Dolly Parton Gets COVID-19 Vaccine, Urges Fans To Do Same

Parton joins other US celebrities who have publicly supported the vaccine like actors Tom Hanks and Sean Penn.

 

From “Jolene” to “Vaccine” — country music legend Dolly Parton has received her first COVID-19 shot and urged Americans to follow her lead with a rewrite of her classic hit singing the vaccine’s praises.

“Vaccine, vaccine, vaccine, vaccine, I’m begging of you, please don’t hesitate,” she sang to the tune of her 1973 hit. “Vaccine, vaccine, vaccine, vaccine, because once you’re dead, then that’s a bit too late.”

In the short video posted to social media, the 75-year-old singer gets a shot of Moderna’s vaccine, the development of which she helped to fund.

READ ALSO: Why Buhari, Others Will Receive COVID-19 Vaccine ‘In The Open’ – Minister

“I am old enough to get it (vaccine) and I am smart enough to get it…. I wanted to tell everybody that I think you should get out there and get it too,” she said.

 

Revered by people from a variety of backgrounds for decades, Parton, a longtime philanthropist, has been popping up in the news of late, especially after donating $1 million to Vanderbilt University.

The funds went towards developing Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine.

Parton joins other US celebrities who have publicly supported the vaccine like actors Tom Hanks and Sean Penn.

Insurgency: Zulum Asks FG To Seek Support From Neighbouring Countries

Borno State Governor Babagana Zulum

 

Borno State Governor Babagana Zulum has called on the Federal Government to seek support from neighbouring countries in the fight against insurgency.

Zulum said this on Wednesday at the North East Governors’ Forum held in Bauchi, the state Bauchi state capital, noting that joint action is required to end the insurgency.

“Again, I want to use this opportunity to call on the Federal Government to seek support from our neighbours, especially the Republic of Chad and Niger with a view to providing a joint action that will look into the possibility of ending this crisis.

“Furthermore, Federal Government has to look into the possibility of employing mercenaries with a view to ending this insurgency.

READ ALSO: COVID-19: 2.3m Persons Registered For Vaccination In Less Than 24 Hours – NPHCDA

“For us to end this insurgency, we must be committed enough. We must bring in external support; ensure mercenaries are hired to end this insurgency,” the governor said.

Zulum, who is also the Chairman of the North East Governors’ Forum urged the newly appointed service chiefs to devise new strategies and initiatives in tackling insecurity in the country.

“Violence been perpetrated by the insurgents seems to be on the increase both in scope and viciousness and it has become a matter of tactical necessity for the new service chiefs to devise new strategies to counter the current attacks and forestall any future attacks.

“Undoubtedly, the commitment of our military to the war against insurgency is unquestionable and the determination to succeed is undeniable.

“However the current escalation of deadly attacks by the terrorists and the various causes of actions being pursued seems to have some limitations in terms of the expected impact. Hence, the need for a new set of a pragmatic approach to completely subdue the terrorist and ultimately end the insurgency,” Zulum added.

The fourth North East Governors’ Forum meeting which was held in Bauchi had various dignitaries in attendance.

They include the host, Bauchi State Governor Bala Mohammed, Adamawa State Governor Ahmadu Fintiri; Gombe State Governor Muhammad Yahaya; Taraba State Governor, Darius Ishaku among others.

British High Commissioner to Nigeria Catriona Laing was also at the event.

 

Joint Support

This is not the first time Governor Zulum will be suggesting engagement of mercenaries in fighting insurgency.

The governor in November 2020 gave six recommendations to the Federal Government on how to win the war against Boko Haram and Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP) insurgents terrorising the north-eastern region of Nigeria.

The governor believes engaging mercenaries, as well as the immediate recruitment of youths into the military to boost its strength, will go a long way to defeat the insurgents.

He said it was also important to engage the services of neighbouring Niger Republic, Chad, and Cameroon to clear the remnants of the insurgents in the Lake Chad region and the Mandara mountains.

Alleged $330,000 Fraud: EFCC Prosecutes Dutch National, Wife

Peiter Borremans, and his wife (both carrying white bags) at the court premises on Tuesday, March 2, 2021.

