5 Major Issues In Nigeria Buhari Will Likely Tackle When He Resumes Office

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As Nigeria awaits the imminent arrival of its supreme leader from the medical vacation in the United Kingdom, there are some major issues President Muhammadu Buhari will likely tackle upon resumption of his duties.

Here are five of the major issues as published by Daily Trust below:

  1. Cabinet reshuffle:

Talks about the possibility of President Muhammadu Buhari reshuffling his cabinet have been there even before he went on medical vacation. There were reports a cabinet reshuffle had been in the offing before May 29 when the administration marked its second anniversary.  Those expecting a reshuffle believe that some members of the cabinet have abysmally performed below expectations, hence the need to ease them out. Indications that the cabinet would be reshuffled emerged a few days ago when Osinbajo swore in two new ministers, Professor Stephen Ocheni from Kogi State and Alhaji Suleiman Hassan from Gombe State, without assigning portfolios to them. They were sworn in more than two months after the confirmation of their nominations by the Senate.

Professor Osinbajo had, after inaugurating the new ministers, assured that their portfolios would be announced shortly. But almost two weeks after their inauguration, the portfolios are yet to be named, though they have been attending the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) meetings.

It is believed that Osinbajo was only directed by President Buhari to inaugurate the new ministers and wait for him to assign them portfolios when a cabinet reshuffle is effected.

Since Ocheni and Hassan were sworn in, fears have gripped most cabinet members who are not sure of their fate in the event some changes are effected in FEC.  There is a tendency that some of them will be shown the way out while others will have their portfolios swapped.

  1. Babachir, Oke’s fate:

The fate of the suspended Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Engr Babachir David Lawal and the Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ambassador Ayo Oke, is still hanging in the balance. The report of the Acting President Yemi Osinbajo-led three-man panel that investigated allegations of infractions again them has not been implemented.

President Muhammadu Buhari had on April 19 suspended Babachir and Oke and set up the committee to investigate alleged financial frauds against both officials within two weeks.

Babachir was investigated for allegedly awarding millions of naira contracts to a company in which he had interest, Global Vision Limited, under the Presidential Initiative on the North East (PINE).

A Senate Committee on Humanitarian Crisis in the North-East, which had earlier specifically found the suspended SGF culpable of alleged complicity in a N200 million grass-cutting contract to clear “invasive plant species” in Yobe State, had demanded his resignation and prosecution.

Oke was probed for alleged $43.4m operations cash found by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission at apartment 7B in Osborne Towers, Ikoyi, Lagos. He had reportedly claimed that the money belonged to the NIA and was approved by former President Goodluck Jonathan for some covert operations.

In accordance with Buhari’s directive, the most senior permanent secretary in the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Dr Habibat Lawal and Oke’s senior deputy, Ambassador Arab Yadam, are currently acting as SGF and Director-General of the NIA respectively.

There are reports that the presidential panel recommended that Babachir and Oke be sacked and replaced.

  1. Ibrahim Magu:

President Muhammadu Buhari must have been told that the Senate has not shifted its ground on the appointment of the acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr Ibrahim Magu. The upper legislative chamber had drawn the battle line with the Presidency long before Buhari embarked on medical vacation. Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has demonstrated both in words and action that the Presidency would not budge an inch on the issue.

Kaduna State Governor Nasir el-Rufai on July 6 said both President Muhammadu Buhari and Acting President Yemi Osinbajo told him that Ibrahim Magu would not be removed.

The Senate had on July 4 passed a resolution suspending all issues relating to the confirmation of nominees and urged Acting President Yemi Osinbajo to respect the constitution and laws as they relate to nominees’ confirmation. But the executive argued that certain federal appointments should not require Senate’s confirmation.

That was the position of a legal advisory prepared by judicial and legal experts as a working document in the Presidency on the differences in the constitutional interpretations on matters of certain federal appointments. The Presidency is said to be considering approaching the Supreme Court over the refusal by the Senate to confirm the appointment of Magu, alleging that had more to do with politics than with the law.

But the Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki, had while featuring on the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) forum in Abuja on Tuesday clarified that the Senate had no pre-meditated plan to reject Magu as chairman of the EFCC. The Senate president explained that Magu’s rejection was prompted by a report from the Department of State Services (DSS)  among other issues, emphasising that the decision to reject Magu’s confirmation was in the interest of democracy.

  1. Boko Haram resurgence:

President Muhammadu Buhari must be worried that Boko Haram militants who his administration was hitherto pleased to  have degraded, have staged a comeback. The administration had last December announced that the Boko Haram stronghold in the Sambisa forest had been captured.

A fortnight ago, the governor of Borno State, Kassim Shettima, while speaking to State House reporters after a closed-door meeting with Acting President Yemi Osinbajo and the service chiefs, cautioned that though the terrorists had been sufficiently decimated, their capacity for attacks should not be underrated.

The service chiefs have, in compliance with the directive handed down by Osinbajo, relocated to the command centre in Maiduguri.

In spite of the pockets of attacks in Borno State within the last one month, the Defence Headquarters denied a Boko Haram resurgence.

Nigerians would like to see how President Muhammadu Buhari will fast track the rescue of the officials of the University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID) and the staff of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC)  abducted recently by the sect while carrying out oil exploration research in the Lake Chad Basin Frontier Exploration.

Osinbajo had last weekend directed the military and all security agencies to intensify counter-terror efforts in Borno State in order to have a strong control and secure lives and property. He charged them to continue the search and rescue missions to locate and free all the remaining abducted persons as soon as possible, “using all available and expedient means in the circumstances.”

He was said to have assured that despite the resurgence of terrorist attacks in Borno, “the federal government is not only on top of the situation, but will define the end of these atrocities by both winning the war and winning the peace in the north-east.”

  1. APC internal crisis:

All is obviously not well with the ruling party, the All Progressives Congress (APC). The party seems to have been engulfed by internal wrangling which, if not properly and perhaps urgently handled, may spell doom for it in the coming elections.

Things seem to be falling apart at the various state chapters of the APC. In Bauchi State, Governor Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, are apparently not on the same wavelength at the moment. In Kaduna State, Governor Nasir el-rufai and Senator Shehu Sani appear to have poised for ‘war’.

The battle of supremacy between Kano State Governor Abdullahi Ganduje and his predecessor, Rabiu Kwankwaso, is far from over. In Rivers State, the recent party “restructuring” which the former governor of the state and Minister of Transportation Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, reportedly did with his own political caucus is generating ripples at the state chapter of the party.

There are rumours that a former vice president and chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar,  Kwankwaso and other bigwigs of the ruling party may return to the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) as they were reported to have been approached. Atiku, while speaking at the second Inter Party Advisory Council of Nigeria (IPAC) annual conference recently, flayed the failure by the All Progressives Congress to organise statutory meetings for its organs. He also observed that lack of internal democracy had made the APC and other political parties “undemocratic.”

Osinbajo had on Wednesday kick-started what appeared to be a peace deal process in the All Progressives Congress with a meeting with state chairmen of the party.

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PDP Convention: Sherrif Missing As Party Extends Makarfi’s Tenure

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The sacked chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ali Modu Sheriff, was nowhere to be found On Saturday at the party’s national convention, as the opposition party approved the extension of the tenure of the Ahmed Makarfi-led National Caretaker Committee by four months.

The extension of the tenure of the Caretaker Committee was approved this afternoon by delegates from the country’s 36 states and the FCT, as party members voted overwhelmingly for it at the convention, which was held at the Eagles Square in Abuja – with over 5000 members in attendance.

ALSO READ: Supreme Court Sacks Sheriff, Declares Makarfi Authentic National Chairman Of PDP

The leadership of the party said the extension became necessary so as to give the committee ample time to conduct an elective national convention.

The convention also approved a recommendation for the dissolution of the state executive committee in Anambra,as well as those of all the local governments and wards in the state.

Similarly, the convention approved the dissolution of the state executive committees in Adamawa, Borno, Kebbi, Kwara, Osun, Lagos and Ogun states.

Caretaker committees proposed by the NCC for all the states were also approved.

