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BREAKING: BudgIT Co-founder, Seun Onigbinde, Resigns Appointment As Technical Adviser In Buhari’s Government

16 September 2019 - 6:22am


 

Co-founder of BudgIT, Seun Onigbinde, has announced his resignation as Technical Adviser to the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning.

The popular critic made the announcement on Monday and shared the link of the post on his official Twitter handle @seunonigbinde.

This is coming days after his appointment by Buhari’s administration was condemned by many Nigerians, who felt he had betrayed public trust by accepting to serve in a government he had heavily criticised in the past.

He said, “Upon further reflections on the furore that has been generated by my new role as the Technical Adviser to the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, I humbly resign the appointment.

“I am very grateful to the Honourable Minister, Prince Clem Ikanade Agba, for believing in my expertise and I also thank everyone who sent his or her congratulations to me in the short period.

“I have also been humbled by the faith and belief that numerous persons have expressed in me.

“My sincere interest is to see a Nigeria that grows and optimises resources for the benefit of all Nigerians.

“My loyalty to the good cause of our nation, Nigeria, compelled me to accept the call to provide technical skills and this experience has more than strengthened it.

“I also want to wish the Nigerian Government, led by President Muhammadu Buhari, well.

“I will always be of help to the government in my capacity as the Director of BudgIT, a critical fiscal transparency group, as I have been to several agencies.

“I would also work to ensure that BudgIT continues to build civic awareness on the right of every Nigerian to know how public resources are managed.”

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N6.9 Billion Fraud: Trial Of Fayose To Resume October 21

16 September 2019 - 5:16am


 

The trial of former Governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose, will now
resume on October 21 before a Federal High Court in Lagos.

Fayose is being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes
Commission (EFCC) over N6.9billion fraud and money laundering charges.

He was first arraigned on October 22, 2018, before Justice Mojisola
Olatotegun, alongside a company, Spotless Investment Ltd, on 11 counts
bordering on fraud and money laundering offences.

He had pleaded not guilty to the charges and was granted bail on
October 24, 2018, in the sum of N50 million with sureties in like sum.

The defendant was subsequently re-arraigned before Justice Chukwujekwu
Aneke, on July 2.

He had also pleaded not guilty to the charges and was allowed to
continue on the earlier bail granted.

After his re-arraignment, Justice Aneke had granted leave for the
defendant to travel abroad for medicals.

The court had, however, ordered that his International passport be
returned to the court, on or before September 16.

Aneke had then adjourned the case until September 16, 17, 18, and 19
and also to October 21, 22, 23, 24 and 25 for the continuation of
trial.

Meanwhile, the case will now come up on October 21, as Judges are away
for the annual judges' conference, which takes place after the annual
long vacation of the court.


News Agency of Nigeria reports that during the pendency of the charge
before Justice Olatoregun, EFCC had opened the trial on November 19,
2018, and had so far called 13 witnesses out of the15 listed.

However, the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Hon. Justice Adamu
Abdu-Kafarati had transferred the case from Olatoregun to Aneke,
following a petition by the EFCC.

During the trial before Olatoregun. the prosecution had called
witnesses, from several commercial banks, as well as a former Minister
of State for Defence, Sen. Musiliu Obanikoro.

According to the charge, on June 17, 2014, Fayose and one Abiodun
Agbele were said to have taken possession of the sum of N1.2 billion,
for purposes of funding his gubernatorial election campaign in Ekiti,
which sum they reasonably ought to have known formed part of crime
proceeds.

Fayose was alleged to have received a cash payment of the sum of five
million dollars, (about N1.8 billion) from tObanikoro, without going
through any financial institution.

He was also alleged to have retained the sum of N300 million in his
account and took control of the aggregate sums of about N622 million
which sum he reasonably ought to have known formed part of crime
proceeds.

Fayose was alleged to have procured De Privateer Ltd and Still Earth
Ltd, to retain the aggregate sums of N851 million which they
reasonably ought to have known formed part of crime proceeds.

Besides, the defendant was alleged to have used the aggregate sums of
about N1.6 billion to acquire properties in Lagos and Abuja, which
sums he reasonably ought to have known formed part of crime proceeds.

