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Unidentified gunmen have abducted the paramount ruler of Mgbuolua Rundele community, Eze G.A. Omodu, in Emohua Local Council of Rivers State.

It was learnt that the monarch had returned home with his family for the Christmas celebration and was whisked away at gunpoint to an unknown destination by the bandits.

A member of the community, Alex Igbeni, while confirming the incident, disclosed that the gunmen, who arrived the victim’s family house at about 2:30 a.m. yesterday, shot sporadically into the air before abducting the monarch in his car.

He said the victim’s car was later recovered between Rumuji and Ndele axis of the East-West Road.

Igbeni said the abduction of the community ruler had thrown the area into panic.

He disclosed that the youths of the community had already entered into the bushes and forests around the community in search of the monarch.

Contacted, the Public Relations Officer of the state police command, Mr. Nnamdi Omoni, confirmed the incident, stating that security operatives had been deployed to the area.

Omoni added that the Commissioner of Police in the state, Ahmed Zaki, has assured the victim would be rescued.

(The Guardian)


LASU Will Get Faculty Of Pharmacy When I Become Governor —— Sanwo-Olu



To strengthen capacity in pharmaceutical profession in Lagos State, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress in the 2019 election, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has assured members of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria that he will ensure that Lagos State University gets a faculty of Pharmacy, if he elected as the Governor.

Sanwo-Olu made the promise on Thursday during his interactive session with the Lagos State chapter of the PSN.

He said the state university after more than three decades of existence should be a centre of academic excellence for the production of manpower in the field of pharmacy.

He said: “To strengthen the profession and boost manpower in the field of Pharmacy, I am convinced that our state university should have a Faculty of Pharmacy.

“If elected, we will make sure LASU within our four years have Faculty of Pharmacy.

“It is not just right that we have Medical College without Faculty of Pharmacy.

“I am promising you that our government will ensure that everything is done to make Faculty of Pharmacy a reality for the State-owned University.

“As professional body of pharmacists, I will implore you to give us a position paper on what we need to do that will enable us achieve our objective and I can assure that as government, we will do all within our powers to make it a reality.”

The APC candidate told the pharmacists the importance he attaches to their profession and the entire health sector in general.

Sanwo-Olu said: “Your profession is one of the most important fields for human existence.

“No one can joke with the health sector.

“So when I received your invitation, I pledged to attend this event regardless of my schedule because it is about health and we must listen to you.”

The Chairman of Lagos State chapter of the PSN, B. T. O. Adeniran, urged Sanwo-Olu to help pharmacists practicing in the State when he gets to government.

Adeniran described the issue of turnaround time in getting drugs at government hospitals across the State as very cumbersome.

She said: “We need the government to look into the welfare and working condition of pharmacist working in Lagos State.

“We want upward review of salary and allowances.

“On capacity development, we need more training for our members so we can serve the state and the public better as integral part of the health system.”

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2019: Why We Chose Five Presidential Candidates For Debate —- NEDG

Peter Okunoren



The Nigeria Elections Debate Group (NEDG) has explained how five political parties were selected to participate in the presidential and vice-presidential debates.

NEDG Executive Secretary, Eddie Emesiri, said in a statement on Thursday that the parties for the debate were picked through an independently administered multi-stage process.

The statement was issued in reaction to the criticism triggered by the number of political parties selected by the group and the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON) organizers of the debates.

Emesiri stressed that the decision to select five parties was taken at the beginning of the process to ensure that the debates were managed effectively.

According to him, the stages of the selection process focused on political parties while the organisers considered the importance of diversity in the nation.

The NEDG Executive Secretary insisted that no preference was given to any candidate or party, adding that nobody influenced the organisers to include or exclude any political party from the debates.

The statement read: “Further to our earlier announcement of participating parties for the Presidential Debates, the organising partners of the Debates hereby reiterate the transparency and independence of the selection process that resulted in the five participating political parties.

“Firstly, we would like to state that the Presidential Debates are organised by a partnership of the Nigeria Elections Debate Group (NEDG) and Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON), a broad coalition of over 100 public and private broadcasters in Nigeria with coverage of terrestrial radio, television, direct-to-home, digital terrestrial television and multimedia distribution system. The members of BON are responsible for over 250 radio and tv stations across Nigeria.

“The choice of participating parties for the debate was made through an independently administered multi-stage process. The first stage was an independent online poll and the second involved the distribution of survey questionnaires per state, to professionals, artisans, students, etc; respondents were within the voting age and spread across urban, semi-urban and rural classifications. The third stage was to take an aggregate of the stage result and extend invitations to the top 5 parties for the debate.

“Following our disclosure of the participating parties earlier in the week, our attention has been drawn to some reactions in the public space over the decision to limit the participation to five parties and exclusion of some party flag bearers from the debate. Considering the vast number of contending parties, the decision to limit to five parties was taken at the beginning of our process to ensure ease of management for the debates. All the stages of the selection process were focused on political parties, taking into consideration the importance of national spread and diversity. Focus was not on specific individuals or candidates.

“We wish to emphatically state that the NEDG and BON were not influenced or induced by anyone to include or exclude any political party from the debate. We understand the disappointment of some political parties who would have wished to see their candidates share their visions for the country at the Debates. However, Nigerians have spoken through the multi-stage process and we urge all Nigerians to respect their choice as we abide by the outcome of the independent party selection process.”

NEDG and BON had named only five political parties to participate in 2019 vice presidential and presidential debates.

The parties listed were Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), Alliance for New Nigeria (ANN), All Progressives Congress (APC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Young Progressives Party (YPP).

This meant that the presidential aspirants expected at the debate are President Muhammadu Buhari, Atiku Abubakar, Oby Ezekwesili, Fela Durotoye and Kingsley Moghalu.

However, Presidential candidate of Allied Congress Party of Nigeria, ACPN, Oby Ezekwesili, has sought for five more influential presidential candidates.

The five candidates include: Donald Duke of the Social Democratic Party, SDP; Omoyele Sowore, of the African Action Congress, AAC; Byron Fagbemj of KOWA Party; and John Gbor of the All Progressives Grand Alliance APGA.

The Vice-Presidential Debate and the Presidential Debate are scheduled for Friday, December 14, 2018, and Saturday, January 19, 2019, respectively.

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Governor’s Aide Arrested Over Alleged Rape Of 15-year-old Girl



An aide to Cross Rivers Governor Ben Ayade, Edet Asim, is in police custody over alleged rape of a 15- year- old girl (name withheld).

Asim, a lawyer and the Special Adviser to Governor Ayade on Biodiversity, was also Commissioner for Information and later Commissioner for Sports under former Governor Liyel Imoke.

It was gathered girl had been continuously sexually defiled for the past three years by the aide, who is also a former chairman of Calabar Municipality local government area with the consent of her mother.

The mother is also in custody.

Although it could not be immediately confirmed, sources said the girl had been coerced to having two abortions since the defilement started.

She was also allegedly forced not to mention it to anyone.

It was learnt it was in the process of a third abortion, which led to complications that damaged her womb, that the matter became public.

Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Irene Ugbo, confirmed the development.

“Yes, he is in detention. The case was reported yesterday and he has been arrested. The DPO is still trying to conclude.

“They have to send the matter to State CID. It is a serious case. So we are waiting for it. The man is in our custody.

“He is at Airport Police Station right now, but very soon, he will be transferred to State CID.

“The mother is also in custody. She and the man were working together. They are accomplices,” Ugbo said.

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