Edo Police Arrest 102 Suspected Cultists

Edo Police Advocate Capacity Building For OfficersThe Edo state police command says it has arrested 102 persons in connection to cult related killings that has claimed two lives in Benin City, the state capital.

The Edo State Commissioner of Police, Haliru Gwandu, who disclosed this in an interview with journalists at the state police headquarters, said 10 of the 102 suspects have admitted to being cultists, while the others are still undergoing interrogation.

The CP expressed his determination to bring secret cult related activities in the state to the barest minimum.

97 Nigerians Deported From South Africa

97 Nigerians Deported From South Africa97 Nigerians deported from South Africa have landed in Nigeria this week, in a development unconnected to the recent flare up of violence against foreign nationals in the country.

27 of the deportees are those who have already completed jail terms for alleged crimes including aggravated armed robbery, drug trafficking and fraud.

The consular department of the Nigerian High Commission in Pretoria, confirmed that the group was truly verified before they were sent back to Nigeria.

An additional 27 were exempted from deportation by a court order during processing.

This follows the evacuation of 41 Nigerian females from Mali, who were said to be victims of human trafficking.

Their return was facilitated by the Nigerian Airforce, the Office of Diaspora and Foreign Affairs and National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP).

The evacuation occurred in the face of renewed wave of xenophobic attacks in South Africa.

The Nigerian community in South Africa, led by Mr Ikechukwu Anyene, confirmed the attacks and looting of Nigerian-owned businesses in Pretoria West

“As we speak, five buildings with Nigerian businesses, including a church, have been looted and burned by South Africans,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Special Assistant to the President on Diaspora and Foreign Affairs, Mrs Dabiri-Erewa, who described the attacks as an unnecessary setback, had appealed to the South African Government to take every step necessary to protect Nigerians.

Senate Confirms Walter Onnoghen As CJN

Walter OnnoghenThe Senate has confirmed the nomination of Justice Walter Onnoghen as the Chief Justice of Nigeria.

The confirmation came after the Senate screened him for nearly 1 hour 15 minutes.

During the screening process, Federal Lawmakers questioned Justice Onnoghen on issues of the independence of the judiciary, judicial reforms, corruption in the Judiciary, as well as disobedience of court orders.

The new CJN maintained that the independence of the judiciary would continue under his watch.

He, however warned that Nigeria would be in serious trouble, the moment the judiciary is politicised.

Justice Onnoghen had been in acting capacity since November 10, 2016 when President Muhammadu Buhari okayed him for the position, following the retirement of Mahmud Mohammed.

Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, had sent his name to the Senate for confirmation as Chief Justice Of Nigeria on February 8, just two days before the expiration of his three –month acting tenure.

Also, the National Judicial Council (NJC), had extended Mr Onnoghen’s tenure by another three months on the grounds that it may have been impossible for the Senate, which was on recess at the time, to reconvene and screen Onnoghen before the expiration date of his tenure.

The initial delay by President Buhari to send his name to the Senate, had been trailed by criticism and condemnation, with some alleging ethnic bias as the reason for the President’s “seeming reluctance”.

The nomination, was however contained in the Presidency’s twitter handle saying: “Hon. Justice W.S. Onnoghen’s name has been sent to the Senate for confirmation as the next CJN.”

Onnoghen has been a Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria since 2005.

His confirmation on Wednesday, makes him the first CJN from the southern part of the country in about 30 years.

Trump Promises ‘Renewal Of American Spirit’ In Speech To Congress

trump-congressThe U.S. President, Donald Trump, has delivered his first speech to congress in what has been described as a softer and more statesman-like tone.

In his speech, the president said the U.S was witnessing a “renewal of the American spirit” and he spoke of a “new chapter of American greatness”.

According to the BBC, Mr Trump also condemned recent vandalism of Jewish cemeteries and a shooting in Kansas that left an Indian man dead.

His prime-time address sought to bolster his low approval ratings after a rough start to his presidency.

Raid On Peace Corp Officials Leaves Three Critically Injured

Alleged Raid On Peace Corp Officials Leaves Three Critically InjuredOfficials of the Peace Corp of Nigeria have said that a Tuesday midnight raid on its headquarters by men of the Nigeria Police Force, has left three of their personnel critically injured.

The police were also said to have whisked away 47 others.

The Public Relations Officer of the Corp, Milicent Umaru, said the National Commandant and the 47 other officers were arrested at exactly 11:59 pm without a warrant of arrest and without providing any reason for the raid and subsequent arrest.

