Thursday, December 14, 2017

Warder Kills Fake 24Years Old Kidnapper In Lagos Court

There was confusion at the Ebute Meta Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday after a man who pretended to be one of the kidnappers of the six pupils of Lagos Model College, Igbonla, was shot dead by a warder.

It was learnt that the suspect, Chizoba Okoye, was fleeing the court premises shortly after his case was adjourned till January 2018 when he was shot dead.

The corpse of the 24-year-old was said to have been taken into a prison ambulance and deposited in a morgue.

It had been reported that Okoye was first arraigned at the Chief Magistrate Oluwayemisi Adelaja’s court on August 3, 2017, on one count of false representation and demanding ransom.

The police prosecutor, Chinalu Uwadione, had told the court that Okoye, while presenting himself to be one of the kidnappers of the six pupils, demanded N2m ransom from their parents on June 11, around 8pm.

He had said the offence was punishable under Section 6 (iii) of the Lagos State Anti-Kidnapping Law, 2017.

Okoye was reported to have been brought to the court one more time before his case came up again on Wednesday.

A credible source told Punch Metro that after the matter was heard and the suspect was being taken to a cell in the court, he bolted.

He said, “Okoye was not involved in the actual kidnapping. He had heard about it like every other person and he decided to call the parents of the boys to demand N2m for their release. That was how he was arrested.

“This is the third time that he would be brought to court. The magistrate had adjourned his case till January 15, 2018. In fact, he was going to be freed on that day based on certain reasons.

“But he fled the court and the warder chased him to the police barracks beside the court. The man asked him to stop, but he refused and continued running. That was how he was shot dead. Operatives of the prison ambulance service confirmed him dead, after which he was taken away.”

The spokesperson for the prisons service, Lagos State Command, DSP Rotimi Oladokun, confirmed the incident, adding that the suspect was shot by men of the Armed Squad Unit.

He said, “It happened after the case was adjourned and the escort team was leading him to the holding cell on the court premises. Thinking he could escape the watchful eyes of the armed guards, Okoye suddenly took to his heels, defying verbal warnings and warning shots from the armed men.

“As he continued in his flight and attempted to scale the fence to freedom, he was immobilised by shots from the armed personnel and subsequently arrested. Unfortunately, he lost his life on the way to the hospital for medical attention.”

He said the state Controller of Prisons, Tunde Ladipo, had ordered investigation into the incident and assured the public of adequate security in all prison formations in the state.
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Two Ondo Clergymen Sexually Assaulted, Defrauded Spinsters Searching For Husband, Housewives

Two clergymen have been arrested in Akure, the Ondo State capital, for sexually assaulting their church members and defrauding them using diabolical and fetish means.

The arrest of the two clergymen was effected by officials of the state Command of Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC.

It was said that, the suspects, using diabolic means, defrauded and sexually abused worshippers in their respective churches.

One of the suspects’ church is located in Ilorin, Kwara State, while the other is in Idanre area of the state.

Reports had it that the two clergymen always lure desperate ladies looking for suitors and married women in search of children by promising to cast out evil spirits obstructing their desires.

They would, in the process, use diabolic means to abuse them sexually and defraud them by asking them for a certain amount of money to prepare concoctions for them.

Exposed by members

Vanguard gathered that some members of their churches, who were not comfortable with the development in the churches, tipped off NSCDC men, who later set a trap for them.

Parading one of the suspects, the State Commandant of NSCDC, Pedro Idebo, said an investigation was still on as regards the other suspect, who is yet to be paraded.

Idebo said some fetish items used in swindling the victims were recovered from the two suspects.

His words: “The criminal activities of the culprits, mostly in using fetish means, forced some church members to report the duo to the NSCDC office in Akure.

“They also obtained various sums running into millions of Naira from members of their congregations under false pretences.

“We use this opportunity to warn the fake clergymen and women to urgently relocate from the state or face the law of the land.”

Idebo vowed to run fraudsters out of the state, adding that the command will team up with sister agencies in the state in ensuring criminals are not only apprehended, but equally prosecuted in a law court.
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NOT Again! SARS Officers Shoot, Whisk Away Lagos Trader, His Wherabouts Unkonwn

The family of Eche Israel, an electronic dealer at the Alaba International Market, Ojo, have become apprehensive after he was allegedly shot by some operatives of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad in the Mile 2 area of Lagos State.

It was gathered that the 30-year-old trader had finished from work around 6pm on Friday and was heading home on a motorcycle when he was stopped by the officers.

During an exchange that allegedly ensued, the victim was said to have queried the officers for stopping him and asked the motorcycle rider to move on.

He was subsequently shot in the waist. The officers were alleged to have shot continuously into the air to scare away residents, who had thronged the scene.

He was allegedly put in the boot of the car the SARS men brought and driven away.

A cousin of the victim, Mary Israel, said a family friend, who witnessed the shooting, called the attention of the family to the incident.

She said they had been to different police stations in the state, including the SARS office at Ikeja, adding that Eche’s whereabouts had remained unknown.

She said, “He deals in electronics in Alaba market. He had finished the day’s work and was going to his house at Ajegunle around 6pm on Friday when the officers asked him to stop. They parked a red vehicle beside the road.

“They found a Samsung phone on him and some money. The man questioning him was not in uniform, so he argued with him and asked why he was being questioned. The policeman held him by the trousers when he asked his motorcycle rider to move on.

“They shot him in the waist. The motorcycle rider fled. He was thrown into the boot of the vehicle and the policemen drove off.

“They didn’t find anything incriminating on him. He is not a robber or a thief. He has his business and a family. He is a responsible man.”

Another family member, Blessing Israel, said the policemen were identified with their police-crested AK-47 guns, adding that one of the men also flashed his ID card at residents when they tried to mob them.

