It was a memorable day of celebration, as chiefs, elders, youths and children of Ogurama community in Degema Local Government Area, last Saturday, gathered to witness the return of peace to the ancient island community.
This was as the Chairman of DELGA, Hon. Michael John Williams, in furtherance of his peace efforts in the area, brokered peace amongst youths of Ogurama community, who had been at daggers drawn with each other.
The ugly situation, which led to the self-exile of some groups from the community for a couple of years, was however, peacefully resolved, following the mediation of the council boss.
Speaking at a one-day peace summit in Ogurama, Williams, who emphasised that peace was priceless and terror senseless, noted that Ogurama and other communities of Degema needed to be peaceful and united, in order to attract development from both government and private investors.
He added that no meaningful development would take place in a rancorous and turbulent environment, unless the people embraced peace.
Williams appealed to the various groups and their leaders to genuinely forgive one another and move on in the spirit of brotherliness, whilst also turning a new leaf and engage themselves in meaningful ventures to better their individual lives, community, LGA and Rivers State at large.
He urged the community members to be vigilant and checkmate the activities of strange faces, who may take advantage of the community’s hospitality to perpetrate crime and criminality, adding that Ogurama was a peace-loving community, which needed to protect its image from hirelings and mercenaries.
Williams, who attributed his success in tackling insecurity to Governor Nyesom Wike, stated that the governor, whom he described as a lover of peace, had set the pace in crime fighting in Nigeria.
He, however, warned that the council would deal decisively with any anyone, who reneges on the peace accord and is fingered in any crime activity within the area.
Earlier, the Chairman of Ogurama Council of Chiefs, Chief Ben Orugbani, commended Williams for the peace initiative, adding that no chairman of DELGA in the past had been this good to Ogurama people.
He noted that the council chairman frequents Ogurama community as his home and shows deep interest in every concern of the community, praying God to reward his kind gestures.
Orugbani, who equally commended the youths for embracing peace, enjoined them to maintain it both at home and elsewhere, as according to him, resuming hostilities outside could find its way back to the community.
“As you have agreed not to fight yourselves again in the community, also endeavour to be good children outside, because if you go out and make trouble, either the government or those you offended will come to look for you in the community and that would portend danger for your community,” Orugbani stated.
In her admonition, an aged woman, Madam Mina Joe Kilo, who appealed to the youths to live peaceably with one another, lamented that Ogurama community has never had a need to be policed by military men in the past, as the people used to love themselves and live as a united people.
In his contribution, the Youth Chairman of Ogurama, Comrade Dakuro Bille, who hailed Williams for his courageous move, stated that Ogurama people would never forget the council chairman for his love towards the community.
Bille, while noting that peace had come to stay in Ogurama, however, warned dissident and recalcitrant elements to steer clear from the community, as they would be fished out and handed over to the appropriate authorities for necessary action.
Meanwhile, in their unanimous responses, on behalf of the various groups, Mr. Godswill Ikiroma (Daddy Blaze), Mr. Charles West and Mr. Ibinabo Braide, commended Williams for the peace initiative, promising to live together in peace and harmony.
They also appealed to the chiefs, elders and political class to be part of the peace process and stop using the youths to pursue their individual ambitions, as according to them, some of the youths may not be as exposed and enlightened as the elites of the community, who sometimes mislead the youths.
The event, which ended with a brotherly embrace and dance, witnessed a large turnout of community members, made up of chiefs, elders, women, youths and children, the council chairman and his entourage, as well as security operatives.
By: Ike Wigodo
Akeredolu will be remembered for truth, justice – Aiyedatiwa
Gov. Lucky Aiyedatiwa of Ondo State on Wednesday said the late former Governor of the state, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, would be remembered for his good deeds, especially standing for truth and justice.
Aiyedatiwa stated this during a special court session held in honour of the late former governor at the Ondo State High Court in Akure.
He explained that the former governor used his knowledge, ebullience and capacities to defend the human peaceful existence.
Aiyedatiwa added that the deceased deeds during his life time were greatly impactful.
According to him, the deceased was after justice and rule of law.
Aiyedatiwa said that late Akeredolu was always not pleased when justice was not served.
He described the honour bestowed on the late governor as a well deserved because his life evolved around the legal profession.
“He was an achiever with success stories. He stood firm and was committed to truth and justice,” he said.
Also speaking, the Chief Judge (CJ) of the state, Justice Olusegun Odusola, said that late Akeredolu remained celebrated in death more than being alive considering a reference to his achievements and attainment in life.
Odusola said that the late governor was a courageous fighter, who faced the serious security challenges in the state with ingenious courage that had become a national model.
He stated that it was more-worthy that the late governor did not interfere with judicial activities, even when it did not favour his desires.
According to him, late Akeredolu was a man that lived with his words.
“In my last encounter with him at a time when his health was obviously failing, Arakunrin still reiterated his desire to construct a judiciary complex that will be the envy of other states in the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“He also spoke about judges’ welfare and I wondered how a man in such a condition could still love the judiciary so much as to remember the little promises he made,” he said.
The CJ said that late Akeredolu was an outstanding legal icon and a political colossus, a man who was an exemplar of indefatigable courage, principled resistance with honesty and self-respect.
He stated that late Akeredolu would continue to be a good reference point in humanity.
