The Nigeria Governors’ Forum on Monday denied allegations that governors hoarded palliatives meant for distribution to Nigerians in order to ameliorate their sufferings during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the forum, governors have held several meetings since the #EndSARS street protests started to address concerns of members of the public and that they identified calls for justice and an end to police brutality.
Towards this end, the forum noted that governors have since set up judicial panels of inquiry to look into such cases.
This was contained in a statement titled, ‘Governors and the CACOVID Palliatives,’ signed by the Head, Media and Public Affairs of the NGF, Abudulrazaque Bello-Barkindo.
The statement read in part, “The NGF regrets the loss of lives and property occasioned by the violent protests that erupted, and calls for calm.
“The NGF reemphasises and corrects the impression that palliatives found in warehouses that were broken into in Lagos and some other states were kept in storage for members of the society, especially our vulnerable citizens.
“The erroneous impression in the public domain that these palliatives were hoarded is not just inaccurate, entirely erroneous and untrue but also mischievous, to say the least.”
Bello-Barkindo further said, “For the avoidance of doubt, some of the palliatives had the CACOVID stamp embossed on them, meaning that their source is unambiguous.
“As we know, CACOVID operations are mainly domiciled in Lagos, being the headquarters of most of the public-spirited organisations, corporate bodies and individuals that came together to form the Coalition Against COVID-19 -CACOVID.
“Until mid-October, when the NGF had its last meeting, up to ten states had not participated in the flag-off ceremonies for the distribution of palliatives in their states. This was because the items meant for distribution in these states had not been completely received from CACOVID.
“Some other states that still had palliatives in their warehouses chose to keep a strategic reserve ahead of a projected second wave of COVID-19.
“As of a couple of weeks ago, some states were still receiving palliatives from the Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.”
The NGF declared that no state has been involved in or has hoarded any palliatives.
It also assured all contributors to the palliatives that prior to the looting of these warehouses, states had kept full accounts of all the items received and distributed.
NDLEA Merges Tactical Teams, Reshuffles Directors
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has carried out a reshuffle of its directors, and renamed its special weapons and tactics team (SWAT).
Buba Marwa, NDLEA chairman, announced the development at a meeting with directors in Abuja.
According to a statement issued on Tuesday by Femi Babafemi, NDLEA spokesperson, all the tactical teams have been merged under one unit — ‘Strike Force’.
“The reshuffling was announced by the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, Brig. General Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd), during a meeting with directors at the Agency’s headquarters in Abuja on Monday, 10th May 2021. He said the new movement was to propel the Agency to greater achievements,” the statement read.
“In the new changes which take effect from Tuesday, 11th May, 2021, the former director of administration and establishment, Ezekiel Epeso, becomes the director, technical services; the former head of internal affairs, Sani Ibrahim Sani, becomes the new director of administration and establishment; while Pius Gamde, an assistant director, legal services, is now director, internal affairs/provost marshal of the Agency.
“The former director of technical services, Ahmed Ninigi, has now been moved to a newly created directorate as commander, strike force/director, special duties.
“According to Gen. Marwa, the various tactical and SWAT teams across the commands have been merged and renamed strike force, which will now function under the new directorate headed by Ninigi.”
Speaking on the development, Marwa added that the decision was taken to improve on efforts to address drug trafficking in the country.
“What we are doing now is to reposition the NDLEA to be able to effectively take on the drug cartels and syndicates operating in any part of the country,” he said.
Delta Police Rescue Kidnap Victim, Recover Vehicles, Weapons, Arrest Suspects
In its efforts to rid the state of crimes and criminal elements, the Delta State Police Command has recorded massive landmarks to checkmate the activities of criminals.
According to a statement by the Command’s PPRO, DSP Edafe Bright, in a space of one week, a kidnap victim was rescued just as there were interceptions of drug and pipeline related crimes.
Bright reiterated the state’s Commissioner of Police warning to criminals to turn a new leaf or vacate the state as there is no hiding place for crime and criminal elements in the state.
Read the statement in details:
1.On the 8/5/2021 at about 2000hrs, information got to the divisional police officer Sapele Division CSP Harrison Nwabuisi that one Jeffrey Emekume ‘m’ 27yrs was kidnapped along Eku Abraka road Eku with his Lexus Jeep sky blue with Reg. No. RSH 716 AX makes a U-turn head to Sapele road. The DPO Sapele swiftly mobilized and led Crack Teams into the bush, The hoodlum who could not withstand the relentless effort of the police abandon the victim and fled. The kidnapped victim was rescued and the Lexus Jeep was recovered. Effort is ongoing to track and arrest the fleeing suspects.