“We have been to SARS Ikeja, Mile 2 Police Station and the Federal SARS at Alagbon. We just returned from the Adeniji Adele Police Station. They all said there was no suspect named Eche Israel with waist injury in their cells. Where else can we go? There has been no word about him since last Friday,” she added.

*I'm literally in tears!!*
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Lagos State Electrician Found Dead In A Pharmacy's Attic

An autopsy report is being awaited by the Lagos State Police Command to clear the air on the cause of death of an electrician, Idris Lasisi.

Idris was found dead in the attic of a pharmacy on Abraham Adesanya Low Cost Housing Estate in Ajah on Monday.

The family of the deceased alleged that he was murdered, claiming that there were bloodstains in his mouth and neck while his phone was not found.

But the pharmacist, identified only as Bayo, claimed that the father of one was electrocuted. It was gathered that Bayo was being quizzed by the police at the Ogombo division on the circumstances surrounding the electrician’s death.

It  was that Bayo had engaged Idris to do some electrical work at the pharmacy on Saturday.

At about 7pm, the 33-year-old was said to have called his wife on the telephone, informing her that he was rounding off.

The wife, Bunmi Lasisi, explained that after awaiting his return for hours, she called his line, but it indicated that it was not reachable.

She said she went to bed, thinking he had gone to pass the night at his elder brother’s residence in Lakowe, Ajah.

She said, “We visited his mother on Saturday at Owode, Ajah. He said he wanted to do a job for Mr. Bayo and he went there from Owode. Around 7pm, he called me and said he was about to leave the pharmacy. He asked me what he should buy for me and I told him to buy apples.

“I waited for him till around 9pm and his line was not reachable. The following day, I tried calling him again, but his line did not connect. He went there in a car; so I thought he was using it for commercial purposes and believed he would soon return home.

“I informed his mother and she called his elder brother to know his whereabouts. The brother said he did not see him. We called his friends; they said they didn’t see him. It was on Monday that we traced him to the pharmacy and found his corpse in the attic.

“He had injuries in the neck and armpit and blood was in his mouth. The owner of the pharmacy claimed that he was electrocuted; but he was not, he was attacked. He used an earpiece, but we did not find his mobile phone. His car was on the premises.”

The deceased’s mother, Samiat, urged the police to conduct proper investigation into the matter, saying she suspected foul play.

The elder brother, Ramon Lasisi, explained that Bayo claimed to have invited another electrician on Saturday to check the roof after workers at the pharmacy complained that they did not see him (Idris).

“He said the electrician did not see him. How did they find his corpse on Monday? If he was electrocuted, blood would not come out of his body. The electrician has also been arrested. My brother was probably attacked and the assailants tried to make it look as if it was an electrocution. His phone is also missing,” he added.

Bayo, who spoke briefly with Punch correspondent on the telephone from the station, absolved himself of any wrongdoing, saying the blood from the corpse could be due to decomposition.

He said, “I am at the station now. He had been working for us for about eight years. It was when I wanted to open the shop on Monday morning that I discovered his corpse and I informed the police immediately. He was electrocuted.”

However, Bayo’s representative, who did not want his name in print, later gave Punch Metro his account of what transpired at the pharmacy from Saturday to Monday.

He said, “On Friday, Bayo invited the man to fix an electrical fault at the store where the incident happened. He did not come. On Saturday, he came and went to the attic. Workers at the store did not see him come down. They looked around for him and called Bayo when they did not see him.

“Bayo told them to check him in the attic. The two workers are a woman and a fat man. They could not climb up. His car was outside and he had a flat tyre. So, they thought he was running around to fix the tyre.

“When they wanted to close, they called Bayo again, saying they had not seen the man and that the electrical fault had not been fixed. He told them to look for an electrician to go up and check if the man was there. The electrician went up, used a torch to look around, but said he did not see anybody. The store was closed afterwards.”

The representative explained that the shop opened the next day for operations and closed at the normal time without the workers noticing any strange occurrence.

He added, “By Monday when they wanted to open the shop, they noticed liquid dripping from the ceiling and strange odour. The owner reported at the Ogombo Police Station. In the course of decomposition, the body will swell and the skin will tear. The body fluid will come out. That was what happened.”

The Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, SP Chike Oti, said investigation had commenced into the incident, adding that an autopsy would be conducted on the deceased to ascertain the cause of death.
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Rapper Nelly's Rape Case Dropped Since Accuser Refuses To Testify In Court

A rape case against rapper Nelly has been dropped by prosecutors in Washington State.

The decision comes after Nelly's accuser refused to cooperate with the investigation claiming she wouldn't stand a chance taking on a celebrity in court.

The woman had called police in October following the alleged assault that she claimed took place on Nelly's tour bus.

But without her testimony, TMZ reports, the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office determined it was unable to charge the recording artist with a crime.

On October 13, a lawyer for the alleged rape victim announced that we 'do not live in a society where a 21-year-old college student can feel safe enough to pursue criminal charges against a celebrity for an alleged rape.'

Attorney Karen Koehler stated that the young woman 'wishes she had not called 911 because she believes the system is going to fail her.'

She added her client would refuse to testify in court.
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Timaya Bags Grammy Award Nomination, May Become First Nigerian-Based Act To Win (Details)

King of afro-dancehall, Timaya, may become the first Nigerian-based act to win Grammy award, haven bagged a Grammy Nomination for featuring on Morgan Heritage’s album “Avrakedabra”.

The first Nigerian, though not based in Nigeria, who won an award at the Grammy was Cynthia Erivo, a singer and actress born in London to Nigerian immigrants.

Cynthia had won a Grammy for Best Musical Theatre Album for the cast recording of the musical The Color Purple in 2016.