 

A Federal High Court in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital has remanded a Dutch national, Peiter Borremans, and his wife, Nkechi Borremans to the custody of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

They are remanded for allegedly defrauding two firms of Three Hundred and Thirty Thousand ($330,000) meant for the purchase of a marine tanker vessel.

The defendants alongside a firm, Lagon Trade Limited were arraigned by the EFCC before Justice E. A. Obile of a Federal High Court in Port Harcourt, the state capital, on two counts bordering on fraud and felony.

The couple allegedly obtained the sum from two firms, Jackkyson Multi Services Limited and Alot General Services Limited on July 31, 2014, as part payment for the purchase of a marine tanker vessel.

The persons, however, pleaded not guilty to the two counts charge.

The presiding judge, Justice E. A. Obile, ordered that the defendants be remanded in the custody of the EFCC in support of the argument by the defense counsel, C.A. Okowanye following the spread of the covid19 pandemic, against the prayers of the prosecuting counsel, J.N Dogonyaro that the couple be remanded in the facility of the Port Harcourt Correctional Centre.

The case has been adjourned till March 31, 2021.

Killers Of Terkura Suswam Must Be Brought To Justice – Ortom

Governor Samuel Ortom

 

Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom has reacted to the killing of Terkura Suswam, elder brother to the Senator representing Benue North East, Senator Gabriel Suswam saying the killers must be apprehended.

The Governor in a statement signed on Wednesday by the Governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Terver Akase said his administration will give security operatives maximum support to ensure that the killers are arrested and made to face consequences of their action.

READ ALSO: Again, Bandits Abduct Over 50 Passengers In Niger

“Governor Ortom stresses that his administration will not surrender Benue to criminals, and gives assurance that killers and kidnapers operating in Sankera axis of the State won’t go unpunished,” the statement added.

He sympathised with Senator Suswam and the rest of the family, as well as the entire people of Logo Local Government Area over the painful death of Terkura Suswam.

He prayed that God grants the deceased eternal rest and his family the strength to bear the loss.

A group of gunmen on Tuesday night killed Terkura Suswam, elder brother to former Governor of Benue State, Gabriel Suswam.

His aide, simply identified as Mr Solomon was also killed by the gunmen.

According to the police, the attack took place when Suswam and his aide sat opposite his house at Elohim Plaza Anyiin to supervise repairs at the plaza. The gunmen who drove in a Toyota Camry vehicle attacked and shot them.

The police statement which was signed by the spokesperson in the state, Anene Sewuese Catherine added that victims were rushed to NKST Anyii hospital where they were eventually confirmed dead.

Alleged Fraud: EFCC Re-Arraigns Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia, Court Acquits Obla

File photo of Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia and Godwin Obla with EFCC operatives.

 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has re-arraigned a judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia on allegations of unlawful enrichment, breach of trust and money laundering.

She was arraigned before Justice Mohammed Liman on an amended 15 counts dated March 2nd.

Before her re-arraignment, Ajumogobia was docked alongside a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Godwin Obla who had earlier been charged along with her.

Counsel to the EFCC, Suleiman Suleiman then applied to the court to withdraw the name of Obla from the charge.

READ ALSO: Insecurity: We Expect Military To Take The Fight To Insurgents, Bandits – Lawan

The court granted the request and Obla was accordingly acquitted and discharged. This paved the way for the re-arraignment of Justice Ajumogobia as the sole defendant in the amended charge.

In the first count, the EFCC claims that “Honourable Justice Rita Ngozi Ofili Ajumogobia on or about the 11th day of July 2014 in Lagos…, indirectly concealed the total sum of N12m in the diamond account of Nigel & Colive Limited, a sum she reasonably ought to have known forms part of proceeds of an unlawful act…and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15(2a) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2011 as amended and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same act.

Justice Ajumogobia pleaded not guilty to all 15 counts.

Her counsel, Mobolaji Kuti then applied to the court to allow her continue on the bail previously granted by his brother judge, Justice Rilwan Aikawa who had earlier recused himself from her trial.

