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ICAO emphasises role in UN effort to limit the movement of foreign terrorist fighters

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The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) on Thursday said it was playing an important role in the United Nations effort to limit the movement of foreign terrorist fighters.

A statement issued by ICAO’s Communications Chief, Mr Anthony Philbin, said the Secretary General of ICAO, Dr Fang Liu, made this known at the official launch of the United Nations Countering Terrorist Travel Programme (UNCTTP) at UN Headquarters in New York.

Liu emphasised that aviation security and the facilitation of passenger movements were important and reciprocal priorities in air transport.

She also outlined the advances ICAO had made in support of the corresponding priorities defined in UN Security Council (UNSC) resolutions 2178, 2309, 2368, and 2396 in relation to Foreign Terrorist Fighters (FTFs).

“Our agency’s efforts in this area have been guided by consecutive amendments to the Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) contained in Annex 9 to the Chicago Convention, which focuses directly on facilitating passenger travel.

“These serve as important tools in support of improved travel security, and cover critical areas of government responsibility relating to air transport facilitation and security priorities,” Liu said.

According to her, the programme is focused mainly on UNSC resolution 2396 (2016), and specifically its call for UN member States to develop capabilities to collect, process and analyse Passenger Name Record (PNR) data, in addition to sharing it with all of their competent national authorities.

She noted that sharing of PNR data among countries was seen as critical to the objective of better identifying higher-risk travellers while streamlining the experience of lower risk passengers.

Liu, however, stressed that the efforts of the UN in these areas must be matched by meaningful State commitments in order to address all related gaps and targets.

“Although UNSC resolution 2396 has placed a legal impetus on all States to develop effective PNR programmes, we must recognise together that only 26 States are currently requesting PNR data,” she underscored.

She also drew attention to the closely related call in UNSC Resolution 2178 (2014) on the related Advanced Passenger Information or ‘API’ data objective, noting that “just 68 of ICAO’s 193 member States have presently established an API system.”

Liu highlighted that ICAO had already developed an API standard under Annex 9 (Facilitation) to the Convention on International Civil Aviation (Chicago Convention), one which became applicable in February 2018.

She added that the conclusions of a special ICAO PNR standard Task Force would be reported on later this year.

“ICAO remains committed to contributing to appropriate API and PNR systems and to actively participate in the implementation of the UNCT Travel Programme.

” “But everyone involved in this effort must remain cognisant that our cooperation will only be effective if its results are supported by our Member States,” the secretary general said.

Defence/Security

Rep assures of improved welfare for military personnel

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Hon. Tajudeen Adefisoye, Deputy Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Army, has assured that his committee will give priority to the welfare of military personnel.

Adefisoye stated this when he paid a courtesy visit to the 32 Artillery Brigade of the Nigerian Army, Super Camp, in Okitipupa on Monday.

The lawmaker, representing Idanre/Ifedore Constituency, said that his committee would work tirelessly to ensure that soldiers were well catered for in the discharge of their duties.

He also promised to foster robust relationship between the military and the civilian populace in the country.

“I am most impressed with the functional facilities that are available in the Super Camp, particularly the helipad.

“The Brigade Commander, Brig.-Gen. Zakari Abubakar, also deserves commendation for the humanitarian services being rendered by the military to residents of the host communities.

“Provision of potable water, distribution of sports wears and computers to students in the Ondo South Senatorial District by the military are undoubtedly deserving of commendation,” he said.

The lawmaker also thanked Abubakar for doing a great job to curb crime and criminality in the state.

Adefisoye also commended the traditional rulers of the host communities for supporting community policing.

He lauded the leadership of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, for making funds available to run the camp, thereby ensuring peace in the southern zone of the state.

Responding, the brigade commander said that the ongoing clearance activities of ‘Operation Crocodile Smile IV’ had been yielding the desired results in the state and across the country.

