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Fish out killers of Olakunrin, Adebanjo tells FG

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A leader of Yoruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, on Wednesday urged the Federal Government to do more to fish out the killers of Mrs Funke Olakunrin.

Adebanjo gave the advice while addressing a news conference in Ikeja.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that Olakunrin, daughter of the Leader of Afenifere, Pa Reuben Fasoranti, was killed on July 12 by unknown gunmen.

Olakunrin, who was shot in her SUV along Sagamu-Ore road in Ondo State, has been buried.

Adebanjo said that government claimed it was doing its best to unravel the killers, but Afenifere wanted it to do more.

The Afenifere leader said that the police authorities had claimed they had yet to establish any links between those arrested so far with the crime.

Adebanjo said Afenifere and other Nigerians were expecting nothing short of justice for Olakunrin.

The Afenifere leader said Olakunrin’s murder reinforces the precarious security situation in many parts of the country.

Adebanjo described the situation in the South West as unacceptable, saying it must not be allowed to get out of hand.

The Afenifere leader advocated return to what he called true federalism, saying the system the country was operating was dysfunctional.

Edited by Oluwole Sogunle

General news

Fishing community decries piracy in Rivers

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Residents of Oyorokoto, a fishing community in Andoni Local Government Area of Rivers, have decried the high level piracy and insecurity on the region’s waterways.

They are, therefore, calling on the government to immediately deploy security operation for surveillance of the area.

Mr Fidelis Ebirien, Chairman, Oyorokoto High Sea Fishermen told the News Agency of Nigeria on Friday in Oyorokoto that activities of sea pirates were hindering their fishing business.

Ebirien called on relevant security agencies to increase their surveillance in the area to ensure safety of lives and property.

“Consistent attacks on the fishermen by sea pirates have endangered fishing business, which is our main source of livelihood,’’ he said.

He explained that fishermen were being exposed to pirates’ attacks almost on a regular basis since 2014.

“Almost on a daily basis, we have continued to lose our fishing equipment such as boats and engines to these pirates.

“The state government and relevant security agencies should come to our aid by curbing the menace.’’

Also, the group’s Secretary, Mr Nte Ogwunte said that the challenge of piracy in the area had become a worrisome experience for residents in the ancient fishing community.

According to him, fishing, sea fairing and other related business no longer thrive in the area.

“Oyorokoto, one of the largest fishing coasts in West African, should enjoy adequate security surveillance to protect and guide the country’s economic resources,’’ he said.
LMI/

Edited By: Kevin Okunzuwa/Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)

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Defence/Security

NCWS calls on Edo Govt. to fish out killers of UNIBEN undergraduate

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The National Council of Women Societies (NCWS) has called on Edo Government to ensure that killers of Vera Omozuwa, a 100-level Microbiology student of University of Benin (UNIBEN) are brought to book.
The President NCWS, Mrs Laraba Shoda, made the call in statement on Monday in Abuja.
The 22-years-old undergraduate was gang-raped and had her head smashed with a fire extinguisher by unidentified assailants inside a Pentecostal church in Ikpoba Hill in Benin, Edo, where she had gone to read.
The victim was attacked on May 13; she died on May 31 at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital.
Shoda, who condemned the action, said such act should not be condoned in the society.
According to her, the news of death of Omozuwa, a 100-level Microbiology student of UNIBEN is shocking and disheartening.
“This goes a long way to show how bad our society has become. People no longer have the fear of God to have raped a girl in a church and murder her.
“We are facing many social vices on top of the current COVID-19 pandemic which is already hard on everyone, compounding it with inflicting additional pain on any families and the society is simply wicked.
“I am calling on all well-meaning Nigerians to join hands in condemning this act, it can happen to anyone.
“It is high time that government at all levels strengthened our security operatives. Our core values of know your neighbours should also be activated to help curb some of these vices,” she said.
Shoda commiserated with the bereaved family on the loss of their daughter and prayed to God to grant her soul peaceful rest.


Edited By: Isaac Aregbesola (NAN)

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Foreign

Anglers fish on opening day of fishing season in India

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An angler fishes on the opening day of fishing season in the outskirts of Agartala, Tripura, India, May 31, 2020. (Str/Xinhua)

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Foreign

Palestinian fishermen work at port in Gaza City

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Foreign

Fisheries production in Philippines declines 3.2 pct in Q1

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Fisheries production in the Philippines declined 3.2 percent in the first quarter of 2020, according to the data culled by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

The PSA data showed that fisheries production in January to March 2020 reached 980.73 thousand metric tons, lower by 3.2 percent from its 2019 same quarter production of 1,013.04 thousand metric tons.

