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Empowerment: Traders, artisans praise Kalu Foundation



Empowerment: Traders, artisans praise Kalu Foundation



housands of small business owners, petty traders and artisans in Abia-North Senatorial District of Abia State showered encomiums on the Orji Uzor Kalu Foundation (OUKF) for the successful conclusion of its Small Business Zero Interest Free Loan Scheme.

The OUKF, a non-business/political entity, had launched the first phase of the scheme in January 2018.


The second phase of the business empowerment scheme commenced on August 12, 2019 with the distribution of zero interest loans worth millions of Naira to petty traders and artisans in Abia-North Senatorial District boost their businesses.


The foundation’s team comprising both staff and volunteers led by its Executive Secretary, Rev (Mrs.) Jemaimah Ola Kalu, stormed the remote communities/wards in the five local governments of Abia-North to ensure that the funds were distributed to deserving beneficiaries.


In a statement, Rev Kalu announced the conclusion of the second phase of the petty traders’ empowerment exercise.


She thanked the OUKF Chairman, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, for his generosity and compassion for the less-privileged in the society.



The team leader also extended gratitude to the foundation’s workers and development partners for their contribution to the success of the exercise.


She said: “The second phase of the Orji Uzor Kalu Foundation ward to ward petty traders’ empowerment programme in the 103 ABSIEC wards (as per the foundation’s rating) which started on the 12th of August, 2019 from Arochukwu Local Government Area, was successfully concluded on Friday, 13th September, 2019 at the three ABSIEC wards in Igbere, Bende Local Government of Abia State. 


“We hereby thank God for the grace to finish successfully, divine strength and speed, journey mercies and protection.


“We thank the Chairman of the Foundation Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, the Board of Directors, our staff and volunteers, Key Stone Bank staff, Umuahia, especially the bank manager who ensured his staff attended to us very promptly. We also thank our other development partners and all those who upheld us in prayers.”


Speaking on behalf of thousands of other beneficiaries, Alice Okereke, a community leader in Lokpanta Ward, applauded the initiative of the OUKF for its laudable activities in Abia State and beyond.

Okereke noted that if other well-meaning Nigerians emulate Dr. Orji Kalu, the country will be a better place to live.


She described the gesture as “life changing”.

According to her, with the loan, her business and those of others will definitely grow beyond expectation.


She said: “We know Orji Kalu for his good works and passion for the people. He is a giver and a man with compassion, I must confess.”


The foundation was granted a Special Consultative status by the United Nations NGO branch (Office of the ECOSOC Support and Coordination) on the 26th of July, 2017.


Over the years, the OUKF has been involved in numerous empowerment programmes such as Free Palm Seedlings for farmers, Free Medical Outreach, Peace Initiatives, Youth Empowerment Summits, Scholarship Awards, Cultural/Tourism promotion activities and other social investment programmes in line with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals Agenda 2030.

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Metro and Crime

Lagos raises alarm over Monkey Pox outbreak



Lagos raises alarm over Monkey Pox outbreak

….Records three cases

Lagos State Government Friday said it has received three cases of monkey pox in the past one month, urging the residents to intensify and maintain adequate personal and environmental hygiene at all times as part of precautionary measures to prevent the outbreak of infectious diseases.

Hence, the government strongly warned residents to observe the highest possible standards of personal and environmental hygiene especially through regular washing of hands with soap and running water and attention to environmental exposure.

The state’s Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, who gave the warning, said that three suspected cases of monkey pox were reported by health facilities in the past one month noting that the cases were positive for Monkey Pox as revealed by reports of laboratory investigation.

Speaking during the biosecurity update meeting on the situation report of Monkey Pox disease in the state, the Commissioner gave details about the recent report of the disease in the state, saying there was need for Lagosians to be conscious and take necessary precautions.

He said: ”The patients were treated at the specialized infectious disease isolation centre of Mainland Hospital, Yaba have since recovered and have been discharged. The close contacts and family members of these cases were actively monitored for 21 days for any development of signs and symptoms of monkey pox and none of these contacts develop any symptoms.”

