Boko Haram top commanders fleeing Sambisa in choppers

Helicopters are allegedly “ferrying away top commanders” of the Boko Haram sect from the Sambisa Forest to unknown destinations, as the group prepares to end the five-year-old insurgency, Sunday Trust learnt from credible sources yesterday.
The claim could not be independently verified at press time. But the alleged repatriation of key officers of the sect came in the wake of reported systematic withdrawal of some Boko Haram’s foot soldiers from the Sambisa Forest, Mandara Mountains and other hideouts.
Some of the sect’s members had been reportedly going to towns and villages in Borno and Adamawa states “to repent” after their leaders had told them that the “war” was coming to an end.
A source in Maiduguri, who does not want to be quoted for security reasons, said in the last 10 days, choppers had landed at the Sambisa Forest severally.
“For now, many commanders of the sect, especially the mercenaries have been taken away from the forest to unknown destinations. Most of the sophisticated weapons being used by the insurgents have also been taken away. From what I gathered, the violence is coming to an end,” he said.
According to him, “Only local commanders are still in the cells and enclaves of the sect. As you are aware, dozens of foot soldiers are also fleeing because of many reasons, including the fact that the operation is also taking a different dimension,” he said.
He pointed out that the “middle cadre” commanders were the ones unleashing terror on communities around Borno and Adamawa states in recent times.
“The truth is that even some of the attacks going on these days are for the perpetrators to sustain themselves because when you observe clearly, you will see that they are taking away foodstuff and animals wherever they go,” he said.
“And in their cells, foot soldiers that are proven tough are being eliminated, prompting many of them to flee to towns to repent even though the real truth is that they don’t want to be killed. We have many of such incidences these days,” he added.
Some officials of youth vigilantes, also known as civilian JTF in Borno State, said they heard about the gradual withdrawal of Boko Haram commanders from their cells as well as the fleeing of some members into towns.
On Thursday, two suspected members of the sect fled to Bama, where one of them, who was captured, said they absconded from their camp because they wanted to repent.
He told the vigilante officials in Bama that many other sect members had also fled to Madagali and Mubi in Adamawa State, while many others had fled to other places.

SOURCE: Daily Trust

Breaking News: EKITI DECIDES: Ayo Fayose knocks out Fayemi by landslide (total result breakdown)

Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) at 4.02 this morning declared former Governor Samson Ayodele Fayose as the winner in yesterday’s guber contest in Ekiti State, stating he polled a total of 203,090 to knock out incumbent Governor John Kayode Fayemi who polled 120,433.

Ayo Fayose contested on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) while Dr. Kayode Fayemi was the candidate of All Progressives Congress, (APC). The candidate of Labour Party (LP), Mr. Bamidele Opeyemi polled a total of 18,125.

Total results from the 16 Gocal Government Areas
Kayode Fayemi of APC 120,433
Opeyemi Bamidele of LP 18,135
Ayodele Fayose of PDP 203,090
——————————————–
Results APC LP PDP
Efon 3,422 358 5,335
Oye 10,176 512 11

Ilejemeje 3,336 165 3,670
Ikere 7,989 585 16

Ikole 8,804 1,259 14,238
Ekiti S/W 6,746 1,413 11,038
Ijero 9,348 1,554 13,814
Ifelodun 6,834 3,555 13,038
Emure 4,332 1,527 7,086
Ekiti-East 8,584 884 12

