps should be handed over to law enforcement agents for prosecution.

 

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Ondo Gang-rape: Suspects To Be Paraded In Court Tuesday

26 August 2019 - 1:20pm


 

The three suspects, who allegedly raped a female student of Ondo State College of Health Technology, Akure, would be arraigned before a magistrate court on Tuesday, Sahara Reporters has learnt.

The suspects are Eyitayo Charles, 22, Aderoboye Damilola, 20, and Blessing Michael, 24.

A police source, who spoke with our correspondent, said that investigation into the matter had already been concluded.

“We (police) have gathered evidences against the suspects and they shall be arraigned at the Magistrate Court tomorrow (Tuesday).

“It is clear that these students conspired among each other to rape the young lady but the court will finally determine that in its verdict.

“And as the case proceed, we would be calling witnesses most of whom had been victims at the hands of the suspects in the past.

“The school authority is aware that the suspects would be charged to court and we have already advised their parents to get them lawyers.”

Efforts by Sahara Reporters to get the reaction of the school authorities proved abortive as calls placed to the mobile line of the college's Student Affairs Officer were unsuccessful.

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Group Demands Release Of CrossRiverWatch Publisher, Jalingo

26 August 2019 - 1:16pm


Agba Jalingo

Agba Jalingo

 

The International Press Center, Lagos, has condemned the continued detention of Publisher of CrossRiverWatch online newspaper, Agba Jalingo.

The police arrested Jalingo last Thursday in Lagos for publishing an article revealing how Cross River State governor, Ben Ayade, approved and diverted N500m for Cross River Micro-Finance Bank.

IPC also denounced the growing crackdown on freedom of expression following the continued molestation of journalists and the media by security agencies.

In a statement by its director, Lanre Arogundade, IPC said, “The detention of the journalist for doing his job of informing the public is an abuse of power and human rights violation.”

Speaking further, Arogundade condemned Jalingo’s detention for more than 48 hours without being charged to court, adding that he should be released immediately.

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Two Arrested By NAFDAC For Chemical Adulteration

26 August 2019 - 1:06pm


 

Two persons have been arrested by officials of National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control in Niger State for adulterating agro-chemicals.

Coordinator of NAFDAC in the state, Mr Aniko Ibrahim, made disclosed while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria in Minna, the capital, on Monday.

He said, “Before now, we have been getting bad reports about adulteration of agro-chemicals in Niger State.

“Therefore, we decided to set up a surveillance team to monitor them and eventually it yielded positive results.

“The two suspects involved were apprehended within their facility in Mokwa Local Government Area of the state.”

Ibrahim said that the suspects, who confessed to have been in the illicit business for over five years, are Jibrin Abubakar, chairman of Agro-chemicals Dealers Association in the area and Babangida Ado.

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CAN Denies Adopting Any Party For Kogi Governorship

26 August 2019 - 12:59pm


 

The Kogi State chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria has said that it had not endorsed any aspirant or party for the November 16 governorship election in the state.

Chairman of the organisation in the state, Dr John Ibenu, made the disclosure at the end of a meeting in Lokoja, the state capital, on Monday.

Ibenu said, “CAN is a spiritual and religious organisation, and not a political organisation.

“All our members belong to as many political parties of their choices and they are free to do so.

“CAN is a father body to all political parties, and so cannot and should not adopt any political party in any election (unless it is compelled to do so and must be the decision of an emergency plenary).

“CAN has not adopted any candidate, every member is encouraged to join the political party of his or her choice. CAN is open to all.”

The body however, added that any political party that needed and demanded its support must be committed to the fear of God; ensure peace and unity of polity; justice, equity and fairness to all.

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It’s Wrong To Criminalise Donations To Peace Institutions, Says Atiku

26 August 2019 - 12:49pm


 

Former Vice President and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party during the 2019 Presidential election, Atiku Abubakar, has said that it was wrong to criminalise donations to institutions promoting peace in Nigeria and Africa.

Abubakar said this in a statement issued by his Media Office in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, on Monday.

His position was in reaction to a publication alleging that his son-in-law, Babalele Abdullahi, donated cash to the Olusegun Obasanjo Library in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

He said, “For the avoidance of doubt, Abdullahi, did not donate any money in cash to the Obasanjo Library.

