August 08, 2019 // 2 months ago


Close Inequality between the Poor and the Rich, APC Urges Buhari

The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) wednesday urged President Muhammadu Buhari to close the ranks between the rich and the poor to address the problems of inequalities among Nigerians. The party, at a meeting in Abuja with the president, particularly implored him to recreate the middle class to guarantee a stable and peaceful society. APC National Chairman, Mr. Adams Oshiomhole, led members of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party to the meeting with the president, the first of its kind since the re-election of Buhari after the last February presidential election.

Free Detained #RevolutionNow Protesters, NLC Tells FG

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has demanded the immediate release of the leader of #RevolutionNow protesters, Mr. Omoyele Sowore. It also asked security agencies to free other protesters arrested during the Monday protest. The NLC, in a statement Wednesday by its General Secretary, Mr. Peter Ozo-Eson, said there was nowhere in the nation’s constitution or laws that the security agencies were empowered to brazenly attack peaceful protest and hound its organisers into detention. It said peaceful protests against bad governance or perceived anti-people government policies was one of the critical fundamental rights towards the entrenchment and growth of democracy.

Kaduna Govt Gives Terms for Compliance with Court Ruling on El-Zakzaky

The Kaduna State Government has filed at the State High Court, terms for strict supervision of the medical leave granted to the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), Sheikh Ibrahim el-Zakzaky, and his wife, Zeenat, to travel to India for medical treatment. This is coming as IMN Wednesday accused the police of holding on to the corpses of 12 of its members who died in the July 22 bloody clash between the group and security agents in Abuja. A State High Court presided over by Justice Darius Khobo had on Monday granted permission to the Islamic leader and his wife to travel to India for medical treatment following their deteriorating health conditions since their arrest and detention in December 2015, when his followers clashed with the Nigerian Army in Zaria.

Buhari Assents to AMCON (Amendment) Bill, Two Others

Two months after the dissolution of the eighth National Assembly, President Muhammadu Buhari Wednesday in Abuja assented to three bills passed by the immediate past federal legislature. The bills, which have now become the Acts of the National Assembly, are Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (Amendment) Act, 2019; Defence Intelligence Agency Civilian Pensions Board (Establishment) Act, 2019 and National Biosafety Management Agency (Amendment) Act, 2019.


Soldiers killed three cops, freed kidnap kingpin — Police

The Nigeria Police Force has accused some unidentified soldiers of shooting to death three police officers and a civilian along the Ibi-Jalingo Road, Taraba State. The Force added that several other officers were also injured during the attack. The police operatives, led by ASP Felix Adolije of the Intelligence Response Team, reportedly came under attack while taking a kidnap kingpin, Alhaji Hamisu, to the command headquarters in Jalingo. The Force spokesman, DCP Frank Mba, explained in a statement in Abuja on Wednesday that one police Inspector, two Sergeants and a civilian died as a result of gunshot injuries sustained in the attack.

Oshiomhole backs #RevolutionNow, faults Sowore’s tactics

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Mr Adams Oshiomhole, on Wednesday gave reasons why he believed the #RevolutionNow protests were unnecessary. Oshiomhole stated that much as he recognised the rights of citizens to protest under a democracy, such protests must be articulated and well-coordinated in order to have a direction. He noted that the convener and presidential candidate of the African Action Congress, Mr Omoyele Sowore, got it wrong when he planned the protest, having contested in a general election with President Muhammadu Buhari on February 23 and lost. The APC chairman spoke with reporters after the meeting of the National Working Committee of the party with Buhari ended at the State House in Abuja.

Residents protest as riot policeman kills Lagos youth

Scores of youths in Idimu, Alimosho Local Government Area of Lagos State, on Tuesday protested the alleged killing of one Ahmed Segun by a riot policeman attached to a company in the area. It was learnt that police personnel from Idimu and neighbouring areas were mobilised to the scene and were complemented by men of the Rapid Response Squad to quell the riotous gathering. The state Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Bala Elkana, said preliminary investigation revealed that the youth were reacting to the death of Segun, 32, who was allegedly shot by a riot policeman guarding a company in the area.

