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Names Of Ministers: Buhari To Submit List To Senate Before July 2

15 June 2019 - 8:05am


Top-ranking lawmakers in Nigeria’s National Assembly said they were expecting President Muhammadu Buhari to submit a list of ministers that will form his federal executive council before or by July 2.

The Ahmad Lawan-led 9th Senate would upon resumption from its two weeks recess in July begin a speedy screening and confirmation of persons whose names are expected to have been submitted by the Presidency before the July 2 resumption of the upper legislative chamber.

A ranking senator told The Guardian, however, that at the moment, nothing is on the ground regarding the list of persons to be confirmed as ministers but was optimistic that within the two weeks of the Senate recess, the President would have submitted the list.

Another lawmaker who just got elevated from the House of Representatives to the Senate in the February 23, 2019 election said that although the President is still within a reasonable time if he submits the list before July, expectations are that President Muhammadu Buhari would make up for the time lost during his first term when he delayed the ministerial list for six months.

The lawmaker further noted that it is particularly very strategic and helpful for the President to meet the July timeline because the Senate might proceed on its annual end of session holiday at the end of that month to reconvene in September.

He was however optimistic that within the two weeks of the Senate recess, the President would have submitted the list.

The lawmaker further noted that it is particularly very strategic and helpful for the President to meet the July timeline because the Senate might proceed on its annual end of session holiday at the end of that month to reconvene in September.

“I believe that the President should take advantage of the three weeks the Senate would spend in session between July 2 and the end of that month by ensuring that before we come back from this two weeks recess, the ministerial list is ready so that we simply screen and confirm them within the three weeks that we are going to sit before we go on end of session recess,” the lawmaker said.

“Anything short of that would amount to dragging Nigeria back to the delay experienced four years ago because the Senate won’t resume until around the third week of September.”

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Shame Of June 12 Democracy Day: Grass Takes Over $360m MKO Abiola Stadium

15 June 2019 - 7:53am



Poor Condition Of $360m Stadium Named After MKO Abiola


Vandalised seats at the swimming pool complex

tv360nigeria

The National Stadium, Abuja, now renamed Moshood Abiola National Stadium is in a state of disrepair following the failure of the government to maintain the facility, which has been taken over by weeds.

Findings indicate that many facilities at the complex, built at a whopping $360m in 2003, had deteriorated while the environment looked unkempt and rough with grasses growing all over the walkways and the parking lot, PUNCH report says.

The sports complex was renamed Moshood Abiola in commemoration of the sacrifices of the winner of June 12, 1993 election by President Muhammadu Buhari during the Democracy Day celebration in Abuja on Wednesday.

The 60,491-capacity stadium, which was constructed to host the 8th All Africa Games in October 2003, consists a covered main bowl; presidential suite and viewing area, 56 corporate suites, post office, banks, media facilities, two scoreboards, and floodlights as well as shops and kiosks.

Other features include a helipad, 3000-capacity indoor sports hall, 2000-capacity gymnasium, 2000-capacity swimming arena, tennis courts, 3000-capacity hockey stadium, and baseball and softball complex.

The MANS is also equipped with emergency service units and closed-circuit security cameras, many of which are no longer functional.

Checks also revealed that about three out of the eight fire-fighting vehicles at the complex had broken down for many years.

One of our correspondents, who visited the Package A and B of the facility on Thursday, observed that the patchy football pitch had been abandoned and looked desolate.

While the tennis and handball courts appeared to be in fairly good conditions, the swimming pool showed signs of decay due to lack of maintenance.  Vandalised seats at the swimming pool complex Punchng

Many of the seats at the spectators’ section have been badly damaged, while the bad ones were simply dumped on the top deck in a messy lump.

The facility, which had been turned to a grazing ground by herdsmen had cattle droppings all over the surroundings of the indoor section of the stadium.

The Ministry of Sports and Youth Development, which is in charge of the facility, had earlier complained that its budget was not sufficient to maintain the stadium.

The Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports, Olusade Adesola, stated that the ministry’s 2018 budget, which he put at N116bn, “was not sufficient to paint the stadium,” noting that the government was planning to concession the facility.

“The concession is on the table; in fact, we are working on a concession plan. I don’t know how long before it will materialize, but it’s a process and it’s on,” he stated.  Poor Condition Of $360m Stadium Named After MKO Abiola tv360nigeria

Meanwhile, sports fans and analysts have reacted to the naming of the Abuja stadium after Abiola.