He was also alleged to have used the sum of N200 million, to acquire a
property in Abuja, in the name of his elder sister Moji Oladeji, which
sum he ought to know also forms crime proceeds.

The offences contravene the provisions of sections 15(1), 15 (2), 15
(3), 16(2)(b), 16 (d), and 18 (c) of the Money Laundering Prohibition
Act 2011.
 

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Body Of Man Missing Found 22 Years After

16 September 2019 - 5:15am


 

The body of a man who was reported missing in 1997 in Florida, US, has been found after images of a submerged car were visible on Google Maps.

William Moldt was reported missing after he went to a club and never returned home. The case went cold after a missing person investigation was opened, but produced no leads, reports BBC.

The Independent reported that a resident spotted what looked like a submerged car in a lake. The person contacted local homeowners, who confirmed via drone footage that the car was still there.

The Guardian confirmed local police pulled the car from the lake and found the skeletal remains of Moldt in the car.

No foul play is suspected.

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National Youth Games: Ondo Contingent Threaten 'Sit-Back' Protest In Ilorin Over Unpaid Allowances

16 September 2019 - 4:51am


 

The Ondo State contingent participating in the 5th National Youth Games (NYC) at Ilorin in Kwara State, are poised for a showdown with the state government over their camp allowances.

SaharaReporters gathered that the state's contingent (mainly officials) lodged at Lasvegas hostels at the University of Ilorin are currently lamenting their yet-to-be-paid allowances.

The Ondo contingent are participating in the field and tracks events included 67 coaches and 108 athletes.

The state is 8th on the log with 21 medals (6 gold, 7 silver, and 8 bronze medals) in the ongoing games. 

One of the coaches, who spoke to SaharaReporters on Monday on the condition of anonymity said: "I am one of the coaches for these indoor games, and today make it day nine that we arrived here (Ilorin) for this event. And as I am talking to you, we have not been paid our camp allowances and we are already protesting about it and we are ready for a "sit back" protest.

"Throughout the game, nothing like health insurances for all of us here. Honestly, it is sad how the state treats his contingents participating in these games."

Moses Usifo, a coach from Ondo in charge of boxing also revealed that some athletes had yet to receive allowances. 

He accused the government of not taking care of the athletes. 

Another Ondo official stated: Yet, he said the contingents are not being paid their allowances and for their hard work despite making the state proud.

"We are very much aware that the state government approved the sum of N20 million for this game before departing Akure for Ilorin. That money might sound very huge to you but it is not meant for jamboree because there are some sporting equipment that we need to get from the fund. 

"So, we heard the sum of N10 million were released from the money out of which is meant to procure equipment and also do some elimination. As I speak, no equipment was procured and they only bought tracksuit for the athletes, none of us (officials) were given an official tracksuit for the games.

"Now, they said they don't have any money to pay us and that our allowance can only be paid when the remaining N10 million is released by the government. We have told them too, we will have no order choice to protest down here in Ilorin and let the world know what we are now passing through."

Reacting, Wande Fabuluje, the General Manager of the Ondo State Sports Council, said, “Every athlete has been paid for both the elimination and the games because they are even the performers. So, we are still pleading with the coaches to exercise some patience with us, and as soon as salaries are paid, they too shall be paid.” 

The competition will end on 17 September.

 

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Attack On Saudi Leaves OPEC With 940,000 Spare Reserve

16 September 2019 - 4:34am


Smoke is seen following a fire at Aramco facility in the eastern city of Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia, September 14, 2019

Smoke is seen following a fire at Aramco facility in the eastern city of Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia, September 14, 2019 REUTERS/STRINGER

 

The attack on oil facilities in Saudi Arabia has left the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting countries (OPEC), with just 940,000 barrels per day of the extra reserve to meet demand, Reuters reports. 

The report stated that Nigeria’s capacity to benefit from the shortfall was limited by production instability.

Although it did not give a specific figure on the extent of the output limitations, Reuters said, ‘Nigerian exports have also suffered from disruptions.’ Nigeria’s pipelines are constantly subjected to breaches and ruptures. These disruptions lead to shot-ins on production. The most recent pipeline leak reported in the media was on the Abura oil field in Delta State on August 29. 