However, Timaya who featured alongside Ghanaian Afro-pop singer, Stonebwoy, Chubb Rock, Stylo G, Bunji Garlin, Dre Zion & Jaheil on Morgan Heritage’s “Avrekedabra” may become the first Nigerian-based act to win the award if the album wins the category at the 60thGrammy Awards which will air live from the Madison Square Gardens on January 28, 2018.

Morgan Heritage is a reggae band formed in 1994 by five children of reggae artiste, Denroy Morgan. The band comprises Peter “Peetah” Morgan, Una Morgan, Roy “Gramps” Morgan, Nakhamyah “Lukes” Morgan, and Memmalatel “Mr. Mojo” Morgan.

“Avrekedabra” was nominated for the Best Reggae Album award and will slug it out with “Chronology” by Chronixx, “Lost in Paradise” by Common Kings, “Wash House Ting” by J Boog and “Stony Hill” by Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley.

Wizkid and Kah-Lo also got to the nomination in 2016 but failed to win any award.

Vanguard
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FG Of Nigeria Finally Pays Ikoyi Whistleblower & He Didn't Run Mad As Predicted By Prof. Itse Sagay - Lawyer

The Federal Government says it has paid the whistle-blower that provided information which led to the recovery of N13bn from an Ikoyi apartment.

The money was recovered by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on 12 April, 2017.

It was gathered that the whistle-blower was paid N421m by the government, and his lawyer, Yakubu Galadima, confirmed the development on Wednesday.

Galadima lauded the government for paying the money and joked that his client did not run mad as insinuated in some quarters.

“My client confirmed to me that he had received a credit alert from the Federal Government. He travelled out of the country this morning (Wednesday morning),” the lawyer told Punch.

“He has been paid the first instalment but there were many tax deductions. Yes, we are happy. I will give you more details later but I can confirm now that he has received some money.

“As you can see, my client did not run mad as predicted by Prof. Itse Sagay.”
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NDA Cadets Drop Uniforms With Fulani Men And Then Disappear – Residents Reveal

The Nigerian Army has said it will investigate an allegation that some cadets of the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna State, sneak out of the camp and drop their uniforms with Fulani residents.

The army announced this on its Twitter handle on Wednesday while reacting to some aggrieved Nigerians who said such practice by the cadets had allegedly become common in the NDA.

One of the commentators, who gave her name only as Raliyah, said the danger of cadets dropping their uniforms with Fulani gatemen before sneaking out of the camp, could lead to hoodlums using the camouflage to perpetrate crimes.

Raliyah, who claimed to have seen the cadets on several occasions, said, ''I noticed the happenings in the NDA which could be a big threat in the nearest future if something is not done about it. Cadets, who are meant to go out only when it is official, tend to sneak out of the premises. But this is not a problem.

''The issue is that they sneak out in their military uniform. They then go to some Fulani gatemen around the academy to change into casual wear. They leave behind their uniform, boots and so on with these Fulani men for as long as three days.

''My concern is how the cadets leave their military wear behind. Sooner or later, the uniform may be used to commit atrocities in society if they have not even started doing so. The rate of robbery, kidnapping and killings by uniformed men is alarming. We want the appropriate authorities to do something immediately. ”

Another commentator, identified only as Musa, said, ''This is absolutely correct.

''There are ways for the cadets to go out for days without the academy authorities knowing. Though checks can be conducted, there are ways to cover up even on parade. When they are caught, they are punished and even dismissed, but it happens.

''My boss and his driver, while they were coming from the airport after his flight was postponed, escaped being attacked by some Fulanimen in army uniform. The army should investigate this.''

The army, in its reaction, said necessary actions were being taken on the issue.

The army said, ''Thanks for your concerns. Necessary actions are being taken as we speak. Issues of internal and national security are everyone’s interest. Once again, thank you for the intelligence.''

Punch
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Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Bukola Saraki Faces Fresh CCT Trial, Set To Appeal At Supreme Court

The Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal, on Tuesday, nullified the acquittal ruling of the Code of Conduct Tribunal handed down in favour of Senate President Bukola Saraki on false declaration of assets, in June this year.

Delivering a unanimous judgment in the appeal filed by the Federal Government against the Senate President’s acquittal, the three-man panel of the Court of Appeal, headed by Justice Tinuade Akomolafe-Wilson, dismissed 15 out of the 18 counts filed before the CCT.

The Court of Appeal held that the prosecution failed to lead sufficient evidence in support of the 15 grounds.

Meanwhile, Saraki has indicated his readiness to approach the Supreme Court to challenge the validity of the three counts upheld by the Court of Appeal against him.

A statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Sani Onogu, quoted Saraki’s counsel, Mr. Paul Usoro (SAN), as saying the judgment would be studied and that the apex court would be invited to adjudicate on the three charges with a view to getting them nullified.

But the court ruled that Saraki, a former Governor of Kwara State, had a case to answer with respect to three of the counts numbered 4, 5 and 6.

Justice Akomolafe-Wilson, who prepared and read the lead ruling, held that there was “ample” evidence, led by the prosecution, to warrant the Senate President to open his defence in respect of the three counts.

With the Tuesday’s judgment of the Court of Appeal, Saraki will now return to the CCT to open his defence in respect of the three counts.

“It is ordered that this case be remitted to the Code of Conduct Tribunal for the respondent (Saraki) to enter his defence,” the Court of Appeal ruled.

In Count 4,  which was sustained by the Court of Appeal, Saraki was accused of making false asset declaration at the end of his tenure as the governor of Kwara State in 2011 and on assumption of office as a Senator in 2011 in respect of a property at 17A McDonald, Ikoyi, Lagos.

The prosecution contended that the defendant falsely declared to have acquired the Ikoyi property on September 6, 2006, from the proceeds of sale of rice and sugar.

