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Police arraign 10 men over alleged membership of cult

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The police on Wednesday arraigned ten men, suspected to be cultists,  in a Grade 1 Area Court, Karu, Abuja, for allegedly constituting public nuisance within Kugbo Furniture Market, Abuja

The defendants, whose addresses were not given, include; Ubadija Nuhu, Timothy Awarga, John Jonathan, Christopher Sunday, Solomon Jonathan, Bala Audu, Ekpo Godwin, Ajaba Dominic, Benedict Ibrahim and Moses Idagu.

The police charged the defendants with joint acts, disturbance of public peace, inciting disturbance and membership of an unlawful assembly.

The Prosecution Counsel, Ayotunde Adeyanju, told the court that the police detectives and surveillance patrol led by ASP Obetan Enang, following a distress call from Kugbo Furniture Market, Abuja, on May 19, arrested the defendants.

He said that on receiving the information, the team which was attached to Kugbo Police station outpost proceeded to the location where the alleged cult members and drug peddlers were using as hideout.

He alleged that the defendants were engaged in a fracas around the Kugbo Furniture Market, also threatened to burn down the Kugbo Police Station outpost.

Adeyanju informed the court that during police investigation, the defendants could not give satisfactory account of themselves.

The prosecutor said that the offence contravened Sections 79, 113, 114 and 102 of the Penal Code.

After the charge was read to them, they pleaded not guilty.

The judge, Sani Mohammed, admitted the defendants to bail in the sum of N100, 000 each, with one surety each in like sum.

Mohammed adjourned the case until July 3 for hearing.

edited by Sadiya Hamza

Judiciary

Commercial motorcyclist remanded over alleged theft of bike worth N225, 000

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An Ikeja Magistrates’ Court on Monday ordered the remand of a 49-year-old commercial motorcyclist, Taiwo Ojo, for allegedly obtaining N225,000 from a man on the pretext of purchasing a motorcycle for him.

The Magistrate, Mr F.O. Hughes, ordered that Ojo, who resides at No. 25, Pa. Odemuyiwa St., Alakuko, Lagos should be remanded at the Kirikiri Prison, Apapa, Lagos pending a review of the facts of the case and sentencing.

The defendant is facing a charge of stealing, breach of peace and fraud, to which he pleaded guilty.

Hughes adjourned the case until Sept. 30.

Earlier, the Prosecutor, Sgt. Ishola Samuel, told the court that the defendant committed the offences at No. 6, Olubayo St., Moshalasi, Alagbado, a suburb of Lagos, on July 2.

Samuel alleged that Ojo collected the money from the complainant, Mr Dotun Makinde, on the pretext of purchasing a motorcycle for him, which he did and resold for N180, 000.

“Ojo converted the money to his personal use and all attempts made by Makinde to get his money back were unsuccessful,’’ the prosecutor said.

The alleged offences contravened Sections 287, 168 and 314 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that stealing attracts a three-year term.

IZU/PIO

(Edited by Idonije Obakhedo)

 

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Judiciary

I was shocked when my name was not on Buhari’s ministerial list–Shittu

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Mr Adebayo Shittu, the immediate-past Minister of Communication, said that he was shocked when his name was not included on President Muhammadu Buhari’s ministerial list.

Shittu, who made the disclosure in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency in Abuja, said although he did not expect that he would not be reappointed, as a Muslim, he took it as his fate.

The ex-minister said: “I took it the way it came.”

reports that Senate President, Dr. Ahmad Lawan, had, on July 23, read out the names of 43 ministerial nominees sent by President Buhari to the lawmakers for confirmation at the upper house.

While the list contained 14 former ministers, 29 new names and seven females, 18 ex-ministers did not make the list, including Mr Shittu.

“Of course, I expected that I will be reappointed (as minister) but when it didn’t happen, as a Muslim, it didn’t take me five minutes before I accepted that what has come, it’s the will of God.

“And I have also found comfort in a Quranic verse when God promised that what is to come later is better than what is with you now.

“So for me, it says we must accept that there is always something better with God which he gives to his beloved.

“I see myself as a beloved of God.

“I have come a long way and I have served at the state and national levels and the experience that I have garnered over the last three and half years cannot be purchased from the stores or from the market,” he said.