Moba 7,994 1,000 8,878
Gbonyin 8,138 714 11

Ise 5,809 600 10,136
Ekiti-West 7,860 884 10

Ido-Osi 7,134 1,182 13,045
Ado-Ekiti 13,927 2,065 41,169

EKITI DECIDES: Some of the results

Ekiti Results at a glance
(1.) Iworoko Polling unit 008 PDP – 109, APC – 63
(2.) Usi Ekiti Unit 009, Usi Grammar school PDP-79, APC- 41, LP-3, Accord- 0, CPP- 1, PPA-1, PDC-2.
(3.) Ado LG, Unit 004 ward 004 : PDP- 199,APC-84, LP-21.
(4) Iworoko ward 005 PDP- 64, APC-37, LP-8.
(5).Iworoko Ward 009 : PDP-78, APC-19, LP-10.
(6.) Okeyemi, Ward 005, Unit 11 : PDP- 162, APC,57, LP-8.
(7.) Onikoye’s Palace IKLG, Unit 16: PDP- 78,APC-50, LP-5.
(8.) Erinmope ward 2 Unit 006: PDP- 47, APC-66,LP-4.
(9.) Imesi Ekiti Ward 5 Unit 003 : PDP-36, APC-46,LP-2, PDC-1, PPA-1, NCP- 1.
(10.) Methodist Polling Unit, Ifaki-Ekiti : PDP-51,APC-1, LP-1
IKERE EKITI
Health Centre Ward 010 Unit 7: PDP- 270, APC-81,
LP-6
Health Centre Ward 010 Unit 8: PDP- 252, APC-81,
LP-18.
WARD 10 OKEMESI:
Emiloju: PDP 59, APC 25
Saloro: PDP 26, APC 13
CAC: PDP 47, APC 18
Ita-Ode: PDP 36, APC 6
Adetoyinbo: PDP 67, APC 39
Town Hall: PDP 80, APC 45
Aro/Saba: PDP 40, APC 36
Obalekosi: PDP 74, APC 44
Ogborodo PDP 47, APC 56
Obalogbo: PDP 58, APC 29
Akeji PDP 3, APC 14
Kanmodi PDP 11, APC 9
Ikole LGA:
Odo Oro PDP 748, APC 564
Igbara Odo ward 8: Unit 02 PDP-75,APC-52 n
LP-7
Unit 11 PDP-73,APC-33 and LP-2
Unit06 PDP-70,APC-51 and LP-3.
Unit 09 PDP-68,APC-22 n LP-5.
Unit 13A PDP-98,APC-55 n LP-5.
Unit 13B PDP-108,APC-26 n LP-8.
Ara Ekiti
Polling Unit 002
PDP 102, APC 32
Igbara – Odo Ekiti
Ward 8, Polling Unit 009
APC 32, LP 11, PDC 01, PDP 69
Polling Unit 008
PDP 62, APC 47, LP 2
Imesi Ekiti, Ward 5, Polling Unit 003
PDP 36, PDC 1, PPA 1, NPC 1, APC 4
Ilawe Ekiti: APC 12, PDP 69, LP 2
Ward 1, Polling Unit 1
PDP 46, APC 21
Eyio Ekiti
Polling Unit 001
PDP 72, APC 40
Polling Unit 002
PDP 102, APC 30
Polling Unit 003
PDP 67, APC 64
Polling Unit 004
PDP 93, APC 23, LP 5
Note that these results are not yet certified by the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC).

Edo House of Assembly Crisis: Lawmakers thoroughly searched before access into HA

Speaker of Edo House of Assembly being searched this morning before gaining access into the Assembly. The PDP had alleged at the weekend that the APC faction had hidden weapons in the Chambers, so police had searched the compound as early as 6.30 am.
Lawmakers who arrived at 4 am were denied access into the Assembly until 7.45 when the place was declared safe.
Lawmakers sat outside as they were denied access to their offices.
Sitting resumes at 10 am this morning.

Economic activities grounded in Benin metropolis as HA lockdown enter Day 2 *court restrains 4 PDP lawmakers from HA grounds

The siege laid on Edo House of Assembly on Tuesday by security operatives following the emergence of a counter speaker of the House by the police continued Wednesday as the whole of King’s Square Benin was totally shut off to human and vehicular traffic.

The blockage, which grounded economic activities in the metropolis, affected Airport Rroad, Sapele Road, Oba Market and Akenzua Roads, as well as the ring that made up Ring Road.

Armed police, Civil Defence officers, and Mobile police officers surrounded the whole area, with over 50 patrol vehicles surrounding the whole of King’s Square.

Legislators of both factions, who went into a reconciliatory meeting with top police bosses of the state, including Edo Chief of Police, Sola Adebanjo dragged into the evening as the meeting was deadlocked.

The brunt of the lockdown was felt most by businesses located around the premises, which were forced to completely close down. The post office, the Central Hospital that shares a fence with the Assembly, as well as Lagos Street and Mission Road were all majorly affected as a go-slow prevented business flow.

A heavy gridlock affected all the roads leading to Ring Road, as motorists sought alternate routes to get to their destinations. Transporters, whose parks were by the Oba Market area also sought alternative loading points as police barricaded all the routes.

