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Daily Archives: April 5, 2019

Another Nigerian caught with cocaine in Saudia Arabia, days after execution of Kudirat Afolabi

Saheed Sobade, a Nigerian, has reportedly been nabbed with 1,183 grams of cocaine powder in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Abike Dabiri-Erewa, senior special assistant to the president on foreign affairs and diaspora, made this known while speaking at a programme on Arise Television on Friday.

This comes a few days after Saudi authorities executed Kudirat Afolabi, another Nigerian, for drug-related offences.

“I have bad news for you. Just yesterday, in the midst of the cacophony of 20 to be killed, eight have been killed, another Nigerian was caught with cocaine in Jeddah,” Dabiri-Erewa said.

“He was caught with 1,183 grams of cocaine powder. As he was arrested, the mission was informed and his name is Saheed Ayinde Sobade.”

On Thursday, the federal government condemned the execution of Afolabi — a widow and mother of two — who was executed on April 1.

The ministry of foreign affairs said the Saudi authorities did not inform the Nigerian mission in Saudi Arabia of the arrest and prosecution of the deceased Nigerian.

Dabiri-Arewa added that the Saudi authorities do not spare any country when it comes to drugs.

However, she called for fair trial, and also appealed to Nigerians back home not to “tribalise crime, no matter what.”

“It’s a sad commentary that at this point in our lives we are tribalising crime. Crime is crime. We should not debase the green passport,” she said.

“We should not allow a few bad eggs to spoil the bond. The Dubai thing was all over the places. We saw the faces released to the public; only the eyes were covered and also the names.

“So, there’s no reason why it will not be mentioned. However, for the Saudi incident, the woman that was executed, we have to tell the family first before making an announcement. So after informing the family, the minister for foreign affairs issued a statement stating her name, Kudirat Adesola Afolabi, a lady and a mother of two.”

Police launch Operation Puff Adder, to battle bandits, kidnappers

Criminals in Nigeria were served notice Friday to abandon their nefarious deeds as the Inspector General of Police M.A Adamu launched a security action plan tagged ‘Operation Puff Adder’.

The Operation will be executed in collaboration with the Nigerian Armed Forces and the Department of State Services (DSS).

It involves massive deployment of well-trained, well-equipped and well-motivated personnel and combined operational assets from the various security agencies, is tailored towards ridding the Country of all forms of crimes and criminality.

Under prime focus are Kaduna – Abuja Expressway, Kogi, Katsina, Niger and Zamfara States.

During the launch which took place at katari Bishin District, Abuja – Kaduna Expressway, Acting IGP Adamu appealed for public support.

He said no Police Agency anywhere in the world, no matter how well-trained, equipped or motivated, can solely achieve its community security and safety mandate without the support of the community.

He called for the full support and cooperation of the civil populace, particularly, traditional rulers, religious leaders, youth associations, market bodies, cultural associations and professionals among others in the fight against criminals especially kidnappers, armed robbers, cattle rustlers amongst others.

The IGP also made a special appeal to drivers, commuters and indeed all citizens that may come in contact with Police officers deployed for the Operation to cooperate with them and show understanding in the interest of public safety.

The IGP however, sounded a note of warning to persons who engage in criminal activities, especially along the Abuja – kaduna Expressway, to give-up their nefarious activities and embrace other legitimate means of livelihood or be prepared to face the full consequences of their actions.

The representative of the Village Head of katari, Bishin District, Kaduna State, Gambo G. Gambo commended the IGP for the launch of ‘Operation Puff Adder’ in the area.

Gambo noted that the operation has already begun to yield positive results with the arrest of five (5) armed criminals in the area on 4th April, 2019.

He thanked the IGP and enjoined the officers deployed to the area to ‘‘do good to the good and do bad to the bad’’.

UAE clarifies: No change in visa policy for Nigerian visitors

The United Arab Emirates(UAE) Embassy in Abuja said the country’s visa policy has not changed, debunking  reports  in the media that it has suspended issuing three-month visa to Nigerian visitors.

An embassy source clarified that the 90-day or 60-day visa is not meant for tourists, but it is issued only to those going to the country for business.

Tourists, the official said, are entitled to 14-day visa.

