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Niger School Sells Land to Raise Money As Bandits Demand Extra N20m



Part of the land belonging to Tanko Salihu Islamic School, Tegina, in the Rafi Local Government Area of Niger State, was sold to raise N50m ransom in two batches, which was paid to the bandits that kidnapped 136 students from the school, The PUNCH has learnt.

This was as the parents of the students who had spent 79 days in captivity as of Wednesday said they had exhausted every available means to get the children released from captivity.

A source from Tegina, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said part of the school land was sold to raise the initial money paid to the bandits to release the children.

He added, “After paying N50m ransom in two batches, the kidnappers insisted on collecting additional N20m and six motorcycles which will cost another N3m. A part of the school land was sold to raise the N50m paid.”

The source lamented that informants contributed to the continued stay of the children with the kidnappers, saying they were keeping the bandits abreast of developments among the parents.

He said, “The first time the honourable representing our area came on a sympathy visit to the parents, he gave us N1m. Immediately he left,  the abductors called  to tell us how much he dropped.

“Also, when the Director General of the state Emergency Management Agency came, the abductors did the same thing, but we cannot identify anyone who could be doing that.”

Meanwhile, the parents, who resume at the school every day, lamented that the state government had not been discussing with them on efforts aimed at rescuing the children.

One of them, who declined to be named, said, “We are tired; the government is doing nothing.”

The principal of the school, Alhassan Garba Abubakar, who spoke to our correspondent on the telephone, said, “The government should adopt the same method used rescuing the Commissioner for information to free the children.”

He said, “They said they didn’t pay any ransom to rescue the commissioner and the Zone C APC chairman; so we want them to use the same method to secure our children’s freedom.”

The Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Ahmed Matane, said government had wanted to take military action, but the parents were reluctant.

Also, the new Niger state Commissioner of Police, Monday Bala Kuryas, said intelligence was ongoing to discover the location of the students.

The CP said this while speaking to journalists in the Mariga Local Government Area during a visit to tactical teams and special formations across the state.

He said, “The children will be released very soon. We are doing our best to locate where they are.”

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Senegal Records First African Win at Qatar 2022 World Cup



Senegal have become the first African country to win a game in the ongoing World Cup after a 3-1 win over the host nation, Qatar, on Friday.

With Senegal’s win, the hope of the host nation appears to be hanging, as their qualification to the next round is becoming really slim.

Goals from Boulaye Dia, Famara Diedhiou and Bamba Dieng were enough to beat Qatar, who will be eliminated if Group A leaders, The Netherlands, avoid defeat to Ecuador later on Friday.

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Unlawful Imprisonment: Kanu Sues NIA DG, Demands N20bn



The leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, has sued the Director General of the National Intelligence Agency, Ahmed Abubakar, for imprisoning him (Kanu) in Kenya for eight days, before his extradition to Nigeria.

The special counsel to the IPOB leader, Alloy Ejimakor, disclosed this on Wednesday morning, via his Twitter handle, were he posted a pictures containing the suit filed, where he described Kanu’s detention in Kenya as “false imprisonment.”

Ejimakor said the suit was prompted by new evidence gathered implicating the DG beyond the “infamous extraordinary rendition.”

Ejimakor said, “Yesterday (Wednesday) I filed a suit against Ahmed Abubakar, the DG of National Intelligence Agency (NIA) for his eight days ‘false imprisonment’ of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu in discovered evidence that implicated the DG/NIA beyond the infamous extraordinary rendition.”

According to the suit, the court gave Abubakar 14 days to appear or be represented in court, adding that failure to show up would mean that judgment would be given in the DG’s absence.

The suit filed in the High Court of Abia State reads in part, “You are hereby commanded that within 14 days after the service of this Writ on you inclusive of the day of such service, you do cause an appearance to be entered for you in the Umuahia Judicial Division of the High Court in Abia State in an action at this suit of Mazi Nnnamdi Kanu….and take notice that in default of your so doing, the claimant may proceed therein and judgment may be given in your absence.

“The claimant’s claim is for (i) A declaration of this Honorable Court that the defendant’s arrest of the claimant and his imprisonment of the claimant at said location in Nairobi, Kenya amounted to false arrest and false imprisonment.

“(ii) A declaration that the defendant acted in bad faith and/or abused his public office in falsely imprisoning the claimant at the said location in Kenya. (iii) An order of this Honorable Court directing the defendant to pay the claimant the sum of N20,000,000,000.00 (Twenty Billion Naira only) being general and exemplary damages…”

This comes just few days after Kanu’s N20bn suit against the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami was thrown out by the Federal High Court in Abuja.

The Punch

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The Story Behind Peter Obi’s Grounded Plane in Lagos



There was a mild drama at the Lagos airport on Wednesday when supporters of the presidential candidate of the Labour Party and some party chieftains were prevented from boarding a campaign plane for their rally in Ibadan, Oyo State capital.

The Deputy Director-General and Campaign Manager for LP Presidential Campaign Organisation, Oseloka Obaze, was the first to raise the alarm following a report that the plane had been grounded.

The former Nigerian diplomat took to his verified Twitter handle on Wednesday to tweet that the ‘Obi-dent aircraft’ was grounded by the ‘powers that be,’ citing “regulatory reasons.”

When contacted, the National Chairman of the party, Julius Abure, confirmed the report.

He said, “We have just finished our rally in Ibadan. It is true that the plane meant to convey our NWC and NEC members for campaign was grounded by the powers that be. But we were not deterred by the plane that was grounded.

“This is what we have been saying about this country. It is not the first time it is happening. They have been using every opportunity to ensure we don’t get to do anything in this country.”

Also, the Head of Media for Obi-Datti Presidential Campaign Organisation, Diran Onifade, released a statement to express the PCC’s displeasure at the turn of event.

However, in their response, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority denied the allegations and explained that the plane belonged to a scheduled operator.

It said, “The so-called grounded plane belongs to a scheduled operator i.e. normal commercial flight. The flight crew of the said aircraft returned to the base on their own to check on an issue that developed soon after it took off.  This is the normal and right thing to do. What they did is what we termed safety precautionary flight measures. NCAA was not involved in this decision.”

Meanwhile, Obi promised citizens that he would not build on tribalism and religion if elected in 2023 and assured them of his plan to secure the country and unite its citizenry.

The Punch

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