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Borno

A man claiming to be a member of Boko Haram has main
tained that the Federal Government must release its members detained in numerous facilities nationwide before the terrorist group releases the 219 Chibok schoolgirls it has held in captivity for almost three months.
This came as the National Council of State (NCS), at the end of its meeting Tuesday, assured the Nigerian public that schoolgirls will be rescued very soon but failed to give detail as to how this would be achieved.
The Federal Government had given the same assurance Monday when the Coordinator of the National Information Centre, Mr. Mike Omeri, said the girls would soon be freed.
Speaking on the BBC World Service, the man whose voice was disguised in order to conceal his identity, said he was a teacher or scholar in the sect and joined the group in 2004.
He said that the girls were in “a state of amnesty”, healthy and eating well, adding that the Christians who refused to convert to Islam were not forced to do so as it is anti-Islamic.
The Boko Haram member maintained that the girls were taken for a specific reason and reiterated the condition for their release, adding that the girls would be released once the Federal Government met the terrorist group’s demands for a prisoner exchange deal.

Ekiti

The Peoples Democratic Party, Ekiti State, has threat
ened to sue the Ekiti State House of Assembly for contempt if it took further steps on the bill seeking creation of the new 18 Local Council Development Authorities.
The party which gave the warning in a letter by its Legal Adviser, Mr. Kolapo Kolade, to the Speaker, Adewale Omirin, in Ado Ekiti last Wednesday.recalled that the party had gone to court to challenge the bid to create the LCDAs by the Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi.
Kolade warned that it will be contemptuous for the Assembly to pass the bill when there was a pending suit in Court.
Citing Cap 8, Section 54(5) of the standing order of the Assembly, the party quoted that “No matter, pending in Court of Law shall be entertained  by the House in order not to prejudice the decision of the court in respect of the matter.”Similarly, it is in law that when an application for injunction is pending in Court, none of the parties should take step regarding the issue raised therein.
“We therefore wish that you will be advised accordingly as we are aware  that the issue of the creation of LCDAs which is the subject matter  of the suit under reference is said to have passed the First Reading in the House on 7th July, 2014 despite the pendency of the suit and the fact that you have adequate notice of same.

FCT

The National Security Adviser (NSA), retired Col. Sambo
Dasuki, said recently that Nigeria respects the sovereignty of its neighbours and has no “territorial ambition’’ over the disputed Bakassi Peninsula with Cameroon.
Dasuki said  in Abuja at the opening of the Nigeria/Cameroon Trans-Border Security Committee holding from July 8-11. that the security meeting held in Paris on May 17 and London on June 4, under the auspices of the leadership of both countries underscored the need for the meeting
He said that the forum would provide a unique opportunity for border security agencies of the two countries to meet and discuss issues that hitherto has been difficult.
On his part, the Head of Cameroon Delegation, Mr Rene Sadi, the Minister of Territorial Administration and Decentralisation, said that the meeting would assist both countries to urgently take measures to wipe out criminality from the borders.

Kano

The Kano State Government said it had recruited 998
new teachers for public secondary schools in the state.
Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso made this known recently when he distributed appointment letters to newly recruited teachers employed into the state civil service.
Kwankwaso said that the introduction of  free education necessitated the recruitment of the teachers to boost the manpower in the teaching profession in the state  and  further appealed to the new employees to be good ambassadors of the state wherever they found themselves.
“The recruitment also became necessary so as to provide qualified staff with a view to improving teaching and learning in schools. Our administration is vigorously pursuing mass literacy campaign to stamp out illiteracy from the state”, he said.
Kogi

A Lokoja Chief Magistrate Court has ordered that three
men be kept in custody over their alleged involvement in the kidnap of children of the Kogi State House of Assembly speaker.    The Chief Magistrate, Mr. Levi Animoku, gave the order in his ruling after the accused- Abdulwahab Bajeh, Sule Ganiyu and Yunusa Abdulmalik- were arraigned  in Lokoja.
They were charged with criminal conspiracy and kidnapping, contrary to section 97 of the Penal Code Law and sections 3(a) and 7(a) of Kogi State Kidnapping, Thuggery and other Related Offences (Prohibition) Law 2010.
It will be recalled that seven year Ogirima Lawal and her three-year-old younger brother Hafiz Lawal, both children of the speaker, Alhaji Momoh-Jimoh Lawal, were on April 15 kidnapped by four unidentified gunmen from their family house in Okengwe, Okene Local Government were released on June 6, after horrifying 53 days in the kidnappers’ custody.

