Farmer jailed for stealing 13 crates of eggs

Forgery: Court dismisses Ikuforiji's 'no-case-submission'A 28-year-old farmer, Amisu Bello, is to serve six months in prison after a Magistrates’ Court in Minna, Niger, convicted him of stealing 13 crates of egg.

Bello was docked alongside one Shefiu Yahaya on a two-count charge of theft and receiving stolen property, contrary to Sections 288 and 317 of the Penal Code Law.

The Police Prosecutor, Emmanuel Ogiri, had told the court that one Isa Azeez, the Manager of IK Farms, Gidan Mangoro, Minna, reported the matter at the Kpakungu Police Station on Sept. 17.

Ogiri said that Bello went to IK farm and stole 13 crates of eggs and when he was arrested, he confessed to having previously stolen 12 crates on five different occasions.

He also said that police investigation revealed that Bello was in the habit of selling the eggs to Yahaya, the second accused person.

When the charges were read to them, Bello pleaded guilty and begged the court for leniency while Yahaya pleaded not guilty.

In her ruling, the Magistrate, Ramatu Adamu, sentenced Bello to six months in prison with an option of a fine of N10, 000.

Adamu also ordered him to pay N17, 000 to the complainant as compensation.

He, however, discharged and acquitted Yahaya of any wrongdoing after establishing the fact that he bought the eggs at their market value without the knowledge that they were stolen.

APC can’t protect Benue’s interest – Ortom

Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, on Monday, said he left the ruling All Progressives Congress because the party failed to arrest leaders of Miyeitti Allah Kautal Hore.

The governor said the ruling  party could not protect the interest of the people of Benue State

A statement issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Information and Communications Technology, Tahav Agerzua, quoted the governor as saying this during a meeting with Peoples Democratic Party ’s stakeholders in Oju and Obi local government areas of the state.

Agerzua said Ortom “came to the conclusion after his cries for the arrest and prosecution of leaders of various Fulani groups, including Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore,  who threatened to invade the state and carried out the threat, fell on deaf ears.”

Ortom explained that after he signed the Open Grazing Prohibition and Ranches Establishment Bill into law in May 2017, leaders of Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore addressed several press conferences at which they pledged to mobilise their kith and kin across the world to invade the state.

Ortom stated that his petitions to the relevant authorities to preempt the invasion were ignored just as his request for the arrest of those who claimed responsibility for the subsequent attacks and killings.

He said, “Leaders of the APC at the national level with their collaborators in the state have made him a target for elimination on account of the Ranches Law which the people have insisted should not be repealed.”

Osun election: NYSC warns politicians against attacking corps members

The National Youth Service Corps has warned politicians and their supporters against attacking corps members that will be used for the September 22 governorship election in Osun State.

The Coordinator of the NYSC in Osun State, Mr Emmanuel Attah, gave this warning in Ede on Monday at the closing ceremony of the orientation course for 2018 Batch B corps members deployed in the state.

Attah said the Federal Government placed much value on the lives and wellbeing of all corps members and would not allow anybody who attacked any of the youths to go without facing the full wrath of the law.

He said the NYSC would not tolerate attack on corps members, adding that they had been trained in the role expected of them to play during the election.

He stated that the corps members were ready to discharge their  duties with passion and patriotism because the election was one of their duties to the nation.

The coordinator said,   ‘’NYSC will not take it lightly with any individual or group of persons who attempts to intimidate or harm any of our corps members in the name of politics. They are our children and we must protect them.

“My advice  to  politicians is to  stay away from our corps members because  they will not listen to them. They will not demand or take bribe from anyone and we have instructed them to report any attempt to compromise them to security agencies.”

The Osun State Governor, Mr Rauf Aregbesola, also urged the corps members that would be used in the conduct of the election to ensure that the votes of residents counted at their polling units.

He also advised them to discharge their duties without fear of favour, saying they should emulate those who had done the duty before them and their contributions to the development of the nation’s democracy.

