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‘Mama Boko Haram’ sent to prison over ‘111m fraud’
A high court in Maiduguri, Borno state capital, remanded Aisha Wakil, better known as “Mama Boko Haram”, to a custodial centre in the state on Monday.
Aisha Kumalia, the presiding judge, gave the order after the Economic and Financial Crimes (EFCC) arraigned Wakil alongside Tahir Saidu Daura and Lawal Shoyade, on an amended five-count charge, bordering on conspiracy, obtaining money by false pretence and cheating to the tune of N111, 650,000.
The EFCC had said the defendants, sometime in 2018, conspired and falsely presented to one Mohammad Umar Mohammed, purported contracts for installation and servicing of 10 pieces of Chison 600A, 2009 version deluxe ultra sound system and the supply of white beans through their non-governmental organisation (Complete Care and Aid Foundation).
Count five of the charge read: “That you, Aisha Alkali Wakil, Tahiru Saidu Daura, and Prince Shoyade, whilst being chief executive officer, programme manager and country director respectively of Complete Care and Aid Foundation (a non-governmental organisation) and Saidu Muktar (now at large) sometime in October, 2018 at Maiduguri, Borno State, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court with intent to defraud, induced one Mohammed Umar Mohammed of Nyeuro International Limited to deliver to you 3,000 (three thousand) bags of 50kg white beans worth N65,000,000.00 (Sixty Five Million Naira) under the guise of executing a purported contract of supply of the said beans which you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 320(a) and punishable under Section 322 of the Borno State Penal Code Laws Cap 102.”
They pleaded not guilty to all the charges and Benjamin Manji, prosecution counsel, applied for a trial date and prayed the court to remand the defendants in the Nigerian Correctional Centre pending the determination of the case.
The judge ordered the defendants to be remanded at a custodial centre and adjourned the case till February 10, 2020 for commencement of trial.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 5:59 pm
Supreme Court affirms Bala Mohammed as authentic Governor of Bauchi
The Supreme Court on Monday declared that Senator Bala Mohammed of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, is duly elected governor of Bauchi State.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 5:23 pm
Mbaka reveals what Ihedioha should have done before Supreme Court ruling
The Spiritual Director of Adoration Ministry in Enugu state, Rev. Fr. Ejike Mbaka, has said Emeka Ihedioha should have come to his church to seek God’s intervention, before losing at the Supreme Court last week.
Mbaka stated this during his homily on Sunday, in what was a thanksgiving service.
The cleric used the opportunity to advise the present generation to believe in prophecy which he said was immemorial, and will not cease to exist.
Mbaka said: “What’s the distance from Imo state to Enugu, that after given the message on 31st night, Ihedioha cannot come to adoration and seek for God’s intervention, rather he embarked on attacking and castigating the message and the messenger; tell me the person that attacked a genuine man of God and went scot free?
“What I am doing here is extraordinary and unadulterated, it is not by power neither by might, the way Peter Obi attacked the message I gave him which later put him in this present political quagmire was the way Ihedioha also attacked me.
“I think that when a message like that is given the right thing to do is to ask the prophet what to do to avert it.”
The Supreme Court removed Ihedioha of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and declared Hope Uzodinma as the Governor of Imo State.
It came weeks after Mbaka’s prophecy, in which he predicted the outcome at the apex court.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 5:15 pm
Pastor Adeboye cries out, says demons in Nigeria did not go to school
Pastor Enoch Adeboye of Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, has lamented that demons in Nigeria are not educated.
Adeboye said the illiteracy level of demons in Nigeria has made it difficult for them to be cast out.
He made the disclosure while delivering a sermon at his church headquarters auditorium, at Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.
Adeboye recalled his encounter with a foreign pastor who wanted to follow him down to Nigeria to cast out demons.
The clergy man said he warned the pastor, knowing that his Christian lifestyle was not strong enough.
According to Adeboye, he warned the pastor that the demons in Nigeria did not go to school, hence they won’t take things lightly with him.
Adeboye, however, stated that demons in foreign countries are considerate because they wear suits and all sort of modern clothes.
He said: “Demons in Nigeria did not go to school. If you see them you will know here comes the original.
“I have enough problem casting out the demons from my own people. I don’t want to add your own.
“Because if you come, I might have to cast demons out of you”.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 5:15 pm
PDP secretly planning to impeach me – Gov. Hope Uzodinma cries out
Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State, has alleged plot by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to initiate impeachment proceedings against him.
