Hospital threatens to abandon sick Nollywood actor, Victor Olaotan

The hospital handling the treatment of veteran actor and former Tinsel’ star, Victor Olaotan, popularly known as Big Daddy has threatened to stop his treatment and dump him at the Nigerian Embassy over unpaid hospital bills.

Olaotan who turned 69 on Wednesday, February 17, is still in a Turkey hospital battling with the effects of a traumatic brain injury he suffered after a ghastly car accident in October 2016.

His wife, Julia, has been relentlessly seeking support for him and some actors have also solicited for support on Olaotan’s behalf.

In 2019, billionaire businessman and philanthropist, Femi Otedola donated N30m to the actor.

Speaking to Punch Newspaper, Julia thanked Otedola and other well-meaning Nigerians that had supported, but stated that she still needed money to offset her husband’s hospital bills.

She said, “I need all the help I can get. I have been silent but now, I am drowning. Apart from Mr Otedola and a few other people who have supported me, I still need help. His monthly expenses are $7,500, excluding the caregiver’s salary and other things like feeding and toiletries.

“The money for his stem cell procedure is about $150,000. He has done the first procedure, and he needs to undergo the second one. I want to bring my husband back home. The last time I paid hospital bills was in March 2019.

“He has been receiving treatment without payment but the agency that helped with his medical travelling, Radmed, has been doing so much for us. They have been very humane because most of the hospital bills have been paid by them.

“However, my fear is that if another Nigerian needs the agency’s services, they might be reluctant because of their experience with us.

“I am just hoping that somebody out there would have compassion. But, I don’t want to appear like an ingrate because Nigerians have given support and everyone has their cross to carry.”

Julia, who hasn’t seen her husband physically since May 2019, said that she often spoke with him via video calls, and whenever they spoke, she could see that he was ‘fighting for his life.

She said, “He is improving, especially when it comes to recognising people. Also, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, I have not been able to visit him.

“I owe the hospital so much money that my travelling to see him without paying outstanding bills would not be good. Because of the debt, the hospital has cut down on some of his treatments such as physiotherapy, although they still give him basic treatments. They managed him very well, and he has even received the COVID-19 vaccine.

“They have called me several times about my debt and even threatened to dump him at the Nigerian Embassy and report me there too. They feel I have absconded because they have not seen me.

“We have not been able to start the second treatment after the one that Otedola graciously paid for. I have not been able to raise the $70,000 that is needed,” she added.

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We’ll starve schoolboys to death – Niger abductors

Abductors of the 27 students and 15 workers of Government Science College, Kagara, Niger State, have threatened to starve them to death if the ransom they are demanding is not paid on time.

One of the abductors stated this in an audio recording made available to one of our correspondents on Wednesday by a prominent Islamic cleric, Sheik Ahmad Gumi.

In the audio recording, the abductor, who spoke in Hausa, was heard conversing with a negotiator, identified by Gumi as a top official of the school.

He rejected N2.7m offered him as ransom for the 27 abductees.

The bandit stated, “I don’t have food for them. If anybody dies among them, we will tell you where to go and pick the corpse.

“You know these children are hungry. I don’t have food to give them, only water if they are going to die, let them die.”

The negotiator said it would be difficult for him to get the phone numbers of all the parents as requested by the bandits.

The bandit responded that he was aware that many security agents and vehicles had been deployed in Kagara, vowing they would not succeed in rescuing the abductees.

He asked, “You think I don’t know what you people are doing? I can tell you how many security vehicles are in Kagara as we speak.

“It is with the help of the people of the city that intruders can overrun the city. Don’t you know that? The person who gave us this business is there among you. He is there with you. Wherever you go, he is watching you. If you want to do this deal, go ahead. From God we come and to him we will return

“Even if you put together the entire security forces of Nigeria in Kagara, I have eyes all over Kagara. Whichever step you take in Nigeria, I swear, I will know. You people are saying they should not pay us, that if they pay us, we will use to money to buy weapons.With whose money did we buy our weapons? If we don’t have weapons, you will just send security agents to kill us and take the children.”

