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Red Cross To Develop Finance Mechanism Schemes For North-East, Others

Thu, 2019-09-12 22:25


The International Committee of the Red Cross on Thursday said that it would develop five to 10 finance mechanism schemes in conflict ridden areas around the globe beginning with the North-Eastern region of Nigeria.

President of the organisation, Peter Maurer, said this would reduce the dependence on aid convoys, Reuters reports.

“With longer, more protracted conflicts, we need to give people income opportunities.

“Even if they are in refugee camps, even if they are in internally displaced person camps, they want to do something.”

The plan would see the Red Cross pair financing schemes to projects in violence-prone areas.

Maurer said Nigeria’s cash-rich businesses and violent habitats makes it a healthy ground for the experiment. 

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$9.8bn Judgment: Nigerian Demands AGF’s Resignation Within Seven Days

Thu, 2019-09-12 22:15

Abubakar Malami

Abubakar Malami


Executive Director of Centre for Public Accountability, Olufemi Lawson, has asked Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN), to resign within seven days over the $9.8bn judgment against the Federal Government of Nigeria for breach of contract involving Process and Industrial Development Limited.

Lawson, in an open letter to the AGF, expressed his disappointment at Malami’s show of incompetence at how he handled the court processes.

He also knocked the AGF for not taking necessary steps when President Muhammadu Buhari's administration took over at a time when the reparation cost stood at just $850m.

He said, “Without equivocation, we wish to state that the unfortunate situation we have found ourselves today cannot be other than as a result of your incompetence as the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation.

“It is, therefore, our patriotic demand, that you honorably resign your appointment as our country's Attorney-General.

“Your continued stay in that position has far reaching implications on us as a nation beyond the present controversial $9.8bn judgment debt.”

Lawson noted that the court judgment had brought national embarrassment to the country, adding that investors could also be discouraged from setting up businesses in Nigeria.

He said that his organisation and other anti-corruption groups in the country would be embarking on a mass protest if Malami refused to resign within seven days.

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BREAKING: Hundreds Flee Borno Towns As Terrorists Attack Again

Thu, 2019-09-12 22:05


Hundreds of civilians have fled their homes as a result of Boko Haram attacks in Gubio and Nganzai council areas of Borno State on Thursday.

According to local sources, many of the fleeing residents are hidden in bushes as the insurgents continue to shoot into the air to create fear.

The attack on both villages occurred simultaneously around 6:30pm while the magnitude of the havoc wreaked by the terrorists is not known as at the time of this report.

Recall that Governor Umara Zulum had visited GajiGanna on Wednesday to plead with residents not to leave the town, saying his administration will do everything to protect them.


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Vat Increase: Businesses In Lagos To Pay 12.2 Per Cent On Goods, Services

Thu, 2019-09-12 21:53


Businesses in Lagos will pay 12.2 per cent on the sale of goods and services once the 7.2 per cent Value Added Tax increase comes into force.

An analyst with Afrinvest, Adedayo Bakare, pointed this to SaharaReporters on Wednesday during a chat.

The Lagos State Government had since collected tax from restaurants and other retailers under a sales tax law despite a Supreme Court ruling against such in September 2018.

Bakare while speaking with SaharaReporters, said, “In Lagos, consumption tax is already 10 per cent because Lagos State charges five per cent VAT and there is also another consumption tax of five per cent.

“So, for Lagos State, automatically, consumption tax is 12.2 per cent.” 

Citing the data on VAT collection given by Nigeria’s former Finance Minister, Kemi Adeosun, in 2018, Bakare said only about four states were generating most of the VAT, adding that the tax burden on just a few is disproportionate.

“Meanwhile, when they generate all these money, they will share it between 36 states when most of the money is generated in just four states.”

While admitting that the hike in VAT was not wrong, Bakare said there was a more urgent need to keep widening the tax net.

He added, “It is important that they widen the tax net to bring more informal businesses to the formal sector.”


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Nigerian Government Directs NCC To Block Over Nine Million Unregistered SIM Cards

Thu, 2019-09-12 21:52


Nigerians, who own unregistered SIM cards, might face trouble as government is set to block over nine million of such item.