Uzodinma alleged that PDP was secretly planning to incite members of the state House of Assembly to initiate an impeachment process against him.
The newly inaugurated governor raised the alarm in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary/Media Adviser, Oguike Nwachukwu.
The statement reads: “We know the game plan of the PDP because we are aware that they have been secretly inciting Imo State House of Assembly members to think of how to impeach the governor. So they are trying to rake up anything they can, even falsehood, to incite the public.”
Uzodinma, while commenting on reports that the Federal Government has failed to make any comment on his alleged $ 12m fraud case as well as a travel ban on him, warned against propagating falsehood.
He stated that he has already briefed his lawyers, who he said were studying the publication for appropriate legal action, adding that the publication, which tried to raise dust about him on old allegations, had been long settled and dismissed as non-issues.
The governor accused the PDP members in the state of sponsoring the publication “even when they are aware that there is no iota of truth in the allegations”.
Uzodinma insisted that the allegation was a sheer mischief and malice borne out of frustration because “they know very well that the assets declaration allegation was fallaciously contrived by the disgraced former Chairman of the Presidential Panel on Recovery of Public Properties, Mr. Okoi Obon-Obia which has been thrown out by the court”.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 5:14 pm
Amotekun, ploy by Yoruba leaders to create Oduduwa Republic – Balarabe Musa
A former governor of old Kaduna State, Balarabe Musa, has said that the main reason the leaders and governors of the Southwest region set up the new security outfit, Operation Amotekun was to create Oduduwa Republic.
Governors in the South West region had established and inaugurated the security outfit to curb the menace of herdsmen attacks in their region.
But Musa, in an interview with the Sun, warned that the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government must not allow the operation of such security network, adding that it falls out of the established laws of the country.
He warned that it was a ploy to secure Yoruba land and a prelude to the declaration of Oduduwa Republic.
The former Governor further said that some of the security components of the outfit like the OPC have records of recklessness in terms of securing the lives and property of non-Yoruba.
“First of all, taking into account what happened in the history of Nigeria, this Amotekun will lead to a declaration of Oduduwa Republic.
“Look at the composition of those who constitute the organization in addition to the six states governors.
“There is also the OPC, Afenifere, and others. So the fear is quite obvious. And this is in spite of the fact that this government is incompetent.
“Definitely, this government is incompetent. And it is because of the incompetence of this government that this problem has arisen. But let us also not forget that this Federal Government is an alliance between the North and the Southwest.
“So, why should this happen? Any correction in the set up of the country is possible if this alliance, which controls the government in the country can do its work.
The Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami had earlier declared Amotekun as illegal.
He added, “Oh yes! It is illegal because it contravenes the provisions of the law in the constitution.
“And unfortunately for them in spite of the intellectual aura of the elite class in the Southwest, they couldn’t be articulate because they could have been articulate like the Kano State did in the case of Hisbah.
“They went through the State House of Assembly. Now, if this Amotekun had been taken through the six-state Houses of Assembly before it was formed you could say they have a case in the sense that the state Houses of Assembly are in charge of lawmaking.
“Secondly, the governor of each state is the chief security officer of his state. So, if you combine this two and enact a law allowing for the formation of Amotekun, they would have gotten it right.
“But in spite of their articulation, they failed to do so, which means it must be deliberate that what they are concerned exactly is an Oduduwa State
Posted: January 20, 2020, 5:11 pm
BREAKING: Supreme Court validates Lalong’s election as Plateau gov
The Supreme Court, on Monday, affirmed the election of Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State.
Justice Sylvester Ngwuta, who headed the seven-man panel of the apex court, dismissed the appeal filed by Jeremiah Useni of the Peoples Democratic Party.
Justice Paul Galinje, who delivered the lead judgment, held that the appeal lacked merit.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 5:05 pm
PHOTOS: EFCC raid Club 360 in Ibadan, arrests 89 ‘yahoo’ boys
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibadan zonal office, on Monday said it arrested 89 suspected internet fraudsters at the Club 360 located on Akala Expressway, Oluyole Extension in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.
The agency confirmed the raid in a statement on its Twitter page.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibadan zonal office, on Monday said it arrested 89 suspected internet fraudsters at the Club 360 located on Akala Expressway, Oluyole Extension in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.
The agency confirmed the raid in a statement on its Twitter page.
