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THE STATES

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Bauchi

The Chairman of Committee on Internally Displaced  Persons in Toro Local Government Area of Bauchi State, Abdullahi Musa-Garkuwa says the state  is currently harbouring about 48, 475 internally displaced persons.

Musa-Garkuwa said last Sunday in Magama Gumau that 47,000 of them were victims from the Jos and Kaduna crises, noting that the victims were resettled by the state government in 53 settlements within the council between 2010 and 2013.

Musa-Garkuwa said the council had in the last two weeks received 1,475 persons, mostly women and children, whose husbands were killed in the recent crisis in Bokkos, Plateau.

He added that Gov. Isa Yuguda of Bauchi had allocated a large expanse of land for the resettlement of victims at Kara layout in Magama-Gumau, and disclosed that each of the victims was given building materials which included three bundles of roofing sheets.

 

Benue

The Chairman of Benue State chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Yimam Orkwar, has urged the Federal Government to create grazing reserves to check conflicts between herdsmen and farmers in the country.

Archbishop Yimam Orkwar said last Sunday in Makurdi that dams should be built close to the reserves to provide water for the cattle.

The cleric suggested that the dams and grazing reserves should be built in the northern parts of the country where cattle-rearing is most predominant.

He said the dams would allow the herdsmen to stock grasses during the rainy season for use during the dry season.

The cleric said the measure would also check the activities of other militia groups that hide under the attacks to cause mischief in places where such conflicts are rampant.

 

Borno

The Borno State Government on Sunday said it had set up a committee to handle the distribution of seats to prospective pilgrims for this year’s Hajj.

The Secretary to State Government (SSG), Alhaji Baba Jidda, told newsmen in Maiduguri that the committee was expected to evolve a fair and equitable formula for distribution of the seats.

The committee was set up following complaints about non-availability of forms for prospective pilgrims.

Some applicants last week relocated to the headquarters of the state’s Pilgrims Welfare Board after unsuccessful attempts to secure application forms from their local governments.

“Gov. Kashim Shettima has approved the appointment of a high powered committee to handle the distribution of the 2013 Hajj seats in the state. The committee is expected to work out a fair and equitable formula for the distribution of the seats among all the 27 local government areas in the state,” Jidda, who is the chairman of the committee, said.

 

Kano

An elder statesman, Alhaji Tanko Yakasai, has advised the Federal Government not to be deterred by withdrawal of some members of the committee on amnesty for Boko Haram members.

He, however, advised the Federal Government to always contact people before appointing them in order not to appoint those not interested in assignments.

“This is a voluntary assignment, so only people who are interested should be appointed to participate in such assignment. “It is also a very sensitive issue; so, there is need for the government to consult people it wants to appoint in any committee or for any assignment,’’ he said.

The Presidential Adviser on National Assembly Matters to former President Shehu Shagari in the second republic, urged the government to appoint replacements to enable the committee to commence its assignment.

 

Kebbi

Governor  Saidu Dakingari of Kebbi State said he would complete all on-going projects before the end of his tenure in 2015.

Dakingari said this during an inspection tour of projects by the good governance media tour to the state.

The Minister of Special Duties, Alhaji Kabiru Tanimu, who represented his counterpart from the Ministry of Information, led the delegation on the tour.

The road projects inspected by the delegation included the N1 billion Sanchi to Elembu; the 10-Kilometre Zuru to Sanchi; N57 million Marafa to Bacita; the N1 billion Zuba to Ribah and the N3 billion Ribah to Kyabu.

The governor said his administration embarked on provision of good road network to open rural areas that had been denied opportunity to interact with other communities for social and economic benefits. He said funds would be provided for the completion of the projects.

 

Kwara

The Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE) last Sunday urged due process in the investigation of journalists for any offence.

In a communiqué at the end of its standing committee meeting in Ilorin, the Guild decried what it called a siege to the media.

The communiqué signed by Messers Femi Adesina and Isaac Ighure, the Guild President and General Secretary, respectively said that the latest siege were the harassment and detention of journalists of the Leadership newspaper.

