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PH Security Operatives And Street Carnivals

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The New Webster’s Dictionary Of English Language, International Edition, defines Carnival as any public festivity usually with processions, dancing and side shows.

If this definition is anything to go by, it is therefore, not surprising to see that governments all over the world, corporate organisations and individuals make huge budgetary allocation to develop and promote the social, religious, intellectual and artistic potentials of the citizenry through various forms of carnivals particularly, culture.

A typical example of such fiesta in Nigeria was the 1977 Festival of Arts and Culture tagged “FESTAC 77” under the military regime of General Olusegun Obasanjo when different cultural troupes and Artistes show-cased the rich cultural heritage and intellectual potentials of the country.

Since then, the Carnival landscape of the country has witnessed one form of festival or the other as the federal, states and local governments organised annual cultural festivals to develop and harness the rich talents of our youths as well as tourism potentials of the country.

Here in Rivers State, the present administration under the leadership of Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi has done enough to provide platform and opportunities for the indigenes and residents of the state to develop their God-given potentials in all human endeavours.

To be precise, Rivers State government sponsored over 1,000 participants who represented 30 different groups and officials in the just-concluded Abuja cultural fiesta, the largest contingent of the festival.

Again, the government has also kick-started the on-going cultural Carnival tagged “CARNIRIV 2009” to further demonstrate its commitment towards promoting and developing social, intellectual, artistic and tourism potentials of the state.

According to the programme of events, this year’s CARNIRIV has been expanded to one week in order to accommodate more than 500 different cultural troupes from various parts of the state at the Elekahia CARNIRIV Village, Port Harcourt.

It is against this backdrop that one is skeptical about the sudden emergence of youth Carnivals in the street of Port Harcourt, Rivers State capital in recent times.

Although, one is not against the development of youths talents and potentials through street Carnivals but it is imperative to point out the security implications of such youths gatherings in the Niger Delta region particularly Rivers State, since the experience of cult clashes is an open wound in the state.

Infact, feelers from some of the street carnivals indicate that if nothing is done to nip them in the bud, the state may be in for another round of cult war or at best, street clashes in Port Harcourt.

For example, the police in mile three area of Port Harcourt metropolis was said to have averted what would have been an ugly clash at Ojiegbu Street in Diobu area when the residents of the street resisted an attempt by the organisers of the street carnival to extort money from them for the street carnival.

Similarly, last Tuesday, there was a pandemonium at Obidianso Street also in Diobu area of Port Harcourt when some residents of the street resisted an attempt to impose a levy of N2,000 each on the premises by the organisers of the Street Carnival billed to commence next week.

From the fore going, it is obvious that Rivers State government and indeed, security operatives in the state should act decisively now before the Port Harcourt Street Carnivals metamorphose into cult groups.

Nwankwo is the editor’s guest.

 

Isaac Nwankwo

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2023: I’m Only PDP Presidential Aspirant To Defeat APC–Wike

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Rivers State Governor and leading presidential aspirant on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Nyesom Wike,has said that he remained the only PDP aspirant that could win election against the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
Wike, in company of some PDP chieftains, made this remark when he met national delegates of the Lagos chapter of PDP in Ikeja, last Saturday.
The aspirant, who noted that he was not running to be vice president to anybody, said that if elected, peace, security of lives and property would be prioritised to strengthen the nation’s sustainable infrastructure, food security, prosperity and economic turnaround.
He said the nation needed a strong and courageous leader like him now, adding that with a courageous leader, difficult decisions would be taken to tackle the nation’s challenges.
“The issue now is who can win election for PDP. Who has the capacity to face the APC? Who will win election for PDP? That is me here.
“I will face APC squarely. If you give me this ticket on May 28 and May 29, go home and sleep with your two eyes closed,” Wike said.
The governor said that PDP must do everything possible not to lose the 2023 presidential election.
“If we lose the presidential election in 2023, we can as well forget PDP.
“I have been tested in terms of performance. Mine is ‘talk and do’,” he added.
Wike, who promised to replicate his outstanding performance in Rivers State across Nigeria, said that he would provide a leadership every Nigerian would be proud of, home and abroad.
The aspirant pleaded with the Lagos delegates and leaders to be united and work for his emergence at the primaries.
“I know APC very well, allow me to face them. I am begging you, delegates, allow me. Support me to take the power from APC and bring back to PDP.
“I depend on the South-West, if the South-West gives me the votes, I have won the election. Donate all your votes to me,” he said.”
The PDP chieftain lamented that some party leaders aspiring to contest for PDP presidential ticket now, were the ones that threw the former ruling party into being opposition when they left the party in 2015.
Wike, who noted that he had been with PDP since 1998, said: “I will never leave this party. Whatever I am today, by the grace of God, God used PDP for me”.
He, however, said that he would never leave PDP even if he did not win the primaries, pledging to support whoever won.
The governor, who appealed to the Lagos PDP to end all infighting and division, said that if the party was not united, it would not win in the state.
In his remark, former Governor of Gombe State, Dr Ibrahim Dankwambo, who led Wike’s delegation, described the presidential aspirant as a fearless and courageous leader, with strong capacity to drive Nigeria forward.