While some argued in favour of the renaming, others said the sporting facilities shouldn’t be named after politicians.

Among the reasons given by the fans for rejecting the renaming of the stadium was that a stadium in Abeokuta, Ogun State had earlier been named after Abiola, while the Abuja stadium was in a bad shape.

Ezeugo Akpan noted that “not everyone loves Abiola. We are united by sports. The FG should not divide us.”

“No sporting complex deserves to be named after a politician,” Kelechi Nkoro added.

Others also wondered why Buhari renamed the stadium after Abiola despite its current dilapidated state.

Temitope Trotsky said, “In the last four years, what has Buhari done to revamp the stadium? Or is there no sports ministry in Buhari’s cabinet?” 

Segun Psalm asked the Federal Government to renovate the stadium, saying that “It’s not about renaming the Abuja stadium to Abiola stadium, but renovating it to a standard stadium worthy of the name.”

Richmond described the naming as a “national disgrace.” 

While some said it was not wrong for two stadiums to be named after a person, a majority rejected renaming another stadium after Abiola.

Delta Kahr, said, “What about the other MKO stadium? Maybe it should also be renamed to avoid confusion.”

“We already have MKO Abiola Stadium in Ogun State. Didn’t they check before this avoidable blunder again?” Ekenedilichukwu asked.

Charles Ntima said, “I am not angry by the way. I just wanted to know if it was possible for two stadiums capable of staging international games to bear the same name. That would be the first time I would have heard or seen such.”

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EU Casts Aspersion On Buhari’s Re-election, Says Presidential Poll Not Transparent

15 June 2019 - 7:29am


The European Union Observers have said the 2019 presidential election that returned President Muhammadu Buhari to power was not transparent.

The EU pointed out that the February 23 and March 2, 2019, general elections were not transparent and were marred by violence, harassment, and intimidation.

These elements, the observers said, seriously damaged the integrity of the elections conducted under the watch of Buhari’s All Progressives Congress.

“The elections became increasingly marred by violence and intimidation, with the role of the security agencies becoming more contentious as the process progressed,” the EU observers said on Saturday in Abuja, in their final report on the elections. 

Not only that were the elections not transparent, the EU observers added: “This damaged the integrity of the electoral process and may deter future participation."

The elections gave Buhari, 76, a second four-year term with 56% of the vote, while Atiku Abubakar, a former Vice President and candidate of the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, came second with 41%. The ruling party also won a majority of parliamentary seats.

At least 58 people, including election officials, were killed in voting-related violence, according to the Nigerian Civil Society Situation Room, a coalition of civic groups that monitored the vote.

Abubakar and the opposition PDP have filed a court petition challenging the presidential election outcome, arguing he would’ve won but for rigged voting in Buhari’s favour.

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Gunmen Attack Ambulance, Kills 2 On Ondo-Edo Boundary

15 June 2019 - 6:36am




Gunmen have attacked an ambulance conveying medical materials along the boundary between Owo in Ondo State and Edo State.

SaharaReporters gathered that the ambulance, a white Toyota bus had some medical personnel and members of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) when it was attacked.

An impeccable source who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the matter confirmed the attack to SaharaReporters.

The source added that the ambulance was conveying some medical drugs meant for the treatment of Lassa fever when it was attacked at the boundary between Ondo and Edo states. 

"I learnt the team was on their way to present drugs and some medical materials,” the source explained, “which were meant to assist in the fight against Lassa fever before they were attacked.”

He added: "The team was traveling in the bus (ambulance) from Port Harcourt to deliver the materials when the bandits struck on Benin road.

"They stopped the bus and attacked the medical team – and shot people in the vehicle. At least, two people were shot dead.”

Another report said some of the ambulance’s occupants were abducted. 

However, Femi Joseph, the police spokesperson in Ondo State, when contacted on the telephone said the incident did not happen in the state.

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State House Clinic Recruitment: We’ll Investigate, Prosecute Individuals Peddling Falsehood, Says Presidency

15 June 2019 - 6:25am


State House

State House PM News

Amidst reports that the Presidency has begun a recruitment exercise for the State House Clinic, the Permanent Secretary of the clinic, Jalal Arabi, has said the President Muhammadu Buhari administration is not employing any Nigerians at the moment, vowing that anyone involved in spreading such information will be investigated and prosecuted.

