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2023: Disquiet as 12 PDP govs back northern President

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Ahead of its October 30 and 31 national elective convention, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, appears to have chosen to pick its National Chairman and 2023 presidential candidate from the South and North respectively.

Although, the zoning committee chaired by Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State failed to make a categorical statement on the distribution of offices in the National Working Committee when it met in Enugu last week, it is expected to do so when it converges on Wednesday this week.

12 out of the 13 governors elected on the platform of the party, it was learnt, have unanimously endorsed the retention of the National Chairman in the South. Thus, despite the exit of suspended Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus, the office will remain in the South, with the South-West tipped to produce the next Chairman.

Retaining the Chairman in the South automatically makes the North the preferred zone for the presidential ticket in 2023.

However, that Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State had done everything possible to prevail on the Ugwuanyi, committee to throw the race for the national chairmanship open to all zones.

His argument was premised on the notion that good, capable hands to steer the affairs of the party abound everywhere in the country. Wike had further argued that zoning any of the party offices may deny PDP the opportunity of having the best man for the job at the helm at Wadata.

Were this to have scaled through, the party would have been left with no option but to similarly throw open the presidential ticket to all party leaders regardless of their states of origin.

Plausible as the reasons he advanced were, the Rivers governor soon realized that he was a lone ranger as his colleagues faulted his stand and opted for a Chairman of southern extraction.

A national officer of the party, who joined hands with Wike in the clamour for Secondus’ removal, noted that the governors chose to back out of Wike’s ship because it is “more of personal interest than for the good of the party.”

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, the official said contrary to the argument of Wike, “his colleague governors are aware that he has his eyes fixed on the 2023 presidency. He knows that a southern chairman will make it difficult for the PDP to have a presidential candidate from the South. So, he wasn’t asking that the race be thrown open for no reason.

He wants to vie for the highest elective office in 2023 but I think it is clear to him now that the PDP cannot oblige his dream for now. The governors are of the opinion that if the ruling party is going South, it must head in the opposite direction to seize the moment,” he said.

A PDP governor from the North-East, this medium gathered, had argued convincingly in one of their meetings in Abuja recently on the danger of fielding a southern presidential candidate in 2023. He was said to have told his colleagues and other party faithful that a good number of northerners in the ruling party would vote the PDP if it fields a northern candidate as the APC is expected to field a southerner. The meeting attended by all the PDP governors lay to rest the possibility of zoning the presidency away from the North.

Although, the source noted that Wike has not completely ruled out his presidential ambition, he is now ready to team up with his colleagues to have the chairmanship retained in the South provided the South-South and South-East are excluded. This position was well received by the zoning committee’s meeting in Enugu last week.

“Wike, alongside the Oyo Governor Seyi Makinde wants to see Chief Olagunsoye Oyinlola as the next PDP Chairman. They are not alone in this. Ab initio, Wike knew that his pro-South presidency on the platform of the PDP is difficult to sell just as having a northerner as PDP Chairman is.”

The alternative choice is that yes, the South can have the chairmanship provided it is not going the way of the South-South. He won’t back the South-East for the position either because his long-time friend, Oyinlola, is interested in the office,” he added.

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Man puts self up for sale in Kano

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Aliyu Na Idris, a 26-year-old man from Kaduna State, has become a social media sensation for putting himself up for sale in Kano.

Idris, who claimed to be a tailor, has been roaming the streets of Kano State carrying a placard that reads “This man is for sale for N20 million.”

It was gathered that the young man has been on the streets for five days looking for who will buy him.

He said he had decided to sell himself due to hardship.

He said his family was aware that he had offered himself for sale, adding that he had initially presented himself for sale in Kaduna but when he could not get a serious buyer, he decided to try Kano State with the hope that someone will pay the required price.

“Even though many people have offered me various prices of N10m, N5m and N300,000 in Kano, I refused because the amount is less than what I expected,” he said.

The young man said he was operating a tailoring business which failed due to the financial crisis and as such, he lost his customers and became financially handicapped.

