​Police decry increase in use of unlicensed firearms in Oyo

The Police Command in Oyo State has decried the rate at which unlicensed firearms are being used by some people in the state.

This was disclosed by the command’s Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), SP Olugbenga Fadeyi, in a statement issued on Tuesday in Ibadan.

Fadeyi said that the use of unlicensed firearms was against the executive order signed by President Muhammadu Buhari on May 22, 2019, revoking the right of private individuals’ licences on fire arms or short guns in Nigeria.

He said that the Commissioner of Police in the state, Nwachukwu Enwonwu, viewed the violation with grave concern.

The PPRO said that some unscrupulous elements in the society had taken the liberty of masterminding inter-gang clashes towards looting and conducting other social vices, powered by the unlawful possession of firearms.

“The CP wishes to urge the people of Oyo State not to hesitate to assist the police in bringing such elements to book by given timely and accurate information about any unauthorised person(s) or group of persons found in possession of fire arms.

“The CP wishes to state emphatically that the buck of this load of correction and restoration of sanity lies in the hands of parents, stakeholders, religious leaders, leaders of thought and all in positions of influence.

“He, therefore, enjoined that all hands must be on deck towards educating the youths and wards alike to shun such dastardly act, gradually turning the state in the opposite direction of peace and progress,” Fadeyi said.

He also quoted Enwonwu as saying that measures had been put in place to ensure that the menace of ‘jungle justice’ was nipped in the bud and lives and property protected.

The police spokesperson said that officers and men of the command had been motivated and encouraged to ensure effective discharge of their duties, adding that perpetrators of such act would be made to face the full wrath of the law.

​731 Batch B NYSC members test positive for COVID-19 – PTF

The Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 has revealed that 731 members of Batch B National Youths Service Corps (NYSC) have tested positive for COVID-19.

The chairman, PTF on COVID-19, and Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr. Boss Mustapha, stated this at the national briefing on COVID-19 on Tuesday in Abuja.

According to him, in continuation of the NYSC engagement, the PTF has conducted the testing of batch B corps members using RDTs. Out of the 35,419 in Batch B, 731 tested positive compared to the 108 recorded in Batch A.

“It is on record that cases were recorded from corps members from every state of the federation,” he said.

The PTF chairman said “there is also a rising rate of infections among healthcare workers and this calls for the escalation of surveillance.

“In Africa, Nigeria has joined South Africa in reporting the highest daily infection cases.

“​As at date, the statistics for Nigeria shows the following: Cumulative cases: 91,351; Cumulative Tests: 958,911; Deaths: 1,318 and Week 53 recorded 57 deaths which is the highest for any single week since we started,” he said.

Mustapha further stated that “We are pleased to inform you that the private sector – CACOVID has commenced supporting our response with 100 oxygen cylinders per day, till the end of March 2021, for distribution to critical care centres in Abuja.

” Furthermore, approval has been given to rehabilitate five oxygen plants across various tertiary health institutions in Abuja. The President has also approved that at least one oxygen plant should be established in each state of the federation immediately,” he said.

On vaccines, he stated that ” the PTF is progressing on the issue of accessing vaccines for Nigerians and that additional information would be provided to Nigerians on accelerated vaccines introduction and deployment plan.

“What is currently confronting us is a critical phase of infections globally. We are constantly reviewing our strategy to emerging situations especially in risk communication, vaccine hesitancy, fake news/disinformation,” he further said.

On sanctioning of defaulting passengers, the PTF said it “has commenced the sanctions on passengers who defaulted on day-7 post-arrival tests.

“Their passport numbers have been published and travel restriction imposed for a period of six months effective from Jan. 1, 2021.

” The PTF has generated over 20,000 inbound passengers that have also defaulted. The publication will continue weekly till it is exhausted.

“​Nigerians should be aware that every defaulter is a threat to public health which is unacceptable to us and represents a drawback to the National Response. We have a duty to advise our relations, friends, associates to comply with laid down rules,” he added.

​University workers to protest on Tuesday over IPPIS, other issues

University workers under the aegis of the Joint Action Committee, JAC, of the Non-Academic Staff Union, NASU and the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, SSANU, are to start a three-day national protest on Tuesday in protest against government’s handling of some issues, including the controversial Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System, IPPIS.

The directive to embark on the protest was arrived at on Friday night at a meeting held by the leadership of the two unions in Abuja from which a communique was issued.

