Nigeria paid ‘ large ransom’ to free Dapchi girls, UN says (Guardian)* Soul singer Aretha Franklin dies at 76 (ThisisLagos)

Nigeria paid ‘ large ransom’ to free Dapchi girls, UN says (Guardian)*  Soul singer Aretha Franklin dies at 76 (ThisisLagos)

Nigeria paid ‘ large ransom’ to free Dapchi girls, UN says (Guardian)

In spite of Nigerian government denial on multiple occasions, the United Nations has said that a splinter Boko Haram group that kidnapped the Dapchi girls in February was paid a “large ransom”. The girls were kidnapped from their school on February 18. One of the girls, Leah Sharibu, is yet to be released for refusing to convert to Islam, other freed girls said. The Nigerian government said on March 21 that negotiations through a back-channel led to the release of the girls and a boy. But a report published by the United Nations on Tuesday said the government lied. Read more

Soul singer Aretha Franklin dies at 76 (ThisisLagos)

American soul singer, Aretha Franklin has died. Franklin has battled undisclosed health problems for several years. She died at the age of 76. Publicist Gwendolyn Quinn tells The Associated Press via a family statement that Franklin died Thursday at 9:50 a.m. at her home in Detroit. The statement said “Franklin’s official cause of death was due to advance pancreatic cancer of the neuroendocrine type, which was confirmed by Franklin’s oncologist, Dr. Philip Phillips of Karmanos Cancer Institute” in Detroit. She was known for hit songs like “Respect” and “Natural Woman.” Read more

DSS Appoints Substantive Spokesman (ThisDay)

The Department of State Services (DSS) has announced the appointment of Mr. PN Afunanya as its Spokesman/Public Relations Officer. In a statement issued Thursday by the Public Relations Department of DSS in Abuja, Afunanya replaces Mr. Tony Opuiyo, who is believed to be non-existent. The statement said the new spokesman obtained the following degrees: BA. English (1997), Abia State University, Uturu; MA. English (2009), University of Uyo; and MA. Peace and Strategic Studies (2011), University of Ilorin. Read more

Odili, a living legend, says Abe (TheNation)

The lawmaker representing Rivers Southeast Senatorial District, Senator Magnus Abe, has described a former Governor of Rivers State, Dr. Peter Odili, as a living legend, whose exemplary lifestyle has impacted positively on many people. Abe, on Thursday in an online statement by his Spokesperson, Parry Benson, congratulated Odili, a chieftain of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), on his 70th birthday.  The senator, who is also a governorship aspirant on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers state for the 2019 election, stated that Odili should be emulated for his impressive performance as governor and love for humanity. Read more

Insecurity: NEC sets up panel to decentralize Police operation (TheNation)

The National Economic Council (NEC) on Thursday set up a committee towards decentralizing the operations of the Nigerian Police Force. This was disclosed by the National Security Adviser (NSA), Babagana Monguno at the end of the NEC meeting chaired by Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja. He was with the Jigawa State Governor, Abubakar Badaru and Deputy Governor of Benue State, Benson Abuonu. Read more

Contempt: Court Adjourns INEC Chairman’s Trial Indefinitely (ThisDay)

A Federal High Court in Abuja Thursday adjourned indefinitely the contempt trial of Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmoud Yakubu. Justice Stephen Pam adjourned the trial to a date that will be communicated to parties in the suit by the authorities of the Federal High Court. Although the INEC chief was ordered to appear in court personally to show cause why he should not be committed to prison for violating the court order, he was however represented by a legal practitioner, Samuel Omale. Read more

Why IGP Idris Is Mad About The Letter (PremiumTimes)

It might appear strange that of all the problems that the inspector general of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has on his table, his biggest concern is how to squeeze a journalist to disclose the source of a leak. But there’s a reason for his obsession. One week ago, Samuel Ogundipe, a reporter with PREMIUM TIMES, wrote a story from a leaked letter by IGP Idris to Acting President Yemi Osinbajo, which was supposed to be an interim report on the invasion of the National Assembly by the State Security Service. The letter was not published by PREMIUM TIMES alone. Other newspapers feasted on it. The social media was awash with it as well. So, why has Idris made Ogundipe and PREMIUM TIMES his scapegoat? Read more