"Three key crude oil conveyors, the Trans Ramos pipeline, the Nembe Creek Trunkline and the Trans Forcados pipeline, all leaked crude at different times in 2018 and 2019. These pipelines carry about 400,000 barrels of petroleum per day. Besides oil spills, there is also the problem of theft."

Godwin Obaseki, the Edo State governor, had just at the time of the Abura spill, said the country lost 22 million barrels of oil per day in six months.

It was estimated that the attack which the US is accusing already sanctioned Iran of carrying out, took out 5.7m bpd of crude oil. 

"According to data from the International Energy Agency, OPEC had a ‘global supply cushion’ of about 3.21m bpd. Saudi Arabia is said to have 2.27m of that petroleum, which has now been taken out by the drone attack claimed by the Houthi rebels but attributed to Iran by the US government.

The attack caused a 15-percent surge in the price of the commodity, which is good news for Nigeria’s oil-dependent economy.  

At 3:22 am Monday, Brent crude – the benchmark used to price Nigerian grades, reportedly opened at $66.45 and reached a high of $71.95 per barrel. 

The commodity went for around $62 per barrel on Friday.

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Nigerians Always Asking Me To Turn Things Into Money -Magician

16 September 2019 - 4:30am


 

Babs Cardini, a 19-year-old magician, says he mostly get requests to turn things into money from Nigerians.

The young Nigerian magician said this in an interview with the BBC.

Cardini, who said he hates being optimistic, said in the next three years, he wants to be one of the greatest magicians in the world.

He said: “Whenever I am performing, people ask me, am I using jazz, am I using voodoo? Am I using any sort of tricks or sleight of hand? I have loved magic since I was five but I officially started magic when I was 16 years old.

“Everywhere I go to, people are wowed and they have been contacting me, trying to be my friend and know me more.”

He said he gets his inspiration from watching other magicians perform on Youtube.

“Me and Magic, we are like 5 and 6. It’s kind of self-taught and gifted at the same time and more practice.  

“I go on Youtube to look at people who are great at magic, who are better in magic and see what they do. Not like I watch tutorials because if you are watching tutorials on Youtube, you don’t get to go far

“Nigerian mentality, when they see me as a magician, they are wowed and they still ask me, can you turn this into money? Most of the request is always about money,” he said.

 

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Four Die Of Cholera In Adamawa State - Report

16 September 2019 - 4:22am


 

At least four people have been reported dead following a cholera outbreak in Adamawa State, while 738 cases were recorded.

According to a joint report by the World Health Organization (WHO) and Adamawa State Ministry of Health, two new cases of cholera were reported from 11 to 12 September 2019 from Yola North Local Government Area.

The report also stated that there was no new case from Girei and Yola South LGAs, adding that Song LGA has not reported any new case in the past eight weeks.

“The total number of cases reported as at 12th September 2019 stands at 739 with 4 deaths (CFR=0.54%), Yola North has 453 cases with 2 deaths (CFR= 0.44%); Girei has 183 cases with 1 death (CFR= 0.55 %), Yola South has 102 cases with 1 death (CFR= 0.98 %) and Song has 1 case with 0 death (CFR= 0 %). So far, 185 samples yielded growth suggestive of Vibrio cholerae on culture and results of 7 isolates from the reference laboratory revealed 01 serotypes,” the reported said.

Adamawa is prone to cholera outbreaks. 

In June 2019, the state government said 76 cases were recorded in three LGAs.

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Embattled Senator Abbo Elias Squares Off With Adamawa Governor Over Council Elections

16 September 2019 - 3:42am



A crisis is brewing within the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in Adamawa State as Senator Elisha Abbo accused Governor Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri of leading the party to destruction.

Abbo wrote on his Facebook page on Monday that Fintiri's high-handedness would destroy the party's fortunes.

"Mark my words that the party under the leadership of Gov. Fintiri in Adamawa state is heading for self-destruction unless he reverses some of his unpopular decisions and ceases to be a dictator," Abbo said.

Abbo's outburst is connected to the just-concluded screening of PDP candidates for the local council polls slated for November.

The senator claimed that aspirants loyal to him were disqualified by the screening committee headed by Kwamoti La'ori, a loyalist of the governor.

"For the records, I met the governor three times before different witnesses on the vexatious LGA elections and he assured or rather lied to us that he will not interfere and will allow a free and fair electoral process.