This is the first national gathering of the party members since the Supreme Court judgement that reaffirmed Senator Ahmed Makarfi as the Caretaker Committee Chairman after ousting the former chairman, Ali Sheriff.

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24 Protesters Killed As Post-Election Violence Worsens In Kenya

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No less than 24 protesters have been killed by police gunfire since Tuesday as Kenya’s post-election violence worsened on Saturday.

The Guardian quoted the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights – which monitors government institutions – as giving the death toll amid appealing to senior officials to urge police to stop using live ammunition against civilians.

Ethnic Politics And The 2017 Kenyan Elections

It is understood that earlier today police used tear gas on a convoy of opposition officials in the capital and a mortuary official said nine bodies with gunshot wounds were brought to a Nairobi morgue from a slum that is an opposition stronghold.

As rioting continued the day after President Uhuru Kenyatta won a second term in a vote the opposition claimed had been rigged, a father said his nine-year-old daughter was killed by a stray bullet on their third-floor balcony in Mathare.

Wycliff Mokaya told The Associated Press his 9-year-old daughter was killed by a stray bullet while on their third-floor balcony in Mathare.

“I was watching her play with her friends when she suddenly fell down,” Mokaya said. “She was my only hope.”

Kenyan police shot and killed two people during riots by opposition supporters on the outskirts of Kisumu, a city where opposition leader Raila Odinga has strong support, according to police. Another five people were injured by gunfire in Kisumu.

Associated Press photographers saw police charging demonstrators and firing live rounds and tear gas in the Mathare area.

A mortuary official said nine bodies with gunshot wounds were brought to the Nairobi morgue from Mathare.

Protesters, some with rocks or sticks, ran for cover as they came under fire in another Nairobi slum, Kibera. One person was shot and killed in Kibera overnight, said Sam Ochieng, a former chairman for Odinga’s party there.

In recent days, opposition officials have described the election results as a fraud and claimed that Odinga, the 72-year-old Nasa leader, was the legitimate winner.

Kenyans had endured a tense three-day wait while a definitive count was done of the ballots from more than 40,000 polling stations.

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Impeaching The “Useless And Costly” Senate For African Power Adventurers

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Impeaching The “Useless And Costly” Senate For African Power Adventurers, By Owei Lakemfa

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Skillful traditional dancer, Jacob Zuma, president of South Africa, narrowly danced out of impeachment three days ago. His nimble political feet enabled him, by a slim 21-vote difference, to continue his performance in office. He has been in office since 2009 and has two years left, but the unrelenting opposition went for an eighth attempt to remove him. National Assembly speaker, Baleka Mbete had ruffled the African political scene with an announcement that the latest parliamentary vote would be secret, which meant that parliamentarians would vote true to their conscience and not necessarily along party lines.

This piece was written by Owei Lakemfa. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

The ruling African National Congress (ANC)’s Chief Whip, Doris Dlakude said the real intention of the opposition was to carry out a coup d’état. She lamented that “(the opposition) are using the constitution so to collapse government, deter service delivery and sow the seeds of chaos in society so as to ultimately grab power.”

After submitting to Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, one million signatures demanding Zuma’s ouster, the parliamentary opposition posted 177 votes, which was not enough to surpass the 198 parliamentarians who voted for Zuma. With nine abstentions, it was clear that some lawmakers of Zuma’s ANC, voted for his ouster or were indifferent.

To Police minister, Fikile Mbalula, this was clearly an attempt to seize the popular mandate given to Zuma: “We were inside (parliament), they said they’re going to topple the president. But with your support, we have defeated them inside. There are those who have been asking (us to vote with) our conscience. We’ve got political conscience to keep the ANC in power forever, and that is political conscience …”

Clearly, there will be more attempts to unseat Zuma, so the question is, will Zuma just sit and wait to be removed or move to ensure he survives until his tenure expires? In any case what do you do with a parliament that is proving so relentless? Zuma might need to learn how his colleague, President Muhammed Ould Abdel Aziz of Mauritania handled the Senate of his country that refused to cooperate with him in his bid for an unconstitutional third term in office.

Aziz, a former chairman of the African Union, had been a leader in the August 2005 coup that removed President Maaouya Ould Sid’Ahmed Taya. Three years later, he unseated President Sidi Ould Cheikh Abdallahi and in July 2009 was elected president. He survived a gun shot on October 13, 2012. Until today, it remains unclear if this was an accident or assassination attempt.

His maximum two terms will expire in two years time, but Aziz insists he has to continue in office beyond 2019. For this, he needs to change the constitution. But the Senate, which is the upper chamber, did not cooperate. So he sold the Senate to the public as a parasitic, useless and costly chamber which does not deserve a place in governance. He therefore demanded it to be abolished. In March, 2017, the lower house voted to abolish the Senate, by a wide 121 – 19 margin. President Aziz then invited the government-controlled Senate to abolish itself. But 33 of the 56 distinguished senators voted against the Senate’s committal of suicide. So on Saturday, August 5, 2017, Aziz held a referendum to kill off the Senate. This was done with a 53.73 percent voter turnout, 85 percent of who returned a ‘Yes’ verdict. Although the opposition parties characterised the referendum as an “electoral farce which has given way to open-air fraud,” Aziz has had his way.

The primary lesson President Aziz has taught Africa is that the best way to meet the challenge of opposition, is to abolish it; the best way to treat a Senate that will not cooperate, is to eliminate it.

Aziz is following in the footsteps of President Macky Sall, the geologist who in 2012, caused a seismic shift in the political calculus of Senegal when he abolished the Senate. He had been a political godson of his predecessor, Abdoulaye Wade, whom he served as prime minister for three years before becoming the president of the National Assembly. But he revolted against his master and replaced him as president in April 2012. However, he felt that merely defeating Wade at the polls without smashing his power base would be dangerous. So he immediately worked for the abolition of the Senate dominated by Wade supporters. He had an ingenuous excuse – that the abolition will save Senegal $15 million! Money he said could be used to tackle the 2012 floods in the country.

Unlike their Mauritanian counterparts, the Senators in Rwanda have nothing to fear as they are ready allies of President Paul Kagame who like Aziz, is gunning for an unconstitutional third term in office. In reality, the Rwandan Senate virtually does not exist. It is a tiny assemblage of 26 persons, with 14 of them being appointed. President Kagame directly appoints eight members, four are appointed by the Forum of Political Parties, while two are appointed by university staff. The remaining 12 are elected from the local level while any former president can apply to the Supreme Court to enlist him as a senator. This provision might actually be a fallback position for Kagame as his six predecessors, except Pasteur Bizimungu, are dead. The latter who was president from 1994, resigned in 2000 over appointment of the cabinet, and Kagame took over.

Bizimungu tried to stand up politically by establishing his own Democratic Renewal Party which was quickly banned. When he persisted on running the party, he was jailed for fifteen years in 2004 for running the party and endangering national security.

Kagame has succeeded not just in bagging the power to run for a third term, but in fact to run for three extra terms of five years each. So by the referendum which gave a 98 percent endorsement, he can remain in office until 2032 or for a total of 42 years in power.

The National Assembly in Nigeria must have been very lucky to escape ‘impeachment’ by an imperial president who fought to change the constitution and bag a Third Term. Former President Olusegun Obasanjo tried all he could to extend his tenure beyond the constitutional limits, but the parliament frustrated him. The Assembly leadership even accused him of bribing members. Perhaps Obasanjo failed because he merely employed arm twisting methods, some persuasion and political lobbying. He might have succeeded if he had tried the Aziz method – dissolve his opponents and continue in office. Who knows, rather than depart ten years ago, he might still have been in power.

Almost at every turn and curve, Africa has adventurers in power who believe that their countries cannot survive without them. As I wrote in the heady days of the Abacha regime; the grave is full of such messiahs.

Owei Lakemfa, former Secretary General of African Workers is a Human Rights activist, journalist and author.

This piece was written by Owei Lakemfa. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

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NYSC Denies Paying Ex-Corps Members N75,000

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The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) on Saturday debunked reports making the round that it has launched a portal for the payment of N75, 000 to former corps members.

The disclaimer is coming on the back of rumours on social media that the agency was giving out the stipends to people who have served.