The Guild said that, while it was not against investigation of journalists when and where necessary, such investigation must conform to the basic norms of due process permissible in a democracy.  It urged the government to depart from the old ways, whereby journalists were  arrested and detained arbitrarily.

 

Niger

No fewer than five persons were killed in Mokwa, Niger State, last Friday when a tanker carrying petrol ran into 10 stationary vehicles along Jebba-Mokwa highway.

The accident occurred when a petrol tanker coming from the Jebba end of the highway lost control and ran into the popular Saw Mill area of Mokwa in Mokwa Local Government Area.

The tanker ran into the vehicles parked on that side of the highway and exploded, causing the vehicles and some business premises and houses to go up in flames.

An eye witness, who pleaded anonymity said that the 10 vehicles were completely burnt and many shops and houses were also torched by the fire that lasted hours owing to lack of fire fighting trucks in the area. It was gathered that of the five bodies recovered, two were burnt beyond recognition.

 

Ogun

Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State said the state government would plant 50 million trees as part of effort to provide friendly environment for the people.

Amosun, who spoke last Saturday, during the launching of the “Ogun Goes Green Walk’’ in Abeokuta, said the initiatives is aimed at restoring dwindling environment to support our survival as human race and to ensure that Ogun goes green.

“l urged you all to cultivate the habit of protecting our environment through planting of trees to secure our environment against degradation, deforestation and decline of biodiversity,’’ he said.

In her remark, the Chairman, House Representatives Committee on Environment, Rep. Uche Ekwenife, said the Federal Government had released money to some states in the north to confront challenges of deforestation.

 

Plateau

Islamic cleric, Sheikh Ado Maikilishi, has urged northern leaders to assist the Federal Government in the current amnesty deal with the Boko Haram sect.

Maikilishi said in Jos that the sect had remained largely faceless and that any effort to reach out to them would assist the committee in the task.

He said that the leaders could bridge the gap by using their intelligence network to gather information about the sect from the ward, village and district heads and forward to the committee.

 

Sokoto

Former chairman, Isa Local Government Area of Sokoto State, Alhaji Yusuf Abdullahi, last Saturday appealed to Nigerians to assist the security agencies by exposing dubious characters in their midst.

Abdullahi said the measure would ensure that peace, progress and political stability be sustained in the country.

He said that the present security situation could only be tackled if Nigerians developed the habit of offering intelligence reports that could lead to the arrest and prosecution of criminals within their midst.

According to him, vital information from members of the public would enable the security officers to fashion out comprehensive security measures that would pave the way for peaceful coexistence in the country.

Abdullahi said that the nation’s security officers were in dire need of intelligence reports from good citizens to end the senseless killings of innocent Nigerians and called on the security officers to be friendlier with the members of the general public.

 

Yobe

Political parties, politicians and government officials have lauded the Yobe State Independent Electoral Commission (YSIEC) for postponing Local Government election indefinitely.

The commission on April 18 at a stakeholders’ forum announced the postponement because of renewed security challenges in parts of the state.

The Special Adviser to Yobe Governor on Political Affairs, Alhaji Maimala Buni, said that the postponement was commendable, adding that YSIEC heeded to requests of political parties in postponing the poll.

Buni noted that the stakeholders’ forum organised by the commission for political parties afforded them the opportunity to collectively agree on the postponement.

“YSIEC has since the release of the election time-table demonstrated true democracy and gave everyone a sense of belonging in the electoral process,’’ he said.

Meanwhile, 10 political parties, including APGA, CPC, NCP, PDP and ANPP, among others, said the postponement was in the collective interest of all parties.

 

Zamfara

The Zamfara  State branch of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), has alerted the public on the danger of hypertension as a major killer disease that required regular and careful watch.

The chairman of the branch, Dr Sunday Onazie, raised the alarm  last Sunday in Gusau when he led tens of medical officers on a “work for live’’ road show as part of activities to mark this year’s World Health Day.