The Nigerian Communications Commission had in June 2019 called on telecom consumers to heed its warning and stop patronising sellers of SIM cards that have been pre-registered because anyone found using (or selling or otherwise transacting with) such will be fined and jailed upon conviction.

A statement by the Federal Ministry of Communication on Thursday disclosed that Dr Isa Patanmi, the minister, had directed the NCC to block all such SIM cards until their users present themselves.

The statement reads, “As at today, preliminary investigation revealed that we have over nine million unregistered SIM cards in Nigeria.

“I have directed the NCC to immediately block those numbers until the users present themselves.”


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You Have No Power To Seal Edo Assembly, Court Tells NASS

Thu, 2019-09-12 21:49


The Federal High Court in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, has said that the National Assembly lacks the power to order the closure of Edo State House of Assembly.

Presiding Judge, Justice Kolawole Omotosho, gave the verdict on Wednesday, following a lawsuit filed by Deputy Speaker of Edo State House of Assembly, Yekini Idiaye, and Henry Okhuarobo, a member of the House.

The two lawmakers had approached the court to decide if the National Assembly had the right to seal the state chambers.

Delivering judgment on the matter, Omotosho said it was only the court that could direct the National Assembly to take over or seal the Edo State House of Assembly.

He said, “There is nothing before the court showing that the Edo State House of Assembly is unable to sit.

“Some elected members have been inaugurated. The House has been carrying out its legislative duties.

“The National Assembly lacks the power to take over the Edo State House of Assembly. The House of Assembly is not an appendage of the National Assembly.

“The National Assembly lacks the power to seal or direct anybody to seal the Edo State House of Assembly.

“The Nigerian constitution is a federal constitution and the National Assembly cannot unilaterally decide that Edo State House of Assembly is in crisis and seal same.

“It is only a court that has the power to make findings, particularly after listening to parties, to decide if the National Assembly can take over a House of Assembly.”


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University Of Lagos Staff Commits Suicide After Being Asked To Face Disciplinary Panel

Thu, 2019-09-12 21:46



A staff of the University of Lagos, Sunday Meshioye, has committed suicide after allegedly ingesting a popular insecticide.

A source within the university, who spoke with SaharaReporters said, “We are all shocked about how he suddenly killed himself.

“He was supposed to face a disciplinary panel for an issue they said he was involved in.”

Another staff of the University who only wants to be identified as Rashid, said, “They finally pushed him to do it.

“They had set up a disciplinary committee because a bus he was driving for the school caught fire and burnt. He took the poisonous substance a day after he was told he would be punished for the burnt vehicle.”

The late Meshioye was rushed to UNILAG Medical Centre before he was transferred to the Lagos University Teaching Hospital in Idi Araba where he died.

He is said to be survived by a wife and three children.

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Continue Free School Feeding If You Want Our Children To Attend Classes, Man Tells Gombe Governor

Thu, 2019-09-12 21:02

The Guardian Nigeria


A man with 14 children, Musa Malala, has told Governor Inuwa Yahaya of Gombe State to continue the Federal Government’s school feeding programme if he wants their children to go back to the classroom.

Malala made the appeal while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria on Thursday in Dukku Local Government Area of Gombe.

He disclosed that since the initiative was stopped, parents in the community had found it difficult to convince their children to return to school.

He said, “I am a father of 14 children with two wives and it has not been easy for me to send my children to school.

“Many children have stopped going to school because the school feeding programme has stopped. All they keep saying is, ‘No food, no school’.

“It has been difficult for parents to convince them to go back to school with the stoppage of the school feeding programme.

“I am calling on Governor Inuwa Yahaya to pick up the programme to encourage all these kids who are out of school to go back to school.

“It will really help the school win back the pupils.”


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Girl Gets 80 Strokes Of Cane For Smoking Marijuana In Kaduna

Thu, 2019-09-12 20:55


A 19-year-old girl in Kaduna, Zainab Abdullahi, was on Thursday sentenced a, to 80 strokes of the cane for smoking marijuana in public by a Shari’a Court 1 sitting in the Magajin Gari area of the state.