He explained that the State Epidemiology and the Monkey Pox focal persons from Nigeria Centre for Disease Control has earlier carried out sensitization for clinicians and community members in some local government areas of the state three months ago to increase awareness and reporting of any suspected case.

The Commissioner explained Monkey Pox is a rare viral infection of animals which can be  transmissible to man and caused by Monkey Pox virus noting that the symptoms in human is similar to those seen in Chicken Pox patients although less severe. It occurs primarily in Central and West Africa close to tropical rain forest where there is frequent contact with infected animals.

 “In the early phase of the disease, patients usually present with fever, swelling of lymph nodes, back pain, intense headache, muscle pain and lack of energy while in the late phase, skin rashes or lesion with a flat base develops between three days after the onset of fever which later form small fluid filled blisters. This fluid later become pus and then crust in about 10 days,” he explained.

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Metro and Crime

    Kwara gets N3.5bn allocation for Oct



    Kwara gets N3.5bn allocation for Oct

Kwara State Government has received a total of N3,516,975,521 as net monthly allocation for the month of October.

The amount is minus N681,499, 217 deductions made at source as monthly repayment of loans including the bailout funds (budget support) that the past administration received from the Federal Government. The monthly deductions started in September.

The monthly allocations included N3:333:607:862,59 statutory revenue allocation (SRA); N859, 606, 843,58 Value Added Tax (VAT); and N5,260,032,85 Exchange Gains, according to a statement on Friday by Permanent Secretary Ministry of Finance Benjamin Fatigun.

The statement said a total of N2,689,825,780 also came to the 16 local government areas of the state as allocation for the month.

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Metro and Crime

Berger to divert another section of Lagos-Ibadan Expressway Monday



Berger to divert another section of Lagos-Ibadan Expressway Monday

The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) says Julius Berger on Friday notified of its intention to extend the reconstruction work on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway from Magboro to Punch section of the road from October 21 to January 31, 2020.

Mr Clement Oladele, Ogun Sector Commander of FRSC, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ota, Ogun, that the development was to enable the company begin rehabilitation work on the 1.3-kilometer stretch of the expressway from Magboro to Punch from Monday.

Accordingly to him, the rehabilitation work will cause a temporary diversion of the Lagos bound traffic to the Sagamu bound carriageway from Magboro to Punch.

“This temporary diversion of traffic will transfer the Lagos inbound traffic to the same carriageway conveying traffic outward Lagos.

“Thereby making both the traffic inward and outward Lagos accommodated on the same section of the expressway within the 1.3-kilometer stretch of the road from Magboro to Punch in Ogun State,” he said.

NAN reports that there was partial closure of the Lagos end of the expressway from September 2 for the ongoing reconstruction work on the 600-metres stretch between Ojodu Berger and the beginning of Kara Bridge.

The sector commander advised motorists to take note of the development and plan their trips by allowing more time to their traveling time, in view of the construction work that would narrow the carriageway which may impair traffic.

“Motorists are also enjoined to observe lane discipline and avoid driving against traffic, as violators risk impoundment of their vehicles and liable to payment of N50,000 traffic fine,” he said.

The FRSC boss cautioned motorists to drive within the maximum speed limit of 50km per hour, the maximum speed at construction zones as prescribed by the National Road Traffic Regulations, 2012, to avoid road crashes.

Oladele, however, commended the public for their patience and cooperation, adding that they still have to bear with the inconvenience the temporary diversion might cause.

He also implored motorists to continue to cooperate with the FRSC and other traffic and emergency agencies that would be strategically deployed to control the diverted traffic around the rehabilitation sections.

The sector commander said that motorists observing traffic emergencies could contact the FRSC toll free number 122.

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Two clerics charged after pupils found shackled



Two clerics charged after pupils found shackled

Two clerics have been charged following this week’s raids on private Islamic schools where men and young boys were being subjected to physical abuse, police in northern Nigeria say.