Arabi urged the public to ignore notices of recruitment at the State House Clinic currently making the rounds on the Internet.

In a Presidency statement, the Permanent Secretary advised the public to be more circumspect and wary of such notices that are designed by mischief makers to deceive and extort unsuspecting job seekers.

Arabi assured that the sponsors of the publication will be investigated and prosecuted.

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Suicide: Nigerian Teacher, 40, Found Dead In His Room

15 June 2019 - 6:04am


A 40-year-old man, Femi Oguntumi, has been found dead and hung with a rope to a ceiling fan in his room at Dakata Quarters Kano.

Oguntumi was a staff of Karish College in Kawaji area of Kano and there has been no indication yet as to what led to the incident.

However, the police say they have launched a discreet investigation to determine whether it was suicide or not.

Abdullahi Haruna, the Police Public Relations Officer in Kano State said in a statement on Saturday in Kano that the police received information on the incident at about 8:15 pm on Friday.

He said that the body of the deceased was discovered hung with a rope to a ceiling fan in his room in what looked like a suicide.

“On reaching the scene of the incident the police found his lifeless body and was rushed to Murtala Muhammad Specialist Hospital Kano where he was confirmed dead.

“The corpse of the deceased had been deposited at the said hospital.”

Haruna added that Police Commissioner Ahmed Iliyasu has ordered that discrete investigation be carried out to find out the cause of the unfortunate incident.

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Sex for Marks: Another Nigerian Lecturer Caught Pants Down

15 June 2019 - 6:01am


 

The management of the Ekiti State University (EKSU), Ado Ekiti, says it has begun investigations into an allegation of sexual misconduct involving one of its lecturers, Dr. O. O Aduwo.

Mr. Bode Olofinmuagun, Head, Directorate of Information and Corporate Affairs of the institution in a statement on Saturday, said that the university had also queried the lecturer concerned.

”The attention of the management of Ekiti State University has been drawn to a video that has gone viral on an alleged sex scandal involving one of our lecturers.

“The video allegedly fingered one Dr. O. O. Aduwo of the Department of Accounting as the culprit and query has been issued to the accused lecturer, to state his own side of the story.

“This will be followed by a panel which would dig deep into the matter,” he said.

Olofinmuagun said the university would not condone any act of sexual harassment in the university.

This, he said, necessitated the query issued to the concerned lecturer to defend himself of the allegation as a first step in the spirit of due process.

“Thereafter, a panel of investigation will be constituted to get to the root of the matter, while the findings of the panel will be made public.

”The general public is hereby assured that management will continue to be transparent and will not allow such a matter that could smear its good image to be swept under the carpet,” the university’s spokesman added.

The lecturer was allegedly caught pants down a couple of days ago, trying to have carnal knowledge of one of his students (name withheld) as a condition to pass exams.

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Eagles Set For Friendly Against Teranga Lions

15 June 2019 - 5:26am


Senegal’s Teranga Lions is Africa’s number one-ranked team, but the Super Eagles (ranked third) are determined to give a good account of themselves when both teams square up in Ismailia on Sunday evening.

Feelers from the camp indicate only a very positive ambience with players and officials thinking of how to bring honour and glory to the nation, when the whistle goes for kick off at the 32nd Africa Cup of Nations finals in seven days.

The last time both Nigeria and Senegal clashed at senior level was on 23rd March 2017, at The Hive (home of Barnet FC and London Bees) in London. Kelechi Iheanacho equalized from the spot after Moussa Sow had put Senegal ahead – both goals coming in the second half.

Three time African champions Nigeria are on an eight match unbeaten run since elimination from the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals in Russia.

Sunday’s game has been scheduled to start at 7pm Egypt time (6pm Nigeria time) and both Federations have agreed that the match be played behind closed door in order to enable both coaching crews to tinker with tactics and strategy during the encounter.

The Nigeria delegation will depart from Ismailia on Monday morning, for Alexandria – venue of their Group B attrition against Burundi, Guinea and Madagascar.

 

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Wig-wearing Women Get Ready: Tanzania To Impose Wig, Hair Extension Tax

15 June 2019 - 5:01am


Illustration

Illustration; Woman wearing wig. DHgate

A row has broken out in Tanzania over the government's decision to impose a tax on wigs and hair extensions.

Many male and some female MPs applauded and thumped their desks in approval when Finance Minister Philip Mpango announced the tax in parliament.

