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Coronavirus: Pope Francis’ twin prayers for an “end to the pandemic”

Pope Francis left the Vatican on Sunday to visit two important pilgrimage sites in Rome to pray for the city and the world, in the midst of the Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak.

Two intense moments of prayer: one before the ancient icon of Maria Salus Populi Romani at the Basilica of St. Mary Major, and the other at the foot of a wooden crucifix that protected Rome from a great plague.

Pope Francis spent his afternoon on the Third Sunday of Lent seeking to underline his closeness to those who suffer by imploring the special protection of Our Lady.

Mary before the Cross

The Director of the Holy See Press Office, Matteo Bruni, announced the Pope’s visits in a communique on Sunday.

“This afternoon, just after 4 PM, Pope Francis left the Vatican and made a private visit to the Basilica of St. Mary Major, to offer a prayer to the Virgin Mary, Salus Populi Romani, where her icon is kept and venerated. Then, after taking a walk along the Via del Corso – as if making a pilgrimage – he visited the church of San Marcello on the Corso, where a miraculous crucifix is housed. In 1522 it was carried in procession throughout the neighborhoods of the city so that the “Great Plague” might cease in Rome. With his prayer, the Holy Father pleaded for an end to the pandemic that has struck Italy and the world. He also implored the healing of the many sick people, remembered the numerous victims of these past days, and asked that their families and friends might find consolation and comfort. His prayer intention was also extended to healthcare workers, doctors, nurses, and all those working in these days to guarantee the smooth functioning of society. The Holy Father returned to the Vatican around 5:30 PM.”

Devotion to the Marian icon

Pope Francis’ special devotion to Our Lady Salus Populi Romani is well-known. He visits her icon on major Marian feast days, and makes a point to stop in for a prayer both before and after his international Apostolic Journeys.

In 593 Pope St. Gregory the Great carried the icon in procession to stop a plague. And in 1837 Pope Gregory XVI invoked her to put an end to a cholera epidemic.

Miraculous crucifix

The Pope’s second stop on Sunday was also significant, considering the critical moment the world is going through.

The church of San Marcello on the Corso houses a venerated wooden crucifix from the 15th century, which scholars hold is the most realistic in Rome. It even survived a fire, and saved the city from a plague. Pope St. John Paul II embraced that same crucifix to mark the culmination of the Day of Forgiveness during the Jubilee Year of 2000.

From the ashes

The numerous traditions of miracles attributed to the “Most Holy Crucifix” began on 23 May 1519.

On that night a large fire completely destroyed the church that bears Pope Marcel’s name. The entire building was found in ruins the next morning. But from the ashes emerged the crucifix of the main altar, untouched. A small oil lamp still burned at the Crucified’s feet.

The scene greatly touched the faithful of Rome, and several began to meet every Friday evening to pray. Pope Leo X ordered the rebuilding of the church in 1519.

To stop Rome’s great plague

Three years after the fire, Rome was hit by the “Great Plague”.

The faithful carried the crucifix in procession – despite the bans understandably put in place by the authorities to halt the spread of the contagion. The crucifix was carried through the streets of Rome toward St. Peter’s Basilica. The procession lasted 16 days: from 4 to 20 August 1522. As it progressed, the plague showed signs of retreating, and every neighborhood sought to keep the crucifix as long as possible.

Finally, as the crucifix reentered the church, the plague ceased altogether.

Since 1600, the procession from the church of San Marcello to St. Peter’s Basilica became a tradition repeated during Holy Years. The names of the Popes who called each Jubilee are inscribed on the back of the crucifix, along with the year.

*From Vatican News

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How Deputy CP, reporter died during Shi’ites protest

A Deputy Commissioner of Police, Usman Umar, in charge of Operations at the Federal Capital Territory Police Command, was reportedly shot dead after a protest by members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, known as  Shi’ites, in Abuja on Monday turned violent.

FELLOW PRESS learnt that two of the protesters were killed, while a member of the National Youth Service Corps reporting for  Channels TV was hit by a stray bullet as many more were injured during alleged exchange of fire between the sect and security forces.

The reporter, Precious Owolabi, was rushed to the National Hospital, Garki, where he later died on Monday evening.

The protest, which started from NITEL Junction at Wuse 2, was aimed at forcing the Federal Government to free their leader, Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, who has been in detention since December 2015.

Umar was reportedly shot as he tried to pacify the protesters who went on the rampage.

The protesters also destroyed vehicles.

One of our correspondents,  who was at Force Headquarters, saw officers mourning Umar,  who they described as a very kind man.

A police Inspector said, “The DCP was a very good man. We were at the mosque on  Friday when he saw one Inspector looking haggard. The man told him how he had not been paid for over 14 months because he was unable to complete his IPPIS (Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information).

“On hearing that, DCP Umar hugged him and immediately made calls to the officer in charge of the platform and budget office. Today, the Inspector has been directed to come to the IPPIS office for enrollment on the platform. His death is so shocking.”

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Lack of schools toilets hampers girls’ education – NGO


The Wheels of Hope Rising Foundation, an NGO, has said that the absence of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) facilities in schools was a major challenge to girls’ education in Nigeria.

The NGO said that this is because the lack of such facilities posed a great challenge for girls and was a risk factor especially when they are menstruating.

Mr Adigun Temitope, the President of the foundation in a statement said it was discovered that most schools did not have any in place to support girls in ensuring menstrual hygiene during school hours, especially in the rural areas.

According to him, this makes a lot of girls in rural schools absent themselves from school during their monthly period.

He said it was discovered that traditional materials and inappropriate disposal of pads were common in the school and menstruating girls also experienced many restrictions, especially from religious activities.

Temitope said that the organisation had recently distributed sanitary pads to 532 students of Odewale Community High School, Ifo, Ogun State, after providing the beneficiaries with menstrual education.

He said that the project was organised in partnership with Always Nigeria’s #APadAGirl2025 Initative and Procter and Gamble Nigeria.

Temitope said that during the event, there was a health talk by medical experts on puberty, menstrual cycle and menstrual care.

“They were told that menstrual hygiene should always be discussed with high priority among girls and young women to guide them in menstrual care.

“Parents were encouraged to extend the new knowledge they had acquired to helping their daughters when faced with menstrual challenges so they see it as normal and natural occurrence,’’ he said.

The health experts said that boys and parents should also be involved in debunking myths and reduce the stigma associated with menstruation.

Temitope said that more needed to be done by stakeholders collectively in strengthening menstruation hygiene initiatives and programmes in rural areas and schools.

“Education on awareness, access to hygienic sanitary pads and deposal of pads need to be addressed accordingly.

“Schools WASH environment should be improved, which includes separate toilets for girls, water and cleansing materials and safe disposal of soiled materials.’’

Temitope said that the aim of the project was to sensitise girls between ages of 11 and 16 and young women between ages of 18 and 24, on the importance of using sanitary pads as against other unhealthy options.

“The event witnessed a mass turnout of students alongside teachers and some parents to understand the impact of menstruation education in promoting menstrual hygiene and care among girls.

“It is also to clear the taboos around menstruation for girls and young women.

“Our foundation recognises that menstrual hygiene is fundamental to the dignity and wellbeing of women, girls, and an important part of the basic hygiene, sanitation and reproductive health services to which every woman and girl has a right.’’

The foundation is a rural-based NGO which focuses on unlocking sustainability development through education for all initiative and facilitating quality healthcare support.

It has been in existence since 2008 and the main objective is to  give hope to the less privileged including persons with disabilities.

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Boko Haram attack Adamawa community, killed 7

Boko Haram insurgents have taken over Mildo community in Madagali Local Government Area of Adamawa State, killing seven people.

A resident of Mildo in Maiduguri, Usman Usmana, on Wednesday told Daily Post that, he received a call from home last night with a sad news of the unfortunate incident in his village.

