Gunmen Attack Niger Communities, Kill One Police Officer, Shoot Military Men

Cholera Kills 10 Persons In Niger State

 

Gunmen have attacked Galkogo and Zumba villages in Shiroro Local Government Area of Niger State, reportedly killing one mobile police officer, shooting three military men and several other persons.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Wasiu Abiodun, confirmed the attacks to Channels Television in a telephone conversation on Sunday.

According to him, the armed men attacked the communities riding on more than 50 motorcycles in an operation that lasted for over two hours.

According to locals, apart from the security officials who were attacked, a little girl was shot on her stomach and another man was shot on the thigh, while some members of the communities have been abducted.

The senator representing Niger East Senatorial District, Sani Musa, who forwarded some video clips to Channels Television, said he was disturbed by the security situation in his constituency, particularly in Shiroro, Munya, Rafi and Paikoro local government areas where bandits have continued to unleash mayhem on the locals.

According to him, members of the affected communities have since fled their homes and are currently taking shelter in the bush.

He, however, noted that those who sustained injuries in the attacks are being attended to at the IBB Specialist Hospital in Minna, while also stating that the state Commissioner of Police, Adamu Usman has now deployed special squads to the area.

CAS Inspects Facilities In Minna, Assures Governor Of Air Force’ Continued Support

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The Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, has assured the Niger State Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello, of the commitment of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) to ensuring the safety and security of the people of Niger State, working in concert with sister services and other security agencies.

The CAS made this known today, February 25, 2020, when he met with the Governor at the Government House Minna, as part of his operational visit to Niger State, which was aimed at assessing facilities emplaced at the Minna Airport to enable the effective conduct of the ongoing anti-banditry air operation code-named “Operation Gama Aiki”.

While, in Minna, the CAS also inspected facilities at the 013 Quick Response Group (013 QRG) NAF Base Minna, including the Base Medical Centre as well as the disused G-222 aircraft provided as a mock-up for anti-aircraft hijacking training, amongst others, where he mentioned that two sets of NAF personnel, who had earlier been trained in anti-aircraft hijacking, would soon be re-assembled to replicate the training locally in Minna.

Speaking during the courtesy call, Air Marshal Abubakar disclosed that the NAF would continue to work alongside other security agencies to bring succour to troubled communities in Niger State.

He stated that he had assessed facilities in the NAF Base, in preparation for the deployment of additional Regiment and Special Forces (SF) personnel to support operations in the state, whilst assuring that the air assets already deployed, including the helicopters and Alpha Jet aircraft, would continue to provide support to the Army and Police.

The CAS equally disclosed that as part of efforts of the Service to alleviate the plight of those affected by the activities of armed bandits, he had directed that a medical outreach be conducted to cater for the healthcare needs of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) at Kuta in Shiroro Local Government Area (LGA).

Air Marshal Abubakar ended his remarks by thanking the Government and people of Niger State for their continued support to the NAF.

In his response, Governor Bello, while noting that the state had gone through a very challenging period, expressed his satisfaction with the arrangements emplaced by the NAF.

He, therefore, thanked the CAS for the tremendous support provided by the deployment of air assets to add value to the Internal Security Operations in the State, especially the most vulnerable areas bordering Zamfara, Kebbi and Kaduna States.

He also commended the CAS for approving the conduct of the medical outreach to Kuta, more so that the NAF had carried out a similar outreach at Chukuba and Kwaki Communities of Shiroro LGA in June 2019.

The CAS, who was accompanied on the visit by the NAF Chief of Training and Operations NAF, Air Vice Marshal (AVM) James Gwani, the Air Secretary NAF, AVM Mahmoud Ahmed, and the Director of Logistics, AVM Ademola Durotoye, amongst other senior officers, had earlier received briefings from the Commander 013 QRG and the Air Component Commander Operation GAMA AIKI, which were held behind closed doors.

Four Killed, 34 Injured In Niger Tanker Explosion

 

Four persons have been confirmed killed and 34 others injured following a tanker explosion at Kutigi town in Lavun Local Government Area of Niger State.

The Sector Commander of the Federal Road Safety Corps in the state, Joel Dagwa, confirmed the incident to Channels Television on Tuesday.

According to him, the explosion happened after a tanker carrying substance suspected to be diesel, collided with a container loaded with bags of maize which was also carrying about 200 people, as well as another trailer loaded with bags of maize and other farm produce.

 

 

Dagwa also stated that a story-building and several other shops by the roadside were gutted by the fire.

He, however, noted that all those who sustained injuries are now receiving treatment at the General Hospital in Kutigi.