The agency said a blog called “Safe Job” and “Vanguard News”, cited a purported passage of bill on payment of stipends to ex-Corps members by the Senate, and published information claiming that the NYSC Director-General had launched a portal for the payment of the said stipends.

“The attention of the NYSC Management has been drawn to publications with the above caption by some online platforms,” the NYSC said.

NYSC also said fake Facebook account, NYSC Online, had also been spreading the content published by the two blogs.

“NYSC Management wishes to state that the information is not only false, but also misleading; and should, therefore, be disregarded,” the statement said.

“We further wish to inform our esteemed stakeholders that the so-called “NYSC Online” is NOT the official Facebook page of the National Youth Service Corps.

“For the avoidance of doubt, authentic information from the NYSC Scheme can be accessed through our official Facebook page with the following link,” the agency concluded.

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EFCC: Senate Rejected My Confirmation For “Obvious Reasons” – Magu

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The Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, has said that the lawmakers at the Senate are refusing to confirm his appointment for “obvious reasons.”

Saraki Opens Up On Why Senate Rejected Magu’s Confirmation As EFCC Chairman

Magu, who made this known in an interview with Daily Trust, also said “what I want is for everybody to join the fight against corruption, whether in law enforcement or not, because we need everybody on ground. Nobody has the monopoly of knowledge in fighting corruption, I emphasize that.”

Asked why the Senate has refused to confirm his nomination, the acting chairman of the anti-graft agency said, “It is your duty to find that out, not for me tell you. I think you should know better, but the reasons are very obvious.”

Magu also revealed he has visited the Vice-Chancellors of various Universities, urging them to add a course unit on anti-corruption.

“We will also appeal to them to create a course unit to emphasize anti-corruption, whether you are in sciences or the arts so that every youngster will grow with that in mind. It would help in wiping out corruption in its own way,” he said.

When asked what should be done to speed up the process of prosecution of corruption cases, he said, “Mine stops at investigating and taking the matter to court, and providing the essential evidence and witnesses. I have very young officers who go to court and face a lot of SANs. There’s a case during which we had about 31 SANs against one small boy lawyer who is just ten years into the profession. Why should somebody carry so many SANs to court, and use all type of language to intimidate the judges?”

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Osinbajo Appoints New Solicitor General | Sends Delegation To Anambra Over Ozubulu Attack

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The Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has approved the appointment of Dayo Apata, as the new Solicitor General of the Federation.

The appointment was confirmed in a statement issued on Friday, August 11, 2017.

Apata served as the Solicitor General and Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Justice in Ekiti between 2010 and 2014, when Kayode Fayemi was Governor. He has served as legal adviser national planning ministry and also held several sensitive assignments.

Apata served in the legal unit of Nigeria customs service as a prosecuting officer (NYSC).

He joined the federal civil service and was posted to the ministry of justice as legal officer.

He worked with the Eastern Zone of Nigeria customs service as an assistant legal adviser, prosecuting and defending customs cases in the eastern zone.

Meanwhile, the acting president has sent a five-man Federal Government delegation to Anambra State to visit and condole with the government and people of the state over last Sunday’s attack on worshippers at the St. Philips Catholic Church in Ofufe-Amakwa, Ozubulu, Ekwusigo Local Government Area of the state.

A statement by Mr. Osinbajo’s spokesperson, Laolu Akande, said the delegation is made up of the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige; Minister of Health, Isaac Adewole; Foreign Affairs Minister,Geoffrey Onyeama; Minister of State for Environment, Ibrahim Jibril; and the Minister of State for Education,  Anthony Anwuka.

“During the visit, the delegation will present a condolence letter from the Acting President Osinbajo on behalf of the government and people of Nigeria to Governor Willie Obiano.

In the letter, Mr. Osinbajo extends deep commiserations to the families, friends of the victims and the Ozubulu community on the death of their sons and daughters and prayed for the speedy recovery of the injured still in the hospital.

The Acting President condemned in very strong terms the atrocious and dastardly act which has brought sorrow to many innocent families and, has rightly provoked widespread condemnation.

It would be recalled, the Catholic Church had confirmed at least 13 deaths from the incident.

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SSS Arrests 18 Suspected Kidnappers, Top Boko Haram Commander

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The State Security Service (SSS) said it had arrested 18 suspected members of notorious kidnap gangs operating across the country.

The suspects include: Haliru Hassan, Usman Abdulkadir, Yusuf Saidu, Abubakar Shuiabu, Abubakar Suleiman, Uzairu Bawa and Sani Abubakar.

A statement by an operative of the service, Tony Opuiyo, said the suspects were arrested on July 3, at the Kakuri industrial area of Kaduna State.

Mr. Opuiyo said the suspects had been terrorising motorists and commuters within the Rijana and Katari axis of the Abuja-Kaduna Highway.

He said the service also arrested two notorious kidnap suspects, Rabiu Sani alias Dogo, and Abubakar Sani.

He said the suspects were arrested on July 4, along the Zaria-Funtua road in Giwa Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

The operative said Mr. Sani was a notorious kidnapper and gun-runner who had been supplying arms and ammunition to criminal elements in Kaduna, Kano, Taraba and Plateau states.

He said items recovered from them include: a blue Volkswagen Vento car with Reg. No. MGU 106 EA, one Pistol,four AK-47 Magazines and five FN rifle.

Others are : 989 rounds of Ammunition, one round of 9mm ammunition, one Beretta magazine, and N457, 140.

Similarly, Mr. Opuiyo said, the service arrested two high profile kidnappers on July 5 , at Ikara Junction, Tudun Wada Local Government Area of Kano State.

He said they were members of a kidnap gang which had been operating at the Falgore forest in Kano State.

He said 26 live cartridges and a bullet proof vest were found in their possession during their arrest.

The operative said the service also arrested five kidnap suspects responsible for kidnapping in the FCT and two others in Kogi.

On terrorism, Mr. Opuiyo said the service arrested a high profile Boko Haram cell leader alongside six of his accomplices in Sakwai, Kachia Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

The suspects are Usman Musa, Isa Halidu, Ibrahim Dauda, Bature Mohammed, Buhari Dauda, Inusa Usman and Adamu Ibrahim.

He said the suspects were arrested on July 1, after a tactical operation was conducted against fleeing Boko Haram fighters.

Mr. Opuiyo said items recovered from them include: Light arms, ammunition and radical literature.

He said that the service also arrested some suspected terrorists in Kano and Taraba who fled from the Sambisa forest.

Mr. Opuiyo said the service had arrested three suspects in connection with the boundary dispute in Odukpani Local Government Area of Cross River and Okuiboku in Itu Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom.

He said the arrest was made in liaison with the Nigerian Army on Aug. 10, after a raid of the militants’ enclave along Ikonoto road, Ikonoto clan in Odukpani.

He said during the raid, one of the suspects was shot dead and two escaped with gunshot injuries.

Mr. Opuiyo said that one Dane gun and an American pump action gun were recovered from the hideout.

“The Service wishes to acknowledge the efforts of the general public in providing critical and actionable intelligence, which have continued to enhance its operations.

“It is hoped that this spirit of cooperation and support will further be sustained toward maintenance of prevailing peace, law and order in the Country,” he said.


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#SME100Nigeria: “I Am More Than A DJ.” – DJ CUPPY

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The official unveiling of the SME100 Nigeria 25 under 25 Awards road map took place today at the Press conference which held at the SME100Nigeria office in Lekki Lagos state.

The press conference which was witnessed by a high turnout of participants of journalists from Nigeria Media houses.

Also in attendance was the Head of Corporate Communications for Airtel Nigeria Mr. Emeka Oparah, The CEO, Omar Gardens Mimi Ade-Odiachi, Head of Emerging Businesses Mr Mark Ifashe, and a previous award winner –Florence Otedola aka DJ Cuppy.

At the SME100 Nigeria 25 under 25 Youth Awards press conference Florence Otedola, DJ Cuppy boldly proclaimed her status as a budding entrepreneur and possible mogul.

Sme100 - DJ Cuppy

Florence Otedola, DJ Cuppy (Previous winner of SME100 Award)

The celebrated artiste added she executes business with day-to-day running, positioning, strategy, etc attributing her inspiration in business as well as life is her father the famed Femi Otedola.

