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Electoral Act: Group writes US, demands visa ban on 80 senators

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A group, Democracy Vanguard of Nigeria in Diaspora (DVND) has written a letter to the United States of America through its Nigerian Ambassador Mary Beth Leonard, demanding a visa ban on all the senators who voted against the electronic transmission of election results in Nigeria.

The group in a statement issued Tuesday by its President, Timothy Sule, described the action as shameful, disdainful, and completely reprehensible, saying it smacks of a clear contempt for the Nigerian People.

It, therefore, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to withhold assent on any Electoral Act bill that failed to incorporate electronic voting, order of elections to start with Governorship and State Assemblies and then Presidential and National Assemblies.

It stated: “We call on the United States, the United Kingdom, the European Union, Canada, African Union and all ally countries to take urgent actions to nip this brewing conflagration in the bud before it consumes the nation and creates a massive refugee crisis in the world.

“In the meantime, we have attached names of all those legislators who played one role or the other in the suppression and undermining democracy in Nigeria for a visa ban. Their family members shall not be spared of the impending visa ban as well.

“This noble intention was vehemently and vigorously challenged by some legislators from a particular zone and political party. These unpatriotic elements eventually succeeded in throwing out such a noble intention into the abyss.”

The group therefore commended a few progressive opposition legislators in the Senate and the House of Representatives led by Senator Ehinanya Abaribe and Ndidi Elumelu respectively who stood for Nigeria when the occasion demanded.

It noted that those who exempted themselves from the chambers without a valid reason are equally reprimanded and condemned, adding that while those who were conspicuously absent are no better than those who shot the amendment down with their selfish and insensitive agenda.

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Police fined N15m for detaining seven Boko Haram suspects without trial

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A Federal High Court in Abuja has ordered the Nigerian Police Force to pay N15m fine to seven suspected members of Boko Haram over their unlawful detention for three years without trial.

The suspects who were said to have been arrested inside a Maiduguri market were allegedly dumped at the detention facility of the Special Anti-Robbery in Abuja.

The applicants are Ajiri Dungus, Gudja Giddah, Adam Mohammed, Wardi Dungus, Fanami Mustapha, Mohammed Abba and Makinka Dungus.

The court registrar was seen preparing a warrant for their release on Wednesday after the verdict.

Justice M. O. Olajuwon, in a judgment on their fundamental human rights enforcement suit, held that the detention of the detainees for three years without trial contravened the provisions of the 1999 constitution on human rights.

The Judge said the police acted in bad faith in keeping the detainees beyond the period required by law, especially when there was no cogent and verifiable ground of indictment of the applicants for any offence.

Justice Olajuwon consequently ordered that the seven applicants be released to their families.

The Judge ordered that each applicant be paid N2m as damages for their unlawful detention and another N10m as cost of litigation.

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Hoodlums hack Lagos NURTW boss at home, shoot him dead in hospital

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A leader of the National Union of Road Transport Workers in Lagos State, Kunle Ajibade, has been murdered by suspected hoodlums in Ijeshatedo, in the Surulere area of the state.

The assailants stabbed the 28-year-old at his house and trailed him to a hospital where he was receiving treatment.

They were said to have shot him multiple times.

The victim’s brother, Kehinde, who urged the police to investigate the killing, said his brother was being rushed to the Lagos University Teaching Hospital when he gave up on the way.

The circumstances surrounding Kunle’s death started during a celebration tagged Prosper Day.

The party held last Saturday on Ijikoyijo Street, Ijeshatedo, where Kunle was the vice-chairman of the NURTW.

Members of two rival gangs reportedly attended the party to also catch fun.

While one of the gang members was led by a man identified as My Son, the other gang was led by a transport worker identified as Kolom.

Kehinde said trouble started when one Malik, a member of Kolom’s gang, started misbehaving after drinking to a stupor around 10pm.

He claimed that Malik’s action infuriated members of the other gang, which led to a fight between the groups.

“Also in Ijesha, there is a group known as the Ultimate, led by one Alaka.

“During the fight, members of the Ultimate group supported My Son group.

“Kunle and some people tried to settle the fight. But Alaka became annoyed and engaged in a shouting match with my brother.

“One of Alaka’s boys, Jabi, even broke a bottle on my brother’s head, but we ensured that the matter was settled for peace to reign. The party ended and everyone went home,” Kehinde added.

He alleged that Alaka, however, led his gang to attack Kunle at midnight, adding that they stabbed him with different weapons, including machetes.

“I was asleep when my phone rang around 2am. I checked it and realised that it was my wife calling. I picked it, but my mother started speaking and she said I should go to Ijikoyijo Street because some people had used machetes to inflict serious wounds on Kunle.

“When I got there, I was told that they had taken my brother to a private hospital on Ogunmuyiwa Street. On my way there, I met his friends, who said while at the hospital, Alaka led his boys to attack the medical facility and shot my brother.

