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Masari constitutes Judicial Commission on alleged excesses of SARS in Katsina State

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GOV. Aminu Masari
GOV. Aminu Masari

EndSars: Edo youths protest despite 24-hour curfew

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EndSARS
EndSARS

Buhari hosts Emir of Kano, Aminu Ado Bayero, at Aso Villa

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BUHAR
BUHAR

#EndSARS: SERAP condemns shooting of protesters at Lekki

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SERAP
SERAP

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, SERAP, has condemned “reports that security agents are shooting at #EndSARS peaceful protesters at the Lekki Toll gate, Lagos. This must stop immediately.”

 A statement by Kolawole Oluwadare, SERAP deputy director, said: Under the Nigerian constitution, 1999 [as amended] and human rights treaties to which Nigeria is a state party, the authorities are obligated to respect and protect the right to life and security of the person, the rights to freedom of expression, association, and peaceful assembly of everyone, including peaceful protesters.”

The statement which was made available to Realnews October 20 said: “We call on the Nigeria authorities to order a prompt, independent and impartial inquiry into the reports of shooting of #EndSARS protesters at the Lekki Toll gate by security agents, identify suspected perpetrators and ensure that they are brought to justice without delay.”

“All the victims must be allowed access to justice and effective remedies, including adequate compensation, satisfaction and guarantee of non-repetition.

“SERAP calls on the International Criminal Court (ICC) to open investigations into cases of attacks on peaceful protesters in Nigeria in the context of #EndSARS.”

“SERAP believes that substantial grounds exist to warrant the intervention of the Prosecutor in this case. Pursuant to the Rome Statute, the Prosecutor has power to intervene in a situation under the jurisdiction of the Court if the Security Council or states parties refer a situation or if information is provided from other sources such as the information that is now publicly available in the country.”

– Oct. 21, 2020 @ 6:46 GMT /

ABU Zaria to develop Artemisia to strengthen fight against malaria

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ABU ZARIA
ABU ZARIA

The Institute for Agricultural Research (IAR), Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria, says it is set to collaborate with Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Department of Chemical Engineering of ABU to develop Artemisia industry for Nigeria.

Artemisia is a plant which produces artemisinin used in the production of Artemisinin-based Combination Drug Therapy (ACTs) used for the treatment of malaria.

Prof. Muhammad Ishiyaku, the Executive Director of IAR, made this known during a media interaction in Zaria on Tuesday.

Ishiyaku said the mandate of the institute was for national genetic improvement of cotton, maize, cowpea, groundnut, sunflower, Artemisia and Jatropher plant.

He added that “artemisia is a plant which is useful in the treatment of malaria; the anti-malaria drug is extracted from the plant.

“We have been given the responsibility to develop a variety of artemisia that would have high yield of the chemical compound.

“The institute would strengthen collaboration with Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Department of Chemical Engineering to develop Artemisia industry for Nigeria.”

Ishiyaku added that Jatropher plant, known as `bini-da-zugu’ in Hausa language, was very good at providing bio-diesel and widely used in the cosmetic industry.

He said the institute would also focus on developing groundnut, sorghum and cowpea that would provide feed for livestock.

He noted that the institute was not only concentrating on the direct food aspect of the crops but all the agricultural systems that would make the system more productive, including the development of livestock industry.

He maintained that by diversifying into the production of feed for animals from the genetically improved crops, the institute intended to curb farmers and herders conflict, especially in the northern part of the country.

Similarly, Ishiyaku said the institute had developed flakes known as “Kanzo” in Hausa from maize and sorghum in different taste and flavours ranging from salty, sweetened, spiced and other flavors.

The director called on entrepreneurs to partner with the institute to explore different business avenues, saying “the institute has also developed a bio fertilizer.

“Bio-fertilizers are micro-organisms that have beneficial association with crop plants such that the micro-organisms get some food from the plant and in turn they would produce fertilizer for the plant to benefit from.

“Granulated micro-organisms are now packaged in such a way that it can be applied to the soil directly to improve its fertility and increase crop yield by about 20-30 per cent.

“This is another area we are going to partner with entrepreneurs to develop a small enterprise for the production of this bio-fertiliser.” (NAN)

Oct 20  2020 @ 20:48 GMT

#EndSARS: Suspected hoodlums invade Customs outstation in Edo, cart away seized contrabands

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ENDSARS
ENDSARS

Suspected hoodlums on Tuesday under the guise of the #EndSARS protesters invaded the Benin out station of the Nigerian Customs Service (NSC) and carted away some seized contrabands in the warehouse.
Mr Meshach Uban, the Officer in charge of the outstation, confirmed the development to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Benin.
Uban said that the hoodlums, who attacked the outstation at about 3pm, defied the rains to carry out looting in the out stations for more than four hours on.
He said that he and his officers were lucky to have escaped with their lives, adding that in spite of distress calls to the Edo Commissioner of Police, Johnson Kokumo, there was no response from the police. (NAN)

Oct 20  2020 @ 20:43 GMT

#EndSARS: Akeredolu imposes 24 hr indefinite curfew

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ondo state guber
ondo state guber

Gov. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State has imposed a 24 hour curfew on the state from 12 a.m on Wednesday till further notice, due to the ongoing nationwide #EndSARS protest.

 

Akeredolu, who gave the directive in a statewide broadcast on Tuesday, however, exempted those on essential duties from the curfew.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Nigerians, especially the youths, have taken to the street in protest over violations of human right and alleged extra judicial killing by Police personnel, specifically the State Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

He said all bars, banks, shops, petrol stations, shopping malls, markets, motor parks and all public spaces were to comply with the directive forthwith except those on essentials services.

The governor, who directed security agencies to ensure compliance and stand firm in the defence of the people, advised all parents and guardians to ensure that their wards were kept in their homes.

“Pieces of news emanating from our neighbouring states are somewhat disturbing.

“It is obvious that certain elements have hijacked the agitation originally meant to correct the manifest wrongs for which the operatives of the defunct SARS are accused.

“Our state has not experienced this ugly trend and it is our belief that the good people of the state will continue to display the same level of patriotism as the problem is not local.

“The government is looking seriously into all these issues with a view to resolving them and giving our youths confidence.

“This administration has the obligation to protect all citizens, including the youths. It will not shy away from its responsibility in this regard.

“I admonish all citizens and residents of our great state to discourage violence and disturbance of peace throughout the state,” he said in the broadcast. (NAN)