Appealing to the bandit, the negotiator stated, “They (parents) have agreed to pay N2.7m. Each parent will pay N100,000 .”

But the abductor rejected the offer threatening to unleash terror on Kagara.

The abductor stated, “If I want Kagara to be in peace, it will be in peace. If it is not going to be in peace, it will go in pieces from here until Ilorin. If I die in this process, I have children that I have instructed that if I die that I don’t want Kagara to be peaceful if you don’t do as I say. Even if I die, nobody will come into Kagara.”

He also berated governors, who said they should not be paid ransom.

He added, “Governors are saying we should not be given money because we are going to use it to buy guns; guns that Allah provides and you are boasting about.

Niger won’t know peace until it disbands vigilantes, abductor vows

“In all of your (Niger State) madness, you are not up to Zamfara. It was compelled to accept our terms and talk less of small fries like you. You see, if you want to seek peace, seek peace and if you don’t stop the activities of vigilantes in Niger you will not know peace forever.”

“Your deploying security officials in Kagara is a waste of time. Is there a fence in this forest? You know we are not in the cities, we are in the forest.”

Appealing to the bandit further, the negotiator stated, “I pray that you assist me the way Allah has helped you. In fact, one of the parents has been on admission in hospital since the abduction.”

Gumi, in an interview with one of our correspondents, said efforts were being intensified to identify the group holding the victims.

He said he had an audio recording of a conversation between the abductors and a top official of the school.

Gumi stated, “There is a crisis really. The abductor is saying he cannot feed the victims and he’s demanding money. He’s saying the money (they are offering) is too small for him.”

Asked on what happened to the negotiation between the bandits and the government, the cleric said, “There was never any negotiation. The bandits we met said they knew the group that took the bus (which carried the victims), but they did not know the ones who took the children. They said they would investigate and call us.”

Efforts to get the state government’s reaction to the audio recording on the negotiation did not succeed as the Commissioner for Information, Sani Idris, did not pick calls to his telephone nor responded to an SMS sent to him.

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Five People Arrested Over The Death Of Four Officers In Calabar | Akahi News

Five People Arrested Over The Death Of Four Officers In Calabar

The Cross River State Commissioner of police, Sikiru Akande has revealed that 5 persons were now in their custody following the killing of four police officers in the early hours of Thursday along with MCC -Idungdung road, Etab Ayip axis, Calabar Municipality Local Government Area.

Akande who also confirmed the incident in his office to Journalists said that the four policemen on mufti were killed and that five persons have been arrested already in connection with the tragic killing.

He said:” Their target is to dampen our spirit. But we are resolute and we are going to strike back at them. It is often said, he who laughs last laughs best; Let Cross River People wait for that last laugh. It will make us happier.”

“We have arrested five persons who are connected with the development. We will still arrest more. We had an inkling that it is a group of suspected cultists that are working hard to get weapons for their initiation that is coming up very soon. So, in four days maximum, we will get all of those involve in this dastardly act,” Akande said.

Speaking further, Akande that the Police has recovered some of the weapons that were taken at the spot.

He also revealed that the checkpoint that was attacked was not known to the State Police command headquarters.

His words: “If it was known to us we would have found a way of giving them cover. That checkpoint is not this Command’s arrangement. If you were there you will see that they were in mufti.”

“By God’s Grace, we will get all our guns back. It is only the lives we will not get back. For the names of the officers, we have to inform the family first before making the names public.

“I want to assure you that our spirit is not dampened. In fact, we are going to continue to work very hard after the incident,” Akande assured.

Vanguard learned that two guns were carted away by the gunmen while two were also recovered by the police.

Source:- Vanguard

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Trump begs Facebook to restore suspended accounts – P.M. News

Donald Trump appeals to Facebook

By Abankula

Former U.S. President Donald Trump has appealed his suspension by social media giant Facebook, both on Facebook and Instagram.

Trump lodged the appeal with Facebook Oversight Board, co-chaired by former Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt.

But, his appeal will not be considered, until about 10 weeks time.