Abubakar urged the public, particularly the host communities, to take advantage of the hot lines provided by the Nigerian Army to provide useful information to attain success in clearance operation.

The commander later conducted Adefisoye round the camp and explained to him its strategic security importance.

Although Abubakar said that the camp was a military barrack, he, however, added that it also housed the police and other paramilitary agencies like DSS, Immigration, NDLEA and the NSCDC.

Edited by Ifeyinwa Okonkwo and ‘Wale Sadeeq

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LASG evacuates lion from private residence to Lekki Zoo

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 The Lagos State Task Force says it has successfully moved a lion found at a private home around Victoria Island to a zoo in Omu Resorts, Lekki.

The Chairman of the agency, CSP Olayinka Egbeyemi, said in a statement on Monday, that the exercise was carried out in conjunction with officials of the Lagos State Ministry of Agriculture and medical personnel from Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Ibadan.

Egbeyemi said that Dr Ogunmo Bamidele, who led the medical team from the University of Ibadan, had to tranquilised the lion thrice before evacuation.

He said that the agency responded to a petition from residents on the use of the lion as maiguard.

According to him, investigations revealed that the lion was brought in from Cameroun by an Indian national two years ago.

”Immediately I got the petition, I deployed my officers to the house at No. 229, Muri-Okunola Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, where they kept a close watch for more than 72 hours before the lion was finally removed today,” he said.

He assured residents that the owner of the lion would face the full wrath of the law, while warning residents to abstain from harbouring wild animals that endanger the lives of others.

”In as much as we appreciate residents around Victoria Island for their quick action, we urge every member of the public to be observant in their immediate environment.

”Residents should report any strange or unusual activity to appropriate government authority for prompt action,” Egbeyemi said.

The Director, Veterinary Services, Lagos State Ministry of Agriculture, Dr Macaulay Rasheed, advised members of the public to stop rearing wild animals in private homes to avoid unnecessary attack and contagious animal diseases.

Edited by Jane-Frances Oraka/Wale Ojetimi

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Woman bags 3 years imprisonment for stealing one-month-old baby

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An Ado-Ekiti Chief Magistrates’ Court, on Monday, sentenced a 39-year-old woman, Mercy Momoh, to three years imprisonment for stealing one-month-old baby.

The Chief Magistrate, Mr Adesoji Adegboye, found the convict, whose house address was not given, guilty of the charge of stealing.

The convict had pleaded guilty to the charge and begged for leniency by the court.

The Magistrate, who summarily tried and sentenced the convict to three years imprisonment, however, gave her an option of N100,000 fine.

Earlier, the police prosecutor, Sgt. Samson Osobu, had told the court that the convict committed the offence on Sept. 20 at the state government secretariat in Ado-Ekiti.

Osobu told the court that convict had stolen a month-old baby belonging to Funmilayo Dada.

According to him, the offence contravenes Section 371 of the Criminal Code, Laws of Ekiti State, 2012.

He told the court that the convict had seen the woman with her baby and tricked her with the story that the Ekiti State Empowerment Programme at the state secretariat was disbursing money to the less-privileged.

The prosecutor said that the convict had further tricked the woman to leave her baby and cell phone with her, while she sent her to help purchase call card.

Osobu said that when the woman came back, both the convict and her baby were nowhere to be found.

He added that the mother of the baby reported the matter at the police station and that through information, the convict was apprehended by the police and the baby given back to the mother.

Edited by Kevin Okunzuwa and ‘Wale Sadeeq

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Northern Governors Forum congratulate  Bayelsa, Kogi  governors – elect

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The Northern States Governors Forum, (NSGF), has the congratulated Bayelsa Governor-elect, Chief David Lyon and re-elected Kogi Gov. Yahaya Bello over their victories in the last Saturday’s elections.

The Chairman of the Forum and Plateau Governor, Simon Lalong also rejoiced with the All Progressives Congress (APC) over the victory of its two candidates in the elections.