In a related development, a Benin High Court has restrained the four lawmakers – Hon Festus Ebea, Hon Patrick Osayimwen, Hon Jude Ise-Idehen and Hon Friday Ogieriakhi- suspended on Monday by the Edo State House of Assembly from gaining entrance into the premises of the Assembly and the legislative quarters.

The court also restrained the suspended lawmakers, the Assistant Inspector-General of Police Zone 5, Benin City and the Commissioner of Police, Edo State from interfering with the Sitting activities and other functions of the state Assembly pending the determination of a motion on Notice before it.

EDO ASSEMBLY CRISES: House finally adjourns after two fights, deadlock

The crises rocking the Edo State House of Assembly took a new dimension yesterday when members of the two factions went into a fresh physical fight. According to eye witness account, the People’s Democratic Party faction, led by the deputy speaker,  whose group swore in on Tuesday allegedly arrived the  Assembly at 6 am with a fake mace and a fake at Arms.  

They were about to begin plenary sitting when the All Progressives Congress faction, led by the substantive speaker arrived and a hot fight ensued.

The fight was only resolved when men of the Nigeria Police, led by CP Sola Adebanjo arrived to stop the scuffle. Eye witness account stated that Emmanuel Okoduwa,  representing Esan North East was injured and his clothes torn.

The matter was later resolved and the two factions sat at a peace meeting with the CP. The meeting which lasted all day ended at about 5.30 pm, and the legislators tried to commence sitting.

But another drama started with Hon Festus Ebea refusing to recognize Hon Uyi Igbe as the Speaker of the House.  When the Sergeant at Arms came in with the mace, the four suspended members who stepped out entered the Assembly, while Ebea insisted that Igbe must step down from the speaker’s seat, or another seat must be placed by his side. The mace was removed following the tense atmosphere.

For over one hour,  members kept pleading with Ebea who later agreed very reluctantly and sat down.
The mace was returned before sitting commenced. The speaker quickly read out a court injunction restraining the suspended members from attending plenary sittings. Part of the order read:

A Benin High Court has restrained the four lawmakers suspended on Monday by the Edo State House of Assembly from gaining entrance into the premises of the Assembly and the legislative quarters.

The suspended lawmakers are Hon Festus Ebea, Hon Patrick Osayimwen, Hon Jude Ise-Idehen and Hon Friday Ogieriakhi.

The court also restrained the suspended lawmakers, the Assistant Inspector-General of Police Zone 5, Benin City and the Commissioner of Police, Edo State from interfering with the Sitting activities and other functions of the state Assembly pending the determination of a motion on Notice before it.

He concluded saying: “the suspended members are not supposed to be with us”. After waiting for a while, Igbe said that since they have refused to leave, the sitting would be adjourned till Monday,  16th June,  bringing sitting to an abrupt end.

It will be recalled that the legislators had also fought yesterday following the hurried selection of a new speaker, in the person of Festus Ebea, the deputy speaker, who was suspended with some other members on Monday.

BREAKING NEWS: Prof Dora Nkem Akunyili is dead

Professor Dora Akunyili is dead. She died in the early hours of today at an Indian hospital. Until her death, she was among the delegates from Anambra State at the National Conference.

My her soul rest in peace.

Prof. Dora Nkem Akunyili (OFR) was born in Makurdi, Benue State (Nigeria) on the 14th of July 1954 to Chief & Mrs Paul Young Edemobi. She is a devout Catholic and is happily married to Dr. J. C. Akunyili, a Medical Practitioner and they are blessed with six children and three grandchildren. Her hobbies include reading, writing, cooking and travelling. She speaks Igbo and English fluently.

Prof. Akunyili was an internationally renowned Pharmacist, Pharmacologist, Erudite Scholar, Seasoned Administrator, and a visionary leader.

She has served her country in numerous strategic positions including as Director-General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and Federal Minister of Information and Communication.

 
EDUCATIONAL CAREER

Prof. Akunyili’s educational career started with her passing the First School Leaving Certificate with Distinction in 1966, and the West African School Certificate (W.A.S.C.) with Grade I Distinction in 1973 (both in Nigeria), which earned her the Eastern Nigerian Government Post Primary Scholarship and the Federal Government of Nigeria Undergraduate Scholarship respectively. It is remarkable that throughout her high school career, Dora Akunyili was always top of her class – a record that has never been broken in the school to date.