“Volume of production declined in all the fisheries subsectors,” the PSA said.

The PSA said catch from commercial fisheries went down by 2.2 percent, decreasing from the 217.81 thousand metric tons production in the same period of 2019 to 213.11 thousand metric tons this quarter.

Production from commercial fisheries comprised 21.7 percent of the total fisheries production.

The PSA said municipal fisheries subsector reported a 3.4 percent decrease in production as catch from both marine and inland fishing dropped.

Moreover, the PSA said aquaculture production posted a slowdown of 3.5 percent during the quarter, dropping to 507.56 thousand metric tons compared with its previous year’s same quarter level of 526.05 thousand metric tons.

Produce from aquaculture constituted 51.8 percent of the total fisheries production during the reference period.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Cambodia to lift ban on fish, white rice, paddy rice exports

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Cambodia will lift a ban on the exports of fish, white rice and paddy rice that had been put in place to ensure local food security during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The Royal Government has decided to allow the exports of paddy rice, white rice and fish starting from May 20, 2020 onward,” said a government’s statement released late on Friday.

The decision was made during a weekly cabinet meeting, which was presided over by Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen, the statement said.

The lifting of the ban, which has been imposed since April 5, came after the Southeast Asian country had detected no new COVID-19 cases for more than a month, and all of the 122 COVID-19 positive patients in the kingdom had been cured.

Health Ministry’s secretary of state and spokeswoman Or Vandine said Saturday that although the country had detected no new cases of the virus for more than a month, people should remain extra-vigilant to avoid a second wave of infections.

“There are still risks of new infections because countries in the region and in the world still see an increase in new cases of infections,” she said.

(XINHUA)

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Environment

Environmental lawyers demand action on fish death in Niger Delta

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Environmental lawyers in the Niger Delta have expressed concerns over the looming public health danger occasioned by the contamination and massive death of fish along the Atlantic coastline of the region.

The lawyers under the aegis of the Association of Environmental Lawyers of Nigeria (AELN) urged the Federal Government to take urgent steps to check the increased toxicity of the nation’s territorial waters.

The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that residents along the Atlantic coastline in Delta, Bayelsa and Rivers have reported massive death of croaker fish floating and littering the coastline since February.

The group made the call in a joint statement by Prof. Sam Dike, the President AELN and Mr Iniuro Wills, the President Ijaw Professionals Association, Homeland chapter on Thursday in Yenagoa.

Mr Kennedy Woryi, the Secretary, AELN who also signed the statement, called on the Federal Government to urgently initiate a full scale independent investigation into the matter with a view to saving lives.

The association noted that in the last eight weeks, varying from location to location, communities along the Atlantic coast in the Niger Delta had been inundated with masses of dead contaminated fishes washing up on their shores.

”This strange phenomenon portends grave danger to the affected states and communities as it will further compound the public health and economic complications that they are still struggling to grapple with as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

”Due to limited awareness of the health consequences, rural poverty and slow action by governments at all levels, some community dwellers have been selling and consuming the dead contaminated fishes, some of which may find their way into the markets and meal tables, in neighbouring communities and cities.

”This marine disaster and the global coronavirus crisis together pose a threat of double jeopardy for Nigeria’s coastal communities and our territorial marine ecology.

”There is need for quick action by the state and federal governments to combat the strange and continuing incidence of masses of dead and contaminated fishes, washing up ashores and beaches along the Atlantic coast.

“Worst hit are Bonny, Foropa, Sobiekiri, Okololaunch areas to Light House all the way to Ifoko in Andoni area.  Numerous other coastal communities of the Akassa Kingdom, Twon-Brass and other such communities in Rivers, Bayelsa, Delta and Akwa Ibom are affected.

“There are reports that coastal communities in Ondo, Lagos and Cross River States may also be affected,” it said.

It added that some dwellers in the affected communities have been harvesting and selling these fishes to the general public.

The group described the development as unfortunate, saying that the communities and the general public were yet to be sensitised about the dangers of consuming hazardous dead fish.

According to AELN, the stench of dead fishes has also polluted the air around the affected communities adding that it is therefore imperative to ensure the restoration of the ambient air and polluted marine ecosystem.

”The impact of the disaster extends to most of the coastal states of Nigeria and will therefore require an inclusive and cross-cutting plan of action for verification of causation, impact scoping and adequate remediation.

”It is against this backdrop that we are calling on the Federal Government to promptly institute a full scale independent investigation of this marine pollution disaster by a multi stakeholder panel of experts, reflecting the appropriate environmental and marine related agencies.