One of them ran a facility in President Muhammadu Buhari’s hometown of Daura in Katsina State, reports the BBC.

The police said they had been charged with multiple counts including running illegal detention centres, torture and abuse.

In September police raided another Islamic school, in Kaduna state, where nearly 500 boys and men were found – many in chains.

Correspondents say these facilities are a last resort for some families whose children have committed petty crimes or are addicted to drugs.

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Metro and Crime

Man arrested for manslaughter in Niger



Man arrested for manslaughter in Niger

A 39-year-old suspect has been arrested by the Niger State Police Command for allegedly killing his neighbour in Shambo village in Rijau Local Government Area of the state.

The suspect, Filani Mallam, was said to have killed one Angulu Makeri, of the same address with a cutlass over some misunderstanding.

It was learnt that one Magwino Makeri had earlier reported that his brother who left home did not return.

The suspect reportedly engaged Makeri in a fight along Atabio village road where he allegedly killed him.

It was reliably learnt that the suspect inflicted deep cuts on the deceased leaving him to bleed to death.

Upon interrogation, the suspect said that he killed Makeri with a cutlass over what he described as accumulated misunderstanding between them.

While confirming the incident, the Command Public Relations Officer, Muhammad Abubakar, said the suspect had confessed to the crime.

Abubakar said the operatives recovered from the murder one cutlass, adding that the matter had been charged to court.

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Metro and Crime

Another fuel tanker catches fire in Onitsha



Tragedy was averted in Onitsha, Anambra State on Friday morning after another petrol tanker fell, spilling fuel into a canal in the commercial town.

It was reliably learnt from residents of Omagba Phase two in Onitsha that the tanker fell at about 4am spilling its contents which subsequently caught fire.

“As the product flowed through the canal, its fire was spreading too,” a source in the area said.

Naturally the latest incident caused apprehension in the town coming so soon after Wednesday’s incident, which residents of the city were yet to recover from.

Narrating the incident, the source said: “PMS laden tanker early this morning lost control and rammed into a parked caterpillar in front of Bessoy Filling Station, along Enugu-Onitsha Expressway, Onitsha.

“The tanker started emptying its content on the tarmac, parked cars and balls of fire erupted.”

Again, like the incident of 48 hours earlier, the Anambra State Fire Service men were unable to put off the fire, until their Delta counterparts came to their rescue.

“We called the Onitsha fire service, but they said they didn’t have a functional vehicle, we called Awka, and they said they were coming, but miraculously, it started raining and the Delta State Fire Service came too and helped to put out the fire,” explained an eyewitness.

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Four youths, fleeing police arrest, drown in Lagos lagoon



Four youths, fleeing police arrest, drown in Lagos lagoon

Residents of Iga-Onitolo, Elegbata community on the Lagos Island, have been plunged into mourning following the drowning of four youths in the lagoon.

The residents said the death of the four boys was caused by operatives of the Anti-Cultism Unit, Lagos State Police Command. The incident occurred on Wednesday last week.

Our correspondent, who went to the grieving community, was told that 10 youths jumped into the lagoon to escape policemen chasing them. Four of the boys died, while six survived. Among the four, only two bodies have been retrieved, while two are still missing.  The six survivors were fished out of the lagoon by fishermen.

On that fateful October 9, residents were rudely awakened from their sleep by sounds of gunshots. The time was 1a.m. Witnesses claimed that 20 of the armed policemen wore uniform, while four men with them were in mufti. Residents insisted that the policemen stormed the community at that ungodly hour in order to raid some youths.

One of the survivors, Toheeb Jumat, recollected that when the policemen came, he and other youths were sleeping. He said it was a normal scene on the Lagos Island for youths to start running after sighting policemen.

He said: “Immediately we sighted the policemen coming towards where we were sleeping, we all ran in different directions. Ten of us went towards the lagoon, with the hope that they wouldn’t follow us. Unfortunately, they followed us. When we got to the bank of the lagoon, some of us hid near an abandoned Marine Police speedboat, hoping that they wouldn’t come after us. But shockingly, the boys in mufti who followed the policemen came after us. That was how we started jumping into the lagoon to evade arrest.