Justice Liman granted this request before adjourning to 21st & 28th of April for trial.

 

Background

The EFCC had first arraigned Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia on an 18 counts before Justice Rilwan Aikawa of the Federal High Court, Lagos. She pleaded not guilty to all the counts.

Justice Aikawa admitted her to bail in the sum of N10 million with two sureties in like sum.

On May 18, 2019, counsel to Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia, Robert Clarke (SAN) challenged the jurisdiction of the court to try his client. In moving his application on the preliminary objection, he told the court that his client is still a judge of the Federal High Court and as such could not be tried in line with the precedent set in the case of Justice Hyeladzira Nganjiwa.

A month later on June 28, Justice Aikawa dismissed the preliminary objection filed by Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia challenging her trial before the court.

He held that Justice Ajumogobia is no longer a judicial officer and could therefore be tried on any criminal offence for which she is accused.

Justice Ajumogobia has since challenged that decision at the Court of Appeal.

In the counts, the EFCC alleged that at various times, she indirectly concealed different sums of money, in the Diamond Bank account of Nigel and Colive Limited, a company alleged to be operated by her.

Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia was also alleged to have on different dates in 2014, retained sums of monies like N5million, 150,000 dollars, 20,000 dollars, 30,000 dollars, 50,000 dollars, and 55,000 dollars in the Diamond bank account of Nigel and Colive.

The EFCC also accused Ajumogobia of indirectly concealing the sum of N12million in the same account, and making a false statement to the EFCC that the money was payment for the sale of landed property.

The alleged offences contravene the provisions of Sections 15 (2) (a) and 18 (a) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2011.

 

FG Approves Establishment Of SIM Swap Centres In All 774 LGAs

A file photo of NCC logo and some SIM cards.

 

The Federal Government has approved the establishment of dedicated Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) swap centres in each of the 774 local government areas in the country.

This was announced in a statement jointly signed by the Director of Public Affairs of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Ikechukwu Adinde, and Head of Corporate Communications at the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Kayode Adegoke, on Wednesday.

The decision was reached at the fourth ministerial task force meeting on the NIN-SIM registration held in February.

READ ALSO: Lagos Govt Advises Residents Not To Panic Over Rise In Food Prices

According to the statement, the NIN enrolment agent licenses granted to mobile network operators was also extended from one to five years in consideration of their satisfactory performance as well as to simplify the enrolment process for Nigerians and legal residents.

 

The minister tasked a multi-sectoral ad-hoc committee drawn from NCC, National Identity Management Commission, Nigeria Immigration Service, and the Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria to immediately complete the review of the processes for new SIM activations for legal residents staying in Nigeria for less than 24 months.

“The technical committee was mandated to complete the development of a new SIM issuance strategy that cannot be compromised. This will ensure that there is no repeat of the past process that was compromised through pre-registration by some agents.

“A multi-sectoral adhoc committee was tasked to immediately complete the review of the processes for new SIM activations for legal residents staying in Nigeria for less than 24 months. The membership of the committee was drawn from NCC, NIMC, Nigeria Immigration Service and the Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON),” the statement read in part.

However, no update was provided about the April 6 deadline for the linkage of national identity numbers (NIN) to SIM cards.

Gunmen Kill Ex-Gov Suswam’s Brother, Aide In Benue

A file photo of a gun seized from crime suspects in Nigeria.

 

Gunmen have killed Terkura Suswam, elder brother to former Governor of Benue State, Gabriel Suswam.

His aide, simply identified as Mr Solomon was also killed by the gunmen.

According to the police, the attack took place on Tuesday night, when Suswam and his aide sat opposite his house at Elohim Plaza Anyiin to supervise repairs at the plaza.

READ ALSO: Gunmen Abduct Another Foreigner In Ekiti

The gunmen who drove in a Toyota Camry vehicle attacked and shot them.

The police statement which was signed by the spokesperson in the state, Anene Sewuese Catherine added that victims were rushed to NKST Anyii hospital where they were eventually confirmed dead.

Terkura Suswam

 

“Corpses have been deposited at the hospital for autopsy,” the statement added.

