Tuesday 14 May 2013

How we did it, Kabiru Sokoto tells court

How we did it, Kabiru Sokoto tells court
•The Algerian connection
…Says: ‘I never met with presidential committee’
From GODWIN TSA, Abuja
Kabiru Sokoto, who is standing trial for the 2011 Christmas Day bombing of St. Theresa’s Catholic Church, Madalla, Niger State, yesterday opened up in court, explaining how they carried out the attack. Sokoto was arraigned for terrorism at the Federal High Court, Maitama in Abuja.
The Boko Haram leader and mastermind of the church’s bombing, who since his arraignment, had denied involvement or knowledge of the deadly attack, suddenly opened up yesterday on how they plotted and killed over 40 worshippers on December 25, 2011 at about 8.00am. Sokoto dismissed claims that the attack on the church was carried out by a suicide bomber.
Another bombshell by Sokoto is the financial link Boko Haram had with Algeria and how a group which is the sect’s financial backbone had been instrumental to their means of fund raising to carry out deadly attacks. The sharing of funds by the members of the Islamist sect, he said, led to the major crack in Boko Haram.
On the church bombing, Sokoto told the court that the incident was a coordinated attack that was executed by two persons- Bashir Mohammed and Mukthar Kafanchan under the supervision of Sulieman Habib, who is the commander of Boko Haram in Niger State.
Giving further insight into how the attack was carried out, he said: “It was not a suicide bomber as many believed. It was a coordinated attack. The car that was used for the operation was parked near the church, laden with explosives and later detonated by the people assigned for the job,” he told the court.
On the Algerian sponsors, he said an Algerian group, Muslimiyama, which means ‘the group from the sunset,’ frequently sent money to them. He noted that it was the sharing of N40million sent by the group that split the sect into two factions.
“There is a group in Algeria, Muslimiyama, meaning ‘the group from the sunset’, which normally sends money to us. And it was because of the sharing of N40million they sent to us that our sect split into two.
I was given N500,000 out of the money which I used to buy Koran and other books.” However, contrary to reports, Sokoto said the Presidential Committee on Dialogue and Peaceful Resolution of Security Challenges had never met with him.
It was widely reported last week that members of the committee met with Boko Haram leaders including Kabiru Sokoto at the Kuje Prison. However, dismissing the reports as false, the sect leader wondered how such a meeting could have been possible when he was still standing trial as at the time the meeting reportedly took place.
He made the denial yesterday through his lawyer; Sherriff Okoh, shortly after the court further adjourned proceedings in his case to May 16 to 17 and 20.
But it was Justice Adeniyi Ademola who first raised the issue of the meeting when he inquired from Sokoto’s lawyer about the location from where he was brought to court. The dialogue between judge and lawyer went thus: Justice Ademola: “Where is the accused person coming from? Sokoto’s lawyer: My Lord, he is coming from the custody of the Department of State Security (DSS).
Justice Ademola: “I read in the newspapers that some people met with the accused person in Kuje Prison and was wondering because on that day, the accused was here in court from 9am to 6pm and at the end of the session, I ordered that he should be remanded in DSS custody and not Kuje Prison, the pressmen were in court too.”
It was reported that the Chairman of the committee and Minister for Special Duties, Mr. Kabiru Tanimu Turaki, who led the 25 members of the committee to the meeting at Kuje, told reporters that the parley was a confidence building measure between the committee and the sect. According to reports, the meeting, which was held in camera, had been preceded by the committee’s parley with different security agencies, including the DSS, Nigeria Police Force as well as the Office of the National Security Adviser.
The report further quoted the committee chairman thus, “we have had cause in the past to speak to members of Jamatul Alhus Sunnah and in doing so, we told them that members of this committee are people of proven integrity, accomplished Nigerians that have been carefully selected by Mr. President to come and do this national assignment.

Slain policemen: Widows demand husbands’ entitlements •Say N1m not our problem •Vow to continue blocking federal highways

“THEY killed our husbands yoyoyo, and then say na work ooo, yoyoyo!!! One million naira is not our problem! Allah yayisa (meaning God will punish them!) What we are saying is that the government should give employment to widows and the children.”
These were the words that rented the air at the Nasarawa State Police Headquarters, on Monday, when the widows of the slain police officers killed by the outlawed Ombatse militia boys at Alakyo village in Lafia East Development Area of the state last week Tuesday, visited the command to receive the donation of N1 million each from the state government.
The event, which almost turned awry when the widows started casting aspersion on the state government and police authorities for playing politics with the death of their spouses, witnessed another protest during which the widows vowed to continue blocking the federal highway in Akwanga even after five days until the entitlements of their spouses were fully paid.
In their separate reactions, Mrs Mary Levis and Fatima Monday, lamented that Nasarawa had not been battling with the Boko Haram insurgency, wondering why a large number of the officers would be deployed to that environment.
It took the intervention of Police Force Welfare Officer, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP), Mrs Abiodun Ige, to calm the women down by appealing to them to put their trust in God, “as He is the only one who could console them.” She assured them that necessary action had already been taken at the Force Headquarters to see to their welfare and the entitlements of their late husbands.

