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INSECURITY: Miyetti Allah regrets Oguta killing, as Rivers LGA alerts FG, State govt. on movement of gunmen

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CONFUSION: Ogun protecting Farmers from Herders with patrol vans, motorcyles in Yewa axis

 …Labour demands blueprint to curb insecurity***

…Dabiri-Erewa tasks US govt on death of Nigerian-American Salau***

While the Imo State Chapter of Miyetti Allah is regretting the death of a community leader and appealing to the community to forgive the offenders, the Ahoada-West Local Council Boss was, on Monday alerting the Rivers and Federal Governments and the entire public on the movement of unidentifiable persons and unauthorised gunmen into Rivers.

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has however demanded from the Federal Government,  a blueprint on how to address growing insecurity in the country; just as Abike Dabiri-Erewa, of Diasporal Commission also on Monday, called on the United States for thorough investigation of the alleged killing of a Nigerian, Toyin Salau.

Mr Hope Ikiriko, Executive Chairman of the Ahoada LGA, who disclosed the movement of gunmen into Rivers State during a news briefing at the council Secretariat, Akinima, said that such persons entered through Mbiama, a border community.

Ikiriko said the Rivers COVID-19 Taskforce and security agents had intercepted no fewer than 160 persons at Mbiama, a border community in the local government area.

He stated that majority of the people were in their mid 20s coming from the northern part of Nigeria and were intercepted between May 3 and June 14.

According to Ikiriko, movement of unknown and unauthorised gunmen were seen in the uniform inscribed NATFORCE moving into Rivers.

He claimed that some of the young men forcefully took possession of the LGA’s District Office premises at Okogbe and attracted some cattle rearers who dwell in the environment with their cows.

“The influx of this disorderly unidentified young men without fixed destination into the LGA boosted the rate of kidnapping around the Mbiama axis of the East/West road,” Ikiriko said.

He said the situation led to the resurgence of deadly cultists masquerading as members of MASSOB in the area.

He added that with the swift operation of the Joint Taskforce, comprising the police and other security agents with the collaboration of community leaders, some of the kidnappers and cultists were accordingly apprehended.

Ikiriko stated that the alert was an obligation to inform the general public, the state and federal governments accordingly as the saying goes, “eternal vigilance is the price of liberty”.

He said that there were other youth still being intercepted while entering the state who were not on essential duty or supplying agricultural produce.

“So, as we are fighting the COVID-19 pandemic with border lockdown across the federation, we don’t understand the mission of these people.

“When they are intercepted, we profile them and send them to the Rivers COVID-19 Mobile Court where they are ordered to return to where they are coming from,” he added.

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In the meantime, the lawmaker representing Oguta Constituency in Imo, Mr Frank Ugboma, has called on his constituents to remain calm over the alleged killing of a community leader in Agwa Community by herdsmen.

The lawmaker made the call in Oguta on Monday when he met with representatives of Miyetti Allah and security agencies in the area.

The herdsmen on Saturday were reported to have allegedly attacked farmers in Agwa community in Oguta LGA, killing a community leader.

Also read:  INSECURITY: Bandits in return battle, kill 18 in fresh attack in Katsina

Ugboma, at the meeting, expressed sadness over the act and warned against reprisal attacks.

He called for calm in the affected community pending the outcome of the investigation.

He demanded for an immediate solution to the crisis to stem future occurrence and called for the prosecution of the culprits if eventually arrested.

“The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) Imo State Chapter was informed about the mayhem unleashed on the people of the community in Oguta by their subordinates,” he said.

Ugboma noted with dismay the activities of some herdsmen which he said did not make for peace in communities.

He commended the swift intervention of the Divisional Police Command in Oguta and other security agencies and urged them not to relent in apprehending the culprits.

According to the legislator, the quick intervention of the security men averted bloodshed and loss of lives.

Mr Kingsley Iredibia, the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) of Oguta Divisional Police Headquarters, commended the community for not taking laws into their hands.

He promised that the command would do everything humanly possible to ensure peace was restored between the Hausa people and their host communities.

Some community members who spoke at the meeting, frowned at the manner in which the herders allegedly brandished weapons, such as AK47 Riffles, and the destruction of their farmlands.

The Chairman of Miyetti Allah Imo chapter, Alhaji Haruna Yahaya regretted the death of the community leader and appealed to members of the community to forgive the offenders.

“We are here to change the narrative which many people imbibed which seems to have placed cows and crops above human lives in our country today.

“Cows and farm produce could be bought or replaced but not human lives. Lives can never be restored once snuffed out.

