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Gov. AbdulRasaq presents 4 female commissioner nominees to Kwara Assembly

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Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRasaq of Kwara on Tuesday forwarded four female nominees to the state House of Assembly for confirmation as Commissioners.

The governor’s request was contained in a message to the House which was read at plenary by the Speaker, Mr Danladi Yakubu-Salihu.

The four nominees are-Hajia Saadat Modibo-Kawu from llorin South Local Government Area (LGA), Hajia johanah Kolo from Edu LGA, Hajia Arinola Fatima-Lawal from llorin East LGA and Hajia Aisha Ahman-Patigi from Patigi LGA of the state.

The Speaker said the screening of the nominees would be conducted later.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that AbdulRasaq has been operating without Commissioners since his assumption of office in May 2019.
BEKl/AMM/ABI

Edited by Abiemwense Moru/Ali Baba-Inuwa

Foreign

9 Houthi rebels, 3 gov’t soldiers killed in overnight fighting in central Yemen: official

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Fighting overnight between the Yemeni government forces and Houthi rebels in Yemen’s central province of Marib killed at least 11 fighters from both sides and wounded dozens others, a local government security official said Sunday.

“At least nine rebels and three soldiers were killed and dozens from both sides were wounded in the battle near the western district of Majzar,” the official in Marib told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

Meanwhile, the Houthi group’s al-Masirah TV reported that the Saudi-led military coalition in Yemen launched 14 airstrikes overnight on the Houthi positions in Majzar.

The coalition has made no comment on the allegation.

The Yemeni government has controlled much of Marib since it recaptured the province from the Houthis in late 2015.

Yemen has been mired in civil war since late 2014, when the Iran-backed Houthi rebels seized control of much of the country’s north and forced the Saudi-backed government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi out of the capital Sanaa.

The Saudi-led coalition intervened in the Yemeni conflict in early 2015 to support Hadi’s government.

The Yemeni five-year civil war has pushed more than 20 million to the brink of starvation.

(XINHUA)

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Politics

Edo: Gov. Fintiri chairs PDP Ward Congresses Electoral C’ttee

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Gov. Ahmadu Fintiri of Adamawa will chair the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Ward Congresses Electoral Committee for the Edo governorship scheduled for Tuesday.

The party’s National Organising Secretary, Col. Austin Akobundu (rtd), disclosed this in a statement on Saturday in Abuja.

Akobundu said that the nomination of the party members and leaders to serve as members of the ward congresses electoral committee was approved by the PDP National Working Committee (NWC).

“The mandate of the committee is to elect three Ad-Hoc delegates in the 192 wards of the state for the upcoming governorship election.

“The exercise is scheduled for Tuesday June 9 across the state,” Akobundu said.

Other members of the committee are; Gov. Diri Douye of Bayelsa;  Mrs Mobolaji Lamuye, Hon. Chukwuka Onyema and Sen. Samuel Anyanwu as Secretary.


Edited By: Chinyere Bassey/Ismail Abdulaziz (NAN)

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Foreign

Former world athletics governing body chief Diack faces court over corruption

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The former president of the International Association of Athletics Federations (now World Athletics) Lamine Diack will go to court here on Monday, facing a potential 10-year sentence on charges of accepting millions of dollars to cover up Russian doping tests.

The 87-year-old Senegalese was charged with “giving and receiving bribes,” a “breach of trust” and “organized money laundering” for obtaining 1.5 million dollars to cover up doping cases of 23 Russians, so they were allowed to compete at the 2012 London Olympics and the 2013 World Athletics Championships in Moscow.

Diack was in charge of the world athletics governing body during 1999-2015. He was under investigation since 2016, facing a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a heavy fine. Diack’s former legal advisor and former IAAF anti-doping chief will also appear on court.

Papa Massata Diack, son of Lamine Diack, was accused of playing a “central role” in the network of corruption. He was implicated through the payment of 450 thousand euros from Russian runner Liliya Shobukhova, allegedly to have her blood passport case delayed in order to compete in the 2012 Olympic marathon, as revealed by German TV station ARD in 2014. Diack refused to leave Senegal despite two international arrest warrants issued by France, the Senegalese authorities said they will not extradite him.

The case is due to run for six days. It was postponed in January because of procedural problems.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Churches, mosques across Jordan reopen as gov’t eases measures against COVID-19

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A Jordanian Catholic wearing a face mask attends a Mass at a Catholic church in Amman, Jordan, on June 6, 2020. Churches and mosques across Jordan reopened on Saturday as part of the government’s plan to ease the measures against the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo by Mohammad Abu Ghosh/Xinhua)

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Roundup: Libya’s UN-backed gov’t takes over western Libya, advances to control Sirte

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The spokesman of the UN-backed Libyan government on Saturday announced launching an offensive to take over the city of Sirte, some 450 km east of the capital Tripoli, from the eastern-based army after it withdrew from western Libya.

The spokesman said the UN-backed government’s forces launched five airstrikes on the eastern-based army in Sirte that destroyed military vehicles of the eastern-based army.