Oct 20  2020 @ 20:38 GMT

Edo House of Reps caucus seeks inauguration of 14 Assembly members-elect

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EDO
EDO
Edo House of Representatives caucus has called for the inauguration of 14 Edo State House of Assembly members elected in 2019 in the interest of peace and development of the state.
Rep Peter Akpatason, the Leader of Edo caucus in the House of Representatives, made the call when six Edo State House of Assembly (ESHA) members paid the caucus a courtesy visit on Tuesday in Abuja.
He urged the newly-elected speaker, Mr Marcus Onobun, representing Esan West State Constituency to immediately embark on the process of bringing all members together.
According to him, do everything possible to ensure that those 14 members are inaugurated for the sake of peace and harmonious relationship in the state.
Akpatason who is also the Deputy Leader of of the House of Reps called on Onobun to prevail on Gov. Godwin Obasaki to ensure the inauguration of the 14 Assembly members- elect, adding that this would help to douse tension in the state.
According to him, ensure that you also put the case of the counsellors that have not been paid before  the governor so that their feelings can be assuaged.
He urged the state lawmakers to ensure that the peoples’ interests were paramount, adding that the people of Edo want peace and development.
“The nation is witnessing a challenging moment because the people are feeling the absence of good governance, infrastructure, human rights protection and development.
“We should take up the challenge to ensure dividends of democracy are delivered to the people and we must be collective in achieving this,” he said.
He said that the caucus was concerned about the state and what is going on in the state, adding that the violence witnessed in the build up to the election gave a negative impression.
Hr said there was need to come together to properly represent the people at all level, urging the lawmakers to work as a team, while jettisoning their difference for the overall good of Edo.
Onobun in his address said contrary to insinuation that the Sept. 19, governorship election in Edo was going to be violent, it was peaceful and the Edo caucus in the national assembly contributed enormously.
The speaker said  that the re-elected governor of Edo state sees the state as his primary constituency adding that there was need to join him in building the state.
He said that the business of ESHA was up and running adding that the event of few days ago which led to the resignation of the former speaker was an internal affair.
“The former speaker’s resignation was an internal arrangement to give support for the governor.
“The business Edo people elected us for is still on and we will ensure that Edo is great again,” he said.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that 14 our of the 22 Edo House of Assembly members-elect have not been inaugurated since June 2019 after the general elections. (NAN)

Oct 20  2020 @ 20:25 GMT

Adhere strictly to budgetary provisions, Nasarawa Assembly urges MDAs

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NASARAWA HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY
NASARAWA HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY

The Nasarawa State House of Assembly, on Tuesday, advised ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) in the state to adhere strictly to budgetary provisions in the interest of accountability and good governance.
The Chairman, House Committee on Finance and Appropriation, Alhaji Aliyu Dogara, gave the advice in Lafia, when he led members of the committee on an oversight visit to the state Ministry of Finance.
Dogara (APC-Wamba), who stated that the visit was to assess the 2020 budget performance of the ministry, urged the MDAs to always ensure probity in their spending.
He said that adhering strictly to budgetary provisions would not only ensure transparency and accountability but would also give room for peace and development in the state.
According to him, any money spent is supposed to be approved by the Assembly.
“We are here to assess your budget performance because we approved it. We felt we should know how far you have gone in its implementation, more so that the governor is preparing to present the 2021 budget soon,” he said.
Dogara also urged the staff members of the ministry to be good ambassadors of their respective offices and offer necessary advice to heads of MDAs, especially as it concerned spending without approval.
“You are urged to spend within budgetary provisions and avoid over spending. For you to spend any money, you must seek for the approval of the House,” he said.
He appreciated the ministry for being up and doing in improving the revenue base of the state and called for its sustenance.
Earlier, the state Commissioner for Finance, Mr Haruna Adamu-Ogbole, thanked the lawmakers for the cooperation and support for the ministry.
Although the commissioner said that the ministry had improved on revenue generation in the state, he, however, assured that more improvements would be made in that regard.
He also assured that the ministry would continue to adhere strictly to budgetary provisions, in the interest of development. (NAN)

Oct 20  2020 @ 20:16 GMT

NiMet predicts cloudiness, sunshine Wednesday to Friday

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NiMet
NiMet

The Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet) has predicted cloudiness and sunshine weather conditions across the country from Wednesday to Friday.

NiMet’s weather outlook released on Tuesday in Abuja predicted partly cloudy with sunshine intervals over Sokoto, Kebbi and Zamfara with chances of few rains over parts of southern Kaduna and southern Taraba on Wednesday.

“ While leaving remaining parts of the region to be in sunny and hazy condition during the morning hours, a few thunderstorms are anticipated over parts of Kebbi, Sokoto and southern Kaduna in afternoon and evening.

“The North central region is expected to be cloudy in the morning hours. There are prospects of thunderstorms over parts of southern Plateau, Kogi, Abuja, Benue and Kwara during the afternoon and evening period.

“Inland and coastal cities of South are expected to be cloudy in the morning hours.

”Thunderstorms are expected over parts of Ondo, Osun, Owerri, Ikom, Enugu, Cross-River, PortHarcourt and Lagos during afternoon and evening hours,” it said.

According to NiMet, sunny and hazy weathers are anticipated over some parts of the region on Thursday.

The agency forecast partly cloudy with sunshine intervals over Kebbi, Sokoto, Kaduna, Gombe and Bauchi in the morning hours.

“Later in the day, partly cloudy atmosphere with sunshine intervals are anticipated with chances of few thunderstorms over parts of southern Adamawa and southern Taraba.

“ More cloudiness is anticipated over the North central region during morning hours. In the afternoon and evening period, a few thunderstorms are expected over parts of Kogi and Kwara.

“ The inland and coastal cities should be predominantly cloudy in the morning hours with prospects of thunderstorms over parts of Cross River, Rivers and Bayelsa,” it said.

The agency predicted better prospects of thunderstorms and rains over the region in afternoon and evening hours.

The agency envisaged cloudy skies with sunshine intervals over the northern region within the forecast period on Friday.

It predicted the North central region to also be predominantly cloudy during the morning hours.

“A cloudy atmosphere is anticipated over the inland and coastal cities in the morning period.

“Thunderstorms are expected over Ado-Ekiti, Edo, Abakaliki, Enugu, Abakaliki, Anambra, Lagos, Calabar, Port-Harcourt and Bayelsa during the afternoon and evening hours,” it said.
FGA/DE/ETS

Oct 20  2020 @ 20:09 GMT

EndSARS protesters block Imo govt house entrance

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ENDSARS
ENDSARS

No fewer than 800 youths on Tuesday blocked the entrance to the Imo State Government House for over two hours in the ongoing nationwide protest against police violation of human rights

The protesters, who wanted Gov. Hope Uzodinma of Imo to address them, however waited endlessly, but the governor did not.

They demanded among other things that the government should ensure the immediate release of all the youths unlawfully arrested and detained in the course of the protest.

The protesters also demanded for the immediate construction of all the bad roads in the state, payment of salaries and pensions, as well as total overhaul of security architecture in the country.

Speaking to newsmen, Mr Achiever Onyelike, Chairman, Imo State Youths Forum, said the protest was the consequence of failed political leadership, decay in governance and the high unemployment rate in the country.

He insisted that no amount of pressure or efforts from the government could stop the protest until their demands were met.

“The protest has gone beyond the demand for end of SARS, because there are many things bothering the youths.

“For instance, we are also protesting against the rate of unemployment in the country; if the youths are employed, they will not come out here to protest,” he said.

Reacting to hoodlums hijacking the protest, another protester, who identified himself simply as Mr Pee, said, “Majority of the protesters here have genuine interests and are committed to having good governance”.

Meanwhile, the protesters later moved to the popular Warehouse roundabout, Owerri, causing heavy gridlock.

The News Agency Nigeria (NAN) reports that the protesters plan to keep vigil at the place in continuation of the protest. (NAN)

Oct 20  2020 @ 20:03 GMT

#EndSARS: Umahi warns protesters against barricades, inaugurates judicial panel

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Umahi
Umahi

Gov. David Umahi of Ebonyi on Tuesday warned #EndSARS protesters against barricading roads in the state as they risked facing the newly constituted judicial panel of inquiry.

Umahi gave the warning while inaugurating the eight-member judicial panel of inquiry into cases of police brutality, human rights violations and related cases of extra-judicial killings.

The governor said that barricading of roads amounted to violations of peoples’ rights as those to appear before the panel could belong to either side.