Aregbesola who was represented by the Commissioner for Empowerment and Youth Engagement, Mrs  Folake Adegboyega, told  the corps members to shun violence and corruption and should not allow any politicians to use them to manipulate the election.

He said, “Ensure that you abide by the advice given to you by seasoned officers of the scheme.

“Shun violence and corruption; ensure that the vote of every citizen at the polling units counts. Do not allow yourself to be used by anyone to perpetuate rigging during the process.”

The governor also advised   them to accept their postings in good faith and avoid frivolous travelling.

He also asked them to contribute their quotas to the development of the state and the nation.’’

2019: Saraki, Ribadu, Bafarawa disagree over Buhari

The President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki; a former Governor of Sokoto State, Alhaji Attahiru Bafarawa and an ex-Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu,  on Monday, differed on the performance of President Muhammadu Buhari.

Ribadu, in an interview with journalists in Abuja, said he would not contest against Buhari in 2019 because he was doing a good job.

But Saraki, who spoke in Abeokuta, lashed out at Buhari, saying he was presiding over a divided country.

Justifying his support for Buhari, Ribadu, who contested the 2011 presidential election on the platform of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria, said it would be in the interest of the country for the President to win the 2019 election.

He noted that those who had a passion for Nigeria’s development were aware of the great job Buhari was doing.

Responding to a question on whether he was sacrificing his presidential ambition for Buhari’s second term, he said, “You can say it is part of it.

“Of course, that is a good reason. When you agree with a leadership, it is okay that you step aside and allow good things to happen and I am comfortable with that.

“Today, Buhari is our President and I agree with him totally and I am comfortable with the leadership he is giving this country.”

He described the anti-corruption war as the most difficult job to do, adding that “it takes a man of courage and integrity to make a success of it.”

On the refusal of the Senate to confirm the appointment of the acting Chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, Ribadu said, “I don’t see any reason why they will not confirm him and allow him to do the work properly. I totally agree with the Federal Government in allowing him to do this work.”

Buhari presiding over divided country, says Saraki

But the Senate President stated that Nigeria was more divided under Buhari. He said that Nigeria required a leader who would give every Nigerian a sense of belonging.

He said this on Monday while addressing the Ogun State party executive council of the Peoples Democratic Party led by the Sikirulahi Ogundele faction.

He was in the state to sell his candidacy ahead of the PDP presidential primaries slated for early October.

Saraki said, “Today in Nigeria, we are here at a crossroads. The country is divided and to unite the country, we need someone who will make everybody feel a sense of belonging.

“Today, there is no sense of belonging in some parts of the country.

“We need a President that rules and represents Nigeria. We want a President where everybody will say they belong here.

“Where there is no unity, there can never be progress. After unity, we can talk about development and progress.”

Saraki, who explained that a lot of Nigerians were suffering today due to leadership’s inability to fix the economy, said it was difficult for any leader to give what he or she did not have.

He said the new world order from Asia to Europe was the enthronement of visionary, dynamic and energetic presidents, qualities which he said he possessed.

He said, “We need a visionary leader. It is time for us in Nigeria to have a visionary leader. We need a man that has the ability and that can perform.”

Also, Bafarawa said the All Progressives Congress government had damaged the economy.

The presidential aspirant said that there was a need for the country to implement the abandoned 2014 confab report in order to tackle various challenges facing the country’s development.

Bafarawa stated this on Monday during his visit to the leaders of a pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, in Akure, Ondo State capital. The meeting was held at the residence of the leader of the group, Chief Reuben Fasoranti.

He said, “When we get to power, we are going to take our time to do the damage control.  We correct where mistakes have been made.

“We shall de-emphasise over-dependence on oil and look towards agriculture, tourism, mining and manufacturing as potential drivers of our economy.”

On restructuring, Bafarawa promised to implement the 2014 National Conference report, saying that “when we are talking of restructuring, we are talking about development.”