2015: Presidency disowns Asari-Dokubo

2015: Presidency disowns Asari-DokuboThe Presidency on Monday defended one of its own, Kingsley Kuku, over a recent statement credited to him to the effect that the re-election of President Goodluck Jonathan in 2015 will be the only condition for sustained peace in the oil-rich Niger Delta.
But Abuja in the same breath disowned founder of the outlawed Niger Delta Peoples Volunteer Force (NDPVF), Mujaheed Asari-Dokubo, over similar statement, saying his drum beats on the 2015 elections “should be ignored by Nigerians who are conversant with his antecedents.”
At separate fora, the duo were reported to have threatened that Nigeria would not know peace if the President was not re-elected come 2015.
Kuku, the Presidential Adviser on Niger Delta and chairman of the Presidential Amnesty Office, was reported to have made the statement in the United States last week while addressing State Department officials.
Although he has denied making such a statement linking peace in the Niger Delta region to the second coming of Jonathan, Asari-Dokubo has remained unremorseful, daring the nation’s security agencies to come after him.
“I stand by my statement. There will be no peace, not only in the Niger Delta, but everywhere, if Goodluck Jonathan is not President by 2015,” he had responded following hostile reactions to his earlier threats.
However, Political Adviser to the President, Ali Ahmed Gulak, told Daily Independent on Monday that the controversies generated by the statements were “unwarranted and politicised in many respects; hence, there is the need to put the records straight and let Nigerians know that the Presidency does not promote violence.”

Boko Haram Leader Reiterates Conditions for Peace

Boko Haram and Amnesty Committee

•               Claims responsibility for Baga, Bama attacks
•               Shows video clips of kidnapped women, children
By Mohammed Aminu in Sokoto with agency report
One of the leaders of the Boko Haram sect, Aliyu Tashaku, monday  ruled out going into talks with the federal government unless it met its condition for peace.
Speaking during an interview on the Hausa service of Radio France International (RFI), monitored in Sokoto, Tashaku said the federal government would need to convince the sect of its sincerity of purpose by releasing  Boko Haram members in detention and ordering security agents to stop further arrests.
The conditions given by Tashaku, which were reaffirmation of earlier ones that the sect had given to embrace dialogue, came against the backdrop of the release of video clips by the insurgents, showing  women and children the Boko Haram had kidnapped in retaliation for the arrest of its members' wives and children.
Boko Haram also claimed responsibility for the attacks in Baga and Bama, in which scores of people were killed.

State of emergency: Northern leaders in crucial meeting

Alarmed by the grim prospects of the declaration of a state of emergency by the Presidency in five of their states, Northern elders are converging on Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, with a view to taking far-reaching decisions to halt such a move, which they see as punitive.
Meanwhile as the northern leaders were putting heads together to come up with a decision, the 36 state governors under the aegis, Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF, yesterday, urged President Goodluck Jonathan to ignore those agitating for state of emergency in some troubled states.
There were reports that the Presidency was contemplating the declaration of a state of emergency in five states of Borno, Yobe, Nasarawa, Benue and Plateau states following escalating violence.
But the Presidency said on Saturday that it had not yet taken a firm decision on what to do in those states with rising violence.
The Special Adviser to President Jonathan on Media and Publicity, Dr Reuben Abati said: “The Federal Government is studying the situation in the affected states and will take a decision that would be in the overall interest of the security of not just the people of the states affected but the whole country.”
But Vanguard learnt that the northern elders were worried that the Presidency had concluded plans to slam emergency rule on those states and jettison the peace move already initiated by them.
A source said the imposition of emergency rule in the affected states by the Presidency was a foregone conclusion, which would take the north unawares.
Although it was unclear as at press time what the elders would do to stop the move, Vanguard learnt that the meeting would discuss strategies for boosting the position of the north to take back the Presidency in 2015.
A picture taken from a video distributed to journalists in recent days through intermediaries and obtained by AFP on March 5, 2013 reportedly shows Abubakar Shekau (C), the suspected leader of Nigerian Islamist extremist group Boko Haram, flanked by six armed and hooded fighters in an undisclosed place.
Discourse to focus on amnesty for Boko Haram, Northern Presidency in 2015