“The National Economic Council (NEC) directed state governors to set up judicial panel of inquiry, special security and human rights commission among others to look into the demands of the #EndSARS protesters.

“We have fulfilled the demands of the protesters in Ebonyi as the judicial panel of inquiry will be a legal instrument to be headed by the former state’s Chief Judge, Rtd. Justice Alloy Nwankwo,” he said

He, however, commended the #EndSARS protesters in Ebonyi for conducting themselves peacefully, urging its representative in the commission to submit a written complaint of the brutality and extortion activities of the Ekeaba police station, Abakaliki.

“We have agreed with heads of security agencies to dismantle all road blocks in the state as the state commissioner of police said that the road blocks were not authorised by the Inspector-General of police.

“Drivers should resist giving money to the police and try marking the money before calling the state’s Ombdusman.

“We have agitated for increment of police personnel salaries and general motivation and are taking it up at the national level,” he said.

Umahi announced that complainants should appear physically before the judicial panel to facilitate the handling of police brutality, human rights abuses, extra-judicial killings among other cases.

“The panel which has six months to perform its task, shall have full powers and authority and can hold sittings in Abakaliki or other places which will deem fit to it.

“We have also set up a victims’ support fund to be managed by the Chairman of the state chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Rev. Fr Abraham Nwali, among other relevant committees,” he said.

Rtd. Justice Alloy Nwankwo, Chairman of the committee, thanked the governor for finding the members worthy of serving in such capacity, pledging to justify the confidence reposed in them.

“God’s willing, we will complete this assignment in record time,” he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that membership of the panel was drawn from the #EndSARS protesters, youth groups, human rights organisations, state ministry of justice, among others. (NAN)

Oct 20  2020 @ 19:55 GMT

ABU to leverage on agriculture to generate more revenue for research — VC

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ABU ZARIA
ABU ZARIA

Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria, says it will leverage on the agricultural services it offers to improve its revenue, to boost research activities at the institution.

Prof. Kabir Bala, Vice-Chancellor of the university, said during the annual Field Day organised by the Institute for Agricultural Research (IAR), on Tuesday in Zaria.

“There is little coming from the government to run the institutions, because there is not enough to go round from the government purse.

“For use to sustain ourselves and the system, there is need for us to generate enough revenue to expand and continue to grow.

“If we combine the potentials in the Institute, with other agriculture related institutes in the university such as National Animal Production and Research Institute, National Agricultural Extension Research and Liaison Services, Division of Agricultural Colleges and Faculty of Agriculture, I think we can do a lot to help ourselves and Nigeria at large.’’

He said what he saw at the event was an attestation that all the potentials can be harnessed for the common good of the university.

Bala said that ABU’s agriculture complex had the best potential in terms of research excellence, manpower and aggregate contribution to the internally generated revenue of the university.

He said that agriculture has the potential of generating employment for the youths, who have so much energy and intellect, but are idle.

“If the youths can become fully engaged, then the country can have less of these agitations from some sections of the country.

“If we can develop agriculture to its full potential from production to processing, the sector has the potential of employing 100 per cent of the youth in Nigeria.

“It also has economic potential in terms of employment, income generation and overall contribution to the Gross Domestic Product; I think this is what some of our board members should drive home,’’ Bala said.

Earlier, Mr Tunji Ajegbe, Board Chairman, Agricultural Research Council of Nigeria, said that the development at the institute was what Nigeria needed to promote growth in agriculture.

He, therefore, tasked the institute to put more efforts into further research and also look at other ways of showcasing its efforts to reach the end users.

“After carrying out research, there is also another need to let the nation know what we have done,’’ he said.

He however noted that paucity of funds had hindered research and development efforts in the institute and other colleges of agriculture.

Ajegbe advised the institute and other colleges of agriculture to go into commercialisation to augment what was coming from the Federal Government.

Prof. Muhammad Ishiyaku, Executive Director, IAR, said that the mandate of the institute was to ensure genetic improvement of cotton, maize, cowpea, groundnut, sunflower, artemisia and jatroper.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports  that farmers from the institutes adopted villages and other key stakeholders were briefed on the latest technologies and varieties of the crops of the institute.(NAN)

Oct 20  2020 @ 19:49 GMT

Insecurity: Nigeria grossly under-policed, says ex-DSS boss

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180px-Chief_RaymoAnd_Nkemdirim
180px-Chief_RaymoAnd_Nkemdirim

Chief Raymond Nkemdirim, a former Director of Operations, Department of State Services (DSS), has said that Nigeria is grossly under-policed, given the United Nation’s benchmark.

Nkemdirim said this while speaking on the spate of insecurity in Nigeria during an interactive session with newsmen in Umuahia on Tuesday.

He described the nation’s police personnel of some 371,000 to 200 million Nigerians as “a far cry” from the UN standard benchmark of one policeman to 400 people.

“If we are to go by the UN benchmark, it means we need at least half a million police operatives to effectively police the country.

“I was discussing with a former Inspector-General of Police and he said that of the 371,000 police, no fewer than 250,000 were attached to private individuals and Very Important Persons (VIPs) to guard them.

“If these statistics are correct, this leaves us with barely 121,000 operatives to do the real police work.

“Under such a circumstance, what do you expect?

“It becomes difficult for the police to effectively police a country of 200 million people,” Nkemdirim said.

He further regretted that beyond the low size of the police personnel vis-a-vis the country’s population, the available police were grossly ill-equipped to efficiently combat crimes.

According to him, the Nigerian police lack modern equipment to fight crime, which has become more sophisticated.

Nkemdirim also expressed worry that the police lacked training in modern day policing, saying that they should be adequately equipped and given the necessary training to excel.

He canvassed for the installation of Close Circuit Cameras in major cities of the country to aid the police in crime fighting as obtained in developed nations.

He advocated a reform that would engender improved remuneration, welfare package, work environment, living condition and better equipment for the police.

“Our police win laurels when they go for foreign assignments because they get exposed to better equipment in those countries.

“Modern day police operations require sophisticated equipment. So, if we have all these things in place for the police, they will do better,” he said.

Nkemdirim further advocated a paradigm shift from reactionary to proactive and intelligence-led policing.

“The police need to move way from waiting to react after a crime had been committed and embrace intelligence-led policing to be able to nip crimes in the bud,” he said.

He said that the nefarious activities of armed herders, kidnappers and bandits could be effectively monitored and arrested before they happened through intelligence-led policing.

Nkemdirim also spoke on the gains of community policing, saying the initiative would bolster the performance of the police through effective community support and collaboration.

He further made a case for the establishment of State Police, describing it as “a very effective means of combating crime.

“Nigeria is long ripe for state police,” he said, adding that statutory checks should be put in place to take care of the fear of its possible abuse by governors.

Meanwhile, Nkemdirim, who is the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of Flo FM 94.9 Umuahia, has advised the Federal Government to yield to the demands of the protesters against police brutality, #EndSARS.

He warned against the use of force to quel the nationwide protests, saying that deploying force would be counterproductive.

He kicked against the planned deployment of the “Crocodile Smile” by the Military to the streets, saying that it would compound the tensed security situation in the country.

“Federal Government should not treat the agitation by the protesters with kid gloves. It should engage the protesters meaningfully and address their demands,” Nkemdirim said.

He warned that the Arab Springs, which had unsavoury political consequences in the Arab countries, started in a similar way, hence the need for government to be more circumspect in dealing with the protest. (NAN)

Oct 20  2020 @ 19:44 GMT

Delta Assembly approves concessioning of Asaba Airport

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THE Delta House of Assembly has approved the concessioning of the Asaba International Airport to attract foreign and commercial cargoes.