The Commissioner of Police has since ordered an investigation to ensure that perpetrators of the murder are apprehended and justice is served.

The police also announced that Anyiin town has been cordoned by additional police teams deployed to assist the Division to go after the killers.

 

Killers Won’t Escape Justice  – Ortom

Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom in reaction to the incident says killers of Terkura Suswam must be apprehended and brought to justice.

The Governor says his administration will give security operatives maximum support to ensure that killers of Dr Suswam are arrested and made to the face consequences of their actions.

Governor Ortom stresses that his administration will not surrender Benue State to criminals and assured that the killers and kidnappers operating in Sankera axis of the State won’t go unpunished.

He sympathised with Senator Suswam and the rest of the family, as well as the entire people of Logo Local Government Area over the painful death of Chief Terkura Suswam.

Lagos Govt Advises Residents Not To Panic Over Rise In Food Prices

Lagos consumes at least 50% of agricultural products in Nigeria.

 

The Lagos State government has asked residents not to panic due to the increase in the prices of food items.

Lagos State Commissioner for Information, Gbenga Omotoso in a series of tweets on Tuesday assured Lagos residents that food security is guaranteed, despite the crisis.

He added that the state Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu is “on top of it.”

Lagosians have been advised not to panic following reports that trucks conveying food from the North are stuck on the way.

READ ALSO: Alleged $330,000 Fraud: EFCC Prosecutes Dutch National, Wife

“The government is aware of the situation and Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu is on top of it.  He has initiated steps to ensure the matter is resolved by the weekend,” he said.

Omotoso said the spike in food prices is a result of the clash between traders in Shasha market, Ibadan.

“Food and cattle merchants from the North have withheld supplies, an action that has sparked rising prices.

“Lagos consumes at least 50% of agricultural products in Nigeria,” he added.

 

On the return of Lekki Concession Company (LCC) to the Lekki Toll Gate, the Commissioner said that contrary to the misconception in some circles, the facility will not resume tolling soon, considering its destruction during the #ENDSARS riots.

He said repairs would leverage technology for a better travel experience to eliminate time wastage.

 

– Food Blockage –

Prices of food items have increased in major cities including Lagos and Ibadan following the strike embarked upon by cattle and foodstuff dealers under the aegis of the Amalgamated Union of Foodstuff and Cattle Dealers of Nigeria (AUFCDN).

The union is demanding the protection of its members and payment of about N475 billion compensation for lives and property lost in the wake of the crises recorded across Nigeria in recent months.

The dealers are also demanding the removal of roadblocks, which they said is responsible for the extortion of their members by security operatives.

 

Police Ban Use Of Covered Number Plates, Blaring Of Sirens By Unauthorised Persons In Ekiti

A map of Ekiti, a state in South-West Nigeria.

 

The Ekiti State Police Command has banned the use of covered number plates, blaring of sirens, and use of revolving lights by unauthorised persons.

The State Police Commissioner Tunde Mobayo who made the announcement in a statement described the illegal privileges as a threat to the security of the state.

“Undoubtedly, this, in recent time has pulled a great threat to the security of the State as some criminal elements hide under these guises to carry out their criminal intentions.

READ ALSO: Gunmen Kill Ex-Gov Suswam’s Brother, Aide In Benue

“To this end, the Ekiti State Commissioner of Police, CP Tunde Mobayo in compliance with the directive of the Inspector-General of Police, IGP Adamu Mohammed, has warned against the unauthorized/illegal use of siren, revolving light, covered plate numbers, and the use of unregistered spy plate numbers,” the Commissioner stated.

He also demanded security consciousness and prompt report of suspected persons on the part of residents in order to tackle criminal activities in the state.

Mobayo noted that the police need the cooperation of citizens to succeed in its quest to tackle criminal activities.

Meanwhile, gunmen have kidnapped another foreigner along Igbemo Ekiti in Irepodun/Ifelodun Local Government Area of Ekiti State.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Sunday Abutu, confirmed the kidnap to Channels Television, noting that the incident took place on Tuesday.

