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BREAKING: Court Affirms Deregistration Of 32 Political Parties

Peter Okunoren

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The Federal High Court in Abuja on Thursday affirmed the deregistration of 32 political parties.

In her judgment, Justice Anwuli Chikere dismissed the suit filed by the parties against the powers of the Independent National Electoral Commission to deregister them.

The judge held that the commission rightly deregistered the parties in line with the provision of section 225(a) of the Nigerian Constitution.

The political parties were among the 74 that were deregistered by the INEC on February 6, 2020, on the grounds of poor performance at the 2019 general elections.

The parties had filed their suit last year to restrain INEC from carrying out the exercise when they got wind of the commission’s plan.

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BREAKING: Sanwo-Olu Lifts Curfew In Lagos

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The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has lifted the curfew imposed on the state with immediate effect.

This was contained in a press statement by the Lagos Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Gbenga Omotoso, on Saturday.

The statement read, “The curfew imposed on Lagos State after the hijack of the peaceful #EndSARS protests has been lifted immediately. The 12 a.m. to 4 a.m. curfew imposed by the Federal Government to curb the spread of COVID-19 remains.

“Lagosians are free to go about their businesses without any hindrance whatsoever. Security agencies will continue to discharge their duties. Lagosians are urged to co-operate with them to maintain the status of our state as one of the most peaceful.

“Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu thanks security agencies for their efforts in restoring peace to our troubled communities. He commends Lagosians for observing the curfew and ensuring the return of normalcy.

“The Governor urges the citizenry not to do or encourage any action that may turn back the clock, but to keep living in harmony as we get set to rebuild our dear State and strengthen the unity that we are known for.”

Details later…

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JUST IN: US Special Forces Storm Nigeria, Rescue Kidnapped American, Kill 6 Bandits

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An American citizen held hostage in northern Nigeria has been successfully rescued by the United States forces, CNN is reporting.

This was revealed in a statement by the Pentagon Spokesman, Jonathan Hoffman, on Saturday.

The hostage, Philip Walton, was abducted Monday night on the outskirts of Massalata, a village about 10 kilometers (six miles) from the border with Nigeria.

Part of the statement reads, “U.S. forces conducted a hostage rescue operation during the early hours of October 31 in Northern Nigeria to recover an American citizen held hostage by a group of armed men.

“This American citizen is safe and is now in the care of the U.S. Department of State. No U.S military personnel were injured during the operation.

“We appreciate the support of our international partners in conducting this operation. The United States will continue to protect our people and our interests anywhere in the world.”

The mission, which was several hours long, was conducted by the Navy’s elite SEAL Team 6 who were flown to the region by Air Force special operations, a US official with knowledge of the operation told CNN.

The US forces who conducted the mission killed six of the seven captors, the official said.

The US believes the captors have no known affiliation with any terror groups operating in the region and were more likely bandits seeking money.

The State Department confirmed earlier this week that a US citizen had been abducted in Niger.

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SARS Detained Me For 22 Days, Took Me To A Shrine, I Lost Two-Month Pregnancy To Torture —- Schoolteacher Tells Lagos Panel

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Hearing by the Lagos State Panel of Judicial Inquiry into complaints of human rights violations by men of the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad continued on Saturday with a schoolteacher, Ndubuisi Obiechina, narrating to the panel how she was arrested in 2017 on a bogus allegation of being a thief and a kidnapper and tortured by SARS men till her then two-month-old pregnancy was aborted.

The schoolteacher, who appeared before the retired Justice Doris Okuwobi-led panel alongside her husband, told the panel that she was detained for 22 days and tortured till she lost her pregnancy.

She named the officers who tortured her as Phillip Rilwan, Christian, and Haruna Idowu.

She alleged that the policemen stole her husband’s N50,000 and compelled them to part with N400,000 as bail fee before they were freed.

Narrating their ordeal in the hands of the SARS men, she said, “On June 1, 2017, I received a text message from an unknown number that I had a parcel from DHL. A caller using different numbers asked for my home or office address and I gave him my school address upon my husband’s advice.

“The following day, I saw a black jeep with huge men inside it. One of them was in a DHL uniform. Immediately, they approached me, they started beating me. They said I should enter inside. They said I was a thief, an armed robber. The one in the DHL uniform removed it. My HM (headmistress) was peeping at us. I said let me go and tell her. They said no.

“I said my kid is there, they said no, that I should follow them, that my kid would die there.

“My HM came to the gate; they pointed a gun at me. She asked what was going on. They said, ‘This woman is a thief, a kidnapper. She must follow us and go. They said they were Police, SARS’.

“They pushed me inside the car and moved. The men were slapping, beating me. I was two months pregnant. I started vomiting. That’s when they found out I was pregnant. But they kept torturing me. I told them I did not know the suspect.

“They took me to their office at Ikeja. They took me to a shrine. They hanged me, beat me. They said they would force my baby out of me. They said I must produce the person or die there.”

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