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Bauchi State Commissioner for Health, Dr Sani Malami, has warned rural dwellers against drying food items by the roadside, to guard against Lassa fever.

Speaking at a news conference on Tuesday in Bauchi, Malami said that the common practice of drying foodstuffs on the shoulders of highways could result in rodents that carried the Lassa fever disease contaminating the food items.

The commissioner stated that the warning became necessary as part of educating the people on the dangers of the disease, which has already affected about 397 people and claimed more than 40 lives in 12 states across the country.

“The Health Ministry is requesting the Ministry of Information as well as the media, to pursue a vigorous enlightenment campaign in collaboration with the State Environmental Protection Agency (BASEPA).

“The campaign is to discourage farmers and rural dwellers from the practice of drying grains on road shoulders on the highways because they could easily get contaminated by rodents,” he said.

He advised rural dwellers to find other suitable methods of drying their foodstuffs to avert disaster as Lassa fever is spreading fast in the country

Malami also solicited for the support of religious and traditional leaders in educating the people on safe methods of preserving food items.



The Benue State University (BSU), Makurdi, on Saturday matriculated 3,562 students into six faculties of the university for the 2011/2012 academic session.

The matriculating students were selected from the 17,433 candidates who sat for the last UTME and 3,280 direct entry candidates who applied to study at the university.

Tthere was no intake at the College of Health Sciences for the session due to the non-completion of the priority areas at the Teaching Hospital.

In her address at the 20th matriculation ceremony, Prof. Charity Angya, the vice chancellor of the university, told the students that Gov. Gabriel Suswam had promised to complete the hospital within two weeks.

“This will pave way for admission into the MBBS programme in the 2012/2013 academic year and ensure that our medical students do not continue to stagnate at the clinical level.’’

She urged the students to dedicate themselves to promoting academic excellence.

The don noted that many educational institutions had been plagued with social problems such as cultism, noting that BSU also had its share of the menace.

She appealed to them to shun all social vices that could impede their progress in life, warning that the consequence of indulging in social vices was expulsion.

Our correspondent reports that the matriculation oath was administered by Dr Timothy Utile, the registrar of the university.



Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State has expressed shock over last week’s  killing of Alhaji Adamu Ahmadu, the Comptroller of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) in charge of Yobe and Borno State.

Ahmadu was killed on Tuesday at his residence in Potiskum, Yobe, by gunmen suspected to be Boko Haram members.

Shettima, who was exchanging views with journalists in Maiduguri, described the killing as sad.

The governor condoled with the NCS and family of the late comptroller over the incident.

Shettima said that from his brief encounter with the late comptroller, it was clear that he was a professional gentleman that had a vision to transform the service.

The governor prayed to God to grant his family and the NCS the fortitude to bear the loss.



President Goodluck Jonathan has formally written to commiserate with the families, people and governments of the two expatriates killed by their captors in Sokoto State last Thursday.

A statement in Abuja said the two separate letters were addressed to the Prime Minister of Britain, David Cameron and his Italian counterpart, Mario Monti.

The statement, signed by President’s spokesperson Reuben Abati, said the letters were delivered through diplomatic channels.

Jonathan said that the hearts of the people and government of Nigeria went out to members of the immediate families of the victims in their moment of grief.

He prayed that the Almighty God imbues them with the fortitude to cope with painful tragedy.

The President assured the leaders of both countries that “the Nigerian Government remains resolutely committed to facing up squarely the challenge of terrorism on our shores and in the international community.’’



The Federal College of Education (FCE), Gombe, has matriculated 456 students into degree programmes for the 2011/2012 academic session.

The college is an affiliate of the University of Maiduguri and the Abubakar Tafawa Belewa University (ATBU), Bauchi.

The provost of the college, Dr Adamu Abbas, said that out of the 456 matriculating students, 330 were undergraduate students in various programmes of the University of Maiduguri, while 126 were undergraduate students of ATBU, Bauchi.

He said the occasion was the second matriculation for degree programmes in the school, noting that the first was in July 2010.

The provost advised the students to be serious with their studies, stressing that “anti-social behaviours such as indiscipline, refusal to attend lectures and cultism would not be tolerated.”