She applauded SME100 Nigeria for inspiring young entrepreneurs and acknowledging the creativity in Nigeria.

The 25 Under 25 Entrepreneurs Awards is an annual award by SME 100 to recognize, celebrate and encourage some of Nigeria’s most innovative entrepreneurs under the age of 25.

The goal of this award is to stimulate an entrepreneurial culture among our youths.

The award is set to take place of Saturday, 26th August, 2017 at Terra Kulture, Victoria Island, Lagos. You can still nominate your favourite under 25.

SME100 Nigeria

Founder of SME100, Charles Odii, The CEO, Omar Gardens Mimi Ade-Odiachi, and a previous award winner –Florence Otedola aka DJ Cuppy.

At the table: Head of Corporate Communications for Airtel Nigeria, Mr. Emeka Oparah, The CEO, Omar Gardens Mimi Ade-Odiachi, Head of Emerging Businesses Mr Mark Ifashe.

For more information, please visit www.sme100nigeria.com. For enquiries call 08177743650 or send email to communications@sme100nigeria.com

READ MORE on SME100Nigeria

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Charlie Boy’s Protest And The Hypocritical Puritans

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Charlie Boy’s Protest And The Hypocritical Puritans, By Chidimma Egwuenu

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Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale is a highly respected member of the Puritan community. He is a beloved Reverend who many people of the town look to for comfort. This is why no one could ever suspect him of being the father of Pearl, Hester Prynne’s child. Throughout the novel, Dimmesdale seems to handle the fact that he is hiding the secret of being Pearl’s father extremely well until Chillingworth and his evil doings finally get to Dimmesdale. In one scene, Reverend Dimmesdale mounts the scaffold in the centre of town and screams out into the night in agony. He fears that he will be caught. However, the few townspeople who hear his cry simply mistake it for a witch’s cry. As well, Reverend Wilson walks near the scaffold and Dimmesdale fears that he will be discovered and questioned by the other Reverend. However, like the other townspeople, Reverend Wilson somehow seems not to notice Dimmesdale upon the scaffold.

This piece was written by Chidimma Egwuenu. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

This symbolises the blindness and hypocrisy of the Puritan society. The Puritans merely assume that the scream is from a witch and the other Reverend simply does not see Dimmesdale because they are all blind to the fact that someone in such a great position of power could commit a sin. Furthermore, they were quick to judge Hester, a woman of normal social class, when she committed her crime but refuse to see what is not right before their eyes when it involves a man in a position of power and respect, lending credence to their hypocrisy.

94 Days After! Is It True President Buhari Is Undergoing Chemotherapy? Charly Boy, #ResumeOrResign Protesters Ask

In study.com, it is elucidated that, “Hester Prynne is condemned to wear a scarlet letter ‘A’ on her chest as a punishment for the sin of adultery, but it seems that plenty of the other citizens of Salem are harboring similar sins without admitting them. They go on acting their part as pious”.

The above preamble which I culled from Hypocrisy of the Puritan Society sheds light on Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter and is a clear depiction of the life of a Puritan society in early America.

The Nigerian society can be likened to that Puritan society, where standards must be set by certain moral jingoists over every issue bordering on the society’s culture, economy, leadership and politics. From a judgmental standpoint, they find it inconvenient to separate their definition of morality from their prism of myopia, of complex social issues.

And they stretch it to a conclusion of what they think is right, irrespective of the opinion of others.

When they do not believe in your cause, they raise every argument to undermine it. This explains why I couldn’t help being stupefied as I just learnt from some quarters that you need to have a sparkling moral life in order to criticise or protest against the government of your country.

Proponents of this absurd school of thought are found everywhere on the cyber space vilifying celebrities like Charlie Boy and Jim Iyke for daring to go on the streets to call upon President Muhammadu Buhari to either resume or resign from his duty. This same very badmouthing was done to 2face earlier. They found convenience in lambasting 2face for daring to organise the later aborted protest simply because he has children by multiple women. Pathetic!

It is very remarkable to note that these puritans of questionable intents are among those who saw nothing wrong with a public officer like Senator Bukar Ibrahim having an extra-marital affair or our dishonourable representatives patronising brothels in every nook and cranny of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, with girls old enough to be their granddaughters. They tag it as part of a “private life” and question the audacity of anyone that tries to call them out; but right now, in a convenient plot twist, these righteous judges of character, after cynically and ‘meticulously’ appraising the ‘unsavory’ details of Charlie Boy’s lifestyle, found him totally unworthy of championing a crusade against His Holiness President Buhari II. Have I not said it that there is something hideous about a society like ours that has its values and priorities set in a reverse order?

How Police Brutalized Me During ‘Anti-Buhari’ Protest – Charly Boy

Now let me ask, does one need to have morals to criticise the government of his country? Does one need to be a saint to hold leaders accountable for the mandate given to them, more so, when one has never held a public office (such that one may then be categorised as part of the problem and tagged a hypocrite)? For those who anchored their criticism on their ‘disillusionment’ with celebrities and their lack of depth and knowledge in civil rights and political activism, I ask, is political activism elitist in nature? Does one need to be an Einstein to appreciate issues of bad governance or a Martin Luther King Jr. to stage a protest against the government of his country? Let me quickly remind us that Mohammed Bouazizi, the catalyst of the Arab Spring that ended the twenty-three year rule of President Ben Ali of Tunisia was a seller of Ugwu and Ewedu! He was no Gani Fawehinmi, Chima Ubani, Fela Kuti or a known activist; nay, he had no pedigree. Just like you and I, he was broken by the sufferings and anguish occasioned by bad leadership. He immolised himself in protest but you and I are so incurably docile and afraid to take to the streets. Another man was bold enough to do it and you dare sit in judgment over his lifestyle? If the substance of his protest is genuine why would you void it because of extraneous issues relating to his lifestyle? Did he hold himself out as a priest or an Alfaa contesting for a clergy position in a church or some Mosque?

This nation will only escape its impending doom when we all come down from our high-horses of judgment and view nation building as the collective task of all, irrespective of our social or religious leanings.

Chidimma Egwuenu, a legal practitioner writes from Lagos.

This piece was written by Chidimma Egwuenu. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

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(REMINDER): Nigerian Navy Recruitment Aptitude Test Holds Nationwide Tomorrow

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The Nigerian Navy (NN) has reiterated that its recruitment aptitude test will hold nationwide on Saturday, August 12, 2017.

This is contained in a statement issued by the Acting Director of Information, Nigerian Navy, Captain Suleman Dahun, yesterday in Abuja,

In the statement, he urged all shortlisted candidates for the recruitment exercise to contact their chosen centres in the various states of the federation on the said date by 8:00 a.m.

He asked candidates to come along with copies of their online completed forms, HB pencils and erasers to the designated examination centres.

The statement said: “Candidates are reminded to come along with copies of their online completed forms, HB pencils and erasers to the designated examination centres.

“No electronic device is allowed at the examination centres, including mobile phones and calculators. Names of candidates who are successful in the test will be published online on Monday, August 21, 2017.

“Thereafter, these successful candidates will attend a selection interview from Friday, August 25, 2017 to Saturday, September 23, 2017 at the Nigerian Navy Secondary School, Ojo, Lagos.”

The Nigerian Navy had previously announced that it rescheduled the date for its 2017 recruitment aptitude test from October 7 to August 12, 2017.

It however regretted any inconveniences the new date might have caused to the candidates and general public.

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94 Days After! Is It True President Buhari Is Undergoing Chemotherapy? Charly Boy, #ResumeOrResign Protesters Ask

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94 Days After: Is It True President Buhari Is Undergoing Chemotherapy And That’s Why He Can’t Return Back To Nigeria?

ALSO READ: How Police Brutalized Me During ‘Anti-Buhari’ Protest – Charly Boy

  1. In the last 24 hours, reports have emanated from different sources that during the course of his 94-day medical sojourn in the United Kingdom, President Muhammadu Buhari (GCFR) has received treatment for an undisclosed form of cancer. These reports state that this treatment includes chemotherapy and go further to declare that President Buhari has become affected thereby to the point where he has severe difficulty communicating with the medical personnel treating him as well as close aides and family who are around him.