Mohamed Gonono on Friday announced taking over all of western Libya after controlling Tarhuna city, the last stronghold of the rival eastern-based army in western Libya that is located some 90 km southeast of the capital Tripoli, following withdrawal of the rival eastern-based army.

The spokesman of the eastern-based army of Libya, Ahmad al-Mismari, on Friday said the eastern-based army had withdrawn from western Libya due to “international pressure.”

Munther Al-Zawi, a military commander of the UN-backed government’s forces, said that Tarhuna was the biggest threat to the UN-backed government in western Libya, which the eastern-based used as a major hub for military operations.

“Currently, we are chasing the remnants of the militias of Haftar (commander of eastern-based army) fleeing southeast of Tripoli. We will not allow any of his forces to remain in western Libya. Now, things have changed and we will not allow threats from eastern Libya, where Haftar’s is based and launches attacks,” Al-Zawi told Xinhua.

“We do not have any problems with our people in the east, unlike the godfather of chaos Haftar, who caused the loss of thousands of Libyan lives in a losing war only because of his greed for power at any cost,” he added.

Libyan parliament member, Mustafa Abu-Shagour, confirmed that the UN-backed government had defeated an “international coalition” that supported the eastern-based army.

“The 14-month epic fight of Tripoli ended with victory of the defenders of the country over the international coalition that brought mercenaries from all over the world to support Haftar, who wanted to destroy Tripoli and destroy the hope of the Libyans for a state. The Libyan freemen presented convoys of martyrs to repel this brutal aggression on their capital,” Abu-Shagour said in a statement.

The eastern-based army launched a military campaign in April 2019, attempting to take over Tripoli from the UN-backed government.

The fighting killed and injured hundreds of civilians and forced more than 150,000 others to flee their homes.

(XINHUA)

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General news

Kebbi Governor donates N5m to victims of bandits attack in Sokoto

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Gov. Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi has donated N5 million to victims of recent bandits attacks in Sabon Birni Local Government Area of Sokoto State.

A statement issued in Birnin Kebbi on Saturday by Malam Yahaya Sarki, the governor’s Special Adviser on Media, said that the donation was announced when Bagudu visited Sokoto on sympathy visit on Friday.

Bagudu noted that the obnoxious mayhem unleashed on innocent victims had left many people injured and multi-million naira worth of property destroyed.

He extolled the commitment, proactive actions and foresightedness of Gov. Aminu Tambuwal in addressing the security and social needs of Sokoto citizens.

He recalled the recent visit by Tambuwal to President Buhari where he intimated him on the sad development.

”We are happy that President Muhammadu Buhari has since directed the Armed forces and other security agencies to urgently stem the tide of bandits’ nefarious activities.

”The condolence visit is also, to express support and solidarity to the government and people of Sokoto State.

”I prayed to Almighty Allah to repose the souls of the deceased and grant their respective families and the state government the fortitude to bear the irreparable losses,” he said.

Responding, Tambuwal commended Bagudu for the visit and the uncommon show of love, support and solidarity.

He appreciated Bagudu’s style of leadership in Kebbi and as Chairman of APC Progressive Governors Forum.

He also said Sokoto and Kebbi States were one and would remain inseparable and that whatever affected one affected the other.

Tambuwal said that the Federal Government had responded to the ugly development in the state and other neighbouring states.

He restated his commitment to securing the lives and property of the people of the state .

Similarly, Gov. Bagudu, accompanied by Tambuwal, were at the palace of the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar, to condole with him over the sad incident.

Bagudu said: “We are at this prestigious and highly revered palace to offer our sincere heatfelt sympathy on behalf of the government and people of Kebbi State.”

He also acknowledged the role played by the Sultan in taking decisions to curtail the spread of the raging coronavirus apart from providing plausible solutions to the recurring security challenges in the country.

Respnding, the Sultan, thanked Gov. Bagudu for the visit, describing the relationship between Kebbi and Sokoto states as cordial.

While praying for the souls of the deceased, Sultan also harped on the need for sustained unity amongst the two states.

The Sultan acknowledged the ongoing concerted efforts by the governors to bring to an end the obnoxious acts of banditry in the region.

He said: “We will continue to play our role as leaders and offer useful advice to leaders, to serve the people better.

“Let me reiterate that COVID-19 is still around the corner, I am appealing to the Governors to continue to take plausible measures to contain the spread of the disease,” Abubakar said. 


Edited By: Chidinma Agu/Maharazu Ahmed (NAN)

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General news

Land dispute: Kwara Govt sues for peace between 2 communities

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The Kwara Government has called on the two feuding communities in the state over a land tussle to sheathe their swords and ensure peaceful coexistence.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the people of Edogi Dukum and Tako Gabi in the Lafiagi Emirate Council of the Edu Local Government of the state had engaged in a clash on Tuesday over the land bordering the two communities.

More than five people were seriously injured in the fracas.

The state Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Hajiya Aisha Ahman-Pategi, during her visit to the area on Saturday,
urged for calm while the government proffer a lasting solution.

She said that the visit was to strategize with members of the two communities on how to find a lasting solution to the conflict.

According to her, the government would ensure that both sides involved in the dispute come together as one family.