Supporters of the levy say it will help women keep their hair natural.

But there has also been public outrage, with women saying they are being punished for wanting to look good in wigs and hair extensions.

Tanzanians tend to uphold traditional values, but society is changing and many women now wear wigs and extensions, the BBC's Aboubakar Famau reports from the capital, Dodoma.

In his budget speech in parliament on Thursday, Mr. Mpango announced a 25% tax on imported wigs and hair extensions and a 10% tax on those made locally as part of a series of measures aimed at increasing government revenue.

The cheapest wigs currently costs around $4 (£3.40), but they can sell for up to $130.

Mr. Mpango also scrapped the exemption on value-added tax placed on sanitary towels, saying consumers had not benefited as businesses did not reduce prices when it was introduced

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International Dream Cup: Future Eagles Lose 4-1 To Japan

15 June 2019 - 4:51am


Nigeria’s U15 boys on Friday lost their second match of the 2019 International Dream Cup tournament to host nation Japan 1-4 at the Yurtec Stadium in Miyagi.

Following their 3-1 win over Mexico’s U16 on Wednesday, the Future Eagles were confident of a result against the Japanese.

But they got a lesson in marksmanship and staying power by the Japanese.

Katsushima, who would eventually annex the match ball with a hat-trick, opened the floodgates in the 16th minute.

Adeyeye Damilola equalized for Nigeria 10 minutes later.

Katsushima got his second four minutes after the restart, and then made it three for himself and Japan in the 52nd minute. Suwama Kosei made it 4-1 with seven minutes to go.

The Future Eagles will take on the U16 team of Romania on Sunday at the last venue, in their last game of the tournament.

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Kano Emirate Kingmakers Lose Bid To Stop Ganduje Emirs Parading As Kano Rulers

15 June 2019 - 4:51am


 

A Kano High Court has rejected an application filed by four Kano emirate kingmakers, seeking the court to restrain the four newly installed emirs of Bichi, Karaye, Rano, and Gaya from parading themselves as emirs.

Voice of Nigeria reports that counsel to the plaintiffs, Suraj Said, also prayed to the court to stop Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of the state from recognizing the new emirs and taking further actions on their appointment.

However, in his ruling on the application, the presiding judge, Justice Ahmed Badamasi dismissed the application, arguing that it lacked merit.

He then adjourned the matter until June 27 for hearing.

Following the appointment of the four new emirs recently, the plaintiff filed a motion to the state high court, asking it to stop the state government and the state House of Assembly from recognizing the emirs.

The motion also asked the court to restrain the newly appointed emirs from parading themselves as emirs.

But in his ruling, Mr. Badamasi ordered that status quo ante be maintained pending the ruling on the application on Friday, June 14.

Voice of Nigeria observed that the Plaintiffs in the suit were Madakin Kano, District head of Dawakin Tofa, Yusuf Nabahani; Makaman Kano, District head of Wudil, Abdullahi Sarki-Ibrahim; Sarkin Dawaki Mai Tuta, the district head of Gabasawa, Bello Abubakar and Sarkin Ban Kano, District head of Dambatta, Mukhtar Adnan.

The defendants included the new emirs; Tafida Abubakar-Ila of Rano; Ibrahim Abdulkadir of Gaya; Ibrahim Abubakar ll of Karaye, and the son of the late Emir of Kano, Alhaji Ado Bayero; Alhaji Aminu Ado-Bayero as well as the Attorney General of the state, Ibrahim Mukhtar.

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Federal Government's Dispute With MTN Plunges Foreign Investment By 43 Percent

15 June 2019 - 4:28am


MTN Nigeria Building

MTN Nigeria Building The Weather Report

Nigeria’s dispute with the telecommunications giant, MTN Nigeria Plc, may have taken a severe toll on the nation’s foreign direct investment profile as FDI plunged 43 percent in 2018 at the backdrop of a significant 13 percent rise in FDI across sub-Sahara Africa within the same period.

The FDI inflow closed at $2.0 billion in 2018, down from $3.5 billion in 2017, according to a report by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), a development which the report said, came as two global financial giants, HSBC and UBS, closed their representative offices in Nigeria.

The UNCTAD in its “World Investment Report”, also said FDI in sub-Saharan Africa rose 13% to $32 billion, adding that the rise in the FDI inflow into sub-Saharan Africa bucks a global downward trend, reversing two years of decline.