In Count 5, the prosecution accused Saraki of making false asset declaration at the end of his tenure as the governor of Kwara State in 2011 and on assumption of office as a Senator in 2011, when he declared that he acquired the property at 17B McDonald, Ikoyi Lagos, on September 6, 2006 from the proceeds of sale of rice and sugar.

In Count 6, the prosecution also accused Saraki of making a false declaration in his Asset Declaration Form at the end of tenure as governor of Kwara in 2007 and on assumption of office as governor in 2007 by failing to declare his outstanding loan liabilities of N315,054,355.92 out of the loan of N380,000,000 obtained from Guaranty Trust Bank Plc.

Delivering judgment on Tuesday, Justice Akomolafe-Wilson held that there was “direct evidence” from the testimony of first, second and fourth prosecution witnesses supporting the three counts.

The two-man panel of the CCT, headed by Danladi Umar, had, on June 14, 2017, upheld the no-case submission filed by Saraki after the prosecution, led by Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), closed its case with four witnesses and 48 documentary exhibits.

Upholding the no-case submission, the tribunal dismissed the amended 18 counts preferred against Saraki on the grounds that the prosecution was unable to establish any prima facie case against the Senate President.

Umar, in his lead ruling, exonerated Saraki, holding that failure of the prosecution to obtain Saraki’s statement and make it a part of the proof of evidence was fatal to the case.

He adjudged as “absurd” that neither Saraki’s statement nor the report of investigation, said to have been carried out, was produced before the tribunal.

He agreed with the defence team, led by Chief Kanu Agabi (SAN), that the prosecution’s evidence had been manifestly discredited during cross-examination by the defence.

But the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation, through Jacobs, on June 20, 2017, filed 17-grounds notice of appeal against the CCT’s judgment.

The Federal Government faulted all the grounds on which the CCT predicated Saraki’s acquittal, describing the entire judgment as unreasonable and unconstitutional.

Jacobs subsequently filed an appellant’s brief on July 28, 2017 formulating five issues for determination.

Justice Akomolafe-Wilson, in her judgment on Tuesday, resolved four out of the five issues formulated for determination against Saraki and only one against the appellant, the Federal Government.

The only issue resolved in favour of Saraki and against the appellant was that the appellant was wrong to have contended that the burden of proof in the case of false asset declaration was on the defendant and not the prosecution.

The court held that there was nothing in the constitution that placed the burden of proof on the defendant presumed to be innocent until proven guilty.

But the court agreed with Jacobs, affirming the legality of the joint investigation team comprising the operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the Department of State Services and the Code of Conduct Bureau, set up to investigate the case.

Restating the earlier decision of the Court of Appeal, Justice Akomolafe-Wilson said, “There is also nothing wrong or any law preventing the Code of Conduct Bureau, an agent of the Federal Government, from collaborating or acting in concert with any other organs of the Federal Government which are also engaged in investigation and prosecution of criminal matters in order to achieve its mandate under the Constitution and the law.”

The court held that the tribunal was wrong to have held that Saraki was not invited to make a statement in the course of investigating the allegations against him.

It said the Senate President actually made a statement in the course of investigation, which was tendered and admitted by the tribunal as Exhibit 46.

The court also faulted the tribunal for holding that the prosecution failed to prove its case by not tendering the original copies of Saraki’s assets declaration forms and his statement.

It said the Certified True Copies of the forms and statement were sufficient under the law to be admitted as exhibits in favour of the prosecution.

On whether the tribunal was right to have upheld Saraki’s no-case submission, the appellate court resolved the issue against Saraki.

The court also held that the allegation that Saraki was operating a foreign account as a public officer was not proved.

It held that the prosecution failed to prove that the American Express Service Europe Limited, with whom Saraki allegedly kept an account, was a bank.

It held that the prosecution also failed to tender the credit card which it claimed Saraki obtained from AMEX.

Also, the Kwara State chapter of the APC, on Tuesday, said Saraki would be vindicated at the end of the legal journey.

The party, in a statement, by its state Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Sulyman Buhari, stated that it welcomed the appellate court judgment.

Buhari said, “Though we do not agree with the section of the judgment which ordered the retrial of the Senate President on three of the counts at the CCT.

“However, the party is convinced the three charges, which the appellate court sustained, will not survive legal scrutiny at the Supreme Court. Soon, the charges will fall like a pack of cards at the Supreme Court.

“It bears repeating that our belief remains unshaken. We strongly believe the Senate President will emerge victorious at the end of the legal journey.”

Punch
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Estate Surveyor Boss Dies While Delivering Speech At ICPC

The Chairman, Estate Surveyors and Valuers Registration Board of Nigeria, Mr. Olayinka Sonaike, has died.

Among other responsibilities, ESVABORN is charged with registering persons who are fit and qualify to serve and practice as estate surveyors and valuers and also regulate the knowledge and the general practice of the profession.

Our correspondent learnt that Sonaike, who was appointed the chairman of the board in March 2017, died while delivering his speech at an event at the headquarters of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission in Abuja on Tuesday

The deceased was one of the resource persons invited by the ICPC to speak at a one-day colloquium of business management organisations.

It was learnt that the 74-year-old Sonaike was the first guest to arrive at the event which was supposed to have started at 9am but began an hour later.

After the acting Chairman of the ICPC, Mr. Bako Abdullahi; the Secretary, Dr. Musa Usman, the Head of Department, Education (ICPC), Mohammed Baba; and the President and Chairman of Council, Nigerian Institute of Management, Prof. Munzali Jibril, delivered their speeches, the first session ended after which most journalists had left the venue.

It was learnt that around 1pm, when Sonaike was to make his presentation, he picked up the microphone and was still flipping through the pages of his document when he slumped.

One of the participants who spoke to our correspondent said, “Around 1pm, Mr. Sonaike who was made the chairman of the session because he was the first to arrive at the venue, was about to make his presentation when he slumped.

