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Sultan urges Ban to help recover looted funds

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The Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar has admonished the United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, to assist Nigeria to recover its stolen money that were stashed in foreign countries.

The monarch stated that the millions of dollars stolen from Nigeria were needed for development of the country, pleading with the UN to assist with the recovery of the loot.

Speaking at a dialogue on democracy, human rights, development, climate change and countering violent extremism, hosted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Abuja and chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on Monday, Abubakar assured that the looted fund would be used by the Federal Government for the benefit of the people, if recovered.

He said, “My final appeal, Mr. Secretary-General, you are here in our country because you believe in Nigeria, because you believe in the present government, I would like to request you, how can you use your office to bring back all the money stolen from this country, and stashed in foreign banks?

“I believe in Mr. President when he said corruption is the worst human rights abuse in the world, I sincerely believe in what he said because corruption is the foundation of all bad governance, and all religious crimes being committed across the world.

“If we have corruption checked, we can’t eradicate corruption, but we can reduce it to the barest minimum, and if the money stolen and the countries know that these money did not belong to these people because they have not worked for such amount of money in millions of dollars, please see how you can help to bring this money back, it would be used for the benefit of the people.  if you bring this money back, it will be used for the benefit of the people, please help us to bring this money back.”

The Sultan’s appeal elicited a loud applause from the audience and a supporting quip from the Catholic Archbishop of Abuja, Cardinal John Onayeikan, who said, “It is not only our money they should bring back, but also our girls.”

Abubakar also challenged the UN on the crisis in the Middle-East, which he said had been raging for ages, noting that political leaders had failed their people by not taking decisive action when necessary.

According to him, the two main religions, Islam and Christianity have no problems, but individual Muslims and Christians, adding that extremists are using religions to cause problems across the world.

Ban Ki Moon in his address stated that he was in Nigeria to visit President Muhammadu Buhari and to ensure strong UN partnership with the country.

The UN scribe also challenged African ambassadors among the audience to recommend to their countries, strong cooperation with Nigeria and the global body.

He stated that the UN has the ambition of ensuring sustainable development goals of ensuring gender parity, ending hunger and poverty and combating corruption by 2030.

The Secretary-General stressed the importance of tackling climate change, noting that sustainable development goals may not be realised without addressing the phenomenon.

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DHQ clarifies identities of arrested Owo church attack suspects

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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

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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

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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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