Saraki, urges Nigerians to vote for visionary leaders

The Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, on Monday urged Nigerians to vote leaders not according to sentiments, but capacity and vision to bring about change.

Saraki, a People’s Democratic Party (PDP) presidential aspirant, made the statement in Lagos while addressing party members at the party secretariat.

The visit to the party secretariat was in continuation of his nationwide tour of state chapters to garner support for his aspiration.

Saraki was accompanied on the visit by Sen. Dino Melaye; a former minister, Alhaji Muhammed Wakil; and former governor of Kogi State, Alhaji Idris Wada.

A former Presidential Adviser on Media and Publicity and Director-General of Saraki Campaign Organisation, Dr Doyin Okupe, was also with him.

The Senate President said that great nations, including the Asian Tigers, were built by visionary leadership, saying Nigeria would be better if entrusted in capable hands.

“We should stop using sentiments to vote for our leaders because a man cannot give what he does not have.

“Most of us here read about great countries including the Asian Tigers; all their achievements do not happen by chance or luck.

“They happened because there are visionary leaderships in those countries.

“So, it is time for Nigerians to vote for leaders who have the capacity, the courage, and knows what he wants to do for his people,” he said.

Dividends of Democracy
Saraki said he was seeking to lead the country out of the need to serve and deliver the dividends of democracy.

The Senate president said he had the capacity, the experience and the youthfulness to turn the country around.

He said that he was the best and the only sure one to deliver out of all the presidential aspirants across the parties.

Saraki decried the killings in parts of the country and other challenges in the country, saying it was the responsibility of all citizens to address them.

He promised to make the issues history, if elected to lead the country.

On restructuring, Saraki said there was the need for powers to devolve to the states to make them more viable.

He said the over-concentration of powers in the centre had stifled the development of the other federating units.

The Senate president expressed concerns that most aspirants who promised restructuring could not deliver, saying only somebody who could pursue the right legislative action and has the political sagacity could implement it.

“A lot of people come and tell you here that they can do restructuring.

“Restructuring is not one thing only a president can do, because it requires laws to be changed.

“Implementing restructuring requires somebody with the political sagacity to carry people along with him to the destination,” he said.

Saraki urged party delegates to see him as part of them and vote for him at the national convention.

He said Lagos had always remained with him, having spent his school years in the state and even married an indigene of Lagos.

The Senate president urged party members to congratulate themselves in advance, promising to do his best to ensure PDP wins Lagos.

Melaye, who also spoke at the event, told the party members that Saraki remained the best out of the aspirants seeking to lead Nigeria.

Okupe similarly appealed for support for Saraki, saying he was the best man for the job.

The PDP Secretary in the state, Prince Muiz Dosunmu, commended Saraki, saying the chapter aligned with his vision to reposition the country.

President Buhari condemns killing of aid worker

President Muhammadu Buhari has condemned the killing of an aid worker who was kidnapped about six months ago in Rann, Borno State, by members of the boko haram terrorists group.

The aid worker, Saifura Hussaini Ahmed Khorsa, was said to have been kidnapped at the Rann camp for internally displaced persons.

In a statement he issued on Monday night, the President also condemned the terrorists’ threat to harm others, including the lone Dapchi school girl, Leah Sharibu still in their custody.

The statement said, “The government of Nigeria strongly condemns this reprehensible and inhuman act. No religion permits the killing of the innocent. Saifura worked for the Red Cross, a humanitarian organisation working to bring succour to all the victims of violence irrespective of the sides of the conflict.”

International Partners
The President also appealed to Nigeria’s international partners and everyone with an influence on the terrorists to prevail on them “to stop these acts of extreme barbarism.”

He said his administration would seize every given opportunity, with both hands and use all means available to bring home all citizens held against their will by the boko haram terrorists.