The Embassy on Thursday on its Twitter handle @UAEEmbassyNGR said; “In the light of the press report published this morning (Thursday 4/4/2019) alleging that the United Arab Emirates has suspended issuing tourist Visa to Nigerian nationals, the United Arab Emirates Embassy in Abuja would like to announce these news are inaccurate and stresses the importance of sourcing news from its official channel”.

A tourist and travel company, Afric Holidays had triggered the misinformation, that went viral that the UAE had rejected requests by Nigerian passport holders for 90-day and 60-day  visa.

“Nigerian Passport holders are no longer eligible to three months UAE Tourist Visa.

“Nigerian Passport holders are now restricted to one month, 96 hours and 48 hours UAE Tourist Visas till further notice,” the firm said.

The five Nigerians arrested in Dubai for robbing a bureau de change. They were identified as Chimuanya Emmanuel Ozoh, Benjamin Nwachukwu Ajah, Kingsley Ikenna Ngoka, Tochukwu Leonard Alisi and Chile Micah Ndunagu

The company made the claim in an Instagram post, coinciding with another report of five Nigerians arrested for robbing a Bureau de Change in Sharjai Dubai.

But the embassy official told the News Agency of Nigeria that there was no truth in the story.

On Friday, Afric Holidays did a recant of some sort:

“We will like to thank the UAE Embassy in Abuja for re-affirming and wading into the recent Nigerian Passport and UAE Visa Application Rejections from Authorised parties both on and offline. With this new public information, we will be able to assist all our Dubai Family Summer groups and urge them to send in their 90 and 60 days Dubai Summer visa requests”.

The travel company further advised visa applicants to screenshot the UAE embassy clarification and attach to their requests.

Some Nigerians in Twitter posts had claimed they also encountered difficulties while trying to apply for UAE visa, online and blamed the arrested Nigerians for their ordeal.

Dubai police this week announced the arrest of five Nigerians for robbing a Bureau de Change operator of Dh2.3 million (N225.4 million) in Sharjai, Dubai.

The suspects were identified as Chimuanya Emmanuel Ozoh, Benjamin Nwachukwu Ajah, Kingsley Ikenna Ngoka, Tochukwu Leonard Alisi and Chile Micah Ndunagu.

Khaleej Times reporting the heist, said the five Nigerians barged into the BDC on March 20 and smashed the glass barrier between the customers and the staff, stole the money in multiple currencies and fled.

Two employees at the exchange were injured as they resisted the robbers. One of them managed to notify the police. The Sharjah Police coordinated with forces from Abu Dhabi, Ras Al Khaimah and Ajman to nab the suspects from four emirates within 48 hours after the robbery was committed.

The incident was reported at Al Ansari Exchange in Al Tawoon area. A top police official said the suspects came to the UAE on visit visas on March 18.

For two days, they studied the exchange office before deciding to commit the robbery around midnight – just before the shop was to close. On March 20, four suspects stormed into the exchange office, while one waited in a car outside. After the four suspects rushed out with the money, they fled in a car.

Major-General Saif Al Zeri Al Shamsi, Commander-in-Chief of the Sharjah Police, said the whole amount has been recovered.

“The police team reached the site within seven minutes after the robbery was reported. The injured staff members were rushed to the hospital, where they were discharged the next day,” the officer said.

The police lifted forensic evidence from the site and formed a team to crack the case. “Arrest warrants for the suspects were circulated at all ports of the country to prevent them from leaving.”

The police retrieved the number plate of the car in which the suspects fled.

Following this lead, they arrested one of the suspects in Sharjah. This suspect led the police to the others – two in Ajman, one in Abu Dhabi and one in Ras Al Khaimah.

The suspects, who confessed to the crime, have been referred to the public prosecution.

Police arrest killers of LUTH doctor

The Lagos state police command says it has arrested two persons over the death of Stephen Urueye, a medical officer at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Idi Araba.

Urueye, who graduated from the University of Lagos on Tuesday, was stabbed to death near LUTH on Thursday.

His assailants were said to have seized his personal belongings after inflicting him with serious injuries.

Elkana Bala, public relations officer (PRO) of the command, told TheCable that two suspects identified as Gbadebo Jimoh and Malik Adeboye, were arrested on Friday.

He said men of the Itire division of the command arrested the duo and that they had been transferred to the state criminal investigation department, Yaba, for further interrogation.