He explained that he had no money to survive, not to talk of investing in another business, hence, he decided to present himself for sale at N20m only.

When asked what he intends to do with the money, he said, “I will give my parents N10m; I will give N5m as tax to the state where I was bought, the person who helped in advertising me will be rewarded with N2m while the remaining N3m will be kept for me under the care of the person who buys me for my daily upkeep.”

He further stated that he knows that he would lose his freedom after being purchased but he’s not worried as he has made up his mind to do the bidding of his master.

He said if nobody buys him in Kano, he would move to another state to sell himself.

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NCC alerts Nigerians to deadly FluBot malware targeting bank accounts

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The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) yesterday raised the alarm about what it described as an extremely damaging malware called “FluBot” which attacks Android mobile banking applications.

According to the NCC, Flubot “impersonates Android mobile banking applications to draw fake web view on targeted applications and its goal transcends stealing personal data and essentially targets stealing of credit card details or online banking credentials.”

Malware is a generic word used to describe a virus or software designed specifically to disrupt, damage, or gain unauthorised access to a computer system.

“According to the information received today (Thursday), October 21, 2021, from the Nigeria Computer Emergency Response Team (ngCERT), Flubot targets Androids with fake security updates and App installations,” NCC’s Director of Public Affairs, Ikechukwu Adinde, said in a statement issued yesterday.

NCC explained that FluBot “is circulated through SMS and can snoop on incoming notifications, initiate calls, read or write SMSes, and transmit the victim’s contact list to its control centre.”
NCC said the malware “attacks Android devices by pretending to be FedEx, DHL, Correos, and Chrome applications,” and compels unsuspecting users to alter the accessibility configurations on their devices to maintain continuous presence on devices.

The statement adds: “The new malware undermines the security of devices by copying fake login screens of prominent banks, and the moment the users enter their login details on the fake pages, their data is harvested and transmitted to the malware operators’ control point from where the data is exploited by intercepting banking-related One Time Passwords (OTPs) and replacing the default SMS app on the targeted Android device.

“Consequently, it secures admittance into the device through SMS and proceeds to transmit similar messages to other contacts that may be on the device it has attacked enticing them into downloading the fake app.
“It suffices to say that, when Flubot infects a device, it can result in incalculable financial losses.
“Additionally, the malware creates a backdoor which grants access to the user’s device, thus enabling the invader or attacker to perform other criminal actions, including launching other variants of malware.”
The NCC subsequently issued an advisory to protect telecoms consumers from falling victim.

The guidelines listed by the commission are: “Do not click on the link if you receive a suspicious text message, and do not install any app or security update the page asks you to install; use updated antivirus software that detects and prevents malware infections; apply critical patches to the system and application; use strong passwords and enable Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) over logins and back up your data regularly.”
Others are: “If you have been affected by this campaign, you should reset your device to factory mode as soon as possible. This will delete any data on your phone, including personal data; do not restore from backups created after installing the app; you will also need to change the passwords to all of your online accounts, with urgency, around your online bank accounts; If you have concerns that your accounts may have been accessed by unauthorised people, contact your bank immediately.”

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Gunmen attack Abolongo correctional facility in Oyo, set prisoners free

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Suspected gunmen have attacked one of the facilities of the Nigeria Correctional Service (NCS), in Oyo State.

It was gathered that the facility, christened Abolongo correctional facility was attacked by the gunmen Friday evening.

It was further gathered that the gunmen set all the prisoners at the facility free during the attack.

The attackers were said to have stormed the facility at about 10pm on Friday.

The attackers used grenades to gain access and set prisoners free.

Spokesman for the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCS) in the state, Olanrewaju Anjorin confirmed the attack on Saturday.

Anjorin said that the senior officers of the agency were on their way to assess the level of damage.

He said, “Yes. It has been confirmed that the attack actually happened.

“And right now, the comptroller of Nigerian Correctional Service (NCS) and other top officers are assessing the situation.

“But, I can confirm to you that the incident actually happened”.

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