The judgment was handed down by the court led by Malam Muhammad Shehu-Adamu after the teenager pleaded guilty to the offence.

According to the judge, 80 strokes of cane was a punishment stipulated for people, who took intoxicants, adding that the punishment cannot be reversed.

Prosecutor, Ibrahim Shuaibu, told the court that the young lady was arrested while smoking marijuana on the road.

He also told the court that the convict had been sentenced before and was serving a jail term due to her inability to pay a fine of N7,000, according to the News Agency of Nigeria.


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EFCC Arrests Nigerian Impersonating UN Official To Defraud Women

Thu, 2019-09-12 20:27


The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission said it has arrested two suspected Internet fraudsters specialised in stealing people’s identities online to defraud foreign nationals.

In a tweet on Wednesday, the EFCC said the suspects, Akeju Crown Babatunde, 31, and Agbanah Toba, 35, were arrested at different locations in Ibadan, Oyo State, following intelligence gathered on their alleged involvement in Internet fraud.

The tweet reads, “After diligent examination of data and documents retrieved from them, the commission was able to establish enough ground for prosecuting the suspects for acts contrary to the provisions of Cybercrime Prohibition, Prevention Act, 2015, and would be accordingly charged to court soon.

“Akeju, for instance, was found mining information from online sites and was in possession of personal information and addresses of several Americans, who had fallen victim to his fraudulent act at different times.

“The suspect usually operated with two email accounts – one personal and one other supposedly official – to penetrate his victims and dispossess them of their hard-earned money.

“EFCC’s investigations also established Akeju’s deployment of fake identity to engage foreigners in romantic affairs with the intention to defraud them.

“Findings revealed various lodgements from his foreign victims into his Nigerian bank accounts.

“Agbanah’s case is not too different. He had admitted in his confessional statement with the commission to be falsely representing himself as one Chris Dan, a 40-year-old Briton, working with the United Nations.

“He confessed to have used the white man’s picture to lure his victims into romantic relationships and thereafter solicit for money from them allegedly to enable him to pay for his flight ticket to visit them.

“After much familiarisation, he would then device other tricks to swindle them the more.

“At the point of their arrest, the EFCC recovered one iPhone XS Max and one Toyota Venza from Akeju, while Agbanah was in possession of one Toyota Venza, one Toyota Camry, two Macbook, one Apple Ipad, one iPhone XS Max, one iPhone 5, one Infinix phone, two hard drives, and one HP printer.”

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Consider Women For Leadership Positions, CAN Tells Government

Thu, 2019-09-12 20:03


The Christian Association of Nigeria has called on government at all levels in the country to consider handing strategic leadership roles to women of proven character and integrity in the society.

According to President of CAN, Dr Samson Ayokunle, the move would enhance peace and stability in the country.

Ayokunle made the call in Abuja on Thursday during an event organised by Christian Aid.

Represented by the National Chairperson of CAN’s women wing, Deaconess Victoria Ehiselo, Ayokunle said, “The Nigerian political scene has been dominated by men from inception and it has long been believed that men are the only ones with the capacity to make decisions.

“This style of leadership is also to a very large extent responsible for the pathetic condition that women have found themselves in the country because men are assumed to be stronger and wiser.” Speaking further, the CAN President said that it had become necessary for women to gain political seats by obtaining empowerment and becoming their own agent of positive change, according to the News Agency of Nigeria.


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Okowa, Health Minister Decry Nigeria’s High Maternal Mortality Rate

Thu, 2019-09-12 19:56

Round Table: Delta State governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, and Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire

Round Table: Delta State governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, and Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire Health Ministry


Delta State governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, and Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, have expressed worry over Nigeria’s high maternal mortality rate, calling for urgent steps to be taken to address the situation.

Speaking during the opening of the 62nd National Council on Health meeting in Asaba, the state capital, Ehanire said all stakeholders must work together to ensure that maternal deaths is reduced by over 90 per cent (less than 3000 maternal per year) by 2030.

He said, “In spite of all efforts, women and babies die needlessly; this concern made Federal Ministry of Health to engage other stakeholders to develop a strategic roadmap for action to be a springboard to accelerate reduction of maternal and neonatal mortality.”