It said, ”In preparation for the late night operation, officers of the commission had carried out a series of discreet surveillance on the nature of activities going on in the nightclub which, according to intelligence, was notorious for harboring suspected internet fraudsters.
”The raid also led to the confiscation of scores of vehicles, laptops, sophisticated phones and other items.
”The suspects are undergoing further interrogation.”
Posted: January 20, 2020, 5:01 pm
Suicide bomber kills nine civilians in Chad
Nine civilians died in western Chad after a female suicide bomber detonated her explosives in an area targeted in the past by Boko Haram insurgents, the army and officials said on Monday.
Chad is one of the countries struggling with the jihadist violence that has spilled over from Nigeria’s decades-long Islamist insurgency.
The attack took place overnight on Sunday in the village of Kaiga Kindjiria.
“A suicide bomber blew herself up yesterday in Kaiga Kindjiria, killing nine people, two women and seven men,” an army source said.
The toll was confirmed by the Chadian army spokesman, Colonel Azem Bermandoa.
“It is Boko Haram, there is no doubt,” the spokesman said.
Kaiga-Kindjiria, a village of about 7,000 people, is located near the vast Lake Chad region where militants hide among islets and marshlands to launch attacks on Cameroon, Chad, Nigeria and Niger.
Boko Haram began in Nigeria but its attacks have spread to neighbouring countries. The group has also split and a faction affiliated with the Islamic State group, ISWAP, is particularly active around Lake Chad.
The suicide attack came as French Minister of the Armed Forces, Florence Parly visited the Chad capital N’Djamena, where she met her Chadian counterpart on Monday morning.
In early January, 1,200 Chadian troops, deployed as part of a regional force in Nigeria, returned to Chad to be redeployed around the Lake, where attacks have multiplied in recent months.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 4:24 pm
Vandalism our major concern, says NNPC boss
The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Mr Mele Kyari, has lamented the rate of pipeline vandalism in the country, describing the problem as a major security concern.
Kyari, who stated this on Monday when he visited the site of the Sunday pipeline explosion in Ekoro, Abule Egba, Lagos, said the corporation is working with security agencies to reduce incidents of pipeline vandalism in the country to the barest minimum as vandals destroy pipelines daily, exposing neighbouring communities to risk and disaster.
He added that the NNPC was working with security agencies, including the Nigerian Navy, Civil Defence Corps and Police in tackling the problem but also sought the support of communities to achieve greater success.
Kyari said, “Unfortunately this incident has happened and we lost five lives and there are many people who were injured, and that is very pathetic for us.
“More importantly, what is happening around the System 2 B Pipeline from Atlas Cove to Mosimi all the way to Ilorin are acts of vandals of all nature along our right of way.
“What they do is that they make insertions into our pipelines, tap petroleum products and at the end, it will be disasters we have seen like this. This is happening daily.
“What this portends is dangerous to all of us. If this incident had happened under a windy condition yesterday, then we would have been talking of thousands of people dying.”
He said that beyond working with security agencies to curb such incidents, the cooperation of all Nigerians, especially those residing close to the pipelines, was required to achieve desired results.
“These activities are happening within communities. People are aware of what is happening, and if we allow them to continue doing what they are doing, they will kill all of us and everybody along this corridor will be affected.
“Therefore, we do need the help and cooperation of all members of the community to expose these people when they come.
“We are counting on Nigerians to help us resolve this because it is a major national security concern.
“We are happy that we have restored the line. After the break, we shut down the line to contain the damage it can cause but now we are back on stream.
“Petroleum products are flowing all the way from Atlas Cove to Ilorin as we speak now,” he said.
The NNPC boss, who also visited the Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu, solicited the support of the traditional and community leaders in tackling the menace.
On his part, Akiolu assured the NNPC boss that the traditional rulers would intensify efforts to protect pipelines and other infrastructure within their respective domains.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 3:36 pm
APC describes PDP protest as disgraceful and senseless
The All Progressives Congress (APC) says the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has become a threat to the peaceful coexistence of citizens in the country.
The ruling party said this in reaction to the protest embarked on by leaders of the PDP in Abuja on Monday.
Members of the opposition party took to the streets over the decision of the supreme court in the Imo state governorship case.
Last week, Emeka Ihedioha, PDP candidate, was sacked and Hope Uzodinma, APC candidate, was declared duly elected governor of Imo. Dissatisfied with the verdict, the opposition party took to the streets.
