The Federal Government says it will henceforth penalise any airline whose staff collude with baggage handlers to tag names of innocent travellers on bags containing illicit drugs on out-bound flights.
Chairman, Presidential Advisory Committee on the Elimination of Drug Abuse (PASEDA), Brig.- Gen. Buba Marwa (rtd), issued the warning yesterday during a stakeholders meeting at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos.
Marwa said preliminary investigations had revealed that some innocent passengers have had luggage that does not belong to them tagged by airlines in their names leading to their arrest by security agencies on arrival at their destinations.
He said: “What I said is real that some airline staff and some persons collude to check in and tag passengers name on baggage that they are unaware of and does not belong to them.
“We have a recent incident at the Kano Airport where a passenger was arrested in Saudi Arabia and he denied ownership of the bag.
“Through the Closed Circuit Television Camera at the Kano airport, the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) officials discovered that he was innocent as the bag was checked in and tagged in his name by an airline staff.
“Henceforth, such airlines will be penalised once we discover that such a thing happened on their flight.”
According to him, the move is necessitated by the high number of Nigerians languishing in foreign jails as well as the recent execution of a Nigerian woman for drug trafficking in Saudi Arabia.
Marwa said the committee was inaugurated by President Muhammadu Buhari to bring up recommendations that were implementable and sustainable for government to implement towards addressing the scourge of drug abuse in Nigeria.
He said though the drug abuse crisis was a huge challenge, it was however surmountable especially with the right political will being demonstrated by the present administration in bringing it to an end.
Marwa commended the various security agencies at the MMIA for their vigilance in preventing the importation and exportation of drugs by traffickers.
Bonfere Jo Applies For S’Eagles Coach
Jo Bonfrère has formally submitted his application to the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and joined the race to replace Gernot Rohr.
The Dutchman application was confirmed by Tidesports source.
Rohr’s exit is likely to be confirmed in the next few days and the Nigeria Football Federation is already shopping for his replacement.
Rohr’s job has come under scrutiny following a string of poor performances and results by the national team.
Bonfrere is a well-known name in Nigeria, having led Nigeria to the Olympics goal medal in Atalanta 96.
He also worked as Super Eagles assistant coach under Clemence Westerhof at the 1994 World Cup and returned as the Chief coach in 1999.
He led Nigeria to the final of the 2000 African Cup of Nations but was fired after a poor start to the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Meanwhile, Gernot Rohr has formally requested to the Nigeria Football Federation to be paid his bonus for qualifying for the 2021 AFCON in Cameroon as well as to remind his employers he has yet to be paid for the last four months.
Rohr is asking for a bonus of $60,000 as stated in his contract, which runs out December 2022.
The contract also allows for Rohr to be paid another bonus were he to qualify the Super Eagles to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
It is the worst kept secret in Nigeria football that at a time, Rohr was not paid for eight months until the sponsors cleared about half of these outstanding salaries.
His current contract stipulates he is paid in the local currency Naira and reports have suggested he has often encountered difficulties converting his entitlements to Euros and shipping them to Europe, where he resides.
He is on a monthly salary of $45,000 (about N25million).
Buhari Seeks Return To Family Values In Rebuilding Nigeria …Wike, Tambuwal, Other Govs Attend Ikpeazu’s Son’s Wedding
President Muhammadu Buhari has said that the reason why there were so many problems in the Nigerian society was because of a diminishing emphasis placed on the importance of family values.
Buhari said this, yesterday, at the wedding of Mr. Jachimike Ikpeazu, son of Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu at the International Conference Centre in Umuahia, Abia State.
At the event, the groom wedded his heartbeat, Miss Thelma Chidinma.
The wedding was also attended by the Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, Sokoto State Governor, Hon. Aminu Tanbuwal, and several other dignitaries.
Others present at the wedding service that was conducted by the Seventh Day Adventist Church were Akwa Ibom State Governor, Udom Emmanuel; Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki; Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri; Bauchi State Governor, Senator Bala Mohammed; Ebonyi State Governor, Engr. David Umahi; and Enugu State Governor, Chief Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi.
Also at the event were the immediate past governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi; and National Secretary-elect of the Peoples Democratic Party, Senator Sam Anyanwu.
Buhari, who was represented at the occasion by the Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Uche Ogah, decried the situation where parents and guardians who should have paid greater attention in inculcating good character in their wards, have abdicated that responsibility.
He sued for a collective effort across tribes and regions towards restoring family values and giving it its rightful place.
“Marriage is family value, character. The reasons why there are issues in the society, today, is because families are broken. When values are enshrined in families, the entire society will be good.”
Buhari charged the couple to build their family on the word of God, have a regular family altar of prayers, and give good attention to building enduring character.
Wife of the President, Aisha Buhari, who was represented by wife of the Ebonyi State Governor, Mrs. Rachael Umahi, told the couple to know that marriage is where love is celebrated.
She urged them to continue in the training given to them by their parents, and learn to love themselves more so that their home can be a blessing and impact positively on others around them.
In his sermon, Pastor B. E. O. Udoh, admonished the couple not to allow their love for each other to diminish.
He further urged them to be tolerant, support each other to become their best, build and cultivate goodly character.
In his remarks, Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu said it was delightful to watch his son take a wife to himself, and prayed God to make their union fruitful.
Ikpeazu expressed gratitude to Buhari and his wife, his brother governors, political associates and friends who attended the event, for honouring him with their presence.
Insurgents Planning To Attack Military Bases, DSS Alerts
The Department of State Services (DSS) has issued an alert over planned attacks by insurgents on Ogun border communities and other border communities in Nigeria.
In a letter signed by the State Director of Security, Ogun State Command, M.B. Abdullahi, DSS warned that it has intelligence that the insurgents were plotting to attack military bases in border towns.
The DSS also advised customs and other security agencies in the country to put counter-measures in place to frustrate the plot by the insurgents.
The letter titled, ‘Plans by insurgents to launch attacks on military bases in various border communities’ read, “Available intelligence indicates plans by insurgents and criminal elements to carry out simultaneous attacks on military posts and bases in various border communities across the nation anytime from now.
“In view of the foregoing and the likelihood such attacks not limited to the military personnel only, all law enforcement and security agencies with operational bases at border communities are advised to take note of the above threat and emplace countermeasures with emphasis on personal security of operatives to frustrate the planned attack.”
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