The Police in Nsukka on Saturday arrested two men in masquerade costume in Ovoko Community, Nsukka LGA, Enugu State, for allegedly beating up a passenger on a commercial motorcycle and robbing him of N57,000.
The incident happened on the Nsukka/Oballo-Afor highway.
A police source said policemen moved to the scene when the victim, Mr. Chinonso Ezewaji, reported the matter to Nsukka Police Area command and the two men were arrested.
“The escorts of the masquerade however ran away.
“There were eight masquerades. They blocked the Nsukka/Obollo-Afor road and harassed people.
“The two arrested masquerades however denied collecting the N57,000 from Ezewaji but claimed they know the person who collected the money from the victim.
“When we searched one of the arrested masquerade, we saw Indian hemp in his pocket,” the police source said.
When contacted, Public Relations Officer, Enugu State Police Command, Mr. Ebere Amarizu, confirmed the incident, saying investigation had commenced on the matter.
He urged communities to regulate and monitor those who wear masquerade costumes, adding that some of them used the opportunity to harass, intimidate and rob innocent members of the public.
“The Police are not against the people practising their tradition and culture but community leaders must know the character of people they allow to wear costumes of masquerade in the name of culture.
“A masquerade has no right to mount road block on busy highways where motorists, motorcyclists and other road users move on daily basis.
“The police have commenced investigation and will get to the root of this matter as issues of masquerade disturbing people have become a recurring decimal,” Amarizu said.
The victim, Ezewaji, a trader, who deals on clothing materials, told the News Agency of Nigeria he was on his way from Nsukka to Obollo-Afor to see his mother when the masquerade stopped the motorcycle he was riding on.
“They beat me, searched me and collected N57,000.
“When they left, I ran into the bush and when I discovered they have gone some distance, I came out and went to the police to report.
The two masquerades identified themselves as Kenchukwu Eze, a carpenter, and Ejiofor Eze, a brick-layer.
They, however, denied the allegation that they stole money from Ezewaji
They claimed that their colleague, Chima Mamah, stole the money.
Eze, however, admitted that the police saw Indian hemp in his pocket, saying it was the leftover of what they smoked before coming out.
“If the police release me, I will not wear masquerade costume, nor smoke Indian hemp again,” he pleaded.
NAHCON screens 7 airlines for 2022 hajj
The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has commenced the screening of airlines that would participate in the airlift of the pilgrims.
No fewer than seven airlines have indicated an interest in the airlift.
They are Azman Air, Med-View Airline, Max Air, FlyNas, Skypower Express, Westlink Airlines and Arik Air.
Out of the seven airlines, six are domestic operators while FlyNas is a Saudi based airline.
It was gathered that the screening exercise would be a verification of the documents of the interested carriers that turned up in 2020 following the call from NAHCON.
The airlines were already screened in 2020 before the Hajj exercise was cancelled due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“They are using the 2020 template but we were only asked to validate our documents,” one of the airlines participating in the verification exercise confirms to our correspondent.
It was not clear yet if NAHCON would apply the same rule which would give over 50 per cent of the traffic to Saudi Airlines which stakeholders in the aviation sector have consistently kicked against.
When contacted, the NAHCON spokesperson, Hajia Fatima Sanda Usara, confirmed that there was an arrangement in place to use the 2020 screening exercise.
She said the screening committee had just been inaugurated to verify the documents of the Air carriers.
Deborah Samuel: Adeboye postpones RCCG crusade in Sokoto
Pastor Enoch Adeboye has postponed the crusade scheduled to hold in Sokoto following the tension over Deborah Samuel’s murder.
The deceased was a 200-level Home Economics student of the Shehu Shagari College of Education.
Last Thursday, she was beaten, stoned and burnt by Muslim youths who accused her of blasphemy.
In a Facebook post Monday night, Adeboye announced the shift of the planned religious event which now holds virtually.
The Redeemed Christan Church of God (RCCG) General Overseer, however, noted that God is able to fix all situations.
Adeboye, who conveyed his message in parable, quoted Richard Halverson, the late American Presbyterian minister who served as United States Senate chaplain.
Halverson had said intercession is the universal work for Christians and that no continent, nation, city, office nor power can stop prayers.
“Postponed but God turned it around. We Trust In Our God’s Big Picture Plan!”, Adeboye wrote.
The Christian leader insisted believers serve a God who specialises in using the impossible situation for His glory.
Adeboye noted that if in doubt, they should look closely at the death and resurrection of Jesus.
“Devil thought he killed Him, but His death and resurrection resulted into life for many. He keeps turning it around for our good. It is in this might that we proceed”, he added.
Deborah Samuel: Gov Tambuwal relaxes curfew
Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State government has relaxed the 24-hour curfew he imposed on the state capital following violent protest over the arrest of some youths allegedly involved in the killing Deborah Samuel, a 200-level student.
Tambuwal in a statement issued by his Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Isah Bajini, said the revised curfew will now be from dusk to dawn in Sokoto township.
The statement noted that “Sequel to the briefing by the security heads in the State, the State Governor, Rt Hon Aminu Waziri Tambuwal has ordered the relaxation of the 24-hour curfew in force in Sokoto metropolis
“The revised curfew will now be from dusk to dawn in Sokoto township. This is with a view to affording people the window to pursue their legitimate businesses and other means of livelihood.”
Recall that following the lynching of the 200-level student for allegedly insulting Prophet Mohammed, the State’s police command arrested some persons linked to the incident.
However, a large number of Muslim boys who were angered by the arrest, stormed the streets in the State on Saturday, demanding the release of the suspects.
The development, which triggered tension in several parts of the State, made the Governor to impose the curfew.
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- Deborah Samuel: Adeboye postpones RCCG crusade in Sokoto
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