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Niger Govt cries out as Boko Haram takes full control of five communities

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The Niger State Government has again raised the alarm over the activities of Boko Haram terrorists in at least five communities in Rafi and Shiroto Local Government Areas of the State.

The Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Ahmed Matane who made this known while speaking with NAN on Monday, said the affected communities are currently under the control of the insurgents.

He named the communities to include – Kurebe, Farina Kuka, Gussau in Shiroro LGA and Madaka, Hanawanka in Rafi LGAs of the state.

He explained that the activities of the terrorists have forced many residents of the community to migrate to safer grounds within and outside the state.

According to him, the terrorists are currently moving freely in the affected communities wielding sophisticated and menacing weapons.

He further revealed that the state government has already notified security agencies for proper urgent security measures to ensure the safety of residents.

He said, ”We have spent over N2 billion on the security agencies in the ongoing fight against banditry, kidnapping and other criminal activities in the last two years.

“We will continue to accord priority attention to the welfare of security personnel deployed to enable them wipe out all those involved in the illegal acts for peace, progress and political stability.

“We equally appeal to residents to volunteer reliable information on movement of bad characters to the nearest security outfits for security action.

”We have also reached out to traditional and religious leaders as well as stakeholders to mobilize residents to support the effort of the government in the ongoing fight against criminal elements”.

Matane, also assured that the state government will not rest on its efforts to bring to a halt security challenges confronting the state presently.

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No president will say there won’t be banditry next year — Lai Mohammed

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The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed has said that no president will say banditry will next year.

Lai Mohammed said this while responding to a question on whether the current security challenges would end before President Muhammadu Buhari leaves office in 2023.

Responding to the question at a press conference on Wednesday December 15, Lai Mohammed said;

“Nobody, I’m not sure any president will say by next year there will be no banditry. It is just like saying by next year, there will be no thief.

“But what is important is that they should judge us by our achievement. We’ve not thrown our hands in the air. There was a time they asked us to hire mercenaries, but our soldiers are doing their best in these circumstances.”

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Buhari jets out Turkey for summit

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President Muhammadu Buhari will on Thursday leave Abuja for Istanbul, Turkey, to attend the third Turkey-Africa Partnership Summit, hosted by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of the Republic of Turkey.

According to the organisers, the theme of the Summit is ‘‘Enhanced Partnership for Common Development and Prosperity’’ and the agenda includes reviewing the cooperation between African countries and Turkey since the last Summit in 2014.

This was disclosed in a statement by Garba Shehu, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity, on Thursday morning.

The third Turkey-Africa Partnership Summit is coming on the heels of President Erdogan’s recent State visit to Nigeria during which several agreements in the fields of energy, defence industry, mining and hydrocarbons were signed to expand existing bilateral ties.

The Turkish leader had during the visit to Nigeria, affirmed his commitment to immediately expand the volume of trade between the two countries to 5 billion dollars and the Nigerian delegation will seize the opportunity of the gathering in Istanbul to enhance cooperation with other partners for more trade and investment opportunities in the country.

It is expected that the Summit would provide guidelines and direction for cooperation with African countries for the next five years.

President Buhari will be accompanied on the trip by his wife, Aisha Buhari; the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama; Defence, Maj-Gen. Bashir Magashi (Rtd); FCT, Mohammed Bello; Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire; Agriculture, Mohammed Abubakar; Industry, Trade and Investment, Adeniyi Adebayo; the National Security Adviser, Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno (Rtd); and the Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency, Ambassador Ahmed Rufai Abubakar.

The President is expected back in Abuja on Sunday, December 19.

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2023 presidency: I’m not going to turn it down – Tinubu

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The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has said he will not turn down the calls of those asking him to contest for president in 2023.

Tinubu stated this after a meeting with leaders of the Northern Alliance Committee in Abuja on Tuesday.

Speaking to journalists after the meeting, the former Governor of Lagos said he would, however, make consultations before officially announcing a decision on the matter.

“I’m not going to turn them down but I will still effectively and widely consult, particularly brainstorm with my friends and find a date to come out openly to tell Nigerians.

“But the president is still in office. I don’t want to distract him from all the challenges that he might face today.

“So, don’t muddle the political water. Consult, make our programme known to the people later,” Tinubu said.

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