State of emergency: Govs appeal to Jonathan

ADO-EKITI— Progressive Governors’ Forum has cautioned President Goodluck Jonathan against declaring state of emergency in some states in the northern part of the country, saying such move would further worsen the security problem in the country.
According to a statement signed on behalf of the governors by Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State in Ado-Ekiti, yesterday, any attempt to force emergency rule on these states would be considered as looking for an opportunity to remove the governors at all cost.
The  statement said: “We believe the presence of the Joint Task Force, JTF, in the affected areas is capable of restoring peace if properly coordinated.
“Thus any attempt to declare a state of emergency would be seen as a mere excuse to remove the governors by every means.”
The governors urged the President to be consistent and adhere strictly with the combination of dialogue and mediation which it has already set in motion
They said: “The Progressive Governors’ Forum implores Mr. President to be consistent with the combination of dialogue and mediation, which he has already set in motion, and stay action on the planned declaration of state of emergency in the affected states, which we believe would be counter-productive.
“The forum further advised the President to consult widely with religious leaders and leading traditional rulers across the country with a view to solving the problem.
“It is also suggested that the Presidency, in addition to the committee, consults extensively with the leadership of the Christian and Muslim communities.”

Bandits kill pregnant woman over church offering

PORT HARCOURT — PREGNANT Florence Onu, 28, was shot dead, Sunday night, in Port Harcourt by armed men who attacked her along Ada George Road, Rumueme.
Younger sister to the victim, Ebere Amadi, who witnessed the incident said her sister had a scuffle with the robbers over her handbag containing N50,000 offerings collected during her church’s evening service that day.
She said: “We were returning from church service around 8 p.m when we saw a red Audi coming close to us. Next thing, one of them grabbed my sister’s bag. There was dragging as my sister held to the bag. One of them at the back of the vehicle shot my sister as they made away with the bag. She was already dead before we got to a nearby hospital.
“The N50,000 in her bag was the offering from the evening service. The pastor asked her to take it home because her husband who is responsible for keeping the church’s money was not in the service that day.”
Alex Chidah, a youth leader in the area while reacting to the incident said: “Ada-George Road has become volatile lately. The police need to take note. There is a particular gang parading the area only at night and they have been molesting and killing innocent residents.”

10 years after, missing woman’s corpse found in son’s wardrobe

Chimezie OsigwehThe Imo state Police Command’s Ambush Squad has arrested a 64-year-old retired school principal who is strongly believed to be a member of the Gurumaharaji sect, Chief Dr. Chimezie Osigweh.
The arrest took place in a village called Ezuru Umuagwu, Ejemekwuru in Oguta local government area where the corpse of her mother, a 78-year-old Mrs. Lucy Osigweh, who had been declared missing in 2003, was found in a large cupboard inside a shrine of a private room.
The state Commissioner of Police, Musa Mohammed Katsina, disclosed this to newsmen yesterday in a press briefing.
He said the embalmed body which was kept in that condition for about 10 years was believed to have been placed in the wardrobe by her son, Chimezie.
Katsina said useful statements made by the suspect revealed that the deceased must have been murdered by the son for ritual purposes where members of the sect used to hold nocturnal meetings to enhance their occultic powers.

"Nollywood has abandoned me" - says ailing actor Peter Bunor

The ailing actor who has been suffering from stroke for a while now told Vanguard in tears that he has been abandoned by his colleagues in Nollywood. Bruno, who has relocated to Asaba, said:

"Since this thing happened there has been no single actor that called me to ask about my condition. It is a shame on their part. Would they say they don’t know that I am sick?’
‘I had a stroke and that was the end of it. I was unconscious, and if you are unconscious you are dead. It was when I opened my eyes that I realized that I was in a church here in Delta State. I didn’t even know when they brought me down to this place. All I could remember is that I was on admission for a long time before they took me to a church where God healed me.’

Top Nollywood Actress Caught Trying To Lace Her Lover's Food With Juju

A recent story published by YES! Magazine allegedly reported that a Nollywood actress (name witheld) was caught trying to lace her lover's food with Juju.photo
Read below;
She Cries......‘It’s not to kill him, but for him to marry me’

Another major scandal has just blown open in Nollywood. Even though two of the drama personae are running up and down, fighting hard to kill it.

Fresh Killings: Jonathan Unhappy With Service Chiefs

Indications emerged that President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday gave his service chiefs the knocks over fresh killings, especially of security personnel in Borno, Nasarawa, Yobe and other states and directed them to tighten their belts and save the Federal Government from avoidable embarrassment.
It was learnt that the president directed the security chiefs present at an emergency meeting he held with them yesterday to devise result-oriented measures that would restore law and order to the country, especially the north-east and north-central where the killing of security agents and other innocent Nigerians has been on the rise.
Information Nigeria reports that following news of the Ombatse killing of scores of security agents in Nasarawa State, Jonathan made a quick return to the country suspending his trip to Namibia from South Africa.
According to a source privy to discussions at the high level security meeting, the President made it clear in no uncertain terms that he was disappointed with the service chiefs over the endless killing in the country and sought an explanation.
“President Jonathan was not happy at all. He spoke for a very long time, asking some critical questions. He told the security chiefs he would not tolerate a situation where policemen and soldiers were being killed like chickens, and ordered the security chiefs to sit up and put an end to the bloodletting,” the source said.
The source adds that the security chiefs cited some unguarded utterances made by some politicians and other eminent personalities in the north as reason and even cited the Baga massacre as a case point.
“They (security chiefs) told the president they were doing their best but the president replied, ‘I am not satisfied with your best. You must bring an end to this shameful act once and for all’.”

