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Buhari to attend ECOWAS meeting

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President Muhammadu Buhari will participate in the 59th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government in Accra, Ghana on Saturday, June 19, 2021, Presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu disclosed in a press statement. 

The President, who will depart Abuja on Saturday, will join other Heads of State of Government of ECOWAS for the mid-year statutory meeting of the regional bloc, with the exception of Mali, which was recently suspended from the group.

Former President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria, ECOWAS Special Envoy and Mediator to Mali, is expected to present a report on his latest working visit to the West African country to the Summit of the Heads of State.

The Heads of State and Government will also receive a report on ECOWAS institutional reforms, single currency programmes and a memorandum on the proposed mechanism of rotation of ECOWAS Member States’ candidature to the Chairmanship of the African Union.

A communiqué will be issued at the end of the Summit.  

The 59th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Heads of State and Government was preceded by the 46th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Mediation and Security Council (MSC) at the Ministerial Level and the 86th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Council of Ministers, in Accra, Ghana.

The MSC, comprising of Ministers responsible for defence and foreign affairs from ECOWAS Member States, considered the security situation in the ECOWAS Region, among other topical issues on the agenda while the 86th Ordinary Session considered a memorandum on the post Covid-19 industry recovery plan, the 2021 mid-term report of the President of the ECOWAS Commission and the ongoing institutional reforms at ECOWAS, among others.

President Buhari will be accompanied by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyema, Minister of State, Foreign Affairs, Zubairu Dada, Minister of Defence, Maj. General Bashir Magashi (Rtd), Minister of  Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, the National Security Adviser, Maj. General Babagana Monguno  (Rtd), Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele and the Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ambassador Ahmed Rufa’i Abubakar.

The President is expected back in Abuja at the end of the Summit.


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NSCDC dismisses viral video on ‘bandit personnel’

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The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) has dismissed a viral video purporting that a member of the corps confessed to being a bandit.

The suspected bandit, Mr Abdullah Saidu, in the viral video called himself personnel of the Corps.

This is contained in a statement issued by the NSCDC Spokesperson, Mr Olusola Odumosu, in Abuja.

Newsmen report that Saidu was arrested in connection to a group of armed bandits terrorising some parts of Koton Karfe Local Government Area of Kogi.

The spokesperson said that the NSCDC has set up a team to investigate the available records to confirm the authenticity of Saidu’s claims that he was the corps personnel.

“The general public shall be adequately briefed on subsequent findings.“Based on the aforementioned, the purported video where the alleged suspect openly confessed to the crime did not in any way give credence to or affirm his membership to the Corps.

“Experience has shown that criminals are fond of impersonating security operatives in order to divert attention, subvert investigation or get away with the crime,” he said.

Odumosu further noted that the NSCDC was saddled with the responsibility of protecting lives and property amongst others.

“The Corps will not in any way condone any saboteur of national security or sponsorship of criminals.”He reiterated the Corps’ zeal to discharge its statutory mandates without compromise but with humility and integrity.

He said the NSCDC will continue to synergise with sister agencies to combat crimes in the country.

Source: (NAN)


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Federal government to incorporate NNPC board in six months

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President Muhammadu Buhari
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President Muhammadu Buhari said on Sunday he had appointed a board for the NNPC and directed that it should be incorporated within six months, a move that could allow it to sell shares in the future.

The President signed the petroleum bill into law last month which has been in the works for nearly two decades, aiming to overhaul the sector and turn the state-owned oil company into a private firm.

The new oil law requires NNPC to be incorporated within six months, Buhari said in a statement, appointing Ifeanyi Ararume as NNPC chairman and its current Chief Executive Mele Kyari to lead the firm.

Kyari has said NNPC could consider an initial public offering (IPO) within three years. The incorporation could pave the way for NNPC to sell shares.

Buhari said last month that NNPC made its first profit in 44 years in 2020.

Source:(Global World News)


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Kogi: Gunmen invade church, kill one worshipper, abduct two

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Gunmen invaded a church in Kabba, Kogi, on Sunday, killed one person and abducted two worshippers.

The church located at Okedayo Area on Kabba-Okene Road was invaded at about 10.15 a.m. as the day’s worship went underway.

Police’s spokesman in Kogi, William Aya, confirmed the incident.

He described the invasion as unfortunate, saying that the police would go after the perpetrators and ensure that they face justice.

Kayode Akanbi, a worshipper who was present when the gunmen arrived, said service was barely underway when the incident happened.

Mr Akanbi told newsmen on the phone that the gunmen, numbering six, were armed with guns and cutlasses and did not mask up.

“We were trying to commence the normal service.

“We just started the call to worship and I was interpreting the pastor’s message when suddenly the gunmen entered from the main entrance and raised their guns.

“They shot sporadically and everybody started scampering to safety.

According to Mr Akanbi, two of the oldest members were abducted and taken away by the gunmen.

He said also that the gunmen killed a 45-year-old worshipper in the process, adding that the spouse of one of the two abducted worshippers and another male worshipper sustained gunshot injuries.

Mr Akanbi said police later visited the scene to take the dead to the mortuary at the General Hospital, Kabba while the two injured persons were taken to Lokoja for treatment.

Newsmen recall that the Nigeria Correctional Service facility in Kabba was invaded by yet to be identified gunmen in the late hours of Sunday, 12 September

During that invasion, 240 inmates were forcefully released by the gunmen while 114 have so far been rearrested.

Source: (NAN)


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