It stated: “Development of new mining and oil projects, a new U.S. development-finance institution and the ratification of an agreement to create a continent-wide free-trade area could further boost foreign direct investment (FDI) in 2019.

“Africa stands in sharp contrast to developed economies, which saw FDI inflows plunge 27% to their lowest level since 2004.”

The report said some African countries fared better than others, noting that “the Southern Africa region performed the best, taking in FDI of nearly $4.2 billion, up from -$925 million in 2017.

Foreign investment in South Africa more than doubled to $5.3 billion. “Though much of the South African jump came from intra-company loans, new investments included a $750 million Beijing Automotive Group plant and a $186 million wind farm being built by the Irish company Mainstream Renewable Energy.

“By contrast, inward FDI to Nigeria, a major oil producer, plunged 43% to $2 billion. Investors were put off by a dispute between the government and South African telecom giant MTN over repatriated profits.

Banks HSBC and UBS both closed representative offices there in 2018.

“That left Ghana, which is in the midst of an oil and gas boom and saw inflows of $3 billion, as West Africa’s leading destination for foreign investment.

“Italy’s Eni Group was behind Ghana’s largest greenfield investment project. Ethiopia remained East Africa’s top recipient of FDI at $3.3 billion, despite an 18% drop compared with the year before.

“Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania all saw increases in FDI inflows. Foreign investment in Uganda jumped 67% to a record $1.3 billion, boosted by the oil and gas development of a consortium that includes France’s Total, CNOOC of China and London-listed Tullow Oil.”

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President Buhari Salutes Former Head Of State General Abdusalami At 77

15 June 2019 - 4:24am


President Buhari has congratulated former Head of State, General Abubakar Abdulsalami, on a life of purpose, driven by a passion to serve his country and humanity.

The president extols the former head of state’s commitment to peace, stability, and development in Nigeria, and the African continent, as he continually and relentlessly follows and counsels leaders and communities on values of togetherness and collective vision.

President Buhari believes General Abubakar’s visionary and selfless leadership style, and willingness for inclusive growth and development sets him apart for commendation, while the handing over to a civilian government in 1999 secured an enduring place for him in history.

He joins family members, professional colleagues, and friends in celebrating the African elder statesman and global voice.

The Nigerian leader that the almighty God will grant Gen. Abubakar longer life and good health as he continues to serve humanity.

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Lawless Lot: In Six Days, FRSC Arrests 5,713 Traffic Offenders In Nigeria

15 June 2019 - 4:20am


The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) has arrested no fewer than 5,713 offenders nationwide during the recent Sallah celebrations.

According to Bisi Kazeem, FRSC Public Education Officer, the 5,713 offenders were apprehended for 6,481 offences committed across 2,053 routes covered by the corps during its special patrol operations which lasted six days.

He said that the patrols were part of the corps’ “renewed commitment towards creating a safer motoring environment in Nigeria.”

Mr. Kazeem disclosed that the FRSC successfully recorded a seven percent decrease in the total number of road traffic crashes and 12 percent reduction in fatality during the 2019 Eid-el-Kabir.

“The corps recorded a total of 117 crashes as against 126 of the same period in 2018 representing a seven percent decrease in the total number of crashes recorded within the period.

“Twenty-two out of the 117 crashes were fatal, compared to 25 of the same period in 2018, representing a 12 percent decrease in the number of fatalities recorded.”

He further said the most prevalent offence recorded during the period was seatbelt use violation with 1,492 offenders apprehended.

“More to this, public enlightenment campaigns within the period increased by 5.7 percent.”

Mr. Kazeem said that the recorded decrease in road traffic crashes during the 2019 Sallah celebration was as a result of improved patrols, robust public enlightenment campaign and prompt rescue services.

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APC Women To Buhari: 360 Of US Contested Last Elections Only 0.1 Percent Scaled Through

15 June 2019 - 4:15am


The All Progressives Congress (APC) Women Aspirants Forum has criticized their male counterparts in the ruling party for marginalizing women to the extent that many of them could not clinch the party’s ticket to participate in the last general elections.

The forum, however, congratulated President Muhammadu Buhari on the successful Democracy Day celebration which followed his inauguration for a second term in office.

The leader of the forum, Mrs. Adedoyin Eshanumi, who led other women aspirants to a thanksgiving prayer on Friday on behalf of the president noted that God answered their prayers by ensuring that both events were hitch-free.

