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Crime

Army vs Police: Military issues strong warning to Nigerians

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The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) has warned Nigerians against comments and actions that could pit the Nigerian Police Force against the Nigeria Army.

The warning became necessary following the controversies and public criticism that greeted the killing of three policemen and a civilian last week by soldiers on the Ibi-Wukari Road in Taraba State.

Col. Onyema Nwachukwu, the Acting spokesman for the DHQ, Colonel gave the warning while reminding Nigerians that the police and the army are two very important services in the country.

He said that concern should be geared at ensuring the joint panel constituted undertakes an exhaustive investigation.

When asked by The Nation about the captain alleged to have been responsible for the unauthorised shootings and release of the suspected kidnapper, Nwachukwu said, “That information did not come from me. Our concern is to allow the panel do a thorough job and avoid comments that heat up the situation. We are trying to apply some restraint on this issue to avoid pitching the police against the army.

“These are two very important institutions in Nigeria and it will be most unfair to this nation to pit them against each other or the personnel of each service against the other.

“What is important is that lives have been lost and this is a difficult time for the families of the victims. We should be more concerned at looking into the human angles, the psychological traumas these families are going through.

“Our concern should be that the panel does exhaustive investigation and gets to the bottom of the matter. So, I would not like to begin to make comments that would pre-empt the investigation or its outcome.”

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Buhari

Pressure On Buhari To Sue South Africa For Xenophobic Attacks

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The federal government says it will not rule out any option in its response to xenophobic attacks against Nigerians by South Africa, The Guardian reports.

It stated this following the advice by a former External Affairs Minister and Professor of Political Science, Bolaji Akinyemi, urging the Nigerian government to take South Africa to the International Criminal Court of Justice.

The violence against Nigerians and other Africans in parts of South Africa had erupted on September 1, forcing the Nigerian government to evacuate its citizens from the country. Akinyemi accused the South African government of failing to protect Nigerians and making statements unbecoming of a responsible country.

According to him, Nigeria must sue because the attacks were in violation of Article 2, Paragraph 2 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. He said they also violated Article 2, Paragraph 1 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, and the International Convention on the Protection of Migrant Workers.






He further accused South African authorities of sponsoring or condoning the attacks, noting that the stance of the country’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Naledi Pandor, amounted to Acrophobia.

He noted that statements by South African leaders such as Pandor, Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula and former Deputy Minister of Police Bongani Mkongi encouraged the latest attacks on Nigerians and other foreign nationals.

But former Commonwealth Secretary-General Chief Emeka Anyaoku said it would not be wise for Nigeria to approach the ICC on the matter, stressing: “The two countries have large mutual interests to protect for themselves and for Africa.”

He said the statement of apology by South African President Cyril Ramaphosa yesterday at the funeral of former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe in Harare “should be welcomed and high-level diplomacy should now be employed by Nigeria to de-escalate the situation and make South Africa pay compensation”.






Anyaoku described the recurring aggression as provocative, given Nigeria’s role in ushering in non-racial democracy in South Africa and his (Anyaoku’s) seminal role as Commonwealth Secretary-General in the negotiations.

“It is very saddening,” he said, “to see the current xenophobic violence against Nigerians and other Africans legally residing and doing business in South Africa. But maturity and internal African solution must be brought to bear on the situation.”

President Muhammadu Buhari’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity Femi Adesina and Special Adviser on Diaspora Abike Dabiri-Erewa said only the ministers of foreign affairs and information could comment on Akinyemi’s advice.“All matters relating to diplomatic moves or foreign affairs policies should be directed to the Minister of Foreign Affairs,” Dabiri-Erewa said.

Foreign Affairs Minister Geoffrey Onyeama told The Guardian that Nigeria “cannot rule anything out for now” when asked if the country would sue South Africa. “We are still receiving reports from our High Commission and the Consulate General, evaluating them and weighing options,” Onyeama said.

Minister of Information Lai Mohammed had not replied to the inquiry sent to him at the time of filing this report.

Ramaphosa, meanwhile, has dispatched three special envoys to seven African countries to deliver messages of pan-African unity and solidarity following the attacks, said presidential spokesperson, Khusela Diko.






The envoys will reassure fellow African countries that South Africa is committed to the ideals of pan-African unity and solidarity. They will also reaffirm South Africa’s commitment to the rule of law, Diko said.

The envoys, according to him, will visit Nigeria, Niger, Ghana, Senegal, Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Zambia.

They will brief governments in the countries about steps the South African government is taking to stop the attacks and hold the perpetrators to account.

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Arewa

Katsina: Bandits free 30 more captives after deal with govt

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Repentant bandits in Katsina have released additional 30 kidnapped victims, following the dialogue initiated by the state government with their leaders.

The victims were presented to Gov. Aminu Masari at the Government House on Sunday in Katsina.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the victims were kidnapped by the bandits from Kankara and Shimfida, both in Jibia Local Government area of the state.

They were thereafter taken to their hideout in Damsadau forest, Zamfara State, where they spent some weeks.

Addressing the victims, Masari said that government would continue to persuade the bandits to release more kidnapped people until all of them were freed.

He directed that the released victims be taken to hospital for medical check up before reuniting them with their respective families.

One of the victims, Zinatu Sani from Kankara, while narrating her ordeal in the hands of the bandits, said that she was kidnapped from her matrimonial home, with two of her children.

She said that the bandits demanded for a N20 million ransom before they could release her and the children.

Sani explained that the ransom was later reduced to N6 million which, she said, her family could still not afford to pay.

She said that the suspected bandits used to give them rice to cook, with only water and salt.

“For 55 days, we slept in an open place without a roof, not minding the rainfall or heat,” she lamented.

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Crime

Drunk policeman stabs nine at nightclub in Ondo

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A policeman identified as Sergeant Taiwo Orisadare has allegedly stabbed nine persons at a popular nightclub in Akure, the Ondo State capital.

Trouble started at the nightclub, which is located in Alagbaka GRA area of Akure over the weekend, when the policeman attached to the Akure Area Commander’s office allegedly began to behave in an erratic manner.

According to eyewitnesses, the drunk policeman became unruly and started harassing the victims who had come to unwind at the club.

One of the eyewitnesses, who narrated the incident, stated that “It was so clear that he (Sergeant Orisadare) was so drunk and was already becoming something else at the club.

“He won’t just listen to those trying to tell him to take things easy. Things went awry as he started attacking everyone he could lay hands on.

“He stabbed nine people before he could be overpowered.”

Meanwhile, some of the victims, who were attacked by the police officer, are currently recuperating in various hospitals, while some are in critical condition.

The Police Public Relations Officers of the state command, Femi Joseph stated that both parties were engaged in a brawl.

“They were both fighting. The policeman did not stab anyone to death. Do you even know the condition of the policeman now?” He asked.

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