“The trucks were from the North heading towards Lagos, while the tanker was from Lagos heading towards the North,” he said.

NLC Suspends Indefinite Industrial Action After Five Days Of Strike In Niger

 

The Nigerian Labour Congress in Niger State has suspended the indefinite strike action it embarked upon five days ago.

The suspension of the strike follows an agreement between organised labour and the state government on immediate implementation of the new minimum wage of thirty thousand naira and the consequential adjustments on salaries of civil servants.

READ ALSO: Minimum Wage: Rivers Govt Threatened To ‘Deal With Us’, NLC Claims

Briefing journalists at the Labour House in Minna, the chairman of the state NLC, comrade Yakubu Garba says the state government has also agreed to pay two months arrears on the new minimum wage to state workers and three months for local government staff in march this year.

He also says government has agreed to release twenty percent of the monthly internally generated revenue to address the liabilities accrued on the 7.5% contributory pension scheme.

Several Feared Killed In Renewed Attacks On Niger Communities

Cholera Kills 10 Persons In Niger State

 

Several persons are feared dead in Niger State after bandits attacked some communities between Friday night and Saturday evening.

The senator representing Niger East Senatorial District, Sani Musa, confirmed the attacks to Channels Television.

According to him, Kudodo, Galapai, Dnakpala, and Dnalagwa communities were among those who fell victim.

He also condemned the lack of response by security agents in the state, despite the fact that the attacks lasted several hours.

Read Also: Man Found Hung On Tree In Katsina

Efforts by Channels TV’s correspondent to get an official confirmation from the police were unsuccessful.

Meanwhile, reacting to the incident, the State Governor, Abubakar Bello noted that security personnel have been deployed to the area to flush out the bandits.

Police Arrest Suspected Car Burglars, Internet Fraudsters In Niger

 

A suspected gang of car burglars known as ‘Open and Close’ have been arrested by the Police in Niger state.

The suspects who operate mostly around banking areas make use of a special fabricated key to burgle people’s cars.

Parading the suspects at the Police Headquarters in Minna, the Public Relations Officer DSP Abubakar Dan-Inna said the suspects, 33-year-old Chibuke Uzumba and 35-year-old Ogochukwu Chimaka specialise in monitoring and waylaying persons who come to the bank to withdraw money.

READ ALSO: Police Rescue Six Kidnap Victims In Katsina

Also paraded were four suspects who specialise in internet fraud, 29-year-old Ahmed Alabi, 28-year-old Chinedu Eche, 29-year-old Chibuzor Ogochukwu, and 30-year-old Okechukwu Ogochukwu.

DSP Dan-Inna said the suspects were arrested following a report by one Kabiru Babayo to the ‘B’ Division Suleja that he was attacked and robbed of his wallet containing one Automated Teller Machine card, money and a cellphone by occupants of a tricycle he boarded.

He disclosed that the suspects also forced their victim to divulge his ATM Personal Identification Number (PIN) to them, which they later used in siphoning 0.6 Million Naira from his account.

According to the Police Spokesman, the suspects during investigation confessed to luring and doping unsuspecting persons as well as swapping bank customers’ ATM PINs at ATM withdrawal points while posing as assistants.

Others paraded include suspected cattle rustlers, kidnappers, and robbers.

Giving a breakdown of items recovered from the suspects, DSP Dan-Inna said two AK47 rifles, 14 live ammunition and one Beretta Pistol with four live ammunition and motorcycles.

Meanwhile, the Command has disclosed that it arrested 213 suspects in 2019 which include 55 kidnappers, 48 armed robbers, 15 cattle rustlers, and rape suspects.

Eight Feared Killed In Fresh Attack On Niger Community

niger-state-yuletide

 

 

Eight persons are feared killed by bandits in an attack on Kaure community, of Kwaki Ward in Shiroro Local Government Area, Niger State.

The attack which occurred in the early hours of Saturday, reportedly left several persons critically injured and many displaced from their homes.

The Councillor representing the ward, Jafaru Kwaki confirmed this to Channels Television, saying the information only got to him on Sunday as the affected community is a remote one.

“I received the sad report on Sunday that armed men dressed in black, stormed Kaure community in Kwaki, that’s under my ward, as early as 7:00 am. They were on motorbikes, as it is their style, and began to shoot sporadically,” he said.

“Eight persons have lost their lives in the attack. As for the injured persons, we cannot ascertain the number of people injured in the attack yet, because many escaped into the bushes with bullet wounds, but we were able to move 15 who sustained various degrees of injuries to health centres”.