Medical students of UNILAG had staged a protest on Friday, lamenting the high rate of insecurity and calling on the school authorities to act.

Meanwhile, the management of LUTH has called for calm.

Kelechi Otuneme, public relations officer of LUTH, said all efforts to resuscitate Urueye both at the accident and emergency ward and later at the intensive care unit failed.

“Members of top management and Specialist Consultants, including the Chief Medical Director were on the ground till late this morning when he passed on,” he said in a statement.

“The matter has since been reported to the police and investigation is ongoing. We implore all staff to be calm and refrain from speculative or inflammatory comments or statements and go about their lawful duties as investigation continues.

“Our heart goes out to his family, colleagues, friends and the LUTH community as we pray that God will comfort us all on this time of great mourning.”

Onnoghen resigns as CJN

Justice Walter Onnoghen has resigned as the chief justice of Nigeria (CJN) with immediate effect, according to a report by The Cable.

He turned in his resignation letter to President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday evening, a day after the National Judicial Council (NJC) recommended that he be compulsorily retired for misconduct.

By virtue of section 306 of the 1999 constitution, his resignation takes immediate effect.

Section 306 says “(1) Save as otherwise provided in this section, any person who is appointed, elected or otherwise selected to any office established by this Constitution may resign from that office by writing under his hand addressed to the authority or person by whom he was appointed, elected or selected. (2) The resignation of any person from any office established by this Constitution shall take effect when the writing signifying the resignation is received by the authority or person to whom it is addressed or by any person authorised by that authority or person to receive it.”

The resignation, TheCable understands, was the “best possible option” for Onnoghen under the current circumstance.

It will also save Buhari from having to get two-thirds majority of the senate to confirm Onnoghen’s retirement as stipulated in Section 292 (1) of the 1999 constitution which says a “judicial officer shall not be removed from his office or appointment before his age of retirement except in the following circumstances – (a) in the case of – (i) Chief Justice of Nigeria… by the President acting on an address supported by two-thirds majority of the Senate.”

Buhari may not be able to muster the needed majority.

Previous reports estatmated that Onnoghen’s retirement benefits in cash and kind will cost tax payers about  N2.5 billion.

As part of the package for a retired chief justice, a house will be built for him in Abuja with a nine-digit sum for furnishing — in addition to a severance gratuity that is 300% of his annual basic salary of N3,363,972.50, as well as pension for life.

Just like state governors, a retired chief justice is entitled to a number of domestic staff and sundry allowances for personal upkeep.

This package for judicial officers was put together by the NJC long before Onnoghen became the CJN in 2017.

However, if he is dismissed, he will not be entitled to any benefits.

Onnoghen chose the option of resignation as a measure of damage control, his associates told TheCable.

The NJC had on Wednesday  recommended the embattled CJN for compulsory retirement after deliberating on a petition by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) which alleges “financial impropriety, infidelity to the constitution and other economic and financial crimes related laws”.

Onnoghen, who denied all allegations, is also undergoing trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) over charges of false asset declaration.

Onnoghen has closed his defence at the CCT and the tribunal is expected to give its judgment at the next sitting on April 15.

But for the crisis, Onnoghen, who is 68, was due for retirement in 2020.

If the “soft landing” option is favoured by Buhari, the EFCC may not proceed with filing criminal charges while the case at the CCT could become academic because the major punishment for Onnoghen would have been his removal from office.

He could be banned from holding public office for 10 years, while his assets believed to have been acquired illegitimately will be confiscated.

FUTO sex romp: One more student dies

The death toll in the alleged sex romp involving undergraduates believed to be studying at the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO), Imo State, has risen to three. Initially, two of the students were found dead at an off-campus hostel, Sunshine Castle Lodge, Umuchima at Ihiagwa community in Owerri North Local Government Area of Imo State on Tuesday, during an alleged group sex romp with one female, also a student.

But yesterday, the authorities of FUTO said they could not confirm that the victims of the tragic sex romp were students of the university until investigations were concluded. The female student, who was earlier said to be on life support, was rumoured to have died at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Owerri.

The four students were reported to have taken Tramadol, Codeine, Vodka and India hemp in the course of the sexual adventure. Two reportedly died instantly while the third male died in the hospital with the lady taken to FMC, Owerri and placed on life support. According to reports, all four of them were found unclad, one was with a bathing soap in his hand, the other lying on top of the lady.