The approval followed a motion moved by the Majority Leader of the House, Tim Owhefere,  during  its plenary on Tuesday in Asaba.

Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa had earlier requested the Assembly to  approve the  concessioning of the airport.

Okowa said that the concessioning was part of the efforts of the state government to leverage the transport infrastructure toward the diversification of the economy from dependence on oil revenue.

”The state government called for the expression of interest from reputable companies for the concessioning of the airport.

”The decision which is in line with our administration’s operation strategy, is to create room for the involvement of the private sector in the redevelopment and  the upgrade of existing facilities at the Airport.

” Such  is to meet international standard as well as attract foreign commercial and cargoes airline operators into Asaba.

”The concessioning exercise is among other accelerated investments in new infrastructure at the airport and  the upgrading of the existing ones to satisfactory standard.

”Having regard to the benefits that will accrue to the State upon the concessioning of the airport, the State Executive Council at its 9th meeting held in August 2019 approved Messrs FIDC-Menzies Consortium as  the preferred bidder for the concessioning of the Asaba Airport,” he said.

The motion for  the approval  of the concessioning  was unanimously adopted by the Assembly.

This was after it had been  put to a voice vote by the Speaker, Chief Sheriff Oborevwori, and  seconded by the member representing Patani constituency in the state Assembly, Mr Emmanuel Sinebe.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

UEFA prize money to be cut for 5 years due to COVID-19 – report

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UEFA

UEFA says Champions League and Europa League prize money will be cut over the next five seasons.

The soccer governing body said the decision is due to the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, The Times has reported.

UEFA has informed its member associations that they lost 514 million pounds ($666.40 million) following the drop in both television and sponsorship income after delays in the knockout stages last season.

The two competitions were suspended in March when the pandemic wreaked havoc on the global sporting calendar.

It only resumed in August after the top leagues in Europe wrapped up their respective seasons.

The knockout stages were staged behind closed doors at neutral locations and each round’s tie was also reduced to a single fixture instead of the usual home-away format.

Last season’s forecast had 1.95 billion euros (1.78 billion pounds) set aside for the 32 teams in the Champions League group stage.

The report added that English clubs can expect to see TV and prize money drop by about 4 per cent.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

Businessman files $1bn suit against Twitter CEO, over alleged #ENDSARS Protest sponsorship

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A businessman, Mr Adamu Garba, on Tuesday, instituted a 1 billion dollars suit against the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Founder of Twitter International Company, Jack Dorsey, at the Federal High Court, Abuja, over alleged sponsorship of the ongoing #EndSARS Protest across the country.

Garba, in a suit number: FHC/ABJ/CS/1391/2020 filed by his Lawyer, Abbas Ajiya, urged the court to direct Mr Dorsey to stop the operation of Twitter International Company in any part of Nigeria.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the case is yet to be assigned to a judge.

Also joined as respondents are Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), National Security Adviser, Inspector-General of Police, Director General of Department of State Service, the Commandant General, Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps; Nigeria Communication Commission, Jack Dorsey, Twitter International Company and the #ENDSARS Protesters as 2nd to 10th respondents respectively.

Garba, who is the CEO of IPI Group Limited, said the suit was filed to enforce his fundamental rights pursuant to Provisions of Order II Rules 1, 2, and 3 of the Fundamental Rights Rules 2009, Sections 34(1), 35(1), 41(1), 43 and 46(1) and 2 of the 1999 Constitution and Articles 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 12(1) of the African Charter on Human and People’s’ Rights Act CAP. A9, LFN 2004.

The applicant sought the court “DECLARATION THAT the mode of sponsorship and protest of the ENDSARS protest by the 8th to 10th Respondents is illegal, unlawful and a violation of the Applicant’s fundamental right to liberty, dignity of human person, freedom of movement and economic right guaranteed and protected under Sections 34(1), 35(1), 41(1) and 43 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as Amended).

“A DECLARATION THAT the 1St to 6th Respondents have the constitutional and statutory duties to protect lives and property of citizens and ensure the existence of peace and order in any part of the territory of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as provided under Section 5(1)(a) & (b) of the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1990 (as Amended)

“AN ORDER OF PERPETUAL INJUNCTION restraining the 8th to 10th Respondents whether by themselves or by their officers, agents, servants, privies and/or otherwise however called from further sponsoring and staging the ENDSARS Protest or any protest in any other manner, howsoever described that infringes on the Fundamental Rights of the Applicant (Adamu Garba) as guaranteed by Section, 34(1), 35 (1) and 41(1) of the 1999 Constitution and Articles 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 12(1) of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act, Cap. A9, 2004.

“AN ORDER of this Hon. Court directing the 1St to 6th Respondents to take measures to stop the 8th to 10th Respondents from further sponsoring and carrying out the ENDSARS Protest using force that is reasonably appropriate in the circumstance of the Protest.

“AN ORDER Directing the 7th Respondent to stop the operation of Twitter Int’i Company in any part of the territory of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“AN ORDER directing the 8th and 9‘h Respondents jointly to pay the Applicant the sum of 61 Billion USD (One Billion US Dollars) as damages.”

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

ENDSARS : Gov. Fintiri approves Judicial Panel of Inquiry

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GOV. Ahmadu Fintiri of Adamawa has approved the composition of an 11-member judicial panel of inquiry to investigate allegations of police brutality and extra-judicial killings in the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the development was sequel to the directive of the National Economic Council, following the nationwide protest the activities of the now-disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).
A statement issued by the Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr Humwashi Wonosikou, on Tuesday in Yola said that members of the panel were drawn from the judiciary, civil society organisations, security agencies and youth as well as religious and students’ representatives.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the panel has, as its terms of reference, to receive and investigate complaints about police brutality and extra-judicial killings as well as to evaluate evidences and establish the nature of the abuses.
Part of the panel’s terms of reference was also to establish whether or not there were individuals in custody and why they were still being kept in custody.
The panel was expected to establish whether the affected individuals had been arraigned in court and how many of them had died in custody.
It was also mandated to establish incidences of financial and material extortions and the damage caused, and determine any compensation to be paid to the victims or their relations.
The panel, which had Justice Adamu Hobon (rtd.) as Chairman and the Permanent Secretary, Security as Secretary, was given six months, from the date of inauguration, to submit its report.
Other members of the panel included: AIG Ibrahim Ahmed (rtd.), the Solicitor-General, Mr Samuel Yaumande, representative of state Ministry of Justice and Bishop Japheth Tonmwaso, representing the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).
The panel also had Alhaji Wakili Ibrahim, representing the Muslim Council of Nigeria, Grace Mamza (Human Rights Commission), James Kamale, the President, Students’ Union Government, Modibbo Adama University of Technology, Yola, representing students, as members.
Other members of the panel were Mr Ajeni Delo, representative of youth organisations, Mr Nafisatu Bala (Red Cross Society of Nigeria), representative of civil society organizations and Hajiya Tanee Bitoko from the National Council for Women Society (NCWS).
The governor, who described the panel members as men and women of proven integrity, urged them to maintain decorum in their discharge of their responsibilities.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

#EndSARS: Youths embark on peaceful protest in Rivers

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Blessing Okojie-Eze, WIVs National President at the #EndSARS protest in Gbagada, Lagos.