"That was not to be as he ordered the Screening committee to disqualify candidates he felt are close to me after findings indicated that his candidates will lose even if he transferred the CBN to those LGAs. Gov. Fintiri did that to pave way for his anointed candidates to contest the election.

"The appeal committee did a good work, sent its report to the party after three days and the party waited for the Gov for nine days to arrive before overruling the recommendations of the party and the screening committee.

"Can he or any of his official spokespeople deny this so that I will fully open up?

"Let me state it clearly that I never got elected because of any godfather, I don’t have any.

"For records, Gov. Fintiri worked against me day and night during the primary elections. He even drove to Mubi and slept in Mubi held nocturnal meetings just to defeat me", Abbo wrote.

He, therefore, demanded an urgent intervention from the national hierarchy of the party, as according to him, "to quickly save the party from total collapse in Adamawa state".

"I said it before and let me repeat again if we cannot as a party learn from our mistakes of 2015, let us learn from the mistakes of APC in 2019," he added.

Responding to the senator's claim, Fintiri through his spokesman, Solomon Kumangar, said he would not join issue with the senator.

"I cannot comment on the distinguished senator's vituperation because I don't think the governor would want to join issues here," Kumangar said.

As of the time of filing this report, efforts to get PDP's response were unsuccessful, as both the Chairman, Tahir Shehu and the Secretary, Abdullahi Prambe, did not respond to telephone calls made to them.

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US, Nigeria Partner On Tackling Counterfeit Drugs

16 September 2019 - 2:41am


 

The United States Embassy in Nigeria has launched a working group that
would seek to learn from Nigeria how it’s been able to curb the
illicit activities of counterfeit drug producers.

This was made known on Monday at a US embassy's its two-day programme
on the bane of counterfeit pharmaceuticals and piracy involving top
executives from the pharmaceutical, Nigeria Customs Service, banking
and creative industry.

In a welcome address by Tanya Hill, the US government said Nigeria's
African country whose asset lies in its innovation, ingenuity, and
creativity of its people.

The embassy further explained how important it was for intellectual
properties of people should be protected.

“Investments in intellectual Property (IP) are growing rapidly in the
global economy, often exceeding investments in traditional property
such as machinery, equipment and real estate. Nigeria has improved its
ranking in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business; a strong
intellectual property regime will further bolster Nigeria’s investment
climate,” Hill explained.

The working group which comprises select NAFDAC enforcement officials
and selected alumni from three pharmaceutical crime workshops were
mandated to build on the capacity-building programmes of the US
Department of Justice (USDOJ).

With the working group, Regional Pharmaceutical Crime Working Group,
the US embassy said it wanted Nigeria to share “its strides in
pharmaceutical crime enforcement with her other African nations”.
 

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Nigerian Policeman Stabs 9 People In Ondo Nightclub Brawl

16 September 2019 - 2:17am


 

No fewer than nine persons sustained varying degrees of injury when an
allegedly drunk policeman, identified as Taiwo Orisadare, stabbed them
at a nightclub in Akure, the Ondo State capital.

The policeman, attached to the Area Commander’s office, Akure,
allegedly stabbed the victims at a popular club in Alagbaka GRA during
a brawl on Friday, Punch reports.

It was not clear if the cop was on duty at the time the incident happened.

According to an eyewitness, the policeman, who was reportedly drunk,
started harassing the victims.

The eyewitness said, “It was clear that Sergeant Orisadare was drunk
and he was already becoming uncontrollable at the club.

“He won’t just listen to those trying to tell him to take things easy.
It got to a point that things went awry as he started attacking
everyone he could lay his hands on. In total, he stabbed nine people
before he was overpowered.”

Another source said some of the victims were currently receiving
treatment at various hospitals in Akure, while some were in critical
conditions. However, there was no loss of life in the incident.

Femi Joseph, the spokesman for the police in the state, confirmed the
incident and stated that both parties were engaged in a brawl.

He stated Orisadare was also injured in the fight and had been taken
to hospital.

Joseph said, “There was a fight between the policeman and some young
men, but we have started an investigation into the matter.

“All those involved in the brawl are already in hospital receiving
treatment. But if at the end of the day we find our man culpable, we
will deal with him, because we don’t tolerate indiscipline in this
command.”
 

