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BREAKING: Sanusi Speaks After Dethronement As Kano Emir, Calls It An Act Of Destiny

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The deposed Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi, has made his first official reaction to his removal from office on Monday.

Mr Sanusi was deposed following a resolution of the Kano State Executive Council on March 9, on allegations of insubordination.

The Secretary to the Kano State Government, Usman Alhaji, who addressed journalists at the end of the emergency council meeting said the action was based on the governor’s powers under the state’s Emirates Law 2019.

A son of late Ado Bayero who was Mr Sanusi’s predecessor, Aminu Bayero, was immediately announced as the new emir with the endorsement of the four Kano kingmakers.

In the video message, which was obtained by an online news platform Premium Times, Mr Sanusi accepted his dethronement as an act of destiny.

“With almost six years on this throne and (in charge of) our heritage. Today, the Almighty Allah, who gave me the leadership has destined to take it back,” Mr Sanusi said.

“As I always say, leadership has predetermined tenure, the days Allah destined are numbered. When the days come to an end one must leave.

“We have accepted whatever Allah decides. We have agreed. We appreciate (God). We are happy and we know it is what is best for us.”

The video appeared to have been recorded at the Kano Palace on Monday before Mr Sanusi was whisked away into exile by security personnel.

Towards the end of the video, the blaring of a siren could be heard signaling the arrival of the police commissioner who led the operation.

The deposed emir called on all titleholders and palace officials to support whoever emerged as the emir.

“We enjoin everyone to remain peaceful. We have directed our family, our children and those that support us that whoever gets it and is endorsed by the people they should pay allegiance to him.

“They should follow him (the new emir). They should guard his honour and dignity because that is also the honour and dignity of this palace.”

In affirming his ties to his grandfather who was deposed in a similar way in 1963, Mr Sanusi expressed happiness for practicing his reign in accordance with that of Emir Sanusi I.

“It is a thing of pride that made us rule and end in the same fashion as Halifa,” he said using his grandfather’s sobriquet.

Mr Sanusi expressed his thanks to the people of Kano, titleholders, lieutenants, and friends for their support and affection during his reign.

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JUST IN: Court Orders Orji Kalu’s Release From Prison

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The Federal High Court in Lagos on Tuesday ordered the release of a former governor of Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu, from prison.

Kalu was jailed for 12 years on December 5, 2019, after he was convicted of N7.1bn fraud alongside his firm, Slok Nigeria Limited, and a former Director of Finance at the Abia State Government House, Jones Udeogu.

However, the Supreme Court, in a May 8, 2020 judgment, nullified the trial and conviction of Kalu and others on the grounds that the judge who handled the case lacked jurisdiction.

The Supreme Court’s judgment followed an appeal by Udeogu, contending that the trial judge, Justice Mohammed Idris, concluded the 12-year-old trial and gave judgment after he had been elevated to the Court of Appeal and ceased to be a judge of the Federal High Court.

On Tuesday, Kalu’s counsel, Chief Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), urged Justice Mohammed Liman to the release of the ex-governor from prison custody, based on the pronouncement of the Supreme Court in Udeogu’s appeal.

“Our application is brought pursuant to Section 159 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act.

“This is a fallout of the Supreme Court decision delivered on the 8th of May,” Fagbemi said.

In response, the prosecuting counsel for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), the anti-graft agency would not, in principle, oppose Fagbemi’s application for Kalu’s release from prison.

“But we are also urging the court that the order made by the Supreme Court for trial de novo should be complied with by all parties; so that Your Lordship will give us a date when arraignment will be done.

“We want the trial to go on; losing more time will be dangerous for us,” Jacobs added.

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Banks, Hotels, Others Back As Government Reopens Businesses

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Businesses got on Monday a new lease of life as government commenced phase two of the ease of lockdown by gradually reopening the economy.

Banks were given immediate clearance to operate fully. Hotels got the nod to reopen “but must observe all mandatory non-pharmaceutical intervention”.

The Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 Control unveiled the new guidelines on Monday at the end of the first phase of lockdown easing ordered by President Muhammadu Buhari on May 4.

National Coordinator of the PTF, Dr. Aliyu Sani, who announced the reopening of the financial sector, said the restricted opening of worship centers will be granted by states subject to the PTF guidelines.

The Aviation Industry is also to be reopened this month.

Airlines and other stakeholders in the industry have been given till June 21 to work out all necessary plans and preparations for the resumption of domestic flights.

Dr. Sani said: “The goal of phase two over the next four weeks is to balance public safety with protecting livelihoods as well as allowing the full restoration of economic activities across the country.

“We are not opening places of worships across the board. We are saying that opening is conditional and it is based on these clear-cut guidelines and would only cover regular church and mosque services.

“Effective from tomorrow (today) Tuesday the 2nd of June, 2020, the easing of the lockdown will be characterized by the following:

“The nationwide curfew will remain in place but the timing of this will be reduced to 10 pm to 4 am. The purpose of the curfew is to limit social interactions and therefore reduce the risk of transmission of the virus.

“Persons that are on essential duty, including but not limited to those involved in the provision of health care services, media services, and critical infrastructure are exempted from the curfew.

“All interstate travels by individuals remain prohibited except for essential travels and the movement of goods and services. All restrictions on the free movement of goods and services are now removed in this phase.