He said as public officer, one must always have it in one’s mind that “whatever has a beginning will necessarily have an end.”

“And it is not how long one stays in public office but how well you are able to distinguished yourself,” he said.

The ex-minister, who is a legal practitioner, said he had decided to fallback to his profession.

“I want to thank God that I am one politician who has a second address in the sense that, if I am not a minister, I will be doing some other productive things which will also contribute to national development.

“Of course, I would have wished that I have other opportunities to serve. I believe the chapter of my public service is not closed.

“By the grace of God, I will continue to be relevant in national development.

“As a lawyer of about 40 years, I now have my chambers opened in Abuja. So now, I am back in practice,” he said.

Shittu, who thanked God for the opportunity to serve as minister, also thanked the president for the appointment.

“I have been a local politicians for almost 40 years before the opportunity to serve at the national level.

“I really appreciate it and I want to say that I am eternally grateful to Mr President.

“So for me to have been in office for three and half years, I think it is a rear privilege for which I will continue to thank God and to continue to thank Mr President,” he said.

reports that Mr Shittu was the youngest lawmaker at the age of 26 to be elected a member of the Oyo State House of Assembly in 1979.

The former minister, who skipped the mandatory National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), had aspired for the governorship seat of Oyo State in the last election but was disqualified by his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC).

edited by Sadiya Hamza

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Developer urges FG to address housing deficit 

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The Federal Government has been urged to address the lingering housing deficit in the country by ensuring enabling laws and environment for the private estate firms to thrive.

Osilama, an estate developer, said Mr Babatunde Fashola, the new Minister of Works and Housing must develop a workable template that would crash the present high cost of houses.

He explained that the government could realistically achieve the provision of affordable houses for all, if it worked in collaboration with the National Association of Real Estate Developers.

He said that no country had succeeded in housing its population without collaborative efforts with housing professionals and the banking sector.

According to him, shelter being a necessity of life like food and clothing must be addressed as quickly as possible for the citizens to have life.

Osilama said the first approach to liberalizing the sector was to review the Land Use Act 1978, which its operations had inhibited housing business in the country.

He said the Act had for many years made it difficult for private developers to easily access land from the overseeing authorities in states and the federal level.

Osilama was of the view that the Act placed so much powers on original owners of land, adding that these owners were at all time prepared to torment developers with astronomic compensation, which invariably would be transferred to unit cost of houses.

“If the law could be amended to make developers easily access estate land direct from the authorities instead of through land speculators as with present experience, the cost of building houses will crash significantly.

“If the cost of constructing houses crashes, you can be sure that the cost per housing unit will equally crash, thereby leading to more opportunities for people to have decent homes.

“Land Speculators are the major challenge of the sector because they are presently responsible for high cost of land. They have always insisted to make 1,000 per cent profit from land they may have bought cheaply from the government.

“Those of us operating in Abuja are suffering the most. In the FCT, the land you bought for N10 million could attract N20 million as payment for compensation.

“The inhibition of the Land Use Act is the power state governors weld. They have often used this power to destroy the sector as they appropriate land to their cronies and leaving out genuine developers.

“By doing this, the government must have set in motion the process of ensuring that the housing delivery chain was made easy and lucrative for citizens to acquire houses.

“As it stands at the moment, the country is outside of the pecking order of nations with coherent plans for their citizens to acquire houses either in mortgage or direct purchases.

“The Federal Government should also review that National Housing Scheme for workers. It could be made to work better. In fact, less than 15 per cent of the workforce has acquired house through the scheme and this is not encouraging.

“The best bet is for the government to shift attention from construction of houses to pure supervision and regulation. The private sector must be brought in to handle the process,’’ Osilama said.

“I am aware of the high cost of building materials, but these materials can be sourced locally. We have cement, wood, water, stones and iron, so what is the problem?

“The government needs to create the enabling environment for the business as it is mandatory for citizens to be housed.

“It should not be viewed as a luxury to own a decent home, to achieve this; the government must remain on the driver’s seat to navigate the private developers through the vagaries of the industry,’’ Osilama said.

Osilama, however, said that his company was more than ever before prepared to crashing prices of house in the country.

