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Convict 400 terrorism sponsors, arrested Owo attackers before May 29, HURIWA tells Buhari

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CIVIL rights advocacy group, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, (HURIWA), on Sunday, charged President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure the trial and conviction of 400 Bureau de Change operators identified for terrorism financing and the six arrested Owo attackers before he leaves office on May 29, 2023.

HURIWA has also asked the federal government to swiftly arrest the Chinese miners in Zamfara who are allegedly funding the armed Fulani terrorists in Zamfara State so they are prosecuted and published for waging war against Nigeria through sponsorship of terrorism.

Specifically, The Times, a British daily, says Chinese nationals in the mining sector are funding terrorist groups in parts of Nigeria to secure access to the Country’s mineral reserves just as the newspaper added that Beijing could be indirectly funding terror in Africa’s largest economy.

The Rights group expressed doubts that President Muhammadu Buhari’s government will have the political will to deal with these Chinese people funding terrorism in Nigeria given that this government has gone down in history as the one that has borrowed extensively and frivolously from the Chinese government which is now the subjection of the international media investigation that uncovered the nexus between the attacks by terrorists in the North West and the funds provided to them by Chinese miners in the mineral resources rich Zamfara State.

HURIWA, in a statement by its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, reminded the President that delayed justice is no justice at all and it is a mockery of his mantra to fight terrorism and banditry which he used as part of his manifesto to campaign for office in May 2015.

The group said Buhari should prove his critics wrong that he pampers Fulani terrorists and is reluctant to prosecute the few arrested ones in the custody of security agents. The President should prove his detractors wrong by doing the needful: which is swift trial of arrested terrorists and their conviction.

HURIWA said rather than seeing to the prosecution and conviction of insurgents, the Buhari administration has perpetually embarked on many frivolous schemes to free arrested insurgents, calling its deradicalisation and even empowerment of murderers and bloodthirsty marauders who claim to have repented.

HURIWA’s Onwubiko said, “We demand clarity on what has happened to the 400 suspected sponsors and funders of terrorism in the North-East who were numerically listed but their names not disclosed by the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami.

“It is over two years since they have been announced but why the secrecy in disclosing their names and why is their prosecution shrouded in secrecy or not commenced at all when other nations are committed to using the legal mechanisms to stamp out terrorists funders?

“For instance, a French court on Friday convicted 11 alleged members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party on charges of terror financing for its campaign to seek autonomy for the minority in Turkey’s South-East.

“Even those arrested in connection with the Capitol riot have been charged for their roles in the riot as about 350 individuals have been sentenced and 192 have been incarcerated.

“Also, the United Arab Emirates convicted Nigerians who were terror financiers about two years ago but the Nigerian government is failing to do the basic duty of government which is to enforce the counter terrorism law to deal with those who have provided resources used by these genocidal killers to bomb civilians targets, and churches.

“Although about a year ago, the Nigerian military said it has arrested about six assailants that carried out the attack on St Francis Xavier Church, Owo, Ondo State, on 5 June, 2022 but none of the suspects have been prosecuted in the attack left over 40 worshippers dead while scores of others sustained different injuries.

“The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Lucky Irabor, named the arrested suspects as Idris Abdulmalik Omeiza (a.k.a Bin Malik), Momoh Otohu Abubakar, Aliyu Yusuf Itopa, Auwal Ishaq Onimisi, Al-Qasim Idris and Abdulhaleem Idris.

“We place a demand on the conscience of President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure the prosecution and the conviction of these six Owo suspects and the 400 terrorism financiers before he leaves office on May 29, 2023.”

April 16, 2023
Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko
National Coordinator – HUMAN RIGHTS WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA

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Emirate crisis: FG will be held responsible for violence in Kano – Atiku

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Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, the 2023 presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has said that the President Bola Tinubu-led Federal Government would be held responsible if violence breaks out in Kano State over the emirate crisis.

Atiku said Tinubu’s government was inviting anarchy to Kano State by providing security for the deposed Emir of Kano, Aminu Ado-Bayero.

On Friday, Governor Abba Yusuf had deposed Bayero while reinstating Lamido Sanusi as the 15th Emir of Kano.

Posting on X, Atiku cautioned the federal government against destabilising Kano State.

According to Atiku: “The action of the Federal Government in deploying soldiers in Kano in the tussle over the throne of the ancient city is an upset to the peace and security of the state, and also in breach of the 1999 Constitution as Amended.

“The foregoing circumstances happened within the confines of the law and in compliance with the powers conferred on the governor as provided by Section 5(2) of the 1999 Constitution as amended; and also in consultation with the kingmakers of Kano, reappointed Sanusi Lamido Sanusi (also known as Muhammadu Sanusi II) as the 16th Emir of Kano State and accordingly handed him a letter of appointment.