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Rochas Okorocha To Appear In Court For Sedition

16 September 2019 - 2:16am


 

Rochas Okorocha, a former governor of Imo state, has been summoned by
a magistrate's court in Owerri over an allegation of incitement.

Okorocha is to appear in court on October 8.

The Governor Emeka Ihedioha-led administration is suing Okorocha to
court for inciting his supporters to disobey the state government.

The state's attorney-general on behalf of the state government, in a
suit with reference number OW/MISC.79/2019, filed at the Owerri
district of the magistrate's court, alleged that Okorocha made
seditious and inciting statements against the government, "even on air
using his radio station (Reach FM)".

The attorney-general also alleged that Okorocha, now a senator, spent
more time in Owerri, "cavorting with his retinue of well-armed thugs
and urchins referred to as ‘Ohaji Boys’ whom he employed to cause
trouble".

The Imo government had alleged that Ihedioha's aide was beaten to a
pulp when he went to Okorocha's Spibat residence to serve the former
governor court papers.

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More Nigerians Flee South Africa As Buhari Regime Is Set To Evacuate 319 Tomorrow

16 September 2019 - 2:13am


 

No fewer than 319 Nigerians will be  evacuated from South Africa
tomorrow (Tuesday).

Punch reports that on Sunday that arrangements for the evacuation
would be tidier than the previous one.

The Federal Government had on Wednesday evacuated 187 Nigerians from
South Africa following xenophobic attacks by its citizens on Africans.

The  Wednesday flight was delayed by hitches introduced by South
African officials, who insisted that some of the evacuated Nigerians
did not have travel documents.

The 187 returnees were the first batch of the 640 Nigerians, who
registered for evacuation following the xenophobic attacks. They
arrived at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos at 9:34
pm last Wednesday.

The Chairman of Nigerians in the Diaspora Commission, Abike
Dabiri-Erewa, told the newspaper that the list of passengers was being
updated.

She added that the necessary travel documents would be given to the
intending returnees and other immigration issues addressed to ensure a
smooth evacuation process.

She said, “We are still looking at 319.  We have 319 registered for
the next flight, but the list is still being updated. For the flight,
we are looking at Tuesday or Wednesday so that proper documentation
would be done. We don’t want a situation where the plane will return
half-empty with few passengers.”

When contacted, the Consul-General of Nigerian High Commission in
South Africa, Godwin Adama, explained that he was still compiling the
list.

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Islamic State Fills Void In Nigeria As Soldiers Retreat To 'Super Camps' -Report

16 September 2019 - 12:09am


 

When Islamic State gunmen stormed the northeast Nigerian town of
Magumeri on the night of August 21, they had free rein.

Nigerian soldiers had left the town earlier that month under a new
strategy of withdrawing to "super camps" that can be more easily
defended against insurgents the army has been struggling to contain
for a decade.

Unchallenged, the Islamist militants torched a clinic in Magumeri,
ransacked government buildings and looted shops before returning to
another town they had raided that night called Gubio, residents said.

The new military strategy announced by President Muhammadu Buhari in
July to concentrate soldiers in big bases is designed to give troops a
secure platform from which they can respond quickly to threats in the
region and raid militant camps.

People familiar with the military's thinking and security officials,
however, say the new tactic for fighting Islamic State's West Africa
branch and Boko Haram is mainly an attempt to stem casualties.

The military did not respond to requests for more details about its
strategy or the impact it will have on the region.

"We strongly believe the days of BH (Boko Haram) moving freely and
passing in between static defensive locations are over," Major General
Olusegun Adeniyi, who commands the anti-insurgency operation, told
reporters last month.

Boko Haram launched an insurgency in 2009 to overthrow the government
and establish an Islamic caliphate. The group, whose unofficial name
means "Western education is forbidden", held territory the size of
Belgium in 2014 but a multinational offensive recaptured much of it
the following year.

The group split in 2016 and the faction that has been the greater
threat ever since won the recognition of Islamic State.

The decade of war has killed more than 30,000 civilians and spawned
what the United Nations calls one of the world's worst humanitarian
crises, which foreign nations are trying to contain with billions of
dollars of aid.

But the crisis shows no sign of abating.