Eshanumi, who used the occasion of the thanksgiving to seek God’s protection for President Buhari, as he pilots the affairs of the nation for another four years pleaded for the inclusion of more women to facilitate nation-building.

“We pray to God to give our dear president the good health, strength, and wisdom needed to lead the country to the next level. We are about 360 women that contested different elective positions but only 0.1 percent scaled through.

“Our dear president promised to include us in his government to show us love the way we have supported him through our votes and prayers and we promise not to let him down, especially as the anti-corruption crusade intensifies,” Eshanumi said.

Mrs. Omorede Osifo-Marshal, a former commissioner for Youths and Sports in Edo, who aspired to represent Oredo Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, said, Nigerian women needed 50 percent of the available appointments in President Buhari’s cabinet.

“We want women ministers, special advisers, board chairmen; we want state governors to make women commissioners and all of that.

“We don’t want the lowest positions; we are women aspirants and we worked very hard to represent our people but at the end of the day, it didn’t work out, some of us were denied our tickets.

“I believe that as a man of integrity, our president will keep his words, not just to the women of Nigeria but to the women aspirants because we have worked for the success of our party,” Osifo-Marshal said.

Mrs. Ann Agom-Eze, Senatorial aspirant in Ebonyi South, who also spoke at the event pleaded with the president to give the APC Women Aspirants choice appointments to position them for 2023 election.

“The states that have never produced a Minister should be seriously considered for Ministerial appointments and heads of parastatals. Other women that have the experience should also be included to serve,” she said.

Another aspirant Princess Nkem Igwe, who aspired for the party’s ticket for Ebonyi State House of Assembly, urged the president to carry more women along in his government.

“We have been so marginalized by the men in most of the contests but I thank God almighty for bringing President Buhari back for a second term in office,” she said.

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Islamic State Claims Responsibility For Borno Attacks

15 June 2019 - 4:03am


The Islamic State says its fighters have killed no fewer than 20 Nigerian soldiers in some attacks in Borno State.

One of the attacks was carried out on Wednesday, July 12, in Borno State with the insurgents attacking troops of 158 Battalion Location in Kareto Village of Mobbar Local Government Area, Borno State.

Reuters News Agency reports on Friday that the outlawed group claimed responsibility for the attack in a message published on a website.

The group claims its affiliate, the Islamic State in West Africa (ISWA), which split from the Boko Haram terrorist group in 2016, has carried out a number of attacks in the northeast over the last few months.

Efforts to get a reaction from the military proved abortive as the spokesperson of Operation Lafiya Dole, Colonel Ado Isa did not respond to phone calls or reply text messages.

Meanwhile, the group also claimed to have attacked a military base in Kareto village which is some 130 kilometres from the Borno State capital Maiduguri.

The group claims an army commander was shot dead in the attack which the military is yet to confirm.

The attack has however left many soldiers dead with many others still missing. Locals confirmed that the whereabouts of the Commanding Officer of the battalion is still unknown.

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There’s No Future For Nigeria, Northerners Unreasonable, Unrealistic –Ohanaeze Ndigbo

15 June 2019 - 3:25am


Chief. Nnia Nwodo

Chief. Nnia Nwodo

The apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo on Friday warned that there is no future for Nigeria with the current structural imbalance in the political spectrum of the country.

The President General of Ohanaeze, Chief Nnia Nwodo who stated this in a statement,

The Ohanaeze president general said, “There is no future for Nigeria. As long as the north decides to be unreasonable and unrealistic, this country can never get better.

“The country is only heading for implosion as long as equity and fairness is denied some sections of the country. The only solution is restructuring or the country will eventually hit the rocks – if not today, tomorrow. What does it cost to be fair and live in peace?

“Certainly, nobody will blame anybody if emotion runs high and the thread holding the country becomes thin and snaps.

“No condition is permanent in life. There are ominous signs and the clouds are gathering. Let the remaining generation that witnessed the Nigerian civil war recant and save the country from the cataclysm that will envelop her if the upcoming generation are allowed to inherit the callousness and wickedness pervading the land now. Nigerians beware of civil war.”

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Buhari’s Cabinet: To Be Or Not To Be? By Fredrick Nwabufo

15 June 2019 - 2:21am


Fredrick Nwabufo

Fredrick Nwabufo

“It will take the next two months before ministers can come on board. Bringing them in now may disrupt the clean-up going on. So, Nigerians just have to be patient.”

