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Colluding with Bandits: Nigerian Army dismisses Gumi’s allegation

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colluding with bandits: nigerian army dismisses gumi’s allegation

… As 65-year-old widow urges govt to support widows in Gombe State***

The Nigerian Army has dismissed Sheikh Ahmad Gumi’s allegation that its personnel were colliding with bandits who had been responsible for various crimes and atrocities against Nigerians and the Nigerian state.

The Director, Army Public Relations, Brig.-Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, in a statement on Wednesday, was reacting to Gumi’s allegations on ARISE TV Morning Show on Wednesday.

Nwachukwu said that the Nigerian Army remained a symbol of national unity that had discharged its constitutional responsibilities in the most professional manner in line with global best practices.

He said that army personnel had always adhered to the rules of engagement and protection of the fundamental human rights of the citizenry.

According to him, the sweeping allegation peddled by the scholar is not only sad and unfortunate, but a calculated attempt to denigrate the Nigerian military and undermine the sacrifices of our patriotic troops, who are working tirelessly to restore peace and stability across the country.

“It is essential to remind ourselves that these same militaries, being accused of connivance, are the ones who recently put their lives on the line to rescue abductees of the Government Secondary School, Birnin Yawuri from kidnappers.

“While the NA will not attempt to excuse the possibility of black sheep amongst its fold, it must be stated unambiguously that it will not condone any form of sabotage or aiding and assisting the enemy by any personnel.

“The provisions for dealing decisively with such acts are crystallised in Section 45 (1) of the Armed Forces Act CAP A 20 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.

“It must also be pointed out, that while the military is very much receptive to constructive criticism, it should not be perceived as a gateway for derogatory comments that have the potential to embolden criminals,” he said.

The Army spokesperson also cautioned that patriotism be taken to a trajectory where subversive conversations on the state were brought to the barest minimum.

He also enjoined opinion leaders to demonstrate patriotism in building peace, rather than being agents of desstabilisation by aggravating the current security challenges facing the nation.

Also read: NDA holds ‘exercise pre-camp highland’ for army cadets June 21

“The NA wishes to reassure law abiding citizens, that troops will continue to conduct themselves professionally in consonance with the code of conduct guiding our operations in all combat engagements, in line with the provisions of the Nigerian Constitution and global best practice.

“Citizens are enjoined to continue to support military operations by providing useful information to defence and security agencies and together we shall rid our society of these criminal elements,” he said.

In the meantime, Sixty five-year-old widow, Mrs Lydia Barde from Gombe State, has called for more government support for widows as the world marks International Widows’ Day.

Barde made the call in an interview with the newsmen in Gombe on Wednesday

Newsmen report that the theme of this year’s International Widows’ Day, is: “Invisible women, invisible problems’’.

She said the challenges of widowhood were “indescribable.’’

The widow said since she lost her husband over 31 years ago, her only sources of support had been from her siblings, church and colleagues at work place.

She said that she had never received any form of supports from the state government, saying she heard on radio that the government was supporting widows but she never benefitted.

According to her, once a woman is educated and working, taking care of her children becomes less difficult compared to a widow who has no form of education.

“Because I was educated and working, through the help of God I was able to raise my four children and they are now all graduates, though I lost one of my sons in 2005,’’ Barde said.

She appealed to the state government to promote girl-child education in the state, saying that “If girls are well educated, their chances of being self-reliant increase’’.

“The state government should please support all widows in the state with empowerment programmes and ensure that the real widows at the grassroots benefit from the programmes and not fake widows,’’ she said.

Barde, who is now a grandmother of three said she had many suitors after the demise of her husband.

“I rejected all just because of my children and the ugly stories that those who did often share,’’ she said.

The widow, who advised husbands to always will their property to their wives or children said things would have been better as at the time she lost her husband if her late husband’s property were given to her.

She appealed to Nigerians to always support widows in their communities.

She expressed her gratitude to Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) 1, Bolari, Gombe, for their support to her and other widows.

 

Health and Safety

LASG Unveils 24-hour Customer Service Centre To Enhance Traffic Management

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LASG Unveils 24-hour Customer Service Centre To Enhance Traffic Management

In a significant move to enhance the operations of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), the Lagos State Government has launched a 24-hour Customer Service Center, equipped with a dedicated Toll-Free Hot Lines, a Walk-In Complaint Centre, a Website, a Whistleblower App, and a new Department of Statistics, Research, and Data. 

According to the Special Adviser to the Governor on Transportation, Sola Giwa, the centre is at the LASTMA headquarters.

Speaking at the inauguration, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Transportation, Giwa officially opened the Customer Service Center and announced the dedicated lines as 0800-00-527862 or 0800-00-LASTMA.

Explaining the initiative, Hon. Sola Giwa said Motorists can contact the Call Center via the toll-free hotlines to report incidents, request assistance, or seek information on road conditions, including updates on the activities of LASTMA personnel. 

