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Eulogies As Jonathan, Wike, Aisha, Others Pay Last Respects To OB Lulu-Briggs

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Prominent Nigerians, including the former President, Dr Goodluck Jonathan; his wife, Patience; Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike; wife of the President, Aisha Buhari; former Cross River State Governor, Donald Duke; and his wife, Onari; former Rivers State Governor, Sir Celestine Omehia; Minister of State for Petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva; Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah; politicians, business moguls, and traditional rulers, last weekend, thronged the ancient Abonnema town in Kalabari Kingdom to pay their last respects to late oil magnate and philanthropist, High Chief Olu Benson Lulu-Briggs.
The funeral service, which had the customary combination of pomp and pageantry, was also graced by Rivers State Deputy Governor, Dr Ipalibo Harry Banigo; former Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Sir Austin Opara; Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Rivers State chapter, Amb Desmond Akawor; Secretary to Rivers State Government, Dr Tammy Danagogo; Amayanabo of Opobo Kingdom and Chairman, Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers, King Dandeson Douglas-Jaja; the Amayanabo of Abonnema, King Disrael Bob-Manuel; Chairman of Rivers Elders’ Council, High Chief Ferdinand Alabraba; former Managing Directors of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Timi Alaibe and Ms Joi Nunieh.
Also in attendance was the representative of the Catholic Church, retired Archbishop of Abuja, Cardinal John Onaiyekan, Nigerian Ambassador to Jamaica, Ms Maureen Tamnuno; and Managing Director of Heritage Bank Plc, Mr. Ifie Sekibo; amongst others.
Interred last Saturday amid flowery eulogies from across broad spectrum of Nigerians, O.B. Lulu-Briggs, who passed on to glory at the golden age of 88 was until his demise, the Iniikeiroari V of Kalabari, paramount head of Oruwari Briggs War Canoe House of Abonnema in Akuku-Toru LGA.
The crowd in the serene riverine community was unprecedented as dignitaries, family, and friends gathered for what many described as a celebration of life.
Jonathan arrived in company with his wife about midday, and was received by the state chief executive and his deputy.
Wike, the chief host, also led the delegation of dignitaries, to honour O.B.Lulu-Briggs with a state funeral.
In his tribute, Jonathan said, “I find it very difficult to express myself when talking about Chief O. B. Lulu-Briggs. I knew him very well from 2007 when I got involved into national politics.
“When the PDP nominated me to be running mate to late President Umaru Yar’Adua, and was looking for top politicians and respected leaders within the Niger Delta who can support the political process, our late father is one of the persons that were recommended.
“As vice president, and had to oversee the Niger Delta region, he was one of those that were recommended that I should work with. And it worked exactly as said. He helped us in many ways in government.
“And I came here with Chief Banigo and from that day, we started relating until his last days and of course he helped us in several ways. It’s a very sad thing when I got the news that we have lost him. Yes, he has his direct children like Dumo and others but he has more than that. O. B. Lulu-Briggs was a very sophisticated man.
“If you glance through his biography, you will know that he started from a very humble beginning but became very successful, and that is the key in life. Not how you start life but how you end life that matters most. Though he started quite small, see how he’s ended big!

 

By: Nelson Chukwudi

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June 12: DSS Issues Stern Warning Against Protest

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The Department of State Services (DSS) has warned individuals and groups planning to stage protests on June 12, Democracy Day, to desist from any violent or disruptive actions.
The warning was contained in a statement signed by the Director of Public Relations and Strategic Communications, DSS, Dr Peter Afunanya, yesterday.
The Service said it has received intelligence on plans to incite violence and disrupt public order during the protests.
The security agency vowed to maintain public safety and national security and urged citizens to resist any persuasions to engage in lawless acts.
The DSS also encouraged disgruntled persons to channel their grievances through appropriate channels and procedures.
Afunanya said: “The attention of the Department of State Services (DSS) has been drawn to plans by certain individuals and groups to stage physical protests in some parts of the country on 12th June 2024. These protests are designed with sinister objectives to coincide with the Democracy Day Celebration.
“While citizens may have the rights of assembly and expression, such freedoms should not be used to undermine public safety and national security. The determination by some non-state actors to incite mass disaffection through demonstrations that may turn violent will not be tolerated.
“Citizens are, therefore, called upon to resist any persuasions to be lawless or cause disorder and anarchy in the nation. Displeased persons are rather encouraged to appropriately channel their grievances through the right channels and procedures.
“The Service, while felicitating the government and citizens on this auspicious occasion of celebrating 25 years of unbroken democracy, calls for continued patriotism, unity and commitment to building a Nigeria of our collective dream.
“The Service will sustain collaboration with all relevant stakeholders, including sister security agencies, to maintain the peace as well as protect lives and property across the nation. Law-abiding citizens are enjoined to go about their businesses without fear.”