‘I am deeply sorry over what transpired between the herdsmen and the Agwa community here in Oguta. That would have been an avoidable mistake if the herders were careful as expected of them.

‘We are sorry and I will communicate the outcome of this meeting to the national body of our group to help in restoring the friendship and peace that had existed between us and this community before now, ” he said.
The meeting had in attendance representatives of the Department of the Security Services, the DPO of Oguta Divisional Police Command, Military and Oguta Village President Generals.

In attendance were the vigilant groups, youth leaders, chairman of the Hausa Community in Imo and the civil society groups.

However, following the spike in threats to lives and properties, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has tasked the Federal Government for a blueprint on how to address the perennial insecurity plaguing the country.

The President of the NLC, Mr Ayuba Wabba, made the call while addressing newsmen in Abuja on Monday.

He insisted that insecurity was thriving in Nigeria, compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic and that the development was affecting the economy adversely.

Wabba said that government needed to fashion out strategies to tackle the problem, which he said, had resulted in loss of lives in parts of the country.

“This is essential because the primary purpose of every government is actually to provide security for its citizens.

“The issues of COVID-19 and the rising state of insecurity are affecting businesses. More so, this is affecting our farmers and the effect is already being felt.

“So, it is important for us to call on government to address the insecurity in the country.”

According to the unionist, the gains that have been made in recent years are being reversed.

“I think the current strategy deployed in repelling attacks is not working and I think what is required is a new technique and strategy.

He said: “each time, we hear news that we have repelled attacks and that we are defeating the insurgents, whereas the problem is on the increase.

“As we speak to you, many farmers in some communities have been displaced and there is threat to security in Nigeria this farming season.”

Wabba lamented that many farmers had become displaced in their communities, saying that “labour will not fold its hands to allow the situation to continue to deteriorate.

“Without security, businesses cannot flourish; economic activities cannot prosper and investors cannot come in.

“This is a real challenge at this point in time because whatever gains we have made are being reversed.

“In fact, there are new security challenges in every aspect of our endeavour.

“It, therefore, behooves government to come up with concrete strategy to put the security challenges to an end,’’ said Wabba.

In another development, however, Mrs. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the Chairman/CEO, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM), on Monday called on the government of the United States to ensure a thorough investigation in the alleged killing of a Nigerian, Toyin Salau.

The NiDCOM chief described the alleged murder of the 19-year-old Nigerian-American Activist, Salau in the U.S as highly depressing and cruel.

This is contained in a statement signed by Mr Abdur-Rahman Balogun, Head of Media and Public Relations Unit of NiDCOM, and made available to newsmen in Abuja.

Mrs. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the Chairman/CEO, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM)

 

Dabiri-Erewa said the U.S government must conduct a thorough investigation on the circumstances leading to Ms Salau’s death.

The NIDCOM boss condoled with the immediate family of Ms Salau who died while advocating against oppression and injustice.

Salau, a 19-year-old lady of Nigerian origin, was found dead days after she was declared missing in the city of  Tallahassee, Florida, the United States.

According to the Tallahassee Police Department, Salau who spoke at Black Lives Matters protests in the city, was last seen on June 6, near Wahnish Way and Orange Avenue, Tallahassee.

Salau was declared missing hours after she tweeted she was sexually assaulted.

She tweeted that a man molested her that morning around Park Avenue and Richview Road, Tallahassee, Florida.

She said the man offered to give her a ride back to a church where she had sought “refuge” because of “unjust living conditions”.

“He came disguised as a man of God and ended up picking me up from nearby Saxon Street,” she tweeted. “I trusted the Holy Spirit to keep me safe.”

According to reports, the Tallahassee Community Action Agency conducted a search party on June 10 night, starting at Bethel AME Church.

The demonstrators searched for hours. They carried flashlights and asked for medics to join them in case she was hurt.

Salau on June 15, after a week of her abduction, was found dead.

Before her confirmed death, she was very passionate about government policies, fighting racism and other issues affecting the society.

 

 

Health and Safety

ONSLAUGHT: Troops Eliminate 227 Terrorists, Apprehend 529 In 1 Week

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ONSLAUGHT: Troops Eliminate 227 Terrorists, Apprehend 529 In 1 Week

 The Defence Headquarters says troops have within the last week, eliminated no fewer than 227 terrorists, apprehended 529 and rescued 253 kidnapped victims, following ground and air operations across the country.

The Director, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. Edward Buba disclosed this while briefing newsmen on Thursday in Abuja on the operations of the Armed Forces.