This was Garba Shehu, presidential spokesman, speaking to Reuters on July 1, 2015 on the hold-up in appointing ministers. He said the president was taking his time to assemble a team of “credible and competent” Nigerians.

But after six months of suspense and wearisome wait, some persons of blemished character and of inchoate competence still got hoisted into the cabinet. What a pathos-inducing denouement that was?

As a matter of fact, reinforcing failure is solving a problem with the same washed-out tools, methods and liveware. A president is as good as his cabinet; this is the reason competence must supersede every other value item in the check-list.

It has been 14 days since the inauguration of the second Buhari administration, and it is shaping up to be the sophomore of a prosaic interlude charged with a numbing suspense.  

Really, I think this uneasy wait could be the result of intense lobbying in “high places” or a consequence of ambivalence in making that important decision of appointing persons to the cabinet by President Buhari. And there is the speculation that most of the "arid hands" may return because they are angling and sparing no quarter in scheming to have another round at retailed power.

In an essay entitled, ‘Mr President, may we discuss your cabinet?’ Simon Kolawole delivered an incisive piece of protest when he said: “Mr President, I will now be straightforward: if you retain certain ministers, I will finally give up on your government. I have seen enough reasons to lose faith but there is this never-say-die spirit that keeps me hoping even when it does not make sense. That is in my DNA. I have, however, been gravely worried that most of the ministers have been saying quietly that they are returning. In fact, I am told more than half of your cabinet will be re-appointed. I hope this is a joke, Mr President. Tell me it’s a joke, Mr President. Assure me, Mr President, that this is a joke. This is a cabinet you should have dissolved years ago! How on earth would they be retained? Say it ain’t so, Mr President.”

With due attribution, I so declare: “I will finally give up on Buhari, if certain former political 'appointees' return.” The truth is, loyalty is not a strong point for outsourcing critical ministries or offices to loudly incompetent persons. This was the intended experiment with Adebayo Shittu, minister of communications. He is, perhaps, the most tragic misfit to have headed that ministry.

And it is not that the president lacks a pool of human resources to make his pick from within or outside his party. But the Nigerian brand of politics of cronyism, loyalty and patronage blights credible choices.

To say the least, I am not oblivious of the achievements of some officials in the administration.  I know that there have been genuine reforms at some agencies. At PTAD, I know, Sharon Ikeazor, executive secretary of the agency introduced the Anti-corruption Transparency Unit to purge the agency of institutional corruption; I know she created a database for pensioners, jettisoning the antiquated and cumbersome filing process; yanked off more than 24,000 ghost pensioners from the system, saving about N495 million monthly for the government. But would it not be fantastic if we had a female Secretary to the Government of the Federation? What is to be said for gender inclusion?

At NEITI, I know there have been reforms. I know there is a push to establish public registers of beneficial owners (real owners) of oil, gas and mining companies which operate in the country by 2020. Already, there is a published roadmap on beneficial ownership disclosure which provides clear definition of who beneficial owners are. The essence of this is to bring transparency and accountability into the extractive industry. What better way to fight corruption in the opaque sector? Also, the man leading this charge at NEITI, Mr Waziri Adio, is a public officer who is known to have shrunk the appurtenances of office off his own bat.

At the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the integrity of data has remained untainted. I remember a few months to the 2019 election; the NBS published some unemployment figures which were unfavourable to the government. Really, it takes special courage to hold up the end of non-compromise in this circumstance. Dr Yemi Kale, statistician-general, braved death threats to do his job.

And there are many other Nigerians who have distinguished themselves in public service like Dr Joe Abah who initiated a series of pristine reforms while he was the director-general of the Bureau of Public Service Reforms. The talent pool in Nigeria is inexhaustible. But the committee of “political scouts” are comfortable with the optional familiar.

President Buhari should imagine himself as the CEO of a blue-chip company. He must understand that competence is ultimate; it comes first, and that appointing career politicians to sensitive offices as he experimented in the time of "change" will not take us to the "Next Level" now.

 

@FredrickNwabufo

Opinion AddThis :  Original Author :  Fredrick Nwabufo Disable advertisements : 
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76 Parties Declare Bayelsa State Election Commission Chairman Unfit

15 June 2019 - 2:15am


Ahead of the council polls in Bayelsa, 76 political parties have called for the removal  of the acting chairman of the Bayelsa State Independent Electoral Commission (BSIEC) Ball Oyarede, within three days.