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Court’s CTC Validates Our Position On Amaewhule, Others -Rivers AG …Advises Media Against Misinterpretation Of Judgements

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The Rivers State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Dagogo Israel Iboroma, SAN, has said that the State High Court neither declared nor affirmed Martin Amaewhule as Speaker of the House of Assembly, stressing that the certified true copy (CTC) of court judgment validates the government’s position.
Mr Iboroma also urged media practitioners to desist from giving interpretations to court judgments by fiat, emotional or other shades of persuasions.
Rather, he advised that they should first obtain the judgement in order to read it thoroughly to gain proper understanding or at best, seek competent legal advice before going to press.
Mr Iboroma gave the advice yesterday night while briefing newsmen after obtaining the certified true copy (CTC) of the Monday court judgment in Port Harcourt.
The briefing was to restate his earlier position that there was no court ruling that ever declared or affirmed Martin Amaewhule and 26 others as members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Rivers State House of Assembly.
Iboroma said: “Yesterday (Monday), I briefed the press and made the point that there is a misrepresentation of the judgment of the High Court of Rivers State in Suit No. DHC/20/CS/2024 in social, print, and electronic media.
“My position has been confirmed and vindicated by the Certified True Copy of the court order in Suit No. DHC/20/CS/2024.”
Mr Iboroma stated that a court order embodied the enforceable decisions of a court, adding that in this case in focus, the enforceable orders of the court will necessarily entail the specific pronouncements of the court.
He listed the three orders of the court in the judgment to include: “That this Suit be and is hereby dismissed/struck out for want of jurisdiction.
“That the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) be and is hereby joined as 4th defendant.
“That the claimants’ case be and is hereby dismissed for lacking in merit.”
Mr Iboroma further said: “Contrary to the false claims and misrepresentation in social, print and electronic media, the court did not make a declaration that Martin Amaewhule is the Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, neither did it make a declaration that Martin Amaewhule and 26 others are members of the Rivers State House of Assembly and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
“If it were so, it would have been embodied in the court orders which have been circulated to you all and displayed by me here for the purpose of clarity.”
Mr Iboroma regretted that by the deliberate misrepresentation of yesterday (Monday), the court was painted in bad light and the public misled with such misinformation.
He said: “Whatever finding of fact that is not included in the court order is an Obiter Dictum, which has no binding force.
“Once again, I respectively urge the media to desist from giving any interpretation to any judgement without first reading the content of the judgement and seeking legal advice,” the attorney-general added.

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Sexual Harassment: Minister Drags Perm Sec Before Head Of Service

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The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Yusuf Tuggar, has formally lodged a complaint with the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation regarding allegations of sexual harassment levelled against the ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Ambassador Ibrahim Lamuwa.
In a letter addressed to the HOCSF dated May 27, 2024, Tuggar expressed his concern over the serious nature of the allegation levelled against the permanent secretary by Mrs Simisola Ajayi.
He emphasised the importance of addressing the matter urgently and thoroughly.
The letter was titled, “Re: Official Complaint Regarding Sexual Harassment Of Mrs Simisola Fajemirokun Ajayi By Ambassador Ibrahim Adamu Lamuwa (Permanent Secretary Ministry Of Foreign Affairs.
It read, “I am compelled to write to inform you of a formal complaint against the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Ibrahim Adamu Lamuwa, on allegations of sexual harassment.
“Bearing in mind the gravity of the matter, I feel it necessary to draw your attention to it and ask that you handle it accordingly,”
The letter included an attachment of the complaint received via email, and Tuggar assured the HOCSF his full cooperation in the investigation.
“May I also assure you that I remain available to provide you with any assistance required in discharging your responsibilities,” he added.
Ajayi, had a petition dated May 29, 2024, addressed to Tuggar, accused the permanent secretary of serial sexual harrasment.
Ajayi, through her lawyer, Femi Falana (SAN), called for a thorough investigation into the actions of Amb. Lamuwa.
The petition, signed by Adebayo A. Oniyelu LP of Falana & Falana’s, was titled “Request For An Investigation Of Amb. Ibrahim Lamuwa’s Conducts Of Sexual Harassment At The Place Of Work, Abuse Of Office, Official Intimidation And Discrimination.”
According to the petition, Ajayi narrated multiple instances of harassment allegedly by Lamuwa, which have created an unsafe and uncomfortable working environment.
She claimed for instance that during a policy retreat on October 7, 2023, Lamuwa allegedly made inappropriate advances towards her, suggesting she joined him in his hotel room.
He reportedly continued with inappropriate remarks throughout the retreat.
She also cited an incident on November 10, 2023, where Lamuwa allegedly invited Ajayi to travel to Hong Kong, promising significant personal benefits from the trip.

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