SOME youths in Rivers on Tuesday embarked on a peaceful #EndSARS protest during which they called on their colleagues to allow government to implement their demands.

Mr Tekena Iyalla, one of the protesters and communication expert, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Port Harcourt on the sidelines of the protest that the group is committed to the ongoing #EndSARS Protest and #End Police Brutality campaigns.

According to Iyalla, the group’s campaign provides an opportunity to let the people know that President Muhammadu Buhari is in support of the youths’ quest to end police brutality.

He urged the youths to give the president ample opportunity to implement the demands of the #EndSARS protest.

“We should not take laws, as Nigerians and youths,  into our hands and start destroying people’s private businesses and government properties.

“We should appreciate that the president and Inspector General of Police (IGP) have already agreed on the demands of #EndSARS protest.

“Therefore, we are appealing to Nigerian youths to remain peaceful and give the Federal Government time to act for the nation to remain strong,” he said.

Miss Mary Peipeiyaye, another youth, urged government to implement the demands of the protesters.

Peipeiyaye said that the protest was peaceful because the youths were desirous of good governance.

She added that most of the youths that came out were graduates and would not allow themselves to be manipulated by desperate politicians to cause mayhem.

Mr Tony Nwala, a self employed youth, said it is time for the youths to leave the streets and allow government implement their demands.

Nwala said that reforms could only occur with dialogue as violent protest would create a situation that could be difficult to manage.

He commended the youths for their unity and sense of purpose in driving their demands.

NAN reports that the youths carried placards with inscriptions such as “Reformation can only occur with Dialogue”, ” EndBadGovernance” and “EndPoliceBrutality”.

The youths also called on Gov. Nyesom Wike to set up a Commission of Inquiry to investigate the activities of the disbanded state taskforce on street trading.

They said this would create an opportunity for victims to get justice.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

#EndSARS: Senate asks Buhari to address nation

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Nigerian Senate during plenary
Nigerian Senate during plenary

THE Senate on Tuesday urged President Muhammadu Buhari to, “as soon as possible”, address the nation on issues of #EndSARS protests in the country.

The Upper Chamber also appealed to the movement and protesters to stop their actions and embrace genuine dialogue in order to give the government time and space to meet their demands.

Senate’s resolutions were sequel to a Point of Order on “Matter of Urgent Public Importance” brought by Sen. Biodun Olujimi (PDP-Ekiti) and co-sponsored by all other senators during plenary.

The motion was entitled “The #EndSARS and the Need for Comprehensive and Holistic Reform”.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that on Oct. 8, a wave of protests against the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigeria Police Force erupted in many cities across the country.

The protests were triggered by a video trending online showing a young man allegedly shot by SARs operatives at Ughelli, Delta; an allegation the police denied.

The predominantly young demonstrators with the #EndSARS sought the dissolution of the unit and end to police brutality.

NAN also reports that the Senate also urged the Federal Government to faithfully and comprehensively implement all the five demands of the EndSARS movement and protesters with necessary timelines to rekindle confidence in government.

While raising orders 42 and 52 of Senate Standing Rules, Olujimi said that some of the documented police brutality in the country during the colonial era was the killing of 21 miners and wounding of 51 workers during the Enugu Colliery strike of 1949.

” Suppression of the women’s riot of Dec. 1929 to Jan.1930 in the eastern part of the country which led to the death of 55 women and serious injury to more than 50 others.”

She cited the June 2020 report of Amnesty International titled “Time to end Impunity” which states:”Between Jan. 2017 and May 2020, there were 82 cases of torture, ill treatment and extra judicial killings of Nigerian citizens by the Special Anti Robbery Squad.”

Olujumi noted that in spite of disbandment of SARs unit by the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, and promise of implementing the demands toward reforming the police and ending brutality, the protests have increased intensity.

She said that as political leaders, “we must take responsibility of protecting, providing succour and guiding our youths”.

Contributing, Sen Adamu Aliero (APC-Kebbi) said that “While seconding, I want to also suggest very strongly that dialogue should be used to get the youths to suspend the
#EndSARS protest.

“Where dialogue fails then we should use whatever means possible, otherwise it will lead to anarchy.

“Already a number of people have been killed and no responsible government will allow lawlessness to take place while it is in power and for that reason government should use whatever means possible to ensure that it bans the #EndSARS movement.

“Of course in liberal democracies like ours, protests take place but where it is being hijacked by hoodlums and unleashing violence on innocent citizens, government should use its constitutional powers by ensuring that law and order is being maintained.”

Also, Deputy Senate President, Sen. Ovie Omo-Agege, said that “we need to be made co-sponsors because these children out there on the streets, are our children.

” Nobody is a friend of the illegal or will condone the illegal activities of SARS.

“When our children went to the street demanding for an end to SARS, I think it was a call that everyone in this country, a cry that they could all identify with.”

Senate Minority Leader, Sen. Eyinnaya Abaribe said that part of what was going to address the issue with immediacy was for the President to look at the issues and address the the nation on them.

“The President must try a way of setting up a judicial panel that will have people that are well respected by the same youths so that they can address a certain issue.

“That issue is that those notorious SARS officers that have been identified should face the panel then the people will see us directly confronting what they are worried about,” Abaribe said.

In his remarks, President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, urged government to implement the demands of the protesters.

“Protesters, you have made your point, you have made your case, your protests have yielded the desired results. It is time to allow the government to implement those issues that government has accepted from you.”

He urged Nigerians to go on with their lawful businesses without hindrances.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

Gov. Emmanuel presents N435.65bn budget for 2021 to lawmakers

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GOV. Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom on Tuesday presented a budget of N435.65 billion for the 2021 Financial Year to the state House of Assembly for consideration.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the proposed budget is higher than that of the current 2020 revised appropriation of N366 million by N69. 65 billion.

The appropriation bill comprised of N158.40 billion as recurrent expenditure, N226.96 billion as capital expenditure and N50.29 as consolidated revenue.

Emmanuel said that the total projected recurrent revenue for 2021 is estimated at N255.03 billion as against the approved revised provision of N203.56 billion for 2020.

In the 2021 fiscal year, the bill tagged “Budget of Economic Reconstruction”, the governor said that N208.68 billion “is proposed as recurrent expenditure’’.

This is made up of personnel costs of N56.54 billion, overhead costs of N101.86 billion and N50.28 billion for consolidated revenue fund charges.

The governor said that the preparation of the budget was guided by the International Public Sector Accounting Standard (IPSAS).

According to him, the budget will have moved very close to actualising the dreams and aspirations of his administration to transform the state from a “Civil Service” state to an industrialised one.

He said that the 2021 budget was predicated on an oil benchmark of $40 per barrel at a production rate of 1.86 million barrels per day.

It was also predicated on an estimated exchange rate of N379/US$, in line with the National Budget benchmark projections.

Emmanuel listed rapid industrialisation and opening of new areas of growth and development as objectives of the 2021 budget.

These objectives, he said, would be pursued through intense and coordinated efforts to increase internally generated revenues.

He further said that the budget was conceived to make Akwa Ibom less dependent on allocations from the Federal Government.

He said that education, being a key component of the Human Capital Development of his administration’s ‘Competition Agenda’, would be given a pride of place.

“Our children must be made ready to compete with their peers and distilled to be a part of the global march to apply science and technology to create job and wealth for themselves,’’ Emmanuel said.

According to him, the policy thrust of the budget will focus on the key pillars of the completion agenda.

He said that the budget would also boost the productivity of local businesses through the promotion of trade, commerce and tourism.