My Oga at the Top’ is Back: Shem resumes as NSCDC boss, Oyo State

The former Lagos State Commandant of Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps, NSCDC, Mr. Shem Obafaye, who postulated the ”My Oga at the top” mantra has finally resumed duty as Oyo State Commandant of the security agency.

Obafaye was replaced by Mr. Adesuyi Clement from Oyo State Command after his interview on Channels Television live programme ‘Sunrise’ about two months ago. Since then, no specific assignment was given to him until last week when he was asked to replace Adesuyi officially.

In a telephone conversation with  a source, Obafaye promised to discharge his duties with every sense of responsibility. ”I am determined to serve in Oyo State and I know God will help me,” he said.

Obafaye’s redeployment may not be unconnected with the interview he granted to Channels Television.

His ordeal started when he was asked during the interview the NSCDC website and he said:

“Hmmm, the website is, excuse me, my Oga at the top knows the website”. He again, cleared his throat and said: “My Oga at the top is working on the website and I don’t have them”.

Man Completes Handwritten Bible After Seven Years

In front of a small crowd at a church in New York, a man named Phillip Patterson completed his handwritten King James Bible after working on it for seven years.
An event was held Saturday at St. Peter’s Presbyterian Church in Spencertown to mark the completion of Patterson’s Bible, the Register-Star, Hudson, N.Y., reported.
Patterson, who said he was encouraged to hand-write the Bible by his late partner, Mohammed, a Muslim, wrote the final words in front of the gathering.
Patterson said he did learn some things from the process: “You have to think for yourself.”
Despite suffering from the effects of AIDS, Patterson said he never doubted he would complete the Bible.
“It’s almost as something in the universe spoke to me in its own language,” he said, adding that he was “in the zone” while writing the book.
Now that the Bible is finished, Patterson says he plans to continue his life in the community.
“I will still be loving my community, my family. That won’t stop,” he said.

Nollywood Actress Camilla Mberekpe Explained Her Meeting With T.B Joshua

An associate of the actress explained the situation on her behalf. On Sunday April 28th, the actress appeared on T.B Joshua's televised deliverance programme on Emmanuel TV, but contrary to earlier reports that she confessed to being a witch, her associate says she never did. She went for deliverance because she felt that an evil force was making life difficult for her. Her associate explains: "Camilla never confessed to being a witch. There was an evil spirit that possessed her and it was the evil spirit that spoke through her. That does not make her a witch. You all should go spiritual and see all the things that go on around you. She took herself to church. Witches don't take themselves to church for deliverance. Witches don't operate that way. The evil spirit said, not Camilla said, so please let's understand this before we start calling her a witch. Camilla returned to the church (bottom photo on the right) the following week to say she has been delivered 'from every bondage of Satan in her life' and her visit to the church had totally tranformed her life. Good for her

Thursday 9 May 2013

Ombatse Traditionalists: Police Killed Our Nine Members Before We Killed 95 Of Them

A man who admits to be an Ombatse traditional religionist in Nassarawa State has told SaharaReporters their group killed 95 policemen today, nearly four times the 23 the police have admitted.
Earlier, Abayomi Akeremale, the State Police Commissioner, said, "The Ombatse gunmen opened fire on our men, killing 23 and burning them," Nassarawa state police chief said, adding that 17 officers remain missing.
Akeremale said the security forces decided to arrest some Ombatse leaders after they receive reports they were embarking on forced conversions in the village of Elakyo, near Lafia, the Nassarawa capital.
Speaking through an interpreter on the phone, the traditional religionist denied shooting at the policemen, saying his groupresponded only with machetes and knives, not bullets, and only after the police had killed nine of their members.
Denying that they have been committing force conversions in mosques and churches, he said the policemen arrived in 12 patrol trucks and opened fire on his group.
“We were in our place performing our rites, when our members alerted us that police may come for our father and leader,” he said.  “Suddenly that day, the armed police came with guns and we say what happened? They did not answer us but started spraying teargas on us and killed nine of our members. In return for self defence we killed 95 of them, we have no guns it was machetes that we used in defending ourselves and eventually killed them. There is nothing like gun attacks.”
On attacking mosques and churches, the sect member, first pointing out he has not been instructed to speak, denied the reports.
“We don’t do that,” he told our reporter.  “Our group is serious about morality, we are against liquor and don’t harbour it, no sleeping with men and no stealing. We are on our own seeking protection for our own people, and the police just entered us.”

