Air Force Begins Upgrade Of Facilities In Yola

Air Force Begins Upgrade Of Facilities In YolaThe Nigerian Air Force has commenced the expansion and upgrade of facilities at the flight line of the Air Force Base in Yola.

The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshall Sadique Abubakar, told reporters in Adamawa State that the exercise would equip officers at the base with necessary skills and also help in fighting insurgency in North-East Nigeria.

“So much has happened in the last few weeks in terms of induction of new aircraft into the Air Force, which was done in Makurdi last weekend. We have also been able to reactivate quite a number of aircraft.

“I’m here to see the kind of expansion we are undertaking to accommodate this newly inducted aircraft so that we are comfortable that if they are flown here, the infrastructure is quite adequate for them to be able to operate from Yola,” he said.

The Air Chief restated the commitment of the Air Force to the development of personnel, stressing that training of officers was an unceasing process.

“Some of our pilots just came back from Egypt, so training is a continuous process. Terrorism or no terrorism, training will always be there,” he said.

Catholic Bishop Frees 25 Inmates In Yola

Catholic Bishop Frees 25 Inmates In YolaIn the spirit of Easter, the Catholic Bishop of Yola Diocese, Bishop Dami Mamza, has facilitated the freedom of 25 inmates at the Yola Prisons by paying up their fines.

Bishop Mamza, during a visit to the facility in Yola, the Adamawa State capital, also presented food items to the remaining inmates to celebrate Easter.

He said some of the prisoners spent about three to five years in jail for their inability to pay as little as 2,000 Naira.

“We have decided to pay the fines for 25 prisoners so that they can be freed. There are so many of them that are here and it is not much money that is needed to set them free,” the cleric said.

He also called on the Federal Government to give more attention to reforming and rehabilitating prisoners.

“Government should really give the prisoners attention, especially in terms of reformation. Different prisons should be well-equipped with training materials so that when they (inmates) get out, they will be very useful to their communities,” Bishop Mamza appealed.

Post-insurgency: Women Hold Peace Summit In Yola

Women, Adamawa, Yola, Post-insurgency, Peace SummitSome women in Adamawa State have organised a peace summit to brainstorm on the way forward after the defeat of Boko Haram terrorists by the military.

The one-day summit was also convened to set the stage for the rebuilding of not only destroyed infrastructure but their lives.

The women, drawn from the 21 local government areas of the state, converge on the Banquet Hall of the Government House in Yola, the Adamawa State capital in northeast Nigeria.

In her address, the wife of the Adamawa State Governor, Mrs Marian Jibrilla, highlighted the significance of the summit.

A member of the state’s House of Assembly, Sodom Daniel, and another speaker at the event, Mrs Mai Ahmed, also gave an insight on the meeting.

It is the first time the women are coming together to chart a new course in a post-insurgency period, as they bear the brunt of the devastating effect of the Boko Haram insurgency.

Many are said to be widows, and their children either killed or abducted.

They have gathered to discuss issues ranging from security challenges, women empowerment, as well as their roles in the development of communities and sustaining peaceful coexistence.

The agitation for the global affirmative action on gender equality and the need for self-reliance was also discussed.

At the end of the peace summit, the women commended the efforts of President Muhammadu Buhari in defeating the terrorists.

They also lauded the State Governor, Mohammed Jibrilla, for his concern for their welfare.

Shiites In Yola Demand Release Of Sheik Zakzaky

Shiites In Yola Demand Release Of Sheik ZakzakyThe Islamic Movement of Nigeria, Adamawa state chapter has described the continuous detention of its leader, Sheik Zakzaky, by the federal government as unconstitutional and a violation of his rights.

The group said this during a street march it organised in Yola, Adamawa state to express their dissatisfaction over the federal government’s refusal to release their leader despite the court’s order to do so.

The protesters comprising men, women and children marched through the streets of Yola, the state capital with placards, and chanting Islamic songs.

Adamawa NDLEA Seals Off Cannabis Ware House

Bayelsa: NDLEA Secures 19 Convictions In 2016The Adamawa State Command of the National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), says it has sealed off a bungalow used as a ware house for Cannabis storage in the state.

This disclosure was made by the State Commander of the Agency, Mr Yakubu Kibo, while briefing reporters in Yola, the Adamawa State Capital.