Trump was suspended indefinitely by Facebook in January, following his serial breaching of the platform’s rules. Twitter banned him permanently.

He was then posting falsehoods that he won the 3 November 2020 election by a landslide, whereas the truth was that he lost by a landslide.

Some of the posts also supported the insurrectionists who stormed the U.S. Capitol on 6 January, for which he was impeached by the House of Representatives.

“We can confirm that a user statement has been received in the case before the Oversight Board concerning President Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts,” a spokesperson for the Oversight Board said in a statement.

‘We have decided that we are going to take this case,’ Thorning-Schmidt said on Tuesday in an interview with UK’s Channel Four.

‘It’s a very high profile case but that is exactly why the Oversight Board was created in the first place.’

She added that they are inviting public feedback on the case for them to look at and they have ‘already received public comments in the thousands and thousands’.

‘One thing I think is quite good about how we deal with these things is not only does Facebook have a statement about why they did what they did. The user can also put in their statement about their opinion,’ she said.

‘A third thing that can happen is that we are open for public comments about this particular case. We’ve already received public comments in the thousands and thousands.’

Facebook announced in January that it asked the Oversight Board to review its decision to suspend Trump on Jan. 7, the day after a group of the president’s supporters stormed the Capitol.

The Trump ban is the most consequential case yet for the Oversight Board, carrying far-reaching political implications for the nation.

Facebook’s Oversight Board launched last year to review the toughest calls the company makes. It is supposed to function as an independent entity but gets financial backing and technical support from Facebook.

The Oversight Board has 90 days to make a decision, but a ruling is expected more quickly. Its decision is binding and cannot be overruled by CEO Mark Zuckerberg or any other Facebook executive.

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Facebook Pledges $1 Bn In News Investments Over 3 Years | How Africa News

Facebook on Wednesday pledged to invest at least $1 billion to support journalism over the next three years as the social media giant defended its handling of a dispute with Australia over payments to media organizations.

Nick Clegg, head of global affairs, said in a statement that the company stands ready to support news media while reiterating its concerns over mandated payments.

“Facebook is more than willing to partner with news publishers,” Clegg said after Facebook restored news links as part of a compromise with Australian officials.

“We absolutely recognize quality journalism is at the heart of how open societies function — informing and empowering citizens and holding the powerful to account.”

Facebook and Google have both devoted money to supporting journalism in the past, citing its critical role in democracies.

Clegg defended the California titan in a blog post titled “The Real Story of What Happened With News on Facebook in Australia.”

The social media platform came under fire after it blanked out the pages of media outlets for Australian users and blocked them from sharing any news content, rather than submit to the proposed legislation.

Clegg contended in his post that at the heart of the controversy is a misunderstanding about the relationship between Facebook and news publishers.

News groups share their stories at the social network, or make them available for Facebook users to share with features such as buttons designed into websites, Clegg noted.

Facebook drove some 5.1 such “free referrals” to Australian news publishers last year, worth an estimated 407 million Australian dollars, according to Clegg.

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“The assertions — repeated widely in recent days — that Facebook steals or takes original journalism for its own benefit always were and remain false,” Clegg said.

“We neither take nor ask for the content for which we were being asked to pay a potentially exorbitant price.”

‘Erred’ enforcement

Clegg said that to comply with the law as originally proposed in Australia, “Facebook would have been forced to pay potentially unlimited amounts of money to multi-national media conglomerates under an arbitration system that deliberately misdescribes the relationship between publishers and Facebook.”

He maintained that in blacking out all news in the country, “we erred on the side of over-enforcement” and acknowledged that “some content was blocked inadvertently” before being restored.

After two decades of light-touch regulation, tech giants such as Google and Facebook are coming under increased government scrutiny.

In Australia, regulators have zeroed in on their online advertising dominance and its impact on struggling news media.

According to Australia’s competition watchdog, for every $100 spent on online advertising, Google captures $53, Facebook takes $28 and the rest is shared among others.

To level the playing field, Australia wants Google and Facebook to pay for using expensive-to-produce news content in their searches and feeds.