“We held the bar of the bridge, so that the current wouldn’t carry us away. While we were holding the bar, those in mufti brought out scissors and started stabbing us. They meant to kill us. When the policemen reached the water, they started shooting directly into the water. Thank God I survived. It was some fishermen, who were going for a fishing expedition that rescued six of us after the policemen had gone. Unfortunately, four of our friends didn’t survive.”

The story of another survivor, Mr. Happy Peter, was similar to what Jumat said.

He said: “We were chased into the lagoon.  We’re not criminals. We’re law-abiding citizens of Nigeria. I don’t know why they wanted to kill us. While trying to hide from the policemen near the river, one of the policemen came to where I was hiding and dragged me out. He then pushed me into the lagoon. Before I knew what was happening, he started shooting in my direction. I quickly swam away from the spot he focused his shots. The police mission was to kill all of us. But they succeeded in killing four of us.

“After the policemen had left, I tried to come out of the lagoon, but one of the civilian boys that came with them, hit me with an object immediately I placed my hands on the bridge railing. I fell back into the lagoon.

“When one of the bodies was brought out of the lagoon, there were marks on his neck and his head, indicating that he was stabbed. We went through a lot. It was when we were calling for help that the fishermen, who were going for fishing, came to rescue us.”

Other survivors are Samuel, Damola Wale, Yinka, and Fuad.  The two men brought out dead were identified as Femi and David.

A 75-year-old resident, who identified himself simply as Freeman, said he was sleeping outside the compound when the policemen arrived.

He added: “Before I knew what was happening, they started shooting. Immediately I heard the gunshots, I stood up from where I was sleeping to find out what was happening. It was then I saw the policemen and four other civilians who accompanied them. The policemen were not familiar with our area. We believe that the four civilians led the policemen to our community.

“When the policemen saw me, two of them came to where I was standing. They demanded to know what I was doing. I told them that I came outside when I heard the gunshots. I believe it was because of my age that they ordered me to return to my room.

“Unfortunately, a 15 year-old-boy, Samuel, who was sleeping beside me, was whisked away. Five other boys were also picked from their apartments where they were sleeping. The boys were bundled into the police van. The harassment from the police is becoming unbearable. Even if they want to arrest the hoodlums, I don’t see the reason for chasing them into the lagoon.”

It was also learnt that in an attempt to arrest another youth, two policemen scaled a fence to gain access into his apartment. Unfortunately, the person they were looking for was not at home.

The lucky boy’s mother, who gave her name simply as Iya Bose, explained that she was sleeping with her physically-challenged son when the policemen scaled the fence and landed in her compound. They then forced their way into her apartment.

She recalled: “Immediately the two policemen entered my apartment, they started shouting the name of my son. They shouted that he should come out from wherever he was hiding. It was when I came out that I saw Azeez, who lives at Onala; he was directing and instructing the policemen on what to do. When they eventually saw my physically-challenged son, the policemen thought it was the one they were looking. Without asking questions, they pounced and started beating him. I screamed and begged them to leave him. I told them that he was not the person they were looking for. Before I realised what was happening, they had injured him. When Azeez realised that the policemen were beating the wrong person, he urged them to leave.”

The woman said that like other residents, she was also tired of constant harassments from policemen.

She added: “My son is not a member of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW). What I heard the following day was that the policemen came to our community on the instructions of a member of the NURTW on the Island.  I want the Lagos State Commissioner of Police to come to our aid. We’re suffering in the hands of policemen on this island.”

A trader in the community, Mr. Ademola Adetunji, described the death of the four youths as unfortunate. He said that most youths in the community were gainfully employed. This is even as he stressed that the youth were not members of the NURTW.

He said: “I just don’t know what the policemen want the parents of the dead boys to do now. We’re still waiting for the remaining two bodies to be washed up so that we can give them befitting burials. The deceased were sleeping after the day’s work when the policemen stormed the community. About 25 youths were arrested.