'IT'S A MESS'

The army's withdrawal into large bases has coincided with a string of
insurgent raids on newly unprotected towns and has left the militants
free to set up checkpoints on roads as they roam more freely across
the countryside, according to three briefing notes from an
international aid and development organisation, two security officials
and residents.

That has left thousands of civilians without access to aid, according
to the briefing notes seen by Reuters.

Soldiers are no longer protecting some key roads, cutting off access
for humanitarians workers as more of the region falls under the sway
of the insurgents, aid and security sources said.

"It's a mess, militarily, and a disaster for humanitarian actors," one
foreign security official said.

The population of towns being abandoned by the military is a combined
223,000 people, according to one of the aid agency briefing notes.

The military departures so far have cut off more than 100,000 people
from aid and if more soldiers go, as many as 121,000 other civilians
could flee their towns, one aid agency briefing note said.

"The impact will be one of the continued skirmishes - soldiers under
constant strain to deal with the insurgency where Islamic State and
Boko Haram dictate the momentum," said Jasmine Opperman, a terrorism
expert based in South Africa.

It's not yet clear how many "super camps" the army plans to set up,
where they will be nor how many soldiers each will hold.

'HERE TO PROTECT YOU'

The new strategy follows a series of setbacks for the army which has
failed to keep a tight grip on territory it has clawed back since
2015. Last year, insurgents repeatedly overran smaller bases and sent
soldiers and tens of thousands of people fleeing from larger towns.

Security experts put the military death toll since June 2018 at
anywhere from hundreds of soldiers to in excess of 1,000.

The military has not released casualty figures but denies that many
soldiers have been killed.

One security adviser at an international aid organisation said a major
goal of the new large bases was damage control, rather than going on
the offensive.

"It is to consolidate all of the strength in one place to prevent them
from being overrun every week," the adviser said.

He said the areas vacated were being filled by insurgents and that
would make it harder for the military to re-enter, leaving civilians
vulnerable.

Those concerns were echoed by the governor of Borno - the birthplace
of Boko Haram and the state worst hit by the insurgency. Governor
Babagana Umara Zulum told reporters last month that recent attacks
were the result of a "serious vacuum" following the withdrawal of
soldiers.

Islamic State is also using its newfound freedom to woo locals.
Drained by the decade-long conflict, some are open to moving into
areas controlled by the insurgents where life can be more stable,
residents said.

Before hitting Magumeri last month, the militants had passed through
the town of Gubio, some 40 km (25 miles) to the north.

There, an Islamic State fighter led evening prayers followed by a
sermon, according to six residents.

"We are here to protect you, not to harm anyone of you," the IS
fighter told residents. "Those with uniforms are your enemies, and we
are here to deal with them and their supporters. You should feel
free."

Rather than flee to a government-controlled city such as Borno state's
capital Maiduguri, many Gubio residents stayed, Reuters reports.

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Chelsea Striker Tammy Abraham On Playing For Nigeria: 'You Can Never Say Never'

16 September 2019 - 12:03am


 

The 21-year-old, who is the Premier League’s joint-leading scorer
alongside Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero with seven goals, has two
senior England caps to his name, won in friendlies against Germany and
Brazil in 2017.

Nigeria has been hoping Abraham can be persuaded to switch allegiance
to them, UK DailyMail reports.

And when asked about the Nigeria interest, he was quoted by The
Telegraph as saying: “I have heard the talks and I’ve not really been
focused on that yet.

“I think when the time comes, the time comes. We never know.

“You can never say never, whatever comes first really. It is about
focusing on Chelsea and hopefully scoring goals and getting
victories.”

Abraham netted a hat-trick for the Blues in Saturday’s 5-2 win at
Wolves, having scored back-to-back braces in the previous two matches.

The Chelsea academy graduate has made an impact for the club this term
after spending the last three seasons on loan at Bristol City, Swansea
and then Aston Villa.

On Tuesday he could make his Champions League debut when Valencia
visit Stamford Bridge.

And he said: “I have grown up watching big stars playing in the
Champions League, and to play in it myself would obviously be a dream.

“Players like the gaffer (Frank Lampard), Didier Drogba and John Terry
are great legends. They have been there and done it. I would like to
follow the same path.

“I am delighted to be scoring goals for a team I have grown up loving
and have always wanted to play for. It is just an amazing feeling and
hasn’t kicked in yet.