“As a company, we are doing a lot to construct affordable houses for the ordinary Nigerians. We are working on a project called “Operation Affordable Houses’’.

“We are combining two technologies to reduce the values of houses in the country by 50 per cent.

“Apart from this, we have the one exclusively designed for federal legislators, especially those making their first appearance in the National Assembly.

“We are partnering with our bank to allow them access beautiful facility in Guzape area of the FCT without collateral and without equity contribution.

“They are only expected to domicile their salary accounts with the bank for installment deductions.

“In this package, we are offering one year free accommodation and those who may not need the accommodation would be offered money in its place,’’ Osilama said.

OMO/AFA

Edited by Felix Ajide

 

 

 

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Judiciary

Breach of fundamental right:s: Court admits applicant to N10m bail

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An FCT High Court Maitama, Abuja, on Friday admitted one Hamidu Abuh, to N10 million bail.

Abuh has been in detention for one year over an unknown offence.

The vacation judge, Peter Affen, in his ruling granted Abuh bail under section 32(1),(2) and section 159 (2) (3) of the Administration of Criminal Justices Act, 2015.

Affen said that the law does not allow the detention of any person more than 24 hours without being brought to court for arraignment.

He held that the court served the police an order to produce the suspect to court on Aug. 23 or show cause why they cannot bring him, but they failed to comply with that order.

However, Affen, ordered Abuh to produce a reasonable surety in like sum

The judge also ordered that the surety must be a civil servant not below GL10 and must reside within the jurisdiction of the court.

Abuh of Kogi State, who resides in  Kubwa, Abuja, filed a suit of Breach of fundamental rights against the police for arresting and detaining him since July 17, 2018 till date for an undisclosed allegation.

Earlier, Mr Owobi Alexander, Counsel to Abuh, made an oral application for the bail of the applicant, citing Section 32(1)(2) and section 159 (2) (3)  of the Administration of the Criminal Justice Act.

Amufu prayed the court to use its discretion to admit the applicant bail in libera terms.

edited by Sadiya Hamza

 

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Judiciary

Impeachment : CJ constitutes panel to investigate Kogi Deputy Governor

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The Chief Judge of Kogi, Justice Nasir Ajanah has constituted a seven-man panel to investigate the allegations of gross misconduct levelled against Deputy – Governor Simon Achuba by the state House of Assembly.

Ajanah disclosed this in a statement on Friday in Lokoja.

He said the constitution of the panel was in line with the provisions of section 188 of the constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria , 1999 (as amended).

” By virtue of section 188 (7) (b) of the 1999 constitution, the panel has three (3) months within which to submit its report to the assembly,” he said.

The Chairman of the panel is Mr John Baiyeshea , (SAN), while Hajiya Bilikisu Abdulmalik Basher, Mr William A. Aliwo, Canon Z. A. Asun, Alhaji Isa Adeboye, Muhammed A. Aikoye and Mr Ada Shaibu are members.

Mr Bamidele Aina, Depuy Chief Registrar, Special Duties, at the state high Court will serve as Secretary of the panel.

Ajanah said that the panel would be inaugurated on Monday, Sept. 26 at the Conference Hall of the state High Court complex, Lokoja.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that state House had during its plenary on Aug. 20 called on the Chief Judge, to constitute a panel of Inquiry to investigate allegations of gross misconduct against Achuba.

The House made the request following adoption of a motion by Majority Leader, Abdullahi Bello-Balogun (APC-Ajaokuta), calling for investigation into the allegations towards impeachment of the deputy governor.

NAN reports that the House request came simultaneously with an interim restrainig order from a state high court, asking the Chief Judge not to act on the request for the constitution of the panel.

The court presided over by a Vacation Judge, Justice Abdul Nicodemus Awulu issued the interim restrainig order on Aug. 20, while ruling on a suit filed before it by the embattled deputy governor.

Achuba also sought to restrain the defendants from taking further steps in investigating the said allegations pending the final determination of the case.

The House asked that the ruling be set aside because the court lacked the jurisdiction to disallow it from performing its constitutional duties and that the claimant misrepresented facts.

NAN further reports that the Chief Judge vacated the order before constituting the panel.

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