The parties under the umbrella of Party Advisory Council (IPAC) also directed members to withdraw from participating in the forthcoming elections.

Their stance was based on allegations that the chairman is a card-carrying member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), to rig the elections.

The leadership of IPAC also directed all member political parties that have not conducted their primaries to put their primaries on hold until their demands were met.

State chairman of IPAC, Mr. Eneyi Zidougha, confirmed the report, threatening to drag the state government to court if their demands were not met after three days.

He said: "Our demand is simple. We are asking the state governor to remove Ball Oyarede, who is a card-carrying member of the PDP and replace him with a none PDP member, preferably somebody from the academia. And we are giving the Governor a three day ultimatum to meet this demand." 

BYSIEC has yet to react to the allegations.

Mr. Oyarede was a serving member of the Bayelsa State sixth Assembly whose tenure ended on June 6, 2019.

Politics News AddThis :  Original Author :  SaharaReporters, New York Disable advertisements : 
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Mob Attack Ruggedman In London Restaurant Over Naira Marley Comments

15 June 2019 - 2:07am



Veteran Nigerian rapper Micheal Ugochukwu, better known as Ruggedman, was attacked at a restaurant in London, the United Kingdom on Friday night.

The rapper, who is in London for a show was having dinner at a fast food named 805 restaurants when he was accosted by a group of four boys wearing a hoodie.

In a video circulating online, the rapper could be seen trying to protect himself while his attackers made use of chairs and objects around to hit him. Ruggedman in the midst of the scuffle found a way to escape out of the restaurant as his attackers continued chasing him. 

A few hours later, Ruggedman took to his official Instagram handle to confirm the incident saying he won’t stop in fighting for the youths. He also thanked the London Police department for their prompt action.

“Being attacked by four misguided boys will not deter me from fighting for the youths, even though they blindly fight me” He wrote alongside a picture of him and a London police officer.

It will be recalled that prior to the arrest and arraignment of Nigerian singer Azeez  Fashola better known as Naira Marley, Ruggedman had chided the singer for showing support for cybercrime better known as Yahoo Yahoo. 

"@nairamarley My brother, I love your music and all but you need to get one thing clear and do not mislead people. Especially kids on social media. You can do Yahoo all you want, but do not disrespect the part of the black race that was sold into slavery by trying to use it to justify cybercrime. The people who bought slaves died ages ago. If you want to fight that, then start a cause/movement against the British and America. Whoever owned slaves, but stealing the hard earned money of other people isn't about slavery. You say the Nigerian leaders are looting trillions outta this country, why aren't you hacking their accounts and giving back to the people Robin Hood style? I swear I go hail you for that one,"

"But bro respect the black race and don't try to use it to justify cybercrime. E no follow. If it wasn't a crime popo won't be busting boys for it. Thousands of qualified Nigerians can't get jobs outside Nigeria because of "yahoo". Their families are suffering. Young Nigerians are suspect everywhere they go because of "yahoo". If you want to do it, enjoy. Nobody is stopping you. But remember that if you do the crime, if you are caught you do the time. I got friends that are into it, I don't judge. I got friends who are in jail as we speak for doing it, I don't judge. All man dey hustle. God bless all our hustles and let's hold our leaders accountable." the rapper wrote on his Instagram April.

This did not go down well with Naira Marley who went on Instagram live few hours later  to call out Ruggedman  saying he is a "moron' and addressed the rumour of him sleeping with 9ice's wife, which broke up their marriage.

However, few days after the jibes throwing by both artist, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC,  picked up Naira Marley on his birthday at his fellow artiste house, Zlatan in Lekki, Lagos.

After his arrest, Naira Marley was arraigned on 11 count charge of violating the Cyber Crimes Act of 2015. This led to insuination by fans of Naira Marley that Ruggedman had a hand in the arrest of the singer.  

Although, the rapper has severally denied playing a role in the arrest of Naira Marley this did not stop him from being attacked by aggrieved fans in London last night. 

Naira Marley who regained freedom yesterday after meeting his bail conditions left Nigeria for United Kingdom at the age of 11 years old and has lived in there most part of his life until his return in 2018 following the success of his single "Issa Goal".

CRIME Entertainment Music News AddThis :  Original Author :  SaharaReporters, New York Disable advertisements : 
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