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Bauchi Gov Bala Mohammed Lied Against Me, I Never Shook Hands With Him — Atiku’s Son

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The son of former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar, Mohammed Atiku Abubakar, has accused the Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed, of lying about how he contracted coronavirus.

Mr Abubakar, in a short message shared with an online newspaper, PREMIUM TIMES, via a WhatsApp platform, said he never shook hands with the governor when they met on board an Aero Contractors aircraft.

The duo, accompanied by their wives, boarded the plane on March 18 at about 5:20 p.m from Lagos to Abuja.

On his return to Abuja, Mr Abubakar tested positive for the virus, and has since been undergoing treatment at a government facility.

Following Atiku Abubakar’s open declaration of his son’s health status, the governor’s spokesperson, Mukhtar Gidado, announced in a statement that the governor had self-isolated, citing his meeting with Mr Abubakar.

Mr Mohammed said he boarded the same flight and shook hands with Mr Abubakar.

On Tuesday, Mr Gidado said in another statement that Gov Mohammed had tested positive for the virus.

“This is to inform the general public that the results of the six initial tests carried out by the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) on His Excellency, Senator Bala Mohammed, his family and aides that accompanied him to Lagos is (sic) out,” the statement said.

“Of the six initial tests carried out, one sample was confirmed positive of COVID-19. The positive result happens to be that of His Excellency, Senator Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed, the Executive Governor of Bauchi State.

“At this point, it should be noted that the governor is on self-isolation as his doctors and officials from the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) have taken full charge of his quarantine.”

“His Excellency solicits for prayers from all and requests that all those who had contact with him or anyone known to have the same medical condition to go for test immediately in order to avert further spread of COVID-19 epidemic,” the statement reads.

But Mr Abubakar said the governor sat on one side of the aisle, while he was on another side with his wife.

“We greeted but never shook hands,” he said.

BIG STORY

JUST IN: Former NNPC GMB Baru Dies

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has announced the death of its immediate pas Group Managing Director (GMD), Dr Maikanti Baru.

In a statement, the corporation said: “NNPC regrets to announce the demise of its former Group Managing Director (GMD), Dr. Maikanti Kacalla Baru, Friday night.”

Baru, a consummate Mechanical Engineer, died after a brief illness, NNPC Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs, Dr. Kennie Obateru stated.

He said NNPC Group Managing Director, Mallam Mele Kyari expressed shock over the sudden death of Dr. Baru, who was the 18th Group Managing Director of the Corporation.

Mallam Kyari described him as a man ‘of exemplary character and disposition.’

Baru, 60, who was at the helm of the Corporation from July 4th 2016 to July 7th 2019, died after a brief illness in an Abuja hospital.

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BIG STORY

BREAKING: Six Nigerian Air Force Officers Jailed Over Murder Of Former CDS, Alex Badeh

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The General Court Martial (GCM) sitting in Abuja, has sentenced six Nigerian Air Force Personnel for criminal conspiracy, dereliction of duty over the gruesome murder of former Chief of Defence Staff, Alex Badeh.

The sentences are however subject to confirmation by the Appropriate Superior Authority.

The convicted Officers were Squadron Leader Tom Gwani, Flight Sergeant Amu David, Flight Sergeant Philemon Degema, Flight Sergeant Sabo Simon, Sergeant Mukhtar Abdullahi and Sergeant Alfred Alexander.

Four of the personnel were detailed to provide armed escort for the late CDS, while two others were detailed for guard duty at his residence.

Badeh was killed on the 18 of December 2018 by unknown gunmen along Gitata-Keffi Highway in Nasarawa State, while returning from his farm.

In a statement by the Director of Public Relations and Information, Nigerian Air Force, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, while delivering his judgment, the President of the GCM, Air Commodore David Aluku, pronounced the six accused personnel guilty of various charges including failure to perform Military duties, by absconding from the convoy of the deceased former CDS while it came under attack, as well as to conduct to the Prejudice of Service Discipline, for giving false statements.

According to the statement, the charges against the accused also included other Civil Offences of Criminal Conspiracy and Miscellaneous Offences Relating to Property, for illegally disposing of 79 rounds of 5.56mm live ammunition issued for the protection of the late CDS, among others”.

It added that “on the count of aiding and abetting, two of the personnel were found not guilty, while the other four personnel who were detailed to provide armed escort were handed various sentences.

“While pleading in mitigation, the Defence Counsels urged the Court to show leniency, describing the accused persons as first-time offenders.

“The sentences were announced as being subject to confirmation by the Appropriate Superior Authority”.

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Nigeria Yet To Receive Ventilators From US, A Month After Trump’s Promise — FG

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The federal government says it is yet to receive ventilators from the US.

On April 28, US President Donald Trump, during a telephone conversation with President Muhammadu Buhari, promised to send ventilators to support Nigeria in the fight against COVID-19.

Speaking at the presidential task force briefing on Thursday, Lai Mohammed, minister of information and culture, said the ventilators are yet to arrive in Nigeria.

He said there is no specific date for the arrival of the medical items, and that the information will be made public once the ventilators are received.

“On when the ventilators promised by President Trump will arrive, to the best of my knowledge, they have not arrived. When they do arrive it will be made known to the public,” he said.

On the efforts made by the information ministry in curbing the spread of COVID-19, Mohammed said there has been increased community sensitization against the disease.

He said there has been a series of jingles played on radio stations to enhance rural engagements.

“In addition, we also have support from 40 community and campus radio stations across the country awaiting our jingles,” he said.

“Our aggressive and sustained campaign on the Social Media has gained traction, in the last five days alone some of the videos we posted have been viewed over one million times.”

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