Is English Important for Scientific Research and Development? (PremiumTimes)

Often, there is this back-and-forth argument on whether the English language is even needed for our scientific development as a nation, because being Nigerians, we are not a native English-speaking country by any real definition of the terms. It is a fact that our sense is found in our thoughts, not in our language; even though the language is very critical in communicating our sense. But to be successful in the business of creating knowledge, and especially in science, we must learn to communicate concisely to present our sense. Read more

DSS frees detained journalist Jones Abiri after two years (Vanguard)

The Department of State Services, DSS, has released the Bayelsa-based journalist and publisher of the Weekly Source Magazine, Mr. Jones Abiri who had been in detention for over two years. Abiri was arrested at his office in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State on July 21, 2016, over an alleged link to armed militancy in the Niger Delta region. Mr. Abiri was charged to court on July 27, 2018, being two years after his arrest and detention. Read more

Teacher ‘pours hot water on neighbour’ (TheNation)

A teacher, Funmilayo Salami, who allegedly poured hot water on her neighbour Maria Gilbert following an argument, was on Thursday brought before an Ogba Chief Magistrates’ Court in Lagos. Salami, 41, of No. 6, Jinudu Street, Agege, was arraigned by the police on a one-count charge of assault before Mr W.A. Salami. Prosecuting Inspector Abiola Adewale said the incident occurred at about 6:30 pm on July 27, following an argument. Read more

3 lawmakers charged to court for treason (Guardian)

Three Ugandan lawmakers, who are critics of President Yoweri Museveni, were Thursday charged to court for treason on their alleged role in the stoning of the president’s convoy. According to the charge sheet submitted to a Magistrates’ Court in Gulu, the accused “with intent to do harm to the person of the president … unlawfully aimed and threw stones thereby hitting and smashing the rear windscreen of the presidential car.” Dozens of others were also charged. Read more

Recalled psychiatric hospital staff sends SOS to Osibanjo (TheNation)

A staff of the Federal Neuro-Psychiatric hospital in Edo State, Dr. Ambrose Lawani, has sent a Save our Soul message to Acting President Yemi Osibanjo that his 2017 presidential directive for him to be restored has been ignored by the hospital management. Dr. Lawani in a letter to the Acting President reminded him that in August 2017, he gave a directive to the Federal Ministry of Health for their immediate reinstatement based on the petition they sent him. Lawani stated that he was a victim of gross impunity and abuse of power as conveyed in the letter dated 24th January 2017. Read more

Father Kills Man For Following Daughter Into Bathroom (Leadership)

Tragedy has struck in Arizona U.S. after a father decided to “take care of a situation” his own way by killing a man who attempted to enter a bathroom stall where his daughter was. Police say Melvin Harris III faces a second-degree murder charge in the beating death of Leon Leevon Armstrong, AZFamily.com reports. Read more

Buhari fully committed to use of PVCs, card readers, says Presidency (TheNation)

The Presidency yesterday said President Muhammadu Buhari is fully committed to the use of Permanent Voters Card (PVCs) and card readers for the 2019 general elections. A statement by Senior Special Assistant on Media and publicity, Garba Shehu reads: “Our attention has been drawn to incorrect and misleading reporting in newspapers regarding the status of the Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill, 2018. “The Presidency would like to set out the true status of the Bill. The Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill, 2018 was sent by the National Assembly to the Presidency at the end of June 2018, for assent. Read more

Borno leads Kano, Lagos, others in birth registration (PremiumTimes) 

Borno is leading other states of the federation in the number of birth registrations conducted nationwide in the last five years, the National Population Commission says. Emmanuel Mark, Head of Department, Vital Registration Department, National Population Commission (NPC) in Borno, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday. Read more

How 10-year-old boy ended up dead in drainage after rainfall in Delta (DailyPost)

Tragedy struck on Wednesday evening in Alifikede community, Agbor axis of Delta State when a 10-year-old boy identified as Kenneth Igbenoba, was allegedly swept into a drainage and was later found dead after a heavy rainfall. An eyewitness, Mercy Okoh, who spoke to DAILY POST, said: “The victim was playing inside the flood occasioned by the rainfall, and after the rain, we did not see him again. We started searching until his body was found inside the drainage system, he was already dead after he drank too much water”. Read more

 

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