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Edo, Niger Delta under terrorists’ seige – NDC

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The Niger Delta Congress (NDC) has condemned the “terrorist attack” in Edo State, warning of rising insecurity in the region.

The group issued a statement on Tuesday in reaction to the abduction of dozens of travelers in Igueben last Saturday.

The incident left some passengers injured and more than 30 kidnapped as they waited to board a train from Igueben Station to Warri in Delta State.

NDC spokesperson, Mudiaga Ogboru condemned the ambush on innocent citizens, observing a series of onslaughts since last year.

He said the “same styled terrorist attack successfully executed in Igueben” was attempted unsuccessfully at the Abraka train station in Delta on 8th July 2022 by “the same terrorists masquerading as herdsmen”.

The organisation also recalled deadly attacks on communities in Rivers, Bayelsa, and Cross River States in the last months of 2022.

Noting that the frequency was disturbing, the NDC said despite numerous calls by stakeholders and the people, the governors are yet to establish a regional security outfit as proof of their commitment to securing lives and property.

The body declared their “reluctance to take action”, despite persistent outcry amid reports of unfamiliar armed persons lurking in forest reserves, “is becoming untenable and unacceptable”.

The NDC charged governors of the region to work towards ensuring the release of those kidnapped and to quickly put in place mechanisms to forestall further attacks.

The statement commiserated with the injured, the families of the captives and wished them quick recovery and safe return of loved ones.

On Monday, the President of Igueben Area Customary Court, Precious Aigbonoga and ex-Edo House of Assembly member, Festus Edughele were abducted in separate incidents.

The judicial official is the wife of Afebu Aigbonoga, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) House of Assembly candidate for Etsako West Constituency 1.

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NAF bombs terrorists hideouts in Borno

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The Air Component of Operation Hadin Kai, OPHK, and the Nigerien Air Force on Tuesday eliminated scores of terrorists and destroyed their hideouts in Damasak and Mobbar local government areas of Borno State.

A statement by the Director, Public Relations and Information of NAF, AVM Edward Gabkwet, on Wednesday in Abuja, said that the interdictions were under the Multi-National Joint Task Force, MNJTF.

Gabkwet said the terrorists had attempted to attack troops of Sector 4 of the MNJTF at Lada, a border town between Niger Republic and Nigeria, and subsequently fled across the border into Nigeria.

According to him, the fleeing terrorists who were on eight motorcycles were later tracked to two locations in Zarri village, about 28 kilometers east of Damasak and Mala Alide in Mobbar areas of Borno.

He further stated that they were observed hibernating in the village with their motorcycles hidden under trees.

“Subsequently, airstrikes from the Air Component of OPHK and Nigerien Air Force, under the watchful eye of Niger’s Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance (ISR) aircraft, struck the terrorists’ locations.

“Real-time ISR footage later confirmed numerous terrorists were eliminated and several structures within the targeted areas destroyed.

“Collaborative efforts of this nature have continued to yield positive outcomes on both sides of the border.

“It has also led to the reduction in terrorism and other forms of cross-border crimes perpetrated by criminals crisis-crossing the borders to evade justice,” he added.

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Sex Scandal: We won’t oppose any sanction against lecturer — ASUU UNN

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has said that the union would not oppose any sanction against the lecturer allegedly involved in sex scandal in a video trending in the social media.

Chairperson of ASUU, University of Nigeria Nsukka, (UNN), Dr Oyibo Eze said this in Nsukka on Tuesday while reacting to the alleged attempt by a lecturer in UNN to have sex with a female student in his office on Monday.

“ASUU will not oppose any sanction if after investigations, the suspect is found guilty of allegation to have attempted to have sex with a female student in his office.

“We should all know that every action has its consequences,” he said.

He said that ASUU condemned the alleged act by the lecturer identified as Mr. David Udom-Udom of the Social Science Unit, School of General Studies (GS) of the UNN.

“I saw the trending video of the alleged act yesterday and this morning I went  to GS department and confirmed the incident in the viral video on Monday.

“Lecturers should see students as their children by displaying high sense of discipline, morality and avoid asking sex for mark.

“It is condemnable and that is what happens when a dog eats the bone hung on its neck.

“Our job as lecturers is to teach students not to harass them sexually,” he said.

Reacting to the incident, Comrade Enoch Utazi, the President, Students Union Government (SUG) of the UNN, also condemned the alleged act by Udom to have sex with a student for mark.

Utazi said SUG would follow the matter to its logical conclusion to ensure that the affected randy lecturer was punished according to rules and regulations of the university.

“SUG will ensure this randy lecturer is punished to serve as deterrent to others who exploit female students sexually in order to give them mark,” Utazi said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Chris Alumona, the Chief Security Officer of UNN, when contacted, confirmed the incident and said that the randy lecturer Udom-Udom had been arrested and handed over to the police.

Alumona said his office acted on tip-off from UNN Department of Students Affairs on what was happening on Monday in Udom’s office

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Alleged N8.5bn fraud: You have case to answer, Lagos court tells NIMASA staff, ex-JTF Commander

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Justice Ayokunle Faji of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos, on Monday, April 22, 2024, told a former Commander of the Joint Military Task Force, Operation Pulo Shield, Major-General Emmanuel Atewe ( rtd.), and a  staff of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Kime Engonzu, that they have a case to answer in the alleged N8.5bn money laundering case brought against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Atewe and Engonzu are standing trial on a 22-count charge bordering on money laundering to the tune of N8, 537,586,798.58, which also involves a former Director-General of NIMASA, Patrick Akpobolokemi, and Josephine Otuaga, also a staff of NIMASA.

One of the counts reads: “That you, Patrick Ziadeke Akpobolokemi, Major General Emmanuel Atewe, Kime Engozu, and Josphine Otuaga, sometime in 2014, in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Court, with intent to defraud, conspired amongst yourselves to commit an offence to wit: conversion of the sum of N8,537,586,798.58 property of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 18 (a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2012 and punishable under Section 15 (3) of the same Act.”

They pleaded “not guilty” to the charges, thereby prompting the commencement of their trial.

In the course of the trial, the prosecution called several witnesses and subsequently closed its case against the defendants.

However, the defendants, rather than open their defence, filed a no-case-submission.

Akpobolokemi had, in a no-case submission, filed by his lawyer, Dr. Joseph Nwobike, SAN, prayed the court for an acquittal without having him present a defence.

Ruling on the no-case submission on Monday, Justice  Faji discharged and acquitted Akpobolokemi  and Otuaga, the fourth defendant.

He however, ruled that Atewe, the second defendant, and Engonzu, the third defendant, should open their defence in counts 12 to 22 of the charge.

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