“We also heard that they were charged to Yaba Magistrates’ Court on Monday. This is an injustice. We’re all Nigerians. I don’t understand why they are maltreating us as if we are second class citizens. We know what to do, but we didn’t want to take the law into our hands.

Adetunji said at a time some bad boys, selling Indian hemp, infiltrated the community residents partnered with the police and chased them out away.

He said: “We did that to prevent break down of law and order in our community. Most of the youth in Elegbata are gainfully employed. Whenever we noticed strangers among the youth, we call the person. We tell him the dos and don’ts of our community.

“Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu should come to our rescue. The policemen have turned us to Automated Teller Machine (ATM). Whenever they arrest someone, they demand between N100,000 and N200,000 for bail. We want peace on the Island, especially in Elegbata. We are not trouble-makers. We mind our businesses. Police should stop disturbing us.”

One of the youth in the community, Shamsideen Owolayo, said they had been subjected to a series of harassment because they didn’t support a member of the NURTW at Onala area of Idumota.

He said: “This member vied for the state chairmanship of the union in the last election.”

Owolayo added that the civilians who accompanied the policemen to the community were working for the NURTW branch chairman.

Owolayo explained that last Sunday, before the Wednesday invasion by the policemen, one of their friends, Bayo, was shot dead by the Onala boys in Idumota.  After the incident, they were warned not to take laws into their hands.

He added: “If truly the policemen were sent by their boss, I expected them to report to the nearest police station or area commander, alerting them that they want to carry out an operation. Unfortunately, they didn’t make any formal report to any of the police stations near here. It shows that someone sent them. It was like war on that fateful day. Those who were sleeping in their vehicles were also arrested.

“Some of our friends were chased into the lagoon by the police. The boys were running to evade arrest even though they didn’t commit any crime. Some of them were stabbed with scissors in different parts of their bodies while inside the lagoon. Even the two corpses that were brought out of the river had deep cuts on their bodies. That shows that the policemen came with a mission, not only to arrest, but to kill.”

Another youth in the community, Mr. Hafeez Adio, said that the policemen came with a plan. He noted that it was suspicious that the policemen allowed everyone to be in bed before storming the community at an ungodly hour.

While in the community, our correspondent learnt that on September 1, a boy called Junior was hacked to death by boys from Onala area of Idumota, on a football pitch at Ebute-Ero area. Also, on September 15, another person was killed at the entrance of Elegbata. Adio disclosed that all those killed were from Elegbata, but those of them at Elegbata refused to take laws into their hands. They didn’t retaliate. 

He said: “Unfortunately, those who were chased into the lagoon were sleeping outside when the policemen came. Immediately they saw the policemen, the boys took off. The policemen, instead of allowing them to go, went after them. The policemen pursued the youth until they jumped into the lagoon and four drowned. Before the policemen came to Elegbata, they had already been to Balogun area to carry out raids. When the policemen got to the Balogun area, they also scaled a fence and got into the compound of a woman. It was after they left Balogun that they came to Elegbata to continue their raid.

“The raid by the police led to the death of our friends. We have being living in fear since then. Some of our colleagues, who escaped the police arrest, have relocated from the community. Those of us who stayed back, stayed because of our goods. If we leave our goods, the police will loot them. The majority of us depended on loan to do our businesses. We want the Lagos State government to call the policemen to order.”

Another resident of Elegbata, who identified himself simply as Taofeek, said that even before the latest invasion, the police had always come on a daily basis to extort them.

“I don’t know what our offences are,” said Taofeek mournfully.

A son of the Oba of the community, Chief Isiaka Olumegbon, said that the police came to raid following a minor clash between two youths from Elegbata and Onala, in the Idumota area of the Island.

He said: “Two persons were killed in Elegbata area and one person was also killed in retaliation by the Elegbata boys. Had it been elders from the two communities had risen to settle the issue, it wouldn’t have escalated to the extent that policemen would invade the community, leading to the death of four boys.