The governor also said that the 2021 policy objectives of the budget also aimed to develop agriculture through the supply of improved agricultural inputs, credit and extension services.

In his remarks, Speaker of the Assembly, Mr Aniekan Bassey, assured the governor that the lawmakers would ensure speedy passage of the appropriation bill.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

EndSARS protest : Police confirm burning of 3 trucks, rape of 3 girls in Ekiti

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POLICE NG
Police

THE Police Command in Ekiti on Tuesday confirmed that some hoodlums allegedly gang-raped three girls during the ongoing EndSARS protest in the state.

The police also confirmed that three trucks belonging to a popular business conglomerate in the country were burnt down at various spots during the protest.

ASP Sunday Abutu,  the spokesman of the Police Command, confirmed the burning of the trucks and the rape of the girls to newsmen on Tuesday.

He warned that hoodlums were gradually hijacking the protests, which he said could portend danger for the country.

” Every Nigerian or group has the legitimate right to protest but the moment you start destroying properties, then it has become another thing.

“We appeal to the youth to refrain from wanton destruction of lives and properties under the guise of protests”.

Investigations by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) revealed that two of the lorries were burnt opposite Similoluwa area of Ado Ekiti while the other one was burnt opposite Uniform building around Mojere market,  along Dallimore junction.

It was learnt that one of the lorries allegedly overran a barricade mounted by protesters along Dallimore/Christ School area on Monday night, injuring some protesters.

Though some of the protesters also claimed two of their members were killed in the process, this could not be confirmed by the police.

On the rape issue, it was learnt that the girls, who participated in the ongoing EndSARS protests, were allegedly gang-raped by some co-protesters.

The incident, according to a source,  happened at the popular Adekunle Fajuyi Memorial Park area of Ado Ekiti metropolis around 8.30p.m., on Sunday.

Also reacting to the rape issue, the Ekiti State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Olawale Fapohunda, frowned at the rape of victims by some hoodlums, said to be #EndSARS protesters.

According to him, “Rape and robbery cannot be the values of EndSARS’ protesters.

“it is becoming obvious that government cannot continue to allow the good people of Ekiti State to suffer in this manner”, Fapohunda said.

The Commissioner, however, advised that the assaulted girls be immediately taken to the Ekiti State Sexual Assault Referral Centre, located in the Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital (EKSUTH) for medical check-up.

“It may now be necessary to alert all those participating in the protests, especially girls and women, to note that there exists hoodlums in their midst whose agenda is to rape and rob”, he said.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

Nigeria loses N1.06trn oil revenue target to COVID-19 – NNPC

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Mele Kyari

THE Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) says  the country’s oil revenue target declined by N1.06 trillion due to COVID-19 and low crude oil price.

The NNPC’s Group Managing Director, Malam Mele Kyari, made the disclosure on Tuesday during a Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) oil and gas webinar with  theme as: “Perspectives of Operations and Industry Experts Post- COVID-19”.

According to Kyari, the country’s N2.64 trillion oil revenue target declined by 40 per cent as a result of twin shocks of COVID-19 and low crude oil price.

He said that the pandemic created an unprecedented and global crisis that would cause regions, countries, sectors, companies and individuals to experience reaction, resilience, recovery and adjustment for a new reality.

Kyari, represented by Mrs Rose Eshietti, noted that upstream projects were delayed as a result of the pandemic restrictions.

“The energy industry is likely to continue to struggle in the wake of a precipitous drop in oil and gas prices due to dampened demand from the effects of COVID-19,’’ he said.

According to him, revenue and production declines will continue to present major challenges for oil and gas companies, especially those at risk of being unable to refinance debt.

Speaking on emerging opportunities in the industry, Kyari said that the passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill would remove uncertainties and create investments opportunities in the oil and gas sector.

He disclosed that 40 billion barrels and three million barrels per day production target were potential investment opportunities for in-country storage capacity for crude oil.

Kyari urged industry players to exploit the country’s abundant gas reserves for in-country consumption.

He added that private firms should support major partners in the establishment of Integrated Power Plants along the Abuja Kaduna Kano (AKK) Gas Pipeline project.

He said that oil and gas industry players should manage cost, improve efficiency and deliver required cash flow for reinvestment and expansion by taking advantage of opportunities that would keep the industry viable and ready for post COVID-19.

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, in his keynote address, also said that the pandemic resulted to loss of revenue and deferred investments.

Sylva stressed the need for innovation and adaptability in the industry for enhanced growth and development.

He said that industry players must adapt in these unusual times, noting that over reliance of crude oil was increasing diminishing.

The minister, however, assured that Nigeria’s oil and gas industry would emerge stronger from the current challenges

Sylva said that players need to come up with strategies and solutions to issues for quick recovery and economic sustenance.

On the way forward, he called for cost reduction to ensure adequate return on investment and accelerated passage of PIB.

Sylva suggested the  full deregulation of the petroleum downstream sector to guarantee industry stability and sustenance.

Earlier, Mr Oscar Onyema, Chief Executive Officer, NSE, said that government and corporate organisations  were saddled with the responsibility of overcoming the impact of the pandemic.

Onyema said that the oil and gas sector was critical to the nation’s economy due to its importance to government revenue.

According to him, the sector needs to adopt innovations in growth areas due to crude oil price collapse.

Onyema said that the exchange would continue to provide platform to quoted companies and stakeholders for long-term finance.

He disclosed that about N400 billion issues had been raised by oil and gas companies from the market.

The chief executive officer said that NSE would work with stakeholders to provide a framework for renewable energy.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

EndSARS: Makinde shuts schools in Ibadan

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GOV Seyi Makinde of Oyo State has directed that public and private schools in Ibadan should be shut.

Makinde gave the directive on Tuesday evening, in his statewide broadcast aired on the state-owned radio and television stations, over the ongoing EndSARS protests in the state.

“I have directed that all schools in Ibadan should be closed from tomorrow, Wednesday, Oct. 21, for the rest of this week.

“The situation will be reviewed on Friday, Oct. 23, and then further directives will be given,” he said.

According to him, the past two days have seen a new dimension to the ongoing protests.

He said that thugs and hoodlums had taken advantage of the situation to perpetrate uncivil acts and harass citizens who were going about their day-to-day activities.

“Some thugs are going as far as forcing people who have businesses open to close shop and join in the protests.

“We know these are criminal elements, and so, as a state, we must act to protect the citizenry.

“Therefore, we are deploying members of Operation Burst to various hotspots in Ibadan to arrest the situation and restore normalcy.

“The members of the team will continue to protect genuine protesters and their right to protest. But we can not allow persons with ulterior motives to hijack the protests.

“We remain committed to the process of meeting the demands of these protests,” he said.

Makinde said that the Director of Public Prosecution, Ministry of Justice, Oyo State, had withdrawn cases against End SARS protesters, and those in custody had been released.

He said that his government had set up platforms for reporting past and present incidents of police brutality and injustice.

These, he said, would naturally pave the way for the next steps in his administration’s quest to get justice for the victims.

He urged the people of the state to trust the process that his administration had set up.

Makinde told them to rest assured that every case would be pursued to a logical conclusion.

He implored the general public to call 615, should anyone attempt to disrupt their legitimate business activities.

The governor said his government would continue to seek ways to engage with peaceful protesters.

“Our plan is that in the shortest possible time, we can finally say the days of large-scale and wanton police brutality and injustice are a thing of the past.