In a statement, Lanre Issa-Onilu, APC spokesman, said the action of PDP is “a calculated attempt to overheat the polity.”
“The disgraceful and senseless protest embarked upon by the opposition party is being done with the sole purpose of dragging the apex court of our land, and indeed our great country into odium and scorn before the international community,” Issa-Onilu said.
“We also view the irascible actions and irresponsible remarks by the PDP as a calculated attempt to overheat the polity. PDP has become a present threat to our peaceful coexistence.
“The crux of the decision was that the PDP candidate (who had been adjudged to have been wrongfully declared the winner by the Resident Electoral Commissioner of Imo State) was removed by the apex court and Sen. Hope Uzodinma of our party was declared the rightful winner of the election.
“The court directed the Independent National Electoral Commission to issue a Certificate of Return to Sen. Hope Uzodinma and that he should be sworn in as the Governor of imo state.
“This decision by the apex court was not made lightly but was, in fact, based on the facts presented by the parties and the law canvassed before it by their respective counsel. How else should a court of law determine a case before it? Based on innuendos, conjecture, suspicions and conspiracy theories? Certainly not.”
The APC spokesman asked security personnel to arrest anyone attempting to cause chaos in the country.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 3:23 pm
Ganduje reacts to his victory at Supreme Court
Governor Umar Ganduje of Kano State in reaction to his victory at the Supreme Court has commended the Judiciary for what he termed “defending of the Nation Democratic Culture.”
Reacting few minutes after the verdict of the Supreme Court reaffirming his Victory, the governor, said the Judiciary has truly shown to Nigerians that they are indeed the last hope of the nation’s sustainability of the democratic norms and values.
Ganduje after praising Allah for the victory, called on all the oppositions to come and join hands with him for the continued development of the state.
“We thank Allah for the victory, for making it possible for the Supreme Court to reaffirm our victory after Election Petition Tribunal and Court of Appeal judgements. We also thank Kano people for their peaceful conduct in their affairs,” says the governor.
He also thanked all the people who actively participated in praying for the victory that came his way, emphasising that, “Whoever believes and depends on Allah, will always see light at the beginning, mid and end of the tunnel, no matter the circumstances.”
“We also commend all the Judges who partook in this exercise of deepening democracy. This shows the commitment of our judiciary in strengthening our democracy. This is highly commendable,” he said.
“I insist that our opposition should come and join us to move the state forward. We have a lot of developmental projects on ground. And more are coming. Our free and compulsory education policy needs all hands on deck. Our security system also needs all and sundry, among others,” he said.
Report shows that Government House Kano has started receiving people in celebration of the victory.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 3:08 pm
El-Rufai asks principals to stop collecting fees from ALL primary/secondary students in Kaduna
Nasir el-Rufai, governor of Kaduna, has directed that free primary and secondary education be implemented in the state with immediate effect.
Phoebe Yayi, permanent secretary for the state ministry of education, announced the development in a letter dated January 17 and addressed to the zonal director of the Kaduna state schools quality assurance authority.
The governor earlier announced free and compulsory education for every child in the state up to the secondary school level when he presented the state’s 2020 budget to the state house of assembly.
In 2018, he declared free education for all female students in public secondary schools in the state.
Of the N259.25 billion signed into law, capital expenditure on education and health constitutes N75.44bn of the entire N184.1bn capital budget.
“Sequel to the public pronouncement made by the governor of Kaduna state on different occasions on the government’s resolve to ensure 100% access to basic and post-basic quality education by all pupils and students of school age in the state irrespective of gender, physical, social or economic status, the government introduced numerous strategies to ensure this is achieved,” the letter read.
“You may, therefore, wish to be informed that one of the measures taken by the present administration effective from the year 2020 is the complete abolishment of any form of fees in whatever name being paid by students in our schools.
“In view of the above, you are requested to direct all the principals under your zone to stop the collection of all forms of fees with immediate effect.”
Posted: January 20, 2020, 3:06 pm
Completing Lagos-Ibadan rail in April no longer feasible -Amaechi
Rotimi Amaechi, minister of transportation, says it is unlikely the Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge rail will be completed in April.
Amaechi made this known via Twitter on Monday.
“Today (Monday), Oyo State Governor is accompanying us on the monthly inspection of work on the Lagos-Ibadan rail line. We are going the whole nine yards,” he tweeted.