Buba said the troops recovered 231 assorted weapons and 6,441 assorted ammunition, comprising 89 AK47 rifles, 40 locally fabricated guns, 59 Dane guns, 250kg bombs used by NATO and Eastern Bloc aircraft and one MRAP.

Others according to him are; 4,198 rounds of 7.62mm special ammo, 841 rounds of 7.62mm NATO, 88 rounds of 5.56mm, 16 rounds of 7.62 x 39mm, 99 rounds of 7.62x51mm, 956 rounds of 7.62x54mm, 242 live cartridges, one PKM magazine, 24 magazines among others

In the North East, Buba said the troops of Operation Hadin Kai neutralised 83 terrorists, arrested 59 suspects and rescued 58 kidnapped hostages as well as recovered a large cache of arms.

He said that 219 terrorists comprising 29 adult males, 65 adult females and 125 children surrendered to troops within the theatre of operations between May 8 and 14.

In the North Central, Buba said the troops of Operations Safe Haven and Whirle Stroke, neutralised 27 insurgents, arrested 154 violent extremists and rescued 42 kidnapped hostages.

In the North West, he said the troops of Operation Hadarin Daji, also neutralised 58 terrorists, arrested 125 terrorists and rescued 105 kidnapped hostages.

Buba said the air component had on May 8, bombarded a new terrorist enclave in Faskari area of Katsina State following an intelligence trail and confirmatory ISR on the migration of notorious terrorist elements to the deserted settlement.

According to him, battle damage assessment revealed that several terrorists were neutralised and their structures as well as logistics destroyed

He added that troops of Operation Whirl Punch apprehended 68 illegal miners from an illegal mining site in Gwagwalada Area Council of FCT Abuja during the week.

He said that the troops also neutralised 25 terrorists, arrested 97 suspects and rescued 32 kidnapped hostages.

He also said that in the South-South, troops of Operation Delta Safe recovered 1,442,700 litres of stolen crude oil and 154,650 litres of illegally refined AGO.

According to him, troops discovered and destroyed 18 dugout pits, 34 boats, five drums, four receivers, four reservoirs and 97 storage tanks.

”Other items recovered include 198 cooking ovens, nine vehicles, three pumping machines, two speedboats, one baofeng radio, one outboard engine and 57 illegal refining sites.

”Troops also neutralised three extremists and apprehended 16 suspected oil thieves and other violent extremists’’.

In the South East, Buba said the troops of Operation UDO KA neutralised 21 terrorists, arrested 45 violent extremists and rescued 12 kidnapped hostages as well as recovered a cache of arms. 

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Health and Safety

Senate Berths Death Penalty For Hard Drugs, Substance Trafficking

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Senate Berths Death Penalty For Hard Drugs, Substance Trafficking

The irresistible attraction for drug pushing is set to wane as the Senate on Thursday, prescribed the death sentence as the penalty for trafficking in hard drugs and other substances in Nigeria.

This followed the passage of the  National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) Amendment Bill 2024.

It also prescribed not more than 15 years imprisonment without the option of fine, for conviction on consumption of hard drugs and substances.

This followed the adoption of the Senate Committees on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters and Drugs and Narcotics report on the NDLEA Amendment Act at plenary.

The report was presented by the Chairman of the committee, Sen. Mohammed Monguno (APC -Borno).

Monguno in his presentation said the amendment sought to strengthen the operations of the  NDLEA, empower its operations to establish laboratories for forensic review and update the list of dangerous drugs.

He said the amendment was also designed to review penalties and enhance the powers of the NDLEA to prosecute drug-related offences and issue subsidiary legislation.

He said the Senate had on Feb.28, deliberated on the bill, which was transmitted from the House of Representatives for the Senate’s concurrence.

He said it was important to make a general comment on the bill,  especially on the classification of the offences and penalty categorisations of drug-related offences.

He said the categorisations were peculiar and different from other laws because of the sentencing guideline used in determining drug-related offences.

“These guidelines in drug laws are designed to promote fairness, consistency and proportionality in the criminal justice system while considering the broader goals of rehabilitation and public safety.

“It is also important to note that several variables are used to determine the penalties imposed on a suspect.

“This includes type and quantity of controlled substance, defendant’s criminal history, intent behind drug-related activities, aggravating or mitigating circumstance such as organised crime, violence, use of offensive weapon.

“Others like  endangerment of minors can aggravate penalties,  conversely mitigating factors like cooperation with law enforcement or lack of prior criminal record may lessen the severity of punishment.”