  2. These reports are difficult to confirm or refute because of the secrecy with which President Buhari’s aides have handled information related to his illness. The reports are deeply disturbing and are a source of grave concern. Even more disturbing is the fact that there are several conspiracy theories circulating as to the state of health the president and how the secrecy behind his ailment persists only to favor the cabals and influence peddlers playing chess with the lives of 200million Nigerians.

  3. It is in this light that we ask the Presidency to clear the air by providing full disclosure of the details of the illness which the President suffers from and the nature of treatment he is undergoing to combat such illness.

  4. Nigerians will recall that for a long time, false information has been peddled around parts of the country that President Buhari was poisoned. Therefore, It is imperative to point out that only full disclosure of the details of the President’s ill-health will put an end to reports of this nature and prevent the sort of social upheaval the lack of information may cause.

  5. Finally, we have read the statement made by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity, Alhaji Garba Shehu, to the effect that our demands for full disclosure and resignation upon confirmation of incapacitation are an attempt to distract the government from the fight against corruption.

It is shameful that this pedantic sort of reasoning is still being applied to critical issues at this point of our national history. At no point has any correlation been made between our demands on President Buhari’s health status and the fight against corruption.

Therefore, and for the avoidance of doubt, we urge the government to continue the fight against corruption by arresting, prosecuting and securing the conviction of any person or group of persons who are found guilty of looting the nation’s treasuries. At the same time, we urge the government to ensure it fully discloses the details of President Buhari’s illness.


Charles Oputa (Leader, #ResumeOrResign Movement)

FOR: Our Mumu Don Do Movement.

Deji Adeyanju (Co-Convener, #ResumeOrResign Movement

For: Concerned Nigerians.

Adebayo Raphael (Co-convener, #ResumeOrResign Movement)

For: OurMumuDonDo Movement.

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FG Confirms When 2018 Budget Will Be Submitted To National Assembly

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The Federal Government has confirmed that it would submit the 2018 Appropriation Bill to the National Assembly in October, about 2 months from now.

The confirmation was made by the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udoma, while speaking at the Presidential Villa after a retreat on the implementation of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan and the 2018 Budget Preparation Process.

The minister said the government would soon send the 2018-2020 Medium Term Expenditure Framework Fiscal Strategy Paper approved by the Federal Executive Council on Wednesday, to the National Assembly.

His words: “The National Assembly is on break nearer the time they will resume in September, but ours is to follow the Fiscal Responsibility Act which has some timelines and we are trying to keep strictly by those timelines.

“So, the budget will get to the National Assembly by October, that was our commitment.

“We will go all out to make that happen, we made a commitment that we will do that on our part and we intend to deliver on that commitment. This is a government that delivers on its promises.”

The minister explained that the retreat was about linking the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan with the budget.

“Basically, we have to keep on reviewing at every stage, so this is review where we are, what needs to be done and what steps we need to take in areas that we need to fast track.

“We need review what we are doing at the stage of implement. So, this was the purpose of the meeting,” the minister added.

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Ambode Reveals When ‘Danfo’ Buses Will Be Out Of Lagos Roads

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Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State on Thursday announced that the first set of 5,000 new buses that would replace ‘danfo’ bus will be unveiled within the next six months.

The governor made this known when students of the prestigious Harvard Kennedy School of Government, United States of America, paid him a courtesy visit at the Lagos House in Ikeja.

He said the 5000 new buses would be the first step by his administration to change the existing transportation system predominantly driven by the yellow buses, popularly known as danfo.

 He said: “In the last one year, we have decided that we must integrate rail, road water and air transportation systems in such a way that the system of connectivity is improved upon and I would like to have a direct partnership on how that can actually be actualised.

“Right now, we are cleaning out all the yellow buses you see in the state. As we proceed in the next six months and a span of three years, we are introducing 5,000 new buses of European standard to actually clean up the city, because, if you want to grow the economy of Lagos, transportation is key and then it’s a major infrastructure for tourism itself.

“The question is: How do you move 23 million people on a daily basis from point A to point B with ease and comfort? So, the way the city has been so designed in the last few years, the city has actually concentrated on only one mode of transportation, which is road transportation.

“There are eight million people walking on the streets of Lagos every minute, did we create more points for them? The answer is ‘no’. We have one-fifth of the state on water, are we doing effective water transportation? The answer is ‘no’.

“The rail system is still under construction in such a way that it can move mass number of people from one point to another. That is why we have a whole lot of congestion on the road.

Meanwhile, bus conductors in Lagos state have finalised arrangements for their members to start wearing uniforms and name-tags.

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70 Feared Dead As Strange Illness Hits Kwara Community

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The residents of Oro-Ago community, in the Ifelodun Local Government Area of Kwara State have been inundated in confusion and anxiety following reports that no fewer than 70 persons have died of a strange illness.

The leaders and members of the community told The Punch that the illness was predominant among the Fulani settlers called the Bororos in the community.

It is understood that a huge number of the Bororos had died since the outbreak of the strange illness on July 23, 2017 – with most of the victims vomiting blood and some black substances.

The President, Oro-Ago Development Union, Olaniyi Olushosa said the death toll as a result of the strange illness had hit 70 in two weeks.

He added that he had reported the matter to the state Ministry of Health in Ilorin, through a doctor that he identified simply as Dr. Lawal.

He said, “Death toll has reached about 70 in two weeks. Those affected are mostly the Fulani people. The matter has been reported to the Ministry of Health.”

“It is worrisome that the Oro-Ago General Hospital had been abandoned and left dilapidated. No health workers, nothing; right now, our community lacks health centres.”

Also speaking, the Oloro of Oro-Ago, Oba Tafa Dada while confirming the outbreak said “It is true that a strange illness has hit some members of Oro-Ago.

“The affected people vomited blood and some black substances. That is the report that I got. I was also told that many people have died, that was why I sent the ODU president to the ministry of health.”

A resident, Taiwo, said the strange illness started on July 23. He claimed that no fewer than 120 people had died. He said about five persons died on Thursday on the way to the General Hospital, Omu-Oran.

He explained that 74 people died in Michede, in Oro-Ago, between July 23 and Thursday. He added that 36 people died at Gaa Wakil along Oreke Road, Oro-Ago, between Sunday, August 6 and Thursday.

According to him, 14 people died at Orisa via Ahun in Oro. He also said that four people died on Wednesday, while five died on Thursday.

He said, “Since July 23, we have been experiencing a strange disease around the Oro-Ago area. About 120 people have died.

“The symptoms are usually intermittent headaches and serious stomach pain. If it starts, between one hour and one hour thirty minutes, they would start vomiting blood. Those who were unable to vomit blood will die within six hours. But those who vomited blood would stay for about three days before they die.

“We have called the attention of the state Ministry of Health. We have not seen anybody.”

However, speaking in denial, the Kwara State Commissioner for Health, Alhaji Suliaman Aloge, said there was no strange illness in the area.

His words: “The Public Health Department, through the Epidemiological Unit, has investigated and such a thing is not recorded. There is no outbreak of any strange illness in Oro-Ago. Why some people raised the alarm is that the worker at the health centre in Oro-Ago was transferred and has not been replaced. I have directed relevant units to move another nurse to the health centre.

“I was informed that only one woman died on Tuesday. She died of a confirmed case of cancer. There is nothing like outbreak of illness in that community.”

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Nigeria Moves Up In August FIFA Rankings, Now 6th In Africa (Full List)

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The Super Eagles of Nigeria have climbed up one step and sixth in Africa based on the latest Fifa rankings released on Thursday, August 10, 2017.

See the full list as published by FIFA official website

Nigeria moved from last month’s 39th place in the world, while they maintained their position on the continent behind Egypt, Senegal, Congo DR, Tunisia, and Cameroon respectively.

Also making progress on the rankings is Cameroon, whom Nigeria play over two legs in the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers next month.

The Indomitable Lions have also climbed one spot to 37th in the world and fifth on the continent.

Both teams will clash next month in crucial World Cup qualifiers.

While on the global stage, Brazil reclaimed the top spot, with the reigning World champions, Germany dropping to second and Argentina remain in third.