“It is surprising that in the early hours of today, exactly at about 5:30 am the former Emir of Kano, His Majesty Aminu Ado Bayero, backed by Federal might made their way into the Nasarawa Palace of the Kano Emirate while the reappointed Emir, Muhammadu Sanusi II was at the Gidan Dabo, which is the main residence of the Emir of Kano.

“In this wise, the former Emir could not have made his way into the Nasarawa Palace without the support of the Federal Government having done so with the support of the army and other security personnel in his company. The deployment of soldiers in extra constitutional matters such as this undermines the integrity of the Nigerian military.

“We need to remind the Tinubu administration that Kano State is known for peace and harmony spanning thousands of years and any attempt to destablise the peace of the Land of Commerce shall be resisted. Recall that Muhammadu Sanusi II was dethroned on 9th March, 2020: dethroned, Kano forged on in peace without any fracas.

“We wish to state unequivocally that if for any reason, law and order breaks down in Kano State, particularly Kano Municipal, the Federal Government should be held responsible as the act of providing security cover to the former Emir, Aminu Ado Bayero to come back to Kano is an invitation to anarchy.”

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Justice’ll prevail – Deposed Kano Emir Bayero breaks silence

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The deposed Emir of Kano, Aminu Ado-Bayero, has said justice will prevail over the issue surrounding the emirates in the state.

Bayero urged relevant authorities to ensure justice because nobody is above the law.

Governor Abba Yusuf of Kano State had dethroned Bayero as the 15th Emir of the state.

Speaking on Saturday, the deposed Emir urged residents to maintain law and order. He spoke at the mini-palace where he has since returned to after his dethronement.

According to Ado-Bayero: “I call on the people to remain law-abiding while awaiting the outcome of the legal process in this tussle.

“We call on the authority to do justice in this matter. Kano is a very influential state in Nigeria. Whatever affects Kano affects Nigeria. May peace reign in Kano. We pray for Allah to bless Kano with responsible and just leaders.

“Justice is the way to go on every issue. There will be justice. Nobody is above the law. We will accept whatever the law says. I appreciate all the people who have shown concern. As I said, justice will take its course. We will keep on praying for peace in Kano State. May Allah the Almighty protect us.”

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Nigerian airports most expensive globally – NAHCO

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Nigerian Aviation Handling Company Plc has set an N100 billion revenue target within the next five years.

The projection was made known by the Group chairman of the company, Dr Seinde Fadeni, at the sideline of its Annual General Meeting held in Lagos on Saturday.

In achieving this, the company noted that it had concluded plans to diversify its investment portfolio to create new jobs and contribute significantly to resolving the country’s foreign exchange crisis.

NAHCO which was established in 1979, provides aviation cargo, aircraft handling, passenger facilitation, crew transportation, refuelling and aviation training services from its base at Murtala Muhammed International Airport.

According to Fadeni, the company is convinced that the food export holds significant potential for foreign exchange earnings because of its impact on the livelihoods and prosperity of Nigerians.

He said though the company is navigating safely around the myriad of challenges confronting the air transport space, he urged the government to look at ways to improve airport infrastructure and reduce the financial burden for airlines and passengers to keep pace with the future growth plan.

He said ” NAHCO believes that the government at the centre should work towards reducing the financial burden for airlines and passengers by reviewing applicable taxes. This way, more payees would be brought into the tax net. Not too long ago, the International Air Transport Association declared that Nigerian airports charge foreign airlines about 27 levies.

“This makes Nigerian airports the most expensive in the world, discouraging airlines from flying into the country. This is not the kind of laurel Nigeria should be proud of. It is a disincentive to investment for both active and prospective investors. The government should address this situation. Government should also heed the industry’s calls for the harmonisation of the regulatory environment, particularly at the ports in a way that aligns with global best practices. The nation’s Ease of Doing Business mantra should be in practice and not in theory only.”

He further said that though multiple cost-related challenges characterised 2023, the increased cost of handling an aircraft cannot be easily passed on to the airline by ground handling companies because any proposed rate hike would require the approval of the industry regulator – Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority.

He said, “The very act of getting new rates approved has its challenges as well. It is therefore not uncommon to see ticket prices rising geometrically while ground handling rates charged by service providers to airlines remain solidly stagnant.

“Our push towards birthing a global integrated logistic giant is taking good shape with the coming into operations of new subsidiaries.”

Also speaking, its Group Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer, Indranil Gupta said the company intends to diversify investment into other sectors of the economy to grow.

“We will continue to leverage our strength and market insights to pursue organic and strategic growth initiatives to expand our market presence and revenue streams

“We plan to comprehensively refresh our fleet of ground support equipment to replace ageing equipment and increase the numbers in our fleet to meet the ever-increasing customer needs and expectations.

“We are already embracing digitalisation and innovation, investing in cutting-edge technologies and solutions to enhance our service offerings, operational efficiency and competitiveness. By harnessing the power of data analytics, automation and predictive maintenance, we aim to stay ahead of the industry trends and deliver superior value to our clients ”

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