2.On the 9/5/2021 at about 1820hrs, based on intelligent gathered by the divisional police officer ‘A’ division Warri CSP T.Y. MAHMUD, mobilized Rapid Response Team and raided a black spot at Hausa Quarters where one Aliyu Adamu ‘m’ 20yrs was arrested with two hundred and thirty seven wraps of weed suspected to be Indian hemp. Suspect allegedly confessed to be a major dealer in Indian Hemp. Investigation is ongoing.
3.On the 7/5/2021 at about 2240hrs, ‘B’ division warri Patrol team while on patrol around Okumagba Estate sighted a tricycle of two occupants, immediately they sighted the Police team they put off the headlight of the tricycle. As the Police moved closer to the tricycle it was observed that the occupants had abandon the tricycle and ran away possibly to a nearby bush. When search was conducted on the tricycle a locally made gun and live cartridge was recovered while the tricycle with Reg. No. EHR 247 QF was impounded. The bush was comb with a view to arresting the fleeing hoodlum. Meanwhile continuous manhunt is on to arrest and bring them to book.
4.On the 10/5/2021 at about 1030hrs, information was received that mob were attacking three (3) kidnapping suspects who attempted to kidnap a victim whose identity was disclosed at Oghara Junction.
Consequently, The divisional police officer Oghara division mobilized patrol teams and vigilante teams to the scene. And rescued the Three suspects which includes one Onome Efetobore ‘m’ a notorious criminal that has been in a police wanted list, Collins (surname unknown) also a known notorious kidnapper and armed robber who escaped from Benin correctional facility during EndSARS protest and one Glory Reuben ‘m’ also a notorious criminal. They were seriously beaten, rushed to the hospital by the police where they were later confirmed dead at General Hospital Oghara. Exhibits recovered include a locally made pistol and three (3) live cartridges.
The Commissioner of Police advised members of the public to work with the police, and and stay away from jungle justice.
5.On the 8/5/2021 at about 1745hrs, Anti-Crime Patrol of ‘A’ Division Warri while on routine patrol intercepted lorry with Reg. No. BDG 358 YA with five (5) suspects, on searching, the lorry was loaded with one hundred and seventy (170) pieces of 6inchs already cut to various sizes. The suspects are allegedly experts in the act of vandalizing Federal Government Pipeline at Ogulagha Dried Land.
The five occupants Lukeman Jimoh ‘m’ 40yrs, Shola Bimigo ‘m’, Yahaya Ikane ‘m’ 55yrs, Ebi Yeregha ‘m’ 41yrs and Lawal Aliyu ‘m’ 35yrs were arrested while the lorry with Reg. No. BDG 358 YA was impounded. Investigation is ongoing.
Ramadan Fast Continues As Moon is Yet to Be Sighted
The Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) says fasting in the month of Ramadan will continue on Wednesday.
The national moonsighting committee of NSCIA announced this in a tweet on Tuesday.
In a statement, Sambo Walli Junaidu, wazirin Sokoto and chairman of advisory committee on religious affairs for sultanate council of Sokoto, said there was no positive sighting of the crescent moon for the month of Shawwal.
“The Sultanate Council Advisory Committee on Religious Affairs in conjunction with the National Moon Sighting Committee did not receive any report from various Moon Sighting Committees across the Country confirming the sighting of the New Moon of Shawwal 1442AH, on Tuesday, 11th May, 2021 which was the 29th day of Ramadan 1442AH. Therefore, Wednesday, 12, May, 2021 is the 30th day of the month of Ramadan 1442AH,” the statement reads.
“His Eminence, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar CFR, mni, the Sultan of Sokoto and President General, Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) has accepted the report and accordingly declared Thursday, 13th May, 2021 as the first day of Shawwal 1442AH. (Day of Eid-El-Fitr).
“His Eminence, the Sultan felicitates with the Nigerian Muslim Ummah and wishes them Allah’s guidance and blessings. The Sultan while urging the Muslim Ummah to continue to pray for peace, progress and development of the Country, he also wishes all Muslims a happy Eid-El-Fitr. May Allah (SWT) accept our religious deeds, amin.”
This development comes after Haramain Sharifain, an Islamic agency in Saudi Arabia, declared that fasting in the month of Ramadan will last for 30 days.
Since April 13, Muslims across world have abstained from eating, drinking, and any form of sexual relationship from dawn till dusk.
This is as a result of fasting during the holy month of Ramadan — one of the five pillars of Islam.
Ramadan can run for either 29 or 30 days, depending on the sighting of a new crescent moon.
Meanwhile, the federal government had announced Wednesday and Thursday as public holidays.
This implies that Nigerians will have only one day to celebrate eid-al-fitr as againt the traditional two days.