According to her, peaceful resolution of the age-long land dispute between the two communities is paramount because Kwara is known to be a peaceful state.

“I wish to plead with everyone to forgive and forget the past and show love to each other.

“This singular gesture will further assist in lifting up the communities for better future and positive development,” she said.

While expressing her happiness at the current situation on the ground, she stated that Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq would be very happy with the peaceful resolution to the land disputes.

She also expressed delight that the warring factions had come together and agreed to find a common ground and proffer permanent solutions to their dispute.

The commissioner told the Boundary Committees of both communities to report back to her office on the final outcome of the matter.

Briefing the commissioner on the situation, the Representative of the Office of the Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Yahaya Mohammed, said that the Emir of Lafiagi and the State Boundary Committee have agreed on a permanent solution.

Mohammed, who is also the Director, Special Services, said that security operatives, the warring communities, as well as other relevant stakeholders, have similarly agreed on a permanent solution.

According to him, this require a visit to the site and the demarcation of the land by the State Office of the Surveyor-General with clear indications on what belongs to each community to forestall future reoccurrences.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will also be signed by all the parties,” he said.

The director commended the timely visit of the commissioner and assured her that the detailed MoU agreement would be forwarded to her office for record purposes, signed by all parties to the agreement.

Earlier, the commissioner had paid a courtesy call on the Emir of Lafiagi, HRH Alhaji Saadu Kawu Haliru (OFR) to brief him on the purpose of her visit as well as to seek his royal blessings.

She thanked the royal father for the maintenance of peace in his domain and his support for the present administration in his policy drive for a better Kwara.

The Emir, in his response, thanked the commissioner for the visit and her zeal in seeking first-hand information about the dispute.

The royal father also stated the disputes had been permanently resolved with the demarcation of the disputed land.

The Director, Personnel Management of the local government council, Prince Timothy Adeyemi, disclosed that amicable grounds had been agreed upon and assured that such incidents would not be repeated.

He also commended the royal father for his fatherly role in ensuring the parties agreed to allow a permanent and peaceful resolution.

Adeyemi assured the commissioner that the council would make available the details of the MoU to her Ministry and relevant stakeholders.

/ AFA

Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Felix Ajide (NAN)

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Environment

Gov. El-Rufai urges FG to transfer Ecological Funds to Environment Ministry

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Gov. Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State on Saturday canvassed for the transfer of the Ecological Fund to Federal Ministry of Environment, which has the expertise and national reach to manage the fund more efficiently.

The governor made the call when the Minister of Environment, Dr Mohammad Abubakar, presented one million seedlings to him in Kaduna, for planting across the state, to mark the World Environment Day.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the theme of this year’s World Environment Day is ‘Bio-diversity, time for nature.’

El-Rufai said that it was only proper for the Ecological Fund to be domiciled with the Ministry, because the fund was meant to fight environmental issues like erosion, deforestation and desertification.

“Apart from that, the ministry has the knowledge, technicality and expertise as well as the national reach to better manage the fund and utilise it for the benefit of the entire country,’’ he said.

El-Rufai revealed that he headed a committee during the first term of the Buhari administration, which recommended the transfer of the Fund to the environment ministry.

According to him, the matter was further tabled before the Federal Executive Council (FEC) and a decision was taken on it, but the resolution has not been implemented.

The governor regretted that Kaduna State has lost a lot of its forest in the last few years before the coming of his administration, adding that the state is being re-forested again.

‘’In the last five years, we have been planting 1.5 million trees every year. Only about 50 per cent of the trees survive, but we have not given up.

“It is an investment that we are willing to make for our children and grandchildren,’’ he added.

El-Rufai promised the minister that the state will plant the seedlings and ensure that at least 90 per cent of it survive.

“We will match the number of what the minister donated to the state; in Kaduna state, when we promise to do something, we always deliver on our promise.

“We will invite you next year so that you will see what we have done; you will then know that your donation was not in vain,’’ he added.

Earlier, the minister said that his ministry had promised five million seedlings to Kaduna state in fulfilment of President Muhammadu Buhari’s pledge to plant 25 million trees across the country.

Abubakar said that the ministry decided to commemorate this year’s World Environment Day with the state because of Gov. El Rufai’s commitment to environmental issues and support to the ministry.

The minister promised that the balance of four million trees will be delivered to the state.


Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Maharazu Ahmed (NAN)

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Foreign

Lebanon sees violent anti-government protest

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Hundreds of protesters demonstrated on Saturday in Beirut’s downtown area calling for the overhaul of the political system in Lebanon, MTV local TV channel reported.

Protesters threw stones at security forces and destroyed shops’ windows near the Parliament.

Meanwhile, security forces who were deployed in the area closed streets in the downtown while riot police fired tears gas at the demonstrators.

Some protesters demanded the disarmament of Hezbollah and the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1559, which sparked anger among supporters of the two Shiite parties prompting them to run toward a crowd of protesters.

The Lebanese have been suffering from dire economic circumstances in the past few months due to successive failing policies adopted by previous governments which led to an accumulated public debt of over 89 billion United States dollars.

(XINHUA)

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