Earlier, before the passage of the bill during clause-by-clause consideration, Sen.Ali Ndume (APC Borno), had moved a motion for amendment to clause 11 of the bill, which initially prescribed life imprisonment for drugs and substances trafficking in Nigeria.

Ndume had called for stiffer sanctions and moved a motion for a prescribing death sentence.

The motion was seconded by Sen.Onyekachi Nwaebonyi (APC-Ebonyi), who said that drugs and substance trafficking were doing great harm to the nation and hence,  stiffer penalties should be given to offenders.

When the voice vote for adoption of the motion on the death penalty was put to the vote, the “Yes” had their way as the Deputy President of the Senate, Barau Jubrin (APC- Kano), who was presiding ruled in favour of the “Yes.”

However, the decision did not go well for Sen.Adams Oshiomhole (APC – Edo), who objected to the ruling, saying that he was responsible to his constituents for every law passed in the Senate.

He said issues of life and death should not be passed based on a “Yes or No” response, advocating for a voting by every senator.

Responding, Barau said the best approach for the Edo lawmaker was to have called for a division immediately after the clause on the death sentence was adopted.

Barau said the decision to rule in favour of the “yes” was not the presiding officer’s making but on the members’ voice vote.

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Kaduna: Police Nab 280 Suspects, Rescue 158 Kidnapped Victims

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Kaduna: Police Nab 280 Suspects, Rescue 158 Kidnapped Victims

Kidnappers hotbed, Kaduna state may finally be set for relative peace as the Police Command in Kaduna said Its operatives have arrested 280 suspected criminals and rescued 158 kidnapped victims from January to date.

The Force Public Relations Officer, ACP  Olumuyiwa Adejobi, disclosed this at a press briefing at the command on Thursday in Kaduna.

Adejobi said, ”I am pleased to highlight the significant achievements in our crime-fighting endeavours, with a particular focus on the Abuja-Kaduna expressway corridor, and communities in Kaduna State, spanning from January to date.

“Notably, I would like to draw attention to a strategic initiative implemented along the Abuja-Kaduna expressway, which has significantly contributed to our successes.”

According to him, under the directive of the Inspector-General of Police, a helicopter has been deployed to serve as an escort for trains using the route.

It provides aerial support for ground troops from the Armed Forces, Police, and other security agencies.

“It has been deployed along the corridor as a proactive measure to prevent attacks and act as a first responder in the event of any untoward incidents,” Adejobi said.

Arms and ammunition recovered by police operatives on Thursday in Kaduna.

 He said this proactive measure has proven instrumental in enhancing security along the corridor, ultimately safeguarding the lives and property of commuters and residents of the adjourning communities along the route.

The Police spokesperson said, ”During this period, our proactive measures and relentless pursuit of criminal elements have resulted in remarkable outcomes.

”This included the arrest of 81 armed robbery suspects, 40 kidnap suspects, 73 murder/homicide suspects, 36 rape suspects, 22 suspects involved in cult-related crimes, and 28 suspects engaged in other criminal activities.

 “We have successfully recovered 16 firearms of various types, along with 226 ammunition of diverse calibres.

”Additionally, our operations have led to the retrieval of 28 stolen vehicles, over 200 harmful weapons, and 600 bags of fertilizers.

“A total of N3.3 million, previously paid as ransom to kidnappers, has been successfully recovered, while our swift and coordinated efforts have resulted in the safe rescue of 158 kidnapped victims, all of whom have been reunited with their families unharmed.”

The Force PPRO  said the Nigeria Police Force, under the leadership of I-G Kayode  Egbetokun, remains steadfast in its resolve to uphold the rule of law, ensure the safety and security of all citizens, and combat criminal activities across the country.

He said these recent achievements along the Abuja-Kaduna expressway underscored the zeal of the Force in fulfilling its mandate of protecting lives and property.

“This special intervention and operation would be replicated in other major expressways and cities across the country by establishing the Special Intervention Squad (SIS) by the I-G.

 The Force Police Public Relations Officer, ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, addressing the press on Thursday in Kaduna.

Adejobi  said, “We will continue to collaborate with relevant stakeholders, employ innovative strategies, and harness the full force of the law to root out criminal elements and create a conducive environment for peaceful coexistence and socio-economic development.

“As we forge ahead, the Nigeria Police Force extends its gratitude to members of the public for their continued support and cooperation.

“Together, we will build safer communities, foster trust between the police and citizens, and strive towards a Nigeria where all individuals can live without fear of crime or violence.“

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