“Of course, we all ran towards him and started pouring water on his face in a bid to revive him but he did not respond.

“The nurses at the ICPC sickbay were immediately alerted and they administered first aid but he was still not responding. He was conveyed unto a vehicle and rushed to the Limi Hospital which is located in the next compound.

“Less than an hour later, the ICPC acting chairman and other senior employees of the commission went to the hospital to see how he was doing but he was certified dead.”

It was learnt that some senior members of ESVARBON had gone to Sonaike’s home to inform his family of his demise.

Punch
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50Years Old Niger State Man, Bamaiyi Tanko, Arrested For Allegedly Hacking Wife To Death!!

The Niger State Police Command has arrested a 50-year-old man, Bamaiyi Tanko, for allegedly murdering his wife, Auta.

According to the police, Tanko, who hails from Maigoge Village in the Mariga Local Government Area of Niger State, allegedly hacked Auta, his wife of 10 years, to death following an altercation.

Tanko, according to the police, threw the cutlass he allegedly used to kill his wife into a nearby bush in his bid to cover up the crime.

In a chat with NorthernCityNews on Tuesday, Tanko said his late wife starved him of food for five days, adding that he attacked her in the heat of an argument.

“My wife was fond of not giving me food on time and when I complained, she would abuse me. She never gave me food each time I demanded it.

“She even asked my 10-year-old daughter to abuse me because I was asking for food,” Tanko said.

Regretting the incident that led to his wife’s death, however, Tanko said it was the work of the devil and advised men to always keep their anger in check.

The suspect pleaded for forgiveness.

“I am sorry, extremely sorry for what happened; it was the work of the devil and I pray my in-laws would find a place in their hearts to forgive me. I regret all my actions,” he said.

The acting Police Public Relations Officer in Niger, Peter Sunday, said Tanko had already been charged to court.
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Ex-Bayelsa State Commissioner For Trade & Investment, Ayakeme Masa, Murdered At Home!!

Unidentified gunmen have killed a former Commissioner for Trade and Investment in Bayelsa State, Mr. Ayakeme Masa.

It was gathered that Masa was killed in his house in Yenagoa, the state capital, on Sunday morning at about 6.30am in the presence of his wife.

It was learnt that a family member opened the door for the gunmen unknown to him that they were hoodlums on an evil mission.

A source, who spoke in confidence, said when they entered the living room, the assailants exchanged hot words with their victim and later shot him.

“They didn’t take anything from the house. A family member opened the door for them. When the victim came out and saw them in the living room, there was an argument and the hoodlums shot him. They took nothing. Immediately they killed him, they fled the house”, he said.

It was gathered that Masa was immediately rushed to the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Yenagoa, where he died on Monday evening.
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Tuesday, December 12, 2017

President Buhari Stabilised Nigeria's Economy, Stamped Out Graft, So Says, Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello

Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State has hailed President Muhammadu Buhari for stabilising the economy and stamping out graft.

Speaking in Lokoja through his Director General on Media and Publicity, Kingsley Fanwo, the governor said the 2019 Presidential election will clear the doubts of some “self-centred leaders who think Nigerians will choose corruption over transparency.”

According to Governor Bello, President Buhari has removed the economy from the “woods of corruption and corruption-driven recession,” saying the “fiscal responsibility of Buhari has cured the nation of the “irresponsible economic policies of the past.”

According to the governor, “President Muhammadu Buhari stands tall among transparent leaders around the world. He is an example of a leader who is incorruptible and impeccably transparent.

“Nigerians will clear the doubts of those who think four years is enough to forget the rot of the past. Nobody is underestimating the importance and strength of some politicians. They were all part of the movement that stopped the rot in 2015.

“However, Nigerians should not forget that the poster of the revolution against corruption and impunity was the cherubic Muhammadu Buhari. He is one man that is trusted by the masses of this nation. He was in Kano and the city reminded those who thought they can displace him in 2019 that there won’t be vacancy in Aso Rock that year.”

The governor said the success story in the agricultural sector of the state is a “clear indication of the power of change and an indomitable desire to rebound the economy of the nation,” assuring that his administration will continue to deliver democracy dividends to the people of the state.

Vanguard
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Enough Of The Blaming Game, Create Jobs - Saraki Tells FG

The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, has stated that it will be futile for the current administration led by President Muhammadu Buhari to blame past administrations for the spate of unemployment in the country.

He called on the Federal Government to do more in creating jobs for the teeming youths in the country.

Saraki also called for closer coordination between the agencies of the Federal Government in charge of youth development and job creation.

He stated that this would ensure that government’s policies and programmes on job creation were aligned across the board.

The Senate President said this at a one-day ‘Special Public Hearing on Youth Job Creation and Entrepreneurship’ held at the National Assembly Complex, Abuja, on Monday.

Representatives of Civil Society Organisations, Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the Federal Government were in attendance.

Saraki said, “It is futile to point fingers or cast blame on any one administration and/or government programme. Nigeria’s youths deserve our immediate interest, best thinking and above all, our best efforts to create workable solutions to include their concerns in our national investment framework.”

The Senate President noted that it was necessary for the executive, legislature, private sector and civil society organisations to give immediate attention to tackling youth unemployment and developmental crisis facing the country.

He also stated that the primary factors contributing to high youth unemployment were high population growth outpacing economic growth and “the fact that the curricula in our schools have not equipped students with appropriate skills for employment; and the lack of vibrant industries to absorb competent graduates.”

Saraki noted that the hearing was intended to discuss issues that would inform the Federal Government’s budgetary and social policy decisions.

Punch
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Ondo State Man, Seun Ayoade, Dies In SARS Custody, Family Demands Justice

Seun Ayoade
A family in Ondo State  has called on the state Commissioner of Police, Gbenga Adeyanju, and the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, to investigate the death of their son, Seun Ayoade, who died in the custody of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the Ondo State Police Command.