UTME: Reps summon JAMB registrar over mass failure

The House of Representatives has summoned the Registrar of the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Professor Dibu Ojerinde, over the  mass failure of candidates in the last Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME).
An informed source told the Nigerian Tribune in Abuja, on Thursday, that Professor Ojerinde was expected to appear before the House Committee on Education today, to explain the rationale behind the mass failure and the way forward.
There have been protests from candidates, parents and guardians across the states of the nation since the results were made public.
Chairman, House Committee on Education, Honourable Aminu Suleiman, who confirmed the development  in Abuja, explained that the summon became imperative because of the various complaints from the members of the public on the outcome of the examinations.
According to him, “we heard that JAMB authorities had formally explained some reasons for the mass failure, this is not enough if the content of the complaints of Nigerians is anything to go by.”
Honourable Suleiman said “it can be recalled that the House passed a resolution asking JAMB not to use computer for the 2013 examinations and they said the board said it would make it optional; but there were still complaints by Nigerians that some students filled the manual or paper option only to find themselves being asked to write the exams using computers.”
He alleged that the mass failure might not be unconnected with the introduction of computers for the examinations, bearing in mind that most so-called “Jambites” and especially those in government secondary schools were not exposed to computer before the examinations.

EFCC grills, releases Sylva on bail

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Thursday evening, released the detained former Bayelsa State governor, Timpre Sylva, on administrative bail, after being grilled for several hours.
He was detained for a night.
Spokesperson of the commission, Wilson Uwujaren, confirmed the development to the Nigerian Tribune.
The conditional bail is likely to require the former governor to drop his travel document with the commission.
He was arrested in his Abuja home on Wednesday, in connection with alleged money laundering and misappropriation of public funds while in office.
The commission alleged that he tried to evade arrest by hiding in his home before being eventually fished out by the operatives.
He had been earlier charged to court by the commission over alleged corruption while in office.
The fresh arrest was said to be in connection with a new discovery of alleged involvement in using diverted public funds to purchase mansions in Abuja.
Uwujaren did not say when he was expected to return for further interrogation.

Amnesty deal for Boko Haram members won’t work —CAN President

PRESIDENT of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has said the Federal Government should not waste time pampering the Boko Haram sect members, because the amnesty deal would not work.
He stated this in Abuja, on Thursday, when he was given an award by the Christian Elders Forum of Northern States (NOSCEF).
Oritsejafor said that the arrogant and deriding manner with which Boko Haram had dismissed the amnesty deal, coupled with statements from the sect’s spokesman, Abu Qaqa, had both reinforced CAN’s stance that the only interest of the sect was to eliminate Christians and enforce an Islamic state in Nigeria.
He called on President Goodluck Jonathan not to waste tax payers’ money on a futile exercise.
The cleric tasked the president to be wary of some Muslim leaders in the North and their few Christian allies, who always come to Abuja in droves to seek regional concessions with religious biases.
“The president should be wary of those who kept mum when Odi and Odioma in Bayelsa State and Zaki Biam in Benue State were destroyed by soldiers, but now want heavens to fall when Baga village came under military attack,” he said.
He also tasked the president Jonathan to be wary of those who kept mum when General Muhammadu Buhari and other Muslim leaders in the North said the country would be made ungovernable if he became president in 2011, but wanted him to arrest Alhaji Mujahedeen Dokubo-Asari for repaeting what they said earlier.
“If we agree that poverty, injustice and inequality are the causes of the insurgency by Boko Haram, a largely Islamic group, the question would be: are Muslims the poorest people, the most deprived? What about Christians? Can we say injustice and inequality, as they say, is limited to Muslims alone?
“Can the claim of poverty be justified if the weapons and arms being used by the sect is calculated in terms of naira and kobo? Where is the justice when the Almajiris have special schools built for them and none for the Christian children in the North and South?
“Where is the equality when most government parastatals, the staffing is heavily skewed in favour of a particular religion? With amnesty to the bargain for the Boko Haram sect members, would Christian youths, whose fathers have been killed, benefit? Yet justice is an open wound, only truth can heal it,” he said.
Oritsejafor further stressed that CAN still believed in peace and would continue to work for peace.

If I’m arrested, Nigeria will be histroy – Dokubo-Asari

FORMER Niger Delta activist, Alhaji Mujahid Dokubo-AsariLeader of the Niger Delta People’s Volunteer Force,  Alhaji Mujahid Dokubo-Asari, has dared the  House of Representatives and leaders of northern Nigeria to arrest him if they can.
Dokubo-Asari, who spoke with journalists on Wednesday evening in Abuja, said he stood by his words that there would  be no peace if Jonathan is not reelected in 2015.
He was responding to calls by members of the House, Governor Babangida Aliyu of Niger State and northern leaders, saying the leaders were cowards if he was not arrested.
The former President of Ijaw Youth Council  also added that any attempt to arrest him would make Nigeria “a history”, asking why those calling for his arrest turned deaf ears when some northern leaders like former Military Head of State Maj.-Gen Mohamadu Buhari, Alhaji Lawal Kaita and a former member of the House of Representatives, Farouk Aliyu, among others.
He said, “I stand by my statement which I made in my early press conference. There will be no peace, not only in the Niger Delta, but everywhere, if Goodluck Jonathan is not president by 2015.
“I want to refresh your memories with comments made by these northerners, who had in the time past threatened war and break-up of Nigeria.