In his remarks, the President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Mr Yakubu Maikyau, described the late governor as a man with keen passion to help humanity and secure peace.
Maikyau added that the deceased was a person of humility known for truth and justice, and asked the deceased family to take solace in the good deeds of the late governor.
Dignitaries present include Gov. Abdulrasak Abdulrahman of Kwara; Ondo State Deputy Gov, Olayide Adelami; Chief Olusola Oke, SAN; and APC Chairman in Ondo State, Mr Ade Adetimehin.
Others are human rights lawyer, Mr Kayode Ajulo; Ambassador Sola Iji, Speaker Ondo State House of Assembly; and former Inspector of Police, Mr Sunday Ehindero.
Gunmen Kill Police Inspector In Rivers
The Rivers State Police Command said an Inspector was killed by gunmen who ambushed and attacked its men on a stop and search duty at the Eliozu Flyover in Obio/Akpo Local Government Area of the state on Wednesday night.
The spokesperson of the command, Grace Iringe-Koko, disclosed this in a statement issued yesterday.
Iringe-Koko said the gunmen who were spotted in a carton-colored Sienna bus with fully tinted glasses drove in from the Rumuodumaya axis, near Port Harcourt where they launched the offensive which claimed the officer’s life.
She, however, said the team rose to the occasion and returned fire and neutralised one of the miscreants who wore masks, but that other gang members escaped by the whisker.
The statement reads, “We are deeply saddened to announce a heinous incident that occurred on 21st February 2024, involving an attack on policemen attached to Operation Sting of the Rivers State Police Command.
“At approximately 2145hrs, while conducting routine stop-and-search at Eliozu flyover, the officers were ambushed by unidentified hoodlums operating in a carton-colored Sienna bus, with fully tinted glasses.
“The registration number of the vehicle remains unknown at this time.
“The assailants drove in from the Rumuodumaya axis, and opened fire on the police team, resulting in the tragic loss of one Inspector who valiantly gave his life in the line of duty.
“Undeterred, the police team responded with bravery, engaging the attackers and managing to neutralise one of them with a mask on his face, while the others managed to escape, potentially sustaining gunshot wounds.
“The command has launched a thorough investigation into this despicable act and has already identified the group responsible.
“Rest assured, we will relentlessly pursue these criminals and bring them to justice. No amount of intimidation will hinder our officers’ unwavering commitment to safeguarding the lives and property of the citizens.”
While noting that such acts of aggression against security forces detrimentally impact the safety and security of our entire society, she stressed that the command remains resolute in its duty to maintain peace and protect the well-being of the populace.
“The Commissioner of Police, Olatunji Disu, reiterates unequivocally that those who perpetrate violence against policemen or any citizen will face the full weight of the law.
“We urge all law-abiding citizens to continue with their daily activities without panic, as we are determined to uphold our mandate of preserving lives and property in the face of such challenges.
“We extend our deepest condolences to the family and colleagues of the fallen inspector, and we assure them that his sacrifice will not be in vain. Our resolve to serve and protect remains unwavering as we stand together against those who seek to disrupt the peace and harmony of our society”, she said.
Recall that last year, a former Divisional Police Officer of Ahoada Division, Bako Angbashim, was ambushed and killed by a cult gang.
Since the death of the cop, the command has been on his trail, with constant land and air bombardments in the various hideouts of the Iceland cult leader, even as some of his lieutenants were gunned down previously.
However, on Monday, Grace Iringe-Koko, said intelligence reports revealed that the wanted cult kingpin was killed in a recent joint security raid in the Idu-Ekpeye community, Ahoada East Local Government Area of the State.
Nigeria’s GDP Grew By 3.46% In Q4 2023 -NBS
Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product grew by 3.46 per cent year-on-year in real terms in the fourth quarter of 2023, the National Bureau of Statistics has disclosed.
In its ‘Nigerian Gross Domestic Product Report (Q4, 2023),’ released yesterday, the NBS said the growth rate is lower than the 3.52 per cent recorded in the fourth quarter of 2022 and higher than the third quarter of 2023 growth of 2.54 per cent
It added that the service industry was responsible for the growth in the quarter.
Both the IMF and World Bank expected Nigeria’s economy to grow by 2.9 per cent in 2023.
The report read, “Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 3.46 per cent (year-on-year) in real terms in the fourth quarter of 2023.
“This growth rate is lower than the 3.52 per cent recorded in the fourth quarter of 2022 and higher than the third quarter of 2023 growth of 2.54 per cent.
“The performance of the GDP in the fourth quarter of 2023 was driven mainly by the Services sector, which recorded a growth of 3.98 per cent and contributed 56.55 per cent to the aggregate GDP.”
In terms of share of the GDP, industry, and the services sectors contributed more to the aggregate GDP in the fourth quarter of 2023 compared to the fourth quarter of 2022.
“The agriculture sector grew by 2.10 per cent, from the growth of 2.05 per cent recorded in the fourth quarter of 2022. The growth of the industry sector was 3.86 per cent, an improvement from -0.94 per cent recorded in the fourth quarter of 2022. In terms of share of the GDP, industry, and the services sectors contributed more to the aggregate GDP in the fourth quarter of 2023 compared to the fourth quarter of 2022. On an annual basis, GDP grew by 2.74 per cent in 2023 relative to 3.10 per cent in 2022,” the report added.
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