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THE STATES

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Benue
Winners of the local government elections in Benue State have accused the Benue State Independent Commission (BSIEC) of “extorting” monies from them before issuing certificates of return.
We report that the elected chairmen were directed to pay N60,000, while councillors paid N25,000 as “handling charges” for the certificates.
The elected officials have expressed surprise at the charges, describing them as “strange and unknown”.
“I came to receive my certificate of return but was taken aback when I was told that I have to pay a fee of N60,000. It is very strange. It has never happened before,” an elected chairman from Benue Central, told newsmen, craving anonymity.
Another elected chairman, who also craved anonymity, wondered what the state electoral body meant by “handling charges” after candidates paid huge sums for forms and screening procedures.

Ekiti
An Ado-Ekiti Customary Court last Tuesday dissolved the 10-year-old marriage between Mrs Oluwatosin Omosehin and her husband, Taiwo.
The marriage was dissolved on grounds of lack of care for the wife and the children.
Oluwatosin, 39, who filed the divorce suit, had told the court that he was not formally married to Taiwo.
She said that they cohabited and had two children in the course of their relationship.
The mother of two said that her husband who worked with the Federal Polytechnic, Ado-Ekiti, never bothered to take care of her and the children, adding that she was responsible for the payment of the children’s school fees.
According to her, as a fashion designer, she has been taking care of the children’s welfare, adding that she no longer loved her husband and that she was eager to re-marry.

FCT
A Karu Grade 1 Area Court, Abuja, last Tuesday discharged one Alhaji Bashir, 26, for lack of sufficient evidence in the three-count charge bordering on joint act, shop breaking and theft levelled against him.
The judge, Mr Hassan Ishaq said since the case began December 28, 2016, only the complainant, Lucky Hilo, testified in the matter.
He also said that no exhibit was tendered, while the prosecutor, Mr Mahmud Ismai’la, did not call another witness.
” Since the matter began on December, 2016, only one witness, Lucky Hilo, testified and no exhibit was tendered before the court.
” Going through the evidence of the witness, it was revealed that the witness was not present at the scene of the crime.

Gombe
The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF), Bauchi Field Office, on Monday, organised a one-day workshop for journalists in Gombe state on how to mobilize the public to end violence against children.
The training, featuring 27 journalists, is aimed at equipping the journalists with the right skills on reporting of issues bordering on children .
Speaking during the training, UNICEF Child Protection Specialist, Mrs Ladi Alabi, said there was no component of violence against children that was acceptable.
She said research had revealed that 60 per cent of Nigerian children suffered one form of violence or the other, either emotional or physical.
“The same people that are supposed to protect them (children) are the perpetrators of the violence.

Kaduna
Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State, has called on the citizens of the state to promote a healthy environment to achieve the objectives of the “Keep Kaduna State Clean” programme.
The governor made the call in Kaduna last Monday, at the celebration of the 2017 World Environmental Day, which has “Connecting People with Nature” as its theme.
He said that the state government would continue to formulate programmes and policies that were geared towards promoting healthy environment in order to address the menace of environmental degradation.
El-Rufai, who was represented by the Commissioner for Stakeholders Relations, Mr Balarabe Shehu, advised the people to support government policies by desisting from harmful environmental practices such as indiscriminate tree felling and poor sanitation.

Katsina
Justice Ibrahim Bako of the Katsina State High Court on Tuesday, fixed November 14 to hear a suit against former Governor Ibrahim Shema for allegedly misappropriating N10 billion state funds.
Recall that state government and EFCC had sued Shema for the alleged offence while he, in turn, had approached the Court of Appeal, Kaduna, challenging the jurisdiction of the High Court to try him.
Tuesday’s sitting was for the parties to report to the court on the progress at the Appeal Court.
Bako, in his ruling, said that the court, having listened to both counsels, had no other option than to adjourn the sitting.
“I hereby adjourn the sitting to November 14, 2017, for the parties to report to the court on the verdict of the upper court.”

Kwara
Nasarawa State Commissioner of Information, Culture and tourism, Mr Abdulhamid Kwarra, has asked the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) to “fish out quacks extorting monies from government officials”.
“There are many quacks moving around as journalists; they use blackmail and other tactics to extort money from government officials. We want the NUJ to fish them out,” Kwarra said in Lafia on Tuesday.
Kwarra gave the suggestion when he received the executive council members of the Nasarawa State chapter of the NUJ.
He called for proactive steps that would rid the media of “fake elements” dragging its name to the mud.