“It is understandable that some media conglomerates see Facebook as a potential source of money to make up for their losses, but does that mean they should be able to demand a blank check?” Clegg asked rhetorically.

“It’s like forcing car makers to fund radio stations because people might listen to them in the car — and letting the stations set the price.”

World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee recently warned that introducing the precedent of charging for links could open a Pandora’s Box of monetary claims that would break the internet.

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Ransom: Kagara schoolchildren’s abductors threaten to starve them to death

The abductors of 27 schoolchildren, 3 staff, and 12 family members at Government Science College (GSC), Kagara in Niger State have threatened to starve them to death if their ransom demands were not met.

Popular Islamic cleric, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, who has been involved in efforts to free the victims, made available an audio recording of one of the abductors issuing the threat on Wednesday, The Punch reported.

The audio recording was said to have been of one of the bandits negotiating with a top official of the school.

According to the conversation conducted in Hausa language, the bandit rejected the sum of N2.7 million ransom offered for the release of the 27 students.

“I don’t have food for them. If anybody dies among them, we will tell you where to go and pick the corpse.

“You know these children are hungry. I don’t have food to give them, only water if they are going to die, let them die,” the bandit said.

The negotiator however said it was difficult for him to get the telephone numbers of the parents of the abductees as requested by the abductors.

Responding, the bandit explained that despite heavy deployment of security forces in Kagara, they would not succeed in rescuing the victims.

The bandits said they would be difficult to catch because of a network of informants giving them information on the movement of the security forces.

“You think I don’t know what you people are doing? I can tell you how many security vehicles are in Kagara as we speak.

“It is with the help of the people of the city that intruders can overrun the city. Don’t you know that? The person who gave us this business is there among you. He is there with you. Wherever you go, he is watching you. If you want to do this deal, go ahead. From God we come and to him we will return

“Even if you put together the entire security forces of Nigeria in Kagara, I have eyes all over Kagara. Whichever step you take in Nigeria, I swear, I will know. You people are saying they should not pay us, that if they pay us, we will use to money to buy weapons. With whose money did we buy our weapons? If we don’t have weapons, you will just send security agents to kill us and take the children,” the bandit said.

The negotiator then informed the bandit that the parents of the abducted children have raised N2.7 million, amounting to N100,000 per student.

However, the bandit rejected the offer, saying that, “If I want Kagara to be in peace, it will be in peace. If it is not going to be in peace, it will go in pieces from here until Ilorin. If I die in this process, I have children that I have instructed that if I die that I don’t want Kagara to be peaceful if you don’t do as I say. Even if I die, nobody will come into Kagara.”

He further berated the governors that have advised against paying ransom to the bandits.

“Governors are saying we should not be given money because we are going to use it to buy guns; guns that Allah provides and you are boasting about.

“In all of your (Niger State) madness, you are not up to Zamfara. It was compelled to accept our terms and talk less of small fries like you. You see, if you want to seek peace, seek peace and if you don’t stop the activities of vigilantes in Niger you will not know peace forever.

“Your deploying security officials in Kagara is a waste of time. Is there a fence in this forest? You know we are not in the cities, we are in the forest,” the bandit boasted.

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We’ll Starve Kagara Abductees To Death If Our Demand Isn’t Met Quickly – Abductors

Abductors of the 27 students and 15 workers of Government Science College, Kagara, Niger State, have threatened to starve their victims to death if the ransom they are demanding is not paid as soon as possible.

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This was stated by one of the abductors in an audio recording made available by Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, a renowned Islamic scholar, to Punch on Wednesday.

In the audio recording, the abductor, who spoke in Hausa, was heard conversing with a negotiator from the school identified by Gumi rejected N2.7 million offered him as ransom for the abductees.

The bandit said: “I don’t have food for them. If anybody dies among them, we will tell you where to go and pick the corpse.

“You know these children are hungry. I don’t have food to give them, only water if they are going to die, let them die.”

The bandit also stated that he was aware that many security agents and vehicles had been deployed in Kagara, vowing they would not succeed in rescuing the abductees.

