Herdsmen attacks in Benue: defend yourselves if attacked – Ortom; Redeploy police officers to states of origin – Senate; I will not tolerate barbaric attacks from herdsmen – Buhari; IBB’s spokesman sues police, media houses for ₦1 billion; How the police got into IBB-Afegbua controversy; Buhari reinstates NHIS boss under probe for alleged ₦919m fraud; Buhari, come out clean on herdsmen activities – PDP; Benue Governor Ortom is a ‘Drowning Man’ – Police Spokesman; Fulani herdsmen allegedly invade Ondo community; Redeploy police officers to states of origin – Senate; Buhari picks Tinubu to resolve APC squabbles; EFCC’s turnaround on CCT chairman is suspicious – Saraki; Buhari orders security operatives to mop up Illegal Arms . . .
The Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, has called on the people of the state to defend themselves if attacked. The governor who spoke on a radio program titled, ‘Issue of the moment’ on Tuesday, said it was necessary for the people to defend themselves in order not to become easy preys. He said:
“I think the people should have the right to defend themselves and not to make themselves easy preys to be killed in their homes. So any lawful means you can adopt to defend yourself, just go ahead in Benue State. We are not going to wait for the Inspector-General of Police to do it.”
Ortom noted that in spite of the presence of policemen in the state, killings were still going on in two local government areas.
President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday urged victims of herdsmen attacks not to engage in reprisals. He reassured the people of the North central zone (middle belt), who are mostly at the receiving end of the attacks, that his administration would not tolerate such barbaric acts.
The President spoke while commissioning the Comprehensive Special School, Lafia, Nasarawa State. Buhari said that the Federal Government was working hard to ensure that peace and stability returned to the region. According to him, additional resources have been deployed to end the crisis and maintain law and order. The President said:
“I also want to assure the people of the North central and indeed all Nigerians that the Federal Government is working day night to ensure that peace and stability return. We have deployed additional resources to all the affected areas to maintain law and order.
The attacks by suspected herdsmen and other bandits will not be tolerated. I appeal to all Nigerians to refrain from reprisal attacks. The security agencies have standing order to arrest and prosecute any and all persons found with illegal arms. I will, once again, express my condolences and sympathy to all the affected victims of these barbaric acts.”
The media adviser to ex-military President of Nigeria, Gen. Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida Rtd.(IBB), Mr. Kassim Afegbua, who was declared wanted by the Nigerian Police, has sued for fundamental rights enforcement.
Afegbua is also requesting ₦1 billion in damages from the police, its spokesperson, Jimoh Moshood, and two media houses. Afegbua’s lawyer, Barr. Kayode Ajulo, filed the suit at the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court Tuesday afternoon.
The reliefs sought include an immediate end to the alleged harassment being meted against him by the police. Barr. Ajulo joined the National Television Authority (NTA) and Channels Television in the lawsuit for airing claims that Afegbua was a wanted man.
The media adviser to ex-military President of Nigeria, Gen. Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida Rtd.(IBB), Mr. Kassim Afegbua had released the statement in which IBB complained about President Muhammadu Buhari’s shortcomings and advised Nigerians on the path to the future.
Hours after the statement was released, a counter press release emerged that purportedly had IBB’s approval. IBB later said he authorised the statement distributed by Mr. Afegbua. The development immediately threw the public into confusion, and reports surfaced Sunday night that the Nigerian Police were looking for Mr. Afegbua.
Mr. Afegbua’s lawyer, Barr. Kayode Ajulo, on his client’s behalf asked the court to grant an order restraining the police from arresting their client. However, Barr. Ajulo restated that the restraining order would not mean that his client will not turn himself in at the police headquarters as scheduled for Wednesday. “If only to show them that our client is not on the run and that they were absolutely wrong to have declared him wanted,” Barr. Ajulo intoned.
President Muhammadu Buhari has recalled the Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme, Prof. Usman Yusuf, who was suspended by the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, on July 6, 2017. In a letter with reference number, ‘SH/COS/10/6/A/29’, signed by the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari, the President informed the minister of Yusuf’s recall, adding that he (Yusuf) had been “admonished to work harmoniously with the minister.”
Media reports say the letter made no mention of the probe Yusuf was facing at the EFCC. Yusuf, who is being probed by the EFCC and the ICPC was accused of perpetrating fraud to the tune of ₦919million. A committee set up by Prof. Adewole had submitted a probe report to the President last September accusing Yusuf of abuse of office.
In the report which was compiled by senior officials of the health ministry, the DSS and ICPC, the panel described Yusuf as a public servant who “portrayed a holier than thou attitude but at the background, milked the agency dry” by conniving with others to perpetrate fraud to the tune of over ₦919million. According to the panel, the N919million stash was dubiously given as payment to consultants for staff training.
The main opposition part, the PDP), has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to come out clean on the killing of Nigerians by Fulani herdsmen. The party said Buhari’s cold attitude towards the activities of the herdsmen in Benue, Taraba and other parts of the country is pregnant with meaning.