According to him, the attackers also rustled cows, dispossessed locals of their cash and foodstuff at gunpoint.

“They burnt two vehicles, five machines and some houses in the attack. At the moment, many of our people are also missing. We have, however, dispatched search parties made up of vigilantes to comb the bush for them, while we try to move displaced persons to safe locations,” Kwaki further explained.

This is the third time in December alone that armed men have attacked communities in Shiroro local government area.

Earlier in the month, at least 13 persons were killed in attacks by bandits in eight communities across Rafi and Shiroro local government areas.

Meanwhile, the district head of Madaka, Alhaji Zakari Yau, his wife, the village head of Kukoki and four others, including the Secretary of the district council and a retired soldier were also kidnapped.

Similarly, some expatriates working around the area were reportedly abducted by bandits.

The Police in the state has, however, remained silent on the attacks.

While the Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Abubakar Dan-Innah, has declined to speak to journalists on the basis that he is on leave, Channels Television made efforts to speak to the Police Commissioner, Adamu Usman, but he is yet to take his call or respond to messages sent to him.

The Acting Public Relations Officer, ASP Uthman Umar, responding to the several missed calls from Channels Television’s correspondent, said the command is not aware of such attacks, but that he believes that if there is any such incident; the command would get a report by Monday.

He promised to keep our reporter abreast of any development on the matter.

But the locals have accused security operatives of compromise, alleging that the security agencies in the state have knowledge of the attacks.

Meanwhile, the Senator representing Niger East Senatorial District, Senator Mohammed Sani Musa has condemned the attack on Kaure.

He has called on the Federal Government, to as a matter of urgency, dispatch security personnel to tackle “the renewed spate of attacks” in Rafi and Shiroro local government areas.

He has also tasked security agencies in the state to up their ante in the fight against bandits.

The Senator particularly urged the Commissioner of Police and other security chiefs to come up with strategies that would nip the challenges in the bud once and for all.

In a statement he personally signed, he said his people cannot be left to die in the hands of bandits, adding that he would continue to make a case for them at the National Assembly until something is done to arrest the ugly situation.

As at the time of filing this report, the State Emergency Management Agency said it had activated an emergency response mechanism to deal with the situation in Kaure.

Director-General of the agency, Alhaji Ibrahim Ahmed Inga, said his office is, however, yet to receive a report on the number of casualties.

Niger Governor Presents N148bn Budget For 2020, Promises Not To Abandon Projects

Governor Abubakar Bello of Niger State on Tuesday presented a budget estimate of N148billion for the year 2020.

Bello, during the presentation to the State House of Assembly at Minna, Niger State capital, said the 2020 budget tagged Budget of Inclusion for Sustainable Development, would focus on completion of all ongoing projects in line with the resolve of his administration not to abandon any project.

The budget constitutes over N69billion for recurrent expenditure and over N78billion for capital expenditure.

READ ALSO: Education Get Highest Allocation As Gombe Budgets N130.668bn

The Governor explained that the budget will be funded through Internally Generated Revenues, Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) and other sources of income at the disposal of the state government.

Bello highlighted of some of the projects executed under the 2018 budgets to include rehabilitation of some rural and urban roads; purchase of buses to enhance transportation services in the state.

According to him, Niger Sate has collaborated with the World Bank to rehabilitate the moribund Ladi Kwali pottery and that so far the sum of N45million has been committed to the project.

Also, over N100million was spent to put the Teachers professional institute in Shiroro Local Government in good condition while the ICT/E-library at the Justice Fati Lami institute of administration was reconstructed at the cost of N17million.

Three Killed, Several Injured In Niger Road Accident

Cholera Kills 10 Persons In Niger State

 

 

Three persons have been killed and scores of others were injured following a road crash that occurred at Kutigi town in Lavun Local Government Area of Niger State.

According to eyewitnesses, the accident involving a van loaded with passengers occurred at about 5:00 am on Saturday, after the driver of the van allegedly lost control and somersaulted three times.

The passengers were said to have been on their way from Idan village to attend an Islamic programme in Kutigi when the incident occurred.

Although the Unit Corps Commander in the area, Mohammed Alhassan declined to grant an interview with Channels Television, the state Commissioner for local government and chieftaincy affairs, Abdulmalik Sarkindaji, who led officials from the state government led by the commissioner of local government and chieftaincy affairs to the area, said findings from the Federal Road Safety Corps revealed that the accident occurred due to overloading and over speeding.

