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THE STATES

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Adamawa

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) in Adamawa secured the conviction of some 64 suspects by the courts in 2010, according to Alhaji Hassan Zungeru, the state Commandant of the agency.

He told newsmen in Yola  that 146 suspects were arrested for various drugs-related offences in the year, three of whom were womn.

Zungeru said four Indian hemp farms, measuring four acres, were also discovered and destroyed, while 606.11kgs of illicit drugs were confiscated within the period.

He said that the seized drugs included 551.33kg of cannabis sativa, 54,682kgs of psychotropic substances and 108 grams of cocaine.

Zungeru said 160 drug addicts, including five Cameroonian nationals were counselled and reformed, noting that the agency had intensified its patrol to check the menance of hard drugs in the border state.

Bauchi

Corps members engaged in voter registration in Bauchi have complained about the high cost of transport they bore everyday to convey materials to registration centres.

Mr Jami‘u Okyimi, a corps member posted to Rugankera polling unit in Bauchi Local Government Area, said he spent N1,000 daily in conveying the registration materials.

“We find it very difficult to carry the registration materials from the registration camps to the various polling units.

“INEC promised to provide the transport for us but up to now we have not been paid.

“We spend our money to convey the materials to the far villages in spite of the heavy weight of the machines and other materials,“ he said.

Mr Akim Olayide, also a corps member registering in Dindima polling unit of Bauchi Local Government Area, said he spent more than N1,000 daily to convey the materials.

“My major problem is charging our batteries. As you can see now my batteries are weak.

“I have to pay okada (commercial cyclist) to convey me to the camp in order to recharge my batteries before going back to continue with the registration.

“We also have problem of the under-age. Some under-age children always come here for registration and we find it difficult to stop them because of the language barrier.

“I cannot communicate in Hausa Language fluently, especially when it comes to offering explanations,“ he said.

Borno

The Borno State Chapter of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has threatened to boycott activities involving security agents in the state over harassment of its members.

A statement issued by the union quoted Alhaji Abba Kakami, the Chairman, as giving the warning after an emergency meeting of the council in Maiduguri.

The statement said that the union had observed a new trend whereby journalists on lawful duties were being harassed and intimidated by security agents in the state.

It said that the harassment had continued in spite of complaints made to security chiefs in the state.

“A journalist with the Borno State Television (BSTV), Alhaji Bajura Mustapha, was assaulted by a military officer on Tuesday in Maiduguri.

“Similar cases are being reported daily by our members on official assignments, we are tired of the situation.

“We are demanding for an immediate apology over the issue, and we are saying enough is enough,” the statement said.

It demanded a written apology and compensation from the military authorities in the state “before we take the next line of action’’.

FCT

The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has said that it was training non-computer literate officers to meet with the aspiration of the service to attain excellence in service delivery.

This was contained in a statement issued by the Public Relations Officer of NIS, Mr Joachim Olumba.

The statement said the service was adopting the strategy to increase the number of qualified personnel to drive its ongoing e-immigration projects.

The e-immigration projects include e-passport intervention and e-registration of foreign nationals of African and ECOWAS countries in the 774 local government areas.

“The officers currently undergoing training are to blend with those with high technical competence, who are not only well versed in computer operations but are also highly proficient in operating e-passport production machines,” it said.

According to the statement, keeping the official passports of junior personnel in the custody of senior officers is necessary to avoid any ugly incident of the disappearance of any immigration staff, which could embarrass the service in particular and the nation at large.

“In order to achieve this, the selection and deployment processes are executed in a painstaking manner, taking cognisance of the confidential reports on all short-listed officers,” the statement added.

The Nigeria Immigration Service had fixed April as the last month for the issuance of the e-passport to Nigerians both at home and in Diaspora.

Gombe

Governor Mohammad Goje of Gombe State has approved the elevation of 13 traditional rulers from second class to first class status, bringing the number of such category of royal fathers in the state to 15.

Before now, only the Emir of Gombe, Alhaji Shehu Abubakar and that of Kaltungo, Alhaji Sale Muhammad, were first class traditional rulers.

The elevation of the traditional rulers was announced in a statement by the Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Abubakar Bage.

It said the gesture was in the exercise of the powers conferred on the governor by “Section 10 of the Gombe State Creation of Emirates, Districts, Villages, Wards and Emirs and Chiefs (Amendment) Law of 2004”.

