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Hard Times For Akpabio As Cousin Joins Kinsmen, Political Leaders To Reject Senator, Accuse Him Of Causing Violence In Akwa Ibom

Peter Okunoren

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Over 500 stakeholders, political leaders and party executives from Senator Godswill Akpabio’s local government, Essien Udim, have accused the former governor of unleashing violence and terror on them during the last governorship and State Assembly elections in the State.

The stakeholders led by Prince Ukpong Akpabio(Cousin to Senator Akpabio) in a world press conference held at the NUJ secretariat Uyo on Thursday, alleged that the senator masterminded and executed the militarization of the electoral process witnessed in the area.

A communique signed by the stakeholders and leaders and read by Barr Imo-Owo Okpokpo reads, “Essien Udim people condemned in strong terms the various electoral offenses and irregularities masterminded and perpetrated by Senator Godswill Akpabio and his cohorts in which almost all the election process in the area was marred by unlawful militarization, rigging and assault on INEC electoral officers.

”Among the atrocities committed by Senator Godswill Akpabio include carting away of electoral materials and INEC ad hoc staff in all the units of the 11 wards in the area, with the help of military men with armoured vehicles to the residence of Barr Ibanga Akpabio.”

They claimed that one Supol Idorenyin Akpabio of SARS in company of other policemen shot at people indiscriminately, detained and maimed PDP supporters on the directives of Sen Akpabio.

They further claimed that, “Senator Godswill Akpabio with his cohorts apart from assaulting INEC staff also beat and machete some PDP faithful to the point of unconsciousness”.

The stakeholders and leaders of Essien Udim maintained that in units where elections were not duly conducted, PDP won overwhelmingly and they have their result sheets intact describing any other result as fake and do not represent the votes of the electorates of Essien udim local government area.

They rejected the published results so far released by INEC in the state and equally condemned the cancellation of results in nine wards in the council area.

Essien Udim people used the forum to admonish Senator Godswill Akpabio to desist from further advertising of “his declining and dwindling political status through various press interviews as such will continue to deepen his failing image. We have totally rejected him as a people”.

They commiserated with the Corps members and other INEC staff who lost valuable items as a result of the allege mayhem ”perpetrated by Senator Godswill Akpabio,” stressing that Akpabio is still bent on killing some PDP stakeholders even as the elections are over.

They restated their hope on INEC’s capacity to correct as well as address the election anomalies with her avowed commitment to conduct a free, fair and credible elections in the country.

However, in a previous press conference held by Senator Akpabio, he alleged that the violence witnessed in Essien Udim during the elections was perpetrated by members of the PDP.

He insisted that APC won overwhelmingly in his local government and other local governments but the INEC in collusion with the PDP-led state government upturned the results against his party, APC.

Akpabio said he has facts and evidences to back his claims at the tribunal when the time comes.

BIG STORY

Coronavirus: Boris Johnson Writes Britons, Warns ‘Things Will Get Worse’

Peter Okunoren

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged Britons to stay home and outlined stricter measures yet to come in the fight against the coronavirus.

“It’s important for me to level with you – we know things will get worse before they get better,” Mr Johnson wrote in a letter issued by Downing Street.

The missive is to be delivered to 30 million households this week.

“We are making the right preparations, and the more we all follow the rules, the fewer lives will be lost and the sooner life can return to normal,” Mr Johnson asserted.

“At this moment of national emergency, I urge you, please, to stay at home, protect the NHS (National Health Service) and save lives,” he added.

Stay-at-home and strict social distancing rules must be obeyed, warned Mr Johnson, who has himself contracted COVID-19.

“These rules must be observed. So, if people break the rules, the police will issue fines and disperse gatherings,” he added.

The number of deaths from the coronavirus in Britain has risen to more than 1,000 with over 17,000 infections.

Britain delayed imposing social-distancing measures on its population to stem the spread of coronavirus until last week.

On Friday, both Mr Johnson and Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced they had tested positive for the virus.

Prince Charles, the heir to the British throne, also has the virus.

Mr Johnson, 55, has said he has mild symptoms including temperature and a persistent cough.

He is self-isolating and working from home.

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BIG STORY

BREAKING: Panic As UI College Of Medicine Provost, Deputy Test Positive For Coronavirus

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The provost and deputy provost of the University of Ibadan, UI, College of Medicine, Professors Ezekiel Olapade-Olaopa and Obafunke Denloye, have tested positive to the dreaded coronavirus.

Olapade-Olaopa, who made this known in a Whatsapp group message Sunday morning said “Dear colleagues, I wish to inform you that the deputy provost and I tested positive for the COVID-19 following the tests done on Friday. Although we are both asymptomatic, we have gone into self-isolation for the 14 days while our contacts are being observed closely to determine if they should also be tested.”

It is, however, unsure whether the duo are new cases or parts of the four cases confirmed by Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, last night.

Last night, the NCDC announced that the total number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the state is now seven.

Before Saturday night’s announcement, the number of confirmed cases in the state was only three.

A breakdown of the case in the country according to the NCDC shows that Oyo State now has the third-highest number of confirmed cases in the country behind only Lagos and FCT.

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BIG STORY

BREAKING: Nigeria Immigration Boss Muhammed Babandede Tests Positive For Coronavirus

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The Comptroller-General of Immigration, Muhammed Babandede, has tested positive for coronavirus, PUNCH Newspaper reports.

The CG, who disclosed this in a WhatsApp message to our correspondent this morning, explained that he is already on self-isolation since he returned from the United Kingdom on March 22.

The PUNCH later called him on phone and Babandede confirmed the development.

He stated, “Today, I tested positive for COVID-19. I have been on self-isolation since my return from UK on Sunday 22nd of this month with British Airways in Lagos.

“I urge my loved ones, Immigration Officers and Nigerians to pray for me and all those affected.”

Babandede urged immigration officers to continue working with his deputy to move the service forward.

He added, “It is a very difficult time but we can’t change what God destined for us.

“I urge officers to continue working with my able Deputy to further move our Service to another level. As advised by NCDC, I am totally isolated.”

This is happening barely 12 hours after the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, tested positive for COVID-19.

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