She got her B.Pharm. (Hons) in 1978 and PhD in 1985, both at the University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN). Prof. Akunyili won the best student award in the school of Pharmacy in her very first year in the school and the Vice Chancellor’s Postgraduate and Research Leadership prize in Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences for 1984/85 and 1985/86 academic Sessions.

She was promoted to the rank of Professor of Pharmacology in October, 2000 by the same University.

 
WORKING / EMPLOYMENTS EXPERIENCES

Prof. Akunyili started her working career as a Hospital Pharmacist in the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH) Enugu in 1978. In 1981, she ventured into Academics as a Graduate Assistant (Research Fellow) in the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, UNN. In the University system, she made a steady progress from lecturer I in 1986 until she was made Senior Lecturer in 1990.

In 1992 she transferred to the College of Medicine, UNN and became a Consultant Pharmacologist in 1996. She also worked as a part time lecturer at the West African College of Pharmacists, Lagos, Nigeria from 1992-1995.

She was appointed Supervisory Councillor for Agriculture in Anaocha Local Government of Anambra State, Nigeria from 1994 – 1996. Prof. Dora Akunyili was appointed Zonal Secretary of Petroleum Special Trust Fund (PTF), where she coordinated all projects in the five South Eastern States of Nigeria from 1997 – 2000.

Prof. Dora Akunyili was appointed Director General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Nigeria from April 2001-2008. Here she recorded outstanding success. Prior to her appointment, food and drug regulation in Nigeria was chaotic. All manner of adulterated, fake and substandard food and drugs were dumped into Nigeria resulting in over 60 percent of fake drugs in circulation. Unscrupulous individuals made fortunes from such unwholesome practices. When she assumed office, she brought in a new culture of excellence and honesty to NAFDAC and the entire Nigerian public service. As a result, the level of fake and counterfeit drugs in circulation dropped to 16.7 percent with vast improvement in the food and other regulated sectors. As a commentator in a national newspaper once wrote, “The NAFDAC Director General is a revolutionary. She has not only changed NAFDAC, she has also changed the pharmaceutical industry in the country.”

From December 2008 – December 2010, she worked as the Honourable Minister of Information and Communications, Federal Republic of Nigeria. As the Honourable Minister, Prof. Akunyili anchored the Re-branding Nigeria Project driven by the slogan, Nigeria Good People, Great Nation. The programme was conceived as an internal process to address Nigeria’s negative image both at home and abroad. Dora has proved her versatility in all areas of human endeavour as she also ventured into politics when she aspired to serve her own people in Anambra State as a Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

As a Scientist and a Scholar, she has presented over 600 papers delivered in various Local and International Conferences, published 4 books and written scientific articles published in 37 local and international journals. She also supervised PhD and Masters Candidates.
 
POSITIONS/PROFESSIONAL BODIES/FELLOWSHIP

Prof. Akunyili has held several positions of responsibility in Nigeria as a professional in the course of her career. She served in six Senate Committees and various Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences Committees of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka from 1986 –1992.

From 1992 to 1994, Prof. Akunyili served as a member of Anambra State Hospitals Management Board and State Advisory Council for Women Commission. She has also served the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (P.S.N.) in various capacities, notably as the National Vice President of Association of Lady Pharmacists (1992-1995) and President of the Enugu State Branch from 1992-1998.

Internationally, as Director General of NAFDAC, Prof. Akunyili was appointed Chairman of West African Drug Regulatory Agencies Network (WADRAN) in March 2006 and as Vice Chairman of the International Medical Products Anti-Counterfeiting Task Force (IMPACT) in November 2006.

She is a Post Doctorate Fellow of University of London, Fellow of the West African Post Graduate College of Pharmacists, Fellow of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) and member of other learned societies, a few of which are New York Academy of Science, International Narcotics Control Board, United States Pharmacopeia (USP) Expert Committee, Association for African Medicinal Plant Standards (AAMPS), Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV), and International Council for Control of Iodine Deficiency Disorders (ICCIDD). 