Seun and his brother Abayomi, together with some other suspects, were allegedly arrested and detained by the men of SARS on October 17, 2017, at the Oke Aro area of Akure, the state capital, for alleged robbery.

A family source told PunchMetro that the deceased had had an issue with a SARS operative, adding that Seun was arrested for a vendetta.

He said the policemen accused Seun and Abayomi of belonging to a gang of armed robbers.

He said, “They (SARS operatives) told us that they arrested some members of an armed robbery gang, who informed them that Seun was their leader, and that was why they arrested him and his brother.”

The source said the policemen did not inform the family that Seun was dead, until a human rights organisation was involved in the case.

He noted that after the death of the victim, the SARS operatives deposited his corpse in a mortuary without informing the family.

Speaking with journalists in Akure, the stepfather of the deceased, Mr. Femi Ajilo, said Seun and his brother did not belong to a robbery gang.

He said after the arrest, he (Ajilo) went to the SARS’ office in Akure to know why Seun and his brother were arrested, adding that instead of explaining to him, some of the policemen beat him up, accusing him of being the father of robbers.

“Seun and Abayomi were with me in Igbara Odo, a day before they were arrested. When I was informed that they were arrested, I quickly rushed down to the SARS office to know what happened. The policemen I met were not civil at all; they pounced on me and beat me up.

“They said I was the father of armed robbers and that I wanted to secure the release of armed robbers. It was one of them that rescued me. I saw only Abayomi, but I was not permitted to talk to him; I did not see Seun.

“Nobody told us anything about the whereabouts of Seun. It was when we engaged a human rights lawyer that we discovered that Seun was dead in their custody. Up till now, we have not been told the cause of his death,” he added.

Demanding justice, Ajilo appealed to the government and the police authorities to unravel those behind the killing.

The Public Relations Officer of the Ondo State Police Command, Mr. Femi Joseph, said the command had begun investigation into the matter.

“It is still an allegation, but we will investigate it. We want to assure the family that nothing would be covered up,” Joseph said.
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Family Drags Bianca, Others To Court Over Ojukwu Father's Property (Details)

An Awka High Court, presided over by Justice Dennis Mmaduechesi on Monday adjourned till March 12, 2018, for a pre-trial conference on a matter involving Bianca, the widow of the late Igbo leader, Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu and others, over the family property.

The case involved the sharing of the late Sir Louis Ojukwu’s property.

Sir Louis Ojukwu, who died in 1966, was the father of late Dim Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu, the defunct Biafra secessionists’ leader

Mr. Aloysius Ojukwu and his brother, Mr. Jude Ojukwu, had instituted the suit in 2014 against Dr. Joseph Ojukwu, Dr. Ike Ojukwu, Ambassador Bianca Ojukwu and Mr. Lotenna Ojukwu.

When the matter was called up on Monday, counsel for the plaintiff, Mr. Ikenna Egbuna, (SAN), represented by Mr. Chuka Anatogu, informed the court that he was just served with a motion which would  require sometime to reply.

Mr. Ebuka Ogwu and Mr. Christopher Ezeoka had put up an appearance for the defendants but parties agreed to an adjournment.

The plaintiff among other reliefs was seeking that they be entitled to 25 per cent of the share in the compound of their father (Sir Louis Ojukwu) at No. 73, Owerri Road, Umudim, Nnewi and a “declaration that the plaintiff are entitled to succeed to 25 per cent shares of their father’s company, Ojukwu Transport Company.”

They also sought an order of the court compelling the defendants to account to the plaintiffs the management of the late Sir Louis Ojukwu’s property over the years.

The plaintiffs further asked the court to grant an order of the Will of Sir Louis Ojukwu to be resealed.

Justice Dennis Mmaduechesi while adjourning the case till March 12, 2018, ordered that hearing notices be served on Dr. Joseph Ojukwu, Bianca and the Probate Registrar, High Court of Justice, Awka.

Punch
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Monday, December 11, 2017

R. Kelly's Atlanta Home Robbed by An Associate While The Singer Was Away On Tour (Pics)

R. Kelly's two mansions in Atlanta were robbed while he was on tour. The singer surveyed the damage for fans in a Friday Instagram video.

Kelly's associate, Alfonso Walker, allegedly sold all the singer's items. A warrant has been issued for Walker on two counts of burglary

R. Kelly's two mansions in Georgia were cleaned out by 'an associate' while the singer was away performing on tour.

The Ignition hitmaker, 50, surveyed the damage for fans on Instagram late Friday, revealing bare rooms and debris in a series of video clips and images.

In the singer's post he addressed the camera, saying: 'That's what happens when you get... you let people too close to you.'

Aftermath: R Kelly showed fans the damage in the wake of his two Georgia mansions being burglarized while the singer was away performing on tour.

R. Kelly, born Robert Sylvester Kelly, wore dark sunglasses, diamond earrings and a black Chicago bulls cap while narrating the scene to his some 1million Instagram followers.

'I'm at my house right now in Atlanta where they basically been cleaning out my whole house,' he began.

The Grammy winner held the camera above to reveal a near empty living room.

Kelly continued: 'I wanna thank all my fans for their support.

'That's what happens when you get... you let people too close to you. People you've known for 25, 30 years,' likely referring to associate Alfonso Walker who is said to have committed the crime.

Too close for comfort: In the singer's post he addressed the camera, saying: 'That's what happens when you get... you let people too close to you'.

Subdued: The Trapped In The Closet singe wore dark sunglasses, diamond earrings and a black Chicago bulls cap while narrating the scene to his some 1million Instagram followers.

Bare: 'I'm at my house right now in Atlanta where they basically been cleaning out my whole house,' he began.