“My Uncle called me late night and told me that, our village was attacked by Boko Haram and that seven people were killed. I happen to know four those killed. I know the family of the others, but I was not very close to the deceased,” he said.

Read more on FELLOW PRESS

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Goodluck Jonathan’s Abuja burgled by police officers

Goodluck Jonathan's Abuja burgled by police officers

Former President Goodluck Jonathan’s Abuja home has been burgled.

According to Premium Times, the house was not burgled by thieves but police officers in charge of guarding the house.

Three police officers has been arrested by the Nigeria Police for stealing from the former president’s residence, items estimated in millions of naira.

The house said to have been stolen from is located at 89, Fourth Avenue in the Gwarimpa district of Abuja.

Item stolen includes dozens of plasma television sets, air-conditioners, sets furniture, box-loads of clothes such as designer suits imprinted with the former president’s name, male and female Ijaw traditional attires, lace materials and bowler hats.

The theft has been confirmed by Mr. Jonathan’s spokesperson, Ikechukwu Eze.

The stolen items were said to have been sold off at regular interval.

Premium Times further quoted one of the trader who bought the items to have said: “Whenever particular or specific items of our interest were brought for sale from Mr. Jonathan’s residence, we used to buy from the wholesaler who bought them in large quantity,” a trader said.

Goodluck Jonathan's Abuja burgled by police officersGoodluck Jonathan's Abuja burgled by police officers

Investigation further confirmed that the traders sold off the stolen items such as suits, women wears, traditional cloth popularly called ‘babban riga,’ Ankara fabrics at about N5,000.00 apiece and bowler hats. It could, however, not be confirmed how much the bowler hats were sold for.

A petty trader at the market said he witnessed the sale of one of the sets of furniture.

“The policeman sold one to the wholesaler who is now on the run at N50, 000.00. The wholesaler sold it at N180,000.00 to a lucky buyer in the market who in turn instantly sold it at N390,000.00.

“I personally bought babban riga, and a suit with Jonathan’s name printed underneath it at the cost of N5,000.00 each.”

The petty trader, who claimed to be an apprentice at Tipper Garage, said they were scared when they heard that the three police officers had been arrested in connection with the theft of the properties from Mr. Jonathan’s residence.

Goodluck Jonathan's Abuja burgled by police officers

List of clothes said to have been stolen and sold are

  1. Niger Delta traditional attires in about 20 Ghana-must-go sacks.

  2. Suits, each one with “President Jonathan” inscribed in the inner side, in five big Ghana-must-go sacks.

  3. About 10 big Ghana-must-go sacks of women attires made from lace materials sewn in Niger Delta style.

  4. More than 10 bundles of Ankara materials, known as Atamfa.

  5. About 10 sets of babban riga.

  6. One big Ghana-must-go sack containing clothes with PDP logo neatly sewn on each one.

  7. About 20 Niger Delta bowler hats.

Also electrical appliances and furniture items stolen include:

  1. 36 Plasma televisions.

  2. About 25 refrigerators.

  3. Five sets of furniture.

  4. Two sets of sitting room chairs.

  5. Several air conditioner units.

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Police should do proper investigation instead of attacking us– Evans’ lawyer

Police should do proper investigation instead of attacking us-- Evans' lawyer

Legal counsel, Olukoya Ogungbeje, representing popular kidnap kingpin, Chukwudi Onwuamadike, best known as Evans, has opend up on instituting defending his client.

Ogunbeje who accused the police and media for attacking him for doing his job, as he filed case of on ground of foundermental human right.

He said, “Let the media tell the police to go and do their job and carry out proper investigation rather than attacking us.

​”​What we have asked the police to do is a constitutional requirement, that is, anybody who has been arrested should be taken to the court of law and if they don’t have a case against the person, you release the person.

​”​They went and staged managed media stations to be interviewing Evans to be making him say that he is not aware of the law suit. How can someone who is in custody be able to pick a lawyer? To you the journalist is that possible?

​”T​he family members briefed us and we are doing our job.​ They call us that we should forge ahead. We have the full backing of the family and I can tell you that authoritatively.

​Asked his chances of winning the case considering his defeat in court in recent cases, the lawyer said reports that he has not not been winning “are just a pit of lie from the pit of hell”.

​”​I can tell you one, the Nyako matter, I won it up to the Supreme Court, go and check your records. The Olanusi matter, the former deputy governor of Ondo State, it’s at the appeal court, we won. The N13 billion Ikoyi suit is it now on appeal.​ T​here are a good number of cases that we have won even to the highest court.​”​

​On why he decided to be a counsel to Evans who confessed to being a notorious kidnapper​, Ogunbeje ​​insisted that his client is presumed innocent until proven guilty by a court of law.

​”​We have asked ​the Police to charge him to court.​ If you have to brief me because the police have vilified you, they have criticised you, they have said negative things about you, is that a ground for me to say I am rejecting your brief.

​”​What are we saying, where have we gone wrong? We are only doing our job. See let me tell you, I have the responsibility to defend whomever within the confines of the law only.

​”​I am not saying we will represent him at all cost, that we will get him off the hook at all cost, no. We will only represent him within the bounds of the law.

​”​If the law says that when someone is suspected to have engaged in a crime, the law says that the investigating authority which is the police should either take him to court within 24 or 48 hours which is two days. We are saying charge him to court, let the law take its course​”​

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Customs officers killed by armed robbers in Katsina

Customs officers killed by armed robbers in Katsina

Two Customs officers, Chief Superintendent of Customs and Assistant Superintendent Customs, were killed Sunday night by suspected armed robbers in Shargelle Dogonhawa area of Katsina state.

The deceased officers have been identified as CSC Maidamma Usman Yabo an ASC Nuruddeen Babandi. (Pictured below)

Customs officers killed by armed robbers in Katsina

Customs officers killed by armed robbers in Katsina

Report about their death said the officers ran into the armed robbers during their patrol duty.

But Hassam Kangiwa, the surveillance officer of Daura Federal Operation Unit, survived the attack.

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Rescued Lagos students: Kidnappers made them wore football jerseys to deceive security

 

6 rescued lagos student: Kidnappers made them wore sport to deceive security

A parents of one of the kidnapped 6 boys of Lagos State Model College, Igbonla, Epe, that have rescued said the kidnappers forced football jerseys on the student so as to fake their identity so that security operatives will not be able to apprehend the kidnappers.

The students, who were abducted from their school premises‎, were freed this week after 64 days in captivity.

Curiously, all the boys were in apparently fake jerseys of big European clubs: Barcelona, Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United.

One of the parents who spoke on the condition of anonymity told Completesportsnigeria.com that the kidnappers initially made the pupils wear football jerseys in order to deceive security operatives who were closing in on the criminals.

“I just want to thank God he is back home now,” the relieved father said.

“I don’t want to say anything in the media now and we were also warned not to grant interviews.

“My son told me that it was those kidnappers who bought the jerseys for them.

“I was initially surprised when he came back putting on a jersey because my son is not really a football fan and he barely shows love for these European clubs.

“Clothing the boys in jerseys was a plan to deceive the security operatives each time the kidnappers changed their location, my son told me when I had a chat with him.”

The parent also revealed that his son and the five other pupils will be visiting a top hospital in Lagos for further check-ups facilitated by the Lagos State government.

“He is not really himself yet but I’m sure with time he will recover totally,” the father added.

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Civil war alert: Igbo groups cautions Arewa youths on quit notice

Civil war alert: Igbo groups cautions Arewa youths on quit notice

Arewa youths have been accused by Igbo Civil Society Coalition, ICSCO, of driving Nigerians into another civil war with their hate statements.

ICSCO is a civil society organizations comprising of professionals bodies, faith based organizations and town unions.

The group, therefore, urged the Federal Government to avert the ugly situation.

They also appealed to the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, to withdraw its threat to scuttle the November 18 governorship election in Anambra State.

These were contained in a communiqué issued after its general congress in Enugu weekend.