“Let me also use this opportunity to call on members of the Nigeria Police to remain professional in the discharge of their duties, as they will be held responsible for their actions,” he said.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

APC, PDP, 20 other parties to contest LG poll in Kogi

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APC and PDP

TWENTY-two political parties have indicated their interest to contest the Dec. 12 local government election in Kogi.

The State Independent Electoral Commission (SIEC) confirmed this in a statement issued by Mr Yakubu Chogudo, the Commissioner in charge of media and publicity, on Tuesday in Lokoja.

Some of the parties warming up for the council poll include PDP, APC, Labour Party, Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), People’s Redemption Party (PRP), Action Alliance (AA), SDP, and APGA among others.

The commissioner said that the screening exercise for the party candidates would hold from Oct. 22 to Nov. 2.

He reiterated the determination of SIEC to conduct a free, fair and acceptable election on Dec. 12.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

Restorative justice practitioners should be in #EndSARS judicial panels of inquiry – Lawyer

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A lawyer and mediation practitioner, Mr Valentino Buoro has called for the inclusion of ‘Restorative Justice Practitioners’ in the #EndSARS Judicial Panels of Inquiry, that have been established by various state governments across the country.

Buoro, in a statement issued to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday, said that both the Federal and State Governments should see the ongoing #EndSARS protests in the country as an opportunity to reinvent the wheels of justice for the betterment of all citizens.

“The demand for justice for victims of police brutality presented a very robust opportunity to activate restorative justice as a practice in judicial proceedings in the country.

“State governments which have already set up Judicial Panels of Inquiry populated by litigators to hear victims complaints, may be getting something wrong if there are no adequate infusion of mediators and restorative justice practitioners in the panels,”he said.

Buoro noted that populating the panels with litigators and judges, would make the panel to be inclined to producing outright winners or losers in the matters which would be subject to their evaluation.

He said that in the Judicial Panels of Inquiry, which are predominantly supervised by litigators, the opportunity to directly have the input of both the victims and offenders into the ultimate outcome of the sittings would be lost.

He said: “A restorative justice process will afford the victims the opportunity to tell their full stories and how their lives have been shattered by extra judicial killings of their loved ones.

“They will have the opportunity to tell the tribunal how best their families can be compensated by the wrong done to them by the killer policemen.

“Restorative justice process will also afford the offending policemen the opportunity to tell their own stories; their motivations and or their state of mind when the shots were fired.

“They may be able to tell if what they did was at that time the best of their professional judgements or whatever.

“Having heard each other speak from the depths of their hearts; personal stories not circumscribed by any legal rules or dispositions, the families may forgive and have a closure without prejudice to their need for compensation.

“While the offender may have the opportunity for a remorse and apology for his indiscretion or alleged crime.

“This is without prejudice to recommendations for judicial trial and punishment for the alleged crime if eventually considered so in the light of the proceedings.”

The mediation practitioner also disclosed that a restorative justice process also allows for the participation of a representation of the community or public.

He said the community will have the opportunity of expressing its own shock, apprehension and or opprobrium at the offender’s act.

“Notwithstanding the highly condemnable act of extra judicial killings, a thought must be spared for some of the accused policemen.

“This is given the facts before them that in the split moment of decision, may have erroneously thought they had taken the best of judgement.

“All these can only be unearthed in a restorative justice hearing,” he said.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

EndSARS : Armed hunters give security cover to protesters in Osun

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SCORES of armed hunters on Tuesday joined the #EndSARS protesters to provide security cover and prevent the infiltration of their ranks by hoodlums and thugs .

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the hunters, who also wore charms, expressed their solidarity with the protesters .

The leader of the hunters, Mr Nureni Adisa, who spoke at the popular Orita-Olaiya Junction in Osogbo, said their aim was to ensure that the protest was not hijacked by hoodlums and to also prevent any loss of lives and property.

Adisa urged the protesters to be vigilant and alert to forestall miscreants and hoodlums infiltrating into their midst, and to identify any suspicious persons whose aim was to forment trouble.

He condemned the recent attack on the convoy of the state governor by suspected thugs in order to discredit the peaceful protest and cause havoc.

Adisa also appealed to the protesters to ensure civility and orderliness in their protest and not to take laws into their hands .

NAN reports that protesters gathered at the Orita -Olaiya junction singing solidarity songs and carrying placards calling for an end to police brutality and extrajudicial killings .

The spokesman for the protesters, Mr Adebisi Emmanuel, assured that the protesters  would not take laws into their hands and promised not to allow the protest to be hijacked by hoodlums or sponsored thugs .

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:40 GMT |

Buhari inaugurates NPF Pensions House, reiterates commitment to welfare of Police Officers

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PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday inaugurated  the multi-billion naira NPF Pensions House, Abuja, with an assurance that his administration would continue to support and enhance the welfare of the personnel of the Nigerian Police Force.

The president, who virtually inaugurated the new Head Office Building of Nigerian Police Fund Pensions Ltd in Abuja, lauded the efforts of the Nigerian Police Force in addressing the emerging internal security across the country.

He also commended the NPF for enhancing the welfare of its personnel through their pensions fund administration.

“Let me commend the continuous efforts of the Nigerian Police Force not only for fighting and addressing the emerging internal security challenges but also enhancing the welfare of their personnel through their pensions fund administration.

“May I therefore assure the Nigerian Police of our continuous support to them in that regards.

“I’ll also like to congratulate the board, management and the entire staff of the Nigerian Police Force Pensions limited for attaining this laudable feat of building a befitting head office for the company,’’ he said.

He applauded Nigerian Police Fund Pensions Ltd for instituting a Retirees Resettlement Support Scheme, which would provide financial support for retired police officers.

The president assured that the Federal Government was fully committed to improving livelihood of serving officers, adding that the government was also focused on ensuring that police officers, who served the nation meritoriously, were resettled into retirement, with some financial support.

“To the Nigeria Police Fund Pensions Limited, I wish to applaud your Company for instituting a Retirees Resettlement Support Scheme through which you provide some form of financial support to retired Police Officers to enable them to resettle fully in retirement after meritoriously serving the nation.

“Taking your services to the doorstep of Police Officers by maintaining an office in each Police Command and Formation is also very laudable.

“At this juncture, I urge you to continue your untiring efforts in collaborating with the Police authorities towards improving the welfare of both serving and retired personnel of the Nigeria Police Force,’’ he said.

He described the event as a significant milestone for the nation pension industry as the new head office complex was the first structure to be built by the pensions fund administrator

Buhari, therefore, noted with delight the efforts of the pensions firm for successfully building the magnificent and befitting edifice in less than six years of its operation.

“It is noteworthy for a company that is just six years old to have achieved this magnificent and befitting edifice, utilizing only its internally generated revenue and using only indigenous contractor show that our efforts in driving fiscal discipline and encouraging patronage of local firms is yielding the desired results.

“I was impressed to learn that since commencement of the building project work never stopped on the site except during the Coronavirus lockdown period.

“This shows the commitment of both the client and the contractor toward achieving this edifice within the set out time line,’’ he added.

Buhari urged the Nigerian Pensions Commission, the Police authorities, and the Nigerian Police Fund pensions limited to maintain their concerted efforts towards achieving improved welfare for their respective personnel.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the president directed the Minister of Police Affairs, Alhaji Maigari Dingyadi, to physically unveil the ceremonial plaque at the venue of the event.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:10 GMT |

Enugu Govt pledges to connect communities with good road network before 2023

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THE Enugu State House of Assembly says Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi’s administration will connect all communities in the state with good road network before 2023.