Lagos
Two employees of Shoprite Retail Supermarket Ltd., Lagos, were last Tuesday arraigned in Lagos for allegedly stealing N1.4 million from their employer.
The accused, Moses Adeyemi,19, and Rasheed Naasir, 37, reside at No. 23, Patey Street Lagos Island and Lekki Beach Road, Jakande, respectively.
They appeared in an Igbosere Magistrates’ Court on a two-count charge of conspiracy and stealing.
The prosecutor, Sgt. Nicholas Akpene, told the court that the accused and others at large committed the offences between the months of April and May, at Shoprite Retail Supermarket, Victoria Island, Lagos.

Niger
A Minna Magistrates Court on Tuesday arraigned 25-year-old sales girl, Ayomide Olushola, for allegedly defrauding her employer of N188, 000.
The accused was docked on a count charge of criminal misappropriation, contrary to section 309 of the penal code law.
The Police Prosecutor, Insp. Gunduma Ibrahim, told the court that Rakiya Datti reported the matter at the station on June 2.
Ibrahim said the complainant alleged that the accused, who she employed as sales girl at her shop at Kure Ultra Modern Market Minna, could not account for goods worth N188, 000 kept under her custody.

Ondo
Some residents of Ondo State have urged Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu to ensure more benefits of democracy for the people as the government celebrates its 100 days in office.
Akeredolu of the All Progressives Congress (APC), who emerged the winner of the November 26, 2016 Governorship Election, was inaugurated as the sixth executive governor of the state on February 24.
The residents, who spoke in separate interviews with  newsmen in Okitipupa, Ondo State, last Tuesday commended the governor for his achievements in 100 days in power.
They urged the governor not to rest on his oars but ensure he fulfills all his electioneering promises to the people.
A civil servant, Mr Wole Akinjuyigbe, who praised the state government for paying salaries of workers, urged the governor to revive all moribund industries.

Plateau
A suspect, Stephen Luka, who is standing trial for brutalising his ex-girlfriend and killing her sister, has told a Jos High Court that the police tortured him to obtain his confessional statement.
Giving evidence in a trial-within-trial in Jos, Luka rebutted the charges and showed the court scars he sustained during the torture to obtain his statement.
We  report that Stephen on Tuesday Luka was arraigned before the court in October 2016 charged with murder, attempted murder, assault and sexual abuse.
The defendant was alleged to have attacked two sisters Simi Dusu and Justina Dusu on July 27, 2016 at his home, in Sabon Gari, Tudun Wada, Jos, when they went to break the news that Justina was pregnant.
According to report, Luka was not happy when Justina insisted on keeping the baby, lost his control and used a machete on both sisters, resulting in Simi’s death and Justina losing her left eye.

Sokoto
Governor  Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State has undertaken to offset the medical expenses of Maryam Abubakar, an indigene of the state suffering from cancer and presently receiving treatment at an Indian hospital.
Abubakar’s case went viral under the hash-tag SUPPORTMARYAM, which elicited various online donations from good Samaritans who sympathised with her.
Tambuwal announced his intention to offset the bill in Sokoto  on Tuesday through his Special Adviser on Media and Public Affairs, Malam Imam Imam.
The governor also urged the people, especially the Muslim faithful to pray for the success of the impending surgery and eventual recovery.
“Maryam is one of us and everything possible will be done by the state government to ensure her full recovery,” he said.

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‘Nigeria, Others Lose $110bn Annually To Inefficient Power Supply’

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The Executive Director, Sahara Group, Kola Adesina, has called on various stakeholders to promote energy access in Africa, as lack of energy costs Nigeria and other African countries over $110billion annually.

He also urged the World Trade Organisation (WTO) on the need to galvanise the interest and support of various stakeholders to promote equitable global trade relations and energy access in Africa where almost 600 million live without electricity.

Adesina, who spoke on ‘Redirecting the World Trade Organisation’ at the virtual 2021 Horasis Global Meeting, said deploying multilateral engagements would help circumvent the status quo that has made global trade relations “somewhat lopsided.”

Horasis is one of the foremost annual meetings of the world’s leading decision-makers from business, government, and civil society.