He confirmed that the bungalow, in Damilu Area of Jimeta, contained 870 blocks of Cannabis Sativa, weighing 981 kg.

According to him, the seizure was made through sophisticated intelligence employed by the command.

The command also revealed that it has convicted 120 persons in drug-related offences and arrested 300 suspects with over 7000 kg of narcotics and psychotropic substances.

Furthermore, it also said 17 drug dependent persons between ages 18 to 40 years, were successfully counselled.

On it’s projection for 2017, the command says it would identify and dismantle the remaining vestiges of drug cartels in the state.

Displaying the seized drugs to Journalists, Mr Kibo went on to stress the dangers involved in the use of drugs.

Uncovered 50,000 Ghost Workers Saved FG 200bn Naira In 2016 – Presidency

Federal Government, Presidency, Ghost Workers, Garba ShehuThe Federal Government says it has rid its payroll of 50,000 ghost workers and saved Nigeria 200 billion Naira.

The government also disclosed that 13 billion Naira has been taken off the payroll monthly from February to December 2016.

The spokesman to the President, Mr Garba Shehu, made the announcement at an interactive meeting with reporters on Tuesday to mark the end the year.

Mr Garba revealed that 11 persons championing the syndicate of ghost workers have been handed over to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for interrogation.

Continuous Auditing

“The flagship programme of the Muhammadu Buhari administration to rid the system of fraud and instill good governance is on course. Through a notable initiative, the Efficiency Unit of the Federal Ministry of Finance, the government has embarked on the continuous auditing of the salaries and wages of government departments.

“When the committee was constituted in February 2016, the Federal Government monthly salary bill was 151 billion Naira, excluding pensions. Now the monthly salary warrant is 138 billion Naira, excluding pensions. Which means that the government is making a monthly saving of about 13 billion Naira (that is from February 2016 till date),” said the President’s spokesman.

Mr Shehu added that “the pension bill was 15.5 billion Naira monthly as at February. Now it is down to 14.4 billion Naira, which means average monthly saving made is of about 1.1 billion Naira”.

He said that the total number of ghost workers so far removed from the payroll was about 50,000, stressing that some of those allegedly championing the syndicate of the ghost workers were already undergoing trial.

Federal Government Adoptees

Mr Shehu further noted that the recently-released 21 Chibok girls were being treated as adoptees of the Federal Government, but revealed that there was a lot of local and international interest in the future plans of the girls.

“A black American billionaire, Mr Robert Smith, who is currently sponsoring the education of 24 girls from Chibok, among them the first set of escapees from Boko Haram at the American University of Nigeria, Yola has offered to pay for the education of the 21 released through negotiations and is offering to take responsibility for all the others who will hopefully be eventually set free. The Murtala Mohammed Foundation in the country is equally interested,” he said.

Shehu also responded to complaints by some of the parents of the 21 Chibok Girls that they did not have enough room for interaction with their daughters brought home for Christmas by the Department of State Services (DSS).

Buhari, three-day trip, Germany, Aisha Buhari, 21 Chibok girls

He admitted that there were some hitches arising from a lack of understanding of the objective of the trip on the part of some security operatives but that following the receipt of the complaint, a directive had been given from the headquarters for the access by the parents to be eased.

“If the situation persists, please let us know so that the higher authorities will make a further intercession,” he stated.

Issue Of Interest In APC

The President’s aide also addressed an issue of interest to a lot of the members of the ruling party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) concerning appointments into boards.

He assured the public that the process would be fully back on track at the beginning of the new year.

“You know that the reconstitution began methodically, from sector by sector. You should expect that to resume at the beginning of the New Year. The President has given directions on what to do,” he told reporters.

Favorable Environment For Diversification

On the agricultural programmes of the administration, Mr Shehu said that President Muhammadu Buhari’s persistent call for a return to farming was yielding good results.

“The talk about agriculture has driven people to the farm. This year, there is a huge boom in the rural economy. We have witnessed an excellent harvest. Farmers are getting value for their output. What has encouraged farmers the more is the increasing availability of extension services. New farming techniques are helping farmers to do their occupation better. The readiness of off takers to buy the produce is also a major boost.

Unemployment, kwara, 20,000 Jobs, Agriculture

“When you put all these together with the systematic move to curb importation, as they boost local production through the restriction of the available foreign exchange to critically important sectors of the economy, you have favorable environment for the diversification of the economy.

