Military Asked To Remain Non-partisan In Election Period

Alex-Badeh

The Nigerian Armed Forces have been asked to remain non-partisan even as the nation approaches another election year.

At the the decoration ceremony of 16 senior officers promoted to the rank of Air Marshal on friday, the Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh, stressed the need for military men to remain subordinate to civilian authorities.

Air Chief Marshal Badeh also asked the newly promoted senior officers of the Nigerian Air Force to bring their experience and professionalism to bear in the ongoing fight against insurgency and provide useful advice to higher authority.

On his part, the Chief of Air Staff, Adesola Amosu, explained  the newly promoted officers were selected based on their capacity and contributions to the ongoing fight against insurgency in the north-east and hoped that it would serve as a motivation to do more.

The Nigerian Armed Forces have been battling to contain the activities of a terrorist group, Boko Haram, that has continued to carry out attacks at different locations mostly in Nigeria’s north-east.

They are seeking an Islamic State and an end to western education in the region.

Suspended PDP Member Heads For Court

PDP22A member of the Peoples Democratic Party, Mr Aliyu Gubrin, who was suspended alongside former Chairman of the Party, Alhaji Bmanga Tukur, for suing the party has vowed to challenge his suspension in court.

Mr Gubrin, who spoke through his counsel, Barrister Lilian Ojimma, described his suspension as ‘strange’, insisting that he was not given a fair hearing by the party before his suspension.

He also debunked the claim that Bamaga Tukur has anything to do with the suit he filed seeking to oust Mr Adamu Mu’azu as the party’s national chairman.

Gr Gubrin had dragged the party before a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja to challenge the appointment of Mu’azu as the chairman of the party.

Justice Evoh Chukwu of the court dismissed the suit, saying that the plaintiff lacks the right to file the action.

The ruling PDP announced their suspension on Thursday.

Anambra State Christmas Lights Excite Indigenes

AnambraThe Anambra State Governor, Willie Obiano, in the spirit of the yuletide has formally commenced the switching on of the commemorative Christmas light for the first time in the state beginning with Onitsha, the commercial nerve center of the state.

Upper Iweka axis and DMGS roundabout are now wearing a new look with Christmas decoration and art works beautifying the whole place and bringing a brand new sight to behold in the city that was once almost overtaken by hoodlums.

Switching on the Christmas light, the governor recalled that Upper Iweka, which was known for notoriety, had now become famous for good things and urged citizens of the state both home and in the Diaspora to be part of the night life that had returned to the city as a result of maximum security in the state.

It was the first ever in the state as night life was hardly experienced before now in the state. As the bright lights radiated creating a superb sight that really thrilled the people, the governor supported by his wife switched on the light announcing the commencement of Christmas celebration that would last to January 25.

The next port of call was DMGS roundabout where the whole place was next to what the governor called the Las Vegas of Nigeria.

The bright lights created a frenzied excitement amongst the people and while fireworks rocked the sky, excitement gave way to reactions.

The initiative by Willie Obiano administration to beautify and change the atmospheric condition of the state ahead of Christmas is a development many see as desirable and with the security situation under control, the stage is set for a successful yuletide celebration in the state.

Gender Violence: Activists Advocate Education, Abrogation Of Obsolete Laws

Sexual_violenceReligious leaders and right activists have said that gender based violence can only be tackled with wide education and a replacement of obsolete and weak laws to check impunity.

The advice was given at a forum on 16 days of activism against gender violence held in Abuja.

Participants at the forum said that efforts should go beyond teaching girls and women about gender based violence to equipping them with solutions that will protect them from being victims of violence.

The leaders also said that other issues which also need urgent attention to stem the rising tide of violence are society’s further victimization of the victims of violence, the quick dismissals of violence as women’s issues rather than a societal dysfunction and the stereotyping of abuse as only physical, neglecting the emotional and psychological harm inflicted on victims.

The increasing cases of violence against women have become a matter of urgent concern and human rights activists say adequate information for the vulnerable and effective legislation will curb it, such as the bill for violence against persons prohibition which has been pending before the National Assembly for 12 years.

From the religious perspective, however, the tactics are different and that is to teach girls self respect which forbids disrespect and to empower women economically and academically so they are lifted from vulnerability.

College Students Protest School’s Merger With Institute In Akure

Students of the Ondo State Cooperative College, protest located in Akure, have staged a peaceful protest against the state government’s decision to merge the college with the Public Service Training Institute (PSTI).

