Unpaid Pension: Military Veterans Stages Nationwide Protest

By Alex Uangbaoje, Kaduna

Military pensioners across the country has vowed to storm Abuja, the Nigeria Federal Capital Territory and other states capital to protest their unpaid pension allowance by the Federal government.

The pensioners disclosed this in Kaduna on Friday during a press conference to express their disappointment for the All Progressive Congress (APC), led government.

According to the spokesperson of Coalition of Concerned Veterans, Abiodun Durowaiye-Herberts, prior to the 2015 general election, the group met with President Muhammadu Buhari, who was then the APC candidate and also went to the APC headquarter to declare their support and share their plight with them.

“We delivered by mobilising massively to contribute greatly towards his victory at the poll. We are concern about the plight of some of our war vets, who fought in the civil war, but served less than the stipulated period of 15 years before the new policy of 1992 took effect.

” However, considering that these individuals served up to 10 years in active capacity, and were either retired by the military or left service voluntarily but are not catered for in the present military pension policy, whereas their Biafran comrades are taken care of.

“We wish to appeal to Mr. President to consider putting all machinery in motion to bringing these vets back on pension payroll. He said.

He appealed to President Buhari, to as a matter of urgency look into the constitutional provisions of pension review of 5 years with the view to directing relevant government organs to commence immediate review which was last done in 2010.

“This has become necessary in view of the high cost of living because of the fall in the value of Naira.” He added.

Abiodun, laments the wrong signal being sent by the government to serving military personnel who will soon become pensioners, saying, “doing otherwise would definitely dampen their morals towards their primary responsibilities of protecting the territorial integrity of our country, on land, sea and air.”

“In the light of the above, we have mobilised our members across the country to come out with banners and placards, on a 2-day peaceful demonstration, commencing on the eve of the annual ritual to commemorate the Armed Forces remembrance day celebration and to culminate on January 15th, 2017, in order to draw the attention of Mr. President to our plight.”

BREAKING: Presidency denies sack of Ibrahim Magu as EFCC Chairman

Contrary to reports, Ibrahim Magu, has not been relieved of his appointment as Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the presidency has said.

The Guardian newspaper quoted an unnamed source as saying Mr. Magu had been asked to vacate his seat by the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami.

Although Mr. Malami could not be reached on phone, officials at the presidency denied the report.

“It is not true,” presidential spokesperson, Femi Adesina, said on Saturday.

Mr. Adesina confirmed that Mr. Buhari had not authorised Mr. Magu’s removal.

Close aides of Mr. Magu also said no such directive was received from the Attorney General’s office.

Messrs. Magu and Malami were said to have met on Friday to finetune ‎case files on an urgent matter asked to be investigated by Mr. Buhari.

However, multiple sources at the presidency and the AGF’s office confirmed that Mr. Malami ‎on Friday made effort to submit a report to President Buhari.

The report was in response to the president’s directive that Mr. Malami investigate allegations of corruption levelled against Mr. Magu by the State Security Service, SSS.

“He (Mr. Malami) was rebuffed by‎ the president when he tried to submit the report,” a source at the presidency told PREMIUM TIMES. “HE was asked to submit the report to Vice President Osinbajo.

“Instead, the president gave him further instructions on some fresh assignments to be carried out jointly by him and Magu.”

BREAKING: Buhari removes Magu as EFCC boss

*As AGF directs he hands over to Director, Operations

The Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, may have finally been removed from office.

A source according to Guardian newspaper, said his redeployment back to Nigerian Police Force (NPF) was to pave way for a fresh person to be presented by President Muhammadu Buhari as the nominee to head the anti-graft agency before the Senate.

The Guardian gathered to make the situation look like a routine exercise, some senior Police officers would be re-deployed by the Police hierarchy to resume as conventional Police officers.

It was equally reliably gathered yesterday that the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, has already issued a leter to Magu on the development and directed that he hands over to the Director of Operations in the Commission.

Magu’s nomination was recently rejected by the Senate following allegation of graft levelled against him by the Department of State Security Service (DSS).

BREAKING NEWS: Rivers Assembly Speaker resigns

For the second time in one year, the Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly has resigned from office.

The erstwhile incumbent, Adams Dabotorudima, resigned today (Friday, December 30, 2016).
It may be recalled that Dabotorudima’s predecessor in office, Mr. Ikuinyi-Owaji Ibani, resigned on Friday, December 18, 2015, shortly after Governor Nyesom Wike presented the N307bn Appropriation Bill for 2016 before the House.
Ibani was succeeded by Dabotorudima, who represented the Okrika constituency, the same Rivers East Senatorial District as Wike.
And now, Dabotorudima has toed the path of his predecessor in office.

Alleged Murder: Court sends two Edo APC Chieftains to prison

An Oredo Magistrates’court in Benin on Thursday ordered the remand in prison custody of two chieftains of the All Progressives Congress, Osakpamwan Eriyo and Sunday Osagbona, for alleged attempted murder.

Chief Magistrate Mrs M. C. Ojobo, who said she lacked jurisdiction to entertain the case, directed that both accused persons be remanded in Oko Medium Security prison.

She said the prison has proper health facilities and directed that the case file be sent to the Directorate of Public Prosecution for legal advice.

The accused persons were charged with the attempted murder of Chief Osaro Idah, Secretary of the state’s APC.

Eriyo is the State Youth Leader of the APC and Chairman of the Road Transport Employers Association (RTEAN) while Sunday is the Ward 3 Chairman of the APC in Oredo Local Government

Their pleas were not taken.

Eriyo protested being handcuffed in the court room.

He said: “Am I a criminal? Did I kill anybody? Why are they charging me for attempted murder?

“I didn’t do anything. It is the governor that is oppressing me.”

Their Counsel, Usunobun Evbayiro, urged the court to grant them custody in the police clinic because of their ill-health.

He said his clients were hypertensive, asthmatic and diabetic and need constant medical attention.

“The first accused person collapsed in police station. It was the police doctors that revived him.

” I urge you to use your discretion to order him to be kept in police hospital so that police doctors can attend to him. It is for him not to die in custody.”

The case was adjourned till Jan. 13 for mention.

News Agency of Nigeria reports that the APC chieftains’ supporters had earlier staged protests at the headquarters of the Edo State Police Command to demand their release.

The police, however,  ignored the protesters and whisked the accused, under heavy security, to the court.

Similarly  officials of RTEAN and suspected thugs  attempted to storm the court room but they were barred by the police.

The APC chieftains were arrested following a petition sent to the police by Chief Osaro Idah that they threatened his life.


Army arrests 40 foreigners after capture of Sambisa Forest

The Nigerian Army has arrested over 40 foreign nationals, since the capture of Sambisa Forest, according to The Nation.

A source revealed that the foreigners were being investigated, to ascertain if they were working for Boko Haram or not.

“In the last one week since we launched massive operations in Sambisa Forest, we have arrested over 40 foreigners,” he said.

“We will come up with the details later after the profiling of these suspects. They are all being debriefed. But we discovered that there were so many foreigners in the midst of Boko Haram.

“We have also rescued a lot of people who are being screened too.”

The source also added that Boko Haram has been dispersed and dislocated.

“The success of the operations is significant because there is no habitation beyond these areas in Sambisa Forest. The area is about 66,000 sq kilometres and there are so many parts uninhabited,” he added.

“Many insurgents, including their leaders, were killed and many were captured. Many insurgents are now fleeing. The situation now is that Boko Haram insurgents have been dispersed and dislocated.”