The police spokesman asked residents not to get tensed as security operatives, noting that efforts were ongoing to the rescue of the victim and the arrest of culprits.

The latest abduction comes three months after a similar incident in Ekiti State.

Saraki Leads PDP Chieftains To Meet With Obasanjo In Abeokuta

Former Senate President, Bukola Saraki exchanging pleasantries with Former President Goodluck Jonathan

 

Former Senate President, Bukola Saraki on Tuesday led a group of  Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftains to a closed-door meeting with former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Saraki arrived at the former president’s house in Abeokuta, Ogun State capital with an entourage that included former Governor of Katsina State Ibrahim Shema; former governor of Gombe State, Hassan Dankwanbo; Former Governor of Cross River State, Liyel Imoke, and Former Governor of Osun State, Olagunsoye Oyinlola.

READ ALSO: Wike Charges APC, Other Parties To Emulate PDP’s Commitment To Project Delivery

The meeting may not be unconnected with burning national issues and matters related to the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) ahead of the 2023 election.

This meeting in Abeokuta comes weeks after members of the PDP Reconciliation Committee led by Saraki met with former President Goodluck Jonathan at his residence in Maitama, Abuja.

Former governor of Gombe State; Ibrahim Dankwambo, former Secretary to the Federal Government, Senator Pius Ayim; former governor of Cross River, Senator Liyel Imoke; former House leader Mulukat Adeola-Akande and former governor of Katsina State, Ibrahim Shema were all in attendance.

No Date Has Been Fixed For 2021 UTME Registration, Says JAMB

2020 UTME: JAMB Releases New Batch Of Results
JAMB Logo

 

The Joint Admissions and Matriculations Board on Tuesday said no date has been fixed for registration for the 2021 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).

JAMB made the announcement in a Tweet on its official and verified handle @JAMBHQ.

It also advised the public to disregard a fake Twitter account that announced information on the registration date for the examination.

READ ALSO: UN Seeks $266mn To Feed Refugees In Covid-Hit E.Africa

“IMPORTANT NOTICE TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC. This is to inform the general public that no date has been fixed for 2021 UTME registration. Kindly disregard any tweet from a fake account that stated otherwise. The general public will be duly informed when the date is fixed. Thank you,” the examination board said.

 

JAMB had earlier on Sunday announced that all admissions in the nation’s tertiary institutions for the 2020/2021 academic session would end by June 15, 2021.

This was contained in a statement issued by the spokesperson for JAMB, Dr Fabian Benjamin, which reveals that the decision was collectively taken at a virtual meeting with heads of tertiary institutions in the country on Wednesday, February 24, 2021.

UPDATED: Buhari Declares Zamfara ‘No-Fly Zone’, Bans Mining Activities

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has declared Zamfara a ‘no-fly zone’ and banned all mining activities in the state.

The National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno (rtd), who announced this on Tuesday in Abuja, explained that it was part of measures to tackle the security challenges witnessed in the north-western state.

He made the disclosure to State House correspondents after a five-hour National Security Council meeting presided over by the President at the Presidential Villa in the nation’s capital.

A no-fly zone, also known as a no-flight zone, or air exclusion zone, is a territory or area established by a military power over which certain aircraft are not permitted to fly.

READ ALSO: We Will See Better Security In Nigeria, Presidency Assures Nigerians

General Monguno also stated that all non-state actors have been placed under surveillance as the Federal Government will not hesitate to use kinetic means to restore normalcy in the country.

File photo of President Muhammadu Buhari in a meeting with Zamfara State Governor at the State House in Abuja

 

The NSA said the country’s defence and intelligence organization have been put on alert and charged not to allow the country to slide into a state of anarchy.

Monguno also said the President, in the meeting, gave a marching order to the new service chiefs to reclaim all areas under the control of bandits, insurgents, and kidnappers.

President Buhari had earlier in February held a meeting with Zamfara State Governor Mohammed Mattawalle at the State House in Abuja.

The governor after the meeting told journalists at the presidential villa that he was summoned by the President to brief him on the security situation in his state.

Mattawalle added that 358 special police forces have been deployed by the Federal Government to the state to tackle banditry.