“I was told that it was the Onala boys that first attacked Elegbata boys. It was later that the issue of NURTW came into the matter. The Onala boys also came sometimes in October to rob Alhaja Owoniran of her bag, which contained dollars and phones. In order to fight Elegbata boys, the Onala boys went to Ijora to hire more boys to assist them. Unfortunately, on September 10, one boy was shot to death during masquerade festival. After killing the boy, his assailants smashed his head. It was as a result of the killing that Ofin boys decided to support the Elegbata boys to the fight against the Onala boys. That was how the clash escalated.”

Olumegbon also spoke on the recent invasion of the community by the police.

He said: “The policemen came about 1a.m. on September 9. When they stormed the community, they started shooting sporadically. When I heard the gunshots, I came out to check where the gunshots were coming from. It was then I saw the policemen. I approached them to find out their mission. The policemen were about 20 and had four civilians with them. The civilians were armed with sticks. One of them told me that they came on an operation. After I spoke with the policemen, I left and went inside the palace to sleep.

“It was after I had entered the palace that the policemen picked my sister’s son, Samuel. Immediately I was informed, I came outside, but the policemen had already left. I believe it was after they left the palace that they went to chase the 10 youth that ran into the lagoon.

“The boy that led the policemen into our community is residing on Elegbata before he went to join the Onala boys.  Whenever the Onala boys want to talk, they would say the Elegbata boys are dealing in drugs and cocaine.  I abhor such a thing in the palace. I don’t want people to discredit the palace because it’s a sacred place.

“The boy that led the policemen to arrest our youths in Elegbata has escaped from the Island. Even his parents also called him on the phone to come and explain what he knows about the incident, he denied partaking in it. On Saturday last week, when the corpses of the deceased were evacuated from the lagoon, the Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) from Lion Building, Bode Ojajuni, was on ground. He promised to get to the root of the matter. What we’re demanding is peace on the Island.”

The state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Bala Elkana, neither picked his calls nor responded to a text message sent to his phone line to confirm the incident.

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Metro and Crime

Man in court for withdrawing N800,000 from victim’s account



Man in court for withdrawing N800,000 from victim’s account

man, Akintunde Ogunrinde, has been arraigned before a Federal High Court, Makurdi, Benue State, for allegedly withdrawing money from the account of another man, Mr. Ademola Adewuyi, without the latter’s permission.

Ogunrinde, popularly known as Kekere, was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Makurdi zonal office, before Justice Mobolaji Olajuwon on a one-count charge of intent to defraud.

The EFCC Zonal Head of Public Affairs Department, Nwanyimma Okeanu, said in a statement that Ogunrinde allegedly used a United Bank for Africa (UBA) Automated Teller Machine (ATM) card belonging to Adewuyi to obtain N800,000 from his account.

“The office of the zonal head, EFCC Makurdi had received a petition from a complainant against Akintunde Ogunrinde (aka Kekere) alleging that Akintunde and Alhaji Baba (aka White) now at large used an ATM card belonging to the victim to obtain unauthorised money from his account.

The charge reads: “That you, Akintunde Ogunrinde (aka Kekere) sometime in 2019 in Nigeria, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court with intent to defraud, used an UBA ATM card belonging to Ademola Adewuyi to obtain N800,000 only and you thereby committed an offence, contrary to Section 33 (1) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention ETC) Act, 2015 and punishable under section 33 (2) of the same Act.”

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Metro and Crime

Anambra explosion: Market shut as traders count losses



Anambra explosion: Market shut as traders count losses

Twenty-four hours after a fuel tanker, which exploded and killed about 15 people, traders at the Ochanja Market, Onitsha, Anambra State, yesterday bemoaned their loss.

Ochanja Market, which is the second largest market in the commercial city of Onitsha, was shut yesterday for business.

Our correspondent who visited the market, reports that traders affected by the inferno were clearing the debris.