The statement added that the gesture was in appreciation of the traditional rulers’ “loyal and conscientious service to the state, and the desire of their respective communities”.

Those elevated are the Chief of Tangale, Dr Abdu Buba-Maisheru; Chief of Waja, Alhaji Danjuma Muhammad; Chief of Cham, Dr James Chachus; and Chief of Dadiya, Alhaji Adamu Galadima.

Others are the Emir of Dukku, Alhaji Abubakar Rasheed; Emir of Akko, Alhaji Umar Atiku; Emir of Deba, Alhaji Abubakar Mahdi; Emir of Yamaltu, Alhaji Hassan Usman; and Emir of Pindoga, Alhaji Adamu Yakubu.

Kano

The Northern Igbo Youths Council (NIYC), has said that it would embark on a two-day prayer session for peace and stability to prevail in the country.

The Secretary of the Programmes Organising Committee of the council, Mr Ben Nwosu, made the announcement in a statement in Kano.

The prayer session was tagged “Ndigbo Pray for Nigeria”.

The purpose of this prayer is to seek divine intervention in the affairs of our nation, Nigeria, which is currently passing through a period of socio-economic and political trauma,” he said.

The secretary said that the spiritual exercise was also intended to ask God to “restore peace, unity, love and progress in our fatherland”.

Lagos

The Fisheries Society of Nigeria (FISON) on Thursday in Lagos raised an alarm over the volume of imported catfish.

Dr Abba Abdullah, the National President of FISON, told newsmen that 80 per cent of the imported catfish contained several storage chemicals which could be harmful.

“Recently, we noticed that this species of fish was being sold in markets across the country.

“It is very unfair for government to allow this, while our farmers are here producing fish with no markets for them,” he said.

Abdullah, however, urged the Federal Government to look for ways of enhancing the number of fish species in the nation’s territorial waters.

“We have 14 million hectares of surface water and 60 billion cubic metres of underground water but it has not been fully utilised for fish production.

“If we use 5 per cent of the 14 million hectares, we should be able to meet the fish demand of Nigeria and other parts of Africa,” he said.

Ogun

The Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) Board Chairman, Chief Boyelayefa Debekeme, has  said former President Olusegun Obasanjo saved the corporation from early collapse.

Debekeme disclosed this when board members of the corporation visited Obasanjo at his hilltop residence in Abeokuta.

“The entire FRCN family is fully appreciative of your efforts to save it from early collapse with the 32 FM Project, which has now brought government very close to Nigerians.

“Work on this project has reached an advanced stage and the corporation is determined to ensure it is completed within our tenure.

“Several of our structures are in their last years of operation and budgetary provisions are hampering our quest for reinvigorating the corporation,” he said.

Debekeme a former Speaker of the Bayelsa House of Assembly, expressed the determination of the board to sustain the Obasanjo legacy by expanding the outreach of and access to radio broadcasting.

“This board is already working closely with the Minister of Information and Communications, Mr Labaran Maku to address the situation,” he stated.

Responding, Obasanjo said that FRCN remained the most accessible medium of communication to Nigerians.

“Radio has this overwhelming outreach to all and sundry and that’s one of the reasons we gave it the kind of attention we gave it during my presidency,” he stated.

Ondo

A group of armed robbers on Thursday attacked two commercial banks in Okitipupa Local Government Area of Ondo State.

Eyewitnesses told newsmen that the hoodlums, some 20 in number, came in two buses.

They said one of the buses was used in blocking the road, once they had taken positions at the UBA and Oceanic banks on the popular Broad Street, Okitipupa

They shot sporadically into the air for about 30 minutes, forcing people to scamper for safety.

An eyewitness told our correspondent that the robbers succeeded in carting away large sums of monery from the banks.

Plateau

The unending Jos crisis, has taken its toll on business generally, as car dealers complain of low patronage.

Our correspondent, who went round some of the car vending points in Jos and its environs on Thursday, reports that there were series of complaints, with dealers saying that business was at its worst ever.

Some of them blamed the decline in business on the persistent violence that had disrupted all facets of life in Jos.

Others, however, blamed the lull in business on the fact that people were just emerging from festive seasons.

Mr Emma Olaiya, the Executive Director, Emma Motors International, told newsmen that majority of buyers usually came from the eastern part.

