2019: Buhari Reappoints Amaechi Campaign DG For Presidential Run; Petrol can’t sell for ₦145/litre – independent marketers; Gunmen abduct traditional ruler, The Agwam Akulu, Bishop Kukah’s brother; 17 killed by the gunmen in Rivers; Prof. Sagay slams Buhari’s critics over dead appointees; Nigerian Army partners with Innoson Motors; Governor Ortom sheds tears as gunmen kill 20, injure 30; Boko Haram leader Shekau appears in new video; Traditional Ruler And His Pregnant Wife Killed By Gunmen In Kaduna; Fulani/farmers crisis: 3,000 flee homes in Nasarawa . . .
President Muhammadu Buhari may have decided to seek re-election in 2019. Reports monitored via ThisDay say the president may have reappointed his Minister of Transportation and former governor of Rivers State, Hon. Rotimi Amaechi, as the Director-General of his 2019 presidential election campaign.
Amaechi, who led Buhari’s campaign in 2015, has been issued a letter of appointment for next year’s election and would make an official announcement on his appointment anytime soon. Buhari was said to have confirmed his intention to run strictly to the “Buharists”, a group of loyalists formed by Amaechi and comprises governors of the APC, ministers, party chieftains and some prominent Nigerians, all of whom share the ideals of the group.
The Depot and Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria yesterday insisted that its members can no longer import and sell petrol at ₦145 per litre. On behalf of President Muhammadu Buhari, his Chief of Staff, Malam Abba Kyari, met with major stakeholders in the oil sector, at the Old Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
DAPMAN Chairman Dapo Abiodun told State House reporters late that there was no subsidy on petrol at the moment. He said for the price to remain ₦145/litre, the government had to find other ways to manage the situation as marketers could no longer import and sell at ₦145.
“There is no subsidy at the moment. The government in its wisdom has decided that the N145 cap will remain because of what they consider will be consequences on Nigerians.
This is a government of the people and they believe Nigerians should not be made to buy fuel for more than ₦145. So if that is to remain then we have to find other ways to manage the situation so that we will continue to sell fuel at ₦145.
Yohanna Kukah, a traditional ruler in Zangon Kataf local government area of Kaduna state, has been abducted. The monarch, The ‘Agwam Akulu,’ is the younger brother of the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto diocese Bishop Matthew Kukah.
Reports say the unidentified attackers struck in Anchuna, village of the traditional ruler, arrived at his private residence aprrox. 9pm. They shot sporadically and ordered him to come out. One of his guards, who reportedly attempted to foil the attack, was also kidnapped.
Waziri Ashafa, a community leader, who confirmed the incident said the gunmen drove away with the traditional ruler and his guard. The Kaduna state police command has not confirmed the attack at the time of publishing this report. The incident comes less than 48 hours after a monarch and his pregnant wife were shot dead in the same Kaduna state.
There was horror on the New Year’s Day when killings in Omoku, Rivers State occurred. It was a tragic New Year when unknown gunmen killed no fewer than 17 persons at Omoku, headquarters of Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni local government area of Rivers State. Rivers state Governor Nyesom Wike visited the community where the killings took place. Wike was told that 17 people were killed by the unidentified gunmen.
Wike announced N200 million reward for information that could lead to the arrest of the unknown killers, saying anybody connected to the killings would have his property forfeited to the government.
The governor also commiserated with the families of the deceased. He said the government would support them in burying their loved ones, promising that his administration would settle the medical bills of the injured. Wike said: “I am pained by this unfortunate mayhem. Enough is enough.”
Sagay told newsmen on New Year 2018 Day:
“What I find irritating is the so-called outrage by the Nigerian elite that in a list of almost 3,000 people nominated for various agencies, five or six had died. And there is a general pretense by the Nigerian elite. . . that it shows incompetence . . . I ask myself: a list that has been under compilation for over two years, revised and re-revised, do they expect that about 3,000 people would all still be alive after two years?
If not, do they expect the Presidency to go knocking from door to door 24 hours before the announcement to ask who was dead or alive, or to ask if they would survive until the announcement? Are they supposed to have done that? So, the whole thing is extremely unreasonable”
— Prof. Itse Sagay, Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC)
Innoson Motors has entered into a partnership with the Nigerian Army to modify of some of its equipment, produce armoured fighting vehicles and other military hardware. To formalise the deal, Chief Innocent Chukwuma, chairman of the Innoson Grup, on Tuesday led his team to the army headquarters in Abuja to meet with Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, chief of army staff. The partnership comes on the heels of the satisfactory performance of three Innoson vehicles deployed in the embattled north-eastern region.