Onazie said that the trek, which covered about five kilometres within Gusau metropolis, was intended to draw public attention to the need for body exercise as a means of curtailing hypertension traits.

“This road show trek is intended to serve as a wake up call on the general public to let people appreciate the need for everyone to create a little time out of his or her schedules to exercise the body and keep it fit. “When you engage yourself in regular physical exercise you are reducing the chances of having traits of hypertension and other heart-related ailments,’’ he said.

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NDLEA Arrests Doctor, Ex-Soldier For Dealing In Drugged Cookies, Cocaine

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The operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have arrested a medical doctor, Jane Chioma Ofoma, in Auchi, Edo, for selling drugged cookies and biscuits.
Its Director, Media and Advocacy, Mr Femi Babafemi, said in a statement yesterday in Abuja, that Chioma sold the drugged cookies and biscuits through an online catering service, Omachi’s kitchen.
Babafemi said the arrest followed intelligence and surveillance where narcotic officers of the Edo Command of the agency on Saturday June 19, stormed her operational base at 1 Winners Way, Auchi.
This, he said, led to her arrest and at least 94 pieces of cookies produced with cannabis sativa were recovered from the suspect.
According to him, Chioma, 26, who is a graduate of medicine from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, recently completed her housemanship at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital.
“She has confessed to baking the cookies with skunk in her statement while under interrogation,” he said.
In the same vein, Babafemi said a 30-year-old Emmanuel Ehiramhen, of No. 10 Egan Street Ekpoma, has been arrested by officers of the Edo Command of the agency for dealing in crack cocaine.
Meanwhile, NDLEA operatives in Kwara have arrested a 52-year-old ex-Soldier, Ibrahim Musa, with 12.167 kilograms of Arizona (cannabis sativa), 4 grams of Cocaine and 25 grams of flunitrazepam.
Babafemi said the suspect was apprehended on Thursday June 17, at Oke-Odo, Tanke area of Ilorin, when he arrived from Lagos to supply his customers.
He said Musa worked in the maintenance department at Abati Army Barracks, Lagos from where he was deployed to 117 Battalion in Chibok, Borno, before he deserted the Army.
He added that the suspect had arrived Ilorin with his wife, Basirat Musa, in his Honda Accord car with registration number JJ 707 BL Lagos with the seized exhibit.
He was, however, arrested at the point of delivery by operatives of the Kwara Command of the agency.
“Under interrogation, Ibrahim revealed that while at Chibok he got the connection of a supplier of Arizona (Cannabis) and other drugs in Lagos who he immediately contacted when he deserted the Army in October 2020.
“He said he decided to go into the illicit drug business to enable him fend for his two wives and three children.
“The suspect revealed that the latest journey was his second trip to Ilorin to deliver the drugs and decided to travel with one of his wives who was not aware of his mission to Ilorin,” he said.
Babafemi quoted the Chairman, NDLEA, retired Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa as commending the Edo and Kwara Commands of the agency for their vigilance and commitment to the goal of ridding Nigeria of the menace of illicit drug trafficking and abuse.
He charged the Commanders, officers and men of the two Commands and their counterparts across the country not to relent in the discharge of their responsibilities.
He assured them of his commitment towards making their welfare a priority.

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13 Vehicles Burnt In Tanker Explosion On Lagos-Ibadan Expressway

