Buhari To Attend ECOWAS Meeting In Niamey

President Muhammadu Buhari will on Tuesday, October 24, depart for Niamey, Republic of Niger.

The special adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina in a statement on Monday said to Buhari will during his stay in Niamey “participate in a meeting on common currency for the West African sub-region.”

Member countries of the ECOWAS Task Force on Common Currency are ‎Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana and Niger.

Adesina also said that “the Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun and the Central Bank of Nigeria governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, will also join the President at the meeting.”

The presidential adviser said President Buhari will return to Abuja same day after the meeting.

239,834 Displaced Nigerians Are Still Refugees In Neighbouring Countries – NEMA

Displaced Nigerians in neighbouring countriesAt least 239,000 Nigerians are still refugees in neighbouring countries where they fled to in the heat of insurgency in the oil-rich nation’s northeast, an emergency management agency said on Monday.

The figure was contained in a report of humanitarian relief intervention by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) released recently.

It also says that about 29, 581 Nigerians, who fled their communities in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa to Republic of Niger and Cameroun as a result of insurgents’ activities had voluntarily returned to Nigeria.

‘Provided With Humanitarian Relief’

According to the report, 13,046 Nigerians returned from Niger Republic in May, 2015 and were received in Geidam, Yobe State while Between April and December, 2015 NEMA received about 16,595 Nigerians that have voluntarily returned from Cameroon through the Sahuda border crossing area near Mubi in Adamawa State.

“Some of the Nigerians that fled to Neighbouring countries (Niger, Chad and Cameroun) were provided with humanitarian relief support by the Federal Government of Nigeria through NEMA to alleviate their suffering.

“The displaced Nigerians have also received humanitarian supports from the host governments, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), the host communities and Nigerian citizens living in the three host countries’’ the report read.

The spokesman for the agency, Sani Datti, said that of the 239,834 refugees, 20,804 of them are living in the Republic of Chad, 80,709 in the Republic of Cameroun and 138,321 in the Republic in Niger.

The agency further said that it had adopted a monthly Humanitarian Coordination Meeting; a forum that consists of relevant Federal government Agencies, UN Systems and International Non-Government Organisations (INGOs) to undertake analysis of causes of humanitarian situations, conduct need assessments, identify priorities and provide humanitarian interventions based on their respective mandates.

According to the agency, the system operates through different sectors lead by national Ministries Department and Agencies and co-lead by UN Agencies.

The report pointed out that due to the successes recorded by the Nigerian Military with the support of Multi-National Joint Military Task Force (JTF) in the fight against Boko Haram insurgents, the humanitarian dashboard was fast changing.

“The focus is gradually shifting towards Reconstruction, Rehabilitation, Resettlement, Recovery and dignified return of IDPs back home while process for the return of Nigerian refugees from neighboring countries is equally on-going.

“NEMA will continue to support and work towards bridging the identified gaps in humanitarian response through enhanced coordination, capacity building and strengthening of collaboration with the affected States and relevant stakeholders including line MDAs, local and international response organizations and the UN system,” the report added.

Navy, Counter-terrorism, Lake chad
UN says children with ‘skin over bone’, as a result of malnutrition, risk death before end of 2016

Boko Haram has, in the past seven years, carried out a campaign to establish an Islamic State and also end Western education in the region.

It has attacked communities and villages, taking people hostage, mostly women and children.

At least two million persons have been displaced, with over six million now needing help inform of food.

Alarmed by severe malnutrition in the region triggered by the lack of food for the displaced persons, UN agency, UNICEF, has called for more aid in the region in form of nutritious foods.

UN has said that over 75,000 children, pregnant women and nursing mothers risk death due to malnutrition.

Troops Clear Boko Haram Hideouts In Yobe

Troops, Boko Haram, YobeThe Nigerian Army has carried out a clearance operation on remnants of Boko Haram terrorists in Yobe State, Northeast Nigeria.

A statement by the Army spokesman, Colonel Sani Usman, disclosed that the feat was made by troops of Operation Lafiya Dole in the early hours of Wednesday.

The operation followed activities of the terrorists around Jororo and Tombaeji villages in Geidam Local Government Area of Yobe State.

The fighting patrol team came into contact with some Boko Haram terrorists around Gajire village, during which there was a firefight that lasted for about 15 minutes.

“The gallant troops overpowered the terrorists and killed four of them and captured one alive.