The Chairman, Assembly Committee on Works, Mr. Chima Obieze, made the assertion in Enugu on Tuesday when the committee visited Ezeagu and Udi council areas respectively as part of its ongoing oversight function on state government projects.

He explained that the governor had so much love not just for Ezeagu and Udi but for the entire state, adding that his intention was to connect every community with good road network before 2023.

The committee chairman also commended Mr.Chukwudi Ani, the Chairman, Ezeagu LGA and that of Udi, Mr. Ifeanyi Agu  for complementing efforts of the state government in its developmental efforts.

“These are the things we will like the world to know in order to challenge other chairmen to follow suit,” he said.

Obieze described Ugwuanyi as a great worker and said that he was happy that some council chairmen were complementing his efforts.

In his remarks, Ezeagu LGA chairman, Mr Ani attributed his success to the free hand given to council chairmen to operate in the state.

Ani said that he thanked God for what he had been using the governor to achieve for the people in Ezeagu mostly the peace they enjoyEd in the council.

According to him, in Enugu State, all local governments have autonomy and we plan and execute projects without interference of the state government.

Also speaking, the Udi council chairman, Agu, assured the governor that the people of the area would continue to support him and his good works, urging the Assembly for continuous support to the government.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the committee also supervised some state government projects in Udi LGA, including, Akpakwumenze-Aku road, Eke Ogui road, Ameke-Ngwo road and others.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:10 GMT |

#EndSARS protest: IPMAN, MOMAN sue for peace

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THE Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) and the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN) on Tuesday sued for peace as the #EndSARS protests continued across the country.

IPMAN’s President, Mr Chinedu Okoronkwo and MOMAN’s Chairman, Mr Tunji Oyebanji, made the calls in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.

NAN reports that curfew has been declared in Lagos and Edo States following violent acts of some suspected thugs who hijacked the protests organised by youths against police brutality in the country.

Okoronkwo told NAN that everybody was at a disadvantaged position in crisis period, adding that it was time for peace and normalcy to be restored.

He said: “I think they have made their point and it is well understood.

“This is the time to begin to withdraw and see how government can begin the implementation.

“Government is serious now and they know that power belongs to the people and they should not drag it further now so that hoodlums will not hijack the protest.

“My advice is that the immediate impact has been made and this is the time for us to sit down and begin to put things in order at every level.”

Similarly, Oyebanji expressed optimism that everything would be resolved as soon as possible.

“Even the change that they are looking at will take some time but I think government should start quickly to look at how it can speed up the process, ” he said.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:10 GMT |

#EndSARS: Hoodlums take over Ilesha-Ife-Ibadan expressway, extort motorists

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THE ongoing #EndSARS protest took a turn for the worse on Tuesday, as scores of hoodlums took advantage of the protest to mount different roadblocks on the Ilesa-Ife-Ibadan expressway and extort motorists.
A News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) correspondent, who witnessed the situation, reports that the roadblocks affected both lanes of the expressway.
NAN also reports that the hoodlums were out, setting up barricades on the expressway as early as 8 am.
The roadblocks, located within a distance of about 500 metres each, started at the Asejiri axis of the expressway and extended to Iwo Road end of the road.
Some of the hoodlums were seen harassing the motorists and extorting as much as N2,500 from each of them before they opened up the barricades.
The hoodlums were also seen accusing the motorists of having the luxury to ride expensive vehicles and sending their children to private schools, while all their own parents could afford were motorcycles and public universities.
The barricades also caused gridlock, while some motorists had to park their vehicles by the roadside out of frustration.
Some commuters, who could not bear with the gridlock, resorted to trekking.
NAN reports that the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) office, Egbeda unit command, Ibadan, where a roadblock was also mounted, looked deserted.
Some of the motorists, who spoke with NAN, expressed their displeasure and frustration with the situation.
A motorist, Mr Azeez Adebayo, said he had been in the gridlock for close to five hours, passing different roadblocks after being made to cough out some money by the hoodlums.
An apparently frustrated Adebayo, who said that he left Osogbo around 8 am. and got to the expressway at 10.10 am, added that he was still in the gridlock as at 2.30 pm.
He said it had been very frustrating sitting for hours in a hot vehicle, while expressing the fear that the situation might degenerate into mayhem, if something urgent was not done by government.
NAN reports that none of the hoodlums were seen with any #EndSARS placard or poster.NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:10 GMT |

EndSARS protest: Ondo Govt.closes schools

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THE Ondo State Government has ordered all schools in the state to close for a while following the ongoing EndSARS protests in the state.

The state Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Mr Femi Agagu, stated this in a statement he made available to newsmen on Tuesday in Akure.

“Mr Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN,  has directed that all schools that resumed on Monday,   Oct. 19,  2020, are to close for the meantime from tomorrow,  Oct. 21, 2020,” he said.

According to Agagu, this is because of the engulfing nationwide protest and the need to ensure safety of our students and staff.

“Parents and the public are to take note of this directive and all schools are to comply.

“Any inconvenience this directive may cause  parents and guidance is regretted, while the state government will  ensure resumption of our schools as soon as possible,” Agagu said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that major roads leading to the state capital were blocked by the EndSARS protesters, who were seen burning tyres there.

Gov. Akeredolu of Ondo State had  last week while appealing to some protesters in Akure urged them to embrace the window of opportunity to be created by  the Judicial Panel of Inquiry  to be established .

He advised the  members of the public to  submit their  memoranda on their grievances against the SARS unit of the Police Force to the panel.

The governor, however, promised to set up the judicial panel before the end of the week.

NAN

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:10 GMT |

Violent #ENDSARS Protest: IGP deploys Anti-Riot Police Officers to protect lives

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Mohammed Adamu, the Inspector General of Police (IGP)

THE Inspector-General of Police, IGP Mohammed Adamu, has ordered immediate nationwide deployment of anti-riot police unit – the Police Mobile Force, PMF, – to protect lives and property of all Nigerians and secure critical national infrastructure across the country.

The IGP has also ordered massive deployment of Police operatives to strengthen security around Correctional facilities nationwide. The orders are coming on the heels of increasing attacks including acts of arson and malicious damage to public and private facilities as recorded in some States of the Federation including the Federal Capital Territory, FCT.

A statement by Frank Mba, Force Public Relations Officer said that the Commissioners of Police in the 36 States of the Federation and the FCT would identify and isolate law-breakers from peaceful protesters; immediately arrest and diligently prosecute such perpetrators of violence in their respective Commands.

The IGP notes that 12 suspects have been arrested in connection with the attacks and arson on Police Stations in Benin, Edo State. Five AK47 rifles earlier stolen from vandalized Police Stations have also been recovered.

“The Inspector-General of Police calls on members of the public to avail the police with useful information that can lead to the re-arrest of the fleeing inmates, unlawfully released from Correctional facilities. Meanwhile, the IGP has advised parents/guardians to prevail on their children/wards to steer-clear of acts of violence and criminality as the Force will henceforth exercise the full powers of the law to prevent any further attempt on lives and property of citizens,” the statement said.

– Oct. 20, 2020 @ 17:10 GMT |

COVID-19: FG to address deficiencies in health system – Ehanire

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EndSARS protest: Senate asks Buhari to address nation

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nigerian senate
nigerian senate

EndSARS protesters are speaking minds of Nigerians – NUJ

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Nigerian-Union-of-Jounalists-NUJ
Nigerian-Union-of-Jounalists-NUJ