The communique was endorsed by Comrade Mohammed Ibrahim, the National President of SSANU and Comrade Peters Adeyemi, the General Secretary of NASU.

The JAC listed issues that necessitated the directive to include inconsistencies in IPPIS payments; non-payment of Earned Allowance; non-payment of arrears of new minimum wage; delay in the renegotiation of the FGN)NASU/SSANU 2009 Agreements.

Others are the non-payment of retirement benefits to former members; non-constitution of visitation panels to universities; poor funding of universities; teaching staff usurping the headship of non-teaching units among others.

The committee urged union leaders across the country to use Monday to sensitise members on the need for the protest.

It added that after the protest, the union members would consider other options to take including embarking on an indefinite strike.

​Benue Security Council to review security situation in volatile Katsina-Ala, Ukum LGAs – Ortom

Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State, has said the State Security Council would soon meet to review the security situation in the volatile Katsina-Ala and Ukum Local Government Areas, LGAs of the state as well as the ban on the use motorcycles in the area.

The Council had days ago embargoed the use of motorbikes in the two LGAs following the increasing cases of violent crimes being perpetrated by armed men on motorbikes in the area.

The armed men had a day to Christmas attacked the Katsina-Ala home of the LGA Chairman where three security personnel and two others were killed and three days later the village of a former lawmaker was razed and several persons including his loved ones were also killed by the armed men on motorbikes.

The Governor in a statement in Makurdi by his Chief Press Secretary, Terver Akase said his attention had also been drawn to reports of the destruction of impounded motorbikes in the two LGAs.

He gave assurance that the Security Council would review the ongoing operation in the affected areas and come out with a position.

The Governor in the statement reaffirmed the resolve of his administration to sustain the support given to security agencies for the protection of lives and property in all parts of the State.

He sued for the continuous support and cooperation of the people to ensure the protection of lives and property of everyone in every part of state.

​AMOTEKUN: Makinde vows to deal with erring members

Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, on Friday, declared that his government was already investigating the alleged high-handedness of the Amotekun corps, noting that the issues would be addressed in the interest of the security and wellbeing of residents of the state.

The governor reassured the residents of the state that the administration was doing everything it could to address security challenges in the state.

A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, indicated that Governor Makinde stated these on his Twitter handle @seyiamakinde on the recent occurrence in Tapa Town in Ibarapa North Local Government Area of the State.

The incident involved some youths and corps of the Oyo Security Network Agency codenamed Amotekun.

He added that Amotekun was introduced to check insecurity in the state, noting that the government will not sit back and watch any harassment or intimidation of any member of the public or any security agent.

He said: “Following the recent events in Tapa, Ibarapa North Local Government Area, it becomes imperative that I once again reassure the good people of Oyo State that our administration is doing everything in its power to address security issues in our state.

“One of the strategies we are using to check insecurity in the state is the recently introduced Western Nigeria Security Network (Amotekun). I am fully aware of the alleged highhandedness by some members of the corps. We are investigating these issues to address them promptly.

Meanwhile, the leadership of the National Association of Nigeria Students (NANS), has given a 72-hour ultimatum to the Oyo State Government to set up machineries for the reorientation of operatives of the corps.

The ultimatum was on the heels of series of alleged misdeeds of some operatives of the corps since its inauguration by Governor Seyi Makinde in the state.

The students’ body, in a statement jointly signed by the association’s chairman in the state, Comrade Oluwafunmbi Mayowa Opakunle; General Secretary, Comrade Ojetola Babatunde and Public Relations Officer, Comrade Adeleke Quadri stated that the Amotekun corps had over the time shown that they needed additional orientation on modern security approaches and their relationship with the masses, for proper cohabitation and navigation of their duties as they will be needing necessary stakeholders in fishing out the criminal elements amidst the population.

The statement added that this was the best way to overcome the security threats posed by bandits and other criminal elements and to avoid unnecessary victimization of the people.

The statement read further: “We’ve written on several occasions to inform the Oyo State Government and the entire populace of the state on the excesses of the just commissioned Western States Security Network, Amotekun Corps, but it seems a mere propaganda to many and an attempt aimed at undermining the effort of the state government on tackling the rampant insecurity uprising in the state, as the accused has also sent publications on this occasion to distort the allegations against them.”