The bright side: Kelly kept positive, however, saying: 'It's all love though. Keep my head up. Keep working on this album'

R Kelly was robbed, shows his followers the emptied out home.

'This is what happens,' Kelly continued, then showing a completely trashed laundry room.

'Where I wash my clothes... Washing machines, everything.'

Alfonso Walker faces charges of burglary, theft by taking and theft by deception.

Kelly kept positive, however, saying: 'It's all love though. Keep my head up. Keep working on this album.

'You can't do nothing about something you can't do nothing about.

He gave his thanks to the police department for being quick and 'helping get some of [his] stuff back and thanked his fans for 'keeping him positive through the whole [situation.]'

The rest of his post contained several other shots of cleared out rooms.

The Chicago native captioned the series of videos: '...Still encouraged. Still blessed.'

Johns Creek police were summoned to the Grammy award-winning singer’s home on Old Homestead Trail on November 26, reported WSB-TV.

An associate, who has been identified as Alfonso Walker, allegedly sold all the singer's items.

R. Kelly's (pictured here) two mansions in Georgia were cleaned out while the singer was away performing on tour.

The maid arrived at the record producer's house to clean it when she saw the entirety of the property had been emptied.

The incident occurred while the singer was on tour in New Orleans.

A neighbor allegedly witnessed several men loading furniture and other house belongings into vans and trucks.

The front door was unlocked and there was a broken window pane on the back porch, officers reported.

Apparently Kelly's personal items, electronics and the majority of the furniture inside the houses were gone.

R Kelly denies he is keeping young women in 'sex cult'.

Johns Creek police were summoned to the Grammy award-winning singer’s home on Old Homestead Trail (here) on November 26.

Additionally, members of Kelly's organization told police about another home of Kelly's on Saint Devon Crossing. That premise had also been burglarized.

Authorities are investigating the missing belongings and have issued a warrant for Walker on two counts of burglary, two counts of theft by taking and at least two counts of theft by deception.

One of the properties was allegedly used by the singer for his 'sex cult.'

The notorious star was accused of keeping a number of women in his Atlanta home as members of a sex-obsessed, abusive cult this summer.

A representative for Kelly spoke out about the claims, saying the singer 'unequivocally denies' them and said he will 'work diligently and forcibly to pursue his accusers and to clear his name'.

Apparently Kelly's personal items, electronics and the majority of the furniture inside the house on Old Homestead Trail were gone.

Kelly has an estimated net worth of $150 million, according to The Richest.

Despite his wealth, the singer has endured his fair share of scandals and legal troubles over the years.

In 2013, the R&B artist suffered a massive hit to his finances when his 20,000 square foot dream home was auctioned for less than a million dollars, according to Forbes.

Additionally, in 2016 Kelly was accused of owing the government $2.3m in unpaid taxes, BSO reported.

During the years 2005-2011 his total debt added up to $6,227,767 for unpaid Federal Taxes.

DailyMail
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Libyan Traffickers Used Migrants To Test Weapons –Returnee Opens Up

More victims of forced slavery, who were recently repatriated to Nigeria from Libya, have narrated their ordeal in the hands of human traffickers in the north African country.

One of them, who gave his name as Lucky Akoluche, said the traffickers used migrants, including Nigerians, to test the efficacy of their firearms.

Akoluche, a 28-year-old man from Ikah North-East Local Government Area of Delta State, told SouthernCityNews that the armed traffickers did not value the lives of their victims.

“The Libyans killed people the way they liked. When they bought new guns, they used human beings to test the guns. They call us black monkeys,” the returnee stated.

Akoluche, who claimed to be a student of the Delta State Polytechnic, Ozoro, said he made up his mind to drop out of school in search of better means of livelihood in Europe when he could no longer afford his school fees.

He also said he was repatriated with an injury in his right hand, which he sustained during a fight with a Gambian migrant.

“I left Nigeria for Europe on April 25, 2016. I wanted to go to Germany, but I had to go through Libya. I left Nigeria because of the suffering that my family and I were facing.

“I was in the second semester of my first year in Ozoro Polytechnic. But I could not continue because of lack of money to pay my fees,” he explained.

Akoluche added, “So, my sister assisted me with some money, which I used to travel. My friends also advised me to go. I spent about N2m.

“I regret abandoning my studies for a trip abroad. Libya is not good; I did not know that it was like that. I should have searched for something to do here in Nigeria.”

Akoluche advised those nursing the idea of travelling from Nigeria to Europe by land to have a rethink.

“It is better to stay in Nigeria because many people are dying in Libya. There was no water and food for days.

“People die at sea. About 10 persons died in my presence due to lack of water and food for up to a month. Some decomposing bodies were seen in the desert as we were travelling.

“I thank the government for bringing me back. But I appeal to the government to help me with my treatment. I am also willing to work,” the returnee added.

Meanwhile, a new batch of returnees is expected to be received by the Edo State Government on Wednesday.

The Secretary of the state Task force on Anti-human Trafficking, Mrs. Oyemwense Abieyuwa, who disclosed this shortly after the arrival of 98 male returnees in Benin, said the state government would do its best to rehabilitate the returnees.

“Immediately we received them, we interviewed them. So, we have all their details; we are going to do a follow-up.

“Some of them went home. But that does not mean that we have lost touch. We get in touch with them at every point,” Abieyuwa added.
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Lagos Woman Who Was Allegedly Killed By Her Banker Husband, Olaoluwa Adejo, Buried Amidst Tears

Tears flowed on Saturday on Alhaji Ganiu Street, Bako Estate, in the Ketu area of Lagos State, as 28-year-old Maureen Adejo, who was allegedly beaten to death by her husband, Olaoluwa Adejo, was buried.

Present at the burial were friends and family members of the deceased.

