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Army Arrests Two Zamfara Traditional Rulers, Kills Six Bandits

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Troops of the Nigerian Army attached to Operation Harbin Kunama 3 have arrested the traditional heads of Doka and Mutu villages in the Gusau Local Government Area of the state for serving as informants to bandits.

The troops also shot dead six bandits in Kirsa and Sunke villages in the Anka Local Government Area of Zamfara State during a gun battle.

The arrest of the traditional heads comes two weeks after the Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan-Ali, said some traditional rulers in Zamfara and the North-West region helped bandits to perpetuate criminal activities.

Although the Zamfara State Council of Chiefs denied the allegations, the minister insisted in another statement by his Public Relations Officer, Col Tukur Gusau, a week later that the Federal Government had some security reports from the region indicting some traditional rulers of complicity in banditry and killings in the state.

According to the army on Monday, apart from the arrests of the leaders of Doka and Mutu villages, whose names were not disclosed, the troops nabbed 16 other suspected informants and errand men to the bandits.

Our correspondent learnt that the troops were on a clearance operation in Kirsa and Sunke villages in the Anka Local Government Area when they ambushed the bandits and engaged them in a shoot-out for about two hours.

The soldiers thereafter killed six of the bandits, recovered two AK-47 rifles and two motorcycles.

Our correspondent learnt that the bandits were armed with “sophisticated automatic weapons” but were forced to flee, abandon their camps and logistics, which were subsequently destroyed by the troops.

The Director, Army Public Relations, in a statement on Monday, confirmed the arrests of the village leaders and the deaths, of the bandits, saying three motorcycles, two dane guns, two machetes, among others were recovered from the bandits in Gusau Local Government Area.

He said, “Troops on Operation Harbin Kunama 3, based on credible intelligence about bandits’ movements in Kirsa and Sunke in the Anka LGA, continued with a clearance operation into the hinterland to clear the brigands.

“Consequently, the troops engaged the bandits in a shoot-out at the bushes of Kirsa and Sunke villages which resulted in the extermination of six criminals, the recovery of two AK-47 rifles and two motorcycles.

“In Doka and Mutu villages in the Gusau LGA, troops also had a serious encounter on Saturday with a group of bandits which lasted for about two hours. The brigands were armed with sophisticated automatic weapons, but they were overpowered by the troops, forcing them to flee from their hideouts. Eighteen suspected informants to the bandits were arrested, including the village heads of Doka and Mutu villages.”

He added, “The Force Commander, Maj.-Gen Hakeem Otiki, said the troops would continue to go after bandits in Zamfara and the contiguous states of Kebbi, Katsina and Sokoto.”

Meanwhile, the Zamfara State Council of Chiefs has denied apologising to the Nigerian Air Force over its allegations that innocent villagers were victims of air strikes targeted at bandits and kidnappers terrorising the state.

Chairman of the state Council of Chiefs, Alhaji Attahiru Ahmad, the Emir of Anja, while speaking to newsmen on Monday, described the report that the emirs apologised as baseless.

Recalling what transpired when the Chief of Air Staff delegation visited him, Alhaji Ahmad said, “I received an entourage led by Air Vice Marshall Idi Lubo, who was in the state to condole and sympathised with the entire people of the state over a mistake made by NAF that consumed innocent lives.

“In my remarks, there was no where I apologised that NAF mistakenly killed innocent lives during its bombardments on targeted camps operated by bandits across some villages in the state recently but, I rather used words of respect as did by the August visitor which had been our tradition when receiving guests.

“Our council meeting had, based on credible reports, believed that the killings of innocent people had occurred and we stand by our position. If later, I would come back to make a U-turn on that matter then, I should not remain as Emir,” he said.

Attahiru further said that NAF had accepted that the action was a mistake.

But NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, in an interview with one of our correspondents, said, “We will not take issue with esteemed royal fathers and traditional rulers. We follow the due process to ensure that it is only the criminals that are taken out by the air strikes. We remain resolute and we will continue our operations.”

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Sani-Gwarzo Reiterates FG’s Commitment to Revolutionize Policing Landscape

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The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Police Affairs, Dr. Nasir Sani-Gwarzo, has reiterated the commitment of the Federal Government to implementing a comprehensive police reform to revolutionize the policing landscape by fostering inclusivity, community engagement, intelligence-driven operations, and technological integration.