PDP National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, in a statement on Tuesday said:
“We strongly condemn unabated killings across the country. We call on Mr. President to come out clean on herdsmen killings and address the nation on how to end the carnage. The president must take responsibility on the protection of life and property, which is the most important of his responsibilities.
We believe that the federal government’s decision to set up a committee, to address issues of herdsmen killings, is a pretentious approach to a matter that requires firm action and leadership by the president, in line with his oath of office; to protect all Nigerians irrespective of creed, tribe and political affiliation . . .”
The public relations officer (PRO) of the Nigeria Police Force, Jimoh Moshood, described Samuel Ortom, governor of Benue state, as “a drowning man”. “It is a great disservice to the inspector-general of police and the entire Nigeria Police Force for the governor to call for his resignation, the governor should resign first,” Moshood said in a Channelstv program
“What he has said, the document presented to the senate is for action by the senate. And nobody can make any part or complete document public until the senate makes a decision on it and passes a resolution. “And that is why we felt you don’t join issues with a drowning man.”
But the chief press secretary of the governor, Mr. Terver Akasewho was also a guest on the program, protested, demanding that officer Moshood should withdraw his statement. Maupe Ogun, the Channelstv presenter, eventually restored calm after the heated argument which ensued.
People suspected to be Fulani herdsmen have invaded Akunnu-Akoko in Akoko North East LGA of Ondo State. This development reportedly caused anxiety and tension in the small sleepy town. This information comes as youths of the town protested the presence of herdsmen, calling on them to relocate.
Reports say the Fulani herdsmen, loaded in four trucks, arrived the community on Monday night. It was learnt that vigilantes patrolling the town in the night got wind of the development and reported to some community leaders.
The Chairman, Akunu Akoko Progressive Union, Mr. Tunde Bayode said, upon interrogation,the Fulani men confessed that they left Iseyin in Oyo state for Akunu following an invitation by one of them identified as Doya Bello who lives in Akunu-Akoko.
Mr. Bayode who condemned the development said the people of the town now live in palpable fear as they are no longer secure with the invasion by the Fulanis, alleging that “this may be an attempt to engage our land in Fulani colony as proposed by the federal government.”
The Senate on Tuesday called for the redeployment of policemen between the ranks of Constable and Inspectorate cadres to their states of origin to address rising insecurity in the country. The resolution followed a motion by Sen. Ademola Adeleke (PDP, Osun) on the need to post junior cadre of the Nigeria Police Force to their states and local government areas to enhance community policing.
Consequently, the Senate summoned the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Ibrahim Idris to appear before the Committee on Police Affairs chaired by Senator Abu Ibrahim (APC) to suggest ways to actualize the resolution.
Adeleke said “There have been calls for the creation of state police in order to proffer a lasting solution to the perennial security challenges due to the ineffectiveness or outright bias of the Nigerian Police Force in carrying out their national assignment.” He said disconnect between the Nigerian Police and various communities with diverse cultural values and orientation, created a vacuum that needed to be filled through community policing.
President Muhammadu Buhari has chosen the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, to lead reconciliation efforts within the party.
The development is part of ongoing moves to improve cohesion within the APC, said a statement by Buhari’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, yesterday.
The task will involve resolving disagreements among the party’s members, leadership and political office holders in some states of the federation.
The President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki, questioned the sudden turnaround by the EFCC over its decision to file corruption charges against the CCT Chairman Justice Danladi Umar, after the EFCC had cleared him of corruption allegations in April 2016. In a post on his Facebook page, Saraki said:
“You will recall that in April 2016, when our lawyers asked the tribunal chairman to recuse himself from our case because of the criminal investigation against him, the EFCC swiftly cleared Mr. Umar of any wrongdoing.
Now, I find it amusing that in a dramatic turnaround, this same EFCC now thinks that Mr. Umar has a case to answer just before the commencement of my case before him . . .I really wonder whether those who genuinely love this government appreciate the damage that all this is doing to our so-called ‘War Against Corruption’. However, in all of this, my confidence in the judiciary and its ability to do justice in all cases remains unshaken.”
President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday ordered security agencies to mop up illegal arms in the country, especially in Nasarawa and Benue States. Speaking during a one-day official visit to Nasarawa State, Buhari directed the police to arrest and prosecute the perpetrators of attacks by herdsmen and other bandits, saying it will not be tolerated by his administration.The president who was in Lafia, the Nasarawa State capital, to commission some projects executed by Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura said:
“I want to assure the people of North Central and indeed all Nigerians that the federal government is working day and night to ensure that peace and stability returns. We have deployed additional resources to all affected areas to maintain law and order.
“The attacks by suspected herdsmen and bandits will not be tolerated. I appeal to Nigerians to refrain from reprisal attacks. The security agencies have been instructed to arrest and prosecute all persons found with illegal arms.”