Nasarawa, Benue Govts. Donate N30 Million For Agatu Rehabilitation

HRW Accuses Officials Of Rape, Exploitation Of Female IDP's  The government of Benue and Nasarawa states, on Thursday approved the release of 30 million Naira, as part of contributions to the rebuilding of the Agatu Local Government Area, Benue state.

This is part of the effort by the states government to help the residents of the state, after the destruction carried out by suspected herdsmen.

Governor Samuel Ortom and his Nasarawa state counterpart, Gov. Tanko Al-Makura, announced the donation at the end of the reconciliation meeting and signing of the peace agreement, between Agatu farmers and Fulani herdsmen in Makurdi.

The governors also called on the Federal Government to halt the influx of foreign herdsmen into the country.

They further noted some dedicated routes in Agatu local government for  Fulani herdsmen to graze their cattle.

Agatu Community Gets Christmas Donation

The wife of the Benue State Governor, Mrs Eunice Ortom, donated food items, clothes and cash gifts to 345 Internally Displaced Persons and widows from Agatu and 22 other local government areas for Christmas.

The gesture, according to Mrs Ortom, is to lend a helping hand to displaced and indigent people who may not be able to afford food for their families due to their condition of displacement.

Taliban Attack Near Afghan Parliament Kills More Than 30

talibanA Taliban suicide attack in the Afghan capital Kabul on Tuesday killed more than 30 people and wounded some 70 others, as twin blasts hit a crowded area of the city during the afternoon rush hour.

Saleem Rasouli, a senior public health official, said 33 people had been killed and more than 70 wounded on the Darul Aman road, near an annexe to the new Indian-financed parliament building. Most of the victims were parliamentary staff members.

The Islamist militant Afghan Taliban movement, which immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, said its target had been a minibus carrying staff from the National Directorate of Security (NDS), Afghanistan’s main intelligence agency. It put casualties at around 70.

It said one suicide bomber attacked the minibus in the Darul Aman area, and was followed almost immediately by a car bomber, who killed security forces attending the scene.

“Right after the explosion, I jumped in a stream and then I saw some injured people and a bus which was totally burnt out,” said Sajadullah Khan, a witness who was walking by when the blasts occurred.

President Ashraf Ghani condemned the “criminal” attacks and vowed that the perpetrators would not be safe anywhere in the country.

“The Taliban shamelessly claim credit for the attack on civilians and they’re proud of it,” he said in a statement.


LONDON OLYMPICS: Nigeria is out of men’s 4x400m relay

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) on Tuesday confirmed that Nigeria’s 4x400m men’s relay team will not compete at the London Olympics.

This is contrary to the statement by the Athletic Federation of Nigeria (AFN) on Monday which listed the team among the country’s contingent to the Games.

The Nigerian 4x400m relay team is made up of Saul Weigopwa, Abiola Onokoya, Isah Salihu, Tobi Ogunmola, Segun Ogunkole and Godday James.

The team ran 3:02.39 to win the gold medal at the just concluded 18th African Athletics Championships on Sunday in Porto Novo, and they were wrongly informed that the team made the cut for the Olympics.

However, the IAAF on Tuesday released the list of 16 teams that have qualified to participate in the event in London and Nigeria was not included in the list.

According to the IAAF report, “the qualification period for the men’s and women’s 4x100m and 4x400m relays at the Games of the XXX Olympiad, London 2012 ended on Monday 2 July. The IAAF is pleased to confirm the following 16 teams, per each of the four relays, which have qualified to compete, are as follows…”

Until the victory in Port Novo, Nigeria was ranked out of the top 20 nations but moved to the 18th on the list following last Sunday’s personal season’s best performance in Benin republic.

South Africa and Kenya will be flying the continent’s flag in the London games which will kick-off in a few weeks.

Meanwhile Nigeria still stands a chance to make the games if two of the qualified countries drop out of the event at the quadrennial Games on their own volition.

Nigeria will thus not be competing in the men’s 4x400m relay at the Olympics.

Victory in past relays have accounted for some of the nine medals Nigeria has won in the athletics event of the Olympic Games.