Boko Haram: Amnesty panel meets Kabiru Sokoto, others

Kabiru SokotoMembers  of the Presidential Committee on Dialogue and Peaceful Resolution of Security Challenges in the North on Thursday met behind closed doors with the mastermind of the Chritsmas Day bombing of St. Theresa’s Catholic Church, Madalla, Niger State and other  suspected members of  Boko Haram currently being held inside the Kuje Prisons, Abuja.
The committee members were led to the prison yard by their chairman and the Minister of Special Duties, Kabiru Turaki.
The committee members met with all the suspects separately.
A prison source told one of our correspondents that a total of 54 inmates are being held for terrorism related offences.
All the suspects were moved to the entrance of the prison chapel from where they were being called one after the other to meet the committee members inside the chapel which was the venue of the dialogue.
Except for about three of them, most of the suspects, our correspondent observed, would be in their 20s.
Among them is a 23-year-old man said to a Master’s degree holder in Electrical/ Electronics.
All the suspects looked sober as they acknowledged greetings from journalists and other supporting staff of the committee while they waited for their turn to appear before the committee.

PINI JASON: One death hard to believe

SUCCESS according to Ralph Walter Emerson means “to laugh often and much, to win the respect of intelligent people, and the affection of children, to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends, to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others, to leave the world a bit better than you met it, and to know that even one person’s life has breathed easier because you have lived”.
In a nutshell, this is the summation of the story of the life and times of Chief Pini Jason Onyegbaduo, the amiable veteran journalist, publisher, writer, columnist and author who like a colossus bestrode the pen profession for 40 years before joining his creator on Saturday May 4, 2013. He was a maternal uncle and brother I loved so much.
During his life time,  he distinguished himself as a reputable, dependable, responsible and patriotic servant of his fatherland and mediator in turbulent national issues. His hard work, articulation of issues, sagacity and oration were of tremendous assistance to the nation in periods of difficult issues, including those that almost tore the nation apart and brought social and economic activities to standstill. Pini until death remained a formidable patriotic voice on all issues of national importance and had the rare privilege of serving in several capacities, including the Imo State government where he was the Special Adviser (Special Duties) from 2007 to 2011.
Pini Jason Onyegbaduo (better known as Pini Jason) was born in 1948 to the family of Onyegbaduo of Umuawam Umuosisi Obizi Autonomous Community, in Ezinihite Mbaise Local Government Area, Imo State. A former Customs officer, he left the job for full time journalism, writing mostly for foreign-based publications such as African Now magazine before writing for local publications. He was with The Week, Nduka Obiagbena’s defunct news magazine that debuted in 1986 before joining Sam Amuka’s Vanguard Newspapers as a columnist. He later established his own newspaper called The Examiner in 1998 at Jibowu Lagos. The paper did not last long before it went the way of others. His weekly column in Vanguard would be what most people would remember him for. But he was also an author, communications consultant and orator.

Edo youths in war of words over gov’s attack on Igbinedion

BENIN—EDO State youths, Thursday, engaged themselves in a war of words,  following the demand by the South-South Youth Alliance, SSYA, that Governor Adams Oshiomhole should apologise to the Esama of Benin Kingdom, Chief Gabriel Igbinedion, over what they described as the abusive words used recently by the governor against the Benin chief.
The SSYA, led by its president, Mr.  Bruce Nosa-Uwaifo, had, while briefing newsmen, accused Governor Oshiomhole of not respecting  elders in the state, describing the recent altercation between the governor and Chief Igbinedion as unacceptable.
Ironically, the youths, who were gathered for the briefing, turned against the organisers, saying that Oshiomhole’s reaction was germane, and, therefore, he should not apologise, saying: “We thought we came here to talk about the development of youths. Were we invited here to insult the governor who has changed the lives of our people?”
Tension heightened when one of the youths,  who identified himself as Anthony Bello-Osagie, informed the organisers that “we were in this state when the Esama you are talking about fought our father, the Oba of Benin.
We are also aware that the Esama’s voting unit was in GRA, but on the day of the local government elections, he chose to go to Okada with policemen.”