The protesting students carried placards with various inscriptions and chanting solidarity songs to drive home their demand from the state government.

The President of the Students’ Union Government of the College, Paul Kolade, told Channels Television that they want the college to be retained and affiliated with either the state owned polytechnic or university.

The students, who marched to the Governor’s Office but met his absence, were addressed by top government functionaries, led by the Head of Service, Toyin Akinkuotu, who assured them that government has a better plan for them and intend to relocate them to a more conducive environment.

The Ondo State Cooperative College, Akure, was established in 1978 to train students to be absorbed into the low and medium workforce in related private and government establishments.

Jonathan Commissions Federal High Court In Asaba

JonathanPresident Goodluck Jonathan has commissioned the new Ultra Modern Federal High Court complex in Asaba on Wednesday, December 3.

President Jonathan, represented by the State Governor, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan, pointed out that the presence of High Court in virtually every state of the federation is a good development as it would bring justice closer to the people while commending the Chief Judge and other Justices of the court for their hard work and immeasurable support for his administration’s resolve to hold accountable all the perpetrators of terrorist acts across the country.

The Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Ibrahim Ndahi Auta, commended the efforts of the state government in ensuring that the Federal High Court was established in Delta State, stating that “Delta State now has not only one Division but two Divisions, one in Asaba as well as one in Warri”.

‎During his speech, President Jonathan also commended the Federal High Court for its implementation of innovative reform measures determined to expand access to justice and bring it closer to Nigerians.

He observed that the access to High Court by Nigerians would not have been possible if deliberate steps are not taken to ensure the presence of the court in virtually every state in the federation.

Ezekwesili Asks Africans To Demand For Good Governance

Ezekwesili-Obiageli

A former Nigeria’s Minister of Education, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, has asked Africans to demand good governance from their leaders, insisting that it is the only way that the leaders will deliver on the campaign promises.

At the Annual conference of the Royal African Society in London on Monday, Dr Ezekwesili urged citizens of the African continent to be more proactive in demanding social change.

“The supply of governance must be matched deliberately by the demand for good governance,” she said.

Dr Ezekwesili emphasised that “Africa is rising, as we have all heard, but countries like Nigeria may be vulnerable to the external shocks of declining commodity prices if prudent management of the nation’s finances are not applied”.

Poverty And Inequality Rising

She was speaking against the backdrop of the uneven growth pattern across Africa where positive economic indices still sees many citizens on the margins.

Delivering a keynote address, Dr Ezekwesili highlighted the positive economic strides being made across the continent, including Nigeria, but argued that the pattern had also with it a paradox. “The levels of poverty and inequality rising side by side the said improvements. Thus mere economic growth cannot suffice,” she stressed.

Bursts of outrage over perceived government failings have been witnessed in various parts of the continent, a popular movement being the Bring Back Our Girls campaign for the over 200 young girls kidnapped in Chibok, Nigeria by the Boko Haram terrorists in April.

But demanding for social justice and economic and political inclusion is not a simple task, as many Nigerians contend with the more demanding challenges of survival.  With the 2015 general elections drawing nearer, experts have emphasised that political apathy was not in anyone’s interest.

Nigerian Navy Destroys Illegal Refineries, Arrest Oil Thieves In Rivers

NavyThe Nigerian Navy has again made good its promise to ensure that the country’s waterways are made unsafe for oil thieves to operate.

The Nigeria Navy Shipyard, NNS pathfinder has destroyed over 20 illegal refineries, 500 drums containing refined AGO and three storage tanks along Onne axis.

Out board and pumping machines used for siphoning crude illegally were also recovered with five suspected oil thieves and a tugboat also arrested in Alakiri Creek in Rivers State.

The leader of the arrested suspects, Emma Frank, however, claimed that the Navy was not unaware of their activities.

The claim was immediately dismissed by the commander, Godwin Ochai, who said that the so called approval was illegal.

He insisted that investigations were ongoing and no stone would be left unturned in the fight against maritime crimes.

Although their operations remain tough, according to the Navy, there would be no going back until they end the war against maritime criminals.

Anambra State Signs $320 Million Agreement For International Market

AnambraAnambra state government has signed a $320 million business agreement with a private consortium, for an International market to be sited at Ogbunike in Oyi Local Government Area of the State.

Signing the memorandum at the governor’s lodge at Amawbia, Governor Willie Obiano said the project was in its first phase and would create over 600 jobs and would provide viable outlet for distributing and marketing goods mass produced by the industrial hub in the state.