“The victorious troops also recovered two General Purpose Machine Guns (GMPG), two AK-47 Rifles and 144 rounds of 7.62mm (Special) ammunition from the terrorists.

“In addition, they also recovered two KASEA branded motorcycles,” the statement said.

Colonel Usman noted that the troops have continued to patrol the general area in search of possible remnants of the Boko Haram terrorists that might be hibernating in the area.

“The ever vigilant troops of Operation Lafiya Dole have continued their routine operations maintaining vigilance, to prevent further actions by the Boko Haram terrorists in their respective areas of operations,” he said.

Not less than 30 terrorists had been reportedly killed in a clash with troops in a village near Lake Chad and the Nigerian border.

The incident, which was said to have occurred on Monday also resulted in the death of five soldiers from the Republic of Niger.

The fighting reportedly started after the Army fell into an ambush, leaving six soldiers injured, and two of the militants captured.

Nigeria Immigration Seizes 452 PVCs, ID Cards, Others From Niger Republic Nationals

PVCs452 Permanent Voter Cards have been intercepted around the border area with the Republic of Niger, according to the Nigeria Immigration Service.

The State Comptroller of Immigration Service, Mr Yunusa Aliyu, told newsmen that 66 PVCs, 33 temporary voter cards, 271 old and 69 new national identity cards were among the seized documents.

He revealed that the documents were seized by officers attached to Tureta checkpoint on the Sokoto-Gusau road.

“The suspected car snatchers were stopped for a routine search by the officers but they refused to stop. They fled.

“The officers pursued them and the suspects abandoned the vehicle and fled, although no suspect was arrested,” he explained.

He further said, “It is extremely difficult to differentiate between the Hausa from northern Nigeria and those from the neighbouring Niger Republic,” adding that this could be the reason why the PVCs, which were supposed to be issued to bonafide Nigerians were allegedly given to non-Nigerians.

Asides the PVCs, other items recovered included a local government identification card and 12 birth certificates.

Ali Modu Sheriff Meets With Jonathan

Ali Modu SheriffA former governor of Borno, Ali Modu Sheriff, on Friday said that his decision to defect from the All Progressives Congress, APC, to the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, was based on what he described as national interest.

Sheriff said this when he spoke with State House correspondents after a closed door meeting with President Goodluck Jonathan at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

He said that as a former two-term governor and three-term senator, his political decisions could not be informed by anything other than the desire to move the country forward.

“By the grace of God and the people of Borno, I was elected twice, which is the maximum limit allowed by the constitution.

“I was elected into the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria three times, which means in every aspect of life, I am one of the stakeholders of Nigeria.

“If God and the people of Nigeria have put me in those positions at every time, my interest should be how to move the nation forward,” Sherrif said.

He noted that “At every time, my decisions would be informed by the interest of the nation first, and my thinking now of moving to the PDP is also in the interest of the nation.”

The former Governor said that he was at the Villa to see the President on a private matter and not to discuss his defection.

“I didn’t come to discuss PDP with the President. Yes, there is this matter that I am joining the PDP, but that is not what brought me to the President now.

“Jonathan is the President of Nigeria, the President of over 140 million Nigerians and he is the father of everybody. So, every Nigerian has a right, if the President permits, to come and see him, discuss matters that are either private or something that affects the nation.

“So, my coming to see the President was a purely personal visit.”

On the Boko Haram insurgency in the North-East, Sheriff said that a good understanding of the vast terrain of Borno by security agencies was key to winning the battle.

He said that Borno had the largest international land border in the country, with over 20 entry and exit points with Chad, Cameroon and the Republic of Niger.

According to him, this was a big challenge to security agencies involved in the war against Boko Haram insurgents, who now operated across the country’s borders.

“What you have to understand is that Nigeria is a big country and Borno is different from any other state in the country.

“Borno has the biggest border to Chad, to Niger, to Cameroon and it is open borders. It is not like the Republic of Benin that has only one entry point with Nigeria.

“In Borno, you can enter and leave through 20 different points to the country” Sheriff said.

He also noted that the campaign against terrorism and insurgency required the support and contribution of all Nigerians.

“I am not a security man, what a civilian can do is only to contribute.

“My being a Chief Executive of the state for eight years, what I have seen through my tenure, I will contribute to the security agencies through whom I got that information.

“Therefore, it needs the understanding of the terrain, every knowledge that every politician has, particularly any politician that operated in Borno, that’s all we can contribute.

“Our knowledge of the state and whatever we feel we should give as advice is critical to the success of this battle on the side of Government.”