Speaking on access to power in Africa, Adesina said the WTO should explore collaborating with the various stakeholders to accelerate the pace of technology needed to make alternative power cheaper and more accessible to the consumers.

Africa is home to 17 per cent of the world’s population, but accounts for just 4 per cent of global power supply investment.

On a per capita basis, power supply investment in Africa ranks among the lowest in the world and lack of energy costs the continent over $110billion annually.

“The Environmental Impact Analysis of conventional power sources should be the focal point of conversations with African presidents as well as key political and business leaders to ensure their support and agree to a collective and sustainable solution template.

“The WTO must ensure that multilateralism guides its decision-making. The countries of the world are not all on the same pedestal, there should be consideration for the poor countries.

“The WTO should create a system where countries come together to create a united front to handle the issues the world is facing,” he said.

Adesina explained that multilateral strategies would create “elastic solutions” that can be adapted with respect to the unique challenges and opportunities across global trade blocs.

He argued that while sustainability should be the ultimate driver of development, concessions need to be in place to effectively manage the current challenges of less developed continents.

He stated, “Africa still suffers from the twin challenge of access versus affordability of electricity. We all need each other to solve the global challenges we face as individual countries and the world.

“A strong commitment is needed to maintain open and free trade; to keep open borders and to help the poorest countries, particularly least developed countries, survive the economic shock created by the Covid-19 pandemic.”

The Horasis session noted that with protectionism gaining steam globally, the WTO would need to reinforce its influence on stabilizing global trade negotiations.

Experts expect that the WTO, under the leadership of Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala would spearhead effective reforms that would make the organization play a strategic role in promoting equity and transparency in the quest for global sustainable development.

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UNILORIN Engages Landlords Association On Students’ Safety

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The Management of the University of Ilorin says the institution is interacting with the Association of Landlords within its communities to ensure the protection of students.
Dean, Student Affairs, Unilorin, Prof. Lanre Ajibade, at a news conference in Ilorin yesterday assured that no stone would be left unturned toward ensuring safety of students.
According to Ajibade, the University has been engaging in consistent interactions with the landlord association of the communities to ensure students who live in the area enjoy the best treatment possible.
He said that although no fresh and returning student of the University was set to resume the 2021/2022 academic session, many live off campus, particularly within Tanke and the neighbouring communities,
He recalled the recent murder of a female student of the University and said management had been working vigorously with security agencies to ensure perpetrators of the heinous act were prosecuted.
The dean noted that the University was working assiduously with all the security agencies and other stakeholders within and outside the institution to ensure the safety of the community.
The University’s Chief Security Officer, Mr Abdulwasiu Oyewo, also said that his personnel were working day and night to provide maximum security in the area.
Oyewo said that the security officers were in constant patrol of the environment, adding that vehicles with tinted glasses and without registration number would not be allowed on campus.
Also, Officer-in-Charge of the Intelligence Unit in the University’s Security Division, Mr Ali Na’Allah, said that the unit would continue to engage in discreet information gathering on campus.

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Unemployed Man, 22, Docked For Stealing Two iPhones, Laptop

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A 22-year-old unemployed man, Akinwunmi Rotimi, yesterday appeared in a Magistrates’ Court in Ota, Ogun for allegedly stealing two iPhones, an Hp Laptop and other valuables.
The police charged Rotimi, whose address was not provided, with two counts of burglary and stealing.
The Prosecution Counsel, Cynthia Ejezie, told the court that the defendant also stole N240,000.
Ejezie said that the defendant committed the offence on April 3 at about 4 a.m.at No.6 Ayoola Adeyinka, off Tetiku road, Owode-Ijako, Ota.
He said that the defendant broke into the house of the complainant, Mrs Adeleye Anike.
She said that the police from the Sango-Ota Police Station, tracked one of the phones to the defendant.
The offence, the prosecutor said, contravened the provisions of sections 383 (1) and 412 of the Criminal Code Vol.11, Laws of Ogun, 2006.
The defendant, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
The counsel to the defendant, Mr Ambrose Aisedion, prayed the court to grant the defendant bail in the most liberal terms.
Magistrate Shotunde Shotayo admitted the defendant to bail in the sum of N250, 000 with two sureties in like sum.
Shotayo ordered that the sureties reside within the court’s jurisdiction and be gainfully employed with two-year tax payment to Ogun Government.
The case was adjourned until June 17 for a definite hearing.

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