President Muhammadu Buhari on Sunday said the unity of the country would not be open to any negotiation.
The President, in its first statement to Nigerians since he returned to Nigeria after a 104-day medical vacation in London, added that political mischief makers who were fuelling ethnic violence would be dealt with.
Buhari, who said he was not against legitimate concerns, noted that different groups must air their grievances and work out a mode of co-existence.
“The National Assembly and the National Council of State are the legitimate and appropriate bodies for national discourse,” he added.
The President said he had been monitoring developments in Nigeria from London, adding that some comments, especially on the social media, crossed the national red line by questioning the nation’s continued existence.
Apparently making a reference to the recent quit notice to people of Igbo extraction by some northern youths, Buhari said “every Nigerian has the right to live and pursue his business anywhere in Nigeria without let or hindrance.”
He said terrorists and criminals must be fought and destroyed relentlessly so that the majority of Nigerians could live in peace and safety.
The President said his administration would reinforce and reinvigorate the fight against elements of Boko Haram, which he said, were attempting a new series of attacks on soft targets.
The speech read in part, “I am very grateful to God and to all Nigerians for their prayers. I am pleased to be back on home soil among my brothers and sisters.
In the course of my stay in the United Kingdom, I have been kept in daily touch with events at home. Nigerians are robust and lively in discussing their affairs, but I was distressed to notice that some of the comments, especially in the social media have crossed our national red lines by daring to question our collective existence as a nation. This is a step too far.
In 2003 after I joined partisan politics, the late Chief Emeka Ojukwu came and stayed as my guest in my hometown Daura. Over two days we discussed in great depth till late into the night and analyzed the problems of Nigeria. We both came to the conclusion that the country must remain one and united.
Nigeria’s unity is settled and not negotiable. We shall not allow irresponsible elements to start trouble and when things get bad they run away and saddle others with the responsibility of bringing back order, if necessary with their blood.
Every Nigerian has the right to live and pursue his business anywhere in Nigeria without let or hindrance.
I believe the very vast majority of Nigerians share this view.
This is not to deny that there are legitimate concerns. Every group has a grievance. But the beauty and attraction of a federation is that it allows different groups to air their grievances and work out a mode of co-existence.
The National Assembly and the National Council of State are the legitimate and appropriate bodies for national discourse.
The national consensus is that, it is better to live together than to live apart.
Furthermore, I am charging the Security Agencies not to let the successes achieved in the last 18 months be a sign to relax.
Terrorists and criminals must be fought and destroyed relentlessly so that the majority of us can live in peace and safety.
Therefore we are going to reinforce and reinvigorate the fight not only against; elements of Boko Haram which are attempting a new series of attacks on soft targets, kidnappings, farmers versus herdsmen clashes; in addition to ethnic violence fuelled by political mischief makers. We shall tackle them all.
Finally, dear Nigerians, our collective interest now is to eschew petty differences and come together to face common challenges of; economic security, political evolution and integration; as well as lasting peace among all Nigerians.
I remain resolutely committed to ensuring that these goals are achieved and maintained. I am so glad to be home.”
Army withholds salaries of 45 soldiers in Borno
Authorities of the 7 Division Nigerian Army, Maiduguri, have withheld the salaries of 45 soldiers, according to sources.
The soldiers, who were among the 149 troops of the 153 Task Force Battalion withdrawn from Marte, Borno State, after spending three years in counterinsurgency operations, were accused of for abandoning their duty posts.
The battalion came under attack on three occasions during which several soldiers were killed while a range of weapons, equipment and vehicles were either carted away or destroyed.
The battalion was overhauled after the last attack in February.
A source said necessary changes were made and troops who served with the battalion were moved to different formations in Maiduguri before a new deployment was made.
“Some of the soldiers who were not seen at their new units were believed to have gone on AWOL (Absence Without Leave). Their salaries accounts were not credited in April,” he said.
But one of the affected soldiers said the allegation of desertion against them was untrue.
“We were not given our salaries and when we asked our supervisors in the 7 Division, we were shocked to hear that we had forfeited all our entitlements over desertion.”