Also, sympathisers thronged Iweka Road, Ziks Avenue and Ozomagala Street.

One of the affected traders, Chief Godswell Anyanwu, a former chief security officer (CSO) of the market, told our correspondent that he lost goods worth over N12 million.

Anyanwu, who deals on electronics, said it was painful that no fire fighting vehicle was seen from 1p.m., when the incident occurred, till 9p.m.

He also said that the state government had provided fire fighting vehicles to markets in the commercial city but none was seen throughout the period the fire raged.

Anyanwu said it was the private water tanker drivers who helped to provide assistance which reduced the spread of the fire. He appealed to Governor Willie Obiano to come to their aid.

Meanwhile, the Chairman of the Anambra State Amalgamated Traders’ Association (ASMATA), Chief Ikechukwu Ekwegbalu, said he did not order for the closure of the Ochanja market, instead he said the market was open and business was going on as usual.

The ASMATA boss said the governor had earlier visited the market to sympathise with the traders and had also set up a panel of inquiry to ascertain the immediate and remote causes of the incident.

Anyanwu said he was hopeful that Obiano would compensate the victims of the inferno.

He, however, condemned the attitude of some miscreants who threw stones and pebbles at government officials and agents when they visited the market.

The ASMATA chairman said the culprits were not traders at the market but criminals.

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Gunmen kill one, abduct teacher, four others in Kaduna



Gunmen kill one, abduct teacher, four others in Kaduna

At least one person was killed while four others including a head teacher have been abducted in Birnin-Gwari Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

This is as the community called on the Federal Government and the Kaduna State government to come to their aid before they were consumed by bandits.

The Chairman, Birnin-Gwari Vanguards for Security and Good Governance, Malam Ibrahim Abubakar Nagwari, said in a statement the that the Head Teacher of Dangamji, Primary School, AbdulHafiz Abdullahi, and two others were abducted at Doka filing station, while two others were shot.

According to him, bandits have been kidnapping and killing people in the area in the past few weeks.

He said: “Bandits have abducted the Head Teacher of Dangamji, Primary School, AbdulHafiz Abdullahi, and two others at Doka filing station, while two others were shot.

“Earlier on Wednesday morning, about 8.30a.m., heavily armed bandits, opened fire on vehicles around Polwaya and abducted a bread vendor, about 10 kilometres from Birnin-Gwari.

“Similarly, the bandits struck again on Wednesday near Gayam village, wounded three vigilante and abducted people from vehicles.

“The notorious Unguwar Yako, Kwanan Mahaukaciya and indeed entire Birnin-Gwari-Kaduna highway have been overtaken by bandits terrorising and abducting innocent people especially women and children.

“In the last three weeks, bandits have launched a major onslaught against innocent civilians and motorists across the length and breadth of Birnin-Gwari Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

“On a daily basis, the bandits carry their nefarious act along Birnin-Gwari-Kaduna Highway in broad daylight without any challenge from the security personnel that are stationed in Birnin-Gwari. The strategic Birnin-Gwari-Funtua Road has been deserted, while the entire eastern part of Birnin-Gwari, bordering Zamfara and Katsina states, is now surrounded by bandits.

“It is apparent to state categorically, that Birnin-Gwari is once again under siege by bandits and the handful of security personnel and state officials are paying lip-service to the plight of general insecurity of lives and property.

“We have noticed with dismay, the way our people are subjected to horrified and traumatised situation by the bandits that prey on human beings every day on various communities, villages and settlements in Birnin-Gwari Local Government Area.

“While we appreciate previous efforts by the security personnel against banditry in Birnin-Gwari, we hope the government of Malam Nasiru el-Rufai, will not treat our people as prodigal sons.

“With the current tension, fear and inability of peasant farmers to go to their respective farms because of activities of bandits, we strongly call on the Federal Government, Kaduna State government and the security agents to act decisively on the bandits and their collaborators before we are consumed by the bandits. Enough is enough.”

The Kaduna State Police Command is yet to react to the latest incident.

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