In his remarks, Okowa said that a review of the second national strategic development plan was imperative to enhance practicality of its operationalisation in view of the fiscal constraints the country was currently facing.

He said, “Of utmost priority is the need to develop viable and sustainable frameworks that would address both maternal and child morbidity and mortality.

“These frameworks must include the private sector support as they serve as a strategic source of healthcare service delivery enhancement.

“This is necessary because it is important that interventions are focused on outcomes rather than inputs as these help to ensure that available resources are judiciously utilised.”


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Bandits Displaced More Persons In Nigeria Than Boko Haram In First Half Of 2019 –Report

Thu, 2019-09-12 19:37


The Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre said in a report released on Thursday that criminal violence in North-West Nigeria as well as farmer-herder clashes in the Middle Belt region, displaced more persons than Boko Haram insurgency did in the first half of 2019.

According to the report, 140,000 persons were forced to leave their homes between January and June.

The report said, “Criminal violence in North-West Nigeria and clashes between herders and farmers in the Middle Belt region forced more people to flee than the Boko Haram insurgency.”

Across the globe, 10.8million people were displaced by storms, flood and conflict while 3.8million of that figure was down to conflicts.

It added that climate change-powered natural disasters drove 7million people out of their homes.

“These figures are alarmingly high, particularly as we are only half way through the year.

“They show that the causes of conflict and inequality are not being addressed, and that displacement is creating cyclical patterns of crisis and vulnerability,” Alexandra Bilak, IDMC’s director said in a statement.


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Increasing VAT Will Cause Inflation, Analyst Warns

Thu, 2019-09-12 19:10


Public affairs analyst, Makut Macham, has described the planned hike in Value Added Tax as a hole being dug by the Nigerian Government, which will cause inflation at the end.

The government had stated that there will be an increase in the VAT from its current rate of 5.5 per cent to 7.2 per cent.

It also said there will be a 0.005 per cent tax on the profits of companies to be set aside for the Police Trust Fund.

The move is expected to generate more revenue for the government.

Macham, who spoke with SaharaReporters on Wednesday, said although it looks attractive, the policy would in the long term affect ordinary Nigerians.

He said, “On the surface this looks like a solution to the problem that we have on ground but when you dig deep, you will realise that there are a lot of loop holes to this government's policy considering the standard of living of Nigerians and the level of unemployment.

“Those that are in support of this policy have argued that our current VAT rate is one of the lowest and even countries like Ghana charge higher rates.

“Most of these countries have designed their VAT systems to be able to serve the masses by charging VAT on big and medium businesses and using the proceeds to take care of poor masses while our VAT system on the other hand looks a bit faulty.

“This policy if not planned out well and will end up only making Nigerians pay more while government earns less.”

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Insecurity: Northern Governors Hold Emergency Meeting

Thu, 2019-09-12 18:59

Cross section of Northern governors, at the Northern Governors Forum emergency meeting in Kaduna on Thursday

Cross section of Northern governors, at the Northern Governors Forum emergency meeting in Kaduna on Thursday Shehu K. Goro/DailyTrust


The Northern Governors Forum on Thursday met in Kaduna State to discuss the National Livestock Transformation Plan and find a lasting solution to the insecurity affecting the region.

While at the meeting, Chairman of the forum and Plateau State governor, Simon Lalong, said livestock management in the country and in particular the Northern region had continued to generate discourse, controversy, misinformation and even politicisation.

Lalong said the governors had made ‎so many attempts at find lasting solutions to the incessant farmer-herder clashes, cattle rustling and associated criminalities such as banditry, kidnapping among others in the region.

He said, “We consequently set up a committee under the chairmanship of Governor Aminu Masari of Katsina State to develop a comprehensive regional plan that can bring lasting solutions to the lingering crises.

“At this meeting, we shall also deliberate on the National Livestock Transformation Plan, which was inaugurated by the National Economic Council chaired by Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, and seek to support and strengthen the development of market-driven ranches in the livestock ecosystem for improved productivity through breed improvement, pasture production, efficient land and water utilisation.”