The communiqué jointly signed by its National Coordinator, Prof Obasi Igwe and Convener Mazi Ikechukwu Bismarck Oji, read, “The Igbo Civil Society Coalition, a coalition of Igbo activists, civil society organizations, professional bodies, faith based organizations, town unions, among others, held its monthly general congress in Enugu and after due deliberations resolved as follows:

“Constitution Amendment: that ICSCO is dismayed at the National Assembly’s inability to align itself with the obvious wishes of Nigerians cutting across partisan, ethno-religious and socio-economic lines, which is that Nigeria should be restructured so that there will be devolution of powers from the Federal Government to federating units.

“Therefore, in the interest of national stability and socio-economic advancement of the country, ICSCO appeals to the National Assembly to re-consider its stand on devolution of powers from the Federal Government to the federating units (regions).

“Unless that is done, Nigeria will never be able to attain economic advancement or political stability since the feeding bottle federalism practised in Nigeria today is an aberration and does not make room for the development of the federating units based on areas of comparative advantage.

“Arewa Youths Ultimatum to the Acting President to Arrest Mazi Nnamdi Kanu: ICSCO observes with dismay that Arewa Youths have refused to withdraw the Quit Notice they issued to Ndigbo despite interventions of well-meaning Nigerians, even from their region.

“Rather, they have continued to issue hate speeches, threats and ultimatums. The other time, they asked the Federal Government to declare IPOB a terrorist organization.

“Last time, they descended heavily on the Acting President- Prof Yemi Osibanjo, who despite all his humility and loyalty; they claimed was plotting to unseat his principal-President Buhari.

“Now, they are giving the same Acting President an ultimatum to arrest Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the IPOB leader.

“It is obvious that these youths want to force Nigeria into war at all cost. If not, what is the rationale behind asking for Kanu’s arrest because he is asking for referendum when they insist that there will never be restructuring.

“They should realize that IPOB has the sympathy of a vast majority of Ndigbo as a group, which has stoutly challenged President Buhari’s policy of Igbo exclusion (no longer marginalization).

“Anambra Governorship Election: ICSCO is appealing to the IPOB to re-consider its stand with regards to boycotting the election. Secondly, we appeal to all parties involved to come together as Ndigbo in order to build consensus on the issue to engender peace and unity of purpose in Ala-Igbo (Igbo land).”

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41 homosexuals nabbed by Police in Lagos hotel

 

Lagos state Commisioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni

Not less than 41 men reportedly caught in the act of homosexuality have been arrested in Lagos hotel by police.

According to police the suspects were rounded up on Saturday at Weigh Bridge hotel in Owode Onirin area of Lagos State.

It was learnt that the hotel, Vincent Hotel, where they were caught in the act had been sealed off.

A resident of the area, who gave his name only as Tunji, said policemen from the Owode Onirin Division swooped on the suspects around 3.30 pm.

He said, “There have been reports that the hotel harbours homosexuals. They were there this afternoon when policemen struck. About 40 of them were caught in the act.”

The Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, Olarinde Famous-Cole, confirmed the arrest.

He added that the suspects had been handed over to the state task force for prosecution.

“41 suspected homosextual men have been arrested and the hotel has been condoned off pending while the investigation is carried out.”

He added that the suspects are in custody of Lagos Task Force and would soon be charged to court.

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Dog owner who named dog Buhari finally cleared

President Buhari

Joachim Iroko, who named his dog after Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari, has finally discharge.

The 41-year-old market trader also known as Joe Fortemose Chinakwe, was arrested in 2016 accused of conduct likely to cause a breach of the peace.

A judge in south-west Ogun state found the prosecution had failed to substantiate the charges against him.

The arrest sparked nationwide outrage. Critics accused the police of stifling constitutionally guaranteed freedoms.

At the time, presidential spokesman Garba Shehu said that Mr Buhari must be having a good laugh about the story and that anyone linking him to the dog incident was displaying their ignorance.

Mr Iroko’s lawyer said the prosecution had repeatedly failed to present witnesses and that the complainant was also absent.

The man who lodged the complaint in August 2016 was reported to be a neighbour.

‘My hero’

Mr Iroko walked his pet – with the name Buhari painted on both flanks – in an area where support for the president was high, police said at the time.

Officers said they were worried the move could antagonise people, though he insisted it was meant as a compliment and that people had misunderstood him. Mr Iroko said he named his dogs after his role models, and that others had been called Nelson Mandela and Obama.

“I named my beloved pet dog Buhari, who is my hero….My admiration for Buhari started far back when he was a military head of state.”

He had received death threats over the perceived slight.

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There won’t be election in Anambra if If Nigeria is not restructured befoe October

Nnamdi Kanu was quoted on Monday as giving condition at an event in Enugu where he received awards from three Igbo groups, including the Eastern Consultative Assembly and the Igbo Students’ Association.

According to him, the election will only be held in the state if the federal government restructures the country before October 2017 and gives him a date for a referendum.

“There will be no election in Anambra State come November 2017 and going forward there won’t be any election until they give me a date for a referendum.

“They know what to do; convene a meeting, I will send my rep; give us a date for the referendum, that is the only way.

“In which part of this earth have you ever found a measure of self-determination to be equated to war except in Nigeria because the political leaders do not understand the difference between self-determination and war?

“Self-determination does not mean hate speech; the status quo can no longer remain. Like my brother Evangelist Eliot Ugochukwu-Uko said, if on or before October 1 nothing happens in terms of substantial restructuring, then there won’t be any election; the people will support us.” – He was quoted as saying

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Boko Haram commander nabbed in FCT

Boko Haram deputy commander, Seth Yakubu, has been arrested by police at Gwako Village in Gwagwalada area of the Federal Capital Territory.

The insurgent who 20 years old hailed from Obi Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, was nabbed at about 11.30am on Sunday after a tip-off, the FCT Commissioner of Police, Musa Kimo, told journalists on Monday in Abuja.

Yakubu’s arrest is sequel to the capture of five suspected members of the insurgent group in Kano on Sunday.

The CP said the suspect confessed to investigators that he escaped to the village from Sambisa Forest after their hideout was bombed by the Nigeria Air Force about a week ago.

He said, “Yakubu further stated that he left Maiduguri on Friday, July 21, 2017 and arrived Gwako village on Saturday at about 10pm, to conceal his identity and seek refuge.

“The suspect said he was lured to join the Boko Haram terrorists group by a young man who approached him with a promise of an automatic employment into the Nigerian Army, only to end up with the sect.

“He said he was given a form to fill and, thinking the job was real, he completed the form, but was taken to an unknown depot where he and some others received training.”

Kimo said the suspect further confessed that apart from being the second in-command in his unit, he actively participated in several deadly attacks launched by the group against innocent citizens.

He said investigation was still ongoing to track down Yakubu’s accomplices.

Yakubu in an interview admitted to being a Boko Haram member, adding that he fled from Sambisa Forest to Abuja after their hideout was knocked out by an air-strike.

Meanwhile, the CP has admonished residents of the FCT and environs to be vigilant and always report any strange and suspicious persons or activity to the police.

“The command wishes to also advise community leaders to guard against habouring strangers, especially those whose mission to the community is not clear,” he added.

Kimo called on residents to report any strange face in their community to the nearest police formation or to the FCT police command emergency helplines-lines:08032003913, 08061581938, 07057337653 and 08028940883.

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Boko Haram still have many other girls– Freed Chibok girls

 

The released Chibok school girls who were recently freed by the Boko Haram on May 2017 have appealed to the Federal Government to devote attention to the release of other abducted non-schoolgirls who are still under the captivity of the dreaded terrorists.

The girls were released after the Federal Government’s successful negotiation with the notorious sect.

The girls, who spoke through their leader, Miss Hauwa Ntakai, made the call while speaking with journalists during a special luncheon organised by the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development in Abuja on Saturday.