According to Buratai, the army decided to partner with Innoson Motors in order to encourage local entrepreneurs in Nigeria. Buratai said:
“The Nigerian army, being patriotic, and in a bid to encourage local entrepreneurs asked Innoson Motors to supply three vehicles early last year which were found to be durable. They were deployed in combat and proved to be useful, comfortable and convenient in military operations.
Based on that the Nigerian Army acquired over 70 more variants of the Innoson vehicles which were deployed in the north-east for Operation LAFIYA DOLE. The Nigerian Army desires to deepen its cooperation by partnering with Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company Limited to conceptualize, design, modify and produce military hardware.”
Responding, Chief Chukwuma expressed happiness that the army had endorsed his vehicles, commended Buratai for his “great sense of patriotism”. He promised to assist the army in its quest for better vehicles for its troops and resuscitation of its special vehicle plant and workshops. The highlight of the occasion was the inspection and handing over of three of the newly manufactured vehicles by the company to the army for trial. The vehicles are IVM G80 Bigger Jeep, IVM G40 Smaller Jeep and IVM Granite Pickup.
No fewer than 20 people were killed and 30 others, including children, injured, by gunmen suspected to be herdsmen. They attacked villagers in the Middle Belt state. Governor Samuel Ortom (photo: below) wept when he saw the magnitude of the attack during his visit yesterday to the Benue State University, Makurdi where the bodies were kept in a morgue.
Ortom spoke to reporters after a security meeting and confirmed the casualty figure. The attack occurred between Monday and Tuesday in Guma and Logo local government areas. According to him, nine of the dead were livestock guards – the enforcers of the anti-open grazing law. Their patrol van was set ablaze.
The law is to check the herdsmen, who have been killing people. Its implementation has started despite protests by Miyetti Allah, an organisation of Fulani herdsmen. Ortom said the law was not targetted at any ethnic group and wondered why the herdsmen had taken it so personal to the point of unleashing terror on the people.
Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau released a video message on Tuesday claiming a series of attacks in northeast Nigeria during the festive season:
“We are in good health and nothing has happened to us,” said Shekau in the 31-minute video message spoken in the Hausa language common across northern Nigeria. Nigerian troops, police and those creating mischief against us can’t do anything against us, and you will gain nothing.
We carried out the attacks in Maiduguri, in Gamboru, in Damboa. We carried out all these attacks.
Suspected gunmen killed a traditional ruler and his wife in Kaduna in an early morning attack on Monday January 1, 2018, around 12:05am. The traditional ruler, Gambo Makama, the Etum Numana, and his wife were said to have been killed in Arak, his hometown in Sanga local government area of Kaduna state, around 12:05 am.
The assailants reportedly broke into Makama’s residence and opened fire on three persons. The third identified as the son of the traditional ruler. The traditional ruler and his wife were killed on the spot, while his son was taken to the hospital. It was learnt that the chief had left his palace in Gwantu, headquarters of Sanga local government, to celebrate the New Year.
The gunmen fled into the bush after the attack. Some officers at the divisional police station in Gwantu confirmed the killings.
Thousands of Tiv farmers of Nasarawa extraction deserted their homes, following attacks on some communities in neigbouring Benue State, by gunmen suspected to be Fulani herdsmen. The affected farmers who deserted Boutsa, Demekaa, Ayoosu, among other villages in Keana Local Government Area of the state, for fear of being attacked by the rampaging herdsmen, are currently taking refuge at Keana South Primary School.
President of Tiv Youth Organisation in Nasarawa State, Mr. Peter Ahemba, while addressing the displaced Tiv people in Keana, regretted the untold hardship been experienced by his kinsmen as a result of the unfortunate incident. He pointed out that the harassment of Tiv people from Nasarawa, by herdsmen, as a result of the implementation of the anti-open grazing law by Benue State government must not be allowed to continue as Tiv people have nothing to do with enacted laws in Benue. “Since the implementation of the anti-open grazing law by Benue state government, the herdsmen have continued to harass our people here in Nasarawa, as if we are party to the decision of Benue.”