He revealed that the person who gave them the job to do was an insider, but declined to identify the person.

He also revealed that bandits had access to the city through the help of the locals of Kagara.

He said, “You think I don’t know what you people are doing? I can tell you how many security vehicles are in Kagara as we speak.

“It is with the help of the people of the city that intruders can overrun the city. Don’t you know that? The person who gave us this business is there among you. He is there with you. Wherever you go, he is watching you. If you want to do this deal, go ahead. From God we come and to him we will return

“Even if you put together the entire security forces of Nigeria in Kagara, I have eyes all over Kagara. Whichever step you take in Nigeria, I swear, I will know. You people are saying they should not pay us, that if they pay us, we will use to money to buy weapons. With whose money did we buy our weapons? If we don’t have weapons, you will just send security agents to kill us and take the children.”

During the conversation, the abductor threatened to unleash terror again on Kagara after rejecting the negotiator’s offer of N100,000 on each abductee.

He chided governors, who said they should not be paid a ransom, saying that the ransom will be used to buy guns, and vowed that there will not be peace in Niger until vigilantes are disbanded.

“If I want Kagara to be in peace, it will be in peace. If it is not going to be in peace, it will go in pieces from here until Ilorin. If I die in this process, I have children that I have instructed that if I die that I don’t want Kagara to be peaceful if you don’t do as I say. Even if I die, nobody will come into Kagara.

“Governors are saying we should not be given money because we are going to use it to buy guns; guns that Allah provides and you are boasting about.

“In all of your (Niger State) madness, you are not up to Zamfara. It was compelled to accept our terms and talk less of small fries like you. You see, if you want to seek peace, seek peace and if you don’t stop the activities of vigilantes in Niger you will not know peace forever.”

“Your deploying security officials in Kagara is a waste of time. Is there a fence in this forest? You know we are not in the cities, we are in the forest.”

“I pray that you assist me the way Allah has helped you. In fact, one of the parents has been on admission in hospital since the abduction,” the abductor said.

Speaking later to the newspaper, Gumi said efforts are being intensified to identify the group holding the victims.

He, however, clarified that there was never any negotiation between the bandits and the government.

He said: “There is a crisis really. The abductor is saying he cannot feed the victims and he’s demanding money. He’s saying the money (they are offering) is too small for him.”

“There was never any negotiation. The bandits we met said they knew the group that took the bus (which carried the victims), but they did not know the ones who took the children. They said they would investigate and call us.”

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Minna Bus Kidnap: Our close shave with death— Victims

By Wole Mosadomi

The victims of Minna kidnap saga bear nasty tales! And the tales are many and varied: Some can wrench the mind and melt stony hearts. As they breathed the air of freedom after nearly a week in captivity, they were indeed a pathetic sight.

With dusty heads and wrinkled visage, they could barely speak as all their energy had been sapped by the traumatic experience unleashed on them by their captors, popularly known as bandits.

They were on their way from Kontagora to Minna, the state capital when they were captured about two weeks ago and taken into the forest until ransom was negotiated and paid for their release.

Narrating their story, it is obvious that they may never forget their ordeal in a long while; it is a painful experience that may haunt them for the rest of their lives. Indeed, even after their release, these unfortunate victims of the Niger State Transport Authority, NSTA, are yet to comprehend the fate that befell them when their journey was abruptly terminated by gunmen who proceeded to inflict pain, tears and agony on them.

It was supposed to be another routine trip for the 60 passengers in the luxury bus that was to convey them to their destination. Made up of men, women and children, some of them were on their way to a wedding, while others were going for a burial.

There was no premonition that their journey would be ill-fated one.  But barely an hour later when they were close to the Zungeru Bridge, the evil men, all armed to the teeth, struck like demons from hell and ended their joy. They flooded the highway and forced the doors of the bus open and descended on the occupants. And that was the beginning of their misery.

The heartless bandits did not care about the nursing mothers and their babies as well as pregnant women among their victims. All in the bus were dealt with mercilessly and threatened with death if they failed to cooperate with them. One of them women lost her three months pregnancy in the process as she could hardly cope with the harsh conditions and brutality unleashed on them inside the bush.