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Nigerian Elected Into Legislative Seat In Canada

Thu, 2019-09-12 18:44

Uzoma Asagwara

Uzoma Asagwara Winnipeg Free Press


Uzoma Asagwara, a 39-year-old Nigerian-Canadian, has been elected into the country’s legislative seat for the New Democratic Party.

Asagwara was one of three black people in the 150-year history of the Manitoba legislative house, CBC News reports.

She has been working within her community as a psychiatric nurse and for long has been a community activist in Winnipeg.

Uzoma said she is grateful to everyone, who has supported them long before the election.

The Nigerian-Canadian is not only a politician and activist, she is also an athlete.

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Three-storey Building Collapses In Enugu

Thu, 2019-09-12 18:27


A three-storey building under construction has collapsed at Monarch Avenue in Independent Layout, Enugu South Local Government Area of Enugu State, according to a report by PUNCH.

It was gathered that the building located behind Catherine Lodge, was said to have collapsed on Wednesday night.

There were no casualties reported according to sources.

Some residents of the area attributed the incident to substandard materials and the use of quack engineer’s in the execution of the project.

A resident, who gave his name as Clifford Eze, said that there was no casualty, adding that block work had already been completed and the building was about to be roofed when it suddenly collapsed on Thursday around 8:30pm.

When contacted on the telephone, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Ebere Amaraizu, confirmed the incident, adding that investigation had commenced to unravel the cause of the collapse.


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Police Arraign Hotel Employees For Stealing TV Sets

Thu, 2019-09-12 18:23


The police in Lagos has arraigned two employees of Transit Budget Hotel in court for stealing 10 television sets worth over N1m from the facility.

They were arraigned on Thursday at the Ikeja Magistrates’ Court before Magistrate O.A. Layinka.

The employees, Idris Ishagbesan and Daniel Kefas, were charged for conspiracy and theft.

According to the prosecutor, Raji Akeem, the alleged theft took place on August 30.

The offence, he said, contravened the provisions of sections 287 and 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

The defendant pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Magistrate Layinka admitted the defendants to bail in the sum of N200,000 each with two sureties each in like sum.

The magistrate adjourned the case until October 23 for mention.


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I Did Not Ask Barcelona To Sign Neymar, Says Messi

Thu, 2019-09-12 17:54


Barcelona superstar, Lionel Messi, has denied media reports that he told the Barcelona board to resign Neymar Jr from Paris Saint-Germain.

Messi, however, acknowledged that he gave his opinion to the club about resigning the Brazilian playmaker.

In an interview with Sport, Messi said his teammates did not push for the signing but stated that he would love for him to return to the club.

Messi said, “A lot of things are said. We didn't ask for his signing. Obviously, we commented on it when we heard Neymar might come, we gave our opinions on whether it was good or not.

“We never said he had to be signed. We didn't impose anything. We gave our opinion in the same way we did with Antoine Griezmann and other players who have come or who haven't arrived in the end.

“I would have loved Neymar to come. I understand the people who were against it. It's normal after everything that happened with Neymar because of how he went and how he left us.”

Messi said though the return of Neymar would boost the chances of the club to win trophies, he noted that some of the players do not want him to return, according to UK’s Evening Standard.

“It's normal and logical that there are many people who don't want him to come back but thinking in sporting terms, for me Neymar is one of the best in the world.

“Obviously, in our team, he would have increased the chance of achieving the results we want so much.

“I don't know if the club wanted that or not. But from what I know, Ney really wanted it.

“I also understand that it's very difficult to negotiate with Paris (Saint-Germain) after all the twists and turns they have had with Barcelona.”

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Flood Destroys Dozens Of Homes In Borno

Thu, 2019-09-12 17:47


The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs has said that more than 3,000 people have been seriously affected by floods in Borno State.

According to the report by OCHA, more than 600 houses were damaged.

The report said, “Heavy rains have inundated two camps and a village in Northeast Nigeria, affecting around 3,450 people.

“More than 600 houses including emergency shelters, toilets and other water and hygiene facilities as well as food and households items have been destroyed.

“Humanitarian organisations are mobilising assistance and are also working to prevent further damage as heavy rains and flash floods are expected to continue in September.”


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