“Hopefully this is the beginning of a great career at Chelsea. I’m
living the dream and I need to keep it running.”

Earlier in the week, England boss Gareth Southgate said, after not
naming Abraham in his most recent squad: “I think with Tammy, he’s a
young player that we’ve always liked, we know he’ll score goals.

“We felt (that it was a) bit early this time, but we really can see
that he can offer us something moving forward. We obviously gave him a
cap back in November of 2017.

“So, for sure, we need to make certain that he feels that the
opportunity is going to be there. I’m pretty sure he does. He knows us
well enough.”
 

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Container Falls Off Truck Onto Many People In Lagos -Eyewitness

15 September 2019 - 11:22pm


Many people were trapped killed in Lagos on Sunday as a container fell off a truck onto a Bus Rapid Transit lane on Ikorodu Road.

Eyewitnesses told Punch that the accident occurred around 8.30 pm at the Agric area of Ikorodu.

The truck, which was heading for Ikorodu, was said to be conveying an unlatched container.

As of 9 pm, eyewitnesses said many persons were trapped underneath the container.

The Director-General of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, Dr. Femi Oke-Osayintolu, who confirmed the accident, said he had yet to ascertain the number of casualties.

“We have deployed our men there. I do not know the number of casualties. We are there to move the container and save lives,” he said.

An official of LASEMA confirmed the incident, adding that rescue operation was ongoing as of 9.33 pm around the Agric bus stop.

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Fear Grips Imo Workers Over Review Of Their Recruitment

15 September 2019 - 11:17pm


There is apprehension in the Imo State civil service following the submission of the report of the technical review committee on appointments, recruitment, and promotions in the service.

The committee was set up by Governor Emeka Ihedioha following allegations that the Rochas Okorocha administration hurriedly recruited and promoted many people towards the end of his second tenure.

The committee, chaired by Austin Otuokere, submitted the report to the Deputy Governor, Gerald Irona, who said the government would study the report and consider the recommendations made.

However, many the civil servants, who spoke to Daily Trust, implored the government not to use the report as an instrument of victimization.
 

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FUOYE Killing: Police Warn Students, Groups Of Unlawful Gathering

15 September 2019 - 11:16pm


The police in Ekiti State has warned against 'any unlawful assembly' by students and groups.

The warning came on the heels of the ongoing controversy over the killing of two students in Ekiti by security detail attached to Governor Kayode Fayemi's wife, Mrs. Bisi Fayemi.

The two students, said to be among protesters, were shot and killed by security agents of the state.

In a statement on Sunday its spokesperson in the state, Caleb Ikechukwu, the police said it discovered that a group under the aegis of ‘ex-graduates', who are not currently students of any higher
institution, are presently moving into the state to foment trouble over the Federal University, Oye-Ekiti (FUOYE) crisis.

“The police command is using this medium to warn anyone or a group of person(s) against any unlawful assembly with an intent to cause a breach of peace.

"The police command has the constitutional mandate to maintain law and order and also to stop any gathering which it thinks might lead to the break down of law and order.

“Furthermore, the police command shall deal decisively with anyone or group who takes the law into their hands. Such a person will be arrested and prosecuted accordingly no matter how highly-placed,” the statement said.

A statement by NYCN Director of Education and Training, Oluwadamilare Bewaji, said: “It is understandable to say that the office of the First Lady has nothing to do with the epileptic supply of electricity
to students’ environment but it would have been wise and safer if she had taken time to address and appease the agitating students.”

Besides, a coalition of over 400 civil society organisations, Transition Monitoring Group (TMG), said the governor’s wife would not be in a position to order the firing of the students and that it would be in the interest of justice not to implicate anyone who has no command of responsibility for the conduct of the police.

The group stated this when it met with the leadership of the SUG of FUOYE in Ibadan to commiserate with the union and the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS).

According to the chairperson of the group, Dr. Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, the incident affirms the growing brutality and use of excessive force by the police, and the entrenched culture of impunity of perpetrators in several parts of the country, which has once again resulted in these preventable deaths of the two innocent students.

The TMG, which, however, urged the inspector-general of police to ensure that the culprits are brought to book to serve as deterrence to others, demanded justice in an unequivocal term for the students of FUOYE and immediate lift on the ban of the students union.
 