He stated this during the Bi-Monthly Consultative Meeting of the Directors/Heads, Reform Coordination, and Service Improvement at the Ministry of Education Conference Room, 2nd Floor, Phase III, Federal Secretariat, Abuja.

The Permanent Secretary, according to a statement signed by the Deputy Director, Press, Bolaji Kazeem, and made available to the National Association of Online Security News Publishers (NAOSNP), said that currently, the Ministry of Police Affairs is spearheading policy reforms and administrative initiatives aimed at bolstering the operational efficiency of the NPF and improving welfare and morale.

In addition, the Ministry is actively engaging in nationwide citizens’ town hall meetings to foster community participation in policing and secure enhanced support from critical stakeholders for policing operations.

Sani-Gwarzo stated that the adoption of the SERVICE COMPACT with all Nigerians (SERVICOM) signals a realization that the Public Service could do better and needs to do better, to serve the Public adequately.

In his words, “There is a confluence of goodwill across all strata from Mr. President that has written agenda that has been itemized, calculated and weighted in percentage and given the mandate to the Ministers with a term of references broken down into themes with the Head of Service that has given reforms agenda in a compendium called FCSSIP 25 and other documents to support as well as translating same into actions driven by directors”.

He said, “Most of the time it is the director’s reforms that can make or destroy the Ministry. I like that attitude of being in the first position, that is what Ahmed Bola Tinubu told us during a retreat. We must win, we must succeed, it is not negotiable”.

In her keynote address, the Permanent Secretary, Service Policy and Strategies Office (SPSO) Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr. Debora O. N Odoh pointed out that Directors and Heads of Reform Coordination and Service Improvement in the Ministries and Agencies occupy a privileged position in the architecture and hierarchy of institutions implementing the ongoing reforms in the public service.

She added that the meeting provides another opportunity to examine their achievements in the past months on the implementation level of the Federal Civil Service Strategy and Implementation Plan (FCSSIP25) and other reform initiatives, and the way forward.

Earlier, the Director of Reform Coordination and Service Improvement, Ministry of Police Affairs, Mr Ibrahim Musa Mshebwala in her paper presentation titled “Synopsis of Police Reform in Nigeria” stated that the ongoing pursuit of comprehensive police reform is a multifaceted approach that addresses the systemic challenges facing the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) while incorporating lessons learned from past reform efforts.

He added that the strategy emphasizes a holistic and inclusive approach, prioritizing collaboration between government agencies, civil society organizations, and the public.

“Unlike previous attempts, we emphasize political will more, recognizing its pivotal role in driving meaningful change within the NPF. Additionally, we are committed to fostering transparency and accountability at all levels of the police force, instituting robust oversight and delivery mechanisms, and ensuring that reform initiatives are responsive to the needs and aspirations of the communities they serve,” he stressed.

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How Lion Attacked, Killed OAU Staff on Campus

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A 9-year-old male lion on Monday killed a zookeeper while feeding the wild cats in their den at the Zoological garden of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife.

The victim, identified as Mr Olabode Olawuyi, who was a Veterinary Technologist, was said to have been in charge of the Zoological garden for over a decade.

The Public Relations Officer of the university, Abiodun Olarewaju, confirmed the incident in a statement on Monday.

He said, “Mr Olawuyi has been taking care of the lions since they were born on campus about 9 years ago but, tragically, the male lion killed the man who had been feeding them.

“The other members of staff who were at the scene of the incident did everything within their power to rescue their boss but the wild cat had already caused severe fatalities.”

Olarewaju said upon hearing the sad news, the management team, led by the Vice Chancellor, Prof Adebayo Bamire, abruptly ended an ongoing meeting for an on-the-spot assessment

“Vice-Chancellor, Professor Adebayo Simeon BAMIRE, was informed, on arrival, by the Acting Director of the University Health and Medical Centre, Dr. Tirimisiyu Olatunji, that all first aid and medical efforts to save the life of the victim proved abortive.

“Saddened by this tragic event, the aggressive Lion has been euthanized.

“The University management has sent a delegation to the widow and children of the deceased, imploring them to take solace in God who gives life and also has the power to take life,” he added.

The varsity spokesman said the management had ordered a comprehensive investigation into the immediate and remote causes of the incident.

In February 2018, a 22-year-old woman was mauled to death by a lion at a private game lodge close to South Africa’s capital Pretoria.