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Army Bombs B’Haram Commander’s Convoy, Kills Scores, Destroys Gun Trucks

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Troops of the Nigerian Army under the auspices of Operation Hadin Kai have bombed a convoy of a Commander of Boko Haram in Sambisa forest, Abubakar Sarki, killing scores of terrorists who were with him.
Sources said the offensive was coordinated by the General Officer Commanding 7 Division, Nigerian Army and Commander Sector 1 North East Operation Hadin Kai (OPHK), Maj-Gen Waidi Shaibu on Saturday, May 14, 2022, at Yuwe location, within the Konduga Local Government Area of Borno State.
The Army was said to have deployed a massive artillery gun after sighting eight moving convoys conveying Abubakar Sarki and unconfirmed numbers of fighters in devastating hits.
The source said that based on intelligence information, Abubakar Sarki and his team were heading toward Abu-Ubaida’s camp to engage its rival fighters from the Islamic State of the West African Province (ISWAP), in a battle of supremacy.
Counter Intelligence expert with knowledge of terrorists activities in Lake Chad, Zagazola Makama confirmed the artillery bombing of the BH Commander’s convoy.
“A ground assessment confirmed that three guntrucks with all its occupants were completely destroyed, while the remaining five vehicles, including Abubakar Sarki escaped” the source said.
The source added that the terrorists, however, aborted the mission and evacuated the dead and wounded fighters towards the axis between Pulka and Banki.
The sources said that the troops were mandated to go after the fleeing terrorists and eliminate them completely.
The infighting between the two terrorists groups had intensified with the ISWAP hunting Boko Haram during the day time while the Boko Haram are coordinating reprisal attacks at night because of their knowledge of the terrain.

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NDDC Fund, Account For Alleged N700b, Inaugurate Board, Monarch Tasks FG

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Barely three days after some ministers resigned, including Minister of the Niger Delta Affairs, Sen. Godswill Akpabio, the Paramount Ruler of Idjerhe Kingdom of Delta State, King Obukowho Monday Whiskey, yesterday, called for urgent inauguration of the already screened and confirmed board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) just as he called on the Federal Government to the over N700billion he alleged has been allocated to investigate the commission in the last three years.
He said these steps by the government would help resuscitate the agency and rekindle hope of the people whose regional resources, he alleged, were criminally plundered by the leadership of Federal Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs.
In a press statement personally issued by the monarch and made available to journalists in Benin City, Whiskey said, “Having voluntarily resigned as Minister of the Niger Delta Affairs, our beloved son, Obong Godswill Obot Akpabio, should come out clean to explain to fellow Niger Deltans the whereabouts of the three years running budgetary allocations of the NDDC which inside sources claimed were more than N700billion.
“For presiding over the ongoing illegality in NDDC, Akpabio is not fit to be president.
“The Federal Government and Akpabio, who held the region perpetually captive and denied her of her developmental agenda because of an inglorious forensic audit that never brought out anything should now explain to our people of our collective regional wealth.
“The father of the nation, Mr. President must have seen now that those he entrusted with the developmental agenda of the oil and gas bearing communities of Nigeria had their own nefarious intentions to swindle and cause more havoc and deny the people their collective dreams of development.
“It is instructive to note, Mr. President, that three options are still available to the Federal Government of Nigeria. The first being the immediate inauguration of the screened and confirmed board of the NDDC under the Chairmanship of Dr. Pius Egberavwe Odubu, and Olorogun Bernard Okumagba as managing director. Secondly, immediate dissolution of the illegally constituted sole administrator that is alien to the NDDC Act 2000, and thirdly, every of the allocation to the NDDC from 2019 to 2022 except for those used for staff salaries and sundry expenses, every other monies of the over N700billion be recovered from whoever were part of the Macabre dance of shame in the past four years.”
The traditional ruler stressed that the inauguration of the already screened and confirmed board would rekindle hope and restore the Federal Government’s integrity before Nigerians and the international community.

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