Bitter experiences:  Most of the victims said they were convinced the bandits wanted to kill them on the third day of their captivity as the ransom they asked for failed to arrive. This was after the hoodlums had collected all the cash, phones and all other valuables they found on their victims.

One of them, Mohammed Ndagi, who is a civil servant with the state government, said: “We were a few metres to the Zungeru Bridge when the bandits jumped from the bush into the road and forced the driver to open the doors and marched us group by group into the bush.

We trekked for three days: “We trekked for several kilometres and they asked us to wait under a mango tree. They went back to escort others to the same spot. There were motorcycles already parked at a distance from the highway but the motorcycles were only used to ferry the women and children to their final destination, which was in the thick forest.

We the men were forced to trek several kilometres before getting to the designated spot. The journey took us three days, trekking day and night, though we were allowed to rest intermittently.

No water to drink for days:  “There was no food or water for the first three days and some of us nearly gave up the ghost as we were tired. They beat us mercilessly and inflicted serious injuries on us.

They almost killed me because of my Yoruba tribal marks—woman

A caterer, Mrs. Oyerinde, said she was engaged by the bereaved family to cook for the invited guests at the burial in Rijau. But that was not to be as she was kidnapped with others during the ill-fated journey. “The bandits separated us the women and children from the men and carried us on their waiting motorcycles batch by batch to their first stopover.

“For the men, they were made to trek the same long-distance along with some cows which the kidnappers had rustled from different villages. For the first day, there was no food or water and we slept on the rock in the very harsh weather.

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“Children were crying everywhere and nobody could give them any attention. The second day, we started another journey to another unknown destination as we were ferried on motorcycles while the men also trekked again.”

Mrs. Oyerinde said the bandits for the first time asked if they would want to take tea and that out of joy, most of them, including the men and children chorused loudly in affirmation, not knowing that their own tea was lashes of cane and that this led to severe beating by the bandits, with the men suffering the worst of it.

“They later served us cooked rice without pepper, seasoning or salt. Though each of us got portions of between one and two spoons we were happy because we were almost dying of hunger having not taken any food for days.

“Some of the women broke into uncontrollable weeping and mourning as the small quantity of rice could not go round. In my case, my tribal mark gave me out  as a Yoruba woman among the rest and they started threatening me with gun and I broke down, crying. They wanted to kill me because of my tribe and I lost hope at that point.”

My saddest days in life so far—Adamu

An immigration Officer,  Adamu,  in his own account,  described the unfortunate episode as the most traumatic and saddest days of his life as he was kidnapped along with three of his kids.

“We were ordered to cook by ourselves. We cooked only rice without the basic ingredients like salt and other form of seasoning. They only sprinkled it with drops of palm oil. For water, we were only provided a bottle for about 10 persons.

“The water was drawn from any available pond or stream. This is the same water they and their animals drink and we were also forced to take it and did not complain since there was no other option.

“For the children, they used to bring out a few pieces of Kulikuli and biscuits and share to them whenever they cried for food even though the quantity was not enough to satisfy them.”

Pointing to his three kids, Adamu was overcome with emotions as he said: “If not for God, my life and that of these my children would have been wasted, leaving my wife and the last kid at home alone.”

The post Minna Bus Kidnap: Our close shave with death— Victims appeared first on Vanguard News.

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Jigawa: Gov Badaru assents law prescribing death sentence for rapists, kidnappers – Daily Post Nigeria

The National Industrial Court, sitting in Ibadan, has upheld the election of Mr Soji Amosu as the duly elected Chairman of Ogun State chapter of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ).

Also, the court, in suit number NICN/IB/85/2019, affirmed the election of Kunle Olayeni as the Vice Chairman, Kunle Ewuoso as the Secretary and Abiodun Taiwo as the Assistant Secretary of the NUJ in Ogun.

DAILY POST reports that the union had been enmeshed in crisis over the election conducted in 2019.