President Buhari extended condolences to the family of Saifura, the Red Cross and UNICEF over the loss of this selfless and hardworking mother.

EFCC denies freezing the Adelekes’ accounts

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday denied freezing the accounts of the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP), Sen. Ademola Adeleke and any member of his family.

The agency, in a statement by its Head of Media and Publicity, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren, warned against being drawn into partisan politics.

The statement said: “The attention of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC has been drawn to media publications alleging that it had frozen the account of Senator Ademola Adeleke,  candidate of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the September 22, 2018 Osun State governorship election and those of his family members, including the musician, David Adeleke.

“The commission calls on members of the public to disregard the report, which is patently false and contrived to dress the agency with a partisan garb in the unfolding political contest in Osun State.

“For the avoidance of doubt, at no time did the EFCC place a freeze order on any  account belonging to members of the Adeleke family.

“The purported freeze order, which has unfortunately been amplified by pliable sections of the media without any attempt at confirmation, is alien to the commission and another example of fake news.

“The EFCC frowns at the seeming attempts by faceless forces to drag it into the political fray and, for the umpteenth time, restates its neutrality as a law enforcement organisation that is sworn to uphold the law at all times,  irrespective whose interest is at stake.”

NLC urges MTN to pay $10b fine

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has urged communication giant MTN Nigeria to comply with the directive of the Federal Government to pay the over $10 billion as tax arrears and illegal repatriation.

Mr Ayuba Wabba, NLC president,  in a statement yesterday in Abuja, said: “This is as well as the $8.13 billion illegally repatriated to South Africa over which four indigenous banks have been fined.

”We similarly urge the Federal Government to spare no effort in recovering this money as anything to the contrary will send wrong signals to other corporate organisations it had punished for lesser tax infractions.

”The need to enforce this order is all the more compelling when it is realised that workers pay taxes they can ill-afford, but religiously pay all the same.”

Wabba noted that government’s tax reforms have been skewed in favour of corporate organisations, there was no reason for a default.

He added that every taxable person is expected to pay his or her tax as and when due.

Wabba said: ”If companies default, with what is government expected to run the country or conduct its business?

”In our view, this incident does not only directly test the Thabo Mbeki Report on Illicit Financial Flows from Africa, it is also a major crime against the government and people of Nigeria.

”On our part, we are, however, not surprised by the unethical conduct of MTN.

”They are not only engaged in the exploitation of Nigerian workers and turning them into slaves, but have extended their frontiers to unwholesome economic exploitation and sabotage.

”The questions on every lips are: How many times has MTN done this? How many other companies are doing this?”

He stated that through the Tax Justice Campaign, labour had relentlessly and assiduously drew the attention of the government and Nigerians to the humongous crime against the vulnerable people of Africa, especially Nigeria.

He noted that over 70 million people in Africa are said to be the poorest in the world.

”Government should use this opportunity to send an appropriate message to everyone, especially corporate organisations who often pay taxes in the breach.

”Coupled with this, government’s tax reforms will only make meaning if they are judiciously executed.”

2019 polls: Don’t return thieves to power, APC warns

BuhariTHOSE ganging up to unseat the President Muhammadu Buhari-led All Progressives Congress (APC) government ruined the nation’s economy, the ruling party has said.

It alerted Nigerians to be wary of those deploying what it called stolen commonwealth to fund their political activities to stage a comeback to power.

In a statement yesterday by the party’s spokesman, Yekini Nabena, the party warned that such persons were regrouping to use the stolen funds to subvert the will of the people through vote buying.

Nabena, who is APC’s Acting National Publicity Secretary, urged relevant agencies to proactively get involved in tracking election financing, pointing out that those with illegally-acquired money were using it to canvass votes for elective positions.

Nabena said that Nigerians have not forgotten the yoke they bore under the “inept” Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) regimes and therefore deserve no more of it.

He pointed out that public funds that could have improved education, healthcare sectors and provided infrastructure to develop the economic and social life of Nigerians were in the pockets of individuals.