AWARDS/RECOGNITION

For her industry and commitment to the values of honesty, transparency and selfless service, Prof. Akunyili has received over six hundred Awards and Recognitions locally and internationally, notably among which are: –

Conferment with the National Order of the Federal Republic (OFR) and Recognition as an Icon of Hope for Nigerians by President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo(2002); Person of the Year 2005 Award by Silverbird Communications (2006); Nigeria’s Five Greatest Living Legends Award by Silverbird Group and Vanguard Media (Dec. 2009); Recognition as Nigerian Woman of Distinction during the Nigeria @50 Independence Anniversary Celebration (Sept. 2010); and as Minister of the Year 2010 by Nigeria Royalty Award (Dec. 2010). Integrity Award by Transparency International in South Korea (2003); Honoured as one of the 18 heroes (Health) of our time by TIME Magazine, New York (2005); Grassroots Human Rights Campaigner Award by Human Rights Defence Organization (International Service) in British House of Commons (2005); Special Award for Combating Economic Crime by International Chamber of Commerce-Commercial Crime Services London (2004); Amazon of Integrity by National Council of Women Society (2004); Pharmacist of the Year Medal Award by International Pharmaceutical Federation, FIP (2005); Honourary Degree of Doctor of Laws by University of Bristol, London (2006); Honorary Georgia Citizen by The State of Georgia, USA (2006); Agribusiness, International Euro Market and Transbusiness Awards respectively for 2003, 2005 and 2006 by European Marketing Research Centre (EMRC), Brussels; Elected Honourary Member of The Royal Pharmaceutical Society Of Great Britain, London, by The Royal Pharmaceutical Society Of Great Britain, London (2008); Conferred with the prestigious Harmony Tribute Award by Planet Africa Television Canada (2010).

BREAKING NEWS: Emir of Kano is dead

The Emir of Kano Ado Bayero is dead.
He died in the early hours of today. Details later.

Bayelsa community desert homes over quakes in the earth

Indigenes of Okordia Clan in Yenagoa Local Government Area of Bayelsa State yesterday abandoned their homes in fear of a possible earth quake following an earth tremor that happened in the area.

Daily Trust gathered that no fewer than 50 buildings have their walls cracked by the strange occurence,while many of the indigenes of the community attributed strange earth tremor to the years of oil exploration activities by oil multinationals.

In a fact- finding  visit to the area yesterday,the Paramount Ruler of the Community,Chief Franco Daniel,said the incident occurred at about late evening on Wednesday and caused panic in the community.

Said the monarch:”I was sleeping when my daughter rushed into the house shouting that the ground is seriously shaking.I rushed out and observed many of the indigenes running helter skelter in fear.Many of us believed it is due to the years of neglect by Oil multinationals.”

The Commissioner of Environment,Mr. Inuiro Wills, who was also in the fact finding visit said though the preliminary investigation during the tour of impacted buildings with cracks showed the seriousness of the incident,it could be a warning. He however assured the indigenes of the community that government would not wait until an earth quake happens in the state.

Wills said “we have spoken to many of them and they reacted spontaneously.We have been shown around and we have seen cracks.Some of them may not be too evident and long. But some are queit long. it could be a warning and we will not also jump into conclusion.”

Credits: Daily Trust

Pro-Biafra group fails in bid to hijack Enugu media house

Exactly seven days after a remembrance ceremony was held to honour 3.6 million people who died in the Biafran war, two members of Biafran Zionist Movement and a police officer lost their lives during an attempt to hijack Enugu State Broadcasting Service, ESBS in Enugu capital city and declare the sovereign state of Biafra.

The group, led by Barrister Benjamin Onwuka had attacked Enugu State Government House last March and held the place to ransom for nearly four hours.

It was gathered that the BZM members, who were led to the TV house by Onwuka, killed a police sergeant and wounded another Inspector  who were among security operatives that rushed to the scene to stop them.

The police, however, shot two members of the group dead and succeeded in disorganizing the plans of the group who were over 20 in number.

It was gathered that Onwuka and many of his men were later arrested by the police.

Onwuka’s mission to the state television house, a source added,  was to make a live broadcast having declared himself leader of the new Biafran Republic last year.

After BZM declared the republic of Biafra last year, the police arrested and arraigned five of it’s members.

Onwuka and his members were later declared wanted but none of them was arrested before today’s invasion of ESBS.

When contacted, the State Police Spokesman, Mr. Ebere Amaraizu, DSP, said” Please we shall give you details of the incident as soon as we are through with the brief enquiry. Onwuka and some of his arrested members are with us and we want to get more facts”.