Two years after, states await FG’s 10,000 health centres’ project

Two years after the Federal Government promised to revitalise 10,000 primary healthcare centres across the country, many states have said they are still awaiting the central government’s intervention. The Federal Government had, in 2017, begun the National Primary Healthcare Revitalisation Initiative with the aim of resuscitating over 10,000 health centres across the country. During the inauguration of the Model Primary Health Care Centre, Kuchigoro in Abuja, the immediate past Minister of Health, Prof Isaac Adewole, had said the target of the scheme was to have at least, a functional health care centre in each ward in the country. He added that the scheme would be executed through the National Primary Health Care Development Agency. But stakeholders in different states, including the Nigerian Medical Association branches and chapters of the National Association of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives, told The PUNCH that they had yet to see the impact of the Federal Government’s programme. The associations and many state governments also said not a single primary healthcare centre had been rehabilitated in their states. But the NPCDA said the programme had not been abandoned, noting that N5.8bn had been released for the revitalisation project.


Army confirms killing three police, one civilian in error

The Nigerian Army Wednesday night confirmed that its troops attached to 93 Battalion, Takum, Taraba State, shot dead three policemen and one civilian after they were mistaken for kidnappers. Army spokesman Sagir Musa said the soldiers were responding to a distress call from members of the community to rescue a kidnapped victim. The army chief said the team of police in a white bus “refused to stop when they were halted by troops at three consecutive check points”, hence, prompting the army to suspect them as the kidnappers.

Shiites fight back, sue FG over proscription

The members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) have taken the Federal Government to court over the proscription of their group, saying the action is a violation of their constitutional rights to worship and freedom of association. The decision came on the heels of a Kaduna High Court ruling, which on Monday granted leave to IMN Leader Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky and his wife, Zeenah, to travel to India for medical treatment. The duo has been in the custody of the Department of State Services since 2015, following a clash in Zaria, Kaduna State, between the sect and the Nigerian Army. In a motion on notice filed by the group at the Abuja Federal High Court, the applicant wants an order setting aside, discharging or vacating the ex parte order of the court made on July 26, 2019, which gave the government power to proscribe the sect.

Nigeria defies cuts as OPEC output slumps to five-year low

Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), has pumped its fewest barrels in more than five years in July, aided by a huge production decline in its largest producer, Saudi Arabia, alongside wavering compliance by Iran, Nigeria, Libya, and Venezuela, latest S&P Global Platts survey has shown. According to the survey, Nigeria remained the biggest outlier in terms of compliance, coming in 240,000 barrels per day (b/d) over its quota at 1.93 million b/d in July.However, the country did manage to cut its output by 40,000 b/d in July, paring the 110,000 b/d increase from May to June. According to Platts’ data, Nigeria’s production output rose to 1.97mbpd in June, up from the 1.69mbpd quota under the cut agreement, signalling the nation’s highest output since January 2015.Under OPEC’s latest report, Nigeria saw the biggest jump in production, with a 130,000 b/d rise to 1.86 million b/d, according to secondary sources.

Buhari receives APC working committee, promises party supremacy

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday assured members of All Progressives Congress (APC’s) National Working Committee (NWC) that he would henceforth be more conscious of the party’s interests in taking major decisions. The President, who stated this when he received members of the NWC at the State House in Abuja, pledged to uphold party supremacy and commended National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole and other members for their sacrifices and success in the last general elections.


Call for probe into 11 missing after Sudan sit-in crackdown

Legal proceedings have been filed in Sudan to open investigations into 11 people who went missing during the deadly June repression of a protest, lawyers said Wednesday. According to doctors close to the protest movement that led to long-time ruler Omar al-Bashir‘s ouster, at least 127 people were killed on June 3 in a crackdown on a sit-in in the Sudanese capital Khartoum.

Ethiopian village mourns death of 15 young migrants

A village in northern Ethiopia is in mourning after learning about the death of 15 young migrants from their community. They lost their lives while trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea from Libya in a bid to reach Europe. The migrants were high school students from Endalgeda when they were “lured by smugglers for a better life”, a local official told BBC.