“From the mega station in Ebute Metta to Apapa and all the way to Ibadan. A large chunk of this rail line is in Oyo State.
“Looking at the state of work in Apapa, completing the project in April doesn’t seem feasible, especially the extension of the rail line to the seaport.
“We’ll however work and redouble our efforts to complete the project and meet set targets.”
Today, Oyo State Governor, @seyimakinde is accompanying us on the monthly inspection of work on the Lagos-Ibadan rail line. We are going the whole nine yards. From the mega station in Ebute Metta to Apapa and all the way to Ibadan. A large chunk of this rail line is in Oyo State. pic.twitter.com/TKpiO52Lak— Chibuike.R. Amaechi (@ChibuikeAmaechi) January 20, 2020
During an inspection in November, the minister assured Nigerians that the project would be completed in April and he expressed satisfaction with the state of the work.Looking at the state of work in Apapa, completing the project in April doesn't seem feasible, especially the extension of the rail line to the seaport. We'll however, continue to work and redouble our efforts to complete the project and meet set targets. #LagosIbadanRail pic.twitter.com/lp41Fy80X2— Chibuike.R. Amaechi (@ChibuikeAmaechi) January 20, 2020
“There is huge improvement compared to the last time we came. We will all agree that there is huge improvement,” he had said.
“The contractor has assured us that by the 20th of December when we gather for next inspection, the tracks will get here (Omi Adio Station) in Ibadan, Oyo state.
“By then the focus will no longer be on the tracks, but on the completion of the stations, then communications and signaling. Once we get communications and signaling complete, we are out of Lagos-Ibadan.
“We have told you we will be out of this place latest April (2020). We are no longer giving ourselves the time, the contractor now give us the time.”
The rail service between the two cities is expected to have 10 stations from 2020, and will operate on a maximum speed of 150 km/h.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 3:05 pm
Burna Boy’s song places fourth in Michelle Obama’s playlist for 2020
Nigerian Singer and song writer, Damini Ebunoluwa Ogulu, a.k.a Burna Boy ‘My Money’ ‘My Baby’ song makes Michelle Obama, former US First Lady’s, workout playlist for 2020.
Obama took to her Instagram page, @michelleobama, on Sunday, where she posted her playlist.
She said the playlist helps her go through her toughest workout sessions.
A rundown of the playlist reveals that Burna Boy’s song falls fourth on her list.
“It’s about that time when New Year’s goals and resolutions get just a bit harder to stick to. To offer a little inspiration, I want to share my go-to 2020 #WorkoutPlaylist with all of you.
“These songs always seem to give me that extra boost to get through my toughest workouts. What’s on your playlist? #IAmBecoming #SelfcareSunday,” she wrote.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that in 2019, Michelle’s husband, Barrack Obama, released his summer playlist that sparked off a lot of conversation online following Rema’s ‘Iron Man’ inclusion.
Burna Boy’s My Money My Baby is rendered in Pidgin English and a Fela-styled Afrobeat, sounding like Fela Kuti’s 1972 “Shakara”.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 2:42 pm
Transfer: Edinson Cavani asks to leave PSG
The 32-year-old has been limited to 14 first-team outings this season after Mauro Icardi’s arrival on a season-long loan from Inter Milan in the summer.
“It’s true that today he asked to leave,” said PSG sporting director Leonardo after a 1-0 win over Lorient in the French Cup on Sunday.
“We are studying the situation.”
He added: “It’s also true that there has been an approach from Atletico Madrid.”
Cavani joined PSG in 2013 and is the club’s record scorer with 198 goals.
He was not in the squad that beat Lorient and Leonardo added: “We have to listen to him because we have a lot of respect for the player.”
PSG coach Thomas Tuchel appears keen to keep Cavani to help his side’s push for silverware.
“I have said a lot about this, I am not going to repeat myself always on the same subject,” said Tuchel. “If we want to achieve our objectives – winning as many trophies as possible – it’s best with ‘Edi’, yes.”
Posted: January 20, 2020, 2:34 pm
Supreme Court judgement: Lawmakers, well wishers besiege Tambuwal’s residence
Barely one hour after Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal was declared the duly elected Governor of Sokoto State by the Supreme Court on Monday, serving lawmakers, former Reps, NASS workers, Sokoto indigenes and different groups besieged his Abuja residence to greet him.