The Chibok schoolgirl noted that government was focusing more attention on the release of the abducted schoolgirls because they were captured inside their college.

She urged the government to also direct its attention to other girls in Boko Karam captivity because, according to her, “the Sambisa Forest is a place of sorrow.”

She said, “We have many of our sisters there that are not students of any school and nobody talks about them. It is because we were abducted from a school that government talked to Boko Haram and they released us. We thank them (government) very much, we appreciate them. May the Lord bless them for what they have done.

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TRAGIC: APC chairmanship aspirant crushed by truck

A chairmanship aspirant for the Ikotun/Igando Local Council Development Area, Shakiru Balogun, aka SAB, was Friday crushed to death.

Balogun was a former Chairman, National Union of Local Government Employees of the LCDA and a member of the All Progressives Congress, APC.

The aspirant was going to the council secretariat when the driver of the PSP truck lost control of the truck and rammed into his Toyota 4runner at Okofili Bus Stop, LASU-Isheri Road.

An eyewitness, Fadeyi Daisi, said 52-year-old Balogun died on the spot.

“The PSP driver fled the scene, but I don’t know if he was later arrested by the police. It was very tragic.

“The door of the sport utility vehicle was cut with a saw before emergency officials could extricate his body”, he told the Punch.

A resident of Abu Taiwo Street, Afolabi Bus Stop, Akesan, where Balogun lived, Joshua Ogundipe, said the incident had thrown the community into mourning.

Ogundipe added, “He accepted defeat at the primaries in good faith. He was going to the office when the incident happened.

“He is survived by two wives and four children. He had been buried according to Islamic rite.”

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Pastor made women select husbands during church service [VIDEO]

women pick husband

A clergyman in Delta State, Prophet Jeremiah Fufeyin, of the Christ Mercyland Deliverance Ministry, on Friday incurred the wrath of many Nigerians after a video of him asking a woman to move round the auditorium and pick a man as husband during service emerged online.

In the about 9.42-minute-long clip, Fufeyin was seen ordering the woman to come towards where he stood at the front before asking after her husband.

When the woman responded that she was yet to marry, the pastor giggled before asking her when she wished to marry.

Immediately the woman answered that she would wish to be married on that very day, Fufeyin asked her to quickly go round the auditorium to pick a husband.

The light-complexioned lady sporting a blue native attire, moved round different sections of the packed auditorium while the pastor followed closely behind.

After insisting that she had not found a man of her choice to take as husband, the prophet then asked men interested in taking her as wife to file out.

About eight men came out but the woman told the clergyman that she was not interested in any of them, prompting him to say that her eyes had been covered by supernatural forces.

He said, “The reason why you are just moving around without finding a man is because they put a mask to cover your face.

“In the realm of the spirit, you are just moving aimlessly. Anybody that comes your way just chop (sic) and go. No be so?

“They plaster your face not to find husband until you grow old.”

The clergyman thereafter asked ladies interested in marrying the eight men, who had come out for the first woman to line up behind them.

While one or two ladies queued up behind some of the men, a particular one among them had 11 women lining up behind him.

Fufeyin thereafter said he gave the men till the end of the month to screen their “wives” and pick the one person they want to marry.

He said, “Pastors, write down the husbands’ names. We cannot allow women to remain like this forever. I want to marry off this people. I give you people from now till month end to screen your wives. Nobody should go and meet them at night; if you go I’ll catch you.

“I will sponsor the marriages in this church on the same day. I give you time to check yourself.”

He then turned to the first lady and told her to go and look for her husband before laying hands on her.

The woman fell to the ground immediately his hands came upon her.

Watch the video below:

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Fayose slams Saraki, Buhari, Nigerian top officials for sending kids abroad for education

saraki and family

Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, on Friday condemned Nigerian public officials who send their children to schools abroad, saying it is wrong for government functionaries to educate their children outside Nigeria.

The governor’s comment appears to have been directed at President Muhammadu Buhari, Senate President Bukola Saraki and other top Nigerian officials, including fellow state governors, whose children recently graduated from or are in universities abroad.

Mr. Fayose urged the affected officials to emulate him, saying all his children are products of Nigerian universities.

Mr. Fayose, who was at Covenant University, Ota, in Ogun State, to witness the graduation ceremony of one of his sons, Ayorogbayimika Fayose, told journalists that there was no reason children of public office holders should study in universities outside Nigeria, except in cases where courses they are interested in are not offered in Nigerian
universities.

The governor’s Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, quoted Mr. Fayose as saying, “We talk and do. Whatever we say is what we practice. Apart from the fact that none of my children attended schools abroad, I have never travelled out of the country for Medicare.

“Even though the views of people like us might not be popular among the powers that be because we say the truth and act the truth, we won’t stop telling them what they do not like to hear and one of such is that the only way to improve the standard of education in the country is for children of holders of public office to experience what children of ordinary Nigerians are experiencing in schools in the country.

“During my first tenure as governor, I took my son from a private school and enrolled him in SUBEB Model Primary School in Ado Ekiti.

“Today again, I am here to witness the graduation of my son and I make bold to say here that none of my children attended tertiary institution outside Nigeria.

“That should be the spirit not a situation where someone is the minister of education in Nigeria and his children are schooling abroad. And by enforcing this too, we will be saving Nigeria a lot of foreign exchange being wasted on medical and academic tourism.”

While condemning what he described as the hypocrisy of some Nigerian leaders, especially those in the All Progressives Congress (APC), Governor Fayose said; “Even children of President Muhammadu Buhari that they told us lived a modest life attended universities abroad.

Shouldn’t President Buhari have lived by example by enrolling his children in universities in Nigeria?”

While reiterating his commitment to the uplift of education in Ekiti State, Governor Fayose added, “We are after quality education and we want to maintain our position as leaders in the education sector. We are first in NECO examinations and we are among the best in WAEC and the only industry in Ekiti State is education and we can’t afford to let it depreciate.”

The governor also called on parents, corporate bodies and others to support the government in the task of improving the standard of education in the state.

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Senate subsidizes dollar at N200 for pilgrimage


The Nigerian Senate has requested the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to subsidize dollar at N200 for those going for pilgrimage either Isreal or Saudi Arabia.

Currently the naira exchange to dollar at the rate of N315 at the official rate, which means dollar will be subsidized at 37 per cent for pilgrims. Dollar sells for N356 at the black market.

The request ignores the provisions in the approved Medium Term Expenditure Framework, MTEF, covering all expenditure plans for 2017, and the Appropriation Act, which was earlier approved by the lawmakers, prior to the assent by Acting President Yemi Osinbajo.

Following the adoption of the report by the committee on foreign affairs on “Extortion of Pilgrims” by the National Hajj Commission, a former governor of Kebbi State, Adamu Aliero, APC-Kebbi, had requested, as matter of urgency, concession of N200 to the dollar once every year, for those going on pilgrimages.

“The committee strongly recommends the concession of N200 to $1 for 2017 Hajj, to bring down cost to the bearable level,” Mr. Aliero said, after claiming the CBN had been offering FOREX at that rate to some unnamed businesses.

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My wife twists my testicles during fights– Man seeks divorce

One Chukwuma Onwumere on Thursday told an Igando Customary Court in Lagos State that his wife of 10 years, Obianuju was after his life.

The 43-year-old man said his wife was fond of going out and returning at will and that whenever he cautioned her, she would turn it to a fight.

Begging the court to dissolve the marriage, Chukuma said: “My wife wants to kill me by always grabbing my testicles when we fight.

“Apart from twisting my scrotum, she was always hitting me with dangerous weapons over trivial issues.

“She once cut me on the head with a machete during one of our fights.”

However, Obianuju, denied all the allegations, insisting that her husband was the one threatening her life.

She said: “My husband was always beating me; all the scars on my body were as a result of his abuse. There was a day he beat me and one of my teeth fell off.

“There was a night I saw him holding a charm and moving round my bed and reciting some incantations. I stood up, but he left my room and placed the charm at my door post.