“They shot him in the hand, back and thigh. Even without the gunshots, the probability of him surviving the injuries he suffered during the attack with machetes was low. They cut his hand and head. I have Alaka’s voice recordings confirming that he attacked my brother.

“After the attack at the hospital, my brother’s friends rushed him to the Adetutu Hospital on Kosoko Street in Ijesha. My mum and I went to meet him there and decided to rush him to LUTH because the injuries were serious. We hired a tricycle, but he died on the way,” he added.

A video clip showing Kunle’s lifeless body in a tricycle was seen by our correspondent.

His left palm was severely cut; he was also hacked in the thigh, chest, back and laps.

Friends and family members were also heard lamenting the death.

The victim’s mother, Adeola, who demanded justice, said the case had been transferred from the Ijesha Police Station to the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Yaba.

She said, “My son died in my hands. He kept mentioning Alaka’s name till he died. After his death, I called Alaka and told him that he killed my son. While my son has been buried, Alaka is still around and has not been arrested. I want justice.”

Alaka, however, denied killing Kunle, adding that he spoke angrily to his mother because she accused him wrongly.

He said, “I am not the one that led the attack. Kunle’s mother is like a mother to me. When she called and accused me of attacking her son, because of the way she spoke, I got annoyed and talked to her rudely.

“I asked if she knew what her son did to me. I was shocked when I heard that Kunle was dead and I could not call her back again because of how I had spoken to her on the phone. His brother also called me and started cursing me and I became speechless.

“I never entered any hospital. Gang members from Itire came to the party. Kunle threw a bottle at me. I was even the one going to meet Malik who scattered the party. If I knew he had died, I would never have the guts to talk to his mother like that.”

Jimoh Buhari, a spokesperson for the Lagos State NURTW Chairman, Musiliu Akinsanya, aka MC Oluomo, said some members of the transport union go outside their scope of operation to engage in street fights.

He, however, promised to make findings on the case and get back to our correspondent.

He had yet to do so as of the time this report was filed.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, CSP Adekunle Ajisebutu, said he would get back to our correspondent after being briefed on the incident.

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Orji Kalu opens up on why Nnamdi Kanu’s lawyer, Ejiofor is angry over his visit to IPOB leader

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Senator Orji Uzor Kalu has responded to the claim by Barr. Ifeanyi Ejiofor, the lawyer to Nnamdi Kanu wherein the lawyer said that he (Kalu) violated the law by visiting the secessionist leader in jail.

Kalu said Ejiofor’s anger may be out of vexation that he was not around to listen to their conversations.

Ejiofor had issued a statement where he claimed that the lawmaker violated the court order by visiting his client in custody of the Department of State Services (DSS) in Abuja.

Kalu, a former Governor of Abia State and the Chief Whip of the Senate had Monday, visited Kanu, who is currently detained in the facility of the DSS.

Kalu said he is very disappointed with the lawyer, adding that Ejiofor was very much informed that he was scheduled to visit Kanu but claimed that he (Kalu] violated the guidelines stipulated for visiting his client.

He said that the public has been misinformed about his visit to the IPOB leader in DSS custody.

“I also read a report stating that I took pictures with Nnamdi and also tweeted same on my Twitter account,” Kalu said in a statement on Wednesday.

“For the records, the Department of State Services (DSS) did not break any protocol during my visit as I fulfilled all the requirements expected of me before I saw Nnamdi. The DSS affirmed that I cannot see Nnamdi without the application of his lawyers which I diligently did.

“Probably, Barrister Ejiofor may have expected me to arrive at 4pm for a scheduled 2pm visit. What many people refer to as ‘African time’ is not my style. I strictly keep to time and it is a discipline I have upheld since my childhood.

“I arrived the DSS headquarters at 1:50 PM; went through the necessary protocols and met Nnamdi at 2:17 PM. I stayed with him until 2: 57 PM. Even though he asked that I stayed longer but I had to leave because of other engagements.

“During my visit to Nnamdi, I did not even take my mobile phone along and no photograph was taken. The photograph people are circulating was the one I took with him when I visited him at the Nigerian Correctional Service Medial Security Custodial Centre, Kuje in 2016 and later, his parents in 2017. My Twitter account has also been inactive.

“I don’t also know if Barrister Ejiofor is aware that Nnamdi is not under compulsion to see anyone. If he didn’t want to see me, he could have as well declined, but he was glad to see me and also expressed deep appreciations.

“Ejiofor’s anger seems to be borne out of vexation of not being around to listen to our conversations.”

According to the Senator, Ejiofor is sounding like someone who is a beneficiary of the crisis going on in the South East, adding that men like the senior lawyer may not see the economic damage the region is going through because of the weekly sit-at-home.

Kalu said that Ejiofor should do well to consider the security, safety and wellbeing of the people, adding that there could be a peaceful protest without disruption of the economic activities and going violent.

The former Abia Governor called on the lawyer to be patriotic and rise above what he described as primordial and pecuniary interest and put the people first.

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