It was gathered that nothing less than 20 serving lawmakers of both the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) showed up at the former speaker’s house.
Tambuwal in his usual style received all and sundry shaking hands with those who could get close to him to exchange pleasantries. The governor cracked jokes with all recalling most callers by their first names and titles.
Similarly, back in Sokoto State, residents trooped out to almost all streets, celebrating the affirmation of Tambuwal as the duly elected governor of the State.
It was observed that the crowd, mostly youth trooped to the streets chanting songs in favour of the PDP and Tambuwal.
Some of the crowded streets include Fodio road, Runjin Sambo, Usmanu Danfodiyo University road, Old market, Gobirawa, Rijiya among others.
One of the youth Aliyu Usman who spoke with NAN, thanked Almighty Allah for the Governor’s success at the Apex Court.
Usman said that the jubilation was to show gratitude to God over the victory of Tambuwal, insisting that the apex court’s decision was “an affirmation of the real mandate of the people.”
Recall the Supreme Court in a unanimous judgment on Monday held that the appellants failed to prove allegations made against the election that returned Tambuwal as Governor.
Justice Uwani Aba-Aji while delivering judgment held that the cases of the appellants lacked in merit and hereby dismissed.
APC candidate Ahmed Aliyu Sokoto had approached the apex court to set aside the concurrent judgment of the tribunal and Court of Appeal which upheld the election of Tambuwal and declare him winner of the Sokoto governorship election.
INEC had declared Tambuwal of the PDP winner of the Sokoto governorship election having won majority of votes cast with a slim margin of barely 300 votes.
The APC candidate in his appeal however claimed that the election was rigged in favour of Tambuwal and approached the Supreme Court to nullify the election.
The Court of Appeal, Sokoto Division, on had reaffirmed the election of Gov. Tambuwal, as duly elected in the governorship election held in the state.
The lead Judge, Justice Husseini Mukhtar of the appeal court upheld the judgement of the tribunal which had earlier dismissed the petition filed against the governor by Aliyu.
The court noted that both appeals and cross-appeal were lacking in merit and thereby dismissed them at no cost.
The petition had challenged the declaration of the candidate of the PDP, Governor Tambuwal as the winner of the general and supplementary polls conducted by the INEC on 9th and 23rd of March, 2019, respectively.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 2:20 pm
Army boss, Buratai describes Boko Haram resurgence as last kick of a dying horse
Tukur Buratai, chief of army staff, has described the recent activity of Boko Haram insurgents as ”the kicks of a dying horse gasping for the last breath”.
Boko Haram has stepped up attacks on military formations and civilian population in the north-east.
He also asked local and foreign bodies to be mindful of the comments they make on Nigeria’s security.
Buratai’s warning came a day after the European parliament, a legislative branch of the European Union, said there has not been progress in the fight against Boko Haram insurgents.
The parliament in its January 16, 2020 resolution said the security situation in Nigeria has deteriorated significantly.
Aminu Iliyasu, the army operations media coordinator, in a statement on Monday, said the army chief has asked those bodies to make utterances that would help restore peace.
“The chief of army staff Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu Buratai has reassured Nigerians that the counter insurgency operations in the north-east and indeed other ongoing operations against our common enemies across the country are still on course with current indicators revealing tremendous successes across the various theatres of operation,” the statement read.
“After a careful review of the Nigerian Army operations in the north-east, it is pertinent to state that, Headquarters Nigerian Army has gladly observed the renewed zeal and determination by troops to take the counter insurgency operations to its logical conclusion with outcomes favourable to Nigeria and Nigerians as evident in the recent decimation of many Boko Haram/Islamic State West Africa Province criminals, including some of their top commanders amidst several arrests of the insurgents’ logistic suppliers and collaborators, numerous capture of the criminals’ arms and ammunition as well as rescue of many captives from the bondage of the insurgents.
“To this end, all local and foreign interests are advised to exhibit more commitment and restraint on issues of our national security and avoid taking sides. Furthermore, all actions and utterances must be tailored towards supporting the national cause with a view to restoring peace and tranquility to our beloved country.”
Buratai assured troops that their sacrifices and that of their fallen colleagues would never be in vain.
He also “warned all enemies of Nigeria and Nigerians who take delight in the suffering of our innocent citizens that the day of reckoning is at their door steps”.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 1:59 pm
Oshiomhole plotting to be VP, will ‘greatly’ disappoint Tinubu – APC chieftain, Idahosa
Charles Idahosa, a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, APC, has alleged that the party’s National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole was plotting to be the running mate of a Northern presidential candidate in 2023.