“My husband carried my properties to my parents, saying he was told by a spiritualist that I am a witch. He told my parents that he was no longer interested in our marriage.”

Obianuju pleaded with the court to grant her husband’s wish and dissolve the marriage as she too was no longer interested in the union.

President of the court, Mr. Adegboyega Omilola, adjourned the case until September 12 for further hearing.

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Nigeria restores CRK and IRK as independent subject

All ministry of education has been directed by the Federal Government of Nigeria to restore both Christian Religious Knowledge and the Islamic Religious Knowledge as independent subjects.

Students on assemble ground

The government asked the Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council, NERDC, the country’s education body to immediately reinstall the two subjects where they were before their removal.

Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, gave the directive at a meeting with State commissioners of education and stakeholders in the education sector, in Abuja.

The minister, represented by the Minister of State for Education, Anthony Anwukah, noted that the meeting was aimed at strengthening the partnership within the three tiers of government in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals 4, SDG4.

Speaking at the occasion, Adamu said the restoration of the subjects to their old status was imperative given the controversies their removal had generated in recent times, especially the complaint by the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN.

The minister said: “There is this controversy over the merger of CRK and IRK in the school curriculum. There were complaints by parents that children were overloaded with so many subjects and the recommendation then was to merge one or two subjects.

“Unfortunately, water and oil were merged together and it is not working. So, to save ourselves the agony, the two subjects should be separated.”

The minister said Nigeria has selected the Goal 4 of the SDGs, which emphasizes inclusive and quality education for all and promotion of lifelong learning, for implementation in view of the importance of education as a fulcrum to national development.

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Lagos extends movement restriction over LG elections

Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode

The Lagos State Government has announced the extension of the movement restriction on July 22 when the local government elections will take place.

There has also being alteration, movements will now be restricted between the hours of 7am to 3pm instead of 8am to 2pm initially.

The state commissioner of Information and Strategy made the announcement in a statement, saying the movement restriction will facilitate the smooth conduct of the local government elections.

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Kidnapped woman begs Nigerian government in new video to negotiate with Boko Haram to secure their release [VIDEO]

boko haram
 

Terror group, Boko Haram released another video on Monday where kidnapped women pleaded with Nigerian government to come in terms with the terrorists in order to secure their release. The women were kidnapped last month, Sahara Reporters reported.

In the video, published by Sahara Reporters, the women pleaded with the Nigerian government to negotiate with the terrorists for their release.

The women are believed to be among 14 others abducted when the gunmen ambushed a convoy travelling under military escort along the Biu road in Borno State.

The 4:35 minutes video footage featured a hooded Boko Haram member introducing the women and thereafter asked two of them to deliver their message to the Nigerian government.

The video showed about 10 of the women who appeared traumatized but well kept.

It could be recalled that a large convoy travelling from Maiduguri to Damboa under a military escort was ambushed on June 20 by Boko Haram gunmen some 31 kilometres from Maiduguri.

Some of the travellers, including a police officer and a soldier were killed in the ambush.

Although the Borno State Police Command confirmed the attack, it refused to state the number of those taken away by the attackers.

A few days after the ambush, Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, release a short video where he claimed that his fighters had seized more than a dozen women and “senior police officers” in the ambush. Mr. Shekau said the abducted women had become his “slaves”.

The release of Monday’s video came on the same day elders of Askira Uba Local Government Area of Borno State held a press conference in Maiduguri to urge the Nigerian government to secure the release of 14 abducted women from their community.

The elders said the women were seized even though they were travelling in a police vehicle to attend a ceremony.

The abducted women are relatives of a deceased police woman whose corpse was being conveyed for burial when their convoy was attacked.

The elders lamented “the disturbing silence of the government” over the fate of the missing women.

In the Boko Haram video footage, one of the abducted women who introduced herself as Deborah Philemon, said their captors had been very nice to them, although it appeared she had been rehearsed by her captors for the speech.

“My name is Deborah Philemon. What I want to tell the people of Nigeria is that in all honesty, you (Boko Haram) have been taking good care of us since the time you picked us to this place, you have been providing care to those that were wounded.

“We have never been hungry for a single day; you give us water and all that we need to feed with. The government of Nigeria should not deny that we have been kidnapped; we are kidnapped and here we are. We thank you people that have been taking good care of us.”

After the speech by Mrs. Philemon, some of the women were shown sobbing as the Boko Haram gunman standing in front of them directed the next woman to make her speech.

Introducing herself as Amina Adam Gambiya, the woman, who appeared to be in her 50s, said she is a staff of the Federal College of Fresh Water Fishery, Baga.

“My name is Amina Adam Gambiya. I am a staff of Federal College of Fresh Water Fishery, Baga. I am a lecturer. We want the government to know that among us are government workers, some are not. We are all humans. We want government to come to our rescue the way they did to the Chibok schoolgirls; government should not abandon us, because we are all citizens.

“This happened to me when I was on my way traveling. So, on behalf of all the women here, both those that are federal government workers and those that are not, the government should do the needful just as it did to the Chibok schoolgirls so that we could be freed.

“Among the women here, there are some five of us that are breadwinners of their families. No one should doubt that we are abducted. Here we are; it is clear that we have been abducted for nearly 30 days. We beg you to do all that is best to come and release us; we are in distress here.”

The video ended abruptly after the speech by Mrs. Gombiya.

On Monday afternoon, elders of Askira Uba Local Government Area informed journalists at their press conference that the 14 women in the custody of Boko Haram were their wives and daughters.

They said they were worried that nothing had been done by the police and other security agencies to rescue the women since their abduction, despite entreaties made by individuals and officials of the local government council.

“Till date the security agencies are still silent on this burning issue,” said the elders led by Madu Bukar, a former chairman of the governing council of the Federal College of Education (Technical), Potiskum.

“We the parents, husbands, relations and indeed entire Margi community of Askira Uba Local Government Area are now in trauma waiting anxiously to know why we are being treated like that,” Mr. Bukar said for the group.

He said they had written an open letter to the Acting president, Yemi Osinbajo, and petitioned the Inspector-General of Police, Idris Ibrahim, for redress.

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Man disguising as female sex worker nabbed in Kaduna

 

Man, identified as Van Gomani, who allegedly posed as a female sex worker was nabbed in the early hours of today, along Kaunda, Malawi and is currently in the custody of Kanengo Police.

The suspect dressed up like a woman complete with hair extension, stood along the road where he was picked up by a man who thought she was a lady.

A source said: “They went together and booked a room. It was in that room that the other man noticed that the person he picked is not a lady but rather a fellow man.”
The man dragged the suspect to police because he felt deceived and believed he posed as a lady with intent to rob him.

A statement signed by the spokesperson for Kanengo Police, Salome Zgambo Chibwana said:

Von Goman comes from kapetera village T/A kapeni in Blantyre and will appear in court soon to answer charges of soliciting immoral purpose which is under section 180 sub section (e) of the penal code.

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My wife told me 3 weeks ago to take care of our children in case anything happens– Husband of murdered Perm Sec


The husband of the Osun Permanent secretary of Bureau of General Services, Mrs. Olufunke Kolawole, who was kidnapped and later murdered by hoodlums, has shared strange words his wife said 3 weeks before her the bad incidence.

The death of Mrs. Kolawole, who was murdered by gunmen along Okene-Abuja Road in Kogi State, on her way to Abuja last Thursday, stirred mixed feelings about the actual cause of the death whether it was an assassination by kidnappers or murder by armed robbers.

Mr. Tunde Kolawole, the husband of the deceased however spoke with journalists on the text message he got from the wife before she encountered mysterious death.

He said: “About three weeks ago, she sent a text message to me. I was in Lagos then. When I read the message, it said: ‘In case anything happens, please take care of the children. Make sure they are comfortable.”