“Yes, he did facilitate a donation of N50m to the Obasanjo Presidential Library, but so did many other individuals, including civic-minded traditional rulers, state governors, bankers and captains of industry.

“This is because the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library is a non-governmental organisation that plays a pivotal role in promoting peace and stability in Nigeria, and that should be applauded.

“The sources of these funds are completely legitimate and have been conclusively proven to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.

“Let it be known that the government established the EFCC to be an investigative body and not a propaganda or enforcement arm.”


 

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Exposed: Budget Ministry Unable to Account For N7.3bn Subhead

26 August 2019 - 12:47pm


 

The Ministry of Budget and National Planning, which has since been collapsed by President Muhammadu Buhari into the Ministry of Finance, has failed to account for a N7.3bn subhead in the 2018 budget.

Sahara Reporters made the discovery in a response to a Freedom of Information request addressed to the Permanent Secretary of the ministry on July 3 2019.

The request was sent through the Civic Media Lab’s Citizens Enquiry platform and it was discovered that two duplicate subheads voting N7.3bn and N2.3bn to “Entitlements of Former Presidents/Heads of State and Vice Presidents/ Chief of General Staff,” were in that budget.

Responding to the observation in a letter dated July 23 2019, the ministry through its Chairman, FOI Implementation Committee, said, “The 2018 Appropriation did not provide the sum of N7.3bn to this subhead but N2.3bn.

“The former Presidents/Head of State and Vice Presidents/ Chief of General Staff are not on the payroll of the MBNP but are paid salary for life.

“Their details can be obtained from Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.”

Sahara Reporters had also asked the budget ministry before its merger with finance, for the breakdown of N21bn budgeted as contribution to international organisations and the details of another N40bn reserved as subscription to shares in different financial institutions but the ministry directed the publication to the Ministry of Finance, refusing to answer the question asked.

It said, “Contributions to internal organisations (N21bn) are statutory contributions that the Federal Government of Nigeria makes to international organisations such as Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, United Nations, United Nations Industrial Development Organisation, United Nations Children’s Fund etc.

“The details of the organisations that were paid from the vote should be obtained from the Federal Ministry of Finance that executes the budget.

“Subscription to shares in international organisations (N40bn) are subscriptions the FGN pays to international organisations such as African Development Bank, Islamic Bank, etc.

“It is the investment that the FGN makes on behalf of the country. The request for details of the organisations and payments should be directed to the Federal Ministry of Finance in the country’s budget.”

The Citizens Enquiry platform spotted myriad of duplicate line items in the country’s budget without anyone willing to give any sort of explanation on why this is so despite being contacted by Sahara Reporters.

 

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Presidency Denies Attack On Buhari By IPOB In Japan

26 August 2019 - 11:47am


President Buhari in Japan

President Buhari in Japan

 

The Presidency on Monday denied reports that President Muhammadu Buhari was attacked by members of the Indigenous People of Biafra in Japan.

Buhari is currently in the Asian country attending the Tokyo International Conference on African Development together with other leaders.

In a statement by the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the President, Femi Adesina, the Presidency said that news of such attack on Buhari were false.

The statement said, “The proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra group has had nothing to do with President Muhammadu Buhari since he arrived Yokohama, Japan, on Monday.

“Nigerians at home and in the Diaspora are urged to disregard concocted stories backed with spurious visuals of any protest or harassment of the President and his team.

“It is the stock-in-trade of hate mongers, who do not realise that the rest of Nigerians have left them far behind.

“President Buhari will make his presence at the Seventh Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD7) count for Nigeria, and no scare-mongering or sabre-rattling will detract from the outing.”

Leader of IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu, had earlier said that members of the group in Japan had received orders from him to disgrace and arrest President Buhari upon his arrival in the Asian country.

According to him, Buhari must “answer for his alleged mass murder and crimes against humanity, which he allegedly committed in Nigeria between 2015 and 2019”.

Recall that members of IPOB attacked former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, in Nuremburg, Germany, on August 17, 2019 during a ceremony to celebrate New Yam Festival, sparking fears among top politicians especially those of Igbo extraction of a similar treatment by the group in foreign lands.

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