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Gunmen abduct Catholic priest in Jos

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Gunmen Kill 2 Security Guards, Cut off head, hand in Ondo State

Fr James Kantoma, the abducted priest.
Gunmen abduct Catholic priest in Jos

… Police kill bandit, recover AK47 rifle, 9 motorcycles on Kaduna-Abuja Highway***

Gunmen have abducted Rev. Fr. James Kantoma, the Parish priest of St. Anthony Catholic Church, Angware, Jos East Local Government Area of Plateau.

DSP Alabo Alfred, the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in the state, confirmed the abduction to the newsmen on Monday in Jos.

Also read: Gunmen shoot 5 MWUN members

Alfred said that Kantoma, who is also the chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in the local government, was kidnapped on Sunday night at the church’s vicarage.

He said the command has deployed officers and men from the anti-kidnapping unit to the community.

“Our men are already working to ensure that the cleric regains his freedom and apprehend those behind the abduction,” the PPRO said.

Speaking, Rev. Fr. Polycarp Lubo, the Chairman of CAN in the state, described the incident as ”unfortunate and sad.”

“Since the gunmen took the priest away, we have not heard anything either from him or the abductors.

”This is so sad, but we are praying for him that no harm will befall him wherever he is,” he said.

Lubo, however, called on government and security agencies to ensure the safe return of the abducted priest and others in captivity.

In another development, a combined team of police and military operatives foiled a mission by bandits on the Kaduna-Abuja Highway on Monday.

The team killed one of the bandits and recovered one AK47 rifle and nine of their operational motorcycles.

Police spokesman in Kaduna State, DSP Mohammed Jalige, confirmed the incident in a statement issued in Kaduna.

He stated that the feat was another indication of successful and purposeful synergy between the police and the military in Kaduna State.

“On Monday, June 13 at 2:55 a.m. a team of Police Operation Puff Adder and that of the army’s Operation Thunder Strike on routine patrol along the Kaduna-Abuja highway encountered the bandits at Sabon Sara.

“An exchange of gunfire ensued as a result of which the friendly forces truncated the bandits’ mission forcing them to retreat into the forest as one bandit was neutralized.

“Upon a search of the general area, an AK47 rifle and nine bandits’ operational motorcycles were recovered,’’ he stated.

The police urged residents in the area to report people with suspected gunshot wounds to security agencies as “injured criminal elements will be hibernating around nearby communities to access healthcare services’’.

 

Health and Safety

Hoes and Guns: Police confirm 8 killed in farmers, herders clash in Borno

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Hoes and Guns: Police confirm 8 killed in farmers, herders clash in Borno

The Police in Borno said that eight persons, including children, lost their lives in a clash between farmers and herders over alleged land encroachment in Bayo Local Government Area of the state.

The Commissioner of Police, Abdu Umar confirmed the incident at a meeting with leaders of the farmer association and Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN), on Friday in Maiduguri.

He said the report indicated that violence erupted on Nov. 30, over alleged encroachment of farmlands and murder of a farmer by unidentified assailants in the area.

“Eight persons killed including children while 47 houses and six motorcycles were burnt,” he said.

He said the police had restored normalcy to the area and arrested some suspects in connection with the disturbances, adding that the state government had provided relief items to the affected persons.

“This is a source of concern to the government and security agencies, the meeting is aimed at providing lasting solutions to the problem.

“At the end, we shall come up with modalities to check the movement of wandering herders into the state, especially in areas that witnessed violence,” he said.

According to him, a committee will be set up to enhance surveillance and monitoring as well as promote peaceful coexistence between farmers and herders.

He said membership of the committee would comprise representatives of security agencies, farmers and herders associations.

In his remarks, Ahmadu Musa-Karube, Chairman of the MACBAN, called for proactive measures to address the root cause of the problem.

Musa-Karube said that lack of cattle routes and encroachment of farmlands were largely responsible for farmer/herder clashes in the state.

Also speaking, Hassan Musa, a farmer representative, advocated a ban on night animal grazing in the state.

He also called for closer collaboration between the leadership of the farmers and herders’ unions to address the problem.

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Health and Safety

OSUN: Angry youths set ablaze Iree Oba’s Palace, days after torching Akinrun’s 

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OSUN: Angry youths set ablaze Iree Oba’s Palace, days after torching Akinrun's 

Only a few days after the palace of Akinrun was torched in Osun State, the Palace of Aree of Iree in Boripe North Local Council Development Area of Osun, was on Thursday evening, also vandalised and similarly set on fire by angry youths in the town.

The palace was said to have been burnt by youths who were not pleased about the arrest of the Aogun of Iree, Chief Soliu Atoyebi, by security agents on Thursday morning.

It was attacked and burnt around 7.00 p.m, when the traditional ruler, Oba Ponle Ademola, was said to be out of the palace.

The incident led to the blockage of major roads leading to the town, while the aggrieved youths made burn fires on the roads.

Business owners in the town were said to immediately lock up their shops, while residents too locked themselves for safety measures.

The Osun Police Spokesperson, SP Yemisi Opalola, was not available for comments, as her phone was switched off.

The Maritime First learned that this was what the Osun Governor, Prince Ademola Adeleke had wanted to avoid, when he, on Monday, a day after his inauguration, issued an Executive Order, setting aside the appointment and enthronement of three traditional rulers, Aare of Iree; Akirun of Ikirun and Owa of Igbajo.

Consequently, the Palace of OWA of Igbajo has now been beefed up.

Adeleke also directed that the palaces of the three traditional rulers should be locked up, while security agents should take charge of the palaces to the prevent breakdown of law and order.

There had been palpable fear in Iree town following the appointment and approval of Prince Ponle Ademola as the Aree of Iree by the immediate past administration of Gboyega Oyetola.

Some ruling houses and groups in the town had rejected the selection of Ademola, alleging that he was imposed on the people by officials in the Oyetola’s administration.

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Health and Safety

ALARM: Kogi has 43,000 HIV carriers; Take Preventive Steps to avoid getting infected-  Commissioner

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ALARM: Kogi has 43,000 HIV carriers; Take Preventive Steps to avoid getting infected-  Commissioner

At least 43,373 people are living with HIV in Kogi, Commissioner for Health, Dr. Zakari Usman, said in Lokoja on Thursday.

Usman made the declaration at a news conference organised as part of activities marking the 2022 World AIDS Day.

The 2022 World Aids Day has: “’Equalise’’ as its theme.

Usman advised residents to disregard misconceptions that HIV had been eradicated.

The commissioner said also that it was advisable to take preventive steps not to get infected and when infected, to take management measures already provided by the government.

He assured that Kogi government would not relent in its effort at reducing HIV and AIDS to the barest minimum in the state.

“I assure that government will increase the availability of quality and sustainable services for HIV handling, testing, and prevention to reduce its negative impacts.

“Government will also encourage reform laws, policies and practices to tackle the stigma and exclusion faced by people living with HIV and AIDS

“Government will as well ensure the sharing of technology to enable equal access to HIV testing in communities.

“Getting tested for HIV is the only way to find out if one is infected as all people living with HIV are eligible for treatment,’’ the commissioner said.

Usman said World AIDS Day, celebrated every Dec. 1, gave opportunities to communities and stakeholders in the fight against HIV and AIDS to be united and advance the cause of reducing the scourge.

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