“Before the bomb blast and the recent crisis in the state, most people come to Jos to buy cars; some come to swap their old cars with others.

“But since the crisis erupted, most of my customers are too frightened to come to Jos,” he said.

He, however, expressed optimism that business would pick up by February as peace was gradually returning to the state.

“I expect business to bounce back in February; my only fear is the incessant crisis. I only pray that peace will be fully restored to the state soon. Once there is peace, business will flow,” he said.

Similarly, Mr Sunday Okocha, of Okocha Motors, also attributed the low patronage to the crisis.

“Most people do not have money for cars now after much expenditure during the festive season.

“Again, one cannot blame the customers; people are still uncertain if peace has returned to Plateau. In fact, many are relocating from Jos, due to insecurity,”Okocha said.

Jos has been enveloped in all manners of violence in recent times that had left hundreds dead and many others rendered homeless.

Sokoto

An international NGO, RTI-LEAD Nig., says it will rehabilitate 66 water facilities between January to March this year in collaboration with the six ‘champion’ local governments.

Alhaji Tijjani Mohammed, the Deputy Chief of Party of the organisation, said that the project would be implemented in Dange/Shuni, Wamakko, Illela, Isa, Bodinga and Silame local governments of the state.

Mohammed disclosed this in  Silame shortly after inspecting five boreholes rehabilitated under the project at the cost of N340,000.

“The projects are to be jointly executed by the six local governments . They will provide the

needed funds while the NGO will provide technical assistance and tools,’’ he said.

Mohammed also said that all the rehabilitated boreholes had been abandoned for nearly two years .

‘’ That was why there was an acute shortage of portable water in the areas before their repairs with all the attendant consequences ,’’ the USAID –funded RTI-LEAD Nig. official added .

Also speaking the Chairman of Silame Local Government Area, Alhaji Garba Sanda, commended the organisation for selecting the area as a beneficiary.

“The project has really helped in solving the problems of the people and it has re-awakened the conscience of the officials of the champion local governments towards effective service delivery,’’

Zamfara

Governor. Mahmuda Shinkafi of Zamfara has appointed Alhaji Haliru Andi as the Director-General, Media Affairs, of his campaign organisation ahead of the April elections.

Andi, who had lived a quiet life in the last three and a half years, was the media and publicity strategist of former governor, Ahmad Yarima.

A statement by Sani Lawal Bakura, a Director in the Office of the Head of Service of the state, said that Andi’s appointment took immediate effect.

It further said Shinkafi had approved the appointment and posting of nine other Directors General.

Governor Shinkafi had appointed four commissioners, scores of Special Advisers and Senior Special Assistants early in January.

The appointments filled vacant positions created by the resignation of some political appointees who were standing for elections.

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Of 1,561 Candidates, 880 Graduate From Law School-DG

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The Nigerian Law School says out of the 1, 561 candidates who sat for the December examination, 880 passed.
The Director-General of the School, Prof. Isa Ciroma, SAN, made this known yesterday in Abuja, while presenting the new wigs to the Body of Benchers at the 2020 Call to the Bar ceremony.
“Four others were from previous Bar examination,’’ he said, adding that the new wigs had met all the required and set conditions by the Council of Legal Education.
“I am happy to affirm that they all have exhibited good manners and decorum during their training.
“They have also been groomed in the best ethics and ethos of our noble profession.
“The screening committee of our distinguished body carefully perused the records of each of the aspirants and found them worthy to be presented for the Call to the Nigerian Bar.’’
Ciroma said that the school had begun a special remedial course for students from the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN).
“The programme began on June 28, at the Nigerian Law School Headquarters, Bwari, Abuja. We thank all distinguished members of the Body of Benchers, for their support,’’ he said.
The Chairman, Body of Benchers, Justice Olabode Rhodes-Vivour, congratulated the new wigs and charged them to adhere to the provision of rules regarding the profession at all times.
“As a lawyer, you are an officer of the court and accordingly, you are not to do any act or conduct yourselves in a manner that will obstruct or adversely affect the course of justice.
“The practice of Law is not a right but a privilege. It is a privilege that can be lost should you fail to live up to the requisite professional standards imposed upon you by virtue of your entry into the community of lawyers.
“You must, therefore, strictly adhere to the provisions of the Rules of the Professional Conduct and maintain best practices at all times.’’
He stressed that the Body of Benchers Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee was always determined to discipline any lawyer found wanting or breaching set rules of the profession.
Rhodes-Vivour said that the committee had been carrying out its mandate “in a just and fair manner’’ without giving any room for compromise or ill-will.
He said that between January and July, the committee disbarred six lawyers and suspended some for between two and four years, while one lawyer was admonished during the period.
Rhodes-Vivour advised the graduates to continue to update their knowledge on both statute and case law in order to attain more understanding on especially, international jurisdictions.
In 2020, the Council of Legal Education said that out of a total of 2,515 students who participated in the examinations, 1,864 passed the Bar Final Examinations conducted in January.
The director-general who described the performance as outstanding, said that among the 1, 864 students who were successful, only five made First Class while 632 others failed the examinations.
“Candidates graded in First Class are five, Second Class Upper 77, Second Class Lower are 633, those who got pass marks are 1,067 and those with Conditional Pass are 82.
“632 candidates failed the examination, 17 were absent and 2 results are withheld.”
Chiroma further explained that only 0.2 per cent made First Class, 3.06 per cent made Second Class Upper, 25.17 per cent made Second Class Lower and 42.42 per cent passed.
He said other performances include a 3.26 per cent for those with conditional pass, 25.12 per cent failed the examinations, 0.7 per cent were absent and 0.8 per cent results are being withheld.