The governor also shored up the occasion with a gallant entry to sign the $320 million dollar agreement with the consortium for the establishment of a modern market of international status.

in his speech, the Chairman of Anambra State Promotion and Protection Investment Agency, under whose auspices the project was attracted said the market would have a shopping mall, industrial park, educational and medical facilities and entertainment center.

The leader of the team, Mr Obiora Anyaralu and another senior member of the consortium, Dr. Adedeji Ameh, said the second phase of the project would incorporate the establishment of a housing estate.

He further said that the project would assist the governor in achieving his vision towards elevating the state to an enviable height in commerce.

Addressing the august team, the Governor stated that a similar market would be established in Umunze, Orumba South Local Government Area, explaining that the main market with its challenge of old age necessitated the undertaking of the present project.

He assured the gathering of direct job creation to the tune of 600 when the project must have been completed. He put the percentage benefit of the project to the state at five per cent while the local government of domicile gets 25 per cent.

Signatures by all parties involved were appended, thus sealing the deal and expectations are now high that in 42 months, an international trade center must have been built in Ogbunike in Oyi Local Government Area of the state as the state heads for a digital e-commerce stage in trade and business activities.

FIFA Announces 15 Midfielders For FIFPro World XI

FIFAFIFA has announced the 15 midfielders in contention to make this year’s FIFPro World XI, with only the forwards short-list left to be unveiled on December 1.

After the unveiling of the five goalkeepers and 20 defenders who made the shortlist, the 15 midfielders to be added to it are now also known. The shortlist would be completed by the 15 forwards to be announced on December 1.

The midfield shortlist includes three World Cup winners with Germany, Captain, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Toni Kroos and Mesut Ozil each making the cut, as announced by FIFA on Friday.

FIFPro and its national affiliates are responsible for gathering votes from professional footballers worldwide. It is the only global award that truly represents the views of those who play the beautiful game.

The midfielder shortlist announced by FIFA is: (home country / club)

Xabi Alonso (Spain / FC Bayern München);

Angel Di Maria (Argentina / Manchester United FC);

Cesc Fabregas (Spain / Chelsea FC);

Eden Hazard (Belgium / Chelsea FC);

Xavi Hernandez (Spain / FC Barcelona);

Andres Iniesta (Spain / FC Barcelona);

Toni Kroos (Germany / Real Madrid CF);

Luka Modric (Croatia / Real Madrid CF);

Mesut Oezil (Germany / Arsenal FC);

Andrea Pirlo (Italy / Juventus FC);

Paul Pogba (France / Juventus FC);

James Rodriguez (Colombia / Real Madrid CF);

Bastian Schweinsteiger (Germany / FC Bayern München);

Yaya Toure (Côte d’Ivoire / Manchester City FC);

Arturo Vidal (Chile / Juventus FC)

Blast in Adamawa Bus Station Kills Over 30

Adamawa_State_NigeriaA bomb blast tore through a bus station in Adamawa State, North East Nigeria, killing over 30 people, including five soldiers according to witnesses and security personnel.

Reports say that a combined team of the military and local hunters, who gained entrance into Mubi, were on a routine patrol in the area when the bomb detonated, setting several buses on fire at the Marabi, Mubi junction.

In a village just outside of Mubi, the second largest city in Adamawa state.

Though the area has been repeatedly targeted by Boko Haram, no group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

In early November, Boko Haram seized the town, which has a population of more than 200,000, and renamed it “Madinat-ul Islam,” or the city of Islam.

More than 1,500 people have been killed by the Boko Haram insurgency this year, according to Amnesty International.

Thursday’s incidence is coming barely a day after the blockade of the Federal highway linking Mubi was lifted as a result of which the security operatives modified the curfew imposed on the areas affected by the insurgency.

Kogi Records 234 Deaths, 1000 Rescue In Months – FRSC

FRSC-2The Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) in Kogi state has said that 243 people died while 1,919 were rescued alive in various auto crashes that occurred between January and October 2014.

The Kogi State Sector Commander, Godwin Omiko, stated this in Lokoja during a candle light procession to commemorate 2014 Africa Road Safety Day/Remembrance Day of road traffic crash victims.

Mr Omiko also stated that the command is geared towards bringing new development that would help reduce road accident to the barest minimum.

He pointed out that a strategy to ease road traffic along Lokoja/Abuja highway for the ’ember’ months is in place, warning all road users to obey traffic rules and regulations.

He warned that who ever is caught will be tried in the mobile court which will be situated at strategic places for road defaulters.