Idahosa made the allegation while warning that Oshiomhole will disappoint APC National Leader, Bola Tinubu in the build-up to the 2023 presidential election.
Speaking with Daily Independent, Idahosa said Oshiomhole will team up with a Northerner to work against Tinubu.
He said: “I feel so sorry for Tinubu because he doesn’t know who Oshiomhole is. I am aware he is one of those giving him support as the National chairman.
“Oshiomhole will disappoint him seriously. He will not support him in 2023, he can take that to the bank.
“Tinubu is one of the people supporting him as National chairman thinking that Oshiomhole will use his influence as National chairman to make him get the ticket.
”What he doesn’t know is that Oshiomhole’s ambition is to become Vice- President to a northern presidential candidate in 2023. He is going to pair a northern candidate against the interest of Tinubu.”
Posted: January 20, 2020, 1:57 pm
PDP candidate, Abba Yusuf reacts to Ganduje’s victory at Supreme court
Abba Yusuf, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the 2019 governorship election has reacted to the Supreme Court judgement, which upheld the election of Abdullahi Ganduje as Governor of Kano state.
The Supreme Court on Monday affirmed the election of Ganduje.
A judgment by Justice Sylvester Ngwuta on Monday declared that the grounds of the two appeals brought by the appellant were dismissed for lack of merit.
But a statement signed by Yusuf’s Spokesman, Sanusi Dawakintofa on Monday said the judgement confirmed the ‘connivance of the allied forces who are oppressors of the Nigerian democracy.
He said, “Considering the overwhelming evidence presented by the eminent team of experienced lawyers, one cannot imagine how these agents of tyranny and undemocratic principles joined hands to rob the good people of Kano their mandate.
“However, we have seen the worst of what they can do, so they should await the judgment of the Almighty Allah, which they cannot avoid"
Posted: January 20, 2020, 1:50 pm
FG budgets N4bn for Ajaokuta steel, another N310m for its concession
The federal government earmarked N3.79 billion for Ajaokuta Steel Company in the 2020 budget.
According to budget documents seen, N3.607 million of that amount would be for recurrent expenditure during the year while N188.5 million would go into capital expenditure.
Some of the key highlights from the budget include N94.1 million for provision of water facilities, N43 million for maintenance of power facilities, N41.3 million for purchase of two Toyota Hilux vans while lighting and security would gulp N10 million.
The allocations were made even though the steel plant located in Kogi state has never functioned since its construction.
In 2019, Abubakar Bwari, minister of state, mines and steel development, said the plant had reached 98 percent completion, and that it would start functioning when the infrastructure required such as rail, dredging of Lokoja and Warri ports are completed.
ANOTHER N309.9M FOR CONCESSION
Besides the N3.79 billion, another N309.9 million was allocated to concession the steel company.
This comes less than a year after a bill seeking to halt the concession process was rejected by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The house of representatives had asked Buhari to direct Kayode Fayemi, then minister of mines and steel development, to stop the process of concession. The plant is said to have gulped $5.1 billion.
The failure of the green chamber to convince the federal government to shelve the plan to concession the company led to the introduction of that bill which also sought to complete it.
One of Buhari’s campaign promises in 2015 was to ensure the resuscitation of the plant.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 1:40 pm
Dozens wounded as anti-government protest resumes in Iraq
Dozens of Iraqi protesters were wounded on Monday, in Baghdad and other cities, in clashes with security forces who were trying to clear blocked roads, security and medical sources said.
This is as anti-government unrest resumed after a lull of several weeks.
Reuter’s witnesses said that in Baghdad’s Tayaran Square overnight, protesters threw petrol bombs and stones at the Police who responded with tear gas and stun grenades.
Elsewhere in southern Iraq, hundreds of protesters burned tyres and blocked main roads in several cities, including Nassiriya, Kerbala and Amara.
They said Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi has not fulfilled promises including naming a new government acceptable to Iraqis.
“The security forces should stop shooting and maiming; who are they and who we are? Both sides are Iraqis.
“So why are you killing your brothers?’’ a protester in Baghdad, who declined to give her name, said.
Baghdad Police said its forces had successfully reopened all the roads that were closed by “violent gatherings’’.