Lalong, in a congratulatory message issued by his Director of Press and Public Affairs, Dr Simon Macham, described Lyon’s victory as a demonstration of the people’s confidence in his ability to perform.

The NSGF chairman said that Bayelsa people had no doubt in his ability of their governor-elect to deliver the change to the state in line with the vision of APC.

He said that the re-election of Bello was yet another sign of confidence reposed in him by the people of Kogi.

Lalong said that it was also an opportunity for the state government and the people to work harder in taking the state to the next level.

He assured the elected governors of the support of the Forum as they settle down to fulfill their campaign promises to the electorate.

/ DUA

edited by Emmanuel Nwoye/ Dada Ahmed

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Emir of Daura distributes relief items to 1,500 indigent persons

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The Emir of  Daura, Alhaji Farouk Umar has distributed relief materials to 1,500 indigent persons in the emirate to cushion their hardship.

The monarch made the presentstion at the Daurama palace in Daura on Monday.

He said the materials were donated by a philantropist, who did not want to be named, but entrusted the emir to share it to deserving families.

Nigeria News Agency reports that the items distributed included 1,000 each of matrasses, bags of beans, maize, salt, sugar, cartons of sphagehhtti, formade, noodles, blankets and packets of Lipton tea, as well as 2000 cartons of soap.

Other items are 2000 bundles of clothing materials, 1,000 jerrycan of cooking oil and other cooking ingredients.

Umar said indigent persons, including the blind, cripples, widows, orphans, lepers and some section of the media have been selected to benefit from the gesture.

The monarch added that 59 victims of the recent flood in the area and members of the NURTW were also selected to benefit.

He said the items would be distributed across the five local governments of Daura, Baure, Sandamu, Maiadu’a and Zango, which constitute Daura Emirate, and warned the beneficiaries against diversion of the materials.

“We have formed a formidable survellance committee that will report sharp practices to us for prompt action,” he added.

Malam Saminu Ahmed, who spoke on behalf of the beneficiaries, commended the donor for the gesture and prayed for long life to the emir for his just and fair leadership.

Edited by Maharazu Ahmed

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YPP faults Kogi election, YDP says conduct perfect

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The Kogi Chairman of Young Progressives Party (YPP), Mr Chinda Emmanuel has faulted the outcome of the governorship election in the state, saying it was marred by violence and did not reflect the true wishes of the electorate.

On the other hand, Dr Sani Teidi-Shaibu, gubernatorial candidate of Youth Democratic Party (YDP) said the election was one of the best he had ever witnessed.

Emmanuel disclosed this while addressing newsmen on Monday in Lokoja after announcement of the election rwon by incumbent governor, Yahaya Bello.

According to Emmanuel, the exercise fell short of all known rules of engagement as contained in the electoral rules and regulations and was, therefore, not happy with the outcome.

“I am not happy with the way the election went. In my own Local Government Area, I voted at unit 007 Gboloko and my supporters also voted there but I’m surprised that INEC recorded only two votes for my party in the results.”

He claimed that in Dekina, Ibaji and Lokoja Local Governments people were killed and helicopters allegedly used to carry ballot boxes.

“My party, YPP and our candidate, Hajia Aisha Audu are not happy with the outcome of the election and the result announced today. They announced a cooked result and we shall challenge it in court”, he said.

However, Teidi-Shaibu, the gubernatorial candidate of  YDP said the election was one of the best he had ever witnessed.

“I think this is one of the best elections I have ever witnessed because they at INEC did their homework and the election was very perfect.”

According to Teidi-Shaibu, there was no rigging in the election.

“Whoever is aggrieved should put it aside and let us team up and work with government so that Kogi can move forward”, he said.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that, in the result announced by INEC Monday in Lokoja, Bello of the APC won with 406,222 votes, while Engr Musa Wada of PDP got 189,704 votes to come second.

Edited /Maharazu Ahmed

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