Efforts to get the Police authorities to confirm the arrest proved abortive as the FCT Police Public Relations Officer, Anjugu Manzah, referred Channels Television’s crew to the Force Headquarters.

On getting there, the Force Public Relations Officer, Jimoh Moshood, was said to have been in a meeting with the Inspector General of Police as at the time of filing this report.

The headquarters of the Peace Corp of Nigeria was commissioned on Tuesday by the Minister of Youth and Sports.

Court Dismisses Six Charges Against Nnamdi Kanu, Others

Court Orders Forfeiture Of Malabu Oil To FGA Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, has dismissed six count of the eleven count charges preferred against the self-styled leader of the indigenous people of Biafra, as well as three other accused persons.

Justice Binta Nyako dismissed the counts for lack of proof of evidence.

The charges dismissed included charges three, five, seven, nine and 11.

Specifically in count 11, she said claims by the prosecution that the defendants are researching how to make Improvised Explosive Devices cannot hold waters, because there was no proof that they were doing it.

On count five which borders on belonging to an illegal organisation, Justice Nyako ruled that nothing was placed before the court to indicate that it was an illegal organisation.

On count seven which borders on importation of radio transmission equipment, Justice Nyako also said that the prosecution did not furnish the court with any proof to suggest that the importation was illegal.

She, however, retained five other counts bothering on treason, terrorism and possession of arms.

The accused persons are being re-arraigned again in the remaining charges.

This is the fifth time Nnamdi Kanu and his co-defendants are being re-arraigned.

Meanwhile, on the issue of preventing journalists from covering the trial, Justice Nyako said she would report to the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court because according to her, she never gave such orders to the security agencies.

Customs Justifies Raid On Warehouses Suspected For Smuggled Goods

Customs Justifies Raid On Warehouses Suspected For Smuggled GoodsThe Nigeria Customs Service has declared that it has constitutional right to raid any shop or warehouse suspected to harbour smuggled goods in the country.

This defence is coming days after crisis erupted in Sango Otta, Ogun State, over the Customs raid on some shops suspected to be dealing in smuggled goods.

The Customs Area Comptroller for Oyo and Osun Area Command, Temitope Ogunkua, while speaking with journalists on the achievements of the command in the last quarter of 2016 and 2017, maintained that there is no action taken by Customs officers without the backing of the law.

Citing section 147 of the Customs and Excise Management Act 1990, Ogunkua said officers of the service are well empowered to embark on raiding at any time, anywhere and that the fact that they don’t do that regularly does not mean they lack the power to.

Ogunkua, also disclosed that the command has recorded a significant feat despite the economic challenges, noting that many seizures amounting to 14.9 billion Naira within the months of January to December in 2016.

He reiterated the determination of the command to contribute her quota to national development through income generation.

He disclosed that “the command has made a total of 18 seizures with duty paid value of 20.9 million Naira.  Apart from these, another seizure of almost 9,000 bags of imported rice with duty paid value of 88.9 million Naira was arrested and evacuated in a ware house in conjunction with the Federal Operations Unit zone A.

“Am using this medium to reiterate the commitment of this command to contribute its quota as it plays a strategic role of revenue collection, trade facilitation and border security”.

Ogunkua also emphasised the fact that the ban on importation of rice and fairly used vehicles through the land borders, is still in force as his command is committed to enforcing this to the latter.

Ogun Govt. Canvasses Incorporation Of Security Studies In Schools

Ogun State Recalls Sacked, Suspended WorkersThe Ogun state government has called for the incorporation of security studies and intelligence gathering in the curriculum of schools in the state, to inculcate the habit of security consciousness in pupils even at their younger age.

The state Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Mrs Modupe Mujota, made the call in Abeokuta, the state capital, while playing host to the Provost, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, College of Security Management, Mrs Rachael Awosusi.

She stated that the Corps would be a strong partner in promoting the new curriculum in the school with a view to broadening the horizon of the younger generation on security consciousness.

On her part, Mrs Awosusi said the purpose of the visit was to familiarise with the top management of the ministry and also see areas where they could work together, while assuring that the corps would continue to promote security and its consciousness among students in the state.

Mrs Mujota, further revealed that the ministry was already contemplating a training programme on intelligence gathering and information management for its staff in the college.

She also lauded the corps for providing security during the summer camp held in 2016, at Akin Ogunpoola Model College, Akinale in Ewekoro Local Government Area.