TENSION IN NASARAWA: 100 Police, DSS officers missing in Lafia

LAFIA— The Nasarawa State Police Command has said that only 17 out of the 90 Police officers, excluding other security officers, who were on a mission to arrest the chief priest of Ombatse Shrine, located at Assakyo village, about 10 kilometres from Lafia, the state capital, returned so far with various degrees of wounds.
Ombatse in Eggon language literally means “time has come”.
TEARS FOR SLAIN POLICEMEN—Ambulances bringing the remains of the slain Police officers to Dalhatu Specialist Hospital Morgue in Lafia, Nasarawa State, yesterday. Photo: NAN.
This came as President Goodluck Jonathan, yesterday, cancelled his scheduled visit to Namibia to personally oversee efforts by security agencies to contain the new security challenge in Borno, Nassarawa and Benue states. Already, 40 dead bodies of the missing policemen had been recovered from the forests.
Meanwhile, the House of Representatives, Arewa Consultative Forum, ACF, and the Benue State Governor, Gabriel Suswam have condemned the killing of the policemen and officials of the Department of State Security, DSS, saying  the action was not only unacceptable but also “revolting.”
Jonathan on a state visit to South Africa, was expected to proceed on a state visit to Namibia in continuation of his investment drive across Africa.  A statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Dr Reuben Abati said: “In view of recent developments at home, Jonathan has cut short his visit to South Africa and aborted his state visit to Namibia which was due to start today” (yesterday).

Mob kills undergraduate over alleged phone theft

CALABAR — A SUS-PECTED phone snatcher said to be an undergraduate of the University of Calabar, was killed by a mob at about 9 p.m, Wednesday, for allegedly snatching a phone and a lady’s handbag.
The undergraduate said to be operating with someone at large was alleged to have boarded a taxi at Marian Road to Calabar South and when they got to Goldie by Atu  Street junction, they asked the taxi driver to stop and while stepping down from the taxi, one of them grabbed the lady’s handbag who sat next to him while the other snatched her phone.
“When the lady raised alarm, some people chased the boys and one managed to escape while the other hid himself in the  gutter in front of my house, “  Dr Emmanuel Effiong Ene, a lecturer who witnessed the incident said.
According to the lecturer, when one of the thieves escaped, the mob came after the one who hid himself and descended on him with stones and cudgels.
”I heard someone scratch a machete on the ground and soon after the boy began to scream as he was being dealt machete blows,” he said.

2015: There’ll be no crisis if Jonathan loses – Clark

WARRI — SOUTH-SOUTH leader, Chief Edwin Clark, has said that President Goodluck Jonathan will win the presidential election in 2015 if he decides to contest based on his achievements, but noted that there would be no crises if he was defeated at the poll.
He also declared that former Head of State, General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd), former Minister of Finance, Mallam Adamu Ciroma and other Northerners, should be investigated for their provocative and inflammatory statements, and not just singling out Chairman of the Presidential Amnesty Programme, Mr.  Kingsley Kuku and former militant leader,  Alhaji Mujahid Dokubo-Asari.
Clark, in  an open letter to the Speaker of House of Representatives, Mr. Aminu Tambuwal, said:  “I repeat, there will be no crises, if President Jonathan  is defeated at the presidential election in 2015, but he has a right to contest the election if he so wishes.
“For him to win, he has to implement some of the democratic dividends he promised Nigerians and  he has gone far in accomplishing same in some  areas,  such as stepping up power output to 10,000 MW by 2014, rebuilding external reserves to $45 billion, increased crude oil and gas revenue, massive rehabilitation of roads and general improvement in education, among others.

They Toy With Our Future

IN the ingenuity of the politician, the future of Nigeria is tied to elections. When politicians, who call themselves leaders, engage in phased discussions of Nigeria, they are not contemplating legacy projects that would enhance the development of Nigeria.
Their entire concerns are elections, the struggle for power, the decisions about who becomes what, and those marked for nothingness. The reduction of the country to this contracted vision is the biggest failure of civil rule since 1999. Every administration, from the local governments, through the States to the centre, sees election to office as the platform to perpetrate either itself or its interests in power. When it leaves, the damage endures.
It appears the most important ambition of the politician is to grab power, stay in office as long as he can, produce a successor that would do his bid, and retire to continue manipulating the system.
Disruptive as this attitude is, it is heightening, to the extent that most administration do nothing, other than engaging in schemes to hold power which for them is an end in itself. Power is everything and everything politician wants. He gets it first, before thinking of what he would do with it.
Rarely do we hear politicians espousing their ideas about the future of Nigeria and expending their energies in ensuring that their dream Nigeria is realised. It is not surprising that most of those who gain access to any notch of power in these circumstances, abuse them.