Tari Taribo's Blog had reported that 32-year-old Olaoluwa and the deceased, who hailed from Imo State, had been married for about five years.

The marriage, which was blessed with three children, was said to have been marred with disgreements as the bank worker later allegedly threatened to kill his wife.

She was said to have packed to her mother’s house, but returned for a party at her children’s school.

While Olaoluwa claimed that she took local insecticide, Sniper, their five-year-old son, Richard, said his father tortured his mother and forced the insecticide down her throat.

The case was subsequently transferred from the Oworonshoki Police Station to the Homicide Section of the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Yaba.

The detectives removed the corpse from the Gbagada General Hospital morgue where it was initially deposited by Olaoluwa, and took it to the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja, for autopsy.

The result of the autopsy was said to have been released to the police just as the Lagos State indigene was arraigned and remanded last Wednesday.

The hearse bearing the remains of the deceased reportedly left LASUTH around 11am on Saturday.

It was learnt that it arrived at the Apostolic Christian Church Mission, Ketu, where it was received by scores of residents and sympathisers.

At 12pm, the service of songs was said to have commenced, as people paid tributes to the late Maureen.

The body was thereafter taken to the compound of her mother, Mrs. Kate Jonathan, where she was reportedly buried after a dust-to-dust rite.

Punch correspondent was told that the couple’s first child, Richard, prayed on the body and waved her mother farewell.

It was learnt that the Lagos State Ministry of Justice had placed the three children in the custody of their maternal grandmother.

Jonathan confirmed the development to our correspondent on Sunday, lamenting the death of her daughter.
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Founder Of Girl Rights NGO, Adaobi Onyejike-Ananaba, Arrested For Allegedly Enslaving A 10-Year-Old Girl (Pics)

The Lagos State Police Command has arrested a girl rights activist, Mrs. Adaobi Onyejike-Ananaba, the founder of the Girl Child Art Foundation (GCAF), an NGO that claims to provide more than 17,000 girls with life skill programme opportunities, for allegedly abusing an 11-year-old girl, Ekpere Ezewane.

It was learnt that Onyejike-Ananaba, who was related to the victim, took her from her mother about four years ago after the death of her father.

The suspect allegedly promised to send Ezewane to school.

It was learnt that although the victim was registered in a school, her attendance was not regular due to alleged abuse by the suspect.

Onyejike-Ananaba was alleged to have always insisted that she finish her house chores and anytime she delayed, she was prevented from going to school.

She was allegedly stopped from going to school by the suspect.
The abuse was said to have caught the attention of a resident, who alerted officials of the Lagos State Office of the Public Defender.

A social worker, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the girl was rescued from the house on Omole Estate Phase 1, Ikeja, and taken to a government shelter.

She explained that the police from the Ojodu division arrested Onyejike-Ananaba.

She said, “We got a tip-off on Tuesday from an anonymous person about the condition of the girl, who was said to be undergoing psychological abuse and was deprived of her rights to education.

“We couldn’t gain access to the house when we went for the rescue because the gate was locked. But as we  waited, we sighted the girl approaching. The woman had sent her to a bank across the road for a transaction. That was how she was rescued.

“There were several marks of flogging on the girl’s body. She said she had been living with the woman since she was seven years old and that Onyejike-Ananaba took her from her mother after the funeral of her father. She said the woman promised to send her to school. She said when she got to Lagos, the woman started flogging her everyday, and if she did not finish her chores, she would not be allowed to go to school. So, sometimes, she did not go to school for weeks. At a point, she completely stopped going to school.”
The social worker said the agency was indignant because the suspect, who owned a non-governmental organisation, Girl Child Art Foundation, which catered to the welfare of young girls, “ought to know better.”

Our correspondent learnt that the suspect was to be arraigned the day after her arrest, when she allegedly collapsed and was granted bail by the police.

She was alleged to have reached out to the OPD, pleading for forgiveness and saying she overreacted because she took Ezewane as a daughter.

“I was wrong to have flogged her so much. I am sorry. Please forgive me and end this case. I was frustrated because I love her, but all she did was to give me hell,” she said in a message to a social worker.

The Police Public Relations Officer, SP Chike Oti, confirmed the incident, adding that investigation was ongoing.

He said, “A woman was arrested for child abuse and molestation. When she was brought to the station, the Divisional Police Officer interviewed her. When the DPO saw that she was looking frail and sickly, he decided to exercise his discretion by granting her administrative bail. The intention of the DPO initially was to detain and charge her the next day to court.

“The DPO wants her to be alive to answer to her charges. It is the living that can answer to charges; it is better for her to get proper treatment. Bail is not acquittal. The DPO has not scuttled the matter as investigation is ongoing. Her bail is still subsisting and at the appropriate time, she would be charged to court.”

Oti told our correspondent on Thursday that the suspect was admitted to an undisclosed hospital in the Agidingbi area, adding that the police know the location.

The Director of the OPD, Mrs. Olubukola Salami, said the agency was disappointed at the alleged action of the suspect.

She said, “It is most disheartening that people, who profess to be versed and skilled in child protection and safety, are the same people violating the rights of children. The Lagos State Government enjoins stakeholders to join hands in the fight against child abuse with a bid to curb its continuous vicious cycle and put an end to abuse meted out to these innocent children, who should be protected by all. OPD categorically calls the attention of all stakeholders to this recent case to say that no one is above the law. The law will take its course in this matter.”

When our correspondent contacted Onyejike-Ananaba on Thursday, she said she could not react because she was in a hospital, and asked that the story be held till Friday, when she would talk.

PunchMetro gave her time off on Friday and called on Saturday.

She queried our correspondent’s interest in the story, saying she would call him when she was ready for a press conference.

She said, “Let me save your number. When we are ready for a press conference, we will call you.”
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