Switzerland climbed to fourth – their highest ever position, while Poland, Portugal, Chile, Colombia, Belgium and France complete the top 10.

Jamaica, Concacaf Gold Cup runners-up made the biggest movers in terms of points – gain 172, but Namibia are the biggest movers by rankings – up 20 places to 136th.

The next Fifa/Coca-Cola World ranking is expected to be published on September 14, 2017.

See the full list as published by FIFA official website

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Ozobulu Killings: Blood And Blood Money In The Church

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Ozobulu Killings: Blood And Blood Money In The Church, By Bámidélé Adémólá-Olátéjú

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Alloysius Ikegwuonu, alias ‘Bishop’, has built at least five churches, roads, schools, and even a bank. He has bought cars for parish priests who cannot plead ignorance of his alleged involvement in the drug trade. Bishop got a hint of the drug feud that led to the killings at Ozobulu and left. Those after him killed members of his family, innocent worshippers and wounded many more and the church he built and donated.

This piece was written by Bámidélé Adémólá-Olátéjú. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

The Ozobulu Killings is hardly any surprise because the enemies of God and man have long found refuge in the church. It is confounding that a people reported as the most religious also top the list of the most corrupt people on earth. These and many more are obvious contradictions in our sociology that point to the anomalies in our individual and collective lives as a people. Some years ago, Nigerians were cited as the happiest people in the world and among the world’s poorest. How can a people be poor and still be the happiest? How can a nation be the most religious and also one of the most corrupt? The rational explanation lies in our perception of the Christian and Muslim God, as an Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) – the God of transactions, the God of give and take.

We grow godless with the same alarming rate as the growth of churches and mosques in every city block in the country. Drug lords, treasury looters, ritualists, armed robbers, murderers and every shade of criminals, fund our religious spaces with tithes and offerings, while poverty and misery continue their astronomical rise. Religion is dead in Nigeria. What is practised and branded as religion in the country is a farce. Our religious spaces are a marketplace of fraud. The killings at Ozobulu once again exposes us as a people with no scruples. An Ozobulu will happen when we have no revulsion at accepting a church built and donated by a known and celebrated drug baron. Ozobulu is what we get when we think the blood of Jesus will cleanse all manners of money, including those obtained by spilling human blood. We are the one of the most corrupt people on earth because religion, as it is practised among us, has lost its bite. Clerics have become co-exploiters of the people. Prosperity preaching has taken control of the pulpits, while radical Islamism with promises of a better heaven is the menu served from the minbar in mosques. In the South, clerics preach to the disillusioned poor that money by all means is king and it is better for their congregants to die trying, while the clerics in the North collaborate with treasury looters, encouraging them to feed crumbs to the poor in the guise alms and charity.

How did we get to this sorry station? We need not look too far, our descent into the moral gorge we have found ourselves is an extension of our rentier mentality. The frontiers of American style pentecostalism has been extended and localised well beyond the boundaries of exploitative capitalism, using religious license aided by unreason. Religious life today is no longer about humanism and salvation, but about material accumulation and financial prosperity. A Nigerian will cheat, exploit his kin, cut corners, scam another and when he makes it through these unwholesome means, he sees it as a prayer answered! Of course, the front rows of the mosque and the pews of the church will be reserved for him as long as he brings fat tithes and offerings. The virtues of character, righteousness, honesty, integrity, sacrifice, tolerance, modesty and moral goodness are no longer preached. When emphasis is on money and pleasure, we cannot expect good outcomes from our places of worship. Unfortunately, we are not a nation of laws.

In a nation full of sacred cows, where there are no consequences for actions, we should expect more Ozobulu to happen. Prosperity preachers will continue to feast on the ignorance and gullibility of their congregants. They will continue to capitalise on their bleak socio-economic conditions to rob them of their faith and money. As long as social injustice, fading social mobility, and limited economic opportunity pervade the Homeland, the poor will continue to buy the gospel of miracles, wealth, power, position and privilege, and pastorpreneurs will keep buying more jets and be counted among the richest.

Evil and criminality is as old as man but the prophets of old confronted the socio-political and economic issues of their time with righteousness and an uprightness that is now very absent. Never did they compromise with evil, regardless of its colourations. God does not strike a bargain with criminals. Criminals who support religion as a way of laundering their moral deficiencies are lying to themselves. Building churches, making huge cash donations and sponsoring people on pilgrimage cannot atone for premeditated crimes against thousands of people.

As for the priests of Baal who squeeze away morality from the gospel, they are more dangerous than the criminals they aid and abet. Material provisions by a criminal cannot serve as the basis for determining faith and devotion to the body of Christ.

The Ozobulu killings is a wake up call to all of us. We must reclaim the values of religion as it was, before the Pentecostal invasion. If we must halt the progression of values decay affecting us, God-fearing religious leaders must call out those who pollute their ranks. Nigeria’s redemption must start from the doorsteps of churches and mosques. May the soul of those killed, find peaceful rest and may their traumatised families have the strength, times like this demand.

Bámidélé Adémólá-Olátéjú a farmer, youth advocate and political analyst, writes this weekly column, “Bamidele Upfront” for PREMIUM TIMES. Follow me on Twitter @olufunmilayo

This piece was written by Bámidélé Adémólá-Olátéjú. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

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Another Kidnappers’ Den Discovered Near Ikeja (PHOTOS)

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A suspected kidnappers’ den has been discovered at Ile-Zik on the Lagos/Abeokuta Expressway – an area very close to Ikeja, the Lagos state capital.

This is coming barely a few days after two suspected kidnappers were set ablaze when residents of Obadeyi-Ijaiye end of the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway discovered a suspected kidnappers’ den in the area.

‘Kidnappers’ den’ discovered near Ikeja

‘Kidnappers’ den’ discovered near Ikeja: Photo credit: TheCable

It is understood that security operatives while combing the hideout found human parts concealed in some sachets.

Scores of tunnels were also seen in the area which is adjacent to a perimeter fence of the Murtala Muhammed international airport.

2 Set Ablaze As Residents Uncover Kidnappers’ Den In Lagos

Based on reports, a hawker who fell into the hands of the gang raised the alarm after managing to escape.

Three suspects have been arrested, while a sharp knife was found on one of the suspects said to have been posing as a mad man.

One of the arrested suspects

One of the arrested suspects: Photo Credit: TheCable

The suspects are currently being interrogated at Isokoko police station.

It was gathered that there are at least eight patrol vans of the police at the location, while a huge crowd converged on the place, making it difficult for free movement.

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Boko Haram: Scores Feared Dead, Countless Homes Burnt In Fresh Adamawa Attack

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Scores of persons have been feared dead on Thursday in a fresh attack by Boko Haram Islamists in Ghumbili community in the Madagali Local Government Area of Adamawa.

The attack is coming barely a few days after a similar incident occured in a neighbouring village in the Local Government, known as Mildu, where seven people were killed by the insurgents.

Speaking on the recent attack with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the Chairman of Madagali Local Government Council, Yusuf Muhammed, said it lasted from 11 p.m. on Wednesday to 3 a.m. on Thursday.

He said that the jihadists burnt no fewer than 60 houses and looted foodstuff.

“They looted foodstuff, killed livestock and burnt the village completely,” he stated.

Mr. Muhammed said that the exact number of dead and injured people had yet to be ascertained and that villagers who escaped the attack were currently taking refuge at Gulak, the headquarters of the council.

On his own part, the Spokesman of the Police Command in Adamawa, Othman Abubakar, who also confirmed the attack, said no life was lost.

He said, however, that houses were destroyed in the attack–the latest in a string of deadly blows on mainly soft targets in Nigeria’s troubled northeast.

Speaking on the development, the Executive Chairman of the Adamawa State Emergency Management Agency, Haruna Furo, said only one person was killed and that many houses were destroyed.

In recent times, fighters of the dreaded Islamic cult have raised the level of onslaught in its eight-year bloody insurgency that has claimed thousands of lives.

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Libya Begins Deportation Of 540 Nigerians Today – NAPTIP DG

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At least five hundred and forty Nigerians are set for deportation from Libya, beginning from today, August 10, an official has said yesterday.