“It should include experts representing affected communities, relevant state government agencies, the private sector of the petroleum and marine/maritime industries and credible environmental NGOs.

“This is without prejudice to the ongoing investigations by various state governments.

”At the conclusion of investigations, all persons or organisations directly culpable (if any), for this disaster on our coastal populations, no matter how highly connected, should be brought to book.

“The culprit should be compelled to restore the environment, pay adequate compensation to all affected communities and face stiff sanctions.

”We particularly call on the federal and state governments to take accelerated action on all fronts against this disaster and the looming danger that official inaction may pose,” the association said.

Meanwhile, the National Oil Spills Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) on Thursday said that its investigations on the massive death of the fishes had traced the incident to the discharge of toxic industrial and domestic wastes entering the water bodies.

Mr Idris Musa, the Director-General of the NOSDRA told NAN that the agency discovered that the dead fishes and water sediments were polluted by heavy metals in high concentrations beyond regulatory limits.

Edited By: Chinyere Nwachukwu/Grace Yussuf (NAN)

 

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Politics

Assembly urges FG to  investigate death of fishes on Delta shore lines 

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Delta House of Assembly has urged the Federal Government investigate mysterious deaths of fishes along the shore lines of River Forcados and Escravos River in the state.
This followed the adoption of a motion by Mr Emomotimi Guwo, representing Warri South West constituency during plenary on Thursday in Asaba.
Speaking on the motion, Guwor said that Forcados and Escravos Rivers and their tributaries were believed to be under the siege of a yet to be identified disease presently killing fishes along the shore lines of the rivers in Warri South West.
He said that the areas worst hit by the ugly development included Ekemetagbene in Bomadi Local Government Area (LGA), Akparemogbene, Oyangbene and all communities in Ogulagha and Iduwini kingdom in Burutu LGA of the state.

“Other areas affected are the entire Gbaramatu kingdom, all Ugborodo and Orere communities in Warri South West and Ogheye and other communities in Warri North LGA,’’ he said.

Guwor urged the President to direct the federal authorities to protect the biodiversity, conservation and sustainable development of the natural resources and the eco system of the affected communities from total extinction.

He further urged the state governor to direct the Commissioners in charge Ministries of Environment and Oil and Gas to carry out enlightenment campaigns on the health hazards and implications of the consumption of the dead fishes to avoid an outbreak of epidemic in the state.

Supporting the motion, the Majority Leader, Mr Tim Owhefere, said that any damage to the ecosystem called for worry and urged the relevant authorities to urgently address the issue.

The motion was unanimously adopted when put to voice vote by the Speaker, Chief Sheriff Oborevwori.

Edited By: Bayo Sekoni/Ali Baba-Inuwa (NAN)

 

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Foreign

Fish at Australian aquarium show signs of loneliness due to lack of visitors amid COVID-19 pandemic

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Staff at an aquarium in the Australian State of Queensland have noticed some of their fish showing signs of loneliness since the attraction was forced to close due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Normally the aquarium, in Queensland’s city of Cairns, welcomes large amounts of visitors on a daily basis which many of the fish have gotten used to, according to a report by the Australian Associated Press(AAP) on Thursday.

Fish species like sharks, groupers, stingrays and the Humphead Maori wrasse were particularly fond of interacting with the guests.

Since the aquarium closed, staff noticed certain fish looking out for people and some even stopped eating, like a giant Queensland Grouper named Chang.

“He sulked a little bit for one to two weeks, and during that period of time he stopped eating,” Aquarium Curator and Marine Biologist Paul Barnes told the AAP.

“He’s a very inquisitive fish with quite a strong personality, and he does love to stare at people. It’s even the same for the divers in the tanks – he wants to come right up and have a good look and follow people around sometimes.”

Aquarium staff weren’t overly concerned about Chang’s sulking behaviors since he remained in good shape health-wise, however extra effort has been made to make the fish feel less lonely, including more hugs underwater and eating lunch besides them.

“We’ve got these leopard sharks, and they almost like being held or cuddled like puppy dogs,” Cairns Aquarium Chief Executive Daniel Leipnik said.

“We normally have two divers, we now have three. So there’s a bit more human contact going on, just to create that extra stimulation.”

Staff told AAP eating their lunch beside the tank will help the fish get used to people again before the reopen of the aquarium.

“We’ll go sit there and have a chat with them from the outside,” Barnes said.

They hoped that soon visitors could join the action too and help them better understand the intelligence and sensitive nature of those fish.

“They really have got brain power, they seem to have emotions, and they connect with people,” Leipnik added.

(XINHUA)

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