Man slits girlfriend's throat &had sex with her while she bled to death

A 25-year-old bricklayer, Akinloye Anuoluwapo, has been arrested by the police for slaughtering his 21-year-old girlfriend, Rafiyat Akinyemi. Akinloye slit his ex-girlfriend's throat and had sex with her while she bled to death. Below is how Punch is reporting it...
Anuoluwapo slit Akinyemi’s throat at her family home in Magbon, Ogijo, Ogun state. Punch Metro gathered that Anuoluwapo allegedly murdered Akinyemi for her refusal to continue dating him.
An OND graduate of the Lagos State Polythenic Ikorodu, Akinyemi was said to be home alone last Wednesday, when Anuoluwapo came calling.
PUNCH Metro gathered that the embattled lovers, who had dated for over a year, split up late 2012 despite attempts by Anuoluwapo to prevent it.
It was learnt that Anuoluwapo knew that Akinyemi’s mother and siblings usually left the house before 8am each working day,.
He subsequently sneaked into Akinyemi’s family home at about 8.30am on the day of the incident. As expected, Akinyemi was alone.
Anuoluwapo was said to have made several attempts to have sex with Akinyemi. PUNCH Metro learnt that it was in the ensuing struggle that Akinyemi met her end.
Anuoluwapo, who is being detained at the Ogijo Police Division, said, “I don’t know what came over me, I just wanted us to reconcile and continue our relationship.
“Each time we break up, I am always severely affected; I converted from Christianity to Islam because I wanted to marry her.

Imo police smash baby factory, nab impregnator, rescue 17 pregnant teenagers

Imo State Police Command recorded another success in its renewed fight against crime and criminals, following the bursting of child trafficking and baby factory syndicate in the state.
Disclosing this to newsmen Thursday evening, at the State Police Headquarters, Owerri, the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Mohammed Katsina, said the Command has clamped down on illegal motherless babies homes, as well as rescued 17 pregnant teenagers. (Some of the pregnant teens pictured above)
According to the Imo police boss, one of the illegal homes, Ahamefula Motherless Babies Home, located in Umuaka, Njaba local council area, is allegedly owned by a middle aged woman simply identified as “Madam One Thousand”.

Mr. Katsina equally disclosed that during the police raid, no fewer than 11 minors, who were possibly waiting to be sold to prospective buyers, were rescued by the Command.

The bizarre aspect of the police finding was that a 23-year old boy, simply identified as Oyibo, was fingered as being responsible for impregnating the expectant girls, whose ages ranged between 14 and 17.

Apart from being in varying stages of pregnancy, the girls who equally looked malnourished and not properly catered for wept uncontrollably as they were paraded by the police in Owerri.

On how the Command burst the syndicate, the Commissioner explained that the illegal babies home was successfully raided by the “Ambush Squad” after a credible tip-off.

“The prime suspect is now at large. She was was producing pure water sachets as a decoy to deceive unsuspecting members of the public about what was really going on in the premises”, the Commissioner of Police recounted.

Continuing, Mr. Katsina said: “When the police invaded the tightly secured compound, 17 minors were seen holed up in different rooms in the large compound with some of their children playing around”.

The Imo police boss equally paraded the 55-year old security man, Mr. Uzoamaka Okoli, from Nempi, Oru West local government area of the state, employed by the fleeing owner of the babies home.
The 23-year old Oyibo, who was equally paraded by the Commissioner, has allegedly confessed to being responsible for all the pregnancies.

99 Suspected Hoodlums Arrested In Oshodi, Including Teenage Lovers

99 hoodlums have been arrested by officials of the Lagos State Taskforce on Environmental and Special Offences (Enforcement) Unit in Oshodi area of Lagos.
Just last week, the taskforce arrested 183 hoodlums and suspected criminals in Oshodi and charged them to court.
The suspected hoodlums who were arrested in the early hours of Wednesday at Oko Mola, a notorious area in Oshodi where hoodlums and suspected criminals snatch people’s bags and molest women, were taken to the taskforce headquarters at Alausa.
The ages of those arrested range between 13 and 35 years.
The 99 suspects included 25 girls, among whom is a pregnant 13-year old girl, Tosin Odebiyi, who ran away from her parent’s home in Abeokuta and a 16-year old girl, Shola Sunday who was found with a nine-month old baby and her lover, 20-year-old Abdullahi Wahab.
Parading the suspects, Taskforce Chairman, Bayo Sulaiman said some of those arrested have been charged to court, saying that the underaged ones among them have been sent to the Lagos State Remand Home for rehabilitation.
He also said those with babies have been taken to the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Social Development for rehabilitation.
“Some of those arrested had been here before and had gone to prison and are back. We are trying to rehabilitate them. Many of them don’t have homes. They stay in this notorious area of Oko Mola where they snatch phones.
“We have arrested almost all the hoodlums in Oko Mola and we are waiting to see if others will replace them there. This raid on hoodlums will continue,” Sulaiman said.

Come Rain, Come Shine: Tiwa Savage Performs In The Rain Bare-Footed In Warri

Beautiful singer and Mavin’s first lady, Tiwa Savge was scheduled to perform during half-time of a football match in Warri; however the weather seem to have other plans. Rain began to pour but that didn’t stop the gifted vocalist Tiwa from performing. She got in the rain, and sang as beautiful as ever……….and yes she was bare footed.
Such commitment, i like!!!