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Don’t bring Operation Crocodile Smile To South-West- Afenifere



Afenifere, Pan-Yoruba socio-cultural group, yesterday warned against militarization of Nigeria, saying it portended serious danger for the country.

The group called on the Federal Government to prevail on the military to halt its plan to launch Operation Crocodile Smile in the Southwest geopolitical region to tackle the Badoo gang.

It said the operation was unnecessary since the gang had been decimated by the combined efforts of the police and the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC).

Yinka Odumakin, who spoke on behalf of the group after its monthly meeting in Akure, Ondo state capital, said it was the duty of the police to handle such matter even if there was resurgence in the menace of the gang.

“We considered the recent announcement by the military to launch Operation Crocodile Smile in the South West region of the country after the Python Dance in the South East which has been largely condemned locally and internationally.

“They said the operation ostensibly is to confront the Badoo menace. The Badoo gang has been decimated by the Nigeria Police and the OPC in the area where it occurred.

“We insist that it is the duty of the police to deal with such matters without causing tension, invasion and harassment as it happened in the South East during Operation Crocodile Dance.

“The military has no duty in going after Badoo even if it comes back. We want the federal government to be careful at the spate at which it deploys solders all over the country.

“The other day, the Speaker of the House of Representatives lamented that 28 out of 36 states of the country are under one military operation or the other.

“The South west has been adjudged the most peaceful area of the country. To now bring military here is to say that the entire country is not safe,” the group said.

Afenifere warned that frequent deployment of soldiers would send a wrong signal to foreign investors and encourage the military to think of coming back to power.

It said: “More importantly, the federal government should be reminded that before the coup of 1966, this was how Balewa government started to transfer civil duty to military and the military now thought they could take over power themselves.”

Afenifere flayed Monday’s invasion of the palace of Olubadan of Ibadan by hoodlums, describing it as a direct attack on the sacred institution of Obas in the Yoruba land.

The group called on the government of Oyo state to immediately lead the effort to get the perpetrators and ensure that they are punished to serve as a deterrent to others .

It also expressed worry over the conflict between Ondo and Osun states which had seen a commissioner attacked in Ondo state and a retaliatory attack on the Sunshine football club in Ogun state.

“We see this as a brewing crisis that must be nipped in the bud. We can only know the beginning of a development like this, nobody can predict the end.

“We don’t want war between the two states in the South west and therefore call on the two governors to quickly meet and nip the crisis in the bud as it may escalate beyond what we are saying,” Afenifere said.

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DHQ clarifies identities of arrested Owo church attack suspects



Irabor Orders Troops to Smoke Out Unrepentant Bandits

The Defence Headquarters Wednesday gave details of the suspects arrested in connection with the June 5 attack on St. Francis Catholic Church Owo in Ondo State.

The Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Lucky Irabor, had on Tuesday during a parley with media executives and editors revealed the names of the terrorists who masterminded the Owo attack.

Director, Defence Information, Maj.-Gen. Jimmy Akpor, in a statement yesterday, said the clarification became necessary because of the conflicting feedback on the earlier announcement.

Akpor said Irabor had confirmed the arrest of four suspects through the collaborative efforts of the military and DSS personnel at Eika, in Okehi Local Government Area, Kogi on Aug. 1.

“Those arrested included Idris Abdulmalik Omeiza (a.k.a Bin Malik), Momoh Otohu Abubakar, Aliyu Yusuf Itopa and Auwal”

“The Defence Chief said, preliminary investigation revealed that Idris Abdulmalik Omeiza was the mastermind of the terror attack on the Owo Catholic Church.

“As well as the attack on a Police Station in Adavi Local Government Area, Kogi State on 23 June 2022, during which a policeman was killed and weapons carted away,” he said.

Akpor said Irabor also mentioned the arrest of another terrorist, Idris Ojo, aged 32, who was apprehended at Ayetoro Osi, Ondo State through the combined effort of military and DSS personnel on August 7. 