In his speech, the Vice Chancellor of University of Maiduguri, Prof. Malah Daura, said the institution would maintain high quality staffing and improve its infrastructure to produce quality graduates and maintain the standards set by the National Universities Commission.



The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration Control (NAFDAC) will in April commence the re-certification of all registered sachet water factories in Kano state.

The state NAFDAC Coordinator, Akinwomi Adedeji, disclosed this in an interview with newsmen in Kano. He said the exercise would also audit available facilities in the factories to ensure that they meet the set standards.

“During the re-certification, those who meet our requirements will be re-certificated, while those who do not will be given time to adjust or be deregistered,’’ Adedeji said. The coordinator said NAFDAC officials would inspect facilities in all the registered factories in the 44 local government areas of the state.

According to him, the agency plans to hold a meeting with the registered water producers and organise a workshop to sensitise them on the proposed exercise.



The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), has donated relief materials worth N10 million to victims of rainstorm in Yauri Local Government Area of Kebbi.

Two people lost their lives while six others were injured in the incident which also left several structures destroyed.

The incident occurred a fortnight ago when the area witnessed its first rainfall of the year.

The North West Acting Coordinator of NEMA, Alhaji Musa Ilelah, presented the relief materials to the victims in Yauri last Tuesday.



Kogi House of Assembly has called on the Federal Government to urgently review and re-award contract for the completion of the abandoned maximum security prison in Koton-Karfe, first awarded in 1983.

The call was made in a resolution of the house reached at a plenary sitting, following the adoption of the motion by Chief Saidu Akawu-Salihu, representing Kogi-Koton/Karfi constituency.



The National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA), has produced a film on the management of the ecosystem, as parts of its advocacy on sustainable environment.

The film, which would be shown on local television stations, was produced in collaboration with Adams Paul Film Production (APFP).

Paul Adams, Director of APFP told newsmen in Lagos that the film was aimed at enlightening Nigerians to be eco-friendly, and manage waste and climate change.

“Managing waste and climate change is encompassing. It is about managing power, water pollution, controlling how we throw dirt anyhow especially pure water sachet and other things that affect the environment.



A  member of  Plateau House of Assembly, Daniel Deng says the state of emergency imposed on four local government areas is causing hardship in the councils.

The Federal Government imposed the state of emergency on Riyom, Barkin Ladi, Jos North and Jos South in December due to the persistent crises in the areas.

Deng told newsmen in Jos Saturday that since the imposition of the emergency rule, funds meant for the four councils had been withdrawn.

He said the withdrawal of the councils’ allocation had exposed workers to hunger.

The said development was worrisome and had created more challenges.



A Sokoto-based legal practitioner, Nasiru Binji, on Saturday urged the Federal Government to equip the National Directorate of Employment (NDE), with  all the necessary facilities to train unemployed youths in various trades.

Binji told newsmen in Sokoto that it would enable the teeming youths to be self reliant, thereby developing the economy.

He said the Federal Government needed to focus on creating job opportunities for Nigeriams.

“Thousand of unemployed youths roam our major streets in search of job and is not doing good to our nation’s security.”

He explained that provision of learning materials at the various NDE offices would help the youth in learning various skilled trades.



The Federal Government, Taraba and a Kenya-based, American rice farmer, Mr Calvin Burgess, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the production of rice in Gassol village of the state.

Mr Anthony Jellason, the Taraba Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, made the plan known in an interview with newsmen in Jalingo on Tuesday.

Jellason said the agreement would serve as an instrument that would enable each party “to swing into action” to ensure that the project, which would cover about 30,000 hectares, was leased to the investor to cultivate rice.

The commissioner explained that by the agreement, the Federal Government would encourage the Taraba Government and the investor to enter into a partnership.