Kim Jong-Nam Death: Two Women To Face Murder Charges

north-koreanMalaysia’s Attorney General, Mohammed Apandi Ali, says two women implicated in the killing of the half-brother of North Korea’s leader are to be charged with murder on Wednesday.

The women, from Indonesia and Vietnam, allegedly smeared a deadly chemical over Kim Jong-Nam’s face at a Malaysian airport earlier this month.

The women, however say they thought they were taking part in a TV prank.

About 10 suspects have been identified by Malaysia as being involved in the killing.

Among them are a senior official at the North Korean Embassy in Kuala Lumpur and a staff member of the state airline.

Libya Identified As Epicenter For Migrant Child Abuse

Libya Identified As Epicenter For Migrant Child Abuse  Despite all attempts to stop migrants from crossing the Mediterranean Sea, the United Nations says that large numbers of children are still risking their lives to make the dangerous journey from Libya to Italy.

According to UNICEF, almost 26,000 children – most of them unaccompanied – crossed the Mediterranean in 2016.

In its new report, UNICEF revealed that many children suffer from violence and sexual abuse in the hands of smugglers and traffickers; however, they rarely report their abuse, for fear of arrest and deportation.

The agency also said there is a lack of food, water and medical care in Libya’s detention centers.

According to the BBC, UNICEF’s Deputy Executive Director, Justin Forsyth, was quoted to have said: “What really shocked UNICEF staff and me… is what happens to them [children] on this route.

“Many of these children have been brutalised, raped, killed on this route.”

Tony Blair Asks Britain To ‘Rise Up’ Against Brexit

Tony Blair, Brexit, BritainFormer British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, has made a battle cry against a so-called ‘Hard Brexit’.

Mr Blair called on voters, businesses and campaigners to “rise up” and back a coordinated effort to temper the terms of, or even halt Britain’s exit from the European Union.

He made the call in his first major political intervention since Britons voted 52% to 48% to leave the EU in June 2016.

Mr Blair said Prime Minister Theresa May was pursuing “Brexit at any cost”, and must be challenged.

Mrs May had earlier vowed to start the legal process of leaving the European Union in March, but it is not clear whether the process would be reversed.

She said her vision was for a clean break from the bloc, including leaving the single market and customs union.

OCHA Brigade Arrest Over 30 Illegal Revenue Collectors In Anambra

OCHA brigade, illegal revenue collectors, onitchaThe Operation Clean and Healthy Anambra, (OCHA) Brigade, in conjunction with the Joint Security Operation, has arrested over 30 illegal revenue collectors in Onitsha, Ihiala and Ogbunka, where they were collecting levies and taxes banned by the state government.

The operation, led by the Superintendent of the OCHA Brigade, Mr Kenneth Okonkwo, also stormed some markets in Oba and Ekwulobia, where they arrested more illegal revenue collectors to the relief of the market men and women.

Addressing the situation after the arrest of over thirty illegal collectors, Mr Okonkwo reiterated the resolve of the agency to stamp out illegal collection of revenues in the state.

“We arrested over 16 of them at Onitsha Bridge Head where they were blocking motorists coming in from all parts of the state into Anambra, breaking their windscreen and their side mirrors, forcing them to pay what they do not know about- because they do not have any legal authority to collect money but they hide under the guise of IGR collectors of the state to do this, while they are not.

“They collect anything, they tax you what they deem fit for them and put in their personal coffers and not even in the state government coffers.

“They are not in any way authorized or recognized by the state government. So we have no other option than to prosecute them and send them to prison.”

Also, in a recent development, the Anambra state Governor, Willie Obiano, came up with an economic stimulus package to cushion its effects of the economic recession.

According to the governor, “The objective of our tax relief programme is to evaluate existing taxes, levies and fees in the state and introduce some waivers and in some cases scrap the collection of some of the illegal levies imposed on our people.

“I believe that these will go a long way to cushioning the impact of the recession on households in the state.

“I hereby suspend the sale of consolidated emblems in Anambra state, I suspend the collection of Hawkers permit on all streets in the state.

“I suspend the collection of wheel barrow tax in market places in the state and lastly, I abolish the imposition of unapproved levies in public primary and secondary schools and also urge the mission schools and other schools to do same.

“All these pronouncements shall take immediate effect,” he stressed.

Moving to rural markets in Oba and Ekwulobia, joy and excitement was evident among the traders, as they hailed the action of the state government in running to their aid.

The OCHA Brigade then reassured residents of its constant visit to the area, in order to ensure the hoodlums are put under control.