“As we speak, several of the country’s major manufacturing industries are actively backward-integrating- Nestle, Unilever, the breweries are using what we have as local materials, changing their formulations to maintain production levels and keep their share of the market.

“Manufacturers, who are hooked on import of raw materials, are advised to re-strategise and take full advantage of local raw materials. The future belongs to those who employ the use of local raw materials,” the spokesman added.

President Buhari Welcomes Atiku Abubakar To 70s Club

President Buhari Welcomes Atiku Abubakar To 70s ClubPresident Muhammadu Buhari has felicitated with former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, as he turns 70 on November 25, 2016.

In a letter he personally signed, President Buhari said that he was delighted to welcome Abubakar “to the 70s club,” and prayed that Allah would grant him “many more years of good health and service to Nigeria”.

The President added: “Over the years, I have admired your courage and doggedness in defending your interests and your generosity in promoting education. The American University in Yola is one of your noble legacies, and my hope and wish is that it will endure.”

President Buhari said both himself and the former Vice President should be grateful to Allah, who has granted them grace to be in the 70s club, and sends “kind personal regards.”

Govt. Alone Can’t Solve Farmers, Herdsmen Crisis – Gen Abubakar

Abdulsalami, Herdsmen, FarmersNigeria’s immediate past military head of state, General Abdulsalami Abubakar, believes the solution to the persistent bloody clash between herdsmen and farmers across the country should not be left to government alone.

The former military leader-turned-farmer said the crisis requires all hands to be on deck, especially well-meaning individuals in the country.

He proffered this solution after hosting Niger State Governor, Abubakar Bello, his Kebbi State counterpart, Abubakar Atiku Bagudu; Minister of Agriculture, Audu Ogbeh and Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Godwin Emefiele at his Maizube Farms on the outskirts of Minna, Niger State capital.

General Abubakar hinged the escalation of clashes on the increased rate of urbanisation and the attendant reduction in availability of grazing land for livestock.

“The solution to the persistent clashes between farmers and herdsmen requires that all hands should be on deck. This should not be left to the government alone. We have to join hands with government to resolve the crisis.

“The animals need grazing field and water points but the rapid rate of urbanisation has grossly affected this,” the General noted.

He, however, called on the government at all levels to provide grazing reserves with adequate water points to reduce the face off, destruction and wanton killing by the warring farmers and herdsmen.

“In providing the grazing reserves for these herdsmen, government should endeavour to build schools for the children of the nomadic herdsmen. This is very important,” Gen. Abubakar advised.

The former military leader had earlier told the Minister of Agriculture that clashes between farmers and herdsmen have never been limited to the country saying, “the crisis is not limited to this country, it occurs in virtually all the countries in West Africa”.

The Minister disclosed that his ministry is perfecting the use of cassava leaves which abound in the country as feeds for cows as part of efforts to mitigate the crisis.

Air Force Targets Identified Boko Haram Terrorists In Sambisa

Air Force, Sambisa, Boko Haram, Operation Forest StormThe Nigerian Air Force says it will embark on “Operation Forest Storm”, targeted at the Boko Haram insurgents identified in the Sambisa Forest.

The force expressed delight at the great results recorded in its current battle of wiping out the insurgents in Nigeria’s Northeast region.

As the war against the dreaded terrorists rages on, the Air Force said its officials have recorded tremendous success, especially in the Sambisa Forest in Borno State.

Air Force Chief of Training and Operations, Air Vice Marshall Ahmed Iya, made the disclosure on Wednesday during an interview with reporters at the Air Force Base in Yola, the Adamawa State capital.

Nigeria Air Force
Nigerian Air Force reconfigured alpha jet for combat role

He said the operations followed investigations indicating that recent Boko Haram activities had been noticed in some places in Nigeria’s Northeast region.

Air Vice Marshall Iya asked Nigerians not to panic as a result of the operation, saying it was aimed at curtailing the Boko Haram menace in the region.

He further revealed that the special operation would last for few days and would not only be conducted in the north, but extended to the south considering the activities of the militants of the Niger Delta region.

Iya also pledged that the Air Force would do everything possible to bring an end to the activities of insurgence in Nigeria.