“There will be a full opening of the financial sector with banks now allowed to operate normal working hours-five days a week.

“The mass gathering of more than 20 people outside of the workplace or places of worship remains prohibited.

“There will be controlled access to markets and locations of economic activities. But local authorities will continue to provide guidance on opening times.

“Restricted opening of places of worship will be based on state government protocols and restrict guidelines of physical distancing and other non-pharmaceutical interventions. This will apply to regular church and mosques services only.

“In terms of general movement, persons may go out for work, go to buy necessary food, and for exercise provided that they abide by the curfew hours.

“Movement between local government areas is strongly discouraged unless for critical reasons such as healthcare and work.

“I will like to emphasize that it is still safer to stay at home and avoid crowds. The pandemic is not over in this country and the relaxation of some of the rules doesn’t mean that it is safer to go out. If you do not need to go out please continue to stay at home.

“Hawking and trading are also prohibited and we will be looking into this in later details with state authorities.

“The aviation industry requested to start developing protocols to allow for domestic flights to resume anytime from June 21 onwards. Airlines must ensure physical distancing by reducing passenger capacity, ensure the provision of hand sanitizers, and appropriate personal protective equipment as well as carrying out temperature checks at points of entry and departure and ensuring that airports are not congested by either non-travelers or by airport staff.

“With interstate travels, movement across state borders remains restricted other than the free movement of goods and essential travels. Security services are requested to please cooperate with members of the public and ensure that goods are provided with the free passage as this particular phase is directed at ensuring the economy starts moving again.

“With intra-state travel, we will implement new travel processes for areas of the country with high burden local government areas and this will be restricted to essential travel but for the moment with intrastate travel, all the prior guidelines will remain, including reduced occupancy for buses and taxis, the need for a temperature check and where available, the provision of handwashing facilities and the maintenance of physical distancing.

“For the industry and labor sector in terms of working hours, normal working hours will apply to offices other than government offices provided this is kept within the curfew hours of 10 pm to 4 am.

“Offices are to maintain working at 75 percent capacity while maintaining the two-meter physical distancing.

“For government offices, they can open between the hours of 9 am to 2 pm. So, no change in opening hours but can work from Mondays to Fridays. Prior to this, we allowed a three-day working week. However, only persons that are within the grade level of 14 and above at both the federal and state government levels will be allowed to come into work. We will encourage staff to continue to work at home if possible, including the business and private sector, making the best use of technology that is now available.

“Hotels may reopen but must observe all mandatory non- pharmaceutical interventions.

“Restaurants, other than those in hotels must remain closed to eat -ins but are allowed to prioritize and continue practicing the takeaway system.

“The Federal Ministry of Education has been instructed to work with school owners to prepare students that require exiting exams to allow them to take exams early in the next phase of the lifting of the lockdown.

“State governments and security agencies are enjoined to ensure effective and strict enforcement of these guidelines while respecting the exemptions that have been approved by Mr. President.”

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BREAKING: Music Legend, Majek Fashek Dies

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Legendary Nigerian singer, songwriter, and guitarist, Majekodunmi Fasheke popularly known as Majek Fashek, has died.

According to reports, the “Send Down the Rain” crooner, aged 57 died in a hospital in New York on Monday, June 1. Our sources are yet to confirm the cause of his death.

His manager, Uzoma Omenka, confirmed this in a video uploaded on the late singer’s Instagram handle.

Omenka, who said he has been getting pressure from all over regarding the passing of the maestro, said, “Yes, it is true that the legend has gone to be with the Lord. But this time I want to say we should all celebrate him, his achievements. He has done a lot for Nigeria and for Africa.

“Whatever the family decides, I will get to you. This is all I have to say for now.”

Majek was born in Benin City to an Edo mother and an Ijesha father but identifies with his Benin roots.

In the early eighties Fashek, who at the time went by the stage name Rajesh Kanal, joined the group Jastix with McRoy Gregg, and Drummer Black ‘Rice. They were best known as the in-house band on the show Music Panorama on NTA Benin and toured with fellow reggae group The Mandators.

In 1988, shortly after Jastix disbanded Fashek, who now used the name Majek Fashek, signed with Tabansi Records and began a solo career by releasing the album Prisoner of Conscience and quickly became Nigeria’s top reggae artist after the song “Send Down The Rain” became the most popular song of the year, and in 1989 he won six PMAN awards for “Song of the Year”, “Album of the Year”, and “Reggae Artist of the Year” among others.

Fashek was married to Rita Fashek who inspired the song “Without You”; the couple had four children together, but have since divorced. In 2015, it was revealed that Fashek was bankrupt and battling drug addiction. After admitting that he needed help, he was admitted into a drug rehabilitation center in Abuja, but has since recovered, and returned to music.

Besides his struggle with drug addiction, other health conditions required his hospitalization on several occasions. He was rumored dead in September 2019 but his manager quelled the rumors, confirming that Majek had indeed been critically ill, hospitalized at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Woolwich, England, and in dire need of financial assistance

The ‘rainmaker’ as he his fondly called has worked with various artists worldwide including Tracy Chapman, Jimmy Cliff, Michael Jackson, Snoop Dogg, and Beyoncé.

Majek’s life and work are still prominently celebrated by Nigerian music fans and beyond. His legacy of excellence in music and worldwide impact through instrumentation will live imminently.

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