Kwara

An Ilorin High Court in Kwara State   yesterday, con
victed four criminals to death by hanging for armed robbery and criminal conspiracy.
The condemned convicts; Ibrahim Olayiwola, AbdulWaheed Aliyu, Tunde Kareem and Omotayo Isah, who broke down shortly after the judgement was handed down by Justice S.T Umar, were charged for robbing petroleum attendants of Rockfield Petroleum Filling Station, Odota, Ilorin in February 2011 contrary to the provisions of Section 97 of the Penal Code and Section 1 (2) of the Robbery and Firearms (Special provisions) Act, CAP R11 Laws of Federation of Nigeria 2004.

Lagos

The Lagos State Government on Thursday said that it
would channel its available resources to combat overcrowded classrooms in public schools in the state.
Mrs Gbolahan Daodu, Executive Secretary, Lagos State Universal Basic Education Board, disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos.
Daodu said that the state government was working toward having not more than 50 pupils in a classroom, as required by standards.
She stressed that the influx of people to the state everyday poses a serious challenge to the policy.
“We will try and accommodate all pupils but the influx of people into the state is a challenge.
“Lagos is a small state with limited land space, yet millions of people come in on a daily basis and they expect the government to cater for them.
“We are striving to meet the need of all of them.
“Our attempt is to ensure that we do not have more than 50 pupils at the maximum, in each class,” she said.
Daodu said that state government would provide access to education for pupils, irrespective of the challenges confronting schools in the state.

Osun

The prime suspect in the bomb that exploded inside a
Peugeot 505 saloon car at the Ministry of Water Resources, Abere,Osun State, on June 15, 2007, Richard Abayomi Adesanmi, said he was lodged at the State Government House, Osogbo, instead of prison custody .
Adesanmi was ordered to be remanded in prison custody by Magistrate (now Justice) Jide Falola on March 10, 2008 alongside some chieftains of defunct Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, who were accused of complicity in the bomb blast. When the case came up for further hearing yesterday before Justice Adeyinka Aderibigbe, Adesanmi confessed that he was not taken to prison as ordered by the court.
Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice in the state, Mr. Wale Afolabi, while cross examining the suspect, confronted Adesanmi with the fact that he was lodged at Government House instead of the prison, and the suspect admitted.

Taraba

No fewer than 50,000 persons, mainly women, children
and the aged, have been displaced from their homes in various parts of Taraba following the recent crisis in the area, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), has said.
NEMA’s Operations Officer in Gombe State office, Zainab Umar, said this yesterday in Bali, Taraba State, while distributing relief materials at one of the camps occupied by victims of the recent communal conflict.
She explained that NEMA had donated 20 trucks of relief materials and had commenced distribution of assorted materials comprising food, non-food items and medical supplies to the displaced persons.
“No fewer than 9,000 displaced persons have taken refuge in some places of worship and residences in Bali, headquarters of Bali council area and its environs,” she said.

 L-R: Governors Willie Obiano of Anambra State, Sullivan Chime of Enugu State, Martins Elechi of Ebonyi State and Theodore Orji of Abia State, during their meeting with President Goodluck Jonathan at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, recently.

L-R: Governors Willie Obiano of Anambra State, Sullivan Chime of Enugu State, Martins Elechi of Ebonyi State and Theodore Orji of Abia State, during their meeting with President Goodluck Jonathan at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, recently.

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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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