Julie Okah-Donli, Director-General, National Agency for Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), made this known on Wednesday in Osogbo, at the inauguration of the North-West Zonal Command Office of the agency.

While saying that the deportees would be transported back to Nigeria in three batches of 180 each, the NAPTIP boss added that more than 2,000 Nigerians were deported from various parts of the world from February till date, over various migration offences, including human trafficking.

Mrs. Okah-Doni disclosed that the agency had rescued and supported more than 12,000 victims of human trafficking, and also secured 325 convictions since its inception in 2003.

She decried the rising trend of deportation of Nigerians from different parts of the world, especially in Africa, and described the situation as “frightening”.

“Such massive deportations are not good for us as a people. Government at all levels must take steps to halt it by initiating measures that will reduce the vulnerability of our people to being trafficked.

“We must also strive to enlighten our people to resist the temptation to leave the country at all cost,” she said.

Mrs. Okah-Donli, who described human trafficking as a modern day slavery, urged stern measures to end it.

She reaffirmed NAPTIP’s commitment to implementing the Trafficking in Persons(Prohibition) Enforcement and Administration Act of 2015, and declared that there would be no sacred cows.

Mrs. Okah-Donli identified Osun, Ekiti and Ondo among the endemic states in trafficking in persons in Nigeria, saying all hands must be on deck to change the trend.

“Nigeria is a source, transit and destination country. Women and young girls are recruited for sexual and labour exploitation in parts of Europe, the Middle East and even within the African continent.

“This calls for concerted action by all as Nigerians cannot make meaningful progress in its human capital development index, with a sustained depletion of her young and brightest stars.”

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Beware Of Fraudsters! We Are Not Recruiting – NNPC Tells Nigerians

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has, for the umpteenth time, reiterated that it has not launched a recruitment campaign of any kind for now.

The latest clarification is coming on the heels of a fresh recruitment advert purportedly from the Corporation being circulated by e-mails and on various social media platforms.

Update On Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) 2017 Recruitment

A statement by the Corporation’s spokesman, Ndu Ughamadu, disclosed that the advert which is on a fake letterhead complete with NNPC logo is purportedly signed by the Group Managing Director, Dr. Maikanti Baru, and the Chief Operating Officer, Refineries, Anibor Kragha, and directs unsuspecting applicants to send their applications to a fake e-mail address: nnpccareersrecruitment@gmail.com.

Shedding more light on the scam, Ughamadu said another form of the scam involved text messages, e-mails, and letters inviting gullible job seekers for fake job interviews at the NNPC Towers and other locations across the country with a view to extorting money from them.

He called on members of the public, especially applicants, to discountenance any of such adverts or spurious invitations for job interviews as the Corporation was currently not recruiting, stressing that anyone who entertains such invitations does so at his or her own risk.

Ughamadu advised that anyone contacted for the purpose of the fake recruitment should not hesitate to report such invitations to relevant law enforcement agencies, adding that the Corporation would continue to engage security agencies on the scam.

He said NNPC Management under the leadership of Dr. Maikanti Baru would sustain the prevailing culture of transparency and accountability which has witnessed the conduct of open public bidding in sourcing for contractors and suppliers of goods and services for its day-to-day operations, including recruitment exercises, stressing that NNPC will advertise all vacant positions in national newspapers whenever it was ready to recruit.

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Buhari’s 2015 Campaign Official Dumps APC For PDP, Says ‘Ruling Party Has Failed Nigerians’

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Alhaji Ibrahim Al Amin, an active campaigner of President Muhammadu Buhari, during the 2015 Presidential election, has dumped the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kano State.

Ibrahim, a former Chairman of the defunct All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) in Kano, also said he decided to dump the APC over its “inability to redeem all its campaign promises”.

Speaking with journalists in Kano, Ibrahim said his defection to the PDP was borne out his conviction that APC had not been able to fulfilled all the promises it made to electorate.

He further lamented that the President Buhari administration has marginalised the northern part of the country despite the votes they gave to him in 2015 elections.

His words: “Although I do not regret supporting and voting for Buhari, I cannot remain in the party because it is not running the country properly. I hold Buhari in high esteem but he is not in control of the present government.

“President Buhari is not in control of his government since he fell ill, and some people have taken the advantage and control the government.”

“I am highly disappointed in the APC because it has reneged on the promises it made to Nigerians. What we have been accusing other political parties of doing, the APC is now doing them.  There is poverty everywhere and the APC is not doing anything to bail-out the masses.

“I am in politics to serve my people directly or indirectly and I am not comfortable with the way the ruling party is handling the affairs of Nigerians.

“Our major problem is that our political parties are not based on ideologies.”

“I am disappointed with the administration after all the votes provide to Buhari by North-west but the region is shortchanged in term of execution of developmental projects.

“My expectation is government will reciprocate the region with laudable projects but unfortunately, the government is being under the control of some southerners.

“My cross carpeting has been from the ruling parties to oppositions and on three occasions, I held a party to win election. I am not in politics to use political office to make financial gains but I am in politics to have the opportunity to serve the people.

“I have no reason to remain in the party that disappointed Nigerians and the party failed to improve the economic development of the people of the country rather contributed to hardship among the populace.”

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Osinbajo Appoints 21 New Federal Permanent Secretaries

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The Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo on Thursday, August 10, approved the appointment of 21 new Permanent Secretaries in the Federal Civil Service.

The appointment was announced in a statement issued today in Abuja from the office of Mrs Winifred Oyo-Ita, Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, by Mr Haruna Imrana, Director, Communications.

The permanent secretaries are Ehuria Ekeoma (Abia State); Akpan Sunday (Akwa Ibom); Anagbogu Nkiruka (Anambra); Walson-Jack Esther (Bayelsa); Gekpe Isu(Cross River); Aliboh Lawrence (Delta) and Uwaifo Clement ( Edo).

Others are Folayan Olaniyi (Ekiti state); Osuji Marcellinus (Imo); Mu’azu Abdulkadir (Kaduna); Sulaiman Lawal (Kano); Abdullahi Mashi (Katsina State); Adebiyi Adekunle, (Lagos); Ibrahim Wen, (NasarawaS tate); Odewale Olajide (Ogun) and Adesola Olusade (Ondo State).

The rest are Adekunle Adeyemi,( Oyo state); Nabasu Bako, (Plateau); Ekaro Chukwumuebobo,( Rivers); Umar Bello, (Sokoto State) and Aduda Tanimu from the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The statement added that their portfolios would be announced in due course.

The appointment followed after a week-long rigorous examination of  300 Federal Directors at Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).

The change in policy for the Federal Permanent Secretaries to write examinations was part of the resolutions of the National Council on Establishment (NEC) held July 2016 in Minna, Niger State.

Over 200 of the 300 Directors earlier shortlisted for interviews and verification for the 21 vacant positions of Federal Permanent Secretaries failed to scale the hurdle for the final stages of the exercise.

The candidates went through three levels of examination, including relevant public service and policy issues, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) assessment test and oral interview, within one week.

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Corruption: Nigeria Loses N11trn In Power Sector

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Nigeria has lost N11 trillion to corruption in the power sector since 1999, a university lecturer, Dr Yemi Oke, said on Wednesday in Lagos.

Speaking at a media launch of a report on the power sector, Oke, a lecturer at the Department of Jurisprudence and International Law, University of Lagos, lamented that with the trillions allegedly invested in the sector, the country has yet to enjoy uninterrupted power supply.

The report is entitled: “From Darkness to Darkness: How Nigerians Are Paying the Price for the Electricity Sector” and was produced by the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) with support from MacArthur Foundation.

The lecturer also explained that the much-celebrated power sector reform was yet to yield the desired results as majority of Nigerians were still in darkness.

He further stated that the loss represented public funds, private equity and social investment (or divestment) in the power sector.

“It is estimated that it may reach over N20 trillion in the next decade given the rate of government investment and funding in the power sector amidst dwindling economic fortunes and recurrent revenue shortfalls.”

According to Oke, preliminary findings show that corruption in the power sector is caused by weak regulations, institutional decay, top-down model of electricity governance and corrupt officials.

He said it was also caused by state monopoly, state controlled electricity governance model and lack of decentralised energy options.