Mass protests have gripped Iraq since Oct. 1, 2019, with mostly young protesters demanding an overhaul of a political system they see as profoundly corrupt and as keeping most Iraqis in poverty.
Over 450 people have been killed.
Numbers had dwindled but protests resumed recently as demonstrators sought to keep up momentum after attention turned to the threat of a U.S.-Iran conflict, following Washington’s killing of Tehran’s top general in an air strike inside Iraq.
The killing of Qassem Soleimani, to which Tehran responded with a ballistic missile attack on two Iraqi military bases, has highlighted the influence of some foreign powers in Iraq, especially Iran and the U.S.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 12:42 pm
Many injured as truck conveying PDP protesters crashes
Some supporters of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) were injured on Monday when a truck conveying them during a protest in Abuja fell.
The PDP supporters were heading to the Supreme Court Complex located in Central Area when the accident occurred.
Not long after members of the party left their campaign headquarters in Maitama, the truck, said to be carrying about 30 persons, attempted to forcefully make a u-turn at Transcorp Hilton junction but fell to its side.
It took the intervention of other protesters to rescue those trapped in the truck.
The party embarked on the protest to kick against a supreme court judgement sacking one of their own.
Last Tuesday, the apex court nullified the election of Emeka Ihedioha as the governor of Imo state.
It held that Hope Uzodinma of the All Progressives Congress (APC) was the winner of the March 9 governorship election in the state.
But the PDP rejected the judgement and accused the court of ruling against the wish of the people of Imo.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 12:41 pm
Fani-Kayode attacks Anthony Joshua for prostrating before Buhari in London
Femi Fani Kayode, former minister of aviation has condemned Anthony Joshua’s behavior when he met President Muhammadu Buhari.
Joshua during his meeting with Buhari on Saturday in London prostrated while presenting his world title belts to the president.
Recall Buhari's aide, Bashir Ahmad on Saturday shared a video showing Joshua prostrating while meeting Buhari.
Joshua reclaimed the IBF, WBA and WBO titles from Andy Ruiz Jr on Saturday night, while Wilder will defend his WBC gold against Tyson Fury in February.
Fani-Kayode, however, condemned his behavior describing it as a shame.
According to him, “Anthony Joshua’s behaviour prostrating before Buhari is utterly repulsive and disgusting. “
The former minister stressed that he is no longer a fan of the boxing champion due to his actions.
Fani-Kayode on his Twitter page wrote: “I find this picture and Anthony Joshua’s behaviour utterly repulsive and disgusting.
“Prostrating before his slave master and a bloodthirsty dictator and someone who is viciously persecuting and humiliating his people: what a crying shame.
“This speaks volumes. He has lost me!
Posted: January 20, 2020, 12:38 pm
Residents flee as JTF begins manhunt for killers of military men in Bayelsa
The Chairman, Ekeremor Local Government Council of Bayelsa, Dr Bertola Perekeme, on Monday condemned the killing of four Naval personnel in December 2019, in the area.
Perekeme said no sane person would condone the killing of anyone, let alone military officers on the line of their constitutional duty.
He said that the leadership of the area was worried about the activities of criminals and has always collaborated with security agencies to protect law abiding citizens who were also victims of criminal activities.
He, however, noted that invading communities and burning houses in the guise of searching for criminals is unfashionable in a democratic setting and highly unprofessional.
Sources told the News Agency of Nigeria in Ekeremor that a joint military team arrived Bilabiri community in about 16 gunboats on Friday morning in search of those behind the murder of the four naval men.
Residents reportedly fled the community following the military operation and alleged that houses were burnt down by the military, leaving the coastal settlement deserted.
Reacting to the development, the local government chairman urged the military to exercise restraint and demonstrate professionalism in line with international best practices and their rule of engagement.
He regretted that communities, whose inhabitants live in fear and apprehension following activities of some criminal minded elements, were being invaded and destroyed by the military.
“These communities need help and protection from security agents because they live in fear and are constantly intimidated.
“The military should work closely with other security agencies in intelligence gathering and effect arrest to help our people,” Perekeme said.
He sympathised with the military over the loss of its four officers during exchange of fire with suspected sea pirates along the Ramos River and warned youths of the area to shun criminality.
Meanwhile, the outcome of the Joint Task Force in the Niger Delta with headquarters in Yenagoa on the ongoing operation is being awaited.
Posted: January 20, 2020, 12:30 pm