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NGO Trains 300 Returning Migrants On Business Development

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Web of Heart Foundation, a Non-Governmental Organisation, says it has trained and empowered more than 300 returning migrants, youths and internally displaced persons on job creation.
Its Executive Director, Mrs Bose Aggrey, made the declaration yesterday in Lagos at the graduation of its “Create and Start Module’’ trainees.
The graduating trainees were awarded certificates and given grants facilitated by some investors and soft loans from banks after six months of training to identify and analyse business ideas and opportunities.
“We taught them how to articulate their business ideas into plans; introduced them to investors and equally assisted them to get bank loans.
“It is an opportunity for the participants to put themselves together either to get employed or to become employers,’’ she said.
“We introduced investors to the participants when they were pitching and some of them are already getting grants.
“We are working with two banks so they can provide soft loans at low interest rates for the participants,’’ she added.
In his remarks, Mr Peik Bruhns, Team Leader of the firm of consultants that conducted the training, said the company had reached out to train 5,000 Nigerians on Micro, Small and Medium scale Enterprises in six months
He said this was done in collaboration with nine organisations, including Web of Heart Foundation.
“I will like to stress the importance of working with returnee migrants because Web of Heart Foundation focuses on assisting them to reintegrate into society.

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Zamfara Police Refute Kidnap Of 60 Passengers Rumour

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The Zamfara State Police Command has refuted a story that 60 passengers travelling along Sokoto – Gusau road on Sunday, July 25, were kidnapped by bandits.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, Mohammed Shehu, in a statement, yesterday, said the story was inaccurate and a calculated attempt by some mischief makers to create fear and apprehension into the minds of the general public, especially the commuters.
“The attention of Zamfara State Police Command has been drawn to a story trending on social and conventional media that armed bandits blocked Sokoto – Gusau Road, and abducted 60 people travelling from Sokoto to Abuja.”
The statement said, “For the avoidance of doubt and purpose of clarity, the command was informed that a large number of armed bandits blocked a Toyota bus vehicle, belonging to the Sokoto State Mass Transit and abducted 11 passengers who were travelling from Sokoto – Abuja along Sokoto – the accurate report of the incident. On Sunday, July 25, 2021, Gusau Road in Bakura LGA.”
According to the statement, the Police Tactical operatives attached to Operation Restore Peace were alerted, and they quickly mobilized to the location and dislodged the hoodlums who blocked many vehicles for abduction, adding that the road was instantly cleared for motorists and other road users and reinforced more police operatives to improve the security and safety of the commuters.
The statement noted that in the course of mopping up the scene, a Toyota bus vehicle belonging to Sokoto State Mass Transit was sighted empty and it was revealed that 11 passengers, including the driver were abducted and taken to the bush before the arrival of the police.
It said the operatives further embarked on search and rescue operation in the surrounding bush with a view to rescuing the kidnapped victims, stressing that two persons who were left far behind with other hoodlums were abandoned by their captors for fear of being neutralised by the Police operatives, the remaining nine victims were taken to the forest.

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