He said the centre will also enable drivers get real-time updates on road conditions and traffic advisories, enabling them to plan their routes more effectively, avoid congestion and reduce travel time.

Highlighting the features of the customer support centres, the Special Adviser further explained that the whistleblower app is designed to involve everyone in the state’s traffic management. 

“When you see something, say something,” he added. The app is available for download on the Android Play Store”, Sola Giwa said, stressing that the whistleblower app will allow Motorists and other road users to report dangerous driving and other reckless behaviours on the road, enabling LASTMA to take immediate action and uphold traffic regulations. 

He said the public can also earn points for every valid incident they report and get rewarded for their actions.

Hon. Giwa also mentioned that a walk-in complaint centre and a live interactive website (lastma.org) are available for citizens to engage with traffic management personnel, urging everyone to embrace the initiative.

Discussing the new Department of Statistics, Research, and Data, he explained that the department aims to provide a comprehensive breakdown and analysis of vehicles on Lagos roads. 

This includes real-time data on the number of vehicles impounded, categorized by private and commercial vehicles, and details on accidents and other traffic offences.

In the demonstration on statistics and data carried out between January and June 2024, the Special Adviser debunked the belief that the agency concentrates more on private vehicles disclosing that 5, 547 commercial vehicles were impounded for traffic infringement as against 3, 823 private vehicles. 

In his address, the Commissioner for Transportation Mr Oluwaseun Osiyemi emphasized that the customer support centres aim to improve communication between the public and LASTMA, streamline traffic operations, and significantly enhance the overall driving experience in Lagos State. 

He noted that with these new centres, Traffic Management Officers are now just a phone call away, at no cost to the public.

The General Manager of LASTMA, Mr. Olalekan Bakare Oki, confirmed that officers managing the newly launched Call Center have been thoroughly trained by the government, noting that the agency will use multiple languages, including English, Pidgin, and Yoruba, to ensure convenient communication for all members of the public.

 

He reiterated the agency’s commitment to prioritizing public feedback, stating that input from citizens will aid in efficient traffic management across the state.

The event was also attended by the Permanent Secretary of the Lagos Ministry of Transportation Mr. Olawale Musa, Directors in the ministry and LASTMA Personnel.

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Health and Safety

Waterloo: NAF Kills Several Terrorists In Aerial Bombardment In Borno

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Waterloo: NAF Kills Several Terrorists In Aerial Bombardment In Borno

The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) says the Air Component of Operation Hadin Kai, has eliminated several terrorists in an aerial bombardment in their hideouts in Borno.

This is contained in a statement by the Director, Public Relations and Information, NAF, AVM Edward Gabkwet, on Thursday in Abuja.

Gabkwet said that the hideouts located near Degbewa and Chinene in the Mandara mountains in the state were known terrorists’ hideouts.

He said the air strikes became expedient after several days of aerial surveillance which revealed a consistent gathering of a large number of terrorists in the area.

According to him, the location is also suspected to be a site for manufacturing Improvised Explosive Devices and a storage area.

”The terrorists were also observed to be loitering within the vicinity, clearly oblivious of what was to befall them, and probably confident that their location was safe and secured from any form of military bombardments.

”The air strikes were thus authorised with the aircraft bombarding the locations in several passes until the majority of the terrorists were eliminated.

”Others observed fleeing the location were taken out using canons,” he said.

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Health and Safety

Sumal: 1 Dies, 12 Arrested In Ibadan Palliative Protest – Police

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NEMESIS: Kogi Police Officer Detained Over Alleged Robbery, Car Theft– CP

… Affirms protest hijacked by criminal elements who forced their way into the factory

The Police Command in Oyo State says one person died and 12 suspects were arrested in a violent protest by workers of Sumal Food Company, Ibadan, over palliatives on Monday.

The command’s Public Relations Officer, SP Adewale Osifeso, confirmed this in a statement issued on Tuesday in Ibadan.

Osifeso said the protest broke out in the factory located at Oluyole Industrial Estate, Ibadan around 4 p.m. on Monday.

He said that the workers staged the protest to challenge what they called non-distribution of the palliatives allegedly given by the Federal Government to all private companies across the country.

Osifeso said that it was sad that the protest was hijacked by criminal elements who forced their way into the factory, thus destroying vehicles and other property worth millions of naira.

“One person died and 12 suspects were arrested in connection with the violent protest,’’ he said.

The spokesman, however, said that normalcy had returned to the area where the company is located, following the deployment of police operatives to maintain peace.

He also said that the Commissioner of Police in the state, Ayodele Sonubi, had ordered the transfer of the matter to the homicide unit of the Criminal Investigations Department for further investigation.

“Preliminary investigation revealed that the protest was premised on false information created and peddled by some workers over the disbursement of palliatives to privately-owned companies,’’ he said.

Osifeso said that the command would give further information on the matter as soon investigation was concluded.

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