A faction of the union in Ogun State had petitioned the National Chairman of the NUJ, Chris Iziguzo, complaining about the conduct of the election.

Consequent upon this, the NUJ President had dissolved the leadership of the state council by annulling the election of the applicants, saying it was not in line with Article 5, Paragraph 10 of the union’s constitution.

But Amosu and his colleagues dragged the NUJ before the National Industrial Court to challenge the dissolution of the union’s leadership in Ogun State.

In his judgement on Wednesday, the presiding judge, Justice J. D. Peters, said the annulment of the claimant’s March 29, 2019 election was illegal, stressing that it was and against the NUJ constitution.

Justice Peters also granted seven out of the eight reliefs sought by the claimants, while awarding a cost of N200,000 against the defendants.

The court ruled that the meeting held by the NUJ National Working Committee, where the purported annulment of the claimants’ election was done was illegal, null and void.

“This court found merit in seven out of the eight prayers of the claimants, and I hereby rule that the annulment of their election is null and void,” the judge declared.

While alluding to the fact that the National Working Committee of the union has the constitutional power to act on complaints arising from an election within 21 days, it said that “the Central Working Committee did not take the steps required until after 37 clear days from the date of the election complained of.”

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Air Force plane crash: Sen Olujimi sad about Olawumi’s death, other personnel, demand probe – Daily Post Nigeria

The Senator representing Ekiti South at the National Assembly, Chief Biodun Olujimi has expressed shock and grief over the death of a Flight Sergeant, Olasunkanmi Olawumi and other six Nigerian Air Force personnel on board the crashed military aircraft.

Federal Commissioner in CCB, Ehiozuwa Johnson Agbonayinma disclosed this on Monday while speaking with journalists in Abuja.

Agbonayinma, who heads a subcommittee investigating the case, said it is not a witchhunt.

According to media reports, Akapabio allegedly offered bribe to the CCB officials to give a “soft landing” to Sole Administrator of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Mr Efiong Okon Akwa over discrepancies in his asset declaration form.

“We have been given a mandate by the bureau to investigate the allegation against some officials of CCB that we saw on social media. Let me be specific, one Mr Jackson Ude twitted, and it went viral, that money was given to some officials of CCB by Akpabio. Because of that, a committee to investigate the allegation was set up, with myself as the chairman,” he said.

“The committee is not to witch-hunt anyone but to do its job of defending the constitution of Nigeria.

“We invited Akpabio, who in his wisdom, came to give his side of the story. At the moment, we cannot pass judgement as the investigation is still in progress. All the accused parties remain innocent until the investigation is over,” he added.

South East Governors’ Forum, on Monday waded into the political clash between the governor of Imo State, Hope Uzodinma and former governor, Senator Rochas Okorocha.

Recall that governor Uzodinma was said to have ordered Okorocha’s arrest for unsealing Royal Palm Estate.

The South-east governors in a statement signed by their chairman and Governor of Ebonyi State, Chief David Umahi, assured the two political leaders of Imo State- Uzodinma and Okorocha of their preparedness to settle the disputes internally, instead of washing their dirty linen in the public.

The statement, which was forwarded to DAILY POST by the Special Adviser to governor Umahi on Media, Francis Nwaze reads in part: “The South-east Governors’ Forum sues for peace between governor Hope Uzodimma and former governor of Imo State Rochas Okorocha.

“Southeast Governors’ Forum has decided to wade into the impasse ensuing between Governor Hope Uzodimma and the former Governor of Imo State, Senator Rochas Okorocha.”

Governor Umahi said he had already made contacts with Uzodinma and Okorocha and asked them to cease fire, adding that the parties to the dispute had agreed for a truce.

The Forum further explained that the leaders of the Southeast were capable of settling their disputes internally instead of washing their linen in the public.

“We call for calm among the supporters of the two political heavyweights to ensure a timely and amicable resolution of the disagreement within the shortest possible time.

“We call on people of Imo State and the South East Zone to go about their normal businesses and shun provocative statements until normalcy is completely restored between the former Governor and his successor,” the forum stated.

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