“When I read the message, I thought it was her normal way of asking me to care for the children. I never suspected anything bad, neither did I imagine that anything was going to happen to her.

On the speculated death, he expressed doubt on the tendency of his wife being killed by hired assassins.

“I don’t want to believe that she had a premonition of her death before sending that message to me. I only felt that it was her normal way of asking me to take care of the children.”

“I can’t say whether they were kidnappers because the manner in which they attacked her showed that they were not kidnappers, but robbers because some of them searched her bags and made away with money, her handsets and other valuable items”, Mr. Kolawole noted.

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I don’t own any Facebook account– Lagos CP Owoseni

owoseni_Fellow Press_nigeria news
Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni

Members of the public have been warned from transacting any deal with fraudulent Facebook accounts in the name of the Lagos State Police Commissioner, Fatai Owoseni, because he does not operate any, the spokesperson for State Police Commend, ASP Olarinde Famous-Cole said.

The ASP said the police boss is not a social media fanatic and he does not have anything to do with the fake accounts in his name on Facebook. Famous-Cole then warned those behind the criminal act to desist or face the full wrath of the law.

Hiss statement reads: “This is to inform the general public that the Lagos state commissioner of police, CP Fatai Owoseni does not operate a Facebook account.

“It is necessary to inform the public about this, so as to avoid any fraudulent activities through any claim of a Facebook account operated by the Lagos state commissioner of police.

“Those involved in such fraudulent acts are hereby warned to desist from such deviant behaviour or face the full wrath of the law”.

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Photos of Osun Perm Sec killed by kidnappers

 

Bureau of General Services’ Permanent Secretary in Osun state, Mrs Olufunke Oluwakemi Kolawole was killed by gunmen suspected to be armed robbersin Okene, Kogi State, on her way to Abuja on Thursday, July 13.

Some of the deseased photos:

 

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I told my husband not to leave camp until 5am, he left 3am–Wife of pastor killed by fallen container along two sons

Vivian Ezechila, the 49 year old bereaved woman narrated the sad tale of hearing about how the fallen container from truck killed her husband, Pastor Charles Ezechila and two sons while returning from Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) camp.

The accident occurred on July 8 while they were returning from the church’s monthly Holy Ghost vigil.

The truck driver was reported to have fled immediately the scene of the accident, while his motor boy was arrested, she told Punch. An old woman and other boy who was their neighbour also died in the accident.

Recounting how she heard about their death, the Abia state-born women said, “My pastor called me on Saturday, July 8, around 7am. He said, “Where are you, Sister Vivian?” I told him I was at home. He then asked me who among my children accompanied my husband to the Redemption Camp. I told him two of my children— Peculiar, 12, and Chibuike, 14. I asked him if all was well. He said yes. After the call, I was disturbed because anytime my husband went to the camp; he usually came back home around 5 or 6am. I had been calling his number but it was not going through.”

Sensing the strangeness of the pastor call, she immediately called her daughter to confirm the whereabout of her husband and sons, but only to be told by family friend from Ojota that container fell on their bus with other church members inside and are all dead.

Asked why she did not go with them to the camp, she said she was not feeling strong enough to bear the usual stress of the camp and decided to stay at home.

The women said their last discussion was her calling him Friday 11pm not to leave camp too early until 6am for the fear of Badoo cultist killings in Ikorodu, but the husband told her not to worry that God whose church they are returning from will protect him. So he left the camp around 3am.

Aside the two sons, she has two other children, Victoria and Emmanuel who are still in the university.

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Nigeria government to start collecting tax from beggars


The Nigerian government has stated that no one would be left out in the campaign to enlarge the tax revenue.

She said some beggars were earning millions and that “proceeds from begging are taxable. You are supposed to pay taxes even if your means of income is begging”.

Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun said this in Lagos at a lecture at PWC’s Business School, with the theme: ‘Voluntary Assets and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS) Interactive Session for Executives and Business Owners.’

She said to ascertain the income status of the companies/individuals and their lifestyle, investigators would rely on information derived from Bank Verification Number (BVN), records of property ownership, records of foreign exchange allocation, and records of company ownership from the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), among others.

Adeosun said: “We are using some firms to trace assets internationally.The investigators’ findings will enable us to compare the income and how much tax the company/person is really paying, and that gives us lots of information.

“But we encourage people to come up and pay their taxes willingly. You can register a high-end car. It tells me something about your income.

“So, we look at your tax returns. If you registered Mercedes E-Class and you are paying N100,000 tax, then something is wrong. Those are red flags. We now have the capacity to assess people accurately.

“We are trying to build an economy where we have oil and other things. It is going to be oil plus and wider economy”.

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Imo: Mother exchanges her son for bag of rice

The Imo State Police Command has paraded a 20-year-old woman, Chioma Fidelis, for exchanging her two-month-old son, Favour Fidelis, for half a bag of rice, six chairs, cement and N200,000 cash.

Chioma, who admitted that she bartered her son for the aforementioned items in addition to the cash, disclosed that she gave birth to the child following an unwanted pregnancy but was unable to cater for the newborn.

She said that it was in her point of necessity that one of her accomplices, one Chidimma Unakalamba, advised her to sell the child.

Chioma, who hails from Ehime Mbano LGA of Imo State, said she had no option but to accept the offer, because the baby was suffering from bad health, and also because she had nobody to take care of her and the child.

Unakalamba, who was paraded alongside Chioma and other accomplices, reportedly confessed to selling the baby boy to a couple, Mr. and Mrs. Jonas Anyanwu, who allegedly were in dire need of a male child.

She said the baby was sold for N600,000 to the couple.

Though the baby has been recovered, a mild drama ensued when the couple insisted that they paid N700,000 for the child.

Unakalamba then admitted that she deducted N137,000 she spent on the child’s medical bills, and that she gave the mother N200,000 and pocketed the remaining.

The Imo State Police Command has paraded a 20-year-old woman, Chioma Fidelis, for exchanging her two-month-old son, Favour Fidelis, for half a bag of rice, six chairs, cement and N200,000 cash.

Chioma, who admitted that she bartered her son for the aforementioned items in addition to the cash, disclosed that she gave birth to the child following an unwanted pregnancy but was unable to cater for the newborn.

She said that it was in her point of necessity that one of her accomplices, one Chidimma Unakalamba, advised her to sell the child.

Chioma, who hails from Ehime Mbano LGA of Imo State, said she had no option but to accept the offer, because the baby was suffering from bad health, and also because she had nobody to take care of her and the child.

Unakalamba, who was paraded alongside Chioma and other accomplices, reportedly confessed to selling the baby boy to a couple, Mr. and Mrs. Jonas Anyanwu, who allegedly were in dire need of a male child.

She said the baby was sold for N600,000 to the couple.

Though the baby has been recovered, a mild drama ensued when the couple insisted that they paid N700,000 for the child.

Unakalamba then admitted that she deducted N137,000 she spent on the child’s medical bills, and that she gave the mother N200,000 and pocketed the remaining.

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Osun Perm Sec kidnapped along Abuja-Okene Road found dead

Osun Perm Sec kidnapped, hacked to death along Abuja-Okene Road

Permanent Secretary of Bureau of General Serevices in Osun state, Mrs. Olufunke Oluwakemi Kolawole, has been kidnapped and hacked to death.

Kolawole was abducted by hoodlums on Friday while travelling from Osogbo to Abuja for an official assignment and taken to unknown place.

The Permanent Secretary was reportedly attacked by the kidnappers on her way to attend the inauguration of the Ministry of Justice Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Abiola Adewemimo, being one of the justices of Industrial Court.

The incident has been confirmed by Mr. Sunday Owoeye, State Head of Service, in a statement, in which commiserate with the deceased family and colleagues.