The state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Orlando Ikeokwu, told journalists that the police recovered two male corpses, Tramadol tablets and Indian hemp from the scene of what appeared to be a group sex at a students’ lodge.

He said preliminary investigations showed that the deceased collapsed and died allegedly while having group sex with a female student. Ikeokwu, who gave the names of the dead students as Ugochukwu and Uche (surnames withheld), said the incident occurred at Sunshine Lodge located at Ihiagwa, near FUTO and that the students were suspected to have used sex-enhancing drugs for the exercise. According to him, the police operatives, who evacuated the bodies and took two others to hospital, also recovered substances suspected to be Indian hemp and Tramadol from the scene of the incident.

He said: “On April 2, information was received from the caretaker of Sunshine Lodge in Ihiagwa, Owerri, that students at Federal University of Technology, Owerri — Ugochukwu, Richard, and Uche — were engaged in a ‘fatal sex romp’ with Onyinyechi (surname withheld), also a student at the same university. “Police detectives from Nekede Division promptly mobilised to the scene and found the four individuals completely naked and unconscious.

Death toll in the alleged sex romp involving undergraduates believed to be studying at the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO), Imo State, has risen to three. Initially, two of the students were found dead at an off-campus hostel, Sunshine Castle Lodge, Umuchima at Ihiagwa community in Owerri North Local Government Area of Imo State on Tuesday, during an alleged group sex romp with one female, also a student. But yesterday, the authorities of FUTO said they could not confirm that the victims of the tragic sex romp were students of the university until investigations were concluded. The female student, who was earlier said to be on life support, was rumoured to have died at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Owerri.

The four students were reported to have taken Tramadol, Codeine, Vodka and India hemp in the course of the sexual adventure. Two reportedly died instantly while the third male died in the hospital with the lady taken to FMC, Owerri and placed on life support. According to reports, all four of them were found unclad, one was with a bathing soap in his hand, the other lying on top of the lady.

The state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Orlando Ikeokwu, told journalists that the police recovered two male corpses, Tramadol tablets and Indian hemp from the scene of what appeared to be a group sex at a students’ lodge. He said preliminary investigations showed that the deceased collapsed and died allegedly while having group sex with a female student. Ikeokwu, who gave the names of the dead students as Ugochukwu and Uche (surnames withheld), said the incident occurred at Sunshine Lodge located at Ihiagwa, near FUTO and that the students were suspected to have used sex-enhancing drugs for the exercise.

According to him, the police operatives, who evacuated the bodies and took two others to hospital, also recovered substances suspected to be Indian hemp and Tramadol from the scene of the incident.

He said: “On April 2, information was received from the caretaker of Sunshine Lodge in Ihiagwa, Owerri, that students at Federal University of Technology, Owerri — Ugochukwu, Richard, and Uche — were engaged in a ‘fatal sex romp’ with Onyinyechi (surname withheld), also a student at the same university. “Police detectives from Nekede Division promptly mobilised to the scene and found the four individuals completely naked and unconscious.

“The victims were immediately conveyed to the police clinic and two of them, namely Ugochukwu and Uche, were certified dead by the medical doctor on duty. “The corpses have been deposited at the Federal Medical Centre, Owerri, for an autopsy, while Richard and Onyinyechi, whose condition is yet to be stabilised, have been referred to the emergency and casualty ward of the FMC, Owerri, for further medical attention.

“The families of the deceased have been contacted, while the condition of the surviving persons is still being closely monitored.” However, FUTO Public Relations Officer (PRO), Mrs. Uche Nwelue, said the university was aware of the incident but that it was still investigating to confirm if the victims were students of the institution.

According to Nwelue, the university, at the moment, cannot state categorically that the deceased were its students. She said: “Our internal investigation is ongoing. For instance, now we have got their names and we are looking to get their registration numbers and if that match with their names, we can certify their status and will then make official statement.

“Remember that in the lodge where the students lived, there are students of other institutions. That is why we need to find out if they are actually FUTO students before making any official statement to the press.”