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FG Vows To Check Modern Day Slavery



The Federal Government says it plans to check modern day slavery through awareness creation activities on the effects of illegal immigration, child labour, sexual abuse and other vices.
Director, International Cultural Relations, Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, Mrs Memunat Idu-Lah, stated this in an interview with The Tide source in Abuja yesterday.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), designated August 23 each year as the International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition, and Nigeria is preparing to join other member countries to commemorate the day.
Idu-Lah said the ministry in collaboration with other relevant stakeholders would use the celebration to showcase the experience of victims of trafficking, to educate Nigerians on the tricks of potential traffickers.
She said: “We are looking at the effect of this slave trade on Africans and the effects of what we termed as modern day slavery.
“We have learnt in history about how people are enslaved; now we can see how people are being trafficked.
“There is illegal immigration where people are moving to locations they are not sure of their means of livelihood.  Many of them die in transit, all those vices, child labour, sexual abuse, all sorts of things that are going on.
“We want to see how we can use this celebration to also reach out to people to create awareness, let them know that these things people are doing are another forms of slavery.
“And it means we are not yet out of slavery, as of those of us who went to school and study history, we learnt of Trans-Atlantic slave trade.
“We should be able to look at what is happening now and correct these modern day slavery.”
According to her, this is because generations to come will sit down and read what we did during our own time.
“It will be bad if we as educated as we are, cannot check this modern day slavery that is going on.
“One of the ways of checking it is through awareness because a lot of people don’t even know when they are being lured to be trafficked, they don’t know.
“Through this celebration, we can reach out; we might be having people who have experienced it,
“They will come out to tell people their experiences and alert people on the kind of languages traffickers use, how they lure them.
“People will get to know that when somebody comes and says those kinds of things they will know that this is a possible trafficker,” Idu-Lah said.

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Imo Police Resist Armed Bandits’ Attack



The Operation Restore Peace team of the Imo State Police Command has repelled armed bandits attack at Njaba town in the Njaba Local Government Area of the state.
The Imo State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Abutu Yaro disclosed this in a statement issued by the Command’s Public Relations Officer, CSP Michael Abatham at the weekend.
According to him, the convoy of bandits was moving towards Njaba town to launch an attack but were intercepted by Operation Restore Peace team of the Nigeria Police , Imo State Command . 
The Commissioner explained that during a fire fight which ensured immediately, one of their operational vehicles was de-mobilised and two of them neutralised while the remaining ones scampered into the bush.
According to the Commissioner, one Ak 47 rifle was recovered with ten rounds of live ammunition and a locally made double barrel pistol with two expended cartridges.
The Police boss stated that the team detonated an Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) into the parking lots of a nearby Njaba Police Station causing minimal damage. 
 Mr. Yaro said that cordon and pursuant exercise is on going  in the area while advising members of the public residing in the area not to panic as the ongoing Police clearance operation is designed to root out violent criminals in that axis.
He appealed to them to avail Police information of  persons seen treating  bullet wounds or hiding within the community.

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NDLEA Intercepts 35 Wraps Of Cocaine, Drugs En Route Italy, Turkey



The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), says it has recovered 35 wraps of cocaine from a lady passenger at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA), Ikeja, Lagos.
NDLEA’s Director of Media and Advocacy, Mr Femi Babafemi, disclosed this in a statement made available to The Tide source yesterday in Abuja.
Babafemi said that the suspect, Okafor Ebere Edith was arrested on July 31, during the outward clearance of passengers on Air Cotevoire bound to Monrovia Liberia.
He said the suspect, who tucked pellet of cocaine in her underwear to beat security checks at the airport, was however picked up for search.
This, he said, included questioning during which the wraps of the illicit drug were found on her.
“During preliminary interview, the suspect claimed that the desire to make money pushed her into drug trafficking,” he said.
Babafemi said the operatives arrested another suspect, Echendu Jerry Maduakolam, an intending male passenger going to Istanbul, at Gate A Departure hall of the MMIA on July 27.
He said the suspect was arrested during outward clearance of Egypt Airline bound to Turkey in possession of 78grams of Cannabis mixed with dried bitter leaf.
“On the same day another intending male passenger, Egbon Osarodion going to Milan, Italy was arrested at the airport’s Gate A Departure hall.
“This was also during outward clearance of passengers on Egypt Airlines with different quantities of 225mg Tramadol and Rohypnol concealed in foil papers wrapped in a polyethylene bag,” he said.
Babafemi disclosed further that NDLEA operatives, Kontagora Area Command, Niger State, raided a warehouse at Mailefe village in Kontagora Local Government Area of the state.
The spokesman said the operation was carried out on July 29, at a warehouse where suspected drug supplies for bandits operating in parts of the state were stored.

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