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Muslim-Muslim Ticket: Pope not against my appointment as DG of Tinubu’s campaign – Lalong



Director-General of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential Campaign Organization, Simon Lalong, says he will not resign as the party DG campaign organisation.

Mr Lalong said that even Pope is not opposed to his appointment

Mr Lalong, who is also the Governor of Plateau, an ardent Catholic, said the Pope had not told him that accepting to lead the Muslim-Muslim APC presidential ticket was against the tenets of Christianity.

Some groups had staged rallies in Abuja, calling on Mr Lalong to reject the offer to serve as the DG of APC presidential campaign organisation.

However, the governor said he would not reject his new appointment just to satisfy the wishes of certain individuals or groups.

”The Pope is not angry with my decision to be the DG of the Muslim-Muslim presidential campaign.

“I came back home and Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) welcomed me at the airport.

”The next day I addressed stakeholders of Plateau and I told them why I’m accepting and then there was jubilation, all of them accepted.

“So, if you see people talking about me rejecting, I have already accepted – is not an issue. Some of them have already keyed into it – I’m a Christian. If you watch my TVC interview I saw, I was born a Catholic, baptized a catholic, confirmed a catholic.

“Today, I went through missionary schools. I was taught by missions that I respect my being a Christian.

“I have been given the highest award by the Pope, I still hold that award – the highest Papal Award, I want people to know, Knight of Saint Gregory the Great, I have it and one day if you want I will wear my uniform and come here. So those who are talking about it I don’t even know where they are.

“I hold a Papal Knight and as a catholic everything we do, we do it and send the advice to the Pope.

“The Pope has not told me that what I’m doing (to accept Director General) is bad – As a catholic, we take that direction.

“But, generally as a governor of a State, I’m not responsible to only my faith. I’m responsible to other people who belong to other faiths, who are not even Muslims or Christians’’

He urged Nigerians to grow up from ethnic or religious sentiments.

Mr Lalong said that he had already accepted the job and there was nothing anybody could do to dissuade him from performing his responsibilities.

Mr Lalong said he was in the Presidential Villa to thank President Muhammadu Buhari for approving the University of Jos as a national cancer centre as well as granting presidential pardon to the former Governor of the state, Joshua Dariye.

According to him, the people of the state will remain grateful to the president for delivering a lot of democratic dividends to the State.

“My visit to the President is to come and show him appreciation because of what he has done for Plateau State in the last few months.

”Just a week or two ago, we just got approval to make the University of Jos a Cancer Centre.

“I saw over N3 billion approved for the institution as a special centre for cancer. So, it’s not a small achievement.

“Recently, the President approved the establishment of an orthopaedic hospital in Jos, Plateau; the only one in North-Central.

“He also approved the establishment of a Federal Medical Centre in Wase. Another one is the Federal Polytechnic Shendam, which is almost starting this year in October to be precise.

“The president has also approved the conversion of the Federal College of Education, Pankshin, to a Federal University of Education and immediately approved the establishment of another Federal college of Education in the State.

“We were just celebrating that one then we also heard of the establishment of a Zonal campus of the Nigerian Law School for North-Central in Jos.

“We cannot have all these achievements and not come and show appreciation to the President,” he said. 

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PHOTOS: Oluwo of Iwo visits Olubadan



The Oluwo of Iwoland, Oba Abdulrosheed Adewale Akanbi, on Wednesday visited Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Olalekan Balogun Okunmade Alliwo II.

Oluwo said his visit was symbolic as he has a maternally relationship with the Alliwo Lineage, the source of Olubadan.

Oba Akanbi is maternally related to the Alliwo Compound where he was said to have lived for many years.

Oba Akanbi described the visit as a friendly father and son meeting.

He prayed for a successful reign for Oba Olalekan Balogun Okunmade

Here are pictures of the visit:

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