Read the statement below:

“On behalf of the Forum of Head of Service and Permanent Secretaries, Tutors-General, Accountant-General, Auditors-General and Surveyor-General, and with rude shock and a deep sense of loss, I hereby painfully announce the untimely death of Mrs. OLUFUNKE OLUWAKEMI KOLAWOLE who was brutally attacked by kidnappers while travelling along Okene – Abuja highway on her way to Abuja on Thursday, 12th July, 2017 for an official assignment.

“Until her death, Mrs. Kolawole was the Permanent Secretary, Bureau of General Services, Office of the Governor, State of Osun.

“The Forum commiserate with the families of the deceased, the entire public service and the State Government of Osun on this irreparable loss.”

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Osinbajo sign N1.6billion to states damaged by flood

osinbajo_fellow press

Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, has issued directive to Finance Minister, Kemi Adeosun, for the release of N1.6 billion to cater for 16 states affected by floods across the country.

The states are Ekiti, Osun, Akwa Ibom, Kebbi, Niger, Kwara, Ebonyi, Enugu, Abia, Oyo, Lagos, Plateau, Sokoto, Edo and Bayelsa.

READ ALSO: State Assembly summons Commissioner of Environment over flooding in Kwara

Presidency spokesperson, Femi Adesina, disclosed this to journalists after the Federal Executive Council meeting, saying the fund is intended to cushion the effect of the damage caused by the floods in affected states.

His said, “The fund would be taken from the Federal Government’s Ecological Account in the Central Bank of Nigeria”.

Explaining further, Adesian said Finance Minister has been directed to release the said amount directly to the office of the National Emergency Management Agency for immediate disbursement to the states affected in the flood.

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[UPDATE] Breaking: Multiple explosions hits Maiduguri, killed 11, 5 injured

Not fewer than 11 people have been killed in the Maiduguri multiple bomb attack Tuesday night, which is suspected to be from Boko Haram terrorists.

Dwellers narrated they heard the explosion around Molia Kura, on Damboa road, an outskirt of Maiduguri.

This ordeal has ejected many resident from their homes, as they fled for safety.

8 people died along with suicide bomber and 3 other persons were also killed while 5 injured in the third and fourth explosions.

Sources revealed that the first explosion occurred about 10:15pm, followed by another one. The eye witness said the interval between the second and third explosion is within an hour. Though there is no official report from Security agencies as at the time of filing this report.

The source added that, “It is a foiled attempt by Boko Haram insurgents to infiltrate the town.”

Inquiries from residents of Jiddari Polo area by our correspondent was meet with shocks as they said that they could not really tell where they explosion was coming from.

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We’ll continue to meet health needs of Kwarans–Ahmed

The Kwara State government has restated its resolve to continue to improve and meet the health need of its people.

The State Governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed stated this yesterday ‎while declaring open a two-day giving hearing to the hearing impaired people in Ilorin.

Governor Ahmed who was represented by his Deputy, Elder Peter Kisira assured that the State government would continue to commit resources to the programme and other health related programme with intervention to the health needs of the people.

The Governor stressed that the programme was in tandem with the shared prosperity programme of his administration.

He appreciated the enormous resources committed to the programme and the initiative of the Olusegun Obasanjo Foundation to minister to the needs of the hearing impaired which was one of the critical areas of human need.

Governor Ahmed noted that the programme would help to further put in the front burner the health programmes of the State government.

The Governor ‎explained that the programme was a follow up to the training received by Kwara team a month ago in Abeokuta at a programme packaged by the Olusegun Obasanjo Foundation.

He congratulated the prospective beneficiaries and urged them to conduct themselves in orderly manner to enable them draw maximum benefit from the programme.

Also speaking, the Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Isiaka Gold said Kwara State was one of the twelve States to benefit from the project adding that the people had been mobilized to participate in the exercise.

The Representative of Olusegun Obasanjo Foundation, Doctor Olalekan Makinde who enumerated some of the areas of coverage by the Foundation pledged that its would continue to collaborate with the State government to meet the health need of the people.

‎The Director of Starkey Hearing foundation, Doctor Lukman Lawal who thanked the State government for its support, stated that over eight hundred people were targeted during the exercise and called for sustainability ‎of the programme.

Responding, one of the beneficiaries, Alhaji Momonu Abdulkadir Gambari commended the State government and the Foundation for the giant stride and its effort at taking care of the people especially the less privileged.

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First gay Muslim wedding in the United Kingdom

Gay Muslims, 24 year old Jahed Choudhury and 19 year old Sean Rogan, who got married are the first ever to do so in Britain.

Jahed from West Midlands grew up feeling ostracized by the Muslim community because he was gay. Because of his sexual preference, he was considered the black sheep of the family and was sent on a religious pilgrimage hoping that would ‘cure’ him of being gay.

 

After years of being bullied, he contemplated taking his life and was sitting on a town bench in Darlaston, crying, when he met Sean.

Sean comforted him and they began dating. They finally got married in a ceremony in Walsall registry office, both wearing traditional Bangladeshi wedding clothes.

Jahed said: “I was crying on a bench and Sean came over and asked if I was okay. He gave me hope at one of my lowest points and he’s stood by me all the way. I stood out like a sore thumb – I never liked football, I preferred watching fashion shows on TV. I remember feeling trapped. It went all over school, people would spit on me, empty the rubbish bins on me, call me pig and the Muslim people would shout ‘harum’ – which is a very nasty insult in my language.”

Jahed was made to date girls, change his social circle, take medication and even go on a pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia and Bangladesh in a bid to change his sexual orientation but nothing worked. Until he overdosed on pills and sat on that bench crying, that was when his life turned around. His wedding to Sean was well attended by family and friends of both men. Jahed’s mother, sister, older brother and cousin witnessed the wedding, as did Mr Rogan’s mother, two sisters and older brother.

Jahed said: “My mum has always been so supportive. Without her I would not be here today. It was lovely for both out families to be there. We get on really well. It was just close friends and family who were invited as I did not want a big wedding. It was just perfect the way it was.”

After the wedding, Jahed said they will have a huge party in Darlaston then go to Spain for a week of honeymoon. He further disclosed that Sean is considering converting to Islam, but that they would struggle to find a mosque. He said he told Sean to convert on his behalf and also to wear the Bangladeshi traditional attire for their wedding and he agreed to both.

He said: “The outfits are traditional Muslim-Bangladeshi outfits. Everyone wears them for a wedding at home. I told Sean I thought it would be very nice to wear them and he agreed. Also, they look very pretty. Sean is considering converting to Islam. I asked him if he would on my behalf. We would not be able to find a place of worship however. We would not be welcomed by any mosques. I have heard about the liberal mosque in Berlin that opened recently where they are a lot less traditional. It sounds fantastic. I really want to visit, and wish we could have somewhere like that here.”

The newlyweds and their families have received a number of death threats since the wedding, but they are determined to ignore them.

Jahed said: “We have had death threats against us and our families. People telling me they are going to kill me and that I should never have been born. They are really vile, horrible comments. But we are so happy we are able to just brush them off. We’ve had an awful lot of support too.”

He added: “I want to say to all people going through the same thing that it’s okay – we’re going to show the whole world that you can be gay and Muslim.”

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CAN President accused of fraud…those agents of Satan should give evidence, he replied

can
Rev’d Supo Ayokunle

President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Rev’d Supo Ayokunle, as denied the accusation by National President of Patriotic Christian Youth of Nigeria, Evangelist Simon Timothy Nasso, of diverting N40 million meant for the Internally Displaced Persons to purchase his official cars.

Ayokunle also called his accusers agents of Satan who have no evidence against him, saying the hallmark of his ministry is integrity. He also said those opposing him wrongly are those who desired his position and desire soil his name so that they can be popular.

“That it was a blatant lie from agents of Satan, and a random imagination from those who are opposed to current overhaul of CAN”, Ayokunle replied in a chat with Vanguard.

“You should know that somebody of my spiritual status cannot misappropriate money because I came to CAN from a denomination with bigger administrative set up and with more funds to manage for different mission works.

“Let them know that I am not a novice in administration and my integrity is the hallmark of my ministry.”