AfDB approves $98 million financing for Ethiopia-Djibouti road project

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a $98 million financial package for Ethiopia for a road transport corridor project to neighbouring Djibouti, it said late on Tuesday. The project’s total cost is $255 million, comprising an AfDB grant of $98 million to Ethiopia’s government and an AfDB grant of $5.3 million to Djibouti’s government, plus a co-financing contribution of $151 million by Ethiopia’s government.

Burundi shuts ‘unhygienic bars, eateries‘ amid cholera outbreak

Burundi’s main city has been hit by a cholera outbreak forcing the authorities to shut unhygienic bars and restaurants, Bujumbura’s mayor has said in a statement. So far 126 people have been infected by the acute diarrhoeal infection, which is caused by ingestion of food or water contaminated with the bacterium Vibrio cholera. In severe cases, the disease can kill within hours if left untreated.


Taiwan and Japan brace for a potential super typhoon

Residents in Taiwan and Japan are bracing for Typhoon Lekima, which could become a super typhoon by the time it hits a Japanese island chain on Thursday. Currently barreling northwest across the Pacific, Lekima intensified Wednesday night with winds at 205 kilometers per hour (about 127 miles per hour), the equivalent of a Category 3 hurricane. It is expected to strengthen into a super typhoon by Thursday night -- potentially reaching winds of 240 kph (about 150 mph). Japan‘s southern Ryukyu Islands, which stretch north of Taiwan to the Japanese island of Kyushu, are expected to be hardest hit Thursday night. The chain of islands includes Okinawa, with a population of 1.4 million people. The possibility of a super typhoon could mean a "serious natural disaster is possibly to take place," said Mitsugu Noguchi of the Japan Meteorological Agency‘s Okinawa office.

A man killed 4 in a stabbing rampage that lasted hours. He was arrested at a 7-Eleven

A man killed four people during a stabbing rampage in Southern California before officers arrested him after finding his silver Mercedes parked outside a 7-Eleven, authorities said. In addition to the people killed, the attacker left two others wounded in multiple crime scenes in Garden Grove and Santa Ana, police said. The victims killed included two people at the suspect‘s apartment complex, a 7-Eleven security guard and one more person at a Subway restaurant.

Kyrgyzstan Special Forces attempt to storm former president‘s mansion

Kyrgyzstan special forces have stormed the home of the country‘s former president Almazbek Atambayev in an attempt to take him into custody, according to Russian state media TASS. Dramatic images apparently taken from inside the former president‘s mansion on Wednesday evening show supporters holding off troops with shotguns. There are conflicting reports as to the current whereabouts of the former leader, with Russian state media reporting that Atambayev has been detained and taken to an "unknown location." Atambayev was stripped of his presidential immunity by the central Asian nation‘s parliament in June, after accusations of corruption and illegal land acquisition while in office. At the time, the former president said the charges against him were "nonsense and rubbish" and that he would resist any attempts to arrest him. Russian President Vladimir Putin met last month with Atambayev. In a press appearance confirming the visit, Putin stressed Moscow‘s interest in Kyrgyzstan‘s "political stability" and avoiding new popular uprisings. According to Kyrgyz news agency Kabar, at least 15 people were injured when Special Forces attempted to raid Atambayev‘s resident in the village of Koi-Tash in northern Kyrgyzstan, near the capital Bishkek. Kabar said Atambayev had been summoned for questioning three times by the Ministry of Internal Affairs but had ignored the requests.

US government warns of Iranian threats to commercial shipping, including GPS interference

The US Department of Transportation‘s Maritime Administration has issued a new warning to commercial shipping about Iranian threats in the Strait of Hormuz and Persian Gulf, saying that some ships have reported having their GPS interfered with. Additionally, the administration warned that there have been reports of "unknown entities falsely claiming to be US or coalition warships." The warning, which was issued Wednesday, listed a series of incidents involving Iran since May, including Iran‘s seizure of the United Kingdom-flagged M/V STENA IMPERO and the detention and subsequent release of the Liberian-flagged M/V MESDAR.

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