Attempts to get the response of army authorities were not successful.
EFCC goes after top officials of PDP over N10bn scandal
The Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) has invited officials of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) for questioning over alleged criminal conspiracy, abuse of office, diversion of funds and fraud.
This is coming barely a month after a chieftain in the PDP, Kazeem Afegbua, petitioned the anti-graft agency to scrutinise the Secondus-led National Working Committee on financial misappropriation.
In the letter of invitation dated May 17, 2021, and addressed to the Prince Uche Secondus, the EFCC said the need to obtain certain clarification from the party has become imperative.
The agency, however, requested the party’s National chairman to release the National Auditor, National Organising Secretary and Director of Finance to report at the EFCC headquarters from May 19th to 21st 2021.
The agency also requested the national officers to honor the invitation with relevant documents relating to sole of forms into the party’s elective positions from January 2017 to date.
Kazeem had in his petition alleged that much of the financial transactions of the PDP under Prince Uche Secondus has been shrouded in mystery, accusing the leadership of deliberate attempt to shortchange the party in the build up to the 2023 general elections.
However, Secondus had since denied the allegation and filed a N1 billion suit against the petitioner, Kazeem Afegbua.
Nigeria’s drug control agency approves new COVID-19 vaccine
The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), has granted approval for the conditional emergency use of Janssen COVID-19 vaccine in Nigeria.
Janssen COVID-19 vaccine is the third vaccine recommended for administration in the country.
The director-general of NAFDAC, Prof. Mojiola Adeyeye, in a statement on Tuesday, said information on the vaccine shows it met the criteria for efficacy, safety and quality.
She said, “The Janssen COVID-19 vaccine is administered as a single dose. Results from a clinical trial involving people in the United States, South Africa and Latin American countries found that Janssen COVID-19 vaccine was effective at preventing COVID-19 in people from 18 years of age.
“The Phase III clinical trial involved over 44,000 people. Half received a single dose of the vaccine and half were given placebo (a dummy injection). People did not know if they had been given Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine or placebo.
According to her, the trial showed a 67 per cent reduction in the number of symptomatic COVID-19 cases after two weeks in people who received Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine.
The most commonly reported side effects were pain at the injection site, headache, fatigue, muscle aches and nausea. Most of these side effects were mild to moderate in severity and lasted 1-2 days.
On the vaccine safety, Adeyeye said NAFDAC, in line with its pharmacovigilance and safety monitoring plan for COVID-19 vaccines, will closely monitor and subject the Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine to several activities that apply specifically to COVID-19 vaccines.
The AstraZeneca vaccine which Nigeria has been giving out has garnered many sceptics internationally after some recipients of the vaccine died.
At least 16 countries including Germany, France and Sweden have suspended the use of AstraZeneca, which put on the Nigerian government to suspend it.
- APC considers Badaru, Umahi, Akeredolu, five other Govs as Presidential Campaign Directors
- Tobi Amusan wins 100m hurdles gold
- Senators move to drop impeachment threat against Buhari
- Ligue 1: What PSG coach said about Messi after bicycle goal against Clermont
- Britney Spears slams ex-husband Kevin Federline’s hurtfulll comments about their children in emotional reply
NEWS20 hours ago
JUST IN: Police arrest wanted suspected cultist, Rasidi Oko-Ilu in Osun
NEWS1 day ago
Faces at Daisy Danjuma’s 70th birthday in Lagos
NEWS1 day ago
Fayose feels ‘great’ after back surgery in secret hospital overseas
POLITICS2 days ago
Adeleke forged certificates, Oyetola tells tribunal
CELEBRITIES2 days ago
Kim Kardashian and Pete Davidson break up after nine months
NEWS1 day ago
Melaye bombs Keyamo for rating Obi above Atiku, challenges him to a debate
SPORTS1 day ago
Ronaldo finally gets Champions League club as another defender set to leave Old Trafford
CELEBRITIES2 days ago
Khloé Kardashian, Tristan Thompson welcome baby boy via surrogate