Rev. Ayokunle urged his aides to let the correspondent know that it was the “few remnants of political jobbers who feel that they are loosing out in CAN and are opposed to a total overhaul of things in CAN that are behind such allegation. ‘’They belong to the camp of evil men like Korah and Abiram that opposed Moses and accused him wrongly.

“Tell him (our correspondent) to ask them to give him documentary evidence for their claim. Besides, he should tell them to wait for the external auditor’s report before their campaign of calumny. Tell him that the people are agents of Satan who do not worry about rubbishing the image of Christ, which CAN and its leadership stand for.

“One of them eyes the position I divinely occupy thinking that it is by destroying my name that they can be popular.

They did that with my predecessor and they have started with me again. By the grace of God, unless they repent, God will recompense tribulation to all those people who are part of the mixed multitude in the body of Christ doing this type of dirty job. “This is what the Book of II Thessalonians 1:6 says. They are enemies of the church. Why can’t they present their allegation to CAN leadership if they are sure of it? Why should they go to the press?”

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State Assembly summons Commissioner of Environment over flooding in Kwara

As part of measures to  prevent  flood related disaster in Kwara State, the State House of Assembly has resolved to invite the State Commissioner for Environment and Forestry to brief it on the state’s preparedness in forestalling flooding in the State.

To this end , the House Committee on Environment and Forestry has been directed to invite the State Commissioner for Environment and Forestry ,Otunba Taiwo Joseph to brief members on the activities of his Ministry in maintaining the environment and prevent health hazards in the State.

This is part of the resolutions of the House, while considering a Motion on” Preventing Flooding in Kwara State” sponsored by a member representing Kaiama/ Kemanji/ Wajibe Constituency Hon. Ahmed Ibn Mohammed.

Reading the resolutions of the House, the Deputy Speaker, Elder Mathew Okedare, who presided over the Tuesday’s sitting, said the motion was timely and expedient in view of the alert on flooding this year by relevant  government agencies.

The House equally called on the State government to ,as a matter of urgency, ensure regular and routine monitoring of the environment to  prevent dumping of refuse on water ways.

It also enjoined the state government to liaise with the federal government on  resettling all the communities along river banks to forestall  attendant loss of lives and properties to flooding.

The Legislature also called on the Ministry of Environment and Forestry  to declare a week as “operation clear your drainage” in the state, to  ensure free flow of erosion as a precautionary measure against possible flooding in the State.

It equally urged the state government to intensify its advocacy efforts about the inherent dangers of flooding and living at river banks.

Hon Ibn Mohammed had while raising the motion, said the proactive measures of the state government would go along way in preventing the reoccurrence of incidence of  flooding and its attendant loss of lives and property in Niger and Lagos States in Kwara.

Other members who spoke on the motion emphasised the need for government to make adequate preparation to mitigate against the effects of possible flooding in the State.

The House equally on Tuesday acknowledged the receipt of message from the Governor, Alhaji Abdul Fatah Ahmed,  requesting to House to pass  to bill , given legal backing to the establishment of the State Vocational Technical Entrepreneurship Development College, Ajase Ipo, while a Bill to amend the state Road Traffic Management Authority and Bill for a law to give legal backing to the establishment of International Aviation College Ilorin, passed through first reading at the floor of the House.

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Gunmen kill business woman inside her shop in Ilorin

A business woman was on Friday’s night killed by suspected hired assassins in Kulende area of Ilorin, Kwara state.

The gruesome murder of the woman popularly known as Alhaja has thrown the residents of the area into mourning.

The business woman was reportedly murdered by her assailants in her shop around 10.00PM on the fateful day.

Though, there was no clues yet about what informed the killing of Alhaja, she had been buried last Saturday in accordance with Islamic rites.

The spokesman of the state police command, Ajayi Okasanmi confirmed the murder of the woman.

He said some suspects had been arrested in connection with the killing of the woman and would be charged to court soon.

Also, the Kwara State Command of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) yesterday paraded five persons suspected of criminal conspiracy and theft of 80 bags of cement at Lafarge cement depot, Ilorin.

The state Commandant of NSCDC, Pedro Ideba while parading the suspects at the state command office, Ilorin said that the officers and men of Ilorin West divisional office made the arrest around 5:am on Sunday in Ilorin based on  intelligent information
The commandant said that he prime suspect, Olamide Ayeni, 24, was a security and store keeper of Lafarge cement Depot along Egbejila road, Ilorin.

He said that the suspect facilitated the crime while the buyer, Suleiman Mamood Agboola, 35 , the truck driver Rashidi Olori, 35, the motor boy Kasim Akorede, 20, and the connector Azeez Musa, all admitted to the crime.

He said the command would handover the suspects to the police for further investigation.

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Cult members kill undergraduate soldier in Yenegoa

On Monday, his family urged security agencies in the state to find his killers and bring them to justice.

Ovieakini Enoch, the deceased’s uncle, said that 20-year old Saviour was shot dead at about 8 p.m. on the Gwegwe/Naval Road in Ovom, Yenagoa Local Government Area.

He disclosed that Saviour was admitted into the NDA two years ago and that his father, Gbavieme Enoch, also died two years ago while serving in the Nigerian Army in Maidugiri, Borno.

According to him, Gbavieme, who was a Staff Sergeant, was killed while performing a national duty on Jan. 25, 2015.

“That is why Saviour’s death is a painful one,” he said.  “We are calling on the police and other security agencies to assist us to bring the perpetrators to justice.

He added he learned the police made some arrests on Sunday night.

Saviour’s mother, who cried uncontrollably, also urged the security agencies to help the family to fish out the killers.

“My son died by shooting and my husband also died by shooting; my husband was a Staff Sergeant in the Army, he died two years ago and now, my son,” she lamented.

Speaking by telephone, ASP Asimin Butswat, the spokesman of the Police Command in Bayelsa, said he would brief journalists on the matter when authorized to do so.

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Gunmen killed NTA reporter in Benin

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Nigerian Television Authority reporter, Lawrence Okojie, has been shot dead by some unknown gunmen along Ogunola junction off Siluko road in Benin city on Saturday July 8th.

According to reports, the NTA Benin reporter was gunned down minutes after he came down from his company staff bus.

He had called to inform his wife that he was closeby to their house. Hours after he did not arrive home and his phone unreachable, his wife raised an alarm. She contacted his colleagues who came down and began to search for him.

His remains were later found at a morgue in Benin. Confirming the incident, the state police Public Relations officer, Moses Nkombe, said one person has been arrested in connection with the murder of the deceased. He said investigations is still ongoing and that all those found guilty would be brought to book.

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Osinbajo visits collapsed Mokwa-Jebba bridge, promises repair within 14 days

Professsor Yemi Osinbajo, Nigeria Acting President was at the collapsed location of Mokwa-Jebba Bridge, Niger State to access the level of damage and he promised that the Federal Government would repair it within two weeks.

Accompanied by Babatunde Fashola, Minister of Power, Works and Housing; and Niger State governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani, Osinbajo enjoined the motorists plying the bridge to exercise patience.

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The bridge collapsed on June 11 as a result of flood. However the Acting President has promised to provide alternative bridge in the next 14 days to facilitate easy movement while traders convey their goods.

Inspection time: Minister of Works Fashola leads Acting President to see the damage level of the bridge
Mokwa-Jabba bridge: Happy residents and bridge users impressed with Osinbajo’s visitation, knowing it would be positive impact

His words: “We have come here to look at the bridge because this road is very important to us as a government and this axis is very important to motorists and the country.

“The Federal Government will make sure that the collapsed bridges along Tegina/Mokwa and Jebba/Mokwa roads are done immediately and all repairs on the roads are done.

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Osinbajo promises to fastrack the repair within 2 weeks

“We want you to be patience with us, as shortly the bridge will be finished in the next two weeks,’’ Osinbajo said.