The Medical Doctor at the Kutigi General Hospital in Lavun local government, Dr Oyewo Abdulrazak, however, confirmed the number of casualties.

According to him, 81 others sustained varying degrees of injuries.

Director-General of the State Emergency Management Agency, Ibrahim Inga, said the state government will cater for the medical bills of the victims.

Police Release Channels TV Cameraman

 

The police in Niger state have released a Channels Television cameraman Abdullahi Egba, after almost four hours in detention at the Tafa Divisional Police Station.

He was assaulted and arrested during a protest by youths in Tafa Local Government Area (LGA), who had blocked the Kaduna-Abuja Highway in disapproval to the cancellation of results in the LG poll last weekend.

Mr Egba was released following a directive by the commissioner of police, Adamu Usman, ordering the Divisional Police Officer to set the journalist free.

RELATED: Police Beat Up Channels TV Reporter, Arrest Cameraman

According to Mr Egba, he was forced by the Investigation Police Officer (IPO) in charge of the case to write a statement indicting him of instigating the protest.

The Policemen had seized and threatened to destroy the camera, but the intervention of the CP Usman, they released the camera to the Channels TV crew.

The Reporter who was beaten also sustained injuries on his back and leg as a result of the assaults by policemen who hit him with sticks and gun butts.

Some of the officers at the protest venue had slapped the reporter severally, dragging his clothes.

He only managed to escape from the scene of the protest.

APC Wins 22 Chairmanship Seats In Niger

 

 

The Niger State Independent Electoral Commission has announced the results of the Chairmanship and Councillorship elections from 23 local government areas, out of which the All Progressives Congress has won 22 Chairmanship seats while PDP won 1 seat.

Results from Mashegu and Tafa local government areas are yet to be submitted, while councillorship elections in seven wards in Shiroro, Chanchaga, Bida and Rafi local government areas were canceled.

Announcing the results, the chairman of the commission, Aminu Baba said eighty-five candidates contested for the position of Chairman, while six hundred and sixty-one candidates contested for the position of councilor across the 25 local government areas.

READ ALSO: Residents Vote In Niger LG Polls Despite Low Turnout

He noted that there were hitches in some local government areas which include Agaie, Mashegu, and Chanchaga, adding that there also cases of delays in cm the commencement of poll.

Channels Television gathered that the elections in the aforementioned three local government areas were marred with violence.

Baba, however, said the commission recorded success despite the hitches and commended the security agencies in the state for their support.

The elections on Saturday witnessed a low turnout of voters across the twenty-five local government areas, with some voters refusing to come out and vote because of what they described as poor performance of politicians after being elected.

Residents Vote In Niger LG Polls Despite Low Turnout

 

The Chairmanship and councillorship elections in Niger state have witnessed a low turnout of voters across the 25 local government areas.

In most of the polling units visited by Channels Television, officials of the State Independent Electoral Commission arrived early with voting materials, the election did not, however, commence until 9:00 am, when voters started turning out.

No violence has been recorded yet, but there are however complaints of politicians engaging in vote-buying, ballot box snatching and other acts intended to disrupt smooth conduct of the election.

At a polling unit, Salihu Maikatifa One, at Cikin gari ward of Kagara in Rafi local government area, voters turned out in their numbers to exercise their franchise, but express concern over the use of money by politicians to sway the voter’s mind.

READ ALSO: Voting Begins In Kogi West Senatorial Rerun Election

The PDP collation officer in Rafi, Haruna Marafa told journalists who are in the area to monitor the election that the APC is engaged in vote-buying using public funds at its disposal.

He also said the process in the area is characterized with violence, but commended security agents for their prompt response.

According to him, he received a report from the party’s agent in Yakila polling Unit that an APC chieftain hired thugs to snatch ballot boxes to his house, but with the help of the Divisional Police Officer in the area, the ballot boxes were retrieved and arrests have been made.

But, an APC chieftain Gambo Tanko Kagara who was the former Chairman of Rafi local government and former president of Association of Local Government Organizations of Nigeria, ALGON, discredited the claim by the PDP, saying the latter is desperate to get power.

He said the APC’s performance in the last four years is enough to make the people vote for its candidates.

He attributed the low turnout of voters recorded in the election to the current crop harvesting which made many people go to farm rather than to vote.

In Kontagora local government area, the polling unit of Governor Abubakar Bello also witnessed very low turnout. Although officials of the State Independent Electoral Commission arrived as early as 7:30 am, voting did not commence until 9:00 am when voters started turning out.

Voting in Chanchaga, Bosso, Shiroro and Paikoro also recorded low turnout.

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