Oke said the inability of the government to bring those who have perpetrated various scams in the sector to justice had continued to create a culture of impunity.

The don, therefore, urged the anti-graft agencies to reinforce the prosecution of such persons.

Also speaking, the Executive Director, SERAP, Mr Adetokunbo Mumuni, said Nigerians were paying the price for corruption in the power sector in a multi-dimensional way.

Apart from being forced to provide their own electricity, Mumuni said Nigerians were also subjected to crazy billing by the electricity distribution companies on monthly basis.

“Small-scale businesses and industries are closing down everywhere and it is due to corruption in the sector.

“Our organisation is pained by what is contained in the report and we are also pained that publicly known corruption acts in the power sector have not been dealt with.”

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The Moral Debris Of GEJ’s Looted Home

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The Moral Debris of GEJ’s Looted Home, By Louis Odion

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Editorials of the Vanguard newspaper, in my view, belong in the heavyweight echelon of Nigeria’s commentariat. The weight of their punches is to be judged not only by the resonance of their messages over the years, but also the economy of phrase utilised – the uncanny facility to say a lot in so few words, and packing so much into limited space.

This piece was written by Louis Odion. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

But its edition of August 3 must rank among those that fall miserably short of the high value it normally espouses. In the commentary entitled, “Looting of ex-President Jonathan’s home”, the newspaper said every thing expected against the cops-turned-burglars and those who trafficked the stolen goods.

What would have been a fine argument against yet another iniquity of man was however sullied when, in the next breath, it openly sought to either deny anyone the right to outrage against Jonathan on any count whatsoever and make an outright villain of those unable to express pity or empathy with the victim on this matter.

3 Policemen Detained For ‘Stealing’ Designer Suits, Fridges, Others In Jonathan’s House

It wrote: “No decent human being can claim that what took place in … President Jonathan’s house is excusable on any ground. All people of conscience must rise up and condemn evil, no matter who is involved. The atmosphere of hatred which seems to have seized the people of this country by the throat must be made to give way to empathy for one another, as that is the only way we can build a united, strong country.”

For effect, it reminded us of the great sacrifice GEJ made to secure Nigerian democracy: “It was due to his gentle and patriotic disposition that the nation experienced a peaceful transfer of power from one political party to another in 2015.”

In the haste to whip up sentiments, the editorialist, alas, missed the context and the nuance of the great heist at issue. To start with, seeking to overplay Jonathan’s 2015 concession of defeat as reflected above is very cheap indeed. Care needs be taken against overdrawing that goodwill account. His action then was the most honourable thing to do at that moment, for which enough encomium has been showered on him both within and outside our shores.

But that can, by no means, now amount to an entitlement to pity at all times. Nor can it possibly be tendered as adequate inoculation against reproach or perpetual immunity against public scrutiny.

Otherwise, we, given what is now also known about the sordid aspects of the same past, risk enthroning a new relativity of morality with the suggestion that gross ethical inadequacy should be excused in the throes of sentimentality or being captive to one memory.

Rather, the intelligentsia must be seen as setting very high standards for the society, holding all actors by a universal principle. Inherent in that resolve is a commitment not to compromise values or lend itself to those seeking to lower the society’s ethical bar on sentiments ranging from ethnicity to creed.

Two, there can be no disputation over whether Jonathan, were he another ordinary Nigerian, would be deserving of pity over this loss of valuables. While it may be true that most Nigerians indeed lack true love for their nation as a corporate entity, they certainly do not hate one another at the inter-personal level, as can be verified from the instinctive response of the average Nigerian meeting complete strangers at an accident scene, for instance. He is very unlikely to turn the other way but play the biblical Good Samaritan – lending a hand to those in distress.

As a people, Nigerians are not incapable of pity when sufficiently aroused.

In the present circumstance, the truth is that Jonathan is definitely not the guy next door. And if we can summon courage to face the more inconveniencing truth, many – if not most – Nigerians today would argue GEJ only just got a mini dose of the bitter portion the nation was force-fed with under his watch as president.

In a poetic reversal of role, while the man from Otuoke grieved over the loss of domestic valuables under police guard, his fellow compatriots have not stopped bemoaning the mindless looting of their own country while Jonathan was sentinel.

On account of what is now known, those who wish to discount the GEJ silhouette as only totemic of looting without limit cannot therefore be accused of being uncharitable. The costs of plasma TVs, refrigerators and bowler hats are certainly insignificant compared to, say, the $150 million (N54 billion) of luxury asset recently forfeited by Diezani and co to US authorities alone. To say nothing of an estimated $15 billion (N5.4 trillion) systematically stolen, as revealed through Dasukigate.

Funny enough, when the likes of then CBN governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi were crying out that the national exchequer was being bled to death, Jonathan took it upon himself to parlay every national platform to vigorously defend Diezani as a hapless victim of those playing malicious political games.

When you occupy an enviable office, he once philosophised on national television in her defence, enemies tell fat lies to pull you down.

So, if some citizens are now unable to bring themselves to pity Jonathan over the Gwarinpa burglary as the Vanguard editorial surmised, it must be understood in the context of a nation still unable to come to terms with the mega heist under his watch, the lurid details of which continue to unfold with stifling pungency both at home and abroad.

In the statement to the police, he lamented that his home was “completely stripped bare”, underlining an epic betrayal of truth. Policemen asked to guard a home chose to become the thieves themselves.

But once the marauding vultures had been upbraided and chased away, it will be time to censure the mother fowl for exposing her chicks to danger in the first place. By Jonathan’s own admission, the theft was only discovered last month. The truth he was obviously too shy to share is that the property in question was lying waste as he lives elsewhere in Abuja. That apparently left the door ajar for the evil cops to systematically clean out the four-bedroom duplex over months.

Of course, in a society where an estimated 60 percent of the population is considered homeless and many more go to bed on empty stomaches at night, that is not the sort of secret you want to let out.

So, had the media not become awash last week with “sensational” claims of what went missing, it is debatable if Jonathan would not have preferred to hush things up to avoid eyebrows being raised or some hard questions being asked. His statement on the theft would then seem to be motivated more by a desire to debunk the “exaggerated” claims than a willingness to give the self up for scrutiny.

Obviously to deflect initial reports suggesting “36 Plasma television sets and 25 refrigerators” were stolen, the former president detailed the haul to include only six flat screen TV sets, toilet seats, three refrigerators, doors and one gas cooker. His statement was, however, conveniently silent on the reports on “bales and bales of babanriga wears and designer suits with his names embroidered on the inner linings”.

Without being induced, some witnesses have already volunteered accounts of what really happened. One Mallam Shuaibu has been named as one of the buyers of the stolen items at the popular Pankera Second-hand Market, Abuja. One account said each suit was auctioned for N5,000. And what a boom time it was in that corner of the market for a long time before the secret leaked. You would see locals of all nations and creeds trying on the assorted bowler hats on display and “woko” Ijaw jumpers of many colours in the open, before making a pick.

Not surprising, the four cops implicated in the shameful conduct have since been dismissed by the police after an orderly room trial preparatory to their being formally prosecuted. The same way Ibrahim Bagobiri, chairman of the Pankera Market, has been defenestrated by members for allegedly partaking in the receipt and disposal of the stolen goods.

From media pictures of the crime scene, it is easy to feel anger, vengeance in the clinical severity with which the policemen-burglars violated the haven where Jonathan once dined and slept. Literally, what remained was for the brigands to excavate the floor tiles and the blocks to complete a furious plunder.

Though no one can tell for sure how long it took them to finish the pillage, since they were reportedly posted after the former president quit Aso Rock, it is perhaps safe to assume they had taken charge before the slime of Dasukigate began to seep out by the twilight of 2015.

Dazed by the stories of grand larceny that began to circulate, chances are that the unscrupulous policemen themselves only saw Jonathan’s personal effects and household goods as their own fair portion of the elephantine loot. Ordinarily, no one would wish to be left out when the proverbial butchered elephant is being shared.

It is clear Karma had passed through Gwarinpa with all its mystical stealth.

Louis Odion is a Fellow of the Nigerian Guild of Editors (FNGE).

This piece was written by Louis Odion. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

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