Recently, the Nigerian Air Force successfully reconfigured another alpha jet for combat role.

The alpha jet has been reconfigured to carry both rockets and bombs during combat missions.

The alpha jet has been reconfigured to carry both rockets and bombs during combat missions.

Boko Haram terrorist group has attacked communities in the northeast in its over six years campaign for an Islamic State and an end to Western education in the region.

UNICEF official said children with ‘skin over bone’ need nutritious foods to survive

The group that has retreated from communities it had taken control of due to heightened counter-terrorism operation now sees Sambisa forest as a safe haven.

Activities of the group in the past years have led to the death of thousands and displaced over two million persons in the region.

Its aftermath, according to UNICEF, is severe humanitarian crisis.

The United Nations’ agency said not fewer than 49,000 persons, including children, nursing mothers and breastfeeding mothers are severely malnourished  and are risk of death.

UNICEF has stressed the need for aid to come to the region in form of nutritious foods that could turn the tide for the malnourished.

Abubakar Says Quality Governance Critical To Nation Building

Abdulsalami Abubakar, Nation Building, Quality GovernanceFormer Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar (rtd), says the quality of governance is a critical element in a sustainable peace building process.

General Abubakar noted that it would require full security and resumption of normalcy, to sustain the current efforts in ending the Boko Haram insurgency in Nigeria’s northern region.

He made the recommendation on Monday at the multi-purpose hall of the Modibbo Adama University of Technology in Yola, the Adamawa State capital.

The former military President delivered a speech on “Post-conflict Peace Building and Reconstruction in the Lake Chad Basin” at a conference in collaboration with the Nigerian Army.

The Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant-General Tukur Buratai, was the special guest at the event.

He informed the gathering about the mandate of the military in the fight against terror, its achievement so far and the role it plays in a post-war effort to rebuild and reconstruct liberated territories from Boko Haram terrorists.

General Buratai also briefed reporters about the Army’s position on the recent video of the purported Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau.

On his part, Adamawa State Governor, Mohammed Jibrilla, applauded President Muhammadu Buhari for his commitment to ending insurgency, especially in northeast Nigeria.

Subsequently, General Abubakar in company of the Army Chief, Governor Jibrilla and other dignitaries proceeded to commission two hostels at the university.

Former Adamawa Governor, Ngilari Gets One Million Naira Bail

James Ngilari
Former Adamawa State Governor, James Ngilari

An Adamawa State High Court sitting in Yola has granted bail to a former governor in the state, Mr James Ngilari.

Justice Nathan Musa on Thursday granted bail to Mr Ngilari in the sum of one million Naira and a surety with landed property in Yola, who must provide a court affidavit of means to that effect.

The former governor had been remanded in custody of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Wednesday, September 21.

The detention followed his arraignment on a 19-count charge bordering on alleged rigging of procurement process in the award of contract worth 167 million Naira.

The court has adjourned till October 10 for commencement of trial.

Ngilari is being tried alongside the former Secretary to the Government,  Ibrahim Welye and Commissioner for Finance and Budget, Sanda Lamurde who both served during his administration.

Herdsmen Attack: Jibrilla Visits Kodomun Community, Sues For Calm

Jibrilla, Herdsmen, KodomunThe Governor of Adamawa State, Muhammed Jibrilla, has appealed to residents of Kodomun to remain calm in the aftermath of the attack on their village by herdsmen.

Two months after the brutal attack on Kodomun, Governor Jibrilla on Thursday visited the village to assess the problems the people face and assured them that the state belongs to everyone.

He observed that the situation whereby a group of people in the state attack and kill another group was unacceptable.

“We cannot fold our arms and see people killing each other for nothing because we’re all Nigerians.

“This state belongs to all of us … all of us are one,” said the Governor.

Residents of Kodomun told Channels Television how the houses in the community were burned down and they were forced to flee the village.

They expressed hope that the Governor’s visit would accelerate their recovery from the devastation of the herdsmen’s ambush.

Governor Jibrilla has set up a panel of inquiry to investigate the cause and effect of the invasion which led to the death of dozens and rendered scores homeless.

The panel of inquiry is expected to round off their assignment in a week and the government has promised to act swiftly thereafter.

Kodomun village is in Demsa Local Government Area of the state and shares a border with Yola, the Adamawa State capital, in northeast Nigeria.