 

Two FUTO students die during drug fuelled foursome sex romp

Tragedy struck at a hostel in Imo State, on Tuesday, as two undergraduates of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, were found dead while allegedly engaged in sex romp with a female student of the institution.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Orlando Ikeokwu, who confirmed the development to Punch on Wednesday, said the deceased students were suspected to have abused drugs during the sex romp.

The police spokesperson, gave the names of the dead victims as Ugochukwu Kingsley and one Richard, while the third victim, Aka Uche, 27, and the female victim, Onyinyechi Okafor, were receiving treatment in hospital.

He said the incident occurred at the Sunshine Lodge in Ihiagwa, near the FUTO campus.

According to him, the police personnel, who evacuated the corpses and took the two unconscious victims to hospital, recovered substances suspected to be Indian hemp and tramadol from the scene.

Ikeokwu stated, “On April 2, information was received from the caretaker of the Sunshine Lodge in Ihiagwa, Owerri, that the students of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Ugochukwu Kingsley, Richard and one Aka Uche were engaged in a sex romp with one Onyinyechi Okafor, also a student of the same university.

“Police detectives from the Nekede Division promptly mobilised to the scene and found the four victims completely naked and unconscious. The police operatives recovered substances suspected to be Indian hemp and tramadol from the scene.

“The victims were immediately conveyed to the police clinic and two of the victims, Kingsley and Richard, were certified dead by the medical doctor on duty.

“The corpses have been deposited in the morgue of the Federal Medical Centre, Owerri, for autopsy, while the female victim, whose condition is yet to be stabilised, and uche have been referred to the FMC, Owerri, for further medical attention.

“The families of the deceased have been contacted, while the conditions of the surviving victims are still being closely monitored.”

Ikeokwu said the state Commissioner of Police frowned on drug abuse and other illicit acts by youths, whose parents were working hard to ensure that their future was guaranteed.

When contacted, the Public Relations Officer, FUTO, Uche Nwelue, said the institution was still investigating to confirm if the victims were its students.

Nwelue stated, “We are still investigating to ascertain if truly they are students of FUTO. You know that the hostel where the incident occurred, is being occupied by students from different institutions.

“Apart from FUTO students, who live there, students of the Federal Polytechnic, Nekede, also live there. We have to conclude our investigation first before we can come up with an official position on the incident. But I have read about it online.”

Court orders return to ‘status quo’ in 9mobile case

Binta Nyako, a judge of the federal high court, has asked parties to a suit on .the sale of the Emerging Markets Telecommunication Services Limited (EMTS) to maintain the ‘status quo’.

“Any action that has been taken concerning the rest of this litigation from the 25th day of April, which is earlier in time, should revert to the position, as of the res, to its 25th day of April 2018,” she said.

The ruling, dated April 1, 2019, was in a suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/288/2018 filed on April 6, 2018, by Afdin Ventures Limited and Dirbia Nigeria Limited, the two major investors in Etisalat.

The two major investors — with investments estimated at $43,033,950 — had sued Etisalat to retrieve their investments following their alleged exclusion from the decision-making process of the firm.

The plaintiffs had said they met the court to void the sale of Etisalat, upon learning that the defendants have proceeded to conclude the transfer of the company’s ownership despite earlier restraining orders.

“In 2009, the plaintiffs/applicants purchased a total of 4,303,391 class “A” shares from the 1st, 2nd and 5th defendants (Karlingtton, Premium Telecommunication and Etisalat International) at the rate of $43,033,950 only, and were issued with share certificates,” they said in a supporting affidavit to the motion dated November 16, 2018.

“In 2010, the defendants rebranded Etisalat Nigeria Limited to 9mobile and entered into negotiations with Smile.com and Glo Network to transfer its licence without recourse to the plaintiffs.

“When the plaintiffs became aware of the purported transaction, they filed this suit along with two applications namely: motion ex-parte and motion on notice, seeking for an order of injunction to restrain the defendants from going ahead with the transaction.

“When this suit came up for hearing on the 17th of April, 2018, this honourable court ordered parties to maintain status quo-pending the determination of the motion on notice.”

Defendants in the suit are: Karington Telecommunication Ltd, Premium Telecommunications Holdings NV, First Bank of Nigeria Plc, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Etisalat International Nigeria Ltd and Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

Teleology formally took over the management of 9mobile following the issuance of the final approval of no objection by the board of the NCC on November 12, 2018.