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The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) says six tankers, five trucks and two cars were destroyed in a tanker explosion at Ogere on the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway yesterday.
Earlier, FRSC Sector Commander in Ogun, Mr Ahmed Umar, confirmed the incident to The Tide source, saying that it occurred at about 6.20 a.m.
Umar had said the explosion occurred in front of Romona trailer park on the expressway.
Giving update, he said, “the fire is serious, six tankers, five trucks and two cars are burnt in the explosion.’’
Umar said that one person had so far been rescued and taken to a private hospital in Ogere.
Meanwhile, the Ogun State Traffic Compliance and Enforcement Corps (TRACE), has advised motorists plying the road to use alternative routes.
TRACE spokesman, Mr Babatunde Akinbiyi explained that the tanker which was laden with fuel suddenly burst into flames affecting other vehicles.
“Vehicles moving inbound Lagos should go through Saapade-Ode/Remo-Iperu-Sagamu to relink Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.
“In addition, vehicles moving inbound Ibadan should also go through Sagamu-Iperu-Ode/Remo-Saapade to relink Lagos-Ibadan Expressway,’’ Akinbiyi said.
The incident was the fifth of such tragedies involving fuel tankers in the Lagos and Ogun State axis since the beginning of the year.
A similar fuel tanker-related fire was recorded on Jan. 7 on the Apapa-Oshodi Expressway.
On March 21, a fuel tanker was the cause of fire on Otedola Bridge, also on the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway in which many vehicles were burnt.
On March 25, a diesel-laden tanker went up in flames at the Ikotun area of Lagos, leading to the incineration of other vehicles and shops.
On June 17, fire from the kitchen of a Chinese restaurant at the Ogun State Property Investments Corporation (OPIC) Plaza in Lagos trailed a leaking gas truck which was on motion in the area.
This resulted in a fire snowball which engulfed many other vehicles and property.
Twenty-five cars were destroyed in the OPIC Plaza inferno, while 13 persons, mostly workers in the restaurant, sustained burn injuries.

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S’ East Leaders Denounce Secessionist Groups …Seek Protection Of Igbos

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Leaders of the South East geo-political zone have urged leaders of other geo-political zones in the country to protect Igbos living in their regions, even as they condemned in totality the activities of violent secessionist groups in the zone and elsewhere. 
The lgbo leaders comprising the governors of the five states, members of the National Assembly, Ministers, Speakers of the State Houses of Assembly, the Clergy and Traditional Rulers, made their feelings known on Saturday, in a communique issued when they rose from a closed-door meeting at the Government House, Enugu. 
Explaining that they made the request in view of what they described as “threats by some groups against our people”, the South East leaders promised to protect everyone, including Igbos and people from other regions, residing in the zone.
On the impression that South East leaders are silent over agitations for secession by some youths of the region, they stated that “is not correct”, stressing that “South East Governors, Ohaneze President, National Assembly members, notable leaders had come out publicly many times in the past to speak against such agitations”.
Proclaiming firmly that “we do not support them, they do not speak for South East”,  the communiqué read by the Governor of Ebonyi State and Chairman of South East Governors’ Forum, Engr. David Umahi, made it clear that the leaders of the zone reiterated their “commitment to one united Nigeria under a platform of justice, equality of rights, fairness, love and respect for one another”.
The communiqué revealed that South East leaders, in order not to mismanage the unfortunate situation, “have set up a committee to engage such youths to stop and allow elders speak to address such fears”. 
It added that South East leaders also condemned the killing of security agents, burning of strategic infrastructure and killing of civilians in South East and in other regions, and requested the security agencies to discharge their duties within the rules of engagement and the law
They, however, explained that the meeting was held “for articulation of our positions and further meet with the Presidential team”, sequel to the earlier meeting with the Presidential delegation, led by the Minister of Defence, Retired Maj. Gen. Bashir Magashi, on June 11, 2021.
The communiqué disclosed that the meeting consequently “set up committees under Ohaneze Ndigbo to articulate and address our positions on all burning issues to further meet among ourselves and thereafter meet with the Presidential team”.
On the safety of the Igbo indigenes in other parts of the country and the newly established regional security outfit, the communiqué added that the “meeting directed our Governors and Ohaneze Ndigbo to liaise with indigenes from the northern part of Nigeria and indigenes of other regions to assure the nation, Nigeria, and their people of their safety in South East.
“The meeting endorsed our South East joint security outfit – Ebubeagu and asked them to work with security agencies and to respect the rights and privileges of all those living in the South East and our visitors”.

By: Canice Amadi, Enugu

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