The victim was attacked by the lioness near Hammanskraal, roughly 45 kilometres (30 miles) north of Pretoria around 0900 GMT.

“When Netcare 911 paramedics arrived at the scene, bystanders had initiated (resuscitation). Tragically, the victim had sustained severe injuries and she died at the scene,” Nick Dollman, spokesman for the Netcare 911 ambulance service, said.

Also in August 2022, a South African conservationist was killed by lions he hand-reared, according to the family.

West Mathewson, 69, was walking two white lionesses when one of the animals attacked and killed him without warning.

The incident took place on the premises of the family-owned Lion Tree Top Lodge, in South Africa’s northern Limpopo province.

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Food for Living: Of Fear and Faith

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By Henry Ukazu

Dear Destiny Friends,

Fear and faith are two great rivals in the affairs of man. Where one is found, the other takes a leave. They can either make or mar any progressive being, and anybody who truly wants to succeed must know how to activate and control the inherent powers of these two great forces.

According to Dr. Yomi Garnett, “viewed from a spiritual perspective, fear and faith can be said to be opposites…and what each of them brings to our life is also opposites. Fear can lead to failure, while faith will lead to conquest”.

Question: Do you want to live in fear, or would you like to be associated with a conquered fellow?

One of the major killers of vision is fear,  and one of the enablers of life is faith. When one is possessed with the spirit of fear, it will be difficult for that person to achieve their heart desires, but when one’s spirit is activated with the right amount of faith, even the highest fear will fade out.

One may be wondering, how fear and faith can be positively activated to attract success, ab at the same time be the destruction of man, if not properly managed.

What actually inspires a success-oriented mind? Obviously, several things activate one’s mind. To a lot of people, their greatest fears in life is poverty. These sets of people abhor being poor can mitigate their success in life, and as such they put in all their efforts to succeed.

To some, their greatest fear in life is failure. They can’t imagine the shame and defeat that come with failure, and as such they put in their best in whatever productive work they engage in.

Wen fear becomes extrem, it turns to phobia and dreaded. It’s instructive to note that some people have the phobia of height and flying. Some others have the phobia of pregnancy, traveling on water, approaching, or talking to people due to rejection, making mistakes, threading on new ground, among others.

To conquer this fear however, one needs to activate the inherent power of faith. Faith is the belief in what is not seen but hoped for. Any creative mind that wants to succeed in life must have faith not only in themselves, but in their businesses, academics, personal and professional developmental endeavours.

No great person has ever succeeded in life without faith. They believed in the possibility of their business even when there’s little or no hope of survival. They dared to succeed.

In contrast, fear has been th singular reason for most of the failures men have recorded. Some people even give up before they begin their project because of lack confidence and hope.

In some cases, this fear is projected by friends, family members, mentors or even trusted persons who don’t really know or understand what the person is working on. They just simply believe the project is bound to fail based on the prevailing circumstances or challenges surrounding the person or business.

This is how to activate and stimulate the subconscious and inherent power of faith. Imagine as a young man, you have interest in a lady, but you are wondering how to approach her considering her perceived response. It is not out of place to have a perception of the kind of respinse expected, but then, nothing ventured, nothing gained.

One of the best things the guy can do is to dare to succeed by reaching out to the lady. In the worst-case scenario, the lady might say no. In that case, the man will be satisfied he tried his best because the worst feelings to have in life is the feeling of regret.

Alternatively, the lady might like the guy and just play to the gallery just to gauge the man’s intent and seriousness. If the latter is true, the man is deemed lucky for daring to ask.

As a student, business owner, parent, teacher, government official, or pastor just to name a few; if you have a project or task in mind, don’t allow the fear of failure, disappointment or obstacles to weigh you down, look into the future with bold eyes, and with the mindset of faith in the impossible.

In conclusion, fear and faith are two necessary criteria needed in the journey of life. The ability to nurture both will go a long way in shaping not only our personal lives, but also our professional lives.

Henry Ukazu writes from New York. He works with the New York City Department of Correction as the Legal Coordinator.  He’s the founder of Gloemi. He’s a Transformative Human Capacity and Mindset coach. He is also a public speaker, youth advocate, creative writer and author of Design Your Destiny and Unleash Your Destiny.  He can be reached via info@gloemi.com

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