Nabena said in the statement: “While we alert Nigerians to the plot of some politicians to buy votes and deploy other illegal means to subvert the people’s will during the coming elections, we urge relevant agencies to be proactively involved in the tracking of election financing.

“The same people who criminally-diverted public monies to fund their political activities as brazenly displayed during past administrations must be prevented from doing same in coming elections.

”Under the President Muhammadu Buhari-led All Progressives Congress (APC) administration, the scale of recoveries from corrupt elements in the past three years by the country’s anti-graft agencies is testament that the administration’s extensive anti-corruption drive is yielding results.

“Compared to the past, successful prosecution of many corrupt persons, the hugely-successful whistle-blowing policy and voluntary return of corruptly-acquired funds and assets have shown that it is no longer business as usual and corruption is increasingly becoming unacceptable.

“Corruption can no longer define how we do things as a country. There is a new realisation among well-meaning Nigerians that if we don’t kill corruption it will kill us.

“Recently, the media space has been awash with a campaign of calumny against the anti-corruption efforts by the same opposition partisans and their proxies that ruined the country with their institutionalised corruption. This is expected as corruption will naturally fight back.

“Sadly, these thieves have resurfaced to canvass votes of Nigerians for various elective positions, ostensibly to resume their stealing. Nigerians are neither gullible nor stupid. They have not forgotten the yoke they bore under the corrupt Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) regimes and deserve no more of it.

“Public funds that could have improved the education, healthcare sectors and provided infrastructure to develop the economic and social life of Nigerians are sadly in the pockets of these thieves.

“To conclude, we share the submission of a former United States (U.S.) Vice President, Joe Biden: ‘Corruption is a cancer; a cancer that eats away at a citizen’s faith in democracy, diminishes the instinct for innovation and creativity… it wastes the talent of entire generations. It scares away investments and jobs’.

“We must continue to challenge corruption and its related vices. This is line with the Change Agenda the APC promised Nigerians. This is a promise we are committed to keep.”

But the PDP spokesman Kola Ologbodiyan accused the ruling party of shielding members of questionable characters.

He said: “We urge the APC to begin its fight against corruption from Buhari Presidency where the most iniquitous felons enjoy presidential cover.

“President Muhammodu Buhari can demonstrate this anti-corruption fight by mandating the EFCC to immediately commence the arraignment of Babachir Lawal.”

Zamfara Gov. Abdul’aziz Yari attacked in Gusau

Governor Abdul’aziz Yari of Zamfara State has condemned attack on his convoy by All Progressives Congress (APC) supporters who are loyalists to aggrieved governorship aspirants in the state.

Yari, in a statement issued on Sunday in Gusau by Malam Ibrahim Dosara, his Special Adviser on Media and Public Enlightenment, cautioned his loyalists to desist from revenge.

He urged people of the state to be law-abiding citizens and avoid any form of violence in the name of politics.

“Any law-abiding citizen needs to respect the peaceful atmosphere concerning politics in Zamfara.”

The governor said that his administration had done a lot to stop loyalists and all youths, especially supporters of APC, from engaging in any activity that would endanger the peace among political associations and parties.

He urged politicians to enlighten their supporters on peace and stability in relations to all political associations and gatherings

Some APC supporters had attacked the governor’s convoy at Lalan Roundabout in Gusau on Sunday as he was travelling to Kaduna.

The seven aggrieved governorship hopefuls including the deputy governor, Malam Ibrahim Wakkala, had organised a rally in Gusau on Sunday, where a multitude of their supporters turned out to receive them.

While the rallying aspirants and their supporters were coming into town,they ran into the governor’s convoy and the irate supporters attacked the governor’s motorcade destroying glasses.

However, the quick intervention of the mobile police and governor’s security details who fired gunshots in the air, dispersed the mob.

Calm has since been restored in the state capital after the confrontation.