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Bandits Free 30 More Captives: Buhari's Katsina Where Criminals Exchange Kidnapped Victims With Government

15 September 2019 - 11:02pm


 

Bandits in President Muhammadu Buhari's home state have released 30

more people held captive.

Despite killing and kidnapping people, Katsina State decided to 'make
peace' with the band of criminals and have been celebrating the
success of the 'peace deal'.

There has been no attempt to prosecute the band of bandits that have
terrorized innocent citizens in Katsina and perhaps other states.

On Saturday night, 30 more people,15 women and 15 children were
released in the ongoing exchange of captives by the Katsina State
government and bandits.

This brought to 57, the number of captives so far freed by repentant
bandits with 17 detained bandits freed by the state government under
the peace deal initiative between the two.

Speaking while receiving the freed captives from Kaankara and Jibia
local government areas, Governor Aminu Masari said his administration
was committed to ensuring that all captives were released.

He directed the released abductees to be taken to hospital for further
medical evaluation, saying they would later be reunited with their
families.
 

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MASSOB Insists On Independent State Of Biafra, Iwuanyanwu Says Igbo Didn't Cause Civil War

15 September 2019 - 11:01pm


Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) says realizing independence for Biafra from Nigeria would end the numerous forms of slavery the Igbo suffer in the country.

Leader of MASSOB, Uchenna Madu, stated in Awgu, Enugu State, during the 20th-anniversary celebration of the group, that there was no going back in the struggle for the Biafra republic.​

MASSOB, he added, was committed to the quest for an independent state of Biafra.

Madu said, “These undeniable realities are the reasons the Nigerian state is afraid of Biafra, which represents the truth they cannot legitimately counter.

“Biafra speaks of the truth Nigeria know they are guilty of; so out of weakness, jittery and fear, Nigeria resorts to repression, persecution, killings, and detention of Biafran agitators.

“MASSOB has resolved that 20 years of our long walk to freedom can never be jeopardized, compromised or corrupted. The reformation and rededication of our committed and consistent efforts in the actualization of Biafra has brought back our lost confidence and trust on Biafra’s actualization.

“MASSOB shall never relent in its non-violent Biafra struggle because the truth shall always prevail over falsehood,” he said.

In a related vein, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu said the Igbo were not the remote cause of the 1966 military coup that culminated in the Nigerian civil war.

Speaking at an event in Owerri, Imo State, at the weekend, he said, “The coup that started the civil war was not caused by Igbo, but because they didn’t have the media, they were linked to it. People outside Igbo land then controlled all media.

“The propaganda was against the Igbo, who were projected as very greedy and over-ambitious.”

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Ohanaeze: Igbo Don't Hate Buhari, Premature To Congratulate President On Tribunal Victory

15 September 2019 - 11:00pm


The Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, says it will not congratulate President Muhammadu Buhari's recent victory at the tribunal.

Deputy National Publicity Secretary of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Mazi Chuks Ibegbu, told The Guardian on Sunday that despite the tribunal’s ruling in favour of Buhari, the group would not congratulate him.

Ibegbu said: “Ohanaeze took a position before the election and until we are aware that the person that benefitted from that position is not moving ahead with the matter, it will be premature to send any congratulatory message to Buhari.

“Again, the National Executive Committee and Imeobi have not met to discuss the tribunal’s ruling. Ohanaeze Ndigbo is not a political party and will not be pressured into acting like one.

"Our interest is on what can benefit our people and our people said they want to restructure. Atiku promised to restructure if elected. Buhari did not and that made us take the position.”

Continuing, he said, “Ndigbo do not hate President Buhari and we don’t also have anything against him. It is a matter of principle and there are Igbo people everywhere. All we are saying is that Nigeria should
be restructured to survive and anybody who is ready to do this will receive the support of Ndigbo.On the essence of restructuring, he stated that the recent xenophobic attacks on Nigerians in South Africa could have been curtailed if the youths had jobs in the country.

“Those returning to the country with little or no means of livelihood could have stayed back in the first place. There won’t have been the need for them to leave the country in search of greener pastures. We should have created the institutions that could employ them through the efforts of their various regions. That is what we are saying. So it has nothing to do with Buhari. All we want is something that should prosper the country at all times.”
 

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